(This post contains affiliate links - please see what that means here). This recipe is great for when you have 6 bananas that all get too ripe at once. IMG_2279 This happens all too often for me. My twins literally will eat 2 bananas everyday at breakfast time. I'll usually to be proactive and buy two huge bunches at the beginning of the week. By the time Friday rolls around, it's banana bread time. I absolutely hate to waste food! Amazon had an amazing deal with the almond flour - I just bought a 4 pack of Bob's Red Mill Almond Flour and because it's part of "Prime Pantry" I received a discount for choosing slower shipping. Since I didn't need it right away, I will save $6 on a future Prime Pantry item  - I think this is pretty awesome and totally worth the wait. Anyway, this banana bread is super easy and a very forgiving recipe. You can literally dump it all in a bowl, mix, and bake with two toddlers hugging your legs (I know from experience). The best part about this - it actually tastes AMAZING once it's refrigerated. It has a very creamy texture that is almost like bread pudding. It also has no added sweeteners! The only sweetness comes from that of the bananas. It does have dairy, so be mindful if you have issues there. I have also substituted buttermilk many times for milk + apple cider vinegar with great success. Here's the full recipe: [amd-zlrecipe-recipe:2] I can imagine if you want to make this dairy free - I would substitute the butter for coconut oil (1:1) and use full fat coconut milk and apple cider vinegar instead of the buttermilk. Let me know if you try it!

(This post contains affiliate links - please see what that means here). Today's workout was some quick and dirty cardio. I woke up at 5 to snow falling outside and definitely needed to get warm.  Since I usually try to get in a shower and few sips of coffee before the babies wake up, the timing of this one worked out nicely. This one is very cardio focused, as it is higher reps and lower weight. I'm trying to alternate days of heavy lifting and what I like to call "panic breathing" workouts. IMG_2359 Strength:   Worked on power snatches (see video of movement here) I warmed up with a few sets of ten with just the bar. I eventually worked up to 65# and did three sets. Snatches are something I don't like to go very heavy on. Any heavier than 65# right now, I'll end up with bad form. I'm happy to stay injury free, thank you very much! Workout: Use an interval timer app to program 6, two minute high intensity rounds with 1:30 rest in between. Each round is an AMRAP of:
  1. deep squats with 45# bar on back (could sub air squats)
  2. pull-ups*
  3. OH lunge with 25# plate
  4. burpees
  5. jump rope
  6. Sumo deadlift high pull (I used 35# KB)
Push yourself, because each round is short! *I will use a band or stool to help me get more reps. I'm still working on stringing my strict pull-ups together! Cool down: 3x30 russian twists with medicine ball or weight plate This workout only took me 45 minutes, definitely do-able if you're on a time crunch.  

(This post contains affiliate links, see full disclosure here) So, I wanted to make stuffed peppers for dinner with a lower carb count than your traditional recipe. Mixing in a bunch of rice with the meat doesn't do anything for me. Not only do I try to eat grains sparingly, but seriously - if I'm going to eat rice... I'm going to eat it plain and covered with butter. I want the full experience - not a bunch of rice hidden in a dish for no reason. With that being said, I wanted to keep the texture similar and add a nutritional boost. Enter in: baby kale, chard, and spinach blend IMG_2131 I LOVE these greens, and so do my twins. They are so mild tasting, yet still full of flavor with zero bitterness. If you think you don't like kale, try this. Anyway, I had the idea to chop some of it up, sautéing it with a sweet onion and some spices, and mixing it into the meat mixture for the peppers. I like to also add the seasonings here because I think sautéing them with the onion adds more flavor. IMG_2133 IMG_2134 IMG_2136 After hollowing out the peppers, I also didn't want to throw away the tops. Instead of being wasteful, I chopped those up to also use in the filling. IMG_2137 IMG_2138 IMG_2139 To bind the filling, instead of rice, I used a little bit of Coconut Flour. Coconut flour is a great binder because it sucks up a lot of moisture and you need very little of it. This makes it one of the more economical "paleo" flours. I've also used it in meatloaves and meatballs with great success.   IMG_2141 I mixed together 1 egg with the coconut flour, ground beef, and tomato sauce (I used jarred tomato sauce since this was a quick weeknight dinner - and the twins were not happy). Add in the cooled greens + onion mixture and the diced up pepper tops. Mix well with your hands and stuff the peppers. Add remaining tomato sauce around the peppers. These take about an hour, maybe more to cook. Use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. IMG_2142 IMG_2143 There you have it! You don't need rice to make this a super satisfying and filling meal full of vegetables. *Tip for your toddlers - I had some of the meat mixture left over, so I cooked it up in a frying pan on its own. I gave this to my twins because they were getting very impatient for dinner and obviously tomato sauce is kind of a mess for one year olds. They loved it! Here's the shortened (and printable!) recipe instructions: [amd-zlrecipe-recipe:1]

(Just wanted to throw this out there, every situation is different and I am hoping to encourage, not disparage any moms. This post speaks to my experience and general information only. Please treat yourself with love and care.) I can recall a midwife appointment during my pregnancy, around 26 weeks. It began like any other visit - I was weighed, measured, and two heartbeats were heard. AeKYZRhIa032mVZJZKtmCLN2F+9w Before I knew it, it was time for my questions. Did I have any? I had an entire notebook of questions that I’d been filling out whenever any inkling of worry came over me. (In case you didn’t know – pregnancy fries your memory. Notebooks were a necessity and worry flowed from my pen constantly.) I didn’t even know if my insurance would cover the time it would take to get tackle those pages of queries. The conversation went like this: Me: “I’m having a lot of anxiety lately.” Midwife: “It’s normal to experience this before giving birth, I promise…” Me: “No, I’m not anxious about birth. I’m incredibly scared that I won’t be able to breastfeed.” Midwife: “Do you have any reason to believe that you can’t breastfeed?” Me: “No… I just don’t know I could ever make enough milk for two babies. It seems impossible.” Thankfully, I had an amazing provider who sat and addressed my concerns for as long as I needed. She was incredulous that I was so sure I wasn’t going to make enough milk. I could easily look back on my mindset then and blame it on my hormones. However, hormones were not the culprit, this time. Society, people, the internet, even well meaning family members, can cast doubt on your ability to breastfeed your twins. You need to tune them out. Do not give up before you even start! [caption id="attachment_84" align="aligncenter" width="300"]IMG_1486 - Version 2 Just minutes old![/caption] This is not a debate about formula feeding vs. breastfeeding – this is for moms who know they have made the decision to breastfeed their twins and want to be armed with as much knowledge as possible. I want you to know that it is possible. My midwife was incredulous for a reason. There really is no biological explanation for why you couldn't provide nutrition for the two babies that your body is creating. Don’t quit before you begin, and don’t make any big decisions on a bad day. By quitting before you begin, I mean saying things like “I’m going to TRY to nurse my twins.” In what other context do we use that exact phrase? Things like, “I’m going to try to get there on time,” “I’ll try to eat healthy this week.” Usually, when we say these things, we end up not following through. We are 15 minutes late for something even though we said we would “try,” or we are back to having a “cheat meal” after a few days of “trying” to eat healthier. “Trying” is the mentality of accepting that it may not happen. Breastfeeding is something that you need to commit to. Committing to it does not guarantee success, but hearing yourself say, “I am going to breastfeed until x amount of time” breaks down the mental barriers. It’s assertive, straightforward, and present a real, tangible goal for yourself. IMG_1151There will be days that even the most committed mothers want to quit. Breastfeeding two babies has a huge learning curve and is very stressful. There were even times when it was going well and I didn't think I could make it one more day. One of the best pieces of advice I was given was to wait until tomorrow. Just get through one more day. If I still felt like I wanted to quit tomorrow, then I should seriously consider it. But, if tomorrow is better, even marginally better – wouldn’t I have wished I hadn’t acted so brash before? Months down the road, you may regret stopping because you had a bad day, or even a bad week. Pick a time when you’re feeling better to make these tough decisions. Even if your choice is to stop, you’ll know that you were informed and not controlled by too much negative emotion, therefore minimizing future regrets. IMG_1515 IMG_2091 I’m currently at almost 16 months of exclusively breastfeeding my twins. I’m proud to say they’ve never had any milk besides mine. I’m not trying to brag, but it has been hard work and we should have permission to pat ourselves on the back. I’ve seen expectant twin moms on Facebook ask the same questions that I asked my midwife. I want them to know their worries are normal and so are their bodies. Listen to your bodies, your babies, and find a community that will support you and your goals. I haven’t decided on a stop date, and I still take it one day at a time. I commit and recommit to breastfeeding each and every single day that I choose to continue. When the time is right, I’ll decide our nursing relationship is over - on a good day.     Please feel free to add your thoughts in the comments! Like what you read? Check out part 2 here: You CAN Breastfeed Your Twins - Part 2