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Quick and Simple Back to School Meal Time Ideas with $1.99 Rotisserie Chicken!

This post is sponsored by Boston Market, All opinions are my own.

Quick and Simple Back to School Meal Time Ideas

Back to School Meal Ideas

Back to school season this year has had me thrown for a loop.  The kids are starting their second school year in Florida and the school year starts very early down here.  

Going into this summer, I assumed this year wouldn’t be as bad after hustling through last year, I was wrong!  After living my entire life in New England, I guess it is still a habit to think of August as a summer month.  When school supplies started popping up in stores before the 4th of July, logically I thought “wow, I guess we have to start shopping” but did I? No!  I am so accustomed to the 4th of July being the kick off of the summer festivities not the time that the summer fun starts to wind down.  So, I procrastinated and procrastinated and as you can surely imagine, the first few weeks of school this year had me frazzled, pus to add to the stress, the youth sports season started at the same time.

There were several nights that I spent trying to squeeze through the school supply isles of my local department store with all the other stressed out mothers, after already spending hours on a practice field.   Luckily by day one, the kids had their new school clothes on and their backpacks packed, but once they got on the bus, I realized I hadn’t even thought about dinner, or lunch for the second day.  I excitedly thought about how I could now stroll through the grocery store without any kids attached to my carriage, but the last thing I wanted to think about was cooking.  Luckily Boston Market saved my sanity!

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Boston Market Family Meal

I love Boston Market because I can run in and get a complete meal for my family that is not only affordable, but it also feels like home cooking.  We are still sitting around the table passing the mashed potatoes and vegetables at the end of the day talking about how school was, and this makes my heart happy and my brain a whole lot less frazzled.

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Boston Market Family Meals feed families of three, four or more.  I usually get the Family Meal for 4, because my husband works the night shift and isn’t a big eater at dinner time, so it is always more than enough food for us.   With a main dish of rotisserie chicken, meatloaf, roasted turkey, or BBQ ribs, plus 4 sides and corn bread, this family dinner is an easy way to get everyone to the kitchen table without any complaints!
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$1.99 Family Meal Deal!

Boston Market is offering a whole rotisserie chicken for only $1.99 with the purchase of any Family Meal!  In addition to feeding my whole family a delicious wholesome Family Meal, I got a whole fresh, never frozen rotisserie chicken for just $1.99.  These chickens can be used in tasty school lunches, afternoon snacks, and into dinner recipes to save time without sacrificing flavor.  This deal made meal times during the school week so much more manageable!

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How I used my $1.99 Fresh Never Frozen Rotisserie Chicken

Breakfast:

Omelets!  I love mixing up the usual cereal or waffles quick breakfasts that happen in my house during busy mornings.  Omelets are a perfect option when I have cooked chicken in the fridge waiting for me.  My kids love eggs, and I love being able to add some nutritious chicken breast and veggies to their breakfast.  With the help of Boston Market’s $1.99 meal deal, I can have a hot breakfast on the table as quickly as it takes my children to pick out which cereal they’d want.

Lunch:

Chicken Salad is a lunch time favorite for my family, the kids love it as a sandwich, while my husband and I can eat it by the bowl full.  Using Boston Market’s Rotisserie Chicken makes my normal chicken salad a lot more flavorful, plus there is no cooking for me!  Lunch is ready in a few minutes.

Dinner:

For a third meal, I used what was left of our rotisserie chicken in a quick Ceaser Salad mix to add some protein to flavor to it.

For $1.99, this Boston Market Meal Deal, saved me time while feeding my family 3 delicious meals in addition to the original family dinner I purchased. 
Are you struggling with meal time during the back to school stress?  Boston Market has you covered!

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What is your favorite Boston Market meal?

Fitlife Foods in Tampa is Delivering Powerfully Good Meals!

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Occasionally, I learn about a company that I immediately fall in love with.  Being new to Florida, I’ve been missing some on my Boston go-to businesses.  So, the search has been on since we moved to find all those day to day places that you become loyal to over time.  

I was invited to a media tasting at a Fitlife Foods in Tampa last week, which is a company that I had hadn’t heard of prior to this tasting.  The company is based in the Central Florida area and provides healthy meal options that are premade daily from scratch using delicious fresh ingredients.

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The media tasting was my first time visiting a Fitlife Foods store but within minutes of walking into the store, I was hooked!  As a busy mom, I am always looking for healthy and quick meal options for those crazy weeknights.  As a blogger, I am frequently on the go and eating breakfast or lunch out of my car, I never knew that such a healthy and yummy option was available.

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During the event, I had the privilege of meeting chef Andrew Ruga, and I can hand down honestly say, he has amazing skills!  We tried several dishes, from breakfast plates to dessert, and every item that was put in front of me was delicious.  However, the meals weren’t just delicious, a lot of chefs can create a yummy plate of food, what made these meals awesome was that I didn’t have to think twice about what I was putting in my mouth.  Every meal is made with fresh and healthy ingredients which are listed along with the nutritional information on each meals packaging.

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We tried Quinoa Hash, Tampa Bay BBQ Beef with Mac N’ Cheese, Simply Grilled Salmon, Carrot Cake, and so much more.  I left with my belly full and very happy.  My favorite was a tie between the chicken tortellini and the BBQ beef.  I also can’t wait to bring home the Mac ‘n Cheese for my daughter, who asks for this meal for dinner every night.  Fitlife Foods Mac ‘n Cheese is made without the heavy cream and with lots of hidden vegetables, I can kiss the mom guilt of serving bright orange macaroni to my kids goodbye.

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One aspect of Fitlife Foods that has me really excited is Project U.  A complimentary service that sets you up with a health and wellness advisor, who will take your BMI, weight, height and discuss your goals.  Whether you are trying to lose weight or maintain your current weight, your health and wellness advisor will help you set up a plan that works for you.  

I plan to take advantage of this free service soon!  I learned last week that I have PCOS and one of the most important aspects of me overcoming the symptoms of this disease is to monitor what I put in my body and how I’m taking care of myself. This company crossed my path at the perfect time and showed me how easy it is to get a healthy meal with lots of vegetables and protein on my kitchen table. 

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 The option to run into a store and have a healthy meal ready in 2 minutes sounds amazing, but Fitlife Foods just upped their game even higher with delivery!  In certain locations, you can order 8-12 meals or 20-24 meals delivered, along with the purchase of a cooler that holds 12 meals and Fitlife Foods delivers made-from-scratch meals right to you.  Now choosing to eat healthy can’t be any easier.

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 The food was delicious, the staff was incredibly friendly, and the entire concept of this business has me ready to be a frequent customer.

 

Whole Foods Market Grand Opening in Westford Massachusetts! Plus a $50 Gift Card Giveaway!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Whole Foods Market. The opinions and text are all mine.
I am super excited about the new Whole Foods Market that opened in Westford, Ma on May 4th!  I had been traveling to the Bedford store for years and now there is a brand new beautiful store that is right off the highway on my way to see all the hubby’s family.  This will definitely be my new go to grocery store.

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Eating Healthier On The Go with McDonald’s New Chicken Sausage! #Giveaway

The busiest time of day for us is usually in the morning, 7 days a week we are hustling and bustling in the am.  With the school and work rush all week, Saturdays started early with dance classes and sports games, then church on Sunday, we only get to sleep in and lounge around on holidays.  
Plus because I love my bed, I rarely plan out enough time for breakfast in the middle the busyness.  This means breakfast is likely on the go, especially on the weekends.  
With my resolution to try to live a healthier lifestyle this year, my on the go breakfast has been tricky.  I want to find something filling and delicious, without spending all my calories for the day.
Before the new year, my go-to breakfast was always a sausage biscuit.  I used to eat these for breakfast every weekend with my Nana growing up, and they are still a favorite for me.  However with the 190 calories and 18 grams of fat in the sausage patty alone, I tried (not so successfully) to make better choices.
You know how hard it is to give up a food you love, so it just wasn’t happening, and I was feeling guilty each weekend.
That was until last week when McDonald’s sent me information about their new chicken sausage!  I’ll admit I was skeptical at first, this was the breakfast that had me out of bed before 10 o’clock as a teenager to make it to the old breakfast cut off.  Teenagers today will never know the feeling of missing that cut off by 2 minutes, but man it is great to be able to order a Sausage McMuffin whenever I want.
  However I need to make healthier choices and hoped McDonald’s was working their typical magic when providing a sausage patty with only 80 calories and 5 grams of fat.
They did it, oh my Yummyness!  
I had all three kids at Children’s Hospital for appointments last week.  We left home when the sun was coming up and spent 5 hours rushing from doctor to doctor.  Once we got out of medical mayhem, I couldn’t wait to try a the new chicken sausage.  It tasted exactly like the sausage I was eating all these years that had more than triple the grams of fat.
The chicken sausage also passed the kids taste test!  After 5 hours of whining, I got to sit down in a booth of quietness, with happy and full kids.
McDonald’s began serving the chicken sausage on January 18th at restaurants in New England and Albany, NY (excluding Fairfield County, CT) and is an option for all breakfast sandwiches and platters.
Ready to try the Deliciousness?
Enter to win a $25 Arch Card and 4 Coupons for Free Chicken Sausage Samples.
Giveaway Ends: February 3, 2016
Disclosure:  This is a sponsored post, as always all opinions are 100% my own.

Our Turkey Caught on Fire, Let’s Make Thanksgiving Easier with Buca di Deppo!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Buca di Beppo® for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.
Now that I have children, I am usually the one to host Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner for my parents and brother if he is in town.  It works out well because my kids don’t have to leave their toys and I don’t have to worry about another persons house being child proofed.
However a couple years ago, my family was going through a hard time after the loss of my cousin.  I invited my aunt and uncle up because I knew they wouldn’t be up for cooking and my normal Thanksgiving family meal went from the usual 4 adults and 3 children to 8 adults and 4 children, plus 2 dogs.

So there I was, a woman still learning how to cook and entertain trying to figure out how to coordinate a holiday meal for a dozen people.  Add to that the fact that I had never prepared a turkey before.  Up until last year my mother would always prepare the bird and then my father would stop by early Thanksgiving morning and put it in my oven.
The morning started early between baking, side dishes, the turkey being dropped off, and some Italian dished mixed in.  I thought everything was going ok, I was stressed with the alternating of cleaning and cooking all morning, but I was getting things done.  Then my husband basted the turkey, recovered it, and shut the oven door.  Two minutes later we saw flames and smoke seeping out of the oven door!  The juices had over flowed and caught on fire!
I screamed while grabbing my children and yelling “I’m calling 911”.  Once I had the kids out in the car, I ran back in to see that my husband had poured a big bowl of water over the turkey and oven. Luckily the fire was out, however the turkey was wet and still needed to finish cooking.
We spent the next hour cleaning out the oven so that it wouldn’t smoke too bad, and then proceeded to cook the turkey.
We ate pretty late that Thanksgiving and I am lucky that I have such a laid back family that just came in, helped, and hung around having fun together.

However looking back on that Thanksgiving, I realize how much more I would have been able to enjoy my holiday and my family if I had forgone all the stress and simply ordered our Thanksgiving feast from Buca di Deppo.  I would have been able to order everything with a Thanksgiving Party Pan Feast to go ahead of time and then used curbside pickup on Thanksgiving morning.  I wouldn’t have had countless pots and pans to wash, and would have been able to relax and enjoy watching football games with my family and parades with my kids.
The Thanksgiving Feast includes all the yummy stuff I usually make except I get to enjoy my holiday too!  The items included are classic Thanksgiving items with an Italian twist, such as: Sliced white meat turkey, homestyle gravy, roasted garlic mashed potatoes, spicy Italian sausage stuffing, green beans and cranberry sauce and even pumpkin pie!
Now that life has calmed down and it’s back to just being my parents, my husband, and I with the kids, I am considering making Thanksgiving reservations at Buca di Deppo to dine in this Thanksgiving while we are down at my parents place in Florida.
The idea of having no dishes, no clean up, and my kids being able to order off the regular menu if they pull the “I don’t like turkey” stunt, has me very intrigued.  Buca di Deppo has me reconsidering our current holiday traditions for sure!

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