About me
One of my favorite places in my home is the kitchen.  My earliest memories are hanging out in the kitchen with my Mom and Tia (aunt in Spanish). My Mom and Tia would show me how to stand at a chair at the counter to help. I would be in awe as I watched Tia sharpen her knife to butcher a whole chicken in record speed. I always made sure to stay on her good side! Their kitchen knowledge came from my grandma who first showed me how to make arroz con pollo (rice and chicken) and finely dice the peppers, garlic and onions for the suffrito.
As a child of a single mother who worked, my brother and I would sometimes need to get dinners ready. I think one of the first meals I made by myself was tuna noodle casserole. I remember being so proud of myself and feeling such a senses of pleasure watching my family enjoy the meal I had prepared. That is a pleasure I still thoroughly enjoy today. As a teen I moved in with my bachelor dad who still to this day can barely boil a pot of water. I then had to cook out of necessity but still enjoyed the pleasure of it. It was here in high school I had a foreign exchange student stay with us from Norway who opened my eyes up to cooking and eating more whole foods. She was absolutely appalled at all the boxed food products found in the typical American home. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches absolutely blew her mind. Then in college I had a roommate from Germany and she also showed me the yummy simplicity of eating whole foods. For her, it was S'mores that blew her mind. Instead of S'mores, she says they would roast Apples with dried fruit and cinnamon over the camp fire. 

I have always struggled with my weight as well as tummy issues from childhood into adulthood. In college both issues got pretty sever. Doctors weren't sure what was wrong and dismissed it with IBS or stress. I tried different diets such as Atkins and even gave up eating beef, which till this day I still don't eat beef. Spring 2014 my tummy issues came to a head and I was at my highest weight. On the morning of my son's fifth birthday party I had a horrible gallstone attack and had to cancel his birthday party and spend the day in the ER. This was my first experience with the Canadian medical system and I was very impressed I must say. I had gallbladder surgery a few month after that but my tummy issues came back with a fierce vengeance! The doctor said my intestines were severely inflamed and placed me on medicine which I had to take 3 times a day for an uncertain amount of time. I was certainly not satisfied with this outcome so I researched on my own anti inflammatory diets and found that gluten and dairy can lead to inflammation. I went gluten and dairy free and never looked back!

Today, Whole body health is super important to me. Eating what feels right to my body, a naturally gluten free, dairy free, whole food diet. Of course there are some occasional splurges. Exercising regularly not because I have to but because I LOVE to! I have always enjoyed various sports through the years and now I have found a whole new appreciation for them in fitness. From swimming, soccer and playing at the park with my kids to trail running or skiing the beautiful North Shore mountains of BC. Lastly, I have grown to realized that my mind and spirituality are vital in maintaining a happy healthy me! Now that my kids are a bit older I am finally carving out more time for me and my spiritual growth as a Christian. Boy have I realized this makes for a happier wife, mother and just a better healthier me!
I look forward to continuing on this healthful journey with you!
Jessica

Meet My Sweet Balentine's

Adam

Hubby - Visual Effects Artist by day Photographer, part time blogger and website administrator by night. 

Tyler

Big one - Aspiring photographer and night time and weekend sous chef.

Chase

Little one - day time sous chef and food taster.