Trying to Eat Healthier as a Family

My family and I are really on this “eating healthier” kick, no we are not going all crazy but we are trying to eliminate the easy boxed meals that were predominately our world up until a month or two ago. Sure we still have an occasional boxed mashed potatoes mix or the hamburger helper packages from time to time; I don’t believe we will ever be 100% anti-boxed meals. With that being said, we are trying to be about 65 – 70% healthier with our food choices.

My Easy Pasta Bake

I haven’t ever been the parent who buys chips or sodas by the regular for the kids nor have I been into buying too many junk snack options or drinks, however, my youngest is a super picky eater. Right now I am choosing my battles and continue to offer him things he will eat while giving a wide range of other options to the other kids and myself. Lately I have been using the internet as a tool to find recipes that are better for us.

With my age, now 32 years, I know my family health history will start to play into my daily life. This means I want to not only start eating better to ensure happy heart health but also to ensure the pounds come off and I start seeing a regular doctor. I happen to love pasta, it is my one addiction that is difficult to break. I am also a pizza addict. If someone asks me what my favorite dinner is, the answer would be somewhere between pizza and lasagna. The cool thing about learning to eat and cook healthier is that there are healthy options of your best loved foods, I mentioned lasagna; there is a paleo lasagna recipe that I am thinking about trying to make for the family one evening.

Since we have been cooking “from scratch” around here, my boyfriend has lost two pants sizes and while I am still struggling with losing any weight, I am proud to see that my healthier cooking is keeping the kids faster longer as well as helping my boyfriend lose some weight. Eventually my body will catch up, it just happens to be slightly slow in response to this healthy food eating.

If you could give up one food cooked in an unhealthy way and learn to like a healthier version of that meal, what would it be?

A Wonderful Easter Sunday

Baby Niece

Olivia with her Daddy

Easter Sunday is normally  just another day for me, if the kids are here they wake up and find their Easter baskets that the Easter Bunny hid all over the house for them. When the kids are gone, like this past Easter, then it’s simply just another day. The Easter Bunny visits and hides the baskets but the kids do not get to find them until they return home on Monday. As most of you know that talk to me often or read my blog, I became an aunt for the first time in January and so this year a new tradition was born. Whether this is done yearly or not, I don’t know, all I do know is this – Easter Sunday this year was spent at my sisters and her husbands apartment. Sister cooked a nice ham meal for us to gobble up and I got to spend quality time with my niece and sister.

Brandy Holding Baby olivia

Me Getting Olivia Love

What a fun day it was to see my niece for the first time in forever, you see between the virus that was in my home and took a month to get over and now my sister and her family being sick with the virus, it just wasn’t smart to have all of us around each other. Since my baby niece is still sick as well as my sister and her husband I wasn’t quite sure about heading over at all anytime soon but the temptation of great company combined with great food was simply irresistible. And so I went over to the sisters house and enjoyed ham, mashed potatoes, stuffing and deviled eggs. Then for dessert we had strawberry shortcake, it was super yummy and I left super full.

I was so happy to see my sister and to get my baby fix, my youngest is four so any chance to snuggle and cuddle with a baby I am going to go for. Olivia is getting so big and she is smiling a lot now. I loved watching her lay on her back on the floor while I leaned over her talking to her and she smiled then turned her head as if she was playing shy not wanting me to see her smile. I had a lovely Easter Sunday and I hope all of you did too. Now it’s time to return back to regular work week schedule and children duty.

McCormick’s Turkey Gravy For the Not So Great at Cooking Mama #McCormickGravy Giveaway

It’s that time of year, Thanksgiving is just around the corner and today I get to share with you a fantastic turkey gravy that you can not only use on Thanksgiving but Christmas as well, McCormick Turkey Gravy.

The kids and I love love gravy, okay two of my kids and I love gravy, the picky four year old doesn’t hardly like anything except pizza and boxed mac n cheese. *shake my head* I decided that since the older two kids enjoy gravy, that I would have this McCormick Turkey Gravy served up as part of my dinner with mashed potatoes one evening. It was a hit! It’s easy to prepare and totally yummy.

McCormick Turkey Gravy is easy to prepare, taking just about a minute beyond boiling point. Savory and lump free is a total bonus for McCormick’s Turkey Gravy, and I am not that great at being a cook, there were no lumps, the gravy came out perfect on first try! You also can’t beat this little fact; McCormick Turkey Gravy is made with natural spices, no artificial flavors or colors, no MSG, and has 0 grams of trans fat, total plus for those health conscious families.  You can also add your own personal touch to McCormick Turkey Gravy by adding to it, feel free to test it out and see what works best for you to ensure that no one will ever guess your gravy wasn’t made from scratch!


This is seriously simple people, I am a not so great at cooking Mama and enjoyed making McCormick Turkey Gravy to have on our mashed potatoes. As a busy work from home Mom of three, time is something I have little of but adding McCormick Turkey Gravy into the mix of my evening cooking of dinner didn’t add much more time and made the dinner all that more special to the kids and me.

Enter the McCormick Turkey Gravy Giveaway

One lucky person who enters below will have a chance to win the following package:

  • $75 Prize Package Including Le Creuset Gravy Boat
  • Le Creuset Condiment Ladle
  • $50 Crate & Barrel Giftcard


There are only three options in this giveaway, and so there is no Rafflecopter form being used. Complete any or all of the following to be entered for your chance to win. Open to US. Giveaway will end at 12:01am EST on November 20, 2012. Winner chosen using Winner has 48 hours to reply with their information to claim prize or another person will be randomly selected.


  • Follow McCormick on Pinterest. Leave a comment below with your Pinterest username.
  • Leave a comment below telling me why you like McCormick Turkey Gravy.
  • Click the Retweet Button on this blog post to tweet (ONCE PER DAY ALLOWED). Leave a comment below with a link to your Tweet and your Twitter username.



Tofurky and Gravy Soda

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Jones Soda. All opinions are 100% mine.

I received a sample of Tofurky and Gravy Jones Soda ! When I first heard of this flavor soda I wasn’t really sold on it, who wants to drink their turkey and gravy? I would personally rather indulge in a nice big plate of mashed potatoes, gravy and turkey but figured I would test a sip of this Tofurky and Gravy Soda. I attempted to be brave and keep an open mind as I spun open the top of this soda, I stuck my nose in the top to give it a quick smell and then I took a nice big sip of the Tofurky and Gravy soda …

Jones Soda Tofurky and Gravy

Yuppers, that is me with an open bottle of Jones Tofurky and Gravy soda!! (the hat was a nice addition, huh? Thanks IZEA!) My opinion on this soda is that it isn’t really all that bad, if I were in the mood I could easily drink this whole bottle as the taste wasn’t too bad. I swallowed the soda right down, didn’t cringe or wrinkle my nose or anything. So overall it tastes fine if you are up for drinking your “dinner”.

I think Tofurky and Gravy Jones Soda would be a great gift to my father, want to send him some? I believe he would be the most open minded person about taking a sip, and maybe he would even like it … who knows?! This is pretty cool because you can actually give it as a gift, really, I am not joking. If you visit their website you will see that your Tofurky and Gravy Jones soda comes with 3 bottles of Tofurky and Gravy as well as 3 new Jones zilch flavors and 1 original lunchbox! This gift idea is even “turkey approved”.

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