Missouri: The Show-Me State

Missouri was a whirlwind experience for us as we were only there for 1 day. After spending 3 quiet, but full, days in Kentucky we began our 8-9 hour car ride to Branson, Missouri located in the south west corner of the state.

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The first noteworthy thing that we saw was naturally the Gateway Arch in Jefferson Memorial Park.  We didn’t have time to stop and take in the sights as we had to get to Branson by 7:30pm for a show we were scheduled to see.   But, traffic was a bit backed up due to construction and I got to take many photos from many angles and a good few moments to stare at it.

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Luckily, traffic got flowing again quickly and we enjoyed the ride.  This was actually my husbands favorite part of the trip.  Branson has so much to offer with great hotel rates and numerous live shows and theater productions advertised everywhere.  We unfortunately didn’t have a chance to stop by the Laura Ingalls Wilder House, but that will definitely be on our list for next time.

I think one of my favorite parts was the drive through the beautiful Ozarks.  The landscape was breathtaking and awe inspiring and we were all filled with so much anticipation as our van took us further from home and closer to the unknown.

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We arrived in Branson with plenty of time to spare which was great and after finding our hotel was only 2 minutes from the theater we took a lot of time to rest, watch TV, shower, and snack on some foods.  The driving wasn’t too bad, but we knew the very next day we would be driving again, so this was a welcomed rest.

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At 7:30 we were scheduled to take in a showing of the biblical play “Jonah” at the Sight and Sound Theater.  We have been to these shows before in the theater in Lancaster, PA.  We were told, however, that the Branson theater is the bigger of the two so we were excited to see it.  It was a beautiful theater much like the one in PA, but just so big.

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We decided to eat at the Theater to save time and money since we were going to get snacks there anyway!

Printing our tickets in advance was a great idea because we got right in and had awesome seats in row 5 near the stage.

They do not allow photography during the show so unfortunately I can’t share any of the amazing production in media form, although I can say it was one of our families personal favorites.  The way they did the whole boat and whale scene was amazing and well, you just seriously should go check it out.  Like, now. For real.

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After the show we stopped of course at the gift shop where we spent too much money on stuffed animals for the children and I surprisingly treated myself to a shirt.  It was just that cool.

As we left the parking lot there were some beautiful fireworks being put on in the distance over the city.  It was a nice added bonus.   We then went straight back to the hotel which took, you know, two minutes at which point we all went promptly to bed to prepare for another 8 hour trip the next day to Amarillo!

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Thanks Missouri for “showing us” all the beauty and excitement you have to offer.  I hope you will “show-me” again really soon!

Low Carb Meal Plan

One of the fastest ways and in my opinion healthiest ways to lose weight is to limit processed carbohydrates.  I lean toward low-carb, high-fat paleo diets.  Limiting carbs has been the easiest way to maintain weight-loss in my experience.  Here is a sample menu to get you started:

Breakfast:

1 Cup Cottage Cheese with 1/2 Cup Peaches mixed in

1 Apple, small handful of Kale, water and ice blended into a juice

 

Lunch:

2 Cups at least of Spinach or Romaine Lettuce with 1/2 Cup Grape Tomatoes, 3oz Organic Turkey Breast served with Annie’s Organic Lite Mustard Vinaigrette Dressing.

1 Cup Whole Milk or Half and Half and 1/2 a banana Smoothie

 

Dinner:

3oz of Meat: Beef, Chicken, Fish, etc.  Get Organic and Grass-fed/free range where possible.

1 Cup Green Vegetable such as asparagus, broccoli, or brussels sprouts

1 Tablespoon of butter on veggie

 

Snacks:

1/2 cup carrots

1 Tablespoon Butter on an Organic Graham Cracker

 

This roughly equals 1400 calories.  I hope this helps you get started.  The great thing about this diet is you don’t get hungry or famished as on other diets because the extra fat keeps you satisfied!

Hiatus

Hey everyone, I am still here!  I took a little unannounced personal hiatus from blogging to focus on some other activities and hobbies for a little while.  I can’t wait to share with you the things I have been learning and doing!

I recently opened an instagram account which I plan to use to update with pictures of my travels and everyday things that I find beautiful and inspiring.  In my next blog post I will share with you how you can connect with that.

I took up some running/walking recently that turned out to be not the greatest idea and set my health back a little bit, but things seem to be improving now!

I’ve been doing a lot of freelance writing which is awesome and getting back into photography and bird watching.

I have become a HUGE fan of National and State Parks, especially those in the western US such as the Grand Canyon and Arches National Park.  Find them on facebook because the photos they post are just amazing!

Well that is just a sample of what has been filling my days and I will fill you in on more in the coming days!

What’s been keeping you busy?

Almond Joy Oatmeal Cookies

These look so AMAZING! So going to try these! #notpaleo #notdiet #butohsogood

My Foray Into Food Storage

Before I begin, here’s a quick reminder to enter my 2nd April giveaway here.  Simply visit Emergency Essentials’ website, find something you’d like to try, visit this post, and tell me what it is.  It’s a Quick, Simple, and FREE entry!

Yesterday, as I was preparing to go to a surprise birthday party for a dear friend, I was trying to think of some yummy treats to bring along with me.  I planned to bring some homemade artisan crackers to serve with goat cheese and vanilla pear jam (click here to learn how easy it is to make these delicious crackers!), but I wanted to bring something sweet like a cookie.

Yummy homemade crackers served with Vanilla Pear Jam over goat cheese.  YUM! Yummy homemade crackers served with Vanilla Pear Jam over goat cheese. YUM!

I took a look in my baking cupboard and found that I was running out of chocolate chips.  Not too great for a so…

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Buying the Right Kind of Fish

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Tonight’s dinner was a deliciously cooked, fresh cod.  We buy our fish from a store that gets it directly from the fisherman and therefore it is much fresher than that bought at regular grocery stores.

When buying fish, it is important to know the route that your fish took to get to your plate.  The shorter the journey, the fresher and healthier the fish will be.

Look for fish that have been pole or troll caught.  Conventional methods of fishing involve dragging a net which catches just about everything, including the old and dying fish.  Pole and troll caught fish, are caught by fishing poles or large trolls that drag baited hooks in the water.  This method only catches the health fish that are able to swim fast and compete for food.

My favorite method for cooking fish is to pan fry it in grass-fed butter.  I love Kerry Gold butter which is imported from Ireland and tastes amazing!  I add thyme, pepper, fresh lime, and salt to the fish and put the lid on until its done.

Tonight I served it with a baked potato.

Healthy and delicious!