Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Eating Healthier in 2014

I don't know about you but one of my secret resolutions for 2014 was to cook more and cook healthier. I say secret because I'm not really into announcing my resolutions and putting them out there for the world to know. 

So we're now three weeks into January. How am I doing with my secret resolution? I'd have to say that it's going pretty well. I'd give myself a B! But I feel like the last few days I've been straying off course. So it's time to regroup and look at spicing thing up in the kitchen again. 

Check out these 20 Recipes that will get you healthy and stay healthy in 2014. Today I'm going to pick three of these recipes to try, get the ingredients and plan to add them to my menu plan for the next week. My picks are:

1. Hearty and Delicious Chicken Soup - this will be particularly delicious during our wintery weather.

2. Easy Asian Lettuce Wraps - I think the kids will get a kick out of using lettuce as the wraps!

3. Turkey Slow Cooker Chilli - this will be a great addition to our Superbowl Sunday snack menu (and it's only 5 Weight Watcher points!)

So what about you? Please share your favourite healthy, hearty recipes so we can share in the deliciousness!!!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Thankful in December

For us Canadians, our Thanksgiving is long over once December rolls around on our calendar. But the American Thanksgiving last week has me thinking about being thankful.

December is a busy time, especially for parents of young children. There are parties and concerts and lots of shopping to be done so it's often a stressful time trying to get to everything and do everything that needs to be done during the holidays.

Today, I am reminding myself that even in all the rush leading up to Christmas (or whatever holiday you celebrate) it doesn't have to bring out the Grinch in you. After a particularly crazy week of juggling work and childrens' activities, this weekend I am going to focus on being thankful for:

1. Concerts - Instead of fussing over clothes and hair, I am going to be thankful for the music and smiles that I see on the stage at the school concert. This is the time for our children to shine, even the shy ones who need a bit more support. I'm going to listen, really listen and smile back at the beautiful, innocent and often toothless smiles I see at our concert.

2. Parties - I often worry about what to wear, what to bring, how the children will behave... and I'll probably still do that but I also will be thankful that we have friends and family who invite us into their homes and who want to be around us and celebrate. Instead of looking at the calendar and getting overwhelmed at all of the commitments we have in the coming weeks, I'm going to see these events as opportunities to catch up on the lives of friends and family and share our stories with them.

3. Shopping - This one is a bit tougher... although the stores can be crazy and I stress about finding THE perfect gift, this year I'm going to try to cross items off my list and be thankful that I have a lot of people for whom I buy presents. This means that I have lots of people to love and who love me too.

I am also thankful for the amazing blogging community that I am part of and the fabulous content that is created online to help us all thrive during the holidays. Here are some helpful Tips to Survive a Visit with Santa in the Mall and 20 Ways to Celebrate Christmas Eve with Your Kids.

One more thing, I'm going to be thankful when I remember to move our Elf on the Shelf!! Sometimes it's the little things that make you most thankful!

What are you thankful for the Christmas? Let me know.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Smore Martini Recipe - A Little Treat for Moms (and Dads)

Sometimes Moms like a little sip of something sweet over the holidays especially if they are missing the lazy days of summer and cozy campfires. If that sounds like you or someone you love, check out this delicious recipe for a Smore Martini:

Smore Martini
Per Serving:
2 oz. Marshmallow Vodka
1 oz. Chocolate Liqueur
1 oz. Creme de Cacao
1 oz. Chocolate, melted
1 Graham Cracker
3 mini marshmallows

Crush the graham cracker into a shallow bowl. Place the chocolate into a second shallow bowl and microwave until melted. Dip the rim of the martini glass in the chocolate and then the graham cracker pieces. Refrigerate for a few minutes to set. Add the Marshmallow Vodka, Chocolate Liqueur, Creme de Cacao and cream to a cocktail shaker. Fill with ice, shake well and pour into prepared glass. Spear the mini marshmallows onto a skewer or long fork and hold over a flame until the ends get toasted. Thread them onto a cocktail pick and garnish the drink.

Cheers! Borrowed from my talented friends at Flavor.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Our Favourite Holiday Tradition is Back

December has finally arrived! That means one of our favourite family traditions has started again for this year. Our Elf on the Shelf is back for another holiday season. Meet Henry:

Henry has been part of our family since 2009. Elves on the Shelf come to your home to check on kids on behalf of Santa. Every night, the elves fly back to the North Pole to report to the big guy. Each morning, Henry and his elf friends can be found in some new creative position sometimes creating havoc while we sleep. For the most part, Henry is a good elf but every now and then he gets into some trouble.

My girls love Henry and get up and excitedly search for him every morning. They anticipate his arrival every year and (im)patiently countdown to December 1st. This year, we decided to surprise Henry and introduce him to our new elf, Holly, and I think Henry is in love.
Do you have an Elf on the Shelf or another tradition (old or new) that you enjoy sharing with your family in December?

Friday, November 22, 2013

Shopping Local and Supporting Moms

This weekend, the East Coast Momma Collective is hosting the second annual Holiday Fair, November 23rd & 24th. More than 80 talented and creative women will be selling their creations at the Fair so make sure you get there early so you don't miss a single item.

The East Coast Momma Collective (ECMC) is a coming together of Atlantic Canadian Moms who love to knit, sew, bake, decorate… create! The ECMC hosts two Fairs a year in Halifax, NS, so these talented Moms can sell their unique products in a market-like setting, giving you the chance to buy one-of-a-kind, locally made gifts and connect with local Mom-run businesses.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Chronicle Herald Holiday Parade of Lights in Downtown Halifax - This Saturday!

It’s that time of year again, time to kick off the Holiday Season. One of my family’s favourite ways to celebrate the start of Holiday season is to attend the Chronicle Herald Holiday Parade of Lights in Downtown Halifax. 
Close to 100,000 spectators will line the streets of Downtown Halifax for the Parade of Lights, presented by Eastlink and Downtown Halifax Business Commission, on Saturday, November 16, beginning at 6:00 pm.
The Parade begins on Upper Water Street at Cornwallis Street, continues over the Barrington Street overpass onto Barrington Street and turns right onto Spring Garden Road. It then turns left on South Park and then right onto University Avenue, concluding at the corner of University Avenue and Robie Street.
The Parade is a community event, which also serves as an integral fundraiser for local, non-profit organizations. Spectators of all ages line the streets donating new, unwrapped toys and non-perishable food items along the Parade route. The Chronicle Herald and Scotiabank will be selling blinking, red noses at the parade in support of the National Sport Trust Fund, which helps the development of amateur Nova Scotia athletes compete nationally. Canada Post will also be picking up letters to Santa.
So bundle up and make your way to downtown early on Saturday to get a great seat to watch all the magic unfold. VISIT THE OFFICIAL 18TH ANNUAL CHRONICLE HERALD HOLIDAY PARADE OF LIGHTS WEBSITE FOR ALL THE DETAILS.