Posted in Uplifting

We need each other

The day my daughter met her new little brother it was love at first sight. In her mind I had given her a live baby doll to take care of. This love affair continues with them but its more a love/hate relationship now.

The rose color glasses came of for my daughter when her precious little brother decided to have a mind of his own at such a young tender age of only one.  The fights started and never really ended. Even today when we have dinners together as supposed adults the teasing and verbal insults laced with love can and do fly.

I had tried everything from setting timers and letting them hash it out then when the timer stops they had to say at least five nice things about each other. To if fighting continued we would get in a talking circle and pass a talking” oven mitt around ( because if we used a talking stick, why that’s just asking for it) but that would end with them turning and laughing at my expense. I could go on with the creative ways to deal with the arguing and at family dinners we laugh at some of them but one in particular stands out and actually worked more often than not.

I would have them sit on the floor with their backs to each other, lock arms then try to stand. I have to admit that at times I enjoyed watching the struggle and how they learned to work together. Sometimes it took longer for each to cooperate and stand but other times they stood together no problem.

I thought of this and how it parallels with life. I have been so busy with getting my blanket business off and running and my eBooks written plus mix all other normal life activities into my day-to-day that I started feeling stressed. As I had my quite time this morning I remembered I have a God with me always, willing to help, in fact would love to take the pressure of if I only allow him to take it.  Plus I have some awesome people in my life that I could work with and help me to stop struggling.

In todays electronic driven world we can become an island. With becoming an island it bring so many health problems that can be avoided if we just remember to reach out to other. Even just a smile can go such a long way.

We as people were never meant to be alone. Things go smother and happier when accomplished together.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12  (NIV)
9
Two are better than one,
because they have a good return for their labor:
10
If either of them falls down,
one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls
and has no one to help them up.
11
Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.
But how can one keep warm alone?
12
Though one may be overpowered,
two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

Posted in Uncategorized

Bean Taco Salad

Growing up in Phoenix I was used to my mom trying out easy cool dinners for our family. I carry on this tradition by using part of her bean taco salad she would make then added a few things.

This recipe is served as a taco salad bar making it a great way to serve people of various appetites who like to help them selves and socialize.

1 bag of corn chips (low salt)

1 can of black beans

1 can of kidney beans

1 can of pinto beans

Grated cheese

1 small onion ( any will do but I like green or purple onions best in this)

Lettuce chopped (any type works, I enjoy a mix of greens in this)

Tomatoes chopped

Black olives

Cilantro diced

Avocado chopped into bite sized pieces

Light Catalina dressing

To assemble salad:

Place desired amount of corn chips in your bowl, place rest of ingredients on corn chips including Catalina dressing, mix together and enjoy.

 

 

 

 

Posted in Recipes

Vegetarian Pierogie Lasagna

Winter has come back for a quick hello, it made me think of a warm comfort food dish for today.

I didn’t grow up eating pierogies but found out how good they are when I had them home-made as an adult. I love lasagna and enjoy a good pierogie so this a great marriage of the two.

Vegetarian bacon ( made from tofu or  store bought)

6-8 medium Potatoes

9 Lasagna noodles

2 cups of Cheddar Cheese or per your taste

1 small onion or 5 green onions

2-3 cloves of garlic

Milk, Greek yogurt, chives for making the mashed potatoes

 

Wash, peel and cut potatoes, cook them until done. Drain and return potatoes to the pot mash them adding the milk, Greek yogurt, chives and butter. You want them nice and creamy.

While the potatoes are cooking dice onion and garlic, crumble vegetarian bacon in pan. Cook until onion is clear and bacon is done.

In another pot cook lasagna noodles per package directions

To assemble you will need a 13×9 lightly greased pan.

Spread the mashed potatoes on the bottom of pan place cooked lasagna noodles on top of mashed potatoes, spread onion, garlic bacon mixture on the noodle then sprinkle with cheese. Continue layering until last noodle then spread the remainder of the mashed potato on top and sprinkle with cheese.

Bake at 350 for 35-45 minutes

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Recipes

Roasted Chickpea and Beet Pita Pockets

I can’t believe it is June! I enjoy this month so much. All the fruits and vegetables at the farmers markets make it a great time to try new fresh and so very easy recipes, plus it is nice enough to enjoy the summer weather, unlike the dog days of summer.

I have found  I really enjoy roasted beets. I never thought I would like them as much until I tried a fellow bloggers (Cooking with a Wallflower) Roasted Beet and pasta dish.

I combined my new love of roasted beets with roasted chickpea and that is how todays recipe came together.

 

To Roast Beets:

Beets

Coconut oil

Sea salt and pepper to taste

Wash and slice beets, Place clean beets on a cookie sheet that is lined with foil or parchment, this will save your cookie sheet from becoming a beautiful color. Pour coconut oil on them (just enough to coat) then sea salt and pepper.

Bake at 400 for 30-40 minutes

Roasted Chickpea:

1 12oz can of chickpea ( washed and drained)

Turmeric, Curry, Sea salt, pepper and garlic powder per your taste

Coconut or Olive Oil

Place chickpeas on cookie sheet coat with oil add seasoning.

Bake at 400 for about 30 minutes

I roast both together but checking about half way through incase you need to stire the chickpea or flip the beets. While roasting the veggies I make a quick dressing from some hummus.

Hummus dressing:

1/2 cup Hummus

1-2 Tablespoon of diced garlic in oil

1-2 Teaspoon of lemon juice

1 Tablespoon of soy, almond or cashew milk

Mix all together keep refrigerated

I know this might sound like a lot of prep work but its worth it. I like to do it all ahead of time so when I come home and need a fast dinner I just get it all out then assemble the pita pocket, top with hummus dressing and nuts.

Pita bread ( I use flax, oat bran and whole wheat )

Roasted Beets and Chickpeas

Shredded Lettuce ( I like a nice assorted spring mix )

Jicama ( pealed and diced)

Tomato (diced)

Mixed nuts

Hummus dressing

 

 

 

 

Posted in Recipes

Dingo’s Pupsicles

It is Memorial day and some might only think of it as the start to summer. This recipe does help give our pets a nice treat and a great way to cool down but I would like to thank all the soldiers that paid the ultimate price for my freedom.

Dating back to the end of the Civil War. In the spring time people began to show up at the graves of all the soldiers. They would clean them up from winter and pay their respects by leaving flowers, it became a day know as “A day of remembrance” but then in the early seventies it became Memorial day. So thank you to all the men and women who gave their all.

 

First recipe

Peanut butter and banana pupsicle

1 Ripe banana

1-2 Tablespoon of peanut butter

1 Tablespoon of flax-seed ( great for skin and coat)

1-2 Tablespoon of plain low-fat Greek yogurt

Mix all ingredients together, place in a silicone mold then freeze over night. If you do not have a mold then you may scoop small amount of the mixture onto a cookie sheet and freeze over night. After the pupsicles are done place them in a freezer bag.

 

Second Recipe

Peanut butter pupsicle

1/4 cup of peanut butter

1 cup of water

Your choice of the following  safe veggie/fruit for dogs:

Pumpkin, sweet potato or apples

Ice cube trays

Cut and peel your veggie or fruit that you chose. Mix peanut butter and water together.

Put the cut up veggie/fruit on the bottom of ice-cube trays, pour peanut butter water over. Place in freezer until frozen. When frozen place your pupsicle in a freezer bag.

 

 

Posted in Uplifting

Undercover Boss

This past Saturday I wanted nothing more than to eat pizza and binge watch Gilmore Girls. This is a little unusual for me, don’t get me wrong I love the show but for me to sit that long just watching TV is not something I normally do or enjoy.

I turned on my Netflix but it wouldn’t load, after trying it a few times and not being tech savvy or having patience for technology I gave up and looked at what was on TV. I found an undercover boss marathon.

I haven’t watched it much but it seemed ok for someone who just wanted to be a couch potato. I enjoyed it but always wanted to know how most people couldn’t see past the disguise, from the few I watched only two people saw through the disguise. Besides bad wig jobs it was interesting to see the CEO work menial labor and interact with those that worked for them. You could see the happiness in the CEO’s eyes when they worked with people who cared about their job and just as interesting to watch were those interactions with people who did not like their job and could have cared less. I noticed even with people who didn’t have the best out look or work ethic the CEO would still try to work with them to see if they could or would do better.

In the end I would get a little teary as the good hard-working people got a reward and of course I also got to see the few that were not so hard-working get talked to or let go.

As I went to bed from a wild night of undercover boss I thought how very much Jesus was like that on earth. He came in a disguise not as the “CEO” that he was but as an ordinary person no frills just hard-working and showing love were he went and taught us by his actions how to live and treat others. Only a few saw past the disguise.

In the end he will reveal who he is, will we be the ones getting the reward or the deadbeats that don’t.

 

“The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”

2 Peter 3:9

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Recipes

French bread Pizza

I might have used all my energy early on Saturday making dog treats for my girl ( see the recipe of Dee’s pumpkin cookie recipe on my blog) or maybe I was just feeling lazy because of my allergies that were reminding me of all that was in full bloom but when it came to dinner that night I didn’t want to cook and I didn’t want to spend the money ordering out so I used up what I had.

I had French bread that needed used up plus cheese and few other things that are not healthy but are tasty and sometimes with in reason are so good to just have for dinner.

I came up with this recipe as a way to have pizza and use up what I had on hand.

1 loaf of French bread

1 small can of tomato sauce

Cream cheese

Pesto

Fresh basil, parsley and oregano

Grated cheese ( any you have will do but I used provolone, cheddar and mozzarella )

Any toppings you like or have on hand will do.

 

I used up my jalapeno peppers sliced, pineapple and fresh spinach.  I think Jalapeno and pineapple work well together because you get the sweet and spicy.

Now to assemble the pizza

Slice French bread length wise, spread the cream cheese on both halves like you butter toast. Next spread pesto on top of the cream cheese then add the tomato sauce fresh herbs, sprinkle with cheese, your toppings and more fresh herbs.

Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes

 

 

 

Posted in Recipes

Dee’s Pumpkin Cookie

IMG_20170520_093631864

I should explain that Dee also known as Dingo is my one and only baby girl who just happens to be my dog but to me she is family.

I am always looking for healthy treats to make for her and if you look on the web like I have there are no lack of recipes for dog treats. I have combined those I found and catered them more to her taste and what vegetarians say are good for dogs.

Dee loves carrots and pumpkin so in this recipe I have combined them.

 

1 can of pumpkin puree

2 cups whole wheat flour

1/4 cup of oats

1/4 cup of shredded carrots

1-2 Tablespoon of peanut butter

1 egg

A pinch of cinnamon

Mix the above ingredients, place balls on ungreased cookie sheet press down with fork to make a design.

Bake at 400 for 30-35 minutes

I also just roll and press them in my hand to form desired shapes or you may like to roll them out and use any cookie cuter shape you prefer.

 

Posted in Uplifting

When Ordinary becomes Exceptional

A brief definition of ordinary according to the dictionary is “Having no special ability, quality, or purpose.”

I know this might sound as if I have low self-esteem when I say that I have always thought of myself as ordinary but just stick with me for a moment. I am not what you call unattractive but defiantly not beautiful. I have always had a problem keeping weight on, no major muscle tone but still a small amount of muscle. I have average intelligence although on some days I question if perhaps its a little below. I can be crafty but nothing Pinterest worthy, I can sketch but nothing to sell and the list can go on.

For years this drove me nuts, I wanted to be the best.  I was the over achiever, I studied harder to get that 4.0 or when I ran I had to beat my own time. When I became a wife and mom I had to be and do everything.  I became almost obsessive you might say, that anything I did I wanted to go above and beyond almost to prove I was anything but ordinary. It’s no small wonder my husband left me, yes he had his demons but looking back how exhausting to live that way.

I continued that “I must be the best attitude” for so long and if I did not achieve being perfect I would bail or almost kill myself trying to do and be all things. I have hurt people I love with this way of living and burnt my candle out at both ends. I had to learn that ordinary does not equal failure.

“Those who dare to fail miserably can achieve greatly” John F Kennedy

True to perfectionist form I didn’t just fail but I did so miserably but I am so glad I did because now I can achieve greatly.

Isaiah 64:8 “Yet you, Lord are our father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are the work of you hand.

I may be an ordinary gray clay pot nothing to extravagant with design or color but I am exeptional, unique and so loved by my creator.

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Recipes

Eggplant and Lentils

When I find new recipes for eggplant and lentils to try it is always fun. I also enjoy making my own up or combing them. Sometimes it works and then there are other times when its a lesson.

Over the weekend I made eggplant and lentils with so much left over I could have fed a small village, even though I was just cooking for my self it turned out so good I thought I would share what I did today.

I used red/yellow lentils but its your preference or like me what you have on hand always works.

1 Eggplant

1-2 cups of Lentils cooked

1 cup of Veggie broth

1/2 – 1 cup of plain Greek Yogurt

1 Tomato

2-3 Garlic cloves

1-2 Tablespoon of coconut oil

The following seasoning per your taste

Turmeric, Curry powder, Red Pepper flakes, Cumin powder, Salt and Black Pepper

 

To cook the lentils. Wash them well then add twice the amount of water, cinnamon stick, sage and bay leaf. Cook for about 20-30 minutes.

While lentils are cooking cut up eggplant and sprinkle with salt and Turmeric and set aside until lentils are done.

When lentils are done pour them into a bowel then in the pan add coconut oil sauté garlic and eggplant( no need to wash the salt and turmeric off, it gives it great flavor). While sautéing the eggplant mix the veggie broth and Greek Yogurt. When eggplant is almost done add cut up tomato, lentils to pan then veggie broth mixture and seasoning. cook together only a few minutes more.

I serve this over rice for a complete meal that is a healthy dish but still gives that comfort food feel.