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Showing posts from January, 2016

Breakfast Smoothies

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(This article does contain affiliate links to a couple of my favorite products :)

One thing about working hard to get fit is that I also am focused on my eating. I've found smoothies to be a great way to start my day. They are so versatile! You can make them in so many different ways. I also like the fact that I can add extra things to them to boost their nutritional value.

One of my favorite things to add to my smoothies is chia seeds. Those little seeds really pack a huge amount of nutrition in each teaspoon. They are basically tasteless so they don't change the flavor of the smoothie. They also add a little bit of thickening as well. When added to liquids chia seeds expand in size and become somewhat gelatinous.

Here is what I've found out about chia seeds...

They are rich in antioxidants, fiber, magnesium, zinc, iron and calcium (gram for gram they have more calcium in them than diary products)
They are high in Omega 3 fatty acids
They are high in B vitamins

Easy Salmon Fillets

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I only had a vague idea what I wanted to do with my salmon last week. In the past I've not made a whole lot of seafood and fish. It was just too expensive when feeding a large family. Today it fits better with our budget and it tastes so good!

I only wanted wild caught salmon, not farmed salmon. I found what I was looking for at Costco...


It is very nice for cooking small amounts. It is a 2lb package and each piece of fish is individually wrapped making it handy to just pull out what you need.


I used about 1 ½ lbs of fish, which was 4 pieces.


I cut up a small onion and a few mushrooms and sautéed these in a large frying pan in a bit of olive oil until they were just starting to soften. Then I put the fillets in the frying pan and sprinkled them with salt and pepper...


I let them cook for about 5 minutes and turned them over...


I fried them for another 3 or 4 minutes and poured on a little Italian dressing and let it cook another 2 or 3 minutes and turned over again.. …

Menu Monday!

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I ended up making a few extra meals last week so I could have some meals in the freezer. I made tuna patties and spaghetti along with the other meals I had planned. It's always nice to have a few meals tucked away in the freezer for those busy days.

One of the meals I made last week was salmon. I found wild caught Alaskan salmon at Costco in the freezer section. It's really nice, each piece is individually wrapped so you can pull out just what you need. I'll be sharing how I cooked that tomorrow.

I made the pork chops that I had on my menu last week on Sunday. I still have enough of that and some of the bean soup leftover, so that is what we are having for dinner tonight. As usual this is errand day and grocery shopping day so the leftovers are nice to come home to.

Here is how my menu is looking for this week...

Garlic Shrimp Pasta
Garlic & onions and a little kale, sauteed in butter with a little salt and pepper. Add shrimp and cook a few minutes. Mix in a …

13 Ways to Help Ease the Winter Blues

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I posted this article a couple years ago. Winter time blues are a real thing. I do find since I started walking and working on fitness it seems to be a bit easier. Also, as #13 says, acceptance of the season has helped but more than that I'm learning to embrace each season, be content and just roll with it. The seasons go by quickly and it is important to realize this and let God help me to appreciate all the little things that make each and every season beautiful and unique. 


I don’t know about you but personally I deal with the winter time blues. It’s not bad but it is something I’ve dealt with for a long time. As soon as the weather warms up, the days get longer, the trees start to bloom, the birds and frogs are back making their spring time noises, I start feeling much better! But in the meantime the stark look of winter and short days are just no fun. However there are a few things that I’ve learned to do over the years to pull me out of it all and learn to make the…

Menu Monday!

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Hard to believe we are in the second half of January. The month seems to be going by quickly, at least for me. And it's time to plan out a few meals for the week.

I'll be grocery shopping and running errands today so I have a frozen lasagna that I'm going to make for dinner tonight. That along with some garlic bread and a salad will be on the menu.

Here is my plan for the rest of the week..


Garlic Honey Mustard Pork Chops
I found pork chops on sale last week when I was shopping. I'll be making this simple easy and tasty recipe with them. You can find my recipe HERE. I'll serve rice and broccoli on the side.


Baked Salmon
I'm hoping to find a decent deal on wild caught salmon. I've been in a fish/seafood mood lately and this sounds good. I'll sautee up some onions and put those on the bottom of the baking dish, the salmon on top, pour some Italian dressing over the salmon and bake it. Pasta and a nice green salad will make a perfect meal (and pr…

Getting Fit in the 50's – One Year Update

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Well we are half way into January and I decided it was time to share an update on my fitness progress.

One year ago I decided it was time to get up off the couch and start moving. I desired to be in shape. I was out of shape, and still am.. but the improvements I've seen in one year have been amazing.

I posted my journey last year and added updates as the year went along. I am now one year into my fitness journey. So I wanted to update and give you a little bit more about my year.

In January my main goal was to just .. move.. I did not like where I was at. I wanted to be more active. I began by walking. I still walk. And I love it. It costs me nothing, I don't need special equipment (other than a good pair of shoes!), I don't need a membership anywhere and I can do it in various ways any time and anywhere.

My first goal was to walk a mile. When I step out my door, walk to the end of my driveway, down the road to where it meets the next road, turn around and come …

Parmesan Chicken

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I'm pretty sure I'm becoming the queen of quick and easy meals. After spending the last 25+ years in the kitchen .. ok that is a bit dramatic.. ha, ha. But seriously, one of the main ways we made it living on one income and raising 8 children was that all our meals were cooked from scratch. It was how I stretched the $$ and kept our family well fed. I never minded it. I enjoyed spending all that time in the kitchen with my daughters cooking, teaching them to cook and how to have the skills to raise their future families.

Nowadays, my life has changed a lot and I find there are many other things I would rather be doing than spending lots of hours in the kitchen. So I look for recipes that taste good but also are quick and easy.

This is one of those recipes. 
Flatten chicken breasts with a meat pounder, top with spaghetti sauce, mozzarella cheese, parmesan cheese and a bit of italian seasonings.


Bake for 30 minutes.
Serve with pasta or rice, or garlic bread and a sa…

Menu Monday!

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Another Monday and another weekly menu! I was trying to figure out what to make this week and decided to shop at home :). I checked my freezer and found I had what I needed right in there.

One of the recipes I made from last weeks menu was Parmesan Chicken. I made it yesterday and we are having the leftovers tonight. It was another super easy, quick meal. And it was also super good! I'll be sharing that recipe tomorrow.

The rest of the week is looking like this...


Orange Chicken
This is frozen orange chicken from Costco. My husband had a craving for orange chicken and saw it at Costco so we bought it! I'll be serving some Costco egg rolls and a salad along with this.

Ham and Navy Bean Soup
After Christmas I put my ham bone and leftover bits of ham and juices in a zip lock bag in the freezer. I'll be using that to make the soup. I plan to serve biscuits and a salad with this.

Hamburger & Cabbage
This is a simple meal. You can find the recipe I use HERE (scroll do…

Luscious Lemon Chicken

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Last week I had planned to come up with an easy chicken meal. I was not sure what I was going to do, but something chicken and mushrooms sounded good. What I ended up making was even better. I made a lemon chicken dish and served it over angel hair pasta. Oh my, not only did it taste delish, it was so quick and easy. If your chicken is defrosted you could have this on the table in 30 minutes or less.

I first cut up one medium size onion and sliced about 3 cups of mushrooms. I used 2 chicken breasts and sliced those fairly thin.

I sautéed the onions and mushrooms in a little olive oil until the onions were looking a bit soft...


Then added lemon juice, some garlic, salt and pepper. Stirred that around and then added my chicken.


I let the chicken cook a little. Then added chicken broth. I let this simmer with the lid on for about 10 minutes. Then added a little cornstarch mixed with water and cooked it another minute to thicken up.


I served it over angel hair pasta and ha…

Menu Monday!

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My newest challenge is learning to cook less food. I'm no longer feeding an army. So this year begins with readjusting my brain to know what is enough for 2 or 3 people for our meals.

Last weeks menu worked well. I had planned some sort of chicken and mushroom dish. I was not sure what I was going to do until the day came. I ended up making my own version of lemon chicken and it turned out so yummy. I'll be sharing that recipe tomorrow.

I made the Asian beef in the crockpot on Sunday and still have enough for us to eat tonight. Today is grocery shopping day and it will be nice to come home and have dinner ready to go.

This week I'm planning 4 meals. I'm not sure if I will use them all, it will depend on how many leftovers there are. It's all part of the adjustment to smaller meals.

Here is what I have planned..


Meatloaf
Basic, easy, and one 2lb meatloaf should feed us for a couple days. I'll serve tater tots and a salad to go with it.

Garlic Shrimp …

Ringing in the New Year and Changes on the Homestead

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Hubby had to work on New Years Eve.. which was fine.. we never do anything to exciting. But I am excited for the New Year. So many possibilities and so many changes here on my homestead.

My son Jacob moved into an apartment in the city much closer to his work. He was commuting 3 hours a day to and from our home. I'm so happy for him now. He is 10 minutes from work and closer to his girlfriend. So it's a win-win.

A pic of Jake and his girlfriend, Julie...


But now that leaves us with 1 child at home. What a change that is! After years of raising kids and having an extremely busy household the quiet is an adjustment. I see the empty nest more so. My youngest son works full time and is gone all day long. My husband I keep looking at each other and saying.. is this for real? With only 1 child at home I'm already seeing the change in cooking and cleaning, and I like what I see. It makes us feel like we are on vacation in some ways!! ha, ha..

It has us contemplating o…