Tasty Tuesday: Roasted Butternut Squash and Pepita Salad

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

I actually crave this salad daily.
Like woah, the flavor combination is the best.
It's probably tied with the strawberry beet salad (I'll post that one soon!) but even Oaklyn likes this one!
Butternut squash has such a yummy flavor. It's kind of sweet unlike zucchini squash or yellow squash. 
When it's roasted it has a little bit of a crisp outside and a bit of salt just makes it so flavorful.
We eat butternut squash as is, in soup, as a side, but it's my favorite in a salad. 
I love adding a bit of warmth to a salad, and a different texture. 
Paired with feta, pepitas, and apples... you guys it is SO good!


Ingredients:
- 1 butternut squash (or cheat and get the already cut up butternut squash at costco! It's the best!)
-1/4 cup roasted pepitas
-1 package crumbled feta
-1 apple of your choice (I loveee pink lady)
-Favorite Balsamic vinaigrette
-1 Roma Tomato
- Washed and dried arugula (or another leafy green you like but I love the flavor of arugula)

Directions:
1) Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. If you bought an entire butternut squash you'll want to cut and peel. If you bought precut, you're saving yourself some time! Make sure your squash is in bite sized cubes. Toss it with 1 tbs olive oil or other oil you have on hand. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray and add cubed squash. Sprinkle a little salt and pepper over the top to your liking. Bake for 30-40 min or until squash is fork tender and golden on the outside. 
2) While your squash is baking you can start to prepare the rest of your salad. You'll need to dice your apple into smaller than bite sized cubes. I use about 1/2 of the apple. Dice your tomato. wash and dry your arugula. 
3) Once your squash is ready and cooled down to a warm temperature, assemble your salad. I like to add the arugula first, then the squash, then tomato, then apples, next pepitas, and finally feta. I let each person add dressing to their liking. 


I love pairing this salad with some grilled chicken and Hunter loves it with some warm crusty bread. It would also be really good with some yummy tomato soup! No matter what you pair it with, this salad is sure to please!

All my love,
Aleigh Joy 

6

Heaven Can Heal

Monday, March 4, 2019
              

After church today we were listening to the Worth of Souls album. It's soo good, if you need some uplifting background music for your Sundays, this is it. This particular song really spoke to me today. The line "earth has no sorrow heaven can't heal" hit me hard. I've heard it before, but today it stuck. We're all going through something. Every single one of us. Each of our "sorrows" will look a little bit different. Each of those sorrows are also completely valid. I remember talking to a friend about the struggles she was going through and the sorrows she was feeling because of it. At the end of telling me all about her feelings she said "but I know that others have it way worse than me so I really shouldn't be complaining. I'm sorry for dumping all of that on you." You guys. I don't care if you're sad because your milkshake fell on the floor... you should never discredit the way you are feeling! Feeling is living. Feeling means you're human. Feeling helps you learn and experience. The problem lies when you dwell on those feelings and let them define you, your worth, your happiness, and your well being. One of my hardest emotional years was the year after Oaklyn was born because I was dealing with PPD. I remember feeling so insanely guilty for feeling sorrow when I had this beautiful baby in my arms. I felt so lame for wishing for a different life when mine was one others are praying for. But there lies the first problem. I chose to discredit my feelings. I chose to not give myself a chance to immerse myself in all I was feeling, I instead chose to bottle it all up and erupt when I couldn't keep it all in anymore. I chose not to remember that all the sorrow I was feeling, can and will be healed. There will be a day when we no longer feel this despair, weakness, and loneliness. That thought alone brings so much comfort and joy into my heart. That being said, I'm human. I know that the comfort lasts only long enough to get you through one emotional breakdown or obstacle... but the next one may not be far off. Thankfully, God has given us the strength to fight through the pain and sorrow we feel on this earth. In the scriptures we are told to be "strong and courageous" to not be afraid or discouraged... because the Lord is on our side. So how do we apply that to our daily lives? I have found that heaven feels close when my prayers are humble and I let Heavenly Father know that I cannot do this on my own. "Earth has no sorry that Heaven can't heal." I find so much comfort in knowing that Heaven is so much bigger than all of us. That there is a plan greater than us. That there is a Savior inviting us. Life hasn't exactly been easy for us these past few years. We've dealt with my post-partum emotional state, we've had a death that rocked our worlds, we've lived in numerous homes, struggled financially, felt discouraged, felt unappreciated and neglected, and several times we've felt completely knocked down. But we have always found comfort in knowing there will be a day when there will be trouble no more. 

All my love,
Aleigh Joy 
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