Friday, October 31, 2014

Pumpkin Bars

Pumpkin Bars

According to:( http//, the fruit of the pumpkin is rich in vital antioxidants and vitamins. It is a low calorie vegetable. It contains no saturated fats or cholesterol. It can be used in so many recipes from pancakes to pumpkin bars. You can find the directions for how to bake using fresh pumpkin at: (http//

Modified From POPSUGAR
Pumpkin Bars


2 cups whole-wheat flour
2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup applesauce
1 teaspoon Agave
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 large egg white
1/3 cup butter substitute
1 cup fresh pumpkin
2/3 cup finely shredded carrots


  • Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 15 x 10 glass with a low fat cooking spray
  • In a small mixing bowl, whisk the flour, spice, baking powder, and baking soda
  • In a large bowl, beat the applesauce, Agave, brown sugar, and butter until crumbly
  • Add eggs, pumpkin, and carrots and stir until it is blended
  • Add the flour mixture and mix until well blended
  • Spread evenly in greased pan and bake
  • Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until an inserted toothpick comes out clean
  • Cool and cut into squares and spread the tops with Cream Cheese Icing

Modified from: SparkRecipes
Cream Cheese Frosting


1 (8oz) package fat free cream cheese
1 (8oz) tub Cool Whip Free Whipped Topping
3 tablespoons  Agave 
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese until soft
  • Add cool whip, Agave, and vanilla extract
  • Mix until smooth
  • I like to refrigerate for a hour before spreading on the pumpkin bars

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Peanut Butter Ice Cream

Peanut Butter Ice cream

3 bananas
2 packs low fat hot cocoa
A heaping tablespoon of peanut butter
2 waffle cones

  • If you don't have the bananas already peeled and frozen, put them in the freezer for about an hour
  • Using a blender or a food processor, place the bananas in one at a time until the mixture is becoming very smooth, with no lumps
  • Add the hot cocoa packs,and the peanut butter, and continue to blend or process until smooth again
  • Pour it into a airtight container and place it back in the freezer for another 30 minutes
  • Scoop mixture into your ice cream cone
  • So it's not totally sugar-free but it is still good enough to be allowed as a healthier snack alternative
  • Unused ice cream will freeze well

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Grilled Chicken with Apple-Orange Chutney

Grilled Chicken with Apple - Orange Chutney

Nothing adds aroma to your home like a pot of chutney simmering on the stove.
Nothing dresses up grilled chicken like homemade chutney.


3  chicken breast fillets
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon pepper

Apple-Orange Chutney


3 Gala apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
1/2 cup chopped sweet vidalia onion
1 cup red wine vinegar
1 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons orange peel
1 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon nutmeg

Combine all the ingredients in a medium saucepan and simmer , covered,for 45 minutes.
Cool and refrigerate until needed.

Place chicken breast in a glass dish and marinate with oil and pepper.
Turn grill on med-high , add chicken and grill until done, 15-18 minutes.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Turkey Lasagna

Nothing welcomes in the cool temperatures of fall like the aromas coming from a pan of lasagna baking in the oven. In my quest to become fitter in my fifties, my regular recipe for lasagna  has been modified to reflect my lifestyle changes. I like to freeze the left-over lasagna in individual containers.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.


1 pound of lean ground turkey
1 16 ounce can of Basil tomato soup
1 cup of  spaghetti sauce/ low sodium
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 teaspoon parsley
1 teaspoon rosemary
1/2 pound oven-ready lasagna noodles
15 ounces ricotta cheese
1 egg
1 pound shredded mozzarella


In a 10 inch skillet brown the turkey meat for 10 minutes, over medium heat. Meat should not be pink.
Add the soup and the spaghetti sauce to pan and simmer for 10 minutes
In a medium sized bowl, combine the ricotta, egg, and spices, set aside
In a pretty 9 by 12 glass baking dish, spread some of the sauce over the bottom
Layer the noodles
Spread the ricotta mixture
Layer more noodles
Add remaining turkey mixture
Sprinkle the top with the mozzarella
Bake for 45 minutes until the cheese has turned a golden brown

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Decadent Ghirardelli Chocolate Pudding

Decadent Ghirardelli Chocolate Pudding
Adapted from: recipe called Silky Chocolate Pudding.
Serves: 3

1/2 cup cornstarch
1/3 cup Agave
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups skim or 2% milk
3 ounces of Ghirardelli Intense Dark Chocolate
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Combine the cornstarch, Agave, and salt in a small saucepan on medium heat
Slowly whisk in the milk, stirring slowly so no lumps form
Then after the cornstarch mixture is incorporated stir briskly for two minutes
Place over low heat for 10 more minutes, stirring ocasionally to keep from sticking
Add the chocolate and stir for 2 to 4 minutes and allow the mixture to become quite thick
Remove from heat and stir in vanilla
Spoon pudding into pretty dishes and refrigerate for 2 hours
Add cool-whip (optional)


Companies Coming!



Valentine's Day!
St. Patrick's Day!

  Tablescapes are  another way to express your creativity when you create your  meals.
They are as pleasing to the eye as your scrumptious meal is to your palate.
You can use yard-sale, consignment shop finds, family gifts, or  anything you love to  create your tablescapes.  Tablescapes allows you to add your own personal touch!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Broccoli & Potato Soup...Just Enough For Two!

Give Thanks!


3 medium potatoes, peeled and quartered
2 cups fat-free chicken broth
2 cups skim milk
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon Cilantro 
1 cup broccoli florets
Garish, fat-free sour cream


In a small pot add the broth and potatoes
Cover and bring to a boil
Reduce to medium heat and cook for 12 minutes
Add the milk and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally so milk doesn't scorch
Add the spices and the broccoli and cover for 7 minutes at the lowest heat setting
For an added flair, serve in individual soup pots

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Grilled Salmon, Grilled Asparagus,Corn-On-The-Cob, With Herb Butter, And Vietnamese Style Bananas


A grill and fresh herbs can help make a good recipe even better.
Did you know that salmon is one of the most nutritious types of fish?
Did you know that asparagus are packed with antioxidants, and ranks at the top of the pack for fruits and vegetables that have the ability to fight free radicals. It can also help our brain fight cognitive decline. Enough said about that!
Corn has taken a bad wrap of late, it isn't the corn that is bad it is the type of topping you choose.
Herbs offer health benefits and are easy to grow right from the backyard garden,  plant boxes,  pots, or simply your windowsill.
Eating bananas can help lower the risk of cancer, lowering blood pressure, and improve heart health.

Grilled Salmon For Two

2 (6 oz) pieces center-cut salmon filet
 1 teaspoon lime juice
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon fresh savory
1 teaspoon minced rosemary
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
1 teaspoon pepper
 Preheat grill for five minutes on medium heat
Place salmon in a glass dish and marinate salmon in lime juice and herbs
Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes
Brush salmon with olive oil
Use a fish grill rack to cook salmon
flip the grill rack  after cooking on each side for 4 minutes

Grilled Asparagus  For Two

 1/2 pound fresh asparagus spears, trimmed
 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon chopped parsley
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
 Preheat grill on high heat
Brush olive oil and lemon juice on asparagus
Add spices
Grill in a vegetable basket for 4 minutes , until sear marks appear

Grilled Corn-On-The-Cob, With Herb Butter

2 ears of corn
Herb butter
Prepare the grill on high heat
Place corn in their husk in microwave for 2 minutes
Remove husk and silk from corn
Brush corn with herb butter and place on grill
Cook until seared then move to unheated side of grill for ten extra minutes
Use a cooking tool and remove the corn to a plate

 Herb Butter

1/4 cup of unsalted butter(softened)
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon fresh parsley, minced
1/2 teaspoon cilantro
Add all the ingredients to the softened butter

Vietnamese Style Bananas Dessert
1 banana
1/2 cup Almond milk
2 tablespoons honey
1/4 cup nuts (your choice)
Slice banana into a pretty dish
Add milk and top with other ingredients

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Chili with a Little Kick and Spooktacular Baked Apples

Fall at Dad's House

Fall in the Mountains

Time to eat!

Whether traveling or at home, chili is always a favorite meal.
Fall is the season when you do not  need a reason to get out the crock pot.
It is time to try all the recipes you have been collecting.
Or maybe you just want to make a family favorite.

Turkey Chili


1/2 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
1/2 pound 98% lean ground turkey
1 8 oz can low sodium chicken broth
1 can low sodium tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup ketchup
1 can kidney beans, drained
1 can black beans drained
1 can green chili peppers
1 sweet vidalia onion. diced
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon chili spice
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper


Brown the turkey in olive oil in a medium skillet on medium heat
Remove from heat and drain
Add all the ingredients to the slow cooker
Cook on low for 7 or 8 hours or half the time on high

Spooktacular Baked Apples

Yield: 4 servings


2 teaspoons cinnamon
2  teaspoons ground nutmeg
1 /2 cup honey
1/2 cup roasted chestnuts (recipe at bottom of post)
4 apples ( we like Fugi)
 1/2 cup apple juice
1 slice colby cheese


Preheat oven to 345
Combine cinnamon, nutmeg, and honey in a small bowl. Set aside
Core apples, but do not puncture the bottom
Scoop half of the apple out and dice, add to the cinnamon mixture
Slice stem side of apple like a top(save)
Place apple in oven-safe casserole dish
Spoon mixture into each apple and put the apple (hat) on top
Pour apple juice around the apples
cook for 30 or 40 minutes
Apples should have a shiny sheen and apple mixture should be brown
Make a little stem with colby cheese and enjoy
Serve with crackers, cornbread, toasted cheese sandwiches, or hush puppies

Roasted Chestnuts
I picked up a bag of chestnuts at a produce market  in the mountains for a 1.00


 Wash chestnuts
Cut a large X on the flat side of nut
Place in a shallow pan and bake for 25 minutes
Allow to cool and peel off the shell
Be sure to peel as soon as they are cool

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Take The Coffee Challenge


So True
Texas Size

Fond Memories

Our Favorite Coffees and Creamers
Our Favorite Cups

What is your favorite coffee cup?
Checkout this website to see what your coffee mug say about you.
Article: What Does Your Coffee Mug Say About You?

What is your favorite coffee?
Checkout this website to see what your favorite coffee drink says about your personality.
Article: Here's What Your Favorite Coffee Drink Says About Your Personality

 What is your favorite creamer?
Checkout the top 25 flavors of coffee mate at,

Checkout the favorite coffee creamers chosen by home chefs and other food lovers, at

Why drink coffee?

Why Not?

Checkout this article about the health reasons to drink coffee (and cons to consider) Eating Well,
at :

I took the challenge.
Question #-1-What is your favorite coffee cup?
 I use a different mug among my favorites everyday. That means I like variety in my coffee and my life! That is so true.
Question #-2- What is your favorite coffee?
I was glad that my favorite coffee which is a "mocha" was not listed. I would take this site with a grain of "sugar".
 So let's try  the Starbucks challenge instead: -Article: What Does Your Starbucks Drink Say about You?

 Mocha: "Work hard, play hard is your life motto. You're the team member successfully leading the huge client presentation, but you're also the person organizing the office happy hours and the holiday party of the century. When you decide to indulge, you do it right . The bottom line: You get stuff done, and you go big, or go home." Wow, pretty close!
Question #-3- What is your favorite creamer?
Sugar-Free-French Vanilla, #1- This is the gateway creamer and the number 1, non-dairy creamer in America. My husband is a black coffee drinker most of the time or he uses Bailey's Irish Cream.(non-alcoholic)But if he was in Ireland he might.............

Be sure to leave a comment after you take the challenge. Thanks!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Grilled Open-Faced Turkey Sandwich

Turkey The Other White Meat

Did you know that a fat-free ground turkey burger provides 22 to 25 grams of protein per 3-ounce serving? Did you know that mustard is great for arthritis, weight loss, lustrous hair, and more?
Check out the article titled: Turkey Burger Nutrition Information  at:
 Check out this article titled: 10 health benefits of mustard at

Open-Faced Turkey Burgers For Two

 1 teaspoon of olive oil
2 fat- free or extra lean turkey patties
2 whole wheat hoagie rolls or hot dog buns
2 teaspoons of  mustard
2 slices of low-fat Swiss cheese
1/2 cup of fresh pears and peaches per burger (or pineapple)

Lightly oil the grill grates
Preheat the grill for medium-high heat
 Place the  burgers on the grill
Cook for 20 minutes, turning once, until well done
Place buns on the grill and toast until seared
Place buns on a plate and spread the mustard on them
Add the cooked burgers
Top with cheese and fruit
Enjoy with a baked potato and green beans!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Grilled Tilapia For Two

From my own tiny garden

Grilled Tilapia, Mediterranean Pasta Salad, 
Grilled Vegetables, and Fresh Fruit, For Two

Grilled Tilapia For Two

Total time: Prep/Total Time : 25 min.


2 tilapia fillets (fresh or frozen)
2 tablespoons of lemon juice (fresh or concentrated)
2 tablespoons basil (fresh or in a jar)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons of savory (fresh or in a jar)

1. Place the fish fillets in a glass dish with a lid.
2. Mix all the other ingredients together,
3. Use a cooking brush and generously brush both sides of the fish with the sauce .
4. Let marinade in the refrigerator until ready to cook.
5. Lightly brush your grill with olive oil or put fish in a grill dish made for cooking fish.
6. Grill, covered, over medium heat until fish flakes easily and is not opaque in color. We like 7 minutes on each side.

Mediterranean Pasta Salad

Total Time : Prep- 10 min/ cook- 10 min


4 oz, of  rotini or bow-tie noodles
 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil
1 cup diced sweet vidalia onion
8 cherry tomatoes halved
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon of Mediterranean grill


 1. Bring a medium pot of water with olive added to a boil. Add the pasta of your choice and cook for 10 minutes; drain.
2. Mix together your remaining ingredients and toss with the pasta.
3. Put in a covered dish and place in refrigerator.
4. This is a dish that tastes better cold.

Grilled Vegetables

Total Time:  prep/total time: 10 minutes

Many types of vegetables and fruit are great cooked on the grill. Today's recipe consist of:


2 cucumbers
1 large red tomato
1 large sweet vidalia onion
1/2 teaspoon of olive oil
1 teaspoon of chopped parsley
1 teaspoon of chopped basil
A sprinkle of crushed red pepper
A sprinkle of black pepper
Skewers/ wooden or metal


1. If you are using wooden skewers be sure to soak in water for 10 minutes before placing on grill.
2. Mix all spices with the olive oil.
3. Thread the vegetables onto the skewers.
3. Brush and coat the vegetables.
4. Place directly onto the grill on medium heat and cook on each side to a golden brown. We like to cook most of our vegetables 3- 4 minutes per side.

Fresh Fruit

Total Time: 10 minutes


I try to use seasonal fruit purchased from a farmers market as much as possible.

2 cups diced cantaloupe
1/2 cup fresh blueberries
1/2 cup fresh strawberries/ halved


When you use a cantaloupe for just two people who have to plan meals for the next few days using the leftover cantaloupe. Blueberries and strawberries freeze well, and can be thawed at room temperature and added to the recipe at the time you plan to eat.
Fruit is pleasing to the eye and to your palette when it is dished up in a pretty dish!

Lets Talk About Clothes!

Two Sizes Will Do......  

Lifestyle changes require a need for change. I have found that keeping only two sizes of clothing in your closet can encourage you lose and maintain your weight. Two sizes allows a person to be able to gain around 10 lbs before you have to do something about it. If you have four sizes you are more apt to let yourself to gain 20 or 30 lbs or more. Decide what your "ideal weight" goal is. As soon as you reach it down-size those clothes! If you do not have any clothes in the size you are working toward...Oh Joy... you get to go shopping!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Southern Fried Cabbage Meets Italian Tricolor Paccheri with Sauage,and Apple Butter Muffins

A busy Saturday at my house means setting your table and preparing a nutritious meal ahead of time and putting it in air-tight Pyrex dishes for warming later.
That means you get to enjoy your meal knowing that you have already cooked and cleaned up!
Who knows, a grateful family member may decide to clean up the few dishes remaining after eating such a scrumptious meal.

My daddy always said "there wasn't but one way to cook cabbage and that was fried." I tend to agree with him. I have modified his recipe somewhat to stick to my lifestyle changes as I become fitter in my fifties.

Southern Fried Cabbage


1 medium to large head of cabbage, quartered
2 cups of water
1/4 teaspoon of cracked black pepper
1/4 teaspoon caraway seed
2 packets  of Equal or other sugar substitute
1 Tablespoon olive oil


In a very large frying pan, add your cabbage and water
Add pepper, caraway seed, and sugar
Simmer on medium heat until all water is boiled out
If any water is remaining be sure to drain it
Make a hole in the middle of the cabbage and add the olive oil
Cook on high heat as you stir the cabbage
Stir until brown

Tricolor Paccheri with  Sausage

Fix pasta according to package directions
Remove from heat and drain
 Add 1/2 cup of  low sodium spaghetti sauce
Heat 10 minutes on low heat
Remove from heat
Add 1/2 teaspoon of olive oil in a small frying pan
Cook sausage on medium heat until browned

These are simply the best:
 Apple Butter Muffins

The only way I modified the recipe was to remove the 1 teaspoon of sugar as I felt the apple butter was sweet enough along with a box of 100 calorie raisins.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Exercise and Life Expectancy

A walk with my grandson Logan.

Hiking the Appalachian Trail

Did you know that life expectancy in the United States reached an all time high.
Because people are eating healthier and exercising.
Checkout this article at:
 U.S. Expectancy Hits Record High
1.A brisk walk is as good as a run.       
2. Walking 30 minutes or more is best.  
3. Most cities have Senior Centers.