How Lovely

by fitforthesoul in , , , , ,


Hi everyone!  I hope you had a lovely weekend y'all~ I just wanted to re-cap on my weekend.  "These are a few of my favorite things...and now I don't feel so bad!!~~"

Did you catch that line?! It's from the Sound of Music!! Only like, one of my favorite films of all time! When I was a wee little child, I remember I watched it 4 times in a row in ONE sitting! Call me cwazy. :P

Anyway, I'll keep it short!

Have you ever tried Seeds of Change Quinoa Rice?! It's sooo delicious! I highly recommend it if you like the chewy texture of rice, along with a gentle buttery taste and a hint of garlic.  I got a pack of 6 at Costco about 2 months ago, and I find it to be very convenient when I'm in a hurry.

In the mix went in:  Tomato pasta sauce, hummus, carrots, Seeds of Change rice, mozzarella, and avocado.  I whipped up this dish within 4 minutes flat using the microwave!  :D

I loaded up on Yerba Mate--one of my favorite things to drink! It's a staple Argentinean herb that we drink for leisure, relaxation, and energy.  Sometimes, it's a great alternative to coffee you know? :P  It's funny because in Argentina, you'll walk by all these people lounging in their comfy chairs out on the sidewalk while drinking Mate.  These people know how to take leisure time seriously!

Greg and I saw our children over the weekend and had a blast with them! They were wilder than usual, but aren't they so adorable? :)

Eh?  What's that car doing here?

Haha! Today's service at the church where Greg has been giving messages, was at Lew Webb's Automobile Center!  This church doesn't have an official building and the usual Synagogue they've been staying at had some deal going on today.  So we had service at this location! Pretty neat huh?

Greg was too excited :P

So we had a potluck today! And so I made these last night and good thing I started early!  Really, because my eyes were getting lazy-eyed all the way into 1 AM while making these. :P

One of the best things over the weekend was seeing all these beautiful souls!  Seeing the people at the church growing and striving to live non-complacent lives was truly one of the greatest encouragements for me!

Oh and one more thing! Remember Lauren from a few weeks ago?!  It's soooo weird....but while driving at completely the opposite side of 'town', I saw her two times over this past week! I don't believe in coincidences and I know this happened for a reason.

But...she's been walking with this sketchy dude and I'm praying that she's alright.  I'm asking God for wisdom as to what He wants me to do.  Perhaps this time, it's just to pray on behalf of her situation.  We'll see.

Have you seen the Irish movie Once by the way?  I watched it with Greg and the storyline as well as the music is so amazing!  Admittedly, there were far too many F-bombs in this film...but once we looked past that, we found that the end message is a very good one, though the ending itself is very bitter sweet. :(

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ej-jDfURn_k&feature=related]

My Question:  What's your favorite movie or movie genre? Did anything bless you this week, that you'd like to share? :) Have you tried Seeds of Change?  What's your go-to food/dish when you're in a hurry?

Links to Japan's Aid:

The red cross

Save the Children

Global Giving

International Medical Corps

Love,

Ellie <33


From Mah Heart to Yurrrs

by fitforthesoul in , , , ,


Can I tell you that you guys make me smile? :P  Your support and constant enthusiasm in the pursuit of a healthy and wholesome lifestyle truly makes me grin!  From ear to ear. I am so infinitely grateful to have found you all through the blogosphere, and I look forward to sharing many more sweet moments with you as we grow together!  As I'm sure many of you would agree, we are a strange and beautifully unique bunch who understands each other's quirks! And I love that about this community!

Thank you in advance for opening up to the public; I have to say that I'm having a lot of fun sharing recipes, tips, and life with all of you--and vice versa.  :)  YOU make this blog happen...OY, I sound like a show host.

I also wanted to say a HUGE THANK YOU TO JENNY FROM FIT GIRL FOODIE!!!!!!! For always being encouraging and passing down the Versatile Blogger Award to me. *SNIFFLE*  I appreciate your positive nature and passion to help others as you walk this extraordinary journey.

Here are the rules for this award:

  • Write a post like this: Thank the person who gave you the award and link back to their blog
  • Tell your readers seven facts about you
  • Award recently discovered bloggers with the prize.
  • Contact the winners.

And these are some random facts about me!

1.)  I speak exactly 3.5 languages.  Yep!  Not three, not four.  :P  I speak Spanish (Castellano in Argentina), Korean, English (of course), and partly some French.  That's the half in the 3.5 languages.  I believe that if I were dropped off in France in a parachute, then I could pretty much survive life on my own.  You see, I'm a Korean girl born and raised in Argentina, who happened to immigrate to the U.S. and learned French for five years. I love languages!

2.)  I have hiked all of the Half Dome in Yosemite and survived!  It was one of the coolest experiences in my whole life!  And painful too. Try it, and your calves will thank you.  Or hate you.

3.)  I am sort of ashamed to admit this.  But I am extremely competitive when it comes to physical activities!  So sometimes I would rather not participate at all hah!  I have been dubbed as the Queen of Laser Tag because I once went laser tagging with a whole group of church friends, and I won the top score and incinerated beat all the guys!

4.)  I'm an ENFP and seem to look at life/the world through a very idealistic perspective.  I'm always inclined to be an optimist, and sometimes too much!  I'm learning to find the balance in between so as to not come off as insensitive to others.  :D

5.)  I adapt to new environments and foreign countries rather well.  I love to immerse myself within the culture and become one of the 'people' as much as I can!  Culture and the ability to understand it is one of my greatest passions.

6.)  I used to be the biggest tomboy when I was a little girl!  I played with Barbies but mostly with toy cars and Nintendo.  During the beginning stages of my teenage years, I wore super baggy pants and over sized t-shirts.  Oh, and I had an afro when I was 3 years old.

7.)  I ran Cross Country during my sophomore and junior years in high school.  It was an amazing experience where I met awesome, caring people who really made the team feel like a family!  I used to despise running before joining the team, but something changed I guess.  :)  Surprisingly, I won the "Most Improved" Award.

This was so fun and such an honor to be a part of!  Thank you Jenny and to all who are reading this.

I would like to pass this award to...

-Rach from This Italian Family

-Hannah from Wayfaring Chocolate

-Angie from The Fitness Apple

Congratulations and have fun with it! ^.~*v

Your turn!  Please feel free to share something about yourself!  I love hearing about your unique-ness.

From mah heart to yurrrs,

Ellie <33


Something to Think About...

by fitforthesoul in , , ,


Freedom...What IS freedom really?  Is it really doing anything and everything we want?  Or is freedom actually keeping boundaries and keeping healthy pre-set laws?  Does the saying "I can do anything as long as it doesn't hurt someone else" really ring true to the core of this society?  Or are we just ignoring the good "convictions" in our hearts?  Something to think about... Whewww that's heavy stuff huh!!  I don't mean to sound so critical or imposing in any way by asking these questions!  They're just some things that I've been learning in my Growth and Development class.

These are issues that have been on my mind and my heart as of late, and I've been battling with them for quite a while now actually.

I just wanted to bring this up because Human Trafficking is a societal disease that has been behind the curtains for far too long.  But really, is society imposing these things upon humans?  Or aren't we, humans, the ones who SHAPE society?  Something to think about...

Human Trafficking is by far one of the leading injustices that are rampant in this world, while it produces so much profit for exploiters.  But on the flip side, young girls, women, and even young boys are just left with incurable scars.  This heinous industry is so "successful" because there is the reality where people want drugs and arms.  No matter what country we may be in, these are "needed".

The reality is that these things are not lasting.  At all.  They're used up once and they're gone.  Just like that.   However, as sick as it may sound, humans are "re-usable"  for many purposes.  It can be sexual labor, forced labor, you name it! And as long as they're enslaved in some form or another, the exploiters can create some form of consistent profit in order to GAIN all the said items like drugs and guns.  Again, something to think about...

I was very thankful this morning to go on Caitlin's website and find that the media is beginning to expose moral issues such as this one, all the while bringing into the light "America's Dirty Little Secrets"--or even crazier, the WORLD'S LITTLE SECRETS.   I'm so glad that it's not only being acknowledged now, but that people are moving towards the abolition of present-day slavery!

My incentive for posting this isn't to bring anybody down.  It's just something that is constantly being reminded to me to pray for these victims and this issue.   I certainly wouldn't want to remain silent about it or even worse--remain indifferent about this injustice because I feel that THAT would be a greater injustice.

Have you seen Boondock Saints? I know I know bloody movie but hey! It's got SOME good points!  :P There's a quote in that movie that states my thought better than I can!  Well sort of, because it begs the question for some philosophies I have.

But it goes something like..."There's no greater evil than good people watching evil being done..."? Hahaha I'm probably butchering it I'm sorry!

There are some great organizations out there that help support these kinds of causes...

One of them is a Christian organization called Living Water for Girls. There's another one that sets up events with churches or organizations and it's Love 146! I remember attending one of these events last year where we fund raised through music!  We can donate to these groups' websites and perhaps someday get involved even!  Who knows?

All in all, I wanted to reiterate info on what's going on out there, as well as share where my heart has been lately.  It's interesting...whenever I wake up in the middle of the night I remember these things and feel pulled to pray...Not a coincidence :D  I don't believe in coincidences anyway hehe!

Well, I hope this turns out to be an encouragement instead of a downer!  Because this is reality.  Perhaps this brings our lives into perspective a little bit more, and demonstrates that there truly is more out there than ourselves...at least, myself...It's definitely something to think about.

This is one of the songs that I've been listening to over and over lately!  It's sad but again--it changes my perspective.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjDzyh3TwAE]

And thanks to Caitlin from Healthy Tipping Point for posting this up!  It was a great reminder! <33

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kupGd9dnyHA]

Have a great day and stay cool! Errr warm?!

Grace & Peace,

Ellie <3


VOO Changed My Life

by fitforthesoul in , , , , ,


Hello y'all! So....I have a confession to make of what I had this morning...If you care to know! :P

Can you guess it?

Yep!  Ding ding ding! I had over night oats in A JAR!!!  *Cue the bell sound and applause*

Mr. Smiles in the back says HI to all of you!  He's a gift from my very good (soon to be going to Korea) friend AJ!  Isn't he so cute?  He even has a little crown to keep Joe warm for me!

Into the mix went in many ingredients!  Some healthy, some just OK.  But my philosophy of food is most things in moderation. When it comes down to me, I don't deprive myself of anything in order to stay healthy, but I just listen to my body and go along with it because most of the time, it's telling me to eat something nutritious and healthy.

*ahem* Of course sometimes it tells me to eat a whole slice of pie...or maybe two...

Trusting our bodies is a great discipline and progression that we learn as we live each day!

This is what I put in the jar this morning:

  • 1/4 C rolled oats
  • 1 C almond milk
  • 2 TBSP Fage yogurt
  • handful of frozen blueberries
  • pecans
  • coconut flakes
  • cinnamon
  • drizzle of maple
  • some yogurt chips!
  • 2 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp chia seeds

This was definitely a welcomed and satisfying breakfast!  Let me tell you--the trick of putting in Greek yogurt in a VOO makes it extra creamy and thick.

Today I would like to share a bit about my eating and fitness background,  why I choose to eat the way I do, and how it has helped me in positive ways.

Ever since I was a child, I grew up eating mostly Korean food and Argentine food.  However, Korean cooking was the staple in our household due to my family's strong traditions and customs.

Korean food is known to be one of the healthiest foods out there because it consists  of vegetables and roots!

Almost everything is pickled or slathered in some kind of spice.

There is also a wide variety of meats and carbs.  The meat is usually grilled or marinated in a delicious and sweet sauce.  The carbs usually entail bowls packed with rice! And let me tell you, I ate that stuff at least once or twice a day!

Not to mention, during my high school years I really DID eat every junk food that was available at the cafeteria.  Welcome Chili Cheese Fries....

I don't think it's bad to eat it every ONCE in a WHILE!  But what you have to know is that I ate this bad boy EVERY SINGLE DAY DURING NUTRITION TIME FOR A WHOLE YEAR. I still don't know how I did that.

Now going back to Korean food, you can see that it has its pros and cons in many aspects.

Pros:  Veggies, fruits, healthy oils.

Cons:  Too much meat, carbs, ulcer-inducing spices.

I never really  had a difficult time eating this way, until high school hit. Then, my stomach began to act up in strange ways such as constipation, constant stomach pains, indigestion, and much more.  You name it.  I believe the only thing it hasn't experienced is an Ulcer, and I'm so grateful for not having those!  :D

Due to this experience, I began to search for better ways of eating. I guess I could say that I was successful on and off.  There were many failures as well.  After years of trial and error in an attempt to find out the reason to my stomach issues, I finally went to the doctor to get an endoscopy.  (That was the most physically unpleasant experience in my whole life...I think)  Surprisingly enough, even the doctor told me that I was fine and that I should just try to lay off of spicy food.

Obviously, this assessment hadn't really helped me in any way because I was still having way too many intestinal problems.  You can imagine that when I went anywhere far away like mission TRIPS, my stomach would do just that.  TRIP out.

Fortunately, everything was rather okay when I went to the India mission trip this past summer!  After much prayer and supplication for a break, my body responded in a kind way.

[Sorry for the blurriness :P]

However, when I came back from India+Korea, I realized that my stomach started to react once again!  But lo and behold!  I somehow came across Angela's and Caitlin's blogs!!  Since then on, I saw more and more that vegan/vegetarian  ways of eating don't have to be weird and deprived.

I also believe that being in the poor villages of India, it did something to my spirit...I'm not sure what it is exactly, but my mind and heart compelled me to eat better and treat myself better as a result.

The excitement of feeding my body healthful and wholesome foods was increasing the more I read about all these crazy bloggers!  At this point, it hit me that I DON'T have to eat my mother's cooking all the time. (No offense to you mom I love you!)

It was like a crazy revelation at the time!  And though I was scared to venture out to eat like this...

from traditionally eating this...

I was pleasantly surprised by the results!  I didn't think that I would survive with the "little amount of nutrients" that I thought I would get if I didn't eat Korean food everyday!

And more than anything, I felt sort of bad towards my family because maybe I was betraying them and our culture altogether.  You see, in their minds, if I don't eat the way they do--I am starving myself and I have some kind of eating disorder.

But this isn't true obviously, because I still eat all sorts of food here and there.

I'm so glad to have made these alterations in my lifestyle because it has truly helped me to work at optimum level (as opposed to before) and have way less digestive problems as a result!

I REALLY have to admit that I was scared of trying Vegan Overnight Oats at first,  but it won my heart the second I took a bite! Love at first bite... Since then, I knew that healthy food could be fun and delicious.

And you know what the funny thing is?

Just because of reassuring my family that I am making these changes to actually BE healthier, I have come to grow stronger in my character.  I have never been one to oppose much of what my parents desire, but life has taken its different route the past few years.  This lifestyle of nutrition and health has become one of those "less traveled roads".  :)

Because of MY decision to do this, I believe that I've become less dependent on having to please my own culture, and just do what is right for me.

Not only that, but I've always loved to exercise and work out.  These past few years exercising has become an addiction a habit. :P  To be quite frank, I don't just do it to stay in shape--although that IS one of the reasons.  But the main reason why do it is that I feel more physically and mentally awake!  I love it when I have that adrenaline rushing down my veins!  I feel less lethargic and become more productive as a result.

In my opinion, working out for the sake of well-being and optimum performance is the best motivation to stay in shape.  (But that's just me)

Who knew that I would also become more emotionally strong through these changes?

This is just a brief (maybe long?) explanation of where I am with all this, but I hope it encourages you in some way!

I want to live as healthily as possible within every aspect of my life! Physically, spiritually, and emotionally--so that I can also be of great service and encouragement to others.    ^_~  Because this life ain't about me...It's about loving God with all of my heart and soul, as I love others the way He loves them.

My Question: Have cultural and familial customs kept you from a healthy lifestyle?  When did you start this journey, and what advice would you give to those who feel like they're stuck in a rut?  Or, what kind of changes would you like to make? :D

Grace & Peace,

Ellie <333

__________

P.S:  Elaine was phenomenal during the concert!! She did a beautiful rendition of Tango legendary Astor Piazzolla's piece Bordel.  Here's a clip!

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gkqn5UBJ9mY]

Enjoy! :)