Tag Archives: Bolke

Easy, Peasy Taste of Fall – Perfect For Dinner Any Day Of The Week

15 Nov

Perfect for cool outdoor weather, this dish is satisfying, flavorful, and optionally gluten-free!

If you enjoy lots of flavor, you’ll love this dish! This simple and delightful fall meal takes just minutes to prepare:


These brands are the ones I use for this easy fall dinner, but feel free to switch things up a bit depending on availability in your region or personal taste!

Main Dish:

–Spinach & Garlic chicken sausage by Bilinski. I buy it because it contains no pork casing – the fact that it’s delicious is a bonus!

–Pumpkin Parmesan Pasta sauce by Williams Sonoma.

–Ancient Grain Quinoa Pasta (any shape – I had elbows on hand). Feel free to substitute your favorite pasta.


–Fresh baby spinach.

–Apples (unpeeled). Gala or Honeycrisp both work well with this recipe.

–Walnut halves/pieces.

–Blue Cheese crumbles – use sparingly, as the flavor is very strong. Consider placing it in a separate small bowl, allowing your guests to help themselves.

–Olive oil vinaigrette dressing. (I like Newman’s Own).


–Grill sausage whole on medium-high for ~4-5 mins each side.

Quick tip: Opt for grilling the sausage earlier in the day and then refrigerate it until needed. Simply slice and warm the sausage along with your sauce while pasta is cooking.

–Cook pasta according to package directions.

–Warm Pumpkin Parmesan Pasta Sauce in a saucepan while pasta cooks.

–Chop apples and assemble the salad. Toss in olive oil dressing.

–Drain pasta and toss lightly in olive oil. Return to cooking pot (should be emptied of all cooking liquid), and toss with pasta sauce, coating evenly. Top with chicken sausage and fresh parmesan cheese.

For easy decorating, add a mini pumpkin to each dinner plate and toss a few leaves on your table.

Enjoy the flavorful taste of fall Around Your Home!


Quick Tip In Health: Auto-Refill Your Prescriptions

1 Jun

When my son was six months old, I was diagnosed with post-pregnancy thyroiditis. This condition causes extreme swings in thyroid hormone levels, resulting in a variety of symptoms as the body tries to regulate itself.

My hair was falling out in large clumps. I was experiencing severe night sweats, and changed my bed sheets every morning. My stomach was a wreck and my mood was all over the place.

My symptoms persisted until I was referred to an endocrinologist who diagnosed my condition and prescribed a daily medication.

I was having trouble remembering to refill my prescriptions, until I learned that my pharmacy offers an automated refill service. Now that I’ve enrolled, my prescription is automatically renewed each month and I receive a text message on my phone when it’s ready to be picked up.

My thyroid levels have since stabilized and most likely I will take medication daily for the rest of my life.

Though I do have to remember to take my medication every morning, I no longer have to remember to renew my prescription.

What a relief!

Costco, Walgreen’sWal-Mart, and Target all offer automatic refill services for maintenance prescriptions, free of charge. There are many other pharmacies that offer this service as well.

If you take prescription medication regularly, check with your pharmacist to find out if an automated refill service is an option for you.

To your health,

Image of prescription bottles provided courtesy of foto76

Perfect Asparagus Every Time

18 May

Perfect Asparagus – Delicious and Ready to Serve

I once was afraid to cook asparagus, but not anymore!

Thanks to my mother-in-law, my asparagus now turns out perfectly every time, and yours can, too! During her recent visit to Austin, she shared these simple tips with me: Continue reading

Quick Tip: In the Kitchen With Quinoa Flakes For Breakfast

11 May

Quinoa Flakes for Breakfast – Super Tasty and Gluten-Free!

Recently, I’ve decided to give gluten-free living a try.

I love having hot breakfast year-round and discovered the tasty treat of Quinoa Flakes.

Quinoa Flakes are quick and easy, and are a delicious, gluten-free alternative to oatmeal. This hot cereal is literally ready in 90 seconds on the stove.

I add a dash of sea salt and some maple syrup to mine each morning. They are super-healthy and even my 1-year-old loves it, without the syrup!

If you’re looking for a healthy, gluten-free, hot breakfast, I know you’ll enjoy it, too!

What To Do With The Fruit In Your Refrigerator Before It Spoils

9 May

Before tossing out that fruit, consider making quick and delicious frozen fruit purees that can be used later as:

–Healthy frozen fruit pops for the kids this summer.

–Always-on-hand ingredients for fruit smoothies, eliminating the need to add ice.

Fruit topping for pancakes, french toast, waffles, ice cream, oatmeal, quinoa, and Greek yogurt.

Greek yogurt topped with strawberry puree and honey

Here’s how in 4 simple steps:

1. Wash the fruit thoroughly and discard any pieces that are in really bad shape.

When preparing berries, I keep them whole, like the strawberries pictured here:

Leftover strawberries from a recent dinner party.

Continue reading

Take The Sting Out of Mosquito Bites This Summer

6 May

3 indispensable products for outdoor summer living Around My Home!

I like to imagine that there were no mosquitoes in the Garden of Eden. Unfortunately, that’s not the case in our backyard.

We have three neighboring properties around our home that all have swimming pools. Where there’s water, heat, and humidity, there are mosquitoes.

I’ve discovered a handful of at-home remedies for both preventing and treating mosquito bites that are safe for all ages.

I learned of these methods while preparing for a business trip to Bangkok, Thailand.

Mosquitoes are a big problem in Bangkok year-round. The climate is hot and humid, many places do not have air conditioning, and the sanitation is not ideal – a perfect recipe for a multitude of mosquitoes.

Not only are the mosquitoes a nuisance in Bangkok, but many also carry dangerous diseases, so I was required to get a slew of vaccinations before traveling there.

Below are the tips I followed to avoid getting bit and they really worked!
Continue reading

Love Your White Sink in Less Than 10 Minutes

5 May

BEFORE: Blueberry puree creates a tough stain.

AFTER: Less than 10 minutes to a beautiful white sink again.

Non-toxic cleaners are my choice in every area of my home except for one: the kitchen sink.

Although I do use a non-toxic soft scrub recipe for regular sink cleaning, I reach for something more powerful when it’s time to tackle tough stains.

It takes no time at all to re-store my sink to gleaming white and I’m going to show you how to do it.

Don’t have a white sink? This technique is fabulous for bathtubs, too!

My kitchen sink on an average day

The cast-iron sink pictured here is more than 45 years old. It’s the original that came with the kitchen when we purchased our home.

We liked the feel of the original kitchen and wanted to maintain some of its charm while still giving it an update. So we kept the sink  and cabinets but replaced the flooring, countertops, appliances, and lighting.

I’d never had a white sink and loved it – at first. It didn’t take long for me to become frustrated with how easily it stains.

Today I made some fresh blueberry puree for my baby boy. When I was finished cleaning up the pots, my sink wasn’t looking too great.

For the purpose of this post, I intentionally poured the leftover blueberry liquid over the entire surface of one side of the sink.

I then let it sit for ~30 minutes so that the stain would be nice and hefty.

Fresh blueberry puree I made for my little boy

What my sink looked like afterward


Here’s the process I followed for cleaning my sink: Continue reading