2017 is off to a beautiful start. Despite the impending doom of the nightmare that is the Trump presidency, my little family is emanating love and chugging ahead on the home front. Since returning from Kauai for the holidays, it’s been cooooold and I’ve been so content spending days and days in the kitchen making soups and stews with the kiddos playing nearby with their new rainbow silks, tee pee and Waldorf play structure.

I’m deeply immersed in and insanely inspired by my Lifeways parenting seminar training. I just attended my sixth class (out of the eight I signed up for). We started with the importance of rhythm – daily rhythm, weekly rhythm, and seasonal rhythms. Then we studied the four temperaments, which was one of the most engrossing, fascinating subject matters I’ve ever studied. It gave me immense perspective on my nuclear family growing up, my own family dynamic, and understanding these four tendencies helps us to parent by temperament – a powerful tool. We then studied the 12 senses and how to give our children sensory nutrition. Followed by the development of movement in infants and how we are doing our kids a huge disservice by putting them into swings and propping them upright before they develop the proper muscles to do so on their own. Part of this class was looking at the importance of having appropriate play spaces and toys to foster healthy development, and made me come home and want to re-do everything!

The phases of development and biography class was super amazing – we spent hours exploring the earliest depths of our own memories of childhood to better understand how our children experience the world. We learned the various phases of development through childhood and our adult life. We also learned about working with our children’s Angel(s) – how very beautiful! And most recently, the development of play, which points out how essential uninterrupted play is for young children and how in today’s world parents and elementary schools are so preoccupied with academics that public school systems are no longer giving children time for imaginative play.

As a new parent, this Lifeways North America education has been transformational, and I’m so grateful for the opportunity to support my children in this way. It’s made me even more committed to keeping my kids in Waldorf as long as we can afford it, at least til 5th grade I hope.

I wanted to share a few of my favorite family-friendly recipes recently.

Pasta with Creamy Alfredo Cheeze Sauce
Serves 8

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  • Soak 2 cups raw, organic cashews in 4 cups water overnight, rinse and add another 4 cups water, put in the Vitamix
  • Sautee an onion and several cloves of garlic in lots of olive oil, salt and pepper, let cool, add to Vitamix with several heaping spoonfulls of nutritional yeast
  • Dump creamy mixture into a large cast-iron pan and heat on low, stirring often, adding more nutritional yeast and salt to taste, allowing it to thicken up to your ideal consistency (may add water if needed)
  • Pour over organic rice noodles and roasted veggies (we roasted zucchini, bell pepper, eggplant, onion, garlic and green beans with olive oil, salt and fresh herbs like thyme and oregano) for a seriously DELISH meal that your kids and husband alike will devour!

Potato Leek Soup
Serves 8

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  • Chop the stocks of 3 large leaks thinly and saute in large soup pot with olive oil and salt
  • Add 15 or so medium sized yukon gold potatoes chopped thinly, saute for a few minutes with more salt and olive oil until it starts to stick, then add water and veggie broth paste (I use organic better than boullon) to fill the pot with enough water for the ideal soup consistency
  • Add nutritional yeast and a bunch of fresh thyme, let simmer for 30 min. or so until the potatoes are cooked
  • Blend 1/2 of the soup at least in Vitamix to make it extra thick and creamy
  • Serve with garlic bread

 

Homemade Elderberry Syrup + Thyme cough syrup – both so yummy and they work like crazy! I got these recipes from the Food Revolution Network – here is the link to recipes!

home-remedies-stay-well-in-winter

One-pan Farro with Tomatoes

This recipe is from one of my fave food bloggers, SmittenKitchen. I just made it last night for my family and both kids couldn’t shovel it into their mouths fast enough – this is not a common problem and something I could get used to!!!!!

farro

Super Easy Banana Ice Cream

 

  • Chop up several over ripe (very spotty or black-ish) bananas and freeze
  • Once totally frozen, blend in Cuisinart for several minutes – the key to making ice cream is to keep blending for a long long time
  • After several minutes it will look and taste just like thick banana ice cream! You and your kids will LOVE it! I added a wee bit of peanut butter and cinnamon just for fun.

 

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And of course, since it’s winter, I’ve been making my favorite green soup which my kids love. Give it a try!

To your health!

xoxo,

Mama Ashlita

Ps. I drew the Swan as my animal medicine for 2017; as always it’s so fitting. I’m so grateful for this continued guidance from the sacred animal spirit world. 2016 was a very intense year – the intense joy & beauty of raising my two incredible little souls, matched with intense struggle & challenge trying to find balance between activism & motherhood, finding time to support my community when my own family is all consuming, finding time to sleep when the work feels so important, finding time to cook healthy meals to nourish my family even though it takes hours every single day, managing to swim & do yoga and feed my spiritual practice, and striving to be a loving wife and a good person.
I’m so humbled by the selfless act of mothering and have endless respect for all the women in the world raising kind, sensitive, conscious kids who hold the fate of the planet in their hands.
I have big dreams for 2017 with many changes ahead. Kicking the year off with a 3 month sabbatical to travel, grow deeper in love with my boys & do some soul searching. So grateful for this amazing opportunity. A family heritage trip to Holland. Would like to cultivate deeper relationships with my sisters in this life. Hope to manifest a longstanding vision with my life’s work to advocate for a responsible food system & protect animals. And will do everything I can to resist Trump and foster love in the world. Thank you for bearing witness. This life is so precious. May we never take it for granted. 🙏

swan

 

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