Thursday, January 31, 2013

Creamed Cauliflower

  So, recently I've talked about how my husband and I have been getting a little healthier this year. Anyone that knows me knows that I have an OVERWHELMING love of potatoes. Mashed, creamed, fried, french fried (My FAV!), scalloped, you name it! Potatoes are my favorite food, but their starchiness does not always go along with healthy meals. I've been reading about a lot of people substituting cauliflower for potatoes. I was a little skeptical because I'm not the biggest cauliflower/broccoli fan, but we gave it shot!
  Turns out... It was really hard to tell the difference! The biggest thing, besides it of course not tasting EXACTLY like potato, was just the texture being a little more grainy than mashed potatoes. Here's how I made mine!

Cauliflower florets (I used about 2 cups when cutting a head)
2 Tbsp Butter
Salt & Pepper
Garlic Salt
1/4 C. Ranch or Greek Yogurt (whichever you prefer)
1/4 C. Milk

What I Did:

Boil your Cauliflower, 1 Tbsp butter, and salt for about 10-15 minutes or until VERY tender.

Drain the cauliflower and and place in a mixing bowl with another Tbsp of butter, seasonings, milk, and ranch (or greek yogurt). Beat with a mixer until you reach the desired creamy consistency (add more ranch or yogurt if needed!)

I was very pleased with the kind of healthier substitute! I encourage anyone to try it!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Nothing to Lose 2013

  This past weekend, my husband and I went with our church's youth on their trip to Gatlinburg for the "Nothing to Lose" conference. The basic theme of the conference was that You have nothing to lose when you chose to follow God, like Philippians 8:8 which says "What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ." You can gain every worldly possession while you're here on earth, but you'll always have this emptiness, a void you're trying to fill and you can't figure out why. It's because God has to be first above the things you deem most important to you, or else your relationship with him drifts. You won't be able to recognize the plans he's leading you toward, or the messages he's trying to reveal to you. God is jealous for us and he wants you to love him the same way he loves us, unconditionally, and you have nothing to lose because nothing will ever compare to him or the feeling of his love for us.

  For a while, it has been hard to focus on the parts of my marriage that needed work because I didn't know how to approach them. Though this conference was directed more towards teens and how hard it is to follow Christ in school, it occurred to me that it will be impossible to work on our relationship together without working on the relationship with God first. It really is true that if you have God first in your life and you pray to him about all problems before trying to tackle them yourself, everything else really does fall into place.
  Throughout all of our speakers and all of our concerts from artists like Kari jobe, Kristian Stanfill, and Matt Papa (Who were all WONDERFUL and very powerful in their worship!), I had one song that came into my head and stayed most of the time we were there. It's called "In Christ Alone" and it hits me hard every time I hear it.  In fact, the one moment that made me realize all this was the first moment I looked over and my husband had his hands raised to the lord during our last worship session, and in the moment I broke down and cried, and I couldn't stop. Then, they played clips from the Passion of the Christ, which can overcome anyone's emotions to actually see the events that we can only read about.

  As for our group of kids, I think they had a lot of fun during the weekend, but I think they had a lot of realizations of their own. As I mentioned before it's easy to say you will stand in Christ at school or at work, but it's a whole different level of difficulty when you have to do it. It's not just peer pressure (which adults can still experience), but it's hard to have the ability to stand up for what you know is right when so many people will look at you differently, but God doesn't. You might lose some people you thought were friends but really, they weren't that great of friends to begin with, but you might also open someone else's eyes of how great God's love could be for them so that they could stand up for themselves, too. One of our speakers at the conference even started talking about something very controversial, that we know as Christians that being Gay is wrong, but we have a responsibility to stop them from being bullied. Though we all sin, we're still all God's children and we still have to help one another because it's not our place to judge but to lead others to Christ.
   I love our youth and I'm so excited to see what is to come for them. I know they'll experience their own struggles and tribulations, but they believe God knows how to bring them through and what's to come can be so much greater for them.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Chicken Broccoli Loaf

   So, I'm Very, Super, Extremely, Extraordinarily Excited that my hubby got a new job with REGULAR hours, so he'll be home every night with me now! I finally have a reason to start cooking dinner a lot more and not just for leftovers lol! Tonight we had something I've made before, but this time it turned out WAY better than before.

Skinless Chicken Breasts (diced)
Shredded Cheddar
Low Fat Cooking Cream Cheese
Salt & Pepper

Preheat the oven to 375*.
Start by cooking the broccoli and chicken. (I bought a steamers bag of broccoli because it's sooo much faster to cook!)
In a mixing bowl, mix hot broccoli, cheddar cheese, and cream cheese until the cheese is mostly melted.
Add the cooked chicken, salt, and pepper and mix well.
Spread out your croissant dough.(I used the croissant dough as a whole, this time, instead of splitting them up individually.)
 Scoop the chicken broccoli mixture into the middle and fold the corners of the croissants where they overlap.
Bake for about 10 minutes, or the recommended time for your croissants.