Jan 31, 2014

Clean Eating Chicken Paprikash


INGREDIENTS:
  •     2 tbsp whole-wheat flour
  •     4 tsp paprika, divided
  •     1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  •     1 tbsp olive oil
  •     4 6-oz boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  •     1 onion, halved and thinly sliced
  •     1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  •     2 cloves garlic, minced
  •     1/4 tsp ground cayenne pepper, 
  •     3/4 cup low-sodium chicken
  •     1/2 cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt
INSTRUCTIONS:
  1. In a shallow bowl, combine flour, 1 tsp paprika and salt.
  2. In a large pan, heat oil on medium-high. 
  3. Coat chicken in flour mixture and shake off excess. 
  4. Add chicken smooth side down to skillet. 
  5. Cook until brown, 3 to 4 minutes. 
  6. Turn and cook other side until brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from pan.
  7. Keep pan on medium-high heat and add onion and bell pepper. 
  8. Heat until tender, about 5 minutes. 
  9. Add garlic, remaining 3 tsp paprika and cayenne(you can leave cayenne out if you like). 
  10. Cook, stirring, until garlic is fragrant, about 1 minute. 
  11. Add broth, scraping up browned bits from bottom of pan. 
  12. Return chicken and any juices to pan and bring to a boil. 
  13. Reduce heat, cover and cook until chicken is cooked through and vegetables are very tender, about 10 minutes.
  14. Remove chicken from pan. 
  15. In a small bowl, whisk about 2 tbsp pan juices and yogurt.
  16.  Add yogurt mixture to skillet, stirring to coat onion mixture. 
  17. Bring to a gentle boil, stirring until thick and smooth. 
  18. Spoon over top of chicken.
This is good  served dumplings or noodles, but to make it healthier it is really good served over mashed butternut squash, roasted root vegetables or grains such as brown rice or farro.

You can also try this with pork, beef or lamb.

This Moment: Daddy and Us

A beautiful and fun Friday ritual. Inspired by SouleMama.

{this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. – Amanda Soule

Clean, Rosemary and Garlic Roasted Salmon

I LOVE Salmon, it is so healthy and yummy and this clean eating salmon recipe makes such a great meal. 

2 garlic cloves
2 fresh 6″ rosemary sprigs, about 1 tablespoon chopped
1 1/2 to 2 pounds salmon, preferably Copper River Salmon*
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper

1. Preheat oven to 425°. Peel and chop garlic and rosemary and set aside.

2. Place salmon on a parchment lined baking sheet.

3. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, rosemary, and garlic. Place in the oven and roast for 12 minutes or until the salmon is flaky.

Jan 30, 2014

Valentines Day Craft Ideas

For homeschool in the first two weeks of February, I thought it would be fun to include all sorts of Valentines Day ideas for crafts.  The kids love crafts and themed ones seem to inspire them.  Here are some craft ideas I have come across so far.

Valentines Day ideas for crafts


Cork Love Bugs (I thought it might be fun to do this with toilet paper rolls we have)

Valentines Day ideas for crafts
10 DIY Valentines Day Crafts
Valentines Day ideas for crafts
15 Valentines Day Crafts for kids
Valentines Day ideas for crafts

Valentines Day ideas for crafts

Long distance Hug
Valentines Day ideas for crafts

Easy Valentines Day Crafts for kids
Valentines Day ideas for crafts

Heart Shaped Fish
Valentines Day ideas for crafts

I love all these craft ideas, they inspire me and I had that the thought that this Valentines Day maybe I can get the kids to send a valentine to someone, like their grandmother.

Cranberry-glazed Ham

I have had lot of hams in my freezer this year and I am always interested in coming up with a new recipe for ham that I can try.  Well, Prince Charming is a big fan of sweet glazes and he LOVES cranberries so I know this will be a HUGE his with him when he has it for supper tonight.
  • 3/4 (16 ounce) can jellied cranberry sauce 
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 orange, juiced and zested
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon prepared mustard
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  1. Stir cranberry sauce, brown sugar, orange juice, orange zest, lemon juice, mustard, and honey in a saucepan and bring mixture to a boil. 
  2. Reduce heat to medium and boil until cranberry sauce has melted, brown sugar has dissolved, and the glaze is thickened, 10 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C), score the ham so the sauce soaks into the ham, pour sauce over ham and bake for 2 hours. 

Ham about to go in oven, isn't that yummy glaze a great way to use cranberry sauce?

Jan 29, 2014

STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE SALAD



Ingredients:
  • 12 oz. whipped topping
  • 1 small package of cheesecake pudding (just the powder, don't add the milk)
  • 3 (6 oz) strawberry yogurts
  • 1 lb fresh strawberries, sliced
  • 3 bananas, sliced (add just before serving or they brown)
  • miniature marshmallows (add just before serving)

Directions:
  1. Thaw whipped topping and in a large salad bowl stir together whipped topping, yogurts, and pudding powder. 
  2. Let this set up in the fridge for at least an hour before serving. 
  3. Wash and slice strawberries. You can add strawberries to salad or wait to add them with sliced bananas and marshmallows just before serving. Keep refrigerated.

Serves about 10.

Wordless Wednesday: Then and Now

Stacy

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Jan 28, 2014

Frozen Tropical Delight


  • 3 Mangoes
  • 2 Bananas
  • 3 Passionfruit
  • 1 cup Greek Yoghurt
  1. Chop mangoes and bananas and place in freezer until frozen (place on a large flat surface to avoid freezing in a big clump)
  2. Place frozen fruit in batches in blender with portions of the yoghurt - once combined, add all to blender to mix.
  3. Add pulp of passionfruit and mix.
  4. Pour into individual or popsicle containers. If you prefer you can freeze in one large container to spoon into balls but would need to be removed from freezer about 10 mins before serving.

Mangoes, bananas etc can be substituted with mixed frozen berries, rockmelon, kiwifruit ... whatever your taste preferences.

Enjoy this treat on a summer day.

Organizing, planning and arranging

I fell on the ice yesterday (a couple of times) so I am having an easy day today (well as easy as a homeschooling mom of 4 can have LOL).  I decided to take some time and update my Weight Loss Page, especially since I am in the process of taking this whole weight loss thing seriously.  I plan to make clean, healthy meals that everyone in my family can enjoy.

I also took the time to update my budget and get our savings all official to arrange for our plans.  I refuse to let anything get in my way and I have a set amount that I expect to be saved by the end of each month. 

For supper tonight, I cheated.  I took some leftovers out of the freezer and took a moment to take inventory of what we had in there so I can better evaluate our grocery situation.  I like having lots around and I like knowing what I have.  I discovered lots of things I had frozen to use later for soup so I definitely see some soup in our near future!

I love watching my girls play doll and barbies together.  It is sweet and warms my heart. I can't help but try to sneak pictures.  I just wish I had a camera again and not just a cell phone. 



Jan 27, 2014

Clean Banana Choc Chip Ice Cream.


Serves 4 . Gluten Free, Vegetarian and Refined Sugar Free!

Ingredients:
  • 2 x Bananas, sliced and frozen overnight
  • 1/2 teaspoon Cacao Powder
  • 1 tablespoon Natural Peanut Butter
  • 2 -3 tablespoons of Cacao Nibs

Method:

  1. Remove Bananas from the freezer and let them soften slightly.
  2. Mash with a potato masher until broken down.
  3. Add cacao powder and peanut butter and beat with an electric beater until smooth.
  4. Stir through Cacao Nibs and place back in the freezer for 15-20mins.
  5. Remove and serve with some fresh berries!

Hope that you all have a fantastic day

12!!!!

Princess Belle turned 12 and I thought it would be nice if shared some pics of  birthday activities, a picture of our birthday cake, and just some birthday images from our day.

Now this year, due to circumstances, Princess Belle was aware that our birthday activities were limited, but she was happy with the day and is already making big plans for next year when she turns 13!  Here are some pics of her sisters having fun!

birthday activities

birthday activities

birthday activities

When I was making her birthday cake (pink decorations and heart shaped at her request) my icing bag broke!!!  I didn't have any zip lock bags to substitute, so I had to improvise.  I made the cake egg free and dairy free so that her cousin would be able to have some (I thought he was going to be there). She was pleased with the result and in the end, that is what is important.

birthday cake

Here are some other birthday images of her brother and sisters from her special day:

birthday images

birthday images

birthday images

birthday images

And here is the birthday girl getting a present from Notsosnowwhite that she was VERY excited about can you tell??

birthday gift

And here is my beautiful birthday girl:

birthday girl images

Jan 26, 2014

Oopsie Bread

Instead of bread - make oppsie bread instead YUMMMMM
Will you have a hard time living without bread? Ooopsies are a good option. It's a "bread" without carbs and can be eaten in a variety of ways.



Oopsie Bread
Makes 6-8 depending on size.

  • 3 eggs
  • 3.5 ounces of cream cheese
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder (can be excluded)
  1. Separate the eggs, with the egg whites in one bowl and the egg yolks in another.
  2. Whip the egg whites together with the salt until very stiff. You should be able to turn the bowl over without the egg whites moving.
  3. Mix the egg yolks and the cream cheese well. If you choose, add the psyllium seed husk and baking powder (this makes the Oopsie more bread-like).
  4. Gently fold the egg whites into the egg yolk mix - try to keep the air in the egg whites.
  5. Put 6 large or 8 smaller oopsies on a baking tray.
  6. Bake in the middle of the oven at 150 degrees C (300 degrees F) for about 25 minutes - until they turn golden.

    You can eat Oopsies as bread or use them as a bun for a hotdog or hamburger. You can also put different kinds of seeds on them before baking them, for instance poppy, sesame or sunflower seeds.

Gratitude Sunday

Gratitude Sunday
Sunday's heart felt tradition. A time to slow down, to reflect, to be grateful.

Here are some things I am grateful for this week:

1.  Good friends who help us Celebrate Princess Belle.  It is good to be able to count on friends to make your kids feel special.
2.  Finding a way to make her cake look special even though the icing bag broke when I started to decorate the cake.
3.  Having a girl who feels like everybody loves her and is already making plans for her and her best friend for her 13th birthday.
4.  Making yummy food for my family which lasts for two meals and makes everyone happy.
5.  Having a family that loves my food and makes me feel like a good cook even when I feel like I am being slack. LOL
6.  A nice warm house when it is windy and raining and yucky outside.
7.  A baby boy is learning to walk up stairs while holding our hands.  And big sisters who get excited to see him doing it.
8.  Enjoying a nice hot cup of coffee early in the morning in the quiet of the house before the little's get up.
9.  Clearing out a corner of my basement, it feels good to get things done.

Jan 25, 2014

Confession

I have to confess, since we moved here, I have fallen off the wagon with regards to my diet.  Things are expensive here and it just feels like when it comes to budget, I always knock special foods for me off the bottom of the list.  I am feeling yucky about how I look and I need to get my butt in gear and get back into shape!!!

Jan 24, 2014

Yay!

I am so proud of Princess Belle lately.  She is really getting the hang of her math.  For a girl who used to be behind a full grade in her math, she is doing so well.  She is doing on grade math and completely getting it.  She is retaining the Science, Language, and History that we are learning too.  Something has clicked this year and she is really enjoying school and she is doing great!



Peanut Butter Cup Brownies


  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 Tbsp cocoa
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tsp soda
  • 2 cups flour
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter chips
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  1. Bring to boil: butter, water, and cocoa
  2. Remove from heat; let cool.
  3. In a bowl mix in with cocoa mixture: sugar, soda, flour, buttermilk, salt, vanilla, and  eggs
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray or grease 40
  5. Spoon batter evenly into muffin cups, about 1 heaping teaspoon in each.
  6. Bake for 13 to 15 minutes or until top is set and toothpick inserted into center comes out slightly moist.
  7. After brownies are out of the oven, wait for centers to fall. This will happen upon cooling. If not then tap the centers with teaspoon, this will make a indent for peanut butter.
  8. Over low heat, warm creamy peanut butter. 
  9. While brownies are still warm spoon about half teaspoon warm peanut butter into the center of each brownie; top with chocolate chips and peanut butter chips. 
  10. Cool completely in pan. Remove from pan and serve.

This Moment: Daddy and Me

A beautiful and fun Friday ritual. Inspired by SouleMama.

{this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. – Amanda Soule

Jan 23, 2014

Pizza Spaghetti Casserole


Ingredients
  • 1 lb. Ground meat 
  • 1 16 oz. box unooked spaghetti noodles
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon Oregano
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ Cup Milk
  • 1 Egg
  • 2 ounces sliced pepperoni 
  • 1 (26 ounce) jar pasta sauce
  • 1 16 oz. can diced Italian style tomatoes
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 (8 ounce) package shredded Italian cheese blend
  • Any other pizza toppings, you can add like Black olives, sausage, onions, green peppers, etc...
Directions:
  1. Boil water & salt for Spaghetti noodles, once it starts boiling, add noodles. 
  2. Brown meat in a separate frying pan. 
  3. Once noodles are cooked, drain and put in a casserole dish. In a separate bowl, combine milk & egg & whisk. 
  4. Poor over pasta & add jar of sauce, can of tomatoes, garlic powder, & oregano. 
  5. Mix all together well. On top of pasta mixture, layer the ground meat, then add a layer of pepperoni's. 
  6. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese, & Italian cheese. 
  7. And layer more pepperoni. 
  8. Bake in the oven at 350 for 30 minutes.

Working on it

I have been working on being more present in my life.  Taking some time out from housework, computers, cell phone, planning and working to just be with my kids.  I love to watch them make up songs, to answer their questions, to listen to their little stories.  It is so easy to get caught up in the every day work of being a mom, I forget to just be with them when we aren't doing homeschool stuff, participate with them, and just to enjoy them.

Things I have heard today:
  • a morning song to a baby brother, 
  • play dishes banging together to be a food song, 
  • adorable lisp singing cute songs
  • the little tea pot song sung with actions
  • a big girl writing a story, diligently, asking for help with her spelling
  • girls giggling together
  • a big girl comforting a crying little sister, reassuring her that winter will end and we will be making more trips to the park when it does.  
I just know that I get so caught up in trying to get everything perfectly done all the time, I forget to let a little go and just to be here, enjoying them because I know that they grow too darned fast.



Jan 21, 2014

Changing it up

It feels so good to have a computer again that I decided to change up my template a bit.  I finally had a chance to get rid of the snowflakes in the background and put up some lovely hearts instead.  I like it a lot.  I also changed up the format a bit for a little fun.  I love playing with my template, it is fun for me and I find it fun to find new and interesting things to do with the background and layout.

Now if only I could get my Adobe Photoshop back so I could do a new header too!

Jan 20, 2014

Action Plan

The Therapist (I have no idea which kind, there are so many working with us right now) came over to work with Little Prince today.  We finished going over her questions and she came up with a plan for us to start with him.  Our first plan of action is to start getting him to copy sounds we make and to try to get him to say, "more" when we offer him things.  It is a simple plan but it feels good to have an idea of how to start.

We are getting concerned about his physical development at this point too, he is a VERY wobbly walker.  He always looks like he is on the verge of tumbling onto his nose at any minute.  She is making a referral to someone to look into that as well. 

She did tell me that she fully expected an official diagnosis before summer.   It will be good to have that settled too. 

#Autism

Homemade Salsa



Ingredients:
  • Chop 5-6 Roma tomatoes, 
  • 1 small onion 
  • 1/2 cup fresh Cilantro. 

  1. Mince 2 seeded Serrano or JalapeƱo peppers and 1 clove of garlic. 
  2. Add 2 tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice and salt and pepper to taste. 
  3. Mix everything together and let sit overnight for flavors to meld.

Jan 19, 2014

Cheesecake Popsicles




Ingredients
  • (8) 5-ounce Dixie Cups
  • popsicle sticks
  • 8 sheets graham crackers, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 (small) packages cheesecake instant pudding mix
  • 4 cups milk
  • sliced strawberries and blueberries

Instructions\
  1. Crush your graham crackers into small pieces, using a food processor, blender, rolling pin--whatever you've got!
  2. Stir in melted butter to combine.
  3. Combine pudding mix and milk, whisking together until smooth.
  4. Add a small layer (a spoonful or so) of pudding mix to the bottom of your cups.
  5. Next, add a layer of your graham cracker "crust" (again, about a spoonful).
  6. On top of your graham cracker crumbs, layer in a few sliced berries. Fill cups up the rest of the way with the remaining pudding mix.
  7. Insert popsicle sticks and freeze until set.

Gratitude Sunday: Woo Hoo!! Yay!!


Gratitude Sunday
Sunday's heart felt tradition. A time to slow down, to reflect, to be grateful.

I have lots to be grateful for this week but my number one is:  

1.  I finally got my computer fixed!!!  I am so completely thrilled!!  Since I actually ended up having to replace it, it will take a while to get my bookmarks back, but I am so happy to be here properly again!!  Woo Hoo!!  Yay!  I'm back baby!!!

2. Big sisters who love to play makeovers with their little sisters.

3. Adorable girls who love to play with their Christmas presents especially when they involve coloring.  Isn't this purse beautifully colored?

4.  Little girls who love to be together.

5. Adorably suggly nighties that make for very warm and fuzzy hugs. 

6. Homeschool creativity that is fun and inspires little minds.





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