Awesome Banana Mango Spinach Smoothie

By Jodee Weiland

There is nothing as good as a fresh smoothie in the morning or after a workout! Smoothies are a great way to stay healthy because you get so many essential nutrients in one drink when done right. I love a good smoothie for this reason and for the great flavor. My Awesome Banana Mango Spinach Smoothie is not only a nutritional smoothie, but a delicious smoothie as well!

Most people know that bananas are a great source of potassium, an essential mineral which helps maintain normal blood pressure and healthy heart function. Mangos contain over 20 vitamins and minerals. Possible health benefits are mangos may reduce the risks of colon cancer and macular degeneration, while they may improve digestion and bone health plus more. Spinach also provides proteins, iron, vitamins, and minerals, which means it has the possible health benefit of improving blood glucose control in diabetics, lowering the risk of cancer, lowering blood pressure, improving bone health, and more. Together, these ingredients bring together a delicious smoothie that will be both enjoyable and healthy!

Awesome Banana Mango Spinach Smoothie

  • 1 to 1 and 1/2 cups pf fresh mango cut up
  • 1 cup fresh spinach leaves
  • 1 medium banana
  • 2/3 cup pure unsweetened pineapple juice
  • 1 cup ice
  • 1 teaspoon organic honey (optional for those who want additional sweetness)

Prepare and place all of the above ingredients into a blender. Blend the ingredients together until smooth. Pour the smoothie into a glass and serve. This recipe will be enough for about two ten ounce servings.

http://learnfromyesterday.comMy Awesome Banana Mango Spinach Smoothie is a great option for getting great nutritional value in one delicious drink!  One serving made without the honey is only about 176 calories, has 4 grams of fiber, and a variety of vitamins and minerals that will all benefit your health. This smoothie will not only taste great, it will make you feel great. I love having this smoothie before or after a workout. But whenever you choose to have it, you will love it, so enjoy!

It Started with HELLO: Sweet Connections with Lindt HELLO Chocolate!

By Jodee Weiland

This article is sponsored by Lindt HELLO. Thanks to Lindt HELLO for sponsoring today’s discussion!

Be sure to enter the sweepstakes at the end of this article every day for their chance to win* sweet experiences from Lindt Chocolate.

Most of us know that all of the relationships in our lives, be it friendship, romantic, professional, or otherwise, usually started with a simple “Hello!” Even a new mother will whisper lovingly to her newborn something like, “Hello, my sweet baby!” The important connections we make in life with others, for the most part, are sweet connections. Lindt HELLO Chocolate just made it easier for each of us to make “sweet connections” with those we care about or even with someone new when we want to say “Hello” in a special way! That’s right and here are just a few ideas on how to do that. Remember It Started with HELLO: Sweet Connections with Lindt HELLO Chocolate!

Our wedding anniversary is coming up next month, and I always like to do a little something special for my husband. Lindt HELLO Chocolate gave me the perfect idea for a sweet connection with the man I love. We both enjoy sipping a fine wine with the sweet flavor of chocolate. It really is delicious together and a great treat for us! So I decided to make him a gift of Lindt HELLO Chocolate and one of our favorite bottles of wine.

I found a plaque at the store that was created to look somewhat aged and a metal container that went with it well. I put an assortment of the Lindt HELLO Chocolate bars, sticks, and one of the mini-stick bags in the metal container and added a bottle of our favorite wine. With the plaque set behind these items, it will make the perfect way to say “Happy Anniversary!” It surpasses any card and is such a sweet connection for us. By the way, look at the plaque carefully. It says it all: “You are my favorite HELLO!”

http://learnfromyesterday.comThat’s not the only idea I came up with for hip trendy new Lindt HELLO Chocolates. What about for Halloween? Do you have someone special you would like to give a great treat while making a sweet connection? With such a large family and so many good friends, I always have someone I want to make feel special. So why not put on that witches hat and “Surrender the Treat,’’ a Halloween mesh basket filled with Lindt HELLO Chocolate! Anyone would love a great treat like this one!

But don’t stop there! What about Christmas? How about an oversized coffee mug filled with Lindt HELLO Chocolate and a cute reindeer for that special secret Santa gift you’ll need? Or what about that special person you would love to share a big mug of hot chocolate/coffee and sweet chocolate with on Christmas Eve in front of the fireplace? Buy two mugs and put Lindt Hello Chocolate in both and share! Wouldn’t this be a great way to make a sweet connection over the holidays?

No matter how you decide to make a sweet connection of your own, Lindt HELLO Chocolate, a hip, trendy brand in premium chocolate, will make it fun. This new collection from Lindt of sinfully delicious premium chocolate is inspired by classic American treats. Say “hello” to the enticing flavors, of the Lindt HELLO collection:

  • Caramel Brownie: Discover the irresistible combination of smooth milk chocolate, hazelnut and caramel brownie filling.
  • Strawberry Cheesecake: Satisfy your cheesecake craving with rich milk chocolate and a light, fluffy strawberry cream cheese filling.
  • Crunchy Nougat: Smooth milk chocolate, now that’s yummy!
  • Cookies & Cream: Chocolate, cookies – and a crunch!  Savor a chocolaty experience like no other, with chocolate chip cookie pieces and cream filling.

Be sure to check out the Lindt HELLO Sweet Connections Sweepstakes for the chance to win some great prizes. Also check out the “It Started with HELLO” web series here on Youtube with new episodes weekly through October 9, 2014. And remember It Started with HELLO: Sweet Connections with Lindt HELLO Chocolate! So enjoy!

Lindt HELLO is the hip, trendy brand in premium chocolate, that inspires connections and conversations everywhere it goes.  Be sure to enter the sweepstakes every day for a chance to win* sweet experiences from Lindt Chocolate.

To enter the sweepstakes, visit the Lindt HELLO Sweet Connections Sweepstakes Landing Page and enter your email address. Entries can be made daily for additional chances to win the below prizes.

Weekly Prizes – Connect with Someone You Love, or Someone New!

Girls Just Want to Have Fun (9/24 – 9/30)

  • Enjoy a shopping spree with the girls + yummy Lindt HELLO Chocolate!

Sweet Staycation (10/1 – 10/7)

  • Lindt HELLO treats you to a pampered night in – movies, books + chocolate!

Besties Reunion (10/8 – 10/14)

  • Reconnect with your bestie at the spa for a day + Lindt HELLO chocolate to sweeten the deal.

* No purchase necessary. Open to legal residents of the 50 U.S. & D.C., 18 years or older (19 in AL or NE and 21 in MS).  Void where prohibited. See Rules for weekly sweepstakes entry periods, prize descriptions, odds and other details. Ends Noon on 10/14/14. Void where prohibited. Sponsor: Lindt & Sprüngli (USA) Inc., One Fine Chocolate Place, Stratham, NH  03885.

Many thanks to Lindt HELLO for sponsoring today’s story, and giving my readers a chance to win really sweet prizes!

Healthy Zucchini Spaghetti with Tomato Basil Sauce

By Jodee Weiland

Zucchini spaghetti is a great way to stay healthy and have your “pasta”, too. I love the versatility of zucchini spaghetti and with a veggie spiralizer, it couldn’t be easier. There are several ways to make zucchini spaghetti, but since I bought my veggie spiralizer, I couldn’t imagine making this dish any other way. Since I had some fresh tomatoes to use, I decided to make Healthy Zucchini Spaghetti with Tomato Basil Sauce for dinner, and it was absolutely delicious and definitely healthy!

A while back, I found out that you can prepare the zucchini spaghetti with a julienne peeler, a mandoline with a julienne blade, or with a veggie spiralizer type product. I chose the veggie spiralizer type product for a number of reasons after reading reviews and checking prices. The one I chose was at a store that gives 20% discounts with their coupons, so the price was under $25 with tax. Also, the product I chose was made basically the same as a more expensive version at another store and both had similar reviews. Last of all, after looking into it, this product made preparing the zucchini so easy, it cut the time of preparation down tremendously.

For this dish, I began my preparation the same way I did when I made my Zucchini Spaghetti with Olive Oil, Garlic, and Fresh Tomatoes. I prepared my zucchini and set it aside to drain, while I prepared my tomato basil sauce using my fresh tomatoes from the garden. The recipe is similar to my marinara sauce with a few differences. In this sauce I use the addition of fresh tomatoes, and I eliminate the tomato paste and water, but for the most part, they are very similar. The main thing is my Healthy Zucchini Spaghetti with Tomato Basil Sauce is awesome, and you will definitely want to have it again.

Healthy Zucchini Spaghetti with Tomato Basil Sauce

For zucchini spaghetti:

3 medium zucchini cleaned and skin removed (skin may be left on if preferred)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove chopped
Sea salt

Prepare the zucchini first by peeling it and cutting it into long thin spaghetti like strands with a veggie spiralizer, a julienne peeler, or a mandoline with a julienne blade. Lightly salt the zucchini strands and put them into a colander for about thirty minutes or longer, placing the collander in a large bowl, so the moisture in the zucchini can drain off. Toss and squeeze lightly every once in a while until ready. You will use the olive oil and garlic when you lightly heat the zucchini later.

For the tomato basil sauce:

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves chopped
1 medium onion chopped or sliced
1 teaspoon basil or use 1 tablespoon fresh basil cut up
1/2 teaspoon dried or ground oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper (optional)
1 tablespoon sugar (some people prefer to use 2 carrots finely shredded or chopped for sweetness)
1 cup pureed fresh tomatoes (puree in a blender or food processor)
28 ounce can crushed tomatoes or tomato puree
Freshly grated imported Parmesan Reggiano cheese

Sauté onions, garlic, basil, and oregano in olive oil and stir together. Then add your fresh tomato puree and the can of crushed or puree tomatoes.  Add in the sugar if you do not use carrots.  If using carrots, sauté the carrots with the onions, garlic, and mushrooms. Let the sauce begin to bubble and then cover the pot lowering the heat to simmer for about 20 minutes or longer, stirring every so often.

When the sauce is just about ready, drain and squeeze the zucchini spaghetti. Then put the zucchini in your serving bowl or dish, being sure to drain off any excess liquid.  There may be some left, but this will not hurt the flavor of your dish. Last of all, add your sauce to your zucchini and when ready, toss lightly.

My Healthy Zucchini Spaghetti with Tomato Basil Sauce is so delicious, while definitely healthy! Serve this dish with freshly grated imported Parmesan Reggiano cheese for those who like it, a crusty loaf of bread, and a glass of red wine. Some people think this meal will not be filling, but they are wrong. Not only is it filling, but if you want some frozen yogurt for dessert, you won’t feel the least bit guilty about it. So try this wonderful dish, and enjoy!

Awesome Apple-Delicious Apple Recipes

By Jodee Weiland

The fall is a great time for apple recipes! Families love to go apple picking in the fall, only to return home and start digging out the favorite family apple recipes to make. My family is no different from everyone else. We, too, loved to take the children apple picking every fall and sure enough, when we arrived home we pulled out our favorite family apple recipes to bake. The one other thing we have done over the years is to add to those apple recipes with new ones we created or found along the way. The Awesome Apple-Delicious Recipes are just a few of our favorites! So if you are looking for some new apple recipes after apple picking, be sure to check out our five favorite family Awesome Apple-Delicious Recipes pictured above. You can find them at the following links for the pictures from right to left as follows:

Apple Strawberry Crumb Cobbler

Apple Cranberry Walnut Pie…Sweet, Juicy, and Delicious!

Apple Walnut Bread…For Apple Picking Time or Just Any Time

Apple Galette, the Versatile French Pastry We All Love to Eat!  

Sweet Juicy Homemade Apple Pie is Perfect for Apple Picking Time!

My Awesome Apple-Delicious Recipes are absolutely wonderful and definitely are our family favorites for apple picking time or any time. These apple recipes are great tasting and so full of wonderful flavor! You won’t be disappointed if you try any one or all of these recipes after your family returns from apple picking or any time of the year. So when you’re looking for a new apple recipe to try, give one or all of these delicious recipes a try, and enjoy!

A True Gem, Sole’s Italian Restaurant in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

By Jodee Weiland

While visiting Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, we came across a true gem while eating out! Sole’s Italian Restaurant in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, is one of those rare finds on the Grand Strand. There are so many restaurants to choose from, but Sole’s Italian Restaurant is not just any restaurant. A True Gem, Sole’s Italian Restaurant in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, is fine Italian dining at its best with the rich authentic flavors of Italy that so many of us enjoy! We actually dined at this restaurant twice in the ten days we were at Myrtle Beach. Being one hundred percent Italian American, I am very picky when it comes to dining at an Italian restaurant, but with the first bite of bruschetta, I was convinced that this restaurant was the real thing. Carlos Ribera, the chef and owner, and his wife, Patricia, own this restaurant and several more in Florida. The food they serve is beyond delicious and will satisfy any cravings you have for delicious authentic Italian food. Well known for their fine cuisine and restaurants in Florida, when they opened Sole’s Italian Restaurant in Myrtle Beach, they started from scratch, but in no time at all, this restaurant was winning awards and accolades for fine Italian dishes, just like their restaurants in Florida. While family continues to run the restaurants in Florida, Carlos and his wife are creating a new sensation here in Myrtle Beach. http://learnfromyesterday.comDuring our visit, our meal started off with a delicious bruschetta, done perfectly. This was followed by freshly baked bread served with an olive oil with basil and cheese. Next, a fresh salad with the house vinaigrette was served. All of this was delicious, and we still had our main course coming up! There were so many wonderful choices when it came to choosing our main course, but we loved everything we chose. While eating there, my husband and I enjoyed several traditional Italian dishes plus a few special dishes being served while we were there. My husband loved the Linguini alle Vongole, clams over linguini in a white wine and garlic sauce. This dish was also served with a tomato sauce for those who prefer it. In fact, any dish could be made with the sauce of your choice or adapted to your taste. But why change perfection? I enjoyed the ravioli stuffed with ricotta cheese in a pomodore sauce. It was so delicious and exceeded my expectations. You could also have lobster stuffed ravioli if you chose to do so. The menu included so many traditional choices and the specials simply took that to the next level. There were several fresh fish options done in an Italian style and full of rich flavors as well. One special my husband tried was Linguini Malafemina, a seafood medley that had a white fish filet, scallops, shrimp, mussels, and clams. He chose a spicy red sauce with this dish and claims it was over the top delicious! Although it was a spicy red sauce, he said it was just spicy enough for anyone’s palate, while some people might choose to add some crushed red pepper. Actually, this dish could be served with the sauce of your choice, so it could satisfy anyone’s taste! http://learnfromyesterday.comFor dessert, we shared a serving of Tiramisu that was out of this world! It was so delicious in taste and light in texture that it was, in fact, the perfect way to end an Italian meal. But there were several other choices as well, such as cannoli, Italian cheese cake, or chocolate mousse. All in all, I highly recommend this restaurant, A True Gem, Sole’s Italian Restaurant in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, for dinner when visiting the Grand Strand. You will not be disappointed because the food is exceptional and the service is great! This restaurant is a true family run business, so there is a great deal of pride obvious in what they serve you. The feeling of being in an Italian household is felt here as they serve you excellent food and share with you the feeling of family, while welcoming you! So if in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, stop to have dinner at Sole’s Italian Restaurant, and enjoy!