Tag Archives: recipes

4 Heart-Smart Must-Dos

Puritan's Pride Vitamins

The folks at Campbell Soup Kitchen have launched the “Address Your Heart Health” campaign. I was asked to participate in spreading the news. According to the CDC, heart disease is the leading cause of death in both American men and women. Amongst the statistics of deaths by Ethnicity, Caucasians take the lead. That isn’t something to be proud about, either.

Fortunately for my family and I we take well-being seriously and place it at the top of our priorities. Over the years, we have managed our lives with a health-conscience approach by following these four basic must-dos for life.

  1. No smoking
  2. Exercise regularly
  3. Reduce stress
  4. Eat a balance diet ~ lean meats & veggies

These are really common-sense steps. I bet you do these, too. One way I know to help reduce stress for a mom-on-the-go is with a few easy-to-make dinner ideas, right? I found a few recipes I want to share with you and to make for my DH.

Grilled Chicken Bruschette

Louisiana-Style Chicken, Sausage & Shrimp Skillet
Pork Medallions with Spinach & Barley
Broccoli Cheddar Rice
PIzza Primavera with Cauliflower Crust

Which recipe has you saying, “Oh, yeah! I want to try that!” They all look pretty awesome, don’t they?

Campbell’s soup has been a big part of my life, and the life of my family. Every bowl of Campbell’s soup I serve, I offer a measure of comfort to those I love. Do you get that same sense, too? Another way to reduce your stress is help at the grocery store. I always say, “a penny saved, is a penny earned” and in this bad economy, you have to be coupon savvy.  Click the below link and begin saving!

Campbell’s Coupon & Savings Center

Soothing some worries, keeping a little more in your wallet, while increasing your heart’s heart with Campbell’s soups… now, that’s something I can really get behind!

About Campbell’s:

Health is foremost on people’s minds, keeping your family in tip-top shape can be a challenge in these busy times. Campbell’s Soup wants you to “Address Your Heart” with Heart Healthy Tips, recipes and more!

Visit AddressYourHeart.com to get heart-healthy tips, including 21 Campbell’s recipes AHA certified and product coupons. Also, to get the latest Campbell’s recipes and offers like them on Facebook!

***This post is sponsored by Campbell Soup Company.***


Monday Morning Musings #6

Puritan's Pride Vitamins

If you’ve landed on my homepage looking for my Monday’s Music Moves Me post, then click here to join me on the dance floor. Otherwise, keep reading!

October was the last time I participated in my own Monday Morning Musings post and that was on my old blog (Cathy Kennedy’s Blog). I thought it was time to get back into doing this.  I know everyone is busy as little bees this week and I hope if you’re reading this today, then you might be interested in adding these recipes among the feast you’ll be partaking on Thursday.

The first recipe, I wish to share with you is one I have made since 2002 and it has been a favorite. DH discovered it in the 2002 November issue of Yankee Magazine. He’s talented for spotting tasty recipes without even having to try the dish.

Cranberry Compote
1 c. seedless raisins
1 12-oz package cranberries
1 c. sugar
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. ground ginger
¼ tsp. allspice
tsp.  ground cloves
¾ c. cider vinegar
1 Tbsp. grated lemon peel
¼ c. organ juice
Garnish: Orange zest
Up to 2 weeks ahead: In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine all ingredients. Cover mixture and cook 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cool in pan. Transfer to a glass jar with an airtight lid, cover, and refrigerate.
Thanksgiving Day: Pour compote into a serving dish and garnish with orange zest
While I am on the subject of cranberries and you know pumpkin is a major ingredient for many of our Thanksgiving recipes, I want to pass to you a delicious bread recipe that my brother-in-law’s wife gave me. 
Cranberry-Pumpkin Bread
3½ c. all-purpose flour
1½ c. (1 can) pumpkin
½ c. oil
2  tsp. salt
4  eggs
3  c. sugar
c. milk
2 Tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
4 tsp. baking soda
1½ c. chopped walnuts
1 lb. cranberries (sorted, washed, & drained)
PREPARATION grease and flour loaf pans; set aside. Preheat oven to 375°F.
MIX everything together, except flour; then add it a little at a time. Fill pans ½ way and bake about 40 minutes.
MAKES about 2 large and 1 small loaves.
TIP excellent served with spreadable cream cheese on warm bread.


That’s a wrap for now on a few recipes that I made for our Thanksgiving feast this week. Maybe, these will find their way onto your table and if not, then these are great additions for Christmas!

A last look at the fall colors around town….

Image captured mid-October with iPhone4.

Image captured mid-October with iPhone4.

Now, let’s visit do a little fun hopping…

My first blog hop takes me to Sasha from The Good Life has a fun Monday Listicles prompt



  1. Music
  2. Old photos
  3. Family
  4. Friends
  5. Chocolate
  6. Kitchen aromas
  7. The Smoky Mountains
  8. Cooking
  9. Crafting – making hand-stamped cards
  10. Memories

Each week, Heather puts on loan FOUR QUESTIONS for anyone to borrow and answer for your blog post, and then she gives you the option to add a fifth question of your own for those who are visiting your blog to answer in the comment section, along with commenting on the four questions you answered. Don’t forget to grab the MQAM badge for your blog or post or both from Acting Balanced blog!

1. Yesterday (Sunday) was National Adoption Day in the US – does your family (or friend family) have an adoption story?

My parents adopted my 1st cousin in the early 70s. His mother died of cancer. His dad, my dad’s brother, either fell completely apart or was simply unable to deal with small kids as he pretty much abandoned them leaving the children in the care of close friends or family. That’s truly sad, but anyhow, my folks decided to take in my cousin and later adopted him. Although, I love children I don’t know that I could do this. Adopting another person’s child takes a special heart.

2. Do you plan out your Thanksgiving preparations? When do you start?

I keep Thanksgiving dinner preparations fairly simple. There isn’t a lot of planning that needs to be done, other than shopping and then cooking. I generally starting buying items in October and then begin to cook the meal the week before. I store everything in the freezer since it has to be transported to my in-laws on Thanksgiving Day. They are elderly and aren’t able to do what they once could. This is my small contribution for all the meals they prepared for us over the years.

3. Shopping on holidays – pro or con? What do you think of stores and malls opening at 6 PM or 10 PM on Thanksgiving for “Black Friday” What about Midnight or 3 AM? Are you planning to shop at any time this coming weekend?

It used to bother me that stores were open on “Black Friday”, but it doesn’t bother me so much anymore. Perhaps, I’ve grown a bit numb to that aspect of the holidays. For the past several years, we pretty much do 99% of our shopping off the internet all year round. I don’t like being forced to buy gifts in December. The craziness of it all takes away from my enjoyment of the season’s true meaning. I am a much happier gal doing shopping on my terms 11 months out of the year, instead of all at once in a short couple of weeks. Oh to answer your question, no, I do not have any plans to be out among the shopping madness on Black Friday.

4. Do you have a fireplace? Do you use it? If you don’t, do you want one?

Yes, we have a fireplace, but it’s not in use. The previous owner built it himself and I do not feel comfortable with burning anything in it. It looks pretty is about all I can say. Maybe, one day in my dream home we will have a fireplace that I feel safe with and we can enjoy a cozy fire’s glow.

Here’s my bonus question for today…

What are you looking forward to most on Thanksgiving Day?

To complete my Monday morning ramblings, I want to skip over to Carissa’s of lowercase letters to play Miscellany Monday

My stereo CD player is having an issue. It won’t turn on. That really, really bothers me. I am so hyped up to play my favorite Christmas music and now THIS. GRRR! I could look at this as an opportunity for Santa to do something wonderful about my problem or I could just try to figure out a workaround till DH can find time to look it over. *sigh* Oh well, I won’t be without music this Christmas season. I can always listen to internet radio or upload my Christmas CDs onto my computer and play them that way or sync to my iPhone. Either way, I will be blissfully happy listening to my favorite Christmas tunes. 

Photographed with iPhone5s in Dillsboro, NC

Do you like music? Would you like a fun, loving group of loyal bloggers to visit you week after week after week? If you’re nodding your head yes like I think you are, then you’re gonna wanna check out my Monday’s Music Moves Me post and be a part of the dance floor shakin’!



Thanksgiving Traditions

Puritan's Pride Vitamins

It’s official, I’m on Thanksgiving break! Yep, you won’t find me online over the next two, three, four, or even five days. We’re in for a long, very long relaxing weekend. I don’t wanna miss a second of it. Do you blame me?

Thanksgiving feasts really conjure a warm essence in all of us, wouldn’t you agree? The aroma from the kitchen, the family gathered in the home, bubbly conversations, laughter, good moods,…it’s total bliss! I got such a chuck when I stumbled upon 8 Stupid Questions People Ask the Butterball Turkey Hotline. Remember laughing helps to make you skinny, so read it!

Have you finally pulled yourself away from the dinner table?  Now, all you want to do is relax in front of what…the computer? Really?  Why not watch some good ole football?

Our founding fathers didn’t have this luxury, so you owe it to them to sit in front of your nice high def TV to enjoy your feast. After all, football and Thanksgiving is a long-standing tradition.  In fact, I had no clue how far back this tradition stretched until I did a little digging on the net. Look at this old postcard circa 1900 depicting the relationship between the two.

While you’re snuggled in the living room watching your favorite football team, you may want to take with you a slice of home-made pumpkin pie.

I delight in making a couple of classic pumpkin pies every Thanksgiving, as found on the backside of Libby’s canned pumpkin.  This recipe is featured on their product since 1950.

3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 large eggs
1 can (15 oz.) LIBBY’S® 100% Pure Pumpkin
1 can (12 fl. oz.) NESTLÉ® CARNATION® Evaporated Milk
1 unbaked 9-inch (4-cup volume) deep-dish pie shell
Whipped cream (optional)


MIX sugar, cinnamon, salt, ginger, and cloves in small bowl. Beat eggs in large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture. Gradually stir in evaporated milk.

POUR into pie shell.

BAKE in preheated 425° F oven for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350° F; bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for 2 hours. Serve immediately or refrigerate. Top with whipped cream before serving.

This recipe uses a pre-made pie shell, but I like making my own. This year, I used a recipe from my copy of Good Maine Food Cookbook by Majorie Mosser.

Plain Pastry
2 cups pastry flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup lard
1 cup butter
Cold water

Mix flour and salt. Work in lard and butter with fingertips, or two knives, until particles are the size of a large pea. Add enough water to make particles hold together.Chill.


The result is delicious! It’s funny, as a kid I didn’t care too much for pumpkin pie. Now, I love it! Thanksgiving wouldn’t be the same without it.

I found a poem “The Pumpkin” by John Greenleaf Whittier written in 1850 for your reading pleasure…

Ah! on Thanksday, when from East and from West,
From North and from South comes the pilgrim and guest;
When the gray-haired New Englander sees round his board
The old broken links of affection restored;
When the care-wearied man seeks his mother once more,
And the worn matron smiles where the girl smiled before;
What moistens the lip and what brightens the eye,
What calls back the past, like the rich Pumpkin pie?


Allow me, to leave on this note…

May your day be wonderfully blessed amongst kin and friends. God bless!

**The pictures in this post I borrowed from various web sources.**Save







Fiber Furious

I have always prided myself in taking care of myself. I eat well, try to stay fit, and keep in shape. I prefer DIY self-helps, but I’m not an expert. I’m guilty as the next woman to occasionally junk out. However, as I’ve gotten a little older, I discovered a problem – an inability to tolerate carbs. Since I am unclear, which carbs are my primary offenders; I decided to head things off at the pass. Type II diabetes is prevalent in my family and I wanted to get matters under control before things escalated out of control.

Two months ago, I embarked on the Atkins diet. I elected to begin at the Induction phase even though I could have moved directly into Atkins OWL (ongoing weight loss) level. At this level, my carbs are severely reduced to 20-grams per day and the amount of fiber is practically nil. Click here to learn what your daily fiber intake should be. After I found out what my daily fiber intake should be it startled me to realize how little fiber I was getting before starting the Atkins diet. I needed to make a change.

I immediately began to incorporate an Atkins’ friendly fiber – flaxseed into my meals. Words of caution, though, remember to consume enough water throughout the course of the day to help the fiber work properly in your body. One quick way to know your daily recommended water needs is to divide your weight (in pounds) by two. The resulting number is the number of ounces of water you need each day. Naturally, if you have an active lifestyle or drink caffeine, then you must replace what your body uses up to prevent dehydration. Read Wonders of Water at WebMD.

I’m a person who needs variety or else I become stagnate on my diet. This tends to sidetrack my hard pressed efforts. I found some wonderful recipes, which gave me ways to work in the flaxseed. For breakfast, try Hot Peanut Butter Flaxseed Cereal or Pumpkin Flaxseed Muffins. Each of these recipes gives me a whopping 10-grams of fiber. That’s about half of my daily intake. Flaxseed meal can be sprinkled directly onto most foods without altering the flavor. I like the golden flaxseed as it adds a nutty flavor. I often put two tablespoons of flaxseed in my Atkins Shakes, which makes for a great meal substitute because it’s so filling. One of my favorites, weekend pizza time I added back to my diet bu using this flaxseed pizza crust recipe and easy pizza sauce recipe. You can choose whatever toppings you want on top to compliment your taste.

Flaxseed has wonderful properties to aid your health. It’s is high in vitamins and minerals, fiber – soluble and insoluble, many positive antioxidants such as lignans (estrogen-like chemicals), and omega-3 fatty acids. But, what does this mean to me, exactly? Flaxseed can lower your blood cholesterol and blood sugar levels, reduce bone loss, help manage your weight, improve your digestion, boost your immune system, and help to fight certain diseases such as colon and breast cancers. Most findings show more research is needed on flaxseed, but some reports have a high regard for flaxseed because of it is a plant source of omega-3, which are as beneficial as fish oils. Flaxseed is a little wonder seed of sorts.

Unfortunately, not all people can use flaxseed comfortably or safely. I’ve read people who suffer Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) should use extreme care when using flaxseed because of the laxative effects. Pregnant and nursing mothers should avoid flaxseed use, as well as women who have issues with fibroids, endometriosis, and polycystic ovary disease. Soluble fiber such as psyllium seems to be a better alternative fiber to boost your daily intake if you suffer from any of these conditions. Remember, if you have any concerns about which fiber works best for you, then ask your physician.

Be smart, eat right, be fiber furious for life!