Cooking ahead

Hello beautiful people!

I’d like to share how I cook ahead for a couple of days. I plan a few meals that would have the same main ingredient than add to that main ingredient to make different meals. It cuts a lot of cooking and prepping time and dinner is ready in 30 minutes or less. In this case I used stew meat. This particular meat I buy at Aldi it barely has any fat on it and when cooked its so tender. I buy two packages.

Sunday night prep

1 large or 2 small vidalia onions
2-3 cloves of freshly minced garlic
1 large carrot sliced
handful of fresh parsley diced

Sautรฉ on olive oil, add washed and dried meat (I dice it even smaller if the cubes are big).
Season with you favorite seasoning I just used salt and pepper.
Once you brown the meat lower the temperature to the lowest, cover and let it simmer in its own juices for 30-45 minutes ๐Ÿ™‚



Cool it to room temp and put in fridge to use for next day.

Day 1
Brussels Potatoes Soup
Use 1/4 of your meat for this, because its a soup you do not need that much.
2 cups of washed Brussels
2 large potatoes peeled and cut into big cubes
Warm up your meat then add Brussels and potatoes. Add 2 cups of organic vegetable stock and 1 cup of water. Salt, pepper, paprika, more parsley if you would like, you can add any other vegetable you like (sometimes I add peas and freshly diced tomatoes). Bring to boil then lower temp to lowest and let look for 30 minutes.

Day 2

Beef Stew
Warm up the beef on medium temp.
Finely dice one tomatoes and add to meat and simmer on low.
Add one tablespoon of flour and stir then add 1 cups of vegetable broth. Season with paprika, salt and pepper. Simmer on low for 15 minutes.I serve this with rice or Quinoa pasta.

  
  
Enjoy! 

Maya

Bouncing back to normal after vacation

Hello beautiful people! Mi gente!

We just came back from a wonderful family vacation. We spent a week in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico. We stayed in the beautiful Grand Riviera Princess. The weather was mostly perfect except a few days of short showers and the last day it was raining all day.

For many people, a vacation is like a trip into space, at least for me it is. ๐Ÿ™‚ The blastoff takes place once you book your vacation and days of careful planning. Then a few days of serenity and peace are followed by a harrowing re-entry to the real world. But with a bit of planning, you may find that you actually did get some rest on vacation and you are ready to resume your regular life again. (As I mentioned before I plan everything lol)


(Some pictures from our vacation, our oldest child is spending the summer in Europe with our family)

I am a morning person and while on vacation especially when I am well rested my body just wakes up early. Every morning I would wake at 6:30 to 7:00 am. It was perfect for morning runs on the beach. This gives me time to my self while my boys sleep in ๐Ÿ™‚ Its just a nice and early morning breather.


My one and only rule is to leave your self at least one rest day post vacation. This day allows you to rest from travel and restock your house with groceries, even do some laundry maybe. If you are a drinker and plan on drinking on vacation I would cut it very short or completely the last day of vacation and hydrate with a lot of water that will detox your body at least a little and give you more energy. As soon as we got home the next day I got laundry out of the way. I find it if it’s hanging around it is only adding more on my to do list and God knows those of us that have to go back to work have already a lot to catch up on and adjust back to, having heaps of laundry when you come back from work simply sucks. On that off day I also meal prepped and even cooked some food for the few days ahead. I try to have nothing to do when I get home from work that first week, other than relax, get back into my workout routine and play with the kiddos.

 If you have been eating more than you usually do or consuming alcohol I would recommend a detox. There are plenty of recipes out there you can look up on Pinterest but my favorite one is lemon water (with a lot of lemon slices) through out the day, I even add matcha, and detox tea at night.

I hope everyone is enjoying the summer so far and have vacations or staycations planned ahead to just take a few days to kick back and relax. If you are not traveling anywhere do some research there are plenty of things around your town to do and I am sure some are free too just like here in HOT HOT Gerogia.

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Roasted Garlic Brussel Sproutsย 

Hello beautiful people! 

I wanted to share a quick and easy recipe that tastes delicious. My family is big on protein loading aka chicken and steak (especially hubby) so i always want to make awesome side dishes that are not high in carbs especially for dinner. Here is a easy one….

  
1-2 pounds of brussel sprouts washed then sliced in half. 

   
 

1/4 cup of olive oil. Freshly minced garlic (I used 2 cloves). Salt, pepper and paprika to taste. 

  

Toss all ingredients well and spread it on a baking sheet that’s sprayed with non stick spray.

  
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and bake for 35 minutes. Turn Brussels with wooden spoon couple of times through baking. 

If you would like you. An top it with shredded Parmesan cheese when serving. 

Enjoy.
๐Ÿ’œ Maya 

When Traveling with kids…

Hello beautiful people!

With school out and summer vacations in full gear I thought I’d share few tips when traveling with kids. We have had quite some traveling under our belt since our 8 years old was an infant and I think by now I have it figured out lol. (I think) If anyone has additional ideas feel free to add in the comments below ๐Ÿ™‚

First thing I pack is medicine aka Emegency Kit.

1. Advil or Motrin
2. Benadryl (I would also bring EpiPen if you or your children have severe allergies. or asthma inhalers.)
3. Pepto-Bismol  (not on picture but Dramamine is highly recommended for motion sickness/nausea)
4. Anti-Diarrheal medicine (trust me you never know when you will need this)
5.  Alcohol wipes, Band-Aids, Neosporin
6. Vaseline (I use it for minor burns, blisters if you are walking a lot on vacay :-), dry skin)
7. Silverdene cream- this is a sulfa antibiotic. This is amazing for burns. Accidents happen, and this is a life saver if you get a burn. Last year one of my boys got bad sunburn on his shoulders, I mean bad! We used this on his shoulders.
8. I also keep a finger splint there.

Of course bring medicine for you if you take any.

CAR TRAVEL

If you are traveling by car depending on the ages of your children I recommend bringing some type of entertainment. DVD players, coloring books, or do good ol’ car games. Packing a new toy the children have not seen yet is always good entertainment.  I would also pack snacks (NO SUGAR) and water in a little cooler and keep in the car so you do not have to stop every time someone is hungry.

PLANE TRAVEL

Pack your documents/ flight tickets ahead of time and double check expiration dates on documents. Do you best to pack everything ahead of time so that you are not frazzled the day of you trip. I have learned from experience that our moods rub off on our children ๐Ÿ™‚ If we are stressed they will be stressed too. Prepare flight entertainment just like you would for your car trip. For babies I always make sure that they have their pacifier or a sippy cup / bottle at take off, it helps with their ears. Also, our pediatrician has always recommended giving our kids Benadryl (dosage appropriate for age/weight) before take off if the trip is longer. Check with your pediatrician or advice nurse. It helps tremendously with decongestion (and of course some kids sleep well with Benadryl and that’s awesome lol). If you are traveling out of country its always recommended to check your children’s immunization record and make sure they are up to date and if they need additional travel immunizations/medications. Bring copy of immunizations along. Of course you should check this for your self as well. When at the airport let them run around, watch planes take off but please be with your children at all times and keep in mind people around you. I find that this exhausts them and they are calmer on flight. If you know you have a hyper or curious child (don’t we all) when you are seated in the plane and you know that your child may have a melt down or a tantrum introduce your self to the people in front, behind and next to you. Simply say I have a little one that is flying for the first time, I am sorry if she/he has tantrums or is upset during the flight. I promise this makes a world of difference, people immediately become more understanding. One of my friends flew to Japan from USA with her daughter under 2 years of age. She actually made little goody bags with a note introducing her daughter, apologizing in advance if child screams or cries and put little mints / candy in the baggies and placed them on the seats around them.

Here is her letter.

Isn’t she creative?! I am trying to persuade her to start blogging. She currently lives in Japan, her husband is in the Navy. She is a stay at home mom and student, and she is very crafty. Her little daughter is a kids fashion model and you can check out her Instagram @AidaHilgart.

Do you guys have any tips you would like to add for easy traveling with kids? Feel free to share in comments below ๐Ÿ™‚

Have a great day!

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The Creative Blogger Award!

Hello Beautiful People!

CBA1

Thank you so much to my fellow Georgia girl Angela at The Keen Peach for nominating me for the Creative Blogger Award! I am so honored, as I am still a newbie blogger this is so exciting for me.

Rules/Instructions:

  1. Thank and link back to the person who nominated you (mention your nominator in your own award post with a link back to their original award post, which would be this one).
  2. Share 7 things about yourself.
  3. Nominate other bloggers and comment on their blogs (usually on their about page or contact directly if necessary) to let them know.

7 Things About Healthy Mom in a Busy World

1. English is my second (or so) language. ๐Ÿ™‚ However, these days I speak English more than any other. Bosnian is my first language. I have learned German as well, however since I do not use it often it is fading. I can understand people fine but I have a hard time with response. I know a lot of Spanish words and if I really tried I believe I could learn it easily. I could also sit here and tell you that I am fluent in Croatian and Serbian but the languages are too similar so it will be cheating ๐Ÿ™‚ To add to this I can understand people with really thick accents easy, everyone at work transfers those call to me ๐Ÿ™‚

keep_calm_and_i__m_multilingual_by_ameh_lia-d4vnpuq

2. I have moved around a lot during my childhood due to the war in Bosnia in 1992 but I believe the experience has made me a better person and help me view the world differently. We settled in USA 17 years ago and I am a US citizen ๐Ÿ™‚

              (My coworkers decorated my workstation the day after I became a naturalized citizen)
3. I plan everything. I feel like my mind is constantly checking off things and I kind of hate that I can not just relax. I do not write many things down but I have the whole week planned ahead including our weekly meals and grocery list (that I do not write down).

4. I love traveling and learning about different cultures. People and their stories are so fascinating to me, I feel like everyone has a story. When I was little I always wanted to work for the UNICEF to be able to travel and learn about people and help kids in need.

5. Audrey Hepburn and Angelina Jolie are my idols not because of their Hollywood careers but because of their dedication to the world.

Audrey UNICEF

6. I cry easily and it got worse since I had my kids. I am such a softie. I somewhat dislike this about my self because I trust people easily and think they mean well with everything they do. Even though I am a softie if I am hurt or angered I can be quite feisty.

7. And my favorite….This may be clichรฉ but my husband is truly my best friend. This year we will be married 10 years and I would be lying if I said we did not have ups and downs but I feel like we are in a really good place in our life. Our boys are my life! The love I have for them sometimes frightens me.


Blogs I would like to nominate…..

Sarah at Sarahrammfit1

Ethan at RaisingTheBar

Beth Anne and her ladies at 4Mothers1Blog

and last but not least this awesome Mum at UrbanMumble
Thank you for reading!

Maya

Matcha!

Hello beautiful people!

Today I wanted to share my new addiction….MATCHA!

I have been seeing it on Intagram for a while with a few eating healthy accounts I follow but never actually paid much attention to it. Recently a nationally syndicated radio show host was talking about it. He said that he was not a big coffee lover and wanted to steer away from caffeine and stated ordering Matcha at Starbucks. He was ordering it with ice water in a tall cup with 2 scoops of Matcha shaken, and that would cost him 80 cents. Well after he spoke about it on the radio the price went up to $2.69 because of the amount of people that were ordering it. I went to Starbucks that day to test it out. As a matter of fact all of us from work went. LOL It looked very green, but it tasted good, sweet…..and that’s the bad part. Apparently Starbuck Matcha is loaded with sugar as a matter of fact 40grams per serving. WOWZA!


Then I did some research on Matcha.

It originated from Japan. The history and the cultivation of this tea is fascinating but what is matters the most is the amount of antioxidants it has.  It is a fat burner, cancer fighter, increases concentration and boosts energy. See here what BodyBuilding says about it. Here is what I found

  • Is packed with antioxidants including the powerful EGCg
  • Boosts metabolism and burns calories
  • Detoxifies effectively and naturally
  • Calms the mind and relaxes the body
  • Is rich in fiber, chlorophyll and vitamins
  • Enhances mood and aids in concentration
  • Provides vitamin C, selenium, chromium, zinc and magnesium
  • Prevents disease
  • Lowers cholesterol and blood sugar

I did some research on different brands and I found an organic one on Amazon for $19.99. Sugar free. So when I make the match drink I add a packet of stevia to sweeten it.

I have been using it for 2 weeks. I bough some at my Sprouts Market till this one arrived. If you use any water flavoring like Crystal Lights you can mix it with that if you don’t like the taste of Matcha, but honestly if you ever drank green tea its pretty much the same taste. As you can see on the bag you can use it in smoothies, lattes, baking and many other recipes. I mainly drink it in water but did test it out in my greek yogurt parfait and it was delish. I am still experimenting with different recipes and will post them.

 In two weeks that I have been taking it I definitely have a noticed 3 things. A huge difference in energy. You can ask the people at work, my bff says I am happy and bouncing off the walls ha ha ๐Ÿ™‚  Usually I drink coffee in the morning and at 2 PM I am exhausted and go to our work kitchen and start up another pot of coffee. With Matcha I do not do that anymore. I do not crash either after drinking it. The other major difference I noticed (excuse me this is a little TMI but I got to share lol) is my bowl movements are totally regulated, I have been having issues with this for years, since high school. I even went to a GI specialist who told me to take a bunch of different medicine that was still not doing a good job. Lastly, I have had some unexpected issues come up and I have been a little stressed to which my skin decided to have a freaking zit party. With Matcha it has definitely been clearing up. So far I love it and can not find any bad reviews or experience’s on it. Will you try it? Let me know your thoughts if you do ๐Ÿ™‚

Everyday is Mother’s Day

Hello beautiful people! 

I don’t know if I mentioned before but some of you may know that I am originally from Europe. I moved to USA 17 years ago. Back home we did not have Mother’s Day, we had International Women’s day which falls on March 8th. So when I learned of another day to celebrate the beautiful and amazing women in our lives I was excited to celebrate my mom and spoil her with gifts, however no matter what gift I bough her it could not reward her for her endless love and support. I did not understand that until I became a mother myself. 

We love them and sometimes, we become them. Whether she carried you inside of her for nine months or if she put her life aside and adopted you and you became her life most people can identify a person who they can be thankful for on this holiday. These women work hard, especially these days where most women are employed and stay at home moms are so rare. Wether you are a stay at home  Mom or a working Mom I know you are wonderful and hard working. I know you fill your roll with so much love and you are so selfless. I know that you put your kids first no matter what, I know that you are tired but you rarely complain, I know that no matter what you would do it all over again for their smile and a hug. Being a Mom is a lot of work but it’s worth it. 

My mom is my best friend, she is my hero, my cheerleader, and my rock, and if that was not enough God blessed me with another wonderful mother figure and that is my mother in law. I wish nothing but the best for them, and hope that one day I can be as half as good as them and that my children appreciate as much as I appreciate them.

  

And those of you without your Mom’s on this day I know it sucks. I can’t even imagine the pain. Celebrate her and most importantly, remember that even in the darkest days of life you still have her in your heart. 

Mothering has been the richest experience of my life, and we should celebrate our families everyday not just on this day. I want to thank my husband for supporting me and helping me be the best mom that I can to our boys, and for keeping me sane with this mom has a “moment” ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚.