So I up and moved to an island just to work for the summer; it’s called Mackinac Island, and there is not a single car here besides emergency vehicles. How do we get around this place? Biking, horse drawn carriages, and our own two feet. It’s a totally different world here, and I’m pleased to call it my home for the summer.
Here is a view of the island from the mainland; it’s only 8 miles in diameter and cozy as can be.
At this point in my life, I have quite the travel bug. All I really want to do this summer is pay off school loans before heading off to teach English abroad for a few years. I also figured I could use a couple months to relax on a peaceful island and gain some clarity and direction regarding the next steps I want to take in life.
When I had to abandon the pantry I had built up over the last couple years at my apartment to move here, I was pretty bummed. I had acquired many different ingredients that helped me cook tasty and very nutritious meals, and I was torn trying to figure out the “essentials” I wanted to bring to the island. I was not trying to transport numerous heavy boxes of food over on a ferry and up a 1.5 mile hill on a horse-drawn taxi to my room. I definitely wanted to, but I was trying to be practical.
I share this because I was pleased with what I brought and also because I know this may be a situation for many others as life is so full of transitions sometimes. When eating clean remains crucial in these situations, prioritizing and planning are of increased importance. I love anything that has to do with coconut and chia seeds. So naturally, I decided to bring other ingredients that would allow me to make foods where I could incorporate these two.
In my one reusable grocery bag of food, there was:
-dates, dried cranberries and apricots, pink himalayan sea salt, vanilla extract, cinnamon, chia seeds, coconut butter, coconut oil, non-dairy milk, peanut butter, almond butter, wheat grass powder, green superfood powder, spirulina tablets, and rolled oats
Check back to read a post of what else I decided to lug over in later weeks!
On a side note-if you’re wondering why else I chose to bring some of the things I did, light lunches and dinner are included with room and board where I work so I mainly brought things for breakfast and snacks. I wasn’t too thrilled about eating food provided by work (it reminds me of living in the dorms and having to eat in the cafeteria), but buying groceries here on the island costs an arm and a leg and our “kitchen” is a small sink, refrigerator and a microwave. It’s something I’ll have to make do with for just the next couple months for the sake of experiencing something totally new and becoming debt-free!! That’s the plan anyways. But it doesn’t mean I can’t still give my body vital nutrition each and every day through foods I prepare for myself.
So feel free to follow me on this journey that may contain a hint of creativity, a dash of determination and pinch of passion 🙂
This chia porridge was my go-to breakfast I made for awhile when I first got here. I like to call it “Warrior Chia Porridge” because I feel that it is jam-packed with power-punching ingredients (protein, omega-3’s, healthy fats) to give your body sufficient energy to embrace the day. Oh, and it just happens to taste reaaally good. But the energy is such a plus because I’m always movin’ getting around this island!
Every time I made this, I did a very “little bit-a this, little bit-a that” method when making it so the measurements are rough estimates. I feel it’s a very cater-to-your-liking kind of dish, and feel free to have a blast experimenting with different flavors and dried fruits. I also would make a bigger portion by adding more of everything to make it last for two days. Hope you try it (or some version of it) and enjoy it as much as I do!
- 1 banana
- 1 tbsp. coconut oil
- 1½ tbsp. peanut butter
- 2-3 tbsp. chia seeds
- ¼ cup oats (can use gluten-free oats for a gluten-free option of this recipe)
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- ½ tsp. cinnamon
- Dash of sea salt
- ½ cup-1 cup non-dairy milk (I used almond)
- Handful of dried cranberries, dried apricots, and/or dates, chopped
- Mash the banana in the bottom of a bowl with a fork.
- Add coconut oil, and mash with banana.
- Add remaining ingredients, and mix everything well the night before so the chia seeds and oats can absorb the milk and thicken.
- Place in the refrigerator and enjoy the next morning. You may wish to add and mix in more milk before eating to make the porridge have a thinner consistency.