Lemon Caper Sauce

9 Mar

As I was looking through past recipes I made, I came across a lemon caper sauce that I was obsessed with for a while.  I would drizzle it on top of chicken or pasta dishes.  It’s extremely delicious and fairly healthy too.  What could be better?!

Lemon Caper Sauce:

1 Tbsp water

1 Tbsp cornstarch

1 1/4 cups chicken broth

1/4 cup lemon juice

1 tsp lemon zest

black pepper

1 Tbsp capers

1/2  cup fresh mushrooms (optional)

Chicken or chicken sausage (optional)

Feta cheese for topping


1.) Begin by mixing cold water and cornstarch in a small dish until smooth.

2.) In a medium sauce pan, combine remaining ingredients except chicken with cornstarch/water mixture and heat over medium, stirring as sauce starts to thicken.  This should take approximately 10 minutes.

**Can be used over pasta noodles of your choice.  I prefer the flavored al dente noodles similar to the ones below.**

I typically use lemon juice from a bottle just because it’s easier.  Also, here is what capers are packaged in just in case you’re not familiar with them.

Once you have cooked pasta noodles and prepared chicken (or ingredients of your choice), top with sauce as you desire.  I have made this recipe three separate times, and each time I did things a little different as you can see.

Each time though, it turned out perfect, and even tasted great as leftovers the next day!  Don’t wait any longer… you need to make this. 🙂


Thursday Things

9 Mar

Hello friends and happy Thursday.  You know what that means… I’ve almost completed one week of student teaching.  Simply amazing!  I also had a few exciting things happen in the past 24 hours that I want to tell you about.

First, after finding a super awesome job yesterday a local university for a Wellness Coordinator, I talked to my lovely friend Chelsey about it, and she just so happened to know the main contact person!  What are the chances??  Hopefully she can put in a good word for me.  I’m sure it will be tough competition, but I’m willing to take on the challenge.  😉

Second, after all of that great news, I remembered that I had entered a bride-to-be giveaway that I found on a blog online.  I decided to check back to see the weekly winner and it just so happened to be ME!  Talk about a lucky day!  I won a $100 gift certificate to be used on a shop at etsy.com called Emici Bridal.  Her site can be found here…Emici Bridal.   Her etsy store features beautiful bridal accessories like the ones pictured below.

Hera Double Flower Gemstone Sprig Fascinator

The blog that was holding the giveaway was Brenda’s Wedding Blog.  Thanks to Brenda and Marie for making my day extra special.  I can’t wait to pick out an accessory to help complete my wedding attire!

I’m not sure what mom and I have on the agenda for tonight, but I have had chicken sausages on my mind.  I love adding them to dishes, and they do a great job of filling me up for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  I think I might have to convince mom to make a trip to Sam’s Club to pick some of them up since we don’t really have anything planned.

Be sure to look for these in upcoming recipes. 🙂  Have a wonderful evening everyone.

WIAW (What I Ate Wednesday)

8 Mar

So today I decided to try out my first ‘What I Ate Wednesday‘ posting.  See below for my delicious eats!!

Quinoa flakes bowl with strawberries, slivered almonds, almond butter and coconut butter. Yum!!

After breakfast I finished getting ready and headed to school for the 3rd day in a row.  Today the students were making soft pretzels on their own.  My job included circulating throughout the room and helping them if they needed it…basically it wasn’t that stressful of a day.  It really did drag on though.  I was more than ready when lunch time came around!!!

Extra black bean burger from last night.

Mango Chobani with added chia seeds and homemade granola. Pine nut hummus and carrots weren't pictured.

After getting home, mom and I got started on dinner right away because we were STARVING!  To hold me over I snacked on some more hummus with crackers while we prepped our famous pesto chicken.

After preheating the oven to 350, we defrosted 2 breasts of chicken in the microwave for about 6 minutes.  We then cut off the fat and sliced the chicken into two thin halves, creating 4 pieces.

Pesto Chicken Bake:


2 large breasts of chicken (thawed and divided into flat, thin pieces)

2 Tablespoons of pesto

1 cup of diced tomatoes (canned or fresh)

Italian seasoning to taste

1/4 cup of feta cheese


1.) Defrost chicken breasts in microwave, and divide.

2.) Spread a thin layer of pesto onto all 4 pieces.

3.) Pour diced tomatoes over the top of the chicken.

4.) Sprinkle with italian seasoning mix.

5.) Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 30-35 minutes

6.) For the last 5 minutes, sprinkle with feta cheese and continue baking.

Serves: 4

After working on an application and cover letter for an AWESOME job through a local universiy (that would be absolutely perfect for me), mom and I headed to Target to pick up a few things.  When we got home, we were feeling snacky.  I knew it was time to try out the new PB2.

I mixed 2 Tbl of the PB2 with 1 1/2 Tbl of water and a few shakes of cinnamon before dipping a crisp, cold apple into it.  Delicious!  I have been craving cold apples with peanut butter lately, and this didn’t let me down.  Now it’s time to hit the treadmill before I talk to Korey.  Have a wonderful night!!!

A Fun Package!

7 Mar

Good evening everyone!  I hope you all had a nice day.  The weather here was bright and sunny when I got out of school, and I was loving every minute of it!  Today at school I had to do a demonstration for the kids.  We made soft pretzels, and it went pretty well.  It can be hard when 25 students are staring silently at me as I knead the dough. 🙂  It definitely makes for some awkward silences as I still am uneasy about adding random thoughts or stories in, but it will get better!

While at school today I took some time exploring recipes that I want the kids to try out in a few weeks for nutrition week.  After school I stopped by the grocery store to pick up the necessary ingredients so that I could try them out at home.

The first recipe was a black bean veggie burger.  There are so many different variations online, but I decided to go with a simple and new to me recipe.  I also tried following a cauliflower “mashed potatoes” recipe.  I’ve made it before, but again this recipe was a little different.  Although the meal was edible, the recipes weren’t perfect, so they may not be worth sharing until I can perfect them.  However I’ll still let you take a look at the finished products. 🙂

As I said, overall the recipes were okay, but there is definitely some altering that I would do the next time around.  I did love putting the cauliflower mixture into the blender with milk in order to get it smooth and creamy.


When I arrived home today, I had a special delivery waiting for me.  Last week I ordered a few things off of iherb.com for the first time.  I have heard many people talk about the site, and I couldn’t wait to try out some of their products.  Plus, if it’s your first time ordering you can receive $5.00 off by entering this coupon code- GAJ068

Take a look at all of the fun things that I got!

MaraNatha Almond Butter, Coconut Butter (which I have heard so many great things about), coconut flour, PB2 (new powdered peanut butter) and last but not least my sample item, ‘The Vice-Busting Diet.’  With every order at iherb, you are allowed to pick out one free sample.  How could I resist a healthy eating book that is regularly priced around $20.00.  I’ll have to let you all know how it is.

Well that’s all that is new with me, and I really can’t complain too much…except I am counting down the days until Korey gets home…6 remaining…please speed up time!  Have a great night. 🙂

Update on Life

6 Mar

Well it’s been a few months since I created my blog, and a lot has happened.  One thing I know for sure is that I love the world of blogging.  It’s something that I dive into on a daily basis to keep myself motivated while trying to lead a healthy lifes.  Instead of being a passive reader, I feel as though I have valuable recipes, thoughts and inspirations to share with you all, so here I am again!!!  Your support during this process is appreciated more than you know.

I just began my first day of full-time student teaching at a local school.  I will be at the school every day for the next 12 and a half weeks until school is out in June.  I will be teaching a ‘Food for Teens’ class where we do a lot of cooking, and I will be teaching a ‘Teen Living Skills’ class, both of which are very fun.  I will be sure to keep you updated as I go through this process.


Tonight’s dinner was simple and delicious.  My mom and I are trying to keep each other motivated by eating healthy and exercising on a daily basis.  We grilled two chicken breasts on the stovetop and placed slices onto a bed of lettuce and spinach mixed together.  We topped the salad with avocado, sunflower seeds, strawberries, chia seeds and Bolthouse Farms Tropical Mango dressing.  This dressing is great… only 30 calories and 1.5 grams of fat.  Besides, it was delicious to boot!

Other than school and eating (which takes up most of my life), I have been working on the job search process quite a bit. It is overwhelming/scary/frustrating all at the same time.  It’s so weird to not know where I will be living six months from now and where I will be teaching.  All I know is that I’m ready to get to that point.  I can’t wait to be with Korey EVERY day.  Right now he works in North Dakota in the oil field.  His schedule involves working for 2 weeks and then getting 1 week off at home with me.  However, after a year of this schedule together, we are ready for it to end in a big way.  Once I find a job, we will move, and he will search for something else in that area.  We talk about it on a daily basis, and I can’t express how ready we are.

Below is a recap of our recent getaway in Vegas!!!

I can’t believe the trip has already come and gone, but I had such a great time.  It’s so wonderful spending time with someone who is so much like me.  I can’t wait for more adventures together to come!

The 8 Dimensions of Wellness

3 Jun

“Wellness” seems to be the buzzword lately, but it is a pretty vague term as far as I’m concerned.  My goal is to get us to think about what wellness really entails.  In lectures at the University of Minnesota, many of my professors described wellness as having 7 different dimensions.  They include the following:

1.) Physical

2.) Social

3.) Emotional

4.) Spiritual

5.) Intellectual

6.) Financial

7.) Occupational

8.) Environmental

The goal of my blog is to describe these dimensions to you and provide you with ways to improve upon each dimension in your life.  I want to point out that each dimension of wellness lies on a continuum.  Some people are at one end, and some are at the other.  However, most of us (myself included) fall somewhere in between.  The point is that we all have work to do, so let’s get started!!

Going out on a limb…

3 Jun

Life is full of decisions…and I always try to make mine carefully because sometimes there’s no turning back.  After graduating from college a few weeks ago and moving back home to live with my mom for the time being, I have found myself in an awkward transition phase.  However, the problem is that I don’t know what I am transitioning to...  I feel like I have so many ideas in my head that I just need to get down on paper before I truly make a decision.  

I majored in Health and Wellness with a minor in Family Social Science, and it was a great decision because those are all of the things that I am passionate about.  I thought about becoming a teacher for Family Education, but that would have required another year at the University of Minnesota, and more time living and commuting in a big city, which is not what I wanted.  So I made the decision to move home and either search for a job in Wisconsin or go on for my master’s degree.  

So here I am, sitting home alone on a beautiful, sunny summer day not knowing where my life is headed.  This week has been a roller coaster already.  My wonderful new boyfriend [more on that later :)] had to go back to work out west for 2 weeks, and I am here trying to figure out what I want to do with my life.  Over the course of the past 3 months I had planned on going back to school for human resource management through an online program offered through Concordia University.  However, as of two days ago, I had an epiphany and decided that wasn’t the right fit for me.  Again, I know what my passions are….health, parenting, relationships and education.  There has got to be something out there (rather than human resource management….what was I thinking?!) that is a better fit for me.  After looking around Concordia’s website, I found a master’s program in Family Life Education.  Perfect right?!  After finding it, I have been looking into different career options/salaries/etc… given that I decide to go forward with that.  Although money isn’t everything, it sure is something to take into account.   

cha ching

I discussed the program and future options with my mom, and after getting the, “I support you no matter what you do,” statement, I knew I could do it. 🙂  I’ve contacted the school and have been asking questions just so that I have an idea in my mind of the program length, career options, cost, etc…  In the meantime, I know that I can’t spend all day every day applying to schools and jobs, so what better way to spend my time then to start a blog!!  I’m sure there are others in a situation similar to mine right now, and so why struggle alone, right?!  

The focus of my blog is on my life, but that sounds pretty boring, I’m sure… Well sometimes I like to think my life is boring from the outside, but on the inside I have tons of crazy thoughts, ideas and inspirations that I hope to share with you and in return, I hope to get your feedback, thoughts and advice!  So if you’re brave enough to step into my mind…let’s go!! 🙂  

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