REPOST: Homemade, No Sugar Added Fruit Rollups!

REPOST: Homemade, No Sugar Added Fruit Rollups!
(LINK)

These look awesome and according to the author, can be made from pretty much any fruit! Great alternative to the sugary, store bought ones.

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Creamy Red Wine and Sausage Pasta (diabetic friendly!)

Okay, so I have really been on a cooking kick lately (remember the Creamy Chicken and Dumplings?). While that was okay for my sugar, this is even better. It’s super simple and it’s so damn fancy that people will think you are a gourmet chef! I used Dreamfields Pasta in this recipe (as I do with ALL things I make that involve pasta) Using regular pasta makes this WAY less diabetes friendly.

CREAMY RED WINE AND SAUSAGE PASTA 

Ingredients: 

  • 2 medium onions, diced
  • 2 Tablespoons garlic, minced
  • 1.5 pounds sweet sausage, removed from casing
  • 1 box Dreamfields rotini
  • 1 Cup red wine (I used a pinot noir and it was perfect in there)
  • 1 Cup heavy cream
  • 2 medium – large tomatoes, diced
  • About 7 leaves fresh basil (optional, but recommended)

The how-to:

  • Place diced onions in a sauté pan and sauté for a few minutes, then add the garlic and let that sit.
  • While the onion and garlic fill your home with the aroma of happiness, remove the sausage from the casing. Put in with the onions and garlic, ripped into pieces, and let it cook, breaking it into pieces (thank about adding salt and pepper)
  • This is a good time to put the water up for the pasta, if you haven’t already. Rotini takes 8 – 10 minutes to cook. Also, dice up those tomatoes and the basil!
  • After the sausage is fully cooked, remove the sausage mix from the pan and set aside.
  • Put the red wine into the pan and let it cook for about 5 minutes or so (cook off that alcohol!) Then add the cream. Cook for about 2 – 3 more minutes or until the sauce thickens up and gets all happy. Add in the tomatoes and basil after the sauce is thickened.
  • The pasta should be ready to drain by now. Place the pasta, sausage mix, and sauce with tomatoes in the big pot from the pasta and toss all of that goodness together.
  • Serve with a little Parmesan cheese and watch your friends silently wonder when you learned how to cook so well.
  • You’re welcome.
Okay, I forgot to take a picture last night, so this is it, reheated... oops.

Okay, I forgot to take a picture last night, so this is it, reheated… oops.

I tried to look up the ingredients to check a carb count and it was pretty low. I’m not really going to put anything up here because I’m not sure how exactly carb counts are done… but if you know, feel free to come up with one  and let me know!

Dear Children,

Dear children,

If you cold read, I probably wouldn’t post this….

I have here, a list of things I would LOVE to tell you two little… darlings, but won’t because it will either break your baby hearts OR I simply can’t find a way to say it without cursing at you… Mommy loves you.

1. I DON’T WANT TO KISS YOU WHILE I’M ON THE TOILET. This is pretty self explanatory. Mommy’s “potty time” is already compromised by the fact that I can’t go to the bathroom in peace. Please do not open the door, come up to me, try to kiss me, then scream at me when I don’t want to kiss and poop at the same time (yes, mommies poop, too.)

2. YOU KNOW WHAT’S NOT CUTE? WAKING MY UP BY WHINING. Sorry, babies. I love you and all and there’s nothing that I would (theoretically) love more than to wake up to your cute little faces in the morning. But that horrid screech-whine hybrid noise that comes from your face-hole at whatever-o-clock in the morning just kills it for me. Be silent until I’ve had my coffee.

3. I JUST DON’T WANT TO SHARE WITH YOU. MINE, MINE, MINE. Go away when I’m eating, on the computer, drinking from my water bottle, or sneaking a snack. It’s bad enough that I guilt myself for stealing chocolate covered pretzels in general… don’t draw attention to it! My snack. And lunch? No, kids, I fed you already… Hit the road.

4. SURE IT WAS CUTE THE FIRST TIME, IT’S JUST ANNOYING NOW. Okay, it was kind of cute when you spun yourselves dizzy, flipped over the couch, and hung upside down in a weird-ass head stand thing, but let it go. I just can’t fake interest that long.

5. IT’S TRUE. I REALLY CAN’T WAIT TO DROP YOU OFF SOMEWHERE AND DO NOTHING…. WITHOUT YOU. I mean I love you.. so, so, so much and I always will. But holy Christ, you guys are just too much sometimes. I’ll say it, sometimes I just want to drop you off somewhere and sit in the house and do nothing.

If these little confessions (and trust me, there are the little ones, you KNOW there are others) make me a mean or bad mommy, then so be it… but I’m sure I’m not the only one. I love you little turds, but sometimes you make me want to hide in a corner for days at a time (that’s not weird).

 

HOMEMADE Creamy Chicken and Dumpling Soup in the Crock Pot! (it’s possible?!)

Today, I was looking online for a nice recipe for creamy chicken and dumpling soup to make in the crock pot…. yeah right. You know what I found? “Mix 2 cans of creamy chicken soup and water, then add in pop-n-fresh biscuits, broken into pieces and cook for an hour or two” WHAT THE CRAP?! I was pissed. Like, thanks guys, I’m so glad that’s a recipe. Now, if that’s how you cook, that’s totally cool… but that’s just not what I was expecting when I searched for an actual recipe. I’m talking from scratch, mothereffers, FROM SCRATCH. What’s good about this is that it is relatively low-carb (you can leave out the roux and make it not creamy and it would still be delicious).

So here it is… I actually made this recipe up! It’s totes mine and I love it. Even my hubby said it’s some the the best soup he’s ever had. (it’s a lot easier than it looks, I REALLY didn’t want to leave anyone stranded not knowing what to do, so I spelled it all out.) Make this and you will never love another soup like this one again…. never. ever.

Creamy Crock Pot Chicken and Dumpling Soup

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 – 2 lbs chicken (I used the leg quarters because they are so tender in soup and fall right off the bone – and they’re usually cheap)
  • 62.5 oz chicken broth + 14.5 oz water (1- 48oz College In Low sodium chicken broth + 1 – 14.5 oz can of chicken broth + 1 can full of water. Feel free to chance this up, but make sure you cover the chicken with liquid in the crock pot!)
  • 2 large (3 small) carrots, diced medium
  • 3 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 large onion, diced medium – large (you want the onions to still be onions after sitting in the crock pot all day!)
  • Spices! Try thyme, sage, parsley, oregano, rosemary, lemon pepper, garlic powder, and a little salt.
  • 5 Tablespoons flour
  • 5 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 Cup milk

For the dumplings:

  • 2 Cups flower
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon garlic powder
  • 3/4 – 1 Cup COLD water 

DIRECTIONS:

  • Place Chicken quarters, broth, water, veggies, and spices in the crock pot and turn to high.
  • Cook on high for about 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Turn the crock pot down to low and let it cook for another 1 – 1.5 hours, or until the chicken in cooked and falling off the bone. (You can also leave this on low for about 6 hours or so, instead of starting it off at high)
  • Take the chicken out of the crock pot and separate all the bones out. You can also shred up the chicken and cut pieces that are a little big.
  • In a saucepan, combine the butter and flour together, and stir the whole time (this ensures you cook the flower without burning it)
  • Add in the cup of milk and STIR, STIR, STIR! (you will end up with something that kind of looks like mashed potatoes)
  • Add some of the chicken broth from the crock pot to the roux (this is called tempering) until it is nice and creamy, then add the whole thing into the crock pot and stir it around.
  • Let this cook on high while you mix up the dumplings.
  • To prepare the dumplings: Mix the flour, salt, and spices together in a bowl and make a well in the middle. Slowly add in a little bit of the water, mix, and then a little more, mix, then the rest of it. (Don’t kid yourselves here; you need to be using those hands for this!) Finally knead the dough out on a clean, floured surface. Let the dough rest for a few minutes so it can breathe and get ready to be yummy. Finally grab little, 1 inch pieces and roll them into a ball-like shape and you’re good to go!
  • Drop the dumplings into the soup but MAKE SURE you stir the soup up before you add the dumplings because if you do it after ,you will just break them up into mush.
  • Let this whole thing cook for about another 45 minutes to an hour (depending on the size of the dumplings)
  • Serve
  • Happy dance.

Please do me a solid and if you post this someplace else, let me know or link back to me. It would be awesome. 🙂

A not-so-great picture of my soup!

A not-so-great picture of my soup!

You NEED To Plan Your Meals. Like, Really.

Cheap-o tips:

  1. plan your meals.
  2. Plan them around the sales.
  3. But what you need.
  4. Don’t forget lunch and breakfast.
  5. Probably get a snack or plan that out, too.

But really though. I grocery shopped for my family for $72.40 this week AND I have delicious stuff planned for these guys.

BREAKFAST is easy. Bars, cereal, oatmeal, yogurt… those things are easy and at least one of them is almost always on sale somewhere.

LUNCH is a tough one. If there is extra money int he food budget, I’ll pick myself up some Lean Cuisines. Otherwise, almost any combo of yogurt, those pouches I make (also good for breakfast!), cheese, fruit, veggies, or some chicken nuggets/hot dogs even (don’t lie, you know you do it) will work.

DINNER has gotten so much easier for me. Here’s why (I know it’s a little blurry):

better menu

 

The point is, it’s a menu. Not only do I not have to think about what’s for dinner, answer any questions about what we’re having, stand there like an ass in the grocery store, figuring out what I’m gonna use some obscure thing for, but I also sound fancy. Who doesn’t want to be organized AND fancy? I know you are tiling your head (maybe even raising an eyebrow) in agreement. Exactly.

How did I come up with all that awesomeness? Well, I looked to see what was on sale and what I had in the freezer, and went for recipes with included those things. Usually, I start with the protein, since meat is usually the most expensive part of a dish, then go from there. I get a lot of recipes online and from other people. This week alone, 3 of the dinners on my menu are either new or something I’ve only had once, at someone else’s house. You can pull recipes from diabetic sites, too. Doing that will hopefully help to curb junk dinners because not only do you make things that are healthier, but you also don’t pick on crappy food or order pizza because you don’t want to deal with the whole “what’s for dinner” pain in the butt discussion.

Some of the things on there, like the roast and stew, are going to use the same piece of meat. I spent 10 dollars on the roast. That seems like a lot until you realize that I’m using it for 2 night’s meals. The chicken (though this time I happen to have leg quarters in the freezer for soup) can be made using one family pack of chicken, split into 2 portions.

The other thing I started doing, which has little to do with saving money and more to do with saving time, is prepping my veggies and stuff ahead of time and freezing it. I know a lot of people don’t like to freeze fresh veggies, but I’m all for it. I have never noticed anything off about them afterwards. Today, I went shopping, came home, put the baby down for a nap, and while she was sleeping, cut all the veggies that I needed for dinner for the week up and bagged them (I labeled the bags with what was in there, the date, and what it was for – you don’t need to). This saves me from messing up my kitchen (even more) when I make dinner and it stops me from having to cut veggies more than once because, really, who wants to prep veggies all the time?

 

“You’re a stay-at-home mom? What do you DO all day?”

Absolutely awesome perspective. Loving this right now!

The Matt Walsh Blog

It’s happened twice in a week, and they were both women. Anyone ought to have more class than this, but women — especially women — should damn well know better.

Last week, I was at the pharmacy and a friendly lady approached me.

“Matt! How are those little ones doing?”

“Great! They’re doing very well, thanks for asking.”

“Good to hear. How ’bout your wife? Is she back at work yet?”

“Well she’s working hard at home, taking care of the kids. But she’s not going back into the workforce, if that’s what you mean.”

“Oh fun! That must be nice!”

“Fun? It’s a lot of hard work. Rewarding, yes. Fun? Not always.”

This one wasn’t in-your-face. It was only quietly presumptuous and subversively condescending.

The next incident occurred today at the coffee shop. It started in similar fashion; a friendly exchange about how things are coming along with the…

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