Archive for June, 2013

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

garden grow

Inspiration is everywhere? It is in your everyday! Sometimes we are just not in the mindset to see it or feel it. I admit to feeling somewhat “meh” lately. I haven’t felt my creative mojo flowing. I have certainly seen some pretty inspiring things lately but nothing has really kick started my creativity. Maybe I have been looking too hard or maybe I’m just exhausted! Sometimes though inspiration just sneaks up on you when you don’t expect it and you feel it, even if just for a moment.

As you may know I work full-time. You probably don’t know that my office has a fabulous receptionist (why would you know that lol?). She is the friendly, competent kind who is always willing to help someone and ready with a quick compliment to lift you when you need it. She is always creating activities to bolster moral and keep my colleagues and I invested in interacting with each other. Recently she challenged us all with a “How does your garden grow?” photo exhibit. That is, she asked us to bring in our personal photos to be displayed in the company cafeteria in the theme of things that grow in nature (it’s open for interpretation).

So I suppose about now you are thinking “what does this have to do with lunch”? Ha! Well, today’s lunch was inspired by the “How does your garden grow” theme. You see her theme got me interested. I actually went through my personal photos and remembered once again how much I love to take photos. I remembered why I stop and take pictures every single day of my life. I remembered that inspiration really is everywhere in everyday. If she is reading, I thank her for the inspiration!


  • Pretzel thins
  • Naval oranges and blackberries
  • Sugar snap peas and carrot chips
  • Flower sandwiches (turkey with mozzarella)

Sandwich was created using 3 cutters: 1 small flower, 1 small circle, 1 smiley face

This lunch is not gluten-free BUT simply swap the pretzel thins for a gluten free pretzel and the bread for a gluten-free bread. Everything else is gluten-free and these are very easy substitutions to make. Gluten-free bread can sometimes be crumbly but should withstand the flower and circle cutters without issue.

Do note that portions pictured are child sized. If you need more food add more!

Since I pulled together some of my favorite garden type photos I thought I would share one that I submitted to the exhibit! This was taken at the Copley Square Farmer’s Market in Boston.

 copley farmers market



Products featured in this post (links below are affiliate links and this blogger may earn a commission on any sales):

Make it Count!

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

calorie count lunch


I want to be healthy! I try to be diligent about it. I TRY to be mostly artificial free, mostly organic, and mostly Non-GMO! For my 2 year old son Evan I even try to be gluten-free (he is, I just try)! I put a fair amount of effort into it all! The one thing I haven’t really tried to do though is count calories, not until recently that is! I never really gave much thought to calories in and calories out. So I have added this to my healthy checklist! I am in my 40s and have 4 children, 2 of them under the age of 4, and I want to be around a long time to enjoy them! Maintaining a healthy body weight therefore has to be important to me too!

I don’t want to be hungry all day though! Oh no! My life is chaos and I need to stay focused! Hunger is distracting and OK I fess up, hunger also makes me cranky! Lately I have tried to put together lunches that will give me big portions for less calories. I also try to give myself variety so I have the option of eating a few items as a snack if hunger strikes before lunch hour! I do this by mixing in a portion of fresh fruits and veggies that is 1/2 or more of my total lunch!

Here is an example in my lunch today:

calorie counted

This lunch in total was under 450 calories! Believe me, this lunch was very filling! Don’t you think it looks filling? Some would argue that fruits and veggies are not filling enough. There are always some who will argue! I say if you are drinking water and eating smaller portions through out the day you should be fine. That being said if you need more then simply make some adjustments. You could always swap out the mango for pretzels, popcorn or crackers! You could toss in a Babybel Cheese! Definitely adjust and do consider what the proper calorie intake is for you! My Easylunchboxes container always makes it easy to control portions and add variety that appeals to my eyes and stomach! I have to admit I am excited to open my lunch on my lunch hour! I follow up lunch with a walk or jog and then back to work!

I am not a fitness expert but 8 weeks in to my consideration of calories in and calories out, I find myself down 12 pounds. To me that is 12 pounds healthier…. check!



Note: Calories are estimated. Do consider consulting your doctor before starting a diet and exercise regimen!

Products featured in this post (links below are affiliate links and this blogger may earn a commission on any sales):

Leftovers for Lunch Hour

Tuesday, June 18th, 2013

leftovers for lunch

Time sure flies when your having… well it seems to fly no matter what! This is my first post in some time because sometimes life simply gets away from me! I am delighted to say however that I had the opportunity to not only take a break from posting but to take a much needed life break. My husband and I were fortunate to escape our every day chaos and take a 3 night cruise with Royal Caribbean. My wonderful mother-in-law watched our 4 children for 4 days and we had a true break of the mind, body and soul!

This was our first ever cruise. I wasn’t sure how I would feel. I was concerned about being sea sick. I was concerned about feeling trapped. I was concerned I would just not like it at all! All my concerns proved to be unfounded! My husband and I are most definitely “cruise people” and had a fabulous time! With so much to do, so much to see and so much to eat, how can you not enjoy yourself? Not to mention the views were simply spectacular!

cabana view

View from our cabana on Coco Cay (Royal Caribbean’s private island)


Sunset on board the Enchantment of the Seas

Sunset on board the Enchantment of the Seas

This also meant a temporary break from packing lunch but not for long!

The lunch featured at the top of this post is a leftover lunch. Most of the grown-up lunches I feature on this blog are derived from family dinner leftovers. In this case, this is actually leftovers from Father’s Day. To celebrate my husband we had dinner at his favorite Mexican restaurant! Let’s face it when you go out to eat the portions you receive are often more then you can (ok should) eat. If you keep the idea of packing the leftovers for lunch in mind you may be inclined to eat a more reasonable portion. However even if you do indulge (and hey we all sometimes do) whatever amount you have leftover can still become your lunch by simply filling it out! My Easylunchboxes container is always a great way to turn today’s restaurant leftovers into a filling lunch for work tomorrow! Be honest, how many times have you brought restaurant leftovers home only to throw them out? Don’t do that! Pack them up and take them to work for lunch hour!

In this case, I have pulled my leftover Chori Pollo (Chicken with chorizo sausage) out of a sad restaurant take home tin and freshened it up. While I sat at my desk and worked I enjoyed this meal a second time! No leftovers were thrown out!

This lunch included:

  • Leftover Chori Pollo  and rice which I served on a bed of lettuce harvested from my own garden.
  • Way Better Snacks Sweet Potato Tortilla Chips
  • Fruit salad of grapes, blueberries and strawberries

I have to admit I was pretty excited to open my lunchbox that day! This is one of my favorite eat out meals and I was happy to enjoy it just as much the second time around!



Products featured in this post (this link below is an affiliate link and this blogger may earn a commission on any sales):


Get every new post on this blog delivered to your Inbox.

Join other followers: