Tag Archives | Health

Good Girl Moonshine

I certainly can’t take credit for this refreshing, invigorating drink,
but I have been making countless jars of it,
and drinking it down every day since learning about it last week.
along with my {seemingly} very thirsty children. :)

*****I have edited this to say that perhaps I am a bit “crunchy”
or have weird taste buds . . .
because not everyone I talk to likes
good girl moonshine or some of my other faves
like I and my family do.

Maybe we’re just weird like that. There that’s all I’m going to say.
You’ve been warned and now you’ll just have to try it for yourself!*****

It’s been over three months now, and I am even more enthused
about the way of eating and wholesome living
that has helped me drop approximately 8 pounds,
{though it could easily be more . . .
I just didn’t have a working scales until about 3 weeks
into this way of Trim Healthy eating},
has cleared up more than 90% of my PMS,
including many, many headaches,
and gives me much needed energy
and a “clear” mind vs. the foggy brain
that I get on a sugar and carb laden diet.

I have had my days of cheats (my friends know this usually means chocolate chips),
but for the most part, I have been enjoying great food that makes me feel great too!

Good Girl Moonshine is just one more way that the authors of Trim Healthy Mama
continue to teach and give through their book, as well as their Facebook page
and private Facebook groups, which any female may ask to be a part of.
It really is a wealth of support and information.
Here is a bit of what Serene had to say about this lovely, refreshing drink.

img_6074{I look forward to drinking this on hot summer days!
Husband loves it too and says I should buy seltzer water
to add to it and give it even more pep.}


“Since I (Serene, coauthor of THM) have been enjoying such copious amounts of my new favorite drink, I decided to do some studies about ginger. What do you know? I read that ginger actually dulls the appetite. But, I noticed this first hand before I even read this merit of ginger. Ginger heats up the thermogenic temperature of the body the metabolism which gives a double punch alongside apple cider vinegar’s own weight loss talents.

. . . Ginger is a potent digestive aid and fires up the digestive juices. It reduces flatulence and eases tummy cramps. It improves the absorption and assimilation of essential nutrients in the body. . . . Ginger clears the micro-circulatory channels of the body including the easily clogged sinuses. It clears throat and nose congestion and is a wonderful immune stimulant along with apple cider vinegar. Ginger is up at the top of the list with the most potent anti-inflammatory supplements on God’s green earth and can relieve common aches and pains and even help with more serious arthritic conditions.

Here are just some of the goodies Apple Cider Vinegar offers you:
•It is abundant in potassium which is imperative for growth and building muscles, the transmission of nerve impulses, heart activity and preventing brittle teeth and hair loss.
•It encourages weight loss by breaking down fats to be used instead of stored in your adipose tissue.
•It is loaded with acetic acid which slows the digestion of starch and lowers the rise in glucose levels that occur post mealtime.
•It is anti-viral, anti-fungal, and anti-bacterial due to its high levels of malic acid.
•It is super alkalinizing though being rich in ash.
•It lowers bad cholesterol and helps to regulate blood pressure.
•It is a powerful detox tool and improves bowel function
•It clarifies the skin
•New research reveals it shows strength in killing cancer cells or slowing their growth.

Hey if you hate ginger – no worries. Just leave it out. Add a few drops of your favorite edible young living essential oils like sweet orange or lemon. You could also add natural flavor extracts like maple flavoring etc.”



So what are you waiting for? Here’s the recipe!

Good Girl Moonshine {aka “Ginger Juice”}

•Fill a quart sized jar with water and ice.
•Add a generous drizzle of raw apple cider vinegar (I use 2 Tablespoons)
•Add 1 teaspoon of ginger powder or (my favorite) is to press about an inch
of fresh ginger in my garlic or lemon press for that delightful fresh taste.
•Add a few shakes of stevia to taste {Nustevia Pure Extract Powder is excellent).

And that’s it! Let me know how you like it,
whether I’m the one introducing you to it,
or if you’ve been drinking it for days now.

gg moonshine on gratitudejournalblog

{And I’m warning you, if you want any for yourself,
don’t let your children get their first taste.}

Shrimp Pad Thai ~ The Trim & Healthy Way


As promised, here is the Pad Thai recipe!

If you want a reeeeally easy, but not quite as authentic pad thai taste, you can always buy one of those seasoning packs at the grocery store. That’s how I and my first serving of konjac noodles fell in love. But you do have to watch out for a few things on the ingredients list, especially sugar. So when my first seasoning pack had disappeared, I began dreaming of making my own, completely guilt free sauce! I searched and found a beautiful recipe here and have adapted it to fit into my Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle. My friends and I have “taste tested” this for you, so I hope you’ll enjoy!

Shrimp {or Chicken} Pad Thai ~~~ Serves 2

1.) Pad Thai Sauce:
1/3 cup fish sauce
1/2 cup xylitol OR 1/4 cup xylitol with dashes of stevia sweetened to taste
1/2 cup tamarind juice concentrate (I bought this one)
4 cloves garlic, minced

To make Pad Thai sauce, heat a small pan on medium low and add fish sauce, sweetener(s), tamarind juice concentrate, and garlic. Cook until xylitol has completely dissolved. At this point you can adjust the sweetness with more xylitol or stevia, and the hotness by adding a little Thai chili powder. As for myself, I was happy with things as they were! Remove from heat and allow to cool down before storing in a jar or plastic container.

2.) Konjac or Miracle Noodles:
Drain and rinse konjac noodles, approximately one 7 oz. bag per person. I like the fettuccine noodles best, but the angle hair type work as well. Boil in water on the stove for 2 minutes. Rinse again. Cut through the noodles a few times with a kitchen shears so they are easier to fry and eat. Set aside.

3.) Other Ingredients
1 1/2 cups shrimp or thinly sliced chicken.
Minced garlic, 1-4 cloves depending on your preference
1 cup red onion, thinly sliced
1 cup carrots matchsticks OR 1 cup red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 cup mung bean sprouts
green onion
roasted peanuts, chopped
Heat 3 tablespoons coconut oil in a wok or frying pan and cook raw chicken or shrimp for 3-4 minutes. Set aside in a small bowl. Add a little more oil to pan and fry red onions and garlic, stirring so as not to burn the garlic. Add noodles and stir for a minute or two. Add 2-4 tablespoons Pad Thai sauce, continually stirring noodle mixture until well-coated with sauce. Add cooked meat back and fry for 2-3 minutes and then set aside or push to one side of the pan. Fry the remaining vegetables for a minute or two til tender, adding a dab more coconut oil if needed. (At this point you can also add an egg and fry it with the veggies, but I prefer it without.) Add additional sauce if you want more flavor. Remove from heat and serve. Garnish with green onions, cilantro, chopped peanuts, and a wedge of lime.


Just talking about this wonderful dish is making my mouth water!


And now for a bit of Trim Healthy Mama facts: This meal can easily be a Fuel Pull if you go really light on the coconut oil and the peanuts. Otherwise I guess it’s a pretty light “S” meal. Read here for fascinating facts on the miracle “konjac” or “shirataki” noodle. I buy them here for the best price, although I would love to visit a local Asian store and perhaps find them at an even better price.

*Some folks find that xylitol gives them uncomfortable feelings in their belly after consuming. Beware of this and perhaps ask/warn your friends. Ask me how I know! It is a safe and healthy sweetener and supposedly something one’s body becomes accustomed too, but just be careful.

*When cooking konjac noodles it’s important for the best eating experience to drain and rinse out the water they come in~thoroughly. Boil them in fresh water. And then be sure to fry them {such as in the sauce as is instructed in this recipe} for a few minutes.

OK, I think that’s it. Go for it! Make a bowl of guilt free Pad Thai and enjoy!

This post contains affiliate links which means that if you purchase through them, I receive a small commission. Thanks for helping me support children in India through Compassion and Bridge of Hope.

THM {the skinny on my recent favorite book & club}

They arrive on my doorstep once again.
It’s Wednesday morning and the little road
that leads to my house will hardly see a busier day this week!

I greet their smiling faces,
these lovely women
and their sweet children,
as they come from the near and far
corners of our county.


{l-r: yours truly, hilda, rosanna, jenn, joanna, shannon, cindy, thelma, and melissa}

It’s time for another few hours
of wonderful conversation, laughter,
sharing our frustrations and victories,
{both with the scales we KNOW lied to us last week,
but which is speaking in our favor again this morning,
or with the latest, greatest recipe we have discovered}.


Welcome to the local chapter of
The Trim Healthy Mama Book Club!

Trim and Healthy.
But did we also mention delicious?!
Great information!?
And fun!?

Yes. And the journey has only just begun!



Early last year when I saw whisperings
for a new book yet to be printed called, Trim Healthy Mama,
I preordered my own copy and waited hopefully
for September’s first printing!

I had read about a few of Serene & Pearl’s ways of cooking
and eating here and there though the pages of Above Rubies Magazine.
And I was so excited to finally get my hands on their book
which, amid families and homeschooling
and lots of time spent in the ktichen,
had taken them five years to complete!”

September came . . . and so did my very own copy
of this {now} blockbuster book!
I began reading . . . and reading . . . and reading.


It’s a thick book, chuck full of good information
on the “science” behind the “S”, “E” or “FP” meals,
hormone issues, natural skin care,
a one week fuel pull week for stubborn weight loss,
effective exercise, the authors’ personal stories,
many great recipes . . . and much more!

{It’s been said that if more husbands knew
the things encouraged in this book
they’d be out in droves buying this for their wives.
Um, yes. Well, we’ll leave it at that
and let each wife discover for herself, shall we? :)}

One thing I so love about this book and approach to eating,
is that it isn’t a fad diet, but a wonderful “coming together”
of so many of the other books on whole foods
and healthy living that I’ve been reading in recent years.
Books like The Maker’s Diet,
Making Babies,
and several more.
All are on track and books that I so appreciate
for their own area of expertise.

Trim Healthy Mama {THM},
for me, adds one more element
that is so important, and that is to know
how blood sugar and insulin levels are effected by food,
and how to enjoy wonderful, delicious,
whole foods in a way that will help me
to feel great {no sugar rushes} and to stay trim
instead of packing on the pounds!

For more detailed information about the book itself,
including a printable shopping list, and great recipes,
here is one of the best book reviews I have read
for Trim Healthy Mama.


And so . . . to tackle the learning curve,
to introduce more women to the book,
and to surround myself with a support group
for something that I see as a lifestyle change,
I asked around to see if others would be interested
in joining a Trim Healthy Mama Book Club
at my house for a few months.

Quite a number of friends,
as well as others who I only knew
through a friend or by a connection made through this blog,
were interested . . . and so the group was formed!


 So, this, our last “official” book club morning at my house
turned out to be bigger and better than ever!
Each woman was able to come,
bringing with her each. and. every. one. of her children,
which came to a grand total of twenty-three!!!

gratitudejournal 29{Lunch with some of the clan!}

, we have a partially finished basement where they could play,

and more importantly, we hired a wonderfully responsible 16-year-old
to watch, read to, play with, and do over-all monitoring of this tribe. :)
{And hats off to my friends who are raising pleasant,
well-mannered, responsible children as well!}

trim healhty food 1
trim healthy food

trim healhty mama food 3

{Wisdom from children of Trim Healthy mothers.}


So after an hour or so of book discussion,
we migrate to the kitchen
where the ladies begin to set out
the wonderful food they’ve prepared
and are proud to share with the rest of us.


Our first meeting’s menu included:
A big salad w/ seasoned chicken & creamy dressing,
mini pepperoni pizza cups
and a mocha cheesecake.

{These foods all fit into the “S” category
of satisfying foods, which means they
contained plenty of healthy fats,
but very little or no carbs at all.}


Menu #2
Chicken Ceasar Wraps
Homemade Berry Ice Cream
and coffee w/cream

{again, an “S” meal}

img_5965{I think they loved the food, though expressions could cause one to wonder. :)}

Menu #3
Trim Healthy Pancakes {oh, they are so good!}
w/ berry syrup & greek yogurt sauce
Turkey Bacon
Chocolate and Berry Frappes

{an energizing “E” meal because there is minimal fat
but is a little higher in healthy carbs}



Menu #4
Chicken/Shrimp Pad Thai
Lemon Muffins
Homemade Berry Ice Cream


{The Pad Thai is actually a “Fuel Pull”
because we used the ever-growing-in-famousness
Konjac noodles (also known as Miracle Noodles)
which means that it had very little fat
and very few carbs,
making it a meal to really PULL
and use stored fats in the body.}


The only thing is . . .
we kind of turned this meal into an “S”
by the time all was eaten and done
because of the most awesome,
most delicious & decadent
Lemon Muffins which we also consumed,
plus a bit more of that lovely ice cream.


OK, if you’ve followed me thus far,
you must be a very patient person.
I feel like I’m fumbling along to both:
a) tell you about the wonderful book club
b) to educate you just a wee bit on what exactly
Trim Healthy eating might involve.

Oh and in case you wondered,
there are recipes for all of the above mentioned foods!
Some come from the book,
and some come from our own creativity
or the innovation of other women
in blogland who are also cooking
and baking the Trim, Healthy way.

In this thing, you are definitely not a loner!
Even if you don’t have a local support group
to learn from and hang out with,
there is quite a large online community
that is bursting at the seams with
Q&A’s, encouragement, success stories,
daily inspiration, and yummy eats!

So just assuming that you might perhaps
like to know how we made these great meals,
check back again, and as time allows,
I will either give you the recipe myself
or link you to the website where it can be found!

First up will be the Pad Thai recipe,
coming tomorrow!*****

So that’s that.
We have lost WEIGHT too!

Since early-mid January,
the total combined weight that eight of us have lost
eating and exercising the Trim Healthy Mama way
is approximately 55 pounds!

It’s been slower going for some,
but still a steady downward trend!
Others dropped their weight more quickly.

Just as there are so many different body types
and stages of life,
and also the level of diligence
with which we apply ourselves to the cause . . .
it all gives us our unique story!

But as one friend said,
We ALL lost.
No one gained.
and we are on a roll
with continuing to lose . . .

So that’s our happy story and we’re stickin’ to it. :)

The ninth member in our group has lost
a very significant amount using another,
faster weight loss program,
but wanted to join along
with our group because she wants to learn
and apply Trim Healthy
lifestyle and eating plans into her life
for continued weight loss and maintenance.
We are so proud of her for sticking to her current plan
and for putting up with the rest of us
as we talked and discussed all manner of THM things!


And now our book club is officially ended.
But it seems we can’t bare to part ways for good.
So we have plans to get together at Melissa’s house
in about a month for more learning in essential oils.

When Spring comes we might meet at the park
so our many littles can run and be wild,
and I’m sure we’ll bring lunch to share.

Rosanna suggested a girls’ night out.
{You know one of those nights where the fathers
take their turns with the 23 young ones!} :)
Now there’s a great idea!
It would be a celebration of good food,
goals reached,
and lasting friendships made . . .
with uninterrupted conversation!

Sounds like a HEALTHY plan to me.

Thanks for reading. It’s been a pleasure to tell this story!

And so many, many thanks to these friends
{’cause I know they are going to read this!}
who have brought food, picked up the baby sitter,
shared ideas and encouragement,
brought food for the children,
snapped pictures of the children at our last meeting,
and plenty more that I’m probably forgetting.

You all know which “thanks” is meant for you. :)

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