Saturday, March 31, 2012

Scentsy Review!

I received part of my Scentsy order this week and was so excited to try it out!

For those of you who aren't familiar with Scentsy, here is a quick run-down. Scentsy is a wickless alternative to candles. The ceramic warmers have a bulb inside which provides heat to melt the wax that fills your home with delicious smells. It doesn't get warmer than your body temperature, so there isn't a risk of burning yourself. You can turn the warmer on and off easily with a switch located on the cord. The wax dries quickly once the warmer has been turned off. This company makes several other "scent" products as tins, lotions, soaps, scent paks, and buddys (scented stuffed animals). They have a lot of fun things to offer and are very reasonably priced!

My friend, Jessica, is a Scentsy distributor and helped me make my selections! Here is her website, if you are interested:)

Here is my full size warmer, the Barista!

I am so in love with this style. It looks perfect in my living room!

Here is my plug-in warmer, the Charlemagne.

It is the perfect size for my bathroom and matches the colors perfectly. I was afraid it would be big and obnoxious, but it's not!

The scents I chose to start with are Home Sweet Home in the full-size warmer and Blueberry Cheesecake in the plug-in warmer. I also got Perfectly Pomegranate as a alternate.

Home Sweet Home smells like....well...home. It has a cinnamon-y smell with hint of floral. I love homey smells like this!

Blueberry Cheesecake smells like a blueberry cheesecake is surrounding your head. It makes me want to bite the air. It is such an incredible smell!

Because of the way air flows through my house, one warmer provides a scent for the whole house. I didn't realize this before, but I kinda like it. I turn on Blueberry Cheesecake in the guest bathroom and 10 minutes later, my bathroom smells like it too!

I am loving my Scentsy products so far!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes

Oh. my. word. y'all. You must try this soon.

I saw a variation of this recipe on Pinterest and knew I had to make it immediately. Here is the original recipe. I omitted a few ingredients in an attempt to keep it healthy.

Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes

2 sweet potatoes
1 cup green onions
1 large handful spinach
1 heaping Tbsp sour cream
minced garlic
Mozzarella cheese

Bake sweet potatoes at 350 until they are fork tender, about 60 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Chop green onions and saute in heated olive oil with garlic. Add in spinach and stir for a few minutes until spinach is wilted. Slice potatoes into half. Scoop out your pulp and place it in a large bowl. Add in sour cream, green onions, and spinach. Brush empty potato shells with olive oil and place in the oven for about 5 minutes or until slightly crispy. Fill in shells with sweet potato mixture and top with cheese. Place back in oven and bake for an additional 15 minutes.

I have never been a huge fan of sweet potatoes, until now. These were amazing. I used a dairy free, organic mozzarella cheese just to try it out. It was pretty tasty. Hayes LOVED these. He ate them before he ate his grapes, which is kinda a big deal for him.

We ate these with grilled chicken marinated in a mixture of olive oil, minced garlic, chopped basil, and lemon pepper.

Baking the sweet potatoes was kinda long. I think I will look into cooking them in the crock pot during the day to eliminate that hour of cook time.

I promise these won't disappoint you!


I tried Tabouli at Earth Fare a few weeks ago and loved how fresh it was. I was very intrigued by this dish, so I decided to make some myself. The label from Earth Fare listed the ingredients and I researched a few from Pinterest as well. Then, I created my own recipe. It probably isn't really technically Tabouli, but it is delicious and healthy.

This dish calls for bulgar, which is a whole grain that can be used in a variety of dishes. When cooked, it resembles rice in appearance and texture. It is low in fat and is a great source of dietary fiber and protein. It is a good substitution for pasta! I found a ground bulgur made by Bob's Red Mill at Kroger.

Katie's Tabouli

1 tomato, chopped
1 cucumber, chopped
1/2 red onion, chopped
fresh basil and parsley, chopped
1 cup dry bulgar
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup olive oil
2-3 cloves minced garlic
salt and pepper to taste

Start by cooking your bulgar. Combine 1 cup bulgar with 2 cups cold water. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 12-15 minutes. While this is cooking, chop your veggies and herbs and throw them in a big bowl. Mix your lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, and s & p in a small cup. When the bulgar is done, stir it in with the veggies. Add in the lemon juice mixture and mix well. Refrigerate for at least an hour before serving to allow the flavors to mix. It gets tastier with time!

Traditional tabouli has mint instead of basil and maybe a few other alterations. I prefer fresh basil, which is why I added into mine.

This dish is so light and fresh and healthy and super easy to make and perfect for summer! Hayes loved eating it too!


Top 10!

1. I guess a Monday Top 10 is the new thing in our house. Who doesn't need a pick-me-up on a Monday?

2. I guess I assume these Top 10 posts are uplifting and entertaining. Am I full of myself, blogwise? Hmmm....

3. I recently ordered my first Scentsy products and I can't wait for them to come in! Thank goodness I had Jessica to help me. I ordered a warmer, some travel tins, room spray, and a scentsy buddy for Hayes. I will let everyone know my thoughts on them once they come in!

4. Allow me to share a little known fact. Jessica in #3, friend since birth and the other half of my brain. Together, we have extensive knowledge of the animal kingdom and have a hand/arm gesture for all types of annoucements someone might need to make. We also once saw Santa on a firetruck. True story.

5. Hayes is currently coughing his head off in the bathtub. Probably because he and daddy were blowing bubbles in the water again. Sounds like a safe activity for a 13 month old, right? I guess what doesn't kill us makes us stronger.

6. Know what's awesome? Sushi. Know what's even more awesome? Having two great friends to eat sushi with so you can order several different rolls and pretend like you are at a sushi buffet. I love my Terra and Andrea!

7. The Duck Commander, Wednesdays on A& may make the town I grew up in look slightly uncivilized at times, but it is extremely entertaining. And if you aren't from West Monroe, don't act like your town doesn't have any crazy folks running around too.

8. Finished The Hunger Games this weekend and started on Catching Fire last night. It's my new Twilight. Wonderful. That's exactly what I need. To form emotional attachments to characters in a fiction book. At the age of 27.

9. Ryan's birthday present is here and assembled. It is a beautiful, wooden swing. We don't exactly agree on where it should be, but I'll let him keep it in "his" location for a few more days...

10. Pray for babies. Pray for people trying to make them, people having them, people delivering them, people raising them. No, this is not my way of saying I'm pregnant. I just happen to know a lot of ladies with babies these days:)

All about Hayes

Our baby is growing way too fast. He is 100% boy and he shares his daddy's love for sports.

He got this t-ball stand for his birthday. He isn't quite batting yet, but he does love to put the ball on the stand.

This face is directed at the neighbors who were playing basketball....apparently not his sport of choice.

Oh. You eat the ball. Right, mom?

Ah. No. Silly me.

Hayes still loves to eat. One look at his belly and anyone can figure that out. We have started giving him a spoon with dinner to encourage self feeding with utensils.

The trick is to take the food off the spoon with your fingers, then eat it.

My boy is such an innovator;)

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Day 15!

I am 2 weeks in now with my Advocare 24 day challenge, which I blogged about here...and 5 lbs down!

I am so happy I have decided to do this. I am sure the supplements I am taking are doing something good for me, but I am more excited about the lifestyle changes we are making.

This experience so far has motivated us to eat healthier and start exercising regularly. These are positive lifestyle changes I am excited about, not just a fad diet to do for now.

Speaking of exercising, I start week 2 with Jillian's "Ripped in 30" today. Wish me luck...I'm gonna need it!

Just a quick food update...

For breakfast, I am still eating my fruits!

For lunch, a meal replacement shake.

For snacks, fruits and rice cakes with organic peanut butter.

For supper, lean proteins, veggies, and grains!

I am not perfect for every meal and this weekend was not my best. (We were out of town.) But...overall my meals have been much healthier and leave me feeling healthier as well!

Grocery Shopping 101

I am my mother's child when it comes to grocery shopping. Ever since I can remember, my mom has planned out a menu for the week and then made a grocery list for the week. The list is also made in order from one side of the store to the other, for more organized shopping:) This is the method we use in our house. We plan our menu and make our list accordingly. The goal is to shop once a week in hopes of cutting out unnecessary trips and purchases throughout the week.
Our grocery bill has been creeping higher and higher since we have been together. Having a baby certainly makes it go up. Lately, our grocery bill has been averaging $150-180. This isn't a number I'm proud of and I almost didn't share it, but I want to share the huge difference we have made in our grocery bill. The past several weeks, the total has been between $120-130! Today's final bill...$109! I want to share the changes we have made and hopefully save you some money too! *Our grocery bill includes diapers, wipes, toiletries, and household supplies

I'm going to give an example menu and grocery list from before we started eating healthier, and after. It will be long, but I think it's worth reading if a high grocery bill is something you struggle with, too!

"Before" Menu example for a week:

Shrimp and Grits
Homemade Pizza
Spicy Sausage Pasta
Turkey meatloaf and veggies for Hayes
food for lunch
snacks for week
*these meals are meant to serve as leftovers too.

"Before" Grocery List for a week:
grits . butter . whipping cream . green onions . bacon . shrimp . parmesan cheese . lasagna noodles . 2 lbs beef . 2 lbs sausage . 1 jar tomato sauce . 2 cans stewed tomatoes . 2 bags mozzarella cheese . pre-made pizza crust . roma tomatoes . pizza sauce . pepperoni . banana peppers . 1 bag Italian blend cheese . olives . 1 lb spicy sausage . 1 bag frozen tortellini . 1 jar alfredo sauce .  1 lb lean turkey . onions . 1 bell pepper . 2-3 bags frozen veggies . fresh fruit . yogurt . bread . turkey . cheese sticks . baby yogurt . 3-4 gerber baby pre-made meals . chips . salsa . cereal . whole milk

*I used to make Hayes separate meals because I didn't want him eating the unhealthy stuff we were eating. I would also buy several pre-made meals for him just in case I didn't get around to cooking something else for him.

* We were not usually buying organic veggies or fruits before.

"After" Menu for a week:
 (this is actually our menu for this week)

Grilled Salmon with Roasted Broccoli and Bulgar
Grilled Tuna Steaks with Roasted Broccoli and Bulgar
Cobb Salads
Grilled lean "bunless" burgers with roasted brussels sprouts and mushrooms
Grilled chicken with twice baked sweet potatoes.
lunch food and snacks for week

"After" grocery list:
Salmon . tuna steaks . broccoli . lettuce . tomatoes . green onions . eggs . tomato . feta cheese crumbles . lean beef burger patties . brussels sprouts . veggie broth . mushrooms . lean, organic chicken . sweet potatoes . spinach . reduced fat sour cream . organic mozzarella cheese . yogurt . strawberries . pears . apples . 2 cans tuna . bread . organic whole milk . rice cakes . organic peanut butter

*Because we are eating healthier, Hayes eats what we eat. No more separate meals! We have stopped eating turkey sandwiches and now eat tuna salad for lunches with olive oil mayo and celery.
*All veggies and fruits we buy are organic when possible now.

I have noticed several changes that I think are making the difference in our bill:

1. We are cooking with less pasta and more grains. Because of the way you buy grains, it isn't a purchase you have to make every week, unlike pasta. (ex. bulgar, quinoa)

2. Tuna salad is a much cheaper and healthier lunch option than deli meats. Celery and olive oil mayo are also purchases that aren't made every week.

3. We have significantly reduced the dairy products that we buy, mostly in the cheese and butter department. I used to buy at least 2-3 bags of shredded cheese a week and a box of butter every other week. Whipping cream and fat free half and half were also common on our list.

4. Our menu now focuses on lean proteins with veggies and occasionally a complex carb. Our snacks are either fruits or healthy snacks, such as rice cakes with organic peanut butter. When you look at our list, the bulk of it is vegetables, fruit, and lean proteins (fish, lean chicken, lean beef.) That means less "ingredients" to buy to make a meal.

5. I am comfortable feeding Hayes what we eat, so no more separate meals or Gerber pre-made meals. This is an expense that adds up fast! We can also share snacks more now.

6. Cutting out fatty meats like bacon, sausage, and shrimp has made a huge dent in our grocery bill.

7. I cook with olive oil instead of butter and I find that I don't have to buy olive oil as often as butter.

8. Portion control was difficult for us when we would have a rich dish like shrimp and grits or a pasta dish. It is much easier to eat appropriate amounts when you cook the meat you are eating for that meal and veggies. And if you want more veggies...that's better than a second helping of cheese grits;)

Final thoughts...
Buying organic is more expensive if you are comparing individual prices of products...but the overall result is cheaper if your menu is healthier! can't just switch to organic and expect your bill to be lower. A change in the meals you are preparing might also be necessary for you to see a difference in your bill...and your health!

I hope this helps someone who may also be frustrated with their grocery bill!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Jogging Stroller!

My shiny, new jogging stroller came in today! I had Ryan put it together right away and then took Hayes out for a run while he mowed.
Um....ouch. I haven't gone running in about 4 years. Running was tough. I felt like I had been smoking for 50 years. But it did feel good to get started again. No time like the present, right!

So, back to the important stuff, the jogging stroller! I loved it! Here is the one I ended up ordering...

I did a lot of research and review reading. Did you know some jogging strollers cost like $600! So crazy! This price is one of the more reasonable ones, without being the cheapest. I ended up choosing it for the swivel wheel feature. Some jogging strollers come with a fixed front wheel. This stroller has a swivel wheel with the option of locking it. It makes steering around all the turns in my neighborhood easier. From what I read, it would be good to lock for some "off-roading." It is easy to lose control of the stroller in bumpy terrain when the front wheel is not locked. So when I go running up a wooded mountain, I will be good to go:)

The stroller was so smooth and easy to push while I was "running" today. Holding onto the bar with both hands and jogging was awkward, but it was really easy to steer while holding on with one hand.

Hayes was super comfortable in his new ride. So comfortable, in fact, that he slept most of the time.

The sun shade is easily adjustable so that I could keep Hayes shaded at all times. The straps and seat angle are easy to adjust as well.

I know this is only my first journey with this stroller, but I loved it! I am so happy with my purchase and would highly recommend this stroller!

Day 11!

The cleanse is over! Total weight loss in the past 10 days...3 lbs. I was curious so I measured my waist, 2 inches down! I feel better already and cannot wait for phase 2 of the 24 day challenge.

For breakfast I ate my usual pear....although I'm thinking I should probably add something to this.

I had a banana for a mid-morning snack.

I had my meal replacement shake for lunch.

For supper, Black Beans and Rice, from Advocare. Here is the recipe:)

1 lb lean ground beef
1 bell pepper
1 onion
minced garlic
1 cup sugar free tomato sauce
1 Tbsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp soy sauce (low sodium is best)
1 Tbsp mustard, prepared
seasonings (I used chipotle chili pepper)
I can reduced sodium black beans, drained
brown rice

Throw your beef, bell pepper, onion, and garlic into a pan and cook until meat is done and veggies are tender. Place a small amount of tomato sauce in a bowl and add next 4 ingredients. Whisk until well blended, then add in remaining tomato sauce. Stir in meat mixture until meat is coated. Add in black beans. Simmer for an additional 20 minutes. Serve over brown rice. Easy and tasty! Hayes loved it too!

Today I made a new friend who is starting her 24 day challenge tomorrow! We had a blast talking about it....the people around us might not have enjoyed it as much...

Yay for Day 11!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Top 10!

1. So this Top 10 is happening on a Monday instead of a Sunday.

2. I did some cooking with bulgur this weekend. It's an interesting grain, and I am loving it so far! I will share a recipe soon!

3. We made another fun trip to Earth Fare this weekend for lunch. We signed up for coupons via text and got one for $10 off a purchase of $25 or more. Such a great coupon! And, such a great lunch for a low price!

4. I'm currently reading One Day by David Nicholls. It is about a girl and boy who meet on July 15, 1988. Each chapter takes place on July 15 and follows their relationship through ups and downs and everything in between. It takes a while to get into it, but it is a pretty good book overall.

5. Jogging stroller is ordered! I am so ready to start running again.

6. I did a Jillian Michaels DVD workout last night..."Ripped in 30." I'm pretty sure I ripped something...

7. Today started off great. My straightener stopped working when I was half way done straightening my wavy, messy hair. Thank goodness Ulta had a big sale on them today! And, thank goodness for ponytail holders.

8. I cheated. On Advocare. I had a mini blizzard Saturday night. I had been dreaming about it for nights. If I had waited any longer, I would have gotten a large blizzard...or two.

9. I love Army Wives. I'm so glad it's back on. Even if it is not so realistic...according to my sister, army wife extraordinaire.

10. Pray for Terra and I. We have a plan to spread the word about Dementia care, and we could use all of your prayers!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Day 6...

What a day. Seriously. Today was probably the busiest day of the week for me. 11 a.m....the daycare called. "Hayes is puking and won't stop!" I asked if he had a fever and they said no, but they were really concerned with how much he was vomiting. So, I tried to tie up the really important loose ends and left to get my baby.

I get to daycare and my super sick child is bouncing in his swing with a huge grin on his face, shrieking. Really, Hayes? Really? So we come home. He takes a nice nap, I did some cleaning and laundry. He wakes up and plays while I continue to do housework. Takes another nap. No vomiting. No fever. No sickness. Did he know I was busy today? Maybe he didn't want me to stress out at work...

I had two funeral visitations to attend today. I went after Ryan came home from work and took over "Hayes duty." Two special residents in our memory care unit passed away in the last week. They were both incredible and special and loved. I will definitely miss them. Here are some quick memories about them...

"L"...sweet teeny little lady with poofy white hair like a cotton ball. She loves the OSU Buckeyes. Her walls are covered in Buckeye paraphernalia. But I loved her anyway;) Even on a bad day, you would still get a wave and a small and a small chuckle.

A...the Italian Stallion of Memory Care. He would probably laugh at me for calling him that. He had several strokes before he came to us and as a result had difficulty with speech. His speech often sounded like stuttering. Not long after he moved in, he was eating popcorn at a rapid rate while watching the news and began to choke. While choking, he managed to get out one very important question..."How's the DOW?" My response..."I have no idea what the DOW is or how to interpret it. But maybe you should stop eating popcorn for a second."

"A" and "L" will be greatly missed and I am so blessed to have spent time with both. Please pray for them and their families this week.

On my way home, I stopped by Earth Fare, a health supermarket close to my house. My intent was to buy sushi for Ry and I, but I was distracted by the mass amounts of fresh, prepared food available for purchase. After careful consideration, I ordered some Tabouli salad and live dark green salad. Talk about delicious! It was a nice change from tuna and carrots, which is what I had for lunch right before picking up my "sick" child from daycare.

Enjoy your Friday night!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Day 5!

What a busy week! On Tuesday, we celebrated Ryan's birthday! He is such an amazing daddy and husband. Hayes and I are so lucky to have him! Hayes was so excited about his daddy's birthday all day, that he slept...all night. All night in this case means from the second we walked in the door until 7 am. That's right. He even slept through supper. We tried to wake him up, but he wasn't having it. I was hoping for a great daddy/Hayes picture on his birthday like last year,

 but someone had other plans. Oh well, there's always the weekend!

The Cleanse has been going good so far. I've been eating lots of brown rice and tuna. Carrots are not my favorite veggie, I don't know why I bought a whole bag of them. I am loving fresh pears on the way to work every morning for breakfast! Bananas, grapes, and almonds make great snacks throughout the day.

The weather here has been so amazing. And such amazing weather calls for grilling! We made some delicious burgers, thanks to Advocare for the inspiration. We used lean ground beef, a chopped onion, and some seasoning. We didn't eat them with buns but topped them with sugar free salsa. And of course, no burger is complete without steamed carrots on the side, right? Darn carrots.

I ate sushi for lunch today. It was a weak moment. But, I only ate sushi with salmon and tuna in it. None of it was deep fried...and only 1 had cream cheese! I think there are far worse things I could have splurged blizzards, margaritas, pasta alla vodka with shrimp (which I made for Ryan's birthday and didn't eat), girl scout cookies, coffee, or mini Cadbury eggs.

Have I ever mentioned Hayes has a pair of TOMS? He does. I happen to have a matching pair. Not weird at all, right? Every where Hayes goes, he gets tons of compliments on his precious little shoes. Check out this pic from Christmas.

I love TOMS. They are cute and comfortable and classic. And the best part is, they give back. For every pair of TOMS purchased, a new pair is given to a child in need. One for One is their motto. And I love it! So Hayes will continue to wear TOMS as his little feet grow and we will continue to help give shoes to kids in need.

What a blog full of randomness. Kinda like this week....

It's almost Friday! Make the most of it!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Day 2!

Funny how today is only Day 2, but I already feel like I'm on the home stretch.

Breakfast: Fiber drink and a pear!

Lunch: Tuna salad and quinoa with carrots on the side

Snack: orange and almonds

Supper: Meatloaf, red potato, green beans

The meatloaf recipe came from my Advocare 24-day challenge cookbook!

1.5 lbs turkey
1 bell pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
a few carrots, shaved
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1/2 cup tomato sauce (sugar free)

Combine all ingredients and form into loaf. Put in pan greased with fat free/no calorie spray. Top with tomato sauce. Bake at 350 for 1 hour or until done.

I had a few small victories today. I managed to ignore the girl scout cookies in my office. I went to Kroger to buy bottled water and ignored Easter candy. And, I didn't start my day with a chai latte!

Bring it on, Day 3!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Day 1

So let's talk about one of my least favorite topics in the whole wide weight. My weight has always fluctuated. I can think of a few times in my life when I was happy with my weight/size...and that's when I was working out hardcore or dieting. When I got pregnant with Hayes, I was not where I wanted to be. I have been back down to pre-baby weight for about 8 months...and now I am ready to take it to the next step!

I finished up breastfeeding a couple of weeks ago. Now that I don't have to worry about eating enough calories to make milk, I feel like I can focus on losing the weight that I want to.

I don't have the time to do hardcore that I have a sweet baby. Diet changes are usually effective for me, but I don't really know enough to make them myself. I felt like I needed something to kick start my journey. That led me to....Advocare.

I have lots of friends who use these products and they get rave reviews. My best friend and personal pharmacy consultant, Brittany, also gave them a thumbs up. So, I am doing their 24 day challenge. I want to share this experience with you. Even though I hate discussing my weight, I am hoping that this information will be helpful to someone else out there.

Days 1-10 of the challenge are a "Cleanse Program." This is a time to cleanse your body of toxins so that you are physically ready to become healthy and lose weight.

Days 11-24 are focused on increasing energy, controlling your appetite, losing weight, and core nutrition.

I did my research before I chose this program. I liked this one because it encourages dietary changes and exercise to enhance your results. I have never been a big fan of only taking pills to lose weight. I know that I need to get into an exercise routine and become a better eater if this weight loss is going to stick. Also, the success others have had are pretty encouraging:)

Planning a menu was a little overwhelming, but Advocare has some great suggestions and menus to get you started. I'll be sharing my meals to give you inspiration for healthy eating as well!

So, today is Day 1.

Breakfast: I started my day with a fiber drink and a banana.

Lunch: I had couscous with veggies and tuna.

Supper: I had a grilled tuna steak, steamed broccoli, and a red potato. The Pioneer Woman inspired my red potato recipe. I boiled them until tender. Then I put them on a cookie sheet covered with olive oil. I smashed the potatoes, brushed olive oil over them, and seasoned them with a little Old Bay seasoning. I baked them at 450 for 25 minutes. Delicious!

I am so excited about this challenge! My friend, Amber, is an Advocare distributor and will be my personal cheerleader over the next 24 days. I am so glad I have this support system. And I'm super excited to share my pounds and inches lost!

Top 10!

1. Hayes hates broccoli. He probably gets it from me. I didn't eat it until my sophomore year of college.

2. Old Bay seasoning rocks my world. Buy some and use it on everything.

3. Ordered some v neck t's for Hayes today. How could I pass up a baby v-neck?

4. This past week was sheer insanity. It felt like a full moon x50. Here's hoping next week is better.

5. Anyone watch Justified on FX? You should. Raylan Givens is the scruffy, country boy, modern day version of Don Draper, kinda. Except he isn't a womanizer. But he could be. Just watch it. I promise Raylan won't disappoint.

6. Speaking of Don Draper, Mad Men starts back this month!

7. We took Hayes to a toy store (not Toys R Us) for this first time this weekend. Elmo was there. Hayes looked at Elmo like he was covered in...broccoli. He did enjoy running all around the store with a toy that we just had to buy...a Oball roller push toy. It gets my seal of approval!

8. Ryan has a birthday this week! Hayes and I can't wait to spoil the best daddy and husband in the world!

9. Today is Day 1 of the 24 day challenge I am doing through Advocare. I will do a separate series of posts about this excitement...Look for the first one later tonight!

10. This week, pray for patience. We could all use a little.

Couscous Veggie Delight!

I love couscous and am always looking for new recipes. This quinoa recipe inspired the couscous dish that I created last night.

Couscous Veggie Delight

3 cups couscous, cooked
1 container cherry tomatoes
(can substitute sundried tomatoes)
olive oil
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1 can corn, drained
1 container feta cheese crumbles
1 1/2 cups spinach, chopped
1/2 cup pesto sauce

If you are roasting your own tomatoes, slice tomatoes in halves or fourths. Toss in olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast in oven at 350 for 45 minutes.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add green onions and saute for a few minutes. Add in couscous and corn and stir until sizzling hot. Add feta crumbles and spinach. Stir until heated. Remove mixture from heat and stir in pesto sauce until couscous is coated. Top with roasted tomatoes. Enjoy this delicious dish!

*If you opt to roast your own tomatoes, set aside extra prep time!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Top 10....Louisiana Edition

1. We have had a wonderful weekend in Louisiana!

2. Brittany was a stunning bride and Kevin was a dashing groom. Their wedding weekend was so special and fun and I am so glad I was a part of it. I love you, Mr. and Mrs. Combel!

3. I also had a blast with some bridesmaids this weekend. Between the hunks, junks, lemon drops, wine, roses, brooches, Mother Goose, high school kids and tough $%@*, we had some great female bonding time!

4. Abita Strawberry... It only comes around once a year. We took advantage of our time in Louisiana and picked some up! So excited!

5. Hayes had a fun 1st birthday, round 2, with his LA family. It was lots of fun to watch him play with Caleb...or to watch them both protect what was rightfully theirs.

6. Hayes got two of my favorite childhood books for his birthday from Nana and Pappy....Make Way for Duckings and Babies. Books make me happy:)

7. We got to spend time with Jeanna and Chris during our short stay in the Red Stick. They have an adorable home, although I wouldn't expect anything less from Jeanna:) We stayed up way too late telling fun stories from our college days and we probably could have stayed up longer if we didn't have to leave early this morning. Thanks for letting us stay and for the delicious waffles this morning!

8. I am now planning a trip to Baton Rouge/New Orleans so Ryan can truly explore the fun and greatness that is southern Louisiana. Anyone want to join in on the fun train?

9. Hayes ate duck gumbo....and loved it. And I finally got some goooood boiled crawfish!

10. Pray for all of those affected by the deadly tornadoes this past week. They hit one day after we traveled through many of those areas and I am thankful we were not in the middle of them.