Introducing Hippie Mom, Jennifer Burwell! Jennifer lives in Gilbert, AZ and is a mother to an adorable 10 month old son… Find out what she dreams of becoming and accomplishing!
She really puts herself out there and I’m honored she is this week’s Hippie Mom! Oh, and don’t miss her yummy chicken pesto recipe too!
Q) What do you love about your city? A) I love how family centric the community is. Everywhere you go there are families and places for children to learn and play. I also love our farmers market and local farms. It is great to wake up on Saturday morning and visit the small farmers and shop owners to pick up our produce and grocery items for the week.
Q) What is a tip you think every Hippie mom needs to know? A) Follow your own instinct and trust it. You know what is best for you and your family. Find what works and use it.
Q) What is your go-to recipe or current favorite recipe? A) My current obsession is homemade chicken pesto spinach pasta. (See bottom of post for recipe!)
Q) What is your favorite or most used holistic or natural remedy? A) I use essential oils for a lot of things. Lavender for everything, including diffusing before bedtime for my little guy. I also love peppermint on my temples for warding off headaches.
Q) What is one thing you can’t live without? A) Coconut oil. Seems to be a quite popular answer! I use it to cook with all the time. I make lotion for my sons’ eczema using coconut oil and I use it as a moisturizer… It’s a big part of my daily routine.
Q) What is your favorite healthy food? A) We are focused on eating a wide variety of vegetables as a family right now but I really love Brussel Sprouts right now. Simple and delicious!
Q) What do you incorporate into your daily life for optimal health? A) I make sure I drink enough water each day. Being dehydrated can lead to so many things. I also try to meditate for at least 5 minutes a day each morning to get ready for the day ahead.
Q) What was the best advice you received from another Hippie Mom/Woman? A) You don’t have to be perfect. Be gentle on yourself. Do the best you can and incorporate one new practice a week to avoid being overwhelmed.
Q) What healthy habit or healthful food have you always wanted to try or incorporate into your life but haven’t? Why? A) Oil pulling. I don’t know why I haven’t tried it…I just need to sit down and take a few minutes to read up on it and do it!
Q) What is your least favorite house chore and why? A) Laundry! It is never ending and is so redundant! I hate the whole process, the switching from washer to dryer and then the folding and putting away! Ugh…I feel stressed just thinking about it!
Q) What do you do for yourself on a daily or weekly basis? A) That is a good one…and an area I need to work on. I am trying to bring back reading one hour each night before bedtime. I have gotten away from it and am trying to do it as much as I can again. It helps me wind down from the day and relax.
Q) What is the biggest challenge eating healthy? A) I have a sweet tooth! My middle school and high school years were filled with pop tarts and Dr. Pepper and other really bad stuff…bad habits die really hard. Thankfully I don’t indulge in those things anymore but I do have a weakness for ice cream. I have found an amazing coconut ice-cream that does the trick so I don’t feel quite as bad. Now that I have a son, that also helps motivate me to stay on the healthy train. If I think “I would never let Jack eat this!”, then I know I need to put it down and walk away. I definitely have my lapses though.
Q) What is one healthy goal you want to incorporate or accomplish in your life over the next several months? A) I really need to get back to exercising regularly. I haven’t been focused on it since my son was born. He’s almost 10 months now so I can’t really lean on the “I have a newborn” excuse any longer. I am really hoping to run a half marathon at the end of this year.
Q) What is something you can share with us that is funny, embarrassing, or vulnerable? A) Hmmm….I have so many embarrassing stories. Here is one of my not so fine mommy moments. Becoming a first time working mother has been so much fun but also so unbelievably overwhelming. One morning, after a sleepless night, I was having a particularly tough morning. I decided that a trip to Starbucks was in order. I nursed Jack and then put him in his car seat. Off we went! I ordered my black tea and as I pulled to the window, the normally warm and friendly barista looked puzzled and confused as he took my credit card for payment. As he handed me my drink with very few words I looked down and realized in my sleepy stupor I hadn’t put my breast back in my shirt after I was done nursing Jack!!! I was so embarrassed I didn’t know what to say so I just drove away.
Q) What hobbies or passions do you have? A) Besides spending time with my husband and son, I have recently begun to research and learn about becoming a birth doula. I think the entire birthing process is so incredible and such an empowering and beautiful experience. I would love to help support women and their families in such a beautiful time. I hope to become a certified doula by the end of this year.
Q) If you could talk to future self (10 years from now), what would you ask yourself? A) I would ask myself if I am finally getting a full nights’ rest yet!?!?
Q) Was there a time or experience that changed the way you lived and guided you on a more healthy and holistic path? A) The birth of my son. In my adulthood I have always been pretty health conscious. During my pregnancy with my son I was extra careful and very nervous. I had a miscarriage just a few months before; we lost our two sweet angels. That day will forever be burned in my brain. Just minutes after finding out we were having not one but two babies we also found out that they no longer had heartbeats. Needless to say we were devastated. So when we found out we were pregnant again I was scared and very nervous.
I began to research and realize that the traditional OB path just wasn’t for me. There were too many interventions, unnecessary tests and screenings in my opinion. I switched to a midwife and registered for Bradley Method classes. I decided the natural route was best for our family. I realized maybe even for the first time that doctors may not always know what is best for you and it is so important for you to be your own health advocate. I was the crazy lady rejecting some of the prescribed tests and refusing to drink the gestational diabetes drink because it was colored with artificial dye. (I had to go to a compounding pharmacy to get a type of water and sugar solution to do the test).
Ever since then I have been really careful and do a lot of research on my own to make sure when I do give consent it is truly informed. The birth of my son has also challenged me to take even more steps towards a holistic lifestyle to do what I can do to maintain my family’s health.
Meet Jen Burwell!
Do you have any words of inspiration for Jennifer! She is so incredible to have shared her journey with HMAC! Give her some Hippie love!
Jen’s Yummy Chicken Pesto Recipe:
- Spinach pasta noodles (Farmers Markets and Sprouts)
- Pesto- 2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed (can sub half the basil leaves with baby spinach)
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Romano or Parmesan-Reggiano cheese (about 2 ounces)
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup pine nuts (can sub chopped walnuts)
- 3 garlic cloves, minced (about 3 teaspoons)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- About one pound of cooked shredded chicken
- Special equipment needed: A food processor
Place the basil leaves and pine nuts into the bowl of a food processor and pulse a several times. Add the garlic and Parmesan or Romano cheese and pulse several times more. Scrape down the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula.
While the food processor is running, slowly add the olive oil in a steady small stream. Adding the olive oil slowly, while the processor is running, will help it emulsify and help keep the olive oil from separating. Occasionally stop to scrape down the sides of the food processor. Stir in some salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
Mix half of the pesto into a bowl of shredded cooked chicken to coat the chicken. Then stir into the cooked pasta. Great served cold or hot.