God truly blessed us when He created the bond of best friends. Special people who come into your life that you love like family, that in return love you as such. I have been blessed with many special people in my life, from countries all over the world who I've been able to call friend, who have taught me things about myself, who I've been able to touch, but there are also certain people who just stick. Who just get you, who make life lighter, better, funnier, easier, lovelier. I have two of those people in my life outside my immediate family. My Miss Jessica and my Paul.
Jessica and I met 15 years ago. Woh. That's crazy to type out. Where does time GO?! We bonded over a Britney Spears concert (don't judge, I was a teeny bopper and aspiring popstar. So, you know.) And we have been best friends ever since. Ups, downs. Relationships, oceans between us, and now with her living in Oregon and me in AZ, I miss her like crazy every day. But then...
Lucky me, she came to visit Mr. Charming and I last week and we found a restaurant I could actually eat at! True Foods, in Scottsdale Arizona has PURE, WHOLE... well, TRUE food. The waiter even steamed FRESH ALMOND MILK for me, instead of coffee. :D Jessica questioned where else I could ask for that and not be seen as crazy? Why No where! Which is why this is officially my new fave place to take company, and Mr. Charming on date night! I also ordered sweet potato hash with onions, organic eggs and red pepper turkey sausage. Mmmm.
My other bestie celebrates his BIRTHDAY tomorrow and I so wish I could be there to toast him on his special day! Wishing this year brings him more success, love and happiness than he could ever wish for. I met Paul in L.A. when I was 21. He auditioned to be my back-up dancer (and booked, because he's, um, super fabulous and uber talented) but it's his charisma and amazingly kind heart that make you fall in love with him. I am so blessed to have him in my life and can't wait until I can visit him in New York City where he is making his dreams come true dancing his heart out. Miss you Paul! Living out my dreams singing and red carpets are just not the same without you.
More & more, as I grow, I realize its the LOVE in people, of your relationships that can really make your life happy or bland. I am blessed to have people that make life electrically exciting and wonderous. Make sure you don't get so caught up in life that you miss moments with those that matter most.
As my darling beautifully & successfully wrapped another semester at school on his journey to become Dr. Charming, I wanted to do something special for him on his last night after finals. With Christmas and his birthday this month and our budget streeeeeetttttccchhhheeedddd to its max, a big lavish gift was out (even though he deserves it all, acing Anatomy Physiology isn't easy folks...) I decided to cook him a delicious meal!
He is AMAZING when it comes to supporting my new lifestyle. I cook up paleo, grain free, gluten free, dairy free concoctions daily for breakfast and dinner when we are able to eat together. And he eats it, cooks it for me and with me, and seems to enjoy it! But tonight was just about him so I wanted to make him a favorite.
Back when I noticed I was starting to get pretty sick, we were in Disney for our honeymoon. (I spent the whole weekend in bed sick with a fever, flu and my body was so inflamed I could barely eat food, so a redo is on the list of to-do's.) We went to eat at the restaurant outside of Pirates of the Caribbean and Mr. Charming ordered his favorite dish in all of the lands, the Monte Cristo sandwich.
Note: This is NOT gluten free, NOT dairy free, and NOT sugar free. This is probably the only time you will see this on my blog, and I have NOT included the recipe, because all of my recipes are guaranteed to be gluten and dairy free, but like I said, it wasn't about me tonight. So, I put the sandwhich in my memory bank and knew that one day I would make this for my new husband. Well, after a journey of everything I eliminated these past two years we've been married, it never crossed my mind to cook something like this in my "safe" kitchen, until now.
I went to the store and picked up things I hadn't bought in years. Seriously, shopping for cheese felt so foreign to me. I made sure to get the highest quality ingredients, since I'm not crazy about my family consuming these things either, but I knew it would mean so much if I could bring a part of Disney into our home, and voila! My homemade Monte Cristo just for my own fairy tale prince come true!
This month is FLYING by. I know it's only the 8th, but I ADORE the Christmas season and all it has to offer, and all the memories waiting to be made. Yet this year with our school & work schedules, a partial house remodel to build a home theatre, and all the commitments we've piled on top, we haven't taken much time for our traditional activities. Don't get me wrong, I see the blessing in all of what we have & do, I just want to drive around sipping hot cocoa with my honey looking at lights, and spend nights by a fire with a Christmas movie enjoying our tree.
So, in an effort to start doing some Christmas-y events, I planned a wintery date night and Mr. Charming and I went to the Phoenix Zoo's Zoolights. I hadn't been since I was a kid, and I remember as a pre-teen thinking it was so sparkly and romantic like the movies and that, one day, when I was in love, I would come here on a date and it would be magical.
Haha, yes, I've always been a hopeless romantic. And we went. And it was. They did a Wizard of Oz light show on the water with the music from the movie and my night was made. A few photos from the night.
Over the weekend we had my friends son, my sister Ashley and my niece over for kiddo time! We got some more Christmas activities in, went to a few Christmas parties, and drove around a little looking at lights, but the highlight of the weekend was doing Gingerbread houses with the kids. Especially seeing my two year old niece get SO excited and make these memories for the first time.
It was boys against girls, and Ryker and Mr. Charming kicked our butts. But I was ok with that, because we had a 2 year old on the team, our roof caved in, and she ate more than she decorated with, but I think thats what made it all the more special. And can you say curls & sugar? This girls hair, LOVE it. Its just like her mama's.
So, in the crazy hustle and bustle of the holiday season in a life that seemingly gets busier each year, we must remember to make time to make these moments.
It's what the season, and life, is truly all about.
Nosh & Nurture was born of this journey I am on to better the health of myself, my family and those around me. What started as a simple compilation of recipes has grown to a all-around lifestyle journal with ways to incorporate organic products into your home, pantry and beauty cabinet. I also include stories on pregnancy, new motherhood, travel, Proverbs 31 marriage, and spiritual health, as I am a Christian who couldn't do any of this without my Lord & Savior Jesus Christ. For more of my story you can click here.
All recipes are gluten-free and dairy-free with a lot of soy-free, grain-free, sugar-free options.