Veggie Spaghetti

It’s dinnertime again. Your family is probably getting tired of eating the same boring spaghetti! Last night, my family and I sat down to a delicious healthy alternative. We added a powerful punch of fresh veggies, spice and vitamin C! As your family’s food choices change, so will your dinner plans. If you have vegan, vegetarian, or even meat eaters ino your home, this dish will please everyone! I also recommend for anyone attempting to make any small gradual food swaps.


(any items listed below may be substituted or left out depending on your vegetable)

Here is the recipe for my veggie spaghetti:

Sophia’s Vegetarian Spaghetti

1 pkg meatless meat (we purchased our from Trader Joe’s)


1 pkg brown rice gluten free noodles (we purchased our from Trader Joe’s)


1 yellow or purple onion


1 small yellow zucchini


1 small green zucchini


1 half of an eggplant


1 small banana pepper for spice


4 roma tomatoes


1 green pepper


1 red pepper


1 yellow pepper


2 cans organic spaghetti sauce (we purchased our from Trader Joe’s)


2 tablespoons organic brown sugar (optional)


2 cloves of garlic or minced garlic


Himalyan Pink Salt & peper


Olive Oil for sauteing


Begin by boiling noodles, while simultaneously sautéing cut vegetable chunks with olive oil in separate pan. After sautéing approximately 5 minutes (keep crunchy) add meatless meat (if using red or turkey meat sauté in separate pan until brown than add). Add garlic, salt, and pepper. Finally, add spaghetti sauce to meat and veggies. Let simmer a few minutes.













Sweet Potatoes Restaurant (well shut my mouth!!) Winston Salem, North Carolina


Barbeque shrimp and grits.

Good food can make one travel out of their way to experience the deliciousness of the flavors in their mouth. And that is exactly what brought my family back to eat brunch at our beloved Sweet Potatoes in Winston Salem, North Carolina.

Rich in not only food, art and culture, Winston Salem is home to the award winning Sweet Potatoes (well shut my mouth!!) a soul food restaurant ran by Chefs and Hostesses ViviánJoiner and Stephanie Tyson.

So what makes this soul food restaurant different from the one in your city?


Outside Sweet Potatoes in the Art District of Winston Salem, North Carolina.

For starters, it’s a place where the chef will personally will come out to thank you for stopping in. True southern hospitality! Next, most of the dishes incorporate sweet potatoes into the food – creating a unique and magnificent flavor you must go experience for yourself.

Sweet Potatoes is open all week for lunch and dinner, but also have a full bar. I recommend going on Sunday to enjoy their brunch menu ranging from sweet potatoes pancakes, to chicken and gravy on a sweet potato biscuit and sweet potato french toast just to name a yummy few.

On top of the deliciousness the ambiance is relaxing as light jazz and beautiful artwork line the walls.

If you enjoy eating out on the patio, Sweet Potatoes recently moved to a larger location to accommodate those who enjoy the outdoor patio setting. Although North Carolina is known to be hot, the entire patio area is fully shaded with a comfortable breeze.

Check out a few dishes below and be sure to stop through Winston Salem to give Sweet Potatoes(well shut my mouth!!) it’s a restaurant – a try!!


Un-French Toast with sweet potato batter


Fried Catfish and grits



Chicken and gravy on a sweet potato biscuit


Sweet potato pancake with fruit topping

Be sure to also check out their newly opened sister restaurant Miss Ora’s kitchen nearby! For more information visit their website here.







Unique Places to Stay, River Hill Retreat, Sparta North Carolina

Are you heading through North Carolina and looking for an affordable, extraordinary stay away from the busy city life and typical hotel?

 Look no further than the beautiful, scenic, Christmas Tree Farm in Sparta, North Carolina. Better known by the locals and Airbnb as River Hill Retreat.


This beautiful retreat and tree farm is located near a state route beside main thorough fair Interstate 77 and is nestled in the foothill of the Blue Ridge Mountains. River Hill Retreat is a relaxing surprise at the end of a long drive.


Located on a 23 acre Christmas Tree Farm actively ran by husband and wife Joel and Mandy along with their two sweet little boys, created a home away from home that is exactly the reprieve you are looking for.

 If you are in the mood to relax amongst beautiful scenery – you’ve come to the right place. The four bedroom five bed home is pleasing to both families and couples alike.

 Relax on the porch swing under the tree or in a relaxing chair overlooking the vast hillside.

 Looking for adventure? I suggest a small hike down the hill to the pond to fish. Walk amongst the Christmas trees as they beautifully wait for their season.


Did the kids come too?? Absolutely no worries. Take a breather while the kids play on the trampoline, feed the Alpacas, enjoy s’mores by the fireplace, or play with the friendliest dogs you would ever want to meet. And don’t forget catching lightning bugs in a jar before bedtime.

Dinner on the go is no problem at all. Less than 10 minutes up the country roadside are delicious local take-outs. Or, use the full kitchen in your home away from home to whip up a dish from the local grocery store. All your dishes and supplies needed are already tucked away for you in cabinets.


In the morning wake up to fresh peaches, mandarins oranges and bananas, farm fresh eggs, Starbucks and French Press to sip in the morning.

Does this hidden retreat sound too good to be true? It might, but I believe most hidden treasures are. To book your next stay at River Hill Retreat click here





15 Simple Pleasures Money Can’t Buy


Regardless of the amount of money in your pockets, Earth’s beauty will forever be one thing that we ALL can afford.

Take pleasure in knowing that such vastness and beauty can be enjoyed at any time – day or night – for FREE!

All too often a person can feel stagnant or depressed because of their financial stature. Society moves so quickly that we can easily forget about the simple free pleasures that surround us every day.



Forget about the meeting this morning or the stressful day you may have had at work or home. If you woke up and opened your eyes you can take in this simple pleasure. Cozy up in your robe or blanket, grab your favorite beverage and go have a seat at this beautiful spectacle.




The playground was already built in a city near you. Whether young or old – a push on a swing or a ride down a slide always triggers an immediate smile or laughter across the face.




Hiking in the park is a wondrous free exploration that never gets old. Grab some old boots or shoes and venture into the woods. Some cities offer meet-ups or guided tours, however, the best hikes I have ever experienced have been the unscripted trails that I choose on my own. Encounter butterflies and interesting insects you may not see every day.




After a long day or for an early start to your day begin with a walk through your neighborhood or nearby trail.




Grab a blanket and sand toys for the kids. Sit back and enjoy listening to sounds of the mesmerizing waves.


Feed fish/ducks


Grab a loaf of bread or leftover biscuits and head out to the pier or park.




Gather sticks or leftover firewood. Make a fire at home or in a fire pit at a local park.


Blow/run with bubbles


Everyone has a tube of bubbles lying around. This simple pleasure can be done just about anywhere.


Catch lightning bugs



Free festivals 


Every city has their own unique free festivals. Check your local magazines and online local venues.


Pick/Plant Vegetables

Help a friend or have a friend help you pick or plant vegetables and fruits in the garden. Getting your hands dirty in the Earth is always therapy for the soul.


Lay in the grass



Not into planning for the day? Take a blanket and stare into our beautiful sky.


Stick your toes in the grass


Need to feel a little more grounded in your life? Take off those socks and shoes and stick your feet in the grass.


Enjoy your FREEDOM!