Versatile Blogger Award

VersatileBloggerNominations
Thank you Faithrises for this nomination! It is such an honor for me.

Guidelines for the Versatile Blogger Award are as follows:
-Display the Award Certificate on your websiteAnnounce your win with a post and link to whoever presented your award
-Present  award to 15  Versatile bloggers
-Drop them a comment to tip them off after you have linked them in the post

My nominees have some pretty great stuff you will love: (Sorry, I am new and only have been following a few)
http://faithrises.wordpress.com
http://fabulouslydisheveled.wordpress.com
http://louisegroomphotography.wordpress.com
http://katestull.wordpress.com
http://hikingphoto.wordpress.com
http://exploredreamdiscovertours.me
http://fitfor365.wordpress.com
http://mostlybrightideas.wordpress.com

Overnight Breaskfast Strata

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Overnight Breakfast Strata: Great for a brunch or breakfast that can strech a few days! Serves about 12.

Ingredients:
1 lb ground turkey sausage
1/2 lb diced ham
9 Large eggs
3 slices whole wheat toast cubed
2 cups low-fat sharp cheddar
3 cups low-fat milk
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper to taste.
Cooking spray

Directions:
1. The night before: Coat pan with cooking spray and place the pan over medium-high heat. Add the ground turkey sausage adding red pepper as it gets brown and crumbly.
2. In a bowl wisk together the low-fat milk, garlic powder, dry mustard, paprika, and eggs.
3. Add the ham, cooked turkey sausage, low-fat cheese, and whole wheat bread.
4. In a 9x13x2-inch baking pan pour the mixture. Cover and set in Refridgerator overnight.
5. In the morning: Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
6. Once preheated, pop your baking pan in the oven to get yummy for one hour. (check at 45 min.s)
7. Cut into squares and serve with a bit of fruit.
8. Enjoy!

Chicken Pot Dump

caption id=”attachment_124″ align=”alignnone” width=”300″]Chicken Pot Pie and Chicken and Dumplings together in a healthy makeover. Chicken Pot Pie and Chicken and Dumplings together in a healthy makeover.[/caption]Chicken Pot Dump: Pefect for a cold or rainy day. Hearty and warms you to your toes!

Ingredients:
1/2 cup diced onions
3 cloves of garlic, minced
4Tablespoons of Olive/Canola oil
2/3 cups Bisquick
1/3cup whole wheat flour plus 2 tablespoons for sauce/broth.
1 whole chicken cooked and shredded
1 pack of frozen peas
1 pack of frozen crinkle cut carrots
1 box of chicken broth
1 cup of water
4 tablespoons of low-fat milk
2 teaspoons of your favorite poultry seasoning mix (or mix oregano, basil, rosemary, sage, thyme, etc. Mixed evenly)
Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:
1. In a large pot or dutch oven, add 2 Tablespoons olive oil and heat at med-high heat. (med if using dutch oven) Once heated, add onions and garlic. Pepper lightly. Cook until opaque.

2. In a small mixing bowl mix Bisquick, 1/3cup whole wheat flour, 1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning, and milk. Stir until dough-like consistency.

3. Back on the stove, add the additional oil and 2 Tablespoons of whole wheat flour. Stir until thickened and smooth. (I prefer to use a wisk here) Next add broth a little at a time, allowing the broth to warm up and thicken slightly without clumping. Add the water (more than called for if necessary) and bring to boil.

4. Add the dumpling dough in one teaspoon-sized dollaps until all dough is used. Reduce heat to medium or med-low if using a dutch oven. Cook for 10 min.s uncovered and then covered for an additional 10 min.s . (If you are in a hurry, after the first 10 min.s uncovered, move to step 5.)

5. Add the frozen peas and fozen carrots. Bring up to medium-high/ medium for dutch ovens, covered. Once softened (but not mushy) add chicken and poultry seasoning. Salt and pepper lightly to taste. Continue cooking until chicken is warmed, about 5-7 min.s.

6. Let simmer on low for 10 min.s covered.

7. Enjoy!

Tips: If you prefer a thinner “broth” skip the extra oil and whole wheat flour step. Simply add broth and water to sauteed onions and garlic.
You can double the dumpling recipe if you want more dumplings. You can alter the sizes and even make fun shapes for the kids.

Perspective

The first step to any successful change is our mindset. Our actions are fueled by what motivates us, how we perceive ideas, and what we find priority. First let’s talk about the way we see food. Food is more than an essential piece of life. Food is the way we fuel our day, show love, reward, apologize, get past a tough moment, heal, and live! Food is not the enemy. We have control over what we eat. We can make a change and choose better for ourselves. I remember what changed my perspective on food. My husband sweetly brought me breakfast to work one day. It was Burger King biscuits and gravy. It was the most disgusting-looking food I was ever about to put in my mouth. The thought “What am I thinking? Are you really going to eat this?!” hit me like a ton of bricks. That moment I realized that I have been settling for less than my body deserves and it wouldn’t even taste good. Some foods we eat taste good at the time, but come back to haunt us later. Whether it is a bad stomach ache, lbs gained, weird feelings, bloat, or other issues it never leaves us truly happy and fulfilled. Something to consider when choosing food, is how you will feel after you eat it. Will you be glad you made the choice to eat it? If so, go ahead and enjoy. If not maybe it is time to consider another option.

I pointed out before that cooking is the best option. That scares people sometimes. Especially the crazy busy parent who doesn’t have time to shower, let alone cook or exercise. It doesn’t have to be a hassle to fix dinner. You may even find you have a flare for it. The time it takes you to run through the drive thru and grab a bite and take it home or where you are heading, you could have had a home-cooked meal instead. Just ask Rachel Ray. She is seriously one of the busiest people in the business and she cooks almost every meal. When she is sick she at least pulls a pizza bread together. I am not saying you have to be Rachel Ray, but you can find time to cook if you practice. Most weekday meals can be made in 30 minutes. I will be posting some recipes for you weekly. Plus, you are more likely to help your children develop positive habits for the future and even right now if you share your meal at the table. You will savor your food more and eat less if you enjoy it over a good conversation. We may also find that we have more energy, because we are not crashing from all the excess sugar in fast food products. Eating well will also help keep our moods more stable. Something extreme diets do not offer. If you are nervous about skills in the kitchen, look at my tips and practice cooking. I will be adding more over time.

The second and final perspective we may need to change is how we see ourselves. Believe it or not, you really are worth putting time and energy into. Seeing yourself as a person who has a purpose in life is key. In order to fulfill your purposes in life, you have to be healthy. I am not saying you should become self-centered. However, when you need to make a decision for yourself choose the best! Someone once said you cannot love others until you love yourself. I never agreed until recently. If we do not take care of ourselves how will we be in good health enough to take care of others? Also, once you learn how to better care for yourself, you can apply that knowledge when helping those you love. Remember to take time for yourself. Sometimes those with children find this particularly difficult. Aside from the guilt many feel for taking time for themselves, there are changing schedules, chores to be done, activities to do, etc. Squeezing some exercise time does not have to be impossible with children. If you have an infant, hold the baby as weight for squats and other exercises where you can have a good hold on your baby. Toddlers will enjoy watching you exercise and may even join in. If you toddler gets so involved you can’t move, save exercise for his or her nap time or after they have gone down for the night. When your children see you taking time and making good decisions they will understand that these things are important. This helps to prepare your children to make similar decisions for themselves later. If you are a busy person who barely even gets to see their significant other, make a date out of exercise or just do something active on your outings. Get creative. It also makes for great friend bonding time to do a similar program and keeps you accountable!

Valuing your health and choosing the best for yourself does not have to be a hassle. First of all you are worth the effort and time it takes to be healthy. You will feel better once you choose better. Start simple and grow from there. Small changes will help make for a lifetime of good choices for you and maybe even for others you care about. Balance in life has to include your wellbeing. When things are balanced, life is good! So go ahead and be a little snobby!

The Food Snob Theory: Living in good taste

As mentioned before, I have a theory that food should taste great and be healthy. There are many claims out there to have found that compromise. Most of those recipes have not wowed me. The healthy food out there claiming to be delicious usually seems to fail my expectations miserably. The first stage I go through is denial. I tell myself that this is edible and enjoyable. The second stage I tweak it to where it is less healthy. Stage three I abandon it altogether and get what I really wanted in overcompensation servings. Other programs can leave you feeling hungry  and unsatisfied. Some may let you eat what you want, but you are left counting everything you eat or drink. Others yet ask you to give up an entire food group…temporarily of course. Once you see how much you loose without that food group, it is tough to stop. It is tough to stop until you cannot stand being without that food (nutrients) any longer. Then you are left with gaining back all you lost and then some. If you are anything like me, you end up worse off. The feeling of failing yet another attempt at weight-loss and healthy eating seems to make you regret the effort and queue the self-shame.

 

  The great thing about the Food Snob Theory is that there is no sacrifice in taste. I believe in feeding the body and the soul. Food is a way of showing love, creating memories, feeling whole, and simply enjoying life to the fullest. Who wants to spend their life eating bland food? Not me. The true trick is in being creative about how we make our food. Yes, the best option is to cook your own meals the old fashioned way. Guess what? You can do it. Some of you may need to do extra planning ahead. Others may need a confidence boost in the kitchen. As busy and hectic as our lives are, let us remember what is important to us and our future. Time with our family, serving up something special, and health. Without taking time for yourself, how can you take care of others well? I will give you tips to help make you a more confident chef of your kitchen. I am not going to pretend that there are not nights where we grab a bite from somewhere outside my fridge, but moderation is key here. More on that later. 

The truth we need to face is as society gets bigger and demands get higher we need to remember what is important for keeping us going. Health. If you want to live a fuller life of health then you are at the right blog! I have found a perfect balance of enjoying life and being responsible. After all, who isn’t happy about discovering a purchase they made was both exactly what they wanted and on sale! Here you can have your cake and eat it too!

Feel free to email me or post questions you would like answered! 🙂 Until Next time my foodie friends!

Hello World!

My name is Tiffany and I am a food snob. More than that I am passionate about living healthfully and  eating great food. Some of my favorite quotes about food come from the movie Ratitouille. “If I am what I eat than I only want to eat the good stuff!” You can eat great food while living a healthy lifestyle. As our society learns that diets don’t work (as I have tried my fair share) I want to teach others how I have learned to live well.

I was not always where I am today. Three years ago I made a commitment to myself to find out what was wrong with me and to change it. I was 23, 5’5″, and weighed 209lbs. I was very active and strong, but overweight by more than I ever wanted. My doctor told me I had PCOS. Immediately I set out on a path to get smaller and change my life. The road has not always been easy, but anything worth anything never is. The change was an adventure that has shown me what I am made of and my desire to help others live as fabulously as I have discovered. Within a year I got down to 133 lbs!

At Miami University my major is Exercise Science. I will be talking about how to live a luxurious life without the hefty price tag, giving fitness tips, and reviewing recipies and fitness programs I personally try.  Living with health issues can be a struggle. Whether you want to just live better, try new recipies, or get even more fit (for those who already exercise) this is the blog for you! Your feedback on how I can improve or how helpful the information is to you is welcomed. Afterall, this is for you! This is your time.