realfoodwholelife realfoodwholelife

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real food whole life ✨  robyn downs // portland mama on a mission: gentle is the new perfect simplifying wellness feel good effect podcast host

Hey southwest friends! We're headed to Scottsdale, AZ for a quick little trip next week. We'll have the littles with us, Elle (6.5) plus my sister's kids (2.5 and 6mo). We'll have a car and a kitchen. Where should we eat and go? Any fun things happening for kiddos right now? And, any sister-date, no-kid suggestions? You all always have the best recommendations, so thank you in advance! xo 😘

Hey, it's pretty dark up here in the pacific nothwest. Here's how we're beating the winter blues: staying in jammies way beyond the appropriate hour, hot sweaty yoga sessions, Christmas movies we've seen so many times we can repeat every word by heart (I'm talking to you, Elf), 3-ingredient hot cocoa, cozy socks, yellow twinkle lights on anything & everything, hot tea, diffusing orange + vanilla all day everyday, Vince Guaraldi Trio a Charlie Brown Christmas soundtrack + Christmas cocktail jazz (thank you, Spotify) on repeat, beanies + dry shampoo, putting on an extra layer and taking that soggy forest hike, doubling up on cozy and sitting by the fire. ✨ What about you—fav ways to beat the winter blues?

One little word. Have you ever done that? Picked a word to focus on for the new year, to set an intention instead of making a resolution? I do love this idea, and knew we had to have the queen of one little word herself, @aliedwards on this week's #feelgoodeffectpodcast to talk about storytelling, listening to your life (agh, love that soooooooo much), and how to pick a word for 2019. This conversation is so rich, I hope you'll take a listen (find it via the link in profile or using any podcast app you like). Okay, now dying to hear: what's your word for 2019? ✨ // photo: @hey.candace

Does it ever seem like there's just one way to be healthy? Like there's some perfect little health box we should by trying to squeeze into? I know I used to fell that way, at any rate. But now I know, honestly, the truth: there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to healthy. So no matter what the latest trend, or craze, or box, know this: there's more than one way to healthy. #gentleisthenewperfect

Oh hi, hello 3-ingredient homemade hot cocoa. So glad you're back for the season. Basically just all about that 3 ingredient magic. Want to give it a try? You'll need: 2 cups plain, unsweetened almond milk (or any type of milk you prefer), ¼ cup pure maple syrup, and 4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder. Then just: whisk all the ingredients in a medium saucepan over low heat until warm. You'll end up with 4 small servings or 2 large servings. Then call it good, or kick it up a notch: swap ½ cup coconut milk (from a can) for ½ cup of the almond milk—it'll be super creamy that way. Add 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract or ½ teaspoon pure peppermint extract. Mix, stir, and stay cozy. ✨

Almost exactly one year ago I finished my 200 hour yoga teaching certification. And since then I've gone onto teach, to practice, and to continue learning. It's been such a lovely gift, both in the ways I thought, and also in ways I couldn't have imagined. The thing is, I almost didn't go through with it. I nearly talked myself out of it, repeating all those "not enoughs" in my head over and over until the whole thing seemed like a terrible idea. Not young enough. Not fit enough. Not bendy enough. Not yoga enough (whatever that means). Luckily I said enough, not enough, and went through with it anyway. If I could go back and talk to that version of myself, though, I’d tell her this: go ahead and release some of that not enough. Loosen the grip, let it go, see what happens. So here’s my little weekend wish for you: see what happens if you release one little not enough. Just one. Release, let it go. It’s good on the other side. I promise. #gentleisthenewperfect

The Best Golden Glow Red Lentil Soup! ✨ I first made this lovely little soup last year for a potluck last holiday season. It's dairy-free, gluten-free, meat-free, nut-free, basically all.the.things-free, so I thought it would be a good option for the group gathering. To tell the truth—I'm not gonna lie—it was not the first thing people went for. I mean, we're competing with cookies here, people. But after a few tastes it ended up being the first thing to go, with the pot scraped completely clean. With plenty of requests for the recipe I promised it would makes its way to the site at some point. So now here we are, holiday season in full swing, with the super simple, totally nourishing recipe at the ready. Make it in the Instant Pot, Crockpot, or stovetop—I've gottcha covered anyway you go. Grab the recipe on realfoodwholelife.com (link in bio) and share it with some people you love!

I’m not very good at resting. Well, wait, scratch that. I’m in the process of learning how to rest. What I’m really good at, what I have a lot of practice with, is pushing through. My life motto for many years: just.push.through. For years, so it went. Practice the pushing, practice the ignoring, practiced the busy. Then, of course, all the pushing and the ignoring and the busy caught up with me. Took me down. Humbled this mama again, and again. And then again. But then, little by little, bit by bit, I started to learn how to lean out. To lean out from the push. To lean into the gentle. Practicing small, tiny little acts of kindness. To rest when I need to rest. To take the pause. To take the breath. When I forget, which is often, a reminder to show myself the same kindness I show my daughter. Her little soul deserve that. Mine does, too. And so we practice. ✨✨ What do you think—a little less push, a little more gentle? #gentleoverperfect

Woke up with a little tickle in my throat, feeling a bit rundown + in need of a rest day. I’ve got tea and bone broth on repeat, plus zero plans other than a date with this cozy, comfy couch. Thinking a family movie binge may be in order for this afternoon. What should watch?

Meanwhile, andrew handled breakfast like a pro this morning, whipping up a batch of One-Bowl Gingerbread Pancakes straight from the blog. These are the perfect way to kick off December in sweet, simple style. Grab the gf df recipe on realfoodwholelife.com under breakfast—click the link in profile to get there. ✨

I follow this woman on Instagram. Mainly because she’s an incredible business owner, and I enjoy watching as she builds her empire. The thing is, she’s also insanely gorgeous and generally impeccably dressed. The other day I was scrolling and caught a photo of her posed in an impossibly gorgeous outfit, hair perfectly done, makeup just so, super-cute high heels—the whole package. And for just a moment, I caught myself in wave of jealousy, comparing me (hello yoga pants, top knot, belly stretch marks, running shoes) to her: perfectly polished little square on the internet. But then I remembered one very important, key thing. I don’t like wearing high heels. Blow drying my hair is very low on my priority list. My stretch marks exist from growing a human. Jeans and a sweater? These are my uniform for a reason. The truth is, part of that woman’s job is to show up and model clothes, which, I might add, she does really well. But it’s not my job. So it’s not about bashing that woman, her choices, or her priorities. Like I said, she’s building an empire. Instead it’s more about knowing what works for me; which most often includes dry shampoo + a beanie, jeans + nothing that requires dry cleaning, making a truce with the stretch marks, and shoes that allow me to walk wherever I need to go. Because what works for her is great, but what works for me, well, that’s a place to come home to. #gentleoverperfect #yourenotdoingitwrong

Crockpot Mini Turkey Meatball Vegetable Soup! I'll be honest with you guys, I breathed a giant sigh of relief this Monday. I so love the holidays, my family, all that comes along with big celebrations + the entire holiday season. But I also love routine. So when Monday rolled around, I was pretty pumped to send my girl off to school, pour a cup of tea, grab a ridiculously large glass of water, and get back to real food. Because it's not about punishing myself for what I ate over the weekend, or diving into deprivation mode to atone, but really truly about choosing wellness + real food because it makes me feel so dang good. Finding nourishment in particular from this brand new recipe. It's packed with protein & veggie goodness and is basically just a lovely little one-pot meal you'll want to make again and again. Grab the recipe and get back into your grove right now on realfoodwholelife.com just follow the link in profile. ps Instant Pot and stove top adaptations because you know I love ya!

Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted, counts. It's so easy to get wrapped up in the counting, right? The number on the scale, the number of instagram followers, the number of miles, the number of words. And all that counting is fine and good, except when it makes us miss the good part. The part when you show up, even when it's hard. The part when you get back up after the fall. The part when you take a deep breath. The part where you are here, and present, and connected. The part where you close your eyes, and release the grip, and trust yourself. The good part, the part that can't be counted. #gentleoverperfect ~
What's your favorite part that can't be counted?

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