Zen Bodi melissaboyer.jeunesseglobal.com


For more information, to order, or for pricing please visit melissaboyer.jeunesseglobal.com.

Jeunesse Global has so many great products to offer. I am using and loving the Luminesce skin care line but am excited to tell you about a product line that caters to weight management. I will start by saying I have not used this product since I am pregnant. My sister has used the complete line for almost two weeks now and is seeing amazing results! We were chatting this morning and she basically said I know this sounds crazy but I have lost 9.5 lbs in 11 days. I’m almost nervous to post it because I’m not sure people will believe me. I can tell you that she has tried several different approaches to weight management, some of which worked and some that didn’t and this one is working for her body. Every body type is different so results will vary. Here is what her plan looks like on Zen Bodi.


  • 2 Zen Shape pills and 1 Zen Fit before showering (30 min before eating)
  • Protein rich breakfast


  • 2 Zen Shape pills and 1 Zen Fit (30 min before eating)
  • Light lunch


  • Zen Pro
  • If she is still hungry she has a salad or some protein. No evening carbs.

WATER – WATER – WATER! Drink a lot of water! As with any plan, make sure you incorporate regular exercise into any routine.

Here is some info from the Zen Bodi site OR you can go to my product site and read up for yourself.


1. Take two capsules of ZEN Shape™ before your main meals to curb cravings.
2. Pour ZEN Fit™ into 8–12 ounces of cold water before exercise or twice a day to trim down.
3. Take ZEN Pro™ as a meal replacement or after exercise to help with muscle recovery.

ZEN Shape™
With African mango seed extract, green tea leaf extract, and raspberry keytones, ZEN Shape™ fights sugar cravings while controlling hunger. Featured in Forbes Magazine as one of the most effective weight loss supplements on the market, African mango seed extract has been turning heads internationally. In fact, to get the kind of nutrients ZEN Shape™ offers, you’d have to eat 90 pounds of fruit. Meticulously developed, ZEN Shape™ was made to prepare the body for fat loss. A vital part of the ZEN BODI™ System.


ZEN Fit™ fruit punch

ZEN Fit™ watermelon

ZEN Fit™ is a rich source of amino acids, which aid with muscle recovery as well as with the digestion of proteins. They are also important for burning fat and helping to lift your mood. A specially formed compound found in ZEN Fit™ works with ZEN Pro™ and ZEN Shape™ to heighten the brain’s sensitivity to leptin, so you know when you’re satisfied sooner—which means you eat just as much as your body needs—no more, no less. A vital part of the ZEN BODI™ System.


ZEN Pro™ vanilla bliss

ZEN Pro™ chocolate dream

Protein is the ultimate muscle fuel. That’s why we’ve incorporated a potent blend of whey, rice, and pea proteins into ZEN Pro™—to build the power you need to tone up. Our proprietary powder is made from the highest quality protein available, which is easily digestible and healthier than many soy-based formulas. A vital part of the ZEN BODI™ System.


Please feel free to message me through my site if you have any questions. I will follow up this post soon with how my husband is incorporating Zen Bodi into his daily work out routine. If you have any interest in becoming a distributor let me know. Wholesale product is just one of the many benefits!

It’s a…

We had our last doctors visit on March 4th. They told us we had to wait three more weeks to find out the sex of the baby. THREE MORE WEEKS! The anticipation was killing us. I booked my ultrasound for March 27th and then immediately got to the car and called Baby Face (a local ultrasound place). They could get me in that Saturday. SOLD.

Miles, Gavin, and I were all together when we found out the great news. Nobody even knew we were there. We made it a big deal that Gavin was going to see pictures of his new sibling. He was interested all of 5 minutes before he started climbing on furniture.

Gavin has said from the beginning that he was getting a brother. About a week from the ultrasound he started saying he wanted a sister. Miles and I really had zero preference. A sweet girl to play dress up with would be fun but a rough and tumble boy would also be a blast.

With the exception of a few people, we have been holding out on telling what we were having until we could do some cute photos of Gavin for the reveal. Well in true Boyer fashion, we got busy. So instead we made use of a Silver Dollar City attraction to tell everyone what we are having.


IT’S A BOY!!!!

He has a cute button nose just like gavin had in his first ultrasound. He was squirming and moving all around for the photos. We are are over the moon excited!


On March 15th Miles and I both felt Baby B kick on the outside. Such a special moment when you first feel movement. It just makes things so real. Since then he has become so active. I’m pretty sure he will play soccer one day.

Wrinkles Be Gone! – melissaboyer.jeunesseglobal.com


In all the chaos that this year is bringing I decided to start a new venture! I know I am crazy but I just can’t help myself when  good thing comes along.

I am a huge skeptic when it comes to selling anything. I see those videos and infomercials and I just know those people are fake or airbrushed to perfection. I buy a work out DVD set and really push hard for 3 months then take a few days off and next thing I know it has been a month and I haven’t touched the things.

I kept seeing stuff posted on Facebook about this miracle product that was changing the way people look at skincare. YEAH RIGHT! But the curiosity got the best of me and I shot my friend a text and said what they heck are you selling?

Well here I am writing a post about the exact thing she was selling. I am now part of the Jeunesse Global team and couldn’t be more excited about the products and the opportunity to back a product that I know works and a full line of products that have the potential to affect not only myself but my husband.

Tonight’s proof that this stuff really works. I got my Instantly Ageless product in and immediately wanted to make sure that I could 100% see the results and see the transformation first hand. My dad of all people was my first tester.

Now if any of you know my dad he is not one to use product. For as long as I can remember he has used that terrible bar soap that I swear has sand paper in it by his sink. No special face wash. No facial product. That just isn’t him. He has definitely aged well over the years but like all people he has some lines. Specifically some crows feet right next to his eyes, a few wrinkles on the forehead, and some spots under his eyes.

He sat down in the chair, I put the instantly ageless one side of his face, waited two minutes, and the results blew me away. See for yourself. No photo shop or anything like that.

001We had a little extra so why not see what mom thinks. She has very few wrinkles, just the normal lines that start to appear over time. Check out her before and after.

002If you want to test this product out yourself contact me directly to purchase a sample OR trust me that it works and head on over to melissaboyer.jeunesseglobal.com and buy some today. Poke around at the other product lines that they offer as well. I am going to be testing out the Luminesce line and Miles (my very supportive husband) is pumped about the Zen line as an addition to his daily workout routine.

Please contact me in the site listed above if you want to know more about the products or would like to join our team and see what the hype is all about! Don’t be the last to join. You won’t be sorry you signed up!

2015 – A year of new things

Once again, I have neglected my blog. My excuse this time is just life. I keep waiting for things to slow down and I don’t know why I am surprised when we just keep getting busier. To be honest, we bring it on ourselves.

2015 is starting to be the busiest of all. Here is a little of what to expect from the Boyer’s.

Photography – We continue to be blessed with a growing business. Growing  team, full season, and some pretty great locations. All of the guys are about to get into the thick of wedding season and we are excited to see the beautiful brides we have booked walk down the aisle. The rest of our time is filling up with seniors, families, corporate shoots, and much more. Keep it coming. We love our clients and love the work we do. I don’t do as much photography as I would like to these days. With a very active 3 year old and a full time job there really aren’t enough hours in a day.

Home – We recently sold our “dream land” that we have been preparing to build on for years now. It went quickly and painlessly though. Hopefully the person that purchased it from us will enjoy it as much as we would have. Instead we have decided to build a custom home in a great neighborhood with JSN Properties of NWA. We met with many builders and JSN was the only one that we walked away feeling like they were on our team and wanted our dream home as much as we did. It helps that they are friends of ours. We were lucky enough to have shot their destination wedding years ago. We have settled on a floor plan and are just waiting to break ground. I know building a house can be stressful but once it is done it will all be worth it. We hope to put our current home on the market soon! The market is really good right now so hopefully it will move quickly as well. Yes that means if it sells we will be homeless and likely moving twice. YIKES!

Future Home Site

Building a home should be all that you take on in a single year BUT we love to keep things interesting. So on top of it all our family is growing. No we aren’t getting another dog! The Boyer three will be the Boyer four around August 11th! I’m sure you are thinking we are crazy right now. You are probably right. Baby B will likely arrive before our new home is complete. I am laughing out loud as I type this. I will go ahead and answer all of the normal questions that we have been getting.

bigbro.winner bigbro.mwb-4 bigbro.mwb-5 bigbro.mwb-6 bigbro.mwb-7 bigbro.mwb-8

Was this planned – yes we were trying to have a baby. In true Boyer fashion, we were pregnant before we had really come to terms with the fact that we wanted another baby.

bigbro.mwb-9When did we find out – in Taos, NM. We went out for a wedding and to see Miles family and I took a test while I was there.

bigbro.mwb-11When did I tell my family –  We told everyone on Christmas day. I had wrapped up a package addressed to Gavin and took it over to my parents. After Gavin, Cade, and Harper opened gifts I told gavin we had missed one. Everyone was confused about where it came from. He opened it up and held up a shirt that said “BIG BROTHER”. My mom and sis started screaming and causing a scene. I think my sister even threw a box in the air she was holding. Dad and Joe took a little longer to catch on. We captured it all on video. We proceeded to tell a few additional family members on my side and miles family over the phone. Then of course we had to go over to the Post’s. We had baked and decorated gingerbread men by request of Gavin. Gavin decorated his man, Miles decorated his, and then I decorated mine with a baby on the front. We wrapped it up and took it over to them. Ashely had stopped by the house less than a month before with a bag of cookies from the mall with a note on it that said “If I am getting fat so art you”. I didn’t get it at first but it turns out she was pregnant. Being pregnant with your best friend is a blast!

bigbro.mwb-13How have you been feeling – Until about week 13 I was miserable. Food was absolutely repulsive. I might have gone to the grocery store twice during those three months. I didn’t eat anything I cooked which means I didn’t cook. We ate out more than we ever have before. The tricky part was once I ate something I was done with it. Not going back. Ginger ale and this HORRIBLE ginger gum from Walgreens is really all that kept me going. Not to mention the fact that I would go home at lunch and take a nap. By my first check up I had gained one pound. I feel a little more human now and have started eating again. Between all of the middle of the night pee breaks and the crazy dreams, sleeping still isn’t going so great. If you haven’t been pregnant, go ahead and prepare yourself now for some of the most unusual and realistic dreams you will ever have.

bigbro.mwb-3What am I craving – I have had a lot of cravings so far but nothing that has really lasted. I had a week where I was obsessed with BBQ chips. Pickled okra, gummy bears, jelly beans, and chips & salsa are a few of my go to foods. NOT together of course. Loafing Joes in Sprindale makes me really happy. I was craving it for days and finally drove all the way to Springdale on lunch break to get it. Had the whole sandwich gone by the time I got back to the office. Best meal so far has been Mama Z’s lasagna!

bigbro.mwb-12What does Gavin think – He seems excited. When asked if he wants a brother or a sister it is very clear that he only wants a brother. He sometimes talks to my belly and tells baby b hello. He asked me not long ago why I didn’t just take the baby out if it made my belly hurt. I proceeded to tell him that the baby had to grow big and strong first. This sparked questions about how they get the baby out. “Mommy do they cut the baby out of your belly?” I told him that was one of a few ways and quickly changed the subject. He has been sharing his knowledge that there are a few ways babies come out to his other little friends. Thank goodness we didn’t go into any further details! He is also pretty pumped that baby b gets his bed in the new house and he gets his very own big boy bed.

bigbro.mwb-10Do you want a boy or girl – We honestly have no preference. As most of you know I cried when I found out I was having a boy with Gavin. I wanted a girl so bad. Now that I have Gavin I can’t imagine anything other than boys. We of course want a healthy, happy baby but we also want a baby that sleeps since Gavin never did.

Big BrotherSo there is the Boyer update. My hope is to update my blog with baby and house progress as I can. I’m still not really cooking much right now so don’t expect a lot of food photos.


Butterfinger Cake with Butterscotch Filling



This past month my mom and aunt celebrated a birthday. My grandma had been hinting at me making the cake for the party for about six months and of course I was going to do it. I previously made this cake for my best friend Ashley but didn’t take the time to photograph it so I thought why not make it again. The first attempt was a breeze and the cake was nothing short of amazing as far as the taste.

In theory, I should be able to lay out all of my ingredients and go to work right? WRONG.

I mix up the batter and put three cakes in the oven. While they are in the oven I get started on the filling and the icing. When the cakes are cool I begin construction. What happened next was a cake mudslide. I didn’t leave the filling in the refrigerator long enough and instead of two cake layers I had three. One cake down, one layer of icing, and then BOOM it would start slipping off the side. I quickly put on the next layer thinking maybe that would fix my issue and even things out. WRONG. Now I had two layers slip and sliding off the base. My next genius thought was to go ahead and ice the sides and get it in the refrigerator so it would set. The frosting wasn’t ready for my leaning tower. Once the sides where iced I thought well that looks a hot mess so why not cover this baby with butterfingers crumbles. BAD IDEA. Now I had a slip and slide cake with frosting dripping down the sides and then heavy butterfinger acting like an avalanche down the side of my cake.

I panic. The party is later that day and I will be the only one bringing a cake. It is my mom for goodness sake, I can’t just go out and buy a new cake. I sit down on the floor, maybe shed a few tears, and then do what anyone would do in my situation. I open the back door where my husband and child are mowing and with tears still running down my face proceed to tell them what had happened. My husband, being the sweet man he is, looks at me and says, “I bet it isn’t as bad as you think.” I proceed to lead him to the refrigerator and show him my catastrophe. He agrees that I cannot salvage the cake without actually saying that to me.

He packs up Gavin, heads back to the store to purchase more ingredients, and leaves me with a few moments to myself to regroup and whip up a few more cakes.

This time around Gavin went down for a nap and the cake turned out exactly how I wanted. A happy ending at last.




What You Need:

For the Cake –

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups cake flour
  • 3/4 cup NESTLÉ TOLL HOUSE Cocoa (unsweetend)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water

For the Butterscotch Buttercream Filling –

For the Chocolate Frosting


How it comes to life

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter inside of 2 (8-inch) round cake pans. Line bottom of pans with wax paper. Butter wax paper. Dust entire inside of pans with flour, shaking off excess.

Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium for approximately two minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be very thin so don’t be alarmed). Pour batter, evenly divided, into prepared pans.

dashoflovely.butterfingercake-2 dashoflovely.butterfingercake-1

Bake 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10-15 minutes.



Run a knife around the edge of the cakes in pans. Invert one cake on to wax paper and then re-invert on to cake stand. Invert the other cake on to wax paper and then re-invert on to a wire rack. COOL COMPLETELY BEFORE ICING.

To make Butterscotch Buttercream Filling (I DID THIS WHILE THE CAKES WERE COOKING) – Place butterscotch morsels in a glass bowl. Heat cream in a small saucepan until boiling. Pour cream over morsels and stir until completely melted and smooth. Cover and refrigerate until mixture solidifies. When butterscotch mixture has chilled, add powdered sugar, and beat with an electric mixer until filling becomes thick. Spread filling on top of the cooled cake on the serving platter. Place the other centered cake on top of the filling on the first cake. You can place the cake back in the fridge again for cake and filling to re-chill, about 1 hour. **If your filling is thick enough you may not have to put it back in the refrigerator for another hour at this point. I did not.

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dashoflovely.butterfingercake-15 dashoflovely.butterfingercake-16

To make Chocolate Frosting (ALSO DID THIS WHILE THE CAKES WERE COOKING) – Place chocolate chips in a glass bowl. Heat cream in a small saucepan until boiling. Pour cream over chips and stir until completely melted and smooth. Cover and refrigerate until mixture solidifies and is completely cold.


Remove cake from fridge and assemble cakes placing one on top of filling on the other. Ice sides and top of cake with chocolate frosting. Put the Butterfinger Bites into a ziploc bag and pound until they are crumbles. Scatter crushed butterfinger candy on top  and around the base if desired.


dashoflovely.butterfingercake-20 dashoflovely.butterfingercake-23


This recipe was adapted from a PIN I found. Click here to see the original recipe. HERE

German Chocolate Cake



I have the best dad in the whole wide world. Growing up he was always the dad that coached my softball teams and when he wasn’t coaching my teams he NEVER ever missed a game. We took countless post game trips to McDonalds to get a twist ice cream cone no matter how late it was.  He was my principal in middle school and then again in junior high and I actually enjoyed him being around everyday. He taught me how to fish and is the reason that I can bait my own hook. To this day I can probably count on one hand the number of times I have beaten him in the board game Pente and we have played it countless times and continue the challenge on occasion. He does however know that he is no match in a game a Chinese Checkers.

I have a huge soft spot for my dad. Even now that I am an adult and have a family of my own, he and my mom are still at the top of the list for people to call when I need advise. I know that whatever he tells me, he ultimately has my best interest at heart. He is a man of God,  a wonderful influence for my husband, a role model for my son, and still my daddy.

German chocolate cake is my dads FAVORITE. I found this recipe last year and made him this cake. It was my first attempt at a German Chocolate. It was such a hit that he asked for it again this year. This cake is not for those bakers that want a recipes that you can just throw together. Honestly it is a lot of work but so delicious!





What you need for the cake:

Parchment paper
2 (4-oz.) packages german chocolate baking bars
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs, separated
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk


How it comes to life:

Lightly grease 3 (9-inch) round cake pans; line bottoms with parchment paper, and lightly grease paper. I like to then sprinkle some flour on top of the greased parchment paper and work the pan around to so that the flour is spread evenly. This seems to help the cakes not stick.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Microwave chocolate baking bars and 1/2 cup water in a  microwave-safe bowl at HIGH for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes or until chocolate is melted and smooth, stirring once halfway through.

Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.

Beat butter and sugar at medium speed with a kitchenaid mixer until fluffy. Add egg yolks, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Stir in chocolate mixture and vanilla. Add flour mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended after each addition.

Beat egg whites at high speed until stiff peaks form (about 5 minutes or more); gently fold into batter.


German Chocolate Batter

Pour batter evenly into prepared pans.

German Chocolate In Pans

Bake at 350° for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from oven,  and gently run a knife around outer edge of cake layers to loosen from sides of pans. Cool in pans on wire racks 15 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks; discard parchment paper. Cool completely (about 1 hour).


What you need for the icing:

2 cups chopped pecans
1 (12-oz.) can evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter
6 egg yolks, lightly beaten
2 cups sweetened flaked coconut
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract


How it comes to life:

Right after the cake came out of the oven (still at 350 degrees), bake pecans in a single layer in a shallow pan 10 minutes or until toasted, stirring halfway through. Cool completely (about 20 minutes).


Toasted Pecans

Meanwhile, cook evaporated milk, sugar, butter, and egg yolks in a heavy 3-qt. saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, 3 to 4 minutes or until butter melts and sugar dissolves. Cook, stirring constantly, 14 minutes or until mixture becomes a light caramel color, is bubbling, and reaches a pudding-like thickness.

Remove pan from heat and transfer mixture to a bowl. Stir in coconut, vanilla, and pecans. Let stand, stirring occasionally, 45 minutes or until cooled and spreading consistency.


coconut Pecan Icing dashoflovely.germanchocolatecake.©2014mileswittboyer-1201


Bring it together:

Place one layer of the cake onto a cake pedestal.

German Chocolate

Spread a thin layer of the coconut pecan icing on top of that layer. Next add the second layer and spread another thin layer of icing. Add the final cake and use the remaining icing to cover the cake. I used extra coconut to decorate the base of the cake.


German Chocolate



Recipes adapted from HERE


Turkey Sausage & Egg Breakfast Casserole


Turkey Sausage Breakfast CasseroleI’m not sure how this is possible, but this week is busier than normal. Between work dinners, two birthday dinners, and a charity gala on Saturday there isn’t a whole lot of cooking that I get to do.

I got a late start on meal planning for this week and boy did I pay for it. I had this great pizza crust recipe I found on Pinterest that I was hesitant to make because of time. I went ahead and forced myself to do it and then it turned out to be an epic fail! I’m not sure if it was the pinner or the pinnie but I would like to think that I couldn’t mess up a pizza crust that bad. I mean I have made some wonderful homemade crusts over the years. I will spare you all of the details but it was a sticky mess followed by a rising crust that would not rise correctly. No tears over it though. We just jumped in the car and ate out.

When we returned home we took the dune buggy (Gavins green car) for a spin around the block and then while Miles got G ready for bed I tried to redeem myself from the afternoon food trauma.

Breakfast is hard for me. On the weekend there is ample time to get up and get moving on a homemade meal. Week days are a little more difficult. Most mornings Miles is on breakfast duty for Gavin and we both scavenge for ourselves. I do try and make sure we have options but nothing overly amazing. To be honest, I’m just not a breakfast person unless it is for dinner.

This recipe was EASY and DELICIOUS! I wasn’t too sure what to think when I read that it had cottage cheese in it but why not! I don’t care for the stuff by itself but you can’t taste it in lasagna so I will be fine.

The original recipe called for that pre cooked turkey sausage but I did some looking at Walmart and they actually make turkey sausage in the sausage log (excuse my terminology) and it is really tasty.

This is a make again recipe that has a lot of potential. You could add spinach, peppers, ham, different spices, top it with homemade salsa, put salsa in it before you bake it, or substitute the whole eggs for all egg whites. The list could go on and on. This recipes was adapted from I heart planners blog.

What you need:

  • 1 lb. turkey sausage
  • 1 1/2 cups of shredded cheese (I used an italian blend)
  • 12 whole eggs
  • 4 egg whites
  • 6 oz. Low fat cottage cheese
  • Chili powder, to taste
  • Salt, to taste

How it comes to life:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

Cook and crumble the turkey sausage, drain grease. Sprinkle the sausage in the bottom of a 13×9 greased pan.

Next sprinkle the shredded cheese over the sausage.

In a medium size bowl, add the eggs, cottage cheese, chili powder and salt to taste.

Pour over the sausage and cheese.

Bake for 35-45 minutes or until the eggs are done.

Turkey Sausage Breakfast Casserole



Blueberry Cupcakes

Blueberry Cupcakes
I rarely make boxed cupcakes but sometimes I just don’t have time to dedicate hours to dessert. I will never take credit for a boxed cake but I do still feel like you need to put your own personal twist. This cupcake recipe allows you to take a simple box cake and dress it up into something beautifully delicious! Plus you can use those yummy farmers market blueberries that you want so bad to buy but don’t know what to do with them.
Blueberry Cupcakes
What you need:
  • 1/2 cup freeze-dried blueberries
  • 1 pkg. white cake mix
  • 1 pint fresh blueberries
  • 1 pkg. (8 oz.) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 stick butter, at room temperature
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

How it comes to life:

Heat oven to 350°F. Line 24-well cupcake pan with paper liners. In a Ninja food processor, pulse freeze-dried blueberries until finely ground powder forms; set aside.


Dried Blueberries


Prepare cake mix according to package directions, adding 1/2 fresh blueberries. Divide batter evenly among liners in prepared pan. Bake 15 min. or until done. Let cool.


White Cake


Using mixer on medium, beat cream cheese and butter 3 min. or until light and fluffy. Add sugar, vanilla extract and ground blueberry powder. Beat 1 min. or until smooth.


Blueberry Icing blueberry-cupcake©2013MWB-dashoflovely (4 of 7)


Ice the cooled cupcakes and then top with  blueberries.


blueberry-cupcake©2013MWB-dashoflovely (7 of 7)


Recipe adapted from First for Woman Magazine

Shrimp with Avocado Mango Salsa

Shrimp with Avocado Mango Salsa


I know the trends in eating and honestly I fall right in line. In the winter I lean towards those heavy comfort foods. In the Summer I just can’t help but want to eat fresh and include a ton of garden vegetables and fruit.

We do use the grill some but getting food just right on the grill seems challenging to me.  That could be why I don’t even try. Miles is the grill master in this house. I do from time to time prepare a meal to hand off to my husband to grill up. This recipe is one of those meals. It has so many great foods and a fresh flavors. The best part is that clean up is a cinch with the foil bag. Cook, cut, top, and serve!


What you need:

  • Cooking spray
  • 8 cups baby spinach
  • 1 cup couscous
  • 1 pound medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro – I love that I can just go outside and pick this from my herb garden
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large mango, peeled and diced
  • 1 medium avocado, diced
  • 1 medium tomato, diced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

**If you want a little kick, the original recipe calls for 1/2 jalapeno chile, seeded and chopped. I took this out for Gavin’s sake but if you don’t have kids eating I would put it back in.


Shrimp with Avocado Mango Salsa

How it comes to life:

Heat grill. Fold four 18-inch-long pieces of foil in half; unfold and coat inside with cooking spray. Place 2 cups spinach in center of 1 half of each piece of foil. Combine couscous with 1/4 cup water; divide evenly among packets, placing on top of spinach. Combine shrimp, 1/4 cup cilantro, oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a bowl. Divide shrimp evenly among packets, placing next to couscous. Fold foil to close and crimp edges to seal; place on grill; close lid; cook until packets are fully puffed, 10 minutes.

Steam Bag

Combine remaining 1/4 cup cilantro with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, mango, avocado, tomato,  jalapeño (if using) and lime juice in a bowl.


shrimp-couscous-6 shrimp-couscous-7 Avocado Lime

Avocado Mango Salsa

Carefully cut foil to open; stir contents; top with salsa just before serving.

This recipe was adapted from EPICURIOUS

Mini Meat Loaf


Meat LoafDigging through old photos on my hard drive yesterday I found a recipe that I forgot to post. I may put this on the shopping list to make again this week. I remember finding this recipe and thinking to myself, I HATE MEAT LOAF! In an effort to try to find something Gavin liked at the time I went ahead and made them anyway. Lets face it, meat loaf just isn’t pretty but everything we make can’t always be photo worthy.

So here is how it went down…

We all sit down at the table and Gavin pushes his veggies around his plate taking a few small bites of corn. He takes a bite of parmesan mashed potatoes and immediately spits them out (which I fully expected). Then the moment of truth. Will he eat it or will dinner be a fight?

Not even one bite! After begging, pleading, bribing, and then finally bed we walked away from dinner defeated. I may have shed a few tears. It is important for me to cook and have sit down meals with my family so why does my son hate what I cook? Well the reality of it is that he doesn’t hate what I cook he is just a little boy (or at least that is what Miles said to make me feel better). Not a mom fail even though at the time it felt like it.

Don’t be discouraged if you want to try these out. Miles and I both loved them and we even got Gavin to eat a bit a few hours later. He thought he was eating corn and bam in the mouth it went. MOM WINS AGAIN!

What you need:

  • 1/2 cup plus 2/3 cup ketchup (apparently we are a Heinz family according to Miles)
  • 1 tablespoon packed brown sugar
  • 2 lbs ground beef (unless we are cooking hamburgers we typically buy the extra lean)
  • 1  1/4 cups italian bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

How it comes to life:

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 12 count muffin tin with non stick cooking spray. Mine made 15 so I had to use a second pan. In a small bowl mix 1/2 cup of ketchup and the brown sugar. Set aside.

In a medium bowl crumble the ground beef. Add the bread crumbs, worcestershire, mustard, eggs, parsley, salt, pepper and the remaining ketchup. Make sure you mix this up well so that the meat is seasoned throughout.


mini-meatloaf-1 mini-meatloaf-2 mini-meatloaf-3



Press the meat into the muffin pans. Fill them level with the top of the pan. Press down the mixture so that there are not any air bubbles.

Spread about 1 teaspoon of the ketchup mixture on the top of each loaf.

Bake for approximately 30 minutes.

A few of them stuck to the side a little so I used a sharp knife and went around them before removing them from the muffin pan.


On the side: Mashed Potatoes – I did not have a recipe to follow so i just peeled, cubed and boiled the potatoes until they were tender. Drain the water. Place in a Kitchenaid mixer and whip until smooth. I added skim milk, a tiny bit of butter, salt, pepper, 1/3 cup sour cream and shredded parmesan. I rarely make mashed potatoes but man do I love them!


I found this recipe in  All You Magazine.

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