Can Real Food Become an Idol?

Can Real Food Become an Idol?

Do you intentionally grow bacteria on your counter?

Have you ever sipped a glass of raw milk while researching whether you should soak, sprout, sour, or just ditch your grains altogether?

Have you felt overwhelmed by the things others say you should be doing, yet you have trouble managing it all?

Honestly, keeping up with the real food world can be discouraging and downright depressing.

If you allow it to be so.

The problem is that we can become so obsessed with buying food or making recipes in order to become better parents, better spouses, better employees, or better people.

And then we might elevate food too high — place it on a pedestal where it was never meant to be.

Can real food become an idol?

I believe it can.

It was once, for me.

Continue reading at Traditional Cooking School

My Favourite Things

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I feel like breathing a sigh of relief as the day draws to a close. It’s been a good but busy week. Today was a busy day. I did tackle a couple of bathroom drawers and desk drawers of that was AWESOME! I get excited anytime I am able to find items I no longer need so I can keep things more simple and organized.

As Sunday draws near I am thankful to have a day of rest with some good God time, my Sunday School class, family, and friends. Isn’t a day to set aside the business of the week a blessing? It a wonderful way to end or begin a week.

I’m getting ready to put on my comfy cloths and enjoy a “Concha” (Mexican sweet bread), a cup of coffee, and a good book. Have a blessed weekend my friends! Be sure to check out some of these reads and deals that I am loving right now!


DIY Reusable Snack Bag @ Red and Honey

11 Researched Way sot Get a Good Night’s Sleep @ The Nourishing Gourmet

Why My Kids Don’t Drink Juice Everyday (& What They Drink Instead) @ Keep of the Home

Morning Glory Sourdough Muffins @ Smithspirations

Simplify Your Wardrobe So You Can Feel Fabulous Everyday @ Richly Rooted

It is More Blessed to Give…Than Sell Your Stuff @ Embracing a Simpler Life


The Ultimate Digital Photography Bundle is AMAZING!!! I. can. not. wait. to dig in! The awesome thing is that it is offered at three different levels, Beginner, Intermediate, and Business. You can learn to step up your game where ever you are at in your skill level, lack there of. 😉 Who doesn’t want to have great picture of their kids? And food because well, food is great..

On Life, Dishes, and the Frog in My Sink

Dirty dishes piled in kitchen sink, close-up

So, I had a frog sitting in my sink one day. The next day there was three…thankfully there weren’t five the following day. Lovely sight when you go to wash the dishes that have been sitting in the sink all day don’t you think?

There are few things that gross my out but tiny frogs in my sink did the trick, that and the crocodile lizard that was chilling on the counter a different day. I just LOVE reptiles and amphibians in my kitchen sink said no one ever, unless they were prepping frog legs I guess but who really does that at home?

My Frogs

In my old home the kitchen was in the lean-to/mud room, which meant critters loved to find their way in. If you want a tour of my old kitchen be sure to check out this video.

The solution would have been to stay on top of the dishes and my friends would only be hanging out in an empty sink. Back then I was a dorm mama for many and sometimes dishes didn’t get done when they should have.

Now I try to stay on top of things and either wash the dishes after each meal or put them in the dish washer. Thank the Lord for that invention! You can totally live without one, I did for 10 years but it is a thing of beauty, especially when you have a full plate and really what woman doesn’t?

Focusing on your kitchen sink being empty after every meal (or snack) leaves your kitchen clean(er) and allows your sink to receive the dishes from the next meal. Another great thing to try to do is clean as you prep a meal. That is the #1 tip my mom taught us growing up. That way you are not left overwhelmed by the overflowing sink once dinner is over.

Dishes are just one of many things that leave the homemaker (or single gal) feeling overwhelmed. Other things like laundry and what is the world are you going to fix for dinner while the kiddos are trying to climb up your legs or ask a “Mommy, can I?” question for the one millionth time in the last hour can leave you frazzled as well.

If you are stressed-out homemaker there is no need to stay feeling overwhelmed! 

Check out this free eCourse: 4 Simple Steps to Stress-Free Homemaking!

4 Simple Steps to Stress-Free Homemaking

Are you tired of getting behind on laundry?

Do you struggle to keep your kitchen clean?

Does the dinner hour have you harried?


If so, you cannot miss a FREE 4-part mini eCourse that is available for a limited time: 4 Simple Steps to Stress-Free Homemaking!

In this eCourse, you will learn:

  • how to never get behind on laundry again,
  • how to wake up each day to a sparkling clean kitchen,
  • how to avoid the 5 ‘o’clock scramble with a super simple meal planning method, and
  • how to set yourself up for success with a quick nighttime routine.

Control My Spin’s Holly Dvorak, a popular speaker and home management coach, and her long-time homemaking mentee, Erin Odom, of The Humbled Homemaker, have put together this eCourse to help curb homemaking overwhelm and give you the tools you need to run your home like a well-oiled machine.

4 Simple Steps to Stress-Free Homemaking will not take you long to complete, but what you learn through it can totally revolutionize your home.


What comes with this eCourse?

  • 4 videos: These videos are all less than 10 minutes long, so it won’t take up a lot of time to watch them. But they each pack a punch!
  • 4 printable worksheets: We don’t want to just leave you with the teaching; we want you to brainstorm ways to implement it in your life!
  • FREE REWARDS by sharing this FREE eCourse with your friends as well!

What rewards can you earn?

  • Share this FREE eCourse with 1 friend to get $5 off the 2015 Ultimate Homemaking Bundle! This year’s sale starts next Monday, April 20!
  • Share this FREE eCourse with 5 friends to get a FREE 1-year magazine subscription!
  • Share this FREE eCourse with 10 friends to get the 2015 Ultimate Homemaking Bundle for absolutely FREE!

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We let a sampling of bloggers get a sneak peek at this course, and this is what they had to say about it:

Kayse Pratt

“I absolutely loved the course! It was so encouraging for me to hear someone else’s homemaking struggles, and the tips I learned are so practical, I can implement them immediately! Each video is less than 10 minutes, and well worth your time. I’m recommending it to all of my friends!” ~Kayse Pratt, blogger at Kaysepratt and author of Worth the Fight

Angi Schneider

“I was really encouraged by the videos to really think about the little things that make my day go smoother when I do them. Thank you!” ~Angi Schneider, blogger at Schneiderpeeps and author of Hope: Thriving While Unemployed

Jill York

“I cannot tell you how much this simple free course has helped me already! I’ve watched them with my oldest daughter, and we are putting them to action! The motivation it provides can be life-changing! It made me really look forward to digging into the rest of what’s in the bundle.” ~Jill York, blogger at Jill’s Home Remedies and co-author of Homeschooling Day-by-Day

Kristen Smith

“The four mini lessons taught in this eCourse aren’t overwhelming, won’t load you with guilt, and are really doable. There’s also room to tweak the lessons for your family’s unique needs, which I appreciate as a homeschooling mom of give younger children. Instead of feeling like a failure by watching it, you feel motivated to make the small changes that Holly explains.” ~Kristen Smith, blogger at Smithspirations and author of Strengthening the Heart of a Homemaker

Don’t miss out on this FREE eCourse that can help take the stress out of homemaking! Get immediate access by signing up here, now! Don’t forget to check out the preview too!

Click here for immediate access!


6 Tips to Start Your Day Right

6 Tips to Start Your Day Right-

Routines make me happy. Having a routine that you stick to make the day get off to a good start and can give you a fresh perspective for the day ahead.

Schedules are great, there is no doubt that they have their place. Just ask my girls, when you have 16 kids schedules are must for certain times of the day. They also can be the cause of a bit of stress. Routines are a rhythm; those little things each day that you do the same way.  Even if things don’t happen at the exact same time everyday a routine makes life flow more smoothly. Days when I don’t at least try yo follow my routine don’t go nearly as well as the days I follow through with them.

Routines bring a comfort and a sense of peace even on the hard days.

1. Get up with your alarm

The “Just five more minutes” trap can be disastrous. Five more minutes can easily turn into an extra half hour if you are not careful. I speak from experience. Once you allow yourself to drift of to sleep again you feel more groggy than you would have if you had gotten out of bed with the first alarm. Then your whole routine for the morning is rushed or thrown off.

I find that once I get into a routine, my body starts to wake up naturally at the time I need to be up. My only problem there is remembering to turn off the alarm before it goes off if I wake up a couple of minutes early. I’ve had not so happy of room mates that heard my alarm go off when I was off in the bathroom getting ready while they got a bit more sleep.

I’ll admit that the selection of sounds on my iPhone has made waking up to an alarm much nicer than before. Being a dorm mama for 9+ girls for 9 years has made me a light sleeper. It take very little noise to wake me up, so I use the harp sound on my phone set on the 1 level of volume. That in and off itself helps my day start better. Who wants to have their heart start pumping with a loud noise first thing in the morning? If you need one and it work for you that’s great too.

2. Make time for God

Making time for God first thing in the morning is something that I can not emphasize more. Taking a few minutes before the feet of our Father is key no matter how rested or tired we are.

In some stages of life it has been a quick prayer while I start getting ready and practicing a verse. I’ve had other times in life where I was able to sit down a spend a good chunk of time with my Heavenly Papa first off. In those bust moments in life I took what I could get, then found a bit of time again later in the day.

Once Mare from Just Making Noise’s mom told be something I have never forgotten. She told that before I even got out of bed to pray that God would help me to respond well and not react poorly to the situations of the day. This short prayer is always a good reminder at the start of the day, especially on those days when from the moment you wake up your day is not what you planned.

Here are some ideas for making time for God everyday.

3. Do your hair

Who would think that a simple act of pulling your hair back would make a difference? Mama’s this one is for you. (Or work at home ladies as well.) When you know that you aren’t going out and that the kids don’t care it’s easy to just go with the bed head for a while. If you have even just two minutes you will be amazed at the difference it will make, regardless if your attire in PJ’s or not.

I have found that as long as my hair is pulled back in a pony tail or up in a bun (normally with a flexi clip) that I feel more put together. I can focus on what I need to do and proceed with the day. Later on I throw on cloths or shower but that simple act of getting my hair out of my face is a life saver!

4. Have something to drink

Not only is starting your day with a warm beverage soothing but it also can refresh your body from it’s overnight fast. Bulk Herb Store and Traditional Cooking School both share beneficial lemon waters that will help you get going in the morning. Even though I love my coffee and tea I really have noticed the benefit of starting my day this way. I love to wrap my hands around my mug and savor the moment.

Once I am done with my lemon “tea” I make a batch of coffee in my french press or make myself a cup of tea. If I’m in the mood I might make a mug of my “frothy coffee”.

Lemon Vanilla “Tea”

  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 TBS lemon juice
  • A pinch of Real Salt
  • Vanilla Stevia Drops to taste (optional)

5. Stretch

Just a few minutes of stretching can loosen your joints that may have gotten stiff overnight. It can also help wake you up a bit!

6. Eat a Good Breakfast

Protein is a must in the morning! It gives your body full that will keep you going. Skipping breakfast or just having a piece of toast will leave you hungry later on or make your body think that it is starved once lunch time rolls around. If you are short on inspiration for breakfast foods, Beth of Red and Honey’s book The Breakfast Revolution is jam packed with amazing meals, all which are gluten-free! I haven’t tried a recipe that I didn’t like in it!

What is your morning routine? Are there things you can think of to add to mine?


Baby Steps to Healthy Living

It’s never a good idea to go all in when it comes to leading a healthy life. You will end up burned out and feeling more unhealthy than when you started. That’s why baby steps are such an important thing. Diving in head first may work for a bit but talking everything at once is a bit much.

Eventually you will get to a point where you are doing more of the things you want to do but it comes from taking things one step at a time. There are many things that I would LOVE to be amazing at but I’m still not there. Take gardening for example. Yes, I have gardened over the years but it was never a huge success. Hopefully I will get to a point where I have a beautiful garden like my Grandpa Stanley’s but for now I will be happy with my herbs and a vegetable plant or two.

Baby Steps to Healthy Living

Baby steps to healthy living will look different for everyone. We are all in a different part of our healthy living journies. Please don’t compare yourself to some one else. Comparing either breeds discouragement or pride, neither of which are good things.

I want to share with you a few things that I started with, slowly adding things as I went. Step by step is they way to go. The little changes won’t feel nearly as overwhelming as sudden huge changes. Husbands and children will  generally respond better to baby steps as well. Remember to have grace on yourself and your family.

  • Look through your cupboards and get rid of some of the packages that have the  longes ingredient lists.
  • On your next trip to the store add a few new healthy products to your cart that you have been wanting to try.
  • Eliminate unhealthy oils and replace them with a healthy fat.
  • Think of one over-the counter-drug you have in the house and replace it will herbs or an essential oil.
  • Think of the cosmetics and beauty care products you use the most. Slowly as time and finances allows replace your chemical filled ones with natural ones you have bought or made yourself.
  • Look through the cupboards. Those are full of toxins as well. Find a natural replacement for each product at a time.
  • Get active. This could be taking a walk around your neighborhood. Taking your kids to the park and pushing them on the swing.

Before you know it you will find yourself adding more and more changes to your routine. You will feel more healthy and have more energy as well!

Please remember it’s baby steps not a race. It is fun if there is a friends who wants to join you along the way. You can be an encouragement to each other and inspire each other on with what you have learned!