Weekend Roundup and Smelly Stuff :)

December 3, 2018

We have been BUSY here at The Daily Soul Sessions, ’tis the season, right?  Kate spent the weekend in New York, on a trip she has been dreaming of since she was a little girl. A weekend filled with Christmas Magic…..FAO Schwartz piano playing, an afternoon with The Rockettes, Rockafeller Center Tree and the broadway musical The Lion King! A dream come true and she got to bring Sloane, her oldest daughter, along for the fun!

Plaza Hotel

Kacey spent a busy weekend singing with their band Three Daughters (and missed Kate tremendously!) at a TED conference, what an opportunity! She then had Kate’s youngest babe and her dog, while they were out of town for the weekend, and you know how adding a kid or two to the mix can be-can anyone say chaos?! lol

Three Daugters

I (Kara) started the weekend with an ornament exchange party (a tradition that a good friend hosts), followed by celebrating a dear friend’s 40th birthday, a surprise that was a complete success, and then decorating my house with the family (with a small headache along for the ride-I’m too old to be celebrating past 10pm-lol-not great at a 5 year old’s basketball game-ha). So needless to say it was busy weekends all around! What fun, holiday adventures did you experience this weekend?

ornament exchange

We wanted to share one of our favorite little things we do make our homes feel cozy during the holiday season-we like to call it Mom’s Smelly Stuff-haha. But seriously it’s amazing and makes your whole house smell so festive and fun.

Holiday Smelly Stuff

  • The peel of one large orange (or 3 small cuties)
  • about a tablespoon of cloves
  • 2 Cinnamon Sticks

Place all ingredients into a pot filled 3/4 of the way with water and turn on to high, bring to a boil.  Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer and enjoy the most delicious smell filling your house with cheer.

Happy Monday Mamas!

xoxo

Buffalo Chicken Salad

December 2, 2018

I can’t tell you how many days of the week lunch rolls around, and I am at a loss for what to eat.  I’m usually in a rush for preschool pick up or fitting my workout into the nap time window, so I end up grabbing something fast or skipping lunch and snacking…..never a good option!

Since starting Keto I’ve been much better about my lunchtime options and this buffalo chicken salad does NOT disappoint. It’s quick and easy and you can have it ready in about 15 mins or less!

Buffalo Chicken Salad

Ingredients

•Lettuce-your choice of what kind!
•Spinach
•Diced Red Bell Pepper
•Two Chicken Breasts (you can also buy precooked chicken which cuts the cook time down to nothing!)
•Frank’s Red Hot Original Sauce
•Ranch Dressing
•Shredded Cheese
•salt and pepper
•EVOO

Instructions

1. Dice chicken in small chunks
2. Drizzle EVOO in pan, turn heat to medium/high
3. Place chicken in to pan and salt and pepper generously
4. Sauté chicken until cooked through about ten mins or so
5. As chicken is cooking put lettuce, spinach and red peppers together on plate/bowl
6. Place cooked chicken on top of salad
7. Drizzle with Frank’s Red Hot and Ranch Dressing-I don’t use much ranch, just enough for flavor.
8. Sprinkle with cheese if desired.
*note* you can make up a bunch of cooked chicken for the week and this salad will take less than 5 mins to make!

DONE-enjoy!

Easy Banana Muffins

November 27, 2018

 

Please tell me I am not the only mom out there who ends up with over ripe bananas almost every week? I always have good intentions to make banana bread or muffins, but somehow too much time passes and I end up wasting them.  WELL, not any more mamas! I found the easiest 5 ingredient banana muffin recipe, and I have to share it with all of you.

My son JJ had a play date this afternoon and ALL THREE KIDS approved…..if that isn’t a reason to make these I don’t know what is! Whip these little muffins up for your family, and you will get all the love. 🙂

Easy Banana Muffin Recipe

Banana Muffins
recipe adapted from my Betty Crocker Cookbook
 
Ingredients
1 1/4 cups mashed rip bananas (3 Medium)
3 tablespoons of vegetable oil
1 large egg
1/3 cup of Sugar
2 cups Krusteaz Pancake Mix (original recipe called for Bisquick but I couldn’t find any at the store-which I thought was strange?)
____________________________________________
1. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Line a 12 cup muffin tin with paper baking cups.
2. Beat bananas, oil, egg and sugar in large bowl until well blended. Then stir in Krusteaz mix until everything is just moistened. (Batter will be lumpy). Divide batter evenly between muffin cups.
3. Bake about 15 minutes or until golden brown. Let muffins cool and remove from pan.
DONE! Easy Peasy and a hit with the kiddos!
Mangia!
Kara

Thanksgiving Appetizers “Turkey” Veggie Tray

November 20, 2018

 

Thanksgiving Turkey Veggie Tray

Are you still looking for something you can make to contribute to all the Thanksgiving events this week? Try this Turkey Veggie Tray. It is fun and festive – a great project to enlist some little ones to help assemble as well!

Here is how you assemble this bad boy: Lay out butter leaf lettuce on the bottom of a large plate.  Then add your veggies: A row of carrots, broccoli florets, thinly sliced red and yellow bell peppers, and zucchini.  Save the top of the red bell pepper to make the turkey’s face, and slice up some zucchini to make the legs.  Add 2 little eyes (from some cauliflower) and you’re done!  Pair with homemade hummus or your favorite dips.

And be sure to let people know it’s ok to “ruin” the turkey – it’s almost too pretty to eat!

xo,
Kara, Kate, and Kacey

Be sure to check out our Thanksgiving Table Decorations:
Moss Green + Cobalt Blue Thanksgiving Table Decorations
Classic Fall Thanksgiving Table Decorations
DIY Thanksgiving Gratitude Quotes
DIY Fall Indian Corn Wreath

Almond Milk Breakfast Smoothie Recipe

November 7, 2018

 

Almond Milk Smoothie Recipe

We love a good smoothie over here at our house. This one is a go-to breakfast smoothie that the kids absolutely devour!

Almond Milk Breakfast Smoothie Recipe

2 cups almond milk
6 frozen strawberries
1-2 cups frozen blueberries
1-2 bananas
1 spoonful of vanilla protein powder
2 tbsp flax seeds
1 spoonful chia seeds
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 serving “green superfood powder” (we use Shaklee’s green powder)
handful of almonds

Blend, blend, blend! This recipe makes one big smoothie for me and 2 smaller ones for my kids.

I love my Vitamix for making smoothies – it grinds everything up perfectly. Honestly, smoothies are the way I get veggies down my kids’ throats! We make a green smoothie that is full of spinach, lettuce, celery, and more. They love it.

Email me at thedailysoulsessions@gmail.com if you’d like more information about my Shaklee Organic Green Powder. I add it to all our smoothies to give us a boost of superfoods. I also use their daily vitamin regimen that has for sure made a difference in my daily energy level.

Happy Smoothie Making!
xo,
Kate

Almond Milk Breakfast Smoothie Recipe

Korean Beef Bowl Recipe

June 28, 2018

Korean Beef Bowl Recipe

Make these yummy, sweet, and savory Korean Beef Bowls for dinner this week – you will not be disappointed! And neither will your family. My kids love this dish (even the broccoli! Well, most of the time!).

Korean Beef Bowl Recipe – serves 4

Ingredients
1 lb ground beef
2 bunches broccoli
garlic powder
salt
ground ginger
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar
crushed red pepper flakes
green onions (optional)
cooked brown rice

1.) Break broccoli into bite-sized florets with a knife. Sauté in pan with olive oil, garlic powder, salt, and ground ginger.

2.) While broccoli is cooking, make rice. I bring 1 cup of brown rice and 2 cups of water to a boil, then reduce to a simmer until rice is cooked. Season with salt.

3.) When broccoli is still crunchy, shove it to the sides of pan. Add a bit more olive oil and the ground beef. Season beef with some salt. Cook beef all the way through.

4.) While beef is cooking, make sauce. Mix together: 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1/4 cup soy sauce, crushed red pepper flakes to taste, 1/4 tsp ground ginger, 2 tsp olive oil. Once beef is cooked through, pour sauce of beef and broccoli and stir.

5.) Serve over rice. Add green onions if desired.

YUM! xo, Kate

PS: Don’t forget to get your copy of The Daily Soul Sessions for Every Mama – let’s THRIVE, not just survive motherhood! This books helps you learn to do just that with short, daily inspirational thoughts and messages. Love + Light!

Korean Beef Bowl Recipe

 

Skinny Margarita Recipe

May 1, 2018

 

As summertime approaches, we all start being a little more mindful of what we eat and drink. We take in more fruits and veggies and less comfort foods and cookies. That is why this Skinny Margarita is seriously amazing, it is full of all natural, healthy ingredients (well outside of the Tequila!) and tastes fantastic.

It’s also perfect for upcoming Cinco De Mayo festivities! Yummmmm

skinny margarita recipe

Skinny Margarita
(recipe adapted from cookieandkate.com)

Ingredients
-Kosher Salt
-2 Ounces (1/4 cup) of Silver Tequila-I used Hornitas 100% Agave
– 3 Tablespoons (about 1 1/2 limes) Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice
– 2 or 3 Tablespoons Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice
(about a half of a medium Orange or a quarter of a large Orange)
– 1 teaspoon of light Agave Nectar
– Lime round or wedge for garnish

Start by prepping your margarita glasses. Pour a generous amount of salt on a small plate.  Take a small slice of lime and run around the rim of the glass.  Run the edge of your glass in a circle around the plate at an angle to get desired amount of salt.  Fill your glass with ice.

Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and add all the ingredients above. Shake, shake, shake your cocktail shaker for about 20 seconds or so and then pour your tasty skinny margarita into your salt rimmed glass.

Enjoy, mama!
Kara

Homemade Valentine’s Day Brownie Recipe

February 14, 2018

Homemade Valentines Day Brownies
So easy! So cute!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

If you’re up to your ears in candy hearts and lace doilies for the kids at school, you might be in need of a delicious and festive pick me up.  In France, they call their afternoon snack the “gouter” (gooh-tay): typically sweet and served with tea or coffee.
 
I’m a fan already:)
 
So here’s the deal.
 
Stop by your local Sur La Table, or any kitchen store.  I found varying sizes of these heart shaped cookie cutters for a very reasonable price of $.85! (The bigger ones are $1.25…you can decide how big you want your brownies to be).
Then bake these delicious homemade gooey brownies, or if you’re in a major hurry, you can go the store bought route.  Let the brownies cool way down in their 13 x 9 pan before cutting out your heart shaped treats! I got about 14 mid sized brownies out of one recipe…and there are some delicious edges left over to snack on too:)

Homemade Brownies

Ingredients
4 eggs
1 tsp salt
1 cup butter melted
3/4 cup of Hershey’s cocoa
2 cups Sugar
2 tsp vanilla
11/2 cups of flourBeat eggs in a large bowl.  Add sugar, salt, vanilla and mix for about a minute.  Add melted butter to mixture.  In a separate bowl combine flour and cocoa with a wisk until blended. Add dry mixture to wet mixture and blend until well combined.

Spread brownie batter into a 9×13 pan and bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minute.

Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe:

Ingredients
4oz. organic cream cheese softened
1/8 stick of butter softened
8 oz (half a small box) confectioners sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Beat cream cheese, add in butter.  Slowly beat in Confectioners sugar as frosting gets fluffy and soft.  Mix in vanilla at the end and Voila!!  YUMMY cream cheese frosting!
I mean…sooooo delicious…I’ve always had a love affair with cream cheese frosting…now that I know how simple it is to make…I am in serious trouble!
Enjoy my Valentines!!  It’s the little things…and this one is too yummy to pass up!
Love and hearts,
Kacey

Halloween Pumpkin Carving Party

October 30, 2017

Apple Cider Burbon Cocktail www.TheDailySoulSessions.com

Mamas, it’s time to carve those pumpkins! Why not make it a bit more festive and add a fun fall themed cocktail and some yummy meatball paninis?

DRINK: Apple Cider Bourbon Cocktails
SNACK: Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
EAT: Homemade Meatball Paninis
DO: Carve those pumpkins!

Apple Cider Bourbon Cocktails
2 parts fresh Apple Cider
2 parts Ginger Ale
1 part Bourbon
Apple Slices
*Stir all ingredients together on the rocks.
*Garnish with a slice of apple

 Roasted pumpkin seeds recipe www.thedailysoulsessions.com

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
1.) Save the seeds you dig out of your carving pumpkins.
2.) Rinse seeds well with water. Then lay seeds out to dry on a paper towel.
3.) Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees, and spread seeds evenly on a cookie sheet (or 2!)
4.) Drizzle olive oil over top of seeds. Sprinkle with sea salt (or garlic salt, or any other flavored spice!)
5.) Bake seeds for 30-45 minutes, until slightly golden in color and crunchy to the bite.

Meatball Panini Recipe www.thedailysoulsessions.com

Meatball Paninis – makes 6 paninis
Italian bread
tomato sauce
meatballs
red onion
sliced prosciutto
arugula
sliced provolone cheese
red pepper flakes

Meatballs:
1 lb ground pork
1 egg
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp dried basil
3 tbsp garlic powder
garlic salt – a few shakes
1/4 cup Italian bread crumbs
salt and pepper
1.) Mix all ingredients together with your hands in a mixing bowl
2.) Roll mixture into balls roughly 2 inches in diameter.
3.) Place meatballs on greased cookie sheet. Gently press into each, flatting them slightly This makes it easier to fit in the sandwich.
3.) Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees, turning meatballs once.

***Either make your own tomato sauce or use a store bought version.

Paninis
1.) Using a good crunchy Italian bread or ciabatta, cut into panini size.
2.) Spread tomato sauce generously on both sides of sandwich.
3.) Slice a meatballs in half and layer on one side.
4.) Add sliced red onion, prosciutto, provolone cheese, arugula, and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes on other side of bread. Put panini together.
5.) Using panini press, heat sandwich until warmed through.
6.) Serve immediately with fresh green salad.

 

Easy Pasta Bolognese Recipe

October 17, 2017

 

It’s National Pasta Day!

And in honor of National Pasta Day, I thought we needed some good for the soul, warm us up, comfort food.  One of my favorite hearty dishes in the winter is Bolognese.  It’s easy to make and has our home smelling wonderful all day long as it simmers on the stove top.  One of my favorite go to recipes is Giada De Laurentiis’ Simple Bolognese.
Easy Pasta Bolognese Recipe www.TheDailySoulSessions.com
Giada’s Simple Bolognese
 
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 celery stalk, coarsely chopped
1 carrot, coarsely chopped
1 pound ground beef
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1/4 cup flat-leaf Italian parsley, chopped
8 fresh basil leaves, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano
————————————

Directions
1.) Pour olive oil in a big pot. Sauté onion and garlic till translucent on medium high for about 3 minutes. Stir constantly so it doesn’t burn. Toss in the chopped celery and carrots and season liberally with salt and pepper. Stir occasionally until soft, about 8 minutes.

2.) Add ground beef and cook through. Season again with salt and pepper. Pour in crushed tomatoes. Stir in basil and parsley. Season again with salt and pepper. Let simmer until sauce thickens, an hour or more is best! It just gets better as it simmers.

3.) 15 minutes before serving, cook pasta in boiling, salted water according to package instructions. Either heat buttered bread in oven or toast it. Make up a salad! Romaine lettuce, peppers, tomatoes – whatever you have and toss with Italian salad dressing.

5.) Plate drained pasta with heaping spoonful of bolognese sauce on top. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese. Serve with salad and bread. Freeze leftover sauce in single serving freezer bags for next Friday’s dinner or future meals.

Easy Pasta Bolognese Recipe www.TheDailySoulSessions.com