Goat Cheese Avocado Pesto Wrap!

goat cheese avocado pesto wrap

You wouldn’t think goat cheese and pesto goes together, but oh man it really does! Yum.

Yesterday I wanted a salad wrap, I had already eaten a leftover chicken breast a few hours earlier, so I decided to go vegetarian.

I’m a bit obsessed with pesto, and wraps are my go-to at home quick lunch these days.

Somehow the pesto makes the wrap feel like you’re at a cafe and not just sitting at home, scarfing it down.

Add some fresh avocado and sun dried tomatoes and you are fancy.

By the way, I often eat this pesto/goat cheese wrap with some sliced deli chicken or turkey added, I skip the avocado sometimes, it just depends on my mood.

It’s creamy and satisfying, and while not at all fat free, it has those healthy fats that make your heart happy and your skin glow.

Ingredients: (per wrap)

1.) A regular sized tortilla, I like the organic whole wheat olive oil tortillas from Trader Joe’s.

2.) One ounce of soft mild goat cheese, or a one ounce medallion from Trader Joe’s.

3.) Pesto sauce, about two tablespoons.

I do make it myself, but I also like the Trader Joe’s one called Genova Pesto from their refrigerated section for quick lunches.

4.) Sliced ripe avocado and/or chicken or turkey.

I used about one third of an average sized avocado, or 3-4 good slices.

(By the way, it’s also yummy to add a vegetarian protein like Gardein Crispy Tenders, which are kinda like breaded chicken strips.)

5.) Salad veggies of your choice- this time, I used two sliced organic sugarplum tomatoes, a handful of organic baby romaine lettuce and a tablespoon of sun dried tomatoes.

6.) Optional: An additional dressing on the greens or some mayo, I used two tablespoons of Lowfat Parmesan Ranch from Trader Joe’s, only 30 calories total.

7.) Also optional: Olive oil spray or a half teaspoon of butter to brown the tortilla.

Salt and pepper to taste, mine was seasoned plenty without it.

Directions:

I spray the olive oil spray or melt and spread out the butter a bit in a non stick skillet and heat the tortilla on medium high until it lightly starts to brown on one side.

Remove the tortilla to a plate, lightly brown side on the bottom/outside, of course.

Add the goat cheese first in chunks to the still warm tortilla, it’s good when it gets just a teeny bit softened that way.

Next add the pesto sauce, you don’t really have to warm it first, but you can.

Wash, dry, slice and add the veggies and avocado and/or any additional protein you like.

Drizzle on the ranch or other dressing over the greens or veggies, wrap up like a burrito, slice in half with a sharp knife and eat!

Calories: Mine as pictured above was approximately 500-550 calories. Enough to fill me up without being too full for the day time.

You can reduce that by using less pesto than I did, but why? Ha ha.

Hope you enjoy.

XOXO-

~ H

Posted in Recipe, Skinny Mama Meals | Leave a comment

Love Monster Attack

boy minecraft t shirt

My seven year old boy Bexon loves to play a game with me that he named Love Monster Attack!

I am the Love Monster in this scenario.

He hides in my bedroom closet and closes the door. I “pretend” to knock on the door to his “house” acting innocent and saying “Hello, I’m not a monster, I’m a good guy, you can trust me…”

He flings open the door and runs out, climbing on the bed, as I say “Actually, I’m a bad guy! You can’t trust me! I’m a villain!”

I use silly voices and he “attacks” me with small stuffed animals, Tie-gee white tiger and Timmy cat, a bobble head Hello Kitty, and sometimes a Russian nesting doll I got in Moscow.

In these photos he’s also wearing gloves and those sticky bottom socks that you get in trampoline centers where kids jump like maniacs and have pizza parties.

The gloves and the socks give him extra power and possibly lasers.

I fight back, though. I can sweep his leg, which he loves because he falls back on the soft bed, giggling. (I pile it up with extra pillows so he can’t hit his head on the headboard.)

I pretty much always lose, but I can capture his stuffed animals/aka weapons if he tries to throw them at me. Then they can be on my team, they turn to the dark side…

If one of us is hit in the tummy or the head with a stuffed animal, we lose that round and fall on the bed dramatically in mock death.

I really ham it up and stick out my tongue to the side, closing my eyes and saying “Ahhh! Ya GOT ME!”

He laughs and then stands over me and brings me back to life with “Angels” giving me another life. He wiggles his fingers over me and says “Angels, angels…”

I leap up and cry “Ya got me…But I’m back!”

I get a lot of hugs and kisses in between and it’s so sweet. Having a seven year old boy is a lot like having a golden retriever puppy who talks.

I can’t help but see the metaphors in this game (kids worry about losing their parents, he gets to re-alive me and also it brings back warm memories of his even earlier childhood, etc…)

I asked him why he likes to play it and he said “Because I like the voices you make and I get to jump on the bed a lot and it’s fun.”

I realize how lucky I am that he still wants to play with me.

I know one day he’ll be a teenager and then a man who plays Love Monster Attack with his girlfriend or wife, not his ol’ Mommy!

love monster attack bex

He says the funniest things. Yesterday Bex came home from school and asked sincerely “Are we African American?”

“No,” we answered, smiling, “No, we’re not African American.”

He then replied quite seriously, “You may want to look farther back.”

Maybe he knows something we don’t! Ha ha. That would be cool.

Sometimes it’s the end of the day and I’m feeling too tired to play Love Monster Attack, but I remind myself more often than not that this time is fleeting and then I suck it up and soak it in.

I’m pretty sure I’m going to just camp outside his college dorm room so I can still get glimpses of him when he moves away.

Would that be weird? :-)

He’s got me.

Signed,

The Love Mom-ster

Posted in A Giggle, Bexon, Family, Fumbling Towards Ecstacy, Funny Kids, Mommyhood, Parenthood | Leave a comment

Radical Optimism

Radical Optimism

A poem by Heidi Ferrer

To get out of bed every morning

Is an act of radical optimism.

To put one foot in front of the other.

In the face of the day.

In the face of world history.

In the face of hundreds, if not thousands of strangers crossing your path.

Some who may mean you harm.

Some who may be crazy.

We rise.

We smile.

We say me, too.

I’m here.

I see you.

My fragile heart is open.

Let’s hold hands.

To have a baby, to get married…

…these are acts of radical optimism.

In the face of statistics.

In the difficulty of daily life.

Despite all of our deepest fears of losing.

We throw our hearts on the line.

We strive to defy the odds.

Our eyes lift to the sky and we try.

To do better, to grow.

To raise a child with unique challenges.

To ever fall in love.

We fall.

We get back up.

These are acts of courageous hope.

In the face of natural and man made disasters.

To stand when the ground under our feet can give and quake.

And the sky above can swirl and storm.

To vote for something we believe in or against.

When people have been, are killed for less.

We raise our voices in protest.

In song.

We scream.

We cry, we leap and we laugh.

To step foot on a plane or sit in a vehicle when we know the risks.

To believe we’ll get better when we are ill.

Even when we have loved ones who haven’t.

Even though we know our bodies are fragile like birds, like snowflakes, as delicate as petals.

We fight, we try to save each other, ourselves.

We form groups and families, we lift and soothe…

Beyond countries and borders,

Skin tones and names and religions…

We see each other’s beating hearts.

Purple with creation, red with blood…

We send each other prayers and good vibes.

We give each other nourishment.

These are brave beliefs and acts.

Acts of every day courage.

To teach someone, to help a child grow, to be someone’s eyes, to be the memory for someone who has lost theirs…

Even the most humble life is filled with bravery.

Your very existence, your survival, is radical.

You’re a badass, living a wild and hopeful life.

Because father time is undefeated,

Your radical optimism is love.

xo-

~ H

Posted in Fumbling Towards Ecstacy, Poetry | Leave a comment

You Are a Soul Quote

you don't have a soul quote

I thought C.S. Lewis wrote this quote, but an internet search tells me that’s not true.

Well, whoever said or wrote these words first, it feels true.

xo

~ h

P.S. This is my hand with my niece Saffron’s hand, a throwback personal photo.

Posted in Inspirational Quotes, Quotes | Leave a comment

Low Carb Cheese Crisps!

low carb cheese chips

I was in Whole Foods recently and saw a bag of expensive cheese chips that were advertised as 100% cheese.

“Hmm, I wonder if I could make that?” I thought.

And I did. It’s so easy. They take only about 5 minutes or less to cook.

I’ve heard this called Frico cheese, I think that’s what fancy restaurants call it when they serve it on the side. Cheese chips sounds fine by me.

These are awesome if you’re looking for a low carb snack, as a dip chip or for guests, they will be impressed you made them yourself (try them with avocado or guacamole- yum!)

All you need is some shredded cheese that melts like cheddar, I mixed mine with a shaved Parmesan blend, and you can add seasoning or not.

I’m a garlic lover, so I added some garlic powder and a little dried parsley for a garnish.

Now, I tried these in the microwave on parchment paper and they were not as good at all.

I would skip trying to bake them in the oven on parchment paper too, I really think this non stick skillet method is best. The parchment paper dried them out too much.

Also, you don’t need to add any salt, really- I used garlic powder, not garlic salt, my cheese was salty enough.

These are to die for, cheese lovers.

Ingredients: (time, about 5 minutes, plus 3 minutes to cool.)

1.) Shredded cheese that melts- I use about one half cup of reduced fat (not nonfat) mild or sharp cheddar cheese for a 10 inch skillet.

In a 12 inch large nonstick skillet, use about 3/4 cup of cheddar, just eyeball it.

Note: if you are doing cheddar only, you’ll need another 1/4 cup for the 10 inch pan and another 1/2 cup for the 12 inch.

2.) Optional: Another cheese or cheeses that melt, I added a blend of shaved (not grated) Parmesan, Romano and Asiago cheeses that I buy at Trader Joe’s.

This combo is delicious, I use one fourth cup of this for a 10 inch nonstick skillet and about one half cup for a 12 inch skillet.

3.) Olive oil cooking spray.

4.) Optional: Seasoning, I used garlic powder and dried parsley. You could try any flavor you like with cheese: black pepper, smoked paprika, hot pepper like cayenne, maybe even a little ranch powder mix!

Directions:

Just spray your non stick skillet with some cooking spray, I like olive oil, and turn the heat on your stove to high or medium high.

frico cheese in pan

Sprinkle the cheese in a thin layer over the surface of the pan. Thin, not like pizza cheese, or it won’t crisp.

You want it to make a circle and connect when it melts, so don’t leave too many big empty holes.

If you’re using two or more cheeses, sprinkle the other cheese(s) on top of it, also in a thin layer.

As it melts, add seasoning lightly on top, I sprinkled the garlic powder all over it and added a few dashes of dried parsley.

Once the cheese fully melts after about two minutes, turn the heat to medium for about 2-3 more minutes, or until it bubbles in the middle and starts to crisp at the edges.

It has air bubbles in the middle similar to pancakes when it’s almost done.

frico cheese sliding out of pan

Remove from the heat and let the pan cool for about 3 minutes or longer. Then carefully use a spatula to try to remove it from the pan in one piece.

frico cheese back

Here’s what it looks like on the back. I mean.

Once cool to the touch and crisp (it has a little bend), you can break it into whatever size chips or crisps you like and serve/devour!

High calcium, high protein and low carb, baby.

Calories: All depends on how many you eat and what size you break them into, but my 10 inch pan recipe was approximately 400 calories total, or two servings at 200 calories each.

Hope you enjoy.

Xo-

~ H

Posted in Recipe, Skinny Mama Meals, Skinny Mama Snacks | Leave a comment

Promise Me You’ll Always Remember- Quote

promise me you'll always remember quote

I love this quote. For Bexon. And for me. And for you.

xo

~ h

Posted in Bexon, Inspirational Quotes, Quotes | Leave a comment

Skinny Caesar Spinach!

skinny caesar spinach

I was in between lunch and dinner a couple days ago and felt hungry for a snack.

Looking in my fridge, I had a bag of baby organic spinach and I thought, I don’t feel like a salad right now, but I could use some green veggies.

Plain sauteed spinach didn’t quite sound flavorful enough, then I had a quick idea with only 2 ingredients.

This is more of a trick than a recipe, but it’s a good snack or side dish if you like spinach and the taste of Caesar. I love both.

I didn’t take the picture with Parmesan cheese added this time, but that would be delicious.

Ingredients:

1.) One bag (6 ounces or 4 cups) of baby spinach. (80 calories)

2.) Two tablespoons bottled Caesar dressing of your choice.

I’m not vegan, but I like Follow Your Heart brand vegan Caesar dressing, I buy it in the refrigerated section of Whole Foods (not sponsored.)

It’s 35 calories per tablespoon, so mine was 70 for 2.

Directions: (Cooking time about 4-5 minutes)

Put the spinach directly in a large nonstick frying pan, no oil or water needed.

Turn the heat to high.

Drizzle the dressing on top of the raw spinach in the pan and put a lid on.

I use a glass lid so I can see what’s going on in there. A party, usually, ha.

After it begins to heat up for a couple of minutes, remove lid and stir occasionally, putting lid back on until the spinach is just barely cooked.

Serve with or without Parmesan cheese, add optional salt and pepper if desired.

Calories: With my dressing, this was only 150 calories total.

As a side dish for 2 people, it’s only 75 calories each.

Easy and yummy.

XOXO-

~ H

Posted in Recipe, Skinny Mama Meals, Skinny Mama Side Dish, Skinny Mama Snacks | Leave a comment