10 No Sweat Slow Cooker Recipes

5
Mar
2015

10 Easy Slow Cooker

My life has been ramped up for the past few months, very busy with a lot going on.  We will be starting baseball with my youngest soon, and my 18 year old is coaching his very own team this year, so it will be a fun baseball season at our house!

It seems that my Slow Cooker has been a life saver with everything being so busy.  I just don’t have the time to spend preparing complicated meals and finding extravagant ingredients. 

I found a few easy, no-sweat meals that you can prepare in your slow cooker and which are fairly healthy.  I try to stay away from those recipes that call for canned cream soups, although I have  recipe for my own homemade version in my Got Dinner recipe book which has been a life saver for those tummy casserole recipes which call for it!Slow-cooker

If you are serious about using your Slow Cooker more in your kitchen, I think it really helps to have one of good quality.  For years I used a cheap one, and yes, it did the trick, but I cannot say enough now about having one that is larger, has a thermometer and I can set the timer for it to start and go off!  This is my favorite Slow Cooker.

I purchased it off of amazon about 4 years ago, I love the larger size, I really find the big handles on the side helpful in moving it around when it is fully loaded and I really love that it is not White on the outside!

So on to the recipes I have found and we’ve been enjoying.  Some have been on our table already and some are yet to come – hope they can provide some fresh inspiration. 

 Crock-Pot-Chicken-Marsala

CROCK POT CHICKEN MARSALA

Crockpot-Chicken-Cacciatore1 CROCKPOT CHICKEN CACCIATORE

Bowl of homemade mushroom and barley soup.

SLOW COOKER MUSHROOM BARLEY SOUP

crock-pot-breakfast

CROCKPOT BREAKFAST CASSEROLE 

Slow-Cooker-Chicken-Wild-Rice-Soup-final

SLOW COOKER CHICKEN WILD RICE SOUP

Pork-Carnitas-2

PORK CARNITAS (MEXICAN SLOW COOKER PULLED PORK)

slow-cooker-sloppy-joes

SLOW COOKER SLOPPY JOES

Crock-Pot-Split-Pea-Soup

SLOW COOKER SPLIT PEA SOUP

Slow Cooker Sesame Chicken

SWEET SLOW COOKER SESAME CHICKEN

Crockpot-Chicken-Fajitas

 EASY CROCKPOT CHICKEN FAJITAS

Getting Your Focus Back

5
Feb
2015

Keep-focus big

There are days when I feel like my brain in mush.   Mama wakes up and even after a couple cups of my favorite coffee, it is still struggle to get things into focus.  I need to get my MOJO going!

Brain fog is a condition that many of us moms experience, even without having extra issues, like emotional struggles, autoimmune disease or just plain exhaustion.  But I am here to share a few of my favorite weapons that help keep my brain engaged and in gear when my brain feels sluggish and unfocused.

It is amazing what a few drops of an essential oil can do to help clarity, focus and concentration without any side effects that could be harmful. I just love that!  I am also so happy that I decided to choose Young Living as the only essential oils I use in my home as they have the largest oil selection – more than any other essential oil company.

Curious to here about some of my favorites for keeping focus?  Here are a few in my secret stash:  

Motivation™ helps you overcome procrastination and take action

I need this by the gallon!  But really, this awesome blend of Roman Chamomile, Spruce, Ylang Ylang and Lavender is one that will get you going!  I love diffusing this one at my desk or in the kitchen, especially while unsuspecting kids are working on homework or college applications!  :-)

Brain Power™ clarifies thought and focus

It does just what it says.  Serious as a heart attack!   The blend of Sandalwood, Cedarwood, Melissa, Frankincense, Blue Cypress, Lavender, and Helichrysum gives your brain a boost with essential oils that are high in sesquiterpenes.  This one is excellent applied topically at the base of the neck.

Clarity™ promotes a clear mind and alertness

Clarity contains stimulating oils including peppermint and rosemary, which have been used for many years to promote mental sharpness. A study performed by Dr. William N. Dember of the University of Cincinnati found that inhaling peppermint oil increased the mental accuracy of students by 28 percent.  This is such an incredible blend of Basil,  Cardamom, Rosemary, peppermint, Coriander, Geranium, Bergamot, Lemon, Ylang Ylang, Jasmine, Roman Chamomile and Palmarosa.   I enjoy this one in the diffuser and also topically on the vita-flex points on the ears (not in the ear, ON the ear!)  Here are two different charts you can refer to on Pinterest:  Emotional Ear Chart and the Vita-Flex Ear Chart.

Rosemary improves mental clarity and concentration

I love that this oil is so beneficial for so many things – it’s relaxing but yet invigorating, can be used in cooking and does help with clarity and concentration.  It is one of my favorites to use in an Epsom Salt Bath in the evening, as it is great for muscle relaxation as well.

Grounding™ supports clarity and balance

I use this blend on me as well as my five year old.  We all have some emotional chaos that needs tamed, I am sure you know exactly what I mean – this blend can lead to better decision making and cope with issues at hand.  Powerful blend of  White fir, Spruce, Ylang Ylang, Pine, Cedarwood, Angelica and Juniper.

These can all be applied topically and used in the diffuser – easy peasy.  If you are looking for some  help to get back on track, you’ll want to check them out.  If you are not a member of our oily community yet, you can CLICK here to find out more on how you can become a Young Living Member and feel empowered caring for your family!   

Join us Tuesday evening for a fun LIVE Facebook event learning about essential oils – easy from your own home!  CLICK HERE TO JOIN!

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*These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. I am just a mom sharing my experience in order to help others, not a doctor.

Fun Valentine’s Day Gifts for the Family

2
Feb
2015

 Fun Valentines gifts

Yummy Treat!

Spend an afternoon making a fun treat to keep or to give away.  Every now and again I indulge on things I don’t normally and this would fall into that category!  But look at it…. so yum!!

val-yum

Find the recipe HERE:  Valentine Confetti Candy mix

Because I Love You:  66 Blank Love Coupons

This is perfect for splitting and sharing with the whole family.  You can use some for your hubby, your kids, a friend – they are great!  You can customize each coupon, which I have found to be the best, as most coupon books you purchase already have ideas on the coupon, and some are just not my style.  

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You can for example give one day of no arguments, a romantic walk, one night of stargazing, a breakfast in bed, a free wish, one big bear hug, a massage, a weekend getaway, a kiss, a day to yourself to do whatever you want, a soothing foot massage, get out of one household chore, or a coffee date.  Use your imagination.  Of course, you could easily make a homemade version, but again, I am not a big DIY person!!

FIND IT HERE on AMAZON

The many reasons why I love you LOVE NOTE {Free Printable}

So adorable and perfect for spouses and kiddos!!  Print this out, take some time to fill it in and surprise them with it sitting at the breakfast table.  Wouldn’t it be fun to have everyone read it outloud and share what is so great about them and why they’re loved?

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Find it HERE to DOWNLOAD

Mr. & Mrs. – Love Notes & Mugs Gift Set

I have had these mugs for years and love them.  Now I see that you can get the mug set with sweet notes too – this will cover the entire family!   I especially love the scripture on the mugs:  I found the one my heart loves.  Song of Solomon 3:4 NIV   You can grab it this week for 30% off  – Just use code MRANDMRS at checkout.   Hurry – Sale ends Feb 5.

Mr-Mrs

CLICK HERE and type in Mr and Mrs in the search bar – you might even find some other goodies to get from Dayspring – I love to stock up on their bulk greeting cards! 

For other Frugal Valentines Ideas, you can check out this blog post!

5 Tips for Overcoming a Lack of Motivation

26
Jan
2015

Overcoming-Lack-MotivationIt happens to us all.  One day we’re motivated and have a great attitude and the next day we’re in a not so good place, finding it hard to even make it through the day.  Being a mom has it’s challenges and when you add in trying to work from home or take on a challenging project it can be overwhelming.  I can easily become paralyzed with my lack of motivation and feel like giving up.

Over the years I have struggled with emotional imbalance and finally I have some freedom in this area – but I do still have days which overwhelm me.  So what to I do on those days?  I want to share with you five little secrets.

Finding Grace with Yourself

This is by far the biggest ‘secret’ tip I have to offer and one we ALL find the most difficult giving to ourselves.  My bible study is just beginning the book, “One Way Love,”  by Tullian Tchividjian and I am so excited to read it because it is all about real life and how most of us carry burden rather than allow grace to fill us.

On those days were I find myself weak, overwhelmed and a with maybe too many expectations…. I sit back and try to give myself grace.  This has taken me quite a while to begin to make part of my ritual in my process of daily living, but it make a huge difference.

Take Action Daily

For me, lacking motivation is not really an issue with a big project, so that is not really what I am addressing here, but more along the lines of being overwhelmed and paralyzed.  So something that I do is to do SOMETHING!  Even when I feel like one thing is a big step, I will find one small thing to do which can often times propel me forward.  That is how the Confident Mom Weekly Household Planner actually came into existence….. because of the dread and feeling of not knowing where to start.  Even if I only can cross off two things on my daily list, it is more than I otherwise would have, so I can know I took some action.

Lift Your Spirit

There are many things you can do when your spirit needs a boost – pray, read scripture, find motivational quotes, phone a friend or go for a walk.  I have also added into my list of ideas – diffusing  essential oils.  I love Orange, Lemon, Joy and a few others for positively influencing my mood and my mind, (there is actually an oil blend called Motivation too!)   This has become a life-line for me!  

This is just not “feel-good” stuff either, it is science;  aroma inhaled causes the olfactory bulb to send messages to the limbic part of the brain, which activates memories and emotions.  It takes only 22 seconds for an inhaled oil to reach the brain – it is crazy fast!  The limbic system supports a variety of functions including adrenaline flow, emotions, behavior, motivation, and long-term memory.  (source) Our emotional life is largely housed in the limbic system, and it has a great deal to do with the formation of memories.  The only way to get to the limbic system is through smell.

Celebrate Success

Whatever you are struggling with – find ways to be encouraged in the small victories.  Some days we can perhaps only find success in getting a shower under our belt or maybe a quick run to the grocery store.  Finding and celebrating small steps is good – progress however small, is still progress.  We can easily keep the negative undertone or we can shift our thought process to find celebration – sometimes just that small shift can make a big difference.

Make a List

Do you ever find you mind so full of ideas and things to remember that it almost bursts?  Find a way to get those ideas, tasks, things you need to remember OUT of your brain.  I have a system of lists on my smart phone now which all sync with my computer and iPad.  I am still learning the process of getting it out of my head and into a list when I think of it, but it has helped tremendously to not feel bogged down and unmotivated.

Find a system that works for you – it may be just a spiral notebook you keep in your purse and on your counter, depending where you are, but this will hep ease your mind and keep ideas from clogging your thinking.

What tips do you have that might encourage another mom?

The Ultimate DIY Bundle 2015 – Get Your Creative On!

21
Jan
2015

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There aren’t enough hours in the day, right? With work, helping the kids with their homework, preparing meals, cleaning up after everyone and putting yet another load of laundry on, there’s very little time for sleep – let alone DIY and crafting!  You all know I am not a huge DIY person, but I use to be.  I feel like I’ve lost a bit of my creative side, although I venture into using it differently on this blog.  :-)

I am in the middle of updating our family room and kitchen, it’s been a long process, but I wish I could add a little of my own flare – but how?   I need inspiration and just wish for a few hours to do something about it?

Or do you browse through those wonderful crafting successes on Pinterest and think to yourself that “one day” you’ll have a few more minutes to yourself so that you too can create something incredible?

You’re not alone – there’s a huge community of people out there who are feeling just as frustrated as you are!

Thankfully though, there’s an exciting new product to help you quickly and easily get into (or back into) the creative projects you’ve been desperate to start. It’s called The Ultimate DIY Bundle, and it’s a collection of carefully curated DIY and crafting eBooks and eCourses from the world’s leading authors and bloggers in the industry.

For the crazy low price of just $34.95, you get access to a carefully curated library of over 75 eBooks and eCourses. And let me reassure you that this really is great value: the Ultimate Bundles team (who produced the resource) has spent MONTHS seeking out the most respected experts in the industry and asking them to contribute their premium-quality eBooks and eCourses. These really are the best of the best when it comes to DIY and crafting advice and information.

Topics in the bundle include:

  • Home decor
  • Furniture painting
  • Photography
  • Chalk pastels
  • Handmade gifts
  • Homemade skincare products
  • Cake decorating
  • Photography and photo-editing
  • Paint colors and interior design
  • …and a whole lot more (76 eBooks and eCourses in total) – to help you be inspired or get started with your next DIY or crafting project!

There’s no need to worry about information overload though: The Ultimate DIY Bundle comes with a complete guide to getting started, so that you can know exactly which resource to use for your specific crafting or DIY project and jump straight into it with confidence!

 

Hurry though! The Ultimate DIY Bundle will only be on sale for 6 days – from 8am EST on Wednesday, January 21 until 11.59pm EST on Monday, January 26.

You can buy with complete confidence because you’re covered by the Ultimate Bundles 30-day money-back guarantee. That means you have a full 30 days to enjoy all the eBooks and eCourses in the bundle, and if you don’t think they provided enough value, you’ll get a full refund.

Not only that, but The Ultimate DIY Bundle comes with 4 awesome bonuses, worth over $118. That’s 3x the price of the bundle alone! These include…

A free $15 Store Credit PLUS 8×10 Art Print from Hope Ink ($43 Value), a free online class from Craftsy (up to $60 Value), free $15 store credit to Fawnsberg.com, and a free sewing pattern PLUS a Premium Video Class from UpCraft Club ($19.99 Value).

So, don’t miss your chance to grab The Ultimate DIY Bundle, and get 75 incredible eBooks and eCourses for just $34.95. All you need to do is take action by midnight on Monday, January 26!

This amazing deal ends in just…

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Pick up your copy right now, before it’s too late. Or, learn more here.

 

Disclosure: I have included affiliate links in this post. Read the fine print about this bundle and read the answers to frequently asked questions about the bundle.