5 Things I’ve Learned from Rubbing Two Sticks Together – by Clint

I’ve been working on improving my primitive skills lately.  This is not about practicing and preparing for the zombie apocalypse but allowing myself the opportunity to step back from a fast-paced digital life and reconnect with simpler things.  My latest project I’ve been practicing is making fire by rubbing two sticks together, something I’d been wanting to learn for a while, and something a lot of people also want to learn but think is out of their reach.

Over the course of this past week, struggling to achieve this goal, I was lucky enough to learn some things about the process that could easily relate to many aspects of my life, and other people’s also.

 Here are the top 5 things I’ve learned about rubbing 2 sticks together:

1. Patience is essential

When first learning how to make fire, it’s extremely important to have patience! Since it is such a new, yet simple, skill to learn you need to take the time to prepare your body for it.   Realistically you should give yourself at least 2 weeks of practice to allow for your body to adapt to the physical changes.  I did not do this! I was stubborn, impatient and went hard into it. And, a result I suffered large blisters on my palms and bruised fingers.

No matter what skill or challenge you’re learning it’s vitally important to be patient with the whole process and not rush it. In this modern time with so much available at our finger times as soon as we decide we want them, patience is lacking for a lot of us. Activities like this that build patience are really handy to partake in.

Blister from not taking the time to adapt.  Lucky I heal quickly!

 

 2. Teamwork is great

As much as I love to be competent and skillful enough to achieve tasks by myself, it’s sometimes great to work as a team.  The first time I managed to succeed at the whole process (rubbing sticks together -> ember-> Fire!!)  I didn’t have enough stamina to achieve it by myself.  Lucky enough I had Aimee to work with.  She was there to take the slack and allow me the recovery time that I needed to keep going.

She was proud of her inclusion in the process and the outcome we reached. She may have squealed when we eventually created flames!

Teamwork is something you can easily apply to everyday life.  Remember that it’s ok to ask for help to achieve something.  Working together is often far more efficient and effective than being too stubborn and proud to ask for help. Our ancestors mostly lived in tribes and worked together to carry out all the necessary tasks required to survive.

3. Once you have an ember, you need to nurture it

Generating an ember from the dust made from the friction is the first step and it’s hard work, but the hard work is far from over at this point.  You need to gently nurture it till it catches fire on to fine materials to then become bigger and eventually into flame.  If you don’t nurture it well it will die!  Trust me, I know!

Much like a friendship, a business or yourself, you need to spend time nurturing it; if you don’t give what is needed you will achieve substandard results or no results all.

4. Frustration and joy are not far from each other

While working hard to generate the heat to make an ember it’s so easy to get frustrated and give up.  Many times I’ve felt like giving up because it’s too hard or I was too tired, only to push on and a second later develop an ember, then feeling relieved and happy I didn’t end up quitting.

Much like life, it’s sometimes easier to give up on something that seems hard or impossible, when in reality success is so close.  You just need to push a little further through the discomfort to achieve your goal.  This has been a big realisation for me, and as a result, I’m more determined to work harder and longer in achieving my goals.

5. Simple things can bring immense joy

I never imagined that something as simple as making a fire with two sticks would bring so much joy to my life.  I can’t really explain the feelings I had after successfully making fire for the first time. It was a mix of joy, success, power and pride and a whole lot of other emotions thrown in.

I’m enjoying this new project so much that I’m practicing every chance I get – outside during the day and in the garage at night time… just whenever and wherever I can!

I think often we’re striving to achieve massive feats, but I also think it’s equally important (if not more so) to celebrate and find joy in the simple things as well.  By finding joy in the simplest things you are opening your life up to a whole lot of joy. It’s not something I can properly explain in words, but you’ll know what I mean when you do this yourself.

These are only five of the things I have learned from this process but really there are actually many more things I’ve learned about myself and my world.   If you ever get the chance I highly recommend taking a step back in time and trying your hand at some primitive skills.  You’ll really be amazed at what you’ll experience and learn!

 

Clint

Health + Fitness Coach

Primal Influence

Working with kids to help them reach their full potential

I’m pretty excited to say I have my first Private Kids Coaching 1-on-1 student! Yay!

So I thought I’d take this opportunity to explain in a bit more detail what I do.

From a distance, it may simply look like two kids just playing (me being the big kid!) but the reality is there is so much more than just play happening.

The first contact I have before I start working with a child is with the parents. This initial chat helps me understand who I’ll be working with; such as the child’s personality, health challenges, general likes and dislikes as well as gathering information around why they think their child needs to train with me.  Communication with parents is an extremely important element of the children’s training so we know we are working towards the same goals and are on the same page.

We then tee up a 30min intro session where I meet the child, chat with them and introduce them to some games and natural movements. This is a chance for me to get to know them, to make a connection, and to see where they’re at physically and emotionally with movement – I can see what they’re capable of and what needs improving.

From the first moment I meet the children, I am mentally taking notes of how they interact, for example, are they shy, excited, tired, uninterested etc? This initial meeting often dictates how I am going to interact from then on. Say they’re really shy, I need to back off a bit to try and build rapport and earn some trust. If on the other hand, they’re excited and friendly, I need to match my intensity with their excitement level.Once I think I’ve established some rapport with them I start to introduce them to my games.  These games are suitable and modified to suit their current needs and ability level.  At this point again my mental notepad is working over time. I’m noticing how they’re responding to the game, if can they do it easily or with difficulty, if they’re getting bored or frustrated, and how they’re moving in general. If I detect some consistent movement struggles, I will give some suggestions on how to move a little better, than allow them to try again.  I find with children, it’s not about movement perfection, but allowing them the space to develop better skills.  One of the goals of the sessions is to get children outside playing and having fun increasing fitness and

Once I think I’ve established some rapport with them I start to introduce them to my games.  These games are suitable and modified to suit their current needs and ability level.  At this point again my mental notepad is working over time. I’m noticing how they’re responding to the game, if can they do it easily or with difficulty, if they’re getting bored or frustrated, and how they’re moving in general. If I detect some consistent movement struggles, I’ll give some suggestions on how to move a little better, then allow them to try again.  I find with children, it’s not about movement perfection, but allowing them the space to develop better skills in a less structured and specific manner.

One of the main goals with these sessions is to get children outside playing, having fun, increasing fitness and self-confidence. It’s not about gaining really specific skills and techniques.

This mental note taking continues through the whole session as I continually change, adapt and modify the games according to the child.

Once the session is finished we sit down and have a casual chat. Here I often find out what they liked most, what they didn’t like and why.  This allows me to change things around for next week’s session to help achieve maximum results and create a general program in my head for the amount of time we’ll be working together.

From the outside it may look like play, but in reality every game, every movement and every conversation is working towards the bigger picture of helping them achieve their maximum potential.

I really enjoy working with kids, and find it both challenging and rewarding working with those experiencing behavioral issues such as ADHD and Autism. I don’t specialise in these areas but I’ve seen positive results and received fantastic feedback from parents when I’ve worked with these children and it’s made me realise how beneficial what I do is for them.

I recently introduced Private Kids Coaching to my list of Health + Fitness Coaching services and am so excited to have started working with local kids. I’m looking forward to meeting and working with many more!

If you have any questions for me about what I do please contact me via email info@primalinfluence.com or via the website here and I’d be happy to chat to you.

Thanks for reading!

Clint

Health + Fitness Coach @ Primal Influence

Recipe: Sugar-Free Pumpkin Spice Choc Chip Biscuits (Paleo + nut-free)

Clint and I are going through periods of low and no-sugar eating at the moment because we need to for our health. He’s doing 30 days straight of no sugar and I’m 5 days on / 2 days off -ish.

It’s going really well for both of us; we’re each noticing improvements to our health, we’re feeling better, and we’re getting used to some of the swap foods we’ve been eating.

I went live on our Facebook page last week giving my tips for no and low sugar eating, because we’ve been through this quite a few times and can definitely give some advice on how to be successful with it. Watch the video HERE.

Yesterday I felt like baking so I had an idea of a biscuit I wanted to try.  I know pumpkin puree is a great natural sweetener and binder so I decided to try Pumpkin Spice Choc Chip Biscuits and was very pleased with the result!

They turned out nice and fluffy, quite moist and surprisingly moreish. The only negative… they’re best eaten warm. Not when they’ve completely cooled down as they then become a bit dry and definitely not as tasty. So if you wait until they’ve come out of the oven and have cooled just enough to still be warm inside, or you heat them up gently if they have cooled completely, then they are delicious! And warm biccies are so much more enjoyable in the cooler months, so it’s not a bad thing overall!

Here is the recipe for you…

 

PUMPKIN SPICE CHOC CHIP BISCUITS

(makes 8 large)

 

You’ll need:

1 egg

2.5 tbsp ghee

1 tsp pure vanilla

2 tbsp cacao nibs (as the ‘choc chips’. They don’t taste overly ‘chocolatey’ and don’t melt but give awesome crunch!)

2 tsp cinnamon powder

1 tsp nutmeg powder

1 tsp ginger powder

1 tsp apple cider vinegar

1/2 tsp each of bicarb soda and baking powder (look for gluten-free and aluminium-free)

3 tbsp organic green banana flour (buy some HERE)

1 tbsp arrowroot flour

6 tbsp pumpkin puree (Jap is usually the sweetest)

Pinch of pink salt

 

To do:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celcius
  2. Make pumpkin puree by peeling and dicing pumpkin then boiling until soft. Strain to remove water, then mash with a fork until no lumps or chunks remain. Let it cool slightly before adding to the other ingredients
  3. Whisk egg and ghee in a bowl
  4. Add remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly
  5. Use a spoon to dollop about 8 spoonfuls worth of mixture onto baking paper on a flat oven tray
  6. Place in the oven and bake for 15-20 mins or until the surface of the biscuits show golden brown colour
  7. Transfer to a cooling rack and allow to cool down just enough to handle and eat safely then serve

TIPS

  • If you’re after more sweetness and aren’t on a low/no sugar eating plan, add raw honey or Grade B maple syrup to the mixture, and/or some chopped fresh Medjool dates. Yum!
  • Add more or less of the spices depending on your personal taste
  • Instead of boiling the pumpkin pieces, roast them instead on a medium heat until cooked through but without dark brown edges. This will add more sweetness and flavour
  • For denser biscuits, leave out the bicarb soda, baking powder and apple cider vinegar. These ingredients help the mixture rise when baking and creates a fluffy texture, so without them the biccies will be flatter and more dense which some people may prefer

 

That’s it, really easy!

If you’d like ALL of my healthy green banana flour recipes grab my e-books HERE.

 

Happy cooking!

Aimee xx

Food + Cooking Coach @ Primal Influence

 

 

Recipe: Easy Chicken Coconut Curry (Paleo + dairy-free)

A great way to enjoy warming, comforting, hearty and healthy meals in the cooler months is to take advantage of energy-efficient and easy-to-use kitchen appliances like slow cookers!

 

One of my favourite dishes to make in my slow cooker is my Chicken Coconut Curry. It’s so easy to make, it’s really versatile, and it’s a great dish for those who don’t enjoy rich and spicy curries. I’ve actually given taste testers of my recipe to people who don’t normally eat curry and they’ve loved it!

 

It’s Autumn here in South East QLD right now so it’s cooling down and feeling like the right time to start making hearty soups, stews and curries. So here’s my Chicken Coconut Curry recipe for you to use and enjoy…

 

CHICKEN COCONUT CURRY

 

You’ll need:

4 organic chicken thighs or 2 breasts, chopped
1 tin Ayam coconut milk
1 large brown onion, chopped
2 carrots, cubed
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tsp ginger (or more if you like), minced
2 fresh organic tomatoes, chopped
1 tbsp organic curry powder
2 tsp turmeric powder
Himalayan salt, pepper to taste
Good cooking fat (ghee, coconut oil, olive oil, animal fat etc.)
Piece of fresh lemongrass
Up to 1 cup bone broth and/or water
Optional: Chili if you like heat, paprika, coriander leaves for flavour and garnish, other herbs and spices of choice, spinach leaves, celery

To do:

  1. Heat oil in a medium saucepan on low, add onions and allow to cook gently
  2. Add garlic and chicken and slowly increase the temp but watching onion and garlic don’t burn
  3. Add carrot to the saucepan along with the spices, lemongrass, any other herbs, salt, pepper, tomato, broth/water and coconut milk to the saucepan and reduce heat to a gentle simmer
  4. Once all ingredients are cooked through, the carrot is soft and the liquid has reduced slightly, remove the piece of lemongrass
  5. Serve by spooning the curry mixture over a flattened heap of cauliflower or white rice on a plate. Garnish with coriander leaves

Easy!

 

Enjoy 🙂

Aimee

Food + Cooking Coach – Primal Influence

Recipe: Winter Warming Porridge (Paleo + oat/nut-free)

Are you like me and miss enjoying a bowl of steaming oats and honey for brekkie in Winter time? If you’re no longer eating gluten and grains and miss oats as an easy breakfast option then you’ll love my healthy porridge recipe!

 

It’s even nut-free, a bonus for those who, like me, don’t do well on nuts, or are allergic to them.

The other bonus is it’s super quick and easy to make! It even has a similar texture to instant oats.

WINTER WARMING PORRIDGE – with blueberries

 

You’ll need:

1/4 cup organic green banana flour (buy here)
1/2 cup organic desiccated coconut + extra for garnish
Pure vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg powder (to your liking)
Ayam coconut milk for drizzling over to serve (use another milk if you prefer)
1–2 cups spring/filtered water
½ cup organic frozen blueberries
Drizzle of raw honey (optional)

Other flavour suggestions: Grade B pure maple syrup, Medjool dates pitted and diced, grated apple, any berries, slices of banana

Method:

1. In a small saucepan on very low heat add the spices aand stir to draw out flavour
2. Add remaining ingredients and stir will until warmed right through and blueberries have thawed. Add more water if needed until it reaches the consistency you like
3. Transfer to a serving bowl
4. Drizzle honey on, pour on coconut milk and garnish with a sprinkle of dried coconut

 

You can leave out the blueberries and add whatever fruit you like, add chopped nuts if you like, some cacao nibs, cocoa powder for a chocolate porridge bowl… this recipe is so versatile!

Grated apple adds freshness

Time saver tips:

Measure out a few serves worth of the dry ingredients, place in a large jar, shake well and store in the pantry to grab on mornings when you’re short on time. Spoon as much as you like into the saucepan, add the water and any other flavours (such as fresh fruit) you like, stir through then serve. This saves you time getting the dry ingredients together, yay!

To save even MORE time, use clean dried fruit and add to the jar! Such as sulphur-free dried banana, berries etc.  Freeze coconut milk into ice cube trays and keep a bag of cubes in the freezer so you always have some handy, then use one on top of your warm porridge. Easy!

Enjoy and please let me know what you think!

Want to know more about green banana flour? Watch this video!

If you’d like to grab ALL of my green banana flour recipes my e-books are available to purchase HERE!

 

Aimee x

Recipe: Carrot Spice Muffins with Lemon Icing (paleo + nut-free)

I’m so excited to be launching my TWO green banana flour recipe e-books in October that I’m giving you guys a taste test with this recipe!

Yesterday I whipped up a batch of Carrot Spice Muffins with Lemon Icing and they were so delicious. Clint enjoyed one after work and because they’re full of nutrients, they’re very filling so he could only fit one in. That’s amazing, Clint usually eats a lot!

So it’s good to know that they go a long way, which is handy when you’re spending a bit more cash on the ingredients, compared to conventional baking ingredients.

As with most of my recipes, this one is free from nuts as well as the usual inflammatory suspects like gluten, grains and dairy. But it’s not missing flavour, the most important element! I love that by using quality ingredients, just real food, and utilising herbs and spices, dishes can be full of flavour without compromising on health.

I won’t waffle on anymore, here’s the recipe for you…

carrot-spice-muffins-w-lemon-icing

CARROT SPICE MUFFINS WITH LEMON ICING

You’ll need:

Muffins:

1/2 cup green banana flour (buy some here)

1/4 cup coconut flour (buy some here)

1 tsp pure vanilla (paste, powder, bean)

1 tsp combination baking powder and bicarb soda (look for brands free from aluminium, gluten and rice)

1 tsp organic nutmeg

2 tsp organic cinnamon powder

2 tsp organic ginger powder

1 cup firmly packed grated organic carrot

2 tbsp raw honey

4 tbsp coconut oil (liquified)

2 pastured eggs

1 tsp apple cider vinegar

 

(FYI: organic herbs and spices make a huge difference when it comes to adding flavour!)

Icing:

(I recommend you purchase a stick blender for making the icing, or use a small bullet blender, but anything larger will make it difficult to achieve the desired consistency because the creamed coconut is so firm)

1 tbsp raw honey

3 tbsp creamed coconut (buy some here)

2 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice

 

To do:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 160 degrees Celsius and grease a muffin tray with a little coconut oil
  2. Sift the flours and powders into a mixing bowl to remove lumps (important for the banana flour)
  3. Add remaining muffin dry ingredients and stir
  4. In a separate bowl add the wet ingredients and whisk then pour into other bowl and stir until the mixture is well combined
  5. Spoon into the muffin tray, to the top of each section (that’s a decent serving size, but you can make them smaller or larger if you wish)
  6. Bake in the oven for 20-30 mins, depending on your oven, until edges are brown and a skewer inserted in the middle to the bottom of one muffin comes out relatively dry
  7. Turn onto a cooling rack and allow to cool down almost completely (a tad warm is fine)
  8. For the icing add the creamed coconut, honey and lemon juice to the stick blender jug and use your stick blender on high speed to mix it thoroughly. Lift the stick blender up and down constantly and stop sometimes to scrap edges and to ensure all of the mixture is combined well. When it’s free from lumps it’s ready
  9. Spread the icing on the cooled muffins, or use a piping tool to make a fancier appearance and texture
  10. Then serve and gobble down! These muffins are best served fresh and with a slight warmness. If you do refrigerate these just take them out and let them sit on the bench for 30min – 1 hour before serving so they’re not too cold and firm. Enjoy!

Optional extras: if you do want to add nuts to this for crunch then walnuts and pecans would be nice. Also some natural organic sultanas/raisins would be a tasty and sweet addition.

Remember you can add more or less spices and honey depending on your taste, this recipe is not strict!

Note: the ingredient purchase links above are affiliate links, we only affiliate with products and companies we 100% trust and believe in.

Please let me know what you think 🙂

For a stack more green banana flour recipes pre-order the world’s first e-books using this amazing ingredient HERE !!

banana-flour-ebook-savory

Cooking with Green Banana Flour

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Cooking with Green Banana Flour

 

Aimee x

 

5 Things I’m Grateful For Today:

  1. Using green banana flour to create really healthy and yummy dishes
  2. The sun shining on this gorgeous Spring day
  3. It’s the weekend tomorrow!
  4. The country music song playing right now and Spotify
  5. My little container garden doing really well right now

 

 

Fun on the farm and learning about Biodynamics

We held another Farm Tour Meetup at Eumundi Beef a couple of weeks ago, and as always, Farmer Susan gave an incredibly detailed description of how she runs her small and sustainable grass-fed Angus/Murray cattle property using Biodynamics principles, even including her background (she wasn’t born into farming, she was actually a Biochemist  before she transitioned into farm life!) and also what her goals for the future are.

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She won’t be focusing solely on producing quality beef, she’s branching into heritage chicken meat, chicken and goose eggs,  tallow soap and more! She sure is a busy lady, she’s also very knowledgeable, passionate, interesting and generous with her time.

We appreciate her allowing our Sunshine Coast Paleo Lifestyle Meetup Group members explore her property and bug her with lots of questions about her methods.

When we’d had a thorough tour of the farm which included patting a bull, spying a cute calf wandering off and staying close to mum, holding chickens, seeing geese and ducks, getting lots of fresh air and sunshine.. we sat down to enjoy a picnic and chatted about what we’d just experienced.

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So many people, including us, were really interested in the whole Biodynamics philosophy and how it really seems to be the ultimate in achieving health for the planet, the animals and us humans as consumers of meat and produce. It sounds a lot more in-depth and rewarding than even Permaculture, which we know is really popular here on the Sunshine Coast, with courses being held regularly. Biodynamics though is less talked about but more farmers are finding out about it and starting to implement the methods.

Basically, the main benefit of Biodynamically-raised plants is that the nutrients from the soil end up in the cells of the plants, rather than just in the water part of the plants, which is sadly the result of many common ‘clean’ practices such as Aquaponics and even Organic farming. When the nutrients are held in the cells of the plants the plants are far more nutrient-dense, last longer, and are utilised more efficiently and effectively by the animals and humans consuming them.

Interesting or what?!

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Farmer Susan talked a lot about the processes in which she went through to vastly improve her soil quality over the 5 years since she began farming the land, the different layers of soil, all the important and pesky types of grasses, paddock rotation, how to raise happy and healthy cattle, why she chose the cross-breed of Angus / Murray, how to identify a healthy patch of ground, beneficial bugs and bacteria and so much more.

It really was a chance to learn new things and be inspired to take positive steps in our own lives with our own gardening practices and with what produce we purchase. Looking for Biodynamically-produced food is really the healthiest.

The day wasn’t all about learning though, we did eventually sit down for a picnic, scoffed down some amazingly delicious paleo delights, had great conversations and lots of laughs.

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We enjoyed some Turkish Delight, raw vegan cakes, char grilled flavoursome chicken, nuts, and more. It sure was a feast!

Thank you so much to all our members who came along for a day out on the farm! We hope you enjoyed yourselves and learnt a lot, we certainly did!

And of course a huge thank you to Farmer Susan for hosting us and sharing so much information and time with us all, we love you!

To keep up with all our farm tour and other paleo lifestyle meetups and events, be sure to register for our newsletters here.

To find out more about Eumundi Beef head to the website.

Clint & Aimee

5 Things We’re Grateful For:

  1. Really fun and interesting farm tour  meetups
  2. Spending time with lovely people at our meetups
  3. There being so many quality food producers on the Sunshine Coast
  4. Paleo Turkish Delight (lol)
  5. Sunny days spent outdoors