Tuesday, September 21, 2010

We're Baaaaaack!!!!

Hey Everybody!!!

We are soooo sorry we have been derelict in our blogging duties. But Shari and I have been in a whirlwind of change. Shari left a job she had been at for 10 years, at the top of her game I might add. I came along with her like a willing puppy. We have new jobs with a fantastic company, and couldn't be happier. Could not ask for a better boss, she kicks butt!! Oh and did I mention our office is at home? O yeah we check our e-mail in our jammies every morning.

But we have been yearning to put on our tiaras and cook y'all something healthy and good. Well we haven't been completely tiara-less. We recently appeared in the flesh at one of our senior semminars, cookin' up our famous sweet potato tatersalad. Not only were they caught off guard from our apperance, they LOVED the tatersalad. Not wanting anyone to feel left out we brought everyone tiaras, tatersalad and shiny baubles. It was a hoot looking out in the audience and seeing 100 smiling faces wearing tiaras.

Since this event we have caught fire! We have been booked for 3 other events. The Queen Bees of T3, come see what all the buzz is about!!!!! We are planning a Queen Bee High Tea in the near future, watch for your invite on our site!

And with all this going on Shari has been remodeling her home, I am in the process of getting my home ready to sell as well. My mother-in-law says I'm not happy unless I have a paint brush in my hand! Ok Shari your turn! =0)

Roxie is not kidding. What a wild and crazy pace we've been running at. As soon as we made the switch we were off to New York and then shortly there after we were off to Atlanta. In the middle of all that we had to set up our home offices. Setting up an office at home while also remodeling was a total nightmare. I moved my office "3" times in "3" weeks. Moving is not condusive to a smooth working environment. Anyway.....................that is thankfully all behind us now. We are so excited to get back to the blog. We've been thinking up all kinds of fun new stuff for the fall. We've purchased our own domain name and plan to move our blog there sometime soon. We have gotten to the point where we will need some help doing some of the things we have dreamed up for the future. Stay tuned to big changes in the future.
I have a request. We've noticed how many hits we've had on the blog, but so few of you are signing up as followers. If you visit the site and like what you see, please join. The larger your number of followers the easier it will be for us to get published which is our ultimate goal. Well, that and the desire to have tiaras on the heads of every Queen who wants and needs one.
Roxie wanted me to tell y'all about the new and improved Roxie and Shari. I am now 100 pounds lighter and Roxie is 30+ pounds lighter. We are lookin good I must say. We took new pictures today, but have had some temporary technical difficulties. We hope to get them up tonight when Rick (our IT go to guy) gets home and fixes our technical problems. So, if you don't see them up now, please check back soon.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Here a convict, there a convict, everywhere a convict!

In my generation your backyard, bike and pets, were your domain. We had a lovely backyard, fenced, and Mama had a window at the sink to keep an eye on me; which believe me was a full time job! We had a tall wooden fence 3 quarters around our backyard and the rest was chain link. Mama didn't care for one of our next door neighbors. Mama said those kids were hellions and they didn't do things to suit my Mama. I never really knew what a hellion was then but I knew it must be pretty bad to warrant a 8 foot wood fence!

Well this story begins like all my days when I was four, get up Mama carried me to the table, yes I know what your thinking but that's how she and I did things. Fixed me an absolute fabulous breakfast and then put on my play clothes and out to play. Then it was off and into the enchanted forest that was my backyard. I was imagining that I was in an enchanted forest, with my faithful German Shepard Princess, and we off to find the treasures of all treasures! When all of a sudden I hear a voice and some kind of commotion at the back of the fence right where the wooden part meets the chain link. Well I sauntered back that way and climbed right on up there, I could climb like a Colobus Monkey, and took me a seat.

Well there before my very eyes were about 10 men with sling blades in their hands whacking away at the weeds in the creek bed. Then there was this one man who seemed in charge. He had on those mirrored glasses, and also held a shotgun just like my Daddy had for hunting. Another thing I thought was odd those men had chains on their legs linked together like a charm bracelet. But what struck me as most odd was they all had on black and white striped britches! Well I commenced to barrage them with all kinds of questions, about their britches, those painful looking chains, and what their names were, and who was their people. You know the basic "Southern" questions, who's your parents and where do you go to church?

Well they didn't answer me, nor were they going to and the man with the glasses and shotgun just grinned as did most of the guys working, but no eye contact or anything. I was just about to start a new line of questioning when all of a sudden I was flying, backwards! Mama spied me sitting on the fence, a big no no, and came to get me down. When she saw those convicts I thought she was gonna faint! She said "What do you think you are doing?" I said "Just gabbing a little". Well you don't talk to convicts! "What's a convict I asked?" After a long pause and much thought Mama said "They are people who have done bad things and could possibly hurt little girls and don't you EVER speak to one of them again". I asked " Well how can you tell if they are convicts", not wanting to make that same mistake in the future. Mama said "They all wear those black and white striped britches". Made sense to me.

Fast forward 2 weeks later we are shopping at the neighborhood Liberty Grocery,gathering up all the fixins for Mama's delish pot roast, green beans and tatersalad. When I looked across the isle and to my astonishment and there was a convict! I promptly stood up in my buggy and as loud as I could I screamed " Look Mama a convict!" Well you could have heard a mouse squeak. This poor woman was over in the veggies whilst Mama was pickin' out her taters, and this poor women looked over at us and said " Baby are you speaking to me?" Well my Mama was absolutely mortified!The older woman started to walk over and I was terrified , Mama didn't say anything about women convicts! The woman struck up a conversation with Mama and me and the woman was caught up to speed about the other day. When it was over they had a big laugh and that woman said she understood my confusion and said she had been called a lot of things but never a convict! She also said she was gonna retire her black and white striped britches wasn't ever gonna wear them again!


Now don't tell my Mama I put her Pot Roast recipe on here, she might get my goat.

Mama's Pot Roast Recipe

Buy a beef or pork roast 3-4lbs
6-8 Carrots-organic or regular (whatever floats your boat)
6-8 Taters-again whatever kind you like best, Mama likes the little red ones, you can use sweet potatoes and they are great, but put them in 20 minutes before the roast is done
Two large yellow onions
5-6 cloves of garlic
Fresh mushrooms one carton- I like Baby Bellas, but the regular ones are just fine

Take your meat and salt & pepper both sides. Rub it in the meat good.
Turn the stove on high and get your pan good and hot.
Toss that piece of meat in your pan and sear it on both sides. Pull off your meat and set aside for a few moments.
Peel and cut your carrots in half
Wash them taters good and quarter them
Chop your onion
Slice the whole carton of mushrooms
Finely chop the garlic

Put a few swirls EVOO and put in your onion, mushrooms, garlic, carrots and taters.
Set your meat on top and cover with a lid. I use a big ole Dutch oven pot on top of the stove. Cook on low for 5-6 hours. Also salt and pepper the rest of the veggies to taste. When it's done you should be able to cut with a fork. We always liked it with fresh green beans and a big ole bowl of tatersalad.


Saturday, April 24, 2010

Mississippi's "Little Grand Canyon" Red Bluff

Ed and I had the extreme pleasure of riding on our Fatboy Harley this past Saturday. We had a fabulous ride out to the Red Bluff with our friends Cardis and Melissa Sparks. It was Cardis' birthday and we rode out to Red Bluff and it did not disappoint. It was amazing! All the beautiful colors of dirt in one bluff. Purple, red, gold, beige, and yellow. It was also a high elevation for MS. The bluff itself is 400ft elevation and has a view to die for! I have put a link below, so if ya have time take the kids or grand kids and check it out!
http://www.mcdp.info/tourism/red_bluff.html 4

Now there is a reason for telling this story, and food is attached... of course! Melissa called me about 2 weeks ago and said, " Cindy tasted your Sweet Potato Tatersalad and loved it, can I make it for Cardis' birthday party?" "Unless your recipe is a secret or something, then will you just make it and bring it?" Well I laughed and said, "No it's not a secret, I would love for you to serve it at Cardis' birthday." So after a fabulous ride, we went to McNair Springs in Magee, Ms and had hamburger/hotdog fare with 2 kinds of baked beans, which were sooo delish, regular tatersalad also tasty, and my soon to be famous Sweet Potato Tatersalad. A few FYI's for ya about the sweet potato: It has vitamins A, C, calcium, iron and more fiber than a bowl of oatmeal! And it won't spike your blood sugar like white potatoes can. So please give this recipe a try and enjoy! R

http://www.mcdp.info/tourism/red_bluff.html 4

Medium sweet potatoes cubed
1 Red bell pepper diced 1 sm Red onion diced or 1/2 of lg red onion
2 Boiled eggs chopped
6 pieces of chopped bacon cooked( I use Bryans no preservatives, no nitrates)
1 8oz cream cheese (1/3 less fat)- leave out at room temp easier to mix
1 cu of Mayo- We use Hains organic mayo, no preservatives or MSG
2 tbs Fresh Dill or 1 tbs of dried Dill
1/2 tbs of sea salt- better for ya 1/2 tsp of Cayenne pepper or less (but don't be a wuss)
Boil sweet potatoes til tender( about 15 minutes) drain potatoes and pour taters over room temp cream cheese. Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Garnish with a sprig of parsley or red bell pepper ring. Serves 8
Keep refrigerated!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Open-Faced Italian Sammies

These little sammies are easy, tasty, fast and did I mention easy? Clean Eating Magazine has an article this month about preparing two meals at a time. Meal one is for the first night and a second meal using your leftovers for the next night. I found it to be a really great idea this week when I made Italian Meatloaf with Polenta and steamed veggies on Sunday and tonight I made Open-Faced Italian Sandwiches. The recipe in the magazine was actually for a pork tenderloin which I didn't happen to have on hand. I did have some Laura's Lean Beef Ground Chuck, so I improvised and made meatloaf instead.
Last night I served the polenta as a side item to the Italian Meatloaf. The recipe made a lot so I poured the rest into a 9 x 11 pan and stuck it in the fridge.
Tonight I took the polenta out and cut it into 12 pieces and placed it on a greased baking sheet. I made a quick tomato sauce and covered each piece of polenta with a spoonful. I then topped each one with 1/2 a slice of the meatloaf, another spoon of sauce, mozzarella cheese, chopped parsley and fresh grated parmigiana. I put it under the broiler (on Lo Broil). Wow !!!! They came out like a cross between a mini pizza and an open faced sandwich. I am loving this planning ahead for the left-overs meal. Dinner tonight was quick and easy and my husband thought I was a genius. What a great idea. Thanks again Clean Living Magazine, for yet another wonderful idea. I can't wait to try more of these "Two Meals In One".

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Quinoa (pronounced Keen-wah)

All this "Clean Eating" has opened up doors that I never even knew were there. From being on the De-tox a few months ago Roxie & I were introduced to quinoa. Often called a grain it is actually a seed. It's a species of goosefoot (Chenopodium)and has been around over 5000 years. Found growing in the Andes Mountains, quinoa was called "Mother Grain" by the Inca's and was one of the three staple foods of their Civilization. It is a nearly perfect protein, because it contains all of the essential amino acids. It is extremely high in iron, protein and very rich in fiber.
You can use quinoa pretty much interchangeably with rice. Actually I think it tastes better than rice with a nut like flavor that is very mild and goes with everything. I've used it in soups and stews, as a side dish alone with just a few spices or souped up with onions and garlic and as a bed for chicken, fish or beef recipes that normally call for rice. Important to know..........If you buy quinoa from a bulk supplier you better wash it really well because the outside is covered with a very bitter residue. If you don't want to bother with the washing you can buy packaged quinoa that is pre-washed but is also more expensive.
I really love this stuff. I usually keep some cooked up and stored in the fridge to add to recipes during the week. It really has a ton of uses. Give it a try as part of your new healthier Clean Eating regimen. There is a reason the Inca's called it Mother Grain.

General Cooking Instructions
1 cup quinoa
1 1/2 cups vegetable or chicken broth

Rinse quinoa well. Bring liquid to a boil. Add quinoa, stir and cover. Cook over low heat 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes.

The picture above is a wonderful Fiesta Chowder recipe that I've used many times over the years. I've seen three different people take credit for the exact same recipe, but my version has quinoa added. If your interested in getting it let me know and I'll send it to you. Any soup or stew tastes great with the quinoa.
Clean Eating Magazine had a killer Minestrone Soup recipe that I blogged about right after we finished the Detox. They used quinoa in it and cooked it "in" the soup. Check it out on our blog entitled "Clean Eating".

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Kristi's Gluten Free Chocolate Cookies!

It just keeps getting better! Shari's daughter Kristi was the one that found our new "favorite" magazine Clean Eating, and made the most amazing gluten free chocolate cookies! She brought the cookies by work and said, "Here Ms. Roxie, gluten free"! I said, "Are you sure?" Kristi said "Now Ms. Roxie you know I wouldn't do anything to hurt you!" She wasn't in the parking lot good and I had gobbled down 3 of them little boogers! OMG!!!!! Sooooooo good.

Now about hurting one self. I had a small setback this past Saturday. After working in the yard all day I came inside absolutely famished. I remembered I had bought an organic meat patties product in the health food section at Kroger. Maybe cuz I was so hungry or just sheer stupidity, I pulled 2 out, nuked them and ate them. It wasn't 30 minutes later I was paying the cost! I ran to my fridge, pulled out the box and to my horror it had 3 types of gluten!!! OMG!!! I felt just like I had been poisoned! It wasn't until Tuesday that I got back to myself. I was experiencing IBS, my eyes were runny, I was puffy in my face and felt horrible. When I got to work on Monday Shari said, "you don't look well, your eyes are all puffy". Well I told her the tale and she was astounded and felt bad for me, for she too has seen and almost miraculous change in me for the better. So I'm back to my gluten free existence, loving all the new recipes and tastes, and hope ya'll will as well. Healthy Eating!



Did I mention I've lost "15" pounds !!!!!! Easiest 15 pounds I've ever lost in my life. I haven't even started exercising yet (which is next)=0).
So here's this wonderful cookie recipe!

1 cu unsalted almond butter, stirred well
3/4 cu Sucanat(a type of cane sugar)
1 Lg egg
1/2 tsp baking sodalightly browned.
Let cool for 5 minutes.
Remove to a wire rack and let cool for 15 more minutes.
1/4 tsp sea salt
3 oz dark chocolate (70% cocoa or greater), broken into small pieces

One: Preheat oven to 350 degrees In a medium bowl stir together first 5 ingredients until blended. Stir in chocolate

Two: Drop dough by round tablespoonfuls onto parchment-lined baked sheets. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until
Then let the carnage begin!!!!!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Clean Eating

Ever since we did the De-tox, Roxie and I have been obsessed with "Clean Eating". According to Clean Eating Magazine (a super fantastic magazine filled with fabulous recipes & articles), clean eating is defined as the following: (1)Eat 5-6 times a day; 3 meals and 2 to 3 small snacks. Include a lean protein, plenty of fresh fruit and veggies & a complex carb with every meal. This keeps your body fully energized and burning calories efficiently all day. (2)Drink at least 2 liters of water a day (3) Get label savvy. Clean foods contain 1 to 2 ingredients. Any product with a long ingredient list is human-made and not considered clean. (4) Avoid processed and refined foods such as white flour, white sugar, bread and pasta. Stick with complex carbs such as whole grains instead. (5) Know thy enemies. Steer clear of anything high in saturated and trans fats, anything fried or anything high in sugar. (6) Shop with a conscience. Consume humanely raised and local meats. (7)Consume healthy fats (essential fatty acids or EFA's) every day. (8)Learn about portion sizes and work toward eating within them. (9) Reduce your carbon footprint. Eat produce that is seasonal and local. It is less taxing on your wallet and our environment. (10) Drink water with a lemon wedge. A glass of red wine for a special occasion is OK but it should be a rare indulgence. The health advantages of red wine are reversed after more than one glass a day. (11) Slow down and savor. Never rush through any meal. Sit down and enjoy every bite. (12)Take it to go. Pack a cooler for work or outings so you can always eat clean even on the go. (13) Make it a family affair. Food is a social glue that should be shared with loved ones. Improve the quality of your families life as well as your own.
The soul of clean eating is consuming food in its most natural state, or as close to it as possible. It is not a diet; it's a lifestyle approach to food and its preparation, leading to an improved life - one meal at a time.

In addition to the fantastic "Clean Eating" Magazine, there are books, blogs and newsletters galore. I believe that this new (actually old) style of eating is going to be the next food craze......and it is "NOT" a diet. This is very similar to how I ate in my house as a kid and it is definitely like my mom & dad grew up eating. It is getting back to basics. We are now eating food and not all the over processed, preservatives and additives that we had been eating that was making us fat and sick. I watched Jamie Oliver's new program last night and clean eating is what he is talking about as well. If you didn't see his show the first night then you need to catch it the next time it is on. You will be amazed at what they are feeding our kids in school. Actually its not much different from what we've been feeding them through the drive thru's. Yikes !!!!!!!!
Living here in the fattest state in the nation I am more than aware of what our bad eating habits can do. Its time to get back to basics and start taking better care of our bodies or our children will be the first generation to live "less" years than their parents.
Tonight for dinner I made the minestrone soup that was on the front cover of the January/February Clean Eating Magazine (for the 2nd time in 2 weeks). OMIGOSH it is so good. It has fennel, carrots, basil, spinach, quinoa and many other great "fresh" ingredients. It only took 35 minutes to make and with only 137 calories in an 8 oz serving, it is nearly a perfect food. It was low in saturated fat, sodium, carbs and sugar and it tasted wonderful. I have had no desire to return to my old habits of eating over processed convenience foods since I've started this. Clean Eating just looks and tastes sooooooooo much better that I can't imagine eating any other way.

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