My battle with self acceptancence

Ok gals, I am going to be real with you all and share something that has controlled my life for sometime. Over the years I have been asked ‘what was the one thing that made you choose to become a holistic health coach?’ For me the answer was never simple. So many areas in my life needed attention and my life needed a major overhaul however, it wasn’t until recently that I discovered the true reason I travelled down this incredible path… My battle with self acceptance.

To me self acceptance is exactly that, accepting who you are, where you are and for all you are becoming. I always struggled with knowing my identity and where I belonged even from the time I was little I always had some sense of doubt and uncertainty.

As I got older I started to feel lost and confused. I used food as a comfort to help cover my emotions that I didn’t understand. Food was the one thing I could control and I would sometimes eat until I felt sick. This is where my unhealthy relationship with food started. I gained weight, felt sick all the time and felt so unhappy within myself. I hated the way I looked and dreaded anybody seeing my body.

The battle had started and the worst thing was that my loved ones had no idea as the battle was within myself. So many girls and women have this struggle each for different reasons and this was mine. To be honest, I still had this struggle up until Hux was born.

I had conditioned myself to wake up everyday and analyse by body, picking it to pieces and listing all the things I didn’t like. Oh gosh I am cringing even writing this but it was the truth. This was the WORST way to start the day and of course only fuelled my lack of self acceptance and body shaming.

So what changed? You would think having a baby would only create more doubt and hate and I would be lying because at first it did. My body changed in so many way and I did struggle at the start to recognise and understand my new body. I would look in the mirror and grab my excess skin and think ‘all that hard work has gone out the window’ but that’s not true.

It only took me to look at this incredible miracle baby to realise life is freaking amazing. I mean what is perfect? I always thought if I looked a certain was that I would be happy, if I didn’t have stomach rolls and was super lean that all my questions would be answered. I used to train super hard to achieve what I thought would make me happy when all it did was made me tired, depleted and forever chasing an impossible goal.

After having Hux I took sometime to fill up my very empty cup. I started listening and taking my own advice like I would with my beautiful clients and started doing the ‘inner work’ I always go on about and something shifted. I started to feel comfortable, calm and like I had finally found my place in this world. A light had switched on and I could see everything that I had been missing. I was freaking free!!

Holy moly it is a good feeling. I no longer strive for perfection, I practice gratitude towards my body everyday (even when my inner mean girl pipes up and yes she still does), I eat more intuitively and abundantly, I feel so happy where I am and what is to come (so many exciting things in the works) and most of all I am just loving being me.

So if you are someone that struggles with self acceptance I want you to do your inner work. You have absolutely nothing to lose but everything to gain and don’t worry ya gal Emma is here to help.

Inner work checklist

1. Ask the big ones

• What would make you truly happy? Not what society wants, it’s what would make you scream with excitement happy like you’re at a spice girls concert.
• What is stopping you from achieving this?
• What needs to change?

2. Self care

• Are you looking after yourself? Do you do atleast two things a day for you? If not GF today is the day!

3. Positive self talk

• This was the one for me. Instead of talking yourself down try the opposite and start listing what you love about yourself.

4. Eat intuitively

• This needs a blog on its own but to put it simply listen to your body and what it’s telling you. It knows best and what it needs so before you get fist deep in a packet of chips (I’m totally guilty here) ask yourself what is it I am actually craving?

5. Show up for yourself everyday

• Only you have the power the change your perspective. I always say to myself ‘If today was my last day how would I want to live?’ the next step… start living that life beautiful.

These 5 steps are just the beginning of something seriously life changing and for the sake of not making this blog any longer (if you’re still reading your amazing!) I am going to email all my subscribers my full inner work checklist so you can start creating your best life yet. If you aren’t a Blissful Health member you can subscribe on the homepage of my website.

Alright this mumma better get this day started and go and get my little man who has just woken up. I can’t wait for you all to read this and to start experiencing some major self love

Much love,
Emma

Chocolate Mousse Cups

Have you ever thrown a whole lot of ingredients together and ended up creating the most epic raw treat ever? Well that is exactly what happened here.

I love chocolate mousse and since I became intolerant to dairy I have really missed it. So I thought I would test myself and see if I could make a gluten and dairy free version that tasted incredible and was full of amazing health benefits.

These are amazing for a afternoon snack, dessert or for a gathering with friends.

I like to keep mine in the freezer and take out 5 minutes before I want to eat it so it has time to soften slightly to give you that velvety mousse texture however, I am also known to be impatient and eat it straight from the freezer.



Chocolate Mousse Cups

  • Servings: 12
  • Print

Ingredients

Base:

  • 1 cup of pitted dates
  • 1/4 cup of boiling water
  • 1/4 cup of melted coconut oil
  • 1 cup of coconut flour
  • Pinch of Himalayan salt

Chocolate Mousse:

  • 1/2 cup of cashew nuts (best soaked for a few hours)
  • 1 can of full fat coconut milk
  • 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp of maple syrup
  • 3 tbsp of melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup of raw cacao powder
  • Pinch of Himalayan salt

Method

  1. Grease a small silicon muffin mould
  2. To make the base add dates, boiled water and vanilla extract to a blender and let sit for 5 minutes.
  3. Once soaked blitz to make a date paste. Add in the coconut flour, 1/4 cup of coconut oil, salt and blend together.
  4. Once combined press into the base of each mould around 1 cm high. Once done place in freezer.
  5. While this sets make the mousse by adding all mousse ingredients into the blender and blitz until it has become a smooth chocolate custard like texture. 
  6. Pour mixture into each of the moulds. 
  7. Top with cacao nibs, hemp seeds or what ever your heart desires.
  8. Pop back into the freezer for 2 hours to set.
  9. Once set you can remove from the moulds and store in a airtight container in the freezer.



My weekly grocery haul

I think most people would agree that grocery shopping can be stressful and not enjoyable. Well not for this mumma, I have always liked going grocery shopping (I know weird huh!) Even more so now that I have studied health and nutrition. I really look forward to going to the farmers markets and shops to buy our food ready to cook healthy nourishing meals.

I also know that grocery shopping and cooking is one of the last things people want to do so this had me thinking, why not share with you my shopping tips and weekly buys. It may just be what you need to make that shop a little quicker and more affordable. So with out further ado let’s get to the nitty gritty.

If food shopping just isn’t your thing it could be for a few reasons:

  1. You actually just don’t like it
  2. You have kids (enough said)
  3. You never know what to cook/buy
  4. You work long hours
  5. You find it expensive

I totally understand all of these and luckily there are a few ways to kickstart and epic shopping haul.

  • Plan your meals. Spend 15 minutes on Saturday night writing down what meals you would like to cook, then write down which ingredients you will need. This not only saves you money (no food wastage) but also time only having to goto the shops once instead of 2 or 3 times.
  • Order online. If you dont have time or really don’t enjoy shopping plan your meals and do an online shop. This can all be done while sitting in your Pj’s snuggled up at home. 
  • Look what is on special. If we see things on special that we might not need just yet we buy it anyway. Saving a couple dollars here and there adds up in the long run.
  • Buy in season. By basing your meals around what’s in season you will find your total will be alot cheaper and the food will be a lot fresher.

So what veggies and fruit are in season? Being Winter here in Australia we have so many delicious foods available. So our weekly shop normally consists of:

Fruit: Lemons, Kiwi fruit, Avocado, Bananas, Orange, Mandarin, Apples and grapes just to name a few.

Vegetables: Spinach/Kale, Capsicum, Pumpkin, Zucchini, Brocolli, Carrots, Sweet potato, Cauliflower, Celery, Beetroot and Mushrooms*

We try to get vegetable that will go in a varity of meals from bakes, soups, salads, curries and stews.

Another reason to buy seasonal is that mother nature is incredible and intentional. Fruit and vege are grown at certain times of the year for a reason. As the cooler months are here you will notcie a lot of food containing Vit C and A coming into season. This helps us fight off sickness and helps build a healthy immune system. Pretty amazing!! Think lot’s of red and orange colours for immune bosting vegetables.

We try to fill most of our bags up with wholefoods (nothing processed or in packages) So this is the majority of our shop.

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However we obviously need other foods to create nourishing meals so our other weekly staples include:

Protein: Grass fed meat, Salmon/tuna, Organic Tofu, Free range eggs from the farmers, Organic canned legumes, you can find these in coles and woolies (try to not consume too many canned items due to the chemicals in the packaging and salt content)

Grains: Quiona, Brown rice, Buckwheat/Wholemeal pasta, GF rolled oates, Organic Oat Sourdough (I freeze this and use as needed so it doens’t go off) and rice noodles.

Healthy Fats: Coconut yoghurt, Nut butter (no added salt), Nuts and seeds, Coconut milk (canned and carton), Tahini and Olive and Coconut oil.

Other items: Frozen berries, Buckwheat crackers, Dates, Muesli bars (from the health food isle, always check the ingredients. The longer the list the faker the food), Tamari (GF soy sauce), Tahini, Vegan chocolate, Raw local honey, Herbs and spices and then our household items.

What I love about this is it means we avoid the whole middle 2 items containing the lollies, chips, soft drink ect so no temptation to grab and go. The health food isle has so many great snacking options for kids, a few of my favs are below. Grabbing these at the beginning of your shop means you are less likely to want to go down the chocolate isle. 

I also like to do a little meal prepping to get us ready for the week. This helps when we are both super busy with work and Hux. I like to have something sweet like blissballs, cut up fruit or some homemade biscuits like these yummy choc chip cookies from my eBook and also some savoury food like cooked quinoa, roasted sweet potato, boiled eggs, frozen banana, granola, my paleo bread and chooped up veggie sticks. This means that I have heaps of healthy snacks on hand plus some throw together lunch options.

It only takes and hour out of my week to have so many great options available. Once you get into the habit it honestly doesn’t feel like a chore. Even by prepping one or two things will make your life even easier. I now add in prepping some food for Hux which is normally poaching fruit or steaming veggies ready for his little meals.

If time is something you lack then I encourgae you to look into slow cooker meals and cooking in bulk. This means it can be cooking while you are at work and you are able to freeze some meals ready for days your are late home or don’t feel like cooking.

I honestly could go on and wish I could film our typical grocery haul (maybe one day soon) so you can see exactly how we navigate our way around the shops. This week I am going to try and show you what our meals are and how I prep especially now that I have a baby.

I hope this has helped or even inspired you a little for your next grocery shop. Keep an eye on my instagram this week to see what we are eating. Happy shopping!

Much love,

Emma

Choc Peanut butter Blissballs

One of the best combos in the world, Chocolate and PB. As you all know I am a huge fan of healthy snacks and blissballs is one of the most versatile when it comes to flavour combinations.

Each week I try to make them different and this week I felt like something a little more indulgent but still full of healthy ingredients. The healthy fats from the nuts and coconut means that one of these little flavour bombs will satisfy even the richest craving.

The added benefit of raw cacao powder gives these treats a decadent chocolate hit and because of the processing of the beans it is jam packed with antioxidants and nutrients to help you feeling energised and happy.

Who would have thought a little blissball could be so good for you.

I would love to see you recreations, simply tag blissfulhealth_ on instagram so I can show you some love and see your yummy treats.

Chocolate and Peanut butter Blissballs

  • Servings: 12
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of pitted dates
  • 1/4 cup of boiling water
  • 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup of almonds
  • 3 tbsp of raw cacao powder
  • 2-3 tbsp of natural peanut butter
  • 1 cup of dessicated coconut
  • Pinch of himlayan salt
  • Crushed peanuts to roll

In a blender blitz the almonds to form a chunky powder and set aside.

Now add in your dates, boiled water and vanilla extract to the blender and let sit for 3 mins to soften.

Now add in all other ingredients as well as the almonds and blitz together to form a slightly sticky dough but not too wet.

Roll into balls and then roll in the crushed peanuts. 

Store in a airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.

Chocolate + PB Brownie Bites

What do you do when you are craving a chocolate brownie but you are also trying to be #healthy? You make these fudgy bites of course. The perfect chocolate hit without the guilt..Yep that is right, these bad boys are gluten free, dairy free and sugar free!!

Sweetened only with banana these brownie bites wont spike your blood sugar levels which means they are perfect for the kiddies. If you have quite the sweet tooth you can always add 1-2 tbsp of maple syrup or honey but that it totally up to you and your taste buds.

Chocolate + PB Brownie Bites

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of almonds blitzed into a powder
  • 3 tbsp of raw cacao powder
  • 2 tbsp of plant based chocolate protein (optional, add extra tbsp of cacao if not using)
  • 1/4 tsp of ground cinnamon 
  • 1 tsp of GF baking powder
  • 1 ripe medium banana
  • 2 tbsp of peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp of melted coconut oil
  • 2 tbsp of plantbased milk (I used coconut)
  • 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract
  • Pinch of sea salt

Pre heat oven to 180 degrees C and grease a small muffin tin.

Add all ingredients into a blender and blitz until it forms a batter. It will be slightly thick but still easy to spread.

Once blended spoon mixture into prepared tray and bake for 12-15 mins.

Let cool in tray before adding a drizzle of extra PB on top. Store in cupboard for up to 5 days.

Juggling Health and Mum life

I am not going to lie, this is my fourth attempt at writing this blog. I sit down, read what I have written and then end up deleting the whole thing! Why? Well I am going to be completely honest with you, Since becoming a mum staying healthy has been no walk in the park. If you add up being constantly tired, emotionally/physically exhausted, trying to keep a new born alive whilst not setting the house on fire the last thing you really want to do is go for a run or meal prep for the week.

However, I know from my many years of experience and my own inner coach telling me that to be able to live your best life and give your beautiful self to your children and loved ones, you really need to do the inner work.

My inner work is my health and happiness. If these two things are not balanced then let’s just say I’m not the most fun person to be around, just ask Jack. It is like a mixture of being hangry and tired (or an emotional wreck).

Now don’t get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE being a mum. It is the most incredible feeling having this tiny little human in your arms entirely dependent on you. Their touch, their smile and their presence is breathtakingly beautiful, but it’s not always rainbows and butterflies. It’s hands down the hardest thing I have ever done. The life you once knew is now changed forever and now you have to figure out how it all fits back into place.

Finding that right balance between being a mum, a lover, a friend and yourself is hard enough without adding a little human into the mix. So now the challenge is how to live a healthy, sustainable lifestyle as a new mumma. So I want to share with you how I have managed to create the healthiest and happiest lifestyle for both Huxley and myself.

Firstly though I want to let you know that where ever you are in your health and wellness right now is just perfect, even if it’s far from where you would like to be. For example my household is very sick at the moment with colds so my priority is to ensure I am doing all I can to create a calming and healing environment. This means no exercise or daily outings which has me going crazy!! However this is what we need right now and that is ok.

Accepting where you are is so important as it’s setting yourself and your mindset up to achieve all you set out to. It just means you have more room to grow and thrive not only as a mum but yourself. Try not to compare yourself with other parents out there, every child, every mum and every situation is different. No one is Instagram perfect and I can pretty much guarantee most mums haven’t left the house without some sort of a meltdown (says the mum who got projectile vomited on just as we were leaving today).

There are a few things I do every day that help me achieve a little more balance in my life when it comes to health and wellness. They may seem like small things at first but ultimately add up to feeling happier and healthier throughout the day. These little game changers may be things you use to do but have forgotten about amongst the craziness of life, or they could be things you could add into your daily life. Even by taking one of these things away with you will start you on a healthier path.

So pretty much staying healthy as a mum is a constant juggling act (hence why it has taken me so long to write this blog) and pretty much letting go of all judgement and time schedules. No more going to bed at 9:30 waking up at 6 and starting my day with my morning routine, it’s more sleep when I can, leave the house once Hux is fed and dressed and hope I get a shower in. Finding time to keep the habits that I love was one of the hardest things but once I figured it out it became a lot easier.

Mornings, most parents most dreaded time. It can be one of the craziest times of the day but also one of the most important, how you start your day is how the rest of your day follows. So no matter how busy we are in the morning I always find time to have my warm lemon water. I normally have it while I’m feeding Hux or while I’m expressing or if he’s still asleep it’s my 5 minutes to myself. This by far has been the one habit I’ve kept for the last 5 years and honestly believe it makes all the difference.

Your brain and body needs water to function so if we are dehydrated we can’t think straight, we are irritable, feel lethargic and our body just can’t function properly. So staying hydrating is SO important. Each glass is like a little high 5 to your body.

As for breakfast we all know I love food so having a nourishing breakfast in the morning is essential for me and is vital for how I feel for the rest of the day. This means some days I have to forgo my beloved smoothie bowls and prep my breakfast the night before, normally something I can eat with one hand (I’m sure all the mums out there feel me on this one). Besides smoothie bowls my go to breakfast ideas are chia puddings, overnight oats, sourdough toast with avocado or nut butter or coconut yoghurt with my home-made granola and berries. Most of these are prepped the night before I go to bed so I know in the morning I’ve got something really healthy and nourishing to eat. You could also try my superfood soak.

Snacks, yummo! These can either make you or break you. Breast feeding and running around after a little one makes you super hungry, so having snacks on hand is vital to keep you feeling amazing and fueling your body with all the good stuff that mummas need. It is so easy to grab that muffin or donut because they are there and taste great right? But what happens is your body uses up the processed sugar and refined carbs so quickly that it will leave you feeling even more tired and hungry. So what I do is spend 30 minutes on the weekend prepping a few great snacks. Normally blissballs, hummus, my paleo bread or some trail mixes.

To prevent cravings I try to ensure I am eating a balanced diet. Making sure I am eating an abundance of protein, healthy fats, carbs and LOTS of fruit and vege. Eating a variety of food means your body is getting all the nutrients and minerals it needs to function optimally and keep you feeling healthy and happy.

Exercise, this by far has been the most challenging since becoming a new mum. I first thought I’d be able to exercise while Huxley sleeps to only realise he isn’t the longest sleeper and rather cat naps, so for me it’s been all about quick at home workouts and morning walks. When I say quick workouts I mean 10 to 15 minutes of moving my body and getting my heart rate up. I have been doing a lot of body weight exercises like squats, lunges and push ups and also incorporating some yoga moves and resistant bands.

If I don’t have time for this I’ll always go for a morning walk for at least 30 minutes out in the sunshine and Huxley loves it. Walking is so underappreciated for it’s health benefits. Since giving birth it’s been my go-to for not only my physical health but my mental health. Even parking a little further from the shops to ensure you get a few more steps in your day is incredible.

As for my mindset I swear by yoga. It’s not always easy to get there but I know if I ever need to I can YouTube yoga videos and do it from home, however the benefits from going into a studio for me are beyond amazing. This means I sometimes have to ask for help from Jack to watch Huxley while I have an hour to myself. Luckily Jack knows this is essential for my health and I try to get there at least twice a week. It’s important to still do something you love. Being a mum doesn’t mean you have to give up everything or stop doing things that make you happy, if anything it means you need to do it more. After yoga I feel like a new person, I can think clearer and feel more at peace but most of all I feel like I have so much more to give.

Creating a sanctuary at home is my other little tip. Surrounding yourself with things that make you happy means you always have somewhere to go when times are tough. Things like essential oils and oil diffusers, plants, candles, beautiful pillows and blankets, books that you love to read, uncluttered space and photos of loved ones. Surrounding yourself with all these things means that whenever you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed you can turn to an environment that will bring you peace and joy.

Planning your day is also a great help. writing down the things you need to get done or would like to achieve either the night before or in the morning ensures that you have a little less to worry about. We all think the purpose of a to-do list is to tick absolutely everything off which I guess it is, however by prioritising three things means you are not only having a productive day but also not putting too much pressure on yourself to get things done. I know having a 4 month old baby means if I get two things done that’s a huge accomplishment so don’t be hard on yourself just celebrate what you do achieve.

I honestly could go on FOREVER but I feel like this is already so much information so I am going to leave it there. Being a mum can be overwhelming but just know you are doing an incredible job. Taking time to rediscover yourself and what you love is absolutely ok and important for you and your family. Take each day as it comes and remind yourself daily how you would like to feel and make sure all your choices reflect that.

I hope this helps guide you or even remind you what you are capable of.

Much love,
Emma

Overnight Superfood Soak

This is one of those recipes that I just randomly threw together one night in the hopes that it would work out in the morning and luckily it did.

I guess it is almost like a bircher muesli but this one is gluten free and dairy free. Sometimes it’s the most simplist breakfasts like this that end up becoming one of your favs.

The nuts and seeds soak overnight releasing all their amazing nutrients and allowing for easier digestion. You can either eat as is or heat it up on the stove by adding a little more coconut mylk to have a warm porridge., yummo!

Don’t let the list of ingredients put you off, you simply just add them all into a bowl before adding your coconut mylk and vanilla and presto! All the hard work is done.

Overnight Superfood Soak

  • Servings: 1
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of rinsed buckwheat
  • 1/4 cup of chia seeds
  • 2 tbsps of pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tbsps of sunflower seeds
  • 1/4 cup of shredded coconut
  • 1 tsp of hemp seeds (optional)
  • 1/4 cup of crushed nuts (I used walnuts)
  • 1/4 tsp of cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup of raisins
  • 1-1 1/2 cups of coconut mylk
  • 1 TSP of vanilla protein powder (check the ingredients to make sure it’s not full of nasties, optional)
  • Toppings: Honey and banana

Place all ingredients into a bowl and mix well.

Place in the fridge overnight to soak.

In the morning top with honey and banana or even some coconut yoghurt. You could also add in some raw cacao nibs for a chocolate hit.

If having warm simply pop into a small saucepan and add a little extra liquid. Cook just enough to heat through.

You can double or triple the dry ingredients and store in a airtight jar ready for more yummy breakfasts and just add the wet ingredients when making it.