• {NOT} Parmesan Crusted Salmon

    {NOT} Parmesan Crusted Salmon

    How do you name a recipe that tastes like parmesan cheese but is actually DAIRY FREE? I’ll just call it cheesy, satisfying, amazing and creamy {NOT} cheese.

    I’ve made parmesan crusted fish many times over the years using mayo, parmesan cheese and spices. This recipe is an upgrade! An upgrade in health and flavor!

    You won’t believe it’s “not” parm.





  • Stuffed Dates {Easy & Quick Plant-Based Snack/Dessert}

    Stuffed Dates {Easy & Quick Plant-Based Snack/Dessert}

    My kids love these little gems. A little salt. A little sweet. A little crunch. We started eating these for a snack when we were scaling back on sweet things. Cutting back on bananas was hard. Measuring and limiting honey and pure maple syrup was a new practice. Although, we’ve always limited junk food we were surprised by how much natural sugars we were consuming. We had to really work through cravings. I’ve read that it is actually the candida/fungus overgrowth in the gut that makes us crave. We sought to balance our gut microbiome by eating lower glycemic foods and finding sweets that included more fiber and protein. This treat checked all the boxes!

    Slowly our cravings for salt, sugar and fat diminished.

    We had to relearn what hungry feels like. It feels so much better than craving. It feels content and necessary. Like a gentle reminder to nourish your body.

    Are Dates Healthy?

    I’d say YES! In moderation of course. I have one little darling that would eat a pound of them if I’d look away long enough. I ate them intentionally during my last pregnancy because veteran Mamas (and studies) suggest that eating them may ease labor! It was worth a try and proved successful for me! We are obviously fans of this little fruit.

    I’ve read that they are:

    • Anti-Inflammatory {necessary for healing}
    • Low Glycemic {surprising right?}
    • High Anti-Oxidants
    • High Fiber {always looking to add fiber to our diets}
    • Nutrient Dense
    • High Calorie {good calories for my active family}
    • Good for Bone Health
    • Good Source of Energy

    How are Dates grown?

    They grow from a Date Palm Tree. When I found this out I immediately searched for info on growing our own. It was more complicated than I’d prefer. Some say humidity can cause the dates to ferment and fall before they ripen. I tried to imagine myself tending dates via ladder or perhaps asking my husband to shinny (it’s shinny not shimmy…much to my surprise) up barefoot to check their status. Will the birds and bugs eat them before we can? It was just too much. It felt out of reach. This will be a fruit I continue to buy. Though, perhaps one day I’ll revisit the idea! In the meantime, we’ll marvel while we eat fruit from a palm tree to nourish our bodies!

  • 4 ‘Easy to Grow & Easy to Propagate’ Plants…

    4 ‘Easy to Grow & Easy to Propagate’ Plants…

    Plant, plants, planted, planter. I love the word. The act. It’s a lovable root word. Plant. We love puns too. 😄

    It seems the more you learn to grow, the more you want to grow. How easy it is to become a plant collector.

    Over the years I’ve researched, collected, propagated, tended and even neglected so many varieties of plants.


    I come from a long line of plant lovers. My Great Grandmama, Christine, started the legacy of plant propagation. She was Mama to 9 kiddos. Most remembered for her love of children & her perfect biscuits. I have so many sweet memories of Grandmama. One of those is of her wrapping newly cut plant starts in a wet paper towel to transport home where she’d watch it take root and flourish.

    She got a cuttin‘ or a piece from many places she visited. I was told that she was even gifted plant starts from a warden at the prison while she was visiting a loved one. I guess coming away from a sad circumstance feels brighter when new life will come of it.

    Nature has a way of pointing us back to redemption, growth, resiliency, forgiveness & beauty. A master plan perfectly designed despite hardship. It has a lesson to teach. Listen for whispers of wisdom. 🌱

    My Great Aunt Ginny’s Oxalis with a cascading Vinca Vine.

    I’d love to know if Grandmama propagated for fun, because it was a challenge, because she loved plants or perhaps because she simply couldn’t afford to purchase them. All of these are ambitious reasons to try!

    Her flower beds weren’t fussy, organized or landscaped. Just plants being plants. Scattered here and there. What a legacy she began!

    Some plants really ARE too fussy for challenging seasons of motherhood. You know the seasons when the toddlers are fussing…day & night, night & day?! When the siblings are fussing…day & night, night & day?! Bless their heart. Seasons where one more fussy thing CANNOT be tolerated.

    During this season I came to really appreciate resilient plants. While gazing at these plants I’d feel a sense of relief and think…Sweet Little Growing Thing, I don’t remember the last time I gave you a sip of water and look how precious you are. You dont need me. It’s a good thing because I’m unavailable. 🥰

    These plants give any gardener hope. Whether you have a green thumb, brown thumb, pink thumb…you can win with these easy to grow little darlings.

    1. Thunbergia (Blue Glory):

    I got a start from my Aunt or Granny…or both. I’ve moved it, separated, replanted; it died back completely during a freeze this past winter. I’m telling ya…give this one a try!

    A stalk of blooms. My kids, the butterflies and hummingbirds like to drink the nectar from these sweet little blooms.

    2. Sedum:

    It’s such a low maintenance plant. When it’s happy you’ll know it. I’ve propagated many varieties from a 4-6 inch start. Stick it in the dirt, gravel, rocks, hanging pots, inside or outside it seems to be resilient.

    Tiny little clusters of blooms!
    So simple! My 8 year old started this one!
    Started from a piece I found on the ground.
    This one too!

    If it seems unhappy just take a piece and start it somewhere else! A friend recently told me plants present this gorgeous pink color when they’re stressed. Well, I’m sure she is and I appreciate the fanfare as she’s contemplating death. Bless her heart. I wish I were that pretty when I’m stressed.

    3. Pothos:

    Satin Pothos

    Oh, pothos. You’re incredible. So many varieties to collect and enjoy! It roots well in water or soil. I love to spot it growing up a tree. Some people call it Devil’s Ivy. Offensive. A perfect beginner or veteran addition to your home or garden!

    In Aunt Ginny’s Swan on the porch…
    In the kitchen…
    With JellyBean the Beta…

    4. Mint & all her family:

    The Lamiaceae family. Mints and Balms. I’ve always kept mine in containers because I’ve heard horrendous stories of it taking over the yard or flower beds. It’s a delicious topping to a glass of iced tea. Easily dried. Simple to use it for hot tea as well! Repels pests. So many uses!

    Chocolate Mint. Mmmm! She almost died in her little pot…now look at her. Thirsty and thriving.
    This one’s an old gal. I’ve had her for years!
    Lemon Balm is in the same family!
    Grown from seed. No fertilizer. No pesticides. No pruning. No consistent watering. It smells heavenly.

    Definitely get aquainted with this family. You’ll be surprised how many relatives mint has!

    Happy Planting! Enjoy the view! 🩷

  • Homemade Salsa

    Homemade Salsa

    No Cook. Easy. Amazing.

    It’s a simple addition to most gatherings, a perfect topping for many meals and a satisfying snack for any season. Everyone asks for the recipe. Most are surprised by how simple it is!

    I’ve been making this salsa for longer than I can recall. It seems like it may have been 4 kids ago or so.

    Where it all began…I followed this witty blogger before she became famous. She was a trailblazer. Her life fascinated me & she was funny. I needed that. Her blog on salsa still cracks me up!

    That’s where this salsa recipe began but it has changed over the years. Ahh…memories.🩷

    A poem about SALSA because it’s always on my mind…

    I would eat it on a chip, on a purple rocket ship.

    I would eat it on my eggs and later I would beg…

    To eat it with my nachos, or my mango or my tacos.

    In my guac, while I talk, on a rock.

    I would eat it at the park, with a lark in the dark.

    I would it eat it all day long because SALSA can’t be wrong.


    Thanks for amusing me. Salsa brings out the Seuss in me.

    You get the point though. This salsa is a staple. It must be stocked!

    Ingredients you’ll need:

    Look at the cilantro hugging the vinegar…makes a Mama’s heart happy.
    • 3 Cans of Diced Tomatoes*
    • 1/2 Medium Onion (sliced)*
    • 1 Bunch of Cilantro*
    • 1-2 Jalapenos*
    • 1 Lime
    • 1 tsp Cumin
    • 1 TB Red Wine Vinegar*
    • Salt to taste

    How to Make Homemade Salsa:

    • Slice, or dice or don’t 1/2 of an onion. The blender can do it all but I find it helpful to dice the onion!
    • Rough chop the cilantro or don’t. If you don’t the stems may wrap around the blender’s blade!
    • Cut off the stem on the jalapeno. Remove the inside pulp and seeds to control the heat in the salsa. Make sure you protect your fingers from the jalapeno juice! If that’s too fussy just throw it in whole.
    Don’t ya just love a pop top?
    • Add only 1 can of tomatoes with all of the other ingredients to the blender. Pulse until you reach the desired texture.
    Pulse more…
    Much better.
    • Now that you have the cilantro, onion and jalapeno to the desired texture. Add the other 2 cans of tomatoes. If you prefer chunks…by all means leave it chunky. If you prefer smaller bits then you’ll pulse until you get there. It won’t take long!
    • Now, taste! If the flavors aren’t vibrant and flavorful then add salt. It’s nearly always salt that is lacking.


    *Sweet or Red Onions work well but any will do!

    *I often times add 2 bunches of cilantro because we love it’s flavor. Feel free to add more if you do too!

    *Bell Peppers, Sweet Peppers, Poblanos, Tomatillos, Green Chilies, Garlic and Crushed Red Peppers are all amazing additions!

    *If you prefer a hotter salsa add another jalapeno or two.

    *Feel free to omit the vinegar. The “witty blogger” that I referenced earlier protests vinegar in salsa. However, I prefer it because it seems to taste freshly-made longer after being refrigerated.

    The basic concept is all you need to know! Be creative…let your taste buds guide ya!


  • Healthy Taco Soup

    Healthy Taco Soup

    I’ve learned a lot this year. One of those lessons is…

    “Our health isn’t always measured by what we ARE eating, many times it’s what we AREN’T eating.”

    This perspective eased my inclination toward rebellion. I’m laughing. It sounds ridiculous, right? You wouldn’t know it but I used to feel it rise up when I thought about elimination diets, calorie control, cutting sweets and the like.

    So focusing on INCREASING instead of decreasing gave me a wonderful start in my journey to healing.

    What does this have to do with Taco Soup? Well, I ate this yummy soup at a sweet friend’s home. She is a Mom of 8 and had thrown 6 or so things in a crockpot to feed a crowd. It was so simple yet satisfying and delicious. I made it days later for my family because my kids loved it so much.

    It is now a family favorite! You can’t go wrong with the flavors in this soup. You can add, omit, be creative. As long as you have those amazing first six ingredients…you’ll be good to go.

    Increasing the vegetables to feed the gut’s microbiome is always on my mind. Have you read that each strand of beneficial bacteria consumes different types of plants that we eat? So diversity in our diet is important! Another simple goal that doesn’t spark rebellion. 😄

    Rainbow Taco Soup!
    Sprinkle Blue Corn Chips on top and
    you’ll have all the colors!
  • Gluten Free Brownies

    Gluten Free Brownies

    We love brownies. Who doesn’t!? I realize they can be the subject of great debate. Must it be fudge-y or cake-y? I say it must only be chocolate–y.

    I made these for the first time for my son’s birthday party. It was a special request. We expect a little celebratory sugar on birthdays but I cringe at gluten because of the inflammatory responses we have to the sugar, gluten combo. Guests were thrilled to know they were gluten free as well! You wouldn’t know by their look, taste or texture!

    Seriously, friends…they are decadent.

    I have tried all kinds of brownies over the years. Brownie bites, brownie hummus, vegan brownies, black bean brownies, boxed brownies, brookies…you name it!

    While eating a failed brownie experiment with friends I commented that I had never met a brownie I didn’t like. My daughter’s sweet friend retorted , “I have!”. “Really? What was it like?” I asked. “Burnt and hard as a rock.” I guess there are unlikable brownies.

  • Healthy Coastal Coleslaw

    Healthy Coastal Coleslaw

    I’ll never forget the first time my sweet friend made this dish for my family. Well, actually I don’t remember all the details. I’m pretty sure I was knee deep in babies and barely awake but it made quite an impression and became a staple!

    Sweet, citrus-y, crisp & salty.

    Just last week we packed it for a beach day! It was so cool and satisfying.

    Yes. My kids eat it and LOVE it.

  • Heal-ing


    Day 1 of blogging…

    Healing. I know the body heals. I see it heal cuts, bruises, insect bites all the time without intervention. Right?!

    Three months ago I was given alarming news. After feeling a rather large bulge on my neck I got an ultrasound. They discovered 6 thyroid nodules. My next step was supposed to be biopsy. This news thrust me into a whole new lifestyle and set my feet on a heal-thy eating, thinking & living path.

    MORNING by MORNINGNEW MERCIES I SEE! All I have needed His hand has provided. Great is His faithfulness!

    My hope is to share heal-thy recipes I’ve made along the way! Many of them are Vegan, Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Meatless and Sugar Free. Southern Comfort Foods were the most exciting and the most challenging makeovers! It must compete with the original to be a keeper! These recipes have been tested and retested on the most skeptical dairy-loving, meat-eating, sugar-craving, gluten-swooning kiddos and hubby…with much success!

    I lost 17 lbs in 2 months by trading in a “semi- healthy” menu (gluten and sugar restricted, full dairy) for a menu that brought LIFE. Whole foods in every meal. Mounds of veggies. Quality meat. Mostly organic. The challenge of trying new recipes and making them taste amazing put wind in my sail.

    Now to share them with YOU! I hope you enjoy them as much as we have.