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Simple Healthy Eating

It can be easy, accessible and delicious.

If you were to ask anyone about my skills in the kitchen, you’d receive a laugh. I’m not into food so it’s been a learning journey feeding my family because I am in to healthy, easy meals that my whole family will eat together. You don’t have to be a master chef to make meals that are healthy and taste good! I find that keeping things simple allows my mind to stay clear and stress-free in areas where I don’t excel or find interesting. How could that philosophy apply in your life?

When I’m looking for culinary inspiration, I like to use Pinterest because I can search for the dietary needs of my family, see pictures and look at the reviews all in convenient little rectangles. If you aren’t familiar with Pinterest, it allows you to “pin” things you choose to different virtual Pin Boards that you can refer back to later, which is especially helpful when you need to refer back to recipes.

Crock pot dump recipes are my go to when I know I won’t have time to cook in the evening. Today, on Taco Tuesday, I’m sharing my two favorite dump taco recipes that can be made vegan, vegetarian, gluten and dairy free depending on your needs. What’s a dump recipe? As unappetizing as it sounds, it’s one where you dump all the ingredients into a slow cooker, turn it on and let it cook until it’s time to eat. It doesn’t get any simpler.

Find the Chicken Taco recipe here.

Find the Lentil Taco recipe here.


To save time, use a pre-made taco seasoning.

Use corn tortillas or these egg wraps if you need a gluten-free option.

Use Violife Shreds if you need a vegan, dairy free cheese option. I like the mozzarella flavor.

Thanks for reading and let me know if you try either of these recipes! Happy, easy cooking my friends.

Peace, Jill

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Maintaining 2021 Intentions

Shifting your mindset around New Years Intentions- How to create and maintain your 2021 intentions.

I’m not talking New Year’s Resolutions friends, I’m talking Intentions. Resolutions are typically very specific and have a timeline- like losing ten pounds in three months. An intention is broader-like increased physical self-care. That self-care may include more exercise and weight loss, but it’s a mindset shift, not just a simply goal that is so often associated with failure if we don’t “achieve” what we set out to do in a certain time frame. So, how do we stay committed or re-commit (if we’ve fallen off the proverbial wagon) to our 2021 intentions?

First, take yourself back to the basics-meaning choose the beginner’s path. The beginner’s path is hallmarked by simplicity. Taking self-care as an example, identify just one area of self-care you are struggling with- going to bed on-time, committing to a regular exercise routine etc. What is one thing you can do or change to bring yourself more in line with your intention? For instance, I love yoga (duh), but I really dislike gym workouts, which I need to maintain my intention of broadening my physical health this year. I especially struggle with classes that take more than 30 minutes. I find myself checking my watch every few minutes and getting bored. But, I am motivated by the social aspect of taking classes with others, especially my friends, because it’s more fun for me that way and we can keep one another accountable. As part of my self-care journey for 2021, I took the actionable steps to find a gym that had short workouts and invited a few friends to join me. I’m pleased to say it’s working and I’ve been enjoying mercifully short and effective 35-minute gym classes with some of my good buds.

Second, let go of comparison! Easily said, difficult to do. Let me assure you, no one is paying more attention to you, than you. No one cares if you can run a 7-minute mile or do a crazy arm balance. No one cares if you intermittent-fasted for 16 hours or ate a bowl of ice cream at 11pm. It may sound harsh to hear that no one cares, but it’s meant to liberate you from the perceived judgement and associated validation from others. No one is good at everything when they begin, so cut yourself some slack and remind your inner critic that this is a journey of small steps to improve your wellbeing, not to improve the opinion of others about your wellbeing. The freedom you’ll feel from escaping the comparison cage in favor of cultivating your own self-worth is a gift that affects so many aspects of your life in a positive way.

Third, remember that rebirth is a constant process. The “I’ll wait til Monday, next week, next month, etc etc” approach, or the “I’ve already messed up today by not staying on track so I’ll simply forget about my intentions” approach is a defeatist mindset. And many times, life throws us curveballs that affect our schedule and make us feel we can’t commit. Who made the rule that when a wrench is thrown into our lives, whether self-induced or not, we can’t stay on track? Well friend, you made that rule. And because you make the rules, you can make new rules. You have the power to choose rebirth; to reset, and refocus whenever you wish. How freeing is that?

Last, I’ll leave you with the reminder that the key is not to succumb to the overwhelming-ness of it all. Intentions and mindful living are not an all-or-nothing thing, they are small lifestyle patterns that build, ebb and flow.

Peace, Jill

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Starting a Meditation Practice in 3 Simple Steps

How to start meditating in 3 simple steps.

Meditation has gained so much popularity in the mainstream western world-we hear about it being used not only in yoga studios and alternative health centers, but also in corporate settings and in schools to reduce stress and anxiety. Simply Google “Benefits of Meditation” and thousands of results pop up, like this one from Healthline, if you’re curious. But how to get started yourself is intimidating and it’s one of the top things my students tell me they wish they knew how to do.

When you think of meditation, you might think of someone sitting in padmasana with their hands in jnana mudra. If you’re asking yourself- what is padmasana and jnana mudra?! Don’t worry, you don’t need to know to start meditating. It’s important to let go of your preconceived notions of what meditation should look like and open your mind to simply finding what works for you.

Think about how you start something new- if you want to start working out, you might sign up for classes at a local gym. If you want to learn how to play piano, you might download a teaching app or hire a local instructor to help you. Meditation is no different. It’s one of the reasons I love Insight Timer. It is your own personal introduction-to-meditation teacher. This guided meditation app takes out the guesswork, allowing you to listen and look inward with the speaker as your navigator. There are other apps for this too, like Calm, but I like to reference Insight because it’s the one I use.

  1. Prioritize it. Set aside time each day for this self-care and don’t waiver. You might think you don’t have time, but everyone has five uninterrupted minutes. Found time can be in your parked car somewhere before you go in or after you come out. It can be the five minutes before you go to sleep or when you wake up.
  2. Go with the flow. Don’t waste your time scrolling through hundreds of options with analysis paralysis. Choose one that looks appropriate for your mood and the time you have allotted and go with it. In time, you’ll discover which teachers you connect with and can favorite them. Here’s one of my favorite teachers, Tara Brach with a short 6-minute meditation on seeing the goodness in others.
  3. Let go of expectation. Meditating is a practice and it’s something that doesn’t come easily for many people. Your brain is designed to think- so thoughts will arise and you’ll find yourself drifting away at times. That’s normal. Acknowledge the thought and bring your attention back to the meditation. It will get easier. Eventually you may give up guided meditation in favor of simply meditating on your own…but that’s another blog post.

Happy Meditating friends! Peace- Jill

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