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nourishment Archives · Rachel's Nourishing Kitchen

Tag: nourishment

Connect.Savor.Nourish: A Refreshing Approach to Eating

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Food has always been a special part of my life.

Going grocery shopping and to farmer’s markets with my mom as a little girl.

Waiting for the horse-drawn “strawberry man” cart to come to our neighborhood with fresh “strawbetties”, as I called them.

Picking wild raspberries along the side of the road in upstate New York on a warm summer day.

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Photo Credit: Laura Toraldo Photography

Listening intently as my elderly neighbor and Julia Child admirer, Miss Muriel, taught me the art of making cheesecake, pasta, bread, and sugar cookies from scratch. 

Spending my summers in high school guiding customers how to pick out ripe watermelons and the perfect peach.

I’ve always been drawn to food.

After conducting several nutrition-based research studies with a professor in college, pursuing a graduate degree in health science, completing my health coach training, and running my company’s wellness program for the past decade, I knew I had to do something more than just read or talk about food.

I had to write about it.

I was encouraged by friends and coworkers to start a blog over two years ago, and that’s how Rachel’s Nourishing Kitchen first came to be. Since starting the blog, I haven’t felt like it reflects my style or my brand, so I’ve been working to change that. Over a year ago, my designer created this beautiful logo for me, and I’ve wanted to showcase it on my site ever since then!

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It’s playful, fun, inviting and warm. I love the little pop of color and how I feel when I see it. I’ve gotten similar feedback from dozens of people when I hand them my business card.

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Photo Credit: Laura Toraldo Photography

Today I’m excited to celebrate the roll-out of my redesigned website, complete with branding, professional pictures, and a cleaner, less cluttered look. This is the first phase of the redesign process, so you can look forward to even more improvements in user experience and functionality in the future.

In the process of coming up with the new design for the site, I spent some time thinking about what makes me different and what makes this site different. What’s the unique message that I want to put out into the world in a way that is meaningful to me and my readers?

After years of writing, teaching workshops, and interacting with people one-on-one and in groups, I’ve come to realize that what makes Rachel’s Nourishing Kitchen different is the refreshing, inviting, judgment-free, hopeful, and empowering approach I take. I stand in my truth and am honest about my victories and my struggles. I invite you along that journey with me, giving you permission to explore your own health, life, body and food choices.

We’re inundated with confusing, often negative, fear-driven information around food in the media and in our conversations. Most of us are looking for something beyond a diet, something that will stick, something that makes us feel good and gives us hope.

What if instead of feeling overwhelmed, you felt empowered about eating?

What if instead of obsessing over calories, you could connect with why you eat in the first place and what foods make you feel best and most alive?

What if instead of judging yourself for what you ate, you decided to get curious about it?CuriousG

I’ve updated my tagline to reflect what I feel is my unique message around food – Connect.Savor.Nourish. I want to invite you to connect with and savor your food and nourish yourself in every sense of the word.

  • CONNECT with your food – why you eat, how it makes you feel, where it comes from, and the impact it has beyond your plate – and with a community of people that lifts you up and brings out the best in you.
  • SAVOR your food by slowing down and making eating an experience, so you can truly taste and enjoy your food instead of feeling guilty about it.
  • NOURISH your body with energizing, healing, life-giving foods, so you can look and feel like the best version of yourself and, in turn, be your best for others.rnk_logo200_new

People who don’t know me often ask me why I have the word “kitchen” in my blog, since I don’t operate a physical space called Rachel’s Nourishing Kitchen.

Here’s the reason.

The kitchen is a special place. I’m going to guess that you have positive memories at some point in your life that involve a kitchen.

I remember baking Christmas cookies and muffins with my mom, sharing family dinners at the table, and sitting down after a long day at school to a snack with my brother. We set out cookies for Santa, dyed Easter eggs, and blew out birthday candles at that table. It was a place to gather, a place to share stories, a place to make memories and connect.

Food is about so much more than nutrition.

It’s about life. It’s about connection, celebration, enjoyment, and nourishment. I love what nutritionist, Marc David, has to say about the connection between food and life.

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Whether it’s your first time here or you’ve been here since the very beginning, welcome.

Welcome to my nourishing kitchen – a place of connection, and community. A place to be yourself and try new things. A place to find delicious, nourishing recipes that nourish your body. A place where you are invited to explore why, how, and what you eat in a way that is energizing, inspiring, and makes you feel alive.

I’m grateful you’re here, and I hope you’ll come back soon to visit!

 

I'm Turning In My Busyness Badge: Retreat Reflections Part 1

I was going to write about Brussels sprouts today.

I had it all planned out – spotlight three tried and true recipes featuring one of my favorite vegetables.

And then I went away for the weekend on a women’s retreat.

I’ve been inspired to write about something else. I’ll write about Brussels sprouts another day.

As important as eating what is nourishing and avoiding what is toxic is so important to our overall health, avoiding disease, and feeling our best, there is something we often overlook in this seemingly unending quest to “be healthy,” and that’s the power of rest.

Every year in February, my mom invites me to go on a retreat with her church to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania with about 400 other women.

I’ve been about six times so far…and every time, I’m so glad I’ve heeded that gentle nudge to register.

I almost didn’t go this year.

Why? Well, you know, I’m just so busy, and besides, I could find plenty of other ways to spend the money.

With some encouragement from my husband, who knows I don’t do this whole relaxation and resting thing very well, I decided to go.

The main speaker was Tracey Meeks, who lost her husband of less than a decade to an inoperable brain tumor several years ago and is now raising her two children as a single mom. The stories and perspectives she shared were gripping, inspirational, and inviting.

One of the things she said that really resonated with me was this: “When we’re in constant activity, it’s like we are living while only exhaling.”

Let that soak in for a moment.

How many of us feel that way? We are going, going, going, constantly exerting energy, rarely taking a second to stop, to breathe in.

Most of us suffer from “hurry sickness.”  And this perpetual state of busyness robs us of our sense of wonder and can be kind of numbing.

We proudly wear our “busyness badge of honor,” and in doing so we forego connection, avoid vulnerability, and miss out on truly living.

I’m as guilty as the next person of proudly donning my busyness badge each day at work, at home, at church, and with my friends and family, constantly telling everyone how busy I am.

It is the result of my choices that I feel so busy…and I realize it is doing me more harm than good.

When “I’m busy,” I miss out on admiring the beauty of a stunning sunset.

When “I’m busy,” I ignore the subtle urgings to reach out to a friend and see how he or she is doing.

When “I’m busy,” I pass by a coworker having a less than great day with a “hey, how are you?” and don’t stop to hear his or her response.

When “I’m busy,” I prioritize my to do list over spending time with my husband.

When “I’m busy,” I don’t make time to rest, to relax, to retreat.

Being away this weekend made me realize something…I’m tired of being busy.

Does each of us have a lot going on in our lives? Sure. I don’t mean to diminish the complexity of life and the many hats that we wear and roles that we play on a daily basis.

But I also don’t want to use busyness as an excuse to avoid connection, intimacy, vulnerability, and life.

Taking time to rest, reflect and reconnect is one of the most important things we can do for our health.

More than anything else in my health journey, I struggle to set aside time to rest and renew myself, but I know I’m not alone, and that encourages me.

As much as it scares me, I’m going to commit to making a change because I know it’s good for my health, my relationships and my soul. I pledge not to use “busyness” as an excuse to distance myself from others but to see it as a gift, an opportunity to invite them in to support me, to connect face-to-face, and to be reminded of what really matters.

I’m turning in my “busyness badge.”

In Part 2, I will share lessons learned on the retreat about some non-food nourishment for our too-busy souls. 

I’m Turning In My Busyness Badge: Retreat Reflections Part 1

I was going to write about Brussels sprouts today.

I had it all planned out – spotlight three tried and true recipes featuring one of my favorite vegetables.

And then I went away for the weekend on a women’s retreat.

I’ve been inspired to write about something else. I’ll write about Brussels sprouts another day.

As important as eating what is nourishing and avoiding what is toxic is so important to our overall health, avoiding disease, and feeling our best, there is something we often overlook in this seemingly unending quest to “be healthy,” and that’s the power of rest.

Every year in February, my mom invites me to go on a retreat with her church to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania with about 400 other women.

I’ve been about six times so far…and every time, I’m so glad I’ve heeded that gentle nudge to register.

I almost didn’t go this year.

Why? Well, you know, I’m just so busy, and besides, I could find plenty of other ways to spend the money.

With some encouragement from my husband, who knows I don’t do this whole relaxation and resting thing very well, I decided to go.

The main speaker was Tracey Meeks, who lost her husband of less than a decade to an inoperable brain tumor several years ago and is now raising her two children as a single mom. The stories and perspectives she shared were gripping, inspirational, and inviting.

One of the things she said that really resonated with me was this: “When we’re in constant activity, it’s like we are living while only exhaling.”

Let that soak in for a moment.

How many of us feel that way? We are going, going, going, constantly exerting energy, rarely taking a second to stop, to breathe in.

Most of us suffer from “hurry sickness.”  And this perpetual state of busyness robs us of our sense of wonder and can be kind of numbing.

We proudly wear our “busyness badge of honor,” and in doing so we forego connection, avoid vulnerability, and miss out on truly living.

I’m as guilty as the next person of proudly donning my busyness badge each day at work, at home, at church, and with my friends and family, constantly telling everyone how busy I am.

It is the result of my choices that I feel so busy…and I realize it is doing me more harm than good.

When “I’m busy,” I miss out on admiring the beauty of a stunning sunset.

When “I’m busy,” I ignore the subtle urgings to reach out to a friend and see how he or she is doing.

When “I’m busy,” I pass by a coworker having a less than great day with a “hey, how are you?” and don’t stop to hear his or her response.

When “I’m busy,” I prioritize my to do list over spending time with my husband.

When “I’m busy,” I don’t make time to rest, to relax, to retreat.

Being away this weekend made me realize something…I’m tired of being busy.

Does each of us have a lot going on in our lives? Sure. I don’t mean to diminish the complexity of life and the many hats that we wear and roles that we play on a daily basis.

But I also don’t want to use busyness as an excuse to avoid connection, intimacy, vulnerability, and life.

Taking time to rest, reflect and reconnect is one of the most important things we can do for our health.

More than anything else in my health journey, I struggle to set aside time to rest and renew myself, but I know I’m not alone, and that encourages me.

As much as it scares me, I’m going to commit to making a change because I know it’s good for my health, my relationships and my soul. I pledge not to use “busyness” as an excuse to distance myself from others but to see it as a gift, an opportunity to invite them in to support me, to connect face-to-face, and to be reminded of what really matters.

I’m turning in my “busyness badge.”

In Part 2, I will share lessons learned on the retreat about some non-food nourishment for our too-busy souls. 

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