What a crazy, amazing, rewarding past week this has been! From chairing Packer Collegiate Institute’s annual Fall Fundraiser, The Pumpkin Patch, I switched gears into another fundraiser for a cause very close to home. This past Wednesday, 10/29/14, BIll and I hosted a Shaklee Fundraiser to help women and their families affected by breast cancer. We also ran an online event in conjunction with the live event. All proceeds will go to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
This cause is important to me because breast cancer has always been present in my family and a part of our lives. Both of my grandmothers had breast cancer, my aunt had breast cancer, and in 2001 my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. Thankfully all of them had caught it early and beat it. Last year, one of my best friends-having previously battled cancer-was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer. She had a difficult, unbelievably courageous battle , but thankfully she too is a survivor. Sadly, this isn’t the end of the list. A friend diagnosed at 31 years old and a childhood friend are also breast cancer survivors. The list goes on. This disease does not discriminate. I am deeply tied to this cause because of the people in my life , my fear of being the 1 in 8, and a hope that my daughter can live in a world without the fear of breast cancer. My husband is deeply tied to this cause because he has a wife, a daughter, a mother. 3 sisters, and nieces. We want to do whatever we can, in whatever way we can. Shaklee is a company that is committed to building health and improving our environment. The Shaklee Difference is that the products are Always Safe, Always Green, and Always Work. With over 100,000 quality tests performed annually, you can be sure that Shaklee products are free from cancer causing Toxins and chemicals. Click here to learn more about this amazing company. We decided it was the perfect vehicle for our fundraiser.
So, we had our vehicle-now we had to pick our charity. After a lot of research, we decided on the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
Why the Breast Cancer Research Foundation? Because of the following reasons:
-They are Committed to achieving prevention and a cure for breast cancer by advancing the world’s most promising research.
-They Provide critical funding for Breast Cancer Research worldwide to fuel advances in tumor biology, genetics, prevention, metastasis, and survivorship
-BCRF is recognized as one of the most financially efficient non profits in the country. They are the only breast cancer organization with an A+ rating from Charity Watch and a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator.
-91 cents out of every $1.00 goes directly toward research & awareness programs (with $.88 to research). That is the highest percentage we found from any of the well known breast cancer organizations.
We turned our home “Pink” for our “Think Pink with Shaklee” Fundraiser!
Some of the green, natural health and wellness products featured:
Anyone who placed an order at the event, or through our online event, was entered into a raffle to win a L’Equip Juicer and a limited edition hand carved wooden breast cancer ribbon pendant from Burned in Brooklyn.
And of course there’s always food and wine! I forgot to snap some pics of the full spread, but I’m a huge believer for a gathering like this in make a couple of things and buy/assemble the rest. Here are a couple of fast, easy, and healthy recipes using fresh ingredients to keep in your entertaining repertoire:
1 whole wheat quiche or pie shell
1 1/2 Tablespoons Extra virgin Olive oil or Sunflower oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups fresh spinach, chopped
1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
8 cage free eggs
1/2 cup skim milk
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a medium size bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, sea salt, and pepper. Set aside.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add onions and saute until soft, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and cook another minute. Add spinach and cook until it wilts. Transfer veggies to the quiche shell. Add tomatoes. Pour egg mixture into the pie shell.
Bake for approximately 25 minutes until cooked through and golden brown
I love eggplant This is a delicious dip/spread that can be made in advance. Just refrigerate and reheat before serving. Great at room temperature also. I served with sprouted toasted baguette slices and multi grain pita chips.
1 large eggplant, peeled and chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped ( I used an orange pepper because that is what I had)
salt – pepper – hot red pepper flakes (to taste)
approx 3-4 tbsp tomato paste
3 slices finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes
2 Tablespoons capers, drained
Put about 1/2 inch olive oil in pan and heat medium high heat
add onion cook couple of minutes then add garlic cook about 2 mins
add pepper, again cook about 2-3 mins then add chopped eggplant continue to cook until starts to shrink
add chopped tomato, salt, pepper, hot pepper, and tomato paste.
reduce heat, cover and cook about 45 mins. Stir and smash down every so often.
Re-spice as needed. After 45 mins remove top and continue to cook about 15 mins.
Stir in capers.
So delicious you won’t believe they are good for you! The kids will never know lol
- 1 cup plain, vanilla, or chocolate Shaklee Protein (I use chocolate most of the time)
- 1 cup oats, + more oats as needed
- 1 cup raw almonds, chopped
- 1/3 cup flax meal (optional)
- 2 Tbsp. Chia seeds
- 1 cup almond butter (look for a brand with no more than two ingredients-almonds and sea sat). You can use Peanut Butter if you prefer!
- 2/3 cup raw honey
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Sunflower seeds
- Pumpkin seeds
- Dark Chocolate chips
- Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside.
- Heat honey on a stove till it comes to a rolling boil. (only takes about 1 minute). Remove from heat immediately.
- Add in almond butter and vanilla immediately to the hot honey in the pan. Stir until almond butter melts and is well combined and smooth.
- Add honey/Peanut Butter mixture to the bowl of dry ingredients. Combine. I have found that it works best to just get in the old fashioned way and mix it with your hands. Almost kneed all the ingredients together until they stick! If mixture seems too wet add in more oats and continue to combine until mixture forms a ball. If it is too dry, add a bit more Almond butter or Honey.
- Press down into ungreased 9 x 13 in. glass dish. Cool in the refrigerator. Cut into squares.
It was an amazing night of sharing ways to build health, green our homes, and help the environment for a great cause!