Vegetable Chicken Soup

I’m finally back writing an entry on the blog! I can’t believe that it has been about 3 weeks since I last posted. It is partly because we have been enjoying a wonderful spring this winter! Seriously! I know that the groundhog saw his shadow, and thus said that we would have 6 more weeks of winter, but he totally forgot to tell the birds, the bees, and the flowering trees! The song birds have been serenading us every morning for weeks now, and all our fruit trees are blooming! The last time we had such an early spring was in 2007. That ended disastrously when we had 3 nights of killer frost in mid-April. We lost all our fruits that year!

My sweet little grand girl has been practicing to be flower girl at her Opal Gen’s (Uncle Ben’s) wedding in July.


And sweet Little Man has learned to sit up all by himself!


Now about that recipe… Many people here in my area of the south have been sick lately. Thankfully, the sickness has not found my house! One of my friends was sick last week, so I decided to make her some chicken soup. Since I had some extra veggies in the fridge, I added them to the mix as well. A few spices added in made it a very tasty soup!

1 quart chicken broth

1-2 chicken breasts, cooked and diced

1 large carrot, peeled and diced

1/2 medium onion, diced

4-5 medium sized mushrooms, cut in fourths

1 c. or so of cut green beans (I used fresh ones, but canned would be fine)

Salt and pepper to taste

1/2 tsp. each  turmeric, chili powder, garlic powder (use whatever spices you desire!)

Combine everything except the chicken in a large pot and bring the broth to a boil. Simmer until the veggies are tender. Add the chicken and heat through. Check flavor for spices and adjust to your own desires.

Nutritional Yeast, Turmeric, and Integral Collagen

We’ve had almost 10,000 visitors to the blog!


If you’ve been reading this blog for the last few years, you know that I have been eating the Trim Healthy Mama way for over 2 years now. I love the way that I feel when I eat according to the plan. I can fudge a bit for maybe a day or so, but if I go much longer than 2 days, I begin to have joint pain and feel sluggish and puffy.

Following THM is very easy and doesn’t require a lot of extra foods that I need to purchase. I seriously don’t think that I’ve spent a lot of extra money on special ingredients! I do try to be more careful in what I purchase and read labels for certain ingredients that I don’t want in my diet any more.

There are however, 3 items that I have begun using in my diet on a regular basis. These are nutritional yeast, turmeric, and integral collagen. I have found these ingredients to be very helpful in helping me to feel better. Over the last months of adding these to my daily diet, I have noticed that my joints don’t hurt nearly as much as they used to…especially after physical activity. I have little to no inflamation in my ankles and fingers, and my lower back pain has all but disappeared.

Nutritional yeast is an ingredient often used in vegan diets. We do not eat vegan in the Gardner household!! However, nutritional yeast is high in the B vitamins. It is also gluten-free; sugar-free, and low in fat and sodium. Nutritional yeast can be added to a wide variety of foods. I enjoy adding it to scrambled eggs, quiches, and other egg dishes. For more information, visit here.

Turmeric is another ingredient that I have added into my diet. I always add it to my lemon drink. I also add it to scrambled eggs, pasta dishes, and chicken salad. Turmeric has many good health benefits, one of which is that it is anti-inflamatory. You can read more about it here.

The third ingredient is integral collagen. I began adding this to my hot tea each morning about a year ago. It took about 6 months before I began noticing a difference…mainly in my hair health and my fingernails! I actually have new hair growth at my hairline! And my fingernails are much stronger than they used to be. This page has more information.

I hope you find this information helpful, and that you research these items for yourself.

**Disclaimer** The links that I have used here are just ones I found on the internet that help explain more about these ingredients. I do not support these websites in anyway!


Sunshine in a Jar

Many thanks to all my readers! Yesterday we finally passed the 20,000 views mark…which I had set for December 31, 2015. I am thankful for each of you who care to read what I write and even try the recipes that I share!

We all know that drinking water is very important for good health. Unfortunately, most of us don’t drink enough water to do our bodies much good. Oh, we drink fluids every day, but most of them contain ingredients that hinder good health! Sodas, coffee, and tea or other beverages can actually contribute to dehydration rather than hydration.

Following the Trim Healthy Mama plan for 18 months now has helped me to better understand the need to keep my body hydrated as well as healthy. Did you know that you should be drinking half your body weight in water every day? This means if you weigh 150 pounds, you should be drinking 75 ounces of water daily. This is not easy to do!  THM has several all-day sippers to help us with our daily water intake. My favorites are the Singing Canary and the GGMS…good girl moonshine! I actually enjoy mixing them together instead of drinking each one alone! Because neither of these has enough carbohydrates or fats to sway them towards an S or and E beverage (in the THM plan), these can be consumed all day long without causing you to go ‘off-plan.’


Doesn’t that look amazing? I love drinking it out of a Mason jar!

I have played around with the Singing Canary recipe and have made it my own! It is a delicious drink and helps to quench my thirst each day. This recipe makes half a gallon, and I end up making at least one gallon a week. It will probably be more during the hot summer months!

2-3 lemons (3 if on the small side)

1/2 gallon water, divided

4000 mg. Vitamin C  (I use 4 (1000) mg tablets)

4 pills Vitamin B-Complex (my bottle doesn’t give a mg/tablet)

1 tsp. turmeric

1/2 scoop whey protein powder

1/2 tbsp. powdered collagen

2-3 pinches salt

1-2 tsp. melted coconut oil

1 tsp. vanilla

2 tbsp. truvia blend (I use Pyure)


Cut the lemons into small pieces and toss them into your blender (rinds and all)! Add about 2-3 cups water. Blend until the lemons are totally ground up. Pour mixture through a sieve and press the pulp to get all the liquid out. Toss the pulp and pour the liquid back into your blender. Add the remaining ingredients. Blend until you don’t hear the vitamin tablets much at all (usually about 60 seconds with my blender). You can also use a pill grinder for the vitamins and then add them to the mix before blending.  Pour this into a 1/2-gallon Mason jar and fill to the top with water.  Some ladies prefer adding ice cubes in addition to the water, but I like mine without ice.

Be sure to either shake or stir before pouring a serving or taking a sip if it has been sitting out. The ingredients will settle to the bottom. Store in the fridge!