Last December we finally had to quit our gym membership. We had been donating to them for far to long and not taking advantage of the amenities. (Aka we got really lazy.) I needed to get back into the swing of things, but I could never seem to find time with having a child and my husband’s crazy schedule.

Lucky for me, there are some hard core mom’s out there that actually exercise with their children in a class called Stroller Strides. We put our child in a stroller, run laps while pushing him or her, stopping every few minutes to do circuit training. At the end, our kids can get out and run around while we finish up with toning and stretching.

Now I am going to be totally honest here, I hate to exercise. I mean, it feels great when it’s over but I have to talk myself into going almost every single time. However, if Quinn and I are going to get out of the house, and I plan to still fit into my pants, this is the most productive thing that we can do. Plus, there are some really nice mom’s there that I have met.

Recently a bunch of us had a mom’s night out and took a cooking class. There is a place here in Chicago called Kid’s Table, that provides cooking classes for kids, teens, and families. It has a focus on empowering kids to make healthy food choices, stressing on organic foods, health and sustainability. It is a pretty amazing company and a great experience.

Our class in particular was for just us moms. We learned how to make various sauces including butternut squash, creamy kale, and tomato. I made the tomato sauce that weekend for my family, doing a adaptations, and it was a hit with everyone, even little Quinn.
Tomato Basil Meat Sauce
3 Tb c olive oil
3/4 c chopped onion
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb organic ground beef
1/4 c tomato paste
2 c diced fresh tomatoes
1 can diced peeled tomatoes, with juices
1/4 c fresh basil, torn into pieces
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
salt and pepper
Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and saute until soft, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and saute for 1 minutes. Add ground beef and cook until browned. Mix in tomato paste, stirring well to evenly distribute. Add tomatoes (fresh and canned) and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 15-20 minutes. Stir in basil and red pepper. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Serve over whole wheat pasta noodles.

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