Tuesday, 15 July 2014

{RECIPE} Easy Tin Foil Potato Packets

We love to camp in the summertime, at least once. We've been doing it since the girls were babies.  But before we head out I like to test out recipes at home to make sure they will work for us when were out there without my bare necessities (back-up food).

Recently I tasted tested these at home and they turned out amazing. Kids loved them too!



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Monday, 14 July 2014

Losing it and Winning - Week 10

If you are new to this series, I wrote a little bit about my 12 week challenge in this post.  Here are the recaps for week 1week 2week 3week 4week 5week 6week 7week 8 and week 9.




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I have had a few people ask me about an update pic so, I managed to take one yesterday after my group session.  If you follow me on Instagram, you might have seen this already. Thanks to all for your kind comments, it gets me through the tough parts of my day, knowing that someone is rooting for me.

Friday, 11 July 2014

{RECIPE} - Best Ever BBQ Sauce

This has become my go-to home made BBQ sauce  and my kids love it. I've used it on chicken wings, as a hamburger topping and even with these holiday meatballs. It is so easy to make and you can control how much heat you want. I love the sweet and spicy flavour.

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Best Ever BBQ Sauce

Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup finely diced onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 white wine vinegar
  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp steak sauce
  • 2 tbsp chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • a couple shakes of hot pepper sauce (depends on how spicy you want it)
Directions:
  1. In sauce pan, saute onion and garlic in oil, until slightly browned.
  2. Stir in remainder of ingredients except for hot pepper sauce.
  3. Bring to a boil and simmer on low for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and add a couple of shakes of hot pepper sauce to desired spiciness. Enjoy!

* Refrigerate the leftovers.
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Some other Summer Recipes you may like:



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linking up at: Be Awesome

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

{RECIPE} - Grilled Vegetable Salad

I love grilling in the summer time! I love to eat salads in the summer time! I have found a way to combine my two faves into one big bowl of yummy goodness. I'll even call it healthy yummy goodness... mmmkay? You can use whatever vegetables are in season or whatever you have in your crisper. 

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Grilled Vegetable Salad

Grilled Vegetable Salad

Ingredients:
  • Fresh Summer Vegetables (not frozen)- red and yellow peppers, zucchini, asparagus, eggplant, mushrooms, etc.
  • 2-3 fresh tomatoes
  • 2 - 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup Balsamic Dressing ( i used my favourite)
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste
Directions:
  1. Prepare your vegetables for the BBQ (see pic below, to see how I did it)
  2. In a bowl, pour olive oil over vegetables and sprinkle salt and pepper.
  3. Place on grill until you have your desired doneness. We like ours on the softer side.
  4. Once vegetables are grilled, carefully chop them up into bite-sized pieces.
  5. In a bowl add chopped tomatoes, chopped grilled vegetables and pour balsamic dressing over top. Mix together. 
  6.  Sprinkle feta cheese over top. Enjoy!
Grilled Vegetable Salad

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TIP: Skewer your mushrooms so you can easily turn them.

Grilled Vegetable Salad

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Are you a summer griller or a year round griller? Do eat like to eat salads in the summer?


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Tuesday, 8 July 2014

{RECIPE} - Pound cake with Ice-cream and Strawberry Sauce

Do you have one of those recipes that is so crazy simple you almost feel silly writing up a post about it?

This is one of those for me, but I figure if I can help just one person with a quick after dinner dessert I've done my job as a blogger! lol

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Pound Cake with Ice-Cream & Strawberry Sauce

Ingredients:
  • 1 store bought pound cake (I used Chocolate marble loaf cake in this recipe)
  • Vanilla Ice-cream
  • Strawberry Sauce (see below)

Strawberry Sauce:

2 cups of Strawberries - cut in in small pieces
1 cup of water
1/2 cup of sugar

Mix all three ingredients in a small pot and let it come to a boil and stir for 2-3 minutes. If you want a thicker sauce add 1 -2 tbsp of cornstarch before adding the pot to the heat.

Slice pound cake and place a scoop of vanilla ice-cream on top.  Serve hot strawberry sauce over ice-cream. Enjoy!

The combination of cold ice-cream and hot sauce is amazing! You can refrigerate left over sauce for a a couple of days (if it lasts that long).



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There is very minimal cooking involved with this recipe people! And I have yet to find one person who did not like it! The hot sauce makes it look like you have spent hours in the kitchen. Your guests will be impressed. ;)

Here is another easy no bake summer dessert you may enjoy!



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Linking up at these awesome parties!  Be Awesome, Tutorials & Tips, July Before & After, Inspire Me Tuesday

Losing it and Winning - Week 9

Welcome back for another week of my Biggest Loser Challenge!



If you are new to this series, I wrote a little bit about my 12 week challenge in this post.  Here are the recaps for week 1week 2week 3week 4week 5week 6week 7 and week 8.

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WEIGHT LOSS CHALLENGE

Here are my measurements as of  Sunday, July 6, 2014:


Weight:  148.1 lbs
Bust:       38" 
Waist:     31 1/2" 
Butt:       37.5"

I lost 2lbs this week!!  The measurements were exactly the same as last week.

Here is my original starting weight and the measurements as of Sunday, May 4, 2014:

Weight:  172.3 lbs
Bust: 41 1/2"
Waist: 39 1/4"
Butt:  40"

I ran alot this week. And I mean alot. I did alot of sprinting on the treadmill and incline running and sprinting. I did outside running, with a group from my gym. I ran on my own. I JUST RAN. I also did 4 HIIT classes and few other personal workouts.  So I was really surprised that I didn't lose more than I did. I think I should just face the facts, that my body does not really like to lose more than 2-3 pounds at a time. I guess, that's healthy right? The good news is that my 2 little pounds puts at 14.05% which is currently first place in the challenge.  The next person is at 13.71% and she has her weigh-in on Thursday. So until Thursday, I am in first place. ;)

PHYSICAL CHALLENGE

This week, my hip that I injured a few weeks ago, was not an issue and my hamstrings are slowly feeling better.  I'm really trying to focus on stretching really well after each work out and also through out my day.

I managed to get 4 HIIT (Hight Intensity Interval Training) classes in this week, and a whole lot of running. I'm all about the running right now. Thank goodness for nice weather.

MENTAL CHALLENGE

The one thing I am struggling with right now, is seeing my new body for what it is instead of what it used to be. It's difficult to explain, but when I picture myself in my head I don't picture the leaner body that I have, but I still see the bigger girl I used to me.  Sometimes I look in the mirror and I don't recognize the face staring back at me. Maybe it will take some time.  I was talking to someone else who recently lost 80lbs and she understood exactly what I was talking about.  I used to have a hard time accepting the bigger girl I had become the past 14 years and now I have a hard time believing that I am the smaller girl I see in the mirror.  

Although my body has toned up and lost so many inches everywhere, sometimes when I'm feeling 'blech' I look down and see the last remain rolls on my arms, stomach and legs and start feeling yucky about myself.  I have work on this and I try to pick out the things I like about myself.

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I only have three weeks left in this competition, and I am really ready for it to be over.  


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Thursday, 3 July 2014

{RECIPE} - Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Muffins

For some reason in my house, when bananas get a few spots on the them, my kids won't eat them. Of course, I toss them in the freezer and after awhile, my freezer gets over loaded with frozen bananas.

Usually I make either Banana Pancakes, Banana Chocolate Chip muffins  or Chocolate Banana Bread, but this time I thought I would try something different.  If you follow on Instagram you would have seen that I made these just before school let out last week.  One of my kids commented that it tasted just like a Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwich without the jelly part.  All three kids enjoyed their muffin with a glass of milk and I also managed to freeze a few for a quick snack another time.

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Muffins
(makes 12 muffins)

Ingredients:
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup oil (I use canola oil)
  • 3 very ripe banana
  • 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup of quick-cooking rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350C
  2. In a large bowl mix egg, oil and bananas.
  3. Combine remaining ingredients and add to wet mixture. Mix together.
  4. Grease muffin tin or line with muffin cups add 1/4 cup mixture to each muffin cup.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 20-23 minutes or until toothpick inserted in muffin comes out clean. Makes 12 muffins. Enjoy!


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Are your kids like mine? They see a spot on a banana and automatically label "the banana has gone bad, time to freeze it"?


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Wednesday, 2 July 2014

{RECIPE} - Balsamic Salad Vinaigrette

Due to my Weight Loss Challenge, I have eaten my fair share of salads over the last few months. This is my go to salad dressing, because it is low in sugar and sodium. 

Did I mention it is very flavourful too?

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balsamic salad vinaigrette

Balsamic Salad Vinaigrette

Ingredients:
  • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried basil, and oregano
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp honey mustard
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • pinch of salt

Directions:

Add all the ingredients to an airtight container (mason jar, works well) and shake to mix well. (I keep my jar in the refrigerator.)


balsamic salad vinaigrette, house vingraitte


balsamic salad vinaigrette,  garlic lemon chicken kabobs

Here is the recipe for the Garlic - Lemon Chicken Kabobs.

Other recipes you might like:

{recipe link}
{recipe link}


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Do you eat a lot of salads in your house like we do? Do you prefer to make your own or do you have a favourite store-bought one you can't live without?


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Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Happy Canada Day and some Red and White Desserts

Happy Canada day to all my Canadian readers!

Hubby is home today from work, so we will having some family fun and enjoy our day together.  I've rounded up some red and white desserts that are perfect for celebrating Canada day.   Please click on each link to the original source and pin from there. I want to give credit where credit is due. I have also created a Pinterest board if you wanted to check it out and you can repin all the recipes below (and more) from that board.


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(please pin from original source, thanks)

Red Velvet Cupcakes from Taste and Tell



No Bake Cherry Cheesecake  from Somerset Lane



Canada Day Cupcakes from Echoes of Laughter


Cheesecake Bars from Once Upon a Cutting Board



Watermelon Cake  from Sober Julie.


Strawberry Clouds  from Somerset Lane

(here is a Instagram pic of myattempt at a Canada flag 


Cupids Cloud (Raspberry & Cream dessert) from Pretty Life in Suburbs



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I hope you all have a sweet Canada Day with friends and family!

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