We are Amy and Gail Shingler, sisters-in-law and friends!

We are passionate about living authentic and intentional lives!

We are enthusiastic about healthy eating!

We created a space to share our favorite recipes & the life philosophies from which they stem!

Our desire is to inspire,

may you be edified by what you read here!

Monday, November 4, 2013

The Journey

My daughter created this profound visual reminder of how we can live our lives in the moment.  We have been discussing the ease at which we tend to focus on the past or the future in our thought life.  We conclude... that it is beneficial not only to ourselves but also to those who "do life" with us to BE in the moment.  Some situations are simply about putting one foot in front of the other. Being mindful to not look at the path we have already paved and not looking ahead at the paths that our imaginations can drum up.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Beans, Beans, the Fountain of Youth!

Almost every Sunday or Monday  I make a huge pot of beans in my crock pot.  I add pinto, black, white or adzuki beans and then fill the crock pot with water until there is about 1-2 inches of water over the beans.  I cook them all day on low (or if I had a crazy morning I will set it on high for 4-6 hours).  After that point, I will add them to a recipe.  Or my favorite thing to do is add 1-TBSP minced garlic and some sea salt to taste and blend it up in my cuisinart until it is "refried".  Sometimes I add a little water to make it the right consistency.  YUMMY!  My family will use this big mother load batch all week for nutritious snacks and lunches using whole grain wraps or corn tortillas.   Click on the link below to watch this short clip about the benefits of eating beans on a daily basis.  It is informative.  Increased Lifespan From Beans | NutritionFacts.org

Saturday, October 5, 2013

state of grace

We make assumptions every day: 
about people within our own circles, 
the "others" around us, 
the president, 
about why they do the things they do, 
say the things they say, 
what they are thinking, 
what their motives and intentions are, 
we presume we understand where it ALL stems from. 
It gives us a 'misperception' of being 'in the know,' 
and so, being somehow 'in control' or 'of interest and import'. 
When we or someone else make a statement of assumption about another, 
it is fair and kind and loving to ask,
"Do you know that to be absolutely true?" or 
"How can you know that?" or 
"Do you KNOW that person?" or 
"Have you spoken intimately with him or her?" 
The answers to any or all of those questions define an assumption 
and help us see what is worthy of our time and energy to comment on.

Friday, September 20, 2013

progress not perfection

As you lean toward a plant-bsed lifestyle, remember: 
progress, not perfection! 
As much as this process is about being proactive and changing our habits, 
it is also about allowing the body to do what it innately knows how to do: 
process and let go of the old; 
and rejuvenate. 
So today, say to yourself: 
I trust the intelligence of my body. 
I ease into a new way of being.

I can relax knowing that my decision to eat a plant-based diet is well researched and sound. 
I have been moving toward the notion of conscious eating for many reasons, and I find myself at this place with an open mind.

The earth, with all its abundant riches, provides for me everything I need. 
I am becoming more aligned with the natural and benevolent flow of life. 
I ease into it, trusting that this is exactly where I am supposed to be. 
It's all about leaning in!


Monday, August 12, 2013

Back To School Morning Muffins

Yep!  It's that time again.  My youngest two girls started school last week and they were so excited.  As we begin to get back into the school morning routines, I've been on the lookout for easy, healthy, and yummy breakfast options.  The one I tried this week was chocolate chip pumpkin muffins.  They were a hit.

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin muffins
Serves 6-12

1 medium banana, mashed
1 (15-oz.) can sweet pumpkin puree
1/4 cup 100% pure maple syrup
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups  oat flour (grind up oatmeal in blender)
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 cup grain-sweetened dairy-free chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. In a large bowl, combine mashed banana, pumpkin puree, maple syrup, and vanilla extract.

2. In a small bowl, combine oat flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. Transfer mixture to large bowl and mix together gently until well combined. Fold in chocolate chips.

3. Spoon batter into muffin tins and bake for 20 minutes or until the muffins are lightly browned. Remove muffins from the oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Store muffins in an airtight container.

I love this recipe because:
1.  oatmeal is a great alternative to wheat 
2.  the only "sugar" is 1/4 cup maple syrup in 12 muffins
3.  There is no added oil or eggs used

Sounds like a great way to fuel the young minds in our household!  Happy schooling!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

practical steps to find a way forward

In the Shingler household, 
we are grateful 
for the techniques we have learned from Byron Katie, 
and it is BLISS to hear and see 
our 3 children use these techniques 
in various forms to help themselves, 
each other, US, and others, 
to find all there is to be grateful for, 
happy about, 
all there is to delight in 
and find comfort in, 
even in what seem like 
the WORST circumstances imaginable. 
There are many in our lives 
who do not see 
the beauty and richness of their own, 
we hope someday they will. 
There are many in our lives who do not see 
all the possibilities 
in their despair, barrenness, darkness, 
they do not see their value 
in what they believe is a "small" life, 
a life less than they want, 
a life less than they deserve. 
All we see is their magnificence, 
AH! if only all we had to do was tell them- 
for them to believe and see their blessings!

I love this letter to Byron Katie 
and I love her response, 
it does not minimize the facts of the situations 
in which people are truly grieving, 
but it gives practical steps to find a way forward 
and eventually beyond that grief. 
Our joy is up to us, 
what and who we trust in, 
what and who we believe in, 
has REAL power to transform us 
within and through circumstances 
we wish we did not find ourselves.


Monday, July 15, 2013

Oatmeal Choclate Chip Banana bread

We buy a crazy amount of bananas for our household.  The checkers at the grocery store usually have some cute comment to say like, "Are you guys monkeys?"  Well, this week I had a few extras that went uneaten and I decided it was time to try a new banana bread recipe.  I tried this one because it had a minor amount of oil and sugar.  Plus, it was made with oatmeal instead of the typical whole wheat flour I usually use.  It came out delicious and I thought I would pass it on.  The first time I made this I was skeptical that the recipe only called for 1 Tbsp of oil per loaf so I added 2 Tbsp per loaf.  It was delicious.  So, today I wanted to see if 1 Tbsp per loaf would work and yes sirree it sure did!  After I made it, my kiddos swarmed and devoured the loaf.  I must say, right out of the oven it is super yum! 

Here it is:

The Ingredients:
3 Cups Oatmeal
1 1/2 Teaspoons baking powder
1/2 Teaspoon baking soda
1/4 Teaspoon salt
3 Bananas, very ripe
1 Tablespoon coconut oil
1/2 Cup coconut sugar or date sugar or brown sugar
1 Teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 Cup dark chocolate chips
1/4 Cup applesauce or 1 extra ripe banana
3 Tablespoons oatmeal & 1 Tablespoon brown sugar (optional for topping)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray 9 x 5 loaf pan with cooking spray.
Make oat flour in a food processor or blender by processing oats for 1-2 minutes or until it resembles flour.
Add oat flour, whisk in baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
In a separate bowl, beat mashed bananas, brown sugar, vanilla, and coconut oil until smooth and creamy.
Slowly add in oat flour mixture and mix until well combined.  If it is too thick I add 1-2 Tbsp of almond milk.
Fold in dark chocolate chips and pour batter into pan.
Sprinkle top with 3 tablespoons of oatmeal and 1 tablespoon of brown sugar.  (optional)
Bake for 35-40 minutes or toothpick comes out clean.
Let cool for 15 minutes and then remove from pan and place on wire cooling rack.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Sara Bareilles - Brave "let the words fall out..."

This is one of my favorite videos I watch at the gym in the morning.  It is sort of a theme song for me lately.  I believe we all need to practice and therefore live by truth telling with an emphasis on love and vulnerability.  Sometimes that takes bravery, well it does take bravery .  I love the lyric that says, "say what you want to say... let the words fall out."  I hope this inspires you and brings a smile to your face.

Monday, June 17, 2013

healthy summer watermelon salsa

Watermelon Salsa

Serve on tacos, burritos or next to a bowl of tortilla chips!
1 cup diced unpeeled nectarine
2 jalapeƱo peppers, seeded and minced 
1 tablespoon sweetener, like raw agave or honey
3 tablespoons fresh
lime juice
2 teaspoons orange zest
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
2 cups seeded and diced watermelon
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/3 cup diced red onion

Stir together first 6 ingredients in a large bowl; let stand 15 minutes. Add watermelon and next 2 ingredients, and gently toss to coat. Serve immediately with chips or tacos/burritos, or cover and chill up to 24 hours. Enjoy!

give give give

Surprising ways to give back
You live to give, regularly donating canned food, old books and your fair share of hideous clothing all in the name of being charitable. (It was only a tad embarrassing when the Salvation Army turned down your sequined leotard.) But how about your frequent-flier miles? Or your old wine corks? Here, a few surprising things you can, and totally should, donate:
Scuzzy Sneakers
Scuzzy sneakers No, nobody wants to wear your stinky old kicks. But when you donate them to Nike's Reuse-a-Shoe program, they’ll be melted down and used to build a track, basketball court or playground.
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Unwanted Crayons
Unwanted crayons Got a bunch of crayons you want to unload? Send them to this national recycling program, which repurposes them as--what else?--brand-new crayons.
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Wine Corks
Wine corks Yemm & Hart Green Materials andReCork are two companies that will accept your unwanted corks (no judgement about how many you have) and turn them into flooring tiles, building insulation and even automotive gaskets.
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Frequent Flier Miles
Frequent-flier miles We know you worked hard to earn them, but donating your frequent-flier rewards is really, well, rewarding. A handful of airlines will let you give your miles to places like the American Cancer Society (to enable patients to travel to treatment facilities), the Make-a-Wish Foundation (to give the gift of Disney World) and the Red Cross (to fly volunteers to disaster sites).
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Credit Card Rewards
Credit-card rewards Credit-card companies likeAmerica ExpressChase and Capital One have finally caught on to the fact that we don’t all want to redeem our points for big-screen TVs. Instead, turn your points into much-needed cash for disaster-relief organizations and other worthy nonprofits. You knew you were charging all those lattes for a reason.

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