When I was little my Dad used to throw the ultimate backyard BBQs. From sweet corn on the cob with honey butter and salt to his famous picnic salads, Dad was the man who knew how to make you smile with a Dixie paper plate full of your favorite colorful summer food. I remember sitting on checkered picnic blankets with my cousins as we held juicy watermelon wedges and patiently waited for the rest of our meal.

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I’m a firm believer that every BBQ or party should have at least a few healthy choices available for guests to nosh on. No one wants to show up and only be served mayo-loaded potato salad, overly salted potato chips, hot dogs, cake from the grocery store and cantaloupe that tastes like it’s out of a GMO factory.

Okay, maybe those are only the parties I’ve been to. Whomp whomp.

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My mom filled my Easter basket to the brim with treats until I was in high school. Suddenly when I was 16, she decided that I no longer qualified to receive Easter goodies from this so called bunny. At first I thought she was kidding! This was a tradition, wasn’t it?

I suppose I figured that for the rest of my life, Mom would be there to drop off an Easter basket filled with my favorite jelly beans and chocolate eggs that no one ever eats (unless they’re Reese’s eggs of course).

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When I used to have a corporate job, we would eat lunch out or in the cafeteria frequently. It was easy and fun to have lunch with my coworkers and enjoy good conversation. However, I realized how easy it was to make poor choices when eating out. Often times I used to get a burrito bowl with ALL THE TORTILLA CHIPS and 1/2 cup of guac. No joke.

When I started making my lunches at home, it helped me save tons of money. Not only that, but I reached my weight loss and fitness goals quicker because I didn’t have a massive serving of Mexican food in front of me everyday. (So good though.)

As I continued to prep meals, I realized that sometimes it can be difficult to figure out what you want to eat, what’s in your budget for the week, and not eat the same thing all the time. Thus, I put together some fabulous lunch recipes to help you plan! There are plenty to choose from so you should be set for a few months. Just bookmark this link so you can come back often! Most of the recipes are salads, sandwiches and soups; all meals I find myself eating often for lunch.

I hope this list inspire you to prep a little more at home, save money and stay motivated to eat healthy! xoxo!

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The title of this recipe is certainly a long name for a salad, yet somehow I feel like the more descriptive, the better. Especially when it comes to salads, there are just too many out there these days; I want you to know what sets this one apart right from the beginning.

Secondly, I’m wondering how many of you actually eat salads on Thanksgiving? For me, it’s an absolute MUST. I pile my plate full of salad before anything else. I want the greens before the beige breads and golden brown gravy.

Fill me up with nourishment, then fill me up with that pumpkin pie comfort.

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Yesterday we moved into our new apartment! Finally, I’ll have own office. And our place is much larger than my previous 700 square foot 1-bedroom.

I’m so eager to get to Home Goods, Pottery Barn, Target plus go antique shopping. The upside of moving is that you get to completely redecorate. If I haven’t mentioned before, my style is very romantic with a bit of sophistication. I love antiques and making them new again with a fresh coat of paint. In fact, I recently had an old headboard painted a beautiful bronze gold from my friends at MegMade here in Chicago. They have a wonderful Etsy shop too, so check it out!

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If I ever move anywhere else in the United States, it would be to California. Lately I’ve been thinking about the days when I used to live in Hermosa Beach. The weather was indescribably beautiful. The neon pink and orange sunsets were astounding. The wines were bold and native. The hiking trails were gruesome (in a good way).

Every year these memories come up as we approach cooler temperatures. I can already feel it happening and I’m just not ready yet. How about you?

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While I enjoy all fruit, I never purchase cherries too often because I always have felt limited as to what I could do with them. Usually the only thing I made was a basic fresh cherry pie or an apple cherry crisp.

But then I realized that I ain’t no basic chick and made this bright salad with all of the good things in life. Hells yes.

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Each and every Summer since I was a babes, I’ve gone to a family cabin in Northern Minnesota to celebrate the 4th of July. Honestly, it’s one of my favorite holidays because we all get together and celebrate with ridiculous little traditions.

It all starts early in the morning when my Godmother (my second Mom) puts an old school Shaggy CD on full blast. When we were little, we hated his music with a passion. These days, it makes us laugh and we stumble out of our rooms cracking up and shaking our heads.

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Ohhhh ohhhhh ohhhhh! I made you a loaded salad. I mean really loaded. Magically so.

You guys know me well by now. If there’s a salad then there’s most likely kale in it… but then I went to Trader Joe’s (of course) and saw bag of organic spinach on the shelf. I mean, really let’s not forget about the first superfood that ever was. Before kale was this huge thing that people tried to make chips out of, spinach was the star. And so I decided to throw it back to 2008.

There’s something about summer that makes chopped salads everything you could possibly want. So many fruits and veggies in delicious little chunky bites waiting to be demolished. That’s how I think about salads anyway. Seriously can people please stop bringing those mayo-laden potato salads to potlucks, please? Most of the time I can’t even recognize if there are potatoes actually in the salad because I’m blinded by all that white weirdness.

Exaggerate much? Heh.

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