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Easy No-Measure 5 Ingredient Salsa

 (Click here to find the printable version of this recipe!)

So you must understand one thing. In my large, crazy, Hispanic family, every time a new girlfriend came into the family, she was often judged on three things: her cooking skills, her willingness to pitch in and cleanup, and her personality (in that order). The girls that could cook like no one's business truly won the hearts of my family. 

So imagine the pressure on me as I grew older and wondered what would be my recipe? You know, the one that at family reunions people would ask, "Sarah, can you bring ____?"

Well, after making salsa for one game night in college, I knew I had found THE recipe. Everyone LOVES this salsa, and anytime we're invited to game night or dinner, I'm usually asked to bring chips and salsa. 

Reasons this salsa recipe rocks: 

#1 You only need 5 ingredients (or 4 if you're feeling lazy)
#2 You don't have to measure any of the ingredients (ain't nobody got time for that!)

Alright, enough talk. Let's make some salsa! 

Go ahead and gather your ingredients. All 5 of them. 4 if you're being lazy (I only add onion if I have it on hand/feel like adding it).

Finely chop your cilantro, jalapenos, and onion. A couple notes about each: 

-Cilantro: I used to painstakingly pick the leaves off the stems and just chop the leaves. Well, I got lazy and now I cut off the main part of the stems and then just chop leaves and stems all together. I don't think it affects the texture and sure doesn't affect the taste! 

-Jalapenos: You can seed the jalapenos or just leave the seeds in there. Seeds = greater spice (usually). I usually cut the stem off and then just chop the pepper, seeds and all. I use 2 jalapenos for an "average" crowd (think "mild" salsa). I would use 1 jalapeno if your idea of salsa isn't spicy and then 3-4 peppers if you're wanting a good kick. This always can depend on the spiciness of the peppers themselves so sometimes you'll need to adjust how many you add. 

Open your can of tomatoes and dump this along with all of your cilantro, jalapeno, and onion. If you're like me, and have a smaller food processor I have to do this in 2 or 3 batches. I just try to make sure each "batch" that I blend has a little bit of each ingredient. 

Blend away! If you want chunkier salsa, obviously don't process it too much; I like my salsa on the smoother side so usually blend for a good several seconds. 

Once all the ingredients are blended, add garlic salt to taste. I put a measurement down below for those of you that just feel the need to use a measuring cup, but I will say this- it's almost easier to add it to taste, that way you don't get it too salty. 

A couple things to remember about the garlic salt: 
1. You have to put more than you think you're going to put. Trust me. 
2. If you feel like your salsa is too spicy, adding a little more garlic salt can help mellow out the flavor.

Grab some chips, and you're about to be the most popular person at the party. 

The recipe is below, or click here for the printable version (PDF format). 

Easy No-Measure 5 Ingredient Salsa

1 28.5 oz can diced tomatoes
1 bunch fresh cilantro
2-4 jalapenos
1/2 onion (optional)
Garlic salt, to taste

1. Finely chop cilantro, jalapenos, and onion
2. Pour can of tomatoes (undrained) into food processor. Add cilantro, jalapenos, and onion. Process to desired consistency.
3. Add garlic salt to taste (approx 1/8 c. if you must measure)
4. Serve with tortilla chips and enjoy! 

Much love and chips and salsa,

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Dear Nursing Student

You're probably reading this on one of your breaks from what seems like endless studying. Either that, or you're like me and you're procrastinating all that you have to do. 

No matter whether you're in your first year of nursing school or fifth, you probably have this burning question that lingers deep down... 

Will I be a good nurse? 

This question probably rears its ugly head in the meanest of ways after you make a mistake in clinical or fail an exam. I'm here to tell you that yes, you will be a good nurse and it all gets better. 

If you're anything like me, most days in nursing school you wondered why anyone didn't warn you that nursing school would be so dang hard! Why didn't anyone tell you that while most of your friends focused on one paper, exam, or presentation at a time-you would be focusing on all three at the same time? Why didn't anyone tell you that your textbooks weighed more than a small child, and that you were actually expected to read through it?   Why didn't anyone warn you that you'd be doing twenty page care plans... every week? 

And for the love of everything that is good and right in this world... why didn't anyone warn you about the fact that you would be waking up when it was still dark outside while the rest of your friends considered an 8 o'clock class "early"?

(this is me after one of my first clinicals...ever)

These thoughts ran through my head on a weekly daily basis in nursing school, and there was more than one time that I felt like quitting. 

You may have felt like quitting last night as you stumbled into bed after having worked on your care plan for the previous 8 hours straight. You may have felt like quitting this morning when you got to clinical and were told to redo part of your care plan because you missed some important points.

I'm here to tell you don't quit because it.gets.better. Nursing school is a grueling 4-5 years. You are learning so much, and believe it or not the skills you are developing in clinical will help you in your career. You'll still have a lot to learn when you start your first job, but the foundation that you're forming now is essential to the knowledge you'll learn later on. 

When you graduate nursing school and land that first job you will be so nervous. The lectures you heard in nursing school of nurses losing their license will run through your head. Ignore those thoughts. Don't let that fear cripple you. 

In that first job, take advantage of every opportunity. Learn from your preceptor and watch and listen to nurses around you. Some of the most important lessons I've learned have come from observing the nurses around me. Focus on being a safe nurse, that cares for his/her patients. This means looking up your medications and asking if something doesn't make sense. This means asking for help if you're not comfortable with a procedure {even if you're worried you'll look dumb}. This means questioning orders that don't seem to make sense, and going with your gut feeling. 

Each day you will get better. 

As stressful as your first year can/may be, you will finally feel like a "real" nurse. You'll feel that you are getting somewhere and finally achieving your dream of being a nurse. You will start to realize that you know more than you think you know, but you will constantly be aware of how much you don't know. 

You will make mistakes and doubt yourself. Perhaps the most important lesson I learned the first year is... 

Be nice to yourself. 

You're a human and you make mistakes. All the nurses around you that are great nurses, made many of the same mistakes that you did. Learn from those mistakes and move on.   

You will no longer have to do care plans and when you get home from the hospital you are finished. You won't need to study for another exam or write a paper. You can go home, make dinner, and watch TV free of guilt. You may even find yourself wondering what to do on your days off. For these reasons alone, the real world is so much better than nursing school. 

Depending on your job, you may land up working more weekends, holidays, and nights that you ever bargained for... but at least now you're getting paid instead of waving goodbye to every penny of your existence every time the university tuition bill lands in your mailbox. 

Nursing student, what you are doing at this very moment is no piece of cake. It's hard, it's long, and sometimes you'll wonder if it's worth it. 

It's worth it. 
Don't quit. 

Your job as a nurse will give you career stability, endless opportunities for advancement, and one day you will find the area that makes you tick, and makes you excited to go to work

Your job will leave you feeling fulfilled, and this sense of purpose is something that most people spend their entire lives searching for. You may not find the job you love, or the one that leaves you feeling fulfilled right away. Keep searching. Its out there. 

What I heard so many times before I graduated nursing school is true... I hated nursing school, but I love my job. It's possible, friend, it's possible.

(My first day at my first job)

Take it one day at a time until you cross that stage to receive your diploma. Breathe. Enjoy life outside of nursing school. Never forget why you chose nursing in the first place, and focus on the good around you.

You will be a good nurse. You will make a difference, just like you've always wanted. You are the future of healthcare, and you are going to change the world.  And just remember...

It all gets better.

 Yours Truly,

A nurse that loves her job and is glad she didn't quit nursing school

A Monthly Date Challenge

As Alex and I near our one year wedding anniversary (crazy that it's already been almost a year!) We've started reflecting on some things that have marked our first year. One of the themes for our year that {unfortunately} stood out, was the fact that we budgeted for entertainment every month... and hardly used all (if any) of that budget.

Now, we still had fun, and we know that fun doesn't always have to cost money, but we realize a year later that maybe we should have actually spent some of what we budgeted.

I'm a crazy frugal person- I like math, calculators, and budgets... and most of all I like saving money. When I got married, I never in a million years thought that I would marry someone more frugal than myself.

But I did. 

And although we are frugal in different ways, our frugality means that we stay home a lot. Maybe a little too much. Maybe so much that our families and even some close friends have to remind us that it's okay to spend money on fun things. And remind us that it's okay to spend money on a vacation.

Our habit over the past year has become staying at home and watching Netflix. Microwave popcorn and the couch have been our near constant companions. And while this makes an absolutely lovely date, we realize now that maybe we should have added a little variety. We'll occasionally go out to Chik-Fil-A on a Friday night (we're high class, people), and we've done a handful of dinner dates at various other elegant restaurants like Red Robin.

As we talked one night about this habit we've formed, we remembered that we "dated" a lot more before we were married. I think it had a lot to do with the fact that we weren't living together and we intentionally had to make time to do something fun. A year into the married life, and we still have fun, but it doesn't feel as intentional as it used to.

And so we decided that something needed to change... Enter...


For the month of August {and hopefully subsequent months}, we decided that we are going to do two planned dates.

Alex plans one.

I plan the other.

We're each going to plan one because:

#1 We both like to be surprised

#2 We each have different ideas about what to do for date night (Alex has way better ideas than me!)

#3 If I plan one, that takes the expectation off of him to come up with all {or most} of our date ideas. Which is a win-win for both of us.

We haven't set a budget yet but I think it will probably look like where one of us plans a "stay-in" date, and the other plans a "go out" date.

I'll be reporting back in September with a "report" of each of the dates {pictures included}!


Will you join me in intentionally dating your spouse/significant other? 


Have you ever had to make dating your spouse/significant other a habit? 


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