April is nearly over…where is the year going?! 

Seriously, it’s going by too fast. Someone get me off this ride STAT!!! My son has had his birthday, leaves now cover the tree branches, bees are buzzing about, bunnies frequent our yard, and before we’ll know it Christmas will be here and we’ll start the new year. Am I the only one?! 

Ok, I’ll stop complaining, but it really is throwing me for a loop here. And I’ll just be honest with you all, my summer is going to be crazy busy. Lots of wonderful things going on at church this year, to which I feel extremely blessed to be part of since I know there are several other well accomplished and equally capable folks who could do the work that God has called me to do. But since He’s called me to fulfill these specific needs, I am more than ready to step up and do my absolute best for Him! What will that mean on here? Well, all I can do is try and I ask that you all hang in there with me! 

So, an update first…Last week I accidentally left my iPad at church and didn’t get it back till yesterday. I felt lonely without it. Naked at times. Oh how I hate that! Such dependence on a little device…thankfully my Dad was kind enough to let me borrow his device so I could at least manage my NOK FB page and personal FB profile. My Instagram and email though, yowzers! Backed up just a tad 😳 This afternoon I was able to finally get my IG updated, so if you have an account on there, be sure to check @nok_amandagayle. This week I am planning to post my wee little heart out! 

I do have happy news, two weeks ago I fell off the health wagon(that’s not the happy news). Last week I eased myself back on it(partially good news), but this morning after wrecking things I am happy to report I’m down 22 pounds!

I’ll take it!! It could be worse, so many praises going up for this small victory! And hey, losing the equivilent of 217 golf balls is awesome. I wonder how many sticks of butter that is?! 🤔 And G-Man is starting the slow wind up of his school year. Today he finished Science and came out passing it with an 87/B+ for the year. Very excited for him! I was the one sweating bullets over here about his final exam, which he passed as well(got an 82). He ceases to amaze me! 

And finally got around to getting two big pork butts into the oven. Are they butts or shoulders?! Meh, it’s bbq goodness, who cares! Mom was gracious enough to make extra rub for me while I finished up my school with G-Man. Tomorrow I’ll make a low carb mock potato salad to go with and maybe a side salad. Mmm, going to be good eats!! 


Okie dokie, I think I’ve shared enough for now 😁 In the meantime, enjoy the rest of you Monday and hope you all have blessed evening! 


Salsa Chicken and Spanish Faux Rice

Lately I’ve been going bonkers trying to find meals that not only everyone can enjoy but things that are lower in sodium for my Dad. His blood pressure has come down to a safer range and thankfully he’s started losing some weight. He and I are walking three days a week together and I think I’m getting more out of it than he is. I’m shorter and his stride is much longer than mine, we both have started using fitbit to monitor our steps, calories, and distance throughout the day.

May 2014 010

Lime green fitbit is happy about my progress so far!


So in trying to stay on track with my workouts(walking three days a week and doing cardio the other two) meals have become something I really don’t like to think about. I used to love planning out the weekly menu but lately I groan at just the thought of food. It’s bad enough I have to remember to eat 3 times a day but then add on the effort of actually making the food…yeah, no. The other night I decided chicken enchiladas sounded pretty good, they’re easy enough to throw together and the fresh homemade enchilada sauce tastes so much better than the can stuff from the store. I went to gather the ingredients and after going through the freezers(yes, more than one) I was heartbroken…there wasn’t any enchilada sauce  to be found. I think I experienced at least a dozen emotions all at once lol anger, frustration, utter sadness were the top three. It was going to be ok, I thought, I’ll just grab a jar of salsa verde! Newp, none to be found. At this point I was beginning to feel defeated, I seriously had no back ups for dinner and it was already after 5pm. I checked our other food storage shelves and it was as if the light from Heaven was shining down on the four jars of red salsa! *queue heavenly choir*

Thus salsa chicken, done enchilada style, was born! I went back to the freezer and grabbed two bags of frozen cauliflower, a can of Rotel tomatoes, and a package of low sodium taco seasoning. It was so on and I had about an hour to get it all done!  (I love a challenge!!!)


Salsa Chicken

3–13 ounce cans of chicken, drained and shredded, roughly 5 cups of chicken

1 taco season packet

2 tsp dried minced garlic

1 Tblsp dried onion flakes

8 low carb high fiber tortillas

2 jars salsa

4 cups shredded cheddar cheese


Drain all three cans of chick and add to a large glass bowl. There might be some liquid still in the chicken, this is ok. Break up the chicken with your fingers or a fork till there are no more chunks. Sprinkle on an entire package of taco seasoning, add in dried minced garlic and onion flakes. Stir to combine and set aside. I used aluminum disposable pans to bake with, but you can use a 9×13 glass pan if you prefer. Pour half a jar of salsa in the bottom of your pan, depending on the size of your tortillas it will determine how many will be able to fit into the pan. Since we buy the large ones I could only fit four into each pan.

Now comes the fun part…the loading of the tortillas 🙂

Grab four fingers worth of cheese and place it down the center of a tortilla. Spoon about two large spoonfulls of the mexican chicken mix. By large spoonfulls, I mean rice spoon size. Fold over one side of the tortilla to the center followed by the other side to the center. Transfer to your pan placing it seam side down in the salsa. Continue on with the other seven tortillas, using one jar of salsa per pan. Pour the remaining half jar of salsa over the four chicken tortillas. Top with two cups of cheese, cover pan with foil and bake at 375 for 40 minutes. Uncover and continue baking for 10-15 minutes or until cheese is lightly browned. Let it sit for a few minutes before serving. Enjoy with sour cream on top, your favorite tortilla chips on the side and my recipe for Spanish Faux Rice (see recipe below).


1/8 serving: 391 calories; 19g fat; 39g carbs; 15g fiber; 24g net carbs


Spanish Faux Rice

2 bags frozen cauliflower, 1 pound each

1 can Rotel tomatoes, do not drain

1/2 onion, diced

2 garlic cloves, minced

Paprika and Chili Powder for color and taste


Steam cauliflower for 10 minutes. Using either a ricer or a shredding attachment for the food processor(which is what I do), process the cauliflower to look like rice. Set aside.

In a medium pan saute onions and garlic in a little olive oil till onions are transparent. Add in riced cauliflower, Rotel tomatoes, salt, paprika and chili powder. Let cook on low to allow flavors to blend, stirring often. Serve immediately.

1/12 serving: 289 calories; 13g fat; 29.6g carbs; 12g fiber; 18g net carbs


May 2014 006

May 2014 007     May 2014 004

This was such a hit with the family! Even my Mom who isn’t a Mexican chicken fan loved this dish 🙂 The key to the recipe is using canned chicken, it’s tender, juicy, and easier for her digest. Plus the entire meal was ready in an hour, right as my Dad was walking in the door! The Spanish faux rice looks just like the real deal and surprisingly had just a hint of a cabbagey flavor. Increase your onions and garlic to help mask that flavor. All in all it was a yummy treat meal! 

True these dishes aren’t for the induction phase, and you can reduce the carbs by eating half of a salsa chicken wrap. Or skip the tortillas all together and serve the salsa chicken over a salad with homemade guacamole dressing. Whichever way you choose to serve this up I know you’re going to fall in love with this dish as much as we have!