A picture is worth...

 
29 of the different servings of fruits, vegetables and berries I am getting each day when I take Juice Plus+, all for the price of about 1 pineapple or a bag of carrots and apples. I was definitely glad we take Juice Plus+ when I went to the store yesterday and tried adding up what that all would cost to eat every day... too much!

Getting kids to eat right...


While T and I don't have kids yet, being a teacher allows me to see the effect that nutrition has on the students within my classroom. I can immediately tell the ones who ate breakfast in the morning by how they connect with me, and who is dragging around 10:30am because of poor eating habits. I want my students to be feeling their best and performing their best, and a lot of that has to do with the nutritional choices they are making at home.

I even see in my niece and nephew how difficult it can be to get kids to eat healthy, especially when you either a) have picky eaters, or b) don't have the time to make a balanced meal for your family. American kid these days simply do not get enough fruits and vegetables in their diets, and they are suffering consequences because of it. It seems like our tastebuds are hardwired to prefer french fries to carrots, and donuts to apples! (Or the car naturally seems to veer towards McDonalds or Papa Murphys when you have had a long day... is that a built in mechanism these days?) :)

Even if your kids do eat fruits and vegetables on a regular basis, they are often limited to what they like (carrots or tomatoes, anyone?) and usually nothing else. And let's face it, we don't have the time, energy or resources to purchase and prepare the full required servings and variety of fruits and vegetables that our bodies need each day. That's why so many moms, dads, kids (and teachers!) have come to depend on Juice Plus, because it bridges the gap between what we should eat, and what we actually do eat.

Several studies that have recently been published paint a grim picture for the future of our children's health. With the increasing amount of processed foods being incorporated into diets, mixed with more sedentary lifestyles (PSP, DS, Wii and XBOX sound familiar?), children are now at risk of developing serious diseases at a much younger age than ever before. Here are some published facts that face our children and this current generation:
  • They aren't getting enough fruits and vegetables. 93% of children and adolescents do not consume the recommended amount of vegetables per day. --Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine
  • They have a weight problem. One in three American children and teenagers is overweight or obese. - American Heart Association
    • Obesity rates have tripled among teens since the late '70s. -Journal of the American Medical Association 
  • They're already developing serious diseases (many without even knowing it!)  80% of children who are overweight at ages 10 - 15 become obese as adults. --U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    • By age 12, an estimated 70% of children have the beginning stages of hardening of the arteries. -- Bogalusa Heart Study
    • Today's generation of children may be the first in two centuries to actually live shorter lives than their parents. --New England Journal of Medicine
 Thankfully, for busy families, teachers, and people in general who want to incorporate the simple plan of incorporating whole, fresh and organic fruits and vegetables into their diets and experience the real impact it has on our body, there is a hand-up out there with Juice Plus+. Unlike the overwhelming majority of nutritional products on the market, Juice Plus+ is backed by published, peer-reviewed, gold-standard, clinical research. Studies conducted by prestigious research institutions and published in peer-reviewed scientific journals have found that Juice Plus+:
  • Delivers key phytonutrients that are absorbed by the body
  • Reduces oxidative stress caused by free radicals
  • Positively impacts markers of systemic inflammation
  • Helps support a healthy immune system
  • Helps protect the structural integrity of DNA
  • Promotes cardivascular wellness
  • Is without question the most thoroughly researched brand name nutritional product on the market today. 
Juice Plus is a whole-food based nutritional product that provides nutrition from 17 different fruits, vegetables and grains-- such as apples, broccoli, kale, parsley, papaya and beets in a convenient capsule or chewable form. It partners with your current lifestyle to help you bridge the gap of your nutritional choices and begin laying the foundations of a healthy future for your family. I know I don't want to be another statistic, and I am so glad that I have my "safety belt" of Juice Plus to take on every morning and evening while I navigate through life.

I am so passionate about this opportunity to deliver bioavailable nutrients to my body that I simply don't have the time to incorporate when left to my own doing. Juice Plus+ is affordable, sustainable and has been on the market for over 15 years, successfully changing lives every day around the globe.

I would love to share more about Juice Plus+ and my story with you! If you have any questions, please feel free to email me at meganlove17@gmail.com, or visit my website at www.meganlovejuiceplus.com

Be well!

If you have 5 minutes...


I am the self-proclaimed weekend cleaner. I admit it. I like to consider myself a clean and tidy person; however, I frequently admit defeat week after week when I have to prioritize the "to-dos." And if you are like me, the most boring or tedious ones get pushed until the weekend (much to the disapproval of my husband). This article was written for procrastinators like myself... hooray! And after trying out a couple of these suggestions this weekend, I already feel like a more accomplished person (and hopefully a better wife.) :)

"If you have five minutes..." (Taken from the January 2011 article in Real Simple magazine)

1. Call your dad
2. Check your voicemail
3. Move some random files on your computer desktop to the correct folders
4. Refold your sweaters and stack them by color
5. Floss your teeth
6. Water the plants and wipe a damp paper towel on the leaves
7. Sew on a button
8. Pitch three old items from the refridgerator
9. Put a bag of to-be-donated clothes by the front door
10. Untangle a necklace
11. Cancel one appointment you just really don't want to keep
12. Find the evening bag, scarf, or top that got lost in the closet
13. Test pens or markers and toss the dead ones
14. Arrange your hangers so they all face the same way
15. Pick up five things ad put them where they belong
16. Wash the dog's bowl
17. Brush the cat
18. Clear off the top of the refridgerator
19. Remove gum wrappers, receipts and ATM slips from your purse
20. Get rid of one pair of shoes that kill your feet (since you never wear them anyway!)
21. Scan your medicine cabinet and throw out any expired prescriptions, sunscreens or vitamins
22. Test your smoke alarms
23. Shred something-- anything
24. Write a thank-you note that you have been putting off
25. Walk around your home with a small can of white paint and do touch-ups
26. Create an emergency kit with bottled water, batteries, canned foods and flashlights
27. Download the pictures in your digital camera to your computer
28. Paint your toenails
29. Throw out all expired coupons
30. Gather valid coupons and stash them in your glove compartment
31. Look through a box of photos and frame one that is meaningful to you
32. Empty the bathroom wastebaskets
33. Scan your sock drawer and put any one-offs in a basket. If their matches don't turn up in the laundry the next day, toss them
34. Open your file cabinet and get rid of five old files
35. Transfer dates from invitations and school flyers to your calendar
36. Return that Netflix movie
37. Locate all of your critical pot tops and nest them together
38. Check your stack of magazines and eliminate half (consider donating them to a local classroom!)
39. Polish your favorite books
40. Read an old journal entry
41. Look in your shower and toss any old or empty shampoo bottles or body washes that you haven't used in awhile
42. Neaten up your freezer
43. Do two yoga poses
44. Move worn-out towels to the highest shelf in the linen closet
45. Reply to three emails
46. Charge your portable devices
47. Sweep beneath your kitchen table
48. Book that appointment you've been meaning to make (since you canceled the one you didn't want to keep!)
49. Unload the dishwasher (no one said anything about loading!) :)
50. Make the bed. It's amazing what this one change can do to your room.

It's the little things that count... :)

trust.


This is a good place we're at right now... having such an uncertain future amongst the certain things I know and love: My Heavenly Father who is good, who does only good, and who has a perfect plan for our lives; and the love I have for my husband, my life partner, who holds my hand as we walk forward together. We will trust God together, face everything together, and just know that no matter what, we're in a good place. We can look back upon this time of uncertainty knowing that God is and always was in control, and that we were blessed by trusting Him and His protection as He is always so faithful to provide.

Jeremiah 29:11...so quoted yet so poignant: "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, they are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." This is where we are.

healthy changes in 2011+

I have been studying a lot lately about the benefits of nutritional eating on our lives and how that relates to God's plan for us as His children. Each God-created whole food item that is not man-made or factory processed is rich in nutritional benefit for our well-being. God created vitamin D, vitamin C, folic acid, fiber, etc. Not man. And man created the synthetic, fragmented multivitamin-- not God. For a period of time, our nation focused on "fast food" and multivitamins to supplement our growing, busy lives in America. With an increase in technology, came an increase in responsibilities, which increased a demand on our lives, which began limiting our time allowed to slow down and cook or invest in the work that healthy eating required. Bags of chips and vending machines became the new apples and oranges-- because let's face it, oranges take too long to peel.  Unfortunately, those processed foods and the attitude of being "too busy for..." have taken a huge toll on our health as a nation. This has snowballed into an epidemic of preventable illnesses and obesity leeching onto our bodies, which has risen from the "convenient" food choices we've become dependent upon to supplement our busy lives. I heard a quote yesterday from a 97 year old man who still works out 2 hours a day on how he stays so healthy. He said, "If man made it, I don't eat it."

My family and I have been taking the whole food supplement, Juice Plus, for over ten years, and I have seen tremendous results in our lives on both a physical and biological level. With over 17 different fruits and vegetable pulped into capsule form, I am able to receive a white variety of phytonutrients I would never receive without it. Because let's face it: The reality of buying kale, parsley, beets, papaya, cabbage and barley on a daily basis just isn't happening for myself or for 90% of the world.

Because of adding Juice Plus to my diet, I personally have seen a huge decrease in the amount and length of time that I experience illness, and have had nothing greater than a cold in ten years. I crave vegetables and fruits over sweets (though of course I still indulge!) and buy spinach and broccoli at the store, which I NEVER ate growing up. Yum! My appetite has transformed in that I no longer desire fast food, and in fact, when I do give in (to my husband's request), I often feel this sense of "ick" afterwards and vow that I won't do that again. I am human so of course I do, but it really is that testimony to "you are what you eat," or in my case, "you feel how you eat."

My resolution in 2011 is to keep living healthy: Taking my Juice Plus every day, limiting my amount of bad fats in my diet, cutting back on soda, exercising, and most of all, investing daily in my relationship with God and in my relationship with my husband.  I am so thankful for the good things God has given and how He has designed healthy living to manifest itself in our lives!

at the base of this really huge mountain called...

home buying. I thought this was supposed to be a fun and exciting process? We have had so much difficulty with hoops and fees and contracts and inspections and problems and walk-throughs and, "will this hold its value?" "Do we want to have these neighbors?" "Is this the area we want to live in?" "Can we find a lot to build on instead?" And 500 other questions.

As I'm writing this, I'm convicted in remembering that we are very blessed to be in a position to buy right now. We are tired of spending money on apartment rent and really ache to invest in something more permanent. However, we know that God is good, and in the fullness of time, this too will work out for us if we trust him. I just never knew that this process was so tedious. I am very much looking forward to reading this blog in front of my fireplace in my new home sometime, somewhere, remembering how much of a wall we felt that we were hitting, and being able to look back on where God brought us perfectly into our new home in His timing. For now, we wait.

resolutions.

My students and I created a "resolutions" wall yesterday for the new year. I told them that the had to write a new year's resolution, and that they would need to stick to for the rest of the school year. It could be personal, school-related, friend or family related, but it had to be thoughtful. We have the wall front and center in our classroom, so we will always be reminded of these goals we are trying to achieve this year. I really enjoyed reading their goals and learned a lot. "Eat healthier this year," "Try and run more in p.e.," "Not get so stressed when I am trying to learn something new," "Make three new friends with people I don't know," "Try five new foods..."








but this was my personal favorite... 

some 2011 hopes...

I hope 2011 means...

*I learn how to cook without burning things so much
*We get to move out of this apartment into a new home
*I become better at staying organized
*I make more time to read my Bible and just immerse myself in the Lord
*I take more spontaneous pictures
*I make staying healthy a priority

I tried cooking tonight. I thought it would be really simple and easy since just last week, my sister and I made this dish together. Minus the slight burn of the bacon and peppers in the beginning of the process (I had the burner on too high-- trade mark Megan move), it turned out okay. Hopefully that means 2011 goal #1 is that much closer to fulfillment. I think we'll call it the chicken pepper noodle dish. Very fancy.

Also, here is my first health tip for 2011. It's very profound.

"Eat when you're hungry, stop when you're full." You're welcome.

Today I also took some pictures that reminded me of what the weather was like when T and I were falling in love last winter. Either the weather really was sunny, or I was just excitedly optimistic. :) But today was gorgeous. Thank you God. :)



What 365 days can do

I remember last year, on the cusp of 2010, thinking, "I am REALLY ready for 2009 to be over with. Bring on 2010." I had so much hope and anticipation for the new year: a fresh start, a new person in my life, graduating in April with my Master's degree, hoping to find a job, feeling good in general and completely trusting God. I was in His palms. I was so dependent on Him for survival each day because I didn't know where my next dollar would come from. I wish I could remember back to how each bill got paid, rent was on time each month, and I had food to eat. It certainly wasn't from my own doing, because I had nothing. I worked tediously and faithfully each day for the hope of something bigger, and God sustained me. He did exactly as He promised, like He always does.

So here I am, January 1, 2011. I have a husband now, who's sitting next to me. Somehow he seems to think I'm worth his affection, though I secretly think I'm not. We have food in our fridge, jobs, bills are paid, and 1,000 memories from 2010 that I think neither of us would have expected, exactly one year ago today. To me, he was this new vibrancy in my life. This new soul person that understood me with each word I said, and loved me in spite of them. To him, I was a girl who listened and loved. We grew together with such natural fervency that in the fulness of time we got engaged and married. And so,  we now start our life exploration together. 2010 brought adventures, travels, experiences, concerts, staycations, road trips, dates, fights, concerts, surprises, make-ups, learning, growth, compromise and most of all, a deeper love every day. I am excited to see where God brings us this year.

2010 was the warm-up; 2011 is where it all begins.
 
Blogging tips