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I have been asked to cook for a local family. Yes, can you say “Dream Job!” I am so excited. Every week, I am going to spend an entire day at their home and cook them all their meals for the week. Have I done this before? Nope. Did I go to the culinary? Nope.

Do I love to cook? Oh yes. I also love to challenge myself and try something new. I am going for it.

It is so easy to get stuck in a routine. Overtime, you may get bored. I challenge you to challenge yourself. Try something new. Take a moment to think about one thing you could do to challenge yourself. Maybe that one thing could be getting in the kitchen making dinner for your family. Try out this easy recipe.

Lemon Broccoli Chicken over Angel Hair

Ingredients:

2 Tbsp Flour, whole wheat

½ tsp Salt, table, divided

¼ tsp Pepper, black, freshly ground

1 lb chicken breast, boneless, cut into strips

2 tsp coconut oil

3 cup(s) Chicken, broth, fat free, reduced-sodium, divided

2 tsp minced garlic

2½ cup(s) Broccoli, uncooked, small florets

zest of one lemon

4 Tbsp Parsley, fresh, chopped

2 Tbsp Juice, lemon, fresh

Directions:
1. On a plate, combine 1 1/2 tablespoons of flour, 1/4 teaspoon of salt and pepper; add chicken and turn to coat.
2. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook, turning as needed, until lightly browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes; remove to a plate.
3. Put 1 cup of broth and garlic in same skillet; bring to a boil over high heat, scrapping up browned bits from bottom of pan with a wooden spoon. Add broccoli; cover and cook 1 minute.
4. In a small cup, stir together remaining 2 cup of broth, 1 tablespoon of flour and 1/2 teaspoon of salt; add to skillet and bring to a simmer over low heat.
5. Cover and cook until broccoli is crisp-tender and sauce is slightly thickened, about 1 1/2 minutes. Stir in chicken and lemon zest; heat through.
6. Remove skillet from heat and stir in parsley and lemon juice; toss to coat.  Serve over angel hair pasta.

Recipe adapted from Weight Watchers.

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Top 5 ways to enjoy the now

by Betsy on April 8, 2014

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I have been nursing my Juliana Rose for over 17 months. Yes, 17 months. It is hard to come to terms with our kiddos growing up and not needing us the same way they did before. As much as nursing can be hard, demanding, time consuming and downright exhausting at times… it is wonderfully amazing and I am sad to know that this point in our lives is coming to an end soon.

Somedays, I am so ready to be done nursing. Done with on-demand nursing sessions. Done with nursing bras. Done with feeling like I am the only one who can comfort her. I know, totally selfish. Most of the time, though, I don’t want this time in my life to be gone. Juliana may very well be my last baby so I really try to enjoy it all.

I know that I am going to miss this stage of motherhood but I welcome the future. I am learning to embrace the fact that my kids are growing up. Madilyn will be going to school in the fall. Life is changing. We are growing. We are evolving. Instead of being sad, I am smiling and enjoying the change.

To my sweet Madilyn. In a few short months, I will no longer spend every day with you. You will be at school learning, growing, experiencing new people, new situations, new environments. I pray that you have fun, that you learn, that you know that mommy is always here for you. I will have a yummy snack waiting for you when you get home from preschool. I love you sweet girl.

To my baby girl, Juliana. I can feel our nursing sessions coming to an end someday soon. I have loved this experience with you and I am so proud of us. Sure, this experience will be changing but I look forward to what the future holds. I love you baby girl. 

Lately, I have really been enjoying motherhood. My girls are both sleeping great. I am getting time at the gym. I am cooking a lot. Life is good. Gratitude. My mom says it is time for #3. Hmmmm… not sure about that one. The hubs is staying strong that we are “done” for two kiddos. 

Below are my top 5 ways to enjoy the now:

1. Start your morning right. Instead of jumping right on your iPhone and checking FB statuses, do something that connects you to the real world. Make a cup of tea and stretch. Do yoga. Make a real breakfast. Let your kids cuddle with you in bed so you can catch a few more minutes of shut eye.

2. Take your pictures then put your camera away. Sure, take lots of pics but then put your phone away. Nothing is a bigger distraction from the present than constantly looking on your phone.

3. Embrace change. Knowing that life can change and will change, helps us all enjoy the now.

4. Be thankful for it all. Yes, thankful for the messy playroom, the sticky fingers on the sliding glass door, the spilled milk and the lack of sleep.

5. Get in the kitchen and create something. Cook dinner for your family. Get your kids in the kitchen with you. Make these easy breakfast squares for everyone to enjoy.

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Peanut Butter Quinoa Squares

Ingredients:

1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce

1 banana, mashed

1/2 teaspoon real vanilla

1 egg

1/3 cup plain, unsweetened peanut butter

1/4 cup real maple syrup

1 cup cooked quinoa (1/3 cup dry)

1 cup oats

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 tablespoon ground flaxseed

1/3 cup dried fruit, chopped

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Combine applesauce, banana, vanilla, egg, peanut butter and maple syrup in a bowl. Mix well. Add the rest of the ingredients and continue to mix. Spray an 8″ X 8″ baking pan with cooking spray. Pour mixture into baking pan. Bake for 20 minutes. Cool and cut into squares. Refrigerate.

Could you use some support in motherhood? Want to tackle some of the biggest stressors? Sign up for Mama Sanity Group Study. We start April 21st. 

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Healthy version of Friday Fish Fry

April 1, 2014

Fish Fry’s are available all over the place this time of year. Right now, we are in the middle of Lent – which is the time leading up to Easter Sunday. Us Catholics love Fish Fry’s on Friday nights! Fish Fry’s not only help raise money for the church, they give church members an opportunity […]

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Mama Sanity Group Study. April 2014.

March 28, 2014

When: April 21st – May 2nd (we will take the weekend off) Where: Online via email and Facebook. Plus, calls on the telephone. Who: Group limited to 15 mamas.  Cost: $75 I don’t know about you, but I am sad thinking about Mama Sanity Bootcamp being over! I have decided to keep the magic alive. […]

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Mama Sanity Bootcamp Giveaway

March 16, 2014

One lucky mama will win all 10 amazing giveaways! Enter below. The more you enter the better chance you have to win. a Rafflecopter giveaway Day 1 – A copy of Andrea Beaman‘s 3 cookbooks Day 2 – A custom made chemise from Eden Gray Day 3 – Natural skin care products from Nardo’s Naturals Day 4 – A […]

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Top 5 tips to be a more patient mama

March 12, 2014

We complicate motherhood. We complicate life. Motherhood has challenged my patience more than anything else in my life. If you are like me, I bet you have tried a million things to be more patient with your self and with your kiddos. Whew, I have tried it all. What I have realized is that it all […]

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My love hate relationship with caffeine plus a Teeccino herbal coffee giveaway

March 4, 2014

The other day, I drank a full cup of caffeine coffee and I had the headache of my life afterwards. This migraine shook me to my core. It lasted for hours. It affected my vision. I was nauseous.  I was once again reminded that caffeine and I do not get along so well. Not well […]

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Top 7 ways to stop feeling defeated, mama.

February 25, 2014

I am hard on myself as a mama. Oh yes, I am. I compare myself to other women. To other mothers. Sometimes, I can’t stand my post-two-kids belly. Sometimes, I am jealous of my friends who don’t have kiddos who get to go out on the weekends and even get to use the restroom by […]

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Mama, you are not alone (plus win 2 tickets to the Pittsburgh Parenting Expo)

February 18, 2014

Mama, you are not alone. Oh no, my dear. You are so not alone in this motherhood thing. Somedays, I feel alone. It’s hard to understand how a mama can feel so alone when she is with her kiddos all day long. However, it is a real feeling. It gets better. It gets better when […]

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Iced Almond Coconut Valentine Cookies

February 11, 2014

This morning, we signed up our 4-year old daughter, Madilyn, for preschool in the fall. Damn. I really can’t believe it. Last night, I watched her so meticulously help me press down the heart shaped cookie cutter in our Valentine’s Day cookie dough after she begged me to stay up past her bedtime. I caved […]

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