It’s that time of year again and many of us have made a list of New Year’s resolutions. However, how many times do we make resolutions that do not get checked off of our list?

I’ll eat healthier in the New Year, I’ll lose weight, and on and on. Good intentions are not enough. This year, make your New Year’s goals attainable by making them SMART goals.

S – Specific





Her are some tips for New Year’s resolutions that last:

Make your goals measurable. This year make your goals measurable by setting criteria for knowing whether you have reached your goal. Is your goal attainable and how will your measure your progress?

Put your goals on a timeline. Are your goals realistic and something that you are willing and able to work toward? Do you have a timeframe or checklist for when you want to accomplish your goals? Sometimes setting dates for accomplishing goals can push us forward in helping us to achieve them.

• Break your goals up. It is easy to get overwhelmed when we have a long list of resolutions. Discouragement can also set in if we have big goals that offer no payoff in the short term. Try breaking up a larger goal into a few smaller ones.

Reward yourself in healthy ways. It is easy to stay motivated and focused to make changes in our lives when we reward ourselves. Rewarding ourselves when we have reached “mini” goals or milestones is one way to stay focused and keep us pushing forward.

• Look for programs that help. Sometimes finding the right ingredients to staying healthy and fit can be challenging, especially when we face it alone. Sometimes a support group can offer just the help that is needed to help us accomplish our goals.

Consider starting a walking group with friends or family, take a class or join a local wellness center that will support you in your goal quest. These types of opportunities also allow you to surround yourself with a support net of individuals that have similar goals.

Best of luck in the new year with your resolutions. Remember to make them specific, measureable, attainable, realistic, and timely. Applying these concepts can help reduce the chances of feeling anxious, unmotivated or overwhelmed.

Chopped Thai Salad

  • 3 cups finely shredded cabbage (purple or green)
  • 1 cup chopped cucumbers
  • 1 cup shelled edamame
  • 1 cup shredded or julienned carrots
  • 1 cup chopped bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup chopped roasted peanuts
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped cilantro

Peanut dressing

  • 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 Tbsp. lime juice
  • 2 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 tsp. chili garlic sauce
  • 3 Tbsp. warm water

Place the cabbage in a large bowl. Arrange the cucumbers, edamame, carrots, bell peppers and peanuts on top. Sprinkle with cilantro.

For the dressing, whisk together the peanut butter, soy sauce, honey, lime juice, sesame oil, chili garlic sauce and warm water until smooth. Drizzle the peanut dressing over the vegetables, then serve immediately.

Recipe Source: University of Vermont Extension Service

Cream of Turkey and Wild Rice Soup

  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 cups sliced mushrooms (about 4 oz.)
  • 3/4 cup chopped celery
  • 3/4 cup chopped carrots
  • 1/4 cup chopped shallots
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup quick-cooking or instant wild rice
  • 3 cups shredded cooked chicken, or turkey
  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add mushrooms, celery, carrots and shallots and cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add flour, salt and pepper and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes more. Add broth and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits.

Add rice and reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and cook until the rice is tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in turkey (or chicken), sour cream and parsley and cook until heated through, about 2 minutes more.

Note: Quick-cooking or instant wild rice has been parboiled to reduce the cooking time. Conventional wild rice takes 40 to 50 minutes to cook. Be sure to check the cooking directions when selecting your rice; some brands labeled “quick” take about 30 minutes to cook. If you can't find the quick-cooking variety, just add cooked conventional wild rice along with the turkey at the end of step 2.

Recipe Source: University of Vermont Extension Service

Easy Greek Salad

  • 6 romaine lettuces leaves, torn into 1-1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 medium cucumber, peeled and sliced
  • 1 medium tomato, chopped
  • 1/2 cup red onion, sliced
  • 1/3 cup feta cheese, crumbled


  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Combine lettuce, cucumber, tomato, onion, and cheese in large serving bowl.

Whisk together oil, lemon juice, oregano, and salt in small bowl.

Make the dressing. Pour the dressing over the lettuce mixture; toss until coated. Serve immediately.

Recipe Source: University of Minnesota Extension Service

Taco Soup

  • 2 lbs. hamburger
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 64 oz. jar tomato juice
  • 3 Tbsp. taco seasoning
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 can (15.2 oz.) whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1 can (15.5 oz.) kidney beans, drained
  • 1 can (16 oz.) pork and beans, do not drain
  • 1 can (16 oz.) Mexican Chili beans or Black Bean Fiesta (21 oz.), do not drain

In a large boiler (8-qt) brown hamburger with chopped onion, drain. Add tomato juice, seasoning, brown sugar and all canned ingredients. Simmer everything together for an hour to 90 minutes. Serve with shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream, crushed corn chips and corn bread.

Recipe Source: University of Vermont Extension Service

Favorite Apple Salad

  • 1 can (20 oz.) unsweetened pineapple chunks
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • 2 Tbsp. cold water
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 8 cups chopped tart apples
  • 2 cups green grapes, halved
  • 2 tsp. poppy seeds
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted

Drain pineapple, reserving juice. Set the pineapple aside. Place pineapple juice in a saucepan, add butter, sugar and lemon juice and bring to a boil. Combine cornstarch and cold water, stirring until smooth and add to juice mixture in saucepan, stirring constantly. Return to a boil, cooking and stirring for 2 minutes. Chill.

Stir in mayonnaise. In a large bowl, combine pineapple, apples, grapes, poppy seed and cooked dressing. Fold in pecans just before serving.

Recipe Source: University of Vermont Extension Service

Broccoli Salad

  • 4 cups broccoli florets, raw
  • 1 cup grapes, halved
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds, raw
  • 1/4 cup green onions (or chives), minced
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 Tbsp. vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar

In a plastic container, mix broccoli florets, grapes, sunflower seeds and onion (or chives). Set aside. Mix mayonnaise, vinegar and sugar. Pour mayonnaise mix over broccoli mix and let marinate overnight, covered. Invert into a bowl before serving.

Note: Mayonnaise can be substituted with a mixture of 1/2 cup mayonnaise and 1/2 cup fat free yogurt or sour cream.

Recipe Source: University of Vermont Extension Service

Turkey Waldorf Salad Wraps

  • 4 thin slices of cooked turkey
  • 2 celery ribs
  • 1 apple, cut into match sticks
  • 1/3 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 4 lettuce leaves
  • 2 large tortilla wraps

Spread each wrap with mayonnaise to suit. Layer lettuce leaves, then turkey. In food processor, finely chop walnuts, raisins and celery. Spread over turkey. Add apple sticks. Roll, cut in half and secure with skewers.

Note: spinach flavored tortilla wraps work nicely.

Recipe Source: University of Vermont Extension Service

Make-Ahead Chicken Bake

  • 5 cups of cubed cooked chicken
  • 2 cups chopped celery
  • 5 hard-cooked eggs, sliced
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup, undiluted
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. finely chopped onion
  • 1 cup (4 oz.) shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1 can (3 oz.) chow mein noodles
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted

In a large bowl, combine the chicken, celery, sliced eggs, can of cream of chicken soup, mayonnaise, lemon juice and finely chopped onion. Transfer to a 9-by-13 greased baking dish.

Sprinkle with cheese, noodles and almonds. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Remove casserole from refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Bake, uncovered at 350 for 30 to 35 minutes until lightly browned and cheese is bubbly.

Recipe Source: University of Vermont Extension Service 

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