The Best Baked Meatballs

Hey there!

How’s your week going? Monday and Tuesday almost killed me, but this hump day has me feeling fresh! As fresh as one can be on 2 hours of sleep with a congested baby.  I’m determined today will be better! Maybe I’m feeling all types of ways since MOVING DAY is upon us!! Yep, the house on the piece of property we purchased 21 months ago is complete. More details to come within the next few days, but you guys…the excitement is unreal, but so is the stress of moving; de-cluttering, packing, and then unpacking. There’s always an overload of things to do when you move and I’m going to try and spread it out as much as possible throughout the next week to ensure the least stress possible. I’ll let you know how well that goes.

I have more great news for you.

I found the secret ingredient to perfect flavorful meatballs!

Should I let you in on the goods? Okkk ok!

It’s KETCHUP!

True statement, I’ve made many meatballs in my lifetime and some have been less than stellar. What’s up with those flavorless balls of meat? Times have changed!

Baked meatballs are healthy, loaded with true ingredients (who knows what’s in those store bought ones!), and delicious! Making a couple batches of these and freezing them is a great idea!

I ate about 3 of these before they even made it to the table. Once they actually hit the table, they were inhaled by my girls and the rest of the family! No sauce…nothing else needed. I lie…Penelope needed a little marinara sauce on hers to cover the onions. (Things you do so your child eats…)

MEATBALLS (2)

 

Baked Meatballs

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Yield: About 20 meatballs

Easy Baked meatballs with incredible flavor! Pair with a pasta dinner or use as an appetizer.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb lean organic, grass-fed ground beef
  • 1/2 white onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup dried Italian bread crumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tbsp ketchup
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400F and grease a large baking sheet.
  2. Place all ingredients in large bowl.
  3. Combine with hands until well mixed.
  4. Form beef mixture into about 1-inch balls and place on baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes, or until meatballs are fully cooked.
  6. Serve with favorite marinara sauce or by themselves!
http://www.al2getherfit.com/2016/07/27/bestbakedmeatballs/

meatballs2

XOXO

Thoughts After Bringing Home a Newborn Baby

No matter how many kids you have, having a newborn or infant is terrifying. Well, having a 2, 5, 9, 16, 18, 21, or 65 year old child can also be terrifying, but there’s something completely intimidating when you’re handed the responsibility of a fragile human being who can’t even lift their head on their own.

It’s almost like you forget how to do everything and just because you knew how to breastfeed your first two kids, doesn’t mean #3 will be just as easy.

How can three kids, made from the same DNA, be so different, yet just alike at the same time?! It’s mind bottling.”You know when things are so crazy, you get your thoughts trapped, like in a bottle.” -Blade of Glory 

Although every child is completely different, the thoughts you have after bringing a new baby home from the hospital are about the same. 

newbornthoughts

  • Enters house: So now where do I put the baby?
  • Shoo away your first baby…your dog. Dog looks at you like, “so what am I now, chop liver?”
  • What if the baby starts choking? I don’t have the nurses at the hospital anymore. (Mini panic attack)
  • Please don’t choke, please don’t choke. Where’s that blue bulb?!
  • Nobody touch the baby! Get out of their face! 
  • Did you wash your hands?!
  • Looks at baby sleeping: I love you so much I might die! 
  • Hey! I can eat sushi now! Yells for husband to order sushi for dinner.
  • I’m so afraid to poop! Will all my insides fall out? 
  • How long is this bleeding going to last? I SO didn’t miss having a period…
  • Who in their right mind wears these huge pads by choice?! 
  • Who’s supposed to watch my baby while I sleep now? Googles ‘infant heart rate monitor’, looks at price, puts down phone. 
  • Are you breathing? (Ask every 15 minutes for the next year)
  • Are you choking? 
  • First night sleeping in your own bed, not pregnant: Ahh! It feels amazing to lay on my back, let’s try the stomach! Ouch my boobs!
  • Omg! You’re so cute! I want to eat you! 
  • Counts all 10 fingers and 10 toes because you forgot to at the hospital. Just making sure.
  • How exactly am I supposed to leave the house with 3 kids now? Sounds like a nightmare. Let’s just stay home. Who needs sunlight anyways?! 
  • How many times can this baby possibly eat? Give me a break!
  • Gets break: Wake up! I want to snuggle you!
  • Tries on pre-pregnancy clothes: I thought I’d be so much smaller by now. Laughs at self.
  • Dang, I have huge boobs! 
  • Can I have cheese? I hope the baby isn’t allergic to anything. Has cheese and baby cries all next day. Throws all cheese away.
  • Bites pillow in pain every time baby latches “shiiiiiiiiii…ok pains gone”
  • Holy moly! Your cry is so freaking adorable! (Regrets this statement after 30 minutes of baby crying in their car seat on the way to and from store) 
  • How am I supposed to give you a bath? Why is giving a baby their first bath such a terrifying thing? It’s like a bar of slippy soap you’re so afraid to drop. 
  • Why do you go through so many diapers? Looks at diaper stash that once looked huge.  
  • This baby is sleeping way to much right now…Will they keep sleeping throughout the night too? Answer: no!
  • Are you breathing?! Looks for chest movement. 
  • How many outfit changes are too many? 
  • How is our laundry basket already full?!
  • Can you see me?! Stares at baby and waits for them to make eye contact. 
  • Gets a moment to yourself. Opens bag of chips next to baby…baby moves their head. Start praying: “Please keep sleeping, please keep sleeping.”
  • Had 2 hours of sleep last night. Where’s the coffee? Can I have coffee? Mama needs coffee. Has cup of coffee and spends all day looking for signs that coffee isn’t agreeing with the baby.
  • Stares at baby in sleep deprived, delusional love gaze: What did I do with my life before you came?!

All these thoughts and moments are precious…and totally normal right?!
XOXO

Crockpot Beef & Brocolli

A healthy take on your favorite take-out dish! Beef is slow cooked all day and broccoli is added at the end to keep the freshness. Delicious, healthy, and enjoyed by the whole family. See below for recipe.

I’ve decided I need a personal assistant…don’t we all? 😉 I haven’t been cooking much and when I do they have been simple, simple, (did I say) simple meals? Think roasted sweet potatoes with panko-crusted chicken or Massaged kale salad with rotisserie chicken. Pretty much no thought and effort has been put into these meals because I might not have any thoughts or efforts left to give towards the end of the day.  I blame it all on #MomLife during the summer at #CampMom. Hello Summer Camp next week for the girls! 😉

I put more effort into the restaurants I go to than what I’m cooking for dinner at home recently.

Speaking of…if you know me, you know I love to try every single restaurant out there. If I’ve been once there is a slim chance I will want to go again, unless it’s to bring someone else who hasn’t been. I’m mostly talking about dinner places since I could go to Oxford Exchange for breakfast every day. My husband, Angelo, on the other hand is a simple man when it comes to restaurants and food. He could eat the same meal (pizza) every day and be happy.

When I was pregnant with Sophia we ate at Outback Steakhouse more than I would like to admit. It wasn’t because I had pregnancy cravings for it, it was because ANGELO had pregnancy cravings for it. After that pregnancy, I vowed to never eat Outback Steakhouse again because gag me! I think it was about a years time that went by before Angelo asked for it again one night for dinner. It might have actually been when I was pregnant with Penelope (#2). I caved and we had Outback a handful of times throughout that pregnancy. Ever since, and over the past 2 years, every time Angelo has asked to go to Outback for dinner I shoot him down immediately. The only thing I could possibly want on their menu is their Aussie Cheese Fries with ranch (because cheese, fries, and ranch), but everything else I’m just totally over. Sorry Outback..still love your ranch though, can I have the recipe?

Where was I going with this?

The other week at our women’s weekly bible study, the topic was on honoring our husbands. What that meant to us and how we showed it with words or actions. My whole philosophy in my marriage is that if I want to see him smile, I smile. I’m not talking like I walk around with a fake smile on my face all day, but I make an effort to be a happy person.
1. Why wouldn’t I be happy?
2. It ain’t doing nobody any good to be angry and/or depressed.
3. Who wants to come home to Negative Nancy or Debbie Downer every day? Pretty soon they wont come home at all. LOL (I laugh at weird moments in life.)

It’s also a lot of other things in regards to having a good marriage but for the sake of your time and mine, I’ll stop there. Also, I’m not a marriage advice expert but I have been with my husband for 14 years so it counts for something, right?! 🙂

Anyways… I spoke up at the bible study and shared that I was going to grant my husband his restaurant of choice for once. When I showed up to the house with Outback (to-go) for dinner his exact words were “YES! Did you get extra ranch?!” This may sound totally stupid to some, but food is our language of love over here.

It goes to show that it’s the little things in life (and marriage) that can bring the biggest smile to someone’s face and heart; and it turns out they aren’t so little after all.
So there you have it, Angelo got his Outback Steakhouse for dinner and I should be in the clear with that for another year. 😉

Now it’s time to plan tonight’s dinner, so take out the crock-pot because we all know how busy we are these days!
I tried to make this take-out fake-out Beef & Broccoli a little more healthier than the norm by cutting down on the sugar. It’s still yummy, but a lot less sweet, so if you’re still looking for that sweet, gooey Chinese staple, this isn’t it.

Crockpot beef brocolli

Crockpot Beef & Brocolli

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 5 hours, 30 minutes

Total Time: 5 hours, 40 minutes

Serving Size: 6

A healthy take on your favorite take-out dish! Organic Sirloin Beef is slow cooked all day and broccoli is added at the end to keep the freshness. Delicious, healthy, and enjoyed by the whole family.

Ingredients

  • 1.5- 2 lbs organic grass-fed sirloin steak, sliced into thin strips
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 tbsp cold water
  • 4 tbsp corn starch
  • 1 (12oz) bag of broccoli florets
  • Quinoa or rice, cooked

Instructions

  1. In your crock pot, stir together beef broth, soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil, and garlic.
  2. Place chopped onions, red peppers, and steak strips into crock-pot and stir to coat.
  3. Cover with lid and cook on low for 5 hours.
  4. When done, stir together water and corn starch in small cup. Pour over food in crock-pot and stir well.
  5. Add broccoli and stir.
  6. Cover crock-pot and let cook for an additional 30 minutes or until sauce is thickened and broccoli is cooked.
  7. Serve over quinoa, rice, or a bed of salad!
  8. Enjoy
http://www.al2getherfit.com/2016/07/22/crockpot-beef-brocolli/

XOXO

 

Lactation-Protein Smoothies

Goodness you guys it’s Monday again! The weekend sure does fly by when you’re having fun. Our weekend went a little like this: Friday night we spent at the pool with friends and family. Saturday was a little bit of nothing (except us getting an entire yard of new grass!) followed by a family date night to sushi & ice cream. Sunday included church and an Ice Cream social at a local park to celebrate National Ice Cream Day. Loads of fun and too much ice cream!

Now that we’ve got all that ice cream out of the way, let’s talk about Boob-Smooths. That’s totally a thing and it’s what I call my smoothies because I honestly believe they aid in my milk supply, along with a lot of other benefits! Plus, Boob-Smooth is fun to say. 🙂

I’ve been trying to make this post for weeks now since a couple of mommies have asked me about my smoothies, specially lactation smoothies. I wanted to try out some new recipes to add to the mix before I posted though. The tried and true banana/peanut butter smoothie combo is so “basic” these days, although still yummy and my favorite, it gets old and it’s nice to have options. Then you have those days when you realize you’re out of bananas and panic.

A nursing mom’s diet should consist of a healthy amount of protein, calcium, and iron. I know it’s hard to get a balanced meal in some days when your days are spent nursing on the couch, holding a baby, chasing toddlers, and just life in general. Smoothies are the easiest way to get in that balanced meal in a matter of minutes! I’ve been enjoying a smoothie almost every day since having Rockwell and it’s helped me to stay on top of my nutrition game!

Since I started working out a few weeks ago,  I add protein powders into my smoothies so they double as post-workout and lactation aid. Double whammy!

**I was extremely hesitant to add protein powders into my smoothies. Some have made my stomach hurt, give me gas, and cause baby discomfort. Toss those in the trash because they aren’t worth it! Recently I’ve used both JuicePlus Complete Powders and Bob’s Red Mills Protein powders with no issues.

**Not all protein smoothies need powders!

**You can really make any smoothie into a milk booster! All a “lactation smoothie” needs is a few of your favorite milk boosting ingredients!

Milk Boosting Ingredients
Almond Milk and Nut Butter – Almonds and other nuts are high in good fats and help increase milk production. Specifically, almonds are said to give your breast milk a sweeter and creamier taste!

Bananas – These are more for you momma! Bananas are great for a much needed energy boost, are higher in calories, and aid in overcoming depression due to high levels of tryptophan, which is converted into serotonin–the happy-mood brain neurotransmitter.

Berries – High in antioxidants & fiber.

Greens (Spinach and Kale) – High in iron, calcium, vitamin A, and protein.

Ground Flaxseed – Great source of LNA, an omega-3 fatty acid, which is great for baby’s brain development!  Flaxseeds must be ground to benefit from their nutrients as we cannot digest the actual seed.

Brewers Yeast – Packed with B vitamins, iron, protein, chromium, selenium, and other nutrients. Known to boost milk supply, energy, and help overcome depression.

Oatmeal – High in iron and a complex carbs to make momma feel fuller, longer! Low iron levels can cause a decrease in milk supply, so have a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast or add into your smoothie!

LACTATION-PROTEIN SMOOTHIES (2)

XOXO

Run with Me: FlavorRun 2016

The fun and tasty Flavor Run 5k is coming to Tampa! This will be my first run back after having baby #3 and I can’t wait for those race excitement feelings I’ve been missing the past few months! I couldn’t think of a better way to welcome myself back to the running community!
I love the family friendly vibes at these runs and you don’t feel like you’re in everyone’s way if you’re not sprinting to the finish line. It’s all about having fun with friends, family, and all people who are looking for a good time and get covered in colors! Strollers are allowed for the little ones and all kids under the age of 6 are FREE (with a waiver).

Let’s have fun together and JOIN MY TEAM – Al2getherfit.

 

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From the website: The Flavor Run™ 5k surprises you with a few of fruity twists on your classic color run events. Fruit flavored color powder (Made in the USA), a fruit themed medal, fresh fruit finish line, and a super family-friendly environment. The Flavor Run 5k supports local charitiesand local businesses through creating a fun 5k run engaging all of your senses; sight, smell, touch, hearing, and most importantly TASTE.

When?
Saturday, September 10th
Race Start – 9:00 am

Where?
Florida State Fairgrounds
Tampa, FL

 

How?
Visit FlavorRun.com or
CLICK HERE for 25% off using ‘al2getherfit‘ promo code!
**Make sure you Join My Team – al2getherFIT

OR ENTER TO WIN A FREE ENTRY! I have a FREE ENTRY for TWO lucky winners!

Included in your Entry:
*FREE Entry ticket to The Flavor Run 5k Tampa
*FREE Flavor Run race T-shirt
*Flavor packet
*Post Race fresh fruit
*Finishers Medal


e6e37b5a-d0c0-4c8b-93b7-06c9c68ce304

 Comment on this blog post to WIN!
Tell me your favorite color, fruit, and who your race buddy will be (besides me!) 

THIS GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED

XOXO

**As a Flavor Ambassabor I received complimentary entries into The Flavor Run 5K Tampa mentioned in this post in exchange for social media and blog love. As always, all opinions are my own.**

Maybe I’ve gone mad & a Beet Salad Recipe

Friends!

I feel like every time I see you nowadays I’m like, “OMG WHAT A FRIGGIN WEEK!” and unfortunately it’s so true. Can I tell you how I took a shower last night at 10 pm? I understand that may be normal to some but I’m usually laying in bed at that time.
The house (SO CLOSE TO MOVING!) is consuming all my energy and time (and money) lately. This week we’ve met with the landscaper twice for a total of about 5 hours. Today I forgot to pick up dog food because when I was getting in the car to go Angelo texts me that I need to go buy our toilet paper and towel holders for the bathrooms ASAP. So I went straight to Lowe’s and spent forever almost two hours picking out bathroom hardware. Two hours standing in a bathroom fixture aisle at Lowe’s is a lifetime.
Like a horrid person, I unorganized their shelves so badly in a search for toilet paper holders. Like a weirdo, I stood in the aisle with my eyes closed for half an hour trying to picture each bathroom and where to put said towel holders and hooks. Some days it’s a full-time job designing a house and other days you’ll feel like you’ve gone mad, but I smile every time I go to the house and know it’s all worth it!

Now to the good stuff, yes?!

F O O D

I found these gems at Costco the other day and snatched them up. I don’t really know why but cooking beets is low on my favorite things to do list. It’s actually the peeling part I can’t stand because peeling a round object can be dangerous. 😉 Tell me I’m not alone on this. Plus, right now with baby Rock,  I rarely have 2 hands to cook dinner, so ready-to-eat vegetables are a major key in cooking these days. MAJOR!

beetsalad_2

Beets are a messy vegetable to cook and eat because they totally take over and turned the town red…pink…purple. You should of seen my kitchen sink opening a package of those beets. <– That’s a warning for ya!

I look past their messy nature because I find them delicious! I love beet juice, beet smoothies, and my mother-in-law makes a killer tasty beet salad! I wanted to “healthify” her salad  since hers includes potatoes and mayonnaise…all good things if you aren’t trying to shed some weight!

This salad was amazingly simple (especially using the ready-to-eat beets) and all it has on it is some olive oil and salt.

BEET SALAD (2)

Beet Salad

Ingredients

  • 5 small beets, cooked
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 3 pickles, chopped
  • 2 apples, cored & chopped
  • 2 tbsp EVOO
  • 1/2 tsp Salt

Instructions

  1. In a small pot, cover chopped carrots with water.
  2. Over medium-high heat, bring water to boil and let carrots cook for about 8 minutes or until tender.
  3. Drain water.
  4. Combine chopped beets, carrots,pickles, and apples in medium bowl.
  5. Drizzle with EVOO and sprinkle with salt.
  6. Enjoy!
http://www.al2getherfit.com/2016/07/12/beetsalad/

XOXO

Buffalo Cauliflower & Recently…

Hey Friends!

Seriously, where did this week go? Short week alert!
I can’t believe I haven’t posted AT ALL this week, but I’ve been extremely productive so I don’t feel like a total loser. Since I last posted, last Friday, we had an amazing holiday weekend and celebrated Angelo’s birthday! He’s the big 3-1 this year and he just keeps getting better with age. Love this man!
angelosbday31

We had a big cookout at his sister’s house with tons of food, drinks, people, zip-lining, sliding, and swimming! She has an amazing backyard for parties.

angelosbday

Then, on Tuesday we all came back to reality. 😉

When the girls are home for the summer I set my productivity standards really low. Unless you count making YouTube videos, Summer-Yum food crafts, or swimming as productive. Actually that is productive… “Summer Productive”. This week the girls have been at camp since Tuesday so I’m getting ish done left and right. I’ve been catching up on work that I neglected over the past month and finally got all of May accounting books completed and moving into June! (Oh…June is already over?!) I am almost done ordering all the new furniture for the house. I finally got all the lighting and assembled the chandeliers, and I did yet another toy and clothes purge to de-clutter before we move. I still need to clean out the bathroom cabinets this week and throw out all the baskets of stuff we haven’t used since we’ve lived here.

With everything going on, my eats have been super simple and I’m mildly obsessed with bowls. Like the Chipolte-style food bowls, where you layer everything on top of each other, stick your fork in and hope for the best. The best is always the result and I haven’t been disappointed yet.
mexicanchickenbowl

proats_bowl

Bowls are the new plates.

I’m also currently obsessed with cauliflower.

To be exact, Buffalo Cauliflower and Cauliflower rice.
I’m absolutely horrible at making my own cauliflower rice, so a big thank you to Trader Joes for making bags of it for me! But, I’m wonderful at making Buffalo Cauliflower. I could probably eat anything drenched in buffalo sauce, but when eating clean, this takes the sugar-free cake.
I use Buffalo Cauliflower in lettuce wraps, bowls, and just for a nice snack before dinner. I’ve seen some people compare them to buffalo chicken wings. Don’t fool yourself, but it’s a nice veggie alternative!

Buffalo Cauliflower (2)

Buffalo Cauliflower

Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower, washed and cut into individual florets. (About 8 cups)
  • 1/4 cup buffalo or hot sauce
  • 2 tbsp EVOO
  • Salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. In a bowl, toss cauliflower with EVOO and salt.
  3. Spread cauliflower florets across a baking sheet.
  4. Roast for 20-25 minutes, or until cauliflower starts to brown.
  5. Remove from oven, drizzle buffalo sauce over hot cauliflower and toss with tongs.
  6. Put back into oven and roast and 7 minutes.
  7. Serve hot & Enjoy
http://www.al2getherfit.com/2016/07/07/buffalocauliflower/

Buffalo Cauliflower & avocado stuffed in Romaine hearts.

Buffalo_cauliflower1

XOXO

 

A Weakness & Recipe: Zucchini Boats with Ground Chicken

Hey y’all!

I’ve come to a realization. I’m horrible at writing about food. I love cooking, I love sharing recipes, but I’m horrible at explaining the food I create. Every night at dinner time Angelo asks that dreaded question, “What’s for dinner?” and I usually reply with “Whatever I’ve put together”.  I rarely have a name for my dinners and when I say things like “zucchini boats” I get the side-eye. Now I just read off the list of ingredients, so they can decide for themselves what it is. Lately it’s been real simple eats..meats and veggies.
The other day I set out to steam Bok Choy and it ended up being pan-grilled and I sat there for close to 3 minutes thinking of the words “pan grilled”.  I’m either going completely crazy or I need to read some cook books because good grief.

You know those food descriptions that read “The cheese cascades over a mountain of warm garlic buttered sea prawns”. Sounds delicious but those words don’t flow easily for me.  My immediate description would read “Garlic Butter Shrimp topped with cheese”.  This is my weakness and I am set out to strengthen it. But then I think, is it so bad to be simple person? After all, I do set out to make easy and simple recipes for people like myself! Sometimes I think people’s description for their food is WAY better than it actually is. Maybe it’s all a mind game and my descriptions keep your expectations low, so you are pleasantly surprised when you make the recipe. HAHA

In all attempts to eat cleaner, shed weight, and build muscle,  I’ve gone kind of paleo, as you might of noticed by my recent eats in Instagram. I’m using the paleo methods as a base for my eating; more vegetables and proteins, low carbs, minimal to no sugar, etc.  Trust me when I say I miss eating a burger with a bun, I miss some good pasta, and I miss dessert. (I could really go for a huge brownie right now.) I usually eat a couple squares of dark chocolate for dessert now. Sometimes it’s enough, sometimes it’s not. I know this is how I need to eat for a couple months (or 20) to fit back in my non-maternity wardrobe. When I do fit back in my wardrobe, I will continue to eat this way 80% of the time. I want no life without indulgent desserts and bread with butter, but it’s all about moderation. And right now it’s FIT time.

Continuing with meals using mainly vegetables and protein, I’ve stuffed some zucchini boats! These zucchini boats were absolutely perfect for a healthy and filling dinner. Major keys when eating clean. I used onions, red peppers, black beans, ground chicken to create a tasty filling for the hollowed out zucchini. Sometimes I can’t find ground chicken at the grocery store, so any ground meat will make a tasty filling.

Zucchini Boats

Sprinkle some hot sauce on them and you’ve got yourself a flavorful meal on a plate!

Zucchini Boat (2)

Zucchini Boats with Ground Chicken

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Stuffed zucchini for a healthy dinner at home!

Ingredients

  • 4 medium zucchini
  • 1 tbsp EVOO
  • 1 lb ground chicken
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed.
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • Parmesan Cheese
  • Salt & Pepper

Instructions

  1. In a large pot, fill with cold water.
  2. Place whole zucchinis in pot and bring to boil. Cook for about 10-15 minutes, until tender.
  3. Meanwhile, place a large skillet over medium heat.
  4. Add 1 tbsp EVOO and minced garlic.
  5. Add chopped onion and bell pepper. Let cook for about 3 minutes until onions are translucent.
  6. Add ground chicken, onion powder, and garlic powder, and salt to taste. Chop, stir, and brown until fully cooked.
  7. Stir in black beans.
  8. Crack 1 egg into skillet, stir, and and let cook for another 3-5 minutes.
  9. Set to side.
  10. When zucchini are done, remove water and allow zucchini to cool enough to handle.
  11. Slice zucchini lengthwise, scoop out centers, and lay upside down on paper towels to drain excess liquid.
  12. Pat dry and line zucchini halfs up onto a greased baking sheet.
  13. Fill the zucchini boats with the ground chicken mixture.
  14. Bake at 375 for 25 minutes.
  15. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
  16. Serve hot & Enjoy!
http://www.al2getherfit.com/2016/07/01/zucchini-boats-ground-chicken/

zucchini boats2

XOXO

Edible Necklaces: Summer Yums

Summer time is REAL when your kids aren’t in summer camp. Like lay in your bed every night exhausted thinking “This is REAL” summer.

The blog has been quiet this week because my house has been not so quiet. I’ve grown to love it and after a few outings this week I think I’m getting this 3 kid thing down…for now…and only because Rock is strapped to me at all times. Baby wearing for the WIN! The day Rock starts walking might be the death of me. But until then, I can pretend I’m a pro, even when I’m having 35 anxiety attacks inside.
I’ve been trying to get the girls in camps about every other week, so I can still get some work done during the day. When they are home I barely sit at the computer. When they are home my expectations of being anything close to productive is very low. Take yesterday for an example, the only thing we did was go to Publix, and that’s OK. At least we will eat well.

What hasn’t stopped is the Summer-Yums series and we will count that as being productive! Sophia constantly asks to make “fun food crafts” and I love it just as much as her! This week we did Edible Necklaces! So simple, so easy, so fun!
The girl’s made everyone in the family one, and wore them around munching for a couple of days. We stored them in ziplocks when they no longer wanted to wear them.

Edible Necklaces make GREAT little snacks for the kids to munch on throughout the day and to take to the movies! Genius.

edible_necklaces

Basically any food with a hole in it will work for these necklaces. Or you can go beyond and use a needle to thread on different foods (popcorn, dried fruit, etc).
We used cheerios, lifesaver gummies, and pretzels to make it easy, plus we already had the cheerios and pretzels at home.

nibbleneck2

Edible Necklaces

Ingredients

  • String or twine of any kind. (Something you would want your kids chewing on.)
  • Scissors
  • Candy/Food with holes:
  • Cheerios
  • Fruit Loops
  • Apple Jacks
  • Honeycombs
  • Gummy LifeSavers
  • Hard LifeSavers
  • Shortbread circle cookies
  • Pretzels
  • Chocolate covered Pretzels

Instructions

  1. Cut string to length desired.
  2. Place all food/candy items in separate bowls.
  3. Let kids string food/candy onto string, making sure they keep on the table so it doesn't fall off.
  4. Tie with done.
  5. Store in ziplock bags between use.
http://www.al2getherfit.com/2016/06/29/edible-necklaces-summer-yums/

nibbleneck1

XOXO

WIAW plus a workout update

Happy day friends!
I am on week 2 of this 8 week challenge and I finally weighed myself.

I’m down 4 lbs. Woohoo!
I figure if I lose about 2-3 lbs a week I’ll be golden.
But I did google this just in case there was a magic trick.
diethumor
There’s no magic trick. Major key: Eat right and exercise. The weight will come off slowly, how it’s supposed to. Losing weight in crazy, unrealistic time almost ensures it to come back!

For workouts right out I’m using at-home workout DVDs and working out with Alisha using a combination of elliptical and PowerPlate machine. She’s a fellow mom and we may have used our babies as weights for some squats.

I’m really switching up the workouts this 3rd time around and I’m going to start running again! YAY! I received my jogging stroller car seat attachment in the mail so if everything fits and all goes well, I’ll set off on my first postpartum run! I haven’t ran in 10 weeks, so I might die.

Originally when I started last week I set out to do the entire 8 weeks of the Beachbody Insanity program. That’s what I did post-pregnancy with Sophia and had amazing results. It’s an awesome program and I know that it works…if you ACTUALLY do the workouts, everyday, and not eat like crap.  I also did it post-pregnancy with Penelope but for only 4 weeks and still had great results.
This time around I just cannot get into it. I did the first 4 workouts of it last week and started dreading it.
FYI: You shouldn’t dread exercise…you should find something you enjoy.

After 5 years, Insanity is just too predictable and monotonous for me. I know I needed something new to push me through. Insert Insanity MAX 30! It’s new moves, new format, and it’s only 30 minutes! I’m excited again!

I am not a Beachbody coach nor do I want to be. I just really like their workout programs. 😉

So, along with all that working out, getting buff and stuff, I’ve also been really good with my eating. I didn’t have any of the 9 desserts on Father’s Day! Sweets are totally my downfall and I’ve stayed clear. Again, no sweets/refined sugar, no white carbs, and minimal processed foods.

WIAW (3)

Monday
7am Breakfast: 1 slice of seeded toast and 2 eggs. Coffee with almond milk.
10am Snack: sliced carrots & cucumbers
1pm Lunch: Post-Workout Protein shake – Almond milk/water, banana, vanilla protein powder, peanut butter, blueberries
3pm Snack: Apple
6pm Dinner: Teriyaki chicken with sauteed zucchini, snap peas, red pepper
mixedberry_proteinsmoothie

Tuesday
7am Breakfast: 1 slice of seeded toast and 2 eggs. Coffee with almond milk.
9am Snack: almonds
1pm Lunch: Panera Lunch date: Green Goddess Cobb Salad with chicken
3pm Snack: Sliced carrots and 2 cocktail cucumbers
6pm Dinner: Mushroom and Onion Covered Chicken with roasted asparagus
7pm Snack “Dessert”: Grapefruit
mushroom_chicken

Wednesday
7am Breakfast: 1 slice of seeded toast and 2 eggs. Coffee with almond milk.
10am Snack: Post-Workout Protein shake – Almond milk/water, banana, vanilla protein powder, peanut butter
1pm Lunch: Spring salad with carrots and tomatoes
3pm Snack: Almonds
6pm Dinner: Ground turkey burgers with Brussel sprout skewers
7pm Snack “Dessert”:

Hope everyone is having an active and healthy week!
XOXO