Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

There’s something about roasted veggies that screams fall and makes me feel so cozy and content. I also think that roasting vegetables brings out such an earthy quality and really showcases their delicious flavors in my favorite way. This roasted butternut squash soup is simple and easy to make and only has 6 ingredients in it (not including the salt and pepper). Kid and husband approved, so I hope you enjoy it too!

I blended up my soup with an immersion blender right in the pot that it simmered in but if you don’t have one of those you can also blend it up in a blender that can withstand high heat. Something else to note is that the soup may be thin and runny at first, depending on how large your squash is. The longer it simmers over low heat the thicker and creamier it will become. This soup makes great leftovers because the flavors become bolder over time.

If you have dietary sensitivities or are following a protocol, this soup is vegan, gluten free, dairy free, and paleo approved…but most importantly DELICIOUS! 😉

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Category: Recipes

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 large butternut squash, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 3 cups broth of choice, beef, chicken or veggie
  • 1 can light coconut milk
  • salt + pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Line a baking tray with aluminum foil for easy clean up.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the chopped butternut squash with two tablespoons of olive oil and salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Thoroughly toss so that the squash is completely coated in the oil.
  5. Arrange squash in a single layer, on the baking tray, being careful not to overcrowd.
  6. Roast squash for 30 minutes, flipping over half way through.
  7. While the butternut squash is roasting, heat up the remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a large soup pot over medium heat.
  8. Sautee shallots and garlic over medium heat until soft and fragrant.
  9. Add the roasted butternut squash and broth to your pot and bring to a boil.
  10. Lower heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
  11. Add coconut milk to the simmering soup mixture and blend well with an immersion blender or a traditional blender.
  12. Enjoy hot off the stove.
https://www.wholehealthywell.com/2018/11/12/roasted-butternut-squash-soup/

Co-Sleeping, How We Officialy Ended Our Sleep Battle

Co-Sleeping, How We Officialy Ended Our Sleep Battle

Our girls are our whole world and we love them very much. We also really love to sleep. As you may already know, sleep plays a vital role in overall health, greatly impacting the immune system, mental health, and overall energy levels. Health is of great importance to me, hence the title Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, I carry with pride. Our children have won a very long and arduous battle of disrupting our sleep cycles for the past 8 years and we happily all wake up in the same room every morning, Bama (our large and friendly American Staffordshire Terrier) included.

I hope you’re smiling and can relate on some level, because then I will know for sure that you are my people and that we’ve all been there before, enduring sleepless nights and crazy bedtime antics. Today, a twin mattress happily lives on our bedroom floor and I want to tell you how it got there.

I would like to say, for the record, that Cole and I have always done a decent job of putting our girls to bed. Our routine consists of baths or showers, books, songs, prayers, and finally lights out and off to sleep. However, there are always those weeks after we’ve been visiting family or having family visit us when our girls somehow forget everything we’ve worked so hard to establish and decide that routines are for babies and they’re not going down without a good fight. Cole and I curse under our breath as we walk them back to their bedrooms for the 6th time and tag team re-tucking them in, again and again, until finally they’ve exhausted themselves and have no more fight left in their sassy little spirits.

The middle of the night? Welp, that’s always been a shit show. We’re so tired you guys, so so tired. When a little warm body snuggles in between us without any disturbance at all, we let it. Lyla snuck her way into our bed until she was 6 years old. Then one day, Eva, who was 3 at the time, learned about the midnight “sneak into bed with Mommy and Daddy” mission and our King-sized bed started feeling more like a crowded cot. Sadly, Lyla got the eviction notice and we explained that she could no longer sleep in our bed anymore.

You can imagine how awesome that went. And by awesome, I mean terrible. “How come Eva gets to sleep in here in the middle of the night?” “I’m the only one all alone in my room.” “Please, please, please just let me stay.” Torture I tell ya. Torture because deep down inside I felt bad about kicking Lyla out. Our motto has always been, as long as you are able to fall asleep in your own bed every night and stay there until about midnight, you are welcome to join us. Our pediatrician agreed that this was perfectly normal and also made mention of the fact that we are one of the only countries that does not co-sleep and that this was the norm in many other parts of the world.

At 6 years old, we were certain that sleeping independently was a life skill that Lyla needed to have. It seemed as though all other 6-year-olds were sleeping throughout the night in their own beds. Surely, she should be doing the same. We bought an ‘ok to wake clock’ and offered her treats and bribed her with gifts. And guess what! It worked! It worked for a short amount of time until we visited family in NY and Montana all in one summer and co-slept those summer nights away. We were back to square one, again and again, resisting all the while and continually battling Lyla and bringing her back to her bed in the middle of the night, exhausted and frustrated. Keep in mind Eva still lay in our bed like Sleeping Beauty as all of this carried on around her. We were screwed.

Finally, Lyla turned 8 years old and eventually started the third grade, and the pressure mounted on my shoulders to get this resilient child to sleep in her bed all night long. Third grade brings a challenging curriculum, a bunch of extracurricular activities, and lots of state testing. The school year began, and I made sticker charts. When that didn’t work, I told her that sleeping in her bed all night long would earn her tablet time the following day. When that didn’t work, Cole and I got so frustrated and threatened punishment. If you can’t sleep in your bed all night long you are punished from playing with friends after school. She woke up one night and cried in her room, and then I woke up the next morning and cried for my sweet girl who was now having anxiety over something that was meant to be so peaceful and restorative. Something had to give.

I asked myself, what are my real reasons for trying to force Lyla to stay in her bed all night? Is it because you think this is the social norm? Yep. Is it because you feel inadequate as a parent since your 8-year-old child isn’t perfectly sleep trained? Probably. Is it because you have such high expectations for this child that is only human too? Definitely. These reasons just didn’t seem very good. I started to rack my brain for a solution. In our quest to create healthy sleep habits for Lyla, we all began to unhealthily lose sleep and lose our minds as well.

I texted some wise reliable sources in the matter, and they quickly replied back “quit while you’re ahead, just put a mattress on your floor.” Bingo, it seemed like a simple fix. Cole and I mulled it over, well for a couple of hours anyway. I’m someone who is hell bent on finding a solution quickly when there is an issue in our household, especially one concerning the girls. Cole reluctantly agreed and hauled the twin mattress down from the attic and set it up on our bedroom floor that night. If Lyla really wanted to sleep in our room and have our company at night, she would do so on that mattress and without waking us up and disrupting our sleep.

After a few more days of trial and error, we explained the rules regarding the mattress sleepover experiment and we all began sleeping soundly again. This is what is currently working for us: The girls start the night out in their individual bedrooms and once their little sleep lights go off, after midnight, they are welcome to join us in ours. Lyla goes straight onto the mattress on the floor without waking anyone up. Once the girls earn all the stars on their sticker charts, for going to bed on time and without resistance, they will earn a slumber party in our room, popcorn and movie included. Both girls are not allowed to attend sleepovers or slumber parties with friends until they are consistently sleeping in their beds all night long. Lyla recently had to miss a slumber party and she was not a happy camper, but we want her to understand that that is a privilege for those that can sleep independently (at least that’s our spin on it).

Moral of this whole sleep battle saga is: do what works for you and your family and create your own rulebook. It’s so easy to get lost in comparison and feel inferior to those that seem to have it all figured out, but the truth is, no one really does. Someone may have their sleep routine down to a science but can’t get their kid to eat a green vegetable for the life of them. And guess what. It’s all ok! There is no judgment in any of it. Take the pressure and unnecessary stress off yourself and your children and honor what really works for you and your sweet family.

At some point in time, we can only assume that Lyla and Eva will want nothing to do with sleeping in our bedrooms or even having us read them a bedtime story. So, for now, I’m going to hang onto all the cuddly moments while I can and just embrace the turquoise, purple and pink fairy laden mattress that currently rests on our floor. We are sleeping, co-sleeping in fact, and it’s working, and that’s all that really matters.

So, tell me, what works for you and your family! Can you relate in any way? If so, I’d love for you to comment below or share this post. Thank you so much for reading! Xo, Mel

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