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Nourish, an interview with Amber Hunter

Dictionary.com defines “nourish” as 1. sustain with food or nutrient: supply with what is necessary for life, health and growth. 2. To cherish, foster, keep alive, ect… 3. To strengthen, build up, promote.

Nourish is also a meal planning service owned and operated by Amber Hunter of Santa Rosa Beach, Florida.

Amber’s journey to the kitchens of the Emerald Coast started in central Mississippi with her Grandmother Vera. Grandma Vera had no interest in TV or play, but she was very interested in teaching her beloved granddaughter life skills and cooking was on top of that list. “Cooking IS a life skill, and one that seems to be falling by the wayside in these days of busyness.” States Amber. She recalls garden fresh vegetables and shelling peas for hours with her grandmother. Amber spent most of her childhood in Vera’s kitchen while her mother worked long hours as a nurse. Amber was seven years old when Vera told her that the best thing she could do to help her mother, was to prepare a good meal for her to have when she got home after such hard work. Amber was sent home with an assignment to make her mom a fresh pan of cornbread. Young Amber mistakenly used flour instead of cornmeal and baked her mother a huge buttermilk biscuit!

Amber realized that not only could she cook, but mistakes in the kitchen were not always bad! Amber laughs and said, “We sliced it like a pie and added butter. It was delicious!”

Amber went on to follow her mother into nursing. While it appealed to the nurturing part of her soul, she often went home with work undone, worried about patients and then had to face her own young family and figure out what to feed them after a long day.

Amber says, ” my interest in nursing and functional medicine trained me to understand the connection between food and illness. I wanted to feed my family healthy and good meals. But as a working mom you often have to choose between time for that or your kids.”

Every working mom has experienced the food battle between the frozen chicken and the pizza delivery boy! From my personal experience, unless you are an Iron Chef in full command of Kitchen Stadium the frozen chicken does not stand a chance and the pizza boy wins this fight!

Amber started planning out her family’s menu and spent 2 hours “prepping” each Sunday evening. She would also get up at five am and cook a hot and healthy breakfast for her husband and sons. This was Amber’s quiet time and she said she felt Grandmother’s presence and Vera spoke into her heart the word, “nourish”. What if Amber could not only nourish her own family but others struggling as well?

Nourish Meal Planning Service was born.

Amber now consults with clients, plans menu’s to order, does the shopping, preps the food in your kitchen, stores everything you need in labeled containers. You end up with a spotless kitchen, no need for grocery runs or emergency take out and meals ready to go for the week.  As a nurse, Amber is skilled in tweaking recipes for cardiac, diabetic, gluten-free, and other special needs diets such as specific food allergies.

Q&A with Amber:

Alana: Amber, what is your favorite dish?

Amber: Oh I go through phases! I just got done with a Thai phase and now I am into Italian dishes. I am not afraid to try anything new. If I get a client request for something I have never done I will try it and if need be figure out how to adjust it for any restrictions.

Alana: Can you share a favorite recipe with us?

Amber: This is an easy working mom’s dish– Baked Chicken Fajita’s

Take 1 pound chicken, 1 red, 1 green bell pepper, 1 red onion, 1 1/2 teaspoon cumin, salt and pepper to taste and a dash of chili powder– cut it all up, toss with olive oil and bake at 400 for 35 minutes. You can serve this in warm tortilla’s or for a gluten-free option use lettuce wraps.

Alana: Wow! I am going to have to try that one! Could you prepare in the morning and just toss it in the oven when you get home?

Amber: Sure, or you could even crock pot on low.

Alana: What is your favorite, must have, go to kitchen gadget or gizmo?

Amber: My Instant Pot!  I can’t live without it!

Alana: What is that?

Amber: It’s a combination crock pot and pressure cooker or steamer. What I love about it is that you can cook large items quickly and you do not sacrifice the integrity of the food. Especially meats.

 

Alana: Amber how does someone contact you to schedule services?

Amber: You can contact me on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/nourishmealplanning/

Or on my website http://nourishmealplanning.com/  If it’s easier for you to call, the phone number and business hours are listed there.

Alana: Amber one last question, what is the most important thing you feel you are giving your clients? Time saved, money saved or health?

Amber: None of that, although it is important. The relationships I have established with my clients nourishes us both, that is the most important thing of all. That is what I love.

 

 

I would like to credit Jackie Ward Images for the beautiful photo of Amber. Thank you Jackie!

This post also contains an affiliate link to Amazon to feature Amber’s favorite kitchen gadget, The Instant Pot.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Living Before the Face of God

Jane walked out of the grocery store in a frazzle. It seemed everyone in town had decided to join her in grocery shopping after work on a hot Friday afternoon. It had been hours since the clock struck 5pm at her office and she wrapped it up, but even after 14 extra hours this past week, Jane still had piles on her desk. Thinking of it caused anxiety and Jane’s heart started racing. Maybe she should sneak back into the office tomorrow and catch those files up before Monday morning? Jane sighed, her house was a mess, laundry was piled to the ceiling and everyone had been living on take out all week. How could she spend more time at the office?

Jane loaded her grocery bags into the car and saw movement out of the corner of her eye. It was the homeless man who hung out around the grocery store. He always reminded Jane of “Pigpen” the character from Charlie Brown who traveled along inside his dust cloud. She sighed again, pulled a couple of wrinkled dollars out of her purse and smiled at him. “Sir?”

He stopped, smiled back and accepted the bills. Then to Jane’s surprise he bowed low before her and said, “The Lord bless thee and keep thee: The Lord make His face to shine upon thee, and be gracious to thee: The Lord lift up His countenance upon thee and give thee peace.”

Jane was speechless, and the homeless man bowed to her again and said, “I thank thee for the generous gift!” and in a whirl of dirt and dust, he was gone.

His words kept repeating themselves in Jane’s mind all the way home. “The Lord make His face to shine upon thee.” What did that mean? Why would God shine his face on her?

Jane got her grocery’s home to a chorus of “FOOD! Mom, what are you fixing us?” as rambunctious teens unloaded her bounty then retreated to the TV. Jane smiled, “I bet they would not say a word if I ordered another pizza and fell in front of the TV.” But she started chopping vegetables. With the homeless man’s blessing still on her mind, Jane clicked her audio bible app as she prepared the food. Psalms 139 filled the kitchen.

“Where can I go from your spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence? If I ascend into Heaven, You are there; if I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there Your Hand shall lead me, and Your right hand shall guide me.”

Jane stopped and closed her eyes, feeling God’s peace flood her heart. The Lord’s face was indeed shining upon her, as she chopped vegetables, grocery shopped, showed kindness to a homeless man, worked overtime hours, faced a mountain of laundry… No matter what she did or where she went, Jane was living out her life before the face of God. Jane said a quick prayer, thanking God for the dirty angel who reminded her of His presence.

 

“Weather eating, drinking, laughing or working, all we do, is done before the Face of God.”      Kelly M. Kapic

Coram Deo

Love Talks by Jed Jurchenko

This a three in one book set containing “conversation starters” and instructions for use, along with very practical and realistic relationship advice. I did not expect to enjoy this as much as I did, and I only wish I had a resource like this one prior to my first marriage!

Jed is a licensed MFT with over 20 years experience and has obtained his master’s degree in counseling and psychology, he also has his MD from Southern California Seminary.

This book reminded me that marriage is work! However, if you put the work into what matters, your partner: the rewards are priceless. Before you get upset with the idea of “work” after the “dearly beloved bliss” stage, think about a new puppy. So cute, loveable, but without care and training it never gets housebroken and chews up your shoes. You work through the training stage and your reward is a faithful and beloved companion. What about your houseplants? If you don’t water and care for them, they die.

This book provides you with the training and fertilizer for your marriage! Communication is the fertilizer that feeds your marriage. And healthy, creative communication does not have to cost money. Just your time and a little effort.

Invest that time and effort into your marriage! This book will pay you back in dividends of priceless memories that last a lifetime.

Jed goes beyond “questions” and conversation starters. Even though they are so good I wanted to pull out my journal and ask the questions of myself! Jed gives us tips for “creative connections” in life’s seasons and habits of miserable and happy couples to help point us in the right direction with our marriages.

I have been a stay at home mom with young children and very little  money. I have also been at a fancy five-star restaurant celebrating an anniversary with my husband. After we discussed whether or not the kids were painting the kitchen with peanut butter while the baby sitter snored we had nothing to say to each other. We had taken different paths without maintaining our connection to each other. It was a miserable meal.

Jed provides easy and free date idea’s so you don’t pass through life’s stages and end up with a stranger.

The last book in the set is 131 Necessary Conversations Before Marriage. Just the other day my 15-year-old daughter proudly showed me her “wedding board” on Pinterest. It is beautiful, filled with rings, dresses, flowers…very girly and worthy of a princess, without a prince. I am thrilled she has not “pinned” a prince to her board, but when she does we will be sitting down with this book. I want her to understand that her choice of a man is going to be far more important than off the shoulder or sweetheart neckline, her prince better be more important than the castle. She is going to need to pour herself into that relationship with all the passion she put into arranging this board. This book will help us as a mother and daughter have those important conversations when the time comes, and help her as a young woman to ensure she has the proper conversations prior to marriage. I want to see her prince become her King and their Kingdom last forever!

I encourage you to get a copy of this book, you can click my affiliate link here to go straight to Amazon– check out Jed’s other books and credentials, read a sample and the reviews. I gave Love Talks FIVE stars and I know you will too!  Click and enjoy and leave Jed a review, I did!

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