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you make beautiful things.


This weekend, I traveled two-ish hours north to a fabulous Young Life campground, Timberwolf Lake, for a retreat. It was with all the leaders for the youth ministry at my church. I mentor an amazing group of ninth grade girls. They have been a part of my life for a year now and I adore each and every one of them.

I don’t talk much about my faith in my blog, so forgive me for a moment while I do because it truly is a big part of who I am. One thing that really struck me this weekend was the music. Worship through singing has always been one of the deepest ways for me to connect with God. A song we sang this weekend is from the band Gungor called Beautiful Things. The chorus of the song says:

You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us

Something about those words so deeply resonated with me this weekend. I really don’t know why, but I felt such a deep sense of peace as I sang those words. There is so much simplicity in them, but yet so much meaning. It was exactly what I needed to hear.

Speaking of beautiful things, this was some of the scenery on the drive up.

Uh-maze-ing. Sunsets over the water are by far one of my favorite ways to experience nature in the whole wide world. In fact, not one of, but my all-time, ultimate, absolute favorite.

That is, unfortunately, the sole photo I have of the weekend. Summary food-wise: there weren’t really a lot of options for vegetarians/vegans, despite the ability to specify that at registration. At breakfast on Saturday, I asked if there was a vegan option and the person serving our table said there were eggs. So, that about sums it up. It was ultimately a great weekend; I feel like I learned a lot and really connected with the other leaders for the freshman students.

Fast forward to today!

My 5:30 am boot camp class started this morning! If I said I wasn’t freaking out about it last night, I’d be lying. The exercise, not so much. The 4:30 am alarm, yes, yes, and yes. More than anything, I was worried I’d sleep through it.

I didn’t. I grabbed a lemon zest Luna bar for breakfast and was out the door. Jacqueline, my friend doing the class with me, picked me up on the way and we were even early! Today’s session wasn’t too terrible, but I can tell just by the nature of the class that it will get progressively more challenging. Today was just going through a lot of basic exercises like lunges, planks, crunches, etc. Other days, we’ll mix it up with some running, some circuit training, and who knows what else!

After I got home and ready for work, I made my first ever Green Monster!

Okay, so it looks more like a purple monster thanks to the berries. I threw in a cup of frozen mixed berries, a banana, 1/2 cup of vanilla Chobani, 1/2 cup almond milk, a handful of spinach, and topped with some oats. I’ll be honest, despite all the raves about spinach in a smoothie, I was hesitant. Very hesitant.

I had nothing to worry about! I realize I didn’t use all that much spinach, but I really truly couldn’t taste it! I think I’ll still gradually work up to the quantity I include, but thus far, I’m a fan!

I grabbed a can of minestrone soup for lunch and paired it with some Kashi Heart to Heart crackers.

I’ve made my own chili before, but I really need to learn how to make other soups like this. I had the whole can which was two servings, but almost 2/3 of my sodium intake for the day! Not cool, Progresso.

Anyone have any epic vegetarian soup recipes that will change my life that they want to share?

For a snack, because I had a bottomless pit for a stomach today, I dug into the endless supply of Healthy Living Summit swag bag goodies and found some pretzle slash cracker-esque sticks from Mary’s Gone Crackers.

They weren’t terrible, but I didn’t love them so much that I’d run out and by them again. They did have a lot of really great, nutritious ingredients like flax and chia seeds, so that is a point on the pro column.

Now that I’m home, I’m having a piece of coffeecake my roommate left for me.

I have my first ever hot yoga class tonight! I am stoked!

8 Comments leave one →
  1. cookeatburn permalink
    09.13.10 7:30 pm – that is by far my favorite homemade soup recipe. So simple and good in the cooler temps or when I’m feeling a little under the weather. Congrats on waking up for the boot camp class & trying the “green” monster. Mine only end up green if I only use banana in the fruit category :).

  2. 09.14.10 2:20 am

    Yay for green (or purple) monsters.
    I am hooked on them. I probably make enough for 3 glasses full every day.
    Sometimes they taste kind of bad, but I find that adding fruit juice makes them almost always sweet enough for my liking!

  3. 09.14.10 9:58 pm

    I had the same reaction to putting spinach in my smoothies! I’ve started making them for my boyfriend for his breakfast and am slowly increasing the amount of spinach I put in there, too.

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