Pinterest Wins

Oh, HEY! How is everyone doing?

So, since Bode was born, I haven’t been the most creative cook in the kitchen. The recipe creation has been close to zilch. HOWEVER, this doesn’t mean I haven’t been cooking!

I have been letting Pinterest inspire me to try new recipes. Good ol’ Pinterest. My Pinterest page is stocked full of delicious looking food ideas. I have started to make my way through  some of the pinned recipes and I what I want to do today is share with you not Pinterest fails, but Pinterest wins! Here are some of my Pinterest finds that I have successfully made and really enjoyed (I said Pinterest 6 times in this paragraph in case you were wondering…7 including this sentence)!

  1. BLT Lettuce Wraps. I’m not against bread, but this was seriously so good without it! It was definitely messy, but so worth it.

Pin Win 1

2. Banana Chocolate Almond Squares. This is a clean dessert that seriously fulfills my sweet tooth. It’s been way too long since I’ve made these!

Pin Win 2

3. Chickpea tacos with guacamole! I used this picture as inspiration but didn’t follow their recipe at all. I made my own taco seasoning and cooked the chickpeas with the homemade seasoning. I LOVED these.

Pin WIn 4

4. Slow cooker Texas BBQ Pulled Pork. I. LOVE. THE. SLOW. COOKER. It is my best friend. I served this pulled pork with coleslaw and baked beans of course. Winner.

Pin Win 5

5. Broccoli and Cheese Soup. Yum.  I recall I went a little heavy on the spiciness when I made this, but it was still very delicious. This will be a must-make this winter.

Pin Win 6

6. Carmelitas. And now you are all officially drooling, right? You can’t go wrong with these. Bring them to your next get-together, I dare you.

Pin Win 7

7. Crock Pot Chicken Wild Rice Soup. I just made this last weekend and OMG! I made a few of my own tweaks but it didn’t need much because it was SO good. I added some extra poultry seasoning , a little nutmeg and garlic powder. Salt and pepper to taste. Make this once the weather cools! This competes with Panera’s soup. That’s a bold statement and I said it.

Pin Win 8

8. Slow Cooker White Bean Chicken Chili. Weird, another slow cooker recipe! I made this for my family and they all loved it and asked for the recipe. This is a super simple to put together recipe. I served this chili with a dollop of sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese, and cilantro.

Pin Win 9

How about those for Pinterest wins?! I think I need to stop pinning more recipes though so I can make the ones I have already pinned! That won’t happen. I love Pinterest! BTW follow me if you don’t already:

What are some of your Pinterest wins or successes?

Fall Recipe Roundup

Even though it’s balmy and tropical feeling around here these days, I am starting to get anxious to make some comforting fall recipes. Fall is one of my favorite seasons if not my all-time favorite, and it really is just around the corner!!!

The weather is supposed to cool down next week so guess what I’m doing today? I’m putting together a little fall recipe roundup! It’s time to gather some comfort food recipes so that I can get to work in the kitchen once the weather cools!

A couple of these recipe are my very own, and the rest were gathered thanks to Pinterest!

Heerrrrrrre we gooooooooo!

  1. Broccoli White Bean Soup

white bean broccoli soup


I haven’t made this soup in forever but absolutely need to. So good!


2. Brown Sugar Butter Syrup

brown butter syrup with waffle 2

This recipe reminds me of my favorite syrup from a local restaurant! The thought of making it in the comfort of my own home, in my sweatpants and a messy bun, sounds that much more enticing!

3. Poblano Peppers Stuffed with Chicken and Cheddar



Say what?! That savory deliciousness looks beautiful.

4. Chicken Pot Pie Soup


I need this in my belly.

5. Slow Cooker Beef Pot Roast 

crock pot beef pot roast

Let the slow cooker do all of the work for you. Nothing says comfort like beef pot roast.

6. Creamy Four Cheese Garlic Spaghetti

creamy garlic

Decadent. Cheesy. Perfection. Hand me a fork.

7. Apple Crisp

apple crisp3

Apple crisp WITH oat topping. Because. Just because. Omm yum yum yum.

My mouth has been watering during this entire post! These aren’t all the most “figure-friendly” recipes, but you better believe I’m going to be hitting the streets running to balance out these goodies! 😉

I can’t wait to get COOKING!

What are some foods or recipes you are looking forward to making once cooler weather rolls around?

Random Bits…

Oh hey! This little blog o’ mine has been seriously neglected lately. As I write, I have a little one trying to type on the computer. Bode is now 10 months old and is crawling and standing up on furniture. He likes to hold on to whatever he can get his hands on and walk too! We are in for some serious craziness. It is so fun watching him change and develop. Everyday is something new! He is saying “dada” and just recently will blurt out a “mama” too! I obviously got a little too excited about that.

I can’t believe this summer is drawing to a close. I truly mean it when I say that as time goes on and I get older, times just moves faster. I am really doing my best to cherish every moment along the way.

I thought I would share some random bits and updates from my life for something fun today. So, here we go…

1. After aLLLLLL this time I am still drinking my same smoothie for breakfast every day. I guess I have changed it a little.

  • Frozen banana
  • Frozen blueberries or cherries
  • Frozen kale or power greens (costco)
  • Unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • Powdered peanut butter or peanut butter
  • Cocoa powder
  • I also add in my probiotic powder and glutamine powder     chocolate peanut butter smoothie

It turns out looking like mud and tasting delicious everytime! 😉

2. Ever since having Bode, some chemistry in my body must have changed because I can no longer wear earrings without getting crazy itchy ears. Albeit, I haven’t tried wearing super expensive earrings, but I never had a problem with this in the past! #random

3. We find out today what our closing date is on our new house. Right now we have a “soft” closing date of October 9th but we will find out for sure today at our meeting! It is looking like a real house now. Dry wall goes up this week! I still kind of can’t believe it’s happening! I am so excited to get in there and organize all of our stuff!

4. On the subject of the new house, we have been shopping for a new couch for our main living area and let me tell you, that is quite the task. Things to keep in mind when buying a couch: coil versus foam cushions, fabric, style (we know what we want there), easy to clean fabric, warranties, durability, etc. Not to mention, the fact that we aren’t able to see our home completed with paint and carpet and such before placing the order because it takes 1-2 months for custom orders. Of course we know the colors of the house (since we picked them out), but it’s hard just imagining all of it and not seeing it and then having to choose fabric color, it’s challenging. I know, ohhhh the problems we have. 😉

5. I ran in my first running race post-partum a few weeks ago. I ran the Esprit de she 5k with my girlfriend Stacy and Annie (check out Annie’s blog:!!!). My goal was to run it in 30 minutes or less and I was bummed that I didn’t cross the finish line until 30:12. I’m blaming it on the evening run (I’m not used to that) and running in hot weather. I get to have excuses right? Give me a cooler fall morning race and I will definitely be stomping that goal! :smile:

esprit de sheesprit de shemelanie esprit de she

There you have it for some random little bits and updates from me! I hope you are all well and I do hope to write more often. It’s such a fun creative outlet and I do miss it!



(Healthier) Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake

Oh, hey!

The weekend is drawing to a close, it’s hotter than hot these days, so how about a quick and easy recipe to kick off the week and cool you off? It’s a no-brainer. Of course you want to keep reading…

This is a simplified version of my favorite chocolate peanut butter smoothie that includes only 5 ingredients and is a bit more decadent thanks to chocolate Almond Breeze.

This concoction is peanut buttery and chocolatey, and in my opinion, that’s really all you need :wink:. I’m calling it a healthier chocolate peanut butter shake. Super creative, I’m fully aware.

almond breeze easy smoothie

(Healthier) Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake

  • 1 medium/large frozen banana
  • 3/4 cup frozen kale
  • 1/2 cup chocolate almond milk*
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter or powdered peanut butter

Blend all ingredients together until fully smooth and combined; there should be no lumps and it will be thick! Add more milk if necessary. Drink through straw and enjoy!

*You can always substitute unsweetened vanilla almond milk plus a little bit (or a lot!) of cocoa powder if you don’t have chocolate almond milk on hand!

This “shake” can be considered a breakfast, a snack, a dessert, whatever you wish. It literally is all whipped together in about 2 minutes thanks to the help of the blender. It’s a great way to sneak in another dose of veggies too!

I have to be totoally honest here…it is VERY rare that I ever measure out ingredients, so if you need to add more or less of any of these 5 ingredients, by all means, DO! My shake comes out just a tad bit different everytime, but always tastes fabulous.

What are you waiting for? Get shakin’!


This “Easy as Breeze” post is sponsored by Almond Breeze Almondmilk. For more “Easy As Breeze” recipes made with five ingredients or less, visit Almond Breeze on Facebook (, Twitter (, Instagram ( and Pinterest (

FriYAY Catch Up!


Let’s catch up on this past week, huh?

Did you know I was in Vegas last weekend celebrating with my little bachelorette, Betsy?! This was my first time in Vegas and unfortunately I got hit with a nasty cold on Friday (the day I got there) but I sucked it up and had an AWESOME time! I only lost $10. I’m too frugal to play anything but the penny slots! Hit a button, lose money, hit a button, lose money, etc. It was 114º F or something crazy like that while we were there but it was a dry heat so it didn’t feel so bad, especially when we were in the pool all day. :smile:

Betsy Melanie

Considering the heat, and the fact that I didn’t feel well, my appetite was way off. I managed to have two bigger meals over the weekend though at the hotel’s buffet. This is far from a pretty food photo but the food was really good! Check out my breakfast plate. It included: a fluffy pancake with a caramel buttery banana syrup, lots of bacon, fruit, pastries (took one bite and decided I could do better) and a crab leg! Yom yom yom.

Buffet Las Vegas

I’m one of those people who has a realllllly hard time sleeping in no matter how late I stay up. Vegas is two hours ahead of MN, so can you guess what time I was awake on both Saturday and Sunday? Ok, I’ll tell ya…6:15 am. Lucky me, right? On Sunday morning, I knew no one else would be up for a while, so I got up, pumped, walked to breakfast (above), and then took a long stroll on the strip. I didn’t get to all of the hotels on the strip because there are a lot, but I made it to quite a few! My favorite was the Paris hotel and the Wynn. I was reliving my Paris trip like crazy. I definitely want to go back to Vegas again when it is a little cooler and spend more time looking at all of the hotels. They are beautiful.

I managed to pump, eat breakfast, walk the strip, and go to the pool all before the other girls woke up. Do I wish I could have slept in a bit longer? Of course. But since I couldn’t, I’m glad I made the most of being awake!

Paris Hotel Las Vegas

Such a fun weekend with the girls and so many more fun wedding festivities to come! Love you bride-to-be!!


I feel like I have been getting so spoiled lately. Applegate and Sir Kensington’s hooked me up with major swag (giveaway winner announced at the bottom of this post!), and recently, Steve’s Paleo Goods sent me a SUPER awesome goodie bag!

Steve's PaleoGoods

Steve's Paleogoods

steve's paleo goods

Steve’s Paleo Goods makes on-the-go clean eating snacks and OMG I am impressed. In the kit he sent to me was the paleo sampler which includes:

  • Apple PaleoKit
  • Ketchup
  • Cinnamon PaleoKrunch Cereal
  • Original PaleoKrunch Bar
  • Grass-Fed PaleoJerky (2.5oz)
  • PaleoJerky
  • Dried Strawberries

So far I’ve sampled the apple paleokit and the dried strawberries and holy cow you guys, this stuff is good.

I’m so inspired by this guy. If you have a second, read his story: We need more people like this in our world! Thanks for the delicious samples, Steve!!!


Switching gears….can you believe it’s the 4th of July weekend already?! I just don’t understand how that is possible already. We are having a fairly low-key weekend full of lots of family and relaxation. I need it. Ever since Bode has started daycare we have all been sick, so pretty much the whole entire month of June. Oh well.

Check out this fun and festive food post I put together a couple of years ago:

Independence Day Food!


(UPDATED July 14th)

FINAL new giveaway winner announced because my 2nd winner never responded either! This is it folks.

The new winner of the Applegate and Sir Kensington’s giveaway is:


Send me an email at by tomorrow, July 15th! CONGRATS!!

Happy 4th of July to you all! What are your plans for the weekend?

I’m definitely hooking up with Katie today for Friday Favs!

You Grill Girl {Giveaway–CLOSED}

I’ve never been much of a fan of hot dogs. I would eat them every so often wayyyy back in the day, but once I found out what they were made of, I had a hard time getting past that. I had heard of all beef hot dogs but didn’t really give them much thought. That is until Applegate reached out to me recently.

They wanted me to try their all natural hot dogs, along with Sir Kensington’s natural ketchup and mustard. They also sent me potato buns and a ton of other goodies!!

Check out the loot!


I agreed to try their hot dogs because Applegate’s natural hot dogs are made of only grass-fed beef, water, salt and spices. THAT IS IT!  No artificial ingredients, synthetic nitrates, or antibiotics in these hot dogs.

applegate and sir kensington

Naturally, I had to wear the apron they gave me while “womaning” the grill.

applegate edited

Side track, let’s talk about Sir Kensington’s for a sec. Why I do I love their products? Let’s start with the ketchup. It has less sugar, less salt and real recognizable ingredients: Tomatoes, Tomato Paste, Organic Sugar, Onions, Organic Distilled Vinegar, Salt, Lime Juice Concentrate, Green Bell Peppers, Allspice, Citric Acid

Their yellow mustard is just as delicious and made up of: Mustard Paste (Water, Organic White Vinegar, Mustard Seed), Water, Mustard Seed, Organic White Vinegar, Salt, Organic Sugar, Chablis Wine

They also have mayo which I would love to try!

applegate and sir kensington    applegate and sir kensington

I promise there is a hot dog underneath those condiments! I LOVE ketchup. I love ketchup on my ketchup.

applegate edited 2 applegate edited 4

Because I’m a dietitian and love looking at the nutrition label, I thought I would share the hot dog stats with you guys. These were their natural uncured beef hot dogs.


Serving Size 1 hot dog

Amount Per Serving

Calories 70
Total fat 6 g
Sat fat 2 g
Sodium 330 mg
Sugars 0 g
Protein 6 g
So besides making me happy nutritionally, they also made my belly happy. These babes are tasty! I would love to cook these over a campfire! They have so many hot dogs to choose from like turkey hot dogs, chicken hot dogs, beef and pork hot dogs, and more. How could you get bored with all of these varieties available?
And guess what? Now is your chance to try them yourself! We will be giving away this pack of goodness to one lucky reader.
Enter to win (up to 2 entries):
1. Tweet: “I want to win @applegate and @sirkensingtons goodie box from @nuttymelanie” and make sure to comment on this post telling me you tweeted!
2. Comment on this post telling me which Applegate or Sir Kensington product you definitely want to try this summer!
GUYS, you can enter too of course!

One winner will be chosen on Friday, July 3rd!

Oh Heyyy!

Well, hi! Oh how does time fly, huh?

I don’t have many fun food photos to share with you all, but I wanted to check in and catch you up to speed on what’s been going on around here lately.

1. We moved out of our house and moved in with Dana’s parents for the summer while we build our new home! Moving in general is so much work, but moving with a baby is even more challenging. Poor guy got so sick of us packing and moving. We had a lot of help though throughout the process which helped immensely.

2. Bode is almost 8 months old! He is a hoot! He is eating a lot of food now; anything from oatmeal, avocado, whole milk yogurt, banana and egg pancakes, homemade refried beans, etc. I am having so much fun trying new foods with him! I am hoping to start posting some of the foods I make for him.

He is almost done with his 8 weeks of swimming lessons. This kid is a natural in the water. He gets fairly serious when he is in there but I think he is having a good time?! He kicks his legs in the water, goes under water, and looks absolutely adorable doing it.

3. I got struck with the stomach flu this weekend and it was NO fun. I am working on increasing my breastmilk supply because it plummeted. Good times.

4. I REALLY want to get my cooking mojo back. With all of the packing and moving, we did a lot of take-out food and restaurant dining. Now that we are moved in and settled, and now that I am feeling almost back to my normal self after the flu bug, I need to sit down and start planning some meals. I’m calling on Pinterest for inspiration as usual.

Doesn’t this look good? I believe I pinned this from Katie!


6. I can’t believe it’s the middle of June already. Slow down time, just a little?

7. I cut my hair. I cut EIGHT inches off of my hair (last month actually). I cut it because I was just putting it up all of the time because it was so long but guess what, now I put it up because it is too short to control. Go figure. My hair grows quickly so soon enough it will be to a more controllable length for me. I just know how to work with long hair because I’ve had it my whole life, ya know?


There are my random updates/thoughts for ya. Take care my friends!

How are you all? 

Share some delicious dinner ideas with me, please!

If Friday Had a Face



We have a winner of the Stubb’s coupons! Random number generator chose…

Kate from The Domestikated Life!

“i want all the shredded barbecue chicken with watermelon! We love barbecue in my house!”

I loooovvvvveee BBQ chicken too! Congrats, Kate! Please email me your address at and I will get those coupons out to you so you can enjoy FREE STUBB’S sauce!

Have a great weekend, friends!

My New Favorite BBQ Sauce {GIVEAWAY!}

Happy Memorial Day to you all! We remember all of the heroes who have served and who are actively serving for our country. They are the reason we are free. God bless each and every one of them and their loved ones. Their bravery should never go unnoticed.


Switching gears….

Did you know that May is National Barbecue Month?! Austin, Texas-based Stubb’s Legendary Bar-B-Q reached out to me to see if I would like to help them celebrate the kickoff of BBQ season. Of course I would! We are all about BBQ’ing all year round over here.

Craft-made Stubb’s, the leader in authentic BBQ sauces, rubs and marinades, is the only nationally available BBQ sauce brand (available in 85% grocery stores) to carry the Gluten-Free Organization Certification seal and contain no high fructose corn syrup (the first ingredient in most national BBQ sauce brands.) The company is also working with the Non-GMO Project to verify its line!

I have seen Stubb’s sauce on the shelves but have always reached for the brands I recognize, not even minding the label very often which is something I normally read! After buying the Stubb’s sauce and comparing the labels between the two, my mind was blown. I am convinced I will never buy any other brand. Besides the above mentioned nutritional details, Stubb’s BBQ sauce also has HALF of the sugar grams in their sauce! I mean comparing 16 grams to 8 grams! That’s a lot!

Stubb’s offers a variety of bar-b-q sauces, marinades, liquid smokes, rubs, cooking sauces, anytime sauces, and more.

So far I’ve only tried three of their products, but I am THRILLED to have learned about this brand and can’t wait to try more!


Along with providing coupons for me to try out their products, Stubb’s also sent me a bunch of great recipes to try! I decided to try their Cowboy Burger recipe first which included Stubb’s Smokey Mesquite BBQ sauce, their Beef Marinated, Mesquite Liquid Smoke, and Beef Rub.

Here is the recipe!

Stubb’s Cowboy Burger


2.5 lbs ground beef
1/4 cup Stubb’s Smokey Mesquite Bar-B-Q Sauce
2 Tbsp. Stubb’s Beef Marinade
1/4 tsp. Stubb’s Mesquite Liquid Smoke (optional)
1 tsp Stubb’s Beef Rub
1 large yellow onion, cut into slices
Shredded cheddar cheese
Bacon slices, cooked crisp
Onion Rolls or Hamburger Buns
Toppings of your choice

Cooking Instructions

In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, Bar-B-Q sauce, Stubb’s Beef Marinade, liquid smoke (optional) and Stubb’s Beef Spice Rub. Use your hands to mix well. Once combined, separate the mixture to make six patties. Make a slight indent with your thumb in middle of each patty to keep it from swelling while on the grill.

Prepare your grill for direct medium-heat cooking. Lightly oil the grates and place your burger on the grill, indent side up. Cook burgers for 12-14 minutes or until preferred doneness (160°F) turning once during cooking. While burgers are cooking, add the onion slices to the grill and cook until lightly charred and soft, turning once. Also toast the buns.

To serve, top burgers with Bar-B-Q sauce, bacon, grilled onion and shredded cheese. Add additional toppings to your liking.

TIP: To cook the bacon for this burger, line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and lay bacon on top. Cook in a preheated oven at 375°F for 15-20 minutes. Transfer the bacon to a paper towel lined plate to cool.


K, so I forgot the bacon but would you believe that I hardly even missed it?! This burger packs SO much flavor! I was so excited about it I repeatedly said to Dana, “omg this is so good” and snuck in bites of extra burger once I was done with mine.

And another confession, when I thawed out the ground beef from the freezer, I accidentally grabbed one pack of ground chicken and one pack of ground beef. I realized it once I was pouring the sauces on the meat. I made sure to cook the burgers to well-done because of this.

It’s okay though because they turned out GREAT. The burgers just shrunk more than usual. They started off the size of this sandwich bun, and ended up like this…





I savored every bite of this baby.



YUM! I’m not kidding I am CRAZY about this flavor! No more boring burgers this summer!!!

Do you want to try Stubb’s sauce for your next BBQ?! Here’s your chance to win some coupons for free Stubb’s products!

To enter to win, write a comment on this post telling me your favorite summer BBQ foods. Bonus points if you share this post on Facebook or Twitter (make sure and comment on this post if you do so to get an extra entry!).

Giveaway will close Thursday, May 28th at 9 pm central time. I will choose one winner on Friday May 29th!

Let’s hear it!

One Lucky Mama

The perfect Mother’s Day weekend…

On Saturday we went to Bode’s swim lessons and then for a family 3.5 mile run around a nearby lake. The weather was so beautiful which made for a very enjoyable run. I am very excited to get back into running shape. I want to add a half mile on to each week and build up my endurance slowly but surely!

After our run we went and got our BOGO Caribou coffee. They offered BOGO on both May 9th and 10th so of course I had to take them up on that offer both days!

Hubby made us some BLT’s for lunch!


Bode and I watched Dana mow the yard. Bode really liked watching him walk back and forth!

For dinner we grilled up some steaks from our local co-op, red potatoes with onions, and broccoli. Seriously so good. BTW right now I have a little man grabbing at the computer so I need to hurry this post up!


On Mother’s Day (Sunday), Dana got me Caribou and doughnuts in the morning while I was feeding the baby! Have I mentioned how much I now love doughnuts? It all started during pregnancy and it’s a love that hasn’t left. That and burgers!

caribou coffee and doughnut

I was royally spoiled by my family. It’s fun being a mama on Mother’s Day!! Have you all tried the strawberry shortcake Larabars? I am super excited to try them!

Mothers day treats

Sunday night we celebrated my dad’s birthday along with Mother’s Day and I made one of my “famous” ice cream cakes! Caramel chocolate ice cream, Oreos and hot fudge in the center, topped with more ice cream, Oreos and sprinkles of course! So pretty and very tasty! All for under $10!

ice cream cake

The festivities continued into Monday…just how I like it! We celebrated with Dana’s parents and had pizza and pie!

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend! I am one lucky mama.

I am linking up with Becky today!