Happy first week of March! Spring is right around the corner and I can’t wait. It was a high of -12 this past Saturday here in Montana. Yes, you read that correctly. The HIGH was a negative temperature. Yikes! Warmer weather may seem far away still but it’ll be here before we know it. I love when the seasons change and with the seasonal change comes some eating changes. The lighter fresher air makes me what to eat lighter fresher foods. One of my favorite snack foods is my sweet chili snap peas recipe. It’s easy to whip up, it tastes delicious, and it’s a guilt free snack.Read More
Valentine’s day is less than 2 weeks away. I’m still not sure how we got to February so quickly but here we are. Every year on Valentine’s Day my husband prepares a delicious dinner for me and this year will be no different. My favorite Valentine’s Day dinners usually always consist of pasta and cheese. Who the first person was to prepare pasta and cheese together deserves a Nobel Peace Prize. Okay, well maybe not a peace prize, but they deserve something! Pasta and cheese are two of my food weaknesses and they’re two stars of this Bacon Kale and mushroom pasta.Read More
It is so important to recycle. One of my personal goals this year is to recycle. Yes, this may seem like a minor goal, but it’s an important one. It’s also a more than attainable goal because recycle centers are not hard to find. Obviously, this will take a little more effort of consciousness on my part, but it’s an effort which helps our planet and will teach my children to do the same. When we moved into our house on base we never received a cycle bin. They had apparently ran out of recycle bins for any new residents moving in. Long story short, recycle bins are an easy way to keep recycling items organized. I thought to myself “why not make your own recycle bins?”
I wish I could say there was a lot of thought that went into this project but I was honestly going for easy and simple. Easy because the bins need to be functional for easy transportation to and from the recycle center. Simple because the bins need to not be an eye sore in my dining room/kitchen area. Oh, and I forgot to mention I wanted something frugal which means I naturally thought of the clear storage bins at Wal-Mart. They cost less than $5 each and can be reused for storage purposes when we move. (Being a military family means you’re always thinking about the future a.k.a. moving)
First, I looked up what categories recycling centers separate their items by. This helped me figure out how many containers I needed to buy and how they would fit into my kitchen area. My recycle bins are for: glass, metal, paper, and plastic. My glass recycle bin container is the smallest because we don’t use many glass products to recycle. To create my recycle bins I bought my 4 containers, a large black poster board paper, and a pack of metallic sharpie markers. I already had both tape and a hot glue gun at home to paste the designs on the containers. I took my items home and got to work! To create your own recycle bins you will need:
– Four 58 quart containers
– One 22×28 poster board
– tape and/or glue gun
– 2-3 marker colors
Once you have you necessary items for your project you will:
1) Measure and cut your poster board paper into what ever design or shape you want displayed on the front of your bins.
2) Write your recycle bin category on each of the poster board cut outs using your bold marker colors. (Try using marker colors that will stand out on whatever color poster board you are using)
3) Using your hot glue gun and/or tape, individually attach your poster board cut out label to the front of each of your containers.
4) Place your containers in whatever section of your home you want them and you’re finished!
If you would like to take the project up a notch: line your containers with a plastic or paper that can be recycled as well for easy clean up. You can also decorate the containers themselves with additional colors and designs if they are too plain for your personal liking.
I told you guys this is an easy project! Not only is it easy to do, but we get to help play an important role in saving the planet too. Sounds like a win-win situation to me. If you make your own DIY recycle bins please drop a picture in the comment section below!
Winter time means comfy warm foods. This means a lot of crock pot recipes, oven baked recipes, and soups/stews. One of my favorite year round foods is potatoes. Idaho potatoes, red potatoes, Yukon potatoes, etc. they’re all my favorite. My usual go to comfort potato food is the universally loved mashed potatoes. Mashed potatoes are not only delicious, they are extremely easy to make. However, as much as I love mashed potatoes, I need to switch it up every once in a while. I’ve always loved roasted potatoes, but I’ve recently discovered how much my toddler loves them too. My husband loves potatoes as much as I do so I wasn’t worried about him loving this recipe too. Ha!
Despite the fact that this recipe is absolutely delicious, it’s an extremely easy and quick side dish for multiple recipes. Whether you’re making baked chicken, searing some salmon, or going strictly veggie, this side dish fits perfectly. Did I mention this dish is cost friendly too? A 5 lbs bag of red potatoes will last for a few different meals, and if you love an assortment of seasonings like myself, then you don’t have to buy any other ingredients for this dish. Who doesn’t love having all of the necessary ingredients for a recipe in the kitchen already?
Before getting started, remember for recipes such as this, you can be as generous with your seasonings (except for the salt) as you would like. You can also add any of your additional favorite seasonings you think will add more flavor to your potatoes. There really is no wrong answer when it comes to seasoning your potatoes. Let’s go ahead and get started!
Easy Roasted Red Potatoes
- 1 lbs Red Potatoes
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 tsp Grapeseed Oil for coating the pan
- 1 tsp Sea Salt or seasoned salt (Lawry's)
- 1 tsp Black Pepper
- 1 tsp Garlic Powder
- 1 tsp Onion Powder
- 1 tsp Paprika
- 1 tsp Dried Parsley or 2 tsp fresh parsley
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Wash your red potatoes well and cut into 2 inch pieces. Pat the potato pieces dry.
Using a medium sized bowl with a lid (or a gallon ziploc bag), put your diced red potatoes into the container, drizzle your olive oil in, cover and shake to coat the potatoes in the oil.
Add your sea salt, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and paprika to the container, cover and shake again until the potato pieces are evenly coated in the seasonings.
Take your teaspoon of grapeseed oil to lightly coat a 9x9 baking dish. (We use grapeseed oil because it cooks better in high heat)
Pour your seasoned potatoes into the greased baking dish and place in the oven (uncovered) for 30 minutes or until tender.
Once your potatoes have baked to your desired crisp or softness, garnish with your parsley and serve!
Today we celebrate what would have been Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s 89th birthday. This is one of the few times the actual day of his birthday, and the day observed for his birthday share the same day. I could type a mini book about the accomplishments of Dr. King, but instead I will share the title of a book written by Dr. King in 1967 that has become one of my favorite writings, from him, to date. I will also share a few of my favorite pictures from the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. monument in Washington D.C.
This is my favorite book to date written by Dr. King. I asked one of my friends for a book that shows us a more radicalized Dr. King, and this was his suggestion. (Thanks, Mo!) Although I’ve had the book for months, I thought January would be the perfect month to read this book, because of his birthday and to start the year off strong.
This is one of those books that somehow allows you to respect Dr. King’s fight and message even more. The hardest part to digest while reading this book is how applicable his words still are today. We have come a long way and have equally as much ground to cover before seeing true equality in this country. My absolute favorite aspect of this book is getting a non third grade history book white washing of Dr. King and his legacy. So many people who quote Dr. King don’t even realize they stand for and support the complete opposite of everything he fought for. Dr. King was definitely a non-violent man, but every bone in his body was controversial.
We traveled to Washington D.C. in October 2016. Naturally, we were to see Dr. King’s monument and park. There was a guy leaning on the wall while his friend took a picture. Once we walked up closer I noticed what he was doing and thought it was absolutely brilliant. To this day it’s one of my favorite pitcures, especially considering the circus happening in the United States government today. I also couldn’t help but to think how much Dr. King would’ve approved of this message if he were alive to see this foolishness taking place.
I snapped this picture of my husband reading one of the many beautiful Dr. King quotes in the park. There is something so poetic about my Black military husband not only seeing this quote in person, but being able to share the moment with his family. This quote is so important because as Dr. King said himself there are too many people “who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice.”
Happy birthday, Martin Luther King Jr.
Happy first Friday of 2018! We’re five days into the new year, and it’s already been a busy start for the Jamieson household. Being a military family always means constant changes in family life and schedules. However, this year, the changes will be a little more drastic considering we’re adding another baby girl to the Jamieson clan on, April 22nd! Yes, I am currently six months pregnant, with one very active and extremely loved baby girl named, Riley. We found out in late August about my pregnancy, shared the news with loved ones in October, and had our gender reveal in December.
As if my pregnancy isn’t enough change for the new year, the hubby will be gone for the first three months of this year for various work activities. The great news about the hubby is, he is officially Tech Sergeant Jamieson. He sewed on his new rank the 1st of this year. Hopefully, this new rank will finally bring us orders to an exciting state, this year. (Preferably orders to the DMV area. Prayers are definitely appreciated!)
The last few months of 2017 brought a lot of events and growth for, Jordyn. She is 90% potty trained (only wears pull-up to bed), was a flower girl in her godfather’s wedding, and started playing organized sports for the first time. She played soccer followed by basketball. Although she enjoyed both, it was very evident Jordyn is a “hands on” type of athlete, so she enjoyed basketball more. She’s extremely excited to be a big sister and hugs/kisses “baby Riley” all the time. She likes to ask in the sweetest voice “can I give baby Riley a kiss and hug?” Melts my heart every single time. Her vocabulary is quite extensive, she’s unbelievably intelligent for her age, and she’s turning into such an independent (head strong) child. I don’t know where the time is going, but I wish it would slow down just a little bit.
If I’m honest, this pregnancy hasn’t been the easiest. Especially considering how easy my pregnancy was with Jordyn. Riley, not so much. Ha! Kris and I have known for a while that we would only want two (biological) kids, so we knew this baby would be our last (planned- lol) pregnancy. I think Riley was listening because she’s making sure this last pregnancy is memorable LOL. However, no matter the amount of nausea, sciatica nerve pain, or tiredness, as long as Riley continues to grow healthy and strong, I’ll continue to be thankful for every second of this pregnancy and this baby girl.
With all of the craziness happening this year, I wrote my goals down, and broke them up into three categories for more organization, and easier accountability. Personal, financial, and blogging/business goals. I made a vision board for the second year in a row, but I hung this year’s vision board up in my living-room to consistently see for motivation on those days I need an extra push. The one goal that directly relates to you all, my readers, is my consistency with publishing posts and being active on social media. It is easy to get caught up in everyday life and lose sight of passions dear to us, but I’m going to actively be and do better, for all of you, but myself especially.
My hope and prayer for all of us this new year is to change and excel in ways we once upon a time didn’t think possible. Whether it’s expanding your family, taking better care of your health, repairing a broken relationship with a loved one, getting a promotion, having the courage to quit that job you’ve always hated, starting your own business, moving out-of-state etc. Let 2018 be the year you do so. We have a brand new, clean slate, year and should use this time wisely. Life is too short to not be the best version of ourselves.
Happy New Year to all of you and I look forward to this year of blogging and journeying with all of you!
We brought Ares home August 19th, 2013 and had to say goodbye to him August 1st, 2017. We got to spend 3 years, 11 months, and 13 days with him. The time was way too short, but we have so many beautiful and hilarious memories. I could say it was by luck, but it wasn’t, it was destiny that Ares became a Jamieson. He was just as silly and crazy as everyone else in this household haha.
Kris and I had been talking about getting a dog once we moved into our home on base. I was at work when I received a text from, Krissy (my military BFF a.k.a Sister Wife), about a Facebook post she had recently tagged me in. The post was of a three month old German Shepherd named, Bentley, at the time. I couldn’t get over his adorable little face, and one big ole floppy ear. LOL. I sent the information to Kris and asked him to meet me at the guy’s house to meet the pup. No sooner than I walked across the street to greet him, he ran straight into my arms.
The guy told us we were the second couple interested in the pup, but after seeing Ares’ instant attachment to us, he knew Ares was meant to be ours. By 6 p.m. that evening we were the proud dog parents of a beautiful German Shepherd puppy. I remember so many of these details because Ares was our first baby. Before Jordyn, Ares was our fur baby, or our practice baby as we liked to call him.
It’s been exactly one week since we said goodbye to our fur-baby. I still haven’t found the perfect words to describe the type of sadness you feel after losing a furry family member. But it hurts more than I could ever expect. Even though we’ve known for months that the cancer would eventually come back, it completely catches you off guard when it does. Especially since Ares’ cancer came back SO soon after ending treatments and so aggressively.
There’s a strange silence that always follows me around the house. I never paid attention to how simple things like his breathing pattern while he slept was standard background noise for me while I watched t.v. on the couch or blogged late at night. Or how many every day habits revolved around him. Like, making sure the back door is locked at night, keeping his water bowl full, expecting his face to be in mine while I napped on the couch, etc. The silence and daily habits are constant reminders of how much the littlest of things count.
The hardest part of it all has been Jordyn not understanding that he’s gone. She’s only three years old and doesn’t understand the concept of death. Although it’s tough to hear her ask “is Ares at the doctor?” or “are we going to see Ares?” I’m thankful she’s young enough to not understand the sadness of death. Jordyn is an only child and Ares was her best friend. Whether they were playing fetch in the hallway or making each other crazy, she loved having her big fur brother around.
I’m thankful I’m the typical crazy picture taking Mom, because I have so many awesome pictures and videos of Ares over the years. Even some hilarious videos as recent as a week before his death of him and Jordyn having the time of their lives together. Pictures truly are worth a thousand words, and I’m SO thankful to have them.
Ares’ personality was as big as his heart. You never knew what type of emotion or dog talking you were going to get each day haha. It’s what made him so unique. He was this huge monster of a dog with the sweetest personality. A personality that is deeply missed and will never be forgotten. I’m sure one day in the future we will get another dog to join our family. But for now, we’re going to spend the next few months remembering him, and how special he was and always will be to this family.
Rest in peace, bud. We miss you oh so much. <3
Chicken Teriyaki Pineapple Bowls
About a year ago I saved a recipe video on Facebook for chicken teriyaki pineapple bowls. The recipe gave three ingredients to use but no details on measurements. I decided to wing it and see how it would taste. Although it tasted good I knew the dish could taste much better. Over the last few months I have tried many food combinations and different ingredients to achieve this final winning recipe. This is one of my family and friend favorites in our household.
One of my favorite parts of this recipe is you can use whatever vegetables you prefer in this dish. I've made chicken teriyaki pineapple bowls with broccoli, red bell peppers, green bell peppers, onions, etc. and they've all been delicious. However, out of all of these combinations, our favorite combination is the broccoli and onion. We especially love the teriyaki sauce. This recipe ensures there is plenty of gravy for your rice and any leftovers for the next day.
If you're lucky, you pick a very sweet pineapple and get to eat the delicious pineapple while you're cooking your meal. I'm currently working on a delicious drink recipe to use the sweet pineapple for so be on the lookout for that! In the mean time, enjoy this delicious, and easy, chicken teriyaki pineapple bowl recipe!
- 2 lbs. skinless chicken thighs
- 2 pineapples 1 pineapple per 2 people
- 1 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup mirin (Japanese sweet wine)
- 1/4 cup chicken stock
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp cornstarch
- 2 heads of broccoli
- 1 medium yellow onion
- 2 cups rice
- 4 cups water measurement for the rice
- red pepper flakes optional
Cut your broccoli florets off of the heads of broccoli into 2 inch sized pieces. Place in a bowl to the side
Cut your onion into 1-2 inch pieces and add them to the bowl with the broccoli pieces.
Cut your chicken thighs into 2 inch size pieces and set to the side in it's own bowl.
Start cooking your rice now so that it will be done at the same time as your chicken teriyaki mixture.
Heat your olive oil over medium high heat until very hot. Add your chicken thigh pieces to the pan and brown the chicken for 2-3 minutes.
Now add your soy sauce, honey, brown sugar, and mirin the pot with the chicken. Stir the ingredients together well and let the chicken cook for another 2-3 minutes.
Add your broccoli and onions to the pot and stir until well coated. Cover and cook your vegetables for 3-7 minutes. *How long you let your veggies cook depends on how crisp or soft you want your vegetables.*
While the vegetables cook down, cut your pineapple(s) in half, the cut a square around the middle of each half, and using a spoon scoop out the pineapple. Put in a bowl to the side to eat for later or to throw into your chicken teriyaki if you want more sweetness.
In a small cup mix together your chicken stock and cornstarch until the cornstarch completely mixes into the liquid. Pour the mixture over the chicken teriyaki and vegetables and stir enough to coat the food. Cover the chicken teriyaki again and let cook for a minute or two so the sauce will thicken.
Place your pineapple bowl halves on individual plates, scoop a cup of rice into each pineapple bowl, and then top with your chicken teriyaki and vegetables.
Sprinkle with red pepper flakes for a little spice and it's time to eat!
Father’s Day is this upcoming Sunday, June 18th, and most of us have procrastinated on buying a gift. For those of us who have little children we can still get away with the cute, handmade gifts, for Dad. My husband loves getting handmade gifts from our daughter, who actually turns three years old on, Father’s Day this year. While out shopping for the materials to make my husband’s Father’s Day gift I decided to come up with a list of, 3 D.I.Y. Father’s Day Ideas for Kids, to help out those of you struggling for ideas. Not only are the options easy, but they are cheap, and there is no wrong way to do them.
I bought all of these items from Michaels. For those of you, who like coupons like myself, I highly recommend downloading the Michaels app for awesome coupons and deals.
1) Painted Ceramic Mug:
This is a great go to option for creative gifts. Especially for Dads who love coffee and/or tea like my husband does. They even make these cute painted ceramic mug kits with all of the necessary tools for less than $5 each. This allows your little ones to not only have fun painting the mug, but they’ll get to see their artwork being used every time Dad drinks his coffee in the morning. Pretty awesome, right?
2) Canvas Painting:
This adorable idea allows Dad to display this masterpiece wherever he would like. Canvases come in many different sizes. Which allows you, as the parent, to decide how much mess you would like to clean up afterwards. Ha! You can find most canvases on sale at your local art store, and the paint, and paint brushes are also cheap. Canvas paintings also dry quickly when you use acrylic paint.
3) Handmade Father’s Day Card
This is the most classic and popular option of the list. We’ve been making handmade cards for special holidays since we were in Preschool. Honestly, they’ve been around so long because they never get old and are so adorable. You can use construction paper, markers, stickers, etc. Whatever is used it’s one of the easiest and most creative Father’s Day gift ideas. If you would like to take this craft idea to the next level, buy a gift card to Dad’s favorite store, and tape it inside the card. He will already love the card but a gift card is the cherry on top of the whipped cream.
What are some of your favorite Father’s Day gift ideas? If you haven’t procrastinated like the rest of us, what gift did you buy for your Dad, and why? Feel free to share with us in the comments below!
*WARNING* Previous season spoiler alerts!
Today is June 9th, 201,7 otherwise known as the, “Orange is the New Black” season 5 premiere on Netflix, day. The way last season ended left all of us feeling quite heartbroken with the senseless loss of Poussey. However, what is a great show without a roller coaster of emotions? I’m currently watching the new season as I type this. So far I’m not sure how I feel about season 5. I’m only three episodes in so I won’t be sharing any spoilers. I also need more time to assess how I feel about this season. The excitement for OITNB made me think about the rest of my June Netflix/TV Show Season Premieres.. This month, in addition to OITNB, Queen Sugar, and Power all return too.
For those of you who easily forget the season premiere dates like myself, I figured a blog post sharing the dates in writing would be a goof reference, for those of you who forgot yourselves, or didn’t know about them at all. In case you all can’t tell by now, I’m somewhat of a Netflix/TV show junkie. We’re enjoying a time where there are an overload of quality shows to watch on both platforms. I remember a few years ago it was hard to find anything on TV that wasn’t a “reality” show. Ugh, what a terrible time for television. Thankfully we now have Netflix added to the mix of choices for quality shows too.
Queen Sugar: Season 2 airs Tuesday and Wednesday, June 20th and 21st, at 10pm EST. This is a two night premiere! I’m so excited about this show returning. If you remember how last season ended, Ralph Angel read the note his father wrote before his death stating he wanted Ralph Angel to run the farm. As we all know, Charlie was the last one “running” the show even though all three of the siblings equally share legal ownership.
Power: Season 4 airs Sunday, June 25th, at 9pm EST. This is honestly the show I’m most excited to watch this month. If you watch Power then you already know why this show is so damn good! If you recall, last season ended with Ghost in handcuffs. Angela showed up to his club and arrested him for the murder of Greg. Oh man, it’s about to get good!
What June Netflix/TV show premieres are you looking forward to this month? Or this summer for that matter? I’ll be back in a few weeks with more Netflix/TV premiere dates for the months of July and August. Until then, happy watching! If you find yourself missing me before then, follow me on Twitter for live play-by-play tweets of these shows in the mean time ;-).