Quick Summer Pasta

Does anybody need any zucchini? I think I ask that question every summer around this time, but yet I keep planting it every summer. It's as if I enjoy trying to figure out how to use it over and over and over ...

Oh, yeah.

I do.

So! Both of the girls are all in on the Zucchini Craziness and they're both all in on all things pasta, so it was time to once again combine the two worlds. Of course, I'm super lazy, so combining the two had to be an easy feat.


Mission accomplished. This dish takes about 20 minutes to make, both girls love it, it costs less than $5 to make enough to feed us all, and it holds well for leftovers. That's basically what perfection looks like around here.


Quick Summer Pasta (serves 4)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium yellow squash, diced
1 medium zucchini, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 large yellow onion, chopped
2 cups grape tomatoes, cut into quarters (Or 1 can diced tomatoes. I won't judge you.)
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
1/2 pound pasta, cooked (I like cavatappi the best, but rigatoni worked just fine.)
Shredded parmesan cheese

1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. While that's getting started, go ahead and start cutting up the veggies. As they're cut, toss them in the oil. Remember to stir every few minutes to prevent burning. If you add the squash first, then the zucchini, then the onion, and then the tomato, everything will finish cooking at the same time. You'll know they're done when the onions are clear and the other veggies are softened.


2. Throw the oregano, salt, and pepper in with the veggies.

3. Cook the pasta according to the directions on the box.

4. Drain the pasta and then toss the veggies and pasta in a pan together. Stir well.

5. Serve with parmesan cheese on top.

6. Gosh, that was hard. Or not.


Candy Girl



Do What You Love and Love What You Do with L'il Critters™

I don’t know at what point I made the switch, but there was a time when I was planning a life with a daughter that wanted to shoot hoops while living in jeans and tennis shoes. There would be no time for ruffles and glitter because girl power was all about doing the things that boys do, but doing them better.

And then Alexis made it SUPER obvious that she was having none of that. Forget the hoops, she would rather cheer. You can have your jeans because they are THE WORST. Everything about Alexis’ definition of girl power was different from mine.

Is different from mine.

Fate has a funny sense of humor, so I’m learning daily that the way to be the best is to be your best. Alexis has done so much to teach me what it means to succeed. While I want out on the field when there’s a game of football going on, Alexis makes standing on the sidelines in a skirt look good.

No. Really. She’s very good at her chosen world of cheer. She can jump and flip and yell with the best of them. I have a whole new perspective on how hard it is to be a cheerleader. It requires commitment and consistent healthy habits. From spending hours practicing jumps and flips to making good nutritional choices and supporting those choices with  L’il Critters™, Alexis is committed from A to Z.


And then there’s dance. It was an act of defiance for me to enroll Alexis in dance classes early in life. I didn’t want to do it. It wasn’t my sort of thing. But, if I stopped and listened carefully to what tiny Alexis’ heart was singing, it was really very obvious that it was time for me to suck it up and let her do what made her happy.

A bunch of years later, it’s still what’s making her happy.

I’ve screwed up a lot during this journey as a parent, but the decision to encourage Alexis to listen to her heart and find what activities were meaningful to her was the most important one I’ve made. Adding in the open conversations about how the things she loves aren’t the things I love has given her a perspective into respecting others and embracing differences. It means she gets confused when she encounters people who aren’t passionate about anything, but also has a huge appreciation for when people are passionate about something. She knows how much work it is to be good at something.

Watch her watch the Olympics if you’d like to see what I mean. She has ZERO interest in actually doing many of the activities, but she’s all in on watching others attack them with all they’ve got. She will act as the cheerleader for every single Olympian gymnast, even as she rolls her eyes at the suggestion that maybe she should try the balance beam.


The only way Alexis is picking up a weight bar is if it’s covered in glitter, but she will absolutely applaud when she watches someone successfully do the impossible.


It doesn’t matter the sport, watching people do what they love and love what they do is an incredible gift.


 L’il Critters™ gives kids essential nutrients they need to go on to do big things. Watch them do what they love and love what they do with a great-tasting vitamin that supports kids’ healthy habits. It provides essential nutrients, are great tasting, and are made with natural fruit flavors and colors derived from fruits, vegetables and plants. L’il Critters™ Gummy Vites™ have no high fructose corn syrup and no synthetic (FD&C) dyes, and they are gluten free! It is the #1 kids gummy vitamin brand and is a fun and delicious way to support your kid’s healthy habits. They’re available at stores nationwide such as Costco, Walmart, Target, and Walgreens. Grab a coupon online or follow along on Facebook for more information.

What do you love to watch other people do? Answer in the comments for a chance to win a $100 Visa gift card. This is a sponsored post for which I've received free product and/or compensation, but the opinions are 100% my own.

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