Well, it’s here. 2012 has officially arrived, and with it, much anticipation for all that will be happening this year. Our family is gearing up for lots of changes in the coming months, the biggest being the birth of our son, which will be happening anytime in the next several weeks.
For awhile I was feeling comfortable and content still being pregnant, happy to let this little guy come whenever he’s ready, but now I’m starting to get antsy. The car seat is installed, newborn diapers have been procured, and Eowyn is as ready as she’ll ever be to be removed from her only child throne…I’d say he’s welcome to join us anytime he wants.
But since it could still be a month before “Baby Brother” makes his grand entrance, I suppose it’s wise for life to continue as normal for the time being. I should be savoring all the sleep I’m getting now, right? (By the way, please don’t ever tell a pregnant woman to enjoy her sleep while she can before the baby comes to snatch it away. Such comments are just mean, I tell you.)
Turning our focus toward healthier choices in the new year is nothing new and for many people is likely brought on by the contemplation of resolutions and desired change. At the moment, I’m feeling the urge to eat more cleanly and wholesomely, but for me, this yearning isn’t coming out of the pursuit of an ideology or goal. My body is simply craving it. Over the holidays, I indulged in my share of candies, cinnamon rolls and the like, and it’s time to reel things in, get back on track, and resume filling my body with things that make it feel energetic rather than slothful.
What easier way to do this than with smoothies? I love these because they are quick, easy, and pack a huge nutritional punch. The combinations are endless, and if you like to have them for breakfast as I do, it feels good knowing you are getting 3-4 servings of fruits and veggies right off the bat.
This concoction is simple yet satisfying. Bananas form a thick and creamy base, while seasonal Clementines add a bright tartness and loads of vitamin C, fiber, and collagen (yay beautiful skin!). The flavor of the spinach falls into the background and is hardly noticeable, yet all its antioxidant benefits are gained. It’s no secret that spinach has a lot going for it from a nutritional standpoint, but it’s exceptionally high in vitamins A and K, which aid in vision and blood and bone health.
- 1 1/2 cups fresh spinach, loosely packed
- 2 medium bananas, sliced and frozen
- 3 Clementine oranges, peeled
- 1/2 cup milk
- Place all of the ingredients in a blender in the order listed. Blend until smooth, adding additional milk if needed.
Tips and Tidbits
- If you are hankering for this smoothie but don’t have bananas that are already frozen, just throw them in at room temperature and add a large handful of ice to the mix. (When I am in a season of lots of smoothie making, I like to keep a stock of sliced bananas in the freezer. That way, I’m prepared whenever the craving strikes!)
- Clementines, a type of mandarin orange, are abounding in the grocery stores right now, and I love their perfect sweetness in this smoothie. The Satsuma variety would make an excellent substitute, but you could also use navel oranges or whatever type you happen to have available to you.
- I’ve found smoothies blend up easiest when I place the greens at the bottom, followed by the softer fruits and finally the more firm or frozen components (the liquid can be added at any point really since it is going to go straight to the bottom anyway). Adding the ingredients in this sequence allows the blender to get started on the softer items first and ensures the frozen items won’t start to freeze around the blades.