My Mamma's Autumn Soup


It snowed today.  Like quite a bit!  And the thing I wanted most was my Mom's Autumn Soup.  This is one of those beautiful comfort soups that is delicious and nutritious and reminds you of home and family.  Basically, it is one of my favorite soups ever!  So, what did I do?  I made it!!  And now I'm going to share it with you!  I'll share both my mom's version and my modified version to fit better with lean and green.  Honestly, though, both are pretty dang yummy and good for you!  So, without further ado, I'll get right to it!


The Lean & Green Version:

Ingredients:
1 lbs. lean ground turkey (cooked, put in last)
2 cups water
2 (14 oz) cans chicken broth
1 med chopped onion
1 cup sliced carrots
1 cup chopped cauliflower
3 stalks celery
1 1/2 cup chopped purple cabbage
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 cube beef bouillon
1 tsp cider vinegar
1/4 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp basil
1/2 Tbsp Salt
1 bay leaf

Directions:
Brown the ground turkey, drain, and set aside.  Pour the water and chicken broth into a large pot.  Add onions, carrots, cauliflower, celery, and cabbage to the water.  Add the bouillon, cider vinegar, thyme, basil, salt, and bay leaf.  Simmer until veggies are tender.  Stir in the diced tomatoes and ground beef and allow to heat thoroughly.

Isn't that just so pretty?!!  It's just as good as it looks!  
I hope it brings as much warmth to your home as it did to mine growing up 
(and now to my own home and family).  


My Mom's Original Version:

Ingredients:
1.5 lbs. ground beef (cooked, put in last)
5 to 6 cups water
1 med chopped onion
1 cup sliced carrots
1 lg. diced potato
2 stalks celery
1 cup chopped purple cabbage
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
3 cubes beef bouillon
1 tsp cider vinegar
1/4 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp basil
1 Tbsp Salt
1 bay leaf


Directions:
Brown the ground beef, drain, and set aside.  Pour the water into a large pot.  Add onions, carrots, potato, celery, and cabbage to the water.  Add the bouillon, cider vinegar, thyme, basil, salt, and bay leaf.  Simmer until veggies are tender.  Stir in the diced tomatoes and ground beef and allow to heat thoroughly.

KAMsnaps® How to


Have you heard of KAMsnaps®?  If you are a cloth diapering mama, you most definitely have!  BUT if you're not (like me), ya might be missing out on this awesome-ness...especially if you want a removable hood on your baby carrier!


KAMsnaps® can be used on a variety of stuff (clothing bibs, towels, crafts, crib rail covers for your little woodchucks, etc.)-- but I have most recently used them to attach a hood to a babycarrier I made for a friend (it's seriously one of my favorites!).  Anywho, they are super easy to use and really not too expensive to get started with ($20ish) on Amazon prime.  I thought I'd put together a quick and easy tutorial for those not as familiar....

This was the starter kit I got and I've been pretty dang happy with it.  It was a couple dollars extra to come with the organizer, but I thought that was worth it. It had a good variety of colors along with the pliers and other little tools that make it easier to use along with the box to keep it all in one place.  
There are add-on bundles if you want more snaps. 







Pliers
Flathead screwdriver to swap out the different size attachments on the pliers and a (super sharp) awl needle to make life easier to get your cap prong through your fabric you are attaching to
And the cute little organizer that came with it with all the different snap colors
Top: Caps
Bottom Left: male stud, Bottom right: female socket
Use the awle to put a "pre-hole" through the fabric.  
Push the cap prong through the hole and place the male (or female in this image) piece of top of the fabric with the prong going through the hole

Position the pliers over the snaps (in this image I have the cap on bottom and the female socket on top)
and press until it can't go any further
And voila!
(this is the female side...the male side follows the same exact process)

And here's the results of my snaps on attaching it to my Little Pick Me Up baby carrier.  You'll want to put the female socket on the carrier and the male stud on the hood.  This way if you don't have the hood attached, it's less obtrusive in sticking into your little one while you are wearing him/her.

In the example below, I attached the hood so that it was snapped in from the inside of the carrier.  This way it is less likely to be unsnapped unintentionally.



Pret-ty nifty if I do say so myself!

Aaaaand We're Live!!

Can I get a woot woot?!  I mean really!  I'm such a perfectionist with this type of stuff.  So for me to finally call it "good enough to launch" is a pretty big deal in my book!

So, why "True to You"?  Well, if any of y'all followed my previous blog, "Fit n' in the Pink", it was mainly focused on my health coaching and all that jazz.  BUT that's not all that I'm passionate about!  That's not all of me.  I wanted to be able to share my mommyhood with you, my sewing adventures that make me feel accomplished, my testimony of the amazing gospel, babywearing, cooking, life, humor, (you get the idea...) and much much more!!  SO began a journey of figuring out what to do...  I came up with True to You.

I fell in love immediately.  One of the big things that I'm very vocal about is loving yourself and being you!  Being True to You!  There are things we can do to better ourselves, to stretch ourselves, but in the end...it all needs to be true to who we really are.  So now I have a platform to share things that are true to me (that might be true to you!).  Awesome, right?!  (But don't worry, everything from "Fit n' in the Pink" is here aaaaalong with a ton of other awesome-ness!)

NOW what to do?!  GO and subscribe ---> so you can be all up to date on all of the True to You happenings.  THEN check out what is here already!  (I've got some awesome healthy recipes for you!)

One last thing!!  I want to put together a "Confessions of a Mommy" series.  If you'd love to contribute you can do it in a couple ways...  submit it through my "contact me" page or you can fill out this survey.

Anywho, sit n' stay a while.

Love ya!

It's Happening!!





Big News!!  I'm revamping my blog!!  I'm seriously SO stoked!  I am excited to have a central platform for all the things that I love and want to share with you all!  So...stay tuned!  If a few of the links don't work, never fear...cuuuz I'm still getting thing up and runnin'.  In the meantime, peruse the past and check out what's comin' in the future!  Love you all!! *Muah*



Babywearing: DIY Wrap

(Original Post Date: January 21, 2015)

It's finished!  lol.  I've seriously created an addiction.
BUT I love it!
Okay...the how.  For the actual wrap, I used a Tutorial from the DIY Babywearing Advice and Support group on Facebook.  There are SO many helpful peeps on there!  

The Fabric  
Again, you can't just use any fabric.  It needs to be safe and secure for the baby.  Osnaburg is a commonly used material that is inexpensive and easy to work with.  Sooo...I went to JoAnn's and got me some Osnaburg (6 yards).  I wanted to make a size 6 wrap.

Babywearing: DIY Ring Sling

(Original Post Date: January 21, 2015)
Sooo...I've found a new love (or addiction).  
So, I'll be honest...I've probably unleashed a monster that was growing in me.  haha.  I got connected with a DIY babywearing Facebook group and the ideas began to flow.  So after hours of nursing and purusing tutorials and beautiful pieces others did, I decided to give one a go on my own!  I decided to start with a ring sling and I am LOVING it.

Bringing Stuff Over...

Okay, so I'm finally getting to it.  I am finally moving my (non-family) posts over from my family blog (that is set to private to protect from the crazies).  I'm excited to share some of my early DIY experiences with you -- don't judge me! haha.  I've learned a lot since, but there is still some awesome in these posts!  ;)

Enjoy!


"Spaghetti" & Meatballs Bites


Well, I came home today and it was another one of those "what am I going to make that is healthy with what I have in my house?" days.  My garden yielded a few small spaghetti squash (before the stupid squash bugs killed the plants -- stupid bugs!).  I figured I'd put one to good use and use up other ingredients from my other tasty experiments.  We always have the costco meatballs on hand.  I know they aren't the lowest fat, but they are quick and easy... if you have the time, I recommend cooking some ground turkey as a better option!


Once again, I have to say I created another winner!

Mom's (Delicious) Saucy Chicken

We all have that one meal that our mom made growing up that was our favorite.  You know, the one you loved so much so that it was your birthday dinner meal for years in a row.  Yeah...that meal was "Saucy Chicken" for me.  It is SO good!!  And SO good for a reason!  Those reasons consist of cream cheese, chive and onion cream cheese, and sour cream.  lol.  oh, and the chicken and rice!  The problem with this meal these days is that it just doesn't jive with trying to be on the healthier side of things.
So, the challenge began: 
find a new "saucy chicken" that tastes like it AND is good for me.

I'm pretty sure I rocked this challenge!
Like, for reals!
I know, you can thank me later while your scarfing it down 
and not feeling bad one bit because you just stuffed your face with healthy goodness!
(and as a bonus...it's a crock pot meal! Double Win!)


Ingredients
Saucy Chicken:
- 4-5 chicken breasts
- 1 pkg light laughing cow cheese (all 8 slices)
- 1/2 c. shredded parmesan cheese
- 1/2 c. chicken broth
- 1/2 large onion chopped into large pieces (optional - not on plan with 5&1)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp. minced garlic
- fresh cut chives
- 2 cups fresh spinach (optional)
- 1/2 c. non-fat greek yogourt

Cauliflower Rice:
- 2 lb. bag cauliflower florets (or one large cauliflower)

Directions 
Saucy Chicken:

  1. Blend the individual slices of Light Laughing Cow Cheese with the chicken broth.  This breaks up the cheese because it doesn't melt as easy.  Pour it into the crock pot.
  2. Add the chicken, Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, chives, garlic, and spinach (optional) to the crock pot.
  3. Cook on low 5-6 hours.

(This is before I added the spinach :) 
Before serving:
Shred chicken while still in the crock pot/sauce
Stir in non-fat greek yogurt

Cauliflower Rice:
Blend the cauliflower to tiny pieces...voila! cauliflower rice!  Put it into a microwaveable bowl and cover with plastic wrap.  Microwave for 5 min. Let sit 5 min.  Stir.  Microwave another 5 min.  Let sit for 5 min.  Check how tender the cauliflower is.  (If needed microwave an additional 5 min.)

.
.
.
.

Scoop some cauliflower rice and pour your saucy chicken right on top!  
Aaaand begin to enjoy the guilt-free 
(almost as good as mom's saucy chicken) deliciousnesss!



Makes approximately 4-5 lean & green servings
P.S. If you aren't on 5&1 and just want a healthier version of the saucy chicken, 
this could easily be served over rice instead.  
But, honestly, cauliflower rice is a pret-ty dang good replacement!

Enjoy!


For those that are counting calories ...

Easy Cheesy Cauliflower


In an effort to create something along the lines of a healthy (easy) mac n' cheese replacement, I created this.  It could be cheesier, but it still turned out pretty dang yummy.  I would say it's somewhere in the middle between a mac n' cheese and some cheesy potatoes (depending on how long you cook it).  I definitely wouldn't put it in the same boat as mac n' cheese, but it a nice n' healthy option -- and a great way to get in your veggies for you and your fam!

Ingredients:
- 2 lb. bag cauliflower florets (or one large cauliflower)
- 8 slices light laughing cow cheese (p.s. Costco sells these in bulk!!)
- 1/2 c. chicken broth
- 3/4 c. shredded mixed cheese, divided
- 1/4 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/8 tsp. pepper
- fresh chives (optional)

Directions:

  1. In a blender, blend chicken broth and laughing cow cheese and pour into a crock pot.
  2. Chop the cauliflower florets to smaller (bite-size) bits and add to the crock pot.
  3. Add 1/2 c. mixed cheese and mozzarella cheese, salt, and pepper and mix all together.  Cook on high for ~2 hrs. or longer if you'd like it more tender.
  4. Add remaining 1/4 c. remaining shredded cheese and allow to melt.  Add some fresh chives if your heart desires :)
And voila!
Ready to eat!
Enjoy!

Zucchini Ravioli

A few days ago my awesome mom sent a recipe my way for zucchini ravioli from Delish.com.  It looked delicious and sounded like a great lean and green meal.  SO, I decided to give it a go!  I tweaked it a bit to fit as a lean and green aaaand it turned out pret-ty dang good!  I will say, it wasn't necessarily "hard", but making each ravioli was a bit tedious.  I think next time, I'll probably do more of a lasagna, rather than ravioli to save some time and still get the awesome flavor.  I'll call it a win, though, because little mister was definitely a fan :)

Ingredients:
1 large garden zucchini or 4 medium zucchini (~1.75 lbs)
2 c. low-fat ricotta cheese
1/2 c. shredded Parmesan cheese
1 Egg, lightly beaten
1/4 c. thinly sliced basil, divided
1 tbsp thinly sliced oregano
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
14.5 oz. can low sodium diced tomatoes
1/2 c. shredded mozzarella

Possible sauce Additions: (adding these to the sauce will make 4 full Lean & Green servings)
9 oz. cooked ground turkey
1 cup fresh spinach (coarsely chopped)


Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F
  2. Using a veggie peeler, slice thin strips of zucchini.  Slice until you reach the center (seeds).  Depending on the size of your zucchini, you may want to cut them in half.  
  3. Ricotta Mix:  In a bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, basil, oregano, garlic, salt, pepper, egg, and Parmesan.  Mix together.
  4. Ravioli: Take your zucchini strips and make a cross (2 strips in each direction).  In the center of the cross, put a spoonful of the ricotta mix.  Flip the right side over the mix, then the bottom, then the left, then the top.  (Sorry, I definitely should have taken a pic of this. ha!) Place in baking dish seam-side down. Make up the rest and place in the baking dish. 
    Side note: the zucchini has quite a bit of water in it, as it sit some of the water will come out.
    Pour it out before adding the sauce.
  5. Sauce: Blend the tomatoes.  If you are adding the ground turkey and spinach, mix in ground turkey and spinach. Pour over top the ravioli along with the mozzarella cheese.  Bake 30 min @ 375 degrees.  
  6. Remove and sprinkle a bit of Parmesan and basil.  Cook on broil for 2-3 min.  And voila! 
      
Makes 4 servings. 
Per serving: 2/3 lean serving, 2 3/4 green servings, 3 condiments

With additions to sauce (ground turkey & spinach):
Makes 4 servings.
Per serving: 1 lean serving, 3 green servings, 3 condiments.

You could reduce your serving a bit and have a salad on the side if your heart so desires.
Enjoy!!