Let yourself off the hook!

‘Ello loves! & Happy Friday!

I woke up this morning not the way that I intended to kick off my Friday morning. Not. At. All. I’d like to blame it on a female hormonal imbalance, if you get my drift. Normal morning tasks, like walking the dogs and doing my morning meditation, just seemed so…ugh! Challenging! So, after sitting in the uncomfortable feeling chair for more than I wanted to, a voice came into my head and she said, “Relax. All you have to do is your best for today. And your best for today may be different than your best was yesterday or will be tomorrow. Embrace what shows up.” Immediately, I felt some relief.

I notice that most of the time when I am struggling it is because I am the one putting all the pressure on myself. My ego tells me it is other things…my boyfriend, the dogs, homework, hormones, the weather… But, once I move into some kind of acceptance by opening my heart, embracing what is, and letting myself off the hook, I can breathe normal again.

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So, I made the commitment to myself to do my best today by embracing what shows up and giving myself the permission to let go no matter what. This is my mantra. And when I feel myself starting to tense up, I go right to this, and I kick my ego out of the way. Pow!

Be gentle with yourself.

To go along with today’s gentle theme, I have a real simple, but fun, recipe.

Spaghetti Squash Noodles!

Go get yourself one spaghetti squash from the grocery store…

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Cut the squash in half (long ways)

Scoop out the seeds and set aside (maybe to roast & eat later, hmmm?)

Brush inside of squash halves with tiny amount of olive oil (maybe 1/2 tsp on each half)

Sprinkle salt & pepper over the olive oil coated halves.

Place squash halves on parchment paper lined baking sheet, the cut side down (or inside of squash facing down)

Roast squash for 30-45 minutes @ 375 degrees. (I think I might have done mine for 40 mins, some ovens get a little hotter/cooler than others)

Once you take the squash out of the oven, take a fork and start to scrap away at the inside of each squash half and the “spaghetti-like strands will start to form. I was so very amused with this process. It connected to me then where this squash got its name. 🙂 Leave the strands IN the squash and serve right out of it like a bowl or put strands in an actual bowl. (I just LOVE eating right out of the squash! Makes it so fun!)

Let cool for 5-10 minutes or so.

Season again with salt & pepper, or whatever seasons your wild heart desires and serve!

*I heated up a little spaghetti sauce and poured right on top of the squash, like it was a traditional spaghetti meal. I sprinkled a little nutritional yeast on top. I added a little side salad and some garlic bread, as well.

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Mmmm. Enjoy!

Light & Love,
Amanda

Squash Macaroni and Ch-ch-cheese with Peas

‘Tis the season to be rainy! La la la la la…It’s rainy season here in South Florida and nothing makes me want to curl up with a bowl of comfort food more than when the Earth is getting its cleanse on! I always loved when my mom made her home made macaroni and cheese dish for my three other siblings and I during my childhood. When I decided to eat plant-based, I must say, that there was a concern for how I was still going to be able to feed the macaroni and cheese cravings, among the other desires for the masterpieces that my superwoman mother whipped up in the kitchen. However, I trusted that I was not the only vegan eater in the world that loved a good bowl of mac and cheese!

One of my reasons for starting my own blog was motivated not only by the urge to want to interact and share my energy with like-minded individuals, but to follow in the foot steps of my fellow bloggers that came before me. I have spent a lot of time before this reading, searching, and identifying with so many other creators of blog pages, as well as applying the information I gather into my own life and feeling fantastic about it! Thank you for your gracious energy, my fellow bloggers out there! My soul bows to yours and I only can hope that I can be of the same inspiration to someone else! Having said that, many of my blogs will incorporate recipes, as I have mentioned before. Some of those recipes may come from other blogs, in which I will include the resource. My first recipe comes from one of my favorite blogs, www.celineeatsavocados.com. She has fantastic recipes, funky ideas, and inspiring info on her blog. This recipe is my favorite animal and earth friendly meal that I have come across, yet. And, I had a blast making it! Remember, I am all about playing and having fun, too!

I give you Squash Macaroni & Ch-ch-cheese with Peas

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For this noodle & cheese fest you will need:

1 cup uncooked pasta (I used gluten free quinoa macaroni noodles, but any will work)

3/4 cup roasted squash of some kind (I used an acorn squash; Butternut or Kabocha would be fine, too)

1/4 cup Earth Balance butter

1/4 cup veggie stock

3 tablespoons nutritional yeast

1/3 cup peas (frozen or fresh)

1 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon fresh thyme (I ended up using the ground thyme and liked it much better; more functional)

1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)

 

Preparation:

Roast your squash first. I cut mine in half and scraped out the seeds. I roasted my squash for about 40 mins. It is finished when you can stick a fork into it and pull it out clean. I also poured 1 inch of veggie stock in bottom of the pan that I roasted squash in to help it roast with some flavor. While squash was roasting, I steamed my peas (6-7 mins) and boiled my pasta. I let pasta boil just before they were timed to be done.

Ch-Ch-Cheese Sauce:

After roasting, I scooped out the squash (save the outer skin of squash, will use later!) and put required amount into a pan to keep warm on stove. I then added my butter, nutritional yeast, thyme, and veggie stock and stirred until the consistency of my preference. I found that I added a little more nutritional yeast because that is what gives the cheesiness to the sauce. Yum! Then I added my peas and noodles all into the pan with the squash sauce and gently mixed together to cover all the pasta noodles evenly.

Now the fun part! Remember your squash skin you saved? Well, that is your BOWL for the macaroni and cheese with peas! No cleaning any extras dishes than you already have to! I told you there would be fun in this! Scoop your macaroni and peas mixture from the pan into the squash and enjoy with a few sprinkles of the paprika and red pepper!

Light & Love,
Amanda