Plant-based Recipe - Bowtie Pasta Salad w/Herb-Jalpeno Pesto

Here's a recipe that is PERFECT for a 

This recipe has

NO dairy, 

NO meat & 

NO oil!  

This healthy pasta salad is PERFECT for summer time!  It hosts bold summer flavors including fresh corn, cherry tomatoes, herbs (cilantro, basil & parsley) all in a very tasty pesto and bow-tie pasta.  It makes a lot - serve as meal with fresh fruit for dessert! 

Bowtie Pasta "Summer Time" Salad
w/Herb - Jalapeno Pesto

1 cup Fresh Parsley
1/2 cup Fresh Cilantro
1/2 cup Basil
2 Jalapeños (remove seeds and membrane)
1 Lemon; juiced
2 cloves Garlic
1 tsp Celtic Salt
1 Avocado
1/2 tsp Black Pepper
1/4 cup Sesame Seeds
1/2 pound whole grain Bow-tie Pasta
1 can Black Beans; rinsed and drained
8-10 cherry tomatoes
1 ear Fresh Corn; cut off of the cob

In a food processor, combine the herbs, jalapeños, lemon juice , garlic, avocado, pepper and salt. Process until creamy in consistency.  Add seeds; stir well. 

Bring a large pot of seasoned water* to boil. Cook the bowtie pasta until al dente (11 minutes or as package directs).  Drain and return to pot.

Add pesto to pasta and toss - Add the drained black beans, corn, sliced cherry tomatoes.  (Shhh! I sprinkled feta cheese on top of my salad!)

Serve with a side of fresh fruit or melon -  enjoy a healthy meal!

Serves: 8-10

*I always add 1 tablespoon of celtic salt and a clove or two of garlic to pasta water for seasoning. Seasoning the pasta water is the only chance you have to flavor the pasta itself!  

This salad taste great served warm or chilled. Refrigerate leftovers.  Would LOVE to hear from you and see how you prepared this recipe!  Thanks for stopping by - wishing you an AWESOME day - Remember to hug the ones you love, until next time...

Plant Based Recipe - Okra, Bean, & Rice Bowl

Here's a recipe that is 

This recipe has 

NO dairy, 

NO meat &

NO oil!  

OKRA!  This summer's crop of okra is HUGE!  But our diet is OIL FREE!  

So, how do I prepare okra - we've always ate it fried...

 The search was to find how to cook okra with no oil (and no slimy-ness!).  FINALLY found a great recipe!  ROASTED OKRA - this recipe is amazing - it takes jalapeños, onions and okra roasted in the oven, then mix with rice & beans equals BOOM! 

Okra, Bean, & Rice Bowl

3 jalapeños (membrane/seeds removed)
4 cups Chopped Okra, stems removed
1 can Pinto beans; drained or used 1 1/2 cup cooked beans
1 Onion; diced
1 cup uncooked Wild Rice*
2 cups water
1 tsp Minced Garlic
1 tsp Sea salt 
Spray Cooking Oil

Preheat the oven to 400.  Toss the onions, peppers, and okra on a foil-lined baking sheet that has been sprayed with cooking oil.  Cover the chopped vegetables (I used more foil) and bake in the oven for 30 minutes. Uncover, stir vegetables around and cook for another 30 minutes.  

As the vegetables are cooking - bring the water & salt to a boil and add the rice.  Cook rice until tender. Add the garlic to the rice.

Once the vegetables and rice are cooked - combine together in a large bowl and add beans.  Mix well - and serve.

Serves: 6-8

*Time Saver tip!  Substitute the highlighted ingredients for 2 packets of this rice blend "Seeds of Change - Quinoa & Whole Grain Brown Rice" - this mix takes under 2 minutes to heat up and so good.  Quick & easy!

Purchased at our local Walmart. 

This recipe smells SO GOOD when roasting the vegetables in the oven.  WARNING!  It is EXTREMELY SPICY - super-duper HOT!  But SO TASTY!  I usually do not like spicy, especially this hot - but it was delicious! My boys even enjoyed this recipe!  

Would LOVE to hear from you and see how you prepared this recipe!  Thanks for stopping by - wishing you an AWESOME day - Remember to hug the ones you love, until next time...

Heart Healthy - 9/10 Week - GREAT NEWS!

Our Path to a Healthier Life

Hello!  Thanks for checking back with us as we travel down this path for a healthier life!

We have FABULOUS NEWS!  This lifestyle WORKS...

First, I am no doctor, nurse or ANYTHING dealing in the medical field - I am a concerned wife trying to get her husband healed and start a prevention of heart disease by serving a plant-based diet!  I didn't even know what "triglycerides" were 3 months ago!

After 10 weeks on a plant-based diet - Kyle weighs in at 218 lbs!  What a difference weight loss has made - here are pictures of Kyle - made a year apart!  Good health shows!  But the IMPORTANT thing is his blood work numbers are incredible!  It was BEYOND better than we had planned for!  

Along with Kyle's recent blood work - his doctor sent his last one done in 2014 to compare - ideally, we wanted his cholesterol and triglycerides under 150; and his LDL to be under 80.  As you can see... it truly is beyond what we had hoped for!  

How long has it been that YOU have had your blood tested and you are aware of the numbers??  

You owe yourself and your family to KNOW this information!  Looking back with Kyle's heart attack, if we had been aware of his cholesterol number - we could've changed things!  

Know your numbers!

Your blood test will divide up and give you numbers of a variety of things.  

Your HDL is the GOOD cholesterol; 

LDL is the BAD cholesterol (think lethal cholesterol).  

The triglycerides are the fatty globs that float in your blood that will cause plaque.

By eating a plant-based diet (no meat, no dairy with minimal use of sugar and salt) has significantly lowered the chance of plaque buildup in the veins.  How do we know this?  By the low cholesterol number!  Kyle is still mending - so we are opting to not consume OIL or caffeine - in hopes of healing the lining of veins and arteries.  

This lifestyle has made a HUGE difference.  I DO believe that it's made a positive effect on Kyle's health.  We will continue with this diet and help others to see that there is hope and results you can receive just by changing your diet!

This week's top pick  


for a plant-based diet  is a

Kyle's Favorite Quinoa Salad

Here is a recipe for a quinoa salad that Kyle LOVES!  This recipe is one that HE makes - its that easy!  It's even good the next day!  We serve it cold - eat it as a main meal or as a side!  Enjoy!

 Kyle's Lime Quinoa Salad

1/2 tsp. Red Pepper flakes
1 1/2 cups halved Cherry Tomatoes
1 can Black Beans; drained and rinsed
3-4 Green onions, finely chopped
1/4 cup chopped Fresh Cilantro
Salt & Black Pepper 
1 cup Quinoa
2 cups Water
2 limes; juiced
2 tsp. Ground Cumin

Bring quinoa and water to a boil in a saucepan.  Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until quinoa is tender (20-25 minutes)  Cool.  In a small bowl, combine lime juice, cumin, 1 tsp. salt and red pepper flakes together in a bowl.  In a large bowl, combine the cooled quinoa, tomatoes, black beans and green onions together in a bowl.  Pour the lime dressing over quinoa salad.  Stir in cilantro - season with salt and black pepper.  Serve immediately or chill!

A question we often receive from family & friends while following a plant-based diet is:  

"How do you travel and eat while not at home with access to a kitchen? 

Recently, Kyle traveled a week to San Antonio to a Math Convention - and here is a picture of the food that he took with him.  Yes, it took planning and cooking BUT he was able to stay on his diet with flying colors!  Breakfast was mixed in mason jars of oatmeal, chia seeds - ready for almond milk (overnight oatmeal recipe); a variety of hummus, vegetables, fruits, couscous salad, quinoa salad, triscuit crackers and bean chips.  Plus, LOTS of water!  

Kyle also requested a refrigerator for his room - did you know that you could do that at most hotels??   When eating out at a restaurant - he ordered a No meat, no dairy meal!  We have learn to look for the vegan/vegetarian plate specials.  Also to ask for dishes that fit our lifestyle! Most restaurants have a side of steamed vegetables or salads that work.   So, that is how we are learning to travel and stay on track with a plant-based diet!

Here is a link to last week's progress - here.   And if you have just started reading this - this link will take you to the beginning - here!

Thanks for stopping by and letting us share our story!  Remember to hug the ones you love the most... until next time!

Painting STRIPES on a textured wall!

Here is the "After and Before" hallway that had stripes painted on the textured walls during 2016 summer vacation!  

It proved to be a bit tricky - but this method WORKS!  I was VERY pleased with the results and will use this technique again and again!

We purchased the paint for the hallway over a year ago...  we just didn't like it on the wall after painting a small section!  After searching on PINTEREST - found a striped hallway that I liked A LOT!  So, when the boys were gone over the weekend - I used the paint along with a base white paint and redid our hallway.

Here's how:

First:  took pictures of the hallway with all the pictures up on the wall.  These pictures were later used as guides when my sweet husband replaced the framed pictures back on the wall!  We all liked the arrangement of the pictures and didn't change it!

Second step:  painted the walls and ceiling with the basic white paint AFTER scrubbing the walls and baseboards!  

Third step:  Taped off the stripes!  Used a manual level, tape measurer and metal ruler for this procedure!  There is even a phone app "level" - but I'm old... so I opted for the manual way!

  After watching the videos on YOUTUBE - learned that  horizontal stripes needed to be between 4" - 12" wide.  To use a odd amount of stripes!  To measure the area to be painted and divide by a odd number - this helps to start and end with a stripe!  That in a hallway - to leave the end wall "open" of all stripes for a "lengthening" effect.  My stripes were 12" wide and I added 5 stripes!  (I would like to add a chair rail soon just under the last stripe).

FROGTAPE is good!  Along with the painting tip that I'm going to show you and the frogtape - it all adds up to positive results in painting stripes on a texture wall!

Fourth Step: After the stripes were taped - this is where the magic technique comes in!
  If you have painted stripes before on textured wall - then you KNOW that the paint will ALWAYS bleed through!  
So!  Using this fact, paint the color going into the other side the same color...  My stripes were white and gold - I painted inside the gold stripes WHITE to seal the tape and if any paint bleeds over into the white stripe... you won't see it!  This techniques SEALS the tape strip.

Fifth Step:  AFTER DRYING TIME has passed, I painted the gold stripes!

Final Step:  It is also recommended to pull off tape before paint drys and I DID NOT do that - I was ready with a sharp Xacto knife to aid in cutting through paint when I removed the tape - but didn't needed too!  The tape came off smooth and clean. 

There were some bleed-throughs - but I used a small art brush with paint, and spent MAYBE 5 minutes with touch up!  I was very pleased with this technique!

Here's another picture of the hallway!  My boys were very pleased with the stripes and the clean, new hallway! 

Hope this helps...  let me know if you have any questions or come see it in person!  

Thanks for stopping by.  Remember to hug the ones you love the most... until next time!

Altered "Penne al la Betsy" Recipe - Plant Based Diet

Here's a version of a recipe that is for a 

I have taken a regular recipe and altered it - this altered recipe has NO dairy, NO meat and NO oil!  

The original recipe is one of the Pioneer Woman's - (actually her sister's Betsy's recipe) 
- you can even catch her quick video cooking it here at this link.

Our family is new to a plant base diet and are trying to transition our teenaged boys into this lifestyle.  SO!  I've made my version but also cooked the shrimp and combined it for the boys' pasta.  They have a familiar meal but with added sweet potatoes for a new twist... gradually adding more vegetables and taste to their palettes!

Here's the plant-based version recipe - and it is so good!  It's got a kick provided by the chili seasoning - so, if you don't like it spicy - cut that down a bit!

with wine sauce

2 cups whole-wheat PENNE pasta; cooked “Al Dente”
2 cups Sweet Potatoes; peeled & cubed in bite size pieces
1/2 cup Vegetable Broth
1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
1 tsp. Red pepper flakes
1 cup Diced Onion
2 cloves Garlic, Minced
3/4 cups White Wine
1 can Tomato Sauce (8 Oz)
1 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
1 tsp Celtic Sea Salt
1/2 tsp. White Pepper
12 whole Fresh Basil Leaves; cut into small pieces

Heat vegetable broth in a large skillet over medium to medium-high heat (start with 3-4 tablespoons and add more - as needed). Add the onion and garlic and sauté in broth, stirring occasionally, for 3-5 minutes. Add the cubed sweet potatoes, red pepper flakes & chili powder and cook for 12 minutes, stirring, and adding broth when needed, cooking potatoes until tender.

To the same skillet, pour in the wine and let it reduce for a few minutes, stirring occasionally. (If you would rather not use wine, you can use more vegetable broth instead.)

Add the tomato sauce and stir well until combined. Cook for 3 minutes, then stir in the almond milk. Add salt and pepper to taste. Turn heat down to low and let simmer for a couple of minutes.

Stir in the pasta, then add cut basil - serve and enjoy a healthy meal!

 Serves: 8

Here's the 2 versions...  I didn't have 2 cups of penne - so filled in with a spiral whole grain pasta... !

  This recipe was delicious and the boys ate it up!  So excited!  Oh, FYI - used the "Holland House" Cooking White Wine in the recipe for the sauce.  This recipe uses wine - but I've also made it with vodka - just substitute - make sure the skillet is hot when adding the vodka so that the alcohol all cooks out!  

Would LOVE to hear from you and see how you prepared this recipe!  Thanks for stopping by - wishing you an AWESOME day - Remember to hug the ones you love, until next time...

2016 June Card Swap - Red, White & Blue Challenge

Hello!  Thanks for joining me today!  

For June's Card Swap, the challenge was to make a card using the colors - "Red, White and Blue" along with the challenge of adding a POP of a 3-D design to the card in some way!  

The card swap is inspired by the colors that are ready available this summer with 4th of July decorations!  The decor and snacks were in festive red, white and blue to match!  Just love hosting girl-parties - have an excuse to decorate!  (Having all boys at my house - this is my outlet for decorating and having a creative moment other than sports...!)

We had 6 wonderful cards this month!  These cards are fabulous - but what's better are the ladies that make these cards - they are the BEST!  The fellowship - with the bonus of the knowledge and talent is the highlight of my month!  This month, we had a card swapper all the way from North Carolina (Karen is Margie's SIL) - How awesome is that!!  We were thrilled to have a new face this month!

This month's swappers include:  Margie, Karen, Pam, Maria, April and me!  Here they are:







Here are the links for the last Card Swap that was held in April:  April Card Swap  Next month's Card Swap challenge is using the theme "Something from the garden" in the design of the card!  Can't wait!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you a MARVELOUS day - may all your wishes come true!  Remember to hug the ones you love, until next time...

Daily Bible Verse

Play "Bubbles"