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Quick & Delicious Fruit and Vegetable Smoothie Perfect for all Weather!

You’ll love this delicious fruit and vegetable smoothie that’s perfect for cold winter days. Featuring pineapple, banana, and orange and a secret veggie!
Quick and easy winter smoothie

Fruit and Vegetable Smoothie – Perfect for All Weather

A smoothie is a great day to start the day off right to make sure you eat the recommended number of servings of fruits and veggies. I always listen to the debate about the cost of eating fresh fruits and veg being higher than eating a processed diet, but I’m not sure I agree. We do a lot of things to keep our grocery budget low, yet still eat a healthy diet.

I love this recipe for a Pineapple, Banana, and Orange Smoothie. It’s a fabulous, quick, and easy smoothie using winter produce. Because it uses seasonal fruit, you can buy produce that’s on sale and keep your costs down! Think about in season produce and how to incorporate it into delicious food and you can keep your budget lower too!
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5 Minute Egg & Cheese Sandwich {with bacon, spinach & avocado}

The idea of cooking a hot breakfast on busy mornings sounds daunting. Who has that kind of time? Because let’s just get real, mornings are plain busy. But, given the choice, would you choose a real, hot breakfast {think bacon and eggs} or a bowl of cold cereal in the morning? I know what I’d rather have!

5 minute egg and cheese sandwich with bacon, spinach and avocado - in not too much longer than it takes to pour a bowl of cereal, make yourself a real breakfast instead!I’ve got just the recipe that will help you enjoy that hot breakfast! You can even make it on busy mornings: the 5 minute breakfast sandwich – loaded with healthy ingredients like eggs, cheese, bacon, spinach & avocado. Seriously folks, in just about FIVE minutes, you, too, can have a healthy, nutritious breakfast on your plate!

Why opt for a homemade breakfast? Well, despite the fact that breakfast cereal is expensive and not very healthy, it also doesn’t fill me up for very long. I like to start my mornings out right – and a nutritious meal is a great way to start the day. Quick recipes rule in my world – so this recipe for a quick egg sandwich has recently become one of my favorite breakfasts! Give it a try! You won’t be disappointed.

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Top 10 Posts of 2012

It’s hard for me to believe that 2013 will mark three years since I started blogging here at Simplify, Live, Love. My style has changed a lot these last couple of years and I am really excited for 2013. I’m working hard to improve my posts and I hope it shows!

It’s that time of year again to reflect on the most popular posts on my blog. Knowing what you you all enjoy most helps me focus my efforts better! So I was really interested to look up this information a couple days ago.

And here are the top viewed posts on Simplify, Live, Love in 2012, starting with the 10th most viewed post and working down to the post that’s been read the most! Did you read all of these?

#10. Homemade 9 Grain Bread

One of my most favorite breads of all time to make – it’s crunchy, delicious, and nutritious! 

#9. Overnight French Toast Breakfast Casserole

This is a relatively recent post of mine, and it’s gone crazy the last few months with the many holidays! It’s the perfect breakfast to make for company!!

#8. What to Eat When the Pantry’s Empty

I wrote this post, partly in jest, when I saw someone found my blog by googling “What to eat when the pantry’s empty.” What I know about my own pantry is that it’s never really empty – it just contains the less popular items… Apparently, a lot of people face the same thing.

#7. Developmental Dysplasia of the Hips in Toddlers

This post contains a lot of links and information about dealing with Developmental Dysplasia of the Hips. I’m always sad when when people find this page because I hate the thought of other families going through what we went through. But I’m glad they found it, too, because I know it’s helpful!

#6. The Lazy Person’s Guide to Canning Crushed Tomatoes

If you can tomatoes, this is a how-to for a really easy way to get the most out of your bounty!

#5. Top 10 Tips to Save $$ ~ At the Grocery Store

Even if you don’t coupon, there are a lot of tricks to saving money on groceries. Here are my top 10 tips.

#4. My Gutter Salad Garden

My husband built me this gutter salad garden last year! It didn’t yield anything for me…but I haven’t given up! I’ll be planting lettuce and spinach in a couple of months.

#3. Keeping a Low Grocery Budget by Shopping from Amish

We’re lucky to have Amish Bulk food stores not too far away, and I find lots of goodies there!

#2. Happy Birthday Fruit Cake ~ A Tutorial

One of my all time favorite posts – a tutorial for making a fruit cake!

#1. How to Freeze Avocados

And my most popular post of 2012 – how to freeze avocados!

Is your favorite post among the top viewed posts on my blog? If not, I’d love to hear if you have an all time favorite post on Simplify, Live, Love!

One Holiday Ham = Lots of Meals! 5 Ways to Use Leftover Ham

We love ham! Not only is it super easy to make in the slow cooker, but there are so many great things to do with the leftovers. Here are 5 ways to use leftover ham! All of them delicious!!

One Holiday Ham = Lots of Meals! 5 Ways to Use Leftover Ham

Some of my favorite ways to use leftover ham include making soup, using it in delicious omelets and egg sandwiches, making fried potatoes and ham, and using it in quick fried rice. Most of these ideas allow you to get dinner on the table in under 20 minutes, or in the case of the soup, all day, but with a really short prep. Here are my favorite ways to use leftover ham!

1. Ham & Bean Soup in the Slow Cooker

Slow Cooker Ham & Bean Soup

Slow Cooker Ham & Bean Soup


  • 10 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups dried Great Northern beans, rinsed, sorted
  • 1 1/2 cups small red beans, rinsed, sorted
  • 1 ham bone {optional}
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 tsp pepper {or to taste}
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 ribs chopped celery
  • 2 chopped carrots
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 32 ounces crushed tomatoes


  1. Put everything in a 6 qt slow cooker except the tomatoes.
  2. Cook on high for 1 hour.
  3. Reduce temperature to low and cook for 8 – 10 more hours, until the beans are tender.
  4. Add tomato sauce and cook for another 1/2 hour.
  5. Garnish with shredded Parmesan Cheese.
  6. Enjoy!

Nutrition Information:

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1274 Total Fat: 8g Carbohydrates: 244g Protein: 73g

2. Fried Potatoes & Ham

Fried Potatoes & Ham is another crowd-pleasing, super easy way to re-purpose your leftover ham. Just thinly slice up a bunch of potatoes {I use my food processor}, and fry them in butter or bacon grease with lots of crushed garlic {the more the better!}, sliced onion, and salt & pepper, and don’t forget the leftover ham! If you make these, you’ll want to par boil the potatoes ahead of time for easier cooking at meal time. cook the potatoes on medium heat, turning frequently.

3. Left over ham for breakfast

Another super easy and delicious use for leftover ham – Fried Egg & Ham Sandwiches. To make these, I become a short order cook. Everyone prefers them a little differently in my house. I like my egg over medium; the kids prefer either over hard or no egg at all. Some people in my family like a little bit of grated cheese on top; others prefer a huge slice of cheese, nicely melted of course. And others prefer no cheese at all. ;-) I use my homemade whole wheat bread, but I think this would be fantastic on homemade English Muffin bread or on a store-bought English Muffin. I use sharp white cheddar cheese, but you can use your favorite cheese if white cheddar doesn’t sound good.

4. Nicky from Little Family Adventure has a delicious recipe for a Spanish Tortilla with Ham that looks divine too! Breakfast, brunch, or dinner? When would you eat this?

5. Finally, Fried Rice with Ham

Fried rice with ham is really easy! One of my favorite ways to use up leftover rice! Just add ham, egg, peas, chives, and soy sauce and you have another super quick meal made on the table in minutes.

My recommendation for your leftover ham, chop it and freeze in cup portions so you can pull it out and use it in any of these delicious recipe ideas!

And there you have it! My super easy way to cook your holiday ham and three of my favorite ways to use up the leftovers. What do you do with your leftover ham?

 I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  This content has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias® and CastleWood #cbias #SocialFabric. All opinions are mine.