Baked Apple Chips & 21 day fix approved

Apple’s are delectable. I will take them anyway I can get them. Sauce, Pie, Cobbler, Crisp, Chips or right off the core! I have made & consumed them in all these ways except Apple Chips. I occasionally buy a bag of dried apple chips, but they always end up disappointing. They are either too sweet, not sweet enough or just a pile of crumbs at the bottom of the bag. And to top it off, they are not cheap. Usually no less than $3 for a small bag. A few weekends ago, thanks to Storm Neptune, I had some time on my hands. I made Apple Chips for the 1st time. And let me tell you, it certainly won’t be the last.

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It’s quite simple really.  Apples, Cinnamon and  Sweetener are the only ingredients you need. Add a baking sheet, some parchment paper, a sharp knife (or mandolin cutter) and you are in business. Preheat your oven to about 200 degrees. The low temp allows you to keep them in the oven longer. They will crisp up nice and slow and ensure that you won’t burn them. Slice your apples as thin as you can. The thinner the apple slice, the faster they will crisp up in your oven.  Lay the apples on a parchment paper (or slip mat) lined cookie sheet. Mix together about 1 tbsp of cinnamon and 1 tbsp of sweetener of your choice. I used stevia. This will cover about 2 apples. Adjust depending on how many apples you use. Sprinkle the mixture on the apples. You can do both sides if you want, but I prefer only doing one side. Place in oven and set timer for 1 hour. Flip after one hour and put back into oven for another hour. After 2 hours are up, I shut the oven off and let them sit in the oven for another 30 minutes or so. I did a workout, took a shower, washed the dishes and checked my email all while these bad boys cooked (crisped) away!

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I love this recipe and will be making it again and again. I can ensure there are no added and unwanted ingredients, especially added sugar. For those who follow the 21day fix plan (which I LOVE), as long as you stick with the recipe above, you can enjoy these for a mere PURPLE container! This 21 day fix recipe for baked apple chips is so easy to make, it will become a staple snack in your house! time I think I will add only cinnamon, as I love the flavor. If you love apples as much as I do, this is a must try. Let me know if you try these!

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Happy Snacking ~ Namaste

Chili – Vegan, Gluten Free, Chicken – The choice is yours

Autumn has arrived. With that comes my favorite thing ever. Football. Why didn’t I say my favorite sport you ask? Well, because next to my family- football is my favorite thing. And with football, comes lazy Sundays watching games on the big screen, while munching on my famous chili. I am not proud of many meals, but this darn chili does me proud! I can make it any way I want, depending on my mood and it still tastes like a million bucks. Dear hubby says he could eat it 24/7. Bless his heart.

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It’s quite simple. Once you have the base of the chili- which is vegan, you can add more ingredients to the preference of your guests. What’s even better is, it cooks itself in the crockpot. Oh holy invention. You make us busy moms so happy. If you are not a football lover like myself ( I will forgive you this very big transgression), this chili is still quite a crowd pleaser on any given Sunday. Try for yourself and see……. play around, add something different and report back to me. I love seeing how recipes can be transformed just by a dash of this or sprinkle of that. Happy Autumn.

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Base Ingredients for Chili:

28 oz can of San Marzano tomatoes- Crushed or Diced, depending on your preference
15 oz can of organic dark red kidney beans-drained
15oz can of organic no-salt added corn-drained
1 large pepper (green,red, yellow or orange)-diced
1/4cup  dried onion flakes, 1 tsp paprika, 1 tsp chili powder, 1 tbsp sea salt, 1 tbsp parsley

Delicious as is- but can experiment with more options below:
Add 1 lb. grilled white chicken -cooked and diced-add to slow cooker
Sprinkle with some cheese (dairy-free alternatives can be used as well)-once cooked
Add some blue corn chips-once cooked

This is a simple recipe to make. Place all your desired ingredients into slow cooker. Cook on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 6 hours. Enjoy the taste of Autumn.

Feed your soul

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Motivation Monday- Reviver Challenge

Over the weekend, I participated in something I never thought I would/could do. I ran an obstacle course style race called the Reviver Challenge. It.was.hard. The obstacles were not fun or enjoyable. I mean, if you like climbing over 12 foot walls with only 1 platform for your feet- then you are well, not like me. If you like crawling in tunnels of mud that smell like <not mud> then this is your cup of tea! Me, I like running on smooth pavement listening to my teeny bopper catchy music and people watching as I go. This did not include any of that.

Ready to Race

Ready to Race

Just because the obstacles were not fun or easy, doesn’t mean I didn’t have fun. The fun came with running this with some fabulous ladies. The fun came with conquering each obstacle as a team. The fun came with getting out of my own head and living outside my comfort zone (even if only for a short while). The fun came when I saw my family there cheering me on. But the most fun was at the finish line.  When I crossed the line, I felt accomplished, proud, excited, relieved, tired, hungry and so much more. It was an overwhelming mix of emotions.

Over the past few years, I have been trying to live my life outside of the lines. When you push the boundaries, you experience things you never thought you would. When something scares you, think about how you will feel if you conquered it? Would you be in awe of yourself? Feel proud? What scares you? What is something you have always wanted to do, but never found the right time? Do it. What are you waiting for? Life is not endless. There is a limit to what we will be able to achieve here on Earth. So why waste your precious time doing nothing when you can be doing something. Go. Whatever it is, try it. Try everything once… never know……

Congrats to my girls- Jen, Meghann, Rebecca for a job well done!

After race smiles!

After race smiles!



Motivation Monday: Running Wild

” Joy, you will never ever be able to run 1 mile without stopping”.  “Joy, just work with what you can do”. “Joy, medically is not possible, it’s too detrimental on your lungs”. They told me my lungs can not take that kind of pressure. You see, I have asthma, allergies, but also a deviated septum. It’s so bad, even the structure of my nasal cavities are small. Most people have round holes on their nose that lets air in. I have small slits, plus a deviated septum, which for those who don’t catch my drift: BLOWS! (I made a funny!)

Sporting my favorite running skirt

Sporting my favorite running skirt

Flash-forward to 2011. I started running. Warwick City Park offered a nice paved shaded 5k path perfect for walking/running with a stroller. I would walk- then run-then walk- then jog the whole thing. It would take me 1 hour 24 minutes. And I was pushing through it all, using almost 1/2 of my inhaler in the process. About 3 months after I started that, I decided to register for an official 5K. I chose the Gloria Gemma Breast Cancer 5k because that year I had a scare with the disease. PSA- please do self exams each month. I ran/walked that 5K on October 11th 2011 with a time of: 47 min 45 seconds …….. Much practice and self-discipline as well as understanding my body, I now run at least 2x a week.

My longest run- Feeling Strong!

My longest run- Feeling Strong!

I am here to tell you, don’t let someone tell you what you can and can not do. I understand that I was NOT supposed to be able to run. I get it. Medically, I am not supposed to run 1 mile, let alone a 5k. Running & breathing through your mouth are not conducive with each other. I ran yesterday as a Mother’s Day gift to myself. It was the longest I have ever run. 4.13 miles. My time was 45 minutes and 6 seconds. It was hard. I needed my inhaler like most runs, but nothing compared to 2011. The humidity didn’t help. But I didn’t stop. Don’t just push boundaries, break through them. I am a girl who is NOT supposed to be able to run 1 mile- and I just ran 4!