2nd Saturday Market – 2/13/16

“People who love to eat are always the best people.” – Julia Child

Hello my awesome Maricopa friends and readers! I’m hoping most of you were able to make it out to the market today to pick up your produce (60 lbs for $10), to shop from the other local vendors, and maybe you were one of the few lovely ladies who made it to my free yoga class in the park. If you didn’t make it by my Inspired by Sisters booth (quote painting and natural body products), make sure you stop by and say hi next time!

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My beautiful yogis this morning @tarynraineyoga

I was very excited about this week’s produce selection because of the massive amounts of tomatoes and onions! This means a freezer full of pasta sauce and homemade salsa. No complaints here! This month, we got the tomatoes (plum, beefsteak, and yellow grape tomatoes), zucchini, onions, acorn squash, green bell peppers, and grapefruit. Last month, I gave some of my favorite tomato, green bell pepper, and zucchini recipes, so I would encourage new readers to take a look at THIS POST as well 🙂 for some other great ideas.

Of course, I mentioned my tomato sauce and salsa recipes… I’ve posted about the roasted vegetable spaghetti sauce in my previous post about meal prepping. It is a great way to sneak in some added veggies for those in your household who may be leery of them. I found this recipe a few years back from the blog Peanut Blossom. It is delicious! There are soooo many scrumptious salsa recipes, so I am always trying new things. Here is a great recipe for simple and yummy salsa you can make quickly and confidently at home (simply replace the canned tomatoes with your fresh ones).

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Without further adieu, let’s get to the rest of my recipe suggestions:

Tomatoes:

I eat tomatoes like apples; I LOVE them raw. Sometimes, I’ll just slice them up and eat them with balsamic glaze or a sprinkle of salt. I also love caprese recipes:

Green Bell Peppers: 

I love simply slicing them up and eating them with hummus, but here are a few other ideas:

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Mexican Stuffed Peppers @tarynraineyoga

Zucchini

Acorn Squash

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Stuffed Acorn Squash @tarynraineyoga

Grapefruit

Just like oranges last month, grapefruit is delicious all on it’s own. You can juice it, cut it in half and enjoy it with a spoon, or try one of these recipes below:

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Grapefruit Blood Orange Juice @tarynraineyoga

Well there you have it! Tons of delicious recipes for you to try. I know everyone has favorite tomato sauce and salsa recipes, so I would love it if you’d share your own and other recipes in the comments below. Also let me know what you think of the recipes you are able to try.

Enjoy your produce and thank you very much for coming out today!

❤ Taryn xoxo

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2nd Saturday Market – 1/12/16

“The doctor of the future will no longer treat the human frame with drugs, but rather will cure and prevent disease with nutrition.” – Thomas Edison

Happy Tuesday friends!

Within the last couple of months, I have gotten involved with the City of Maricopa’s 2nd Saturday Market. Right from the beginning, I was very excited about this event because they were focusing on making healthy living accessible to everyone by bringing POW (Produce on Wheels) out to the community, offering free classes, and local businesses together for the cause. POW brings out rescued produce from farms who had overstocked and delivers the produce to communities that may not have access to inexpensive produce. In fact, they offer the residents of Maricopa 60 pounds of delicious fruits and veggies for only $10! I am not exaggerating. It is incredible! (Learn more about Produce on Wheels). I have gotten involved in this event by offering free yoga in the park at 9 am an12193550_720071014794462_4614228810550842255_nd my small business, Inspired by Sisters, sells natural body products and positive quote paintings. There are gluten free bakers, one of my favorite coffee shops (Bead & Berry), our local honey farmer, and so much more!

 

In addition to the yoga class and vendor booth, I have also offered to share some fun, unique, and healthy recipe ideas for the produce received at the market. Unfortunately, the market was cancelled this past Saturday due to a vehicle accident with the produce truck. On the bright side, the City of Maricopa has worked diligently to offer the missed market to its residents and has rescheduled the market to be hosted today! While I eat mostly vegetarian or vegan, I will share some additional recipes for you.

The following recipes are inspired by the produce received on January 12, 2016:

Oranges:

Of course, you can always eat an orange just as it is, but I love fresh orange juice! It is a great way to naturally introduce extra energy to your morning and it tastes amazing. You can hand squeeze your orange juice, use a citrus juicer, or a regular juicer. If you own a juicer, try adding some carrots to the juice. It tastes amazing and will add some beneficial nutrients.  If you aren’t into juice, here are some other awesome recipes:

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Follow me on Instagram: @tarynraineyoga “Orange Carrot Juice”

 

Watermelon:

Just like the oranges, watermelon is totally scrumptious on its own. However, if you are looking for something creative, check out a couple of these recipes. I am a huge fan of the first salad:

  1. Watermelon & Feta Salad by Cooks with Cocktails (vegetarian)
  2. Watermelon “steak” by the Ravenous Couple (vegetarian)
  3. Watermelon Margarita by Recipe Diaries (vegan and delicious)

Mexican Grey Squash

Grey squash is very similar to zucchini and can typically be used in any recipe designed for zucchini. Some of my favorite ways to eat these kinds of squash are in a raw pasta or lasagna, ratatouille, or stew. Check out some other ideas here:

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@tarynraineyoga Zucchini Fritters

Butternut Squash

Butternut squash is one of the staple foods in my household. It stores well and there is so much you can do with it! Here are some of my favorite ways to eat it:

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@tarynraineyoga Roasted Butternut Squash

Green Beans

Green beans are super yummy raw paired with some flavorful hummus or dip of your choice. However, there are tons of ways to eat green beans outside of the traditional Thanksgiving casserole:

Green Bell Peppers

Again, these are super yummy raw with some hummus or in nearly any salad, breakfast scramble, etc. Here are other ideas:

Green Chile Peppers

I LOVE green chile. In my household, we roast a bunch in advance, remove the skins, and freeze the chile to be used year round. I dice it up small to add to nearly any Mexican dish, add to burgers (ahem, veggie burgers), and most soups. I hope you fall in love with them too. Visit the Yummy Life for more info on storing Green Chile.

Tomatoes

When I get a bunch of extra tomatoes, my favorite thing to do is make a big batch of vegetable marina sauce and freeze it (see my blog post on freezer meals). I’m also kind of strange because I love eating tomatoes plain, maybe with a little sea salt. Here are some other awesome tomato recipes:

 

Well, there you have it! I hope you all enjoy your baskets and some of these recipes. I would LOVE to hear from you in the comments below. Which recipes did you try? What did you like or not like? What other recipes did you use with your baskets? I’m here to answer any questions you may have!

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@tarynraineyoga 2nd Saturday Market!

 

Live in Maricopa? Come out for free yoga next 2nd Saturday Market at 9 am and follow me on Facebook for updates on classes at Copper Sky, Maricopa Crossfit, and more!

Thanks everyone!

xoxo Taryn

Country Thunder Meal Plan

We survived! (Country Thunder AZ that is)

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The last few weeks have been dedicated to Country Thunder preparations and having a blast with my hubby and close friends. Preparations for this mega event each year is always time consuming for me. I am always in charge of the camp site, including meals, camping supplies, and making sure all the newbies truly know what they are in for.

We spend about five (drunken) days in the desert with no electricity, water, etc. I LOVE it! But I know it can be pretty stressful for others who don’t enjoy the prep work as much as I do. The food is the most important aspect to me. I meal plan, prep food ahead of time, freeze as much as a can, and pack the coolers strategically. The best solution I have found for feeling the food cold for five days is by layering the bottom of the cooler with block ice, adding a layer of the frozen food, and then everything else on top. I kept a separate cooler for items that did not need to be cold but could not get too hot, such as cookies, muffins, bins ,etc. I had a frozen gallon of water in the cooler which was enough to keep everything cool throughout the weekend.

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Another awesome trick I discovered this year is aluminum Dutch Oven liners! These beauties saved a lot of time because I was able to make meals ahead of time, freeze them, and all I would have to do is defrost the meal and throw it in the Dutch oven. When dinner was complete, I could simply remove the liner and the oven was still clean! No scrubbing!

Here was my extensive meal plan (for 7 people):

Day One: Dinner Only – Sausage and Potatoes 

Day Two:  Breakfast – Breakfast burritos, Lunch – Burgers, dogs, and sides (pasta salad, chips, beans, etc.), Dinner – Chili & cornbread

Day Three: Breakfast – Breakfast casserole, Lunch – Burrito Bowls, Dinner – Chicken, steak, & veggie kabobs

Day Four: Breakfast – Breakfast burritos, Lunch – Buffalo Chicken Salad Wraps, Dinner – Green chile chicken enchiladas

Day Five: Breakfast – Crunchy Eggs, Lunch – Burgers, dogs, and sides, Dinner – BBQ chicken and potatoes

Other food, snacks, and desserts: cereal/protein bars, muffins, fruit, coffee (& creamer), tea & cocoa, chips & dips, cookies, snack mixes, etc.

 CLICK HERE FOR COMPLETE RECIPES

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Everyone raved about the food, which is my favorite part about hosting. The appreciation makes all the hard work worth it!

Interested in my personal packing list? Click here! (This list does not include the camping and cooking supplies)

So Country Thunder is a drunken, crazy time. However, I am so thankful that it has become a place for my husband and I to reconnect. We get to leave the worries of the real world behind for a little bit and fall in love all over again. I am blessed to spend the time with him, no matter how crazy it may get!

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xoxo Taryn

Roasted Salmon and Brussels Sprouts

” If I know what love is, it is because of you.” – Hermann Hesse

Happy Monday y’all! I hope you had a fabulous Valentine’s Day! Our Saturday was lovely. I scheduled us for a couple’s massage, which was completed with chocolate covered strawberries and a champagne toast (delicious!). Then, we went on a triple date with some friends to one of my favorite restaurants, The Cheesecake Factory. I get the starter kale salad. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. I seriously dream about that salad….

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I was super excited to share this easy recipe with everyone (which I made last weekend). I am really blessed to have married a man who likes most veggies, especially when they’re seasoned with garlic and lemon. I love “one dish” kind of dinners and was very impressed with this simple recipe for Salmon and Brussels Sprouts from Eating Well. It was the perfect amount of seasoning, not too much or too little. Plus, the prep time was minimal.

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The salmon practically fell apart and each bite melted deliciously in my mouth. So good! I paired this recipe with a mix of brown rice and quinoa, along with some fresh cherry tomatoes. I like having a colorful plate 🙂

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It was the perfect meal to end the weekend. My hubby and I ate dinner in front of the TV (like we were back in college ) while watching Emerson Eggerichs’s Love and Respect video series. I really suggest his work for all married couples. We are learning so much!

And of course, you gotta top off the weekend with something delicious: a homemade strawberry mojito. Mmmm!

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Thanks for reading y’all! – Taryn xoxo

Make Ahead Freezer Meals

Good day friends! I have had a bit of a tough week so far, as I have been spending all of my friend time helping my mom and step-dad load up for their move to Oregon. Wednesday morning, their house keys were handed over to new owners and they hit the road, with my young half-siblings and large caravan in tow. Family means everything to me, so watching them go was very difficult. However, I am eager to hear about their new life and the beauties of living in the country. They’ve wanted to do this for years and I am very happy for them.

Anyhow, back to the juicy stuff! I do my grocery shopping every other Saturday and meal prepping. It is a big day for me because it takes a lot of planning and I usually make multiple stops that morning. This previous Saturday, I decided I really needed to overstock the freezer with meals for the hubby, so I can spend more time this next month focusing on building my businesses rather than meal planning for his packed lunches/dinners. So, I spent about five hours in the kitchen preparing enough meals to last him quite some time.

I decided to make meal planning more fun by moving an old TV into the kitchen to watch Harry Potter. Nerd fest :)
I decided to make meal planning more fun by moving an old TV into the kitchen to watch Harry Potter. Nerd fest 🙂

Let me start by stating that not all these meals are “healthy”. My husband, Tanner, and I have very different tastes and most of what I cook ahead is for him (I do not want you to feel misled in any way). Also, I did not come up with any of these recipes on my own, but I will share the ones I made:

Roasted Veggie Spaghetti Sauce
Roasted Veggie Spaghetti Sauce
  • Homemade Spaghetti Sauce by Peanut Blossom
  • Bean and Cheese burritos. This one is pretty self explanatory, but I used the refried bean recipe from Pennies and Pancakes but added a chopped Jalapeno. (side note: I totally squirted Jalapeno juice in my eye in my entire face was on fire for hours. DON’T. DO. THIS.)

QUICK TIPS: Here are a few tips I have learned over the last couple of years

1.) Plan ahead. I plan my meals according to what is on sale at the local grocery stores this week. As I am not a big couponer, the ads really help me to save money by only buying meets and produce on sale. I always compare local prices and make stops at multiple stores.

2.) Make sure you have enough freezer bags and freezer casserole dishes. I made the mistake this past weekend of not checking that if we still had foil dishes and had to make a run back to the store. (I hate going back!)

3.) Pre-write out your labels with all instructions and place them on the bag prior to filling with food. I like to print mine out, as it is much more legible than my handwritting. However, I always forget a few and have extra labels and/or Sharpies on hand.

labels.jpg4.) Use a large bowl to place your Ziploc in while filling. This saves me from spills and extra clean up.

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5.) Have fun with it! If something doesn’t get done, oh well. Adding the TV and fun, childhood movies added to the excitement. I also had a friend stop-by for a little while to make a few things and catch up. Entertaining conversation made the day go by so fast!

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I hope y’all enjoy this post! I encourage you to all check out my friend Deb’s blog: Paper Turtle. I had the pleasure of catching up with her on Sunday and spent two hours eating lunch at Whole Foods and doodling mandalas. She posted about our lovely time together here.

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Namaste! Taryn xoxo

A week of gratitude

“Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our Thanksgiving.” – W.T. Purkiser

Whoa! Has the end of November has been a blur! Thankfully, we have gotten so much done in the past two weeks and I have been very eager to share everything with you.

Check! Holiday photos are done and holiday postcards have been ordered.

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Thanksgiving was awesome! I have been working really hard lately on expressing gratitude and appreciating everything I have, so I went a little over the top this year with favors and gifting and what not. I brought my in-laws some mulled wine for hosting. I woke Tanner to a fun list of reasons why I am grateful for him and brought my gratitude cork board to dinner for everyone to get involved. My favorite thing I did was make everyone some spiced maple nuts in little treat bags with a note that said: “I am so thankful for you.” The nuts were a hit! I highly suggest the recipe by Table for Two blog and I found the free printable tags here.

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I had to share another incredible recipe I used this year: Melted Brie with Cranberry sauce by The Kitchn. This was delicious! I used the cranberry sauce recipe which they had suggested, but exchanged the hazelnuts for pecans. I will definitely be adding this to my Christmas party appetizers this year. Here are some more fun pictures of Thanksgiving:

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My favorite way I enjoyed showing Thanksgiving this weekend was spending a lot of time doing things for and with my husband. Friday, we spent time together watching the ASU vs UofA game (the only game we care about all year) and Tanner enjoyed my company in the garage with him. He even taught me how to reload shot gun shells with him. On Saturday, I surprised him while he was out fishing with a friend by organizing and cleaning his garage (something that had been on the top of his to-do list for months). His appreciation made me very happy, but I was already so joyous I was able to do something nice for him. To top it off, I went out hunting with him and a friend Sunday morning which turned into a 6.5 hour event which left me by myself quite often. It was a struggle, but I didn’t complain once about being bored or cold or uncomfortable. He told me after getting home that he was very impressed with me for not complaining and he was thankful for everything I had done.
I often forget how much it means to Tanner when I spend time with him doing the things he enjoys. Sometimes, I do not even need to participate, but just sit and watch him do his thing. It energizes him and makes him feel adored and worthy of my time, something I look forward to doing more often.

How do you show gratitude to those you love most?

xoxo Taryn

Veteran’s Day Cookies

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” – John F. Kennedy

It was such an honor to spend some quality time with veterans today, serving at an appreciation luncheon through work. Living in a small town, it is truly humbling to see a community come together to support each other. Businesses all over town donated food, coffee, water, etc. and gave their time to host former and current military members, their families, and supporters today. There were moving speeches, a few tears, and plenty of laughter as we gathered around picnic tables and playgrounds.

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I spent last night baking twelve dozen cookies for the event. I found some incredible cookie recipes on Pinterest and applaud the expertise of these recipes. DELICIOUS. I had to share. (I apologize for the poor quality of the photos; it was past midnight by the time I finished and the lighting was minimal.)

Host the Toast- The Best Chewy Cafe-Style Chocolate Chip Cookies

This is the best chocolate chip cookie recipe I have ever used (and I have made plenty of homemade cookies)!

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I really enjoy making spritz cookies during the holidays because I can make a TON really quickly and they’re perfectly shaped and flavored for each season. I found this awesome Pumpkin Spice Spritz Cookie Recipe that was simple and had just the right amount of spice. I was fortunate enough to find a pumpkin shaped press among my baking stuff which made it even more fun. Yum!

Diethood — Pumpkin Spice Spritz Cookies

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I would definitely suggest these recipes to anyone looking for a big hit at your holiday event. Even my hubby said the chocolate chips were his favorite I have ever made. I’m very impressed with the recipes and so were the veterans today!

My contribution to the Veterans Day Picnic
My contribution to the Veterans Day Picnic

What did you do to show appreciation to those who served? Comment below! Also, if you try these recipes out, let me know what you think!

xoxo Taryn

Added bonus: Got to bring some cookies over to my new neighbors.
Added bonus: Got to bring some cookies over to my new neighbors.

Morning Routine

“Getting up in the morning to do your sadhana does not mean you will become God. No, getting up in the morning, you will become you!” 

– Yogi Bhajan

Good morning y’all! I thought today I would share a little bit about my morning routine.

So, I tend to have a difficult time accomplishing things in the evening. I come home with a list of to-dos, ready to be completed. Then, I get an hour long phone call from my Nana, chase the dog around the house for 20 minutes trying to get back my favorite bra, cook a recipe that was supposed to take 30 minutes but really takes 75… and before you know it, it’s bed time! Now I can’t even remember my to-do list and I am rushing through my facewash to get into bed “on time”. Does this sound like your evenings? 

I came to the conclusion that in order to find time for myself, I really needed to start waking up early to find the right “stillness” I needed. This was NOT an easy change for me. I’ve always been a bit of a night owl and my body really fought hard to keep it that way. I found this awesome “greatist” about becoming a morning person and I pinned it on my wall and followed it to my best ability. I would suggest you do the same if you’re looking to start finding more time in the morning. Honestly, the most important tool you will need for waking up earlier is a motivator. Just saying “I want to wake up earlier” is not going to help you. Try “I want to wake up earlier to find time for journaling,” “I want to get up every morning to enjoy my coffee as the sun rises,” “I want to wake up earlier to find time for a morning jog/workout.” Keep this as your reminder. You are doing something great for yourself! 

Gotta be 100% honest people, I don’t always wake up early. Sometimes, I cannot for the life of me get to bed on time and I need a little extra snooze time. That’s okay! Don’t punish your body if it is crying out for some extra sleep, just don’t let it become a habit. Okay… blah, blah, blah. Now onto my morning routine.

So, I was really hoping to get to the dog park super early this morning, but I was happy for my plans to be canceled thanks to some beautiful morning rain in AZ today! Love it! I still woke up on time, but I spent my time curled up watching the rain outside and tossing the ball to Wesley inside the house… 

First thing I try to do every morning is eat some fruit and make myself some tea (or coffee on days I’m really dragging). I read a fabulous article by Mind, Body, Green  about eating fruit and the benefits of doing it first thing in the morning, on an empty stomach. If you are trying to put on muscle, it’s really important that you eat within the first 20-40 minutes of waking up to feed your body, or it will resort to feeding off your muscles! Green tea with a little honey and lemon is a great way to rinse out the body and give yourself a little boost of energy. 

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Next, I hop in the shower for 10-20 minutes. (I really try hard remember to rinse my mouth with some coconut oil while I shower, but I typically only remember to do so 25% of the time.) For me, showering in the morning is extremely beneficial because it loosens up my body for morning yoga. I began this practice (along with the morning tea) after reading Iyengar’s Light on Yoga. He suggests the shower to loosen up and the tea or coffee to get your body energized. He also recommends practicing on an empty stomach, but the fruit is so light, it generally does not bother me. 

Yoga time! I try to spend 20-40 minutes after my shower practicing yoga. Sometimes, I follow my own routine or I look up a video online to follow. I love, love, love Yoga with Adriene videos. I was able to transform some space in my home office/craft room to allow space for my yoga practice where I can shut the door and have some ME time. 

I got pretty excited about effects this morning...
I got pretty excited about effects this morning…

After some much needed savasana (corpse pose), I get my morning going again by finally getting ready. I honestly hate getting ready and I really try to spend less than 15 minutes getting dressed, doing hair, and makeup. I wish I could care a little more about my getting ready routine, but I just don’t! Shout out to all you girls looking so gosh darn beautiful in the morning! Seriously, you rock! I am a little too lazy for that… While I am getting ready, this is usually a great time to listen to some aspirations, an inspiring ted talk, or whatever is your thing. It encourages me to kick some ass throughout the day. 

Before heading to work, I am starting to get hungry again so I make a juice or smoothie to bring with me and pack a small morning snack. This morning I packed homemade energy bites and a peachy green juice. So good!

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Then, it’s time for work. If I have a few extra minutes, I feed the trimmings and pulp from my juice to my chickens, love on the pooches for a minute, and typically run out the house because now I’m going to be late (and usually run back into the house to grab my juice I forgot). No morning is ever the same, but this gives you a pretty good idea of my basic “routine”. Thanks for reading y’all!

Doggies are loving the weather, chickens are grubbing on breakfast, and I am actually off to work ON TIME! Loving it!
Doggies are loving the weather, chickens are grubbing on breakfast, and I am actually off to work ON TIME! Loving it!