Friday, June 22, 2012

Thank goodness it's (a sweet sweet) Friday!

I chose this picture because these are now my favorite items first thing in the morning.  I have had a french press for years, but it has been in the back of my cupboard.  A couple of days ago I saw it and cleaned the press up and I am using it again.  I now say "It's a crying shame that I have left it unattended for so long!" 

On the left is my milk frother that I purchased on sale at Macy's about four years ago.  It is the best little invention for a foamy drink fix.

In the center of the picture is a mason jar of local honey that I use as my sweetener.  Local honey has the added benefit of helping your body build immunity to local allergens.  For cost effectiveness we purchased a large container at the local farmers' market and keep a small amount in a mason jar for easy access.

On the right is a container of cinnamon.  I add cinnamon to my coffee not only for the flavor but, because cinnamon is good for controlling sugar levels in the body as well as calming inflammation. 

After I sat down this morning with my hot mug of goodness, I knew I had to share this with you.  The coffee was piping hot, rich and lightly sweetened from the honey.  The cinnamon added a special sweet spice and the frothy milk on top was an extra luxurious treat.  What a great way to start this beautiful Friday!  I wish you all a most wonderful day filled with a touch of sweetness :)

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The first day of summer 2012

I love summer and today is the official first day of the season that brings....
               vegetable garden
                    strawberry patch
                        time at the lake
                              barbecues in the backyard with family and friends. 

It is just a low key and relaxing season.  Everything about summer says "slow down and relax."  Today is our first sunny day in a couple of weeks and we have been enjoying every second of it out in our yard working on our landscaping project, which I might add is very relaxing for both of us.  Today, several truck loads of soil gave us our workout.  Well mostly my husband got the workout :)  But, now comes the really fun part...planting flowers and shrubs.  

After the work was completed we enjoyed lunch out on the patio while admiring our project.  Truthfully, I think I spend more time admiring projects than actually working on them.  Lunch was a big salad made with fresh lettuce from our garden and an ice cold glass of sun tea. The salad has kalamata olives, avocado, and olive oil that are all rich in healthy fat which helps calm inflammation in the body and tastes amazing as well.  

Fresh Summer Salad

3 cups of torn lettuce (your favorite kind)
12 kalamata olives, sliced
1 avocado, sliced
3 hard boiled eggs, diced (I only use the cooked egg white)
3 ounces of shredded cheese (I used pepper jack for a little extra zip)
Balsamic Vinaigrette (1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar and olive oil whisked together)

Split all ingredients evenly between 2 plates.  Place lettuce on plate. Sprinkle the olives, avocado and egg whites over the lettuce.  Then sprinkle the cheese over the top.  Finish with Balsamic Vinaigrette. Enjoy!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Snack attack!

My husband and I have a big, huge, gigantic, humongous problem.  We love snacks!  It doesn't matter if we are outside in the yard, inside watching TV, or playing games, one of us will undoubtedly bring up the idea of a snack.  Then we are both on a mission to find something to munch on.  Fresh fruit and veggies are great, but they just don't cut it when we are having a snack attack. 

In an attempt to make a snack that we wouldn't regret, I whipped up a batch of Sun Dried Tomato Hummus.  THEN....I realized we didn't have anything suitable for dipping, except of course veggies, and I...uh...well... already mentioned that the veggie option was not exciting.  After searching the pantry and fridge, the only possibility was a package of whole grain tortillas.  I decided to try and make tortilla chips with them.

I brushed olive oil on both sides of the tortilla and sprinkled with just a little sea salt.  Then I used a pizza cutter and sliced the tortilla into eight wedges.  I placed them on a pizza pan and put them in the oven at 375 degrees.  After 7 minutes I flipped the wedges over and baked for another seven minutes. 

The homemade chips turned out well and were a healthy and yummy alternative for dipping into the hummus.  And.... the best part was that our snack attack was satisfied with no guilt!