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Growth

Once again, our pediatrician appointment isn’t for a few more days, so we don’t have the specifics on his weight and length these days. At his last appointment, he was 9 lbs, 3.4 oz and 21 and 3/4 inches long, both of which put him at about the 50th percentile. I would venture to say that he has since passed the 10-pound threshold, based on how heavy he feels when I lug him around in his car seat. He has also graduated to the 0-3 months size clothing.

Likes & Dislikes

Caleb continues to love looking at lights, although mirrors are pretty fascinating too. He quite enjoys admiring his own reflection! Peek-a-boo is now a favorite pastime as well; that’s my go-to strategy to snap him out of a cranky mood. As far as dislikes, Caleb generally doesn’t like not being held, which makes simple things like making lunch a tad difficult. He also puts up a fuss when he’s bored, so I’ve taken to talking to him all day long to keep him occupied. Just yesterday, I gave him a lecture on my smoothie ingredients and their nutrition benefits. #nerdalert

Eating & Sleeping

We’re still going strong on the breastfeeding front. I give him about one bottle of pumped breast milk per day to which I add probiotics drops (prescribed by the pediatrician to help with gastrointestinal issues). Caleb sleeps like a champ, which makes Seth and me very happy. It’s pretty typical for him to sleep from about 10:30PM to 7AM. Occasionally, he’ll wake up for a 3AM feeding, but for the most part, he has adapted to his parents’ sleeping schedule quite nicely! (I know I’m jinxing myself by typing that out).

Other Quirks

-Caleb gets the hiccups all the time. That in itself wouldn’t be so bad, but they prevent him from napping, which makes him pretty crabby!

-We bought an Ergo carrier with some gift card money, and Caleb seems to like it most of the time. I just have to remember not to wear nice shirts while wearing him–he tends to drool/snot/spit-up all over my chest. Mmm.

-Our little dude continues to look exactly like Seth. So I guess that’s why I think he’s so darn cute.

6 weeks in

This morning I had my postpartum check-up–it’s hard to believe it has already been 6 weeks since our little muchacho arrived. My appointment went smoothly–my blood pressure, BMI, and lady parts are all back to normal.

This milestone has gotten me motivated to get my pre-baby body back. I’m within about 4-5 pounds of my pre-pregnancy weight, but I’d like to regain some muscle tone and make sure my body is adequately fueled for breastfeeding. Accordingly, I’ve put together a meal plan and exercise plan for the week. Hopefully, this will help me achieve my goals!

MEAL PLAN

Su: lentil burgers + sriracha roasted cauliflower

M: orange sesame salmon (similar to this recipe) + cauliflower rice

Tu: zoodles w. pesto + feta

W: butternut squash hash + eggs

Th: peanut butter chili

F: take-out (?)

Sa: goddess garbanzo pitas + salad

EXERCISE PLAN

M: elliptical + abs

Tu: run + arms

W: elliptical + legs

Th: run + chest/back

F: elliptical + abs

Sa: run

Su: rest

Not the most exciting of fitness routines, but, with a colicky baby, my options right now are limited to what I can do in the house or with him in the stroller.

To any of you moms out there: any tips for sticking to a healthy eating and fitness routine?

caleb at 1 month

Somehow, our little boy is already 1 month old today!

Growth

We haven’t had our 1 month check-up at the pediatrician just yet, but based on our rudimentary at-home measurement, Caleb is currently about 9.5 pounds. He’s still wearing mostly newborn size clothing, although he’s too long for a few sets of pajamas.

Likes & Dislikes

Caleb has been completely fascinated by lights since day 1–Christmas trees were quite entertaining during the first few weeks of his life! He doesn’t like bedtime very much, but lullabies make it a bit more tolerable. We have a few that we play every night to soothe him to sleep. In terms of dislikes, Caleb is not a big fan of diaper changes or having his nails trimmed. Thank goodness Auntie Katie is a pro at baby manicures–otherwise, he might have some dangerous claws at this point!

Eating & Sleeping

Breastfeeding has gone relatively smoothly. I did get to meet with a lactation consultant in the hospital who was incredibly helpful–she gave me so many great tips for positioning and making sure Caleb stays awake long enough to feed (he tends to doze off about 5 minutes in…). Speaking of sleeping, Caleb can now last about 5-6 hours at a time at night. He hasn’t started sleeping in his crib just yet, although he does spend some of his waking hours there–hopefully that will ease the transition when the time comes.

Other Quirks

-When hungry, he makes a distinctive “oy oy oy” sound.

-He’s not perturbed by dogs at all–he sleeps right through all their barking, and he doesn’t mind when they lick his face.

-Caleb is a very “handsy” baby–if he’s not sucking on them, he is gesturing with them or yanking on my shirt.

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Although I want him to stay little forever, I’m excited to see what milestones month 2 may bring!

How Does Internet Marketing Help Businesses

The Internet continues to take the marketing world by storm. It actually changed the business landscape in terms of marketing products and services to consumers.

Forbes.com explains, consumer habits have changed because of the internet, and so businesses have to adjust to this as well by employing San Diego SEO Internet Marketing as one of their strategies to get to their target customers. But how does internet marketing help businesses thrive?

Almost every American has access to and regularly uses the Internet. Most of us, when we hear of a business for the first time, immediately look for a website or social media profile where we can learn more. We don’t stop in for a visit. We don’t look you up in a phone book. We don’t consult a rolodex. People expect you to have a website, and if you don’t, they may doubt your legitimacy or discard you as a potential option altogether. There’s a “bare minimum” standard that consumers expect to see of businesses online, so strive to achieve at least that.”

Read the whole article here.

Business Media Outfit Bloomberg.com for its part says even local businesses tend to thrive with Internet marketing and startup services are taking advantage of these vast benefits.  “Small business marketing used to be simple. You could buy some space in the Yellow Pages, take out an ad in the local newspaper, and call it a day. The Internet has spawned innumerable new ways to reach customers, from search engines to social networks and business listings boards. But most small business owners don’t have time to understand which methods are best for them—let alone fine-tune strategies or even keep information updated across platforms.” Check out the continuation here.

To start harnessing the power of internet marketing, CNN Money gave business owners some tips on how to maximize Internet Marketing.

“Your Web site should be easy to navigate and right on target, and a “Contact Us” button should be prominent. Also, make sure your site appears high on search engines’ results pages. By including keywords and terms in the code, your site will appear higher up on Google and others. These days, any good web designer will be able to handle such search engine marketing as part of the design and programming package. Still, it’s up to you to know the best way to describe your product and service to potential customers and then turn them into qualified sales leads.”

Internet marketing indeed helps businesses stay within the radar of their target consumers.

How to Hire a Plumber

Hiring a plumber can be a bit tricky especially if the homeowner has just moved into a new community. After all plumbers have their own respective service areas. When new in a certain neighborhood, it is important to be aware of whom to get in touch with in terms of trades skills services like plumbing.

The website Angie’s List shared some tips on how to hire a plumber. “The plumber will know what he or she needs to do and will be able to give an accurate estimate, barring of course, any other major problems. Make sure to get at least three estimates, and be wary of any estimate that is much lower than the others. It could mean the plumber is cutting corners or plans to use inferior parts.” Read the whole article here.

And since plumbing work is critical in running a stress-free household, it is important to be choosy when it comes to commissioning a person or a contractor to do the plumbing work in a property. Apart from expertise in the job, it is important that the plumber and the company he represents operate with integrity. It is also important that necessary background checks, as well as drug tests (if applicable in the state they operate in) are undertaken from time to time to ensure the safety and security of the client.

The website This Old House also dispensed some advice from homeowners who want to know how to hire a San Diego Plumber in their area. “The best way to find a good plumber is to ask friends and neighbors, remodeling contractors, and real estate agents. Nothing holds up a home sale faster than plumbing problems, so realtors often have a list of reliable, fast-response plumbers. Once you find a plumber you’re satisfied with, keep his numbers (office, home, and cell phones, and beeper) handy for emergencies.” Here’s where you can find the continuation of the quoted post.

In the end, hiring a plumber is a serious business. Plumbing is an important aspect in any home or business, and installations, repairs or remodeling that will involve such work should only be entrusted to well-experienced professionals.

Why A Water Leak Must Be Fixed Immediately

A water leak may be easy to disregard especially if it is just a really minor drip in a faucet. It is even harder to detect when it happens in the basement, the attic, or a crawlspace which are places that are not usually frequented in a home.

This does not mean though that a homeowner can just leave the situation like that, and just wait for a convenient time to get the leak fixed.

There are a host of reasons why a water leak must be fixed immediately. Here are some:

  1. Water leaks bloat up utility bills. Arlingtonva.us says drips and leaks can cause an increase of a hundred to a thousand dollars per year. “A single faucet that drips just once every second wastes 8.6 gallons per day, or almost 800 gallons per quarter.” Read the published article here.
  2. Water leaks can cause accidents. Water causes floors to become slippery and if a person does not notice dripping water, he may slip and injure himself. This is even more dangerous for homes with young children or older residents.
  3. Water leaks can cause water damage. Water damage is one of the most damaging effects of a water leak, hence it should be fixed immediately. It is a gateway of even bigger problems like structural damage, mold growth, and damage on furniture and fixtures. Water damage restoration San Diego
  4. Water leaks can be a cause for electrical shocks. Electrical shocks happen when there is a source of water near home fixtures. Addressing leaks immediately can help prevent these very disastrous accidents.
  5. Water leaks can be a source of vector diseases. When leaks pool it is possible that mosquitoes carrying diseases like Dengue, Zika, Malaria and the like may lay eggs in that water and eventually cause illnesses within the home.

It is important to commission a professional plumbing contractor when having a leak fixed in the home. When bills sky rocket without a change in utility usage then it is possible that there is a leak or a drip in the home. Licensed plumbers can detect leakages easily, and fix it right away.

Wikihow.com shared some ways to detect a leak in the home. “Recognize that in many cases a leak can be very hard to locate. Not all of the leaks outlined in this article can be located and if you’re not used to plumbing positioning, you may miss something easily. All the same, if you try these steps, you should be able to find an approximate location and this is a most valuable exercise in itself because it will help the plumber (many plumbers do not like searching for a problem so anything you can do they will appreciate), making it time saving for the plumber and that translates into savings for you.” Read the whole article that they published here.

It is indeed very important to fix water leaks immediately.

How Safe Are Electronic Cigarettes

Electronic cigarettes such as in Vape Chicago Yelp may have been regarded by some studies as a safe alternative versus traditional tobacco based cigarettes, but some people still want to make sure how safe e-cigarette smoking is.

For one, it is something new, it does not look like the usual cigarette, and at the same time it has its own formulation that is subject to the scrutiny of those who are still unsure about trying vaping.

An article published by British Broadcasting Company in its official website talked about the latest developments in vaping. It mentioned that one of the reasons that vaping is safe is because it does not involve inhaling something that is being physically burned Vape Chicago Yelp.

“David O’Reilly, Head of Research and Development at British American Tobacco says the danger in smoking is in the actual burning of the tobacco, which is why vaping is thought to be less unhealthy. ‘If you took lettuce, dried it, rolled it and set fire to it and inhaled it, you would inhale very similar toxicants to those you would get from tobacco.’ And we know lettuce is safe to eat.”

Read the whole article here.

In its website, the British based National Health Service meantime quoted an independent study stating that Electronic cigarettes from Vape Shop Chicago are 95% safer compared to traditional tobacco based cigarette smoking.

“E-cigarettes are not risk free, but based on current evidence they carry a fraction of the risk of cigarettes. Public Health England’s independent review of the latest evidence found that using an e-cigarette (known as ‘vaping’) is around 95% safer than smoking. As well as nicotine, e-cigarette liquid and vapour can contain potentially harmful chemicals, although these are either at much lower levels than seen in cigarette smoke or at levels not associated with health risk.”

Take a look at the whole article here.

Apart from the absence of smoke inhalation, electronic cigarettes are also seen as a safe alternative because it also helps in smoking cessation.

How To Hire An Electrical Contractor

How to Hire an Electric Contractor

Hiring a San Diego Electrician Contractor could be a challenging task especially when a homeowner is relatively new in the community. With the many contractor services being offered over the internet, it could still be a challenge to determine which among these electrician contractors are experts in their job, and at the same time can be considered reliable and trustworthy.

Here are some tips on How to Hire an Electric Contractor:

  1. Seek referrals and recommendations. Ask friends and neighbors about their trusted electric contractor. This is actually one of the best ways to hire a contractor, to seek for recommendations because people will never recommend someone who has done a lousy job for them.
  2. Harness the power of the internet. Having said this, it is not always the wisest idea to hire without even comparing. Come up with a shortlist of electric contractors and compare and contract the services that they offer. Check the companies as well in Better Business Bureau’s list to be sure that the company has appropriate license and permit to operate their business.
  3. Check for Feedback. Use reputable websites when seeking for feedback about a certain electric contractor. Websites like Angie’s List publishes feedback from customers of service providers and establishments. It will also not to hurt to check out the social media feedback on the contractor. The feedback section in Facebook, as well as comments in the company’s timeline can give a prospective customer a clue as to how the contractor does his job.
  4. Interview the prospective contractor. Nothing beats being able to talk to the contractor and ask about the specific services required. This way everything a prospective client wants to ask can be answered, and more clarifications can be made. Moreover, it is important to ask for a price quotation estimate so that it can be compared to another provider.

Here are some of the questions to ask during the interview:

  1. Are they Licensed and fully-insured?
  2. Are their electricians licensed as well?
  3. Do they offer emergency services?
  4. How much would they usually charge for the services needed, and how long would it usually take them to complete the job at hand?
  5. Do they offer a service warranty?

Once the interview has been concluded, it is then best to evaluate who among those in the shortlist could deliver a better job.

ParKNDeep Fry San Diego Interesting FoodEpic

About San Diego

San Diego is a City within the State of California, 120 miles off Los Angeles. It is the second largest city within the state and the eighth largest in the whole United States. It measures about 372 square miles and is comprised mostly of canyons and hills. Its climate is a very idyllic mild climate that goes almost ear-round enticing visitors from the state and the whole country to enjoy its many attractions.

San Diego remains to have a bustling economy. It has several economic rivers which include:

  1. Military and Defense related Activities. San Diego is home to a huge number of assets and facilities of the United States Navy – particularly in the West Coast. It hosts military bases, naval facilities, as well as headquarters of Defense Contractors who choose to build their ships and submarines in the deepwater harbor of San Diego City.
  2. International Trade. San Diego has one of the busiest ports in the country with its two marine terminals being utilized by international and domestic ships. Cargoes include internationally-shipped containers, Refrigerated and Frozen Cargoes, among other products for import and export. San Diego is likewise home to one of the world’s busiest border crossing. The border it shared with Mexico processes inbound and outbound trucks and trucks of products and services.
  3. Tourism. San Diego is home to many attractions which are mostly family-oriented. Beaches, Parks, Zoos, Museums and Theme Parks continue to encourage families to visit San Diego. Add to that the fun watersports and outdoor activities meant to entertain the whole family.
  4. Research and Biotechnology. The research industry is bustling in San Diego with as much as 140 research organizations that have set up shop in the city.
  5. Information Technology. Wireless Technology companies such as Nokia, Novotel, Qualcomm, LG Electronics, Kyocera International has their headquarters in San Diego City.

Quick Cornbread Waffles

It’s no secret that baking is not my forte. Shall we recall the number of mishaps with the oven I’ve had? Or perhaps the great chocolate chip cookie debacle?

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I don’t particularly enjoy activities at which I don’t excel (just ask Seth about the onetime we went bowling). Nonetheless, I keep crawling back, hoping that I’ll create a decent baked good.

Today’s attempt: cornbread. I’m planning on making vegetarian chili for dinner tonight, and I wanted to bake some sort of corn-based item to accompany it (cornbread, corn muffins, etc.). This time, however, I decided to skip the oven altogether. Instead, I relied on my trusty waffle maker.

Quick Cornbread Waffles

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Makes 5 full-sized waffles, or 20 quarter-waffles

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 egg + 1 egg white
  • 1-1/4 cups skim milk
  • 1 tablespoon honey (optional)
  • non-stick cooking spray

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1. Whisk together dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.

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2. Add eggs, skim milk, and honey (if using), and stir with a wooden spoon until just combined. Don’t overmix.

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3. Coat waffle iron with cooking spray, and allow it to heat up. (I chose between levels 3 and 4 on my Cuisinart model).

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4. Once waffle iron has reached desired temperature, pour enough batter to cover all the “nubbers.”

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5. Close iron and cook until golden brown.

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Nutrition per full-size waffle: 213 Calories, 2.6g fat, 34mg cholesterol, 481mg sodium, 40.9g carbohydrate, 5.1g fiber, 3.2g sugars, 9.4g protein

Nutrition per quarter-waffle: 53 Calories, 0.6g fat, 8mg cholesterol, 120mg sodium, 10.2g carbohydrate, 1.3g fiber, 0.8g sugars, 2.3g protein

Beware of dogs hoping to sneak a bite!

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Whole Wheat Pasta Salad with Homemade Italian Dressing

If you bring up the topic of pasta salad with anyone in my family, I guarantee they will start to laugh. Why? Because I once had an infamous collision with an extra-large batch of the stuff, right before we were about to take it to a Fourth of July picnic.

I was about five years old , and I guess I lost control of one of my limbs (not an uncommon occurrence), which brought the pasta salad crashing to the floor. I remember screaming, “DON’T TELL MOM!!!” as my sister Lea laughed hysterically and I tried to scoop the dog hair-covered pasta back into the bowl.

Ah, fond memories.

Anyway, despite that experience, I still really love my mom’s pasta salad recipe. Her recipe included a few ingredients that I like to avoid (e.g., white pasta), so I decided to put a little Caroline-twist on the original. And by that, I don’t mean adding dog hair.

Whole Wheat Pasta Salad with Homemade Italian Dressing

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Makes 4 entree-sized portions

Ingredients

For the Salad:

  • 4 oz dry whole wheat elbow pasta
  • 1 15-ounce can no-salt-added chickpeas
  • 2 small carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 medium bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 medium cucumber, chopped
  • 1 small tomato, chopped
  • 2 ounces light sharp cheddar (such as Cabot)

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For the Dressing:

  • 2-1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper

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Method

1. Fill a pot with water and bring to a boil; cook pasta according to package directions. The brand I used required about 7 minutes to cook.

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2. Meanwhile, chop veggies and assemble the dressing. Combine all dressing ingredients in a small bowl, and set aside.

3. Once pasta has cooked, drain and cool with ice cubes.

4. Combine all the salad ingredients in a large bowl, then add dressing and stir to coat. Chill for 1-2 hours prior to serving.

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Nutrition per 1/4 recipe (~240 grams): 304 Calories, 9.9g fat, 1.7g saturated fat, 5mg cholesterol, 321mg sodium, 45.0g carbohydrate, 8.2g fiber, 3.2g sugars, 13.4g protein

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Have you ever re-invented one of your favorite family recipes?

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Smoky BBQ Hummus

Smoky BBQ Hummus

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Makes about 2/3 cup

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup canned chickpeas/garbanzos
  • 2 T. of your favorite BBQ sauce (I use Stubb’s)
  • 1 T. tahini
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • a couple shakes liquid smoke
  • 1/4 t. ground red pepper
  • 1/2 t. ground cumin
  • 1/2 t. child powder
  • salt, to taste

1. Mince garlic before processing, especially if you are using an immersion blender. Otherwise, the clove does not break down and distribute evenly throughout the dip. Biting into hunks of raw garlic is not pleasant, in my experience.

2. Place everything in food processor and pulse or combine with immersion blender.

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Nutrition per 2 tablespoons (1/5 recipe): 54 Calories, 2.0g fat, 0mg cholesterol, 134mg sodium, 7.9g carbohydrate, 1.4g fiber, 1.0g sugars, 1.8g protein

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Spicy Cilantro Popcorn

A few weeks ago, I was delighted to discover a study that provided perfect justification for eating copious amounts of one of my favorite snack foods—popcorn. According to Dr. Joe Vinson, popcorn is not only a good source of whole grain fiber but also an extremely concentrated source of polyphenols. Indeed, popcorn contains comparatively higher amounts of these antioxidant compounds than fruits and vegetables. While Dr. Vinson’s findings are encouraging, they’re not an excuse to skip your greens in favor of cartons of movie theater popcorn. Those fruits and vegetables contain a variety of vitamins and minerals not found in popcorn.

Nonetheless, the surprising antioxidant content of popcorn does indicate that it can be a nutritious snack option. The key is to prepare it without smothering these “nutritional gold nuggets” with hundreds of Calories’ worth of butter or oil. Seth and I happen to love making our own air-popped popcorn for our movie nights, so this study provided the perfect excuse to get creative with our favorite snack.

Spicy Cilantro Popcorn

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Serves 1-2

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup popcorn kernels
  • cooking spray*
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • salt, to taste

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(Farm fresh cilantro, picked yesterday!)

You’ll also need a paper bag for cooking the kernels.

Method

1. Pour kernels into a brown paper bag, and fold the top closed. You can tape it closed if you like, but it’s not necessary.

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2. Place in the microwave and use the “popcorn” button if available. If your microwave doesn’t have that feature, try cooking for about 1 minute on high, or until there are 2-3 seconds between pops.

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(Can you see my reflection?)

3. Transfer popped kernels to a large bowl and spray generously with cooking spray. Sprinkle lime juice, salt, cayenne pepper, and cilantro over the top and toss to combine.

Note:

*If you happen to have one of those handy Misto sprayers for your oil of choice, by all means use that! I used an olive oil-based cooking spray.

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Dig in!

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Nutrition per entire recipe: 165 Calories, 2.1g fat, 0mg cholesterol, 291mg sodium, 33.4g carbohydrate, 6.8g fiber, 0.3g sugar, 5.5g protein

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