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The Monthly Scoop – February 2021

Welcome to another Monthly Scoop post - February 2021 addition! February is always one of those months that flies on by. With bone-chilling temperatures and LOTS of snow, it was a good month to stay snuggled in and whip up a bunch of recipes! Let's dive on in.February...

Brown Butter Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Brown Butter Oatmeal Raisin Cookies are a classic cookie with a delicious twist. Brown butter is whipped into the cookie dough base to add a toffee-like flavor that is irresistible. Add in some oats, raisins and a hint of cinnamon to make a drool-worthy cookie!What is...

French Dip Sandwiches

This post and recipe is sponsored by Certified Piedmontese. All words and photographs are my own. Thank you so much for supporting the brands that make KJ & Company possible! French Dip Sandwiches are a classic, comforting sandwich that you just can't help but...

Baked Ranch Mozzarella Sticks

Baked Ranch Mozzarella Sticks are a fun appetizer to bring to life in your own kitchen! A breading made up of Ranch seasonings, bread crumbs and spices completely coats creamy mozzarella sticks. Baked instead of fried, these mozzarella sticks are a flavorful,...

Salsa Verde Chicken Soup

Salsa Verde Chicken Soup is a simple soup loaded full of flavor! Chicken is simmered in a flavor-packed broth of salsa verde, chicken stock, cannellini beans and spices to bring this chicken soup to life. Each spoonful is like a salsa dance in your mouth! This simple,...

Frosted Sugar Cookies

Frosted Sugar Cookies are a cookie classic! Using my Grandmother's tried and true recipe, these sugar cookies are legendary! A buttery cookie dough is rolled out, cut into desired shapes and baked until perfectly fluffy. Frosted with an almond-scented buttercream...

Healthier Chicken Ramen

Healthier Chicken Ramen is a delicious, healthy spin on a classic noodle dish. Chicken is simmered with stock, vegetables and miso paste to create the perfect broth. It is then spooned over brown rice ramen noodles and topped with roasted vegetables. Each bite is...

Cookies & Cream Puppy Chow

Cookies & Cream Puppy Chow is a classic dessert with a fun twist! Rice cereal is mixed together with melted chocolate and peanut butter for the puppy chow base. Then crushed Oreos are added in for the cookies & cream effect! Perfectly covered in powdered...

Cajun Shrimp & Sausage Stew

Cajun Shrimp & Sausage Stew is a flavorful spoonful! Shrimp and sausage are sautéd in cajun seasonings, and then simmered together with onion, bell pepper, garlic and stock. This stew is best served spooned over a bed of white rice to help soak up all those...

Blackberry Baked Brie

To say that I'm obsessed with this Blackberry Baked Brie appetizer is an understatement! A creamy round of brie is gently wrapped in a buttery pie crust and baked until golden brown. Topped with a warm, blackberry sauce, each bite is gooey, cheesy, buttery and then...

The Monthly Scoop – January 2021

Welcome to another Monthly Scoop post - January 2021! First off, happy New Year! Isn't it crazy that it's 2021? January held so many fun, precious memories to us. From romping in the 15 inches of snow we got with Queso & Amos, to creating comforting recipes to a...

Pepperoni Pizza Roll-Ups

Pepperoni Pizza Roll-Ups are the perfect appetizer option to please a crowd! Zesty pepperoni slices are rolled-up with cheese inside a crescent dough triangle. Baked until golden brown and melted, these Pepperoni Pizza Roll-Ups are best served dunked into your...

Why I Didn’t Try to Lose Weight for Hawaii

About this time last year, we decided to go ahead and take the plunge and book our trip to Hawaii. We were full of excitement and ready to adventure somewhere new together! And guess what? I didn’t start any crazy diets, I didn’t start weighing myself, and I didn’t change my workout regime. Why not? Let me tell you..

Photo Courtesy of Sunny Golden Photography

It’s taken me awhile to get here and I certainly haven’t always had this mindset, but I want to learn to love my body and appreciate it every day for what it is, that God has blessed me with health and I am able to explore the world He created. This doesn’t mean that I don’t want to be healthy, because I certainly strive for that every day. I want my body to be as healthy as it can be every day, and not just for a single trip. I don’t want to feel my best just when I’m vacationing on the beach, but also when I’m sitting at home in my sweat pants with messy hair and un-matching socks.

I’ve struggled with learning what being healthy means for me and my body. Going through eating disorders, tracking my weight and working out only because I felt like I had to (which you can read more about here), were all necessary things for me to go through for me to realize what my body truly needs. That doesn’t mean they were good, healthy, or experiences that I would recommend anyone to go through, but it lead me to where I am now! I’m not perfect and I still struggle with feeling like a rollie-pollie some days or find myself critiquing my body in the mirror, but I’m working on focusing my mind to other things. My body is strong, my body is capable of amazing things and I get to nourish and take care of it.

So, when we booked our trip to Hawaii, I knew it would be hard for me to think that I shouldn’t eat certain things or that I needed to exercise more for my “Hawaii bod”. Because of my past experiences, I knew it would be unhealthy for me to set a weight goal, as it would do nothing but discourage me and overtake my thinking. Instead, I just kept on the track that I was already on. Eating healthy and nutritional packed foods to nourish my body, but still indulging in sweet treats and Chick-Fil-A every once in awhile, working out to strengthen my body and to feel good, but also taking rest days to let my body recuperate, and finding clothes that fit my body type instead of making my body fit into the clothes. That included swim suits. A huge part of me feeling so comfortable in my skin in a swimsuit was finding the ones that worked for me and made me feel confident.My 2017 Swimsuit Recap goes over all the details of what I’ve found that works for me! 🙂

Another important thing to remember is that everyone’s story is different. Healthy looks different for every person and that is ok! It may be healthy for you to set weight goals, track calories or give yourself a goal/trip/vacation to work towards. Whatever is healthy for you and your body is what you need to pursue!

This time of year can be so discouraging as you see everyone pursuing/pushing their New Years resolutions, weight loss, diet changes and fitness dreams. I almost felt bombarded on Pinterest with all of the healthy food and pictures of women with their 6-pack abs, super toned arms and perfectly golden skin giving workout tutorials. I’m not saying these things are wrong, but I quickly found myself feeling smaller and smaller as if I wasn’t doing enough and was comparing myself to things on the Internet. Isn’t it so crazy how quickly we can get sucked in? I had to take a big reality check and remember who I am, what I’ve done and what all I’m going to do. Then I took another bite of my Nutella and moved on ;). Let’s use this time of year to encourage one another, lift each other up and highlight each other’s strengths! Social media and our culture can easily make you feel like you aren’t enough or you will never compare, and I think it’s time that we change that! 🙂 Everyone and every body is fearfully and wonderfully made. Psalm 139

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