Young Independent Readers

5987326059_cc6944d5ae_oNow that school is back in full swing and we’re all getting back into our “school-time routines,” I thought I’d take a moment to talk to you about one of my passions….READING! I’d love to share some tips with you about how to teach your kids to be independent readers and in turn…life long learners.

Reading is such a huge part of our lives. It’s in almost everything we do and of course it’s everywhere we go. Chrissy and I are very passionate about reading. I enjoy reading everything from self-improvement books to the Harry Potter Series. As far as I’m concerned there’s never enough time in the day to read as much as I’d like. At any given time, I have 3-4 books that I’m reading. I just can’t get enough!! :)love reading

I love reading so much and think it’s SOOO important that a few years back I decided to go back to school and get my masters degree in…Reading and Literacy of course!!! My two years of studying taught me a TON, but I’ve still got so much to learn about teaching children to love reading. My hope is to foster an independence in ALL my students that they can carry with them when they leave my class.

Much of our attitudes about reading comes from what we see at home. Think back to when you were a kid…Did your parents read a lot? Not just to you, but for their own enjoyment? Our mom loves to read…This made a huge different in my attitude about reading; which turned out to be a really big deal.

Reading didn’t come easy for me. In fact, my love for reading didn’t come until after I was in college a year or so. In elementary school, I hated reading out loud in front of my peers…I was slow and I stumbled a lot. Even through high school (which was even more embarrassing), I struggled. BUT, in spite of my embarrassment, I never hated reading and I strongly believed it’s because of the model I had at home.

readingLet your kids SEE you reading for pleasure. It might make a huge difference in how they feel about reading…ESPECIALLY if they are struggling!!

If they’re older (7ish and up), share a fun chapter book together. Make it a special time for one-on-one time with them. Make sure the book you’re reading together is something they are interested in. Make it fun…they don’t have to read, but they should be able to understand most of what you are reading to them. “Listening Comprehension” is a big piece of the foundation for reading success.

Talk to your kids about why they are interested in certain books and allow them to read what ever is interesting to them. I mean…WHATEVER!!! Even if it’s comic books or comicmagazines. As long as they are reading, THAT’S what’s important.

If your child is having a hard time picking a book to read, follow this strategy by “The 2 Sisters” (another pair of sisters that love working together). Their strategy is called “I PICK”:

I look at a book (inside and out)
Purpose (Why do I want to read it?)
Interest (Does it interest me?)
Comprehend (Do I understand it?)
Know most of the words

Once kids understand this strategy and have practiced it with an adult several times, they are ready to be more independent.  All it takes is a couple of minutes. Either they know most of the words or they don’t. Either they understand it or they don’t. Either it seems interesting to them or it doesn’t. Its’ as simple as that. What a quick, easy way for them to pick a book that not only is interesting for them, but they can read and understand it all on their own. Nothing empowers kids more than being able to do things on their own. Check out more great tips on teaching reading by the 2 Sisters here.

A love for reading has to be gradually fostered and nurtured…not just by teachers, but by parents, siblings, grandparents, neighbors, and friends. Try to spend at least 20 minutes a day reading with your child or listening to them read. The more books children are exposed to, the more words they are exposed to…the more things they will understand  about the world around them.

Please comment or send us an email if you have any questions about teaching your child to read. I’d love to help in any way that I can.

Peace to you…Happy reading!!


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Let the blogging re-begin!

welcomebackSOOOO yeah… we’ve been pretty busy. :( I’m talking cRaZy busy. I haven’t even thought about drafting a post since May. That’s pretty sad and no way to be a successful blogger and I apologize for that to any of our loyal friends that read our blog.

Here’s what we have done in a nutshell….

We have been at the lake…pretty much all summer. We’ve been camping, swimming and boating our buns off. Teaching our kids how to swim and water ski and watching them tube. Jumping off the lime creek bridge and remembering some great lake experiences from when we were kids. We got to spend more time with friends this summer than we have since we started our families and that has been absolutely amazing.

In June we participated in the Sawtooth Relay, a great running experience that starts in Stanley and ends in Ketchum. This was a great achievement that we were able to share with our mom, aunt, friends and EACH OTHER. It has been a while since we pulled an all nighter and we forgot how funny we both were when we were so tired we could hardly keep our eyes open. Like…pee the pants funny. no lies.

In July we were able to join the rest of the ladies in our community and climb up the mountain for the Ladies Hike to Fourth Peak. We look forward to this every year! I cant even begin to explain how empowering this event is and we are both so proud to be a part of it. However, I did almost die on the way down. Luckily, I had Ginny right behind me to laugh as I tumbled, what I can only describe as, a billion feet down the hill (in reality it was like 6-8 feet)only to be saved by a giant bush. If your in our area PLEASE join us for the hike! Trekking up that hill has really brought many of us together, and in this tight knit community you wouldn’t think that was even possible. What a great opportunity to support and be supportive of the ladies in your community! <3 CANT WAIT FOR NEXT YEAR!swthrly3

In August I got to go to the Mountain Home Country Music Festival with our closest friends and what a great time it was. We got to go to the lake during the music lulls and have a great time without the kids for 3 whole days! SUPER WILD! I had forgotten what it was like to wake up at my own speed… I pretty much was confused in the lack of purpose and didn’t know what to do with myself half the time. The other half was a hoot! This Festival isn’t for the faint of heart though and sadly I wined about the dust and heat constantly. The music was amazing, Blake Shelton was hands down awesome, but it will take some serious consideration before going back next year. For a small town girl that has lived in a dirt road metropolis almost her entire life… the dust was gritty, choking and covered everything in a good two inches and I didn’t care much for it. We made some great memories though, and that made it all worth it!

So with all the fun, training for races and hikes, and accounting for the 4 days it took to clean the dirt and dust from the festival off we didn’t get much else done. Here’s what we didnt do…

festlakeBlog obviously. When your away from your computer you can’t really post to your website. We did work on the site however, as we were dealt a devastating blow from a company that we promote heavily on our site regarding “compliance”. If you have come to our site in search of essential oil help and found nothing, its because most of our posts weren’t compliant and we had to remove them. This was painful and just about broke my heart. Ginny is handling it far better than I am because shes got a solid resolve and rolls with the punches like nobodies business.  We never looked at the oils as a money venture for our blog, they were a part of a multifaceted face of our blog and we have had to let that go. We are both still able to help in anyway we can with any essential oil questions you may have but please get in touch with us through email at instead of posting comments to our site. We still love to talk about oils and our preferred provider and urge you all to keep in touch with us with any questions. We may even do a few posts about oils but they will be compliant and a lot more vague than our posts from the past.

This guy was past out at the fest before 4pm. Poor lamb.

This stranger man was passed out at the fest before 4pm. Poor lamb.

I had a good deal of starts, seeds, compost and plans for my garden but didn’t get to tilling up my dirt…so this summer I didn’t get any sort of harvest from my garden. I didn’t can anything and didn’t use a single apple or plum off of my trees. I did absolutely nothing to put away food for the winter and that is going to cost me some money. I’m very depressed about it.

Right off the bat one of our hives took a dive this spring. We bought nucs this year with the hope that we would have two hives. About two weeks after installing, one of the hives absconded. That’s a fancy way of saying “peace out holmes” in bee speak. So they left us. Super depressing. The other hive has been also lack luster. Usually my backyard is full of the hum from the hives. This summer, not so much. I would go out and watch the entrance for ten minutes at a stretch and the activity was pretty sad. I decided to just leave them alone and see what would happen. They never did build up population and I’m definitely not hopeful going into the winter. God speed my little ladies, I’m just hoping for a miracle.

My husband loaded, cut and stacked all the firewood alone this summer, and I’m feeling pretty low in the “wife and partner” department. We are a family that survives by being as self sufficient as possible, that is a choice that Alex and I have made together and so far I haven’t held up my end of the bargain. Tomorrow is another day! Without the winter stores I’m going to be working my tail off and I’m hoping with all that work I’ll forgive myself for my summer off.

SO! Our blogging resumes as of TODAY! I hope everybody is as excited as we are to start seeing posts to Sisters Practical Magic again.

Pssst…we have plans for another giveaway! If you have read this whole long winded post about nothing particular…your already a leg up on the competition!


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Ginny’s EO #10

Children’s Allergy Relief Blend

I created this blend initially to help treat a nasty reaction to some mosquito bites. My daughter was getting very swollen and the bites were almost unbearable for her. Not really even thinking about it, I whipped up a blend of oils that I knew would help stop some of the itching and hopefully decrease some of the swelling. The blend worked wonders to help alleviate some of her discomfort.

Little did I know that I would also be using it to help treat my son’s allergies. He has never ever had issues with allergies in the past and now, all of a sudden, we can’t walk outside without his eyes becoming red and itchy. For my outdoor loving boy, this is tragic! It’s very frustrating for him to not be able to go out and enjoy the places he loves most.

I tried this blend on him when he had his very first reaction to something floating around in the air. The reaction he was having was bad enough that we needed to throw him in the shower and change his clothes. His right eye was swelling rapidly. I put the allergy blend on his feet every fifteen minutes after he got out of the shower. Withing a half hour he was still a bit swollen, but the itching was gone. We’ve been using the blend every day since.

If you have a little one suffering from allergies and don’t want to give them a synthetic allergy medication, give this blend a try and see if it works. As with all essential oils, what works for us may not work for you, but it could be worth a shot. Feel free to tweek things to work for you and your child’s chemical make-up. We use pure essential oils because we feel more confident in where they came from and how safe they are. If you’re using a different brand of oils, you may need to change the amount of drops you’re putting in.

Here’s the recipe:

In a 10 mL rollerball mix:
20 drops Lavender
20 drops Lemon
20 drops Peppermint
15 drops Melaleuca
Top the bottle off with Fractionated Coconut Oil.

Rub this blend over your child’s feet every morning and at night for prevention and anytime during the day in between when their allergies are causing them some troubles. I also will swipe it across my son’s forehead if we’re out and about and his eyes start to get itchy.

Another great preventative measure is to have your child take a spoonful of raw local honey twice a day. Over time the honey may help build your child’s immunity to whatever type of pollen is causing their allergies. AND you won’t hear any complaints from your wee one about taking honey for a medication. ;) Find out more about what honey can do for your allergies here. There is not much research out there to prove that this theory is correct or incorrect, but hey…if it tastes good and it’s also good for you, why not take a spoonful every once and a while.

I hope you are all able to enjoy this beautiful summer weather with all of your kids in tow! :)

**I’m not a doctor…please follow this protocol with caution and consult your doctor before beginning it. This blog post is meant to share a success story that I had, not diagnose or treat any ailment that the reader may have.


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Severe Sinus Cold Protocol

Sinus ColdA couple of weeks ago I had a sinus cold hit me like a freight train. It came on fast and hard…and I’m pretty sure I was developing a sinus infection. The severe pain radiated from above my eyebrows clear into my teeth.

Lucky for me, I had an amazing sister who had just gone through something similar a month before. Chrissy shared what worked for her and I started the protocol right away. I thought that we should put the information out there since it worked so well for both of us. We both avoided a doctor’s visit and the dreaded antibiotics. With all of my tummy problems, I will only take antibiotics unless I’ve extended all other resources (in steps essential oils…a God send!!). Antibiotics can strip your body of much needed good bacteria. These good bacteria live within you digestive system and are important in maintaining a healthy immune system.

Here is what we did to relieve and help heal our severe sinus colds:

At the onset of any cold, Chrissy and I both recommend taking what’s called a “Flu Bomb.” For adults that is 2 drop Oregano, 4 drops Lemon, and 4 drops Protective Blend. Do this about every 2 hours until your symptoms are gone.

When I got my sinus cold, I was diffusing  Respiratory Blend and Protective Blend (in seperate diffusers) CONSTANTLY…If you only have one diffuser, you could alternate the two blends.

After the sinus pressure hit full force, I started taking Lemon, Lavender, and Peppermint (2 drops each) in a capsule or small glass of water about every 2-4 hours. This helps to clear up the congestion and pressure.

Another oil that works wonders on the congestion is Digestive Blend (down the bridge of your nose and across your forehead). Weird to use a stomach blend on your face, but it works…trust me! I was using this blend on my sinuses about every hour to keep the pressure down.

We also recommend using a neti pot to help flush out your sinuses. I did it once in the morning when I got up and again at night before bed. If your sinus pressure is super bad, you could probably do it mid-day as well. There is a ton of information out there on the Web about how to use a neti pot effectively. Here’s the one I watched. I will warn you that using a neti pot is the weirdest sensation I’ve ever experienced inside my nose. If you’ve never used one before, it takes some getting used to, but it’s SO worth it afterwards.

The most important thing to remember with a protocol like this is consistency! If you aren’t consistently using your oils to help support your healing process, you won’t see results as quickly or effectively. Anytime you are using essential oils, you’ll want to remember to use a low dose, more often…especially for acute cases like a sinus infection.

**I’m not a doctor…please follow this protocol with caution and consult your doctor before beginning it. This blog post is meant to share a success story that I had, not diagnose or treat any ailment that the reader may have.


Posted in Essential Oil, Ginny's Journal, Health and Wellness, Herb and EO Journal, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Homemade Pizza

bubpizzaMy family has to have pizza almost every week. HAS TO. Sit in for green peace, picket line protest, riots and looting if pizza isn’t heading their way soon… kind of situation. Our town has the greatest little pizza place that we often treat ourselves to but buying pizza once a week gets rather expensive. So I make pizza 90% of the time. Its really easy and super cheap.

Here we go.


bubsaucepint of tomato sauce (or a can)
can of tomato paste (6oz)
Garlic (I use almost 4 cloves cause we love garlic)
1-2 T. Italian seasoning (oregano, basil, sage…what ever suits you)
Salt and pepper to taste

First things first. Mix the sauce up and leave it to sit for at least an hour. You could even do it in the morning before you leave for work.

Crust (this is for one crust and maybe a few breadsticks, but easily doubles for more)

1 tbs yeast
1 cup hot water
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
3 tbs oil
3 cups flour (round abouts)

peppizzaMix everything but the flour in your stand mixer with your dough hook attachment. Add flour a cup at a time until you get your consistency. I like my bread to rise high and be really airy so I like my dough to be a little sticky when I leave it to rise. Rise time for this is 45 minutes to an hour.

Grease pan(s) with oil. Roll out your dough on a floured surface. Try to get it pretty thin other wise you will end up with limp pizza and that’s never fun. Arrange your dough on your pizza pan, leaving your edges unfinished hanging over the sides. Alex loves plenty of sauce so I lay it on pretty thick. But you should do whatrollnpizzas best for you. Layer on all your favorite toppings. We go for meatlovers with pepperoni, ham, and sausage. I use at least 2 cups of mozzarella and probably the same amount of cheddar. I like to start with my base of sauce then go to a layer of meat then cheese, and so on a so fourth. Always ending with a layer of cheese. Then I sprinkle a healthy dose of Italian seasoning.

Roll up the edges of your crust and bake at 400 for 20 or so minutes. Your cheese should start to slightly turn brown. Check your crust and make sure its good and browned if you can.

pizzauncookedLet sit for a few minutes so your cheese can set up… then eat it!!!

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Baby Bum Salve

Baby Bum SalveAs promised last week in my “Diaper Wipes and Solution” post, I’ll be sharing my diaper rash ointment today. This stuff was a life saver several times for my baby. She had what some would consider as chronic diaper rash. It didn’t seem to matter what she ate…she always got a rash and they were super hard to get rid of.

When she got a diaper rash on her bum it was BaAaAd! All the store bought ointments and creams would sting and burn…I still remember the shrill screams from her poor helpless mouth when I tried different brands. All I wanted to do was help her bum feel better, not make it worse. It was heart wrenching!

I came up with this salve recipe after much trial and error and fell in love with it quickly. She didn’t scream when I put it on, in fact more often than not it would help ease the pain so she would quit crying all together.

It worked most of the time for her most severe rashes. One time it wasn’t working, my mother-in-law found us a cream at a pharmacy called Calmoseptine (I think) and that didn’t seem to irritate her and worked nicely to clear it up. We kept the tube around for emergencies, but used this salve for most of her rashes.

Here’s what you’ll need:

2 oz. beeswax
1 cup coconut oil
1 oz lanolin (optional)
1 tsp vitamin E oil
2 oz calendula infused oil (or just olive oil)
1/4 cup aloe vera gel
20 drops of melaleuca essential oil
15 drops lavender essential oil
8 drops of lemon essential oil

In order to make this recipe you’ll need a double boiler (I get real technical and use a pot and a metal bowl). Melt the beeswax, coconut oil and lanolin in your homemade or store bought double boiler, if you’re fancy like that. Remove from the heat. Add your calendula infused oil, vitamin E, and aloe. Let cool completely. Add your essential oils and mix well. Transfer to small jars and freeze what you aren’t using so it doesn’t go bad. There are not preservatives in this so, after you take it out of the freezer, you’ll need to use it withing 2 weeks.

I hope that this salve will be useful for someone out there. It made a huge difference for my sweet baby girl and her diaper rash issues.


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DIY Diaper Wipes and Solution

diaper wipesUsing cloth diapers was a choice Chrissy and I both made to cut back some of the expenses in our houses. We bought our diapers here. Up front it cost a pretty penny, but the amount we saved in the long run was well worth it. We stock piled different sizes of diapers while we were pregnant with our oldest boys. And the best part was…we were both able to reuse the diapers we bought for our next child.

While we were stockpiling diapers, Chrissy devised a great way to save even more money…by making our own diaper wipes! It was cheap, easy, and effective.

All you need is 1 yard of flannel fabric and a sewing machine. Oh…scissors and coordinating thread might help too! ;) We chose to use flannel because it’s really soft and is very absorbent.

Spread the fabric out, keeping it folded in half. You’ll keep the front and back pieces together when you go to sew. Cut out the desired size you would like. We did 3” x 4” because they fit pretty well in an old diaper wipe dispensers. Cut out as many sets as the yard will allow, keeping the two pieces together.

Head to the sewing machine and stitch around the outside of each pair with a zig-zag stich. I didn’t even need to pin mine. They don’t have to be super pretty, your baby won’t mind. ;) Pile them into a container. AND you’re done!!

At this point you have to decide: do you want to leave them dry and moisten them only as you need them or do you want to make a solution to pour over them? I’ve done both and find that my babies were less likely to get a diaper rash if I make some kind of wipe solution to kill any bacteria that might try and hang out after I’ve cleaned up all the poopy. Here’s the recipe I came up with for my favorite wipe solution:

Chamomile Diaper Wipe Solution:

2 cups hot water
1/3 cup dried chamomile flowers or a couple of chamomile tea bags
6 drops Melaleuca essential oil
¾ cup raw uncut apple cider vinegar
a pinch of Epsom salt

Steep the flowers/tea bags in the hot water for about 5 minutes (then filter out the flowers)

Mix the remaining ingredients in to the chamomile water (Epsom salt will help to keep the oil and water from separating)

Pour the solution over your wipes.

At this point you’ll need to check to make sure all of the wipes got saturated… I kinda squish my wipes down to squeeze a bit of the solution down farther into the stack of wipes. If there are still a few wipes that didn’t get much of the moisture, add a little bit more water to spread the solution throughout all the wipes.

Another diaper wipe solution I’ve tried and found to be pretty effective is to use ½ cup of witch hazel mixed with 3 cups of hot water. Poor over homemade diaper wipes.

AND their ready to use…As you finish changing a diaper, just keep the wipe inside the dirty diaper and wash them together. Easy peasy!!

Don’t use cloth diapers or cloth wipes??? NO PROBLEM!!

Cut a paper towel roll to fill and empty wipes dispenser and pour the wipe solution over that. Pull out the card board center and draw the paper towels up through the center and push into the lid of the wipes dispenser. I use this method when we travel. We buy a small pack of disposable diapers to use for convenience and take our homemade wipes with us. My daughter has a very sensitive bum and I couldn’t use the store bought wipes on her or she would breaks out in a rash..

Making your own wipes is a safe, natural, not to mention SUPER cheap way to clean your baby’s sweet lil tooshie! We hardly ever had a problem with diaper rash when using the chamomile wipes solution. Of course I also make a rash ointment to use on the rare occasion that my little Bug did get a rash. I’ll post the recipe for that next week. :)


Posted in Being Self Sufficient, Craftiness, Herbs not food, Little Bodies, Natural Mommy, Sewing Projects, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Idahoan Shepherds Pie

sheppieYou know what aggravates me to no end? Finding a recipe that boasts to be one of the most amazing things that you will ever put in your mouth? Then it tastes hoe-hum? Ya know? This recipe will either do it for you or it wont. Personally, I like it enough to eat it… my husband? LOVES IT!! I don’t know why because usually recipes that are this easy will get a complimentary nod from him. He literally gets crazy excited when I make this though. One of my favorite things about this recipe is that other than the flour and dairy, I can grow it in my garden (or in most cases steal it from my grandmas) and the meat comes from my husbands Fall hunting haul.

Idahoan Shepherds Pie

1 pound Elk Burger (any kind of ground meat will work here)bulion

1 onion

1 jar of canned green beans (store bought canned works great)

2 cups frozen corn (1 can works great too)

homemade cream of chicken, mushroom or beef soup (1 can of store bought is fine) –2tbs butter, 2tbs flour sauteed with 2 cups milk and 2-3 tsp bullion.

4 or 5 potatoes, peeled, boiled and mashed. Honestly, here your on your own. I hate following recipe directions pertaining to potatoes. There’s never enough or there’s too much… living in Idaho means your potatoes are huge so usually the latter happens.

shepperpieBrown the burger with the onion. If you use beef you will have to drain it after its cooked. Toss your cooked meat and onion into a 9X13″ pan. From here you can go two ways. Layer your veggies OR mix it all up. Me? I mix it all up, its gonna taste the same anyway and when I get too formal with stuff it stops being an easy meal to cook and more of a chore. From there I stir in the cream of whatever in… or have your butler layer it on if you so choose.  Finally, load those taters on the top. Do not mix this in or your casserole will not be a casserole and more like a cow pie in appearance and texture. Gently spread the mashed potatoes over the contents of the pan. Bake at 350 for half and hour to 45 minutes. BOOM… dinner. We eat this in bowls since it contains all of your essential food groups to have it be considered a nutritious meal.

Ready to hit the oven1

Ready to hit the oven


Posted in Being Self Sufficient, Home Recipes, Idaho Grown, Real Food, Sisters Grown or Hunted, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Confessions of an Emotional Eater

Emotional EaterI’m opening up and being very vulnerable about something a bit embarrassing for me this week. I have a problem and my hope/prayer is that if I write about it, it won’t be so hard to control. We have to admit we have a problem and be willing to change before it can be resolved…Right? I only ask that you please don’t judge me…This is pretty hard for me to talk about.

Here goes…

Hi. My name is Ginny and I have an emotional eating problem. Whenever anything is upsetting for me, hard to handle, or even when I’m just plain bored, I stuff my face like a bear storing up for winter. Obviously this makes it hard for me to achieve my weight loss goals or keep wight off once I’ve lost it.

I ‘m constantly bouncing back and forth from an “ok” weight for my short frame to a weight that makes me feel super self conscious. During the later, I don’t want to be dressed in anything but sweat pants. I’m just uncomfortable and feel gross; partially because of how I see myself, but also because of all the garbage I’m shoveling into my body. Then…to top it all off during this self conscious time, I also start getting worried and stressed about my weight. Guess what this leads to….More eating!! It’s a viscous cycle. :(

Having just celebrated my 32nd birthday, my metabolism isn’t what it used to be. So…it’s becoming much easier to put on weight and much harder to take it off once it’s on there. The problem is that I’ve been eating to mask my emotions ever since I can remember. I’ve gone through phases of eating tons and then cutting back and getting control, only to fall back into my hole and eat tons again. Prrrobably not the best thing for my body!!

From large portion sizes to closet eating , this has got to stop!

As I’m becoming more and more aware of my emotional triggers, I can see a light at the end of the tunnel, but I still catch myself burying my emotions in a bag of Doritoes sometimes. Being honest with myself about how I’m feeling is the best way to stop what I’m doing; which requires me to put down the chip bag and stop to think about what the underlying issue is so that I can deal with it. Kind of hard to do sometimes; especially if I don’t want to deal with it in the first place.

One other thing that was helpful and put a hurtin on my emotional eating was when my husband and I decided to start eating healthier a couple of years ago. We do our best not to buy any “junk food” when grocery shopping. We always have fresh fruits and veggies around the house to snack on. We try our best to buy organic so that we’re not putting unwanted toxins into our bodies. The chips we buy are plain, old, boring, dip in salsa corn chips. Still not a great choice…but better then Doritoes. We only have candy in the house after holidays such as Halloween, Christmas, or Easter. And only then because other people have given it to us.

I’m very proud of the choices we’ve made in what we will/should eat. However, I’m still struggling with self control  when I’m out and about. Junk is WAY to easy for me to get my hands on. I’m more prone to grab junk food when I’m alone. I’ve been known to hide/stash bags of chips or gummy worms in the car at times….I’m getting better, but I slip up from time-to-time. It’s pretty embarrassing when your husband finds your bag of “car chips” under the seat by accident. :-/

One of my biggest fears is that I will pass this emotional eating problem on to one or both of my children. I know I’m not setting a very good example for them right now…even if I think I’m pretty good at hiding it. I pray that I can get it under control soon.

Thank you so much for reading my confessions. If you have any tips or tricks that have worked for you, please share. I’m open to any and all suggestions. Or even if you have a confession of your own about emotional eating, you’re welcome to get it off your chest in our comments section. :)

Any prayers or thoughts you can send my way would be greatly appreciated.

God bless!


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Gluten Free Chicken Stips

GF Chicken Strips 2*Not gluten free? Check out the recipe at the bottom that I used to use…the kids loved it.

I’ve been doing my best to be gluten free for about 8 or 9 months now. I’ve done a TON of experimenting and had a great deal of failures with a couple of sporadic successes. Thus the reason why this is the first gluten free recipe I’ve shared so far.

I’m actually really excited about this because it took a long time to get these chicken strips to a point where everyone in the family would enjoy them.

The great thing is that these can either be fried or baked…whatever your preference is. We usually bake ours, but we tried them fried the other night and they were super yummy that way too…What am I talking about? They were even better that way…everything is better when it’s fried. ;)

The recipe is big enough to freeze about half of it, depending on your family size. I usually take the extra time to make a big batch, so we’ll have an easy to grab lunch for the next few days. I have even made a double batch over a weekend to have a little stock pile of chicken strips in the freezer for when I know we’re going to have a busy week ahead of us.

To save myself some time and a few dishes, I like to mix each “concoction” in a gallon ziploc bag. This way I can throw everything in the bag and shake it around a little…instead of doing small batches of dipping; which can take forever.GF chicken strips

Gluten Free Chicken Strips

5-6 chicken breasts (cut into strips)
5-6 eggs (one per breast)
¼ cup water
2 cups almond flour
2 cups masa (corn) flour
1 cup gluten free flour blend
½ Tbs. garlic powder
1 tsp. seasoning salt
¼ tsp. black pepper
2 Tbs. dried parsley flakes
2 Tbs. chicken bouillon powder

1. Mix the eggs and water and scramble well.

2. Combine the flours, garlic powder, salt, pepper, parsley, and bouillon powder in a bag and combine.

3. Thrown the strips of raw chicken in the eggs. Coat well. Transfer to the flour bag (this can be pretty messy…oh well~if you’re not making a mess, it won’t taste as good right!?!). Shake and coat well. Place the coated strips on a cookie sheet, lined with parchment paper (or just a greased cookie sheet).

4. Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes on each side. Or fry them up in your frier.

Gluten Full Version (with a few variations) :)

5-6 chicken breasts (cut into strips)
5-6 eggs (one per breast)
¼ cup water
1 ½ cups flour
½ Tbs. garlic powder
1 tsp. seasoning salt
¼ tsp. black pepper
3 cups bread crumbs (click here for our DIY bread crumb tutorial)
2 Tbs. dried parsley flakes
2 Tbs. chicken bouillon powder

1. Mix the eggs and water and scramble well.

2. Combine the flour, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.

3. In a separate bag, mix the bread crumbs, parsley flakes, and bouillon together.

4. Thrown the strips of raw chicken in the flour mixture, then the eggs, and lastly the bread crumbs. I like to pat the bread crumbs into the meat to make them stick better. Place the breaded strips on a cookie sheet, lined with parchment paper (or just a greased  cookie sheet).

5. Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes on each side. Or fry them up in your frier.

Bonus Recipe: Best Fry Sauce in the WHOLE World
(I apologize for the vague measurements…I never measure, but it always turns out AmAzInG)

1 huge scoop of mayonnaise
Equally large amount of ketchup
About 2 tsp of mustard
Couple of shakes of Worcestershire
A dash of pickle juice

Stir to combine. :)

I’d love to hear your thoughts on these recipes. Or if you have a GF recipe you’d like to share, please comment below or send us an email.

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