#12: Clear Your Clutter

It’s time to face your internal clutter.

Maybe some of you are familiar with this New Year’s resolution: Clean out the house and keep it clutter-free. It is hard work to keep the house uncluttered when you’re busy, and even more so when you’re busy and have children. When you work, too, well, it’s almost easier to just give up.

But don’t. When you live in a cluttered home, you hold clutter on the inside, too. In fact, when you visit a person’s home and it’s just stuff everywhere, you can tell a lot about that person. Not that he or she is necessarily dirty or lazy, but that he or she likely has some unresolved issues. It’s true: Clutter is only a surface expression of a deeper issue. When you keep your home organized and clean, your heart and mind are more free and available to the people and things that are important to you.

Continue reading “#12: Clear Your Clutter”

#11: Sweet Potatoes–Enchilada Style

Here is a recipe to help you eat what’s in season

Here’s something so yummy and easy that it’s become a winter staple in our house.

Baked Pinto Beans and Sweet Potatoes, Enchilada Style

The following ingredients are for a vegan recipe. If you’d like to add cheese, get 1 cup of cubed Monterey Jack cheese ready, too.

  • A little EV olive oil
  • Your favorite salsa
  • 1 can pinto beans
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 cup crushed tortilla chips
  • A little cilantro for garnish
  1. Preheat oven to 400F. Use a tablespoon or so of oil to grease a 9×13-inch baking dish.
  2. Spread the potatoes and salsa in the dish, cover the dish with foil, and bake for 15 minutes.
  3. Remove the foil, and add the beans and some salt and pepper (and cheese if you like). Sprinkle the tortilla crumbs.
  4. Bake until the sauce is bubbly and the tortilla chips are browned (or cheese is melted), 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the cilantro.

Voila! Easy and delicious…and family-friendly!

(Recipe is thanks to Mark Bittman.)

#10: Why We Do Things Even When We Know They’re Not Good For Us

So the kids and I are sitting in the car waiting for Mike to grab a smoothie for Bella, when a car pulls into the parking spot beside us, and Bella notices that the woman is doing something she hasn’t seen before. “Why is that lady doing that?” “What?” “She’s doing that with the fire.” I look, and I see. The woman is smoking. It’s now time to have thatconversation.

I tell Bella it’s something that some people do, not everyone, and that it’s stinky, dirty, gross, bad for you, makes you sick, makes your teeth yucky….to which she responds, staring blankly out the window, “Uh-huh.” It’s then that I realize what she must be thinking: “Then why would some people choose to do it?” That is much harder to explain.

Continue reading “#10: Why We Do Things Even When We Know They’re Not Good For Us”