Breast Cancer Fund raising!

I work in an amazing department that runs so many fundraisers throughout the year. Usually they are patient based and all money raised by staff is given to patients in need, more so at Christmas but through out the year as well if needed. For the month of October we raise funds strictly for breast cancer and turn the clinic pink, literally!!
We purchase pink exam gloves, breast cancer ribbons, pink scarves, pink calendars (I think you get the point!!). Just before Thanksgiving we decided to raffle off a Butterball turkey – the money raised was incredible for this draw! It actually surpassed all of our other fund raising activities throughout the year, and this included draws for bottles of booze (Who doesn’t like good turkey meat??). We are also doing a Jelly bean count, soup day and a chili day and raffling off a Coach purse.
The thing I love the most about our fund raising efforts is how involved everyone becomes at the clinic. Everyone likes to participate, donate prizes and are genuinely excited for each other. We were looking for new ideas if any one else has some great thoughts please throw them out there!!
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Turkey and Veggie Sloppy Joes

I made up my own version of sloppy joes last night and it was a hit! My eldest had no idea how many different veggies he was eating or that he was even eating mince turkey! I wanted to try out a different type of meat and turkey was an excellent option! I am one of those people that add items to suit how the meal is turning out (i.e.) added spinach at the last moment to add some more green into the meal – but here is an idea of what I did:
  • – package of Maple Leaf prime mince turkey
  • – 1/2 of a red, orange and yellow pepper, cut thinly
  • – 1 cup of mushrooms
  • – 1 cup of thinly sliced carrots
  • – 1 cup of thinly sliced celery
  • – 1/2 bundle of fresh, washed and chopped spinach
  • – 1 medium onion
  • – 1 1/2 tbsp (approx.) of extra virgin olive oil
  • – 1 jar of tomato sauce (we can our own every September so it is just pure tomato but any tomato sauce can work!)
1. Saute peppers, onions, carrots, celery and mushrooms in a pot with the extra virgin oil.
2. Add mince turkey and brown.
3. Add chopped spinach and cook for an additional two minutes.
4. Add tomato sauce and allow to simmer for twenty minutes. You can always add pepper/salt or garlic to taste but I found it had lots of flavour as is.
We served ours on a bed of rice.
Our boys loved this recipe so much and had three bowls each! This was definitely a hit in our home and I will be making it again soon!.
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Week One Update

We had a good and bad week last week. We ate out twice (once at a fast food restaurant that I instantly regretted) but I found that I was struggling with my husband being on evening shifts and our eldest needing to be driven to soccer try outs and preparing dinner and homework,etc!. Trying to figure out a way to organize myself better (any suggestions!!).
I did make one delicious Southwest chicken clean recipe that I found on the Gracious Pantry website and adjusted it to suit my family likes (will post the recipe and what I used in a bit). And it was a somewhat hit! My youngest and I loved it – my husband and eldest son not so much – my husband actually wanted to fry the meal up as he felt it was missing oil. Kind of frustrated me but c’est la vie!
My boys and I managed to get out every day this past week (mostly due to all the soccer tryouts!) but it was nice to spend thirty minutes with them not stressed out about work/dinner prep/housework, etc…I loved that!! And I plan on continuing this – I feel like I blinked and they have grown up so much already, I just want to hold on tight and not let them grow up anymore on me.
Hoping this week will go just as well. I froze the Southwest chicken meal (but looks like it will only be my baby and I eating that one!), figured out a meal plan for the week, purchased all necessary ingredients – feeling prepared and ready for the week! May not feel that way by Wednesday but keeping myself optimistic. I am trying to focus on all the positives and all the good that will come out of this!
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Day One of Healthy Living

Today did not start off great – our youngest child is sick and was up for the majority of the night. I could not for the life of me force myself out of bed this morning early enough to make it to the gym!! I tried and tried but it felt like my eyes were shut closed.

On a good note, both of my boys started breakfast with two scrambled Burnbrae Farms Omega Pro eggs with toast (love mornings where they eat a super healthy breakfast!) and fruit. Hoping to hear about good days from both of them when I go to pick them up!!

I let my husband do the grocery shopping today and I was a tad bit disappointed with his shop. He did not purchase pork or beef with a Canadian label (in fact it had no label on it so not sure where it is from and you can definitely tell the difference! It does not look as fresh as what we usually buy). He did purchase local fruits and veggies which I was proud of 🙂

No gym or walk for us tonight as they suckered me in for another year of Catholic School Council meetings and will be volunteering tonight at the Welcome Back BBQ!!

Anyone else establishing new healthy routines?

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Healthy Living Goals

I have finally been convinced from watching our friends do this, to start to make more positive changes in our family eating and lifestyle habits. I personally think we have pretty good eating habits and are meeting at least minimum active lifestyle requirements but I want to do more for not only myself but my children and husband. I feel that we owe ourselves to be as healthy as possible!
It has taken me a couple weeks to gather information (what a wealth of information there is out there!) and to figure out what would work best for my family.
Here is what I came up with for goals for our family:
1. Introduce one vegetarian dinner a week.
2. Introduce one ‘clean’ meal a week.
3. Introduce lentils and beans into the family diet (at least two to three meals a week).
4. Fruit smoothies every morning for my boys to compliment their breakfast meals (I am always worried they do not get enough calcium!).
5. Introduce quinoa into one dinner a week.
6. Introduce new cuts of meat and all meat be from local Canadian farmers.
7. Consume all local fruits and vegetables (if possible). 
8. Introduce an ethnic meal twice a month.
9. Daily 30 minute walk for all family members.
My own personal growth goals are:
1. Learn how to make Parisian loaf style bread.
2. Get my butt to the gym for three 45 minute workouts a week! I can sense lots of early morning wake ups for me!!
I am excited to introduce these goals for my family and hoping they will be received well (already got the ‘look’ from my eldest when I spoke about starting to make some dietary changes!!).  Not quite sure how to explain to them why we are doing this but going to take that a step at a time. Does your family sit down and make goals together? I really enjoyed this (even though it was mostly the parent’s suggestions that we could all agree on!) and wondering how often do others do this?
Will update in a month to see how well (or not so well!) we did.
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