Saturday, July 19, 2014

Vegetable Soup-Vegan/Vegetarian/Paleo

Here is a soup recipe I made up for Mom and thought I'd share it with you all! I didn't put amounts down-They vary, depending on what you like. It's soup... Have fun with it! :-)

Kelsianne's Vegetable Soup (Vegan/Vegetarian/Paleo)

Vegetable juice pulp (Soup flavor will vary depending on what's in the pulp)
Organic Mixed Vegetables
Tomato Sauce
Canned Kidney Beans
Canned Pinto Beans
Canned Mushrooms
Mixed Vegetables
Bragg's Liquid Aminos
Salt (Opt.)
Olive oil/coconut oil (About 1T)

Put the pulp on the stove on Med. heat in some water. (Maybe about 2-3 cups of water to one cup pulp?-I just eye it) Bring it to a boil, then stir it, and turn the heat down to Med-Low and let it simmer for 1-2 hours. After finished cooking, strain the pulp from the juice. (Make sure to squeeze all the juice you can get out of it!) Put the juice (Soup base) back on the stove on Med heat.  Saute onions in oil till edges are golden brown.  Add them to the soup base. Then add the next five ingredients.  Add Bragg's, Salt, and Garlic to taste. Simmer for a few minutes or until thoroughly heated and kale is cooked. If you are able to have dairy, a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese on top really hits the spot. Enjoy!

Monday, July 7, 2014


       As some of you know, my two brothers and I are with my Mom at a Euro Clinic in AZ as we try to beat this cancer that threatens to take over her body. The hand of God is evidenced by what I've watched around me; the body of Christ pulling together to encourage, pray, and give a helping hand in a time of need. Praise God.

      A few nights back, I had some thoughts that were coming to my mind in regards to a recent visit to a another clinic in the area, in hopes of getting some relief for Mom's arm, which is currently swollen with lymphodema. 

     It occurred to me how much hope is able lift one's disposition and on the other hand, how discouragement and hopelessness can bring our spirits critically low. 

      Back in NM, when Mom was first diagnosed with stage four breast cancer, we were offered very little hope. The best they could give us with contemporary medicine was "buying time" and "quality of life".  They stamped down a time-frame which, with treatment, could buy her a little time with her family. While even one day more with her was a blessing, this news was not favorable or encouraging. However, this was our reality. In our hands and through man's work, this was the most that could be done...... But God.

      When we did the research, we found a few places Mom could go where they were ready to try more than "buy time", but instead, bring her back to health. Were there any guarantees? No, of course not. But we had that spark of hope that kept us trying more, rather than throw in the towel. The interesting thing is, this in itself improves one's "Quality of Life", which seemed to be a buzz-word back at the hospital.

    So now we've been taking her to a clinic in Arizona and things are going pretty well, thus far. However, Mom's arm has been pretty swollen with  lymphodema, so we took her into another clinic and met with a woman who was going to do some massage, wrapping, etc to hopefully bring it down.

    We sat down with her and began our first meeting, the "evaluation", to determine where Mom was and what could be done to help her. It didn't go too well. The lady we met with was nice; very cordial and explained the situation and how the meeting would work... But it was pathetic. She saw Mom, heard she didn't have any lymph nodes removed or "real treatment" done, and shook her head in pity. Alternative medicine, in general, was not something she put stock in. She told us she was pretty sure she couldn't do much to help Mom's swollen arm but she would wrap it and see if that changed anything.

    Nearing the end of the meeting, I was trying to explain Euro clinic's methods for treatment to kill the cancer. She began to shake her head then looked me straight in the eye.

 "You do realize they're not ever going to get rid of the cancer... They're buying you time but that's it... You know that, right?"

    Yes, I "knew". I knew the clinic has been working towards more than "buying her time". I was very aware of the "Worst Case Scenario", if you will. I knew what this cancer may and should be doing to her. However, I also knew the God we serve is bigger than all that.

    As the meeting went on, the "lymphodema lady", (as we later called her) began to bring Euro clinic further into question. "So, how do they test progress?" Mom couldn't remember. The lady lowered her eyes and gave a knowing shake of her head. "See?" Her gaze fell on these poor, naive folks in front of her who were blindly following a pipe dream.

   At this point, the discouragement of Mom's condition and the lack of hope for progress was wearing on me, but I looked at "lymphodema lady" and manged a few words.

    "Back at the hospital, they gave us no hope with traditional medicine. The best it could do was give us a bit of time, and even then, they didn't expect her to last very long." I stopped as I swallowed the lump in my throat. "Just the fact that she is alive, and breathing, and functioning, to me, is progress."

    As I later thought about that meeting, I realized how much it reminded me of our experience back in NM. Mom was having tests done at the hospital, and the gravity of the situation was just starting to weigh on us. Every day we went, every new test that was done... was a struggle. The more we found out, the worse it got, and it was dismal. But praise God for the hope He grants us through the power of His name and the opportunities he puts before us that gives us the strength we need to go on.

    I don't know what the outcome of this story will be. However, no-matter what comes our way, I know without a shadow of a doubt that we do not walk this path alone. I don't know know what will happen... But my God does and it's in His hands to which our spirit's and our lives are committed.

  I pray that we, as the Psalmist, may declare with righteous fervor: "And now, Lord, what wait I for? My hope is in Thee." Praise Him.