Wednesday, September 29, 2010

10 Ways to Eat More Whole Grain

In our home, white bread was never introduced. I think the only time they've ever had it was at other people's homes. I almost always cook with whole wheat pasta so getting my kids to eat whole grains hasn't been an issue at all. However, I learned recently that getting some kids to eat whole grains is mission impossible. The thing is, whole grains are better sources of fiber and other important nutrients, such as selenium, potassium and magnesium. So whenever you can, choose whole grains over refined grains. Here's 10 ways to get your kids (and you) to eat more whole grains.

1. Make checkerboard sandwiches.
2. Popcorn! This is probably the yummiest whole grain out there, but keep an eye on your kids because chocking happens easily with popcorn.
3. Try making half a cup of white rice with half a cup of brown. You family might not notice they're eating whole grains especially if you top it with something yummy like slow cooker beef.
4. Next time you make french toast, use whole wheat bread. Your kids won't notice since french toast is darker (toasted) anyway, plus who wouldn't eat something covered with maple syrup?
5. Always serve pesto on whole grain pasta. Pesto has such a strong garlic flavor that you won't notice the whole grain pasta.
6. Switch to healthier cereal made with whole grains like Cheerios.
7. Add oats when you bake. Try breakfast cookies or black bean brownies.
8. When making meatloaf or meatballs, use whole grain breadcrumbs instead of white.
9. Next time you make chicken wraps, use whole grain.
10. This thanksgiving try adding whole grain bread in the stuffing (recipe coming!)

Friday, September 24, 2010

Salsa Breakfast Burrito

Today my husband, kids, and I went on a little road trip to New York (state) to see some church sites and then do a little shopping. On the way there we went to *gasp* McDonald's and got some breakfast sandwiches! I know, I know, terrible right! Those darn breakfast sandwiches are so bad for you with the processed cheese and English muffin. So for today's recipe, I'm going to teach you how to make a healthier breakfast sandwich, I mean burrito.


1 Egg, plus 1 egg white
1 teaspoon skim milk
2 tablespoons salsa
1-2 tablespoons light cheddar cheese, grated
1 whole wheat tortilla
pinch garlic powder
pinch salt and pepper


-in a bowl whisk together egg, egg white, milk, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and cheese.
- in a non-stick frying pan, on medium heat cook egg mixture. Stir constantly until no longer runny. Remove from heat. It should resemble scrambled eggs... well that's exactly what it is, scrambled eggs.
- in a separate non-stick pan, warm tortilla on med heat for about 30 seconds per side (or longer if you want it slightly crispy)
- spread salsa on tortilla and top with scrabbled eggs
- roll up, cut in half and enjoy!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Happy 50th Mom!

One look at my Mother and you'd never guess that she's 50 years old, a mother of 5, or a grandmother of 4. She looks way younger and has often been mistaken for my sister. My mother has also been very aware of what foods she eats and works out regularly. Even though she thinks she needs to loose weight, there are a lot of women out there that wish they could look as good as she does especially considering she's had 5 (beautiful) kids.

My Mom has taught me so much in my life and has raised me to care about my health. As kids, she never let us eat white bread, canned pasta, processed cheese, or instant mashed potatoes. She encouraged us to take our vitamins, drink plenty of water, eat salad, and to buy organic as often as possible. My Mom is the reason why I chose to go as natural as possible during my pregnancies and delivery of my children (my mother gave birth at home with midwives... drug free! I used a midwife with both my children and Joseph was born at home.) It was her advice and help that I was able to breast feed my babies, even though I so badly wanted to give up at first. She taught me how to make pesto, a weekly favorite at my house!

My Mom has also taught me the value of being a stay at home mom and to cherish every single moment with my family. Her creativity and energy made growing up so much fun, and she now uses those same skills to entertain the grandchildren. I know that she sacrificed a lot to raise my siblings and I, putting us first instead of her own interests. I hope that I can follow in her example.

I love you Mom!! Happy 50th!!

Me Ka Aloha (with love)
- Elisabeth

Mom enjoying life! (last year in Florida)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Recipe Friday - Checkerboard Sandwiches

Sorry for posting this mid-day instead of right at midnight like I usually do. I totally forgot that today is Friday. Here's a super cute recipe that a woman at church showed me. It's a great way to get your kids to eat whole wheat bread, or, if they're like my kids and eat whole wheat all the time, this is just cute and fun.


- 1 slice of whole wheat bread
- 1 slice of white bread
- whatever you want to put in your sandwich, like PB and Jam, Egg Salad, Ham and Cheese, whatever you want!


- Make your sandwich like usual using brown bread on one side and white bread on the other.
- Cut you sandwich into 3 sections across
- The cut into 3 section in the other direction (you should have 9 equal pieces now)
- Now here's where the MAGIC happens... flip every other piece over so that every other side up is whole wheat. Check out the picture below if you don't understand.

Cute eh? Enjoy!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Laughter is the Best Medicine

I thought this was pretty darn funny!! Enjoy!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Recipe Friday - Watermelon Lemonade

Ok so summer is basically over, I know (tear) but this beverage is just so delicious any time of year. Oh sheeesh, I'm a poet and I didn't know it :)

Ingredients (this might have to be adjusted according to preference. Some people like their juice stronger or more watery or whatever)

- Half of a large watermelon cut into cubes, about 6 cups (or whatever, it's going in the blender any way)
- juice of 4 lemons
- 6 cups of water
- 1/2 tablespoon (or more) of liquid stevia or 3/4 cup sugar

Working in batches as necessary, purée watermelon and lemon juice in blender until smooth; transfer to a large container. Add water and stevia; stir until dissolved. Pour over ice in tall glasses, garnish with thin slices of watermelon, if desired, and serve.


Recipe Friday - Salmon Cakes

I used to work at a restaurant that served these amazing crab cakes. Well I found out later that they were not really made with crab (it was that fake stuff) and they lacked in the healthy department (maybe it was the fatty dip they came with).

Later I discovered a way to make salmon cakes that are really really yummy, and much healthier.

Give them a try and tell me what you think.


- 2 large potatoes
- 1/2 onion diced
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
- 1 egg beaten
- 2 cans of flaked salmon (213 g) drained
- splash of olive oil
- lemon wedges
- salt and pepper

Peel and cut potatoes in half crosswise. Cover and cook in saucepan of boiling salted water for 15 to 20 minutes or until tender. Drain.

In large bowl, mash potatoes until smooth; stir in onions, parsley, mustard, salt, lemon zest, salt, pepper and hot pepper sauce. Blend in egg. Fold in salmon. Let cool for 5 minutes.

Using hands, shape into eight 3/4-inch (2 cm) thick patties.

In large nonstick skillet, heat half of the oil over medium heat; cook 4 of the patties for about 5 minutes per side or until golden. Repeat with remaining patties.

Serve with lemon wedges!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Hurray! Oil of Oregano Saved the Day!

As I mentioned earlier, my husband was away for two weeks in Ukraine. I was all by my lonesome with two very young kids. Life was hectic indeed as I attempted to grocery shop, shop for an outfit for a wedding, buy the kids shoes, cook, shower, clean, go to church, paint my daughter's bedroom, make a quilt, clean out our pool, and maintain my sanity all at the same time. Oh and, I had no idea what city my husband was staying in (he was touring the country) and since internet access is limited there, I was constantly checking my email for updates from him (that is until my son disconnected the wireless). Yes life was busy busy busy!!

During that time I woke up with a runny nose. It was one of those kinds where you need to carry a box of tissues around with you at all times. I thought to myself "no this can't happen. I can't get sick. I need to take care of my kids and be healthy when Dave returns." I opened my medicine cabinet and saw a cold and flu medicine. I almost took some when I noticed my bottle of oil of oregano. I remembered reading the pamphlet that came with the bottle and it claimed to fix pretty much every problem. So I decided I'd take a does of oil of oregano and see what happens. If nothing happened, then I'd go straight for the cold and flu meds.

WELL.... even though it tasted like crap, IT WORKED! Within minutes I was feeling 100% better and my cold never came back!! Woohoo!!! Later I heard on the John Tesh radio show that the best way to get rid of a cold is to make tea with oregano. Wow, I never knew it would work so well. I'm so happy that I just had to blog about it!

Me Ka Aloha
- Elisabeth

P.S. This advice should not be taken over that of a doctor or medical professional.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Sorry x 1000

I have to apologize a million times for missing recipe Friday this past week. I have a good excuse I swear! Actually, I have a few good excuses and they're all true.

1. My 1 year old unplugged the wireless router and we therefore had no internet for 3 days. Usually this wouldn't be a problem, but I tried to fix it and made things way worse (clearly I should stick to what I know) I guess I could have gone over to my inlaws to post a recipe, but...
2. Husband had been away for 2 weeks in Ukraine. He used to live there for 2 years and went back with a friend to visit. My life was pretty hectic while he was gone and let's just say that I never want to be a single mom.
3. The night before "recipe Friday" Joseph woke up at midnight crying. He cried until 5 am before finally falling asleep. At 8 am he woke up crying again and my drama queen daughter also woke up fussy and demanding breakfast, juice, potty, and to watch Cinderella.
4. Both my husband and I are sick! What's worse than being sick is being sick with 2 little children, 1 who is cutting 2 molars. We haven't slept much in the past 3 days.

I promise to post 2 recipes this coming week. Don't hate me for forgetting :(

Me Ka Aloha
- Elisabeth
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