Brownie Surprise

I saw this on Pinterest (of course)

Ingredients
-2 boxes brownie mix
4 snack size 6 packs of your fav candy bars ($1 per package)

I chose snickers, twix, kitkat, & Milky Way! Reese, almond mound, Oreos, etc would be delicious also!

You an also use up that extra Halloween candy and not buy the snack size packs!

Prepare
1. Mix one box of brownie mix per box instructions
2. Pour into greased 9×13 cookie sheet
3. Layer candy bars on top of the brownie mixture
4. Mix second box of brownie mix per box instructions
5. Pour on top to finish it off!
6. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes
7. Enjoy!

These gooey delicious brownies are thick so they take awhile to bake! Mine cooled overnight and I brought them to work for our wonderful CNA staff! They were a hit! They are already requesting a second batch!!

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I love to bake!! It adds to my temptation of sweets! That’s why I like to share it with everyone so I will not eat the whole pan!!!

On a side note to my goal list: I have not yet met my goal weight but I’m working on it! My best friend Megan is getting married in February so I have some work to do!!

I am still anxiously waiting to hear back from NP school on my application status.

Work was crazy busy but has slowed down a little.

Ryan & his mom gave me a cameo silhouette for my birthday and I have made lots of fun things!!

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This was for our friends little girl’s first birthday!!!

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This little guy is hanging on my door at work :) (note the band-aide on his knee- wound care nurse!)

Yay it’s Friday!! Let the weekend fun commence!!

Delectable mini molten chocolate cakes

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Yum!! I saw this on Pinterest here and immediately knew it was on my list to bake! Ryan and I love the chocolate lava cake from chilis! Guilty! These are so far from healthy, but they are so delicious! At least I made the mini version, right? :)

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Ingredients:
2tbs melted butter to prep pan
2 tbs coco to prep pan
3/4 cup butter
12 oz chocolate chips (I liked semi sweet)
1/2 cup heavy cream
5 eggs
3/4 cup sugar
2/3 cup flour

1. Prepare cupcake pan by coating each one with butter and cocoa. I just kinda swirled the butter around with the back of my spoon then did the same with coco.
2. For batter- place chocolate chips in a microwave bowl.
3. Add butter and cream on top.
4. Microwave in 30 second intervals (stirring between) until smooth
5. Let chocolate cool slightly
6. Add sugar, flour & eggs
7. Stir!
8. Pour into prepared cupcake pan
8. Let sit for at least one hour or up to a couple days!

Bake at 450 degrees for 10 minutes for a regular 12 pan cupcake size. Just until the outside has set. The top will not look quite done in the center. Check with a knife to see if a thick pudding consistency in center.

Let them cool for 5 minutes then place a flat cookie sheet on top. Time to flip! Invert the pan, mine fell out fairly easily. One or two needed a little help.

Serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream! I added some powdered sugar on top :)

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Melt and stir, melt and stir!

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Pretty and smooth! Add sugar, flour, & eggs!

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Fill up each prepared cup! I filled all the way to top! It only puffed up a little.

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See how the tops are a little dark? Baked, but not quite? I kept putting it in two minutes longer because I felt like it was not baked enough. Some of mine ended up not being pudding like in the center :/ they were still yummy though! so don’t worry! 10-12 minutes will do fine!

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Flip them out of the pan and enjoy! I used a cheese grater to “sift” powder sugar on top to make them look pretty :)

My friend Allison and her boyfriend loved them! Mom, KK, & Ryan did also :) I will make these again! They are so convenient since they can be prepared the day before!

Until next time…
Kallie Jade

Easy Spaghetti Squash

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So, I have heard lots of talk about this stuff called spaghetti squash! I thought it would be a little complicated, but it was so easy.

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
2. Pierce spaghetti squash all over with a knife or fork
4. Place on pan with a rim
4. Roast for 1 hour, turning half way through
5. Let cool until able to handle
6. Cut spaghetti squash in half

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7. remove seeds
8. Scrape with fork, easily comes out in strings

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9. Enjoy with your fav ingredients!

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I didn’t have much time tonight so we made Ryan’s fav… Ground turkey with sautéed mushrooms, bell pepper, zucchini, squash, and parmesan! Simple.

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I plan to try pesto or Alfredo next!

What do you like with your spaghetti squash?

Graduation Hat Cupcakes

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Easy graduation cupcakes! They are super easy, just take a little time putting together!

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Ingredients
Fav cake mix
Cupcake liners
24 chocolate squares (Ghirardelli)
24 M&m minis
24 Reese’s peanut butter cups
Extreme air head sour candy strips
Fav icing
Sprinkles (optional)
Icing decorator (optional)

Prepare
1.prepare cupcakes per directions on box. Let cool completely.
2. In the meantime, take the wrappers off of chocolates and cut the extreme airhead candy strips to size. (I cut each strip in half with scissors)
3. Once cupcakes are cooled, decorate with icing. I have a Wilton icing tool I like to use
4. Top with your sprinkles of choice

Now you are ready to make the fun part!

5. Spread a small amount if icing on bottom off peanut butter cup- it will be like the glue for the chocolate square. (the large side will be the base)
6. place the large side on top of cupcake
7. The icing you put on peanut butter cup should be facing up- place chocolate square on top.
8. Put a small dab of icing on center of chocolate square
9. Stick one end of airhead extreme in icing
10. Place another dab of icing on end of air head extreme
11. Place m&m mini on dab of icing
12. Enjoy!!

I used a zip lock bag and cut one corner. I mixed blue food coloring with my white icing and filled my zip lock bag. This made the little dabs of icing easy to do!

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Yum!! Hope yours were delicious and cute! Ours were a hit!

Happy baking with a Southern Touch of Sugar!

Graduation Hat Brownies

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Yum! My grandma loved these! And everyone else….

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Ingredients
Fav brownie mix (we cheated and bought our brownie bites from Walmart! )
12 chocolate squares (Ghirardelli)
12 M&m minis
12 Reese’s peanut butter cups
Extreme air head sour candy strips
Small amount of icing (to use as “glue”)

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Prepare
1.prepare brownies per directions on box. Let cool completely. OR unwrap your store bought brownies bites
2. Take the wrappers off of chocolates and cut the extreme airhead candy strips to size. (I cut each strip in half with scissors)

Now you are ready to make the fun part!

3. Spread a small amount if icing on top if brownie (to act as the “glue”)
4. place the large side of peanut butter cup on top of iced brownie
5 . Put a small amount icing on peanut butter cup
6.The icing you put on peanut butter cup should be facing up- place chocolate square on top.
7. Put a small dab of icing on center of chocolate square
8. Stick one end of airhead extreme in icing
9. Place another dab of icing on end of air head extreme
10. Place m&m mini on dab of icing
11. Enjoy!!

I used a zip lock bag and cut one corner. I mixed blue food coloring with my white icing and filled my zip lock bag. This made the little dabs of icing easy to do!

Happy baking with a southern touch of sugar!

Mashed Cauliflower

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Wait, what? Cauliflower? Mashed like potatoes? Is this real life?! Yes, and it actually tasted delectable!!

I referenced this wonderful blog!

I read the comments and used some of their suggestions. I did not have sour cream or Greek yogurt so I tried out the milk!

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Ingredients
1 head of cauliflower, chopped into florets, cut off as much stem as possible
1 red potato (I didn’t peel mine)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
3 tbs parmesan
1/4 cup milk or 1/4 cup sour cream
Chives (optional)

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Prepare
1. Fill a pot with 1 1/2 inches of water
2. Fit a steamer basket over the pot and bring to a boil
3. Place chopped potato and cauliflower into steamer basket and cover
4. Let cook 12-15 minutes, until you can easily pierce with a fork
5. Drain well.
6. Return to pot on stove with heat turned off
7. Let sit for 5 minutes to let the excess water evaporate
8. Add salt, pepper, parmesan, and milk ( or sour cream)
9. Mash and whip to desired consistency
10. Sprinkle with chives
11. Enjoy!

I did not have a steamer basket, but then I realized my rice cooker has a little basket and fit the pot perfectly ! Maybe you have one too and you forgot ;)

Some say these taste a little gritty. I didn’t think they were!

Happy Nurses Week! 2013

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Happy nurse’s week to all of those awesome nurses out there! Our facility did a great job showing all of the nurses appreciation! Thank a nurse today, they have control over your pain meds (;

Monday: We had cake and sandwiches! And candy :x

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Two pink starburst! Score. It’s the little things in life.

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Tuesday: western day! Cute decorations included :)

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Wednesday: raising canes!

It was celebrity day! I did not dress up, but I liked my co-workers idea. We wear white scrubs and she said she was dressed as Florence Nightingale! So clever :) so yes, I was dressed as Florence Nightingale also!

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Thursday was twin day! We had subway sandwiches & joes cupcakes. A favorite bakery in the lake area. At least the healthiest meal of the week besides cupcakes… I’ll have to be extra healthy next week (;

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Today (Friday) they are having amazing door prizes and yummy lunch! Party food! And we got nice monogrammed polos! Thank a nurse this weekend!

I made cupcakes for Friday’s party :)

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How did you celebrate nurse’s week??

Until next time…
Kallie Jade

Late Night of Baking for Nurses!

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Last minute, after working out, I decided to bake a few sweet treats for the big Friday of Nurses Week!

I started with the basics, store bought strawberry cake mix and store bought cream cheese icing! I made both as the directions stated.

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I was ready to decorate! I looked on Pinterest and the Internet for ideas. All of the cute ones were fondant :( So, I figured I would try anyways to create the symbols with regular icing. I broke out my icing decorator! All I really know how to do is make the icing swirl. When I switched from white icing to dyed red icing, my icing “gun” spit out a pink blend. I did not feel like cleaning that sucker out each time I changed colors. So, I decided to break out the trusty zip lock bag! Worked like a charm.

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That’s supposed to be pill capsules. ;)

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Florence Nightingale’s hat!

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Stethoscope!

Who woulda thought they would come out so cute? I sure didn’t! I was a little worried when I asked my husband what one of them was supposed to be…. he couldn’t tell it was a stethoscope. But once it was with the rest of the “theme”, I guess you get it!

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I made brownies also! And bought some cookies. I only had so much time to bake in one night for all the nurses!

What is your favorite cupcake flavor? Do you do lots of decorating or keep it simple?

Until next time…
Kallie Jade

Spinach & Mozzarella Chicken

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Yum! I looked through my Pinterest cookbook and decided to try out this healthy recipe! Liven up same ol grilled chicken! Nailed it.

Ingredients
1 red bell pepper
10 oz frozen spinach drained (I used fresh spinach)
4-6 boneless skinless chicken breast cutlets (3 large breast cut in half)
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms (Optional)
1 tsp Olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Prepare

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

1. Season chicken breast with salt and pepper
2. Grill chicken on grill (grill pan, or George Forman) until no longer pink
3. Heat skillet with olive oil over medium heat
4. Add in spinach, red bell pepper, and mushrooms
5. Cook about 5 minutes, until heated through
6. Once chicken is done- place on a foil lined baking sheet
7. Top each chicken breast with spinach, mozzarella, pepper slices, and mushrooms
8. Bake at 400 degrees for 6-8 minutes or until cheese is melted
9. Enjoy!

It’s easy and looks pretty :)

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We enjoyed our chicken with baked parmasean zucchini chips!

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Simple Baked Zucchini Parmesan

Ingredients
1 zucchini sliced
1 tbs Grated Parmesan cheese
Olive oil

Prepare
1. Slice zucchini into thin strips
2. Place on non stick cookie sheet
3. Drizzle with olive oil
4. Sprinkle with parmesan
5. Broil for a few minutes- until cheese begins to brown
6. Enjoy! Yum! Easy!

Also pictured is:

Easy Peasy Red Potatoes

Pop one into the microwave for 5 minutes. Smash. Season with salt and pepper. Add a little pinch of cheese if desired.

Get to cookin! Let me know if you try it and how it comes out! Any tweaks?
Kallie

Healthier Eating Tips

One of my goals this year is to free myself from 16 pounds! My goal is to get back 120. I have lost 9 pounds so far and I wanted to share with you my little tips and rules I like to keep on my mind.

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This is roughly what your plate should look like! Do you usually fill the big portion up with meat? Try this out! Have your plate looking healthy, you can tell with a quick glance! I am by no means a fitness professional, dietitian, or anything of this nature. I am simply a girl interested in eating healthy and being fit so I can feel great! I am writing about the information I have learned or read over the years. This particular post I have referenced Live Strong.

All you have to do is commit. Make a goal. Start small, but ambitious, then go for it! Continue making new goals each time you attain your previous goal.

I started small by eating smaller portions of all of our good ol southern cooking! Our families cook for us quite often (free food? we are there!), but i just eat less! Definitely do my best to avoid seconds! It’s hard to change old habits, but just taking the leap to commit will get you started! Once you are ready, try cooking a few healthy dinners at home instead of eating out every night, or swap out all of your sugary drinks for water or tea. Start somewhere. And keep on going.

Nutrition Tips:

You should have about 46 grams of protein each day! Yes, each day! If you want to get technical you should calculate 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight. The recommended serving size of protein is 3oz of lean meat, which contains about 25 grams of protein.This is why it’s important to have your plate looking like the picture above! You want to choose lean protein (chicken, fish, turkey), not fatty protein. Saturated fats and processed foods- no thanks! A few protein alternatives aside from meat would be: peanut butter, nuts and seeds, beans, tofu, or eggs. Protein helps to keep you full and give you energy, so try to have protein with each meal.

The majority of your plate should be colorful fruits and veggies. Who doesn’t love pretty colorful things? I’m a crazy carrot and apple snacker! Eat veggies raw, cook ’em up, roast them- whichever you prefer! Just eat more! Careful with the dipping-ranch can be caloric. Try hummus!

Don’t forget your whole grain! You should have about 28g of whole grain a day, to be exact! Three 1 oz servings will do (my fav is a serving of oatmeal or a slice of whole wheat bread with peanut butter). Do not let the media tricks get you! Check the ingredients list, if wheat flour or whole grain is not one of the first few ingredients on the list, you probably don’t need it! Enriched or refined grain? Not the best option. I feel that fiber pairs with whole grain. Consume 30-50 grams of fiber daily. Keep that digestive track movin’!

Fat. Yes, you need some fat. Good fats, of course. Try nuts, seeds, or avocado.

Drink lots of water! 0 calories? I’ll take it! I avoid sugary drinks as often as possible. I have banned soft drinks from my diet for years now. Of course, when I do drink my calories, it’s often of the rum ( alli & meg) or margarita variety. You must limit your consumption of alcohol, too! Talk about kill your healthy eating quick! I like to drink green tea at night cozied up with a book or TV.

Supplements. I have read the only supplements you should consider taking are protein, omega 3 fish oil, and a multivitamin. Be careful with the protein. Too much protein is tough on your kidneys and liver. Any other supplements, toss them out!

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Does your diet look a little something like this? It’s time to change. Right now. I may not be a dietician , but I am a registered nurse! If you want to avoid sky rocketing cholesterol and heart attacks, I suggest you take a few of my tips into consideration! Diabetes.. shortness of breath… Stroke.. I’ll pass on that.

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Make a NEW go to list for all of your usual grocery shopping. Keep your refrigerator and pantry looking healthy. And you too, of course! I have a few healthy recipes under “A Southern Touch of Spice” you should check out (:

Okay— lots of fruit and veggies, water, portioned lean protein, good fats, fiber, and whole grain! Got it? If you do, start working on changing some of those old eating habits! I don’t like to say I’m “dieting” because I don’t feel that I am. I love sweet fruit and crunchy veggies. I am simply eating healthy and making smart decisions. I enjoy a few sugary sweets and pizza every now and then. But it’s certainly not part of my every day diet.

Eating healthy is key to dropping a few pounds. I think of exercise as a necessary supplement to your healthy diet. Exercise keeps you strong and heart healthy! Run, swim, bike, step aerobics, weightlifting, elliptical training, tennis, basketball, walking, volleyball…..go do something!

Start small. Commit. You will feel better each day and grow as you reach your goals. Find your motivation! Keep track of your success. MyFitnessPal is a great app to watch your intake.

Temptation is all around. You will fall off the wagon every now and then. What’s important is to realize it and want to get back on track!

To weigh or not to weigh? It’s all about you. If the scale is not changing as quick as you imagined it would, are you going to be disappointed and quit? Or will you be motivated to work harder? Try taking your measurements or a weekly picture. You may find your clothes are fitting a little more comfortable/looser, and that’s all you need for assurance. Do what’s best to keep you motivated.

Here is a few rules Bob Harper (biggest loser) likes to follow:

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I agree with him! Keep these in mind.

Hope you are having a wonderful day! Go out and do something. Success is sweet! (;

If you’re already living a healthy and fit life, keep it up! Grab a friend and get them moving too!

Comment with any questions or suggestions, please. I would love it! What are you doing to be active and nutritious?

Until next time…
Kallie Jade