Beyond Spinach – 5 Greens To Perk You & Your Smoothies Up

When you think of green smoothies, you probably think of spinach first, right?

At least I did when I first started venturing into the world of making green smoothies at home.

Spinach is by far the most mild green, which makes it the no-brainer option when adding it as a smoothie ingredient (in fact, it’s the star green ingredient in the recipe I shared with you last week). The flavor of the greens are easily tempered by other ingredients after a nice whirl through the blender.

While spinach is a great starter green when you’re first dipping your toe into the world of green smoothies, over time you’ll want to start diversifying your greens to reap the benefits of many different vitamins and phytonutrients that the different varieties have to offer.

Each leafy green, like any other fruit or vegetable, has it’s own cocktail of beneficial traits and necessary vitamins, so it’s important to switch up your smoothie greens regularly. Even mamas like us need to pay attention to not overloading our bodies with too much of one good thing – and not enough of another.

BEYOND SPINACH – 5 GREENS TO PERK YOU & YOUR SMOOTHIES UP | RachaelRoehmholdt.com

Adding greens to smoothies is an excellent way to get that much-needed boost in energy most of us mamas with little ones at home are looking for, especially when we’ve hit that afternoon slump that I think you and I are all too familiar with. (Click here to read more about the benefits of green smoothies)

Some greens are a bit more “potent” than others, as you may already know. While they’re all great for you for varying reasons (we’ll get into that a bit more below), some just blend into smoothies better than their other leafy green friends.

Here are 5 greens to perk you and your smoothies up – in order of my own taste preference.

Chard

Beyond Spinach - 5 Greens To Perk You & Your Smoothies Up | RachaelRoehmholdt.com

Swiss, Rainbow, or Red – they’re all great options. With a slightly similar taste to spinach, chard offers vitamins A, C, and K, magnesium, manganese, potassium and iron.

It’s a great immune booster and helps keeps your bones, cardiovascular and respiratory systems in tip-top shape. [Read more...]

Sick of the afternoon slump? Try this to get energized and refreshed in 5 minutes flat.

I am no stranger to the afternoon slump.

For years, like clockwork around 3:00pm, I would shlep myself from the 8th floor of my office job downstairs, across the street and around the corner to the nearest Starbucks for my caffeine fix to regain even a small amount of energy to get through the rest of the day – “Tall nonfat vanilla latte please.”

Sick of the afternoon slump? | RachaelRoehmholdt.com

Then after getting my one-way ticket in-hand to making it through the last few meetings and tasks of the day, I’d wander back around the corner, across the street, and back up the elevator.

Truth be told, caffeine isn’t really a bad guy for everyone. For some people, caffeine doesn’t really affect them at all.

It was only after I cut WAY back on my caffeine intake a few years ago that I realized just how sensitive I was to it.

While I used to need a combination of wine and sleeping pills to get me to finally fall asleep at night and another jolt of coffee in the morning to wake me back up in the morning, now I fall asleep with no issues, sleep through the night and am perky in the morning (who knew that was even possible?).

Well, that’s when my little guy doesn’t keep me up for half the night – but that’s another story.

These days, I try to get my mid-day energy boost from other sources than caffeine. Because I’d rather give up my afternoon coffee than be up all night – or at least moreso than I am already.

When I find myself in that afternoon slump that is all too familiar for us at-home mamas, I now reach for a smoothie.

Sick of the afternoon slump? | RachaelRoehmholdt.com [Read more...]

The No-Bullshit Update On My First 3 Weeks Post-Partum

Let me be honest for a minute. It took me 5 hours to write this and hit “schedule and publish.” Today marks week 3 of my postpartum life. To say things have been a whirlwind is an understatement. Labor, delivery, childbirth – check! Life in the “real world” as a stay at home mom has hit me like a ton of bricks.

I’ll keep this short and sweet since my little fella is on the brink of waking up from one of his far-too-short naps. I had a post scheduled to go out today about the many different ways to save time as an at-home mama. And after looking it over – not even reading it, I decided to call bullshit on myself and scrap it.

I wrote a ton of posts in advance, knowing that this would be a crazy time in my life. That I’d have little to no time for myself and that my baby would take up every waking – and non-waking – moment of my day. To say that’s the reality is far and away an understatement.

Here’s where I’m at 3 weeks postpartum (I can share more about the labor, delivery and childbirth of it all at a later time):

“They” tell you that your baby will eat every 2-3 hours while breastfeeding. Mine likes to keep it around 1 1/2 -2 hours. Lovely.

Sleep is far more than elusive around here. My baby loves to sleep, but only when he’s on someone. And you’re not exactly supposed to sleep with a baby on or next to you. So things are tricky – and exhausting. We’re averaging around 3 to 4 hours on a good night and around 5 on great ones. That’s considering the fact that we “stay in bed” for around 12 hours too.

Baby doesn’t really love the Boba carriers yet, so getting anything done – like meals made or doing his laundry is pretty much not happening right now. I’m ever so grateful to my husband for taking a full month off work to help out during this crazy time. He goes back to work next week and I’m petrified. I’ll see you back here in a year when I can get my head above water – ha!

My body has healed up really well. With a third-degree tear, things “down there” have been far from cozy, but I’m healing up okay. My midwife told me to get in the tub a few times a day to help with my stitches, but let’s be real – that’s only happened a couple times total in 3 weeks.

My baby belly is just about 90% gone, which is a huge surprise to me. I’m about 9 pounds away from my pre-pregnancy weight and quite frankly if I never lose them, I’ll be more than satisfied. Something I never thought I’d say. I’m dying to become more independent and get active again, but I need to fully recover before that happens.

I’ve never been so impressed with what my body can do. Breastfeeding is the biggest commitment and one of the hardest things I’ve ever done in my life. This kid is an eater and from the get-go, it wasn’t easy.

Before I left the hospital, I had to see a lactation consultant four times to help my little baby boy understand how to get milk out. I was told by no less than 6 nurses that my nipples were the worst they’d ever seen based on how sore, swollen, and red they were. We’ve persisted and we’re breastfeeding great now, but again – very few breaks in between.

My life is based around the (barely when you count diaper changes) hour long sleep sessions my little fella will take. There’s not much I can get done in that time – which I expected, but I never anticipated how hard it would be to want so badly to get a meal, get a shower, or simply go to the bathroom without needing help or another person to assist in the matter.

I have finally been able to get out of the house aside from taking him to the pediatrician. I went to the store 2 days ago for the first time and put him in his wrap – he wasn’t much a fan. And I’ve walked to the mailbox to get the mail once. And had 3 walks around the block with little man in his stroller. Other than that, the scorching heat has kept us inside in the air conditioning – despite the fact that I’m dying to enjoy the summer weather.

So that’s the update! Again, no more bullshit here – this is what’s really going on. New baby = in over my head for now. I can’t wait to come back with a more chipper update for you!