Friday, May 9, 2014

Pregnant Pauses #2: Manicure Tips

Infertility offers unique struggles to all who endure it. Pregnant Pauses is a series of posts to help parents-in-waiting find comfort and hope in knowing others understand and endure, too.

The pregnancy test was negative. Again.  So I wiped away the tears and forced myself to apply lipstick and mascara.  The tune to “I am Woman” played in my head as I decided to reward myself for simply being a girl—no matter what my inability to conceive might communicate.  And what could be more of a feminine affirmation than getting a pedicure?
After years of having my life scheduled and charted for doctors’ perusal, I felt like a diva strolling to a salon without an appointment.  I walked into the shop to see rows of people in massage chairs.  Beautiful women with sleek hair and Asian eyes lounged beneath hazy lights, waiting for customers.
A lady approached me with unfettered friendliness. “Hi, I’m Kayla.”  She looked down at the vibrant polish in my hand. “Oh, you pick good culah.”  She escorted me to a chair where my back was massaged and my feet rested in warm, swirling pools of comfort. 
Relaxation started to close my eyes, but Kayla jarred me into reality. “Where you from? I from Tennessee.”
I raised an eyebrow.  “Really?”
She nodded so enthusiastically I worried she might get whiplash. “My whooooole life.”
“Um, yeah, I could tell the accent wasn’t from around here.”          
She smiled. “I from Nabil.”
“Naaabville.” And she mimed playing a guitar.
“Oh! Nashville,” I said, relieved she liked charades.
I nestled into my chair. The massage, the pedicure, the cheer was not so bad. The indulgence distracted me from that aching, hollow sensation trying to take hold of my being.
Then Kayla abruptly changed to an inevitable subject. “You got kids?”      
“No.” I swallowed hard, the tune of “I am woman” still playing in my head. “Not yet.”
She paused in her work.  “Why not you got kids?”
My mind screamed, “Because I’m barren and not a real woman!” Instead, I said, “It just hasn’t happened yet.”
When she looked up, my stomach tightened as it does when I sense someone’s pity.  I tried to sit a little taller so that she wouldn’t sense my depression. I shrugged and attempted what I hoped was a Hey-what-can-you-do? sort of grin.
Kayla nodded. “I got baby 6 weeks old. His daddy not lub him.” She squished her face and bounced her head from side to side.  “He cry. I think ‘cause he know.” She placed a fingernail file to her forehead and nods. “He know his daddy don’t lub him.” She shrugged. “I not want him at first eeder. I want ‘bortion. But I lub him now. It okay.”
My horror must have shown because she quickly patted my hand.  “You get baby.”  Her eyes lit up. “You try tricks?  There lots of tricks.”
“We’ve tried more tricks than the Kama Sutra. We even added a few doctors and a lot of money just for kicks.”
Her eyes widened. “You try tricks then.  Maybe it happen when you not expect it.”
She gathered her things and pointed to the massage chair.  “You no worry. Stay long as you like. No one bodder you here.”
Outside the window, a little girl with baby doll curls and chubby cheeks wailed, impressing me with her volume until it became annoying.  Her mother, looking miserable, alternately placated and scolded the child.  Gazing through the window was as close as the mom was getting to pampering any time soon.
Sighing, I clicked my chair remote for another session of massage and settled in. 

Mother's Day is a difficult time for infertile couples. This weekend, celebrate the beautiful gift of motherhood. However, please do not put someone on the spot and ask when she will be a mom or have another child.  She may be wondering the same thing.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Friday Favorite: Growing Lollipops

I'm not much of a gardener, but even I didn't mess this one up.

Plant jelly beans the day before Easter.

And just look at what blooms on Easter morning!

Monday, April 14, 2014

My Writing Process Blog Tour

Sunshine makes me want to go on vacation.  (Not that there's any sunshine today, but there was last week.) So, with the sun shining, I agreed when Kristin Nador (of Kristin Nador Writes Anywhere)  invited me along on her My Writing Process Blog Tour.  

Hey, I’ll take any vacation—even a virtual one.  Would you like to join me?

Taking a break at a writing retreat
Before going on a trip, there’s always paperwork. So, here's where I earn it.

What am I working on?

Picture books.  I've written a couple of novels and was well into another, when I decided to take a detour. It feels good to travel off the beaten path for a change.

How does my work differ from other of its genre? 

Whether it's novels or picture books, I like to write about possibilities in a world where what you think you see isn't always what you get. I play with the idea of "Okay, it's not real, but why not...are you sure?"

Why do I write what I do?

I write about "the magic of everyday life" on my blog. Most of my YA work has fantastical elements with hints of magic in our regular world, which lends itself nicely to picture books. Recently, I decided to practice the “write what you know” adage.  We devour picture books in this house.  We have stacks and shelves of them. In my former life as a high school teacher, I felt that I had never really left high school. Now,  I'm living and breathing picture books.  Everywhere I turn, I see magical possibilities through the sparkling enthusiasm of my children as well as their intense, face covering drama.  Children see the world as a magical place full of possibilities, and I like the idea we share that perspective. I enjoy parallel worlds where something isn't quite what it seems.   That explains childhood pretty well.

I enjoy writing novels, but labyrinthine plot lines require large chunks of time from me.  With picture books, I can work on a single big idea. Writers go into the world to gather ideas and feed their creativity. I just have to listen to the kids' stream of consciousness chatter. I've heard of writers doing drugs to have creative injections. I have psychedelic creativity padding into my bedroom at 5:58 AM whispering, " Mom.  Mom.  I wanna tell you a story."

How does your writing process work? 

Give me tea (preferably one with bergamot), a baked good, and either a computer or journal, and I'll write. I envy people who churn out novels while chaos surrounds them. That's a challenge, but I'll take what I can get.   Still, a nice, three hour chunk is ideal. It allows me to revisit my most recent writing adventures, experience more and then review them. It's a nice vacation from life into my imaginary world. However, I usually get an hour.  I work best when I get time on a consistent basis so my brain can play with problems and possibilities for the characters before I return to the computer and write it down. I love that feeling of living my writing life in my head while I'm doing something mundane like folding laundry.

Thanks for your interest in my writing process. Mark your itinerary for next Monday when each of the following authors will tell you about her process.

Sonia Gensler is the award-winning author of THE REVENANT (2011) and THE DARK BETWEEN (2013), both from Alfred A. Knopf. She blogs a little about writing, but more often about reading, travel, TV and movies over at

Gayleen Rabakukk enjoys creating stories that explore the mysteries of days gone by, both real and imagined. Find her online at

Stephanie Clinton is a mommy blogger who writes about family, food, and all that goes with it (including the hard stuff) over at Hugs, Kisses, and Snot. She will also be featured in Oklahoma City's 2014 Listen to Your Mother Show.

Happy travels!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Friday Favorite: It's in the eye of the beholder

Me: (wiping at a smudge) What on earth is this yucky gunk on your face?
Alexandra: (batting her eyes) It's a beauty mark.
Placing sprinkles on bananas and peanut butter

She sleeps in a tiara, wears a tutu with sweatpants, and fights with her brother over whether her imaginary jewelry makes rainbows or not.

Perspective is a magical thing.  If one looks from the wrong angle, life can be pretty dirty and ugly. I want to borrow my daughter's viewpoint. Maybe she wears a lot of bandaids because she gets scraped up along the way, but she embraces her pretty bandages as accessories. If she can turn a chocolate covered scrape under her eye into a beauty mark, then what else can transform with the right attitude?

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Pregnant Pauses #1

Each time I attempt this series, my mind turns into marshmallow goo folding into itself. My thoughts become those wispy clouds that disappear on second glance, perhaps never consisting of any substance and existing only in my imagination.  My heart...well, my heart hurts because it doesn't want to remember.

I suppose it makes sense that my brain turns off when asked to recall our struggle with infertility.  It was an emotional experience in which I simultaneously battled my body and the cosmos. Answers, logic, and reason never applied.

"I don't think you can ever get pregnant," the doctors said.

"Genetic abnormality is the only explanation for the miscarriage," the doctors said.

"Circumstances were ideal for the transfer. We don't know why it didn't work," the doctors said.

Every menstrual period was an exclamation point on the end of our painful infertility sentence, rudely interrupting our hope.

Like many couples, we kept the secret for a long time, but last year, I shared it with anyone who was interested. You can click the video below to watch Step Right Up to the Game of Love.

Listen to Your Mother OKC

This February, on the LTYM blog, I committed to a monthly post about infertility so that other women will know they aren't alone.  This post is the first one.

I almost didn't follow through.  However,  three women in the last couple of months have reached out to me with their struggles.  After all that's happened, I still believe in signs. And I think these women were nudging me to be vocal for all of those who are searching the internet for someone else who might understand the crushing, painful, exhausting confusion of infertility.

My purpose is to give strength to those who are Parents-in-Waiting.  You are not alone.  Your story is unique. Each journey is your own.  However, the desire to count ten tiny, perfect fingers and ten tiny, perfect toes is a common one.  Check back with me each month as I share part of my journey.  I'll be brave for you because I know you are mustering bravery, too.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Divergent: Let them eat cake!


Divergent's release date has been on my calendar for months. It was a blockbuster at the box office this weekend.  I'll watch it again. I'll probably watch Insurgent on opening weekend, too.

 Unfortunately, much of the movie was as insipid as this poster.

1.  Sunrise to indicate dawning of a new day over a destroyed city
2.  Protagonist walking an "uphill climb" to get to that "new day"
3.  Hot love interest staring at her bum (yes, I realize that their backs are to each other, but it completely looks like he's staring at her bootie.)

Yeah, yeah, I get what it's all about.


I sighed a lot during this movie.  I've read the book as many times as I've read Hunger Games and Pride and Prejudice. It has elements I really enjoy. I had high expectations.


Unfortunately, some of the reasons I like the book were completely neutered.

Plot Points

Where was the chocolate cake? What's a good book without a food that makes you think of it?  In taking away the chocolate cake the Dauntless are known for, some of the richness of the story was destroyed. Instead, they focused on the whole hamburger thing.  Without a bun.  Really? Chocolate cake is so much more telling of Dauntless than a meat patty.

Where was the fear?  Yes, lots of scenes remained that intimidated people who were scared of heights. But what about the violent scenes that showed so much about the dangerous world they lived in and a person's character under pressure? What about Peter?  No cloak and dagger/eye-gouging stuff?  Was Edward still hanging out with them--both eyes intact?  How are they going to get around him in future movies? They touched on Al's fear of being excluded and how he responded to his fear. I understand why they cut his crush on Tris and her rejection of him, but I still missed that plot point.  What about when Tris let Christina take the flag as a win because she felt she was on shaky ground with their friendship? The film only hinted about the relationship with Will and Christina, so the tension between Christina and Tris is minimal for the next installment. What about the fear scene with Marcus Eaton and Four?  I don't want to see a man beat his child, but I did want to see Tris try to help him through that fear and the others.  There was a bonding in the book when they traveled through Four's fear landscape that I missed in the movie. And on that note...

Where was the chemistry?  Even though Tris was supposed to be this scrawny, child-like, not-so-pretty girl, the book made us see her as Four did. Strong, brave, sexy.  So many of the cute lines and moments from the book were deleted for the movie. Four is totally hot in the movie. Don't get me wrong.  Still, his vulnerability and need for Tris was missing.  Furthermore, why in the hell did they make her fear of being close to Four turn into a rape scene?  A perfectly sweet scene was transformed into a menacing and twisted one.  In the book, there was a hint of sexual groping in her assault when Al and the others tried to toss her into the pit, but that aspect was removed from the film. If some of the violence was left out to protect young audiences, I think adding a rape scene with a sweetheart might do more damage to influence young viewers than showing a mother getting riddled with bullets to protect her child.

Where were the lies?  Although the movie managed to heavily stress some of the themes through imagery--birds/flying/freedom and reflections/seeing true self--it mostly skipped over the duplicitous nature of human beings. Sure, Jeanine talks about human nature and we get she's a big ol' liar, but all of the bits in the book about the protagonist's own proclivity toward dishonesty (she did test as Erudite, too, after all) were removed.   She said in the book, "I couldn't be Candor. I lie too easily." Her duplicity is a running plot line through the trilogy, and its absence weakens her character.


When I saw the casting I was a little nervous.  The movie proved my anxiety was for good reason.

Shailene Woodley...bless her heart.  She did her best, but she is no Tris.  It's not her fault. It's casting. (Note: April 6, 2014: I learned she's cast as Hazel in The Fault in Our Stars and think she is PERFECT for this role. I"m very excited to see her in that movie.) Check out this list of some people's choices.   Yes, I'm being completely superficial, but isn't seeing the story the point of taking a book and making a movie? At times, Woodley's big eyes--that were supposed to be blue like most of the other Abnegation--pulled me in and I wanted to root for her. But she just looks too old (meaning 19? versus 16) and too solid. She's supposed to be scrawny, pale, blond, not especially pretty, but interesting.  She claims to look like a child.   Even Four tells her she doesn't have any muscle. It's not like he was saying she was fat. She gets her ass kicked easily because there's not much of her.

I have to remind myself that this is a movie and not a book. They take liberties to tell a similar story but not the same one.

They achieved success with a lot of casting choices.

Four was right on target. (After all, Theo James caused Mary all sorts of trouble as the Turkish gentleman in Downton Abbey, and he possesses the sexiness to pull off the male love interest.)

Tony Goldwyn and Ashley Judd as Andrew and Natalie Prior were good. I couldn't have asked for better.  I believed them. So many relationships were removed in the film. (I get it. They have to cut for time.) I wish the visitation day would have been kept. It's so cool how she connects with her mother as she watches her in the halls of Dauntless. Of course, if that scene were included, though, they'd have to bring back the chocolate cake. After all, before Natalie left she told Tris, " Have a piece of cake for me, all right? The chocolate. It's delicious."

Christina got away with being smaller than Tris because she captured so much of her spirit.

Kate Winslet rocked Jeanine Matthews.  I look forward to seeing her again in the next film.

Side note: Did anyone else think they were trying awfully hard to make Jeanine look a little too much like Hillary Clinton? I know I know I know... Hollywood never gets political.

All of that being said, I will probably watch it again.  Even if it's just to see this part:

I'll just bake my own chocolate cake.

What about you?  What are your thoughts on the movie? The book? 

Friday, March 21, 2014

Has anyone seen my...?

I point at the unwrapped box in Garrett's hand. "What's that?"

"It's because one of you is always losing your keys," my mom repeats.


"I lose my phone all the time." We have special places for our keys. They are rarely misplaced.

Garrett says if there were a nature show about me, the Call of the Brandi would be has anyone seen my phone?

But it's the thought that counts, so we thank my parents.

Two weeks later...

Running from room to room, I quiz the kids with the same daily questions. "Where is my phone? Has anyone seen my phone?"

Max grins. "Why don't you use your key finder?"

I don't know where he gets such a smart mouth.

What about you? If you could put a tracking device on something, what would it be? 

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Winter Soups: Virtual Potluck Party Roundup

Daffodils are lifting their lovely heads. Trees are budding.  The sun is warming the earth and our spirits. In short, spring has sprung, so our virtual potluck party must end. 

Thanks for joining me each Tasty Tuesday as friends--old and new--gathered to share their recipes. As a party favor, here's a link to last summer's virtual potluck party with salads as well as a round up of all of the soups. 

Happy eating!

Since I threw the party, I brought a couple of soups, too.

Thanks for coming to the party.  Don't be a stranger. Come back soon!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Leprechaun Poop

Need an easy recipe for the little leprechauns in your life?

Mine transform from leprechauns to screaming banshees when I suggest they try anything with mint. 
So, since my children think all things "booty" and "toot" are hilarious, I called these cookies Leprechaun Poop. They saw it through new eyes.

They gobbled up Leprechaun Poop.

Lucky me.

I'm not sure where I first saw the recipe...probably Pinterest.  I guarantee you won't find it by looking up Leprechaun Poop, though, so here you go.

1 bag of ready-made sugar cookie mix
1 Cup of mint chocolate chips (or chop up the Andes mints)
1 Cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 egg
1/2 Cup butter (softened)
1/2 teaspoon mint extract
green food coloring until you achieve desired shade

Stir it up. 
Scoop little balls about 2 inches apart on cookie sheet. 
Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes. 

Leprechaun Poop

Friday, March 14, 2014

Friday Favorite: Easy Icing

Need a fast way to frost a cake? It's your lucky day!
Half the batter made cupcakes.  Half the batter made this easy cake.

My friend Dee Dee gave me this "recipe" a while back and I finally tried it.

1. Remove cake from oven.
2. Place Hershey's chocolate bars or candy kisses on top.
3. Watch them melt.
4.  Eat cake while still warm.

I tried this the other day with leftover Valentine candy.  It was delicious. Thanks, Dee Dee!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Winter Soups: Valarie Lawson and Nana's Potato Soup

This winter has been exceptionally...wintery.  Our snow days have been extensive, but who minds those when you have good soup and good friends?  Thanks for joining me again for another Tasty Tuesday and a virtual potluck. I'm so glad you did because Valerie Lawson is here!

Aside from her mass of curly hair, the first thing I noticed about Valerie was her t-shirt. Like her, it was smart, artsy, and funny. To this day, when I see her at an SCBWI event, I look to see what she's wearing because I know she'll make me smile. 

And she brought potato soup for Saint Patrick's Day week. What luck! I'm definitely smiling now.
Valerie Lawson...she's wearing a funny t-shirt beneath that smile, y'all.

I’m so thrilled that Brandi invited me to participate in this virtual potluck. As many of you know who follow my blog, I am no cook. I was raised by my father, the microwave king, who still thinks cut-up hot dogs in macaroni and cheese is a fancy meal. He actually served this meal to my daughter recently, much to her horror. I think we’ve spoiled her. Or rather, my husband has. He is the cook in the family. He has a natural intuitiveness in the kitchen, lucky for us. Otherwise I’m afraid we’d live off fast food and cold cereal. My husband can look at the contents of our pantry and see what might work together as a meal. He does this weird thing called experimenting with food - and it almost always turns out fantastic. If I tried this, I’d end up with a fried crispy mess and a fire extinguisher.

My husband learned much of his instinctual cooking techniques from standing at his mother’s elbow while she cooked from scratch all through his childhood. She was also a natural cook who never wrote down a recipe, never used a measuring spoon. Thankfully, my husband had the foresight to write down a few of her favorite dishes before she died last year. I’m happy to share it with you, today.

This soup is simple and yet comforting on a cold, winter night. It is a meal all by itself or with some warm, crusty bread. I hope you enjoy it.

Nana’s Potato Soup


4 peeled and cubed Potatoes
½ cup chopped Celery
¼ cup chopped Onion
1 Tbsp Butter
1 ½  cups Milk
¼ tsp Greek Seasoning
Salt and Pepper to taste

Suggested garnish:
Crumbled Bacon
Shredded Cheddar Cheese
Sour Cream
Chopped Green Onions


Cover the potatoes with an inch of water in a large saucepan and bring to a boil for ten minutes.

While the potatoes are boiling, sauté the celery and onions in butter over a medium-high heat until translucent, about four to six minutes.

Pour off half the water from the potatoes, leaving the remainder of the water in the pan. Add the milk to the pan, along with the vegetables and seasonings. Turn the heat down to medium. Let flavors come together and allow the soup to simmer for about twenty minutes. Then your soup is ready.

Garnish as you please.
Nana's Potato Soup

Grab some soup and spend more time with Valerie over at her blog
Barbies on Fire. For me, the title of her blog was enough to tempt me to check it out, but once I got there I loved what she did with the place. She publicly challenges herself and shares her progress with the world while making it completely fun and mixing in great book reviews, author interviews, and more. 
Have fun with Valerie. I'm so glad I could introduce you!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Friday Favorite: Ghirardelli's Double Chocolate hot cocoa

Search your grocery store shelves for a hot chocolate mix without high fructose corn syrup. Go ahead. I'll wait right here.

 It's hard, right? 

We love having hot chocolate "tea" parties

But I finally did it. 

Sure, the first ingredient is sugar, but I know what sugar is.  And cocoa.  And vanilla.  

And deliciousness.

free of high fructose corn syrup and full of fabulous yummy  


Excited kiddos preparing for their "tea" party.  

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Winter Soup: Brandi's Tomato Soup

My sorority house often served the comfort food combo of grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup on a cold day.  I loved it. Still do.

So, as uncreative as I am in the kitchen, I knew I wanted to figure out how to make my own heart-warming goodness. Most people say they create tasty recipes "through trial and error."  Not this girl.  I completely goofed and accidentally added some things and forgot other things because I tried to remember how to make a soup after reading a couple of different recipes.

No one could be more surprised than I was to discover how yummy my mistakes tasted!

All of these ingredients are readily available at my house.

Brandi's Tomato Soup

onion (red or yellow work)
stick of butter
3 cans diced or whole tomatoes
2 cups chicken broth
1 TBS. tarragon
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup of sour cream (pure cream tastes good, too)

  • Dice onions and cook them in butter until clear. If you cook them until they begin to brown, well, that works, too.
  • Add tomatoes and chicken broth and tarragon.
  • Boil. Stir occasionally. Simmer about 40 minutes.
  • Add sour cream and mix with your fancy emulsion mixer until smooth.

Special trick
Whole tomatoes work better than the diced if you use the emulsion mixer.  If you've ever slightly lifted the mixer to try to mix up those little diced pieces, then you know what happened. Yep. It looked like someone had stepped on a ketchup packet and splattered it everywhere.

Complete Magical Meal Suggestion
What pairs better with tomato soup than grilled cheese?  The other night I used heart-shaped cookie cutters on the grilled cheese. Everyone was happy.  For a little luncheon with friends, toss a bag of Caesar salad and cook up some frozen mini quiche. Add the grilled cheese sandwiches and cupcakes for a tea party with a cozy, comfort food feel.

Check back next Tuesday when Valerie Lawson will help us get into the St. Patrick's Day mood with some potato soup!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Winter Soups: Dee Dee's Easy Chicken Chili

Thanks for joining us today for my virtual potluck.  My friend and critique buddy Dee Dee Chumley is here. You may remember her from the summer salad potluck. (She brought a salad and margaritas!)  

When I think of Dee Dee, I always giggle. No reason in particular--she's just so funny that I know if she were with me I'd be laughing. Plus, Dee Dee is always having an adventure that she may or may not tell you about.  She's so delightfully mysterious. Dee Dee treats life as something to be enjoyed, and I love that about her.  She also experiments with cooking. I like that, too, because it saves me the trouble. She's one of those people who sees a recipe and will try it within a week. I'll see a recipe, pin it on Pinterest, and try to convince someone else to make it for me.  

That being said, Dee Dee brought a recipe today that I know I'll try. It's healthy, but it's also so easy that even I can't mess it up.

the lovely Dee Dee Chumley

For most of my adult life, I’ve been a yo-yo dieter, experimenting with almost every weight-loss strategy known to man. I still recall one rather unfortunate situation involving something called “Peel-a-Pound” soup. I read about it in the National Enquirer, where it was purported to have worked wonders for Dolly Parton. The soup—consisting mostly of cabbage and tomatoes—wasn’t bad in itself. But when gallons of it are consumed over a three-day period, the experience can be likened to prepping for a colonoscopy. And the end result (no pun intended) is also similar: one solid meal and all the weight returns.
Last February, as I embarked on yet another weight-loss attempt, I resolved it would be my absolute last one. And my goals would be not only losing weight but also establishing healthier eating habits for life. For those reasons, I joined Weight Watchers because I was convinced it was the best program available for achieving those goals. When Brandi announced she was launching another virtual potluck dinner, featuring winter soups, I was all in. I knew I would collect a lot of tasty recipes that would fit into my new, life-long eating plan, and I haven’t been disappointed. The dishes she has “served up” so far have been healthy AND yummy! I know because I’ve tried several of them—and haven’t gained a pound!
My WW Lifetime Member Award.
With so many failures "under my belt," success can taste pretty sweet.
Since it is only good manners to bring a dish when you’re invited to a potluck, here’s my contribution:
Easy Chicken Chili (And I mean EASY!)
Prep time: 10 mins. Cook time: 6 hours  Serves: 6-8

·      4 shredded, cooked chicken breasts
·      2 cups chicken stock or broth
·      2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
·      1 Tbsp. cumin
·      ½ jar salsa
·      2 cans great northern beans, or bean of your choice
·      Salt and pepper to taste

1. Shred chicken
2. Add all ingredients to your crock pot or slow cooker
3. Stir and add lid
4. Cook on High for 6 hours or Low for 12
5. Serve (See, I told you it was easy!)

Magical Meal:
Really, this can be a meal in itself. But, if you want, you can “embellish” it with crackers, cornbread, sour cream, grated cheese, salsa, or—my go-to favorite—hot sauce.
It is also good with this EASY salad:
Arrange spring mix greens on a salad plate; add any fruit you prefer (this time of year, I like apples or pears); add crumbled bleu cheese; sprinkle with walnut pieces; drizzle with dressing of your choice (I like a balsamic or raspberry vinaigrette)

With lots of lean protein and fiber, this is a healthy dish (except for maybe the cheese). But if you want to really up its health factor, skip dessert and go for a walk. J
Here’s to good eating and good health!

Congrats to Dee Dee on her Weight Watchers Lifetime Member Award.  Hooray! For more fun with Dee Dee, swing by her blog or check out her guest post on Oklahoma Women Bloggers.