Daily Manna: Navigating Food Freedom

I haven’t done one of these posts in a while, and I always get great feedback from doing them! So I thought I’d let you all know what a day in the life has been looking like lately, especially as I navigate intuitive eating and food freedom.

I am currently 25 weeks pregnant with baby girl #2, and it’s been a crazy pregnancy to say the least! Thank God everything is going well with baby and I, but the pregnancy is just flying by! I am still trying to savor the moments, feel the baby move around, and thank God daily for the life He is growing inside of me!

This day started out like any other, with my morning routine! I am SUPER passionate about my morning routine and spending time with Jesus first thing, before I do anything else. I woke up, brewed some coffee (yes, in a Christmas mug) and settled down to my journaling and Bible study. Mornings are some of the sweetest times and I cherish them every day!


After my coffee and Jesus time, I did a 30 minute leg workout. It was lifting + some (modified for me) HIIT at the end. It was such a good workout! I then went live for my Nourished & Free community members and chatted all about MINDSET. Friends, mindset is everything when it comes to well, everything. There is a reason God says that we are transformed by the renewing of our MINDS!

After my video for my clients, I got ready and got Emma ready for the day. I have been craving oatmeal lately, but for months I wasn’t allowing myself to have any because #carbs. BUT, now that I am in a healthier place of food freedom (you can watch this video where I go into all the nitty gritty details) I decided to whip up some warm, comforting oats. I cooked the oats with water and chia seeds, then topped with 1/2 a banana, peanut butter, cinnamon, and stevia. DELICIOUS!


I dropped off Emma at daycare, then headed into work. I had a busy morning, but snacks included veggies and nuts! I then had to run some errands for work at Walmart and had an overall frustrating experience there with not only the staff, but the customers too. I left feeling so grumpy, which I hate. I am usually a happy person, so when I get upset or moody, it makes me upset! But, we all have our days. I got to my second clinic for the day around lunch time, and my coworker and I went on a short walk before settling down to eat our food. The sunlight + having a nourishing lunch of chicken, broccoli, rice, and a side of avocado that I forgot to include in the picture, was just what I needed!


I meal prepped this chicken verde in the instant pot at the beginning of the week, along with the rice. The roasted broccoli took 20 minutes from frozen to deliciously roasted, and voila! We had lunch ready to go for today. It really doesn’t have to be complicated to plan and prepare your meals!


I had a mini honeycrisp apple in the afternoon, but my cravings were screaming to have a cheddar-y snack. I knew that we had some cheddar + caramel popcorn at home, so I waited till I got home, took a relaxing shower (my hubby picked up Emma from school so I got some time to myself) and then I had some popcorn while cooking turkey meat for dinner! 


This was so huge for me. I had a craving, but I didn’t haphazardly stop somewhere on the way home and shovel food into my mouth. I didn’t eat in secret or hide the evidence. I had a craving, listened to it in a calm way, enjoyed my food, and then proceeded with life! I finished cooking the turkey meat and made a huge taco salad, because that’s what my body was craving in that moment!


Its been so interesting navigating this freedom after almost 2 years of following a tight restrictive plan. After dinner we bathed Emma, played with her a bit, and put her down to sleep!

Before we went to bed, my husband and I had brownies with ice cream as I’ve been needing a bedtime snack to not wake up starving (oh pregnancy). 


This was the best nightcap and then I zonked out at 8:30 like the grandma I am.


Thanks for reading along! And remember, what a day of food freedom and eating nourished and free looks like for me is different than what it may look like for you! We are all different, which is why it’s important to know how to best nourish your body and what works best for you! 

Daily Manna: Baby Emma updates and eats

Hey there everyone! I hope you all are having a fantastic week. Can you believe we are already in mid-March? Baby girl is due in exactly 2 months, and time is flying by! I am so excited to meet her! She's been kicking like crazy lately, and is also preventing mommy from eating too much at one time. Which is why meals have been often and small. I've been getting crazy amounts of indigestion that have kept me up at night and leave me waking up extremely nauseous. Since my weight gain is below where my doctors want it to be, I am determined to still fuel my body properly by eating smaller, nutrient-dense meals throughout the day! I thought I'd write up what a typical day has looked like for me lately!

4:30/5am: I usually wake up between 4:30 and 5am naturally every day. I love early mornings and am quite motivated to workout, have quiet time with Jesus, pack a healthy lunch, and work on my business before heading off to my day job. Not everyone is a morning person, but I LOVE mornings and have decided that in order to be more productive, mornings are my most prized time of day.

Gluten free toast with some jam before my workout

Gluten free toast with some jam before my workout

I seriously throw a party for myself every time I finish a morning workout...I feel so accomplished at 31 weeks pregnant!!

I seriously throw a party for myself every time I finish a morning workout...I feel so accomplished at 31 weeks pregnant!!

5:30-6am: Workout! I am doing the 21 day fix program right now mixed in with some kickboxing and other maternity workouts. I am loving moving my body and keeping myself health and (hopefully) in shape for labor! Sometimes, I have a quick toast before my workout if I'm feeling hungry! 

6-6:45am: shower and then head down to make breakfast while packing our lunches! Sometimes, I have a Face time date with afellow coach from our team and we chat and have some tea while we get our day started! It's crazy how quickly you can connect and become such close friends with people you have met on social media! I absolutely love it!

Superfood shakes are LIFE

Superfood shakes are LIFE

6:45-7:15am: get dressed, hair, make up. I've been trying to spend more time in this department lately...I'm usually a super low maintenance gal, but trying to up my game a bit (I'm 28 years old, it's time lol).

7:30am: head off to work! I usually blend up my shakeo superfoods deliciousness at this point and take it with me to work! Helps start my day with a boost of nutrition, and chocolate! The best of both worlds. 

8-4:30pm: work! I'm a renal dietitian at Davita, so work is full of educating patients, meetings with coworkers, and lots of charting! Today, I was at a new facility so I spent some time getting to know the staff and patients and getting used to the place! I also went on a short walk to get outside and get some sun. I try to go on walks on most days to keep myself a bit active. It's so easy to be glued to your chair at work, isn't it??

I also pack a ton of snacks and food with me at work to keep myself eating every 1.5-2 hours. At 31 weeks pregnant, I have been getting nausea and heartburn and find that if I eat smaller meals more often, my tummy is more settled!  


On this particular morning, snacks included hard boiled eggs and strawbs, followed by carrots, and then polished off by oatmeal bites! Shortly after these (I'm telling you, I'm eating almost every hour! ) I had lunch! Dolma is one of m favorite meals! Stuffed zucchini with beef, rice, and spices! 


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More afternoon snackage included an rx bar (recycled picture because I forgot to snap one!) and some nuts that I also forgot to snap a picture of. Sorry about that, friends!

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4:30pm: When I got home from work, I was pretty tired but also felt like baking something delicious. I have been SO frugal with our grocery budget, but I was able to whip up this delicious chocolate chip oat bread! That I cut into bars, so I guess they are chocolate chip oat bars! Recipe coming soon! They were DELICIOUS, they are gluten free, and totally a healthy treat! 

5:30pm: I had a busy rest of the evening, with a team video call with our coaching team, then heading off to a Mommy group I was invited too! I had a small dinner during our team call, which was rice, ground beef, and veggies that my grandma cooked up! Grandma to the rescue!

6:30-8pm: Soon after the video meeting, I headed off to the Mommy group. Can I be honest? Being a mommy excites me, but also scares me like no other! I want to make sure I do everything I can to make Emma feel loved and safe. It makes me cry just thinking about it. Going to the mommy group tonight was such a God-thing! They had a speaker come in who discussed everything from parenting to discipline to not passing down your own baggage to your child. It was great! There was also a legit dinner, since the dinner I had at home left me a bit hungry. SO I definitely didn't stick to my gluten free diet and indulged in pasta, a roll, veggies, salad, pound cake (MY FAV) and strawberries! Feeding baby is priority right now!

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Speaking of which, Baby Emma and I are doing well! She is a "small baby" according to our high risk doctor, measuring JUST below average but still not too far off! Our doctor did say that could just be because my husband and I are not big burly people, because the nutrition going from the placenta through the cord to the baby is still strong (they measure the strength of the blood flow, so crazy and cool!) 

The doctor DOES want me to eat more protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats. Basically more of everything! Even though I feel like I've been eating SO much food, I am trying to shove a little more in here and there, even with the nausea and heartburn that has come on the past couple weeks! He specifically said not to fill up on junk, because we want GOOD nutrition to go to the baby! So I'm trying to feed myself good, wholesome food, while indulging a bit here and there if a craving hits. I am up 9 lbs from my pre-pregnancy weight, which is behind schedule, but I'm trying! Our next appointment is next week to check on her growth progress...prayers would be appreciated! 

8:30-9pm: After the mommy group, I headed home to see my husband and prepared some ground turkey for us for the rest of the week. What a guy! He headed off to the gym and I cleaned up the kitchen a bit and packed my lunch for tomorrow. Packing my lunch took about 5 minutes, but now I'm prepared for tomorrow since I have to be at work crazy early tomorrow! Now, I'm just finishing up typing this post, then headed to bed for some reading, then sleep! Today was such a blessed day filled with a good day at work, good wholesome meals, and meeting a bunch of new, lovely people at the mommy group! I definitely collected on God's manna and blessings! Hope you all have a wonderful night too and get a chance to reflect on your blessings today! 

Daily Manna: belly is growing!

Hello friends! Hope everyone is having a wonderful week. Yesterday was my last day at work at my old job, and on Monday I start a new job which I'm so excited about! As many of you already know, I'm a dietitian and have been working at a dialysis unit for about 1.5 years. I just got a job at Davita, which is still in dialysis but just a bigger company! I'm excited for the new challenges and work environment and so grateful for this blessing! 

My last day at my old job was yesterday, so I have two days to chill and relax, which will probably consist of shopping, wrapping presents, cleaning, and doing some work for my private clients! I'm definitely looking forward to it! 

Let's rewind to yesterday...breakfast! I've been on an egg kick lately, which is much better than the eggo frozen waffles that got me through for my entire first trimester! I made a big dish of potatoes earlier this week which complimented my eggs nicely and made this breakfast so convenient and fast to whip up! 


It was a busy day at work trying to finish up projects and say bye to patients, so snacks consisted of a string cheese (no picture!), carrots, and a banana with a Larabar.  


My sweet coworkers planned two going away parties for me for Tuesday and Wednesday, so yesterday's meal was Panera!  


I am trying to eat less quanties more often during this pregnancy. I'm finding that if I let myself get too hungry and eat too big of a portion of any food, I'm getting nauseous after...so the half sandwich was plenty and I even did get some nausea after that :( oh pregnancy! 


We had plans to take dinner to my hubby's family tonight, so I whipped up some treats to take! I made regular Rice Krispie treats but also made some S'mores treats with Golden Grahams and chocolate chips! They were delicious (I had to taste test obvious). 


For an afternoon snack I had an apple with peanut butter which was a much better choice than Tuesday's afternoon snack! On Tuesday, I let myself get way too hungry and had two huge bowls of pub mix, which is basically like a Chex mix from Costco. I felt terrible afterwards and so uncomfortably full. I realized I had to stock up the house with healthier options, so hubby took me to the grocery store at 8:30 PM on Tuesday so we could get some fruits and veggies...thanks babe! 


I also feel like this week, my belly got bigger! It's so strange because I've just felt bloated for most of the pregnancy but now I feel like the bump is popping out! Woo!  


Dinner was pizza with salad, and then about an hour later another slice of pizza because I was still hungry! Finished the meal off with a Rice Krispie and s'mores treat! I'd say it was a successful day of balancing nourishing foods and having treats! 



I hope everyone has had a wonderful week so far! I'm off to get my morning started with some breakfast and Bible study! Happy Thursday all!  

Daily Manna: it's Christmas!

Happy Wednesday everyone! I hope you all are having a great week and are gearing up for Christmas! I am OH so excited about Christmas this year! We are spending Christmas Eve with my husband's side of the family, and Christmas Day with my side of the family. I can't wait to celebrate the birth of our Savior with family, good food, and my favorite Christmas movies!

I thought I'd do another Daily Manna post this week, holiday style! I've been keeping up with my workouts and it's become such a regular part of my routine, which I am grateful for! And the 21 day fix workouts make it so easy because they are only 30 minutes and VERY easy to fit in to my busy day! 

Yesterday morning, I did the upper fix extreme and then downed my Shakeology! It was sooo yummy! 1 scoop vegan chocolate blended with coconut milk, ice, and a handful of spinach!


I also had some extra time in the morning and decided to make spelt blueberry banana pancakes with PB smeared on top and strawbs on the side! These turned out SO fluffy and delicious! I'll have to post the recipe soon!


There were SO many treats at work yesterday, so I indulged in a dark chocolate coconut cashew bite. SO good with my coffee!


And of course, my daily baby carrots!


Along with 6000 pounds of chocolate, one of my patients also got me this beautiful necklace as a Christmas gift! It was so sweet! I love being a part of these peoples' lives and helping them get through a difficult time. Working as an online wellness coach, as well as a dietitian at a dialysis center, has put me in a position where God can use me to positively impact others. All of the treats and the beautiful gifts yesterday were just yet another confirmation that God can even use someone like me who is broken, but redeemed, to love on others. I know He has me where He wants me in this season of life, and for that I am grateful. 


Lunch was a HUGE salad with cilantro dressing and some chunky veggie marinara with chickpea fritters! These fritters didn't turn out quite as great as I wanted, so I will keep testing it out and share a recipe soon hopefully!


In the afternoon, I also had an apple and nuts but forgot to snap a pic! I had to work later than usual yesterday and knew I would need an extra snack to get me through the afternoon! When I got home, I vegged on the couch for a bit, and then got to cooking! My hubby and I snacked on these veggie and flaxseed chips with some hummus while we cooked!


Dinner was some roasted sweet potatoes with a one-pot-wonder I improvised: zucchini, eggplant, broccoli, kidney beans, and diced fire-roasted tomatoes, with some cumin, salt, and red pepper! Oh and garlic, always garlic!


The night ended with my husband and I getting sucked into yet another show: The Man in the High Castle! SO GOOD but so disturbing at the same time. I can't wait to keep watching and see what happens!

It was a rainy and relaxing day yesterday with some good, healthy eats as well as some treats mixed in there! I've been learning the art of balance this month, and it's been, without a doubt the healthiest thing I've ever done. More on this later as I am still processing and learning and journeying, but all I can say is God is SO good, Christmas is 2 days away, and I am so excited for what is in store for 2016!