Frozen Yogurt Pops

Frozen Yogurt Pops - Blueberry or orange from the 100 Days of Real Food Cookbook! They are so good!

Homemade Popsicles are a favorite in our house! They make the perfect sized afternoon snack (even breakfast at times) for my 3 year old. I typically don’t use a recipe, but instead just dump things in the blender and let it whirl away.

A couple weeks ago I talked about one of my new favorite cookbooks, 100 Days of Read Food (you can buy the book on Amazonaffiliate link). The post got long enough I didn’t have a chance to share one of the recipes I tried from it.

Frozen Yogurt Pops - Blueberry or orange from the 100 Days of Real Food Cookbook! They are so good!

My daughter chose what we would make first. She selected these Frozen Yogurt Pops. No Surprise considering she loves the color purple. She helped measure the ingredients, dump them in the blender, and hold the button down. Definitely an easy recipe for the young chef.

This is a snapshot of what a page looks like in the book (there is also a picture that goes with the recipe, such as the one on the top of this post):

Frozen Yogurt Pops - Blueberry or orange from the 100 Days of Real Food Cookbook! They are so good!

Of course we chose the purple option and used all blueberries since that’s what we had and decreased the maple syrup slightly. The half batch filled our 6 little blue Ikea popsicle molds.

The verdict? My daughter voted them a winner! She thoroughly enjoyed them.

Frozen Yogurt Pops – Orange Cream and Mixed Berry
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

 

Ingredients
Orange Cream
  • 2 cups plain yogurt
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • ⅓ cup maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Mixed Berry
  • 2 cups plain yogurt
  • 1 cup frozen mixed berries
  • ½ cup maple syrup

Instructions
For the Orange Cream:
  1. Whisk together all the ingredients in a bowl. Pour into popsicle molds and insert sticks. Freeze completely – 4-5 hours or overnight.
For the Mixed Berry:
  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth. Pour into popsicle molds and insert sticks. Freeze completely – 4-5 hours or overnight.

What’s your favorite popsicle combination?

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Being Kind Counts

Being kind matters and the little acts that we do throughout our day really do make a difference. There is a campaign going on right now called Being Kind Counts, encouraging us all to be kind and spread the message.

Being Kind Counts! You can be kind and make a difference - even on a budget of $0.

It can be easy to become overwhelmed thinking that acts of kindness need to be big and glorious or cost money to mean anything. Sure, those things do make a difference and are a great way to show kindness but they aren’t the only way. Sometimes the small and heartfelt things can mean just as much to someone. Being kind doesn’t have to cost money! It can be done on a budget of any size.

There might be times when your act of kindness isn’t even noticed. That’s okay too. We don’t serve and give to be noticed and acknowledged.

An example of a small way to show kindness is doing something you shouldn’t have to do.

I’m speaking from experience here. Last week I had two such situations arise. There was a shower at our church Sunday afternoon. Two staff member spouses hosted the shower. That means things should be cleaned up well, right? Well, I walked into work (church) Monday morning and dirty dishes were piled on the counter, the sinks needed rinsed out of cake debris, and the counters cleared off. I ignored it. I ignored it all the way up until Thursday when I was fewer than 2 hours away from being done with work for the week. This campaign crossed my mind and I decided to be kind and bless the hostess of the shower (even though they’d never know it) and also bless the lady who would walk into church early Sunday morning to make breakfast for everyone. #beingkindcounts

The second time was similar, only it occurred in our home. My husband takes food for lunch everyday and typically brings home the containers everyday or two. The rule kind-of is, if you stock pile dirty containers for a week or more, I’m not going to be the one to clean them. They get gross and stinky so he washes them when he lets them pile up. Well, one night Shaun came home with a Wal-Mart sack full of containers and set it beside the sink and said he’d wash them. They sat there several hours, maybe even overnight. All I know is they didn’t didn’t even move out of the sack, instead they were taking up valuable counter space. I was cleaning up the rest of the kitchen and putting away dishes and was about to go and request that Shaun wash them but I didn’t. Once again I remembered this campaign and sucked it up and decided to wash them instead. #beingkindcounts

This week as you are going about your normal life, I challenge you to look for little (and big) ways that you can bless those around you and show kindness even if it will never be noticed. After you do your deeds, pass the challenge on to two other people and keep the momentum going! You can go to Being Kind Counts and submit your good deed and read about the others.

Being Kind Counts! You can be kind and make a difference - even on a budget of $0.

What good deeds have you done recently? Any in mind that you are going to do this week?

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Whole30 Recap for Week 1

Whole30 Week 1 Recap! What we ate, how we felt, and more! WE SURVIVED!!!

It’s time for our first Whole30 recap – we have the first week under our belts. Kind-of. My husband’s parents came to town for 3 days and we ate out a couple of times. My choices weren’t bad, but weren’t Whole30 compliant either. I know you aren’t supposed to do that on a 30 day challenge, especially so soon in, but I was tired of waiting for a perfect time and decided going in that this weekend would be an exception. The rest of the time, I’m geared up for no cheating.

Whole30 Week 1 Recap! What we ate, how we felt, and more! WE SURVIVED!!!

Our first grocery store run for 2 weeks. We made a couple of small trips for things after this. A Whole30 isn’t cheap, folks!

I forgot to take measurements before we started. If I remember, I’ll do it today. Shaun and I both weighed ourselves, though, so we’ll see what happens there at the end of 30 days.

Who exactly is doing this challenge?

My husband and myself and loosely our 16 month old and 3 1/2 year old. They are eating what we eat for the most part but are still having oatmeal and a few other things like that.

How did we feel?

I’ll be honest. The first three days were horrible! I was tired, wanted sugar and wheat, and was just blah. Day number 4 was better. I still found myself constantly hungry. After we had a couple of off plan meals this weekend, I found myself feeling overly full and kind-of bloated and meh for the first time.

Whole30 Week 1 Recap! What we ate, how we felt, and more! WE SURVIVED!!!

Crispy Italian Chicken, Sweet Potato Hashbrowns, White Potato Hashbrowns, and Sausage Sage Cauliflower Soup

What did we eat?

Breakfasts consisted of eggs (only scrambled so far), homemade hashbrowns with bell pepper and onion (sweet and white potato), fruit salad with coconut and nuts, and whole fruit. One observation when it comes to breakfast, only fruit doesn’t cut it even if I add in the nuts. I know I said day  number 4 was better and that’s true except for in the morning when that’s all I had for breakfast. I felt gross and nauseous and starving in very little time. I’m sure it must have been from a breakfast that was so high in sugar and little fat or protein.

Lunches Shaun and I had big salads and we let the kids finish up all the off plan leftovers (I didn’t want to have to throw them away)

Suppers we made a couple soups (I found those to be super yummy and easy to both put together and make Whole30 approved), tacos in lettuce shells, and crispy chicken legs. Side dishes were always fruit, raw vegetables, or oven roasted vegetables (including my first go at sweet potato fries).

Cheats. When my in-laws were here we had some on plan meals (that I made at home – all the breakfasts and some of the other meals) and a couple that weren’t. I tried to pick better options though – a broth based turkey and rice soup, chicken fajita salad with salsa for the dressing (and no wheat anywhere), and skipped the dessert entirely when they got a Dairy Queen snack on our trip to the fair. Shaun’s choices weren’t quite so healthy (burrito with cheese sauce, wrap, and hamburger), but he says that being on the Whole30 made him eat a little less and kept him from getting Dairy Queen as well.

Snacks consisted of almonds, fruit, vegetables, and one day even an afternoon sweet potato that the kids and I shared.

(You can find links to some of the recipes on last week’s menu plan.)

I’m looking forward to seeing how week number 2 goes being 100% on plan.

If you’ve done a Whole30, how did your first week go?

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Whole30 Menu Plan and Goals

I completely jinxed myself last week. The last good nights sleep my little guy had was last Monday and ever since then has been rough going. Well, one night was just a two time wake up but other than that, let’s not talk about it. Oh, and the quiet weekend I was looking forward to? My husband’s parents called last Monday to see if they could come a week early. So they came Thursday evening and left Sunday night. It was a fun weekend – did some sight seeing in Oklahoma City, went to the county fair, and hung out in town but it definitely wasn’t a weekend of nothing. Maybe I can hope for that this week. :-)

Whole30 Menu Plan and Goals for this week @ From this Kitchen Table

In all seriousness, I really do think this week will be a quiet one. I’m looking forward to lots of sleeping, evening walks in the beautiful cooler weather, and maybe a movie night with a friend.

Tomorrow, I’m going to write a little about our first week of Whole 30 (and our cheat so early in the game) and share a couple of food pictures. An e-book that came up searching for recipes was Well Fed – it’s all paleo recipes. Well, Well Fed 2 is part of The Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle.

Whole30 Menu Plan and Goals for this week @ From this Kitchen Table

 

If you are needing meal planning inspiration, be sure to check out the Real Food Recipes section of the Healthy Living Bundle. There’s also an entire section of books with recipes for special diets! Of course, there are also book on essential oils, natural skin and body care, fitness and great e-courses and bonuses that are a part. Today is the last day you can purchase the bundle, so be sure to check it out!

Suppers:

  • Whole Chicken, roasted veggies, potato wedges, and watermelon
  • Taco Salad
  • Leftover Veggie Beef Soup
  • Stuffed Sweet Potatoes (thinking stuffed with sauteed spinach and chicken)
  • Spaghetti Squash Spaghetti
  • Fajita Bowls
  • Leftovers

Lunches:

  • Veggie Beef Soup
  • Grilled Chicken and Vegetables
  • Salads for Shaun and myself, leftovers or sweet potatoes for the kids

Breakfasts:

  • Scrambled eggs with spinach, mushrooms, bell peppers, and onions
  • Homemade hashbrowns with onions and bell peppers
  • Maybe try a zucchini cake or carrot sweet potato cake

Snacks:

  • Fruits, Veggies, nuts

Goals:

  • I don’t think I read once last week, so I’d love to get some reading done.
  • Whole 30 week two with no cheats
  • Exercise. Continue redoing the #mindbodymat 3 week pilates challenge go on a few family walks, and maybe try to jog a couple of days.
  • Actually blog :-)
  • Continue in my Jonah study and Bible memory


Linking up to Menu Plan Monday

Whole30 Menu Plan and Goals

We made dinner for a friend that had surgery Friday night. Saturday I had to go shopping for a going away scrapbook for our youth pastor and his family and then get ready for and clean-up after their farewell potluck followed by a relaxing late evening hanging out with a friend and watching a cheesy Hallmark movie. Sunday after church there was a lunch wedding shower and that afternoon I still had to do my big grocery shopping trip and the house needed (still needs) some work. Some of the small groups met Sunday night. I don’t think ours did, but even if they had we would have stayed home. Busy isn’t always better and sometimes it’s okay to say no – especially if those large social events drain instead of energize you. :-) Yep, that would be me.

It was a good weekend all in all. I’m just thankful that every one isn’t like that and I’m thankfully we are looking at a calm next week. Last week my 15 month old went 5 nights in a row waking up only once (and he’s probably had fewer than 5 of those nights total in his life before). I’m hoping we see some more this week.

Whole30 Menu Plan and Goals at From this Kitchen Table

Suppers:

Lunches:

  • Leftovers
  • Wedding Shower
  • Salads (Shaun and me)
  • Sweet potatoes and leftovers (the kids)

Breakfasts:

Goals:

Linking up to Menu Plan Monday

 

100 Days of Real Food

Affiliate links may be used

I have one real cookbook in my house – a copy of Better Homes and Garden I received when I got married. There are also a few other small ones such as the The Little House Cookbook and one with old Swedish recipes. I enjoy reading cookbooks and flipping through food magazines but really don’t see the need to purchase them and have them in my kitchen. That’s what the internet is for, right? One cookbook you can go to for your basic needs just about covers it and then Google can take care of the rest. (Unless the internet goes down anyway.)

Well, I’ve found an exception to that line of thinking.

What I love about the 100 Days of Real Food cookbook!

Last week I had the honor of reviewing Lisa Leake’s new cookbook (debuting at #2 on the New York Times List): 100 Days of Real Food.

Over the first 100 pages of the book is filled with information of real food – why to eat it, what to buy, budget tips and more. Lisa writes in a way that won’t overwhelm you. It’s enjoyable to read and gives you the information you need to make educated decisions.

Then comes the recipes. Trust me, you’ll want to make them all. The pictures make you hungry. If you have kids in school, you’ll love the section on lunch recipes where each picture shows a complete lunch you could pack and send with your child.

What I love about the 100 Days of Real Food cookbook!

I read through the book and then my 3 1/2 year old daughter wanted to take over. She had me sit down with her and tell her what every recipe (and there are 100 of them) was. Then she sat there again flipping through every page. The next day she did the same thing.

I came up with a plan. I brought out the sticky notes and cut them down and told her to mark her favorite recipes – the ones she wanted to make. After she marked the first 3 consecutively I reminded her to only pick her very favorite ones. Even after reminding her several times and making her skip a few we already make an almost identical recipe of, she had marked over half of the recipes!

What I love about the 100 Days of Real Food cookbook!

I think I know what my go to place is going to be for menu planning.

A few of my favorite things about this cookbook:

I love that any recipe my daughter wants to make – we can!

I don’t have to worry about trying to talk her out of one with processed ingredients and foods that I don’t like using. Every recipe is real food! Now, if you don’t eat grains or dairy you’ll have to tweak and/or skip some of the recipes but for easy reference, in the back of the book, she has a list of the recipes that are (or could easily be made) gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegetarian.

I love that the recipes use normal ingredients!

These are things that every cook will have in their house (or has easy access to). That makes it perfect for those that are new to real food as well as those who’ve been eating that way for a while. There’s not a sense of being overwhelmed and giving up before you start. We can do this. Real food is doable.

I love that the recipes are unique!

I don’t like eating the same types of food. Casseroles and the same old same old types of meals don’t do much for me, even if they are made of real food. I like flavor and variety. Not only does 100 Days of Real Food give you the basics like Whole Wheat Banana Pancakes, Super Easy Whole Wheat Biscuits, Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup, and Whole Wheat Pizza you’ll also find things like Polenta with Mushroom Bordelaise Sauce (on my list to try as polenta is something I’ve never made before), Teriyaki Flank Steak Salad, Shortcut Eggplant Parmesan, and a Grilled Cheese with Apple and Bacon!

I love that it is more than just recipes!

It’s educational with the information of why real food is important and how to attain real food in day to day life. It also contains Lisa’s story as well as the recipes. The Leake’s are a real family with two young girls and you get to hear their journey. If you are beginning your real food journey, you’ll want this book! (Or even if you already eat that way and want a refresher course and a book to share with others.) You’ll learn and have a resource to cook from and go back to again and again.

I was impressed by this beautiful, hardback cookbook. I’m thinking that Lisa should start working on another cookbook – the real food version of Better Homes and Gardens or Betty Crocker that are standard in so many kitchen libraries. I know I’d be buying that one too!

What’s your favorite cookbook? Do you follow the 100 Days of Real Food blog?

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Where to Buy Used Clothes and How to Get a Good Deal

I love buying used clothes! Often you get items like new for a fraction of the cost and sometimes for less than a dollar! I have a put together a great list of where to buy used clothes that I use when needing to add something to our wardrobe.

Where to buy used clothes and how to get a good deal on them! Great list of ideas!

Thrift Stores:

After my daughter was born I stocked up on clothes for her first year at the thrift stores. Babies wear each size for such a short period of time, you normally have a lot of options. When you get into the preschool and elementary aged sizes you tend to find less selection as they tend to put a lot more wear on their clothes. Check each item for rips and stains. Thrift stores don’t have a screening process so you will want to do so carefully. Call and ask about sales. Most of our local thrift stores have a different deal each day of the week – fill a sack for $5, half off children’s clothes, half off yellow tagged items etc. Know what you want to buy and go the day you can get the best deal.

Garage Sales:

These are another great way to build up wardrobes. It requires a little more research and time as you have to look over the classifieds each week to see where you want to go and then drive numerous places but when you hit a house getting rid of clothes the size you wear or your kids are going into, you won’t beat the prices! Don’t forget to look for shoes and jackets as well as regular clothing. If you are buying a large amount, be sure to ask for a little discount. Last year we picked this winter coat and a pair of Converse for my daughter for a $1 each:

Where to buy used clothes and how to get a good deal! Where to buy used clothes and how to get a good deal!

Consignment Shops:

You know you can find end of season clearance deals at retail clothing stores, but don’t forget to check out local consignment shops. I love shopping our town’s consignment shop. Everything is organized by size and color and each piece has already been looked over for stains and tears. Sure, the regular prices on a shirt are more than a thrift store with most between $4 and $15, but if you wait until the end of season you can get a bargain. Ask your store when they swap the clothes out. At our store the kids clothes switches over the beginning of August so families can do their back to school shopping. So you’ll want to look for deep discounted children’s items in July. The women’s clothes are switched over later, so I went in the middle of August and the summer shirts, dresses, shorts, and some pants were marked down – most 70%. I bought 6 shirts and 2 dresses: Where to buy used clothes and how to get a good deal! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Guess what the total was? $19! You can’t beat that. Even if I just wear the shirts for a year or two. It was worth it. It’s also a great way to try out a style or color you normally don’t wear. If you love it, you know what to look for more and if you hate it, no biggie. Just pass it on.

Consignment Sales:

This is another option a lot of people love. To be honest, it’s my least favorite way to buy used clothes. I find the prices to be more than thrift stores and garage sales and the items aren’t looked over and carefully selected like they are at the consignment store so you have to carefully look at every item for stains and rips. If if checked out the other options, though, and you still need clothes, you might want to check for a sale in your area. Some one puts one on in our city twice a year. For the best selection you can bring your own clothes and help set up so you can shop early. Or if you are wanting a great deal, wait until the last afternoon and some consignors will allow their items to be marked down 50%.

Online Stores

Did you know there are online stores you can buy used clothes from? Pretty cool, huh? Shopping the in convienence of your home, while and kids are napping or playing sounds about perfect. Here are three places you’ll want to check out:

ebay

I’ve been looking on ebay so soft soled shoes for my toddler. Great way to get shoes and other clothing for a fraction of the cost and still have it be in good condition. You can also find a good selection of maternity clothes on ebay.

Like Twice

If you are looking for gently used women’s clothing, Like Twice has free shipping over $49 and $4.95 on smaller orders. If you purchase something and you don’t like it, you can use a prepaid return label if you want store credit or if you want the refund in cash a $4.95 shipping fee will be deducted from your returns. If you have women’s clothing, check and see if it would be worth selling to Like Twice. If you sign up through my referral link as a new customer, you’ll get $10 off your first order! If you like them on Facebook you’ll get a 15% off code as well.

Thred Up

Another store that has women, kids, shoes and handbags is Thred Up. They also have free shipping over $50 (or you can pay $19.99 and have free shipping for the entire year on any size order). Returns can be made within 30 days with tags still on but you do have to pay return shipping until you purchased using their app. You can also send your items to them so see if they will purchase them. If you sign up using my referral link, you can get $10 off your first purchase.

What’s your favorite place to buy used clothes from? Do you have any tips to share?

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Menu Plan and Goals

It’s Sunday evening and I’m shooting for a 9pm bedtime for myself. The kids were in bed by 7:30 and Shaun is working an event (for his third night in a row) for the radio station and wont be back until close to midnight, so I figure it’s a good night to do it. The first half of last week the kids were recovering from being sick and rather grouchy. Thankfully, we finished on a higher note but everyone’s still pretty tired.

Neither Shaun or I work Labor Day, so we are looking forward to a fun family day. I discovered that a children’s museum in a town 45 minutes away is having free admission for the day! I’m sure it will be packed, but we’ve never been and you can’t beat testing a new place out for free. I think the kids will love it!

Menu Plan and Goals @ From this Kitchen Table

Turtle Cheesecake Ice Cream – Super yummy and rich (but the blueberry from a couple weeks ago is still my favorite).OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Suppers:

  • Egg Foo Young
  • Popcorn and Ice Cream
  • Grilling for Labor Day
  • Ladies’ Bible Study/Leftovers
  • Crockpot Chicken Tacos x 2
  • Skillet Lasagna (Making double to bring supper to a friend having surgery)

Lunches:

  • Guacamole
  • Veggie Soup
  • Pumpkin Waffles
  • Salads

Breakfasts:

  • Leftover Pumpkin Waffles
  • Oatmeal and Rolled Oats with Granola

Goals: (Affiliate Links)

What have you been reading – anything I should add to my list?

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Menu Plan and Goals

It’s Sunday afternoon and both kids are napping. The house is quiet. Sleep is something that’s been needed around our house this week. There were a couple of long nights, a teething child, runny noses, and feeling under the weather going on the past several days.

Menu Plan and Goals @ From this Kitchen Table

Shaun worked events for the radio station Friday and Saturday afternoon/evening and didn’t get home until almost midnight. The kids and I enjoyed a couple of movie nights, playing at the park, and some cleaning. Hopefully they will feel better soon (though I’m not complaining about my son actually sitting and snuggling with me. That hasn’t happened since he started moving :-) ).

Menu Plan and Goals @ From this Kitchen Table

This is dark chocolate coconut milk ice cream sweetened with maple syrup and honey!

Suppers:

Lunches:

  • Pancakes
  • Leftover Chicken from last week
  • Leftover Mac and Cheese and Bean tostadas for the kids
  • Salads for the adults

Breakfasts;

  • Pancakes from the freezer
  • Smoothies
  • Refrigerator and hot oatmeal

Goals:

  • Finish I Like Giving and start another book. (I finished Running for My Life last week and loved it!)
  • Continue the next Hello Mornings Bible Study
  • Keep going with the the #mindbodymat 3 week pilates challenge. On the last week! Each day’s workout is around 10 minutes. Love that I have no excuses to not get it done.
  • Work on earring and lip balm business stuff – online store, craft shows etc (Yep, that sounds a lot like last week. This week I need to make it happen.)
  • Publish 2 more posts
  • Work through blog assignments
  • Start another organizing project

Linking up to Menu Plan Monday

Easy Mango Lassi

So good! Easy, Healthy, and Refreshing Mango Lassi. I Love this drink. #mangos #yogurt

It’s no secret that I enjoy Indian food (as evidenced by these recipes: Butter Chicken, Naan, Peas Pilau, Spicy Indian Chicken Sandwich, and Indian Layer Dip).

I also love yogurt and mangos. When you put all three things together, you get a wonderful, easy, and healthy treat: a mango lassi. It’s a light drink I love for breakfast, dessert, or a snack.

I can only think of one time I’ve had a mango lassi and not enjoyed it. That time was at an Indian restaurant for my sister’s rehearsal dinner. I’m sure the drink in and of itself was great, but the fact that it was served in glasses hot from the dishwasher made it something I didn’t want to finish.

This easy mango lassi comes together quickly and is good for you! No refined sugars or added ingredients. My kids enjoy this as much as I do!

So good! Easy, Healthy, and Refreshing Mango Lassi. I Love this drink. #mangos #yogurt

 

Mango Lassi
 

Ingredients
  • 1½ cups plain yogurt
  • 1 cup chopped mango (1 mango)
  • Honey/maple syrup/sugar to taste (1-3 teaspoons)
  • 3 ice cubes, optional
  • ½ cup milk, optional (may want if you use a really thick yogurt)

Instructions
  1. Place yogurt and mango chunks in the blender. When smooth add sweetener to taste.
  2. Add ice cubes and or milk if using. Blend well so completely smooth.
  3. Serve immediately.

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