Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Flank Steak Asparagus Bundles {Clean Eating Day 2}

Someone asked me yesterday "Why clean eat, when you don't need to lose weight?"
Clean eating for me is not a diet to lose weight, but a lifestyle change.
A change to be more mindful of what our bodies are consuming.
I can pronounce and accountant for every ingredient my body took in yesterday.
Thats a winning day in clean eating for me.

Last night I made this little bundles.
Super simple and yummy.

Flank Steak Asparagus Bundles {makes 8 bundles}:
- Flank Steak around 1.5lbs
- 2 garlic cloves crushed
- 3 tsbp olive oil
- a bundle of thin asparagus

I took the flank and cut it down the middle making to flanks
Then trimming any fat, cut strips about 3 inches wide.
I laid the strips out covered with some wax paper and took my handy dandy pot and tenderized them.
Then sprinkle with some salt and pepper.
Add to a ziploc with garlic and olive oil, give the bag a good massage.
Set aside, for 30 mins.

In the meantime preheat your oven for 350.
Trim the asparagus, add to a lined baking pan, add a little olive oil and s&p.
Bake for 15 mins.
Remove and cut them in half.

I used my grill pan on medium heat, a grill would be great also.
To make the bundles, take the strips add some asparagus to one end and roll up.
You will not want any over lapping, so trim as needed and secure with a toothpick.

Grill, these are thin so not very long on each side.

I served ours with a side of tomato and cucumber.
Just tossed with a little apple cider vinegar and olive oil, then sprinkled with salt and pepper.

One thing I have noticed with focusing on clean eating, we have been eating clean for the most part. Or should I say at mealtimes.  But snacks are a completely different story.  Yesterday I snacked on a dragon fruit, apple with almond butter, Larabar, a banana, and a juice of beet, kale, carrot, and a red apple.  I am working on thinking of more out side the box snacks, any suggestions?

See you back tomorrow...

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Belated 7th Fiesta Birthday Post

I am realizing some of you might have thought I forgot to blog a certain little girls  7th birthday. 
If you are new to these parts you may not have noticed, but for those who have been following my ramblings for some time might have.  See I LOVE planning my kids parties, crazy LOVE.  So back in April, geez that was so long ago, Buggie had a 7th Fiesta! It was all her idea and I loved every second of it.  We had gone to Mexico in February and she fell hard for the country.  Kori, did a full post on her party here, but these are just some of my favorite photos of the day...

It was a colorful magical day.

Chicken Al Carbon with Quinoa Tortillas {Clean Eats Day 1}

I am sure by now you have seen or are doing clean eating.
Its pretty much everywhere you look.
And for the most part we are pretty clean eaters.
I think the appealing part for me is it is getting back to basics, avoiding additives and processed crap our bodies don't need.
So not that four letter word, diet {said on a hushed whisper}, BUT more a lifestyle choice.

I get that it can be super overwhelming and scary to eliminate so much from you diet.
So baby steps are ok.
This week I am focusing on a whole week of clean eating.
Am I being crazy stupid strict about it, um no, Momma is not about to give up her coffee and little bit of raw sugar, I am all for healthy but not crazy. But with that said, over three months ago I switched to black coffee.  It was more out of dire straights, as I had ran out of my soy creamer one morning and said the heck lets try it black.  And I never looked back.  CRAZY.

Any who back to this week.
After Sunday night and killin a WHOLE box of Hot Tamales aka my kryptonite, I set forth on Monday on a clean eating binge.

I thought I would share my clean eating chicken al carbon with quinoa tortillas. 

I used the Gracious Pantry's recipe for the tortillas.
Now this was my very first time making tortillas, so I don't have a fancy smancy tortilla press.
I took two silicone cutting boards lined them with cling wrap, placed a ball in between and pressed down with my hands. Then to flatten them to an even thickness I used a rolling pin on top of the mats.   Once you are ready to start cooking, make sure you pan is on high heat {for my stove on 8}, one thing I could not find in the recipe.  And keep an eye on those suckers, they cook FAST.

As for the Chicken Al Carbon {makes 4 servings of two tacos each}:
- 2 chicken filets {all natural, free range, no antibiotics is the best if possible}

For the marinade: 
- 2 limes
- 1 shallot
- 2 tbsp olive oil

For the toppings:
- half white onion diced
- avocado
- plain Greek Yogurt {GREAT substitute for sour cream}
- cilantro

At least 30 mins or an hour if possible before you are ready to cook marinate chicken.
Take the chicken and cut them down the middle, making 2 cutlets.
In a large ziploc, add the juice of the limes, olive oil, and the diced shallot.
Season the chicken with a little pepper and salt.
Add to bag and massage, set in fridge.

Over medium heat grill your chicken, since they are cutlets you will only need to cook for 6-7 mins per side.
Remove from grill dice, add to warm tortillas and top with stuff above.

The kiddlets did not want tacos so I made them quesadillas 
{Napoleon make yourself a damn ques-a-dilla, sorry had to} and the tortillas held up good.
I just sprayed a non stick pan with a little canola oil.

Then this am, I decided to make a egg taco.  2 egg whites and one whole egg, some fresh salsa, and a dollop of greek yogurt. Along side my strawberry lemon water {always keep a pitcher in the fridge for easy access all day} and black coffee.

See you back tomorrow with another Clean Eats recipe from tonight.  


Friday, July 19, 2013

We Play With Our Food

Some of you may or may not remember my love of "playing" with the kids food 
{ here, here, and here}
I love the idea of feeding my family.
I know that might sound weird to some.
But to have the satisfaction of preparing meals that my family enjoys makes my heart happy.
Creating fun plates is just a fun little outlet for me.

When Becka asked if she could share some of the images that I had posted on Instagram on the Disney Baby Blog, of course I said yes.

Once it posted I felt great, it was super cool.
Then Disney Baby Blog shared it on their FB page.
And I was confused by some of the comments.

I get it, everyone it entitled to their opinions.
But when people say, I should "use my time more wisely and spend it with my kids" it stings a little.
Heres the deal,
I do this for my kids.
I do it maybe once a week OR maybe once every two weeks.
It takes a mere 20 mins max for me.
My kids faces light up when they get to see their "special" plates.
It gets them to try new fruits and veggies they might normally not have touched.
It gives us an outlet to make up stories about their plates.
And most importantly it gives them memories, memories they can file away to look back on with fondness when they are older.

I totally get this not for every mom, wether due to working, hectic schedules, too many kids to create for but I share to help inspire others and show my love for food.
But it is for me.
So I will continue to create plates and share.



You can follow my Pinterest page for We Play With Our Food for more plates

Monday, July 15, 2013

So Fresh and So Clean

I have been wanting to get back into blogging more regularly for some time now.  After me saying this to Sara for like the thousandth time and not doing anything about it, she finally took the reins for me and took over my blog for a few days.  She basically took my blog to the spa, the Sara Spa.  Gave her  some new highlights, some fresh color on her and tweezed a few hairs here and here.  When I finally saw her, I recognized her but noticed she had a more confident strut about her.  A different sway  that has my mind turning.  Sara is new at this redesign game but really wants to share her talents with interwebworld.  So for an AMAZING low rate of $75 you can snag one of only three spots for a WHOLE new blog overhaul.  Which includes: a custom header, navigation bar, a social media set, up to 3 side bar buttons and a blog button with grab text box. {small print: Only TWO post design changes are included in this price, any more "oh can you change this or thats" will be an extra charge.  This offer is for Blogger and Typepad users only}  

So what are you waiting for?
Email to reserve your spot at the "Sara Spa"

Dilly Dally

Now my blog and I are off for a date, I want to show her off around town.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

The sting of rejection

I am pretty good about keeping myself inside the safe bubble I have created.  The one who lets people in at small intervals and never finds me pushing outward to the point of it thinning and holding my breath for the thunderous sound of it popping.  But a little over a month ago, I got the taste of something I did not even have on my radar, something that had me licking my lips in anticipation of that "POP".

For the past 7 years, I have been Hub's Wifie, and Buggie and Bean's Momma, at home taking care of my fam bam, wiping bums, cooking meals, folding laundry, and making memories.  The world I controlled and created.  But when I was approached for what was described as "the most perfect part time job" with a company I knew well and enjoyed, I felt my hand reaching for that bubble.  This was my year, the year I was going to work on myself.  And to think I could have my at home life and something outside it just for me, was beyond exciting.  I went through the interview process, each time moving to the next step.  After each interview, Hubs would say, "Are you sure this is something you want?  The stress? You can stop it at any point."  But it was something I wanted, something I never knew I wanted.  

Fast forward to two weeks ago, I happened to be going to NYC for a girls weekend.  I had been trying to schedule the very last interview with the Managing Director of the North American division of the company.  YEP THAT BIG.  So I thought maybe I could go to their offices in the city and meet with her in person, HOLY PUSHING THAT BUBBLE PAST ITS BREAKING POINT PEOPLE.  

{here I am about to walk into said BIG TIME interview}

After I woke up that morning and put on my big girl panties, hopped on the subway, found the office building, sat and spoke with them for over an hour.  I left feeling energized.  I felt like I was me, not just wifie or momma, but me.  Dare I say I felt important or valued?  Not in the big hugs from my kids, or thank yous and kisses from my husband kind of way.  No in a way that they could never give me.  After an amazing trip, I found myself at home waiting to hear back.
And when that call came on Tuesday, I knew, I knew that my bubble was about to "POP" but not with confetti and champagne.  No, my bubble pop with tears and rejection.
What did I say wrong?  What could I have done differently?  Would this or that had made a difference?
The whats and woulds, flooded my head.

Rejection sucks.
No way around it.
It creates self doubt.
Second guessing, triple guessing, and even fourth guessing.
Different scenarios playing on a loop.
I was not good enough.

Lucky for me I had a pre-planned trip for a mini staycation with the kiddlets.
Just the three of us, hanging with some friends.

I found myself doubling up on my bubble. Two layers to protect me.  Two layers between me and all the things I fear.  But this time I snuck something with me in that double bubble, hope.  Hope of finding something for me, something that will allow me to do my number one job of making memories but giving me that much needed "me time".  That hope is like a needle prick, a slow releasing escape of air, giving way to something I crave, something for me.   One day that prick will turn into something bigger, I know it will. But until then, I hold onto the moments in time I am creating for my family.