Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Tasty Tuesday! New Recipe - Freschetta Chicken

It's Tasty Tuesday, folks!! Not only did the very first edition of The Recipe For Fitness Newsletter go out this morning, with a whole buncha tasty Turmeric recipe links, but I've also got a fresh new recipe for you on the website!! And when I say fresh, I mean FRESH!!

Unlike a previous recipe test, ahem, this one was hubby approved. He even ate the spinach - which he doesn't particularly care for. Bethany, however... well, she said the chicken tasted great.
She scraped all that beautiful freshness right off to the side. She's missing out, I'm tellin' ya, because this was one tasty dinner!

It comes together super quick, is easy to cook, and gorgeous to look at - Oh, and it tastes fantastic! ;-)  I hope you'll give it a try and let me know what you think!!

Head on over to recipe...

Monday, January 26, 2015

Finally!!!! A few goals completed... including a Newsletter!!

Hope your weekend was fantabulous! Ours was busy - we were able to finally complete a couple projects we've left hanging (um, for a while).

The first was Bethany's headboard... since she moved to a larger (not twin) bed, she's not had a headboard and after pricing out what she wanted (and having a minor heart attack - about $1200 for a headboard and two nightstands) I hit up Pinterest. Did a major sell on the hubby that we could do it ourselves, and then headed to Home Depot. And then I began to question my sanity. ;-)

The project was more involved than expected - and since neither Bill nor I are particularly handy, it was a challenge. However... challenge met. Check out Bethy's new headboard.
Take particular note of the hardware...
Talk about challenging!! Those nails, while adding just the right touch we wanted, were  a pain in the ass! And  yes, two of those split the boards. We're calling it "character". Lol.

Next up are her nightstands - these will be stacked together to make the right height, then she'll have one on either side of the bed :-)  The final coat of stain is currently drying, and Bill will drill them together when he gets off work.

Cost of the headboard: $25 for the wood (half a "fence" panel), $8 for the stain, $3 for the stain applicators, $10 for the legs, $15 for the hardware. Total: $61.

Cost of the nightstands (each): 2 crates @ $12 each, $3 for stain applicators. $27 each.

Not bad, right? Thank you, Pinterest for the DIY inspiration!! :-)

We've also got planned turning this...

Into something like this or this...

We've got two of those doors, so maybe we'll do one of each ;-) Bill started sanding off the paint this weekend (and that's gonna take a while). While he was doing that, I finally got my decals on the laundry room wall, WOOT!!!
I still have a few things I want to do in the Laundry room, just to give it a bit more... ambiance? character? Either way, I'm not done yet :-)  And yes, we have a lot of spare socks. 

And... I also cooked and worked on new recipes. I've got one I'm (hopefully) doing the final test run on today, then I'll be sharing it tomorrow - which coincidentally... is when I'm sending out my very first...

Major Goal Achieved!!! I've wanted to offer a newsletter for... well, for a really long time, but it didn't work out until now.  And I'm so excited about sharing it with you!!! 

If you're interested in receiving it, be sure to sign up - just click on the link below! 

In the meantime... looking for a quick and easy dinner tonight? Try out my Chicken Verde Tostadas

Thursday, January 22, 2015

In Remembrance... Greg Plitt

Last Saturday, the fitness industry lost an icon of physique, motivation, and courage - Greg Plitt. I was deeply shocked and saddened to read the news. Greg was someone who made a tremendous impact on my own life, and I had the honor of meeting him on two occasions. He was truly a kind and generous man.

My very first awareness of Greg Plitt was on the Bravo Channel show, Jackie Warner's WorkOut, then later through a variety of magazine covers, articles, and then his videos. One video in particular (the one that used to be on his home page - it was clips of this) especially motivated me, and I thought, "I want to be that brave, that open and fearless!"  It spurred me to step out of my comfort zone, to reach higher and go farther. And I am so grateful.

Today, as information continues to trickle out, it appears that the fearlessness I envied, may have played a part in his death. The legacy of his life, his message, will live on through all of us who were touched by his joy. The lesson of his death, I hope, will remind us that balance in life is not optional. One can reach too far. One can be too fearless.

While fear should never be allowed to hold us back, it also serves a more noble purpose - it keeps us alive. Fear causes the hunter to respect the prey. Fear causes the climber to respect the mountain. Fear causes the athlete to respect his/her limits. The tragedy of Greg's death - the consequences of a mistake, a miscalculation, perhaps an error in judgement - brings home to me that life is short - and while I strive to make each moment count, to live fully in each one, I am also responsible to find balance - to respect boundaries and limits, even while working to expand them - to cherish each moment, while working toward making a better tomorrow.

The Legacy that Greg Plitt has left us includes an extraordinary impact that is felt, honored, and a loss that is deeply is grieved. He gave us so much, and had so much more life to live. My heart goes out to his family and loved ones.

Greg's family have posted the following information on social media and on his site - if you are moved to give, here are their requests.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests a donation be made in Greg Plitt’s name to one of the following charities that support initiatives that were near and dear to his heart. All knew about Greg’s love for animals, especially his precious pit bull puppies Gunner, Zepplin and the late Quest. As a former member of the military, Greg also had tremendous respect for those who have and are currently serving our country. We thank you in advance for your support.
Donations can be made to:
Lynda Blair Worldheart Foundation (http://www.lindablairworldheart.org/donate)

Memorial Service
Saturday, January 24, 2015 at 2:00pm
Church of the Good Shepherd
504 North Roxbury Drive
Beverly Hills, California 90210
Viewing Service
Thursday, January 29, 2015 at 2:00pm-4:00pm and 6:00pm-9:00pm
Ruck Funeral Home
1050 York Road
Towson, Maryland 21204
Memorial Service
Friday, January 30, 2015 at 2:00pm
Immaculate Conception Church
200 Ware Avenue
Towson, Maryland 21204

Monday, January 19, 2015

Gearing Up for the Big Party...

Life in our little corner of the world has been difficult lately. The last two weeks have delivered some heartrending challenges, but we are not broken - not overcome. I'm a pretty positive person - actually, my daughter jokes that I'm not so much an optimist as I am an opportunist (While the optimist and pessimist are arguing over whether the glass is half full or half empty, I'm simply drinking the wine, lol) - and as an optimist/opportunist, I'm choosing willfully to believe that there's a purpose to this, or at least, joy ahead.

Not that there isn't joy now - there absolutely is. I find joy in all kinds of daily moments, joy in my family and friends, joy in my work, and so much  more. But amidst my joy, there has been significant pain, confusion, and turmoil. Oh, and anger. There has been a significant amount of anger. Just keeping it real and honest, folks. There are times when it's a struggle to hold tight to my joy, in the face of these challenges.

One thing that's keeping my mind focused forward is the upcoming Superbowl party. I was volunteered to host. Lol. Actually, I enjoy hosting  - all the food planning, prep, serving, and of course being surrounded by loved ones. It'll be a lot of fun, and the theme I've chosen will be fairly easy to dish up... Nacho Bar! We'll have a giant pot of chili, another of carne asada, and all the fixin's and trimmin's that make a plate of nachos into a work of art ;-) Woot! Here are some of the recipes I'll be whipping up (see below).  What are you serving?

Follow Chelle Stafford's board Superbowl Party Food on Pinterest.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

New Recipe!! Chicken Teriyaki with Veggies and Noodles

Here it is! The recipe I promised you yesterday... this is a fantastic dish that will fill you up, nourish your body, and happify your tastebuds! ;-) It's super easy to customize - switch around the veggies, make it gluten free with buckwheat or glass  noodles - or whip out that spiralizer and make some zucchini noodles! YUM!! Head on over to the website to check it out!!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

News and New Recipe Ahead...

How's the New Year treating you? Ours has been... challenging. We've got, as usual, a ton of stuff going on, including the awesome news I just can't wait to share, but have to, lol. Mid February, I'll unveil the new chapter in our book :-)  I'm struggling to eke out time to study (drat those Continuing Ed requirements, haha), the hubby is also studying for his own exam, Bethy is about to start back up the new semester, Ariel has started a new job working for my hubby's company, Joey continues to work hard, traveling all over the U.S. - right now he's on his way back from Texas. I've managed to get all the Christmas decorations packed up, and am now trying to figure out what to do for "Spring" decorations :-) And of course, Recipe for Fitness continues to grow (lots of plans for that this year!).

However, if you're on facebook, you may already know, but we had a heartbreaking event last week. Our daughter and her husband went in for a routine doctor's appointment, only to learn that the baby had died. Absolutely devastating. My heart is with them, and I'm so proud of the way they're holding tight together to face this sad experience. I know the future holds bright beautiful things for them, and I'm focusing on hope and healing as we all move forward.

This weekend will find Bill and I traveling back to Colorado - it's snowing! Those of you who live in the snow probably think we're nuts, but hey - we live in Arizona - snow is awesome to us, lol! May even get to go on my first snowmobile ride - or snowshoe! Woot! I better pack the inhaler, haha!

Tonight we're headed to the bowling alley - Bill's got league. I don't bowl anymore (in the league) since my elbow and wrist have never fully recovered (tendon damage), so I just go to cheer everyone on. It's a great group - Bill, his dad, his dad's wife, our best friend, and a couple other friends - Always a fun night :-) I do miss playing with the team, but not enough to screw up my arm again, haha!

Sarku's Teriyaki chicken, veggies
& soba noodles
Tomorrow I'll be whipping up a new recipe to share with you - cannot wait!! One of my favorite meals is Teriyaki Chicken from a little restaurant called Sarku. I only get to enjoy it a couple times a year, and have always wanted to make it myself at home. When I order it, I get extra veggies, no sauce (because I have no idea what's in it), and I sub the white rice with Soba Noodles - then savor every bite. I came across a recipe on Facebook, and my daughter makes another she found on  Pinterest - so I played around and did what I do... I tweaked. ;-) And WOW!! New Fav!! And - I get to enjoy sauce!

I'm addicted to the contrasting textures - the chicken, crunch veggies, soft veggies, noodles... and of course - I douse the whole thing liberally with Sriracha ;-) I'm excited to share it with you, so be sure to stop back by tomorrow!

What recipes are you enjoying? What's your current fav? Apart from my soups, another favorite I keep going back to is this one... it's a lot of ingredients, I know, but it is seriously amazing! I make it with ground turkey or chicken breast. Check it out!

Friday, January 2, 2015

New Recipe!! Slow Cooker Split Pea and Ham Soup

Remember my hubby recently challenged me to create a clean and healthy version of his childhood favorite soup - Bean & Bacon? Well, it took a few tries, but Challenge Accepted and SMASHED! If you haven't tried it yet, seriously - it's BOMBtastic!! Not content to let me rest on my laurels, he promptly threw down another gauntlet... Split Pea and Ham Soup.

Oh no, he did not.

Oh yes, he certainly did.

But then... so did I. ;-) BOOM!! My version is super easy to make, full of mouth watering flavor, filling, comforting, did I already mention the flavor? Oh, and the flavor! ;-) Yep, I did a happy dance. It was mortifying for everyone present, but it had to be done. ;-) AND... it's totally clean and healthy! Check out this comparison...

Campbell's Split Pea soup has per 1 cup: 360 calories, 22g protein, 58g carbs, 4g fat, 10g fiber, 8g sugar, and 1700 mg sodium. It also has a scary ingredient list with a ton of nasty additives!

My recipe has per 1 cup: 202 calories, 21g protein, 23g carbs, 2g fat, 4g fiber, 2g sugar, and 92 mg sodium. The ingredient list is clean and wholesome. And yes, you read that right... 92 mg sodium.

Yep, nailed it! ;-)

Slow Cooker Split Pea and Ham Soup

Perfect for chilly days, this soup is comforting, filling, flavorful, and HEALTHY! Slow Cooker Split Pea and Ham Soup - Easy, comforting and filling soup that's full of flavor and low in sodium!
Preparation Time: 15 minutes Total time: 7 hours
By , December 3, 2014
Serves 12

1 lb dry split peas,
8 cups Chicken Bone Broth *(see note below),
2 small carrots, peeled and diced,
1 medium yellow onion, diced ,
1-2 stalks celery, diced,
1.5 Tbsp garlic, minced,
4 sprigs fresh thyme,
2 bay leaves,
2 ham hocks (ask your butcher if you don't see them in the meat case),

Tools: slow cooker, Reynolds Slow Cooker Liner (optional), immersion blender (if you don't have one, you can do the blending step in batches using a blender - just be careful, it's HOT!)

Rinse peas in water, removing any funky ones. These don't need to soak, just rinse.
Place ham hocks in slow-cooker (I like to use a crockpot liner to save on cleanup).
Place peas in slowcooker, add 8 cups broth, diced onion, diced carrots, diced celery, and stir gently.
Place sprigs of thyme and bay leaves on top.
Cover and cook on low about 7 hours, or until the meat is falling off the ham hock.
Remove ham hocks and shred the meat off and set aside for a moment. Reserve bones for your dogs if desired (our Sadie LOVES this!)
Using an immersion blender, carefully blend crockpot contents until it reaches desired smoothness (usually just a minute). Soup is HOT, so please be careful you don't spatter yourself (or your kitchen, not that that's happened to me or anything).
Add meat back to slowcooker. Stir.

*Note: Bone broth is a fabulous new product Pacific Foods has introduced - though it can be hard to find, it's worth the effort! Much higher in protein (and "cleaner") than regular broth, it's an absolute wonder! If you cannot find it, feel free to substitute lower sodium chicken broth (like Imagine or Pacific brands) or if you're willing to put in the time - make your own! Here's a recipe I recently found that I'll be trying this week.

When you refrigerate this soup, it will solidify (would you like a slice of soup? lol!) - don't worry, it will liquify as it reheats. If you still feel it needs to be thinned further, you can add a bit of water, broth, or even milk.

Nutrition facts per serving: 202 calories | 21 grams protein | 23 grams carbs (net 19g carbs) | 2 grams fat | 4 grams fiber | 92 mg.

You might also be interested in our other Main Dish recipes.