Sunday, December 15, 2013

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

I found a can of Pumpkin puree on sale at Walgreens the other day so I figured why not get it and extend pumpkin season into December.  But what to make with it?  I really do not need to be baking, but I think baking is a natural part of my nesting phase and it is good for my 2 year old.

So, off to Pinterest I went.  I found this recipe for Pumpkin Toffee Chocolate Chip Muffins, but who keeps toffee chips in their kitchen and well, I really prefer to just stick everything in one pan instead of making muffins.  I'm 38 weeks, 3 days pregnant and pretty darn tired at this point so excuse the laziness.

In true Rachel fashion I took her recipe and made it my own. 

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Quickbread

The wet ingredients:

1/2 cup of real butter softened
1/2 cup of Dark Brown sugar
1/4 cup of Pure Maple Syrup

Cream together with a mixer for 5 minutes.  Scrape as necessary.

Remaining wet ingredients to add and mix together after creaming the butter and sugar for the 5 minutes:

1 cup pumpkin puree
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla

The dry ingredients:

1 1/2 cups Flour
1 small package of Cheesecake flavored Instant Jello Pudding Powder (the no cook kind)
Sprinkle of cinnamon (probably around 1 tsp would be fine)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

Mix togther.  Add to the wet ingredients and blend together.

Add at the end:

Mix in 1 cup Dark Chocolate Chips

Pour into a greased 8" baking pan.

I used her streusel topping recipe which I wasn't really sure about, but it turned out delicious. 

3 TBLS flour
2 TBLS Brown Sugar (I used dark)
2 TBLS cold butter

Cut the butter into the brown sugar and flour until coarse and crumbly.

Top the pumpkin bread with the streusel.

Add a handful more dark chocolate chips to the top and press everything down into the pumpkin dough.

Bake for 40-45 minutes until a tester comes out clean.

So delicious.  Even my 2 year old ate the whole piece I gave him.  His was much smaller than this of course :)

Are you still making Pumpkin recipes in December? 
Link your favorite recipe in the comments. 

Sunday, December 1, 2013

December Update

It is December. Wow, the year sure did pass fast. I only have 26 days left until my due date. Then things should really get interesting.

So hopefully you are planning on spending the last month of the year enjoying family and traditions without too much guilt, but at the same time finding some moderation.

There is a lot going on this month that I want to share.

First off, my free challenge. Need a little extra to add to whatever you are currently doing or just a place to start?  This is it.  December is traditionally full of sugar, but eating all those treats is the quickest way to see all the results from 2013 vanish in just a few short weeks.  Right?  So, with a little tracking and some small changes you can keep those sugar surges from sabotaging all the work you have done up to this point.  Join the group Fall for Healthy Foods Again.  I have quite a few participation prizes to give away throughout the month so make sure you add yourself to the group and get a free membership to Team Beachbody HERE to be eligible. 

Second, there are still a couple of days left of Black Friday shopping for some of the most loved fitness programs every created.  You can order them now at this LINK.  If you have ever wanted to do TurboFire, Tai Cheng, Asylum, or P90X, now is your opportunity to get them at their lowest price. 

Third, P90X3 comes out December 10th.  30 MINUTES A DAY!!!!!  Do I need to say more? 
Get a free membership to Team Beachbody HERE now so I can let you know as soon as it is available.  I will start a Challenge Group for everyone doing P90X3 on January 1, so you want to make sure you get your copy in time. 

Fourth, as I have mentioned, this baby is almost here.  January will bring a totally different experience on my Facebook Page Our Virtual Fit Club.  The theme will be "forever" and will be about transforming into the person that makes you happy, feel confident and be your best.  I will be sharing everything from skin care, to personal development, to motivation, to books worth reading, to recipes, to healthy eating, to workouts that work.  I will share my journey, but it will still be our fit club.  I want you to share your journey.  I want to know what works for you and how you are making 2014 the best year yet. 

Saturday, November 2, 2013

November Update

Halloween is behind us, but Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and the New Year's eve celebrations are upon us.  At my house, add in a birthday for my husband, a birthday for me, and our 2nd baby is due so we have a lot of celebrations coming up.  I think for most of us, all of these mean tempting foods will be all around us and not just on the holiday itself, but the entire next 2 months.  So how do you maintain some integrity in your food choices and not undo everything you have worked so hard for this year?

Enter Moderation!

I am not perfect.  I never will be.  I love food.  I crave food.  I design recipes in my head constantly.  Some would say I am obsessed so to go cold turkey and expect myself to never have a bite of something decadent is impossible. 

So for the rest of this year I want you to join me in practicing moderation, not perfection.

November Challenges and Specials
My FREE November Challenge is a plank challenge.  Come join us at Fall for Healthy Foods Again a Closed FB group and start planking with us.  

If you want a head start on your fitter, healthier, more beautiful you before the new years rolls around, Beachbody has specials just for you.

For the FIT and HEALTHY part:

Take on the Beachbody Challenge with a challenge pack or start with better nutrition with the Healthiest Meal of the Day on HD.  Either way ensures you are helping Feeding America and getting me as your coach to help you see all the benefits of completing a program and enjoying healthy meals. 

If you need accountability and motivation to get you through the next couple of months, join one of my Challenge Groups. 

The last of my 2013 Challenge Groups start on November 18, December 2 and December 16.  I am close to the end of my pregnancy so I am only accepting serious applicants for these 3 dates.  You must purchase a challenge pack from the link above and be willing to commit to the 90 days.  Participation in a Private FB group is required. 

The first Challenge Group of 2014 will begin on January 6.  I will be doing Body Beast at that time, however, like always, you can pick the Beachbody program that will most help you meet your goals.  Not sure which program is best for your situation?  Message me at and I can help you pick one that is appropriate for you. 

Now for BEAUTY

The Derm Exclusive Ultimate Kit is on sale for $99.95 from 11/1-20/13 and includes:
o Facial Cleanser (6oz.): Soap-free, nutrient-rich cleanser helps reveal more radiant, younger-looking skin.

o Micro Peel Resurfacing Pads (45 pads): Gently remove dead surface cells to exfoliate refine and polish skin.

o Intensive Repair Serum (2oz.): Target sun and age spots and reveal a brighter, more even complexion.

o Collagen Lift Moisturizer (2oz.): Restores elasticity, naturally boosts collagen production and hydrates skin. Formulated for face and eyes.

o Fill & Freeze® Wrinkle Treatment (0.12oz.): One-touch instant wrinkle eraser

o Age Defense Moisturizer SPF 30 (1oz.): Broad-spectrum UVA and UVB sunscreen helps protect skin from sun’s damaging rays.

o Volume Lip Therapy SPF 15 (0.33oz.): Plumps, hydrates and nourishes lips.

 Each kit includes a bonus Fill & Freeze pen and makeup bag plus FREE shipping!

Monday, September 30, 2013

The role of accountability in weight loss

You have heard this before right?  “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” ---Jim Rohn

When you align yourself with others who either have what you want or are working on the same goal as you, you are more likely to head in that same positive direction.  The same goes true for "hanging out" with the wrong crowd.  To reach a goal, inspiration and motivation can mean the difference between success and failure.  Also, just voicing your intentions to those positive influences can give you some accountability.  Ultimately you don't want to let yourself down and that is what is most important, but have you ever let a goal slip by because no one knew about it anyway and so you weren't letting anyone down, except for yourself?

In weight loss, I have heard both sides:  tell everyone and tell no one.  Either can work, but it takes a very self motivated person to stick to a hard core nutrition and exercise plan.  We are human, we slip.  What you do after that 1st slip can determine if you meet your goal sooner rather than later.  Having someone to talk to and knows what you are going through can help you get back in control so much faster.

Just think about all those programs out there that work:  Weight Watchers and Team Beachbody are 2 I can think of that focus on comraderie and accountability through either meetings or Challenge groups.  They have both proven to work and have many success stories. 

See some of the Beachbody success stories in the video below. 

If you are interested in getting healthy this fall, I have opened a Closed FB group for anyone that wants accountability and wants to find motivation and inspiration from others fighting the same battle.  Request to join FB group: Fall For Healthy Foods Again  All positive people are welcome. 

Friday, September 13, 2013

Roasted Chickpea salad

This is a much more complicated salad than I have posted so far this month, but very good if you are sick or think you might be coming down with something.  It is full of Vitamin C, Garlic and everyday vitamins.

Roasted Chickpeas
Ingredient Line Up:

1 can of organic chickpeas (rinsed and drained)
2 tsps of coconut oil
sprinkle of Paprika
sprinkle of cumin
sprinkle of garlic powder
sprinkle of salt
1 garlic bulb
Mix everything together except the garlic bulb.  Wrap the garlic bulb in foil.
Roast everything above at 450 degrees for 15-20 minutes
Salad dressing
Ingredient Line Up:
1/2 TBLS of a lime
1 TBLS of olive oil
1-2 palm fulls of cilantro
(if I had to guess it was probably between 2-4 TBLS)
as much of the garlic bulb as sounds good to you
(cut off the top and squeeze the cloves out)
a slice or 2 of jalepeno (to taste)
2 TBLS of purple onion
Himalayan Salt
Cracked black pepper
Blend until it becomes dressing :)
Basic Salad Assembly:
Lettuce (I used romaine)
Tomatoes (I used Roma)
1/2 an avocado (or to taste)
Roasted Chickpeas (add as much crunch as you want)
Add as much of the dressing above as
Eat and Enjoy of course!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Dream Board

Have you heard this quote? "What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?"
Robert H. Schuller

Have you ever sat down and really thought about what you want in life? It is so easy just to live the day to day and let the world and the chaos decide how we spend our life. What if you took the time to make a list of goals and things you wanted to accomplish and then made a plan to do it? How different would your life be if you designed it?

One of the easiest and most visual way I have found to design your life is by creating a Dream Board. You can get out the glue, magazine and scissors or use one of the many online collage makers.
I used PicMonkey.  Here's what mine looks like:

My dream list:
1. Well adjusted/bright/HAPPY children
2. Be in a workout video
3. Control my Crohns through diet and exercise and prove that a mom of 2 can be super fit, work and enjoy life
4. A happy and long marriage (just celebrated 11 years)
5. Travel the world (Panama down, a million more places left to see)
6. Have a successful fitness coaching business as a Team Beachbody Coach from home and be able to quit my day job (hey, my boss keeps asking if I am really going to return after this baby arrives, might as well make that come true)
7. Pay off house (our only remaining debt)!!!
8. Be a more patient and loving mom (struggling here big time)
9. Get certified in nutrition

"Commitment is doing the thing you said you were going to do long after the mood you said it in has left you" Darren Hardy  
"It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end."  Ernest Hemingway
"A year from now you may wish you had started today."  Karen Lamb

So what is on your list? 
I would love to see your boards or lists. 
Today's Stats:
24 weeks, 3 days Pregnant
Workout: 20 minutes on the Arc Trainer and 1 set of heavy dumbells (12 reps) for upper body (bicep curls, tricep rows, shoulder press and chest press)
Vegan Salad. I call this Totally Random Monday Salad:
cabbage, carrots, orange/red/yellow sweet peppers, tomato, avocado, and Four Leaf Balsamic dressing (store bought...had a sick kid yesterday and never made it to the store)

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Asian Slaw

Vegan Salad Challenge Day 6

Kept the veggies simple for this one since the dressing is a little more exciting.  I think this is now my favorite dressing. 

Ingredient Line Up
chopped cabbage (any kind will do)
shredded carrots
1 TBLS sesame oil
1 TBLS Rice vinegar
1 TBLS chopped garlic
1 TBLS almonds
1-2 TBLS cilantro
2 TBLS soy sauce
Pepper to taste

Blend the dressing ingredients up until well blended.  I only used about 1/2 the dressing on my salad. 

Friday, September 6, 2013

Maple Mustard Salad

Vegan Salad Challenge Day 5
I love honey mustard, but honey is not an approved vegan condiment.  Maple syrup, however, does fit the vegan standard.  Turns out there are plenty of maple mustard dressings on the internet.  I combined a few and made the one below.  This is my favorite salad so far.  The dressing is actually really good, although thin.  You could probably blend it in a blender to make it a little thicker or blend up the pecans into the dressing.  Either way, I loved it and dipped the rest of my apple into it when I was finished. 

I have always thought fruit in salad was a little strange but apples are very good and went well with the dressing. 

Ingredient Line Up
lettuce/romaine mix
black olives
diced apple
1 1/2 TBLS chopped pecans
1 TBLS olive Oil
1 TBLS Maple syrup
1 TBLS dijon mustard
1 TBLS apple cider vinegar
Watermelon on the usual!
Can you guess what this is?
Answer:  Medela breast milk container filled with the maple mustard dressing instead. 
As another blogger do what you gotta do! 
Tupperware just doesn't hang out in my house for very long. 
But the problem has been solved.


Thursday, September 5, 2013

Bean Taco Salad

Today's salad creation kept evolving as I was wandering around the kitchen trying to get my lunch together, eat dinner and make sure my toddler wasn't trying to make a run for it instead of eating his dinner. 

It started with just some organic black beans and red kidney beans.  Checking through the spice cabinet I found cumin, Himalayan salt, Paprika and some garlic powder.  Added a pinch or 2 of all of those.  Found some cilantro, jalapenos, and a lime in the fridge so in they went.  My favorite part:  an avocado!  Checking the fridge one more time resulted in some sweet peppers.  Decided on 1 orange, 1 red and 1 yellow.  Added tomatoes and lettuce from the salad bar at work and bam! 

Taco salad would not be complete without chips so I tried Garden of Eatin' for the first time.  Pretty good chip.  I LOVE tortilla chips and these are a good substitute for the less healthy version.

Prior to the salad I got in an upper body workout.  I have been doing Shaun T's Focus T25, but left my desk a little late so I decided to just do upper body on my own.  Quick 15 minute workout and I was off to lunch. 

This salad was super filling. 

Here's the lineup:
1/2 cup black beans
1/2 cup red kidney beans
himalayan salt
Garlic Powder
Sweet peppers
Chips (I chose Garden of Eatin)


All the ingredients are to taste.  Salads need to be easy.  Just dump in some good stuff and leave the measuring for the bakers. 

I put the leftover beans in the freezer and will add to my next batch of taco soup.  No signs of fall or winter here in TX so that will have to wait a little bit longer. 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Crazy Salad

Day 3 of my September Vegan Salad challenge

Tuesdays and Thursdays are 1/2 price salad days at work.  They have a pretty good selection so in honor of never making it to the grocery store over Labor Day weekend my salad creation had to come from there. 

Today's salad included:
Crazy lettuce (you know...the curly kind that comes in different colors)
Sunflower Seeds
Black olives
Green and Red Peppers
A splash of Red Wine Vinegar
A splash of olive oil
Salt and pepper
Watermelon on the side

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Sweet Pepper Quinoa salad

Vegan Salad Challenge Day 2
I needed something simple and saw these sweet peppers at Target today.  I have never had them before so they seemed perfect. 

Quinoa (makes extra for the week)
1 cup quinoa, rinsed
2 cups vegetable broth
1 TBLS dried garlic
1 bay leaf
Per serving of quinoa add:
sweet peppers
1/2 TBLS balsamic vinegar
Mural of flavors (similar to a lemon pepper)
2 TBLS chopped pecans
Cook quinoa in the vegetable broth with the dried garlic and bay leaf.  Once it boils, change to low and simmer for 15 minutes.  Remove from the heat and allow to sit covered for 5 minutes.
Saute or grill the sweet peppers until tender.  Add the pecans and saute for another minute.  Add the sweet pepper and pecans to a serving of quinoa (about 3/4 cup of quinoa).  Drizzle the balsamic vinegar over the top.  Sprinkle with Mural of Flavors and Pepper to taste.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Vegan Salad challenge day 1

September 1 brought 103 temperatures and a full busy day nesting for me.  I cleaned out closets, organized toys, scrubbed floors and toilets and everything in between.  Nice way to spend part of a 3 day weekend don't you think?

The challenge I gave myself for September was to eat a vegan salad every day this month.  Why vegan and why salads?  VeganMoFo is having a month long vegan blogging challenge and I already wanted to try to include more veggies going into fall, so I just decided to combine the two. 

In honor of the heat and it still feeling like summer I went with a fruit salad for day 1.

It is a mix of blueberries, raspberries, blackberries and a green apple with homemade Ultimate Granola, a few frozen grapes, and a drizzle of pure maple syrup for good measure. 

The link to my Ultimate Granola recipe can be found HERE

Pretty tasty. 
Have you challenged yourself for the month?

Texas Women Bloggers

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Frozen PB & J Grapes

We have all heard of frozen grapes and frozen grapes dipped in yogurt.  To be honest either way kind of freaked me out.  I imagined a rock hard grape that was going to kill my teeth and well, I do not exactly have a good loving relationship with yogurt.  It is okay at times, but not my go to snack by any means.

So, I decided to take a leap and try out a frozen grape, but of course in Rachel fashion I had to take it one step further.  I love peanut butter and granola and have been doing my best lately to integrate both into as many recipes as possible so an idea formed over the course of a week.  What goes better with a grape than peanut butter?  You have had a Peanut Butter and Jelly sandwich before, right?  Even as an adult that is the one sandwich I bet you secretly still enjoy.  Why granola?  While I have been known to eat PB right off the spoon, I needed the effect of the sandwich and granola is pretty trendy these days and depending on what type of bread you consume, it can be a similar flavor. 

To prepare:  Pick out some grapes, any kind, purple, red, green, whatever variety you love.  I happened to find these Midnight Beauty grapes at my local grocery and thought they would be fun to try.

First I rinsed and froze some grapes.  I will be honest and tell you I have no idea if it is important to freeze the grapes first or not, but I have seen it done that way in several recipes, so that is what I did. 

Then I made some granola.  I used a mixture of oats, flax seed, quinoa, and Pure Maple Syrup.  Have you been seeing as many recipes for quinoa granola as I have lately?  I was a little nervous so I kept the 2 separate when they were baking just to make sure the quinoa was going to be good :)  Turns out it is delish so I combined them, but...more on that later.  I blended mine up in my magic bullet prior to baking since I knew I was using them as crumbs and then blended them one more time after they baked just to get rid of some of the maple syrup that sometimes clumps. 

Then comes the peanutty yogurty deliciousness part.  I mixed 2 parts greek yogurt to one part peanut butter and added a little vanilla.  Ok, I added A LOT of vanilla, but I think vanilla is kind of like salt and pepper.  I can't tell you how much to add.  You just have to add until it tastes right to you.  But can't have too much in my humble little opinion. 

Also, I only had crunchy natural PB.  I have 2 brands of nut butters I buy at my local grocery store because the only ingredient they contain is the nut and go figure this time around my almond butter and PB were only available in crunchy.  I guess the creamy fans beat me to the store this time, but I am not willing to compromise on ingredients just to have a smooth consistency.  If your PB or AB contains more than just the nut, read some more labels next time you grocery shop.  Palm oil and sugar are not important ingredients in nut butters.  I promise you will not be able to tell a difference.  I digress...

Back to PB & J Frozen Grapes.  Drop a grape one at a time into the yogurt mixture and coat.  It will be a thick coating. 

Drop into a pile of granola dust and roll using a fork until all the surface is coated. 

Lay them out on a plate lined with parchment paper (or if you are like me and bought an entire roll of freezer paper to use for 1 little project you can use that as well). Either way, cut the paper to size, shiny/waxy side up. Continue until you run out of yogurt mixture.  Freeze until firm. 

I tried 3 different varieties: 
oats, quinoa and a 1/2 and 1/2 mix of the 2 hence the need for separation.
The result:  a peanut butter sandwich in ball form.  It almost tastes like a Butter Finger which I really was not expecting but enjoyed regardless.  The grapes do not become teeth crushing rocks either like I imagined.  They will of course be frigid so carefully sink your teeth into them. 

The Recipe
Grapes:  rinsed and frozen
Ultimate Granola
1/4 cup oats
2 TBLS quinoa
1.5 TBLS flax seed
1.5 TBLS pure maple syrup
Blend all granola ingredients to desired texture, preferably to almost a powder. Bake at 350 for about 10 minutes, mixing up and turning 1/2 way through. It is powder/crumbs at this point so it should take significantly less time than traditional granola. Also, it does not need to be super toasty, just a light brown color.  Blend again if the mixture clumped up at all or if the texture needs to be smaller. Then lay out on a small dish or a bowl would work fine also. 
Yogurt/PB Mix
4 TBLS Greek Yogurt (I used The Greek Gods in plain)
2 TBLS PB (I used Krema Natural in crunchy)
Vanilla (to your taste buds desire, but I used at least 1/2 TBLS)
Combine all of the yogurt/pb ingredients in a bowl.
Once you have the grapes frozen and the granola and yogurt mix prepped, dip a grape in the yogurt/pb mix and then coat with the granola powder.  Lay out on parchment paper.  You will not want them to touch until after they have been frozen.  Once all the grapes have been dipped and coated, freeze for an hour at least.  Keep frozen.  This is a snack you eat at home.  It will not survive outside the freezer for very long.

Give them a try and let me know what you think.   

Friday, August 23, 2013

Why follow the fitness community

I was on Facebook earlier and Ripped Goddess asked this really great question:
Why do YOU come to Ripped Goddess or to any fitness page? I'm not asking this for compliments, but for real answers. Is it to receive motivation? Advice? To promote your own endeavors? To criticize and scrutinize? Or to feel supported? For community? I REALLY want to know. There are all types of "fitness" pages with all types of purposes.... so I'm interested in seeing if your reason matches my vision.
A million reasons came to mind for me of why I choose to follow so many health and fitness pages and blogs:
  • I want to know what is working for real people.
  • I want to meet others that have been where I was
  • I want to meet others who have achieved the amount of health or fitness I desire
  • I want support
  • I want to be surrounded by people that care about their health
  • I want advice
  • I want to know the latest research and trends
  • I just plain want (make that need) some motivation some days
  • I want to find products and services that work
  • I want to meet others who have Crohns, Ulcerative Colitis or any other inflammatory bowel disease and how they are beating it with nutrition and exercise
  • I need new workout ideas
  • I need new healthy recipes
So those are my reasons.

Why do you choose to follow health and fitness pages and blogs? 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Getting To Know You

So, I was looking for ways to connect with some local bloggers and women in general.  A girl can always use more mom friends, right?  I found Texas Women Bloggers and this was their prompt for last week. 

1. What part of Texas do you call home?     Arlington.  I moved to Fort Worth in 1998 to go to TCU and ended up getting married a few months after I graduated.  We moved into Arlington and have been here ever since. 

2. How long have you been blogging?    this blog...a few months, but my first blog was over 2 years ago when I was pregnant with my first son, The King's Prince and the one I have now for my 2nd pregnancy, Growing Baby #2.

3. Why did you start blogging?  to keep myself accountable to my fitness routine and inspire others to find fitness for their families.  For my baby blogs, it is a way to get out all my mommy frustrations and keep family updated on the pregnancy.

4. When we visit your blog, what can we expect to discover?  articles on health topics, recipes, family fitness and my own personal workouts

5. How did you come up with your Blog Title and what is its meaning?  My fitness journey is exactly that, how I am staying fit despite being pregnant and having crohns disease, oh and being a mom to a very active toddler.  It is also a way for me to show ways for families to find fitness together.  While I love a good DVD workout for myself, outside time around town with my family spent running around and exploring is important too.

6. What do you love about being part of Texas Women Bloggers?  Just joined.  Glad to be part of other women doing the same thing

7. Who inspires you to blog?  My kiddo.  I want to be healthy for him and that means remaining accountable.

8. If you could pick a favorite blog post from this past year, what would it be?  On this fitness blog, it would be a really recent one about a morning spent with my son at the Ft. Worth Botanical Gardens A 2013 Summer Memory.  On my baby blog, it would definitely have to be our Gender Reveal The Big Reveal
Getting to Know You Link Party with the Texas Women Bloggers

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Best Grilling Recipe/Tip

This is actually a tip from my dad, but I happen to love it.

Corn on the grill is one of the best foods during summer. It is sweet and juicy and adding it to the grill just makes it that much better.

So the tip is to soak it for an hour or slightly longer in water with the husks still on. When you are ready to grill, keep the husks on and grill on the top rack. It steams inside the husk, but still gets that grill flavor. Soaking keeps the husks from burning up.

Tip #2: For easier eating, turn a bowl upside down inside a much larger bowl. Remove the husks, stand the corn upright on the upside down bowl and using a sharp knife cut straight down getting close to the cob. The kernels and the corn "juice" will all fall into the bowl below. Add your favorite seasonings, butter if you dare and you are ready to eat.

What is your favorite thing to grill in the summer?

North East Bloggers

Friday, August 16, 2013

A 2013 Summer Memory


I love this topic, but how do you pick just one? The one that immediately came to mind and is an example of us staying active was a morning trip I took with my young toddler to the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens. It is one of my favorite places around DFW. I wish I lived just a tiny little bit closer and could spend more weekends just walking or even running through the gardens. It turns out my son loved it too so regardless we will go back in the fall once it cools down some.

I brought his car stroller, but he wanted out to explore which was fine with me. He ran around with me for more than an hour, giggling and touching everything he could reach. I let him lead us, which sometimes meant exploring the same 10 foot section of trail several times before he got the notion to continue on to a new path. The Native Texas Boardwalk has little learning areas along the path so he  
would play with those. Mostly he just ran and enjoyed the sun and nature.
When we got to the fountains is when his eyes lit up. My little water baby was in heaven. Touching the water in every fountain and pond was a must. There might have been some tasting of the water too, but I would rather not remember that part. I swear taste is his favorite of the 5 senses.


The 30 minute car ride home was the perfect setting to begin his 3 hour nap. Running and exploring nature is a great sleep aid. We should all spend more time outside, just enjoying the trees, flowers and sun!

What are your favorite outdoor spots for kids around your town?

North East Bloggers