Tag Archives | organic food

5 Ways to Boost Your Health and Wellness When Working From Home

Pre-pandemic, up to 50% of the U.S. workforce held a job compatible with remote work. Now, millions of Americans are working from work for the first time. While working from home can certainly make you more productive, it can also take a toll on your health and wellbeing. The lack of physical boundaries between the domestic and the professional can leave you thinking about work when you should be relaxing.

To help give you back some self-control over your wellbeing, here are a few ways you can boost your health and wellness even while working away in your quarantined hobbit-hole.

1. Get your greens in

When you’re working from home, it’s all too easy to forego making a healthy lunch. Instead, you might find yourself reaching for ready-to-go snacks that are high in salt or sugar content so you can quickly get back to work instead of taking the time to really get in the vitamins and nutrients you need for the day. To maintain your health and improve your mood, make sure that you’re not treating your meals like a chore. Opt for organic fruits and vegetables that are good for you that will help your body thrive. Organic veggies also make for great snack options so instead of nabbing a bag of chips or a granola bar on your way to your desk, grab a bag of baby carrots or some cut celery instead.

2. Set up a designated work area

You don’t necessarily need to set up a home office when you’re working at home. But you should definitely have a designated work area. The reason for this is that, once you move away from your work area, you’ll be able to relax. If your work area is also your relaxation area, then thoughts about work will continue to plague you as you try to read or watch Netflix. A designated workspace also helps you keep your professional work organized. Storage and data security are important and you don’t want to mix up work notes with your out-of-work to-do lists.

3. Take active breaks

It’s all too easy to forget about taking a break when you’re working from home, especially if your home is plenty comfortable and cozy. But it’s important to remember that your body needs some rest from sitting for so long. Throughout the day, remember to get up and stretch. Doing a few strengthening exercises during those breaks can also help to get the blood pumping.

4. Avoid work communication during non-work hours

If you have flexible hours, you might feel the urge to use them to stay on the clock on certain days longer than you originally planned to respond to emails and stay in correspondence with co-workers. However, those emails will still be there during the next business day. Remember to clock out of your work mindset at the end of the workday and don’t give in to urges to keep going. Your rest is important.

5. Use a calming app at the end of the workday

When you’re working from home, it can be tricky to separate the professional and the domestic even when you have a separate work area. Consider using an app like Headspace or another calming meditation app to help put your mind at ease after you clock out for the day. Even if you meditate just for a few minutes, the small transition will help you leave your work on the table instead of carrying it with you throughout the rest of the day. Just be sure to check app reviews before you download anything new as some apps have recently been removed from Apple App stores and Google Play.

It can be challenging to help ease your mind and keep your body happy when you’re working from home. By following the tips above, you can help to boost your health and wellness even while remote working.

6 Ways to Get the Most Out of Organic Stone Fruit While It’s in Season

vineyard-peach-346325_1280

It’s stone fruit season! Wondering what stone fruit is? Stone fruit is any type of fruit that has a single seed or pit – for example; apricots, peaches, nectarines, plums, and cherries. Any time a particular type of fruit is in season, it’s a great idea to buy in bulk and stock up. There are several great ways that you can get the most out of the stone fruit that you purchase. It just takes a little creativity and a few different ways to preserve the stone fruit and you can enjoy it all year long. Read on for my 6 favorites ways to get the most out of these sweet fruits.

#1: Bag It!
We recently purchased a large quantity of organic stone fruit – however, there were several pieces that were not ripe. To ripen them up quickly so that we could use them, we put them in a paper bag for a couple of days. Works like a charm.

#2: Grill It!
It’s grilling season too and a fantastic way to enjoy stone fruit is fresh off the grill. Peaches grilled quickly on each side and then topped with organic vanilla ice cream is an amazing fall treat. You won’t be disappointed and it is a super fun dessert for those get-togethers.

#3: Add It!
Stone fruit isn’t only good on it’s own, or as a dessert – it tastes amazing when added to the main course. I like to add cut up stone fruit to salads, salsas, and side dishes during the summertime. It’s adds a ton of flavor and a pop of color to our meals. The possibilities are endless!

#4: Can It!
While purchasing stone fruit in a large quantity while it is in season is a great idea, what if you can’t use it all before it spoils? Can it! Stone fruits can be used in jams, syrups and salsas, so why not get to cooking and preserve some of that sweetness for later in the year. Can you image a yummy stone fruit syrup, salsa or jam during fall, winter and spring?

#5: Dry It!
Who doesn’t love dried fruit? What could be better than dried peaches or apricots. You can either dry the fruit in the oven at 200° F for three hours or use a food dehydrator to get the job done. Dried fruit lasts a long time and will be perfect as a lunch box snack during the school year.

#6: Freeze It!
Whatever stone fruit you have leftover should be frozen before it spoils. Frozen stone fruit is amazing in smoothies and desserts, just remove the amount that you need from the freezer and enjoy!

Get Thermos Happy: New School Hot Lunch Ideas!

vegetable-soup-445160_1280

If you have one or more kiddos in school that depend on you for their lunch everyday, step up your game and introduce new hot and healthy meals into your child’s lunch routine. The perfect way to do this is by investing in a good thermos that will fit in your child’s lunchbox. Of course, the options for thermos designs and colors are endless so be sure to include your little one in the shopping fun – and make sure it is eco-friendly too!

Don’t be skeptical that what you put in the thermos before school will remain hot until your child’s lunch period – it will stay plenty warm! A hot lunch can be a nice change from a cold sandwich – especially with the cooler months approaching. This change may also give you the opportunity to be resourceful by eating more leftovers. If you have the ability to send part of last nights meal in a thermos with your kids the next day perhaps you won’t waste as much food – which is good for the environment and your pocketbook.

You know better than anyone what foods your kids will eat but here are a few thermos meal suggestions to try! What kid doesn’t love spaghetti and meatballs? Add your favorite spaghetti recipe to your thermos and enjoy! Another favorite is to make veggie mac-n-cheese by mixing frozen broccoli, cauliflower and carrots with mac-n-cheese to make a hearty lunch for any season. Is your kid a chicken nugget fan? Send a few warm ones along with your child’s favorite dipping sauce for a special lunch treat!

Make your little one feel warm and toasty on cool days by sending your special homemade soup! Or sometimes there’s nothing better than eating breakfast for lunch. Send cold or hot breakfast thermos options such as yogurt and berries, or hot oatmeal with fruit. Power up!

Sick of PB&J? 3 Delicious Organic Lunchbox Lunch Upgrades

lunch-box-200762_1280

Sometimes making a simple sandwich is just the easiest, but if your student is sick of seeing the standard PB&J in his lunchbox (or you’re sick of making it!) it’s time for a box-lunch upgrade! Read on for three new lunchbox standards that we love in our home and think you will too.

#1 Wraps and Burritos
Wraps are a great way to get a few servings of healthy vegetables into your kid’s day. I like to make extra chicken breast at dinner the night before and combine it with cucumbers, avocado, lettuce, tomatoes, carrots—you name it!—into a hearty wrap the next day. Make sure to include a healthy fat like avocado and a protein like garbanzo beans or feta cheese so that your student gets a balanced meal. Burritos are one of my all time favorite lunch foods and I haven’t met a kid yet who didn’t like them, too! Create a healthy version by combining black beans and brown rice and a sprinkling of cheese. Send some avocado slices, lettuce, or tomatoes in a separate container and the meal is complete.

#2 Homemade Soup
Hearty, homemade soups and chillis are a great winter lunch to send to school with your kid. The next time you make a big pot for the family, portion some out into jars or Pyrex containers and freeze or store the portions in the fridge. On lunch morning, simply heat up the soup and pack it in a thermos. Add a slice of seedy, whole grain bread and the meal is complete!

#3 The Re-done Lunchable
Instead of serving your kids the highly-packaged, preservative-laden lunchables that come from the grocery store, create your own using healthy ingredients. Put together whole grain crackers and cheese with fruit and nuts or hummus with carrots, celery, pita bread, and almonds for a more filling, much more nutritious alternative.

What are your favorite organic lunches to send to school with your little ones? What’s the new PB&J in your household?

3 Delicious Organic Lunchbox Lunches

Organic Lunches

School just started, however your student may be getting sick of seeing the standard PB&J in her lunchbox (or you’re sick of making it!) I know this happens in our family – Eben will want the same thing for lunch for a few weeks and then all of a sudden as I am packing lunch – he chimes in that he wants something different! If you are struggling for new lunch ideas, it’s time for a box-lunch upgrade! Read on for three new lunchbox standards that your child will be asking for again and again.

#1 Wraps and Burritos
Wraps are a great way to get a few servings of healthy vegetables into your kid’s day. I like to make extra chicken breast at dinner the night before and combine it with cucumbers, avocado, lettuce, tomatoes, carrots—you name it!—into a hearty wrap the next day. Make sure to include a healthy fat like avocado and a protein like garbanzo beans or feta cheese so that your student gets a balanced meal. Burritos are one of my all time favorite lunch foods and I haven’t met a kid yet who didn’t like them, too! Create a healthy version by combining black beans and brown rice and a sprinkling of cheese. Send some avocado slices, lettuce, or tomatoes in a separate container and the meal is complete.

#2 Homemade Soup
Hearty, homemade soups and chillis are a great fall and winter lunch to send to school with your kid. The next time you make a big pot for the family, portion some out into jars or Pyrex containers and freeze or store the portions in the fridge. On lunch morning, simply heat up the soup and pack it in a thermos. Add a slice of seedy, whole grain bread and the meal is a winner!

#3 The Re-done Lunchable
Instead of serving your kids the highly-packaged, preservative-laden lunchables that come from the grocery store, create your own using healthy ingredients. Put together whole grain crackers and organic cheese with fruit and nuts or hummus with carrots, celery, pita bread, yogurt (right now – the Stonyfield Petite Creme’s are Eben’s fave!) and almonds for a more filling, much more nutritious alternative.

What are your favorite organic lunches to send to school with your little ones? What’s the new PB&J in your household?