Sunday, May 31, 2015

Table of Contents

Welcome to My So-Called (Mommy) Life. For many years I had dreamed of writing a food blog; a place where I could share my favorite recipes and and my thoughts on local restaurants.  Three years ago I became the mama to a feisty, voracious baby girl, and my life has been a beautiful chaos every since.  This year I welcomed a sweet, smiling baby boy to my brood, and life has gotten even more colorful!  Like my life, the blog's concept has evolved into something bigger, messier, and better.  It's a mix of recipes, toddler food, restaurant reviews, and more.  Hopefully this Table of Contents will help you navigate the chaos that is My (So-Called) Mommy Life.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Hot Corn Dip


Memorial Day is coming up in a few weeks.  Like many Americans, my family tree is full of brave people who served our country.  My dad was both Air Force and Army, and both my grandfathers were Navy.  My paternal grandfather, George K. Larsen II, gave his life for our country in World War II.  He volunteered for a last minute mission, and was shot down in the South Pacific.  His body was never found, so he's listed as both MIA and KIA.  As a child, I would fantasize that he had parachuted out of the burning plane, and had swam safely to an island, where he now lived out his days in paradise on the beach.  Now that I'm all grown up, I sadly know that isn't possible, but I take heart in knowing that his sacrifice (along with many, many others) helped protect our country. 


Thursday, April 30, 2015

Mama's Sloppy Joes


In every family, there is a mom-signature dish...the dish that is famous among all your friends.  For example, my best friend Lauren's mom made the BEST hamburgers and the BEST sweet tea.  My mom?  Well, it was her Sloppy Joes.  No one could come close to her sloppy joes. My dear friend Clint once challenged her to a Sloppy Joe cook-off, but he became daunted during the task, and somehow ended up serving up chili to us "judges" without even realizing it. 

Now that I have a family to feed of my own, I obviously begged my mother for the recipe.  I am happy to report that this Sloppy Joe recipe became the first meal that I served to my entire family of four--6 month old baby included--that we all ate and loved.  This is just one of those meals that you eat with a smile!  Thanks, Mama!

Friday, April 17, 2015

Mix-Free Homemade Spinach Dip


Recently, I found myself in as situation where I needed to whip up an appetizer for a party, but didn't have the time (or motivation) to run to the grocery store.  I looked at all the ingredients I had on hand, and I realized that I had everything to make a homemade spinach dip.  Everyone loves spinach dip, but have you ever had it made without the store-bought mix?  It is even better!  Honestly, there is no reason for me to ever use a mix again...making it from scratch was just as easy, and it is so much healthier and tastier!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Broccoli & Egg Casserole


Now that we have two children, our mornings are quite chaotic.  My husband usually gets the toddler ready, and I'm in charge of the baby, which doesn't leave much time for ourselves.  To make things easier, I make a big batch of breakfast for the whole week on Sunday night.  During the Winter, we ate Baked Pumpkin Oatmeal, but now that it is officially Spring, I wanted to find a more season-appropriate meal to start our day.  I've also started to work on losing the baby weight, so I wanted a meal that was nutritious and full of protein.  I came up with a Broccoli & Egg Bake, and it is so delicious!  I use just broccoli in my egg casserole, but you could easily add in ham, or swap out broccoli for asparagus or whatever vegetable you prefer.  It is easily adaptable to your tastes!  After I finish baking it, I wait for it to cool, cut it into 10 servings, and stick it in the fridge.  On weekday mornings, I take out individual servings and microwave it.  It reheats beautifully!  I love that I have such a healthy and easy breakfast at my disposal on hectic mornings.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Buffalo Chicken Bake with Quinoa & Broccoli


During my pregnancy, I had a constant craving for Buffalo Chicken Dip.  I was determined to figure out a way to turn this awesome dip into an awesome entree.   However, since the baby was born, I barely have had time to feed myself, much less create new recipes.  But as the weather gets warmer and the days get a little longer, I'm determined to get back into my regular routine of cooking new, healthy recipes for my family.  And, yes, we could argue over the label of "healthy" when it comes to this recipe...after all, Buffalo Wing Sauce is high in sodium, and there is a copious amount of cheese.  But...BUT!  There is quinoa and tons of broccoli!  And lean chicken!  And a generous serving size is under 500 calories!  Most importantly, it is frigging delicious, and sometimes you just want to eat something frigging delicious.  

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Sweet Potato Beef Stew


How about one last hearty soup before Winter officially ends?  The weather here in Georgia keeps flip flopping between 80 degree sunny days and 40 degree drizzly evenings.  On one of those recent chilly nights, I felt motivated to put a healthy spin on the traditional Beef Stew.  I made sure to fill the soup with as much veggies as possible, and I swapped out the white potatoes for sweet potatoes.  I think the sweet potatoes added a needed touch of natural sugar to balance out the saltiness of all the other ingredients in the stew.  I don't think I'll ever go back to regular old white potatoes in a beef stew again!