Friday, January 29, 2016

Friday Favorites 1.29.16

It's Friday!! Yay!! I'm linking up with Andrea, Erika and Narci to talk about our favorites. 

1. My boys - this is an obvious favorite but I just love these boys so much. They fight, all the time. I probably say "get off your brother" and "stop touching him" a million times a day. What is the deal with boys and wrestling? I've decided it's just ingrained in their DNA. But these two also love each other so much. I can't imagine a world where they didn't have each other as brothers. 

This week they were passing a foam number back in forth while taking a bath. They thought it was hilarious. 




I'm sure they will not appreciate this pictures being on the internet in a few years. Sorry boys!

They also LOVE going to Home Depot or Lowe's to get stuff for our house. We went to pick up more pink (paint) and the boys drove this shopping cart. 



These brothers, I just love them so much. 

2. Baker's school had a parents appreciate breakfast yesterday. His teachers are my favorite. Seriously, these women are AMAZING! 



They teach him so much. I have been seriously impressed at how much he has learned. They pray for him and give him unconditional love all day long, even when he does stuff like this....

 Yup... he stuck a raisin up his nose. Awesome. I promise you they deserve a raise. 

3. Okay so clearly  my pictures wouldn't cut it for a fashion blogger, but this is my favorite new shirt. 
I pretty much wear t-shirts 6 days a week and I love this bright red color!

4.  This week, we finally hung something up! This bulletin board has been sitting on the floor for the last 6 months. Along with all our other walls decorations! 


We are still working on paint but we are moving along! Hoping we can start hanging the rest of our stuff up soon!

I'm ready for this house to feel like home!

5. Thank you so much for all your sweet comments and motivation about the Daniel Plan. It made it extra funny when I got a box from Amazon this week. 

Oh Amazon. Thank you for packaging them together. I promise I won't use the cookbook for the next 22 days. I will use the Ripped in 30 though. #thedanielplan 

Hope everyone has a happy weekend!! We have a long list of house projects to get to!






Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Daniel Plan Week 2

We survived 2 weeks on The Daniel Plan! Wahoooooo!!!! This week was so much easier than week one. If you are just starting out stick with it! It will get easier. I can also see why the ask you to do it with a group because having a support system is crucial. I wouldn't have been able to do it without Austin or our life group. Seriously do not take the friends section lightly. Make, beg or plead with someone to do this plan with you.

Since we have established that friends are crucial, let's concentrate on faith, fitness and food.

Faith - 

Oh wow. In all ways I have been challenged the last two weeks. We are giving it all over to God and trusting that he will provide in every way. We are trusting that God will satisfy our nutritional wants and desires. Also that God will cover the increase in food costs financially. Our food budget has been blown out of the park. We have had a weekly increase around $30-50. That being said this first month will cost us about $200 more that our typical grocery budget. Last week Austin and I got a random check in the mail. Anyone wanna guess how much this check was for? Yup, the exact amount that our budget has increased. This check should have made it's way to us several weeks ago but it was mailed to our McKinney address. The timing was perfect. God is good and continually is reassuring us.


Fitness -

We just finished up 3 weeks of working out! Once again, without Austin, I probably wouldn't have stuck with the workouts. We are using these two Jillian Michaels videos, 30 day shred and Ripped in 30. The work outs are only 24 minutes long. They are hard and I love that it's a good, quick work out. If you don't believe that you can get a good workout that quick, then I dare you to order 30 day shred and do workout 3 without breaking a sweat. I bet you can't do it.

Food -



Just like last week, when I got home from the grocery store I washed all the fruits and veggies. I love all the colors!



We ate every single bit of this last week. None of it went to waste. In fact, we almost didn't have enough. I bought more bananas halfway through the week and Baker polished off 4 in a row and we needed more! Ha!

Breakfast
Old fashioned oats with pecans, apples and cinnamon.

Lunch

This week we got 7 dozen local fresh eggs. (thanks Teresa) We ate 2 dozen this week. 


We stuck with eggs and veggies for lunch. 

One day we ate tuna with egg, spicy brown mustard, and red wine vinegar. We added a side of oranges and avocados. 

I'm so thankful we can eat lunch at home everyday. This has been a big blessing since we moved. Austin always worked 45 miles away and was never able to be home for lunch. And a big huge bonus is the boys love seeing their daddy at lunch. 

Snacks
70% cacao dark chocolate with almond

dried okra


guacamole with rice chips



lots of fruits

unsweet tea - this is a big treat for me!



Dinner

Black bean soup (not our favorite) 

Kale pan-grilled with olive oil and garlic.

Acorn squash - 
baked with apples, cinnamon and walnuts in the middle.

 brown rice

yummy green beans -
quick boil the green beans for 2-3 minutes, drain them and put them in ice water. Then sautee them with balsamic vinegar, garlic and red onion.

baked greek cod - 
I could not find the recipe online. It's in the book page 320. It was essentially baked cod with olives, red onions and garlic. 

We really enjoy this meal! The fish was excellent and something different. I could eat the green beans everyday. They are so good!


my favorite thing from this week. 


You can see what we ate last week on my week one summary.


Thanks for coming along this journey with me! It is really helpful for me to track our weeks and progress. You can find The Daniel Plan book here if you wanna join me on this adventure! 

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Let's Talk

Today I'm joining Erika and Andrea today for their Let's Talk series! We are talking about resolutions, goals and what we are looking forward to.

I'm not a big resolutions kind of girl. Sorry! I'm all about setting goals to strive for, but resolutions are hard. Maybe they are just two words that mean the same thing? Anyway...This year we are concentrating on getting healthy and leading an active lifestyle. Right now we are doing The Daniel Plan with our church. We are starting week 3 and so far it has been really good for us. It concentrates on 5 areas, faith, food, fitness, friends and focus. You can check out my week 1 update here and my week 2 update will be up tomorrow!

We are also working on renovating our house! I know it'll be awhile before we are completely satisfied but it has come a long way! We gutted our entire kitchen and gave it new lifetore out walls and replaced all the floors. Right now we are working on lots of cosmetic things like new trim and paint. I'm hoping we can get some things finished up in the next few months.











We are currently planning a trip to Napa Valley, California! YAY! We are really looking forward to going this summer! Austin and I have been planning every night!




! We are excited to visit the wineries but good food is exciting too. 




These pictures of Bouchon Bakery were taken by Baking Bites blog. 

I bet you are wanting to plan a trip to Napa now too! Aren't all the pictures gorgeous!

Who has been to Napa Valley? Do you have any good tips for me?










Monday, January 25, 2016

Tortilla-less Soup

I wrote a recipe! WHAT?! No one is surprised more than me! After doing The Daniel Plan for 2 weeks, I was tired of eating food that I wasn't enjoying. I decided to do something about it! I grabbed my Pioneer Woman cookbook and did a little searching. I ended up making up my own recipe after being inspired by her Chicken Tortilla Soup.


Chicken Tortilla-less Soup


INGREDIENTS:
3 cups cooked chicken
1 teaspoon chili powder
3/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 1/2 cups tomatoes (diced or whole grape tomatoes)
1 jalapeno
4 cloves garlic
1 onion
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 green bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
4 cups organic chicken broth
4 cups water
3 cups cooked black beans (or 2 cans)


1. Chop the bell peppers, jalapeno, onion, and garlic. Add them to a large pot with 2 Tbsp olive oil.

2. Add the grape tomatoes to the pot and cook over medium heat

3. Add chili powder, cumin, salt and garlic powder.

4. Cook for about 5 minutes or until the veggies turn golden brown.

5. Remove approx 1/2 cup (big spoon full) tomatoes to a food processor and puree. Don't worry if some of the other veggie sneak in too.


6. Return pureed tomatoes to the pot.


7. Add shredded chicken, water and chicken broth.

8. Add drained black beans to the soup.

9. Bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer. Season to taste with salt, garlic powder, cumin and chili powder.

10. Add a generous squeeze of lime and an avocado to each bowl and enjoy!



Makes about 6-7 servings.


Notes:

My favorite way to make chicken:
Add 4 (or more) chicken breasts into the crock pot with salsa. Cook on high for about 4 hours. When it's done, I shred it with 2 forks. I use what I need and measure out the rest to freeze. I typically freeze 2-3 cups together in quart size bags. Then when I need chicken I can grab a bag out of the freezer with pre-measured and cooked chicken.


If you are following the Daniel Plan make sure you watch the ingredient labels on the salsa. Look for a salsa that doesn't have sugar or MSG. Like this one.

We also cooked our own black beans. We were trying to avoid buying canned beans. If you do this just try to remember to pre-soak them and cook them before you start prepping the soup! I forgot! yikes!

If you really want tortillas in your soup you could add organic corn tortillas. I could not find any at our local grocery store but maybe you will have better luck!

We had these rice chips with our soup. They were really yummy. I found mine at Sams.




I hope you enjoy a yummy bowl of good soup this week!