Hi there! Did you think I went on vacation? It's
been two weeks since
I last wrote.:-)
Unfortunately, I did NOT go on vacation. BUT
we've enjoyed a lot
of busy family activity over the last couple weeks.
My 12 year-old son's all-star baseball team went
undefeated and won
their district title, with my son getting some great
hits along the way. Very
exciting, except for the last three outs of the title
game, which I spent
cowering in the ladies' bathroom. Don't ask.
The girls competed one last time this dance season at
our local county fair.
I'm proud to say that my oldest daughter earned first
place in the 12-
and-under for her tap solo, and both girls took first
place in the 12-and-
under state fair competition for their tap duo.
Their other numbers did
All the kids made the local paper, so I'm awash in
Somewhere in there we managed to squeeze in a
battle re-enactment in southern Vermont, which was
Here's a family photo you might enjoy:
I hope you're doing fun stuff this summer, too.
Speaking of summer, it wouldn't be that time of year
serious BBQ'ing. Hot dogs, burgers, chicken,
like cooking and eating outdoors!
Here are some tips for we ight and taste-bud-friendly
we use each and every year.
1) Go easy on the sides.
Potato salad is great every so often, but
the best way to enjoy the flavors of summer is to pair
with fresh veggies (steamed or grilled) and/or a salad
spring mix, romaine or green lettuce and baby
spinach). Beans are
great, too, and when corn is fresh...mmmm...it doesn't
better than THAT!
2) Go easy on the sugars. I
remember Kool-Aid being a tasty treat
as a kid, but really, it's nothing more than flavored
sugar water. We
won't drink sugar-substitute beverages, either, unless
flavored with Stevia. Why not just drink water
and flavor with squeezed
citrus? It's cheaper, and it's better for
you. Save the sugar for
3) Go easy on the condiments.
Check the labels of your condiments.
Amazing how much sugar and junk is in there,
right? Try all-natural
versions of ketchup, BBQ sauce and marinades.
contain fewer sugars and better-tasting natural
4) Go easy on the pasta and mayo.
Macaroni salad is delicious,
but there are other great pasta salad alternatives
that are equally
satisfying. Use whole-wheat or whole-wheat blend
pasta instead of
white pasta. Look for recipes with crunchy
veggies and olive-oil
based sauces, instead of heavy mayonnaise or cream
ahead and include proteins like cheese and meats (we
all-natural pepperoni). Experiment until you
find a recipe you like
and can make in a jiffy.
5) Go easy on yourself.
Honestly, one of the best parts of BBQ'ing is
how easy it is to pull a meal together. I always
keep a package of
yummy, seasoned frozen burgers and burger rolls in the
(we like Wal-Mart's seasoned burgers--$6 a box).
chips (healthier than regular potato chips) and some
make great sides. Voila--dinner in less than 10
minutes! If you're
entertaining, make it potluck. Everyone can
And there you have it...5 tips for making your BBQ a
healthier experience. There's no better time to
eat leaner and drop
a few po unds. The weather's great (unless you
live in the Northeast...
whine, whine, whine...), so take a walk after dinner
and grab some
"Real People Don't Die t" has lots of other great tips
eating, vacation dining and some of my personal family
recipes (in case
you don't already own a copy):