For some reason, school starting always makes me want to be super healthy. If you’ve been around for any number of years, you know that pretty much every August I randomly decide that we’re not eating cereal for breakfast anymore. That breakfast is going to be freshly cooked, super healthy, and include an entire bunch of kale. And then a week later, we’re back to cereal. So I wanted to talk about some way to eat smart while not making yourself insane! I’m a huge MorningStar Farms fan and have been for years now. I’m absolutely obsessed with their Garlic Parmesan Wings. I crave garlic parmesan wings like you wouldn’t even believe but since the fried kind you find at your local pizza place isn’t exactly healthy or low calorie, I always keep the MorningStar Farms wings in my freezer. They really hit the spot, you cook them in the microwave, and they have 61% less fat than the fried chicken wings! I love how MorningStar Farms is so innovative. Instead of just having a veggie, they consistently put out fun, new twists on meatless foods. Their newest items include Roasted Garlic & Quinoa Burger, Buffalo Chik Patties, Parmesan Garlic Wings, Mediterranean Chickpea Pizza and Baja Black Bean Pizza. I’m forever looking for easy, quick protein. Especially after a workout. There is nothing worse than finishing a hard workout and then having to wait 20 minutes for something to cook. I’m obsessed with the MorningStar Farms burgers because I can cook them in less than 2 minutes in the microwave and then put them on top of a salad. It’s so simple and the if you haven’t tried their Mediterranean Chickpea Burgers, you’re really missing out. I mean, look at that whole chickpea in the burger below! All 12 of the MorningStar Farms veggie burgers are awesome sources of protein. And bonus: you can totally make them on the grill! I also love the Spicy Black Bean Burger and the Roasted Garlic & Quinoa Burger. I tried the Roasted Garlic & Quinoa Burger for the first time while working on this post and it’s definitely a new favorite. MorningStar Farms also has things like Buffalo Chik Patties and Original Veggie Sausage. If you’re looking for delicious, easy, meatless foods, definitely check out the MorningStar Farms section of your grocery store’s frozen aisle. I recommend you pick up a few of the wings – especially with football season coming up!

To enter for a chance to win a $100 Visa gift card, leave a comment below letting me know which MorningStar Farms product you would most like to try!

Sweepstakes Rules:

No duplicate comments.

You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

  1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
  2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post
  3. Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
  4. For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from BlogHer via the sweeps@blogher email address. You will have 72 hours to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.

The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 8/11-9/14/2014.

Be sure to visit the MorningStar Farms brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts!

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One thing that I’m really passionate about is living a healthy, active lifestyle. For many, many years of my life I was neither healthy nor active and I don’t ever want my kids to fall into that kind of lifestyle. I have to say though, with 3 boys, it’s hard not to be active. Now that it’s warm here in Colorado, we’ve been having so much fun playing outside. We take almost daily walks, we are at a splash pad at least twice a week, and when we’re home, the boys are more likely to be outside riding bikes or digging up worms than they are playing video games. I find that staying active is not only good for your body, it’s good for your soul. I know I always feel better after some exercise, and a walk outside typically gets any crankies out of my boys. You have to make things fun to keep kids interested! Go on adventures, run through the sprinkler with them, just make it a whole lot of fun! Nutrition is the hard part for me! It seems like we are never on the same page around here. Someone doesn’t like this and someone else doesn’t like that and “Can’t I just have a bowl of cereal for dinner?” happens a lot. I never have a hard time getting them to eat fruit so we are always fully stocked on whatever is in season. Right now they are digging the strawberries. We go through probably 5 pounds of strawberries a week! And bananas are always a favorite. Veggies are a little tougher. All three of them will eat broccoli and carrots, but that’s pretty much it. I snuck some greens on a sandwich wrap a few weeks back and called that a win! My kids have been taking the L’il Critters™ Gummy Vites Complete for as long as I can remember. It’s probably the only thing I can say “Remind me to get this at the store” and they actually do. You guys, we’ve been out of bandages for months but you better believe we haven’t gone a day with the L’il Critters Gummy Vites!  L’il Critters combines the power of vitamins with a great-tasting gummy. I won’t lie, I use these too. I think they taste a lot better than most vitamins out there and they’re really convenient since you don’t need water.  These are specifically tailored to kids but you can find vitamins for men, women, pregnant women, or people over 50 by vitafusion™. My husband and I both take (and love) the vitafusion™ B12.  L’il Critters and vitafusion are both made in the US and are made with natural flavors. You can find them at club stores, mass merchandisers, drug and grocery stores nationwide including: Costco, Walmart, Target and Walgreens. More information can be found at www.gummyvites.com

Leave a comment letting me know your healthy lifestyle habits for a chance to win a $100 Visa gift card!

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

I received free product and payment for this sponsored post. All opinions are 100% mine.

Sweepstakes Rules:

No duplicate comments.

You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

  1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
  2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post
  3. Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
  4. For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from BlogHer via the sweeps@blogher email address. You will have 72 hours to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.

The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 6/10-7/31.

Be sure to visit the vitafusion and L’il Critters brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts!

 

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I am a huge fan of subscription boxes. I’m pretty sure I’ve tried all of them by now. I go through phases where I really like one and then I get bored, cancel it, and subscribe to another. I currently get Birchbox (beauty), Barkbox (for the pups), and Julep (nail polish – I love it because you can skip a month if you don’t like the colors).

So I thought today I’d share my newest favorite box because it’s about something we all love: FOOD!

It’s called Graze – and this is not sponsored, I pay for all my boxes – and it shows up in your mailbox as often as you want. I have mine set at every 2 weeks because I… uhh, like snacks. It’s $6 a box so much more affordable than other subscription services.

Each box comes with four individually wrapped snacks and a card with all the nutrition info. Since I’m currently doing the boring calorie-counting thing, I really love that! Most of the snacks are around 100 calories which is perfect for me!

The best thing about the box, though, is that once you’ve tried everything, you can go on their site and rate them. So if you absolutely hate something, they will never send it again! I have to say, I’ve only put one thing on my “DO NOT SEND” list so far because, as it turns out, I hate black currants.

I’m on my third box and I thought I’d share a couple of my favorites. The one you see above is Walnut and Vanilla Truffle. It has tiny fudge pieces in it! So it’s filled with good for you stuff like wanuts, pumpkin seeds, and golden raisins but then it has the fudge pieces as a little treat.

And the one below is called My Thai. It’s baked soy crackers with a sweet chili dipping sauce. I could seriously eat this one everyday. It immediately went on my “Send it to me often!” list.

If you want to sign up, use this link to get your first box completely free! And if you decide to continue receiving the box, you’ll get your 5th one free too!

Let me know if there’s any subscription services out there that you love so I can give them a try!

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Happy New Year! I’m back with my favorites of each month of 2013 but first I wanted to thank you for continuing to read, comment, pin, email, etc, etc, etc. Last year was incredibly hard for me and that made it very difficult to stick to all the goals I had for the blog at the start of the year. I really dropped the ball on a lot of things and I’m grateful that you guys have stuck around despite that. So thank you!

January: This Everyday Chocolate Cake is my go-to for whenever I have a chocolate craving.

February: I always say that I’m not much of a chocolate fan but I would eat this Brownie Pudding everyday for the rest of my life if I could.

March: I’ve been really into wings these past few weeks so these Buffalo Chicken Meatballs sound really good right now! And they’re so much easier than frying wings!

April: Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic may have been my favorite dinner I cooked the entire year. I remember sitting at the kid’s soccer game and worrying that my husband would eat all of it before I got home. It’s that good!

May: This month was full of good food but if I had to pick one recipe, it would be the Southwestern Cornbread Salad. I was shocked that everyone in my house loved it!

June: The 7Up Biscuits were probably my favorite bread I made all year. I’ve gotten lots of emails about the dough being too sticky but what I do is pour the batter into the (aluminum foil-lined) pan and then use a knife to cut the batter into biscuits. The lines won’t stay all the way through but they’ll basically break apart after being baked. You have to try these!

July: I love any salad that makes my kids want to eat it. This Italian Chopped Salad is loaded with your typical salad fixins but also has artichoke hearts, pepperoni, and pasta!

August: I love a spicy cocktail and this Spicy Cilantro Margarita was perfect!

September: I’ve made these Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps at least once a month since first trying them. They are one of our absolute favorites!

October: Dessert pizza is one of the best things I discovered all year. I’m telling you, life changing. The Caramel Apple Crisp Pizza was addictive!

November: My husband demanded that I include Funeral Potatoes in this list – I swear he brings it up at least once a week. He loves them and I bet I’ll be making them frequently this year.

December: I made this Late Night Pasta for the first time less than a month ago and I’ve already made it probably 5 times since then. Sometimes I even make it for breakfast and justify it by saying it has bacon and eggs in it.

 

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Hey guys! I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday and is ready for the new year. For the past few years I’ve done two posts around this time of year showcasing the favorite recipes (mine and yours!) month by month. First up is the favorites chosen by pageviews, pins, comments, things like that! See you tomorrow for my favorites!

January: Just in time for the Superbowl: Texas Cheese Fries! These are super simple and one of the best things on earth!

February: These Samoa Brownies are like a chewy, gooey version of the Girl Scout cookie everyone loves! And they start with a boxed mix!

MarchSlow Cooker Honey Sesame Chicken was one of my family’s favorites and one of yours! I’ve gotten a bunch of emails from you guys saying how good it is.

April: Here’s another easy dinner idea: Smothered Burritos! The meat is cooked in the slow cooker and those kinds of recipes are always a favorite around here.

May: This one has become a favorite for my family so I’m excited that you guys loved it so much too! It’s Slow Cooker Cheesy Chicken and Rice and if you haven’t tried it yet, you must!

June: Mozzarella, Tomato, Avocado Salad is perfect for hot summer days! And it’s so pretty!

July: I finally tried the famous Chocolate Chip Pudding Cookies and loved them! I haven’t made chocolate chip cookies without pudding since then!

August: This drink was definitely a favorite for the whole year. It’s a copycat recipe for Sonic’s Ocean Water and it’s the perfect poolside drink!

September: Another easy dinner! Cheesy Chicken Hobo Packets!

October: You guys love pumpkin as much as I do! The Pumpkin Roll Bars are easier than a real pumpkin roll and just as tasty!

November: Y’all like to spoil your pups like I do apparently! The Peanut Butter & Oats Dog Treats were a hit!

December: And finally, Hashbrown Taco Casserole! My kids won’t eat tacos but they loved this! I’m glad you guys like it as much as we did!

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