Are Paleo, Gluten Free, Grain Free Diets a Fad? Healthy or Not Healthy? My Thoughts…

I decided it would make perfect sense for me to post about My Favorite Whole Wheat Recipes, and then follow it up the next day with a post about avoiding wheat and/or grains altogether.  I like keeping you on your toes.


Seeing as the Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle includes an entire section on Special Diets, I thought this might be a good time to address my thoughts on eating a gluten free, grain free, or paleo diet.  Let’s chat, shall we?

A few weeks ago, I got this email from Deb:

I am just wondering what you think about all the gluten free, etc. rage?  Some of my friends truly have celiac, but most just seem to be trying this as more of a fad, way to lose weight, etc.  Don’t you think that the reason that they feel better is because they give up processed junk and sugar, not so much because of the actual gluten? 

We just had a missionary stay with us from Australia, she is originally from Taiwan and has lived in Kenya as well.  She says that Americans are the only ones who take supplements and vitamins and have all these food allergies.  She thinks it is ridiculous to eat at McDonalds, then buy vitamins.  She stayed with us 2 weeks and it was very interesting, even if she was out and about, she would NOT get fast food, she would go to the grocery and buy fresh meat and vegetables and come home and cook it, even though it costs more and was more time consuming.  Also, a lot of my friends that are on these EXTREME diets cheat half the time anyway, so what is the point?  

Ah yes.  I too have watched people go from eating a basic diet of donuts, chips, fast food, and skittles – to eating a low fat or low-carb diet.  They lose weight, feel better, and swear that the key is to cut out carbs, grains, gluten, eggs, beef, or butter.

Hey, hey, hey.  Them’s fightin’ words to this girl.  Nobody better be blaming my butter or beef on their poor health!  Especially when we’re talking about the kind that comes from cows who are raised in a healthy environment.  But enough about my beloved bovines.  What is the healthiest way for all of us to eat?


I hate to disappoint you, but I do not believe that there is a one-size-fits-all diet.  I believe real food, in balance, based on what your body can tolerate and thrive on is the right diet for you.  Learn to listen to your body, and nourish it.

I love my beef, and in fact, I believe I personally need quite a bit of (grass fed, if possible) red meat in my diet in order to maintain a healthy level of iron in my body.  You might not need much or any beef.  You may not need much of any variety of meat.  Okay by me – that means more cow for this girl.  Learn to listen to your body, and nourish it.

While some can’t tolerate grains or gluten, I can.  I can’t eat them in large amounts, and in fact, I believe most of us should cut back on the grains just to make more room in our diet for fruits and vegetables Learn to listen to your body, and nourish it.

Here are my Paleo, Gluten Free, and Grain Free thoughts in a nutshell:

  • When you give up processed foods and instead eat more wholesome, nourishing foods, you will feel better and look better.  This has very little to do with the fact that the food might be gluten free, paleo, or grain free.
  • If you truly are allergic to a certain food or if a food makes you sick, by all means, you should not eat it.  You might want to check into NAET though.  It is possible to re-program our bodies so that they no longer reject certain foods as allergens.  My boys and I have experienced this, and it works.  Where we used to have food allergies, we no longer do, praise God!
  • A Gluten Free label does not automatically make a food healthy.
  • Cutting down on grains is beneficial, especially if the majority of what you eat is grainy.  Our bodies need a better balance, and grains can be difficult to digest.  Bready foods should not be our main nourishment focus.
  • If we’re cutting down our grains, we should not replace them with loads of almond flour and coconut flour.  I believe these flours are fantastic additions to our diets, and wonderful to use in baking – especially if your body can not tolerate grains.  But to eat them by the pound every day?  Well, what happened to balance?

Paleo, Gluten Free, and Grain Free diets can be healthy and beneficial.  But if you’re focused on cutting out foods for the wrong reasons, and not focused on overall body nourishment – you’re right back where you started.

Share with me what you have found is best for you and your family when it comes to eating gluten and grains.  Do you eat them?  What grains are your favorites?


Now, who wants to save $120?

At first, I sort of skipped over the Special Diets eBooks included in the Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle.  We’re the family that eats whole wheat flour and other grains, we can tolerate milk, and gluten isn’t an issue.  I focused on the other eBooks and eCourses instead.

But then, Grain Free Grab-n-Go: Recipes for Portable Meals on the Go! caught my eye.  We’re focusing on food for lunchboxes right now, after all.  To add variety by having some grain free options – very cool!  Then I saw Grain-Free Meal Plans Freezer Cooking Guide.  I love getting me some new freezer meal ideas.  Well, then I just kept looking through the entire Special Diet section.  It is really, really full of great information and recipes.

If you do need to accommodate for special diets in your house, you are going to love this section.  If you don’t need to accommodate for special diets, I think you’re going to love this anyway!  I don’t know about you, but I want to learn more about baking with grains other than wheat.  I want to learn more recipes that don’t include grains at all.  I want to broaden my mind when it comes to healthy meal ideas to put on the table.  Plus, how fantastic is it that I now have loads more recipe ideas to bless my friends who have celiac and food allergies?

The best part?  I did the math on these books.  If I bought them all separately (you can see them all below), they would cost over $150.  The entire Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle is less than $30 for all those and a whole lot more.  I love this deal so much.  You’ll see all the books, eCourses, and free bonuses here.  Here are all the Special Diets books:

Only 4 more days until this sale ends.  I’m going to keep mentioning it because it is that good, and I don’t want you to miss it. :)

Be sure to weigh in with your thoughts:  Share what you have found is best for you and your family when it comes to eating gluten and grains.  Do you eat them?  What grains are your favorites?

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My Favorite Whole Wheat Recipes – and A Nutrimill Giveway From Paula’s Bread

I’m often asked how I get my 100% whole wheat baked goods to actually taste yummy.  It is true that sometimes store-bought whole wheat flour can turn out a dry and dense muffin or bread.  We know whole grains have more nutrition, but really, who cares how healthy it is if it doesn’t even taste good?

No Knead Whole Wheat Bread

Ahhh, that’s why I love my Nutrimill.  Freshly ground flour is so amazingly good.  It makes a world of difference in the way my baked goods taste.  Even better is the fact that all the nutrients are alive and intact when you grind your own flour.  Tastes better and is much healthier?  Yes, please!

What are my favorite Whole Wheat Recipes?  Well, all of them, of course.  But if I really had to choose my top ten, I guess they would be…

How has your whole wheat baking experience been so far?  Ever since I started grinding my own grain, it’s made a world of difference in how the product turns out.  Who knew baking with whole wheat (or other freshly ground grains) could be so easy?

Buying a Nutrimill is a bit of an investment.  It’s worth it, but it can take a while to save up the money for one.  That’s why I thought you might like the chance to win a free one.  :)

Paula’s Bread is the sweetest!!  We’re hitting the restart button with a Nutrimill giveaway, thanks to Paula.  :)

Who Wants to Win a Nutrimill

love my Nutrimill, which can be used to grind hard and soft wheat, kamut, spelt, hulled buckwheat, oat groats, hully barley, triticalae, rye, brown rice, wild rice, popcorn, sorghum, soybeans, split peas, and dried beans.  It grinds these into a lovely, fine flour which can be used in all of your baked goods.

I use my Nutrimill alllllll the time.  I mostly use my mill to grind hard and soft white wheat.  Most people don’t even know they are eating whole grains at my house.  They just know they are eating delicious bread, cookies, muffins, or pizza crust.

Paula’s Bread is the place to go when you’re ready to buy a Nutrimill.  Her prices are always the best, and her customer support is fantastic.  I have worked with Paula for years.  She’s a lovely, godly woman.  (Like Paula’s Bread on Facebook!)

This week, she is giving one of you a FREE Nutrimill.  Who wants to win?!  Here’s how to enter:

  1. Leave a comment on this post.
  2. Sign up for Paula’s Newsletter, then leave another comment on this post letting me know you did (optional).
  3. Follow Paula’s Bread on Twitter, then leave another comment on this post letting me know you did (optional).
  4. Tweet about this giveaway, linking to this post, then leave another comment on this post letting me know you did (optional).
  5. Share about this giveaway on Facebook, linking to this post, then leave another comment on this post letting me know you did (optional).
  6. Email your family and friends about this giveaway, linking to this post, then leave another comment on this post letting me know you did (optional).
  7. Share this post on Pinterest, then leave another comment on this post letting me know you did (optional).

Look at all the chances to win!  I’ll draw a random winner on Wednesday, September 17.  Be watching for a post stating the winner, as you will be responsible for contacting me if your name is chosen.


Don’t miss the Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle, available through Monday, September 15 only.
What an incredible collection at 95% off!  Get all the details here.

ultimate healthy living bundle long

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What I WANT You to Have and WHY I Want You To Have It

This is it, my friends!  This is the Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle I’ve been telling you about.  Wow, it feels so good to finally be able to tell you all the details so that you can get this bundle!!!

Is it worth spending money on this bundle?  Oh it is so worth it, you won’t even believe how worth it, oh my goodness it’s like a no-brainer how worth it this is.

I can’t think of a better investment in your Restart plan.  What I love about this is that you are going to be given months of material to slowly sift through at a 95% discount.  It’s information, it’s encouragement, it’s guidance, it’s ideas, it’s recipes…it’s amazing!!  It really is over $1000 worth of goodies for less than $30.

I keep looking through all the contents of the bundle, pulling up one eBook at a time, getting more excited with each one, and taking notes about new recipes and ideas I want to try.

I’ve been a part of bundle sales before, and I don’t just speak lightly when I tell you that this one is the very best I’ve seen.  I am honored to be a part of this.

See, look.  There’s my eCourse in there.

Does your Restart Button hit begin with cleaning your home naturally?  Does it begin with eating better foods? Does it involve learning about essential oils and other simple natural remedies?  Does it involve getting fit and finding time to exercise?

Whatever your Hitting the Restart Button focus, you’re going to find an abundant blessing of guidance in this bundle.  Find confidence in one area, then start to work through another.  These resources will be yours forever, just waiting to help you with each step.  This is why I want you to have this.

Do you, or does someone you love need to eat a special diet? Tool up with all of these.  My family doesn’t have any dietary restrictions, and we’re still enjoying this section of recipes.  They’re just real food recipes that happen to accommodate special diets.  If I end up not needing some of them, I’ll just send them to a friend who does.

You’ll love that a Getting Started Guide is included with your purchase, which will help you identify the most valuable resources for your specific health priorities.

You’ll also be glad to know that your purchase is covered by the Ultimate Bundles one-year guarantee: you have a full year to enjoy all the books and courses in the bundle, and if you don’t feel like it’s made a huge difference to your family’s health, you’ll get your money back in full!

Here’s what you need to know about the sale:

When? RIGHT NOW! through 11:59 p.m. EST Monday, September 15

What? 73 eBooks and 7 audio & eCourses, PLUS over $200 worth of bonus products you’ll really use!

Where? Purchase the bundle HERE.

How much?  The entire package is worth $1030, and it’s selling for $29.97 (for PDF version) or $39.97 (if you want the eReader version).  No catch – just an awesome deal to bless you and your family.

There are only 30,000 bundles available and once they’re gone, they’re gone!  These are very popular among readers like yourself all over the web.  Get it now before you miss it!

Click here for more info or to buy now.

And now for the (healthy) frosting on the (nutritious) cake…

bundle bonuses 1

The Ultimate Bundles team has also partnered with 10 fantastic companies who’ve each agreed to give a special bonus to every buyer. The bonuses have a total value of over $200 – more than 5 times the price of the Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle itself!

bundle bonuses 2

Check out these bonus offers you all get with purchase of the bundle:

  • a bottle of Healthy Mouth Blend from OraWellness (I’ve found this to be reallllly great so far)
  • a baltic amber bracelet from Sweetbottoms Boutique (I’m wearing mine right now…loveliness)
  • a starter culture from Cultures For Health (fresh, homemade yogurt – yes!)
  • a gift set from Made On Skin Care Products (my all-time favorite skin products – woot!)
  • a package from Homegrown Collective (this is on it’s way to my house)
  • a 4-month membership to (I am so loving this!)
  • a 3-month premium membership to meal planning service Tradishen (a real food planning service with over 500 real food recipes)
  • a $15 gift certificate for (
  • a $15 gift certificate for (drinking from a glass straw, avoiding plastic taste, oooooh, it’s good)
  • a $15 gift certificate for Trilight Health (we love these herbal remedies, especially the Lymph Rub for colds and allergies)

There is a nominal shipping charge for many of the bonuses, based on each company’s standard shipping rates, and is usually $3-5.  These bonuses are the bomb.  I love every one of them.

Click here for more info or to buy now.

Want to see a complete list of every eBook, eCourse, and bonus in the bundle?

You can see a complete list of every single item here.

We think there’s something here for everyone, and don’t forget… our Getting Started Guide will show you exactly which resources cover the topics and health concerns that matter most to you!

Remember, this bundle is available for 6 days only, right now(!!!) through 11:59 p.m. (EST) on Monday, September 15th.

Disclosure: I have included affiliate links in this post. Read the fine print about this bundle and read the answers to frequently asked questions about the bundle.

Now go get your bundle!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Prepare Thyself. You Have Less Than 24 Hours…

The countdown is on.  Tomorrow morning, bright and early, you will finally have access to the Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle.  You are going to love it soooooo much.  That’s why I’m warning you:

Prepare tomorrow’s food, today. 

It’s here, it’s here, it’s here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Once you get the bundle, you may find yourself just a tiny bit distracted.  The books?  They are really, really good.  The freebies?  You will not even believe it.  You’ll find yourself wanting to dig in to all of it right away.  You’ll find yourself wanting to redeem your free bonuses.  You’ll find yourself jumping right in to learn more about all kinds of great ways to make your home and family healthier.

You’ll find yourself without any dinner on the table if you’re not careful. 

I might be speaking from experience.  Heed my advice.  You’ve been given fair warning:  Figure out what you’re going to feed your family tomorrow, and get the preparations underway.  They still need to eat, even if you’re like, “Look at all these amazing books to read!  I’m going to start with this one.  No wait, that one looks awesome – maybe I’ll start with that one.  Oooh, look at this one…that’s just what I’ve been wanting to learn about.  Wait.  Seriously, I get free money to spend in that shop?  And that one too?  Eeehheeee!”  That.  That will be you tomorrow.

Are you hearing me?  The people will still need to eat.  The books and bonuses will cause you to forget your need for food – because they really are that amazing and exciting.  (But you actually should still eat, because hi, this bundle is about healthy living, is it not? Okay then.)

Prep Your Veggies for Easy Cooking

Some ideas to make your life easier (and to give you a little more freedom to enjoy your bundle right away without all the “uh, mom? are you going to feed us today?” interruptions):

Also – in your “I love everything in this bundle and can’t wait to read ALL of it right this minute!” excitement – don’t forget that the bundle will be yours forever to work through as you have time, you’ll have several weeks to redeem all your bonus items, and your family really does come first.  Have fun – the bundle is super full of goodness.  You’re going to love it!

This post includes some affiliate links.

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Gratituesday: Apple Time


At church yesterday, a dear friend stopped me to say, “Laura, if you want apples, I’ve got a tree full.  Come help yourself!”  And so, as soon as we got through the majority of our school work today, three boys and I headed out with bags and boxes.  Below, you will see a big apple tree…and three sets of legs.

apple time

We didn’t have much time, but the four of us picked fast and furious.  Within a half hour, we had 2 big fruit boxes and 5 paper grocery sacks filled!

apple time 2

You can guess what I’ll be doing the rest of this week.  Applesauce, apple pie filling, apple crisp - oh yeah.  Our house will be smelling good.  Our Victorio will be getting a workout.  Our cinnamon supply will dwindle.

What a blessing to be supplied with so many apples.  Having the chance to pick them with my boys on a bright sunny day was glorious!

What are you thankful for this Gratituesday?  Leave a comment to share!

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Fresh Peach Milkshakes

It’s story time, children.  Please sit down, criss-cross-applesauce, and listen quietly.

Once upon a time, there was a lady who got a new blender.  It wasn’t just any blender.  It was the blender of all blenders, the Blend-Tec blender that she’d been waiting patiently to purchase.

She was super excited to make a peach milkshake with the fresh peaches she had in her kitchen, and figured that reading all the fine print in the “blender handbook” would be a waste of time.  “How hard can it be?” she thought, “It’s just a blender.”

And so, the uninformed lady proceeded to fill the blender to the top with delicious whole milk, slices of fresh peach, maple syrup, and vanilla.  With excitement, she placed the lid on the blender and pushed the on button.

Before the lady could say “one Mississippi” the force within the blender sent the lid shooting right off the top.  With a shout that sounded something like, “Aaoourrhheeeewwryeeeoo!” the lady quickly smacked the off button.  But no matter.  Peach milkshake had been sent to the ceiling, to the floor, to the stack of mail beside the blender, to the casseroles sitting on the countertop, to the side of the refrigerator, to surfaces she found three days later, and I think it goes without saying, to the clothes, arms, legs, shoes, and hair of the befuddled lady.

She stood, quite shocked and motionless, for approximately 8 Mississippi’s, before calling in her 12 year old son.  With a chuckle, said 12 year old brought in the camera, as moments such as this should be documented and preserved forever in ones memory and computer picture file.

peach milkshakes 1

This picture does not do the situation justice.
“The lady” was covered, the rug was covered, everything was covered. 

Thus lunch-time was delayed, and the kitchen got a much needed scrubbing.  The lady soon smelled sour from being drenched with dairy product, and even though she changed her clothes before going to a soccer game, was surprised to find flecks of dried peach stuck to her knees and ankles during half time.

The moral of the story: Read the directions, do not overfill your blender, and do not be surprised to find crusty milkshake residue four feet away on the front of the silverware drawer next Friday.

The end.


Everybody hungry for a Peach Milkshake now?  Below you’ll find a recipe, which only makes about 2 servings.  Trying to make 6 servings at once, no matter how large your blender, is a bad, bad, bad idea.  I’m still not quite over it.

Fresh Peach Milkshakes

2 cups whole milk
2 fresh peaches, sliced
1 Tablespoon real maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Place ingredients in a blender, making sure the blender is only half-full, trust me on this one.  Place lid on the blender, plug it in, and give it a whirl until ingredients are well blended.

Fresh Peach Milkshake

Make this milkshake at your own risk.

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Menu Plan for the Week

Pigs in a Blanket

Remember how we used to host High School Huddle on Sunday nights?  (It’s the high school kids from our church youth group, along with a few adults, meeting on Sunday evenings for fellowship and Bible study.)  We took a break last year and instead hosted a family small group Bible study at our house.  This year, since we’ve got two boys in high school, and a big enough house for hosting 40 people, we’re hosting huddle again!  We’re sharing the responsibility with another family, taking turns month by month.  September is our month, October is theirs, November is ours, and so on.  I love this plan and am very excited to have these teens in our home!

All that to say, our first Huddle of the year begins tonight!  Feeding meals to a large crowd isn’t difficult for me as long as I keep the menu simple.  The teens don’t need fancy, they just want yummy.  I can do that.  :)

Here’s our menu for this week.  Our evenings are full of soccer games and music lessons.

Sunday, September 7
Poppyseed bread with orange glaze (recipe from Make-Ahead Meals and Snacks eBook), blueberries
Sweet and Sour Meatballs (recipe from Let’s Do This! eCourse), baked potatoes in the crock pot, green beans and sweet peppers from the garden
Huddle – Grilled Italian chicken, Italian bread, carrots and cucumbers with ranch, watermelon, chocolate chip cookie bars

Monday, September 8 
Scrambled cheesy eggs, peaches
Pizza boats, tossed salad, carrots and cucumbers
Pigs in a blanket, green beans from the garden, honey dew melon

Tuesday, September 9
Chocolate chocolate chip muffins, fried eggs, strawberries
Bacon, egg, and avocado salad, cantaloupe
Chicken, spinach, and feta sliders (recipe from upcoming Healthy Living Bundle – this week!), pineapple mango smoothies, cucumbers

Wednesday, September 10
Mountain man breakfast (recipe from upcoming Healthy Living Bundle – this week!), peaches
Cheddar ranch burgers, potato wedges, peas, honey dew melon
Grilled barbeque chicken, tossed salad, green beans, raspberry lemon cream cups

Thursday, September 11
Try a new smoothie recipe from Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle ideas, scrambled eggs
Easy noodle stir fry with carrots, broccoli, and zucchini, watermelon
Lasagna casserole, tossed salad, sweet peppers and cucumbers, fresh pineapple

Friday, September 12
Mini breakfast pizza, creamy orange cooler
Tuna salad on tomatoes and lettuce, peaches, pickles
Ham and cheese pasta salad, raspberries

Saturday, September 13
Crepes with blueberries, strawberries, and whipped cream
Grilled burgers, corn on the cob, watermelon, pickles

Anything good on your menu this week?


Need some menu planning encouragement and guidance?  Don’t forget – you can get a FREE copy of our 1-2-3 Menu Planning eBook if you subscribe to our free newsletter!  This offer is only good for a few more days!

123 Meal Planning Cover sm


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Organic Grade B Maple Syrup ~ As Low As $15.20 Per Quart

I never find organic maple syrup priced this low where I live.  Time to stock up!

Right now, Amazon is offering Hidden Springs Maple Vermont Maple Syrup, Half Gallon Premium Grade B Organic for $38.00.  BUT, if you have Amazon Prime/Amazon Mom, and you subscribe to at least 4 other items during the month, you can get 20% off.  That makes this half gallon jug cost only $30.40, which breaks down to just $15.20 for a quart of very high quality maple syrup.

hidden springs maple syrup

Read more here about how Amazon Prime/Mom and Subscribe and Save work.  I save so much grocery money this way.  Plus, the food is delivered to my door, so I’m saving gas money too!

Want to see more Amazon Deals?  Check out this page.

This post contains affiliate links.

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Equipping You to Hit the Restart Button

How’s that restart button pushing going?  Are you off to a great start?  Are you still trying to play catch up after a busy summer?  Are you getting settled into a routine now that school has started?

I wish I could tell you, “Yay, for fresh starts! You should see all I’m getting done!!!”  But goodness, our family had a really full summer.  Then we ended our really full summer by beginning a very full school year.  Our oldest is taking three college classes, three of our boys are taking music lessons (all different instruments), and soccer season has started.  I’m behind on cleaning my house, answering emails, getting into an exercise routine, and someone (Laura) who shall remain nameless (Matt’s wife) decided that this week would be the perfect time to transition over to a new newsletter subscription system.  It really needed to be done, but so much for catching up on other work.

It’s a good thing I decided long ago that I wouldn’t take up yodeling.  Ain’t nobody got time for that.

So hitting the restart button?  Thank the Lord, it’s a work in progress.  For ever and for always, we continue forward toward goodness in our lives.  Isn’t that encouraging?

Hitting the restart button is not just a one-time thing.  God is in charge of all this.  I’m learning to embrace this truth and run with it excitedly.  There’s so much to learn!  There’s so many great new opportunities!  My weaknesses = God’s strength working through me.  Glorious!

So guess what is finally coming next week?  The newest Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle.  I am always excited to share these with you, but this year, I am more excited than I ever have been.  Why?  Because never before have all the resources been so incredibly helpful in so many areas.  From essential oils to exercise to healthy eating to planning ahead – and so much more.  As I’m making my way slowly through all the contents in the package, I am feeling more and more grateful.  I feel like I’ve been handed simple step-by-step handbooks in so many needed areas.

Glory be!  I don’t have to become an expert at every little thing.  I don’t have to know all there is to know and arrive at perfection.  All I have to do is trust God and find the resources to help me along.

This bundle is exactly that – resources from many wonderful, smart people who are happy to share their knowledge - all packaged up and placed in front of me with a bow.  If that’s not awesome enough, the bundle comes with $200 worth of bonus products.  Since I got early access to them, I’ve cashed them all in - and most of them have arrived at my house already.  You will not believe all the healthy living products you’re going to get for free.

You’ll be able to get over $1000 worth of resources and products, for less than $30.  It sounds too good to be true, but it’s absolutely true, with no catch.  For about four more days, I have to keep my mouth shut about everything included in this bundle.  But come Wednesday morning, I’m blurting it all out, and you can all FINALLY have access to the bundle too.  I am so happy for all of us!  Hitting the restart button, learning more about how to care for our families and keep our homes healthy, having dozens of fantastic resources right in front of us – plus lots of free goodies – whoop-whoop – the countdown is on!

In just a few days, you’ll all be gushing with me about how amazing this bundle is.  Hold on to your hats!  Hitting the restart button on healthy living is about to get much easier!

And while I’ve got you, did you subscribe or re-subscribe to get our free newsletters each day?  You’ll get a free eBook, just for subscribing.  :)

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Barbecue Beef and Cheese Hot Pockets ~ The Make-Ahead Lunch Box

The Make-Ahead Lunch Box

When I asked you what you needed in a packed lunch, this is what you told me:

  • Quick and easy
  • Can be eaten cold
  • Hearty and filling

These Barbecue Beef and Cheese Hot Pockets are all that plus they are delicious.  You can make them big or small, accommodating big or small appetites.  They taste great hot or cold.  You can make them ahead of time and pull them out as needed.  They freeze well. What more do you need?  Just the recipe I guess…

Barbecue Beef and Cheese Hot Pockets

2 pounds beef stew meat
1 batch homemade barbecue sauce (more if you like)
2 cups shredded cheese
1 batch whole wheat pizza dough

Place stew meat and barbecue sauce in a skillet.  Cook on low heat for about an hour, stirring occasionally, until meat is cooked and tender.  In the meantime, mix the whole wheat pizza dough and set it aside to rise.  Once both meat and dough are ready, remove meat from the heat.  Stir in cheese until it is melted.

Divide dough into about 16 pieces.  Roll each piece of dough into a thin circle.  Spoon meat mixture into the center of the circle, then gather up the edges of the dough and pinch to seal.  Place pinched side down on a baking sheet.  Once all dough is filled with meat, allow the pockets to rise about 15 minutes more.  Bake in a 375° oven for 15-25 minutes or until pockets are golden brown.  Makes about 16 pockets.

Barbecue Beef and Cheese Hot Pockets

This would be a great way to use up leftover roast beef.  In addition, you can fill hot pockets with any variety of meats and cheeses.  They are a great, versatile meal idea!


If you’re hitting the restart button with us this fall, I challenge you to find one recipe (maybe this Barbecue Beef and Cheese Hot Pocket recipe?) that you can make ahead of time and freeze.  Having food prepared like this in the freezer is a life saver on busy days when you need a healthy meal quickly.  You’ll find all of our Make-Ahead Meal recipes here.

Once you’ve completed the challenge, come back to this post and leave a comment letting us know what you made.  Can’t wait to hear!


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