Guest Post~ Elisabeth M. Stone

So many guest posts as of late, we are gushing! Today, we are extremely honored and excited to present, Elisabeth M. Stone. Proud mama, activist, and foodie.

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Earth Foodies: Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Elisabeth: Hello!  I’m Elisabeth M. Stone and I write a lifestyle blog (Elisabeth M. Stone), a community inspiration blog (The Mama Earth Project), and an upcoming food activist blog (The Family Food Revolution).  I’m a 20 y/o mother to two little girls, Eden and Ostara.  I live in the Seattle area with my family and a mini commune, thriving on a vegan diet.

EF: Why have you adopted a plant based/ vegan diet?

E: My husband and I (out of completely random curiosity) attended a showing of Forks Over Knives the month that it was in theaters.  We walked into the movie completely clueless and walked out with more interest in food and nutrition than we’ve ever had toward another topic.  We immediately put our family on a whole, vegan diet and from there went organic and have been studying and mentoring since.

EF: Can you give us some good resources for a healthful transition over to veganism?

E: My favorite documentaries are Forks Over Knives, Vegucated (though this is not a good resource to learn “whole-food” veganism), Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead, and Earthlings.

My favorite books on the topic are: The Kind Diet, The Food Revolution, Diet for a New America, The China Study, No Happy Cows, Hope’s Edge, & Diet for a Small Planet.

Children’s books available are: That’s Why We Don’t Eat Animals and Vegan is Love.

And my favorite cook book on the planet?  Local Bounty

EF: Do you find any limitations to the diet? How do you deal with it?

E: In 2013 the only real limitations that I find are that it’s difficult to find vegan snacks at the passing gas stations or Starbucks when we’re traveling.  Pretty much every restaurant I’ve been to has fantastic GMO-free vegan options!  I do live in Seattle, though.  We’re pretty ahead of the game here.

EF: Do you experience any cravings? How do you deal with those?

E: Every once in a while I crave a meatball sub like nobody’s business.  On those days, I need only text my husband while he’s at work with CODE: SUB (he works at a grocery store… quite convenient on occasion).   He dutifully buys a bag of vegan meatballs, some bread, and marinara sauce.

Other times I just suck it up and drink some water.

EF: What are you favorite things to eat and cook?

E: My favorite?  I pretty much just love food.  If it’s keeping me alive and healthy, I’m good.  But I guess –specifically- I love spinach with insane enthusiasm.  Like, if it were healthy for me to eat a spinach salad 5x/day every day, I’d be one happy camper.

EF: Tell me about your little (cute) babes? What do they love to eat? Have they adopted a plant based diet?

E: My 3 y/o has been vegetarian since birth and vegan since we made the switchover as a family a couple years ago.  She does fantastic with the lifestyle and confuses all the nay-sayers by being a miniature hulk with a fantastic immune system.  At our last pediatrician visit she explained that her favorite foods were kale and carrots.  I got the eyebrow-lift and then a knowing, “She must be vegan?”

Could you tell?

As for my almost-one-year-old?  She just eats rainbow chard and boob.

EF: What or Who inspires you?

E: I’m inspired by people with balls, like John Robbins.  And I mean that strictly metaphorically.  He was born into the Baskin-Robbins empire.  He swam in a pool shaped like an ice cream cone!  But he chose to live a life that made a positive impact of Earth and Her people by leaving his family’s wealth and becoming an influential food activist.  (This is, of course, aside from living a completely minimalist lifestyle in a one-room cabin in the woods with his wife for 10 years.)  I really dig people like that, you know?

I’m inspired by people that are real and passionate.  I like to see people living their activism.  Scratch that, I LOVE it.

I’m inspired by people that take their passions to the extreme.  You’re upset by world hunger so you fasted for 2 months and sold everything for charity? You’re my new best friend.  You adopted 13 dogs because they were going to be euthanized otherwise?  Let’s hang out.

And at the same time I am so inspired by people taking the baby steps that they need to take in the right direction.

I’m really just inspired by everything.

EF: What do you do to stay healthy and nourished in the crazy stress of running a blog, going to school, and raising two healthy babes?

E: I listen very close to my body and what foods make it thrive most.  Adding more raw food into my diet has given me insane energy boosts that help me keep stress levels down.  I don’t really like to exercise.  I like to hoop, chase the kids, do light meditative yoga, and walk rather than drive.  This is probably fulfilling my exercise needs.      

So… I eat for my body’s needs and I don’t ever push myself to extremes with working out.  Less stress, more energy, better mama.

EF: What do you have going on in the future? What can we look forward to?!

E: Oh, love.  Everything.

I’ve devoted my life to reaching out and creating a presence that encourages Earth Activism and raising the next generation to be more responsible, mindful, and passionate than the last few have been.  I want to do this through offerings such as Wheel of the Year http://www.elisabethmstone.com/wheeloftheyear (a subscription for parents looking to connect their family with the cycles of Mama Nature) and my husband’s and my forthcoming blog, courses, and written works on the varying topics of environmental family action and compassionate and healthful veganism.  Keep your eyes out for it!

 

 

 

Recipe~ Vegan Sourcream

Last week I showed you how to make rejuvelace, which is the base for sour creams, yogurts, and vegan cheezes.  My favorite use of rejevalc is sour cream. I use it for everything. Soups, Mexican Food, Curry, ect. The tang and texture of this is superb. I love to pour it over my favorite nacho plate.

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Or strategically place it on top of burrito.

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Vegan Sour Cream

2 c of soaked cashews (2 to 8 hours)

1 c of rejuvelac

a pinch of salt

Put cashews, rejuvelac, and salt in a blender. Blitz until nice and smooth. Place mixture in a glass jar and seal it with either a paper towel or cheese cloth (fastened by a rubber band).  Let the mixture sit for 24 to 48 hours. It depends on how tangy you want the sour cream to be. I usually let it go for 48 hours.  When mixture is done, taste and place in fridge for a few hours. Mixture will firm even more in the cool refrigerator.  Stores for about two weeks.

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Guest Post~ Stephanie Perkinson

We are so excited to present our guest speaker Stephanie Perkinson. An inspiring women who works with women to help heal and nourish their journeys in this life! Enjoy!~
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Earth Foodies: Tell us a bit about your story.

Stephanie: Well, I’m a mom of two delicious boys and we live together with my boyfriend in a coastal town south of Boston, MA. Most people know me through the seasonal cleanses I run online. I LOVE my life and the people in it. I feel incredibly blessed to do what I do. My story doesn’t start there though.

It starts back to when I was pregnant with my first son. During that pregnancy I gained over 75lbs. I started out as a size 8 and ballooned up to a 14. I truly thought it would all magically fall off as soon as I had the baby, as I have never really had big issues with my weight prior. Well, I was wrong. While I did lose about 35 lbs in the first few months with no effort, those extra 50 plus pounds hung around. For years. I had my second son about 4 years later and I was so done looking in the mirror and seeing someone who truly didn’t feel like the me that was on the inside.

I was ready to do whatever it took to change. I was never good at dieting and I was having trouble figuring out what kind of exercise I needed to be doing. My husband was working during the day and going to school at night. I was home with the boys. My formerly active, outdoor loving self began leading a sedentary life with a kitchen close by at all times every time I was bored or something didn’t go right. There wasn’t a lot of “me” time in those years and I knew I needed help with this, if I was going to change.

I found a holistic health coach that I knew through a friend and immediately signed on with her. She taught me so much! I loved what I was learning and eagerly applied it to my life. I began to get happier and clearer about what I wanted out of life. I realized that a lot of what was going on around me didn’t work anymore. I was changing, reconnecting with myself. So, feeling brave (and scared shitless) I made one of the biggest, hardest choices of my life. I moved out of the house I shared with my husband and filed for divorce. It was the most emotionally draining time in my life, but It was also one of the best decisions I ever made.


EF: Why did you choose the health coaching world and what do you do?

S:
I chose to become a health coach at the urging and support of my own health coach that I had been seeing for the last 7 or 8 months. She believed in me. My family believed in me. I had just left my husband and had moved my kids back to my hometown in a different state. I was living with my parents and I felt so incredibly lost. I had been a stay at home mom and freelance artist for 5 years and I wasn’t sure what my next step would be. Who the hell was going to hire me?Deciding to go to Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN) changed the course of my life. It gave me a path to follow, even though I had no idea where it would lead.  I immersed myself in the course material as soon as it reached my doorstep and never looked back. I have always been fascinated by alternative ways of healing, eating, cooking and living.When I graduated from IIN I immediately began seeing clients. I work with women who are ready to look in the mirror and smile at themselves. Women who, just like me have lost touch with themselves for a variety of reasons. I help them begin to lose weight (if they want too), love their bodies, see connection between their habits and their lives and support them as they transition to a way of eating and living that works for them. I work one on one as well as facilitate online group programs centered around eating real food and living a life this reflects our deepest desires and truth.

I have to admit, before my own experience of working with a health coach I always felt like a “healthy lifestyle” was totally unattainable for me. It was too overwhelming and confusing, it was something that skinny people did, not me, that I wouldn’t be able to eat pie anymore, that I had to do yoga everyday. I am so happy to tell each woman that I work with that this simply is not true. I’m living proof.

EF: What sort of philosophies do you have around food?

S: I absolutely and completely believe in the concept of bio-individuality. I do not preach or teach any one way of eating over others.It’s all about experimentation. I love to cook (and eat) and like to show people how totally yummy healthy eating can be. In our house, we eat a little bit of everything, lots of veggies and fruit and try to find the highest quality ingredients we can afford. I prefer and highly recommend eating seasonally and locally. For example, that might mean some grilled steak tips or scallops on Monday, roasted veggies over polenta on Tuesday and raw zucchini pasta on Wednesday. Life is too short to take food too seriously, I guide people towards what tastes good AND works for their bodies.
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EF: Do you ever encounter resistance in your world? How do you deal?

S:
Happily, no. When I talk to people about what I do they are always excited to hear more. People are REALLY craving information about food. They want to feel so much better than they do. They want to know why they are feeling so crappy. There is so much misinformation out there and I love educating people (if they ask me too). So no, I guess I have been fortunate to not run into any resistance. I’m lucky to be pretty skilled in the kitchen…It’s hard to be resistant to food that taste and makes you feel so good!

EF: What keeps you inspired to continue on your path of health and wellness?

S:
Constantly learning and pushing myself into unfamiliar territory. Seeing progress and sharing ah-hah moments with clients. Connecting with like minded souls (like you guys!) to chat about food and life. Experimenting with food to find what optimally works for me right now. Making sure to include beauty, nature and creativity into every day.EF: Do you have anything coming up? Please do tell!S:I do! I have been wanting to blend my creative design background with what I do now ever since I started Wellness by Design. I have partnered with Leah Kent of Skill It to create a gorgeous online e-course called “Feathering the Nest”. It’s a two week program that guides you into making your home a beautiful space that mirrors the love & dreams you hold in your soul. It’s about tapping into our femininity to coax out that magic that lays dormant in our homes. We will have written prompts, creative projects, a few recipes and a lot more to sensually guide you to create a sacred space that nourishes everyone who inhabits it. You can learn more here : http://skillitri.com/feathering-the-nest/
FTN_Square_ButtonThank you SO much for the opportunity to hang out with you guys in this gorgeous space you have created. If anyone has any questions or wants to say hello personally you can find me at www.StephaniePerkinson.com

Guest Post~ The Lovely Dee

Guest Post today from Dee~ She is an amazing lady who works magic with photographs  (above is not her photo). Enjoy!

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Hi, I’m a 47 year old single Mom, who actually lives the dream of being professional photographer for the Army. I chose to make a change in my life for – me. * gasp * I go by Dee, and I’m one of those super happy and truly love people, and this is my journey into a much healthier lifestyle.

As I sit outside and enjoy the incredible sun on what has been a rare occasion here in Germany, I remember why I chose to change my lifestyle for a healthier one. I eat better. I appreciate the taste of food again. It began as a hope, no a dream, that I could and would become healthier. It’s allowed me to think clearer and appreciate so much in life.

About 10 to 12 years ago I started thinking about changing my life and becoming a vegetarian, or at least being more conscious about what goes into my body. Well, that’s all I did was think about it. Then, two years ago I chose to take that last step towards becoming a better me.

I honestly missed the taste of home cooked food, and vegetables. Growing up we ate at home 99% of the time. My Dad truly dislikes eating out. So, my Mom would come home from work and slave over a hot stove and oven for us to have a home cooked meal, I was usually at her side chopping, cutting, slicing and tasting. Unless it was summer. Then, my Dad would break out the barbeque pit and cook for us. Life was good. Food was just better back then, or so I thought. See, I grew up, and got to where I ate out all the time when I lived in America. We ate at fast food places most of the time. I could feel my body dying. I had three heart attacks, I survived cancer twice, and I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. Well, that was it. It was on.

So, since I chose to live this lifestyle now for two years, I’ve never been happier. I’ve discovered new vegetables, but more aptly I’ve rediscovered taste, and more willing to try new things. It’s awesome to live here in Europe, where in the spring and summer there are food markets almost every weekend in a city. The opportunity to talk with the farmers and get new recipes is wonderful. My favorite has to be with a new bean that I was shown while in Mannheim’s farmer’s market in 2011. The farmer’s wife showed me a purple bean. Yes! The beans were purple and beautiful. I couldn’t wait to get home and try them. The recipe was super simple as well. I’ll share it later.
I have also discovered eggplant steak, and mushroom burgers, and carrot fries. Just color me happy!

I can say with complete honesty, this Texas girl is completely in love with two things in life – vegetables, and living in Europe. If you’ve ever wanted to rediscover taste – add more vegetables to your life, and don’t be afraid to experiment.

Half Assed Raw Nourishment~Rejuvelac

I’m going to tell you about a secret weapon I have. It’s the supreme nourishment for your tummy and filled with good bacteria and probiotic power. See I’m worried about your digestion. Your tummy has all sorts of things going on with it.

The gut is the major area in the body where digestion occurs.  It is also a place that likes to hold onto emotions and blocked energy.  Fear based living, limitations, and living in the past can take a toll on your poor little tummy. Then the real problems can occur.

Also, in a world filled with so much antibiotic use through our food  and thru modern medicine, bad bacteria can easily move into our tummy flora. So it’s important to nourish our gut with good things, including good bacteria.

So along with your spiritual and emotional lightening, I present to you another tool to help in your path of wholeness. Rejuvelac!

Rejuvelac is a fermented beverage that is cheap and easy to make. It is also the starter for any plant based cheeze and yogurt you might want to make.

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1. Start with 1/2 cup of wheat berries and soak the grains for 24 hours.  I cover the top of the jar with a papertowel and rubber band. You can use other grains if you want- quinoa, rye, buckwheat, ect. Every 6 hours or so, drain the grains and rinse. Fill the jar back up with grains to continue soaking.

2. After 24 hours, rinse and put the grains in 2 cups of water. Once again cover it with a paper towel and let it sit for 2 days.

3. The water will get cloudy and might smell a bit funky, but it’s all part of the process! Strain the rejevelac off the grains and put the beverage in the fridge for up to a week. You can reuse the grains once more. Skip step one and just soak for a day or two.

I tend to throw the rejevelac into my smoothies.  But as I said, you can use it as a starter for yogurt or cheeze. Recipes on those coming soon!

Nourishment~ Soup for Breakfast

I had nothing in the house, but kale and sweet potatoes. And I wasn’t sure what the heck I would have for breakfast. I am one of those peeps that LOVES the same breakfast everyday. But I do think it’s important to add a bit of variety so the body doesn’t get bored. When the body gets bored, massive cravings happen and binge eating can occur. So I took this as a note from the universe to spice things up, and made a yummy green soup! Earthfood at it’s best baby!

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Breakfast Green Soup

2 stalks of kale

1/4 cup of cooked sweet potato

1 tsp of honey or sweetener of your choice

1 pinch of salt

1 pinch of cinamoon

1/2 c of almond milk (the more you add the more liquidy it will be)

1 tsp of chia seeds

4 or 5 frozen blueberries

Throw everything in a blender except for the chia seeds and the blueberries. When everything is blitzed and combined, put into a bowl of your choice.  Sprinkly on the chia seeds and blueberries. Enjoy!

~You could always add a banana instead of sweet potato if you need to.

~Love! Liv

Baking Meditations

1 am baking meditations. That’s the shizzle. Sometimes sleepless night just call for some kick ass baking. And thus vegan stones were created.

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Vegan Scones!

4 c. of all purpose flour

1.5 c of dried cherries, cranberries, and figs

2 tbsp of sugar, plus 1 tbsp for sprinkling

2 tsp baking powder

1/8 lemon zest

1/4 tsp sea salt

8 tsp of coconut oil

1 tsp of vanilla extract

1/8 tsp of cinnamon

1.5 c of almond milk

1. Preheat oven to 204 C or (400 F). Then put all dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, sea salt, cinnamon, lemon zest) into a large bowl. Add the coconut oil one teaspoon at a time.  Mix the flour and oil with your hands really working it into the dough. Add the vanilla and the milk, start mixing it with the spoon. When the dough is mixed well, place it on a flat board and start kneading. Add a bit of flour. When dough feels combined (about 1 minute of kneading), cut it in half and make to circular disks. Cut the disks into 6 parts each (they will look like triangles) and layer them on a flat stone.You can either put parchment paper down, or just brush the stone with coconut oil.

Sprinkle the scones with a little bit of sugar and then pop them into the oven for 15 to 20 minutes. Turn the pan around half way through the baking process.

Scones will be golden brown. Serve with a bit of honey and a huge glass of almond milk. Enjoy!

Recipe is adapted from here.