Summer Meal

Gosh, I love summer meals.

Hot-diggity-dawgs fresh off the grill just scream summer! And when those “hot dogs” come in the form of aidells Italian Style all-natural chicken sausage, that’s all the better!

Tonight’s dinner included grilled chicken sausage served on a fresh bun with sauerkraut, parnsip fries, ketchup and sweet pickles.

Grilled Italian Style Chicken Sausage

Parsnip Fries

 I made the parsnip fries by peeling and slicing several parnips before spraying them with cooking spray, sprinkling the fries with salt and pepper and roasting them in the oven at 420 degrees for 25 minutes, flipping them half way through.

These fries actually reminded me quite a bit of rutabaga fries!

Dinner is Served

After dinner, Ryan and I sat out back with Sadie to entertain her with several rounds of fetch.

We shared a couple of post-dinner treats like a bag of popcorn and an apple with peanut butter while enjoying the pre-rain breezes.

Apple + PB

Eventually the rain arrived and we were forced inside.

We’re thinking of making tonight a movie night after we head out for a lil’ dessert. One strawberry milkshake with two straws, please! 😉

I’m really happy to be enjoying a relaxing night at home. I feel like our weekends have been jam-packed lately and I’m thrilled to have a weekend in Orlando to get some wedding related things done!

See ya in the mornin’!

Ode to Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is such a treat
It’s a creamy food I like to eat
It’s good on apples, it’s good on toast
It’s the nut butter that I love the most
Crunchy or creamy, I like them both the same
When it comes to eating peanut butter, I’m always game
I lick it off my finger because sanitation doesn’t concern me
The only thing that would make it better, is if it all was free

Any guesses what I had for lunch today?

Yep, A peanut butter sandwich!  Man, nothin’ gets past you guys! 😀

Peanut Butter Sandwich

I enjoyed a peanut butter sandwich made with whipped peanut butter and slightly thawed frozen banana slices on an Earth Grains whole wheat thin bun.

Because I have to keep you guys interested and a simple pb & b sandwich doesn’t exactly scream “creativity,” I sprinkled pumpkin pie spice over the bad boy before folding the two halves together.

Banana + Pumpkin Pie Spice


Confession: I definitely added the pumpkin pie spice to make this sandwich more attractive for the ol’ blog. BUT… man-oh-man, did it kick up the flavor about 10 notches. Seriously! Next time you make a simple pb & b sandwich, sprinkle a little pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg or cinnamon on the lil’ guy.

Along with the spiced up pb & b, I enjoyed a very loving array of butterscotch chips that I stirred into a cup of Fage Greek yogurt, sweetened with honey.

Aw, I Love You, Too, Butterscotch Chips!

All Togetha Naw

(Quick question to all you dog lovers out there… Can dogs eat butterscotch chips? I know chocolate chips are a complete no-no, but I wasn’t sure about butterscotch. Sadie definitely had one… and by one I mean 5… okay like 8.)

This lunch was more like a breakfast, but the body wants what it wants… and mine wanted peanut butter. Shocking, I know. 😉

Keep Calm Print Giveaway Winner

You guys had me smilin’ real big as I was reading your entries for the Keep Calm print giveaway.

Some of my favorite entries included:

  • Molly: Keep Calm and Love Carbs
  • Pursuit of Happiness: Keep Calm and Love Cheese
  • Shane, Corinne: Keep Calm and Smile Big
  • Sarah: Keep Calm and Love Whipped Cream
  • Lauren: Keep Calm and Love Funfetti
  • Marsha: Keep Calm and Love Fur-butts (about her cats 😉 )
  • Lindsay: Keep Calm and Crack a Beer
  • Clarissa, Noel: Keep Calm and Love Each Other
  • Jess: Keep Calm and Eat Cheeseburgers

I think I may need to order some more. I think a whole wall of “Keep Calm” prints would look fantastic in our house, but they might inspire us to drink copious amounts of wine and beer every night and eat an entire batch of cookies daily, so maybe that’s not the best idea. 😉

Without further ado, the winner of the “Keep Calm” print giveaway was:

Kayla: “I love these prints! There are so many I want, lol. I love the Cupcake one and so want the Be a Nerd one. But if I could make my own it would be Keep Calm and Love On OR Keep Calm and Om On for yoga <3. Ok, maybe Keep Calm and Love On. ”

Please email me ( your mailing address and the print phrase you would like so I may pass it along to Barb to make you your free print!

Question of the Afternoon

If you were going to write an “ode” to a food, what food would you choose?

(Feel free to actually write your own ode below. 😉 )

Aside from peanut butter, I think ice cream also deserves an ode… And so does cheese. And cookies.

Butternut Squash Protein Pancakes

I know some of you out there are just as bummed about the lack of canned pumpkin available on the shelves at the grocery store lately. How are we supposed to make pumpkin pie protein smoothies or pumpkin protein pancakes without the key ingredient?

Well, I have one can of pumpkin remaining in my cabinet that I am hoarding and saving for a special day when a pumpkin craving really hits! Since I am saving that can, I figured I could try to recreate my pumpkin protein pancakes with pumpkin’s sister squash, little miss butternut.

My first attempt was a mega-fail, which made Sadie quite happy (she enthusiastically ate up my unsuccessful attempt), but my second go was much better.

While the ‘cakes were cooking on the griddle, I sliced up a nectarine to enjoy along with the butternutty goodness.

After topping the protein pancakes with the nectarine slices and sweet syrup, I dusted the plate with nutmeg for some added flava-flav.

Breakfast is Served

This breakfast came together quickly, but seemed more intense, like a weekend-worthy breakfast or something.

My belly was happy.

'Cakes + Nectarine + Syrup + Nutmeg

And Again

Along with the butternut squash protein pancakes, I downed a tumbler full of Barnie’s French vanilla and nutmeg coffee that I snagged for free as I was leaving the gym this morning.

You can't tell by looking, but my throat is on fiiiire...

Not only was my throat on fire in the above picture, but my head was also throbbing from that headband. Too bad I didn’t take it off sooner because I am now forced to wear it all day because I have the “headband bump” if I take it off, and we all know how cute that looks. 😉

Butternut Squash Protein Pancakes


  • 1/2 c. canned butternut squash
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 scoop protein powder (I used All the Whey cinnamon bun protein powder which tastes like sewage in a shake, but is perfect in recipes)
  • Cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice, to taste


Blend ingredients together using an immersion blender. Spray pan or griddle with cooking spray and cook pancakes for a couple of minutes on each side. Top with syrup, peanut butter, fruit or desired toppings.

Note: The pancakes will not have the same texture as fluffy pancakes made with flour and will be thinner and “eggier.”

Of Possible Interest

Question of the Morning

Pumpkin vs. Butternut Squash: Which do you prefer?