Thursday, March 21, 2013

Healthy Choices for Busy Families

Some days I feel like SUPER mom

kids are up on time
hot breakfast waiting for them
house gets cleaned
dinner is in the crock pot
work is completed
everyone gets where they need to be after school
and we meet up at the end of the day to a great meal.

and then there are MOST days

House is messy
laundry is piling up
kids are headed in 10 different directions which means I get to spend my entire afternoon in the car
hubby left his keys somewhere his car is not
so off to work to pick him up.

It's 6:00
there is NO dinner waiting at home
and we are stuck in traffic.

This is when
Healthy Choice comes in REAL handy.
{and it's even more budget friendly with the coupon}

Honestly, we don't eat many frozen meals at all,
but for nights like these, it is SO convenient.

The kids each get a meal of their choice
{no whining at all}
with a huge selection of Healthy Choice Top Chef  Cafe Steamers,
there truly is something for everyone.

I was hoping to try the crustelss pot pie, but they were gone.
I chose Chicken Marsala instead, and it was delicious.
Stella decided to try the ravioli,

and before I even blinked, they had disappeared.

Charlie LOVED his BBQ steak SO much, he wanted one for his lunch:)

We even brought home  Healthy Choice Greek frozen yogurt for dessert.

Sure, stopping for fast food is "fast" as well,
but not really the healthiest of choices.

While the kids helped to
the meals
I had time to prepare a strawberry salad.
{pretty much how I make sure the kids are getting their veggies}

In a matter of minutes we were sitting down to dinner
and dessert
and everyone was happy.

{you can see my Google + story here}

You're never too busy to make #healthychoices!

““I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias®  and ConAgra Foods #cbias #SocialFabric”

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Celebrating Pi Day

I know that I have mentioned more than once how much I enjoy pie.

I have also mentioned that I love pie so much I have been known to eat pie for breakfast.

 The problem is...
 I stink at pie making.

No matter how hard I try,
I cannot seem to get my crust to look right.

 They always taste great,
but looks...
 not so much

So, when my son
LOVINGLY volunteered
to be the pie making mom
for Pi day at school,
I was more than a bit worried.

MIDDLE school kids can be a tough crowd!
and I did not want to disappoint Charlie
with strange looking pies.

I knew what I had to do.

I marched straight to the frozen food section of my local market,
and bought every variety they had of
Marie Callender's pies.

Apple Pie
Cherry Berry Pie
Chocolate Satin
{my kids favorite}
Key Lime

and I love the mini size for the kids at school

I even bought a pot pie for me
{as a kid, these were one of my favorite meals}

It was delicious,
just how I remembered

and just like a blogger
Marie Callender's
LOVES to hear what you think
{you can write a review here}

They even have a blog {here}
of great craft and party ideas
{they have a very creative idea for all of those pie pans}

With spring break coming up
I know I am going to need plenty of crafts to keep the kiddos busy:)

With Marie Callender's Pies
it's a win win.

Charlie get's pie
that actually looks like pie
 for Pi day

and I saved myself a LOT of time and aggravation.

Some day I'll get the hang of pie making,
but for now
I'm thrilled that there's
Marie Callender's.

Still need pie for pie day?
click here for a coupon

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective, and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Monday, March 4, 2013

You're never too busy for a great Breakfast

I know SO many people
many even with kids
that don't make time for breakfast in the mornings.

Before having kids, I was actually one of them,
even though I could hear my mother...

"Heather, you know breakfast is the most important meal of the day."

Now, I couldn't imagine skipping.
I LOVE breakfast,
and Stella would starve if it wasn't for breakfast.

She may be fussy when it comes to lunch and dinner,
but NOT with breakfast.

She  eats it all,
{well maybe not eggs}
but pretty much anything else.

Even now that our schedule has gotten
with two different school drop offs,
and school starting at the same time for each,
we still make time for breakfast


and  Safeway is making it even easier to get a great start to your day
with Rise and Shine with Savings

I have been a Safeway shopper since first moving to California 17 years ago,
and they always have had a great selection of breakfast items
at what I feel are great everyday values.

Now, when you buy 4 of selected items,
{just look for the yellow tags}
you save $4.

It's that easy.

This is how I stocked up on cereal, juice, Silk,
of course coffee,
and all the fixings for a weeks worth of great, quick and easy breakfasts.

I saved $4,
and even better than that,
I don't even have to think twice about what to fix for breakfast all week long.

So you see,
you can eat well,
save money,
and still get out the door on time.

“I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias®  and Safeway #cbias #SocialFabric”

Sunday, March 3, 2013

lazy Saturdays and my PEOPLE Magazine Oscars Double Issue

If you read the blog lately
or follow me on
Instagram  or

you already know that I have had

On Thursday, Charlie was hurt at school,
and we got to spend the
day at the ER waiting for stitches.

All is well now,
but my nerves were frazzled,
so on Friday I treated myself to a shopping trip to Target and the
PEOPLE Magazine Oscars Double Issue.

Adele made the cover...
I LOVE that!

And the always stunning Jennifer Aniston;
did you see her in red?

Unfortunately, I did not get the read my magazine on Friday,
as I had agreed to carpool to a party for the 6th grade class,
and my daughter had a friend sleeping over, which meant baking, crafts, mail polish, and a LOT of noise.

My daughter read the magazine.
My husband read my magazine.
Even my son paged through it.
I would have to wait until a quiet moment.

Saturday morning,
I crept into the kitchen,
made my coffee,
grabbed my PEOPLE,
and slid out the back door onto the deck.

The sun was shining,
the chickens were talking,
and of course my dogs hopped into my lap.

What a great way to start my day.

Of course, I LOVED every page of Oscar coverage.
I thought the gowns this year were outstanding.

my two favorites in this issue

Jen {as in Aniston} and Justin's wedding  talk
{hello HUGE Friend's fan here}

The Beatles at Home

the images in this piece are incredible,
and as a lifelong Beatles fan,
{my daughters name is Stella for this reason}
I LOVED getting a glimpse at their private lives.

This issue has something for everyone.

Don't miss it,
as it will only be available until March 18, 2013.

Who cares that I made my kids wait over an hour for breakfast today:)

Mom's need a time-out every now and then.

Don't forget to Test your PEOPLE Trivia skills for a chance to win
one of hundreds of rewards cards each week.

This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group™ and PEOPLE Magazine  but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #PEOPLEforOscars

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Hooray for Hollywood and a Giveaway

The Oscars are this Sunday;
will you be watching?

I know I will be;
in fact,
I'm not sure I've ever missed one
{well, as far back as I can remember}

We've got our own little party planned,
which I am SO excited about.

While the party will be all about the food
of course,
the Oscars are all about Star Style

and maybe a bit about the  movies:)

Currently, I'm in the midst of a hair crisis.
long or short
I just cannot seem to decide.

I cut it,
hate it,
grow it out,
still hate it


and while I KNOW I don't look like a celebrity,
I LOVE tracking their hairstyles.

PEOPLE Magazine is one of my favorites for hair inspiration.
Not only do we get to see the celebs  Out on the Town looking glamorous,
but PEOPLE does a great job showing them  au natural.
{those are always my favorites seeing as how I don't usually do carpool in a gown}

I know that by hosting an Oscar party,
even though it's going to be SO fun

I've got games,

and of course the bubbly,

and movie themed food,

I'll miss some of the evenings fashions.

PEOPLE Magazine has got my back.

They have a special double issue devoted to the Oscars

PEOPLE Magazine's 2013 Oscars Double Issue hits stands on March 1,
but don't wait to get it.  It's only available until March 18, 2013.

That way I can scour the pages for ALL the gossip, gowns, and of course the hair.
{I'm hoping this is the year I like my hair}

PEOPLE Magazine has also got something just for you ~
test your PEOPLE trivia skills for a chance to win one of hundreds of rewards cards
click here to play

I also have a giveaway for you
see how nice I am:)
one lucky reader will win a $20 Target gift card
{so you can get your own PEOPLE Magazine}

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Now on with the show!

This shop is part of a social shopper marketing campaign with Pollinate Media Group and PEOPLE Magazine, but all opinions are my own. #pmedia #PEOPLEforOscars

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Crispy Parmesan Chicken

Think you can't eat well on a budget,
think again.

Chicken leg quarters make it easy,
and if you have a family of
leg lovers
like I do,
everyone is happy:)

The crispy coating make you feel like you are eating
fried chicken
{one of my childhood faves}
without the guilt, but still with all of that great flavor
and crunch.

Crispy Parmesan Chicken:
First Street Chicken Leg Quarters
2 cups of plain yogurt
juice of 1 lemon
2 garlic cloves {minced}
chopped parsley {to taste}
1 1/2 cups of Panko breadcrumbs
1/4 grated Parmesan cheese
salt/pepper to taste

Rinse and pat dry the chicken quarters

Combine the yogurt, garlic, lemon juice, and parsley
mix together

In a separate bowl combine the Panko, the Parmesan, and salt and pepper

One piece at a time, coat the chicken in the yogurt,

and then dredge in the crumbs

Place each piece in a buttered baking dish
Cover lightly with foil
Bake @350 for 1 hour
remove the foil and continue baking until the tops get nice and golden
{about another 20 minutes}

I served this with roasted potato wedges and a green salad.

Everything was purchased at Smart and Final.  The First Street Chicken Leg Quarters will be on sale for $.89/pound beginning February 20th.

““I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and Smart & Final  #CBias #SocialFabric” “all opinions are my own”


Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Fish Enchilada Casserole for taco Tuesday #FishnVeggies

The first big trip we took with the kids
{besides Disney World with the WHOLE family}
was to San Diego.

I had only been there once before,
and it was by far,
one of the BEST vacations we've had.

The weather is perfect
the zoo is amazing
the beaches are gorgeous

oh, and then there are the fish tacos

They were SO good, that I ate fish tacos
for a week

I LOVE fish tacos, and even though we have taco Tuesday every week
{seriously my kids don't EVER let me skip one}
I never make them.

It could be that they take a little bit or prep work

you need to bake or grill the fish
prep the veggies
make the sauce
not to mention all the toppings

Not exactly a quick dinner for a  Tuesday,
but an enchilada casserole can be made ahead,
and with  Van de Kamps whole fish fillets and  Birds Eye veggies
it's a snap to put together

the perfect meal for a busy night.

Fish Enchilada Casserole
1 package {10 count} corn tortillas
8 van de kamps crispy fish fillets
1 cup of  Birds Eye frozen corn
1 cup of  Birds Eye frozen bell pepper strips
1 jalapeno sliced {optional}
1 cup of shredded cheese
{I used queso fresco - but cheddar would be great also}
2 cans of enchilada sauce
{I used one medium and one hot}
1/2 cup of sour cream
1/2 cup of  mayonnaise

preheat the oven to 350

spread the medium {if using} sauce in the bottom of a 13 x 9 casserole dish
top with 4 of the tortillas {they will overlap}
cover the tortillas with the 8 fish fillets
top with the corn, peppers, and the jalapeno{if using}
sprinkle on the cheese
top with the remaining 6 tortillas

combine the other can of enchilada sauce with the sour cream and mayonnaise
spread this over the tortillas

bake for 45 - 55 minutes
garnish with fresh cilantro and more cheese

of course we served this with all of our favorite Taco Tuesday fixings


““I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias®  and Pinnacle Foods Group #cbias #SocialFabric #FishnVeggies ”