Posted in Uplifting

Jenga

I am sure every one has heard if not played the game of Jenga. Incase you haven’t it is a game of wooden blocks. You place the blocks in a tower formation then each person takes turns removing the bottom block and putting it on top and as you can guess after some time it becomes a wobbly tower that eventually falls crashing down.

I have played this with my children when they were small and enjoyed it. Sometimes we would make up our own rules other times it was by the book. Either way it would go we would start out on the right track but at some point our tower would look like it belonged in Pisa. Our hearts would beat fast and hopes none of the blocks would come crashing done on our turn.

I was thinking of this game and reflecting on how my life can be like a big Jenga game.

I can start out putting God the first block on top. Everything is stable and going well but as life has it I then start pulling more “blocks” of life from the bottom and replace the top block with my priories and the busyness of life just keep going, block after block until my tower is so unstable my heart will race and I will start to have fear of it all coming crashing down on me. If I don’t take head to these feeling my tower crashes and I am left with pieces of what was my life.

I am learning and sometimes ever so slowly not to have my blocks of life a Jenga game but instead more like the quite but can be fun blocks of a Lincoln Logs set.

Posted in Uncategorized

Quinoa Cucumber Salad

IMG_20170707_171038364

If you are like me and are having a hard time eating lately due to the hot weather you should try todays recipe. It doesn’t take long plus not a lot of cooking is required so you can stay cool as well.

I had red quinoa, steak tomatoes and an American cucumber but you can add any kind of quinoa, tomatoes or cucumber that you prefer, the sky’s the limits. You may want to increase the amounts as well if you are making this for a large group.

1 Cup of cooled quinoa ( if you don’t have any already cooked and in the refrigerator then go ahead and cook some for this recipe and after if is cooked put it in your freezer to cool it quickly while you do the prep work.)

1 medium cucumber cut in bite sized pieces and if you prefer peeled

1 large Tomato cut in bite sized pieces

4-5 green onions diced

4-5 cloves of garlic diced

1 Tablespoon of olive oil

1 Tablespoon of balsamic vinegar

1 1/2 Teaspoons of lemon juice

1 1/2 Teaspoons of lime juice (if you do not have lime juice you may use 1 tablespoon of lemon juice)

The following per you taste Salt, Pepper, Parsley and Oregano ( if you have fresh herbs even better but dried works fine.)

Mix the above ingredients together in a bowl serve and enjoy. This can be done ahead of time if you wish or taken to you next BBQ.

 

Posted in Recipes

Watermelon Juice Drink

Todays recipe is one that I did not come up with but instead being up late and on Pinterest paid off big time.

I stumbled across this great drink and would like to thank Alyssa at “my sequined life” for sharing.

To say that watermelon is one of my favorite fruits is putting it mildly. I love this wonderful summer fruit so this drink not only showcases it in a great way but can be done with out a juicer.

If you are like me and buy watermelon with seeds then it is a little time-consuming picking them out but oh so worth it.

 

Watermelon, Orange, Ginger, Turmeric Juice:

7 Cups of Watermelon

18 oz. Orange juice

3 knob Ginger, root

3/4 Teaspoons of Turmeric

After peeling and cutting up watermelon and ginger add to blender and blend then add the turmeric and orange juice until all ingredients are blended.

Serve over ice and enjoy. Not only is this a great cool summer drink but the health benefits from all the ingredients will be great for you too.

 

 

.

 

Posted in Recipes

Chilled Cucumber Soup and Chickpea Sandwiches

Todays recipe is another one to keep you cool and it is perfect when your appetite is a little smaller because of the hot weather. I grew up eating this with a nice egg salad sandwich but sometimes change it up to chickpeas for protein.

I love the fact that I can make this first thing in the morning and let set in the refrigerator all day waiting for me to come home and just set it out then eat.

Based on your family size you may need to add or decrease the amounts but for a nice summer meal it’s great.

Chilled Cucumber Soup:

1 quart of buttermilk

1-2 medium cucumbers ( depends on size and how chunky you would like your soup)

Hand full of Green onions or 1 small purple onion

Fresh ground pepper to taste (I like to add “garlic pepper seasoning grinder” by McCormick)

Peel cucumber, chop green onions, grate cucumber and if using purple onion grate this as well. In container add grated cucumber and onion, pour in buttermilk add seasoning. Chill for the entire day. Best if served in chilled bowls.

Chickpea Sandwiches:

1 Can of chickpeas washed and drained

Mustard, olive oil mayo ( vegan mayo)

Salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste

Bread of your choice

Pour chickpeas into dish, mash with a fork then add the mustard and mayo enough to make a tasty paste ( think consistency of egg salad ) now season to taste. Refrigerate the when ready make into sandwiches. This will keep well for a few days in the refrigerator.

 

 

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