kids need music … and P.E.

Things are a’changing around this house, the last few weeks have brought exciting news ūüôā

First, Josh and I are purchasing our first home! You know what this means? A BIGGER KITCHEN! A fridge that cools and a freezer that won’t defrost; doors that don’t let rain in; a garage door that closes; blinds that are functional; walls that have wood studs and insulation; this list could go on and on and on and… you get it. We’re looking at a mid-November closing date. Gosh, I am so excited.

Second, I accepted a teaching position at a private school, classes start on the 26th!¬† This will be school #2 that I get to start a music program at.¬† Maybe that’ll be my “thing” – I go to school’s that don’t have a music curriculum and start one. Every school should have a music program, I could seriously go on a 10 page rant about kids needing a creative outlet in school. And P.E. … kids need P.E.; after all, San Antonio is the most overweight city in America.

Speaking of overweight, back to the blog topic… This recipe was passed along to me and who could resist a name of “chicken bombs” when thinking “I wonder if I’ll make this?” I made it the week after seeing it! The chicken was full of flavor and cheese oozed out; super easy to make and incredibly tasty.¬† I left off the bacon … originally planned on using turkey bacon for a healthier option but figuring I’d have to cook the dish inside, I didn’t need my house filling with smoke. I think I’ll nix the bacon even if we do cook it on the grill in the future, I can never get bacon wrapped items to turn out right.¬† The bacon is either soggy or burnt, no thanks! I love bacon but you know what, you don’t need it to survive.

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Josh requested a fresh veggie side, I hadn’t made steamed broccoli in a while so I knew it was time to get back to it.¬† Buy 1 head of broccoli ($1.50! CHEAP!), I added an onion that was already in my pantry. That’s it! It takes maybe 1 minute to prep and 10 minutes to cook. No complaining that you don’t have time! For flavor, I sprinkled on veggie seasoning, ex. Mrs. Dash … whatever you prefer.¬† I did add a SMALL dollop of butter just to coat the veggies once transferred to a serving bowl.

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For the chicken you’ll see I placed the cookie rack on a foil lined casserole dish.¬† Since the chicken needed to be basted a few times while baking, I didn’t want the BBQ sauce pooling around the chicken, making it soggy or turning in to burnt edges.¬† With a deep dish under, the sauce was able to drip off nicely.

Don’t want leftovers? I used 2 large chicken breasts and cut them in half (as directed), you can see it made 2 chicken bombs per person. One disagreement I have with the recipe, it says if you don’t care for spicy peppers then you should opt for green bell peppers instead of jalapenos.¬† Guess what, removing the seeds and ribs (as instructed in the recipe) leaves you with a bland pepper.¬† That’s where the “spice” is typically found. I hate spicy peppers and handled the rib-less/seedless jalapenos just fine.¬† Get your facts straight, Leslie. ūüėČ

This one’s a keeper!

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expect a few things

With this blog you will see A) pictures of meals I pull off and B) pictures of my sous chefs… I mean, the blog is titled in their honor.¬† In case you don’t know me, my sous chefs are 5 years old, 4 years old, and just about 1 year old.¬† I do not have kids, instead I have 3 dogs.¬† I consider them my sous chefs because they get in my way, I curse at them, they help clean up … er…¬†scavenge for dropped food, and I know they are secretly judging me with every move I make.¬† Whatever, I try to not let them get to me; after all the most important judge is myself. I’m critical and very much a perfectionist which absolutely carried over from my real profession as a musician.¬†

Of course I can’t forget about my husband Josh, although his opinion doesn’t matter much to me, he eats PB&J and cereal for every meal when I go out of town. He’s also my human¬†garbage disposal, I wonder if he¬†tastes anything.¬†Seriously though, I actually took up this new cooking hobby because of him (clearly that makes my previous statement a joke, I love him).¬† He was recently diagnosed with Type¬†1 Diabetes; no more fried chicken, mac and cheese, carb loaded dinners, and late night trips to Sonic (happy hour shakes, anyone?!). I had to figure out a new way to cook and if you’ve read any “healthy cooking” blogs or books, maybe you too get the taste of cardboard in your mouth.

Our first grocery trip after the diagnoses lasted 2 hours. 2 HOURS!¬† We left with maybe $100 worth of food after feeling burned out from reading labels and taking in sticker shock (healthy shopping does cost more, I don’t care what people say). Notice how I said “healthy shopping” not “healthy eating” … yes, getting all the no sugar, lean, and light foods does add up HENCE my new hobby of cooking. There had to be a way to not spend an entire pay check on nasty tasting, sugar-free food.

I may be on to something but making my own mayo, salsa, guacamole, marinades, and sauces just tastes better. I know what went in to everything and there’s a satisfying feeling knowing we’re doing our best to be healthy plus we’re not broke after an entire week of homemade meals. Oh most important, I don’t have to read labels anymore! Sure, I have to be aware of what fruits or vegetables have a high amount of sugar but that’s second nature now.

So while this first entry is pretty dull, it’s just that, my first entry. I’m new at this and I will be sure that my dinner posts are funny because lord knows I’m not a professional cook.¬† I have about 60 inches of working counter space, the stove/oven is lopsided, my sink is 5 inches deep, the¬†fridge actually freezes and the freezer defrosts, all of my small appliances are on top of cabinets in which I need a step stool to reach or I just trip over it most of the time. 2 of my sous chefs beg and 1 sits on my feet.¬† I drop knives and curse (like a sailor as Josh would put it); you’d think the kitchen was going down in flames.¬† Somehow delicious meals always end up on the table, sure they may not look like the recipe picture but they are pretty darn close (I blame the camera). Bonus from all of this, Josh has been told by his many doctors that he is one of the healthiest diabetics they’ve ever seen. He actually had one nutritionist tell another guy (in¬†the diabetes class)¬†“you need to get one of those”, referring to Josh’s personal chef, ME.