you are what you eat part 4

this is part four of a series about our all natural and organic diet. Read part one hereread part two here, read part three here.
juicing
we got into juicing because we had heard a lot of our friends talk about it and we watched a few documentaries about the food industry (which i recommend you watch if you want to cut out bad food because you won’t crave certain things afterward!!! – at the same time, they also have their agenda so take them as you will…) here are our thoughts about juicing and what we’ve learned:
when you’re learning about health food and start researching, you realize that every time you open a can of worms, you open another can of worms. this is why i’ve really loved going all natural, there’s no justification or talking myself into eating something that has a ‘no’ ingredients. the hard part though, is trying to figure out what is really all natural sometimes, especially with all the gmo talk and everything. but organic fruits and vegetables as far as i can figure are safe.
but another thing i was worried about with juicing is that eastern thoughts about food recommend cooking all vegetables, and not eating them raw. there are various reasons for this but it’s interesting that it directly contradicted western thoughts and say that cooking vegetables kills all the benefits. so when i did my vegetable challenge a year or so ago (cooking one new recipe a week with a new vegetable) i cooked all the veges. now, we’re trying juicing with raw vegetables so far with no ill effects 🙂 i did finally learn on one of the documentaries that there are nutrients and micronutrients in food. the micronutrients are all the vitamins and minerals in food (the nutrients being the rest of it like fat, fiber, etc…) so cooking food gets rid of the micronutrients which is generally why you would eat vegetables to begin with.
some people are concerned with juicing because you don’t get a lot of the fiber that you would get from just simply eating the veges. here’s my philosophy about that, would i sit down and eat this pile of vegetables throughout the day? not likely, in fact i probably wouldn’t eat that amount of vegetables in a week. so by only drinking the micronutrients of that pile, i’m at least getting more than usual. plus, how do good habits form? by starting them. so we’re starting every morning with juicing so that hopefully throughout the day we will remember how we started it and try to make good food choices the rest of the day. just because you juice doesn’t mean you can’t have a salad for lunch or carrots for a snack. i’m pretty sure you can’t get too many veges. also, our juicer has two settings, one that is mostly juice and one that leaves a lot of pulp so we do end up getting some of that fiber.
another thing we learned is to not put too much fruit in the mix. the point of juicing for us is that we don’t get enough vegetables. fruit is easy to eat by itself, it’s not really necessary to juice mostly fruit. if you’re trying to add green nutrients to your diet, just put in a little fruit for flavor but use mostly vegetables.
some of our friends who have gotten into it since have had concerns about recipes and how to know how much to buy. since i hate wasting time/money, i found a recipe we could both agree on (after trying several) and we just buy the amount of each vege and fruit for the week (and i shop once a week) and that way i have enough but my fridge isn’t so full. here’s what we do:
3ish handfulls of storebought organic kale or 3-4 stalks of garden grown kale (i finally have my garden up and growing and kale grows SO well here!!)
2ish handfulls of organic spinach
5-7 organic carrots (best place to buy these is at costco for $4/10lb bag
1 large organic cucumber (most expensive item but important to be organic)
1 organic apple
1 organic pear
(i juice them in that order too because some things get jammed in there and this is the best way to get the most of each thing that we’ve found)
we love it…now. what i mean by that is that the taste is something you have to acquire a little bit. the first couple days were rough i’ll be honest. once i found a recipe that was easy and nutritious without too much sugar (fruit) i stuck with it and now we crave it. you just have to change your thinking about juice. it’s not fruit juice that is chock full of sugar, and it’s not a smoothie that is also 90% fruit with sugar added. it’s a great way to start the morning full of vitamins!
enjoy!!
(note: these two pics were from when i threw some beets in…i loved it, jared thought it tasted like dirt so beets are out. i also tried celery but i think it’s too bitter of a flavor so those are out too 🙂

read part five here 

Upcycling #1 and Pranks

two things we’ve had a lot of fun with lately are upcycling (because i don’t like wasting) and harmless pranks! i have some fun step by step upcycling posts to share later, but for now i have some small finished projects that i did to redo a wall in our living room.

my grandma gave me a whole box of old cameras, lenses and filters etc. i had them sitting in a box for the longest time not knowing what to do with them. we did a little redecorating and wanted to do movie/camera/film sort of theme. so this is what i did with some of the lenses and filters:

and a few flashes – i wish i didn’t have to use so much glue but i couldn’t figure out how to keep them in there. they are also in an old crayon box i picked up from an antique store 🙂

and this one is a bit more personal. my grandparents had all of their 8mm home movies in a box stored away for decades. i can’t remember why i had them, but we finally digitized them and ended up with all the boxes which i couldn’t throw away. they are just so cool looking! so i made a little collage of them. the fun part about them is that we’ll be able to show our kids what our grandparents had to do in order to see their home movies!

and we also put a little montage of outdated maps together. these are all cities we’ve been to:

now for the prank. it all started when we were watching gentlemen broncos with our friends over at zelo photography. they made a time capsule and blew on a friendship stone…well it’s kind of a weird movie and you just have to watch it. aaaaanyway…so since we live about 2 miles away from each other we talked about giving each other keys so we can watch each others’ houses when we’re out of town.

so this is how they gave us our key:

we were laughing so hard, especially when we opened it and found the key on top of the friendship stone 🙂

so, we had to come up with something just as good for giving them our key. my grandma also gives me things that aren’t so useful sometimes, like these ‘old’ cameras from the 90’s. i did save them just in case and then when we were at a flea market, i thought of it!!

a camera with antlers! random i know, but i think it turned out pretty cool.

and her’s the finished product and we put the key in the film slot 🙂
and, since they happened to be out of town when we finished it, we thought it would be fun to play a little prank and sprinkle their place with army men. unfortunately i couldn’t find any army men so cowboys and indians it was 🙂

i think it fits in really well on their entry table!

oh and these picture frames below were empty so we filled them too.

now i’m really in the pranking mood, and trying to think of who and what will be next!
 

Sendai, Japan – ’12

another one of our last minute adventures. we knew we had some time to go somewhere but weren’t sure where to go…tickets to europe were out of control because of the olympics and we found out that japan wasn’t as expensive as we expected it to be, and we’d both always wanted to go there so off we went.

we went in august which is a time of year that they have a lot of celebrations so we tried to go around and find places where we’d be able to see some neat things. first stop, sendai! many of the celebrations in august have to do with the dead, specifically tanabata festival. it’s a long story but in short the stars align and they are able to commune with their dead ancestors, but bad spirits are allowed to come too during this time so there are lots of ghost stories. they make a bunch of things out of paper to put out their wishes to the dead. all these beautiful hanging streamers must have taken an  incredible amount of time to make! they were so cool!

we really wanted to be in hiroshima on the 6th but it didn’t work out that way, it would have been cool to see the floating lanterns in celebration.

jared was REALLY grossed out that i got this but it was soooo good!

japanese love their malls and there are enclosed shopping malls like this everywhere!

they also seemed to be shooting news or tv shows in every town we were in, so we made sure to walk in the backround of each one, hopefully we made some japanese TV!!

yup, makes sense…

that’s MISTER donut to you!

people in japan also love everything that is cute…and there is a lot of cute in japan 🙂

people can write their wishes on slips of paper.

there were lots of mocktography opportunities this trip 😉

see, cute! he dyed his dogs’ tails…cute or weird…not sure.

there aren’t a lot of gringos (err gaijins) in sendai so we’re not sure if they were having everyone do this or if we got made fun of a little…we still don’t know what this was all for but they made us put on these robes and pose for a picture. random!!

yep…err what?

soda…water…beer…just a normal vending machine.

and then we were off to our next spot on the bullet trains, stay tuned for more!