Healthy Lady Week!!

My girl Chelsea and I were talking at the pool today about how we both had weeks where we just didn’t take care of our bodies, and we just needed to make some changes. She is a dietician, and I’m, well, you know me. I know what to do to take care of myself. I just let stress get the best of me, and made poor choices. It’s really nice when you have friends that are professionals that work long hours, take care of other people, and know what it’s like to not put yourself first sometimes. We are all human! All it takes is some moral support and an effort to regroup. That’s what meal prep Sundays for Healthy Lady week are for! We both went to the store, gathered up our healthy food, and met outside at our apartment complex’s grill!

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I’ve never had bison, but I read that it’s leaner than regular beef so I was really excited to try it! I put Caribbean Jerk seasoning on the shrimp, and seasoned salt on the cod and chicken. 

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The grills at our complex are so nice!! I can’t believe this is the first time we’ve used them! I have to admit, I am not a grill master. I’m actually not bad at meat, but as you’ll see, I’m not great at veggies. I will take all of the tips I can get at grilling veggies, so please leave a comment if you have some for me!!

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I saved the bison and seafood for last because they don’t need as much time. Healthy Lady Week 5

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I can’t complain about our view from the grill, or the proximity of the grill to my unit!

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Here is the finished product! As you can see, the broccolini and some of the other veggies got a bit torched. I definitely think I am going to make foil pouches next time. Not only will some of them cook faster, but they won’t burn and will cook more thoroughly. Everything else turned out awesome!! The bison was really good! I cooked the shrimp perfectly :-)

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Some of the other healthy things I got for the week that are in my fridge are:

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Last but not least, dinner for the night:

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Thanks so much for stopping by for my Healthy Lady Week meal prep post! Again, leave me any grilling tips you have, and have a great week!

 

Happy Trails,

Stacey

Healthified Italian Wedding Soup

I love the food they serve at work! There is always a healthy option, so I am able to adhere to my meal plan without having to cook for myself all the time. It’s so nice, because as of late, I just don’t find myself having the time to cook like I used to. Don’t get me wrong, they still have Nothing Bundt Cakes and Gigi’s Cupcakes lurking in the cafeteria, so it’s not all innocence in there! For the most part, though, it’s really in line with my healthy lifestyle. Plus, we all have to have a little fun now and again, right!?? #gimmedatbundtcake

Last week at work, they served Italian Wedding Soup. I remember the first time I ever had IWS, I fell in love with it! I can’t remember when or where I was, but I remember thinking “where has this soup been all my life, and why am I just now trying it??” Since then, I have just had it from the grocery out of a can, and occasionally at AJ’s from their soup bar. I’ve always wanted to make it, but it’s just been forever on my mental list of things to “make someday.” For some reason after having it work last week though, I got inspired. I started thinking of ways I could make the meatballs, and how to make them healthier. I realized it really wouldn’t take that many ingredients, and most of them really would be healthy! So I made my list, ran to the store, and decided that I was cooking no matter how much stuff I had to get done. I was making time for it, because I was long overdue. Plus, who doesn’t love having some awesome IWS hanging around the house for a few days for dinner?

My friend Lawna always makes soup and posts her pictures on Facebook or sends them to me. So whenever I make soup I always think of her. She joined me that night for the creation of the “soupsterpiece.” Heeeeeeeeey!

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We were joined by our vertically challenged, curly tailed sous chef/don’t worry if it falls, I’ve got you covered “person”:

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Here are all of the ingredients you will need for your soup:

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One package 93/7 lean ground turkey

One package hot Italian turkey sausage (5 links), meat removed from casing

1/4 freshly grated parmesan cheese (not pictured) 

Salt and pepper

EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)

One yellow onion, chopped

Four carrots, peeled and chopped small

Crushed garlic (or just a couple of minced cloves of fresh garlic)

Fresh Italian parsley, chopped

Fresh rosemary

Le Pastine BIO Italian Macaroni Product “Stelline” *see description and alternatives below*

1lb bag of frozen chopped spinach

2 boxes + one can of chicken broth

This recipe may look complex, but it’s really not at all. The most tedious part is rolling the meatballs, which is still easy. To make those, all you do is remove the hot turkey sausage links from their casing by squeezing the meat out. Combine that meat with the regular ground turkey and parmesan cheese, a couple of teaspoons of chopped Italian parsley, salt and pepper, then using your hands, mix together until uniform. Then roll into small balls and line up onto a cookie sheet until they’re all done. The easiest way to keep them from sticking to your hands while doing this is to keep your hands wet with a little bit of water the whole time. 

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Then, once you’re done with all of your meatballs (yes, there will be A LOT of them!) start a large skillet on medium and cook them through until done. While the meatballs are cooking, you can start the soup.

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After chopping the onion, carrots and parsley (you will need about 1/2 – 3/4 cup), add a couple of swirls of EVOO to the bottom of a large soup pot and let it warm up on medium to high heat. Drop the heat back to medium and add the onions, carrots, garlic and a sprig of rosemary.

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Let those cook for about ten to fifteen minutes until the carrots are starting to cook through. At that point, add the broth, and bring the heat up to high. Once the broth is hot, add the meatballs, parsley,  and half the bag of spinach. Let the soup come back up to a boil again (the spinach is cold, and will bring the temperature down when you add it.) Remove the sprig of rosemary. It’s ok if some of the leaves have fallen off. 

I found those cute little noodles at AJ’s, which is a gourmet grocery store across the street from where I live. They contain 35% spinach and zucchini puree in them, so I figured the more veggies in my diet the merrier! By all means, this recipe just needs a small noodle, such as an orzo or something comparable. Whatever you can find will work. Go ahead and add the noodles (I used half of the box) at this point. Mine called for 12 minutes of cooking time, so I left the stove on for 10 minutes and then turned it off. They turned out perfect! I added some salt and pepper to taste, and that was it! Soup was done! 

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I hope you enjoyed this one! I am so glad I got to share it with some of my colleagues at work! Let me know if you end up making it yourself, and how it turns out! The beauty of these recipes if you can do whatever you want with them! Change any ingredients to things you like! I hope you guys have an awesome day!

Happy Trails!

Stacey

Inception at Sea 2016 Part 1

I am flying back to Phoenix right now, and I am still so pumped from the weekend I just had! It has to be one of the most fun trips I have ever taken in my life! I will have a really hard time going on a regular cruise again after this. 

Inception at Sea is basically a 72-hour music festival on a boat to an island in the Bahamas. We sailed to Great Stirrup Cay (Norwegian’s private island) to spend two days in the sun listening to some awesome artists. Some of the ones this trip were The Chainsmokers, Cash Cash, Tyga, Brody Jenner, Bassjackers, Lil Dicky, and Helena Legend. Chainsmokers were probably my favorite. They performed last on the island Saturday. The boat was off the chain the entire time. Never a dull moment! I am ready to go on my first Groove Cruise now! We are all talking about going on the one leaving from San Diego and going to Cabo in October. If anyone wants to come with, let me know!!

There were themes every day and night for the parties, including Team Spirit, Superheroes, Pajamas, and Nautical. Want some good people watching? Look no further :-).

Here are some pictures:

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Mindy, Erica and I on our way to the ship

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My roomie Kristen and I

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I have traveled and also gone out injured before, so I totally empathize with this guy! What a rockstar!

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Randoms 

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Sunset leaving Miami on Friday

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Theater performances night one

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Kristen, Mindy and Erica

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On our way to Great Stirrup Cay Saturday

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Norwegian Sky

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Fear the Fork!

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Bacon!!

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We could’ve been long-lost sisters….

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Beautiful view of the island from the tinder boat

 

I am going to put the rest of the pictures in a separate post since there are so many. I hope you guys enjoyed! Have an awesome week, and I’ll be back soon :-).

 

Happy Trails,

Stacey