43 / 52 : “New Year”

Happy New Year! I hope it is a happy one. I can’t believe what a different place I am in this year compared to last year. In almost every way. I praise God for bringing me out of all the suffering and confusion of disease. I am so excited to see what this year will bring for me and my family. I don’t do superstitious things or make “new year’s resolutions,” I am always just glad to begin anew and refreshed. I thought for this week I would collage…a new me.

43 / 52 : “New Year”

New Year

I am very proud to say that after 2 babies and some VERY nasty medicine for a year…I am back to my college size. I fit into my “skinny jeans” HELLO! I even bought a pair of pink corduroys….haha. I just need to do a little more shopping so I can stop tying and duct taping my clothes on. 😉 Not complaining…AT ALL. I even got a new haircut.

I hope that everyone has a wonderful, healthy, surprising NEW YEAR! God bless.

Garden Additions

This week we added a couple new containers to our garden. The kids and I picked up two new plants I had been looking for from our local Farmer’s Market last weekend. I am very excited about these two. I think next year we will do all our plant choosing from the Farmer’s Market in Colonial – organic and beautiful!

Zucchini – one of my absolute favorites

Bush Cucumber – interested to see how this grows

17 / 52 : “Green Thumb”

This portrait is a part of me that I hope will flourish this year. I do not know much about plants or gardening…but here’s to this year’s harvest! My husband built us these fantastic planter boxes for our little patio and did the heavy lifting and planting for this year’s attempt at vegetables. Last year did not go so well, but this time we are much better prepared and I think our little garden looks pretty!

17 / 52 : “Green Thumb”

We have yellow squash, tomatoes, and a few varieties of peppers. Last year was a  sad time in the garden with almost no veggies to harvest. This year, so far, the plants look pretty happy. They have only been planted about 5 days and are already growing. If I can grow something then anyone can! Seriously.

I am already stockpiling my recipes in hopes for some yummy fresh vegetables from our garden to fill them. Last year the only plants that gave us a few chances to make some recipes were our banana peppers. There were some yummy times; hoping for more chances and variety this year.

We had such a fun family time outside gardening. The kids loved helping with the dirt and plants…maybe their special touch will help our garden grow!

Wednesday’s Word #22

The funny thing about the word this week (besides the fact that Wednesday’s Word is on Thursday) is, it was one word, then as I began to write, it became another. My week had been going really well, things had been changing for the better, a few things got a little easier – the word was going to be a light and positive word. Instead, Wednesday was so strange, confusing and tired – so tiring I couldn’t even put two sentences together. New word:

“MUDDLE”

verb: to mix up in a confused or bungling manner; jumble; to cause to become mentally confused

synonyms: confuse, botch, bungle, spoil (dictionary.com)

I hate when things start to flow – get on the right track – then, WHAM. I have been in such a valley for so long it was relieving to finally feel a slight upward motion. It’s not that I’ve gone back downhill, just tripped over a rock. Jumbled.

To be clear, Wednesday was my dentist appointment…among other things. I hadn’t been in a while because of moving around so many times recently. I knew I was having a few issues, but sheesh….because of some medicines I am currently taking, boy do I have a FEW issues. Not what I expected. It just messed my mind up thinking about more dentist appointments in the near future…boooooo!

If you haven’t been to the dentist in a while, make an appointment now! Don’t let things go unchecked, you will just end up with more problems – or worse problems. If I can do it, you can do it.

Don’t let your mind become “muddled” or clouded with confusion. Stay focused on that upward climb, even if you trip over rocks on the way or stumble on a slide of pebbles. Remember who is the true Rock who will uplift you and not make you stumble: “Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.” Psalm 62:6

11 / 52 : “Shoe-Shoes”

This photo is a self portrait for several different reasons this week. To me, it represents: family time, Springtime, being active, local fun, and mine and my daughter’s love of all kinds of shoes! 😉

11 / 52 : “Shoe-Shoes”

This was taken at our first family trip to Busch Gardens today. These are mine and my sweet daughter’s feet. We are both wearing our walking shoes – which she refers to any shoe as a “shoe-shoe.”

Busch is open, which means Spring is here! We were so excited to get out there and walk the park, or in my daughter’s case, stroller the park. My son couldn’t wait to get on some rides with his Daddy. Unfortunately, about half way through our park time it started to rain, so walking out the last half of the park we all got soaked instead of enjoying the warm relaxing weather. We will try again soon!

It feels so good to get out there and walk again. I love walking. I love that we live in a city with so many opportunities to get out there and walk. For me right now, it is the best form of exercise. Colonial, Busch, Jamestown, outside malls, outlets, parks…we live in such a historical, beautiful area that allows us places to get out there as a family, spend time and be active.

For Dinner

Thought I would share a bit of yummy. A sort of unspoken “new year’s resolution” of mine was to be more creative in the kitchen. I didn’t really plan on it, but it has happened and I am having a lot of fun drowning in all kinds of recipes. I find them in magazines, pinterest, email, blogs, websites, word of mouth, etc… love all kinds of recipes! Usually, I make at least one or two new meals a week. It has made dinners fun, well, maybe not for my picky children…haha…

My favorite type of recipe is one that does not have a lot of rare/uncommon ingredients, simple directions, fresh ingredients and one that offers substitutions and options. I found my dinner recipe off of the Kraft Foods website. Their recipes rarely fail me and they usually uphold all of my qualifications for a “good recipe.”

I provided the link to the recipe above, but I tweaked it a tiny bit, so here is what I made for dinner tonight:

Broccoli & Cheddar Quiche

  • 1 1/2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped fresh broccoli
  • 1 1/4 cups chopped vidalia onion
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/3 cup light mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup skim milk
  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 frozen deep-dish pie crust (9-in)

Heat oven to 375.

Cook vegetables in skillet sprayed with cooking spray on medium heat for 5 minutes or until crisp-tender, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat.

Beat eggs, mayonnaise, and milk in a medium bowl with a whisk until well blended. Stir in vegetable mixture and cheese; pour into pie crust. Place on a baking sheet.

Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until center of quiche is set and top is golden brown. Let stand 10 minutes before slicing to serve.

Hello YUM! I was so excited because it actually cooked properly and tasted fantastic! Things I make for the first time don’t always come out cooked the way they should…but this did! I love finding and making really good meatless meals. This is only a semi-healthy meal, but it was tasty! Try and enjoy if you’d like 🙂

 

Crock Pot Recipe

Here is the recipe I tried out last night, if anyone is interested. I originally found it on Pinterest through another blogger (www.skinnytaste.com). Now, I don’t know if I have some sort of super crock pot, but most recipes I try out in it usually take about half the time they are supposed to. So for me, the recipe took about 3 1/2 hours, but I was able to use the “keep warm” function to not let it overcook until dinner time. I served it over brown rice and it was really good!

Crock Pot Santa Fe Chicken

  • 24 oz (1 1/2) lbs chicken breast
  • 14.4 oz can diced tomatoes with mild green chilies
  • 15 oz can black beans
  • 8 oz frozen corn
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 14.4 oz can fat free chicken broth
  • 3 scallions, chopped
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper (to taste)
  • salt to taste

Combine tomatoes, beans, corn, cilantro, chicken broth, scallions, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, cayenne pepper and salt in the crock pot.
Season chicken breast with salt and lay on top.
Cook on low for 10 hours or on high for 6 hours. Half hour before serving, remove chicken and shred.
Return chicken to slow cooker and stir in.
Adjust
 salt and seasoning.
Serve over rice.