Simple City Life

Monday, October 5, 2015

Quick And Simple When You Need It. #HorizonLunch

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #HorizonLunch #CollectiveBias

Not all mornings go as planned. Everyday I have my alarm set to 5:30am. I am the first one up, I get the hot water first and I am enjoy the stillness for a good 20 mins. It helps start my day feeling refreshed and ready to handle the tasks ahead. It's a simple routine, but one I have gotten extremely used to. That all changed when I woke up on my own this morning. No alarm. Assuming it was going to go aff any minute, I got up to retrieve my phone/alarm from the charger. Instead of being greeted by the numbers 5:30, I was shocked to read 6:35am...
Not a good way to start the morning when you daughters bus arrives at 6:53am. I quickly yanked her out of bed, ran down stairs to get some breakfast ready for her. Like a champ she was able to pull off getting ready for school in 10 mins. I honestly have no idea what she actually wore to school today, but hey- she didn't miss the bus. I was able to get her a piece of toast to eat and a Horizon® milk box. I am so glad I have been keeping grab and go items like these on hand around the house this school year, because you just never know when you will need them!
This whole hour delay in the morning not only started my daughters day off a little wonky, it changed our whole morning routine for the boys. I needed more help packing their lunches this morning and due to time relied a lot on simple grab and go items. There was no time for a more detailed lunch box today- it was all about quick and easy! The boys typically do not complain about this because they get some more special items on these occasions. Quickly they can grab their own snack bags to fill. Owen worked on his lunch by himself , while I helped Raichlen pick out some good for you foods. Of course he had to have a Horizon® milk like his sister, some Horizon sandwich crackers, a salami sandwich, pre-cut carrots and dip, a granola bar and a fruit leather. Typically we do not have this many packaged items in out lunch, but every once in a while you have to be able to accommodate the situation. 
I don't know about you, but I am looking forward to a better morning tomorrow already! I hate starting off the week out of our routine. Thankfully, in the grand scheme of life it isn't a huge deal. I will still get my shower in, my kids will eat a good lunch and have a great day at school. Since life is unpredictable, it is always nice to have a small supply of grab and go items on hand for these small hiccups. I was able to purchase these items at our local Walmart Neighborhood Market.
On top of these products I was able to shop for several other items that were full of quality ingredients. Horizon® carries several items to help you out on crazy morning when you just a simple solution. 

 What have you done to help you out when things don't go as expected in the morning? I'm off to get the shower now, but I'd love to hear your thoughts. 


Ps. Don't forget the new The Peanuts Movie is coming out in one month on November 6th! Look for specially marked Horizon products with The Peanut Movie packaging. Who doesn't love Snoopy? I can't wait- will you be rushing out to see it?  

Friday, October 2, 2015

Gluten Free Nutrient Dense Banana Bread

I love taking a old recipe and flipping the ingredients out to make a new, extra healthy recipe. I love banana bread, but the reality is that I really should not be eating much of it. Although there is bananas in it, the typical recipe is white flour and loads of sugar. I am always trying to reduce the processed sugars as well as ways to add fiber, immune boosting and protein rich ingredients to my old family recipes.  
With a counter full of bananas that were going bad, I decided to try to doctor up my traditional recipe. I recently received a package of superfoods from Foods Alive and I am loving incorporating these foods into our daily lives. I choose to incorporate the Maca powder into this recipe due to the health benefits of Maca. Maca is compared to Gingseng because of its energy boosting abilities as well as its immune support. Maca is great when mixed into morning smoothies, oats or even stirred right into your yogurt. It was a slight nutty taste, which is why I decided it would be a perfect addition to my banana bread. I chose the addition of flax for the omega-3 boost and high fiber.
It has been a long time since I have baked a gluten free treat and have had it rise so perfectly! I was not the biggest fan of garbanzo bean flour initially, but it is becoming my right hand man lately. I will warn you however...when baking with garbanzo bean flour the smell is very different as well as the taste prior to cooking. I have had to remind myself a million times to not judge the recipe by tasting the batter when using bean flours. you are much better off waiting to sample the end result.

Although this is a more lengthy recipe then I typically use, I am thrilled with it and have added this to my trusty recipe book.

Gluten Free Nutrient Dense Banana Bread


4c. Bean flour sifted- I used garbanzo flour
4 ripe bananas
6 eggs
1 c. organic brown sugar
1/2 c honey
1/2 c. ground flax
1 1/3c cup almond Milk
2t. Apple Cider Vineager
1 c. sunflower oil- or other baking oil
1/4 c. crushed cacao nibs
1 t. Himalayan salt
2 t. baking soda
2 t. salt
2T Maca Powder
optional- 1/4 c. crushed nuts

* makes 2 loafs

Mix eggs, brown sugar and honey together, add your oil, milk and apple cider vinegar. In a seperate bowl sift your flour, and add the remaining dry ingredients. Mash bananas and add to wet ingredients. Stir in your dry ingredients until well blended. Stir in cacao nibs and nuts.

Pour into oiled and parchment lined bread pans, bake 60 mins or until your knife comes our clean.
Cool and enjoy!

I typically leave one out for eating and freeze one for later, you can always half this recipe for a smaller batch.

Let me know how you liked it- did you make your own new recipe with your favorite ingredients? I love to check it out. 

Happy Fall Baking Y'all!


Monday, September 28, 2015

Comfort in natural choices for your family. #naturalgoodness

Comfort foods are so popular this time of year. I find myself craving warm and hearty stews and soups, even though it hardly feels like fall! There is just something about the month of September. As much as I am not looking forward to winter, I do love the fall air, the fun photo sessions and the warm clothing. All of these things bring me comfort and peace. Do you feel the same way? 
Another thing that bring me comfort and peace is the companies that we have grown fond of over the past several year. For the bast two decades I have have been using the same brand of toothpaste. A brand I have come to trust not only for myself, but also for my children. I know it may sound strange, however after all these years it feels so familiar and safe, like hanging out with your family. I have watched them grow and try new things. I have tested different products and have remained faithful because I know that they are watching out for me.
I care greatly about my families safety, which is why we continue to stick with Tom's of Maine® Tom's of Maine®  products do not contain artificial colors, flavors, fragrances, preservatives, animal ingredients or animal testing. They are proudly made in the USA and have a great commitment to being good stewards of the earth. I know that living a natural lifestyle can take a toll on your finances at times. This is why I am so excited to see that so many stores are starting to take notice that natural brands should be available to everyone. While shopping at Walmart last week I was able to spot several of our favorite natural and organic brands, including Tom's of Maine®. 

Companies like Tom's of Maine®  have helped me introduce my children to more natural alternatives easily. My daughters first deodorant was Tom's of Maine®  Lemongrass long lasting deodorant. I will soon be purchasing my oldest boy some of the Men's Deodorant. If you are looking for a company to help you kick toxins to the curb, I highly suggest you become good friends with Tom's of Maine®. We have been fighting toxins in our home for several years and truly believe that as a family we are bettering our environment. I will continue to stick to my ways in order for my kids to have a safe home and future. 
When you find a brand that works, that cares and that continually gives back, please stick with them. Our dollars are speaking and our voices are being heard. Stores are changing their ways, natural brands are becoming the front runners. If you are not sure, take the plunge and be ready to be amazed at the wonderful relationship you will develop with 
Tom's of Maine®
You really will start to feel like family, because they care. They care about you and your family.