So happy to have this little baby back in my arms again. Day 18 – I am grateful.
POSTED ON November 22, 2013
POSTED ON November 21, 2013
Thanksgiving is less than a week away, and I am getting so many questions on how to enjoy this Day of Gratitude without breaking your calorie budget! Not to fear, help is here . Today, I’m sharing with you our Powell Thanksgiving family favorites that will save you unnecessary calories, while pleasing even the pickiest eaters.
Before I share though, I have to remind you that it IS okay to indulge every now and then, and Thanksgiving Day is one of my favorite times. Remember – every single one of our carb cycles include a Reward Day. Chris and I highly suggest swapping around your Reward Days, making T-day your Reward Day this next week .
Now for the good stuff. Here are some of our secrets…
For the turkey…
Instead of roasting an entire turkey, and basting (and even filling) it with butter and sauces, try Chris’ and my favorite: Slow-Cooked Turkey Breast. By sticking with boneless, skinless breast and cooking in a slow-cooker, you can get all of the juiciness without the extra calories. And it’s all white meat…my favorite! Season and cook on low all day for an evening meal, or bump it up to high heat and have it ready around noon.
For the stuffing…
What’s Thanksgiving without stuffing? Since half of our family is gluten-sensitive, I cook a delicious gluten-free version of stuffing that we all love. Try our favorite Cranberry Quinoa Stuffing to cut the gluten, the fat, and the calories on this Thanksgiving classic. The best part about this recipe? Gluten-lovers will never know the difference. Chris loves this so much that I make it year round for him!
For the mashed potatoes…
While I won’t be leaving mashed potatoes out entirely this year for those that insist upon their dreamy and creamy potatoes, I love to keep Mashed Cauliflower on the table for those trying to watch their carbs. You won’t believe your buds aren’t tasting spuds when you swap vegetables for carbs. My kids love it and I have a feeling yours will too. Go ahead, pat yourself on the back for getting the kids to devour their vegetables.
For the sweet potatoes…
By far and away, our family’s favorite side dish is my Maple Pecan Sweet Potatoes. This is a delicious twist on a Thanksgiving Dinner tradition. Trust me, these are SO tasty, you’ll be making them year round, like us . Honestly, I consider this dish my dessert…yes, they are THAT good!!!
For the green beans…
While Green Bean Casserole is not my absolute favorite thing in the whole world, I do have a recipe that my entire family loves – sans the fat and cals that come with the traditional recipe. Try this healthy twist on the traditional Green bean Casserole.
For the small sides…
Along with the must have sweet potatoes, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and all other sorts of yumminess, you can add some smaller dishes too! Beets, raw veggie trays, black olives, and cranberries, are a few ideas to spruce up your table and keep smart food choices in front of you .
For the rolls…
Thanksgiving dinner just isn’t complete without the rolls. With 4 kids and a full-plate (no pun intended), this is where I lean on trusted gluten-free brands. Udi’s Frozen Rolls are amazing, and are always a hit with the Powell clan. Simply heat your oven and bake the frozen dough balls. They will perfectly complete your Thanksgiving dinner.
For the desserts…
I’m all about indulging in moderation, occasionally, and Thanksgiving is one of my occasions. I have to admit though, when it comes to Thanksgiving dessert, I crave this tasty treat over pie! Chris and I make a Sweet Potato Pudding that tastes just like pumpkin or sweet potato pie, but with a fraction of the calories! Enjoy this incredible dessert for just around 150 calories of real, whole, natural food.
From our home to yours, Happy Thanksgiving! And enjoy
POSTED ON November 19, 2013
We are so pleased to announce the birth of our beautiful baby girl, Ruby Lane Powell.
She decided to join us on Saturday, the 16th of November at 8:20am – weighing in at 6 lbs, 15 oz and 20″ long.
Her sweetness is the perfect addition to our family, completing our 6 Pack .
See her national announcement on People.com.
POSTED ON November 15, 2013
With baby girl making her grand appearance any day now, we are trying our best to help Cash understand how his little world is about to change. We are also curious as to how he will treat his new little sister. We decided it would be a good idea to borrow one of Marley’s baby dolls and teach him the basics of being an awesome big brother, which we know he will be.
First, we addressed one of Cash’s most favorite possessions: the pacifier. This one took no training as he snatched it up and stuck it in her mouth.
Another one of Cash’s comforts is his “blanky”. We rarely go anywhere without a blanky. I said, “Cash, the baby is going to go night-night.” He then grabs her blanky and covers her up so she is “cozy cozy”.
Next item of business was the bottle. He wouldn’t even consider feeding her with it until we filled it up for him first. He then set out to feed her her bottle but not before trying it out himself first. Had to make sure it was- as Cash would say- ‘delicious’ enough for her.
”Baby hungry? Bottle?” And then he put the bottle in her mouth.
One day, he surprised us all by giving her his
While we know this will be a big transition for Cash, we have no doubt that he will be just as sweet as ever with his new baby sister. He’s already demonstrated to us that he’s a natural with babies. We can’t wait to see him take care of her and protect her, just like a good big brother would .
Have more suggestions to help get siblings ready for a baby? Post away in the comments below…please. We could use them
POSTED ON November 14, 2013
POSTED ON November 12, 2013
Another day of gratitude . Believe it or not, this is getting harder and harder to write each day. There are so many things to be grateful for, I have a hard time choosing each day. I feel like these posts might need to go on for life, just to express all that I am thankful for.
How can I not acknowledge the three boys that gave me thick skin? G-mo (yes, pronounced GeeMo), Darryn, and Denver are, without a doubt, the best brothers this world has ever seen. I smile, laugh, and cry as I type this (and cringe…I know I’ll get some kind of crap from them for being so mushy ).
These boys taught me to never take myself so darn seriously. They taught me to laugh at myself when others (or they) laugh at me. They taught me that blood is thicker than water. Some friends can come and go…family is there for life. They taught me that we can fight like cats and dogs one second, but we’re all hugs and high fives the next. Nothing will ever change how much we all love, support, and got each others backs. They taught me that there is no one I’d rather fight for me than my brothers (alongside Chris, of course)…they take family seriously, and no one better mess with their sister (except them, of course).
They remind me each day that I will always just be their little or big sister…and help keep me grounded with all we have going on in life. These boys will never let my head get too big no matter how crazy this roller coaster gets, and for that, I am forever grateful.
They remind me daily by their examples that family is the most important thing in this world.
They are the best family I could ever have.
I love and am so thankful for my brothers
POSTED ON November 9, 2013
In case you didn’t know, today is National Young Reader’s Day! I so appreciate a day that celebrates something that really does give our kids such incredible building blocks for long-term success. I am fortunate enough to be one of those lucky mommas whose kids love to read. I love it!
Wanting to get your kids reading more? Check out some of the Powell Pack’s top book picks. These keep them reading longer than they are allowed sometimes!
Matix is into the typical 8 year-old boy books like the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series (we have lost count of how many times he has read each of those books), the Creature from My Closet series, and all of the Lego Star Wars books out there.
Cash is crazy for any book based on animals, shapes and letters. He has memorized “Roar! Trumpet! Hiss! Squawk!” and is well on his way to mastering “A Is for Adventure (The Backyardigans)“. The book we credit for teaching him many of his shapes is “Shapes with Albert and Amy“.
Here is a list of a few more good reads for each age group:
Birth – 3 Years:
3 – 5 Years:
5 – 8 Years:
Since we have all heard time and time again that one of the best things you can do for your child and for your parent-child relationship is to read together, it’s time to grab a book, snuggle up and get reading!
Happy National Young Readers Day!!
Today, I’m grateful for more wonderful people in my life: my Mom and Dad. They may have been young when they started having kids (18 and 19 yrs old), but they did a dang good job. I’m sure they both had moments where they questioned if they even knew what they were doing (how could you not, so young!), but their ability to love us (and everyone in their lives) deeply and unconditionally made okay any mistakes they may have made.
I’ve never met two people that complimented each other so well. My dad brought out the best in my mom, and my mom brought out the best in my dad. Until the day my dad passed away in 2011, their relationship was incredible. Not perfect…but incredible. The way a relationship should be. He treated her with more respect than I had ever seen a man treat a woman. And she appreciated and respected him more than life itself. Anyone that experienced being in a room with these two knew that what they had was something different than most. They truly loved each other, made each other strive for greatness, and were what I have always hoped to model my relationships after.
They had their trials together, believe me. But they fought harder than anyone to make it through. Seeing their support and love through all of it was unbelievable. Only best friends could endure what they did.
Because of this one-of-a-kind example we kids had in our lives, we all thrived as individuals, and as a family unit.
I am forever grateful for the lessons Mom and Dad taught us, the people we have become because of them, and for the years of wonderful memories we have to look back on…all thanks to those two ☺.
I’ve always said this, and it remains true…I feel like I hit the family jackpot in life.
POSTED ON November 5, 2013
November is one of my favorite months. Why? Because it is the month of thanks. We should all be living in a “lifetime of thanks”, but with the normal chaos of life, it’s often hard to sit in a place of graciousness for too long before it’s time to discipline the kids and run them around to all of their practices ☺.
Chris and I love to try our best to live with an “attitude of gratitude”. No better reminder than Thanksgiving month to appreciate what we have before we are forced to appreciate what we had.
In honor of this month of thanks, I am following suit of a sweet girl in our family’s life that showed quite the example by posting her 30 Days of Thanks. I’m a little late: today is November 5, so we will only get 26 days of thanks! I’ll do my best to remember to post daily…I’m not perfect, so forgive me if I miss a day or two ☺.
To make up for my tardiness, I have jam-packed my first Day of Thanks with a few things I’m grateful for.
My family. This family. Although these aren’t my only family members, I think this is such a wonderful place to start.
Without these people – all of them – I wouldn’t be where I am. They make me smile and laugh everyday. They are the reason I get up and work so hard, and my biggest source of support in all that I do. A couple of them are the silent “heavy lifters” that help me make it through my days, and make my kids feel even more loved and special than I ever could alone.
These people make one happy, warm, and loving home.
I am a blessed and lucky woman. Thank you to this amazing family of mine. I love you all ☺
POSTED ON November 1, 2013
Halloween is such a fun time for our family…and maybe a little hectic, but so worth it! The costume choosing starts as early as the day after Halloween for the next year around our house . This year was no different.
To be honest, I’m not sure what the kids look forward to more – the costume creation or the way-to-many sweet treats (that always result in a stomachache, I must add). Either way, Halloween is a time of year the Powell Pack loves!
This year, our Halloween day included school parties (where Matix won the gummy worm eating contest), our family’s traditional soup and chicken chili dinner, then some good ol’ trick or treating! Couldn’t have been any better .
We’re one happy (and worn out) family!