Tasty Tuesday- BBQ Cauliflower (Vegan)

Ingredients

1 head cauliflower

1 tablespoon olive oil

salt, to taste

pepper, to taste

¾ cup BBQ sauce

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 450˚F

Cut the head of cauliflower into bite-sized florets

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 

Spread cauliflower florets on the baking sheet.

 Drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

Bake for 20 minutes.

Remove florets from the oven and toss with BBQ sauce.

Return florets to the oven and bake for an additional 10 minutes until browned.

Enjoy!

Stay Safe. Stay Healthy. Stay Well.

Kate and the Kids

Tasty Tuesday – Roasted Chickpeas (vegan)

INGREDIENTS

2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

2 tablespoons of hidden valley ranch powder

INSTRUCTIONS

Heat the oven to 400°F.

Rinse and drain the chickpeas. Open the cans of chickpeas and pour the chickpeas into a strainer in the sink. Rinse thoroughly under running water.

Dry the chickpeas. Pat the chickpeas very dry with a paper towel. Remove any chickpea skins that come off while drying, but otherwise don’t worry about them.

Toss the chickpeas with olive oil and salt. Spread the chickpeas out in an even layer on a baking sheet. Drizzle with the oil and sprinkle with the salt. Stir  to make sure the chickpeas are evenly coated.

Roast the chickpeas for 20 to 30 minutes. Roast, stirring the chickpeas or shaking the pan every 10 minutes.

Toss the chickpeas with the ranch powder and stir to coat evenly. 

Enjoy!

Stay safe. Stay Well. Stay healthy.

Kate and the Kids

Tasty Tuesday- Recipe for Tomato Gazpacho (vegan recipe)

Ingredients 

6 medium tomatoes, coarsely chopped

1 medium red bell pepper, coarsely chopped

1⁄2 medium green bell pepper, coarsely chopped

1-2 cloves garlic, cut into quarters

1 large cucumber, peeled, seeded, and chopped

1 medium red onion, coarsely chopped

1⁄4 cup red wine vinegar

1⁄4 cup extra virgin olive oil

Sea salt and black pepper

Instructions:

Place green and red bell pepper, cucumber, and onion pieces into a food processor.

Add all tomatoes and garlic..

Process until smooth.

Reserve half of the vegetable mixture in a large bowl. Pour the other half through a fine strainer in batches, pushing to extract the juice into a smaller bowl. Discard the pulp.

Add the juice to the vegetable mixture and mix together, adding olive oil, salt and pepper to taste.

Chill for at least 1 hour to allow flavors to meld together.

Stay safe. Stay healthy. Stay Well.

Kate and the Kids

5 Tips to your Best Power Nap

Sometimes I over-do my daily nap, especially when the depression is really bad. On normal or good days though, power naps renew my patience and mood. This is especially helpful for the “dinner rush” when everyone seems to be busy, needy, grumpy and ‘hangry.’ Napless evenings tend to be more stressful for everyone, and my family is famous for responding to the stress by saying “sorry, I’m just tired. I pulled an all-dayer today.” I’ve made it a routine to get my self-care nap almost every day so I can walk into the battle of dinner time as prepared as possible. Since I’m now a professional napper, here are my tips to make the most of your power nap!

5. Choose the right place.

It may be tempting to crawl back into bed- especially in the winter- but reserving the bed  specifically for  nighttime sleep has been shown to provide better quality overnight sleep. Instead, opt for the couch or easy chair.. Or if you’re lucky, on a beach towel in the summer.

4. Make your nap space distraction- free. 

Since you’re making the most out of a mere 20-30 minutes, make them quality minutes. Choose a quiet space that’s cool and comforting. Avoid spaces with blue screen lights such as TVs, computer monitors and cell phones.

3. Timing.

The best time of day to nap is between noon and 3pm. (for a typical bedtime of 10p-midnight.) Sleeping after 3pm can hinder your ability to fall asleep at night.

2. Length.

The ideal power nap is 20-30 minutes. Set an alarm, and resist the temptation to snooze. Naps longer than 30 minutes can put you into a deep sleep, making it harder to wake and rendering the nap counter productive.

1. Caffeine.

Most caffeine, like a cup of coffee, takes about 20 minutes to kick in. Having a cup of joe right before your power nap will give you an extra boost when you wake up.

Take some self care time to recharge today. If you aren’t able to nap, try a short meditation podcast or some mindful breathing- anything to rest and restore to get you through your afternoon.

Stay safe. Stay healthy. Stay well.

Nap responsibly.

Kate and the Kids

Protection or Projection?

Growing up I had four girls who lived on my block and were in my grade. “Fair weather friends” is an extremely generous term to give them. 90% of the time they were absolutely awful to me, but I kept chasing their friendship because that 10% of goodness meant the world to me. 

Historically September was the worst. Every year when school started the girls left a summer friendship behind, and turned into little monsters. It could mean a great morning at the bus stop, laughing and being friends. Then just moments later we would be on the bus. They would put their feet up on the seat so I had nowhere to sit. The bus driver would yell at me to sit down, and I would just panic on the inside. There is no where to sit, and on top of that my friends are being mean. I’m so confused and upset. Stop yelling at me. 

I specifically remember this happening on one very rainy day. Everyone was fine sitting in the car, listening to music and staying out of the storm. When the bus pulled up, they pulled their normal shit. Every seat had a wet, muddy foot on it. 

I panicked, and tried to make myself feel small. I picked a seat that was least covered, and tried to take up the least amount of room possible. When I sat down, this boy made a “booom” sound as if my fat butt had crashed right through the seat. All the girls laughed with him. He then spent the rest of the ride digging his muddy shoes into my thigh, staining my jeans and sweater. I moved as close to the edge as I could to give him space. He kept the pressure against my leg constantly, and when the bus driver wasn’t looking he used all of his lower body strength to kick me off the seat. I fell into the aisle. Mud now covered the entire length of my backside, and everyone was snickering. The bus driver just yelled at me to get out of the aisle. 

The school year for my son is supposed to start at the end of the month, but our town has not released their covid plan yet. I’ve asked my son every single day if he will just agree to the full time distance learning and stay home with me. Every single time he tells me he wants to see his friends. 

I’ve been blaming covid for wanting to keep him home. He is immunocompromised from his Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, and I don’t trust the other kids at school to be responsible with their hygiene and masks. Every day that school gets closer, the more time I spend worrying about it. 

I realized this morning that covid is only part of my hesitation. Jacen is already getting help for his anxiety disorder, and we’ve had so much trouble with bullies in the past. He even had a child from school taunting him over Xbox live, telling him to kill himself. Like me, Jacen insists these people are his friends and they just made a little mistake. He continues to forgive them time and time again. 

It’s abuse. I was in an abusive relationship with my best friends, and I see Jacen doing the same. We let people make us the victim because we don’t have the strength to just walk away and stand on our own. We let the cycle continue because we just want to be a normal kid- to pretend we have people who care about us, to pretend we fit in. I want more than anything to stop Jacen from feeling this way, feeling like he isn’t worth the little sliver of an edge of a bus seat.  He is worthy of space. Worthy of existing. So was I – but that didn’t stop little bullies from making me feel otherwise. 

For months I’ve been telling myself that keeping Jacen home would be PROTECTING, but I realized today it’s more so PROJECTING. I’m so afraid that Jacen will be tortured like I was, and I would love to just avoid the situation all together. 

Ultimately the choice is Jacen’s. That is, within whatever the school district offers. I’ll be so relieved if he stays home – for so many reasons – but I can’t keep him isolated forever. 

I’m asking the parents out there- do you protect or project? What reasons are you considering when choosing remote or in person schooling? And finally, is there anything from YOUR past that makes you fearful for your own children?

I can’t wait to hear your thoughts!

Write them in the comment section or send your voice memos to katefasci@gmail.com

Wash your hands. Wear a face covering. Socially distance. 

Stay healthy. Stay mindful. 

Kate and the Kids

Move that booty!

Exercise is a huge part of overall heath. Moving your body has physical, emotional, and sometimes even social benefits!

Grab a friend and a bottle of water, and move for at least 30 minutes. Don’t know where to start? Take the dog for a walk, try an exercise video off YouTube, or bring the kids outside for a game of basketball.

If you need something more specific, try my HIIT workout! (High intensity interval training) This is my actual workout for today! I’d love to hear some feedback if you try it!

Do thirty seconds of each exercise, with a one minute rest between sets. You can also count 10-15 reps per exercise with a quick water break between sets!

Warm up:

Vigorous side step or power walking (5 minutes)

Set 1:

Cross body standing high knees

Pull downs

Bent rows

Rear shoulder squeeze 

Set 2:

Vigorous steps 

Side lunges (back and forth/both sides)

Squats

Kick backs 

Set 3: (laying down)

Seated row

Bridge

Leg lift left

Leg lift right

Set 4:

Mountain climbers

Leg curl (alternating legs)

Leg extension left

Leg extension right

Cool down with an easy walk or mild yoga

Whatever you choose, just make sure to move your body!

Track your food. Drink your water. Move your body.

Wash your hands. Socially distance. Wear a face covering.

Stay safe and healthy!

Kate and the Kids