The New Recipe I am Obsessed With: Miracle Dough

Okay, so I could go on and on about how awesome this year’s Ultimate Homemaking Bundle is and how it is such a great deal. But I won’t. If you’ve checked out the bundle, you will realize that for yourself in seconds. And, to be honest, these bundles are a great value, but sometimes the amount of resources can be overwhelming. So I thought instead I would highlight the ebook that I have gotten the most use out of so far. I have started several of ebooks and one ecourse. It is hard to pick a favorite. I feel like I … Read more…

Healthy, Heart-Shaped Pancakes

Rebekah tested low in iron recently, probably because she has been battling off sickness. Regardless, I decided it was time to boost her with some iron-rich foods. She has been more interested in baby purees and finger foods over the past couple weeks. The baby cereals seem to have a lot of iron, but they sometimes feel like filler. It was time to get more creative, so the other day I decided I would try and make pancakes using her baby oatmeal. It’s essentially oat-flour anyways, right? And to make it more fun, I decided to make them heart shaped. Just because … Read more…

The Sickness, Quarantine, and the Delicious Soup I Developed in the Meantime

The Sickness Ugh. Hand, foot, and mouth (HFM) can be a nasty bug to fight off! We thought Rebekah’s strain of it resembled chicken pox more than HFM. Rebekah’s primary doctor is older than he looks and had seen more than the typical pediatrician. Due to this, he had seen chicken pox firsthand (many new doctors have not) and many, many strains of HFM. Even though he was confident it was HFM, he sent pictures of her sores to Dermatology to double check. Right before Rebekah got sick, I wrote about treasuring the moments. Well, few things make you treasure your child’s smiles, … Read more…

The 12 Treats of Christmas

Sugar Cookies

I have to admit that I have stressed myself out a bit trying to make a bunch of Christmas treats to share. I keep telling myself to stop, relax, or, you know, finish my Christmas gifts! But, for some reason baking, giving, and frosting cookies is so compelling for me during the Christmas season. I have fond memories of my grandma’s frosted, cut-out sugar cookies and my aunt’s Oreo balls (or truffles). And then after Mitch and I got married, every December we would dip pretzels in chocolate, make cookies, fudge, cocoa, and many other wonderful treats. I hope that … Read more…

The Ultimate Thanksgiving Roundup

Thanksgiving is around the corner! For most of us anyways. This year we get to celebrate three times! We celebrated with my parents on Monday. We will get together with more family on Wednesday and then on Saturday. Strangely, we have no official plans for Thursday. However, we will be with my husband’s family in Springfield, so I am sure we all will soak up lots of time with grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles. 🙂 In celebration of this time of year, I have compiled some of my favorite recipes, crafts, decor ideas, and lessons. This is the ultimate thanksgiving roundup. Feel free to share your … Read more…

Indoor Activities for Kids During the Cold Winter Months

You’ve probably noticed that over the past few weeks the weather has started to change. Winter is headed our way. When temperatures start to drop and rain becomes more regular, we can no longer spend as much time outside with our families as we would like to. For many parents, this means sticking the kids in front of the television to keep boredom at bay. While a little television is okay, like many moms, I don’t believe in letting kids spend all day in front of a screen. I believe that boredom is not always the enemy–in fact, I believe … Read more…

Ideas for Making Your Kitchen Family Friendly

(This is a guest post by Beth Holmes, an Engaged Home contributor. It includes affiliate links.) I spend a lot of time in the kitchen each evening, cooking dinner for myself and my family. Being a busy mom means that sometimes it feels like I get very little time with my family. That’s why I like to encourage them to chat with me while I’m cooking dinner. Many kitchens are anything but family friendly, which can make chatting while you cook difficult. However, by making a few simple changes to the design of your kitchen, you can change that. To … Read more…

Snack Attack: Customizable Trail Mix

I love trail mix. But I get annoyed with the mass quantities of peanuts found in the store-bought varieties. Plus, with as much as boughten trail mix costs, I want something better than peanuts! (Sorry peanuts, I don’t mean to hate on you.) I always fish through to find the pecans, almonds, cashews, dried fruit, and yes, candy bits. When we lived in Phoenix, there was a store called Win-Co that had a fabulously cheap bulk foods section. I would go there and pick out all of the trail mix fixins’ that I wanted. No peanuts. Just the good stuff. It … Read more…

Snack Attack: Blueberry Crumble Bars

It is no secret on this blog that I have a major sweet tooth. Not so much for candy, rather cake, pie, donuts, cookies, ICE CREAM, etc. The dark thought of giving up all the sweets I love makes me sad and quite frankly, cranky. Another blog I love, Heavenly Homemakers, helped me realize that there are ways to make the sweets I love at least more nutritional through a couple easy substitutions: Embrace butter or coconut oil as your main fat. Use whole wheat flour. Whole wheat flour has so much more nutrition, from protein to fiber–it’s good stuff! … Read more…

Farmers’ Market Finds and a Summer Squash Recipe

Ready for the farmers’ market mom!  You can’t beat delicious, ripe tomatoes! Not a bad haul at all if you ask me! Mitch and I decided (bribed ourselves) that after tackling our giant to-do list for this past week that we should reward ourselves and celebrate making Columbia home. What better way to celebrate and explore our new home than to grab a chocolatey cup of coffee, peruse the local farmers’ market, and then eat at one of our favorite places: Pepper Jax Grill! Mitch also surprised me by baking a yummy summer cobbler from some of the blackberries we bought … Read more…

Snack Attack! Green Apples and Yogurt

A couple weeks ago my in-laws took us out to Cheddars for my birthday. In an attempt to be healthy, I took a chance and ordered the apples and yogurt as one of my sides. I was apprehensive because I am not a huge fan of yogurt, at least on its own or as a dip. While I was eating, I had two thoughts: 1. Wow! I actually like this. The yogurt is incorporated well . . . I might even love this!  2. I could totally make this myself . . .  And so, a couple days later, I set … Read more…

Cinnamon Apple Oat Bars

One of my favorite snack recipes is Heavenly Homemaker’s Raspberry Oatmeal Bars. They are versatile. I eat them for breakfast, dessert, or even a snack. You can wrap each bar in plastic wrap and freeze in freezer bag for whenever you want to enjoy them! Sweet, hearty, and even healthy–these are my kind of snacks! I got the hankering for them the other day, but I did not have any jam or preserves. So I decided to take this recipe and dress it up a little bit based on what I had on hand. My twist makes it slightly more of a … Read more…

10 Tips for Grocery Shopping on a Budget, Eating Healthy, and Meal Planning

Do the rising costs of groceries have you nervous about how you can afford to feed your family fresh, healthy food? Does making your grocery budget each month for a growing family become a task you dread? I know we have unfolded our grocery envelope half way through the month and realized we only had $25 left to last us two weeks! Stretching our grocery budget used to be a consistent concern for us. So how did we manage to wrangle in our grocery budget and make it work for us? Let me tell you! What we finally realized we needed to do was … Read more…

Fresh-Squeezed Orange Juice and an Orange Julius Recipe

A warm spring day in Phoenix is pure bliss for harvesting and juicing oranges. Orange trees are beautiful: the contrast of the vivid orange against the dark green leaves are one of my favorite things about spring here. That and the roses! My cousin and friend Doris invited Mitch and I over to juice some oranges from her tree. We readily accepted, not just for the prospect of sweet orange juice, but because Doris is one of our favorite people. She is always so warm and welcoming, plus multitalented, insightful, and artistic. We wish we would have had more time to … Read more…

11 of My Favorite Healthy Pregnancy Foods

First Trimester: During my first trimester I never wanted to eat. The thought of food was repulsive. Fixing food made me feel sick. The smells made me flee the kitchen altogether. Yet, I knew Rebekah needed food. She made that very clear. As much as I didn’t want to eat, not eating made things worse. Most of the time that I found myself dry-heaving in the bathroom it was because I had not eaten anything. I was conflicted: Eating was repulsive, but not eating made me sick. Fortunately, through trial and error I discovered that I could eat nutritious foods that nourished both Rebekah … Read more…

Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix and Spice Tea Mix

I find warm beverages pure bliss. Maybe it’s good marketing on the part of coffee companies, but I find a hot mug of coffee, tea, hot cocoa, cider, etc. very romantic. Many mornings it is what lures me out of bed. I will drink warm beverages all year, even in the 120 degree weather, but I find them most delightful during the cold winter months (or if you also live in Phoenix, the cool winter months). 😉 However, I have grown more particular about my warm beverages. For example, I use Natural Bliss creamer or half n’ half, because it … Read more…

Last-Minute Thanksgiving Recipes

Hopefully, most of you have your Thanksgiving menu set and all your groceries bought! But if you are not quite there, or you were asked to bring a dessert or side and are still looking for ideas, check out some of my favorite, last-minute Thanksgiving recipes! The first recipe I am going to share is an original: Mini Apple Crumb Pies. I created it when I had ton of sweet and tart apples from my grandma’s tree and a leftover crust in the fridge. My mom came up with this idea of keeping flour for rolling out doughs in a … Read more…

Killer Homemade Tomato Sauce and Soup

Hello everyone, today The Engaged Home is being hijacked by the husband of the home to share with you a great recipe that I’ve been using for about a year now. Do you love tomato sauce but worry about the sugar, salt, or preservative content in the jared or canned tomato products at your local grocer? Ever wanted to know exactly what goes into your food? Ever wanted to eat the best tomato sauce EVER? Well, you’re in luck, because I’m going to share with you a homemade tomato sauce that will completely ruin other recipes for you. It is … Read more…

No-guilt Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffin Madness

Whew. That is a mouthful! So are my new delicious muffins . . . Pregnancy has caused me to crave carbs and sweets (Really, I am just blaming our poor child, I have always craved these things). I have been striving to eat a balanced and healthy diet, but some days are better than others. The first trimester my focus was completely on survival. Now that I am feeling better {most days} I am working harder at eating healthy. I had some overly ripe bananas, so I decided I needed to make muffins. Unfortunately, this morning they were too far … Read more…

Our Version of a Margarita Pizza

Since we got married, Mitch and I have loved making pizza together. Pizza, and cookies, we also love to create new types of cookies together. We have tried out different crust recipes, but we usually come back to my bread maker recipe. In attempts to be healthier, I have found a couple whole wheat pizza crusts I really enjoy, unfortunately Mitch is not such a big fan of them! Over the weekend, we bought some fresh basil at a farmer’s market and decided we needed to make tomato basil pizza. We kept it simple. We pressed out our dough, put … Read more…