What's for Dinner {40} - Three New Recipes that were DELISH!

I just finished eating one of the new meals I made the other day and HOLY COW.

It was soooooooo good.

I've been saving these recipes on Facebook for so long and though I'm happy that I've finally started making some, I really should have started sooner. That being said, I'm going to share the recipes that I've really liked. Because I gained a bit of confidence to try these new recipes due to the Tasty videos, I'll embed those as well! Hopefully, they will inspire you too!

One-Pot Lemon Garlic Shrimp Pasta by Tasty on Buzzfeed 

8 oz linguine
2 T olive oil
8 T (1 stick) unsalted butter
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp crushed red pepper
1¼ lbs large shrimp
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp dried oregano
4 c baby spinach
¼ c Parmesan
2 T parsley, chopped
1 T lemon juice

1. In a large pot, boil water and add pasta. Cook until al dente. Drain and set aside.
2. In the same pan, heat olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter. Add garlic and crushed red pepper, cook until fragrant.
3. Toss in shrimp, salt and pepper to taste, and stir until shrimp start to turn pink, but are not fully cooked.
4. Add oregano and spinach, cook until wilted.
5. Return cooked pasta to the pot, add remaining butter, parmesan, and parsley. Stir until well mixed and the butter is melted.
6. When the shrimp are cooked, add lemon juice, mix once more, then serve while hot.
7. Enjoy!

I changed this a tiny bit and then accidentally left stuff out in the end but it was still really good. I probably won't do this too often because it uses so much butter. I didn't end up doing this as a one-pot meal. I prefer to cook the shrimp a lot longer so we cooked the pasta separate so we could utilize the time better. I forgot to put in the parmesan and parsley but it was still good without it.

One Pan Salmon and Veggies by Goodful

2 lb small red (or yellow) potatoes, quartered
4 T olive oil
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
4 cloves garlic, minced
4 T lemon juice
2 T fresh thyme
2 tsps ginger
2 salmon fillets
1 bunch (roughly 1 lb) asparagus

1. Preheat the oven to 400˚F.
2. Cover a sheet pan with foil or parchment paper. Spread out potatoes on the pan and drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt, pepper, 2 cloves of garlic, and 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Bake for 30 minutes.
4. Make salmon glaze. Combine salt, pepper, 1 tablespoon thyme, 2 garlic cloves, ginger, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. Mix well.
5. Remove potatoes from the oven and push them to the top or side of your pan. Place your salmon fillets on the pan. Brush both sides of the salmon with the glaze.
6. Place asparagus on the pan and top with 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of thyme on the asparagus and potatoes.
7. Bake for 10-12 minutes. (The salmon should flake easily with a fork when it’s ready.)
8. Enjoy!

This was a super simple recipe to make so I definitely recommend making it. I ended up using frozen salmon so it wasn't the best salmon I've ever had but it was still okay. I couldn't find any ginger to use so I left that out. I also needed to cook my salmon a bit longer because it wasn't fully cooked through by 12 minutes. I think I went a few minutes more. I also used a lot less potatoes because I wanted to limit the amount of carbs/starch I eat.

Weekday Meal Prep Pesto Chicken and Veggies by Goodful

2 T olive oil
4 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
1 lb green beans
2 c cherry tomatoes, halved
½ c basil pesto

1. In a large pan, heat olive oil and add chicken. Season with salt and pepper. When the chicken is completely cooked through, remove from pan, slice into strips, and set aside.
2. Add green beans and cook until crisp tender. Return the chicken strips to the pan, then add tomatoes and pesto. Stir until fully incorporated.
3. Serve immediately or divide into 4 food storage containers and store in the refrigerator. Can be kept refrigerated for up to 4 days.
4. Enjoy!

This is the one I LOVED. I added red pepper flakes and a little more salt and it pretty much blew me away. I can't wait to eat it again! 


2017 Goals {1}

Come January, a lot of people make resolutions. I've tried to do that in the past with very specific goals, but I always have trouble keeping up with them. Regardless of that, I'm going to keep trying! This time, however, I just have some overarching goals that I will try to work on. Specific goals may come as I develop new habits and that's okay. Actually, that's what I'm hoping for. I want 2017 to be full of purpose and progress. To achieve those two things, I've come up with some areas of my life that I would like to focus on. Some might need more developing but that will come with time. It'll be a year-long working list!

GOAL #1 - Read

I would say read more but I'll be honest, I read one book a year. Michael Connelly has been my favorite author for a very long time and he publishes one book a year. It's time for me to branch out! I hope to add this to my evening routine. For awhile I was doing a sudoku puzzle, which I really liked doing. I'll probably do that and then read for 15+ minutes. That's a better way to end my day (I typically spend time on my phone anywhere from 15-75 unproductive minutes!) Here's my current list:

Hands Free Life: Nine Habits for Overcoming Distraction, Living Better, and Loving More by Rachel Macy Stafford

The 5 Love Languages of Children: The Secret to Loving Children Effectively by Gary Chapman and Ross Campbell

How to Really Love your Child by Ross Campbell

The Sleep Revolution: Transforming Your Life, One Night at a Time by Arianna Huffington

The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin

Better Than Before by Gretchen Rubin

Happier at Home by Gretchen Rubin

The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History by John M. Barry

So You've Been Publicly Shamed by Jon Ronson

Hungry for Change: Ditch the Diets, Conquer the Cravings, and Eat Your Way to Lifelong Health by James Colquhoun

And of course, whatever Michael Connelly's 2017 release will be. He's celebrating 25 years this year so maybe I should get a signed copy at one of his book tour stops!

GOAL #2 - Control Finances Better

We were great about paying off debt when I had a second job. Since I stopped, we haven't been as great because we just don't pay close enough attention. We aren't good at meticulously managing our every day spending. We.are.lazy. It'll take a bit of work but once that's done, I hope to have a very clear debt payoff goal (this will depend on the cost of repairing our main sewer line - yikes, but manageable!) and a better way for us to manage our spending.

GOAL #3 - Cook More, Cook Smarter

This is two-fold. I haven't tried out a lot of new recipes lately or even made previous favorites all that much. I would love to get back to that and cook nice, healthy meals for the boys. Owen has gotten an interest in helping me in the kitchen so I would love to capitalize on that too. By planning ahead, we can spend more wisely, spend less, and eat healthier too! Gotta break those bad habits!

GOAL #4 - Form Healthy Habits

Not only do I need to eat better but I need to get moving! I hope to integrate physical activity into 5-6 days a week. I really enjoy group classes so I will find some of those to join and then all I need to do for the rest of the week is decide the time and location. I also want to drink more water. Gary gives me so much crap about how many water bottles I have so I'll just put those to good use! Lastly, I'll start taking daily vitamins too.

GOAL #5 - Travel

This is something we've never really prioritized. We're such homebodies and that has to change! Since last fall, we've put aside money every month for this so we've got some planning to do! Right now, we're thinking of taking a trip without the boys (as a sort of belated honeymoon) and I'd like to take the boys on a couple of smaller trips. One idea for them is the National Balloon Classic in Indianola, IA. It starts on the same weekend as Nordic Fest so it'll be a busy time if we do plan to go!


Holiday Cheer 2016 {5} Christmas Card

I meant to post this in 2016 but with sickness comes a need to step away from the blog. Man, being sick sucks! I don't yet feel like I'm on the mend but hope that comes soon enough. It's also not the way I hoped to ring in the new year but here's my one last goodbye to 2016.

We ordered these Christmas cards from Shutterfly, when they were offering 10 for free. You know I love a good deal :) I chose one that let me use a lot of photos because I couldn't choose between my options.

Merry Christmas everyone! And of course, HAPPY NEW YEAR!