Cherry Pecan Grain Salad

dsc_0441As I type this, our youngest wanders out, eyes half open, her curly hair pressed sleepily against her head. It’s early…and too dark outside for kids to be awake. We Moms don’t feel like we get much time alone sometimes, do we? Dreams of visiting a Pumpkin Patch this weekend fill my head. Our favorite opens Saturday. Ideas about finishing this cup of coffee alone seem to drift away…the day begins.

Today I’ll go do Step Class. I’ll step wrong and twirl left when the more experienced steppers turn right, but I’ll show up, I’ll sweat and that’s what counts.

dsc_0893At a MOPS Leadership meeting yesterday, we watched a video together, “Making Decisions and Managing Conflict” by Jared Mackey. As he spoke, I took notes:

  • Have an identity that’s secure in who you are.
  • Know who you are and what you value.
  • Believe that everyone is doing the best they can (thanks Brene Brown for that!)
  • Always be the healthiest version of YOURSELF.
  • The best thing you can do is take care of you….then you’ll be able to contribute well to the team (or motherhood, marriage, your job etc.)

He was talking specifically about being part of a team, but when he spoke, I heard so much more. Mothering! Being a wife! A gal with a business or a job! And what he’s saying is TAKE CARE OF YOU. then you’ll be able to live your life well.       dsc_0169While talking with a friend during our hike this last weekend, we decided that September is the new January. Routines are falling back into place as the first chill fills the air. As summer comes to a close, we have the opportunity to get back to what matters to us.

To celebrate the beginning of fall, I’m sharing some inspiration for a simple, healthy weekday meal: Lunch-In-A-Jar, inspired by Whole Foods Market #WFMMakeAndTakeMeal 

They recently sent a box full of organic goodies for me to try and our entire family has been impressed. Did you know Italian Barley is amazingly delicious AND high in fiber? And come on….dried cherries and pecans over sweet potato. If you saw yesterday’s post, you might remember how much I loved eating that on Mount Baker.

As beautiful as it is delicious. this layered salad features bright flavors from pecans, spinach and dried cherries. Use your favorite dressing on it or whip up a quick vinaigrette.

Cherry Pecan Grain Salad
Serves 2
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  1. 2 cups cooked pearl barley
  2. 1/4 cup prepared salad dressing or lemon juice
  3. 2 cups packed greens (spinach, arugula etc.)
  4. 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  5. 1/4 dried sour cherries
  6. 1/4 cup roughly chopped toasted pecans
  7. 2 tablespoons blue cheese crumbles
  1. In a small bowl, toss barley with dressing. Layer barley and remaining ingredients in two wide-mouth jars. Top with tight-fitting lids and refrigerate until ready to serve and up to 3 days.
Northwest Healthy Mama

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About Angela Strand

Angela is a wife, mama to three little ones and a lifelong Washington State resident. Besides facilitating the NW Healthy Mama website, she loves being involved in her kids' school, hiking with her girlfriends, growing all the things, writing, reading and taking photos.

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