This is a savory meal that will make you forget you’re dieting. I make mine low-carb for our diabetic friendly family. I make it with more meat and veggies. We skip the regular mashed potatoes. For a low carb or keto version, you can do parmesan and cheddar cheeses with mashed cauliflower now available in most stores.
Another trick is to use red or yellow potatoes instead. The texture is slightly different, but the carb count is lower and they are low on the glycemic index. What’s that? It’s a chart of how easily your body can convert things to sugar.
This is a great way to stay on target. It gives regular shoppers alternatives to high sugar and simple carb foods. We’ve been using this method for over 10 years. Best of all lots of items can be substituted into Keto and Paleo diets.
We started using this in conjunction with low carb dieting to keep type 2 diabetes in check. We happily report it has taken us back to pre-diabetic status. We have both lost weight and feel better even when we don’t stay as strictly to diet as we should. Hey, sometimes I just need chocolate ok.
Jen’s Easy Shepard’s Pie
1 1/2 lb ground chuck or round
1 package Steam and mash Ore-Ida potatoes Frozen (or low carb substitutions. Parmesan cauliflower is really good).
1 pkg frozen mixed vegetables (California mix is better for carb counts)
4 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp Italian Seasoning (dried)
1 cup chopped onion
2 pkg Brown gravy mix
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp salt (I skip this there is enough in gravy mix.)
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/3c water (if it’s too wet it’s a big mess)
- Heat 2 Tbsp Olive oil over medium high heat.
- Add Beef, onions, garlic, salt, and pepper. Brown beef, about 5 min.
- If not using cast iron or oven safe pan, turn into cassarole dish.
- Mix 2 pkg brown gravy mix with 1/3 cup water. Mix well and pour over beef and vegetable mix. Stir well.
- Preheat oven to 350°F
- Make topping with mashed potatoes or cauliflower.
- For topping add 4 Tbsp butter, 1/2 c milk, and dash of salt and pepper to potatoes. (If using cauliflower add parmesan and cheddar cheeses, salt and pepper.)
- Spread potatoes or cauliflower over filling. Cover completely.
- Bake uncovered at 350°F about 20 minutes.
- Top with sharp cheddar cheese.
- Put under broiler in oven for 5 minutes. Watch to make sure top is not over done. Serve hot.
These are great to freeze to. We put them in those aluminum pie pans or sealing dish. Freeze until needed. Simply defrost and warm. Those pans go easily from freezer to oven and table. If it seems flimsy simply place on on a baking sheet for ease of carrying
This is a great red, white, and blue dish for any patriotic holiday. It gets even better if you switch out the fruits like kiwi instead of blueberries and leave the strawberries with your bananas and you just got Christmas colors. This lucious, fluff like treat is always one of the first things to disappear at our parties.
Cheesecake Fruit Salad
These are for the red, white, and blue version.
1 pint fresh blueberries
1 lbs fresh strawberries
3 fresh bananas, chopped to bite size
1 pint fresh raspberries
1 lg 24.3 oz Philadelphia Cheesecake filling
1 16 oz container of Cool Whip
4 cups mini marshmallows
1 tsp real Vanilla extract
2 Tbsp heavy cream or milk
- Prepare strawberries by removing stem and chop into small peices.
- In large bowl combine cheesecake filling, vanilla, and milk. Mix u till smooth.
- Fold in 1/2 of Cool Whip
- Fold in fruit, marshmallows, and remaining Cool Whip
- Keep chilled.
1 16 oz pkg Bacon
1/3 c red onion
1/2 c dried cranberries, Craisins
2 heads fresh broccoli florets
1 1/2 c shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 c sunflower kernels
1/4 c Blue Cheese dressing
1/8 c Avocado oil Mayonnaise
1/8 c heavy cream
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 Tbsp cider vinegar
2 Tsp or packets sugar or substitute
- Mince onion, chop broccoli
- Cook bacon well. I like mine so I can simply crumble it.
- Add bacon, broccoli, Craisins, cheddar cheese, in lg bowl
- Toss to mix well
- Assemble dressing and pour over salad.
- Mix well to coat.
- Chill 30 minutes or until serving
- Add sunflower kernels right before serving. Mix well and enjoy.
2 medium cucumbers, chopped into1/4 in pieces
2 c grape tomatoes (I like the sweeter taste of grape over slight tart flavor of cherry tomatoes).
1/2 c minced radishes
5 oz fresh Basil leaves
2 Tbsp minced red onion
3 tsp Extra Virgin Olive oil
2 tsp Red Wine Vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 tsp minced garlic
- Mince radishes and onion.
- Wash cucumbers and dice into about 1/4 inch bite size pieces. I find it easiest to slice into 1/8″ slices and cut into quarters or eighths.
- Slice grape tomatoes in half.
- Combine cucumbers,tomatoes, radishes, and chopped basil in large salad bowl.
- Mix Olive oil and vinegar, and garlic.
- Drizzle liquid over salad and salt and pepper to taste.
- Mix well to coat and enjoy.
Serves 9-10 easily.
We paired this with hamburgers and fries. Kids and adults loved it. It was a great low-carb side dish for my husbands birthday party.
So with Valentines day fast approaching most women have already purchased their gifts or have a good idea of what to get for Valentines. I for instance only have to buy cards for hubby and friends whom get gifts. Now if you ask my hubby or most men they not only don’t know what they are getting anyone. For a large percentage they didn’t realize the date was anywhere close. So as they are figuring out what to get, you can help with input. They are actually releaved to be “told what to buy”. Subtlultey is a lost cause here.
Jewelry is one of the favorites , but there are some distinct differences out there and you need information to help you, help him to have a vague idea down to a specific piece you have tried on or like. If the later, let a sales person give you all the info on the piece, then leave card in a place he’s sure to find. That goes for an add you saw too.
Reguadles of who is picking out the piece it is important to follow these tips.
- Fashion or fine if it’s on an open sales floor or made of base metals in China it will unfortunately not last very long. I know that it’s more expensive, however buying fine will give a reminder through many years how much you are loved. That little expense I guarantee you have earned as his/her partner. Fine Jewelry not only features real gemstones, real gold, silver, or platinum, it will not turn your skin green and will become a cherished momentous to hand down to generations to come.
- Big terms like exclusive collection,open hears, Tawalski , Leo, LeVian, and assorted collections are called such for precision cuts inflicted, more faucets than in a normal cut, made by a designer which may or may not improve the quality. Some like LeVian have great examples of high quality gems. Master craftmanship, and rarity are the hallmarks of this brand. If they were good enough for Persian royalty, where they got their start, chances are it will be the envy of all your friends.
- Lastly there are simple signs of quality to look for in any piece. In the USA all metals are required to be stamped. Gold is 10k, 14,18k or 24k. For durability reasons you should stay 14k and under. Pure silver and gold are both soft other metals like copper,zinc, nickel, or others are added for durability. Sterling silver for instance, is .925 that is 75% pure silver. White and yellow golds are done the same way. Even platinum has to stamped”plat” there are others but these are the most common.
- Gems in fine jewelry are real, simulated, or created. The most valuable are determined by color, clarity, and sparkle, like diamonds. Real gems can range in color and have differing hardness. A lot of more expensive or softer stones are created in a lab. Color, size, quality are the same. A simulant is glass or paste. These or plastic is used in fashion jewelry.
- The best gifts are the ones she’ll wear over and over. Which option you choose can be a factor. A necklace or pendant are normally safest unless she is handling small children. Rings need to be sized and generally need maintenance every couple years. It is recommended to have evaluation from jeweler every six moths. This will lead to fewer repairs. Even the most careful of us need some annual check up and or repair. Like auto repairs the earlier it’s caught the less it will run in repairs.
- Some women adore hearts for Valentine’s, others may prefer the newer styles of Pandora, LeVian, Simply Love by Vera Lang, Open Hearts by Jane Seymour, Love Knot, Past Present Future, Ever US to name a few collections out there.
- Prices will vary if you go to a jewelry only store like, Kayes, Jared, Sales, etc. Will carry more of said collections, and will carry more expensive items. To save try jewelry stores like JcPenney, Kohls, Sears, Some Sam’s Clubs,and Macy’s will be more affordable. I do not recommend Wal-Mart or Kmart, over some big box stores simply based on consumer experiences I’ve seen over the years of my career.
- Not all women want jewelry, I know it sounds funny to some of but please remember your Valentine actually loves you enough to spend quite a bit of time finding you the perfect gift. Remember the main part of the gift is the love it took to get it. As one of my girlfriend’s likes to say,’when a two year old hands you a phone saying they are calling for you’ you answer the phone. Leave pictures of what you want in places he can’t help but see them l. I accept all gifts because I would not be able to take my husbands love back to a store. So what do you want this Valentine’s Day. Comment your favorites, and if you have jewelry questions i’ll try to answer, I do not work for any stores. May you have all the love you deserve…..yes that includes Cheerios breakfast in bed from the kids.
I made it !! I just had my 36th Birthday! Anyone who is close to me knows that not too long ago the goal was to reach this age. I’m not going to say its been easy… I would like to think i’ve weathered the last few years withpoise and grace. Overall I believe i’ve done rather well, even when thoroughly aggravated or hit a low spot along the way . What started as a stroke via a burst vessel in my brain, is now a long recovery where we didn’t know how much damage there would be to regaining normal vision and balance. I had to have specialized therapy to drink normal beverages and to walk again. All the therapy and another brain surgery to remove some of the things that initially saved my life. Turns out the tube had been giving me aweful dizziness and vertigo symptoms sometime just sitting up in bed. That is how i spent my birthday one year later. Last year my Christmas was spent clearing more complications this time in the form of a cyst from the original bleed that as it grew unoticed pressed on my spinal cord cutting off the messages my brain sent to my legs. I was so excited when post surgery and enough drugs to stand sitting up i could wiggle my toes. I had read of people s o happy they cried but this was my first experience with that kind of joy. Why am i telling you all this? I implore people to stop living with regrets and procrastinación about your feelings. Embrace how you feel and live the gift of life you’ve been given . Smile, laugh, cry, express your feelings , don’t wait to say i love you, do not hesitate to clear the air with those closest to you. Start with the general stuff as we focus on giving thanks, endevore to make it a habit to look at all we have to be thankful for the whole year long. Moms and dad’s, granparents, aunts and uncles, friends and coworkers, and most of all everyday you wake up to the prescious gift of children. I have a new niece and nephew to spoil and my brothers oldest daughter who will start school soon. I am so blessed that i get to meet them and watch them grow. So as the hustle of the holidays begins, remember to take time to appreciate all the blessings you already have . Siblings, parents, friends, aunts, and uncles, never miss the chance to tell them how special they are to you.