How to Make a Smoothie

Hubby and I absolutely love smoothies. We have one almost every night for “dessert.”  They’re delicious, and it feels like you’re having a treat even though they’re very healthy!

Here’s my simple method for making delicious smoothies. Feel free to substitute any fruit you like!

This makes 2 good-sized smoothies.

Cast of Ingredients:

2 bananas
5-8 strawberries

1/2 cup vanilla (or other flavor) yogurt
2 cups ice
Optional: 1/4 cup skim milk or juice

Peel the bananas and break up into small chunks before putting in the blender.


Next, dump in the yogurt.


Add in the strawberries. You don’t even need to cut off the tops! Couldn’t be easier.


Blend for a minute until ingredients start to mix. If you need a little more liquid, add in a splash of skim milk or juice.
Then add in 1 cup of ice, and blend until ice begins to be mixed in.


Add in the rest of the ice, and blend for a few minutes until smooth.

Pour into two glasses, add a straw, and enjoy! A delicious treat, especially in the hot summer.

Sometimes I add in pineapple, mango, or blueberries. You can’t go wrong with any combination! Peanut butter also goes well with banana, and adds in some extra fiber.

I stock up on strawberries when they are on sale, and put them in the freezer to use later. We go through a lot of bananas, but it’s worth it to enjoy the healthy smoothies. Anything that gets hubby and I to eat more healthily, plus tasting good, is worth it in my book!

Happy Long Weekend

Hello blog world!
Just checking back in to wish everyone a happy Memorial Day!

Hubby and I have actually been camping with my family all weekend, but we’re back home now. We got home late last night and collapsed into bed! I’m so excited to have a day off today just to relax before getting back to work on Tuesday.

We went camping at the same place we’ve gone every Memorial Day since I was 4 or 5. It’s a very simple campground. Lots of dirt, bugs, and trees, but it’s so beautiful. They have archery, swimming, sailing, fishing, basketball courts, and of course, family and friends. It’s very relaxing. My family has gone camping a few times a year since I was little, and this is my favorite place to go. I am not a huge nature person, but for 2 days, I can make it work.

When we got there on Friday, Hubby and I were setting up our tent near the water. He said, “I think I see fins out there.”
I said, “No way. I don’t think they get sharks or dolphins here.”
He said, “No, really, look!”
Sure enough, he was right! There were about 10-15 dolphins playing in the water near the dock. So we ran right out to the dock to get a closer look. They were just swimming around in small groups about 10 feet away from us. What a beautiful way to kick off our weekend! I just couldn’t stop smiling.

Meanwhile, thank you to all of our servicemen and women, and all of our veterans. You sacrifice so that we don’t have to.

Sunday Suppers

Good morning!

For this week’s meal plan:

Monday: dinner out for Memorial Day

Tuesday: Crock Pot Pork Chops (I was going to make this last week, but ended up saving it for this week), rice, and green beans

Wednesday: Creamy penne with squash

Thursday: Asian steak stir fry and fried rice

Friday: Sour cream noodle bake

What are you making for dinner this week?

Ham and Potato Bake Casserole

This was a big hit for dinner last night! I wasn’t sure at first, because it almost seemed too simple. Hubby and I both really enjoyed it and had seconds.

This is so easy, anyone could make it.

The cast of ingredients:

3 medium baking potatoes
1 cup of ham
1/2 onion
1 1/2 cups of grated cheddar cheese

Only 4 ingredients! How much easier could you get than that?

Peel the potatoes and slice thinly.


Dice the ham into small chunks.
Dice the onion.

Grease a casserole dish. I used a 9×9, but anything close to that size should be fine.
Using half of the ingredients, place a layer of potatoes, a layer of ham, a layer of onion, and cover with half the cheese.


Do one more layer in the same order: potatoes, ham, onion, and top with the rest of the cheese.


Bake at 400 for 45-50 minutes.

See what I mean? So easy! It reminded me of the scalloped potatoes and ham my grandmother used to make. Comfort food at it’s finest. Enjoy!

Friday Thoughts

Now that it’s permanently hot outside, I think we can call it summer! Hubby and I finally had to give in and turn on our air conditioning.  We’re very proud though since we haven’t turned on the ac or heat since last September!

So in honor of summer, here are some of my favorite things about this time of year:

1. Sundresses

2. The pool

3. The beach! Oh if only I could live at the beach.

4. Fresh produce

5. Having a sun tan. (Should I admit this? I do wear sunscreen! I promise.)

6. Buying new sunglasses

7. Going for walks when it cools off after dinner

8. Family vacations

9. Driving with my windows down

Happy Friday everybody! What are your favorite things about summer time?

Pasta Carbonara/Alfredo/Cheesy Deliciousness

Well, last night I made Pasta Carbonara. Or so the recipe claimed! In my opinion, it was more like a pasta alfredo, with some bacon thrown in to give it a carbonara-ish swagger.

The way I cook is like my mom. Sometimes I use recipes as a starting point, but I rarely follow them exactly. I like to mix it up or switch things so I know we’ll like it.

So here’s my recipe for Pasta Carbonara Alfredo. Regardless of the name, it sure was tasty!

The cast of ingredients:

3 cups of penne (or other pasta of your choice. I used farfalle)
8 bacon strips, diced
1/2 onion, diced
1 cup half and half
1/3 cup butter (about 3/4 of a stick)
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon dried (or fresh) parsley
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Cook the pasta according to directions. (Boil water, dump in noodles, cook until ready.)


Cook bacon in a large skillet until crisp.

Remove bacon from skillet, set aside, and toss in the onion. Cook the onion until slightly browned.


Remove onion and set aside.
Add half and half, butter, garlic, and parsley. Cook and stir until the butter melts and ingredients are combined and bubbly.


Drain the cooked pasta and add the noodles to the cream mixture.


Add in the bacon, onions, and Parmesan cheese. Stir to combine, place in a bowl, and say, “Mmmm” while enjoying.


This was good, and I served it with some Texas toast, which is hubby and my new favorite side dish. Probably not the healthiest, but it sure is tasty!

Overheard

Hello!

Just a little snippet to entertain you this afternoon.

Last night, hubby and I went into Target. (We had to get a new blender. Our old blender broke and we couldn’t face one night without our daily smoothie.)

We paid, and as we were walking out, we overhear this gem, from one Target employee to another.

Target Employee #1: “Hey! How are you? You got the baby tonight?”
Target Employee #2: “Yup, I left him in the trunk.”

P and I look at each other.

Emily: “Did she really just say that?”
P: “Um, yes, she really just said that.”

This provided great amusement, as we proceeded to  ask each other, “Hey, you got the baby tonight?” for the rest of the evening, followed by maniacal laughter.

After the 172nd repetition of the conversation, I said, “You know, I feel like maybe we should’ve called the police or something. What if there really was a baby in the trunk?”
P: “It couldn’t have been a baby. Maybe it was a dog. Or a plant.”
Emily: “Yes, because everybody refers to their plants as a baby.”

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