Jun 28, 2014

Fruit Leather - Apricot

This last week apricots went on sale at my favorite produce market.  I bought close to two pounds and waited impatiently for them to ripen.  Once they did I pulled out my dehydrator for the first time.  I've had it for a while.  But using it just seemed so scary I kept putting it off.  After my first experience I can't wait to try using it again.  My husband is requesting jerky.  So I guess that is next on my list of things to try.

Apricot Fruit Leather

  • Wash 2 lb. of apricots
  • Remove pits, slice into quarters, throw in blender
  • Add a dash of lemon juice
  • Blend until smooth
  • Pour mixture into two fruit leather sleeves in your dehydrator
  • Cook on 135* for 5-8 hours
  • Remove from dehydrator when there are no wet or sticky spots
  • Place on wax paper
  • Roll up and cut with kitchen shears
  • Store in an airtight container
  • Enjoy

I can't wait for more fruit to go on sale so I can try different combinations. My house smelled amazing all day long.  I was in heaven.  Next time I might try some pineapple or banana.  My leather took close to 8 hours, but I poured one batch slightly fuller than the other.  My son loved when I cut him off small pieces and my husband ate a whole roll by himself. 

 One more goal off my list.  I need to step it up if I want to finish all 99 before February 25, 2016.  Next up is goal 94.  I'm so excited to go on a cruise.  You can check out why I'm working on 99 goals and my progress here.

Feb 18, 2014

Balancing in Fitness

Part of my goal of being a balanced wife includes adding in some much needed fitness.  Now that my baby is a bit bigger and no longer nursing I feel I can go forward with a little bit more enthusiasm.  I've signed up for two 5K's in the next 3 months.  Because shelling out money for two events might just give me the push I need. Plus I've recruited some friends to run with me.

Now it's time to start training.  I've been using two apps to help me in my journey. The first is well known to runners everywhere. Nike + has been great for encouraging me to run more often. It gives me stats, lets me race friends to a common goal, and gives me a basic guideline to train for a 5K. But it doesn't let me adjust the schedule or give me running/walking intervals.

That's why I use C25K too. It gives you a flexible schedule, running/walking intervals, and it's also free. I start with a 5 minute warm up, run/walk for 20 min, and then cool down for 5 minutes. All it takes is a 30 minute session 3 times a week. The best part? I can run Nike + at the same time to log my speed and distance.

As I run more often, I can run longer, faster, and stronger.  I'm loving how great I feel. Do you have a favorite app?

What else do you do to stay in shape?  This weekend I went on a 20 mile bike ride. I rode up two big hills and lived!  I complained all the way up the hill, but Mr. WB kept cheering me on.  I was so proud of myself.  My efforts to exercise are paying off! Here's a picture from the top of the hill. It was a great day to ride!

Feb 13, 2014

Tracking Goals

Tracking goals can be difficult.  Especially since I'm trying to accomplish 99 goals in 999 days.  I've tried several different types of goal trackers in an attempt to manage all mine.  When I look for a goal manager I want something social, easy to use, cheap, and encouraging. That's why I love Lift - Daily Motivation. It manages to accomplish all four of my requirements. 

Lift can be used with friends or used privately. Sometime not everyone needs to know how much time I spent cleaning. ;) But I do love to get positive reinforcement on crossing things off my list. That little rush is so addicting.

Lift is a breeze to use as well. You can quickly check off your daily goals, add new ones, and delete goals you are finished with. I am a sucker for checklists. So I love being able to check off a goal as soon as I complete it for the day. 



I also love that Lift has several challenge goals with added support. This month I'm trying the 30 Day plank challenge.  It has different steps to help you through each day.



Lift is also FREE. Which is one of my favorite words. You can check it out here.

I love the daily lift when I accomplish my goals. I love to see my stats and  work hard to check into my goal 21 times so that I cross it off and move on to the next goal.

Do any of you use Lift? Do you have something else you like more?

Lift didn't ask me to blog about their app. I just really enjoy using it and thought I would share. ;) All opinions are my own.


Feb 5, 2014

Pork Chops and Applesauce

I love simple and delicious meals. They make me happy on tough days when all I want to do is eat ice-cream straight from the carton. Having a go to list of recipes you can make in a snap help me eat healthier. I'm working on building my list here.

Last week I found a pork chop recipe on allrecipes and tweaked it a little to make it my own. I loved these with a simple salad and some mashed potatoes. Next time I will try and get a picture. :)

Pork Chops and Apple Sauce
2-4 pork chops (Tenderize them to make the pork melt in your mouth.)
Dash of seasoning salt (A dash of salt makes everything taste a little better.)
1. 5 cup of applesauce (Allrecipes has a recipe to make your own applesauce. I cheated and used two cups of apple sauce from the store to save on time.)
1/2 cup of cheddar cheese
Grill

Tenderize the pork chop, add a dash of seasoning salt, and throw on a hot grill. I used my George Foreman. Cook for 5-10 minutes per side depending on the thickness of your pork chop. Top with applesauce and grated cheese. Continue grilling until cheese is just melted.  Enjoy!


Feb 3, 2014

Books for Toddlers - Sandra Boynton

My little one is 15 months old. Finding a good toddler book for him is not always easy. Some books are too wordy, some too long, and others not interesting enough. So when I find a great book at the library I do a little happy dance and add it to my list of books I love.

Today I'm sharing part of this list with you, by starting with one of my favorite toddler authors.  Sandra Boynton is a well published author I grew up loving as a child. I was super excited to introduce her to Baby K. The fun illustrations, catchy rhymes and silly characters grip you from the very beginning.  I love Sandra Boynton, but not all her books are created equal. Yes I do play favorites. Baby K does as well. I can't even tell you how many times I have read these books in the last year.

Our Top Ten Sandra Boynton Books





Do you have a favorite Boynton book?

Pictures credit belongs to: http://childrensbooksguide.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/the-going-to-bed-book-main.jpg, http://childrensbooksguide.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/book_ohmyohmyohmydinosaurs.jpg, http://img2.imagesbn.com/p/2940000953495_p0_v1_s260x420.JPG, http://images.betterworldbooks.com/067/Blue-Hat-Green-Hat-Boynton-Sandra-9780671493202.jpg, http://cache1.bdcdn.net/assets/images/book/large/9780/6714/9780671449032.jpg, http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/98/17/c7/9817c72b32d8de5e47d02101fe2aa66d.jpg, http://yourbooksworld.com/images/Childrens/whats-wrong-little-pookie.jpg, http://i.walmartimages.com/i/p/09/78/07/61/13/0978076113799_500X500.jpg, http://images.betterworldbooks.com/076/Pajama-Time-9780761119753.jpg, https://d3hgnfpzeohxco.cloudfront.net/images/bau/97815630/9781563054433/0/0/plain/birthday-monsters.jpg