Category Archives: Recipes

Fasty Friday and Favorites…

not fasty as in fasting, but more like quick..you know?  Fasty.  Or you can just say Quick Takes and 5 Favorites combo’d.  QTs is over @ CampPatton again this week because new Mama Jen FINALLY GOT TO TAKE THE BABY HOME FROM THE NICU!!!  Awesome news in this week of ickiness.  Superb, in fact.  AND……in a bid to bring joyful and useful news among the rough news week, I am ALSO joining in with Hallie and her 5 Favorite Things link up….but mine will have 7-ish.  A two-fer if you will.  It’s always fun to see what people are up to during the week and I’ve been enjoying the  5 faves and seeing what folks around the internets consider their favorite products and such.  Go check ’em ALL out!!

It’s a clean eating theme.

This week marks the end of my 2nd week of eating clean.  It’s not a hard and fast “Clean” and/or Paleo, but a bit of a combined, best-of-both worlds and guess what???  It’s totally working.  Of course, the fact that I have planned out our meals and have made sure to have adequate food for my eating purposes has certainly helped….but, I think this is something that I could totes live with.  Now, that said, I’m heading into week 3 which is where I have generally sputtered and run out of motivation in the past, so pray for me and feel free to send on some encouragement, etc, etc!  Ok, ok, here’s my 7:

  1. Adoration.  I’ve been TWICE this week.  I love  Adoration.  Peace.  Quiet. Prayers.  In light of all the tragedy this week in Boston and Texas amongst other family and friend urgent prayer needs, it was a welcome respite in which I highly recommend.
  2. Pat Gohn.  Love her podcast.  And she has a new book out, “Blessed, Beautiful and Bodacious!” which is on my night stand in the next-to-read position.  This week she interviewed Mary Wallace and they talked of working moms OUTSIDE the home and incorporating your faith life in your work life.  It was a stellar podcast and has encouraged me to begin a “Positivity Project” .  Without going into detail, I’ll just say office morale is totally in the toilet…BUT Mary and Pat encouraged me to “be the change”.  Every person can make small efforts to turn the tide even if those who should be setting the example don’t.  I started yesterday with Gandhi’s quote, “Be the change you want to see in the world”.  I’d like to see a lot less whining, griping and people just doing their job and helping others…..
  3. Pre-cooked food.  Eating Clean-eo has been much easier with cooking up some roasted veggies and hard-boiled eggs on the weekend for some ease in putting together lunches and snacks for me for the week.  However, I’ll just say that I’ve now given brussel sprouts THREE separate tries and they really are not good.  I ate them.  They weren’t horrible.  However, I won’t be eating them again.
  4. Pre-planned meals.  Meal planning for the week just helps me stay focused.  No guess-work in the morning on what to take out, no fumbling after work for what we’ll eat.  It’s just working for me.  Winning.
  5. Almond milk.  Since I’ve cut out dairy, this is my substitute for my coffee additive in the a.m. and my smoothie base after workout.  No dairy.  No gluten.  Tasty.
  6. Spin bike and burpees.  Actually, I hate them both.  However, to get my cardio in on non-workout days the spin bike fits the bill and when I break it up into 5-8 minute sessions with a set of 10 Burpees in between it goes much quicker.  Not to mention I am sweating like a sweaty person when I’m done.
  7. Choco-cado smoothie.  Before you get all EWWWW, sounds gross on me….let me just say….it is so delicious I thought I was cheating.   The fact I’ve had no sugar and/or processed stuff for twoweeks probably increased the yum factor, but seriously…..DELISH!!!!  I’m including the link on the pic credit, but here’s MY version:  8 oz Almond Milk, 1 frozen banana (go ahead and peel that BEFORE you freeze it so you don’t have to nuke it to get the peel off…ask me how I know this.)  1 giant handful of spinach.  1/4 of a avocado.  1 scoop of chocolate protein powder.  Blend and enjoy.  You are welcome.

Now go check out all the other people and their QTs and Faves…Happy Weekend!!

Pinterest: Finally a success

This picture inspired me, I mean….caramel apples=yum!  They’re just kinda messy and awkward, this looked “doable”.

This Pinterest photo removed the alcohol from the original, so I chose this one.

I have a love/hate relationship with Pinterest.  Apparently you need some kind of serious “attention-to-detail” gene and I might be missing that.  Whatevs.  Either way, I am completely inspired by Pinterest and in the next few weekend Hubby and I are going to tackle an outdoor project off Pinterest…(post to come, I’m sure), but as far as fancy food work…meh….I’m at 50/50 right now.  Prior to the apples we had the following disaster…..

Prior Pinterest debacle….

What it was “supposed” to look like…

The weather was fab last night, Hubby got the fire pit going, we had dogs on the grill, marshmallows over the fire, I figured we’d give this caramel apple deal a whirl.  Overall not bad….sadly, Pinterest only shows the pretty.  I’m here to show you the REALZIE.  Enjoy & have a great day!!

I don’t have a corer (and don’t send me one…I have an apple slicer and that’s great…for this a paring knife was fine to removed the core and then I scooped a little of the apple out of the middle to make a reservoir for the caramel sauce.

Bubble, bubble boil and trouble…THIS recipe was O. My. Goodness. Reason to wear stretchy pants #3001…

Cutie pie sous chef

That’s right. Guts of the apple. Pinterest doesn’t show you this!!

Fill ’em up. I used a muffin pan to keep them level and catch some of my spillage

Set them in the fridge for a bit and then slice with a sharp, wet knife. Voila!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pumpkin-obsessed

It’s fall.  Though we don’t get MUCH of a season change here in Central Florida, the humidity and temp do take periodic dives, sending us into a state of bliss.  This is the time of year I get to add my favorite item a little extry, extry into the recipes and food rotation.  Sadly, it appears my family does not share my excitement over pumpkin….at least not to the degree that I love it.  Boo hiss.  More than once I’ve been asked to “cool it on the pumpkin”.

Here are a few things “we” have enjoyed…(by we, I mean it’s been purchased and entered the house, however, not everyone has partaken of):

  • Pumpkin oatmeal….oh wow!  I love oatmeal for breakfast and this was a super yummy addition, not to mention healthy
  • Pumpkin muffins
  • Pumpkin pie Pop Tarts (yes, apparently Pop Tarts has “seasonal” flavors.  who knew?!
  • Pumpkin bread
  • Pumpkin ravioli
  • Pumpkin protein smoothie
  • Pumpkin marshmallows
  • Pumpkin coffee
  • Pumpkin spice coffee creamer
  • Pumpkin chocolate chip cookies (regular recipe just add a can of pumpkin and cinnamon and nutmeg to taste!)
  • and……I still have 6 cans of pumpkin in the pantry!!!  and I WILL use them. oh yes, I will.   family requests be darned!

Now tonight for dinner, along with out 3 Bean Bake, I made that family of mine pumpkin muffins and added some cream cheese filling and guess what???  No complaints.  and no leftovers. That’s right.   I’m bringing them over to the pumpkin side…..

What do you think?  Too much pumpkin or just right?  Maybe I DO have a problem….

 

Monday mourning..

Blah.  At some point perhaps I will try a boring weekend and see if that makes Monday more palatable.  Naaaaahh….

This Monday starts week 3 of the Peak313 “5-week challenge” and I’ve got to say, so far, I’m sucking.  OK, well, not a total lie…the first week was pretty good…with room for improvement on the food choices, but the second week.  Blech!

  • Sick child
  • Hubby dealing with some personal issues…which I then take on (because that’s what I do..I empathize to the point of making it MY problem) and then revert to comfort food and busy-ness wherever I can find it
  • Open house for the Elem school
  • Change in soccer practice, unexpectedly
  • Super busy at work

Nothing truly earth-shattering, however, life got in the way and I let it.  Bummer.  It derailed my exercise AND my eating and so I fully experience the saying “when you fail to plan, plan to fail”.  And fail I did.  When you fall (or fail) you have to get up, brush yourself off and get back on the path.  One day at a time.  One foot in front of the other.  And so on.

Somewhere around Friday I began to rally mentally.  Better food choices.  A little exercise.  Saturday was a busy sports day for the girls with LOTS of driving, however, better food choices and a decent mental outlook on the day as a whole.  Sunday was the RESTART:  Mass.  Walk. Grocery shop.  Pre-cook for lunches for the week:  Baked chicken breasts, brown rice, quinoa, hard-boiled eggs, cut up some veggies for the kids to snack on (and me).  I also made some treats for the fam–not exactly “clean eating” but a treat…moderation, right?  Pumpkin chocolate chip cookies–I’d give you my recipe, but it’s a little of this, little of that kind of deal but you could use this one from A Sweeter Thing.  I made the cookies for a treat for the week (we’ll see if they last that long!) and I made a peanut butter pie for dessert last night.

Moving on….we have fruit and veggies in the house…I’ve got food prepared for the week…I can’t wait to try this pumpkin oatmeal recipe for breakfast this morning… I’ll be hitting the gym @ lunch today…we have a healing mission @ church tonight. Day 2.  Week 3.  It’s ON!

This challenge is motivating and encouraging and I am also EXTREMELY motivated by Socially Fit’s blog and Twitter feed throughout the day.  Focus.  Focus.  Focus.

I’m off to start the morning rush…..How’s your week looking?

Peak 313..Week 3 Scripture verse!

Quick Takes, Mom Guilt, Exercise and MORE!

Time again for the weekly wrap up, seems that’s my most consistent day to blog…probably because it’s a quick summary and I can knock it out before the household is up and roaring along and/or I can start it up before I go to bed…Work really gets in my way of blogging, however, since it allows for the basic necessities I suppose I’ll zip it.  So you can join in and be sure to check in on Jennifer Fulwiler, the new Catholic reality star….(now THAT is an untouched niche in reality TV!!) and her weekly buddies with 7 Quick Takes and see how their week is shaking down!  AH, but THIS week QT is hosted by the hilariously funny Grace @ Camp Patton…she is completely addictive, don’t say I didn’t warn YOU!!

1.  As I mentioned earlier this week, I’ve joined in with Clare et al. @ Peak313 for her 5 week challenge.  Basically a great accountability challenge with a Christian theme focused on spirit (see below for her super cute cutout reminder for memory verse #1), mind (wrapping mine around treating my body as the temple it IS instead of waiting for the fit-fairy to show up…she’s late apparently…), and body (exercise videos, workout suggestions and inspirational success stories)….the whole package.  She has mentioned prizes which has whetted my competitive spirit ( a little), but I really like the whole idea and she’s just so perky and encouraging…

Memory verse week 1 from Peak313 challenge! It’s not too late to join….

2.  Along those lines of building healthy minds AND bodies in this house, a friend recommended this documentary on Netflix (instant queue!!) America the Beautiful 2:  The Thin Commandments.  With 2 teenage boys in the house and one girl walking the line of puberty and the other totally immersed in the cheer life, it’s a message that can’t be touted enough.  In words.  Actions.  Example.  Man, this parenting stuff is tough!!

3.  For some inspiration, check out Lizzie Velasquez and her book, Be Beautiful, Be You.  What a strong message for my girls (and boys) both ways….on judging AND disregarding what others think of you.  Rise above???  She is soaring.

4.  The opposite of inspirational…..I won the “Loser Mom” award this week.  Despite having my daughter’s 5th grade teacher conference in my phone AND on my work calendar, I still managed to completely space it.  To make matters worse, it caused my DD to be late to her after school music practice and she didn’t get enough time and…..<sigh> won’t be playing the water drum this year, only the hand drum.  Which she played last year.  Ugh.  Dagger to the heart.  To ice the cake…..THIS is what I was doing when I could/should have been at the conference:

Yup. That’s me…resting in my car at lunch. Enjoying the 80 degree weather and breeze whilst reading a book. Niiiiiice.

**disclaimer, I usually do conferences in the a.m. because our work schedule is so hectic in the afternoons that it’s too crazy to leave.  Still.  I hang my head.  DD is over it, but this will live on in my Mom guilt “hall of shame”….

5.  This week our Saturday sports consist of 2 HOME games.  Let the angels sing!!!  We will be done by 1.  My feet are doing the happy dance.

Also on Saturday.  We will welcome a second TEENAGER into the house.  YIKES!!!  How is this happening?!?!?!?  I’m just not old enough for this.  Our nutty boy.  Our sensitive boy.  Our competitive boy.  Our smart boy.  Our driven boy.  Who is 5’8”!!  WHAT?!?!?  What happened to my fuzzy little hair boy with the infectious smile and laugh who made his entrance on the heels of a hurricane mid-evacuation of half the state?  He’s a big boy with an infectious smile and laugh.    someone slow this train down!!

Crazy boy bringing out my inner nut…

6.  In WWW. news this week, I’ve been venturing further into Twitter…mainly because I feel cut-off from the world during the day and it’s a great source for news, however, I’m also enjoying keeping up with various bloggers and podcasters and famous people I admire throughout the day as well.  I tweet a little, but nothing like some of the people on there…WHOA!  crazy, I tell you.  You can follow me if you want, maybe I’ll get over 24 followers….wooooooo…or follow me here and boost me out of the 70s….double woooooo.

I also had a Pinterest success this week with PB and Nutella Crescent rolls.  I blogged about it earlier this week.  It was enough of a hit that I may possibly feel inspired to tackle something bigger this weekend; perhaps that herb garden or the back porch project….hmmm.  Stay tuned…

7.  It’s Friday.  So that means.  I think I can, I think I can, I think I can make it through this day!  I usually take above mentioned boy to McDonald’s for a McCafé on Fridays before school (his teachers love me).  I’ll hit the gym at lunch.  And the weekend (for me) starts @ 5:30 p.m. If you are in Dubai…it started yesterday 😉

Time to get rockin’ people.  Have a great weekend!!