Episode 54: The Art of Authenticity

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Episode 54: The Art of Authenticity
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The Art of Authenticity: When was the last time that you felt like you were truly yourself? How did it make you feel? What did you do? Did you continue in that walk, or did you go back to the incongruent you? Click to listen to our latest episode, ” The Art of Authenticity” to see where you fit in.

God bless!

Podcast Breakdown

  • Our Productions:
  • Authenticity with Friends
  • Authenticity at Work
  • Authenticity at Church
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The Path to Healing

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Each one of us have a different path to healing. No two paths are alike. However, our commonality lies in the fact that we are all human, we all struggle, and we all have childhood wounds of some sort that need to be worked out in order for us to heal and grow. Healing is a lifelong journey. Just when you think that you have completed this journey, it can be one random thought or song, or one major trauma or death that causes you to revisit certain areas, and then go in at a deeper level. The poem “The Path to Healing” reflects thoughts on my healing journey. God bless!

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Photo by Fernanda Publio

The Path to Healing

Abandoned?

Not by His love.

Wounded by earthly doves.

Journeying through all the pain.

Dancing in sun and rain.

Forgiving for damage unknown.

Believing the good will be owned.

Entangled by triggers unfounded.

Triangled-The Trinity keeps me grounded.

Holiday Stuffing

vegan stuffing, healthy living, healthy eating, holiday stuffing, katina horton, food photography, purple kale, red kale, organic, simple functional grace-filled living

Background on Holiday Stuffing: It’s that time of year again. Time for cooking and baking to the max. Time for comfort food, movies, books, and cuddling up with a throw on the couch. And even with all the grief and sadness that this week has held for me, God’s daily blessings of grace and mercy have come out on top.

vegan stuffing, healthy living, healthy eating, holiday stuffing, katina horton, food photography, purple kale, red kale, organic, simple functional grace-filled living

I was blessed to have four Thanksgiving celebrations this year: one with friends, one at work, and two with family. The number of celebrations was a surprise, as well as the fact that my son made it home to visit. This served as a constant reminder of the goodness of God.

Except for the Thanksgiving celebration at work, fore each celebration, I decided to make Holiday stuffing and cookies as my contribution to the meal. The concoction that I had in my head and put into action didn’t disappointment. Sometimes my mind starts going, and after cooking and tasting the end result, I am left with thinking, “Oh, this didn’t turn out the way that I thought.” However, that wasn’t the case this time.

What I realized is that the spicy kick of the seasonings helped to make this stuffing a hit. I hope that you’re feeling adventurous enough to try it for yourself.

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Here is the recipe for Holiday Stuffing:

Ingredients

  • 2 bags of Whole Foods 365 Multigrain vegan stuffing
  • small bag of petite rainbow or orange carrots or 1 large bunch of orange or rainbow carrots
  • 1 bunch of celery
  • large onion
  • 2 bunches of purple or red kale
  • a container of broth
  • 4 tablespoons of each of the following: onion powder, cumin powder, curry powder, turmeric, thyme, sage, parsley, and chili powder
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Directions for Holiday Stuffing

  • Prepare the vegan stuffing in a large saucepan as directed on the package.
  • Saute the onions, kale, celery, and carrots in a separate large saucepan, adding 2 tablespoons of the above seasonings into the pan.
  • When both are done, add 2 tablespoons of all of the above seasonings into the stuffing, and then dump the vegetable mix into the vegan stuffing mix.
  • Mix the ingredients with a wooden spoon, adding 2 cups of broth and stir.
  • Place the Holiday stuffing into a casserole pan or two, and then into the oven.
  • Bake at 425 degrees for 30 minutes.
  • Enjoy!

Almond Cookies

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Background on Almond Cookies-Lately, I have realized that baking and cooking does the same thing for me that writing does. First, It helps to open up those creative and healing juices. Secondly, it helps me to see the unending possibilities of connecting certain things together.

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When you are writing, one thought can connect to five other thoughts, and then, in turn, inspire you to a Holy Spirit-infused bible story and revelation. When you are cooking and baking, one ingredient can get the wheels turning to the possibilities for other ingredients. And with me, this starts the whole beginning of my concoction madness.

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Within the last week, I have baked over 120 cookies. It was therapeutic, as I was using my hands, measuring, adding a dash of this and that. And then at the same time, praying that everything came out fine.

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I finally tried out my “head idea” of making almond cookies. Of course, as you know me, I added oatmeal of course. However, these Almond cookies turned out so “almondy”, and of course, that isn’t a word, that you don’t even notice the oatmeal. The slivered almonds added a nice, extra crunch to the cookie.

A week ago, I made the recipe again. However, I substituted the slivered almonds for pecans just to try out something different. I promise you, they didn’t disappoint.

Here’s the recipe:

Yields about 24 cookies

Ingredients:

  • Almond flour -1 1/4 cup
  • Oatmeal – 1 1/4 cup (Rolled Oats give a chunkier look and feel!)
  • Brown sugar – 1/2 cup
  • Almond Extract- 1/2 teaspoon
  • Slivered Almonds- 1/3 cup (Can also substitute with pecans!)
  • Almond Oil- 2 tablespoons
  • Almond milk- 3/4 cup
  • Flaxseed Meal – 2 Tablespoons

Directions

  • Mix all of the above ingredients into a large bowl using a whisk
  • Use a small cookie scoop to make the balls, making sure that you press the side of the bowl with the cookie scoop to get any excess liquid off
  • Place scoops on parchment paper-lined cookie sheets
  • Bake at 330 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes depending on your oven.
  • Enjoy!

Episode 53: Do you trust me?

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Episode 53: Do you trust me?
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Trusting God: How many of us have thought in our minds, or asked someone the question: “Do you trust me?” Have you ever stopped to think of God asking us this question? Tune in to Episode 53 and find out what happens when we trust God while we wait.

Outline for “Do you trust me?”

  • Introduction
  • Our MO when we trust God
  • My Trust Test
trust, hands, control, outcome, faith, waiting, emotional health, mental health, physical health, sovereignty
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Meditation Verses

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
    and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
    and he will make straight your paths.

Proverbs 3;5-6

Last Podcast Episode: “Living in the Moment”

Lentil Asparagus Tacos

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Lentil Asparagus Tacos Background Story

Last week, we had our first surprise snow. Of course, no one was prepared for it. There were several jokes going around on social media due to the fact that the snow, along with the temperatures that trailed soon after were replicating that of what would be going on in the month of January. Surprisingly, even with all the snow and cold temps, I still had about ten kids to come to the door for candy.

Last week, I made another concoction. It turned out good, and the best part about this particular one is that it left you feeling energized and overall in good spirits after eating it. I hope that you enjoy it as well. Have a blessed weekend in the Lord!

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Photo by Katina Horton

Total Cooking and Prepping Time:

1 hour

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag of French lentils
  • 1 1/2 cups of brown rice
  • 1/2 cup of red quinoa
  • 2 bunches of asparagus
  • 2 cans of fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 4 tablespoons of nutritional yeast
  • 1 pack of tortillas
  • 1/2 cup of olive oil
  • 1/2 bag of frozen cut-leaf spinach
  • Optional: 1 bag of cheese (vegan or non-vegan)
  • chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, onion powder, curry, turmeric, parsley, (5 tablespoons of each)
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Photo by Katina Horton

Directions for Lentil Asparagus Tacos:

  • Boil one bag of French lentils.
  • While the lentils are boiling, boil the brown rice and quinoa.
  • Also, while the lentils are boiling, saute the diced tomatoes, asparagus, and spinach in a skillet with olive oil.
  • Add 1/3 cup of olive to the boiling lentils.
  • Once all the ingredients are fully cooked, dump all of them into a separate large-sized pot, adding the nutritional yeast, and all of the seasonings.
  • Heat up your tortilla and add the mixture to the inside.
  • Optional: top it with cheese.
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Photo by Katina Horton

Oatmeal Raisin Pecan Cookies

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Last week, I had a sweet tooth for cookies. And so, on Friday I purchased some pecans, and got to making this desire a reality on Sunday after church. I was surprised that they came out pretty good since it was my first time trying out the oatmeal raisin cookie combination.

I will definitely have to make these cookies again. If you are feeling adventurous enough to try them out, send me an email and a picture letting me know what you think. Have a blessed week!

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Photo by Katina Horton

Total Prepping and Cooking Time

35 minutes

Ingredients

  • oatmeal- 1 1/2 cups
  • raisins- 1/2 cup
  • almond milk – 1 cup
  • chopped or whole pecans – 1/2 cup
  • sugar – 1/2 cup
  • almond flour – 1 1/2 cups
  • flaxseed meal – 3 tablespoons

Directions

  • Mix all of the above ingredients in a large bowl using a whisk or wooden spoon.
  • Using a cookie scoop, grab one scoop at a time, making sure that you press against the side of the bowl to rid of any excess liquid.
  • Place the scoops on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Bake on 350 degrees for 25 minutes.
  • Enjoy!

Episode 52: Living in the Moment

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Episode 52: Living in the Moment
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Living in the Moment Introduction

We all have a never-ending list of things to do. We are so maxed out that we are piling up three and four things at a time, but not fully present to any one thing. How can this change? Take a listen to today’s podcast episode.

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Photo by Sarah Pflug

Show Notes

Podcast Outline

  • My Encounter
  • What Jesus Says

Challenge Questions:

What are some of the steps that you can take in order to be more present?

What are some of the patterns of behavior that you have observed that prevents you from living in the moment?

I Can’t Sleep!

sleep deprivation, trauma, PTSD, insomnia, waking up, living with and healing from trauma, brokenness, emotional health, mental health, psychology, katina horton, blogger, lifestyle

Sleep is one of those things that we can’t live without. At one time or another, we’ve all had problems sleeping. But what happens when lack of sleep starts to get the best of you? Read the poem below to find out.

I Can’t Sleep

I can’t sleep! I can’t sleep!

Do I pray or do I weep?

sleep deprivation, trauma, PTSD, insomnia, waking up, living with and healing from trauma, brokenness, emotional health, mental health, psychology, katina horton, blogger, lifestyle
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Let the music play in your head.

Rest in Jesus while in your bed.

This lack of sleep, all part of trauma.

Give him your fears and all your drama.

I can’t sleep! I can’t sleep!

“I know my child.

My grace runs deep.”

The Sleep Aspect: Living With and Healing From Trauma

sleep deprivation, trauma, PTSD, insomnia, waking up, living with and healing from trauma, brokenness, emotional health, mental health, psychology, katina horton, blogger, lifestyle

Introduction to The Sleep Aspect

We all love a good night’s sleep. When I picture falling asleep, I think about having just the right amount of flat sheets, a soft comforter, a few pillows surrounding me, just the right temperature in the house, and having sweet dreams. Just thinking about this scene would make all of us stop and long for sleep.

sleep deprivation, trauma, PTSD, insomnia, waking up, living with and healing from trauma, brokenness, emotional health, mental health, psychology, katina horton, blogger, lifestyle
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Sleep can be one of the sweetest things in the world, and then on the other side of that coin, it can be that of agony for a person living with PTSD/trauma on a daily basis. There is also no rhyme or reason as to when sleep deprivation will occur.

sleep deprivation, trauma, PTSD, insomnia, waking up, living with and healing from trauma, brokenness, emotional health, mental health, psychology, katina horton, blogger, lifestyle
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Breakdown of My Sleep Aspect of Trauma

Five years ago, unbeknownst to me, I entered an extremely toxic work environment. At the time, I had already been dealing with sleep issues as a side effect of the trauma of my divorce, as well as the events immediately preceding and following the divorce. I would describe the events as a crazy Lifetime movie. Unfortunately, this movie was my life. Although I was already having problems staying and falling asleep, nothing could compare to the level of sleep problems that occurred as a by-product of working at this company for nine months.

People living with PTSD/trauma often face two issues when it comes to sleep: falling asleep and staying asleep. I had and have both. During the time that I worked at this company, I would try to fall asleep around 10 pm. From 10:00 pm to 3:00 a.m, I would fall asleep for a few minutes, wake up with my teeth and whole body tense and clenched tight, and the cycle would start all over again.

Breakdown Part Two

I am going to keep it real here. The first couple of times that this happens, you find yourself trying to stay positive and you start telling yourself not to overly think about. “Don’t be concerned about the time.” However, when you have done this 5 or more times within five hours, and realize that you have only had a total of maybe one hour of sleep, and you have to get up pretty soon for work, the positivity can wear off real fast. I had to wake up at 6:00 a.m. to get ready for work, which if we all do the math, we know that this isn’t enough time for restful adequate sleep.

The toxic job, along with this vicious cycle of sleep caused major life-threatening thyroid problems, along with an overactive adrenal gland.

God granted me grace by allowing me to be let go from this toxic environment. It gave me time to heal and try to breathe again.

Sleep Aspect: What’s Going On Now

I still have issues with my sleep patterns due to trauma. They are not as frequent as they were, but they are still a problem. Last week took me clearly by surprise.

I had been suffering with sinus and allergy issues since August, and last week these issues came to a head. And guess what came with it? Sleep deprivation from trauma. I had two nights with four nights of sleep.

Then, I had one night with five nights of sleep. Just as I thought I was turning the corner, the following night was an all-nighter with only one hour of sleep at best. I nodded off for ten minutes at a time, woke up, and then stayed up for hours, with my body attempting sleep several more times.

I have to get up at 4:00 for work, and so, when this time came, and I was still awake, I reluctantly resigned to calling in and staying home. What I had to do was to give myself grace and compassion. I had to tell myself that I needed a time-out to rest, get in as many liquids as I could to help my sinus issues, and just relax. Finally, I fell asleep at 5:00 a.m. and slept until close to nine.

I would have liked to sleep until one o’clock. However, that didn’t happen. What did happen is that I literally laid down for part of the day, and sat up part of the day and allowed myself to rest physically, emotionally, and spiritually in Jesus. Sometimes we just have to admit that we are having a bad day, week, month, year, and simply REST!!!

Sleep Aspect Conclusion

Sleep deprivation from trauma is real. I won’t downplay it. However, God is also real, and he can meet us right where we are. When we have these hiccups in our schedule, the devil wants to make us think we are right back where we are. WE ARE NOT!!

Unfortunately sleep issues are a part of living with and healing from trauma on a daily basis, but it doesn’t define us. God does! And guess what? When I couldn’t sleep during the night, I had praise music playing in my head as if I had turned on a radio. Even though my feelings were telling me different, God was telling me that he was with me.

God bless and have a wonderful rest of your week!!!

What are some of the things that you do to help yourself when you are dealing with the sleep aspect of trauma?