Adulting, parenting and cooking. Lots and lots of cooking.

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Finding a Focus for my Blog After a Five Year Break

Finding a Focus for my Blog After a Five Year Break

I came back to the blogosphere a few months ago after taking a break from writing for about five years. When I started blogging Chase was  in elementary school, I stayed home while Grant worked all day and I loved being a mommy blogger because […]

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Spicy Thai Pork and Beef Lettuce Cups

Spicy Thai Pork and Beef Lettuce Cups

I really love this recipe for Spicy Thai Pork and Beef Lettuce Cups because Chase usually helps me when I cook this. This recipe was inspired by a recipe that I saw Gordon Ramsey  make on some show on BBC. Of course I didn’t write it […]

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How to Make Fresh Chunky Guacamole Dip

How to Make Fresh Chunky Guacamole Dip

This fresh, chunky guacamole dip recipe is Grant’s favorite. He asked me to make real guacamole one night after going to a mexican restaurant so I started  working on a fresh, flavorful recipe with big chunky vegetables. I always find ways to get Chase and Grant to eat more vegetables so I have some kind of chopped veggies hidden in almost all of my healthier recipes.

Jalapeno seeds and white part.
jalapeno seeds and white part

 

 

It has a little kick so if you don’t want it to be super spicy you’ll need to take the seeds and the white part out of the inside of the jalapeno because that’s where the heat comes from. There is still a bit of spice from the oil in the peppers but it’s not enough to burn your mouth like the seeds do.

Ingredients

4 peeled avocados
4 diced roma tomatoes
1 diced medium onion
large diced jalapeno
3 diced cloves of garlic
juice from one lime
sea salt
pepper
1 tsp. cumin
3 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro

fresh guacamole ingredients
fresh guacamole ingredients

How To

First cut the avocados in half and remove the skin.

Add them to a bowl and season well with salt and pepper.

Next add the jalapeno. If you want spicy guacamole chop up the jalapeno with the seeds and white part. if you want to make the guacamole mild you can remove the seeds and the white vein inside the pepper and only dice the green part of the pepper.

Add the chopped onion and garlic and add more salt.

Use a fork to mix everything together and smash the avocado halves. This is a super chunky recipe so don’t use any kind of masher. All you need is a fork to smoosh the avocado and mix everything together.

Guacamole Ingredients
Guacamole Ingredients

 

Add the chopped cilantro, cumin and lime juice last. Make sure you taste it after you add everything together. Sometimes I add a little more salt and lime juice.

 

 

I’ve spent a lot of time working on this recipe and everyone loves it! Here’s the printable recipe for How to Make Fresh Chunky Guacamole Dip.

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How to Make Fresh Chunky Guacamole
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dip
Cuisine: Mexican
Serves: 2-3 cups
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. First cut the avocados in half and remove the skin.
  2. Add them to a bowl and season well with salt and pepper.
  3. Next add the jalapeno. If you want spicy guacamole chop up the jalapeno with the seeds and white part. if you want to make the guacamole mild you can remove the seeds and the white vein inside the pepper and only dice the green part of the pepper.
  4. Add the chopped onion and garlic and add more salt.
  5. Use a fork to mix everything together and smash the avocado halves. This is a super chunky recipe so don't use any kind of masher. All you need is a fork to smoosh the avocado and mix everything together.
  6. Add the chopped cilantro, cumin and lime juice last. Make sure you taste it after you add everything together. Sometimes I add a little more salt and lime juice.

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Spicy Turkey Chili Frito Pie Recipe

Spicy Turkey Chili Frito Pie Recipe

I saw the traditional recipe for mexican chili frito pie for the first time while watching Food Network a few years ago. I never cooked chili but I love to make chicken tortilla soup and the similarity in the two recipes inspired me to create my […]

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Best Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe Ever

Best Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe Ever

I think that this is the best chicken tortilla soup recipe ever! This is another one of my top ten recipes, along with my spicy turkey frito chili pie. The recipe is simple but the end result is delicious. Chicken tortilla soup is my favorite so […]

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How to lose weight without working out

How to lose weight without working out

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To start to lose weight without working out there were five main things  that I did. Before I give you the list, you should know that I’ve struggled with my weight since I was a teenager. It has always been up and down and I’ve  worn every size from a 5 to  an 18! I’m not even five feet tall so when I had to buy jeans that were plus sized  I was super embarrassed and mad at myself for not taking control of my weight. That was when I finally decided that I would make some changes. I was very unhealthy and really couldn’t handle working out because of my high blood pressure. I also found out that I have PCOS and hypothyroidism. Both of these conditions make it extremely hard to lose weight – especially around the midsection due to the PCOS.




I was shocked when my doctor told me that I wouldn’t be able to lose the weight without surgery. I was definitely way over my ideal weight, but seriously, it’s not like I was morbidly obese! I found a new doctor that encouraged me to start to make healthier choices and prescribed medication for my blood pressure, thyroid issue and PCOS.  It was hard in the beginning but I lost the first 25 pounds without actually working out. Over the past few years I’ve made many  lifestyle changes  and I’ve lost forty pounds through diet and exercise despite being told that I couldn’t do it without surgery. I started by making small changes to lose some weight and get my blood pressure under control so that I was healthy enough to work out.

I wanted to share the things I did to begin to lose weight without working out to hopefully encourage someone else that is ready to make some healthy changes. Of course I’m not a doctor so I’m sharing my story to inspire and motivate, not to offer medical advice. Believe me, all of the little changes add up to big results so just start doing whatever you can and push yourself a little harder each day. Here is the list of the five major things I did to get started on my weight loss journey.

 1. Change your diet.

The most important thing that I did to start losing weight without working out was changing my diet. I met with a nutritionist and started to keep track of the calories I was consuming. I tried to stay between 1300 and 1400 each day. Starving yourself and eating less than 1200 calories is not going to help you lose weight so don’t do it!

Eat your food slowly and really enjoy it, don’t rush through your meal. Being from the south I grew up eating my grandma’s fried pork chops and huge portions of biscuits and gravy with my mama’s crazy, super, sugar-filled sweet tea. I had to learn proper portion sizes and cut out high calorie sweets and fried food. I also added more fruits and vegetables to all of my meals and ate one or two meatless meals each week. The Guide to Portion Control for Weight Loss slide show on the Mayo Clinic website has super helpful examples of how big a portion should be with comparisons to items we’re all familiar with.

A lot of healthy food is low in calories so you can eat a ton of it. Fill up on fresh veggies and fruit. Keep in mind that you need to read food labels. Packaging can be very deceiving so read the nutrition labels, not just the front of the boxes. Protein and fiber help to keep you satiated so grilled chicken, eggs and beans are healthy choices that will keep you feeling full longer and you can use protein shakes between meals if you’re feeling hungry. I use the Nature’s Bounty Protein and Vitamin Shake mix because it actually tastes really good, it’s formulated for women and it’s got probiotics and prebiotics. If you usually skip breakfast you should try drinking a protein shake in the morning. Breakfast really is important because it gets your metabolism started which burns calories throughout the day.

2. Keep a food diary.

Having a food diary is really helpful when you’re trying to lose weight because it will help you to see how many calories are in the different foods that you’re eating. I use the free My Fitness Pal nutrition facts search. You will be surprised at how quickly the calorie count number goes up. By keeping a journal you can see any patterns or triggers that happen throughout the week  to make you crave junk  food or eat too much. Make notes of the times that you eat and how you were feeling. Seeing it written made  a  huge difference for me because I was snacking a lot at night and not realizing how many calories I was really consuming in a day.

Of course I knew that there were a lot of calories in fried chicken tenders and french fries but writing down 1000 calories for just one meal really opened my eyes to how important it is to make healthier choices. I’m an emotional eater, so I have to be mindful if I’m feeling down or stressed and find ways to distract myself when I start to crave skittles and gummy bears because I’m freaking out about how I’m going to finish everything I have to do by the end of the week.

3. Drink lots of water.

When I started making my healthy changes I had to give up drinking soda all day. Diet Pepsi is my favorite but it’s got caffeine and artificial sweeteners and it’s just not good for you. (But I do love it!) I started drinking water all day and only having soda at dinner and I really started to feel better. I drink a glass of water with lemon in the morning to give my body a fresh start for the day and then I add lime or berries to infuser water bottles throughout the day. You can also drink tea. I like green tea because it has EGCG that can help you burn fat or black tea which has natural caffeine for a little boost of energy. Try to avoid drink your calories, unless you’re using protein or meal replacement shakes. If you’re feeling hungry in the middle of the day try drinking a big glass of water before you grab a snack. Often times we’re actually just thirsty when we feel that we are hungry – it sounds crazy, but it really is true. It’s also helpful to drink a glass of water before you eat a meal so that you don’t over eat.

4. Move more.

It’s easy to add more steps to your day and be more active. Park further away from the stores that you shop at, walk down every aisle of the store (even if you don’t need anything from those sections). You’re not working out but you’re still being more active. You can use a pedometer or download apps on your phone to keep track of your steps, how many calories you’ve burned and notify you if you’ve been inactive for too long. I walk around my house while I read books, do lunges in the kitchen while I cook and do a few relaxing yoga moves before I go to bed at night.

5. Set small, weekly goals.

It feels good to reach a goal so making small, attainable goals gives your confidence a boost and motivates you to keep going and trying harder each week. Push yourself to add 100  more steps to  each day for a week, take a 15 minute walk after dinner every day or make it your goal to learn to cook three new healthy recipes for dinner. Set your own goals and don’t compare yourself or your progress to anyone else’s. This is about you creating healthy habits to start your weight lose journey. As long as you’re consistent it will pay off so don’t let anything or anyone discourage you.

Add the image below to your Inspiration, Motivation or Quote board on Pinterest.

Arthur Ashe Quote
Arthur Ashe quote

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Healthier Broccoli Salad with Bacon and Cheddar Cheese

Healthier Broccoli Salad with Bacon and Cheddar Cheese

I’ve had broccoli salad a few different ways at different restaurants so I decided to make it a little healthier while still including all of the things that I love about broccoli salad, like bacon and cheddar cheese. Notice I said healthier, not healthy! This is […]

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How to Make Sugared Cranberries

How to Make Sugared Cranberries

I made my first cheesecake from scratch this Thanksgiving and it turned out amazingly! It was beautiful and delicious and everyone loved it so I felt proud considering I had never made one before. I wanted it to be special since it was for the […]

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