In 2008, my husband and I decided to start eating “healthy.” Both of us grew up in the ’80s and ’90s–a time of Kool-Aid, freezer meals, and packaged chocolate chip cookies. Packaged food was commonplace in our homes, along with home-cooked meals. College turned both of our tastebuds toward a heavily processed diet of fast food and packaged snacks.
The craving for processed food continued during the first few years of our marriage. Our typical meal consisted of chicken breasts, rice (from a box), and a veggie (usually from a microwave package). Due to boredom from eating the same home-cooked meals, I would quickly turn to ready-made dinners to add more “variety.”
One evening in 2008 Dustin issued a challenge, “I bet you can’t shop, cook, and eat from just the produce department for a week.” I’m not one to turn down a good challenge so I responded, “Sure, I got this!”
The next week was difficult. Beyond difficult. But, we survived. Soon we started eating from the produce department regularly and within a few weeks embraced veganism. Due to our lifestyle change I began to dabble in meal planning, realizing planning our meals was the only way to successfully follow a special diet.
In 2010, the birth of my first son changed our eating habits again. Due to health issues (read his story), we introduced grass-fed meat and raw dairy into our diet, along with other nutrient-dense foods like homemade broth. I started making my own bread, yogurt, and even granola bars. My knowledge of real food deepened during this time as I learned how to plan and prepare meals.
With new changes happening in the kitchen and healthier meals being served at our table, I began to dabble in making my own household products– from cleaners to makeup.
In 2013, after having my second child, I started a blog called Live Simply. An online space to share my family’s journey of real food and natural living with a simplified approach. The blog was my passion project.
Fast forward to today, 2020, Live Simply is now my full-time job. I have a small team of amazing moms who work with me part-time and help with recipe work, social media, and photo shoot cleanups. Running an online resource like Live Simply isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but I’m incredibly thankful for where Live Simply is today and for the opportunity to interact and share this journey with so many other men, women, parents, caregivers, and families from all over the world. Live Simply is still my passion project and I’m so thankful to share this space with you.
As I’ve learned how to run a business and be Mom to my growing children who are now in school, and also find time for myself and my husband, I’ve been on a journey to simplify life over the past few years. This has meant decluttering and embracing more of a minimalist attitude (not in a own-nothing way, but more in an intentional about life and things way), and learning how to take care of myself in each season of life (with nourishing food and wellness-promoting lifestyle choices). I’ve also been learning how to simplify our real food lifestyle by embracing food prep, strategically meal planning with rotating meal plans, and creating routines in our home. All of these topics are covered here at Live Simply.
STEP 1: DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE RESOURCESMy free starter guides will empower you to take the next steps on your nourished, non-toxic journey.
At Live Simply, we believe in small and intentional actions, progress over perfection, and that joy is found in simplicity and getting back to the basics.
Maybe you’re like me, having come to real food after being raised on ultra-processed food. Or, maybe you grew up on real food and want to expand your meal planning or food prep skills. Maybe you’re in the season of ditching toxic cleaning products and learning how to simplify your cleaning routine. Maybe you’re focused on developing a nourishing skincare routine using non-toxic products. Or, maybe you’re thinking about raising healthy kids and school lunch and snacks. The free starter guides will help you take the next step.
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Real Food Resources