National Coffee Day

There are so many National Days for so many things. Many of them are made up on Social Media but some of them are actual official celebrated days, such as National Coffee Day. When I read about National Coffee Day I was quick to participate. I find it perfectly fitting for Monday too. I myself even woke up with some Monday blues, but then I headed to my espresso machine for a mood and much needed energy boost. Normally on these “national days” that were created on Social Media, I just admire others posts about the subject but for this official celebrated day, I had to share my morning caffeine treat. A delicious, perfectly sweetened, perfectly flavored, DIRTY Chai Tea latte with a hint of vanilla!

IMG_9837.JPG

And my fellow coffee lovers, I know quite a few places, like Krispy Kreme and McDonald’s, are giving away FREE cups of coffee. So if you are out and about today, stop and get a free cup of caffeine delight.

What are you enjoying on this delicious day? Did you manage to snag a free cup of coffee?

Slow Cooker Meal: Cherry Chai Chicken

Since my husband has started working 2nd Shift, quick meals have become something I have learned to embrace. We now make dinner for lunch so my husband can enjoy a nice home cooked meal everyday. They cut down on prep time and cooking time and gives me more time to hang out with my handsome hubby before he leaves me for the day. Since I love to cook, I wasn’t up for just eating frozen food everyday that we heat up (nothing wrong with it, it just takes away a piece of my passion). I quickly learned that Slow Cookers are where it’s at. You prep it all the night before and when you wake up, it’s all ready to dig into. I rarely cooked in my slow cooker before, so I grabbed an old cook book (Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade: slow cooker recipes) my mom bought me years ago that was centered around slow cooker meals. The Cherry Chai Chicken really stood out to me because I love fruit infused meats and I absolutely LOVE Chai Tea lattes. Since I am about saving money at the grocery store, and knew I wanted to buy some Chai Tea to make some lattes now that fall has arrived, the recipe seemed even better. So I quicky wrote it down on my meal list. I ended up tweaking the recipe some to make it cost effective, to alter it to my family’s liking, and to fit my 10 quart slow cooker vs a 5 quart one that the original recipe called for, I will note any changes.

What you need: 

3 Chicken Breasts (the original recipe called for thighs, I prefer boneless, skinless chicken breasts)

Salt and Pepper

1 cup of Frozen Pitted Cherries (most bags are around 2-3 cups, so think smoothies for leftovers!)

Half an Onion Sliced (or diced up, my husband likes to pick out his onions so slices make it easier for us)

3 Chai Spice Tea Bags (original recipe called for 2)

1 cup of Cherry Preserves (original recipe calls for 1/2 cup)

2.5 cups of 100% Real grape Juice (the original recipe called for 1/2 any port wine for a 5 quart slow cooker)

1/2 cup of water (the original recipe did not use any water)

Let’s get cooking:

  1. Sprinkle some Salt and Pepper onto your Chicken Breasts and then broil on the lower rack for about 6 minutes. This allows the skin to get a nice firm outer layer. IMG_9767
  2. Layer your Onion Slices, Your Cherries, and your tea bags at the bottom of your slow cooker.IMG_9764
  3. Pop your chicken on top of your layers IMG_9768
  4. Mix up your juice, your preserves, and water then pour it all over the chicken.IMG_9771
  5. Cover and cook on Low for 4-6 hours.
  6. Take your chicken out and sit it aside (covering it up with some foil ensures it will stay warm)
  7. Remove your tea bags (Tip: Press them with a spoon to get a little more of the absorbed flavor back into the dish)
  8. Put your juice mixture into a pan and bring it to a boil. Cook until it gets to a thickness you like and pour it on top of your chicken.

and that’s it! I served it with some easy flavored rice which paired well with it but the original recipes suggests serving it over some noodles (worth a try!) The chicken was packed full of flavor and will not disappoint, I promise!

If you tried out the original recipe, let me know how it turns out!

Do you guys use your slow cooker meals often or is it a rare occasion in your house?

Subscribe to The Wife’s Life to keep up with more yummy recipes like this one and much more!

Social Media: Wife Etiquette Part 1

A few weeks ago I went on a Social Media Fast. When it comes to fasting, you are supposed to fast something that isn’t easy for you to give up. Automatically I knew what I would be choosing, Social Media.

Most of us have some sort of Social Media Account, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, the list goes on and on. It’s almost as if Social Media makes the world go ’round. Think about how much time you spend between all of your social media accounts. You probably under estimate how much time you really do spend on it through out the day. If you piled up all the minutes you spend looking through your feeds, it would add up to be more than an hour for the average person, I would guess it would be around the 2 hour mark. Now, this isn’t for every person that owns a social media account. Some only check it once a day, maybe even once a week, or even less. But on average the amount spent on your social media is quite a bit and you probably don’t even realize how addicted you may be to it. Try Fasting it like I did and you’d be surprised how many times you catch yourself going to open the app, without even thinking about it. This was such a habit for me, I deleted my apps until my fast was over.

My post today isn’t a lecture about getting rid of your social media accounts. Let’s be honest, we aren’t just going to go out and delete everything. If you use Social Media maturely it is actually a good thing. I have far away family that I literally hardly ever see and it’s nice to be able to keep up with them as well as seeing pictures of my friends kids I don’t see often and personally, I like to share my own accomplishment’s too (if you checked out my personal feeds, you would mostly see pictures of my food adventures). At this point in life it’s the norm to have a Facebook and other outlets and there is no reason in shaming ourselves for participating. My main idea for this post is using Social Media maturely as a wife. In the world where Social Media is a common practice and it’s only a click away, it is often used in negative ways. A lot of these negative ways can reflect on your marriage and the kind of spouse you aim to be. So let’s take a look at some basic Wife Etiquette rules of Social Media.

Social Media CAN be a good thing. When it was created, it was meant in all good intentions. It was a way to keep in touch with those you love and have them keep up with you. So let’s start with “The Do’s” of Social Media.

The Do’s:

Write on your hubby’s wall: When you write on someone’s wall, it’s public for everyone to see. We as women know how good it feels when our husband’s show us a little affection in front of the guys or our gal pals. Do the same for him. Write a little “I love you so much! Thank you for being so good to me :) ” or something a long those lines, and give him some public praise!

Brag a Little: This kind of bounces back to the public praise idea. If he sent you some flowers on a bad day, don’t feel bad to snap a photo and share it. Social Media is about sharing after all. Tag him and say a sweet line about how thankful you are for them, or create a small status saying that you are thankful for a hard working husband. Something a long the lines of that. It’s public praise that all of your family and friends can see and it will make him feel even more appreciated. But notice I said a little. You can declare your love everyday on Facebook if you feel the need to but remember your friends, families, and followers are there to hear more than just about your love, so make sure to have a good balance.

Post Photos of you together: Your followers want to keep up with what you’re doing in life, take a snapshot when the two of you just had an amazing adventure. Not only will you have the memory in a photo and not only are your friends and family enjoying keeping up with the two of you (parents loveeee photos) but your hubby can feel that you are extra proud of the two of you.

Accept requests from his friends and family: Letting his friends and family into your Social Media lets him know that you care about how they are doing, and not just about your own group. When you marry, you inherit his friends and family too. Be sure and stay active with them when you can, it really shows him that you care about them being involved in your life together. You don’t have to like his ex-roomate’s status about enjoying a cold one, but it doesn’t hurt to throw a like or a comment or two on some fun or meaningful things.

There’s part 1 of The Do’s. Take all these tips as added bonus ways to show your love and appreciation for your spouse, don’t make Social Media the only way you show him these things. Always say thank you in person and make sure you vocalize your appreciation for them often.

Now, on to the negative thing’s that we as Wives (and just people in general) will want to avoid. Here are..

The Don’ts:

Talk about him in a negative way: Never put your significant other down in anyway on Social Media. There are no exceptions to this. Don’t talk bad about them, don’t make vague statues about how mad you are because SOMEONE forgot to take the dog out, and don’t share photo’s that point to you being angry or upset with your spouse. You would hate it if he did it, so don’t do it. You should respect your spouse and pointing out their flaws is not the way to do it. It also does not reflect well on yourself. If you are throwing your spouse under the bus in public, it only comes off as if you are a disrespectful spouse and then everyone who just read your public display of anger, will learn to disrespect you. Just don’t do it.

Don’t vent your marriage woe’s to the world: It can be so easy to open up your account and go on a venting session about your feelings. It can give you an automatic response to your feelings and some people feel supported when their aunt they hadn’t seen in 10 years rallies with them to support their frustration with their marriage. This is a giant no-no though. Not only does it embarrass your spouse but later on when the two of you have made up, your family and friends won’t be there to witness the makeup session and will often grow to dislike your spouse or lose respect for them. The main reason this is a mistake is because marriage is between 2 people. Not the 2 people and their family and friends. Your family and friends did not make vows to you, your husband did. Only the two of you can solve your problems, so outsider views on the issue doesn’t matter at the end of the day. Instead of venting your anger and causing all kinds of negative response, talk to your spouse, work it out, be happy. Once something is online and someone else sees it, that is something you cannot take back.

Don’t post anything truly embarrassing: I don’t mean cute baby photos (unless he is really serious about that), I mean something super embarrassing that you wouldn’t want shared. Marriage gives you the comfort to be yourself and gives you someone else to trust with everything. Even embarrassing moments. We are there to lift up our spouses, not bring them down.

Don’t spend excessive amounts of time online: Between jobs, errands, and family functions, time with your spouse is precious. Life is so busy that it can be easy to come home from work and unwind while scrolling through your feeds and there is nothing wrong with that, if you are spending a ton more time one on one with your spouse with no distractions. Make sure to put it away at dinner, during conversations, and activities. You live with your spouse so of course you will be looking while in their company, but make sure it is a small amount of time compared to the time you are spending with them without the phone.

Don’t share everything: Some of my most treasured moments are times that no one else knows about except me and my husband. I keep a journal of them to look back on from time to time (I highly suggest it). Anytime he does something nice, you don’t always have to share it. Social Media has taken away the idea of having private moments because so many of us share everything that happens to us. Try not sharing everything, sometimes it becomes even sweeter.

Wives, take these do’s and dont’s into some serious consideration. Especially the don’ts. Marriage is precious and sacred and something we need to take care of. In a world where Social Media dominates, don’t let it dominate your marriage.

Respect your Husband. Respect yourself. Respect your Marriage. 

What advice do you have for wives on social media? Be sure and comment and join in on the conversation, and be sure and share this with other wives. It’s something we can all benefit from!

For more Wife Life, be sure and subscribe! :)

3 easy meals, 2 Delicious Dinners, at the price of 1.

IMG_9694

Yes. It’s true. You can make delicious meals at an affordable price. The average meal cooked at home will average around $15-$20 a meal and they barely stretch far enough to feed your entire family for dinner.

Over the years of cooking homemade meals I learned very early on that food has gotten super expensive, especially healthy food. The average person will spend $200 at the grocery store weekly, or $600-$800 monthly. No wonder people are flocking to Ramen Noodles and Pizza Rolls. It’s cheap and goes a long way. In turn, our health is suffering and as of now, 1 in every 3 Americans are obese. Some may wonder why, but most of us already know. Healthy Food is simply too expensive and many of us can’t afford to expand our grocery budget even further.

Me and Mr.B have really gotten the urge to eat healthier, but our food budget is already more than we are comfortable with, which is something many wives can relate to. I wasn’t going to just give up and run back to my unhealthy foods, instead I got creative and came up with two healthy meals, that were cost effective, and went a long way.

A big tip in purchasing healthy foods without breaking the bank is to buy items that you can use more than once. Which is what my two meals are really focused on. Not only are they healthy but I fed my family 3 meals, between 2 dinners, at the cost of 1.

Just because you cut costs, doesn’t mean you cut quality either. My family gobbled these meals up, and were left wanting even more. So let’s take a look at the shopping list:

  • 1 Beef of Roast 
  • 1 large bag of Baby Carrots
  • 1 Small Can of Beef Broth
  • 1 5lb bag of Potatoes (you’re favorite will work just fine)
  • 1 48oz Can of Tomato Juice
  • 1 bag of Frozen Green Beans
  • 1 Bag of Frozen Corn
  • Basil Leaves or Basil the Spice Isle

*I shopped at Kroger, your local grocery store may vary in slightly prices.

So on to Meal #1: Roast

The first meal I made was a classic pot roast full of flavor. It’s amazingly easy to make (can we say slow cooker?!) and it’s DELICIOUS. It is sure to specially please the meat and potato lover (like my hubby). Go ahead and slice up about 5-6 potatoes.

So first thing’s first: Empty your can of Beef Broth into the bottom of your slow cooker, like so…

IMG_9616 (2)

Next drop your Roast into the broth and cover with salt and pepper to taste (I also added in some seasoned salt I had in the pantry, but this is optional.)

IMG_9618 (1)

then add a layer of potatoes right on top and cover with some salt (regular or seasoned)

IMG_9619

and then do the same with your carrots

IMG_9620

Keep Layering Potatoes and Carrots until you run out (use your whole bag of carrots).

After the layering is done, fill your pot up with water until everything is nice and covered.

IMG_9623

Cover and cook on low for 8 hours (cooking times may vary with each slow cooker.)

All that’s left is to enjoy :)

IMG_9624

That’s it for the first meal! It took hardly any prep time and it filled our bellies up, all while getting our veggie servings.

Pour your roast into an air tight bowl for safe keeping in the fridge over night for meal #2.

Meal #2: Veggie Soup!

Meal #2 also requires very minimal work and this one cooks in a lot less time.

What you will want to do first is drain the water from the roast and get it ready for this yummy Veggie Soup!

As you are letting it drain, let your tomato juice and about 5 tablespoons of basil (or 3 leaves) come to a simmer on medium high heat.

IMG_9634

Once it reaches a simmer, add in your green beans and corn (thawed).

IMG_9635

While it’s simmering, cut up your meat and veggies from the roast into bite sized pieces. Then throw them into the soup along with some salt and pepper for taste.

IMG_9640

Allow it to simmer for at least 30 minutes, then scoop out a giant bowl full to cool a few minutes before serving.

IMG_9641

This soup lasted for dinner AND for lunch the next day for my family. It is delicious and loaded with veggies. It is pleasing in all aspects and I see myself making it again in the near future, especially as fall weather approaches!

And there we have it. 3 meals, 2 dinners, all for the cost of 1. These recipes show that you can create delicious dinners without breaking the bank. It’s always a win when you can please your family and please your budget.

Share these recipes along with others who would enjoy this. I know so many people that struggle to create healthy meals for their family at an affordable cost. These recipes allow you to do both and keep your tummy happy.

I please to do more budget friendly healthy meals so make sure to subscribe to The Wife’s Life and spread the word about this sight to others. We are all in this together!

Sneak Peak: 2 in 1 dinner!

IMG_9614.PNG

I cannot wait to share this amazing dinner menu with you. Not only will your husband die for it, but it’s easy on your budget and will feed you for days!

Reader Requests: What do you want to see?

The things I write about come from many different places. Sometimes I’m dying for chocolate and want to create a new brownie recipe, sometimes I’m asked for marriage advice, sometimes I go through something personally. Whatever sparks my ideas, I want to share it with you guys, fellow wives along the journey of marriage that often have some of the same obstacles ranging from a picky eater husband to a stressed out husband (see my post about Stressed Out Husband’s here ).

I wanted to reach out to you, my readers, the people who benefit from my articles, to see what content you guys feel the need to see. What are some issues you have that you would like some guidance on, what are some recipes you would like to know how to make, what are some household tips you need, and the list goes on because we as wives are very busy with all the many different roles we hold. 

Please comment your requests below or see my contact page on how to contact me privately with your suggestions.

I appreciate you all as readers and as fellow wives. Thank you for any questions and suggestions you may have and I look forwarding to writing about what you guys want to hear about!

Easy to do Beef Stew

I’m a little too anxious for Fall to get here. The background on my phone is a bunch of orange and red leaves, I’m dying to get to Starbucks to get the early released Pumpkin Spice latte, and I’ve been dreaming about the fall weather. Today I even ditched my cute pink and white purse for my Deep Brown Michael Kors Purse, which is fall appropriate and I’ve already been painting my nails darker colors and my Pinterest is covered in fall decore ideas (I have a board dedicated just to Fall). Basically, I am DYING for fall to get here. It is certainly my favorite time of year and I am constantly in a good mood when the crisp Fall air arrives. So Beef Stew sounded like the perfect thing to make for dinner. It screams fall. So off to the kitchen I went. Once I posted the photograph below to my Facebook of my scrumptious dinner, the comments flooded in, some asking for the recipe, some telling me just how yummy it looks. So sharing of the recipe was in immediate order. 

Beef Stew

It does taste as good as it looks. What I love besides the incredible taste (my mom told me today it was better than her beef stew!) is how quick the prep time is. I spend so much time in the kitchen since I love cooking so much, but some days I feel like I’m missing out on family time. So slow cooker recipes are great to have on hand for those days where you just feel like relaxing and you have SO much leftover you can eat on it for two days, so for the busy wife, this is a wonderful go to recipe. 

The ingredient’s are common and you probably have most of it in your pantry already. 

Ingredients

  • Stewing Beef (1.5-2 pounds). You can find it at any grocery store all cut up and ready to go for you.
  • A bag of Frozen Peas
  • 1/2 of a large onion
  • 2 celery ribs
  • 3 cups of baby carrots 
  • 3 cups of Beef Broth
  • 1/2 cup of All Purpose Flour
  • 1 tablespoon of Vegetable Oil
  • 28oz of tomato juice 
  • 10 large potatoes 
  • 1.5 teaspoons of Italian seasoning (you can buy this in your spice isle in a shaker or a packet)
  • 3 Bay Leaves (I found it in the Mexican Food Isle at Kroger, your grocery store may have it with the vegetables or spice isle)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of pepper

 

  1. Pour your tomato juice into the bottom of your slow cooker.
  2. Cut your Potatoes into 4 pieces, slice your carrots and celery, and cut your onions into large pieces. Put all of it into your crock pot and cover the veggies with the Italian seasoning and the salt and pepper.
  3. Coat your pan with oil and brown your stewing beef until it is almost done, with a slotted spoon scoop the beef into your pot.
  4. Pour 2.5 Cups of the Beef Broth over your veggies and beef and give everything a good stir.
  5. Place the Bay Leaves on top of your stew being sure you can pull them out when the stew is done.
  6. Cover and Cook on low for 7-8 hours (cooking times may vary with each and every pot).
  7. About 30 minutes before your stew is done remove the Bay leaves and stir in your peas.
  8. Whisk your flour and 1/2 cup of beef broth together to make a paste in a separate bowl. Then stir it into the stew and let it cook the remaining 30 minutes.

Now you have a delicious stew that will please your entire family. I served it with some Jiffy Corn Muffins to top it off! 

Be sure and subscribe to The Wife’s Life so you can keep up with other amazing recipes like this. You don’t want to miss out.

Happy Eating :)

 

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 37 other followers