I know, it’s Thursday, not Wednesday. This is the problem with thinking I could ever stay on task as a blogger! I have ideas of scheduling “holistic” topics on “hump day” but I can’t always get my hands to the computer when my brain wants things to come out of it. But you know, it’s not a big deal to me at all… and I am guessing you don’t really care either 🙂
So yesterday morning, I woke up, stood up, and two seconds later …
(WARNING to any guys reading, this might be too much info) …
… I knew that I was ovulating. I could feel the ache right down there in the ol’ uterus. I know a lot of women can feel this discomfort at mid-cycle. I am fortunate in that I don’t get severe cramps with menstruation, but I usually have one day, mid-cycle, during which I feel mildly to moderately uncomfortable. I could probably Google it, but I think it has something to do with the fluid from the egg sac rupturing, combined with a change in the position of the cervix.
My remedy these days is something that might sound strange, but I’m telling you that it really works for me! And it doesn’t take more than five seconds to use. It’s this:
ClaryCalm Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade Essential Oil Blend from doTERRA
This is an essential oil blend of clary sage, lavender, bergamot, Roman chamomile, cedarwood, ylang ylang, geranium, fennel, carrot seed, palmarosa and vitex. I roll it right on my abdomen – over the ovaries and the uterus – give it a quick rub in, and that’s it. If I need a little more relief, I might heat up a compress and lay down with that over my abdomen for 10-20 minutes. But most of the time I don’t need that. I used this blend one time yesterday and didn’t need it again for the rest of the day. You can even use it for hot flashes, nausea, cramps, and the emotional swings which are sometimes associated with regular hormone cycles in women. (Please consult your health care provider before using this product if pregnant or trying to conceive. See this webpage for more information on essential oil safety.)
If you’d be interested in purchasing a bottle of this oil from me, I am a doTERRA product consultant and you can purchase right through my website. Or, if you’re interested in a sample, let me know! I’d be happy to mail you a tiny (and very cute) bottle to try it out.
After Christmas, I was shopping at T.J. Maxx and found three cookbooks I had to add to my collection. I must have been shopping hungry, because I don’t even know the last time I bought one cookbook – let alone three at one time. (What IS it about T.J. Maxx??) Anyway, I made a Crock Pot chicken dinner out of this book last night and it was delicious!
This cookbook is most definitely an upgrade to my old, canned-soup-on-every-page, filled-with-processed-ingredients slow cooker book. The recipes are varied (zucchini & fava bean frittata, chicken korma, mackerel kedgeree, pumpkin & parmesan gnocchi, to name a few), use whole food ingredients, and each page has a beautifully styled, full-color picture. Not like it’s my job to sell it to you, but if you’re looking for some new Crock Pot recipes, you might like this a lot!
So yesterday, I made Mustard Chicken & Bacon Casserole. Not only did the house smell like bacon all day, but the family loved it and urged me to add it to the “Top Ten” list. (We don’t really have a “Top Ten,” but that’s when you know you just have to remember to make it again, and probably on a regular basis.) WIN-WIN.
Try it out soon. You’ll be glad you did!
Mustard Chicken & Bacon Casserole (from The Complete Slow Cooker by Sara Lewis)
(with a few notes of my own tossed in!)
1 Tbsp. butter
1 Tbsp. sunflower oil
4 chicken thighs & 4 chicken drumsticks (choose organic/antibiotic-free if possible)
4 slices bacon, diced (choose preservative-free, antibiotic-free if possible)
13 oz. leeks, thinly sliced; white and green parts kept separate
2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour (if gluten-free, can substitute a little arrowroot or corn starch)
2 1/2 cups chicken stock
3 tsp. grainy mustard
salt & pepper
mashed potatoes and vegetables, to serve (optional)
Wash chicken and dry with paper towels (will help with browning). Heat butter and oil in a skillet, add the chicken, and fry over high heat until browned on all sides. (Do not use hotter than medium-high heat with non-stick skillets as this could release chemicals into your food. Stainless steel cookware is ideal for high temps.) Remove from pan with tongs and transfer to the slow cooker pot.
Add the bacon and white leek slices to the skillet and fry, stirring, for 5 minutes or until just beginning to turn golden. Stir in the flour, then gradually mix in the stock, mustard, and a little salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Pour into the slow cooker pot, cover with lid, and cook on low for 8-10 hours.
Add the green leek slices and stir into the sauce. Replace the lid and cook on low for 15 minutes longer, until leeks are softened. Serve over mashed potatoes, if desired.