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Three Unexpected Lessons I Learned from an Ex Heroin Addict
heroin-addict-1

The other day I found myself in an extraordinary conversation. I was sitting alone, minding my own business when a man I know approached me. For the sake of this article, I will refer to him as Steve. Steve almost invaded my space, like he has on many occasions. I was sitting, relaxing and watching the world happen all around me, in fact, I was enjoying the solitude that I had found within the busy of where I was.

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The Best Guacamole Recipe

Hey friends, after some fun banter on Instagram about food with crushsocial and boldbrandfast and avocadoshirtco I decided I would repost this recipe. This recipe comes from my brother, Robert, who is an incredible cook.

He makes this for every family gathering and it’s a dish that everyone loves and always wants more of. It is always gobbled up quickly and everyone knows it’s a ‘first in, best dressed’ situation when it hits the table. This recipe serves four, however based on experience, both my brother  and I would suggest you double or even triple the batch when entertaining. Trust us, it’s so good, there won’t be any left. Read More


Without Vision…

without-vision

I’ve heard it quoted and, sadly, I’ve witnessed it happen. Where there is no vision, people perish. I’m not talking about physical eyesight here, rather that internal drive that propels us forward. Some call it vision, others intuition, motivation, a sixth sense or just a knowing that comes from within. The dictionary refers to this kind of vision as:

An experience in which a personage, thing or event appears vividly or credibly to the mind, although not actually present, often under the influence of a divine or other agency or a vivid, imaginative conception or anticipation.

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The Story of You – Discovering Your Identity

Have you ever wondered who you are? Have you ever found yourself pondering your purpose and where you fit in? Maybe you have you watched others walk with direction and confidence whilst you question what part you have to play? Have you considered how good it would be if life were like a play or a movie? Everyone cast in their ideal role, confidently delivering faultless lines and perfectly portraying every aspect of their character. Confusion eliminated. Do you wonder if people around you actually know what they are doing, or are they just making their way in the world as best they can?

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Off the Beaten Track – A Guide to Raising Boys

I have three amazing children – two girls, whom I write about often, and a beautiful teenage boy. All of them are an enormous blessing to our family and I am endlessly grateful to have them. My girls – Sophia (16) and Ella (9) – make the world a better place every day. My son Gabriel (almost 14) is bright, cheerful and adds spark to our family.

For me, raising a boy has been interesting. Being a girl, I get girls.

I understand the complexities we can bring to the table. The emotional highs and lows that we experience. The pain of not having the right shoes to go with your outfit or the wrong bra. Perhaps the girl drama in the classroom,  on the sports field, online or anywhere else. As a woman, I understand these challenges, whether they are small and seemingly insignificant or downright life-changing. I am a girl and I understand girls.

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Recharge, Refuel, Refocus: 5 Tips on Expanding Your Capacity

Susan-Sohn-PromoIf there is one question I get asked on a regular basis it is this, “How do you do all that you do?” My question back is always, “What is it that you see me do that you want to know about?”

This question always results in the conversation of capacity and capacity is something that never ceases to fascinate me. Why is it that some people seem to have greater capacity than others?

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When Dreams Conflict and Collide

she-1I’m 44 and I feel like my life has just begun. How is that possible? I have three children, I have been married for 20 years and I have had a fulfilling career. However, the excitement, the desire and the drive that I find within feels more like it did in my twenties. What is this and where does this come from?

Allow me to reflect. I am a dreamer and I believe that, in the seemingly impossible, the possible can be found. I know that small steps will always lead to big steps and achievements. I’m a perpetual optimist and choose to dig deep and pull out the gold within, whether it be personally or in relation to others. I’m not afraid of hard work, nor rejection, for both are part of life and understanding that at an early age promises to rid one of burdens that can tend to hold us back. I choose to let challenging things like, rejection and hard work, fuel me rather than rule me.

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Winter Stew

stew

Needing a little something to take the winter chill away and to please any palate? Allow us to introduce our winter stew. Yes, it has been a crowd pleaser for both young and old (oh and Bentley, our dog, loves the leftovers). This stew is beyond easy and it is very more(ish) so relax and let the dish speak for itself whilst allowing you to show off your culinary skills.

 

Winter Beef Stew

Ingredients:

Beef Cubed – I use Chuck or Casserole or even better go to your butcher and get the already cut pieces – tell the butcher you’re making a stew and they will sort you out! Now, depending on how many you are cooking for will determine how much you need. I usually make for 8 so I would suggest at least 2 kilos.

Beef Stock – 4 cups/1 litre

Onions – have fun with your onions. Use 1 brown (chopped) and then add either pearl or shallots whole to increase the flavour. Throw in at least 3-4.

Garlic – It’s winter so be generous. Chase the flu bugs away with this perfect bulb. Smash and chop 2-3 and then add 3 whole cloves

Potatoes – Wash and quarter. I like using white potatoes but I’m not precious. I also like my potatoes to look like potatoes so I choose not to chop them to small

Carrots – 4

Celery – 2-3 stalks (preferably with leaves)

Frozen Corn & Peas

Flour + Dry Mustard (if you have) + Worcestershire + Coconut Oil + A splash of Red Wine + Salt & Pepper to taste

Method:

Chop your brown onion & garlic and sauté in 1-2 tbsps of Coconut Oil. Add your cubed beef and brown on a high heat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. You want you meat & onions to absorb the salt, Once the beef is browned and the onions are softened add 3 tbsps of flour to coat your beef plus 1-2 tsp of dry mustard (if you have). This will turn the beef and onions rather grainy and a quite dry. You will wonder if you’ve made a mistake, don’t worry, this is exactly how we want it. Now add your beef stock (all of it). Stir and make sure you get anything that was stuck to the bottom of the pan off. You want this flavour to invade. Once you have this to a rolling boil add you potatoes and allow these ingredients some ‘getting acquainted’ time. Cover and let them simmer away for approx 20mins.

Now add your carrots (I like mine roughly chopped giving enough to dig a fork into) your additional pearl or shallots, celery and corn. You can also add your Worcestershire Sauce and a splash of red wine with a sip for yourself if it’s beyond 5pm :). Stir and make sure nothing is sticking to the base of the pan. Have a taste and if you need to add more Salt & Pepper please do so. Cover and let it simmer away making sure all your veggies are cooking and your meat is becoming more tender by the minute. In the last 10minutes of cooking I suggest you add your frozen peas. I don’t like to add these to early as they can get mushy and it’s just a preference of mine that I choose to wait on. In saying that, adding them earlier if it’s easier for you is totally fine.

If your stew has not thickened during the cooking process to your liking then by all means, add some more flour. Do this little by little as you don’t want it to thicken too much on you. Keep tasting and making sure the flavours are pleasing your palate. Always remember that each bite builds on the latter. Additionally, when cooking stove top I let my meat tell me when it’s done. This stew can be rushed and cooked in 1 hour or it can be brought along throughout the day lending itself to beautiful tender pieces that will melt in your mouth. It is a recipe that adapts well to your schedule.

Recipe Adaptations:

Use Lamb if you’d like | Add Pumpkin or other Veggies that you love | Use the slow cooker but make sure you brown your meat in a pan first as the slow cooker won’t do that for you | Use a pressure cooker | Swap the Beef for Chicken and the broth for Chicken Broth and add Mushrooms