First and foremost, I want to start off wishing each of you a happy holiday season and a fabulous new year!  Speaking of “happy,” I hope that my first song selection will brighten your day just as it does mine and become one of your favorite songs to ring in 2014.  Well…let’s get to it, shall we?

My first and MOST adored selection is the vivacious, catchy and joy-in-a-bottle tune titled Happy by Pharrell Williams.  The organ, drums and vocals all sound like sunshine.  I can’t take full credit for this awesome song discovery but this throwback tune is the theme soundtrack to start my day off  right!  Its infectious 70’s sound gives me genuine happiness.

Next on the ear-gasmic train of sound is the electro-soul stylings of Teresa Jenee’s Tahitian Vanilla.  This little gem features vibrant R&B vocal arrangements over synth keyboards alongside a melodic rap.  It sends a wave of nostalgia through your core sounding familiar and yet brand new all at the same time.   With this new year upon us, as the song says, it’s time to “celebrate this moment of our lives…”

As of late, I’ve had the worst time trying to come up with topics or even video footage to upload to my YouTube channel.  It wasn’t until I took a look at some previous footage that I got the idea to showcase my version of making my favorite crisp and crunchy mixed green salad.  I realize it’s not an earth-shattering recipe but it does show what I’ve been eating so take a look for yourself.

To make this article even more helpful, I’ve taken the extra steps to provide the benefits of some of the fruits and veggies listed in this salad. (See ingredients below)

Ingredients: *Select as many organic veggies as possible to really taste what nature offers.

  • Curly Mustard Greens
  • Dino Kale
  • Curly Kale
  • Collard Green
  • Spinach
  • Red, Green, Yellow Bell Peppers
  • Red Onion
  • Roma Tomatoes
  • Cucumbers
  • Lemon or lemon juice
  • Orange Bell Pepper (optional)
  • Carrots (optional)
  • Chile Pepper (optional)
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Salad Dressing 

The benefits of the above-mentioned ingredients are really the true reason I love this salad.   Many of you may not be aware that collard and mustard greens are not a standard in salads today but I think they add a healthy and hearty taste to the mix.

Speaking of collard greens, they are rich in vitamin C, beta carotene and also contain indoles, one of the phytonutrients thought to protect the body against breast and ovarian cancer.

Spinach is also a cancer-fighting food that has four times the beta carotene than broccoli.  It’s rich in fiber and helps to reduce the risk of heart disease and strokes.  So eating spinach coupled with collard greens will help increase the absorption of vitamin C, especially since spinach contains vitamins C, B6, calcium, potassium, folate, thiamine and zinc.

As for kale, there are so many listed benefits that I cannot present them all in one article.  However, I can state that it is high in vitamins K and A.  Kale is now identified as providing complete support for the body’s detoxification system.

The delicious added bonus of mustard greens to a salad is a wide range of phytonutrients benefits like reducing oxidative stress on cells in the body. This is useful as an added cancer-fighting property.  Furthermore, it’s high in vitamin E.

Whether raw or cooked, onions are antibacterial and antiviral, which helps to relieve bronchial congestion, hay fever and asthma.  Additionally, it fights off colds and combats the formation of clogged arteries.

Lastly,  the great benefit of fruits like tomatoes, bell peppers and cucumber sare interesting to say the least. Tomatoes come in a variety of shapes, sizes and colors. They are best eaten when fully ripened and provide a good source of magnesium, calcium, phosphorus, beta carotene and vitamins C & E.  On the other hand,  bell peppers contain some B complex vitamins and iron along with other significant amounts of vitamin C.  Cucumbers are a different fruit but offer all your favorite payoffs.   They keep the body hydrated, are great for skin, contain B & C vitamins and help to regulate blood pressure.

So enjoy your mixed green salad!