Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Chicken Breast Stuffed With Spinach and Fresh Mozzarella

By Lisa VanWilliams

Here is a healthy baked chicken option that keeps the chicken juicy and not dried out.  This is not a very complicated dish and it will taste like you spent hours in the kitchen.  It's easy to take make ahead and store in the fridge till you are ready to cook it.  It's a great leftover to take to work the next day too. 


3 chicken breasts sliced thin and pounded out
1-2 cloves fresh chopped garlic
1 cup baby spinach
salt & pepper
garlic powder
Montreal Chicken or Steak Seasoning
sprinkle of bread crumbs
1 cup fresh mozzarella (you can use skim milk or low fat)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup white wine

Preheat oven to 350.  Once your chicken is ready you can start to season it and add your filling.  You can filet the breast yourself or some supermarkets will sell cutlets ready to go. Sprinkle the chicken with salt & pepper, garlic powder, fresh garlic, seasoning, and bread crumbs.

Then add your spinach and mozzarella and roll up the chicken. If you need to use cooking string or a couple of tooth picks that's fine, just remember to remove before serving. 

Salt, pepper, garlic and sprinkle the top of the breasts with bread crumbs once in pan. Drizzle the stuffed breasts with olive oil and put enough white wine to cover the bottom.

Bake in oven 45 mins to an hour.  You can serve it over spinach, rice, pasta, or grilled veggies. Enjoy !

Monday, September 29, 2014

Honey Apples With Peanut Butter & Nuts

By Lisa VanWilliams

This is a great fall snack and it's fun to make with the kids. Slice your apples horizontally and core them out. Spread some peanut butter on the inside and made a sandwich with two slices. Take your knife and put some peanut butter around the outside rim of your apple sandwich. Then roll them in crushed peanuts and drizzle with honey.  You can add a dash of cinnamon or any other of your favorite spices if you prefer. Enjoy!


Sanitize Those Hands !

 By Lisa VanWilliams

With cold and flu season brewing we are constantly washing our hands in this house. Play groups, shopping carts, playgrounds, schools, and door knobs can all be carriers of nasty germs.  When you can't wash your hands, we found these great pocket size hand sanitizers for on the run cleansing.

Although hand sanitizing is not as effective as washing your hands, it can help reduce some types of germs.

CVS has these great hand sanitizers for $1.99. They also offer a 3pack for $5.49. These contain 62% alcohol

Saturday, September 27, 2014

CDC Physical Activity Guidelines for Adults & Children & Teens

Get out and get moving. The CDC states the following health benefits of getting regular activity:
  • Control your weight
  • Reduce your risk for cardiovascular disease
  • Reduce your risk for type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome
  • Reduce your risk of some cancers
  • Strengthen your bones and muscles
  • Improve your mental health and mood
  • Improve your ability to do daily activities and prevent falls, if you're an older adult
  • Increase your chances of living longer

For more info from the CDC on physical activity you can go to:

Friday, September 26, 2014

Honey Spoons

By Lisa VanWilliams

Check out these adorable whimsical all natural gluten-free honey spoons you can use in tea as a sugar substitute. Melville Candy makes these locally right out of Weymouth, Mass and they have been in business for over 25 years making lollipops.  They have flavors like Tupelo Honey, Lavender Honey, Orange Blossom Honey, & Blueberry Honey, and if you can't decide which flavor to pick they have a variety pack.  They also make great gifts and stocking stuffers. The company also offers a more decadent variety called Flavoring Spoons and they consists of items like Peppermint, Chocolate caramel, Mulling Spice, & Mint Chocolate. 

It's a healthier alternative made fun. Dr. Mercola did an article where he "recommends healthy and organic natural sweeteners, like high-quality honey. It contains natural antioxidants, amino acids, enzymes, vitamins, and minerals."*

Articles suggest honey might even help calm coughs, make a sore throat feel, and help you sleep a little better over the fall/winter months. 

I have seen these for sale seasonally at Marshalls 6 spoons for $4.99, but if your local Marshalls does not have them, you can order them online here: http://www.melvillecandycompany.com/Honey-Spoons_c_8-2.html


Thursday, September 25, 2014

Bed Bath Beyond & World Market

By Lisa VanWilliams

If you like specialty food or food from around the world, Bed Bath & Beyond has united with Cost Plus World Market and Milford is the only location in Connecticut to currently have one. I spoke to some employees at the store and they told me they put the market in a little over a year ago and let me tell you it's incredible.  They have little baskets filled with all kinds of goodies to try and wonderful ideas for gifts and stocking stuffers.  Jams, Japanese candy, truffle oil, coffees & teas, pasta and sauces from every region you can think of, I felt like a kid in a candy shop. 

Check out these mini honey pots, cute little smores kits they have, and even Halloween pasta!

In 2012 Bed Bath & Beyond acquired Cost Plus World Market and they are trying out World Markets in some select stores. So, if you happen to be in Milford stop by there and check it out. If you are not local, you can view their website online here: http://www.worldmarket.com/category/food-and-drink.do?nType=1

I plan to go back without my two year old so I can actually look at some items :)

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Fall Fairs

By Lisa VanWilliams

Hey New Englanders !! If you are looking for a great short trip this weekend, or just looking to spend some quality time with the fam, it's the 95th Annual Durham Fair this weekend !! This is Connecticut's largest agricultural fair and it's hard to believe it's been a tradition since 1916.  It's an awesome fun experience and if you have not gone, you should check it out. 

So what is there to see there? Tons of great stuff like 1,500 pound pumpkins, livestock exhibits (beef cattle, dairy cattle, goats, llamas, poultry, rabbits, sheep and swine ), a farm museum, baking exhibits, art & photography exhibits, horticulture, flower displays, horse pulling competition, wine tasting, live entertainment, and even a demolition derby.

There is something for everyone here. Sit on a bench and people watch.  It's kind of like the Big E but on a much smaller scale so it's great for people with young children.  The fair is nestled on a hillside so be prepared to hike up and down a pretty big hill all day but the location offers fabulous fall foliage views from several vantage points.

You can go to their website for more details, schedules, & costs here:

Monday, September 22, 2014

Paleo On The Run

By Lisa VanWilliams

Last week we recommended a high protein bar option, and today we are going with a Paleo, gluten free, & high fiber snack option that's great for on the run snacking.  Caveman Foods is a fairly new company out of California that offers all-natural gluten free treats and they stick to the philosophy that minimally processed is best.  Cave Man bars contain around 3g of fiber in each bar. They just sponsored the 2014 Camp Pendleton Hard Corps Race Series. 

We tried the Maple Nut and then I went back and bought a few more.  Tasty healthy treat.  You can check out their website here: http://www.cavemanfoods.com/shop/

Amazon has a box of 15 for $21.  They are also available at Sam's Club, Costco, and some 7/11's. The Vitamin Shoppe will start to carry these in 300 stores and then they will expand to 600 stores.  Keep your eyes open for these great new bars and give one a try. 

Friday, September 12, 2014

Protein Bars

By Lisa VanWilliams

If you are looking for a healthier alternative from your regular granola bars, we found an awesome great tasting high protein bar you might want to try out.  Not only does it pack a punch with protein, it's about half the sugar. 

To give you an idea here is the nutritional comparison of a Trader Joe bar compared to a Wise Weight Management bar:

Trader Joe bar

Wise Weight Management bar

Nutmeg State Nutrition sells these bars and has several locations throughout Connecticut or you can order them online at:

Friday, September 5, 2014

Jamaican Jerk Chicken

By Lisa VanWilliams

This dish is the bomb!  It's a flavorful escape and it satisfies one of our island favorites. You can make it mild or you can spice it up to volcanic eruption.  It smells incredible while it's cooking and it tastes even better than it smells. The jerk seasoning itself is a spice rub mix of allspice and Scotch bonnet peppers and you can pretty much use any kind of meat and/or seafood of your choice. 

  • four large chicken breasts
  • salt & pepper
  • garlic and onion powder
  • 1/2 a medium onion diced
  • 1 medium green pepper diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • Grace Jerk Seasoning spread on each piece (mild or hot)
  • drizzle each piece of chicken liberally in La Choy soy sauce until covered
  • marinate overnight or a few hours at least
Get a 13x9 baking pan or use a roasting pan and put all your ingredients into.

Preheat oven to 350. Cover with lid or use aluminum foil.  Put it in the oven and don't touch it for 2 hours.  After 2 hours remove the cover and brown the chicken on broil for a few minutes, or you put it on the grill to crisp them up (matter of preference). 

Once the chicken is cooked you can serve it over some lettuce and shredded carrots, or some rice and beans cooked in coconut milk, or steamed cabbage (some typical island sides).  The chicken is so flavorful that any option you choose will work. 

Here's the brand of Jerk rub we prefer carried by most grocery stores: