Watermelon Mint Smoothie

Hi Friends!

Here is a new fruity “chill” recipe to kick start the July BBQs! Although I do not consume a ton of watermelon due to it making me on the bloated side, I still enjoy the flavor.  My Mom sent me home with so much watermelon last week and I was trying to figure out what in the world I was going to do with it.

Wallah… All is well in the world now.  Used up all that watermelon and found a new favorite summer treat to cool down with.   ;) Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

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Watermelon Smoothie

  • 2 Cups Watermelon (use cold sliced pieces from fridge so smoothie is extra chilled)
  • 1 Cup Frozen Strawberries
  • A few fresh mint leaves (optional, but highly recommended)
  • Optional protein boost: Nutrilite All Plant Protein Powder

Blend. Serve.

What’s great about this is that it comes out more like a juice than a thick smoothie due to the watermelon water content.  Sometimes all I want is a fresh juice, but without juicer that’s usually an issue!

If you are looking for a great appetizer idea to bring to a BBQ this upcoming week, try these avocado salsa stuffed potato skins. Amazing and always a hit.

Happy almost 4th of July!

 

Strawberries ’n’ cream frozen yogurt and then some

Sometimes I need a change up after my workouts when it comes to my protein consumption. Especially right now while I am on my detox! (Workouts that have been lacking lately since it took me 2 weeks to fully recover from my bad cold :/ ) Typically I stick with my chocolate protein shake, but since that’s off limits right now and since I am a little egged out right now, I decided to try something new.  Success! So flippin’ good. Seriously.

In conclusion, here we have Strawberries ‘N’ Cream “Protein” Frozen Yogurt
MOVE OVER SWEETFROG!

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Of course I added coconut…strawberry frozen yogurt

I didn’t measure anything, but here are the approximates.

Ingredients:
5-6 large organic frozen strawberries*
2 heaping tablespoons 2% plain greek yogurt
approx 1/4 cup almond milk
1 scoop Nutrilite plain protein powder
stevia or any sweetener of choice (I recommend KAL or NuNaturals stevia)

Blend. Enjoy! Add the milk in last in small amounts so you do not over do it, or you will end up with a smoothie.  (Which will still be awesome!) If you have a small blender, you may want to chop your frozen fruit into smaller pieces so it can handle it.

*Play with any frozen fruit of your choice! Jared requested blueberry, so that will be next. :)

Next on the menu… I have been craving a nice glass of wine but since that’s out for a little bit longer, a Detox “Wine” Spritzer did the job well!  Even though it’s wineless, I suggest using a wine glass anyways.  There is just something sexy and relaxing about drinking out of a wine glass.

Detox “Wine” Spritzer
1 large strawberry sliced
2-3 lemon slices
1 cup of chilled sparkling water
stevia

Soooo refreshing!

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Lastly, dinner tonight was shrimp scampi. No recipe yet. I will have one for you next time after I make a few tweaks.  But it still came out fantastic!

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Who else is addicted to candles? My new favorites are the World Market brand. (see wine spritzer photo above)  I am very picky with my candles choices, but these smell so friggin’ good without even lighting it! What is your favorite brand/smell?

What is your favorite fruit that you plan to indulge in this spring/summer?

21 ways to Redecorate your life

I have been really inspired lately.  I had to stop, sit and think… am I REALLY living life to the fullest?  Or am I just on autopilot?  Maybe it’s time you stop and ask yourself the same question.  Be honest with yourself.  We tend to wait around for things to happen before we start enjoying ourselves.  We can end up waiting a lifetime if we are not careful.  What if someday never comes?  It’s time we start appreciating each day as it comes.  Wake up with a better attitude.  Seriously… turn that stinkin’ frown upside down.   What if you could wake up every single day to a life you love?  What would that feel like?  What would it look like?  Why not start living that life RIGHT NOW?

Sometimes we have to slow down to speed up.

Below are a few tips on getting creative with the life you are living today to make it the best one possible!

1. Buy yourself flowers. Why? Just because! I went to Trader Joes the other day and got 3 different flowers to put around my apartment.  Smells so good! Did I mention they look beautiful?  (This is good practice for me on taking care of living things)  ;)

2. Go outside. Yes…I said it.  Winter is over. Get your butt out of hibernation and soak in Vitamin D from the sun.  Take a walk, go for a run, or just stand barefoot on the grass and ground yourself.

3. Paint your nails in something funky and fun that you wouldn’t normally do.

4. Give yourself a facial and makeup makeover.  Putting on makeup is an art, but it can be fun.  Have some friends over and get crazy girly! Try out these new spring trend colors here!

4. Enjoy a glass of your favorite wine. Sip. Enjoy.  Do nothing else.

5. What’s your absolute favorite treat? If it has been a long time (use your best judgment on what a long time is to you) since you enjoyed it because you are punishing and depriving yourself, STOP RIGHT NOW! Go get it baby!  Savor the smell, the flavor, the texture in every bite.  Slowly.  Don’t punish yourself, otherwise it will defeat the purpose and you will not enjoy anything but guilt.  You will not be satisfied.  You know that feeling of not getting enough?  That’s where it comes from.

6. Just Be.  Be here.  Now.  Don’t fear the future or worry about the past.  That is where anxiety lives.

7. Buy yourself that cute/sexy outfit that you have been waiting to fit into.  So you have to buy a bigger size than what you were hoping for.  So what!? I promise you will still feel so happy and confident in that new outfit.  Better than trying to squeeze yourself into something too small that you are not comfortable in or just wearing unflattering clothes because your think you are too fat to wear anything fabulous.  Such bologna! (I really want to spell it bolony!) 

8.  Visit your local shop and pick up some candles and some new accessories you have been wanting for your home.  Why? Because I said so.  Just kidddinggg.  Because home is where you should come to relax.  Even if you only have one small room, why not make it a room you can’t wait to come home to?  You create that energy and environment.

9.  Indulge in that glorious hunk of chocolate.  Enough said.

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10.  Have dinner with your girlfriends.

11. Sit on your bed or floor and close your eyes and meditate for 5-10 minutes.  Don’t make rules.  Just do.

12.  Have a refreshing glass of water with add-ins such as fresh lime, lemon, orange or cucumber.  Soooo goood!

13.  Go to bed 30 minutes to an hour earlier than you usually do.

14.  Wake up an additional 20-30 minutes earlier so you can take more time in the morning to get ready.  When we don’t allow enough of time, we rush and our bodies feel stressed.  Not a relaxing start to what could be a very productive and peaceful day.

15.  Start a new book you have been wanting to read or read your favorite magazine.

16.  Try a new recipe that will create balance; full of greens, protein and a healthy fat.

17.  Explore new places and/or try something new.  You may find a new hobby and passion! Maybe even meet new friends if you are open minded and friendly.

18. Eat slower and chew more.  Put your fork down in between each bite to savor the meal or snack.

19. Laugh.

20.  Smile because it’s sunny and warm.  Smile because it’s raining and the flowers are getting watered.  Can you say snuggle day? ;)

21. Hug your family and friends and tell them you love them and appreciate them.

The opportunities of being creative and having a fulfilling life are endless.  I can go on forever but hope this gets you thinking about the little things.

Life is what we make of it.  We create our reality.  Truth.

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I had so much fun taking these pictures!! Photography is definitely becoming another passion of mine.  It’s fun exploring new hobbies.

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Have fun with mason jars! They are not just for smoothies. ;)

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In the comments below, please share things that you appreciate everyday or new positive actions you want to start implementing into your daily life that you have been ignoring or delaying.

Have a great weekend everyone!

My Favorite Maple Protein Balls

Get your mind out of the gutter!

This is the real deal here. :)

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These suckers are delicious. For real!  I may or may not be addicted.

Snack, pre-workout, post workout… whatever makes you happy.

I’m keeping the recipe very basic which will allow room for your own additions and flavors

Maple Protein Balls (Makes 4-5 balls)
2 Tbl Vanilla BodyKey Meal Replacement Powder or Vanilla Whey Protein Powder*
2 Tbl peanut or almond butter (almond butter will make it a little softer and more moist)
1 Tbl Maple Syrup (agave, honey, preserves)**
Optional add ins: cinnamon, flavored extract, mini chocolate chips, oats, coconut, cranberries

Mix the ingredients and ball it!

*If you are a chocoholic, chocolate protein powder will work to
**To reduce the sugar, use 1/2 Tbl sweetener and add a little water or milk to add extra moisture so the ball is not crumbly. 
Sugar free option: stevia mixed with water
1 Tbl of banana may work too, but I need to play with that recipe again. Last time I added a bit too much and it ended up like soup rather than a ball. :P

What are you favorite protein snacks?! Leave a comment below and let me know. 

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Dijon Herb Tilapia or Salmon: with Brussel Sprouts & Bacon

I can’t take credit for this recipe.  I went to a cooking class recently and this recipe was from there.  It was quick and easy and GOOOOD.  That’s what we are all after right?

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Dijon Herb Tilapia

Ingredients:
4 6oz portions of wild caught salmon or tilapia*
1/4 cup of Dijon mustard
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 Tbl extra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp dried thyme or 3/4 tsp fresh
1/4 tsp dried rosemary or 3/4 tsp fresh
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350.
Line or grease baking sheet.
Combine all the ingredients and cover the fish with the mixture.
Bake for 15 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches about 130 degrees.
Broil for 2-4 minutes to crisp the top.  (Watch the broiler since it things burn quick!)

*I used Tilapia because that’s what I happened to have at home.  Feel free to sub out another fish of your choice!

Brussel Sprouts with Shallots and Bacon

Ingredients:
10 oz Brussel sprouts, shaved (TJ has them pre-shaved in a bag)
2-3 slices of bacon*
2 shallots, minced
Salt and Pepper

Directions:
Heat pan on med-high heat
Add Bacon
Add Brussel sprouts and shallots
Stir and let cook until sprouts are carmelized (10-15 min)

*If you use regular bacon, there should be no need for oil.  I used turkey bacon, so I coated the pan with about a Tbl of Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

Have not done quote of the day in a while, so here you go!
“…it takes guts and determination to make dreams happen.” Dexter Yager

Oh how true that is!

Bacon & Strawberry Quinoa Salad

What is Quinoa?  Quinoa is actually a seed, not a grain.  It is full of enzymes and nutrients to keep your body fueled and energized.  It is also considered a full source of protein.  I am not going to get into a list of all the benefits here, but just know its good for you and should incorporate it in to your menu!

Enjoy this light and flavorful salad for lunch, dinner or even a snack. :)
This was inspired by a food network recipe.  I just tweaked things based on what I had available while I was making it.  And of course I added the bacon as an extra. ;)

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Bacon & Strawberry Quinoa Salad

Ingredients:
2 cups of cooked quinoa*
Approx 2 cups of cut strawberries
2-4 strips of bacon (I used turkey for a healthier option)
2 scallions
handful of almonds/walnuts or cashews
1/4 cup of cranberries or raisins
lime zest (optional)

Honey Lime Dressing:
2 Tbl Olive oil
1 Tbl lime juice
2 Tbl Honey
1/4 Tsp Cinnamon
1/4 Tsp chilli powder
1/4 Tsp salt
1/4 Tsp pepper

*I add the quinoa into the water AFTER it boils.  Makes it fluffier.  If you put the quinoa in before it boils, the quinoa will be softer and mushier (which is a better option if you are trying to make a quinoa breakfast cereal)
Also, when I make quinoa, I make big batches.  Then you can make a variety of things with it throughout the week.
2 cups of uncooked quinoa makes about 4 cups of cooked quinoa.

Mix. Serve. Enjoy. Eat. Repeat.

Quinoa Pizza Bites

These little guys are awesome as an appetizer or if you are anything like me… you will eat half the batch yourself as a meal. ;)   Lonely nights while J is at work. :/

Quinoa bites

They were so quick and easy!!! And like most of the recipes I post, there is room for creativity.  Use what you have around the kitchen/fridge and mix it together! Clearly, that is what I did. You can see the creepy black dots in my pizza bites. Unfortunately, I only had the tri-color quinoa.  For appealing purposes, I suggest going with white quinoa. ;) I also subbed out pepperoni in the original recipe and used turkey sausage and I used goat cheese instead of mozzarella.  

(When you see original recipe, you will noticed I cut mine in half and made 22 bites instead of 40)

Quinoa Pizza Bites (about 22 pizza bites)
1-1/4 Cup of cooked quinoa
1/2 Cup chopped onion*
1 Egg   
1/2 Cup goat cheese
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp basil (or 1/4 cup fresh if available)
1/2 cup of turkey sausage or turkey bacon
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp oregano
pizza sauce for dipping

*If you have time, try sauteing the onions first. Mmm.

1. Preheat oven to 350
2. Mix all ingredients together (except pizza sauce)
3. Scoop about 1 TBL of mix into greased mini muffin tins (pack firmly)
4. Bake 15-20 minutes*

*Let them cool before you take them out of pan or they will most likely fall apart.

Recipe adapted from here

I ate 11 for dinner.  But hey, that was only equivalent to about a 1/2 cup of quinoa. ;)  
This meal is healthy and friggin delicious!

Does anyone else have favorite healthy pizza flavor alternatives?

P.S. don’t forget to follow me on twitter @cassijordan.

HEALING Sexy Spiced Chocolate Smoothie

If you are into plain jane, bland traditional flavors, this recipe probably is not for you.  But if you are open for new ideas and trying new things with a kick… check this out!  There are so many healing aspects of this smoothie.  It’s not just a decadent meal replacement.  It’s healing on the body and immunity building!

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Sexy Spiced Chocolate
1 Scoop Bodykey Rich Dutch Chocolate meal replacement powder
1 Cup milk (I use TJ unsweet vanilla almond)
1/2 tsp ginger powder (or fresh)
1 tsp cinnamon
Dash of chili powder (literally a dash! maybe 1-2 quick light shakes)
1 Tbl coconut oil
1/2 banana
Ice

Optional add-ins: handful of Greens (kale, collards, spinach, romaine), flaxseed, chia seeds, maca root powder

Oh and a 1/2 of an onion…

…JUST KIDDING! ;)

Check out some health benefits of each of the ingredients here:
chili powder
cinnamon
coconut oil
ginger

P.S. Don’t worry about reading every detail, but at least check out the titles in bold highlighting a few health benefits of each.  There is sooo much information on each if you just google it.  But don’t overwhelm yourself.  Bottom line, these ingredients are healing superfoods! Use ‘em!

Chocolate Covered Berries Smoothie

You know the powerberries at trader joes? Or the brookstone Acai chocolate berries?  I know you know what I am talking about.  You sneak handfuls in when no one is looking.  Well, if you love those… good news.  This tastes just like it! A nice combination of chocolate, sweet and tart berry.

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Chocolate Covered Berries Smoothie
1 Scoop Bodykey chocolate meal replacement
1 cup frozen or fresh berries
1 cup of almond milk or milk of choice
1 Tbl of coconut oil
Dash of cinnamon
ice (optional) – I used ice
1 packet of NuNaturals Stevia or 1/2 banana*
Add-in options: chia seeds, greens, flaxseed, maca, etc…

*Sometimes berries are hit and miss and can be very tart, especially frozen.  If  you prefer a sweeter taste rather than tart, add the stevia, 1/2 banana or 1 tsp of other sweetener of choice to take away some of the tart flavor.

Caribbean Breeze Smoothie – Get fit. Get healthy.

Not quite spring yet, but not really winterish anymore either.  What to do, what to do!?  If you want to get that luau dancing, aroma filling, caribbean breeze feeling tingling through your body, here is how to do it…
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GET YOURS!

Caribbean Breeze Smoothie
(Meal Replacement)

1 Scoop Creamy Vanilla Bodykey Meal Replacement (or Vanilla Nutrilite Protein Powder)*
1/2 Cup full fat can coconut milk*
1.5 cup frozen pineapple OR 1 Cup frozen pineapple with 1/4 cup pineapple concentrate (make sure it has no added ingredients or sugar!!)
1 Tsp Vanilla extract
1 T Coconut oil (optional)
handful of ice

BLEND AND SAVOR THE TASTE OF YOUR TROPICAL BLISS!

*If you only have a neutral flavor protein powder, that’s okay… you will just need to add a little extra stevia or your sweetener of choice
*Coconuts are VERY healthy fats, so don’t get scared by looking at the nutritional value. Go with the full fat natural can with no other ingredients or added sweeteners.   I am not going to get into those details here today, but google coconut and you will see thousands of benefits! For this recipe, I unfortunately only had light coconut milk because we got the wrong item, so as delicious as this came out, the regular will make it so much better for next time!!!

3:00am – I guess it’s bedtime for this girl!

Enjoy your happy Friday. ;)
There may or may not be a gluten free Irish soda bread recipe coming your way.