Category Archives: healthy living

the usual suspects: a lentil bowl: kale, curry, + chickpeas


I think this looks like a really yummy and healthy dish to make!

E A T & R E L I S H

Despite the fact that recently it may appear that I’ve been subsisting on a steady diet of creamy citrus pies or cookies stuffed with breakfast cereal, I can assure you that it’s actually quite the contrary around these parts.

Sure last weekend I managed to eat dinner out at threedecadentrestaurants in as many nights, sat outside on my deck lazily sipping sangria, and really only got my rear end to the gym once (and…errrm…spent most of that ‘visit’ perched poolside, trolling Pinterest, and sporting my sunnies).

(Hey, at least I refrained from ordering a beer.)

((And yes, they do serve beer at the gym pool.  Cruel, no?)

But I promise you that not all has gone to hell-in-a-holiday-weekend-hand-basket here.  There has been some healthy answers to all of that…..unhealthy three-day weekend-ing, and those answers come in the form of little red lentils…

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Itching For My Green Thumb!


As I’ve been going more and more toward green/sustainable living, my green thumb has really been itching! There’s just one problem… at this point in time I don’t have an ideal lawn for growing things. A nice little tornado took care of that last year, and we’re just now really getting our lives back in order. Our house is almost completely done being rebuilt, but it won’t be until next year when our yard is ready for growing.

Anyway so I was looking around on the internet, and I found this really cool little project where you can make an in-house hanging herb garden with some coffee cans and coat hangers! Not only is it a good space saver, but it’s also a good way to recycle your old used coffee cans! Pretty neat, huh? Since our house is almost done (there’s just a few small things left), I think I might HOPEFULLY get to try it within the next few weeks. That is, if things go according to plan. *crosses fingers*

In the meantime though, if I don’t get to do this hanging garden thing, maybe my husband’s parents will be nice enough to give us any excess produce they have from their own garden. LOL

If you want a good, detailed tutorial on how to do the hanging herb garden, here is the url!

Also, if you have cats, you might want to either plant cat-friendly plants, or close off the room where your herb garden is. Here is another url for a list of cat-friendly plants:

Happy planting! 🙂

Barley Hoppin’ John


Ok, this doesn’t really have as much to do with being cost effective as it has to do with eating healthy. Last Sunday I got a recipe called “Barley Hoppin’ John” from I made it this Sunday for my in-law’s and my 9 yr old nephew, and they absolutely LOVED it. It’s a vegetarian dish (we’re normally meat eaters, but I figured it would be good to go meatless one day a week) that is based off of the recipe for “Hoppin’ John” which, instead of barley, it uses oats.

At first I thought that it wasn’t going to be as good because of the black eyed peas, since I didn’t like them when I had them in a different recipe months and months ago. But it was delicious, and the whole family loved it! Well, my husband didn’t get to try it because he was at work and everyone wanted seconds. ^_^ I am going to post the recipe, and I hope you guys enjoy it as much as we did!


(This picture is from, and I do not claim it as my own work.)



1 TBS extra virgin olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

1 small red bell pepper, chopped

2 stalks celery, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 14 oz can of veggie broth

1 cup quick cooking barley

1 TBS chopped fresh thyme, or 1 tsp dried thyme

2 tsp lemon juice

1/4 tsp crushed red pepper

1/4 tsp salt

2 15 oz cans of black eyed peas, rinsed


1. Heat oil in large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add onion, bell pepper and celery. Cook until the veggies soften, about 3-4 mins.

2. Add garlic, cook one min.

3. Add broth, barley, thyme, lemon juice, crushed red pepper, and salt. Bring to a boil.

4. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until the barley is done. That will take about 15-20 mins.

5. Remove from heat, stir in black eyed peas, and let sit for 5 mins. Serve hot.


Per serving: 320 cal, 5 g fat (1 g sat, 3 g mono), 0 mg cholesterol, 58 g carbohydrates, 0 g added sugars, 12 g protein, 11 g fiber, 677 mg sodium, 529 mg potassium.