Crock Pot Chicken Fiesta Soup {Taco Soup}

Chicken Taco Soup, chicken fiesta soup, chicken soup, crock pot soup, slow cooker chicken soup, low sodium taco soup, low sodium chicken soup

This Crock Pot Chicken Fiesta Soup got its official name from Bug. Well, more like it got its name from me because I had to entice Bug to eat it. I've made this before and she loves it, but on one particularly "difficult" evening, she decided Chicken Taco Soup didn't sound appealing. I quickly retorted that it was Chicken Enchilada Soup. She didn't buy that either. But when I cleverly blurted in an excited tone that this was now Chicken Fiesta Soup, she decided that sounded fun and that of course she would have a bowl, or two. So from here on out, this soup will forever be dubbed Chicken Fiesta Soup. It's super simple to make on the stove top or in the Crock Pot, and this lower sodium recipe is also heart healthy for an added bonus. This is seriously one of the simplest recipes I make because everything comes out of a can or a bag. I toss everything in the Crock Pot in the morning in minutes, and by dinnertime, we have a house full of delicious aromas and a one-pot meal everyone … [Continue]

Dear Society, Kylee is NEVER Going to Fit in Your Round Hole and It’s OK!

difficult child, parenting, advanced child, school difficulties

Dear school teachers, dear school admins, dear society, I get it. She drives me crazy too. But Kylee, my Bug, is never going to fit in your round holes. Don't force her to conform. She can't. Although it pains me, I won't make her. She's not built like everyone else and that's what makes her unique. She's clever, she's cunning, but she's not cut from the same cloth that you are. Don't make her think that she's anything less because she's different. She's not less. She's different. Don't get me wrong, when she's awake, when she's making me doubt my parenting skills, I get frustrated too. But then I step back and really look at her. I look deeply into those big blue, knowing, defiant eyes, and I see the spark. When I watch her peacefully sleep, I see her "normal". And it's in those moments that I know that my square peg is anything but less. She's more. More than you'll ever know because you don't give her a chance. Give her rote activities and she won't do well. Challenge her creative … [Continue]

Every Day’s a Vacation with Old Factory Natural Soy Wax Candles

Christmas gifts, Old Factory Candles, soy wax candles, natural candles, clean burning candles

For the record, I received a set of 3 Old Factory Natural Soy Wax Candles in exchange for this post, but as always, all opinions, ideas, and photos are entirely my own. Holiday gift giving. I struggle with it every year. I mean, I know what to buy the littles, but what about the adults in my life? I struggle. It's cold outside and I'm not a fan of the cold. I love my island and 90% of the year, it's warm and smells like vacation. So why not vacation 100% of the year and share that smell, that feeling of warmth, with all of the people I love for the holidays? Thankfully, Old Factory Natural Soy Wax Candles makes that easy for me. I can order a set of 3 clean burning candles in the scents of Sea Breeze, Hawaiian Lei, and Awapuhi for just $25 to send to those I love this holiday season. Don't like the smells of the island (what is wrong with you?), they have a variety of scents available including a Christmas collection and each candle burns cleanly for a total of 20 hours. The best … [Continue]

Start Their Day with Peanut Butter and Cheerios Breakfast Bars

peanut butter cheerios bars, peanut butter cheerio bars, breakfast bars, protein bars

Thank you to General Mills and Usher for sponsoring this post and inspiring us to start our day with happiness and positivity! How do you start your day off right? They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but I say starting your morning off right in all ways is super important. We have a hard time here in the mornings. Bug doesn't want to get up, Bubby doesn't want to eat anything (hello pickiest eater on the planet), and I just don't want to fight with either of them. But with the help of Honey Nut Cheerios and the new upbeat song from Usher, "Clueless", our days are getting off to a positive start lately. Good food plus good music to start our day? Yes, please and thank you! This little guy right here is literally the pickiest eater on the planet. Oh, I know, you think your kid is, but you'd be wrong. He'd rather starve, like his momma, than eat something he doesn't like (which is almost everything). But I can't send him to school on an empty stomach so I … [Continue]

Loaded Jambalaya: A Lower Sodium Alternative

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Apparently, I make a pretty mean Jambalaya. Sure, maybe it's not "pin-worthy" because I searched recipes on Pinterest and I saw some amazing photos. But I wonder...are they just pretty, or do they taste great? My food doesn't always look pretty, but for goodness sakes, I have people knocking at my door asking if I made that Jambalaya again. That's all that matters to me. Their plate may look better, but looks don't matter when it comes to the pallet. This Jambalaya right here? It's a crowd pleaser, pretty or not. I win the football party food war, and in fact, I should win the internet for this recipe! I took a combination of recipes I found online, tweaked to lower the sodium and make it in my Crock Pot so it would be a no-fuss recipe. It's actually easy to make and using a slow cooker reduces how much prep work you'll need to do. Crock Pot Loaded Jambalaya Ingredients: 1 lb cooked chicken (You can boil it or buy it precooked.) 1 lb cooked turkey sausage 1 lb cooked salad … [Continue]

The Beauty and Strength of Galveston’s Jetties

Galveston jetties, pier or jetty, galveston landmarks, galveston island, ocean pictures

We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop. ~Mother Teresa I live in a beautiful corner of the country. I've wanted to live in a spot like this my entire life actually, but now that I do, I rarely take the time to get out and enjoy its beauty. But I've had a rough couple of weeks lately and I've felt like a failure as a parent. My babies, mostly Bug, keep acting up. I mean constantly. Talking back, breaking rules, failing to complete tasks...it's been very emotionally trying. Thankfully though, she had a project due for school focusing on Galveston's landmarks and the resiliency of the people of this amazing island. So I took a break from work and we took a break from fussing, grabbed the camera and headed out to some of our favorite places to capture the beauty. I chose first. I'm the mom, I can do that. One of my favorite sites on our slice of paradise to me are the jetties. I love their presence, … [Continue]