“Mom, put down your phone!”

“Mom, put down your phone!”

What you are about to read is just something that has been on my heart to share for quite some time and I figured I would put it out there before it ate me alive. There is nothing but words spilled straight from the heart here, nothing proofread, nothing organized, just stripped down thoughts on something I think is going to tear down society little by little.

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How many of you have become slaves to your cell phone and/or social media? How many of you are distracted parents?

How many of you showboat your children to Facebook? Did you know that parenting is NOT a popularity contest?

Do you know what is more important than the outside world? I am about to tell you something that is going to BLOW your mind! Your children, if you have them, are more important than anything on Facebook, Pinterest, FOX news, ESPN, Instagram, and basically everything and everyone else.

The first time my son told me to put my phone down was an eye opening experience. He was trying to show me something and talk to me and I was so consumed by my mindless scrolling that I literally did not hear him. THIS broke my heart. I just ignored my baby boy! All he wanted to do was show me something that he thought was interesting and by the time I realized what I had happened, the damage was done. He no longer felt important. His spirits were already crushed. I was missing out on his childhood and also I was robbing him of it. I know so many people who claim they love their kids (and it may be true) yet, they never play with them, they never talk to them, they never SHOW that they care. Parents now do not give their children their undivided attention. Instead, parents shun their kids off into their rooms to watch TV and play alone. I missed out on my parents a lot as a child, they missed out on me. I will not let that happen to my son. Children sense at an early age whether or not what they have to say is important to the adults around them.

LOOK UP, YOUR CHILD JUST DID SOMETHING INCREDIBLE, AND YOU MISSED IT!

I want to ask you for a second to really get into your childs head. For a second, think of how they see you. Do they see you as a fun, loving super hero protector or do they see you as the person that feeds them on schedule? If you even do that because unfortunately, I DO know some people that do not feed their children properly.

Do you want your kids teachers to ask them about what they do at home for them to say “I watch tv and get yelled at a lot because my mommy wants to play on her phone” The single fact that this actually happens ALL of the time, all over the world literally makes me sick to my stomach. Did you know there are some children in the world that want to go to school because they want to be loved and have someone’s attention? Why do they love going to school so much? They love school because the teachers spend time with them, teach them things, and play with them and they interpret that as LOVE. At home, this is not happening because todays parents refuse to disconnect from unimportant things.

Cell phones have made us so easily accessible that when we are inaccessible our friends and co-workers wonder which ditch you are laying in. Just stop. If it is after 5:30 and my husband and I screen your call or text, it is nothing personal, we are enjoying our son! 30 years ago you would not have been able to get in touch with someone immediately, those people survived and thrived!

Do you look at your phone when your kids are in the car? SHAME. ON. YOU! Not only are you a hazard to other drivers, you are putting your own children at risk! What is so important that it takes precedence over the possibility of life and death for not only yourself but also your innocent little babies? If you have some attention deficit issues of your own, make your daily travels a conversation with your children. “Look at that over there” “what color is that?” “What number is on that house” “can you read that street name?” “Let’s sing your favorite song!” Just do anything other than stare at your cell phone.

Is the outside world your priority or are your kids? I mean, seriously ask yourself that. Ask yourself when was the last time you got on the floor and played with your kids for more than 5 minutes, WITHOUT a cell phone within reach? Also, I must remind you that doing this merely once a week is unacceptable. You should be spending as much time as possible teaching, interacting, helping, playing with your kids. Yes, I understand that you have to cook and clean but they can be a part of that. They are capable of helping. Would it surprise you to know that they want to help?

When you are at home, look your children in the eyes when they speak to you. This is so important and it will always BE important.

Do not be the reason your children lose their innocence, do not be the reason they learn to see the negative in the world. Always treat your children with respect and care for them as the delicate beings they are. They say babies are resilient and yes, they are to some extent but words can never be taken back and not all wounds heal as if they never happened.

Treat your kids as if they are somebody to you and someday they will be someone to the WORLD.

As I write this, my son grabs my hand, looks at me with an angelic smile and says “Momma you’re my best friend!” THIS is what I live for. I want him to think I am a hero, because he is mine!

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Anything BUT Candy & Roses!

Anything BUT Candy & Roses!

 Valentines Day 101.

[For dummies men]

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Valentine’s Day is not the one day Hallmark and Snickers came together to trick people into thinking they needed to spend a ton of money on calories, cards, and flowers that will eventually die. It is not the one day people “get” to show their other halves just how much they love one another because frankly, that should happen every single day of your relationship, right?

VALENTINES DAY is “just a day” you better not screw up if you don’t want to sleep on the couch for a week. It really is not that hard to just do something fantastic for your girlfriend once a year. If it makes you feel better, just call it “loves birthday”. You celebrate birthdays don’t you? Lord help you if you forget her birthday. Think of Valentine’s Day as a reminder to freshen up your love. Call it whatever you want, do…

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Anything BUT Candy & Roses!

Anything BUT Candy & Roses!

 Valentines Day 101.

[For dummies men]

header

Valentine’s Day is not the one day Hallmark and Snickers came together to trick people into thinking they needed to spend a ton of money on calories, cards, and flowers that will eventually die. It is not the one day people “get” to show their other halves just how much they love one another because frankly, that should happen every single day of your relationship, right?

VALENTINES DAY is “just a day” you better not screw up if you don’t want to sleep on the couch for a week. It really is not that hard to just do something fantastic for your girlfriend once a year. If it makes you feel better, just call it “loves birthday”. You celebrate birthdays don’t you? Lord help you if you forget her birthday. Think of Valentine’s Day as a reminder to freshen up your love. Call it whatever you want, do it however you like just. Don’t. Neglect. It. The point is, if she goes to a sporting event with you and she hates sports then you need to make valentines a home run for her in return.

I will do a lot of legwork for you so you don’t totally blow V-day for your lady friend. I know my husband better read this from top to bottom, TWICE! I kid, I kid. But no, really.

So, without further adieu, If you are “that guy” not taking her to see 50 Shades of Grey then listen up, this is for you…But, for the record… One chick flick is not going to kill you. I’m sure you watch porn, and I am sure you will survive this movie. Please just stop acting like a Neanderthal.

Lucky for you, not all women like that sort of thing. Some women are more practical. Here are some “non-traditional” things you can do to let her know you acknowledge her appreciation for love day.

  • Clean house. Take off work in secret and scrub boy, SCRUB! Bonus if you have on sexy boxers when she gets home!
  • Buy her flowers but not roses. Pay attention to her, she will hint her favorite flowers to you only a few hundred times.
  • Make her a gift basket with all of her favorite products (Cosmo, body lotion, dark chocolate, leggings, that expensive shampoo she’s too proud to buy for herself, etc.).
  • Do something for her that you know she has been putting off. For instance, I have a box of things that I need to sell on Facebook but by the end of the day I am too tired to look at the box. Take [good] pictures of these items and upload them on her computer. Just pay attention to her, you will come up with something creative.
  • Give her a box (a cute one) full of pre-paid mystery dates. Let her cash in whenever she wants. Example here.
  • Chocolate covered strawberries. It isn’t flowers, it isn’t just chocolate. You will enjoy them too. Have fun seductively feeding them to each other. Try not to laugh! If they are homemade, even better! How-to for the Neanderthals here. Don’t forget your apron ;P.
  • Leave a Post-it heart where you know she will see it. Example here. The Dating Divas blog has a bazillion articles on romance. Keep it in your back pocket.
  • Dedicate a song to her. My hubby played a really sexy one for me and I listen to it on repeat!

Remember, Valentine’s Day was not developed with men in mind. Men are from Mars and women are, in fact, from Venus. Always keep an open mind because as you already know, women tick very different from their male counterparts.

More duh ideas I have come up with since writing the last paragraph include:

  • Whatever she buys herself, buy that.
    • Is she a sucker for shoes? Does she have several bottles of perfume? Nail polish her thing? Costume jewelry? Buy her those guilty pleasure items. Mine happens to be shoes, hence why it is first on the list. I am a shoe hoarder collector!
  • Let people know you love her. Post on Facebook, your blog, twitter, the sky, etc. Tell a stranger while you are strolling down the outlet mall. Just do not be afraid to publicize it, women love that!
  • Dance with her to her favorite song. If you’re brave, sneak her phone to check her playlist. ed
  • His and hers pillow cases. Etsy has tons of them! Just make sure they match the décor of the bedroom or she might throw a hissy fit and stuff them in a drawer. Women are irrational.
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  • If you are a stealthy man and you can figure out how to time her entrance to the home, have ‘your song’ play as soon as she comes in the door. You know, like a wrestler has their theme song play while they flex down the runway. Do that.
  • Get on Pinterest. Pinterest will help you become the man of every woman’s dreams. But, for the sake of this tip I want you to search “love quotes”. Find one that you think describes your love or how you view her and have it put on a canvas for your home. Write it in a card, write it in chalk on the driveway. Get creative. a36de929e0de81c8e95872cdbaffa13b
  • Go to Etsy.com (again) and find some crafters that specialize in custom jewelry. get her a bracelet with your anniversary date on it.  Remember, most of the time you get what you pay for so don’t skimp on quality.

If you need date ideas:

  • Buy her lingerie, buy you lingerie. Adoreme.com has some hot little numbers for a great price and much better quality than Victoria’s secret. Everyone knows her secret anyway, she’s a cheap stripper. Go to your bedroom and light candles. Lay there and cuddle, talk, massage each other, do whatever. Just make sure you hit the pause button on life. Erase your minds of anything but the fact that the two of you are nearly naked and alone in a quiet room. Clean the room and make the bed for her first though.
  • Instead of buying a ton of bottles of wine, get the little mini bottles in a variety of flavors and have a mini wine tasting for two. Make note of the ones you both like and buy those for another date night later. wedd_wine_group600_398
  • Go to the craft store, find two receptacles of your liking, lots of cardstock in little squares, black sharpies, and whatever else you would like to use to decorate, if at all. The two of you can spend the night keeping secrets, well.. sort of. Write as many things about the other person you LOVE, fold it up and throw it in your receptacle for the other person to read on a crappy day. If you are awesome, try to make it through 365 pieces of paper so each of you have something to read every day of the year.
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  • What is one thing she always asks you to do but you never do it? My husband hates to take selfies, for example. Initiate whatever it is that she enjoys and at the very least, pretend to enjoy it, too.
  • Take her to get his and hers tattoos. Spontaneity is FUN! Just remember not to drink alcohol ahead of time as it thins your blood.
  • Hire a photographer and tell her to dress her best. Surprise her with a photo shoot. Oh how I would LOVE this one!
  • Buy a fondue set and have a fondue date at home. Have a variety of things ready to dip in melted chocolate, or cheese if that’s your thing.
  • Buy fill-in-the-blank books and fill them in together. My husband and I did this together early in our marriage. I we looked forward to it every night before bed and it gave us something to do together when we were too exhausted for the grown-up thing!
  • Take her to a lake that has a pier and have a picnic.
  • Give the girl a reason to dress up. Make sure you don’t look like a scrub though or y’all will look like an odd couple and couples like my husband and I will point and whisper about you!

Use your personalities to your advantage. If you both are into something weird together, let that part of your personalities shine through. Example, If you are into Call of Duty or something make a theme out of that. Make sense?

ADD SOME HUMOR TO THIS. My husband is going to get something like this: funny-valentines-day-cards-hubbawelcome-2

Super cute, right?

So, there are endless possibilities to showing your love that you care. If you have a smart phone there are no excuses not to google an idea or two. Just do something. Women are crazy, hormonal, bipolar creatures. Go ahead and forget Valentine’s day or put no effort into it and I guarantee your woman will turn into a complete terrorist and I am willing to bet hostile environments aren’t your thing, amirite?

A little note to women, do not contribute to the death of chivalry any more than we already have. Let him get the door for you even if you have to get out of the damn way, step to the side and just look back and smile at him. He will know what to do. It is embedded in his brain. It totally works on my husband.

Enjoy your woman. Women, enjoy your men. Love does not have to be a pain in the ass.

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Essential oils for weight management

Essential oils for weight management

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About a month ago my son and I came to a crossroads with his behavior and my patience. In his defense, he is only 3 and I am very high strung. I know there is nothing wrong with my child and he does not need any new forms of punishment, neither one of us need to be drugged by “BigPharma” and “this too shall pass” Because, it always does.

I began to research other ways to stabilize our clashing moods in a desperate attempt to rebuild our relationship. We really got to a dark place, him and I. It really frightened how much less I cared about all things including him as time went by. But I knew it was more me, less him. Marla, remember he is just a 3 year old boy!

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I wanted this back

I scoured Pinterest for anxiety remedies and natural ways to calm young children and ways to help us both focus. Everything I found pointed straight to lavender. I thought, do I need a plant? I would totally kill a plant in record time and if that was my best bet I was so screwed.
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My initial research led to finding all types of lavender on the market. I found blogs on the uses and benefits of lavender essential oil and I eventually got sucked into a black hole of everything else essential oils. I had so many tabs open I crashed my computer…. My work computer. Oopsie!

When I gather an interest in something I really go all out. In this case, literally. (Reference, computer crash). I read about all sorts of essential oils and their benefits had my head spinning like a top. I thought I could do so many things with these little amber bottles of smelly goodness.

The lavender actually seemed to help. I would put it behind his ears and in his bath before bed and before I knew it he was more calm and so was I. I was huffing these bottles left and right. I was all over the place, happy, energized, focused, and my fingers always smelled awesome! Ha!

…….Anyway…….

For the sake of not making this post 10 miles long, as I have a tendency to want to do, I will skip the series leading up to the inspiration for what I am writing about today and I will fill you in later!

I went over to Amazon and looked through several brands of Essential Oils before I found one that fit my budget but also would be of quality. There are some brands like doTERRA and Young Living that cost a small fortune probably because they are sold by independent distributors. I hate those types of products. I have done several pyramid scheme gimmicks myself and the reality is, we can get the same thing for the same quality if not better for a fraction of the price elsewhere. But let me be clear, not all essential oils are created equally. Be very careful what you purchase and do your research.

I went with a starter set from Fabulous Frannie’s brand. Get it here. I read reviews on many different brands and this is the one that I found to be the one with the best at a fabulous price! I paid $40 dollars for 14 bottles of basically everything I was going to need for what I am sharing with you today. Other brands can cost you up to twice that price for….wait for it…. ONE bottle. Y’all can Sweeerveeeeee with that mess!

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My new best friends!

Compare doTERRA and Young Living prices..

I totally did check out their sites for recipes and blends, however. I was quite skeptical as I am with anything that claims to offer weight loss because the realist in me knows there is NO quick fix. I knew I was going to have to commit to a healthier lifestyle either way. I feel like companies know that a healthy weight is on the top of everyone’s list and people will invest throw away money left and right for something that has enough fake testimonies.

SO! On to the guts [aren’t puns funny?] of this entry.

doTERRA has a blend called “slim & sassy” and there are many recipes for it on Pinterest so like the sucker for advertising that I am, I decided I was going to blend my Fabulous Frannie essential oils to make the same thing, well…a version, anyway.

This blend includes:

  • Cinnamon – inhibits fat cell growth, controls blood sugar levels.
  • Ginger – settles/calms stomach, improves physical energy.
  • Peppermint – focus, appetite suppressing.
  • Grapefruit – burns fat, flushes toxins, suppresses appetite.
  • Lemon – also burns fat and helps detoxify.

I went light on the cinnamon and peppermint because there’s nothing slim or fun about heartburn. Sassy, maybe.

I  was missing Cinnamon and Ginger from my initial purchase so I ordered those two a-la-carte.

WHEW does ginger essential oil stink to high heaven! They want you to drink this crap?? Naw, I kept on with my research and I found that you can get empty capsules and you could ingest them that way.
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I found the capsules at the local health food store, a bag of 100 or so cost me around $5.

I’m having a hard time finding a glass medicine dropper to properly make my own bottle blend so I don’t have to carry all of these around with me. doing it each day in a capsule freehanded can be a bit messy but for now it’s all I’ve got.

I was carrying this super cute wallet for a while and then for Christmas my amazing husband got me a Michael Kors wallet. I had only had the other wallet for a short time and it still had great potential. I just couldn’t let it sit in the closet because I know my new MK would stand the test of time and I would never need a new wallet or to go back to the old one like, ever.
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See how nicely they fit in there? And I keep my capsules in the change section with the zipper.

I sure do love my new wallet though! Thanks, hubby! You da best 😉
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Now, for the what-for and how-to!

I usually fill my capsule with majority grapefruit, about 4-6 drops. Well, more like oozes. I follow with equal parts lemon as citrus has the most fat burning properties. Then ginger with about 3 drops, and 2 drops cinnamon and peppermint. It’s pretty important to go easy on the cinnamon when ingesting and peppermint will make your esophagus feel like you swallowed a tube of ICY HOT. Yikes!
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So there it is. I have taken it mostly every day for about 2 weeks now and I have lost 4 pounds, I have actually had the desire to eat cleaner. My body doesn’t crave junk nearly as much and about 20 minutes after I feel uplifted, energized, and focused!

They say you can rub this blend on cellulite and other trouble areas but I have yet to make a lotion blend of this. I will let you know when I do!

Please again, exercise great caution when ingesting essential oils. Just because I have results with it does not mean it is for everyone. I would suggest consulting a physician before ingesting anything. Do as I say, not as I do!

[REVIEW] Scrub Daddy

[REVIEW] Scrub Daddy

I watched an episode of Shark Tank when my husband and I were going through a phase of trying to figure out what shows we were willing to watch together when we had that extra time. We ended up shutting the cable off and switching to Netflix.

The episode featured a guy talking about a sponge. A sponge, okay? I thought what a total flop this is going to be. That is, until he started pitching his product. I was in total awe. I thought there is no way that product actually does all that it claims to do. It claims to scrub basically anything. Sounds familiar, right?

This sponge is an adorable, little yellow smiley face. It has two eye holes and a mouth hole that literally smiles at you. It can clean nearly anything. It gets soft in warm/hot water, and firm in cold water.

While shopping for cleaning supplies and other necessities at Kroger with my husband and our son, something yellow caught my attention.

GASP! It was Scrub Daddy!

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I immediately “freaked out” and showed my husband the product and we reminisced about the time we watched it air together. I knew I had to try this product simply because I saw it on TV and I associate a very fond memory with this happy little sponge.

I could not wait to get home and wash dishes! I ripped that box open, filled my sink full of suds and went to town. Cue the fans, blowing hair, music, and bright lights. I found my new best friend! And it only cost me a mere $4! >Bargain<

I washed all of my dishes with it and told all of my friends about it because I loved it THAT much.

Then, it went downhill. Sort of.

The sponge started crumbling and it was not as firm as it once was. After about a week, Scrub Daddy lost his allure. I was sad. It was a sad breakup. I threw him away but….I bought another one. The level of awesomeness for the first week was worth the four bucks to purchase a replacement. Now, I will probably beg my landlord to fix my dishwasher before this one gives out because I cannot justify spending $16 dollars a month on a sponge product. I assumed it would last longer than a week.

I would just keep one of these on hand for really tough, impromptu jobs. I would not recommend this product for every day use as it will not hold up. The new one I bought is falling apart faster than the first one.

Scrub daddy is sad 😦

And so is my wallet.

Making sacrifices: Fast food: Arby’s

Making sacrifices: Fast food: Arby’s

What’s up, Y’all? I want to share with you one of my biggest weaknesses, fast food. Now, let me clarify something… I do not prefer fast food over its healthy, home prepared counterparts. Fast food is just so flippin’ convenient it should be a sin.

With my husband and I working 6 days a week a piece, and having a high maintenance, hyper 3 year old boy who steals my heart with every giggle and smile, it can get a little tough to prepare meals at home especially when we already have so much on our plates already. With the pressure to work, cook, clean, run errands, shower, get ready, bathe our kids and get them to bed, maybe we can have a social (throw that in there too) it is almost way too easy to zip through a fast food joint and eat it on the way to or from wherever we are traveling. Virtually no time is lost, right? WRONG!

That workout you have to squeeze in if you’re not dead tired from everything else could in theory be completely skipped if we just ate right. They say a healthy lifestyle is 70% diet and only 30% exercise. So if your eating habits are not up to par what is the use in wasting time in the gym. If you’re like me you are doing the moves all wrong anyhow and completely wasting time and money, both of which are scarce to everyone these days.

So anyway, today I zipped through Arby’s because I have finally pin pointed my peak hunger times. One is about 2:30pm and the other is between 6pm and 7pm. Like…. If you do not feed me between those times please be prepared to excuse anything I might have said to you in vain because I was HaNGRY.

This post is about making sacrifices so I am going to walk you through my old habits of a 1245 calorie meal at Arby’s…. WHAT… AHAH I laugh because it is so pathetic that one meal is MORE than what I strive (I use this word loosely, veery loosely) to eat in a whole day.

I used to order the Market Fresh Roast turkey and swiss (hold the onion) sandwich, medium curly fry (which is huge, I never could eat them all but I sure tried! Momma taught me not to waste food and since its of my own money now, all the more incentive to shove it alllllll in there. All of it.) and an unsweet tea. The unsweet tea is where it started. I found this product called Stevia. There are many brands of this now but at the time I could only find one made by Skinnygirl. It ain’t cheap but it is what it is. I would get unsweet tea and squirt this “natural” no calorie sweetener all up in this paper cup full of beautiful light brown deliciousness.
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it’s dirty because it literally goes with me everywhere and that little sucker has taken a beating

BOY when I found out how many calories I was consuming, I got a attiFOOD adjustment real quick fast and in a hurry. Sandwiches and salads are a conspiracy, I tell ya! Those are the most caloric foods on menu’s!

I just could not seem to give up my Arby’s, The food is a great value and the one by my office is so fast and convenient. I changed my order a little from 1245 calories to 815 calories. I would instead order a classic roast beef, small fry, my unsweet tea and of course, a cup of that dang cheddar crap. I still felt like I could cut calories so I skipped the fries the next time and I was still hungry. Luckily for me (at the time) my son eats like a bird and he hates French fries (the dude literally only eats grilled cheese) I ate his. Don’t judge me.

Today, I ordered a Jr. roast beef no cheddar and a side salad with balsamic vinaigrette. That is it. As a matter of fact, I separated the sandwich and took half the meat and put it on top of the other meat so only ended up eating half the bread. I just needed something of substance to full me up. The sandwich half and salad with dressing came out to about 400 calories but subtract some calories from the bread and the dressing since I squirted nearly half of it across the room. Whoops.

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The point is, you can still have your convenience without it all going straight to your rear end! It is all abut making choices. If only I could make that choice not to eat the cereal on nights the husband gets home late and I am bored to tears.

Easy Guacamole

Easy Guacamole

Easy, Crowd Pleasy Guacamole

Somehow I acquired this guacamole recipe and I don’t remember why I even needed it but I made it for the first time about 5 hears ago for my new husband at the time and after his first bite I could tell he fell in love again! I tried several other versions of the heart healthy snack but I needed to be able to make it cheap, quick, easy, and often. Here it is! It takes about 5 minutes total. ENJOY!

Here’s what you need.

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2 ripe avocados
Salsa
Garlic salt (I only had garlic powder so I used that and added salt)
Lime juice (for flavor, and to keep the avocado from turning brown)

1. Cut open avocados lengthwise by inserting the knife in the top and rotating around the avocado.

[I wonder who decided to pick this thing and thought, that looks delicious… I mean, it’s green! And nevermind that weird, massive seed…]

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I use a paper plate as a cutting board a lot if I can get away with it because I’m lazy and it’s easier to throw away than it is to clean, amiright?

2. Squeeeeeze the green stuff (I’m sure it has a name but who cares it’s yummy with or without a name, right?) Out of the skin into a container of your choice. I always use Tupperware for storage purposes. That is, if you can help from eating the total batch of deliciousness.

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3. Mush the green stuff with a fork, potato masher, or whatever you prefer. Just don’t make a mess. The kitchen fairies probably slaved all day cleaning your kitchen and I guarentee they will haunt you. Been there.

4. Pour salsa, garlic salt, lime juice (real or processed, obviously real tastes much better but this is the quick version of the recipe!)

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I poured too much salsa so… I just scooped it right out with a chip and helped myself. Yum!

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Smush it all together and stir.

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BAM! Emeril said!
It’s done. Takes a total of 5 minutes. That’s about all it takes to eat it all too if you’re not careful!

I will do a post on a less processed version eventually. But for the purpose of this recipe for my household, this one is the best!