What Are You Willing To Do?

What Are You Willing To Do?

There’s a great Jerry Rice quote that goes like this: “Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can’t.” I love the sentiment behind this quote because it embodies a concept we see all too infrequently these days — Delayed Gratification. The idea that the work we put in today will somehow be compounded by time and we will eat of the fruit of our efforts in due time. In today’s culture of “fast forward everything” it seems nearly stupid to wait for anything. And yet, I want to argue that there is still tremendous value in planting, watering, tending and eventually harvesting the seed of expectation and vision in your life. I’m a Christian and I like to read the Bible. One of my favorite books to read when it comes to this idea of delayed gratification is Daniel. Daniel was a Jew and a prophet during a time in history when his people were exiled to Babylon under a pretty harsh king. And yet Daniel was selected to serve in the royal court and lead a band of magicians as he divined dreams and gave the king heavenly advice. Daniel was also aware of certain promises that had been made to his people. Promises that involved going back home. And as the appointed time drew near for this promise to come to pass, Daniel became discouraged because of certain peripheral goings on in the kingdom where he currently resided. Because of this, chapter 10 tells us that Daniel goes into mourning and the Bible says he begins to fast. No meat, no...
The Basics of Juicing

The Basics of Juicing

We are a fan of juicing! If you are new to the idea of juicing, I want to tell you that if this mom of three small boys can juice in the morning on a school day AND get her boys to drink said juice, it’s simple enough for you to do, too! What You Will Need: A Juicer — Do not freak out about which one to buy! Simply head over to Amazon.com and search “juicer.” Narrow your search to juicers costing between $50-$100 and by ones that have reviews of 4 stars and up. Then pick one! To get started in juicing you just need one that will extract the juice and isn’t a total bear to clean. By sticking with reviews four stars and higher, this is what you will find. Personally, we have an older version of this one. (Full disclosure: this is an affiliate link) Produce — The gold standard of juices starts with greens. That could be anything from kale to romaine to arugula (although this last one’s a bit peppery and bitter as a base). Then you want to add some other green veggies. We like cucumber and celery for their hydrating effects. Next, add in some veggies that have other desired effects you’re going for: carrot for some sweetness, beets for liver cleansing, herbs like parsley for overall detox. Last, select a fruit or two to add some pleasing flavor that will hook your kids or a new juice fanatic. This could be a green apple or a pear, pineapple or strawberries. Not too much fruit, though, or you will have...
The Waiting: When It’s Not Happening

The Waiting: When It’s Not Happening

I am writing this blog post from home today, but I’m not supposed to be here. I’m supposed to be in San Diego attending a national conference with my church family, but I’m experiencing a digestive flare and I wasn’t able to travel. When things like this happen it rocks me a bit. Here I am, a health coach and a minister of the word of God, unable to rise above the circumstances I’ve been dealt and just get it done. But life’s like that sometimes, and we can’t deny who we are made to be simply because we’re suffering through something. Suffering is something we go through; it doesn’t identify us. It may mark us, but we don’t have to allow it to steal our destiny. It’s times like this that my worst enemy comes out to mock me. It’s that thought that asks, “Who do you think you are? How is it that a health coach who teaches others can’t find a way to make themselves better? You must not be very good at your job.” Wow. It sounds convincing, right? But I’ve learned to fight back. The circumstances I am experiencing don’t have to dictate where I am going or where I will wind up. I actually don’t have to listen to the voice at all because my success as a coach and motivator has nothing to do with whether I can fix myself or not. My success depends on carrying out the mission I’ve been given — to help others find breakthrough and victory in their lives when it comes to finances, health, relationships, and life issues. My illness...
Holy Guacamole! (or How Taste Buds Can Change)

Holy Guacamole! (or How Taste Buds Can Change)

I never really liked avocado. But somewhere in my teenage years I heard that taste buds change every three years, so I kept on trying avocado despite it being a “thumbs down” for me each time. And while the research I’ve done recently on taste buds and taste development does not support this theory of the three year turn over, I am happy to say that somewhere in my twenties, because of my commitment to continue trying foods I wasn’t fond of, I began to love avocado! It all changed with this amazing guacamole dip that I tried deep in the heart of Texas. I have three small children — 7, 5 and about to be 2. What I’ve learned about taste from them is that it is possible train a child’s palate. Many parenting books tell you that kids may need to try foods anywhere from 10-15 times before they will accept the taste and texture as good to them. It may have something to do with the sensitivity of these new “taste radars” they’ve been equipped with. My kids eat pretty much everything under the sun. I credit this not only to consistently trying all different kinds of foods with them during their toddler years, but also to having a dinner table rule that says they must try at least one bite of everything on their plates. Even if the last time they ate it they didn’t like it. Like magic, salad has become acceptable on the dinner plate! And, remarkably, things like broccoli and spicy foods and coconut curry have always been on the menu for them. As we go through pregnancy and menopause (ladies) and as we age our taste...
The Story Behind Beacon Coaching

The Story Behind Beacon Coaching

My whole life has been a journey towards finding purpose. Ever since I can remember I’ve asked questions like: “Why do I like this? Why am I made this way? Why in the world was I born? What’s my purpose?” Each time I’ve made a major decision in my life — where to go to college, whether or not to move to another state, the right person to marry — there has always been a question bubbling just under the surface. “How will this decision resonate with the purpose I was made for? How will this choice make me more of who I am meant to be?” I guess you could say I am a certified “life purpose junkie.” My name is Erica and I’m the founder of Beacon Coaching. Beacon is the coaching business I started at the beginning of 2015, but the vision for Beacon Coaching has been bubbling up ever since I can remember. When I was six years old I would ride around my father’s gas station on a sparkly magenta, banana seat bike and speak to the crowds I imagined gathered in my mind. At the age of nine I would stand on the walkway beside our house and speak to the masses of people I could see in my mind’s eye. I would talk about all sorts of things. Anything from how to be the best cheerleader to the smartest way to organize your stuffed animal collection to the basics of astronomy and the universe (I had a wide range of interests!). I began to find that what made me happiest was synthesizing information, packaging it into a...
GF Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (and Why I Love Oats)

GF Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (and Why I Love Oats)

        I’m posting this recipe for gluten free banana chocolate chip muffins today in celebration of reaching 100 Likes on the Facebook page. (Woohoo!) Thanks for being a part of getting us here! I chose this recipe because it’s my most popular one. My kids and family absolutely love these muffins, I take them to church, I make them for holiday brunch spreads and I send them to people as gifts. Everyone seems to love them (except my friend Lisa, who is allergic to bananas — Boo!). And no one even knows they are this “specialty” bakery item called gluten free. I’m in the camp that believes gluten free cannot mean subpar in taste or texture. I believe anything gluten free must be delicious and satisfying in its own right. And my kids serve as the perfect taste testers for this benchmark! I make these muffins with certified gluten free oats. I use Bob’s Red Mill gluten free rolled oats. I can find them at my local Publix, but when you buy them in bulk, you definitely save money ($9 at my local store vs. $6/pkg when you buy a case of 4 on Amazon). So why am I so hopped up on oats? I’ve had a condition called Irritable Bowel Syndrome (“IBS”) for most of my life. You’ve probably heard of it since the NIH reports that between 15-20% of the adult population in the United States suffers from the condition (although only 7% seem to have received a firm diagnosis). IBS isn’t an easy definitive diagnosis to come by because it is primarily a collection of symptoms...
Why Am I So Tired on This Cleanse?

Why Am I So Tired on This Cleanse?

I’m currently facilitating a three week cleanse and elimination diet via a Facebook group for about 55 people and today we’re on Day 5. The glorious Day 5! The day when most detox symptoms begin to disappear and we generally hit the “flow” of clean eating. Headaches float away, muscle and join pain subsides, nausea vanishes, bloating is a thing of the past. Can’t you just hear the angels singing off in the distance? Maybe you can’t because you’re still so stinking tired. Fatigue can be a major symptom when you make drastic changes to your diet, especially when you exclude one or more food categories. There are a few reasons why this could be happening to you. And there are certainly some things you can try to get the pep back in your step even while continuing on a cleanse program. Here are four: You have excluded virtually all food-based stimulants from your diet. With the pace of life the way it is these days, many of us have learned to rely on caffeine and sugar to get through the day. We use these foods to wake up and get moving and we use them to stay moving by mid-afternoon. On a cleanse, caffeine and sugar are removed from the diet. If you’re doing an elimination component then things like dairy, wheat, corn and processed foods may also be removed. These foods contain or break down into sugar as well, so they have become part of our energy equation. To combat fatigue resulting from removing stimulants from the diet, try upping your water consumption and making sure you are consuming enough...
“You Can Do This” Chicken Bone Broth

“You Can Do This” Chicken Bone Broth

I want to start with this simple (and true) statement: YOU can do THIS! Practically with your eyes closed. Not even kidding. You just need a few ingredients, a big pot, a stove and time. That’s it. First, let’s start with the Why: Bone broth is extremely healing, especially for those who have gut issues, joint pain, allergies or brain related issues like ADHD and Autism. The primary benefit of bone broth is its ability to rebuild the gut lining and connective tissues in the body; collagen and various minerals being released from the bones and connective tissues are responsible for these regenerating qualities. Check out this post by Paleo Mom to read more about the specifics of why it is so healing. And if you want a little more in general on the topic, check out this post by Wellness Mama. I’ll just say that I have had digestive issues for most of my life and have found that just one day of consuming bone broth significantly calms my symptoms. It’s really that powerful. There are many recipes out there, but I’m going to give you one for a chicken bone broth that you could do in your sleep (in fact, it does most of its cooking while you do just that — sleep!). You can also make a bone broth from beef bones or fish bones and shells. With beef bones you will want to roast them in the oven for a bit before you boil/simmer them with veggies and herbs and spices, and then you’ll want to simmer it for up to 48 hours. Yes, 48 hours. Chicken...
Tasty Rubs for Steak, Chicken or Fish

Tasty Rubs for Steak, Chicken or Fish

Over the years I’ve collected and perfected a number of different rubs that we use on steak, chicken or fish. Since we’ve gone Whole30(ish) this past month, these rub recipes have become super important! Here are our favorites . . . Blackening Rub (covers 2 lbs. steak, chicken or fish) 1 tsp. paprika 1/4 tsp. salt 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper 1/2 tsp. ground cumin 1/2 tsp. thyme 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper 1/4 tsp. onion powder Chili Rub (makes about 12 Tbl of rub) 2 Tbl. chili powder 2 Tbl. ground cumin 2 Tbl. paprika 1 Tbl. oregano 1 Tbl. dried coriander 1 Tbl. garlic powder 1 Tbl. onion powder 1 Tbl. sea salt 1 tsp. cayenne (adjusted for heat) 1 tsp. crushed red pepper (adjusted for heat) 1 tsp. ground black pepper Outback Rub (covers 2 lbs. steak, chicken or fish) 4 tsp. sea salt 4 tsp. paprika 2 tsp. ground black pepper 1 tsp. onion powder 1 tsp. garlic powder 1 tsp. cayenne pepper (adjusted for heat) 1/2 tsp. ground coriander 1/2 tsp. ground turmeric Ribeye Rub (covers 2 lbs. steak) 2 Tbl. chili powder 1 tsp. cayenne pepper 1/2 tsp. salt 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper London Broil Rub (covers 3lbs. steak) 2 Tbl. chili powder 1 Tbl. oregano 1 Tbl. paprika 2 tsp. garlic powder 1 tsp. sea salt 1/2 tsp. ground black...
Black Bean Soup

Black Bean Soup

  We’ve been on a bit of a diet journey these past two weeks as we endeavor to keep Jacob off prednisone during this allergy season. We started on the Whole30 about ten days ago and saw an almost immediate impact. We were able to cut down some of his medication and we also saw his symptoms — watery eyes, runny nose, swelling, and cough — lessen. But there were a couple of symptoms – like a rash he generally develops – that weren’t abating. So when we visited our doctor a few days into the program, we were sure to ask about dietary adjustments. It was then that I was reminded that both Jacob and I do not do well on nuts. In fact, Jacob is allergic to a number of different types of nuts. I have been on this health journey for quite some time and am just a few months away from finishing my health coaching certificate and yet, somehow, I overlooked the fact that my son and I weren’t going to do well on a diet that used nuts so much! We immediately made some changes. We gave up on the nuts – and our kids’ favorite Larabars – in favor of adding back beans to our diet. We also brought in certified gluten free oats so Jacob would have some options for breakfast (he can’t stand eggs). With these changes we seem to be doing okay. Jacob’s symptoms have stabilized into a certain zone we are comfortable with for now. We’ll just have to see if staying consistent with the diet for a week...