Fourth of July Recipe Round-Up!

July 3rd, 2013 - Announcements, Food News, Inspiration

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Fourth of July is a time to Celebrate! This celebration takes place to observe our nations freedom, and to honor the awesome men and women that serve our country!

I don’t know about you, but this celebration always seems to revolve around the outdoors and the wonderful food that is best during the sweet summer time…Which means grilling and all things BBQ of course! Here are a few ideas to get your holiday cook-off started!

Main Dishes:

Teriyaki Pineapple Burger

Inside Out Jalapeño Popper Burger

Greek Style Feta Burger

Grilled Chicken Kabobs

Sides Dishes:

7 Layer Salad

Fresh Zucchini Guacamole

Layered Taco Dip

Grilled Balsamic Parmesan Veggies

Creamy Chocolate Fruit Dip

Parmesan Roasted Asparagus

Layered Pizza Dip

Loaded Pasta Salad

Treats:

Strawberries & Cream Trifle

Frozen Peanut Butter Pie

Cookies and Cream Frozen Pie

Peanut Butter Cup Fro Yo

4th of July Strawberry Poke Cake

Creamy Watermelon Pops

 Peanut Butter Cup Pops

 Superman Ice Cream

Cheesecake Fro Yo Pops

 

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The Daily Dish ~ My Sister’s Wedding Shower & Bachelorette Party!

June 25th, 2013 - Daily Dish

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The countdown is officially on…My sister is getting married on June 29th, which is now in four days! We are all getting so excited {busy, but excited!} I can’t wait to share pictures with all of you of the wedding, but until then I thought I would share the wonderful moments leading up to the big day!

We celebrated my sisters Personal Shower and Bachelorette Party on the same day a few weeks ago, and it was simply wonderful! The gathering took place at my sister Sarah’s house, which made for a beautiful party on a beautiful day!

I had the honor of making the food, so I decided to make a Salad Bar and Dessert Bar with healthy toppings such as Greek yogurt! My sister Sarah and I had a blast decorating with all of em’s wedding colors and cute little details that reflect on her style!

The weather was just beautiful that day, which is always a blessing in Michigan! :)

The salad bar was as much fun to put together as it was to enjoy!

Although, I think the dessert bar was everyone’s favorite {including my own!}

Sarah did all the decorating, and she truly did a fabulous job!

After enjoying all of the yummy food, Emily opened her gifts…and we played games…Needless to say there was tons of laughter!

We are truly blessed to have such wonderful friends to celebrate with!

We spent the rest of the afternoon by the pool and enjoying time relaxing!

That night the bridesmaids went out to celebrate Emily’s Bachlorette Party! I love that we had such an amazing time, and the Lord was glorified through our silliness! Who says you need alcohol to have a good time!?! :)

We went to a sushi restaurant and of course followed it with frozen yogurt!

 

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The Daily Dish~ My 28th Birthday Celebration!

June 20th, 2013 - Daily Dish

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Hey everyone!!! I hope you are all having a wonderful start to summer!I know I sure am…Of course i’m staying busy with the double move my husband and I are going through, and with all the preparation for my sisters wedding (it’s coming up…June 29th!!!)

I always love summer for SO many reasons, but I also love it because I have a summer birthday! :) June 17th was my 28th Birthday…But this year I had the honor of sharing the celebration with my dad, as we celebrated Father’s Day and my birthday on the same day! Talk about double the Fun!!! ;)

I started of the day with what else but a DD Cake Batter Protein Shake topped with whipped cream of course!

We had our traditional birthday meal, which is always Shish Kabob and a large Greek Salad with Baked Pita Chips! For Dessert I made my DD Ice Cream Cake!

After eating, my dad and I opened gifts and we all spent time around the table laughing and talking…One of my favorite times in life!

It was a wonderful day shared with my family, enjoying all the things I loved! I feel truly blessed for the 28 years of life God has given me so far, and the amazing husband and family He has given me to share it with!

We spent the rest of the evening relaxing by my parents lake! The weather was just perfect, and it was a much needed relaxing time after the big move! :)

I truly do treasure moments like this! :) Thank you all for the Birthday Wishes and love! I feel blessed beyond belief, and am so thankful for how God has taken the ashes of my life and turned it into beauty! I’ve learned time and time again that restoration is what He does best!

I hope you all enjoyed this little peak into my birthday celebration! Have a wonderfully blessed day!

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Albion Fitness Wear Giveaway!

June 5th, 2013 - Giveaway/Contest, Giveaways

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I am so excited to share this giveaway with all of you!!!

Albion is a fitness and clothing company that has seriously adorable fitness wear~ and they are offering one lucky Dashing Dish reader a $100.00 gift card to shop till they drop on their site! Their garments are fashionable and unique, but more importantly practical and technical. Designed by women, their apparel is crafted for women wherever they may be in their fitness goals. Their clothes are easily transition from work out gear to lounging gear: whether she’s running an errand or 26.2 miles across a finish line!

For the giveaway, one lucky reader will win a $100.00 gift card to shop on Albion.com.

Here is an example of the skirt they sent me! How cute is this!?!

 Here is how to enter to win a $100 giftcard to Albion Fit:

  • Visit Albion Fit and leave a comment on this post saying what your favorite item is!

For additional entries:

  • Follow Albion Fit on Facebook and leave a separate comment on this blog post saying that you did.
  • Follow Dashing Dish on Facebook and leave a separate comment on this blog post saying that you did.
  • Pin your favorite item from albionfit.com onto one of your Pinterest boards and leave a comment on this blogpost with the link to that specific pin.

Winner of the Giveaway will be announced on June 19th. Good Luck!!!

 

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You are Never Alone or Without Help!

May 16th, 2013 - Dashing Devotionals, Inspiration

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Did you know that if you have given your life to Jesus, you are never alone? 

The Bible says in Deuteronomy 31:6, “Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” This is one of many promises that the Lord gave us that when we invite Him into our lives, that He will never leave us.

This is such an awesome truth for SO many reasons. I sure do find this truth comforting, especially in this ever-changing world!

But the most amazing part is…It doesn’t stop there!

When Jesus went to be with the Father after dying on the cross, He also promised to leave us a comforter, counselor, and teacher who would be with us to guide is through this life. That helper is called the Holy Spirt. (John 14:15) We can see in the Bible that the Holy Spirit was given to us to help us in all things. This means that in every life situation that we can go to the Lord and ask for direction, guidance, and help in any situation.

We can also be sure that if we need to be comforted, encouraged, or reminded of the truth of God’s Word, He will be there to remind us of the promises that we have stored in our hearts! (John 14:26)

God has great things in store for each one of us (Jeremiah 29:11), and we can receive all that He has for us in every area of our lives if we follow His leading and depend upon His strength. A vital part of following His leading is listening to His voice on a daily basis, and the Holy Spirit is a vital part of that communication.

Communication from the Holy Spirit can be achieved by simply going to the Lord every day and asking Him to lead us. From there, we must do our parts by quieting our hearts enough to listen to His leading, (which is often a still small voice in our hearts).

If you are feeling worn out, burdened, or are in need of any kind of help today, the Holy Spirit is waiting to help you, and all you have to do is ask! (Luke 11:13) We can be confident that it is His will to help us, and teach us the right way to go and provide help in whatever we are facing. (John 16:13) There is nothing too big and nothing too small. You can go to the Lord about anything, He cares for you and knows just what you need, because He created you! (Psalm 139:13) Be encouraged today~ for you are never alone or without help!

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“Make Life Cute” Giveaway!

May 9th, 2013 - Giveaway/Contest

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Boy do I have a treat for you guys today! My good friend Kristy is the owner & amazing designer behind MakeLifeCute.Com. She found me through Dashing Dish, and is also a fellow Michigander, and has an incredible heart for Jesus, which created an instant connection between us! She sent me some of her amazingly cute personalized products, and after recieving them I knew I had to share them with all of you…So when Kristy offered to do a giveaway I was jumping for joy!

Make Life Cute is a lifestyle brand that offers a seriously, awesome line of designer party and event designs, as well as stationery, gifts, and lifestyle accessories to make your special occasions + everyday life memorable, unique, and most importantly CUTE!

Kristy’s passion is helping people find the joy in life – everyday! By creating cute, fun designs and products, we hoped to make the world a much brighter, cuter place! (Can you see why I love everything she makes so much!?!) :)

For the giveaway, Kristy will be making one lucky winner a Personalized i Phone case, a Personalized Packet of Stationary, and a Personalized Lucite Tray!

Here is an example of the ones she personalized for me!!! How cute are these!?!

They come in so many cute designs that can be personalized just for you!

The Winner will Receive a Personalized i Phone Case…

Personalized Stationary…

and a Super Cute Personalized Lucite Tray!

If you would LOVE to win this awesome package of personalized products from Make Life Cute…

Here’s How to Enter:

Simply Leave a Comment On This Post That Says What Your Favorite Product is From MakeLifeCute.Com. (Be sure to head over to MakeLifeCute.Com and check out all Kristy has to offer, and come back here saying what you loved the most in the comment section of this giveaway post).

I will announce the winner on May 23rd (in 2 weeks). The winner will be hooked up with Kristy, who will do her magic and design you the cutest i Phone Case, Stationary, and Lucite Tray you could ever imagine!

(Winner of this giveaway must be a resident of the United States.)

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Daily Dish ~ My Sister’s Bridal Shower!

May 2nd, 2013 - Daily Dish

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This past weekend was my sister Emily’s bridal shower! Her wedding is June 29th, so it will be here before we know it! :) It was a beautiful shower, put on by her future mother in-law & sister in law, who happen to have their own cake decorating business’…So get ready to witness some incredible desserts! ;)

It turned out to be one of the most beautiful days we’ve had in Michigan so far…(it has been in the 40′s almost all of April!) But this past Saturday was 70 degrees and sunny…God sure did shine His sunshine down on Emily’s celebration day! I hope you enjoy the pictures of this magnificent day!

Here Emily (the future bride) is with my family…

and Emily with her future in-law’s (including the 2 wonder women who put on the amazing shower!)

For brunch we had fruit to start…

Followed by a strawberry spinach salad (which I had the pleasure of preparing), a scone, and an english muffin, which was later topped with an egg, asparagus, and hollandaise sauce.

After eating we opened gifts.

It was so fun to see her open everything, especially her new kitchen gadgets! ;)

I made her a towel cake! :)

I also made her a basket of ‘my favorite kitchen things’ which was an assortment of my favorite kitchen gadgets, etc. Talk about a fun gift to shop for and give! :)

One of the most creative gifts she received was from our good friend Dayna, who made her a box of ‘date nights’…One for every month after they were married, (they were in envelopes, and she was told not to open them until the date night for each month!) How sweet is that!?!

After opening gifts we had dessert. My Aunt Lorrie made the most adorable wedding cake sugar cookies! I told her she could have her own cookie making business! How cute are they!?!

Brett’s mom, Gerri made everything on the dessert table, including these adorable cake pops…

Beautiful macaroons….

And a wide assortment of cupcakes!

Everything came together beautifully, and we had a great time celebrating Emily and Brett! I hope you enjoyed the preview of this special day! :)

The wedding will be here before we know it! I can’t wait to share pictures of that amazing day with all of you!

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Dashing Devotional~ How Can I Stay Motivated!?!

April 25th, 2013 - Dashing Devotionals, Inspiration

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“So let us not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.” ~ Galatians 6:9

 

We ALL have days where we trip and fall, making us feel discouraged. In fact, I can guarantee that every person has days where they simply lack the motivation to keep pushing forward towards their goals.

I, too, have plenty of days where I am discouraged, overwhelmed, or unmotivated to press on towards my goals with stamina and vigor!

So, the question is… on days like these, how do we stay motivated?!?

Well, to put it simply, we can’t… (Don’t worry, I’m going somewhere positive with this!)

The reason being is that motivation is an emotion, and like all emotions, they are fickle. They are up one day and down the next.

Let me give you a real life example of this (and I know that almost every woman can agree with me on this one).  One day I can wake up and feel like I’m on top of the world and the very next day I may wake up and feel terrible! This one example alone goes to show that emotions can not be trusted and they are certainly not stable.

It is for that very reason that we can’t base our decisions off of emotions. This includes the emotion of ‘motivation’.  If we relied on motivation to finish everything, we wouldn’t end up finishing most things we started…and even if we did, things would turn out very different than how we imagined.

You see… when we begin something, we often have a great sense of determination and motivation. We have a goal set in our mind and we pump ourselves up so much that we can almost taste the victory! Fast forward a couple of weeks and here comes that all too familiar lack of drive, (aka lack of motivation). This change in emotions can be attributed to many different reasons; a lack of results, increased stress, or a realization that the process is harder than we originally expected.

Which leads me to my main point… Instead of staying motivated, we must simply make a COMMITMENT to do something and align our actions with that decision regardless of how we feel.

I do this all the time in my own life in so many different areas. Once I make a decision to do something, I make a commitment. I bring it to the Lord and I surrender that area of my life to Him and ask Him to give me the strength to do whatever it is that I am setting out to do. From there, I make goals and often times I write them down.

When the ‘going’ gets tough, which often times it does…I run to the Lord and pick up the Word of God for encouragement! I encourage myself with the promises that He has given me of success and remind myself that He has promised me an awesome future (Jeremiah 29:11).

I also re-read the goals that I wrote down and reflect on the commitments I made and why I made them in the first place. I make the choice to reign in my emotions and get back up, encouraging myself that “tomorrow is a new day!” (Sometimes I have to do this many times… but the point is, I don’t let myself stay in an attitude of defeat!) I remind myself that I can truly do ALL things through Christ who gives me strength, and that means ALL!

We must recognize that one of Satan’s greatest tactics is to get us feeling discouraged and like a failure, because it is then that we will lack the determination to keep running the race and pressing on towards the goal. We must not fall into that trap! The most important thing that we could ever do is make the decision that no matter how many times we fall, that we will always get back up. We must make the decision to keep doing what we know to do and the results will come if we make the decision to not give up!

Prayer:  “Dear Lord, I thank you that with you I can do ALL things! Help me to be determined to keep running the race and pressing on towards the goals to which you have called me to. Help me not to fall into the trap of discouragement and a defeated mindset. I thank you that no matter how many times I fall, that you will always help me get back up. I am making the decision today to keep doing what I know to do and I know the results will come as I make this decision not to give up! In Jesus Name Amen”

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The Daily Dish~ Meal Prepping 101!

April 17th, 2013 - Daily Dish, How-To, Inspiration

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Does the thought of preparing food for your family during the week overwhelm you, or seem like it is just one more thing that you ‘have to do‘, but barely have time for?!?

I remember feeling this way when I was in nursing school, (and that was when I was only cooking for myself!) It wasn’t long after I got married that I realized that cooking every meal on the spot was not easy, especially if I was going to stay on track with healthy eating.  (Let’s face it… sometimes when you  are overly hungry or busy it’s easy to grab anything in sight, regardless of how healthy it is!) If that sounds familiar in any way, don’t worry… there is a solution!

I have found that the best possible way to live a healthy lifestyle and have healthy and delicious meals all week long is by meal prepping once for the whole week.

There are so many benefits to having one (or two) meal prep days during the week, but some of the best things about it is that it saves me time, money, and stress, all the while allowing me to stay on track with eating healthy.

Sound intriguing?!? Well… Let me show you how it’s done in just a few simple steps!

STEP 1: PLAN & SHOP 

I begin meal planning by making a list of recipes on my “Favorites Board”. (This can be found under the membership section of Dashing Dish.) I create a ‘favorites’ list each week based on what I want to have for breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners.  

From there I write down the ingredient list for each recipe. (I generally divide the ingredient list by 2 if I plan to prepare it for my husband and I and it is a recipe that calls for four servings or more). After writing out my grocery list I double check that I don’t already have something in my fridge or pantry. Then… I’m off to the grocery store!

If this step alone overwhelms you, this is where my meal plans come in! I have done all the work for you! They are broken down into the recipes, shopping lists, and even meal prep ideas for each week, based on the servings you need!

STEP 2: PREPARE THE FOOD

When I get home from the grocery store I generally don’t put any of the groceries away, (unless of course they are frozen and will melt quickly)…I simply take everything out of the grocery bag and set it out on the counter, putting things in organized piles according to each recipe. I then pull up my favorites list and get to cooking! I generally start with the breakfasts and move on from there.

Throughout the week I typically have a protein shake for breakfast, but I find that many of my breakfast recipes are great for mid-morning snacks, and/or if I am in need of a breakfast on-the-go. If I don’t end up eating them I simply freeze them for a time that I am in need of a quick and healthy snack!

This week I made my PB & J Protein Pancakes.

Some hard boiled eggs, (my husband loves these as a breakfast side and snack!)

Strawberry Baked Protein Oatmeal, (recipe to come!)

And for a snack I made my Protein Blueberry Muffins (recipe to come!)

For lunches and dinners I generally prepare big batches of veggies and lean meats to use in my recipes.

I like to cook my veggies in big batches either in a sauté pan or on a big roasting pan. That way they are ready as sides, snacks, or to add to a recipe.  I use this method of cooking in my Zucchini Chip recipe and Parmesan Green Bean recipe, but you can do this with any veggie.

One of my favorite ways to prepare chicken is in the crockpot! I make big batches and use the shredded chicken in my recipes for the week! If I am making Crockpot Shredded Chicken to prepare my recipes, I generally pop some frozen chicken in the crockpot and set it to high heat the morning of my meal prepping day. (That way it is all ready when I am ready to start meal prepping!)

If the recipes call for sautéed chicken or lean ground meat, I will cook it in big batches in my biggest pan! That way I am only prepping chicken and/or lean ground meat once for all the recipes!

STEP 3: PUT EVERYTHING TOGETHER TO MAKE THE RECIPES

For lunches I typically make something really simple such as a couple big salads and wrap sandwiches and put them in Tupperware containers or wrap them in foil individually. (Leftovers from dinner are also a great option!)

For dinners I typically make a few different main dishes and a couple of side dishes. 

This week I made my Three Cheese Stuffed Peppers

My Baked Mac & Cheese

and my BBQ Chicken Sweet Potatoes!

STEP 4: PUT IT ALL AWAY! 

After all the food is prepped and the recipes are made, I put everything in Tupperware containers and place it in the fridge! That way I have something to throw in a cooler if I am heading out for the day or to pop in the microwave and/or oven to heat up and have a delicious dinner on the table in minutes!

This whole process from start to finish takes anywhere from 2-3 hours. I typically pick a block of time on the weekend to get it done. I hope this post helps show you how easy it can be to prepare meals for the week in just one day. If you are still scratching your head, don’t let it discourage you!!! It can take time to learn and get in the swing of things. And if that’s you, a great place to start may be my meal plans…But before you know it, it will become a part of your routine and you may even find yourself loving it!!!

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Dashing Dish Favorite Things Giveaway!

April 11th, 2013 - Giveaway/Contest, Giveaways

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Anyone that knows me knows that I love learning & studying from the Word because it is they only thing that truly changed me, (and continues to each day) from the inside out! For that reason, I love a few specific ministries that teach the basic foundations from the Word in a very realistic and applicable way! Joyce Meyer Ministries is one of my favorites for that very reason.

Joyce Meyer is an amazing teacher of the Word. She uses real life scenarios which are typically very funny, uplifting and even a bit ‘let’s be real‘…All of which are all needed from time to time.

Because I have personally been blessed so very much by her ministry, I thought I would do a giveaway and share some of my Favorite life-changing materials with all of YOU! 

The Winner of the Giveaway Will Receive: 

3 Sermon Series on CD: (perfect for when you are driving around in your car)

  • Battlefield of the Mind
  • Healthy Living Spirit Soul & Body
  • Developing Discipline & Self Control

 

Devotional Book

  • Battlefield of the Mind Devotional

 

All you have to do to enter is share a link to your favorite thing from Dashing Dish. Whether it be a link to a recipe, devotional, or to Dashing Dish website…All you have to do is share the link on Facebook OR Twitter, OR both! 

Come back here and comment on this post saying that you shared your favorite thing on Dashing Dish, and you will automatically be entered to win!

I will announce the winner on Friday April 19, 2013! Good Luck!!! :)

 

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