Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Easy, Healthy, & Fast Breakfast Muffin

My mother in law called me up one day and told me about this EASY morning muffin you can make in less that a minute in your microwave!!! She saw it on the Dr. Oz show! What makes it even BETTER is it is supposed to help you lose tummy fat AND it should keep you satisfied till lunch! How AWESOME does this sound!?! How could I not try this out!?!
Here it is:
Jorge’s Skinny Muffin
Traditional energy bars are often packed with sugar, which can cause a spike and a subsequent crash. These muffins are designed to provide sustainable energy that lasts through lunch, thanks to coconut oil, a healthy fat that’s good for your brain, fiber-rich flaxseed and egg protein.

Makes one serving

1/4 cup ground flax
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp coconut oil
1 egg
1 packet stevia

Mix all ingredients together in a mug and microwave for 50 seconds. Allow to cool to a safe temperature and enjoy!

You can find this recipe and others by Jorge Cruise on the Dr. Oz website: http://www.doctoroz.com/videos/jorge-cruise-energy-boosting-recipes

Anyone who knows me KNOWS that I had to mess with this recipe!!!! It is a very dry muffin and for most, who actually care about taste, you need to spice it up especially if you are going to be feeding it to your kids as well! By the way, What a GREAT breakfast to be feeding your children before school, it will help them sit still and LEARN! 
Here is the beautiful breakfast my WHOLE family ate this morning!

Let me tell you how I spiced up the recipe and made it for the whole family. First, I am so for using coconut oil BUT I didn't have any at the time. I just wanted you to know that you can still make this with butter or any other substitute... I used Earth Balance (pictured) you just wont get the heath benefits of the coconut oil!

Here is my ingredient list:
1/2 cup of ground Flax seed (another tip is to cut this in half with another good flour for example 1/4 cup of ground flax and 1/4 cup of Buckwheat, Spelt, Rice etc. flour)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon Cinnamon (two teaspoons is way to much cinnamon)
1 teaspoon coconut oil (or any other butter substitute you have on hand)
1 packet of stevia (or as I used 1 teaspoon agave, maple syrup, or other natural sweetener)
***NEXT ingredients are what help to not make it SO DRY!
2 teaspoons of applesauce
1 overflowing tablespoon of raisins
*Optional: if you are a juicer, save some of your fruit and veggie pulp and add 2 teaspoons (it's really good)!!!!

As above, just simply mix all your ingredients together in a mug and heat in the microwave! I had to add a few seconds on to mine because of added ingredients. So heat for 1 minute 40 seconds!

Eat with fresh berries, applesauce, and don't forget to add a little honey, agave, or 100% Maple syrup on top. Your kids AND you will LOVE this warm morning treat that is actually so good for you! and takes MINUTES to make!!!

Ummmmm.... where did the food go!?! SO GOOD!

Here is a little video of how it looks straight out of the microwave! Try this and comment on what you thought and/or your ideas of changing it up!
* A little tip, and one of our new favorite ways to make the muffin, for dessert you can take out the raisins and applesauce and add 2 tablespoons of peanut butter (nut butter) and a tablespoon of chocolate chips! After it's out of the microwave add some butter and maybe even a little maple syrup! SO GOOD!
*ALSO, after making this muffin a hundred times I figured out that you can add 1-2 tablespoons of milk(soy, almond, coconut, etc) and it won't be so dry and it will still cook up in less than two minutes in the microwave!

I blogged later about a different version of this muffin...Making it into carrot cake! SO good! Check out the post HERE!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Healthy Easy Homemade Lasagna

This is my Homemade Lasagna recipe.  I make it a lot when we are having company over for dinner because EVERYONE is sure to love it. I also make it for friends when they have had a baby or have been in the hospital because you usually get another night of leftovers! It's an all in one meal but you could add a salad and garlic bread depending on how many people you are feeding. This Recipe is pretty easy and you can't really mess it up even if you don't follow the exact measurements! The BEST part about this is NO ONE can tell that there are tons of veggies in it!!!


Meat Sauce
  • 1 lb ground meat (can be substituted with tofu)
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • 1 Tablespoon Parsley
  • 1 Tablespoon Italian Seasoning
  • 1 small can of V8 or 3/4 cup vegetable juice
  • 1 lb can diced tomatoes
  • 2 6oz cans tomato paste
  • Optional: 1-2 cups of raw vegetables (ground up in food processor)
Cheese Mixture
  • 1 large 24oz container of cottage cheese (3 cups)
  • 2 Tablespoons parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese
Other Main Ingredients
  • 1 lb Mozzarella Cheese
  • 1 9oz package of Oven-Ready Lasagna noodles

First thing I do is blend up my veggies! Use whatever you have, this time around I had Carrots, Kale, Eggplant, and Red Cabbage. This made about two cups of veggies AND my husband, while eating dinner, ACTUALLY asked if I put vegetables in the lasagna!!!! He couldn't tell!!!!

Now you are going to make your meat sauce. Cook the meat and veggies in a large pot.

After the meat is fully cooked add the rest of your ingredient and let simmer for 20/30 minutes. Stirring occasionally.

 While your sauce is cooking, make your cheese mixture... just add all ingredients in a bowl, mix together, and set aside.

If you bought Oven ready lasagna noodles, then they can be used just out of the package. If you couldn't find them you will need to cook you noodles (as box instructs). 

Lasagna simply means layers. Pictured below is all of your "layers". The next step is to layer in a regular 9X13 cooking pan. First its Lasagna noodles, cheese mixture, mozzarella cheese, and lastly meat sauce. You will most likely be repeating this three times.

I wanted to show you a few pictures of my layers...they aren't thick and they hardly cover the whole area of the pan. This is ok because it will all cook together and come out perfect!!! You just want enough to make three layers of each ingredient!

Here is what my noodle layer looks like. Normally 5 noodles across and overlapping a little.

Bake at 375 Degrees F for 30 minutes! Everyone in the family will LOVE this dish and beg for more!!!!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Mod Podge Tiger Painting

I never told the Blog world that we found out that we are having a baby BOY!!!! Here are big brother and sister holding up the first picture of their brother! We have already chosen a Tiger theme to incorporate into Keaten's room which is decorated mostly black, white, and pink. Just to add, Kiki doesn't actually sleep in this room because she shares the bunk bed with her brother. Her toys and her clothing are in the room but it is used mainly as a guest room right now so it's not hard to bring back some baby stuff! I decided to phase out a little of the pink and stick with black, white, and cream.

Here is the first step in the transformation. I had to paint my little guy something. I took an old painting that we were never going to put up in our house and used the canvas, FREE! Then I bought 4 pieces of some antique looking scrapbook paper and ripped then up. Got my trusty Mod Podge and covered the whole canvas. For more information on how to Mod Podge and what it is, here is an old blog I did on it.

With pencil I drew my Tiger face on top of the Mod Podge papered canvas.

Here is the before and after.... Taking out some of the feminine and adding some masculine. Sorry, the chandelier is not being removed! I LOVE it! =)

I will keep you posted as new transformations arise! 

I LOVE painting for children and I have done a few over the years for different friends. I will show you the ones that I have painted for my other two kids. Here is the whole wall of "Keaten's" room... Before she was born I painted this picture of Eloise and her dog as inspiration for her room!

I couldn't dig up the picture of the first two paintings I did for Brenden's baby room but right before Kiki was born I painted this BIG Gorilla for him! He has always loved Gorillas!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Our New Kitchen Bar (Home Renovation)

 I wanted to show off ALL the hard work my husband has POURED into our house in the past month! We have always hated this wall between our kitchen/dining room. I also hated having an exposed trash can so I had an idea for my husband to put in a bar that would bring the two rooms together....My husband made it happen! The before pictures.... black trash went where the Whole Foods bag is!

 Fun Times breaking out the wall!
Can you see my son peeking through? =)

We bought some pre made cabinets from Home Depot (20% off I might add). Then my husband did some tweaking to make them fit our needs...Don't forget the wine rack! 

We started painting, the same color as our other cabinets.
WAIT, I almost forgot to mention ALL of the electrical rewiring he had to do to get the new light switches in place because the light switch used to be on the wall we removed!!!
The next part is my FAVORITE of this whole project! What were we going to do for the counter top you ask!? My husband bought some REALLY old wood and with the help of his brother, who by the way is AWESOME, they planed and joined the wood.

 They brought it over in two pieces and joined the rest at our house!

After it was dry, we took it to the garage and sanded, stained, and polyurethaned the wood!
My husband did a glaze treatment to the cabinets and added the hardware.
 We brought the top up and screwed it down then put up a little tile backsplash.

We FINALLY changed the old linoleum which is pictured above if you want to see how UGLY it was!
And here is the finished bar area! We still have so much more work to go but I couldn't hold out on the awesome transformation that has already taken place! May it inspire you to create in your home!
Update from 2016:
We moved about 3 years ago and my husband has done a ton of remodeling to our new home. To check out the kitchen and breakfast bar remodel click HERE.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Homemade Jello Orange Smiles!

I am SO EXCITED about this post!!!!! It's SO fun and easy! I saw this really cute idea on my phone and took a picture of it with the link at the bottom! I got inspired! I always loved Jello as a kid but I don't feed it to my kids unless it is from Whole Foods or Trader Joes (which is 3 dollars for 4 containers) because I stay FAR AWAY from artificial food coloring. This is a topic for a blog all by itself, which I will do one day. However, I have to add that some food coloring has ALREADY been banned in the UK due to studies. Example, McDonald's Strawberry Shake in the UK is made with REAL strawberries but over here it's made with RED 40!!!! Oh, i'm getting started! This blog is NOT about this! But there is hope!

I researched and it is SO EASY to make jello out of your child's (or your) favorite juice! It just has to be 100 % Juice. I wanted to get a "pretty" juice just for this blog... but if you come over and have some jello it might just be green.... We just got a juicer and we are using lots of Kale and Spinach in everything!!! YUMMY!

Here is what you need:
One packet of Knox Gelatine (there is four to a box)
2 cups of your juice
And if you are using a very bitter juice like 100% Cranberry you will probably need 1-2 Tablespoons of honey/sweetener. However, most juice is sweet enough!

In a little bowl add your pack of gelatine and 1/2 cup of juice.
Then add the rest (1 1/2 cup) of juice to a small saucepan and bring to a boil.
Remove from heat and add the softened gelatine and juice, stirring until completely dissolved.

If you are going to do the orange smiles, cut an orange in half and remove the insides.

Pour in your juice mix and put in the fridge for about 3 hours!

Cut into smile slices and serve!  I did kind of a bad job this time around at removing all of the orange at the bottom but I didn't want to accidentally cut through the skin! To me it was good to have a little orange with the jello! ENJOY!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Breakfast

Just a fun Breakfast idea! Heart shaped egg for your little loved one! I have a mold but you can just cut out the shape with a knife or cookie cutter!


Monday, February 13, 2012

Snow Smoothies

We FINALLY got a day of snow here in Kansas!!! Very little but enough to do an activity with it! I know everyone makes ice cream but I have a son home with Croup and I'm sure none of us need extra sugar added to our diet with all this sickness going around! I came up with a fun HEALTHY snack to make with your fresh snow! SNOW SMOOTHIES! You can make yours however you want with what you have in your kitchen....
Here is what I had and sorry for some of the blurry pictures! My phone camera is going downhill since I use it SOOOO much!!!
We added a little watermelon, a banana, some yogurt, frozen blueberries, frozen spinach, and orange juice!
My son added in the yogurt, which by the way has fruits and veggies in it! It's pretty cool that they are coming out with stuff like this, it's marketed for babies but ANYONE can eat it! The only thing I wish they would leave out is the added sugar!

 My son had fun cutting the banana with a butter knife, while my daughter added the pieces to the blender!
Now for the FUN ingredient! I filled up a bowl with fresh snow! 
Love their faces when they saw the "secret" ingredient!
They took turns putting a scoop each in until the snow was gone! 
Love my daughter reaction to the blender! "It's too loud!" Do any of your little ones do this? =)
This was my first time trying this and I LOVED the consistency that the snow gave the smoothie! SO GOOD! Now I'm gunna be sad the rest of the year when we make smoothies because we won't have any of our "secret" ingredient! 
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