Breakfast Biscuits

Hopefully I am on the road to recovery.  I was still hacking up a lung on Saturday, and I literally spent most of the day on my couch, no matter how many things I put into my journal that I want to get accomplished this weekend.  Oh, like my holiday gift boxes I still haven’t sent – promise family you’ll get them before Valentine’s Day!

I did manage to complete one of my meal plan items for the week – breakfast biscuits.  It’s really so easy and took little effort on my part.  The best thing is that these came in at only 2 smart points each!

Breakfast Biscuits
Serves 5
A great way to meal plan for the week - bake these up on Sunday and you've got breakfast for a few days during the week.
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
779 calories
93 g
12 g
35 g
22 g
10 g
335 g
1325 g
7 g
0 g
24 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
335g
Servings
5
Amount Per Serving
Calories 779
Calories from Fat 315
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 35g
54%
Saturated Fat 10g
50%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 9g
Monounsaturated Fat 15g
Cholesterol 12mg
4%
Sodium 1325mg
55%
Total Carbohydrates 93g
31%
Dietary Fiber 4g
16%
Sugars 7g
Protein 22g
Vitamin A
24%
Vitamin C
71%
Calcium
57%
Iron
35%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 10 refrigerator biscuits (not flakey Grands)
  2. 1 cup mixed chopped veggies – (I used red pepper and zucchini)
  3. 1 cup liquid egg whites
  4. 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  5. salt and pepper
  6. teaspoon of Italian seasoning
  7. pinch of crushed red pepper
  8. dash of hot sauce
  9. 1/4 cup finely shredded cheese
  10. 1 teaspoon dried parsley
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 375.  Spray muffin tin with Pam.  Place the biscuits into the bottom of the the muffin tin, pressing down and brining the dough a bit up the sides of the muffin tin.  Divide your veggie mix among the 10 biscuits.  Mix the egg whites, almond milk, salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, crushed red pepper and a dash of hot sauce.  Pour that mixture evenly between the muffin tins.  Divide the cheese on top and bake for 30 minutes.   Let cook five minutes before removing from the pan and store in a ziploc bag to grab and go later in the week.
beta
calories
779
fat
35g
protein
22g
carbs
93g
more
My Bizzy Kitchen http://www.mybizzykitchen.com/
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The possibilities are endless with these muffins – sautéed mushrooms and spinach, add in some chopped ham for protein (I hadn’t gone to the store yet so it was slim pickings for me!) but bake once and you have breakfast for a few days – I had mine with a giant orange for breakfast on Saturday and this kept me full for hours.

When I woke up on Sunday, I still had this nagging cough and finally decided to go to the doctor.  After waiting nearly 90 minutes at the Minute Clinic – I got the diagnosis that I have a COLD.  Yep, that’s all it is.  I had chills and a fever the first night, my nose runs clear, my lungs didn’t sound like I had bronchitis, and I’ve already had the vaccine for the flu and pneumonia.  She did prescribe me an inhaler and some heavy duty pills to help with the cough, but was told to just rest and drink lots of fluids. The hard part is that I “feel” fine except for the damn cough and funny nose.  So if after another week, I am not better, I am to hit up my primary care physician.

I still kept my plan with my Mom yesterday.  She was coming over for dinner and made it to my house after church around 1:00 p.m.  I still had to go grocery shopping, so she came with me.  Since the kadults and I are each doing our own meal plans, I thought I’d give you a run down of my tentative meal plan for the week. 

josephs receipt

I spent $52.87 for my groceries this week.  This included the green beans and polenta I made for dinner last night with my Mom (I already had the pork chops in the fridge), and you’ll notice that the most expensive item on my list is Jennie-O ground turkey breast at $7.45.  I am using it in three recipes this week – another turkey burger, taco wonton bites and using it in a Cincinnati chili.   That turkey burger I had last week was so good, it was worth the price to buy it to me.

Breakfast Ideas:

  • the breakfast biscuits above with fresh fruit x 2 days
  • Chobani breakfast parfait with my homemade granola
  • egg white and zucchini omelette with an apple and PB2
  • breakfast wonton cups with fresh fruit

Lunches:

  • How Sweet Eats Chicken Tortilla Soup x 2
  • zucchini pasta boats
  • leftover Cincinnati chili mac with spaghetti squash
  • turkey wrap with veggie straws and fruit
  • pork fried rice (using leftover pork chops)

Dinner

Sounds like a pretty delicious meal plan, and not too complicated. 

Since I can’t exercise because of my cold, I really have to be spot on with my food in order to have another loss this week.  I was so proud of myself because I drank tea with dinner last night even though I had wine in the house, and my Mom enjoyed a glass of wine.  It was nice hanging out with her, and I went to bed at 10:15 last night to give my body a lot of rest.  Here’s hoping the medicine kicks in soon!

Had to share this photo of my Mom – the dogs love hanging around her at dinner just hoping she’ll share some of her dinner!  I made pork chops with polenta with a lemon pepper sauce with garlic green beans.

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I’ve been using a salad plate lately because it’s the only plate that fits on the shelf below my dining room lamp where I take pictures, but I love how it makes it seem like so much food – this plate came in at 9 smart points.

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For the record, my Momma did share some of her polenta, but saved the pork for herself – I don’t blame her because it was really good!

I was super busy all the way up until 5 p.m. on Friday night at work, so I have a feeling today is going to be a busy day.  Oh well, at least the day will go by fast!

Make it a great day!  Here’s some Monday Motivation:

0303068cb5fb5595960f59953de09caf_monday-motivation-monday-motivation_800-800

Oh, no big whoop. Down another 2.2! I found out the secret!

I was on the fence of whether or not to weigh in before work or at lunch.  Believe me, I am not one of those people who won’t eat or drink a drop of anything before a WI.  I once worked at an office that had a WW at work and it was at 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon and people standing in line with me to weigh in kept telling me how starving and thirsty they were because they were waiting to eat or drink before weighing in.  Not sure it’s possible to gain 3 pounds if you have a scrambled egg, piece of toast and a coffee, but whateves.

I was so glad my sister and I met there before work because the line to weigh in at lunch time was super long, and I would have missed half the meeting.

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You will note that I am down 11.8 pounds, but speaks volumes is that I’ve lost 9 pounds in the last four weeks.  And if you follow me on Instagram, I am eating really good food.  But here is the secret I discovered!

YOU HAVE TO FOLLOW THE WEIGHT WATCHER PLAN IN ORDER TO LOSE WEIGHT.  I know!  Sounds so crazy right?  But as I was thinking on my train ride home I was wondering what has made me successful these last four weeks that I wasn’t able to do the last 52 weeks of 2016.  Well, here is a typical week I had:

  1. Weigh in at WW.  Whether the number was good or bad on the scale, no matter how “good” I thought I did that week, I have to be honest, come weigh in night I didn’t count a single thing that went into my mouth.  Not wine, not the two slices of cheese I ate while looking in the fridge figuring out what to make for dinner.  Not the one, two (or even three!) handfuls of nuts I’d snack on while making dinner.  None of it.  My reasoning?  I had PLENTY of time to work that off – I mean I had a whole week, right?
  2. Then I get busy at work, or get sick and can’t exercise, and all of a sudden I am not able to work off the “extras” that made it into my mouth.  So maybe a couple days before the next weigh in, I’d be perfect at tracking points, only to suck in my gut come the next WI day hoping upon hope that somehow the scale would move in the direction I wanted it to go.
  3. Guess what?  I repeated that process over and over and over (and over and over) thinking that the outcome would be different.

Isn’t there a saying?

mistake

Week after week I’d try to “cheat” the plan.  Let’s say one week I had a burger and fries, pizza and wine and I stepped on the scale and lost 1.5 pounds.  What?!  Sign me up!  So the next week I’d eat a burger and fries, pizza and wine, go into the next weeks weigh in and be up 2 pounds.  Or I’d do really great Monday through Friday, then come Friday night, all bets were off and I wouldn’t track a thing until Monday morning again.  I was like a hamster on a wheel spinning round and round until I finally realized I had to stop the madness.

There are three things that I have changed:

  1. I don’t binge eat anymore.  If I want something, I make it fit into my points for the day.  No regret, no guilt.  I counted it, and moved on.
  2. I drastically walked away from my beloved wine.  I had two 4 ounce glasses at my family Christmas party on January 7 and I had three 4 ounce glasses at my #live fully party
  3. I track everything I put in my mouth.

That’s it.  I realized the only way to be successful is to get a hold of the food, because let’s be honest, we all walked into a Weight Watcher meeting because we put too much food in our mouths, not because we ate too many fruits and vegetables.  Working out, getting my 10k steps, that’s all well and good, but I realized I will never in a million years out train the shit I put in my mouth to show a deficit week after week.

you-cant-out-train-a-bad-diet

And what makes me laugh is that I’ve always known this.  It’s not my first rodeo with losing weight, but for whatever reason, I was on a merry go round that wouldn’t stop.  But I finally got the operators attention (me!) and said enough is enough.  There is always going to be something that will trigger me to run to food – I know that.  But if I just let that temptation go for 15 minutes (I’ve literally set a time on my iphone!) 9/10 the temptation is gone when the alarm goes off. 

So I am stepping off my proverbial soap box.  It’s consistency, not perfection.  It’s being in control of your life vs. life taking control of you.  And we all have that ability no matter what is going on in our lives.  I am just happy I’ve finally found out the secret. 

***************

Here were my eats for the day – I had 28/30 points for the day:

PicMonkey Collage

I bought a can of these “field peas and snaps” because they looked like baked beans to me, but have 0 grams of sugar – so 1/2 a cup is only 2 smart points.  But when I opened the can, they were really tiny!  Have you guys heard of these before?

So here is my Friday Food For Thought:

quote

Have a great weekend!  Hugs!

Glazed green beans and mushrooms

How to Cook the Perfect Steak

My cough is still lingering, even though I feel fine.  I am sticking with my Aleve and Musinex for the next couple days and see if that pulls me through.  Fingers crossed!  It’s supposed to be close to 60 degrees and sunny on Saturday and I want to get a long outdoor walk in. 

I really had no idea how low in points my breakfast was until I put it into the WW app on my way to work.  I love that I can enter all my food for the day when I am on the train and can adjust it later is something isn’t eaten, or replaced by something else.

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One Ole brand tortilla (1) with egg whites (1) and 1 ounce of reduced fat Swiss Lorraine cheese (1), then I added chopped romaine that I tossed in my homemade salsa verde with fresh fruit on the side.  3 smart points for that whole plate!

Later in the morning when I went to refill my water bottle I stopped in my tracks when I walked into the mini kitchen and saw this!

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Fruit instead of donuts!  What the what?  The firm provided this basket on each floor.  Um, let’s just say that every time I went into the kitchen from that moment on, I may have grabbed another piece of fruit and put it by my desk.  I may or may not have a mini fruit bowl for myself going on at my desk. Smile with tongue out

The office of the building had a health fair and I dropped by really quick to see what it was about.  Mostly stuff I wouldn’t use, but I did try kombucha for the first time – it’s not bad! 

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I did finally break down and hit up the grocery store today at lunch.  I’ve had a taste for beef and didn’t have any in my freezer.  On the way to Mariano’s I walked past the Wal-mart by my office – it’s going out of business and everything was 50% off!

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Before I went too crazy, I realized – oh yeah, whatever I buy I have to drag to the train station and then lug it home.  I spent $8 on canned goods, Crystal light and some other pantry stuff.  When I got back to my desk I heated up my leftover potato, white bean and kale soup from my freezer – but without the kale, didn’t have any of that.  Still delish at 6 points for 2 cups.

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The price of the beef at the Mariano’s butcher counter was a bit pricey for my taste – the cheapest thing behind the counter was $10.99, so I strolled down to the prepackaged goods and picked two of these up.

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The chuck is just behind the shoulder of the cow.  A chuck “steak” is just a cut off of the chuck eye roast.  It has a lot of nice fat marbling, but it tends to be a tough cut of meat if not cook properly.  I would totally use this for making beef stew cooking it a long time, but last night I felt like a steak.  Since I carried this on my train ride home, it had plenty of time to get to room temperature by the time I got home.  But if you are making this from your fridge – set it out for 30 minutes before cooking.  NEVER COOK A COLD PIECE OF MEAT IN A HOT SKILLET.  It will be tough every time.  Sorry I was shouting at you, but you don’t want to throw your beef out!

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I seasoned mine with Hardcore Carnivore Rub Black – my fav.  And recently got their Red seasoning meant for pork – cannot wait to use that on a pork shoulder when grilling weather gets here.  Or at the very least, when it’s still light enough for me to grill outside when I get home – but I’ve got several weeks before that happens.

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I tend to only use a meat thermometer when I am making a roast, because when I make steak in my Lodge cast iron skillet, I can see the cook line on the side and know when to flip it.  This steak was about an inch thick, so I went with 4 minutes on the first side over medium high heat, then just 3 minutes on the other side.  And then I let it rest on a plate in my microwave for ten minutes before slicing.  Please ignore my messy stove top – I cleaned it after dinner, promise Open-mouthed smile

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That picture above is after the first flip.  Here is the fatal mistake a lot of people make with cutting beef – not cutting across the grain. 

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Since this steak is cut from the chuck eye roast, there are going to be what I call “fat lines” – not sure what else to call it, but I cut around that part because it’s usually just gristle – or just give it to the dogs.  So I cut the steak just shy of the fat line to cut it out.   For the record, cuts with weak muscles like filet mignon – it’s going to be tender no matter how you cut it.  But this is a cut from the harder working part that has lots of muscle.  So unless you cut across that muscle grain, you are going to get a tough chew and you’ll think you either bought a bad cut of beef or you cooked it wrong.  Nope, just didn’t cut across the grain.  After I cut the piece from the fat line, I turned it, and cut across the grain.

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Don’t you love that I am using my stumpy finger to show you which way the grain is going?!  You can just see how tender the beef is.

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Gah, I wish my lighting was better, but hopefully you get the idea – this plate of food was absolutely delicious.  The package of beef had a nutritional label that was 3 points for 4 ounces.  This had a bit of fat on it, and I ate just over 5 ounces, so I called it 7 points to be on the safe side.  On the side I made glazed mushrooms and green beans.  The photo above is 1/2 a serving of this recipe below:

Glazed Green Beans and Mushrooms
Serves 2
A quick and simple side dish that kicks up boring old green beans and mushrooms. Perfect side to steak!
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Cook Time
9 min
Total Time
10 min
Cook Time
9 min
Total Time
10 min
56 calories
12 g
0 g
1 g
3 g
0 g
173 g
442 g
6 g
0 g
0 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
173g
Servings
2
Amount Per Serving
Calories 56
Calories from Fat 5
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 1g
1%
Saturated Fat 0g
0%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 442mg
18%
Total Carbohydrates 12g
4%
Dietary Fiber 3g
11%
Sugars 6g
Protein 3g
Vitamin A
9%
Vitamin C
11%
Calcium
4%
Iron
5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup fresh green beans
  2. 1 cup mushrooms, sliced
  3. 1/2 cup water
  4. 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  5. 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  6. 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  7. salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. In a skillet with a lid, add the water and bring to a boil.  Add the green beans and over medium low heat, cook for 5 minutes.  Drain water, add the green beans back to the pan, add the mushrooms and spray the pan with Pam.  Cook for 5 more minutes.  Meanwhile, mix the soy sauce, brown sugar and mustard together.  Add the sauce to the green bean mixture, toss to coat and cook for 1 minute.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.
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calories
56
fat
1g
protein
3g
carbs
12g
more
My Bizzy Kitchen http://www.mybizzykitchen.com/
The soy sauce/mushroom combo went perfectly with the beef.  That side dish is going to be making a regular appearance, especially since it’s only 1 smart point.

Today is my WI day.  Again, I have no idea how it will go.  I haven’t been able to work out since Saturday since I haven’t been feeling well, and I didn’t use all my weekly points like I normally do.  But I have changed my mindset that the number on the scale is simply a barometer.  You’ll just have to follow me on Instagram (mybizzykitchen) to find out if you can’t wait until tomorrow’s post.

So here is your Thursday Thought – make it a great day!

barackobamachange

Under the Weather

I don’t get sick very often.  On Monday when I was cooking away the day I was getting colder and colder, even though it was 68 degrees in the house (I turned UP the heat from 64, which is what I normally keep it at.)  By 9:00 that night I was shivering under the covers, had a slight fever and a dry cough.  Damn.  Hannah was so cute though.  She brought the humidifier that’s normally in her bedroom and put it in my room.  She tucked me in and turned out the light.  So sweet.

Yesterday morning I still felt a bit off.  Still had the cough, felt achy all over.  I walk by a CVS after I get off the train and bought Aleve and Musinex.  Those both did wonders!  Within a half hour my body no longer ached and I barely coughed throughout the whole day.  Fingers crossed this will pass soon.  I haven’t worked out since Saturday, so I’ll have to really concentrate on my food choices to have a loss on the scale this week.

While I did not feel hungry in the slightest, I knew if I wanted to take medicine I had to eat something.  Well, after the first bite, I cleaned my plate.  One cup steel cut oats, with the last of my macerated berries – which were so liquidy, I just decided to add them to the bowl, with fresh blueberries.  5 smart points for breakfast.

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I usually walk at lunch, so it was weird to have an actual “lunch hour” to eat my lunch.  Again, wasn’t hungry, but managed to eat 3/4 of my lemon orzo soup, and a slice of my muesli bread for 9 points.  Probably the most pitiful lunch picture I’ve taken in a while!

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Work was actually steady busy, and even though I didn’t have a structured workout, still managed to get in 12,200 steps yesterday.  I still haven’t grocery shopped, and it’s weird that if I make it to Wednesday and haven’t shopped, I pretty much can eat with what I have on hand.   I was doing a mental checklist on the train ride home (after I took a nap for 45 minutes!) and realized I could make broccoli pasta with sweet Italian sausage for dinner.   One cup pasta (5) 4 ounces sweet Italian sausage (4) and a cup of broccoli.

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I ate about 3/4 of the plate before I was really stuffed.  I was under my points for the day, so I made popcorn as a night snack for 5 smart points (oil popped) so that I could continue my blue dot streak!

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For those who don’t know, the blue dots mean that I ate between 27-37 points per day, or within the “healthy eating zone.”  I get 30 points for the day, and now that I am under 170, 28 flex points for the week.  My next WI is Thursday and I still have 21 weekly points I haven’t used yet. 

I have a new food find for you – I haven’t looked for them yet, but my WW friend on Instagram Christina brings these to Mexican restaurants to dip into salsa – 41 crackers for only 3 smart points!   (oh, and she just made goal last week after losing 137 pounds!)  Sorry it’s blurry – it was a screen shot of her Instagram Story Open-mouthed smile

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I was in bed by 10:30 last night and didn’t wake up until 6:30 this morning.  I took another Aleve and my Musinex before bed and I am feeling better.   A good nights sleep makes all the difference, doesn’t it?!

I saw this on Connect on the WW app – and thought it was worth a share – here is your Wednesday Wisdom.  Make it a great day!

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Copycat Panera Chicken Orzo Lemon Soup

Yesterday morning I was up at 6:45 –  wide awake on my day off.  What the what?  So I got up, posted my blog, had a cup of tea, did some stuff on the computer and around 8:00 I felt like I needed more sleep.  So I did.  And didn’t wake up until 10!

I must have needed it, and truth be told, as the day progressed I could feel my chest start to tighten.  I coughed a bit.  I’ve been vaccinated for everything but bronchitis, so hopefully it turns into nothing.  Since it was raining all.day.long I declared it a Bizzy in my Kitchen day and rest day from working out.  Best.Day.Evah!

I seriously think I can meal plan this week from what I have on hand.  It’s something I like to call “throw shit in a bag” but it does make you think outside the box.  Take my lunch for later today.  I had leftover veggie chili in my freezer, and I cooked up some zucchini and plan on having chili zucchini boats for lunch – doesn’t that sound good?  I have Timehop to thank for that.  I made it for my lunch three years ago.  But Timehop also reminded me that three years ago last night, Tony made me his famous fried rice.  I’ll have to look back on the blog archives, but that may have been the last time he made that for me. Sad smile

zucchini boats

When I worked at The Chopping Block on Sunday, I made a drink that called for macerated strawberries, basil, lime and a bit of sugar.  It was made to go into a wine spritzer, but after I saw what the berries looked like after 15 minutes, immediately thought “this would be great for a parfait!”  And I was correct.  Don’t let the basil sway you – you will barely notice it’s there and then all of a sudden get a bit with the strawberry, basil and Chobani, and it’s the perfect combo.   This is for four servings – each serving comes out to 1 WW smart point.  Simply take 16 strawberries, dice them, throw them in a mason jar.  Add in 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil, 2 tablespoons lime juice and 1 tablespoon of sugar.  That’s it.  It’s magical!  And yes, that is a tablespoon of fat free whip cream on top.  I used a small mason jar for this breakfast since it was nearly 11:00 by the time I ate breakfast.  All this for only 3 smart points.

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As I was looking through the fridge/pantry and freezer, I realized I had a chicken carcass that needed to be eaten.  Jacob LOVES rotisserie chicken and he can eat a whole one in a few days for lunch or a snack.  I got all of 5 ounces of chicken off it it, but it was plenty for my copycat Panera bread chicken lemon orzo soup.  This made 4 servings of 1.5 cups each for 5 smart points.

Panera Copycat Chicken Lemon Orzo Soup
A light and bright soup.
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668 calories
56 g
126 g
17 g
77 g
4 g
2132 g
3957 g
9 g
0 g
11 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
2132g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 668
Calories from Fat 154
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 17g
27%
Saturated Fat 4g
20%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 4g
Monounsaturated Fat 7g
Cholesterol 126mg
42%
Sodium 3957mg
165%
Total Carbohydrates 56g
19%
Dietary Fiber 12g
48%
Sugars 9g
Protein 77g
Vitamin A
649%
Vitamin C
211%
Calcium
58%
Iron
91%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 teaspoon olive oil
  2. 3 cloves garlic
  3. 1 cup thinly sliced celery
  4. 6 cups chicken broth
  5. 2/3 cup orzo, dried
  6. 2-4 tablespoons lemon juice
  7. 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  8. pinch of salt
  9. pinch of pepper
  10. 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  11. 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  12. 5 ounces chopped cooked chicken
  13. chopped baby spinach for garnish
Instructions
  1. In a large pot, heat the oil.  Add the garlic and celery and cook for a few minutes.  Pour the chicken stock and orzo, and cook for 9-10 minutes, or according to package directions.  When the orzo is cooked, add in the rest of the gang: lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, dried oregano and the chicken.  Remove from heat, and put a lid on, just to cook the chicken through.  I added my soup to my bowl and then added the chopped spinach.
  2. I used Meyer lemons, and since they were small, I used two of them for the juice – so start out with 2 tablespoons and add more for a stronger lemony flavor, which is what I did.
beta
calories
668
fat
17g
protein
77g
carbs
56g
more
My Bizzy Kitchen http://www.mybizzykitchen.com/
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I also add one of of the cut lemons to the broth while the orzo is cooking – I think it leaches out some of the lemon oil in the skin to give it that extra zing, but leave that part out if you like.  Just remove before storing any leftovers.

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After Hannah tried the Keto diet for the first two weeks of January, and realizing that is not a lifestyle she can live with for more than two weeks, she’s going to do Weight Watchers with me!  I thought for sure she’d be all over this soup for lunch, which is why I seriously almost chopped the chicken to bits, because she’s particular about her chicken.  She ate half a bowl, but declared if I made it again, she’d appreciate it without so much chicken.  Or any chicken at all.  I’ll have enough for two lunches this week, so I am totally fine with that.

So having ditched my grocery shop for the week, I realized I would have to make everything from scratch for dinner.  I made a batch of naan.   I made tzatziki sauce with the last bit of Chobani I had left.  And I made my mini falafel to have sort of a street food dinner.  On the side I had 4 ounces of homemade fries, meaning this whole plate came  in at 11 smart points.  And it was fricken delicious.  I ate every single bite.

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With a new year, I have a new header here at MBK – it’s a work in progress.  It’s funny because it was on my list of things to change this month, and my sister said “you should change your header, the salsa picture is confusing.”  Since I had time, I made one, but hopefully she (or my brother) can make it look as nice as this picture below:  I just have that gap on the left hand side I can’t seem to get rid of. Sad smile

My bizzykitchen header

And I also updated my Facebook page and photo – and while that photo is 3 1/2 years old, that’s when I was in full Insanity mode and I felt really good about how those pictures came out (thanks to A.J. Kane Photography!) and figured it would be a nice bit of motivation when I log onto Facebook to see that picture.  What’s weird is that I was 156 pounds in that picture, which is only 14 pounds from where I am today.  I am taking this weight loss one short goal at a time, so no matter how long it takes me, 156 is the first goal.  Oh, and to also eat really delicious food while losing the weight!

Back to work today, let’s hope this little cough I have going on doesn’t turn into something.  But I’ve got a Tuesday Tip for you before I sign off:

When you focus on your problems, you’ll have more problems.  When you focus on your possibilities, you’ll have more opportunities. – Steve Weatherford

#LiveFully Girls Night In

I can’t remember if I told you guys that I have today off.  My law firm is closed for Martin Luther King’s birthday and this girl is happy to have another day because this weekend was pretty jam packed.

Friday at lunch I treated myself to lunch at Roti across the street from my office.  I am really getting into journaling and making plans for my the weekend to make sure I am getting the most out of my time.  It isn’t set in stone, and I am okay with not crossing things off my list if they don’t get done, but I did refer to it a lot this weekend.

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I’ve seen all the pictures of bullet journaling, and let’s just say that I am no where close to how pretty those are, but I did buy a ruler over the weekend – Hannah was kind of making fun of my messy lines being the Type A person she is. Smile with tongue out

Bullet-Journal-15

Hannah and I ran some errands on Friday night, and by the time we got home it was nearly 9:30, I hadn’t eaten dinner yet and I didn’t do my 30 minute workout, as I had put in my journal.  It was very tempting to just scratch it all together, but as my mindset is changing these last few weeks that I have fully committed to Weight Watchers, I’d been doing the same thing pretty much all of 2016 – do great Monday through Friday, then not count any points for food or wine over the weekend and basically maintain my weight, or lose and gain the same 2 pounds over and over.  So I turned my stove on, got my workout done on YouTube, and made a pita pizza and was eating dinner by 10:20.  (and I got a large Venti water when Hannah got her nightly Starbucks!)

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Another “resolution” that I told myself I wanted to do more of in 2017 is take advantage of the group classes at my YMCA.  There are a lot to choose from, but when I saw the Les Mills class, I decided to take that one.  One of my long time blog friends who doesn’t blog anymore, but I follow on Facebook (Erica from Itzy’s Kitchen) teaches these classes. 

PicMonkey Collage - workout

The class was an hour long and no joke, it was tough.  Um, just turns out I am not that coordinated and some of the kickboxing moves had me scratching my head a bit.  I was still proud that I was able to do about 85% of the workout – not bad for my first time.  And it felt good to have my workout done for the day by 10 a.m.

Hannah and I had a very eclectic group of women at our #LiveFully Girls Night In Party sponsored by Weight Watchers.  As one of the WW Ambassadors, I was provided a box full of goodies, from wine glasses to crafting supplies.  The idea was to have a Vision Board party.  A vision board is basically to display images that represent whatever you want to be, do or have in life.   I love the door mat they sent me too!

PicMonkey Collage - live

PicMonkey Collage - party

I had the party start at 7:00 p.m., and we spent nearly the first hour just having everyone get to know each other.   It was a nice mix of generations!  This is also the first time I haven’t obsessed over the food when having people over.  I am going to share a new ground turkey wonton appetizer I made later this week – the photos didn’t turn out too well and it deserves it’s own post.  But I had veggie chips, cheese and crackers, nuts and Hannah made her amazeball jalapeno poppers.

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Then we spent the next two hours telling stories, drinking wine, laughing – OMG, so much laughing!  But we also talked about serious stuff too, everyone has such different lives – a couple women are divorced, another one just got separated from her husband, I am a widow.  We found a ton of stickers at Hobby Lobby for 60% off – love!  And we had various magazines to draw inspiration from.

PicMonkey Collage - vision 1

PicMonkey Collage - vision 2

We placed them all on the floor so everyone could see what each had made – I loved all of them!

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Group photo!

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Hannah and I both said we’d love to have more parties like this – next time Jacky I’ll have you and your daughter make the trek to my neck of the woods!

If anyone is thinking of joining Weight Watchers, I have a coupon code – just follow that link below and it will give you the info.

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I worked yesterday and will be sharing recipes for homemade bagels and smoked salmon – holy balls, both looked amazing – I didn’t actually eat either one because our group ate literally everything, but everyone raved about them.  It’s been a while since I’ve made bagels – and Lori, you’ll see how easy they are to make at home!

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Here is your Monday motivation – make it a great day!

 242378-Good-Morning-Monday-Motivation

UPDATE:  My blog has now been posted over at my part-time job at The Chopping Block – I’ve made my copycat Starbuck’s Muesli bread even easier by letting it rise in the refrigerator while I am at work – less than 8 minutes of hands on time for this delicious bread!  Go check it out here, and if you can leave me some comment love over there, I would appreciate it!  Can’t you find 8 minutes in your day to make this?!

starbucks copycat muesli bread

-1.6!

Anyone who’s been a Weight Watcher for any amount of time has their “Weight Watcher Uniform.”  Basically the lightest clothes you own so that you have the most loss on the scale come weigh in day.  And you pretty much wear it every.single.weigh.in.  It makes it a bit difficult when it’s 20 degrees in Chicago!  I weighed in before work so I’d be able to participate in the meeting at lunch and not spend time standing in line at the scale.   I wore the lightest pair of sweats I own and a tank top and wore that under my winter coat.  After having two good losses in a row, I was actually expecting to maintain, or have a loss of 1/2 a pound or so, even though I knew I stayed on plan all week.  Want to see all my blue dots?

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But check it out!

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I’m back in the 160s! Whoop!  That’s 6.8 pounds in the last three weeks.  I didn’t lose that in all of 2016!   Funny if you actually follow the plan you can lose weight Open-mouthed smile

I was so busy at work yesterday.  One of the secretaries was out yesterday so I took on her two people in addition to my two people.  My breakfast was amazing – steel cut oats, tablespoon of granola, a sprinkle of brown sugar and fresh fruit – breakfast comes in at 7 points.

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Our Weight Watcher meeting was fun.  I hope I don’t talk too much in the meeting, but I feel rejuvenated about the plan so I am just so excited to talk about all the good things that you can still eat.  Like Oprah says, she loves and she eats bread every day!   I picked up a small tomato and feta soup at Pret on my way back to the office because I knew I wouldn’t have time to put my lunch together that I brought.  I need to make a note to bring a “picky plate” that doesn’t require heating up.  The soup, although 110 calories, came in at 5 WW points, and the bread was 3.

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They handed out these WW snacks at the meeting yesterday.  They are mini rice crackers with a cinnamon flavor, I actually really liked them and it was kind of a lot for 2 points.  Look at me throwing the Weight Watchers logo in the pic – how did that get in there?! Open-mouthed smile

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I took a bit of insulin when I ate those, but I think it was too much.  An hour and a half later when I was getting off the train, I couldn’t tell if I was hungry or if my blood sugar was low.  Then I started to sweat, and new I had low blood sugar.  By the time I got home (not to worry, less than a five minute drive home) it was 55.

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Instead of running to chocolate like I normally would, I sat and ate about a cup and a half of grapes.  And then was immediately full and not ready for dinner.  I was busy though – I tweaked my copycat Starbuck’s muesli recipe to make it completely hands off (well, almost!).  My blog post for The Chopping Block is due today, and it will post on Monday (I think!) – I’ll let you know because it is so easy!  Look at how pretty it is, even in shitty lighting!

As I was on my train ride home, I went to trusty Pinterest to figure out what to make for dinner.  I needed to use up some Italian sausage, I had potatoes, and with that search, stumbled upon A Cozy Apron’s Saucy Hungarian Red Potato Goulash.  I did a spin on that for a quick 15 minute dinner last night.

Sausage and Potato Stew
Serves 1
A quick 15 minute dinner that will only taste as if it's been stewing all day. 7 smart points for the whole bowl!
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Prep Time
2 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
17 min
Prep Time
2 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
17 min
328 calories
34 g
34 g
10 g
28 g
4 g
644 g
1662 g
2 g
0 g
5 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
644g
Servings
1
Amount Per Serving
Calories 328
Calories from Fat 92
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 10g
16%
Saturated Fat 4g
19%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 4g
Cholesterol 34mg
11%
Sodium 1662mg
69%
Total Carbohydrates 34g
11%
Dietary Fiber 4g
14%
Sugars 2g
Protein 28g
Vitamin A
167%
Vitamin C
114%
Calcium
15%
Iron
26%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 4 ounces sweet Italian sausage
  2. 1.5 cups chicken broth
  3. 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  4. 4 ounces thinly sliced potatoes (I used Idaho)
  5. pinch of crushed red pepper
  6. salt and pepper to taste
  7. 3/4 cup chopped baby kale
  8. 1 teaspoon corn starch mixed with 1 tablespoon water
Instructions
  1. Heat skillet over medium high heat.  Slice sausage into small pieces and cook for a couple minutes until they start to brown, but aren’t cooked through.  Reduce heat to medium low, add in the chicken broth, paprika, potatoes, crushed red pepper and pepper.  (wait to add salt because the chicken broth I used was salt enough).  Cook for about 10 minutes, or until the potatoes are fork tender.  Turn the heat up, add the corn starch and whisk for one minute.  Remove from heat and add the baby kale.  That’s it!
Notes
  1. This would also be good with smoked sausage 😀
Adapted from from A Cozy Apron
beta
calories
328
fat
10g
protein
28g
carbs
34g
more
Adapted from from A Cozy Apron
My Bizzy Kitchen http://www.mybizzykitchen.com/
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I wish that was a better picture, but this was delicious.  Super hearty, the broth almost tasted like gravy and it had a nice kick to it thanks to the crushed red peppers.  The whole bowl came in at 7 smart points via the WW recipe builder.  Yum!

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I am super excited because thanks to Weight Watchers, they sent me a whole goodie box to have a Girls Night In, complete with wine glasses, craft supplies, an Amex gift card to buy food and wine for the party.  Hannah and I are having a Mother/Daughter girls night in and we are getting our crafty pants on.  I’ve wanted to do a vision board for a while, and what better way to do it with two generations of women!   Stay tuned for the full recap on Monday.

I am actually working at The Chopping Block on Sunday!  It’s been a couple weeks and I am excited to be working a Bagel and Brunch class (hey Chicago peeps! – still 3 spots left in that class!): 

Homemade bagels, cream cheese and smoked salmon? We can’t think of a better way to start the day! Learn, hands-on, how to make these crowd-pleasers, and enjoy a fun and delicious brunch.
Strawberry-Basil Spritzer (Sparkling Rosé Aperitif); Hot-Smoked Salmon with Homemade Bagels and Herb Cream Cheese; Cucumber-Dill Salad; Cheese Blintzes with Blueberry Sauce.

You better believe I’ll be sharing those recipes next week!

Here’s your Friday Feeling!

friday feeling