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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Magic Marshmallow Nights

There really is magic in every day. I think, in the crazy, busyness of life we overlook it so frequently we almost deny that magic exists. But it does. It surrounds us. How do I know this?

I have children.

Children who inspire me to see the world with fresh eyes.

Children who guide me to view life with bright, wide, open eyes.

Children who remind me to slow down on days I most hurry along.

To show me things.

Like raindrops dripping down the trunk of a smooth-bark-tree.

Like lady bugs.

And painted toes.

And lace-shaped leaves.

And Fairy-Houses.

And trickling streams. 

Children who urge me to slow down, even on days I *think* I need most to speed up - get it all done - cross all the things off my list.

Today I am reminded of how young 7 is....and yet, how much 7 changes things. How old 7 can be. Today I am reminded that these slow-downs are way more important and connecting and rewarding than all the speed-ups and list-checks combined. 

Slow down, Mama. Slow way down. 

Look for the magic.

Be inspired by the nearly there and nearly forgotten enchantment of a new day. Another breath. A fire ember. A butterfly. A kayak-ride on an empty lake with just you and your wee ones - full, undivided attention.

You will never slow down to soak in the wonder of their company and wish you hadn't. 

So soak in the swim days and marshmallow nights and hammock rides.

I promise you will surround yourself with magic when you slow long enough to see it.


Friday, July 24, 2015

Mama May i Christmas in July Giveaway

Today is July 25, do you know what that means?

Only 6 more months until Christmas!

We decided to host a MASSIVE GIVEAWAY to Celebrate Christmas in July!

Mama May i will be giving away over $200 in products!


We need a little Christmas....right this very instant! 

Mama May I Christmas in July Giveaway!

Like us on Facebook
Tag a Friend
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Make a Purchase on our website for an extra FIVE entries!

This giveaway will start July 25 at 12 a.m. EST and end July 31 at 11:59 p.m. EST

Winner will be announced August 1, 2015
Products will be chosen by Mama May i and sent via USPS to the Winner's address.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Tabbouleh

I had never eaten Tabbouleh ... until recently. Some good friends introduced it to me, on a lunch play date, in this medley. I am so excited and so grateful to be building my meatless recipe repertoire. I love having new, healthy, go-to options - especially ones that have a lot of plant-based protein. I have been trying to expand my food favorites to include more vegetarian options.


This combination has saved me from stopping for fast food - Even on long road trips! Easy enough for me to dip, dip, crunch ... with one hand. 

So, what is it tabbouleh?

According to Wikipedia ( https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tabbouleh ) :

"Tabbouleh (Arabicتبولة tabūlah; alsotabouleh or tab(b)ouli) is a Levantinevegetarian dish (sometimes considered a salad) traditionally made of tomatoes, finely chopped parsleymintbulgur andonion, and seasoned with olive oil,lemon juice, and salt. Some variations add garlic or lettuce, or use couscousinstead of bulgur."

Here is a Recipe I found on The Wanderlust Kitchen that looks beautifully delicious! ( link: http://thewanderlustkitchen.com/tabbouleh-salad/ )


I haven't made it myself yet, but this recipe seems easy enough and looks incredibly yummy. I buy the fresh-packed tabbouleh from WholeFoods. I make quinoa at home and then combine the tabbouleh and quinoa together (for extra protein!) and store it in the fridge. 

I have been eating it with red-roasted-pepper hummus (also fresh-packed at WholeFoods) and their 365 brand Seaweed rice crackers. 

I love following through on the commitment to nourish my body with healthy foods. And it has been exciting finding more plant-based foods that help fill and fuel my body. When I follow through on healthy choices it makes me feel more at ease inside - invigorated, even. Joyful. 

The best part - my children enjoy this combination as well! Yummy!

Nourish your Body, Nourish your Self. Enjoy! 

Friday, July 17, 2015

Friday Featured Product - Balance Balls


I made it to Grandma's house this week to get inventory under control and while we were hanging out [playing] in the new stock room the kids were pulling out products from their bins and playing. And Lincoln (almost 2) found the Balance Balls. At first he was content to grab each bag (packaged) and bring them over to the shipping counter where the girls were "playing toy store". After several trips to and fro' he found one with a loose bow and managed to untie, and loosen the top. And that's when the magic began.

He pulled out each of the pieces as he oh so carefully investigated their sizes, colors, and forms. He checked all sides of each piece before putting them one-by-one on the floor.


And then he began to fit them together. Not matching the colors at first...just knocking the pieces together, making music. Until one piece stood ontop of the other and they became "blocks". And then he learned that the balls didn't wiggle and roll away if set upon the tops of their pedestals. And they it was his mission to stack each ball on top.



Not long into his set up, his knee knocked a ball from it's place and it went scurrying across the floor. And then a new game of chase began. He set them up only to flick them with his hands and fingers across the floor to see where they would end up.


The girls took two pedestals and made them goal posts and they flicked the different colors across the floor hoping to make to goal. 

I love watching my children play with the toys I've created. I am always amazed by their Focus. Attention. Thought. Curiosity. Imagination. And Action.

Their playful work inspires me every day.


Friday, July 10, 2015

Broken Wings





I came out into the lanai to find my three little explorers huddled together looking at something. 

A butterfly. Limping around in a circle. Unable to fly. Three children rooting it on, despite watching it go nowhere for the past 15 minutes. Hopeful it would return to the sky.

"Can we keep it??" They asked. "Just for a little while??"

We think it was attacked by a gecko. Butterflies have 4 wings. One whole wing (top left) was missing. 


Not knowing what this would mean, or how to help, I was reluctant to agree to care for this seemingly helpless creature. But their commitment to nurturing Sky was clear and it was certainly not something I could overlook or ignore. So I went inside to get a bowl and some food - sweet watermelon - usually a favorite with butterflies. We put Sky inside and it didn't take long before the little butterfly was enjoy some sweet watermon nectar, and seeming much calmer...and stronger.

I found the top left quadrant of Sky's wing and it made me wonder if it was possible to help "fix" it's wing. So I did what any other homeschooling mama would do - I googled it. We researched and read and looked at pictures to learn that there is, indeed, a way to help fix a butterfly's wing. It involved refrigerating the butterfly to make it sleepy....and rubber cement to affix the broken piece to the intact wing on its body. Unfortunately, the thought of doing this procedure with three very active and interested wee ones did not appeal to me in the slightest ... And I didn't have any rubber cement. So that fix was ruled out. 


While researching, I discovered that butterflies could fly while missing a lot of their wings. I think I read that even 3/4 of the total wings could be gone ... It mattered more how the wingspan was balanced. It needed approximately the same amount of wing on either side of it's body to properly take flight. Which got me to thinking.... If I amputated part of it's wing on the other side, would it fly? 

I sat with that thought overnight. Because, honestly, I wasn't sure I was cut out for the job. And the logistics daunted me. The thought of cutting a butterfly while it could move and wiggle about kind of freaked me out. And I really don't know how a butterfly "feels". I was somewhat terrified of hurting it... The thought of giving this poor creature pain really bothered me. 

At the same time ..  If I left it alone, it would likely limp around in a circle, unable to fly, until it ran out of energy and either died or got eaten.

I decided to sleep on it. If it was strong enough to make it through the night I figured I would try the wing-surgery.

When I woke up in the morning the children were already investigating Sky's night-survival and brought a fresh piece of watermelon to our little friend.

It had survived the night and seemed stronger today, we found it out of the bowl...but still not strong enough to fly.

So I got the scissors. 


Terrified if hurting it, it took me several attempts before actually following through with the cut. I wasn't sure how it would feel to cut through it - difficult? crunchy? Like Fiberglas? Or paper? Would it make a sound?

Eventually I did it. Not as bad as I expected and the butterfly did not seem to wince or dodge or hurt. And it continued limping in a circle but catching a little more air than before. Maybe there was something to this balancing act after all.

So I made another cut... This time taking off almost the entire upper right quadrant.

And you know what?

It began to fly.

Oh. My. Goodness.

So we, excitedly, brought it to the garden and set it on a flower. 

It flew away.

After a few minutes, in awe we were able to help this creature by "breaking" it....

Sky returned to us. 

It. Came. Back.

Huh.

Of course my children believe it came back to say Thank You. To blow kisses. To show grattitude. And love.

Maybe it did. 

I will never know. And I will never know what happened to it after that. 

But I do know that my original thoughts to get rid of it so my kids wouldn't be disappointed when it died or got eaten was wrong. We would have missed out on the beautiful opportunity: to nurture a living creature. To express empathy. To show love. To learn and research and explore solutions to it's situation. To work together as a team. To listen to a being's body language instead of it's voice or words. To communicate with something that didn't share our language. To worry and think about something other than ourselves. To want to help. To do everything we could. 

I am warmed it worked out the way it did. But I am even more warmed by the opportunity it gave me to reflect and step outside of my comfort zone. And the opportunity Sky gave us to work together in loving ways. 

And reminded me ....
Even a broken butterfly can fly.


I may look broken, but I can still fly.

Monday, July 6, 2015

What's For Dinner - Coconut Chicken Curry

Coconut Chicken Curry


Layla (7) and I worked together in the kitchen to create this really tasty dish from ingredients that were on sale at our local market.

Ingredients

8 Boneless Chicken Breasts
1 TBLS Coconut Oil
4-6 cloves of Garlic
2 TBLS Ginger
3 TBLS Curry Powder
1 15 oz Can of Coconut Milk
1 12 oz bag of Frozen Peas

2-3lbs Fingerling Potatoes
2 TBLS Coconut oil
2 TBLS Rosemary
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 lb Sugar Snap Peas
1 Scallion bunch

Brown Rice (optional)

1. Melt coconut oil and brown the cut chicken. Add garlic. When fully cooked add ginger, curry powder, and peas.


2. In separate pan, melt coconut oil and cut potatoes, salt, pepper, and rosemary. When done to your liking add sugar snap peas and scallions. Cook until sugar snap pease are to your preferred consistency. 


Combine all cooked ingredients together and serve over brown rice (quinoa, noodles, or by itself). 



I prepared the chicken. She prepped and cut the potatoes and other veggies. She stirred the veggie pan while the chicken was cooking and enjoyed adding the ingredients to both dishes as we went along. 

As soon as we were done cooking she gathered her siblings to share our meal <3