Vanilla Coffee Banana Protein Pancakes

I have five words to say about this weekend.  I ate all the food.  I didn’t eat a lot of one thing (i.e. deep dish pizza by myself), but I ate a lot of little things.  I didn’t track all my food. I woke up with a taste for apple fritters, but cooler heads prevailed and I made a hash waffle.  This time topped it with 2 tablespoons shredded cheese so the top is nice and crispy, which the sides are kind of mash potatoey.  You know what I mean Open-mouthed smile

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I had some errands to run.  Ran to Tuesday Morning for some tissue paper, and bought a small bag of gummies at the check out and ate the whole thing while driving around.  300 calories (not even sure about how many points).   Came back from running errands and sliced up cheese and had cheese and triscuits – did I weigh out my cheese or measure out my crackers.  Nope.  I had plans to meet up with my step-son Joe and his wife Lizz for Lizz’s brothers high school graduation party.  Make up on – with jewelry!

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Within five minutes of getting to Lizz’s parents house, I was presented with all this food:

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In case you don’t know this, the Mexican community makes A LOT OF FOOD.  Later Lizz’s dad threw grilled chicken on my plate.  Her Mom presented me with fresh homemade corn tortillas, two salsas, guacamole and chips.  Oh, and Modelo beer.   I had three over the course of the evening, which I now know is 12 points.  Even with all this stuff, I was trying to make better choices, and basically could drink this chile de arbol salsa.  I dipped all my food into it.  I asked her what the recipe was, and when she got to “then I add a cup of olive oil” realized I’d probably eaten 4 tablespoons of olive oil.  Amazing stuff though!

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That salsa above was just as amazing, but I could tell had all fresh ingredients.  Didn’t even mind the onions!  Lizz’s Dad was the BBQ chef:

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The chicken was outstanding. I am not sure if these were chicken quarters, just cut in half?

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It was great to catch up with Joe and Lizz.  The weather held out, and while it didn’t rain, when it got dark, it was chilly enough that you could see your breath.  I was still wearing a short sleeved sweater and was fine.  However, Joe and Lizz have been living in Texas going on five years, and have lost their midwest skin.  I was happy when Lizz changed into comfy clothes!

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Those are Lizz’s cousins – I loved being behind the scenes of this mini photo shoot 😀

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I realized after I got home that I never got a picture of Joe and I that wasn’t silly – but this will have to do. 😀  I still can’t believe I met Joe 17 years ago already.  He was a chubby little 10 year old when I first met him and this fall he’ll be 28 years old.  Crazy!

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Sunday morning I had the house to myself.  The kadults had to work at the coffee shop, and I got to meal prepping and recipe developing.  I tried a protein powder muffin – epic fail.  Then decided to make protein pancakes and these were amazing.  Made with Premier Protein vanilla whey protein powder, this recipe made 4 pancakes for a total of 6 smart points.  I actually started to put all of them on my plate, but decided to eat two, and if I was still hungry, could always go back for more.  Two was plenty!

Vanilla Coffee Banana Protein Pancakes (makes 1-2 servings)

  • 1 ounce vanilla protein powder (about 1/4 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tablespoons egg whites
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons strong cold coffee
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 mashed banana

Mix the protein powder, flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon together with a whisk.  Add remaining ingredients and mix just until combined.  Let the batter sit for 15 minutes to let the baking powder do its magic.  Cook for about 2 minutes a side over medium low heat.  I made a syrup of PB2 mixed with a teaspoon of real maple syrup.

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I have to regroup this week.  I am back to my old habits of doing great Monday through Friday, and then throwing all my hard work in the garbage by not tracking over the weekend.  The hamster wheel that kept me at the same weight (or gaining and losing the same five pounds) all of 2016.

So guess what I am bringing back?  INSANITY!  I started Insanity back on June 1, 2013.  I declared that June was going to be Insane.  I am not going to lie, a little piece of me was like “why not just wait until June of 2017.”  But I know me.  That would only give me more of an excuse on not to keep track because I am getting “back on” June 1.

Tonight is the fit test.  Back then I did the workout between 8-9 at night.  I am always home at that time, and in the beginning the workouts are only 35 minutes long.  Totally doable.  

Zen, I am shipping out your package tomorrow – I realized I never responded to your email, I will shortly! 😀 

Happy Monday!  I am actually looking forward to work this week because my boss that keeps me really busy is out of the country for the week on business.  I am finally going to have time to organize my files/desk/emails.  Jenn, can you walk today?  I need to text you.

How was your weekend?  I’d love to hear your highlights.  Mine, of course, was seeing Joe and Lizz. 😀

Weekly WI +2.4

Happy Friday!  Let’s start off by chosing a winner of my G.H. Cretors popcorn giveaway!

 True Random Number Generator 1 26

Congrats Zen!  Shoot me your mailing address at mybizzykitchen@gmail.com 

Zen
I was raised on popcorn and tomato soup. This is still one of my favorite things. Now I make popcorn in the microwave using a glass popcorn popper.
 
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Thursday is WI day.  It was a gorgeous morning, sun was shining, it was probably around 70 degrees.

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I’d been on track since last Sunday – and really didn’t go over too much last Friday or Saturday, so I was a bit shocked by a +2.4 gain.  But such is life.  As the WW slogan goes, it’s #beyondthescale.  I realized I could do one of two things.  Just say “fuck it” and eat like shit the rest of the day, week, months – or get my shit together and move on.  I chose the latter.  I still have to look at the postives:

  • I am still down 15 pounds for the year (I hadn’t lost 15 pounds in the last two years!)
  • I am still wearing size 12 pants
  • I am more than the number on the scale
  • Giving up is not an option

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Corner bakery is in the lobby of the WW building.  I accessorized my breakfast by getting scrambled egg whites (so fluffy!) and a side of their potatoes.  This plate is only 6 smart points and even though I had to pick through the shallots in the potatoes, they were delicious.

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Even though work was busy (my boss is going out of town next week) I managed to get to the WW meeting.  The topic? How to handle stress.  Not shockingly, I wasn’t the only one who uses food as a crutch in good times and bad.  The WW leader admitted that she finds herself eating things she shouldn’t out of boredom.  Another gentleman who is lifetime after losing and maintaining a 40 pound weight loss, continues to come to the weekly meetings, because the second he decides that he’s “got this” is when the pounds start coming back.  He needs the weekly accountability of stepping on the WW scale vs. the one at home, where he can justify to himself whatever the number is on the scale.

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I hit the ground running when I got back to work and didn’t put my salad together until nearly 3!  Leftover grilled chicken, sweet potato and zucchini over chopped romaine, carrots and cucumbers.  Guys, if you haven’t tried Olive Garden’s light Italian dressing, it’s amazeballs.  Two tablespoons for 1 point.  So good.   My salad was only 5 points, leaving me with 20 points going into dinner, so I got the .99 iced coffee at Dunkin Donuts for my train ride treat – just a splash of skim milk – 1 smart point.

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I defrosted chicken tenders yesterday morning, not really knowing what i was going to make, when I opened the fridge and saw Taco Bell fire sauce and immediately thought tacos.  While I cooked the chicken I munched on 12 tortilla chips with a mini guacamole (7).  My tacos were pan fried in Pam and 1/2 teaspoon of ghee – the corn tortillas were so crunchy – filled with sauted yellow pepper, romaine and chopped tomato.  With a side of watermelon, my dinner was 13 points.

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As a Weight Watcher ambassador, I am part of a private Facebook group – one of the members suggested we do a “#wwambassadorsharethelove” exchange.  We got paired with another ambassador, we decided on a dollar amount to spend, and exchanged some of our favorite things.  My penpal Leslie sent me the cutest package yesterday.  It’s funny because I thought “I can’t wait to use these socks this fall!”  I used them last night because our temps got down to 41 degrees last night. 

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Um, how cute are these mason jar measuring spoons?!   Robin, I totally thought of you when I saw these.  (If you need to learn how to make a mean meatball – you need to check out Robin’s post on making the perfect meatball!)

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My timehop was bittersweet yesterday.  Four years ago this week Tony and I road tripped to visit my step-son Joe and his wife Lizz.  We met their dog Cinnamon Bun for the first time.  That was such a fun time.  I remember Tony and I enjoying so much brisket, sausage, etc.  By day four we were both like “should we maybe eat a salad to give our bodies a break?”

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It was at the end of this trip that I realized that I needed to get in shape after seeing the photos from this trip.  It began the Summer of Insanity – I may need to bring that back this summer!

And five years ago last night, Tony and I were enjoying what we loved most – sitting outside, cocktails, music and our dog Ed.  I actually think Ed would have liked Rummy and Roman.

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Life has changed so much for me in the past few years.  I need to accept the change and make the most of it.  While I can be sad for not having the life I thought I would (growing old with my husband), we only get one turn around this merry-go-round of life, so I best make the most of it.

I had the strangest dream this morning.  Tony had passed away, and for some reason I had a motorized scooter that had to be returned otherwise I was going to be charged $1000.  But it wouldn’t fit in my car so I had to ride it back to the store.  It was so slow, and as I sat in it I realized “what if I HAD to use this scooter?”  I immediately jumped out, and ran with it as I pushed it back to the store, vowing to never take my ability to run for granted again.

Guess who’s getting their running shoes on this weekend?

 

Just a little bit of . . . Effort

I am loving these Lavash wraps.  And I just found a Pinterest board with all the things you can do with them – can’t wait to try these!  Two smart points for the whole thing – only 18 grams of carbs, 1o net carbs.  They are soft, slightly chewy and delish, and make my egg white/cheese/romaine breakfast burrito only 5 smart points.

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Work was busy and before I knew it, it was time to meet my sister at Macy’s to meet Kristin Kish.  We both would have thought that she would have been on the 7th floor because that’s where they usually do Chef demonstrations, but we got there and it was completely empty.

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Turns out she was in the Lower Level, and pretty much as soon as we got off the elevator, there she was so we got a quick photo.

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She was super nice, but as I walked away I realized I hardly spoke to her!  I could have asked her about her experience on Top Chef, was Stefan (one of her co-competitors on the show) how he appeared go be on t.v.  Oh well! 

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How is she a Chef and so skinny!  We did get to try her food though.  We tried her braised beef cheek over mashed potatoes with jus.

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And a miso noodle dish – the broth was delish!  

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I didn’t realize we’d be able to eat food, so that was my lunch – called it 8 points.  We still had time on our lunch break, and it was kind of hot outside, so we got our steps in at Macy’s – which is a giant ten story store that you could walk miles in.  I can get there from the pedway and can meet Jenn there if the weather is bad.

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We both posted our pics on Instagram and Kristin liked them both!  Er, well, she has 118k followers, so maybe one of her “people” liked them, but still, pretty cool!

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Hey Jody and Liz!

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Hi Jacky and Roz!

I ate 1/2 a protein bar around 4:30 to last me until I got home.  No one signed up for night secretary, so I got to leave at 5:30.  When I got home, I could feel my blood sugar dropping.  It was 57.  I ate about two cups of watermelon to bring it up, but I felt that wasn’t working fast enough.  If you’ve ever had low blood sugar, you just want that feeling to go away as soon as possible.  Had I just waited it out about 10 minutes it would have come up with the watermelon.  But no.  I ate about two cups of the Chicago Mix popcorn mindlessly standing in front of the pantry waiting for the low blood sugar to go away.  I haven’t looked up the points for that yet, but it’s probably 12?  The watermelon?  ZERO.  

So I wasn’t all that hungry by the time dinner rolled around, but I had already defrosted the beef.  So I made this bunless burger with 1/2 ounce of cheese (5) with Plochman’s angry mustard, Whataburger Buffalo sauce (1) and green beans for fries.  

And while I wouldn’t consider me shoving the popcorn into my mouth as a true on food binge, it felt like it.  Note to self – check blood sugar before coming home so that doesn’t happen again.

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I’ve realized for the past several weeks, my head just hasn’t been in the game.  I did SO well for the first couple months, then the whole March birthday month came, and some of my old habits started creeping back.  Night time eating, wine, etc.  I’ve been watching lots of youtube videos and healthy weight loss feeds on Instagram, and the ingredient that’s been missing?  EFFORT.  And by effort I don’t mean staying at the gym for two hours, meal planning for days on end (who am I kidding, I DO love that part!) but just the day to day effort that got me to 20 pounds lost this year (er, 17 pounds after a couple gains) but still.

I am back to my journal writing and have found stuff that is motivating to me:

“Every day is full on decisions.  The inner dialogue we have that starts when the alarm clock goes off.  Sleep in?  Get up and go?  Every time you choose what you SHOULD do instead of what you WANT to do, you become stronger as a person.” – my buddy (I am sure we would be in real life!) – Steve Weatherford

“You don’t get the ass you want by sitting on it.”  – Lauren, Lose It Like Lauren

To see changes, you need to make changes.  Other than the low blood sugar popcorn incident, I’ve been on track since Sunday.  Drinking lemon water instead of wine.  Eating fruit on my train ride home instead of telling myself I “deserve” Garrett’s popcorn because I had a busy day at work.  I haven’t spent any money this week on food – I’ve brought all my eats and even my coffee this week.  My change purse thanks me for that one.  It’s so easy to spend $15 a day with a lunch/breakfast/coffee.

Time to put in a bit more EFFORT. 

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For some reason my alarm didn’t go off this morning, and I woke up at 6:30.  I meet my sister early to go weigh in at WW, and because I am low maintenance, I was able to get up, shower, and be on the train platform in 22 minutes for the moment my eyes opened.  Luckily I have an hour train ride to put some makeup on 😛

Again, no idea how much I weigh with no scale at home, you’ll just have to check out my Instagram later this morning to find out.  😀  (mybizzykitchen there too!).

Make it a great day!

Spicy Wonton Soup

I posted my wonton soup on the WW connect app, and several people asked for the recipe.  I love having Trader Joe’s cilantro wontons in the freezer – you can get 10 wontons for only 3 smart points!  This is for one big bowl, but after dinner I made a second batch, so next time I’ll double it.  If you make some to have for leftovers, don’t store the wontons in the soup – they’ll end up soggy, just add in the cooked wontons when you reheat the soup the next day.

  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon PB2 (powdered peanut butter)
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
  • 1 teaspoon Thai chili paste
  • 1 large carrot sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ghee
  • 10 cilantro wontons

In a stock pot, add the chicken broth, water, PB2, garlic, ginger, chili paste and the carrot.  Bring to a simmer over medium high heat.  In a separate small skillet, add the ghee and saute the mushrooms and zucchini for about 5-6 minutes, just until the mushroom start to brown.  Add them to the stock pot.  In the same skillet, add the frozen wontons with 3 tablespoons of water, put a lid on the pan, and steam the wontons for 3-4 minutes.  

Spoon the broth into a bowl, add the wontons, and toss in the fresh chopped spinach at the end.   This giant bowl of soup is only 5 smart points – 3 for the wontons, 1 for the ghee and 1 for the PB2.

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I wish I could come up with a low carb recipe for granola that doesn’t taste like ass, but after several attempts, it hasn’t worked out yet.  Most granola recipes are about 1 smart part PER TABLESPOON.  Yes, I am shouting because I call BS.  This is River Valley Kitchens Cranberry Pecan with Cocoa & Sea Salt Granola: 
Wisconsin rolled oats, brown sugar, pepitas, dried cranberries, pecans, organic coconut, coconut powder, cinnamon, rice oil, sunflower oil and sea salt.

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Here is the perfect bite of my breakfast:  there is Trader Joe’s steel cut frozen oats on the bottom (5), banana, blueberry and two tablespoons of granola (2).

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My sister had a work meeting, so I was on my own, but still got my walking shoes on, even though I had a super busy day.  It’s my inclination to just work through lunch and power out the work, but I realized the work will always be there, it its such a nice break to get outside.  Even though I’ve lived in the Chicago area my whole life, I still love looking up at all the buildings.

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And there is a suprising amount of park areas in and around Chicago.  When we were little and visited our grandparents tiny town in Virginia, the kids used to ask us if we had trees in Chicago. 😀

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But there is always construction going on – whether its highrises being built, or the expressways – it’s never ending.

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When I got back from my walk, I heated up my leftover wonton soup – the broth got extra “mushroomy.”  Not sure if that’s a word, but I am sticking with it.  I also added 2 points of spicy tofu to the mix, making this a 7 point soup.

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The afternoon flew by – check out the temp when I left the office!  It was hotter in Chicago than it was in Austin, Texas!  So strange that just early last week I was still wearing a winter coat to work because it was 37 degrees when I left my house.

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I stopped by Starbucks in the train station to get some water.  Did you know you can get free water at Starbuck’s at any time – stop buying bottled water – they are on like every other block in Chicago – just ask for a Venti ice water to go – bam!  And you don’t have to buy anything either.  FYI, I was at a stop light when I took this pic.

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I saw on Instagram coming home last night that it was National BBQ Day!  Whoop!  I had bone in chicken breasts that I bought over the weekend.  I just did salt, pepper, and a bit of McCormick Montreal steak seasoning.  I grilled them on indirect heat until they reached an internal temperature of 160, because the residual heat will bring them over 165 by the time they rest for 10-15 minutes.

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When I worked the grill event at The Chopping Block a couple weekends ago, we grilled up sweet potatoes and they were delicious.  I used this veggie rub that I bought that day, and absolutely love it.  Just drizzled with about a teaspoon of grapeseed oil, then finished them on the grill when the chicken was hanging out.

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I didn’t eat the skin (um, even though that’s the best part!) but always leave it on when grilling.  You’ll end up with perfectly cooked chicken.

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My sister and I are headed to Macy’s on State street today.  

It’s Macy’s Asian Pacific American Heritage Month.   If you watched Top Chef on Bravo, you’ll remember Chef Kristin Kish – she’s one of the Chef’s that will be at the lunch event.  Hoping to get a quick picture with her Open-mouthed smile  It runs from 12-2, they have this giant test kitchen at Macy’s and have these events for free every so often.

Kristen-Kish2-e1403596000457

Happy Wednesday – make it a great day!

G.H. Cretors Popcorn

My server was down this morning for quite a bit – so hopefully not too many of you were worried about me 😀  

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I love popcorn.  Tony made the best homemade popcorn, and I am glad that is one of the skills I was able to make as good as he did.  Still working on his fried rice!   I could eat a 12 course dinner and if I smell popcorn, I will want to eat it.

So I was thrilled when G.H. Cretors reached out to me and asked if I’d like to get a movie kit from them  Um, yes please! 

g.h. cretors movie night kit

If you have never had “The Mix” popcorn before, it’s the best of both worlds.  Salty cheese popcorn mixed with caramel corn.  I am weird in that I have to eat a piece of cheese popcorn and a piece of caramel popcorn in each bite.  This combo is obsessively delicious! 

G.H. Cretors is a local Chicago based popcorn company that’s been around since 1893 when Charles Cretors unveiled the first popcorn machine at the Chicago’s World Fair.  It’s made in small batches, they use non-GMO ingredients and popcorn and is 100% gluten-free.   Here are some fun facts about popcorn:

  • American’s eat an estimated 17 billion quarts of popcorn every year
  • Nearly 70% of popcorn is eaten at home
  • Popcorn is the official snack of the State of Illinois, home of G.H. Cretors!

I am giving away TWO 22 ounce bags of The Mix popcorn.    Just leave me a comment and let me know if you’ve ever had The Mix combo before.  I wonder if it’s just a Chicago thing?!  Good luck – I’ll pick a winner on Friday.

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My eats for the day:

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Walking shoes with my sister:

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Riverwalk!

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Lunch!  Finally found the Lavash bread – that giant wrap is only 2 smart points.

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The wonton soup recipe will be posted tomorrow – thought you’d like to see some behind the scenes of my amazing professional photography skillz. 😛

Best outtake – me, tank top, no bra, extra long pink hippo pajama pants with the dog

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me trying to take a bite

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the finished project

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Filling, delicious and spicy!

Be back tomorrow with the wonton soup recipe – you are going to want this one in your list of things to make soon!

A Great Momma Day!

Not surpringly, my Mom spent Mother’s Day with her favorite child.  I remember last year it was so cold we were wearing winter coats while we shopped for flowers for her garden.  Yesterday was gorgeous – low 70’s, sun shine – and I was wearing a sleeveless shirt!

PicMonkey Collage - momma day

One of the members of my Mom’s church is turning 100 this week.  She made a comment that one hundred years went by really fast!  I have no doubt my Mom will make it to 100!  

We haven’t gone out for Mother’s Day in many many years.  It’s too expensive, you feel rushed and it’s just not fun.  We went to lunch at Marianos!  It was perfect, soup and salad – we bought salad dressing from the grocery store portion of the store – if you haven’t tried this light Olive Garden light dressing, it’s delicious – only 1 smart point for 2 tablespoons.  Also that Bai brand drink?  Delicious.  Only 5 calories for the whole bottle – it was peach tea but it wasn’t too sweet. 

We managed to walk out of there without gelato or chocolate covered strawberries the size of our heads.

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No trip to Mariano’s would be complete without going to Goodwill which is next door.  Always a good time there.

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We bought matching cowboy hats.  Kidding, but it would have been funny if we did.

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My score of the day was this espresso machine.  It originally cost $159.00.  It’s only missing the “coffee holder” – not sure what the exact term is called, but I think Hannah can order me one through her coffee shop.  I’ve been buying two shot espressos at Starbuck’s for my Premier protein shakes, so hoping this will work to save me money in the long run.  We’ll see!

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We went back to Mom’s house, got into comfy clothes and got our walking shoes on.  She’s got a gorgeous trail near her house – it was so nice.

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My dear daughter bought me roses – I’ve always loved white roses.

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And check out my loot!   And that coffee cup couldn’t be more true, expecially on a Monday – I really need a day between Saturday and Sunday!

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Jacob’s Mom was hosting a BBQ at her Mom’s house so we went there for dinner.  It was nice not to have to cook – these steak tacos with seasoned beans were delicious.  I have to laugh because as much as I look way to much for the amount of people I am serving, you would have thought 10 more people were going to come over.  So I’ll be having leftover beef in my lunch today.  

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No post would be complete without a “Classic Biz” pic!  I think its so funny how my left eyebrow always goes up when I take these pics!  I just got my eyebrows done, so they are on fleek.

PicMonkey Collage - classic biz

My Baby:

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Hannah is the best thing to ever happen to me!  I can’t believe yesterday was my twenty fifth Mother’s Day.  She makes me so proud to be her Momma.

And my step-son Joe and his wife sent we a wonderful card, and we had a long conversation on my drive home.  I am going to see them this weekend because they’ll be in town for Lizz’s brothers high school graduation.  

Hard to believe Joe we became a family 17 years ago – love you!

family

I had a great weekend food wise.  Stayed within my points and didn’t make my Mother’s Day all about the food like I have in years past.  

I have more Monday Motivation from my Instagram buddy Steve Weatherford:

“Life is like a camera.  Just focus on what’s importanat and capture the good times, develop from the negatives and if things don’t work out, take another shot.”

Make it a great day!  What was the highlight of your weekend?

Come back tomorrow because I’ll be having a popcorn giveaway! 😀

Weekly WI– +2.8

Not surprisingly, there was a bit of a gain on the scale yesterday.  Even though I knew it was going to be up, I was happy to go.  As I was walking there, I thought to myself, if you read a post where someone had an off week, would you call them a failure, tell them they aren’t worth it and they should just give up?  Well, of course that answer is no, so why would I tell myself those things?!

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I need to learn to treat myself with the same kindness I would give anyone else.  So that’s what I am chalking that up as – just an off week.  I am refocused.  I am still fitting into my size 12 pants.  Yesterday is gone, and today I will focus on making good choices.  I had a Premier protein chocolate shake (2), hard boiled egg (2) and fruit for breakfast.

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The farmers market opened yesterday for the first time this season, and my new office is right across the street.  I met my friend Jacky there.  We walked around to see what was there.  Of course, so many baked goods, fresh breads – I wanted one of everything!  But I bought my favorite mushrooms, my favorite tofu, my favorite granola and something for lunch.

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I wish I had a green thumb – so many gorgeous plants, but sadly I am only really good at growing weeds and killing everything else. 

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Jacky had Rock N Roll noodles before, and while I would have gotten a noodle bowl, it was easily two cups of pasta and I would have eaten the whole thing.  We opted to get the lemon grass chicken over a salad.  I didn’t use the peanut sauce, but asked for hot sauce on the side.  The salad was already lightly dressed.  

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The chicken was cold, so I opted to nuke that for a minute before assembling my salad on my dinner plate.  This was SO good.  Light, crunchy, the chicken was so flavorful – I need to figure out how to make lemongrass chicken at home.  I counted this as 12 points because I added a bit of peanuts on top and I wasn’t sure what the dressing was.

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When I worked the farmers market in Lincoln Square last summer, the vendor across the way from me was River Valley Ranch and Kitchens.  They have a restaurant/grocery store that I’ve been wanting to go to.  One of these weekends I’ll have to take a drive there.  

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These cremini mushrooms are amazing.  Why I didn’t like mushrooms the first 40 years of my life, I will never know.  I knew I would incorporate them into my dinner somehow.

I worked late so didn’t get home until 7:45.  I bought these thin chicken cutlets last weekend that I needed to use or freeze.  Supa cheap!

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Hannah wanted spinach tortellini that I bought at Trader Joe’s last week, so I took 1/2 a cup of that (5) as the base of my dish.  While I sauteed the mushrooms, I put my chicken cutlet in the same pan with the lid on.  Just salt, pepper, garlic powder, crushed red pepper on the chicken, stuffed with fresh spinach, rolled it up and it was cooked in about 7 minutes because it was so thin.

I tossed the tortellini in 1/4 cup of marinara sauce and topped the chicken with a tablespoon of shaved Parmesan (1).  This whole dish came in at 10 smart points.

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Guess what I am having tonight?  PIZZA!  Although it’s a new crust I found at my grocery store – about a 7 inch personal crust that comes in at only 4 smart points.  That leaves more points for cheese – oh, and these mushrooms – definitely going on there too.

I am happy to report that my cough is almost gone!  Only took three weeks 😛  If it’s rainy tomorrow I am going to the gym.  And since I missed my WW meeting yesterday, I am stopping by my old meeting with my old leader Marci.  

The topic couldn’t be more perfect for me this week – STAY THE COURSE!

“We all do it—that slight or not-so-slight slide or detour from the plan. We might not track so carefully, or maybe we eat a little more ice cream than we intend to, or we sleep in instead of taking that morning walk. Stuff like that. Whether or not it shows up on the scale, you’ll want to course-correct quickly.

The first step is recognizing that a slip isn’t a big deal (or a deal-breaker). That’s essential to remember: If you think it is a big deal, you may be more likely to throw in the towel, and a comeback can be harder. Turning things around is a matter of small steps—and mindset shifts. As your Weekly lays it out, looking at a slip from a fresh perspective and giving it a reality check can steer you right back on course. Whether you analyze your reaction to the slip from a factual point of view (“Is it really true that I never stick to my SmartPoints®Budget?”) or from a friend’s point of view (“You overdid it at one meal—big deal. You can get back on track at your next meal.”), you’re more likely to arrive at a helpful thought that gets your head and your plan back in the right place.”

Hope you have an amazing weekend – and Happy Momma Day to all the Mom’s out there. 😀  Hugs!