Monday, October 29, 2012


Hello All and Happy Monday.  I hope your weekend went by slower than mine did.  I’ll go ahead and jump right in.  I started my new food pyramid based diet last week and in terms of the amount of food I was able to have, it went well.  I was up a bit on the scale.  I wasn’t surprised by this because I didn’t have a good weekend prior to that and I’m currently retaining a bit more water than usual.  I am going to give this diet a real try until the first of the year which I think is a sufficient trial period.  If I don’t see positive results, I will go back to points.  I made some adjustments this week.  Last week I gave myself 2 servings of the “other” category which can be a serving of anything you want.  I changed that to only one “other” serving per day because I felt like I was eating too much.  Also, this upcoming weekend, I’m going to try the diet both days but give myself an opportunity to earn extra “other” servings with exercise.  We’ll see how it goes. I don’t expect change on the scale next week either because of all my Halloween behavior.  I am still steadfast with exercise.  Last week, I tried a boot camp that Cassandra goes to and I absolutely loved it.  It was challenging, they did things in short intervals, it was at a perfect time and it made me realize that I’m in pretty good shape.  The only problem is that it is outrageously expensive.  It’s $180 per month or you can pay over $2000 for the whole year.  If I were ever able to do it, I think I’d save the $2,000 and pay up front.  Oh well, it gave me some good tips and a good workout.

In the spirit of following the food pyramid, I ate WAY more fruits and vegetables than normal last week.  One thing that I’m most excited about is the ability to incorporate protein that I didn’t before because they were too many points.  The protein category includes nuts and eggs and peanut butter so I’ve been pumped to have servings of these foods I considered delicacies before.  You can eat them as long as you only have one serving.  I made a stir fry of sorts that I didn’t have to even cook on the stove.  First, I want to rave over the Oscar Mayer Carving Board Chicken Breast.  Y’all, this stuff is delicious.  It’s a bit over priced but it tastes great, it’s already cooked and it heats up nicely.  Plus, it splits into two servings quite nicely so you don’t have to weigh it.  To make this dish, I microwaved broccoli and green beans then I got out a cookie sheet, added aluminum foil and sprayed it with Pam.   After I did that, I poured the broccoli and green beans onto the pan, added salt, pepper, garlic, W sauce and some of the Carving Board Chicken.  Once it was all on the pan, I put it under the broiler for a few minutes.  I took it out, stirred it around, added more of the spices and then 1/3 cup of almonds.  I stuck it back in the broiler for a few minutes and BAM!  I had a huge plate of yummy green veggies and healthy protein.  I made this a couple times.

The next series of pictures are ridiculous and I wanted to warn you of that.  I only like carrots in certain situations.  If they are cooked in a soup or roast, I’m fine with them.  I will eat them raw but only if I have a dip.  I left the yogurt dip I bought at work one night and I still needed a serving of non-green vegetables and all I had was baby carrots.  I hate eating them alone like that.  It feels like it takes forever to eat and the way they break apart in your mouth disgusts me.  Even though I wasn’t happy about it, I ate them because I wanted to make sure to follow the rules I laid out for myself.  Next time, I will go so far as to drive to the store for a different vegetable.  Just as I suspected, it took me forever to eat them and I wasn’t happy so I took a series of silly pictures.  Sorry if some are gross, lol.

Ok, now that all that is over with, I figured I’d share all of my different Halloween costumes. 

I had so much fun dressing up this year.  Jordan looked great as Ursula and I want to give a HUGE THANK YOU to my mom for always working so hard to help me with Halloween.  She made those tentacles all by herself and they were a big hit at the party.  I hated my costume.  My wig was out of control and the cheap costume from Wal-Mart was sloppy but it was a fun concept with me as Little Mermaid and Jordan as Ursula.  Jordan and I already have the wheels turning for next year but we know we want no accessories.  We want to be creative, we want people to know who we are and we don’t want wigs or too many props.  I’m not sure if such a costume exists but we have a whole year to try.  I also went as a flapper and as Fred (Wilma is my roommate Cassandra). I may dress up one more time on Wednesday to hand out candy but we’ll see.

Alabama had an awesome win against Mississippi State this weekend so I was pleased.  They play LSU in Baton Rouge on Saturday so I’m nervous about that one.

To any peeps I know or don’t know that read this leaving on the northern east coast, be careful out there! I’m praying for your safety!

That’s all I got for now!

I hope everyone has a great week!

Happy Halloween Y’all!

“It’s just a jump to the left…” Let’s Do The Time Warp Again-The Rocky Horror Picture Show

Monday, October 22, 2012

Back To The Basics...

Happy Monday y’all! Here we are again on the day that takes the most grief.  I hope your Monday is uncharacteristically great.  I am doing OK.  I’ll jump right in and tell you that I didn’t see much change in terms of the scale this weekend.  I’m still hovering between 6 and 9 pounds above my lowest weight.  I’m also still working my behind off in terms of exercise so nothing has changed there.   I think I’m going to go to a boot camp class this week that my friend does because it’s “bring a friend” week.  I’m a little nervous about it so if I go, I’ll definitely share how it went. 

I have been doing Weight Watchers for about 3-1/2 years now and I’m very used to it but I realized that there are many times when I phone it in when it comes to nutrition.  Often times, I will opt for a serving of fat free chips because it’s easier than cooking broccoli.  In the same light, I’d rather grab a popsicle out of the freezer than go through the trouble of peeling an orange.  Because I usually go for the food that’s quick and easy, I’m filling my body with preservatives and food that lacks nutrition.  After doing this for several years, I am highly aware of how important a balanced diet is and I wanted to do more to balance my own.  After doing research for a couple of weeks, I have devised a system that is still rough and will probably need some tweaks in the upcoming days and weeks that I am going to experiment with.  I’m still going to count points on Sunday since that’s my cheat meal day but on the other days of the week, I am going to eat based on how the food pyramid recommends.  I’m sure you’ve all seen it but few of us actually do what it says.  The food pyramid tells you how much protein, fruits, vegetables, grain, dairy and fat you should have every day.  I divided the categories into groups and for each day, I will have the recommended amount of servings in those groups.  I have decided to try this until the new year begins.  At this point, as long as I’m still doing the same amount of vigorous exercising, trying out a diet that adds more fruits and vegetables can’t hurt.  I also decided that if I notice myself gaining weight, stop fluctuating and only go up in pounds or if I start cheating more and finding ways to justify eating bad foods, that I would go back to what I know best: counting points.  If I am successful and actually manage to feel better and lose weight by the time the new year rolls around, I will continue the new plan.  I want to change things up but I want to be smart.  My health is very important to me.  It’s more important than the number on the scale but the number does matter to some extent.  The number I used to have over 3 years ago meant that I was unhealthy and I never want to go back to that but I need to make sure that I’m doing as much as I can to get the nutrients that I need.  I’ll update you on any progress or non-progress that I have along the way.  Today is the first day and it’s hard to know for sure yet but so far, so good.

The recipe today is very simple and you must like cucumbers but I enjoyed it and it’s a quick filling, snack so I thought I’d share.  I love bread but as you know, it can be a dangerous thing.  I am almost willing to bet that I had half a loaf of bread myself with the dinner my mom made last night.  So, if you’ve had more than your share of bread for the day, tiny sandwiches replacing the bread with cucumber slices, will be a good snack for you to have.  In no way does the cucumber replace the bread but it’s a nice snack nonetheless.  It couldn’t be more simple, either.  Just slice up the cucumbers and add what you want in between them.  I used Laughing Cow cheese, deli meat, salt and pepper and they were quite tasty.

I also wanted to share a new product that I found.  It’s Healthy Choice’s Greek Frozen Yogurt.  I got the blueberry flavor.  I love frozen yogurt and Greek Yogurt is the new health food fad so I tried it.  I also put it in those small cones that are only about 15 calories a piece to give myself an ice-cream-like treat.  The yogurt tasted great.  This sounds odd but the texture makes it so that if you don’t bite into it (which I can’t do because I have sensitive teeth) and just lick it, it takes FOREVER to eat.  This is a good thing because eating is mental.  If you eat a fun-sized candy bar, there isn’t much satisfaction because it takes 2 seconds to eat but if you eat this frozen yogurt off of a cone, it will take you 10 or 15 minutes to eat it and in your head you feel like you’ve gotten much more out of the snack than you actually have.

Well, I think I told you last week that my dog, Pacey was having a tumor removed.  He made it through surgery fine.  The tumor was 3.2 pounds.  The doctor said it was huge and even gave me a picture to keep of the nasty thing.  I thought it was cool but not everyone does so if you want to see it just let me know.  The first picture was taken when he got to come home from the vet's office the day after surgery.  I found out this morning that the tumor he had was not cancerous so we all breathed a sigh of relief.  Pacey has always despised Halloween costumes but I get him one every year.  In the second picture, he’s dressed up as a groom and he looks devastated which means he is getting back to his normal self.  He’s still not eating like he used to but I feel better knowing that giant thing is out of him.

I wanted to share my new car bumper with you.  Last year sometime, I backed into a truck leaving quite a big dent in my bumper.  Well, I saved up and I finally got a new one.  It’s so pretty that I just had to share.  I also got a new tag, but not to worry, I haven’t stopped caring about breast cancer research and I will make sure to compensate for the new Bama tag somehow this year.  I kept the tag though and it’s in my room because I dedicated that tag to the Pittman family.  My BFF Jordan lost his aunt Angel to breast cancer 3 years ago as of last week and she will always be loved and missed!  

The final thing I wanted to share was the non-healthy food I took to the first of 3 Halloween parties I had this weekend.  My mom helped me (and by help I mean did most of the work) make this spider cookie cake and scary face cheese ball.  The cookie cake is so easy.  You just take a standard tube of sugar cookie dough, slice it up and put it on the pan into one giant cookie.  You bake it, let it cool then top it with store bought cream cheese frosting.  When that’s done, you take black icing and swirl it around on the cake and then run a toothpick through it to give the spider-web look.  The face is just my mom’s famous cheese ball shaped into a face then covered in ham.  We used green olives for the eyes.  Both treats went over very well because not a crumb of either was left.  Thanks for the help, Mom!

That’s all for today!  I’ve got two more Halloween parties this weekend so I’m excited.

Unfortunately, I have to miss it but Alabama is playing Mississippi State in their homecoming game on Saturday so, ROLL TIDE!


“You know how we’re always saying what a pain you are, you’re the world’s worst dog, don’t believe it, don’t believe it for one minute because you know we couldn’t find a better dog, I love you, more than anything, you’re a great dog, I love you.” John Grogan to Marley in Marley & Me

Monday, October 15, 2012

Feel Better Pacey!

Happy Monday y’all.  I’m experiencing a range of emotions right now but at this very moment, I’m in a good mood.  It’s unusual for a Monday but I’ll take it…especially since I know there will be some unpleasant moments this week that I’ll tell you a little bit later.  I weighed this morning and some of the bad behavior I’ve mixed in with the good came back to haunt me and I was up a little.  I fully expect my weight fluctuation to be on the upswing over the next few weeks.  I have multiple Halloween celebrations and it’s my favorite holiday.  I’ll just continue to work out as usual and try to keep things normal MOST of the time.

This week I wanted to tell you about a Pinterest inspired, low fat brownie.  This recipe is so simple and I had MULTIPLE people rave about these brownies.  All you do is take a box of brownie mix and combine it with a 12 oz can of Diet Coke and then bake it like normal.  Because you aren’t adding any calories with the diet coke, the only calories come from the mix which make these brownies pretty low in fat.  I thought they were pretty good and a couple people I let try them said they were great!  They seemed to get even more chocolate-y in the refrigerator.  I would definitely give them a try since they are inexpensive and easy.

Now, this sweet treat was not healthy.  I made this recipe a few weeks back after I saw it on Pinterest.  You make the crust with butter and cake batter and the gooey part is confectioner sugar and cream cheese.  It also had vanilla.  These taste like chess bars but I’ve seen them called a number of things: gooey bars, chess bars, etc .  I don’t really care what they’re called.  They are decadent and DELICIOUS.  They will also be a huge hit if you ever bring them to a party.  Let me know out there if you are interested in the recipe.  They are super easy to make.  Yum!

I love kitchen gadgets!  When I saw these wand shaped salt & pepper shakers, I couldn’t resist.  I got them at a place called Francesca’s at the Summit in Birmingham.  The only thing I don’t like is that there isn’t a lot of room for the salt and pepper and it’s hard to get the salt and pepper in there without wasting.  What do I care, though?  They are cute and when it comes to kitchen appliances, the cuter the better even if they aren’t very useful.

So, my Dog, Pacey Carter Wyatt is having a large tumor removed from his chest/underarm/stomach region.  The doctor said that it is most likely not cancerous so hopefully, he will recover just fine.  I’m VERY worried about him though.  Pacey is not a spry young puppy anymore but he isn’t an old man either and I’m not quite ready for him to go.  He lives with my parents and I’ve been babying him the past few days because he just doesn’t feel well.  He hasn’t been eating and he’s thrown up a few times.  I took him for a walk Saturday and I honestly thought I had killed him when I got back.  Dogs are funny how they can be a part of your family.  I remember being without a job for a little while and I was depressed about that and some other things and he laid by my side all day/every day.  When I house sit for my parents, I let him sleep in the bed and I feel much safer with him there.  He’s a good boy and I love him very much so if y’all don’t mind thinking about him and sending up a little prayer tomorrow that he comes back to his people a healthy boy and lives for 5 or 10 more years!  I know the collage is a bit dramatic and almost looks like an “in memory” photo but I liked it and let’s face it…I am dramatic.

There are a plethora of fun activities to do this weekend.  My friend Beth is getting married Friday night (congrats Beth), I’m having brunch with Jordan on Saturday, I am going to work on my Halloween costume with my mom and watch Bama hopefully take Tennessee down with no problems.  I also have my first Halloween party Saturday night.  I’m excited for all of that.

I hope everyone has a great week!  Roll Tide! Bye!

“Lie to me
 I promise I’ll believe.” Strong Enough – Sheryl Crow

Monday, October 8, 2012

Let's Get Poppin!

I have a serious case of the Monday’s today y’all.  I hope you all aren’t stuck in the same Monday rut.  If you are, no worries, we will make it through the day.  My weight this weekend hadn’t really changed.  I’m OK with that because I did have a bad lunch on Tuesday so staying the same was actually a relief.  I was at about 75-80% this weekend so I’m hoping that my weight will be down this weekend or at least even with last weekend.  I realized today that I haven’t lost weight since April.  I was disappointed when I realized this because it’s become clear to me that my body is over this whole “let’s lose weight” thing.  The problem is, I’m not done.  Granted, I am relieved that after losing 115 pounds, I’ve managed to maintain that weight.  I’ve only had a variation of 3-5 pounds that creep up when I’m not at 100%.  I suppose I should be proud of that and I am, I’m just not sure how to re-charge. 

The recipe this week came from Pinterest.  In fact, every bit of food I will show you was Pinterest inspired.  I guess I have accepted the fact that I rely on it completely for everything now.  I don’t know if it’s just a phase or if my excessive pinning is here to stay.  The good news is, it inspires me to be creative and take dishes that may normally be unhealthy and make them better.  These jalapeño poppers called for full fat crescent rolls and cream cheese but I used Reduced Fat Crescent Rolls and Fat Free Cream Cheese which made the fat and calories drop quite a bit.  All you do is roll out the crescents and add the cream cheese, jalapeño, and bacon in the center, roll them back up and bake them.  The best part about these, other than their simplicity is that you get to put bacon in them!  Unfortunately, the serving size isn’t great.  You shouldn’t have more than 2 but they taste great!

The recipes I made for my mom’s birthday celebration last night were also from Pinterest but they weren’t healthy so sorry about that.  My brother made burgers and we had salad but I also made 3 more new recipes.  The first were bacon wrapped cocktail weenies.  Basically, you take the little smokies, wrap them in a piece of bacon (cut into thirds) and place them along the bottom of a pan.  After that, you melt a stick of butter and mix that with a cup of brown sugar and pour it all over the top and then bake them.  Between the bacon renderings and butter, it made way too much grease so we drained them, moved them from their casserole dish and put them on a cookie sheet and then placed them under the broiler so the  bacon could get done and they would be a bit crispier.  They tasted great!

I also made bacon-ranch potatoes.  You are actually supposed to make these hobo style.  You take a sheet of aluminum foil and place sliced red potatoes, butter, ranch dressing mix and bacon on top, wrap them up in the foil and then cook them for 20-30 minutes.  We microwaved our potatoes for several minutes before putting them on the grill so they would actually BE done in 20-30 minutes.  Unfortunately, my brother and I made packets far too big to fit on a plate so we just dumped the potatoes in a bowl and served them that way.  They turned out great.  They had nice flavor and my parents had plenty left over to fry up tonight for dinner.

Finally, I made miniature Snickers Cheesecakes for my mom’s birthday “cake.”   You prepare the graham cracker crust and press it in the bottom of the muffin tin and then fill it with a cheesecake mix of cream cheese, sugar, caramel sauce, eggs and vanilla.  Before you put them in the oven, you top them with pieces of Snickers.  These were SO rich but they were SO good.  We topped them with even more caramel sauce.  Overall, I think it went well.  I don’t handle multiple dishes at once very well at times  because of poor time management but the help I got made it much better than it could have been.

This weekend, I ran in something called the Color Run.  These are popping up everywhere and they are popular 5K’s to raise money for books.  The concept is simple.  You run a 5K and at certain points in the run, people take a ketchup bottle and squirt colored corn starch on you.  It’s just a different and fun way to have a 5K.  I’m  thinking it wasn’t quite a 5K because I ran it in less than 36 minutes but I was proud because I ran it the ENTIRE way without stopping.  There were so many people there.  It was a lot of fun and I was glad I did it.  I wasn’t perfect Saturday night when it came to food but I got up Sunday morning and exercised for an hour.  Now that I think about it, I am proud of myself even though I haven’t lost weight since April.  That means that for 6 months, I’ve been in a plateau and I haven’t given up.  No matter what happens, I always start over the next day.  I will get the re-charge I need. I just need to be patient, continue working hard and wait for the mental re-dedication to kick in and for my body to get on board with what I want to do and what my goals are. 

Y’all shouldn’t give up either! You make goals for a reason.  Even when you feel discouraged, keep those goals in the forefront of your mind.  Beating yourself up is counter-productive.  You can do it!

Have a good week and ROLL TIDE! Bama plays Missouri this weekend. Bye! 

“No one, no, no one needs to know right now.” No One Needs to Know – Shania Twain

Monday, October 1, 2012

Got Milk, Y'all?

Happy Birthday Mom! If you can’t tell, my mother’s birthday is today so I’d like to take the first bit of the blog to wish her the happiest of birthdays.  We aren’t celebrating until Sunday but today is the actual day.  I get to cook for her on Sunday so I’m sure I’ll be dipping into my Pinterest boards to find something to make.  I am also taking her to lunch tomorrow and I’m going to cheat…you know…for her…since it’s her birthday.  My mom works extremely hard so it’s the least I can do!  I love you, Mom!

Other than my upcoming birthday lunch with my mom tomorrow, I’m being a good girl.  I wasn’t perfect this weekend but I wasn’t awful, either.  When I weighed on Saturday, I was down a little again so that’s good.  I’m headed in the right direction.  It’s nice to know that I can still lose weight after climbing up a little bit at a time for several weeks.  I don’t know what else to do but keep pressing forward and that is my intention. 

I am not the biggest fan of yogurt.  I LOVE frozen yogurt but that is certainly not the same thing as opening a pack of Yoplait.  Even though I’m not a fan, I know that I need dairy products so I’ve been trying to incorporate more milk by having cereal and I choked down some cottage cheese last week with pineapple (though I’ll never do that again) and I’ve also been making recipes with yogurt.  This first one is just a container of plain Greek yogurt mixed with a packet of ranch salad dressing mix.  I mixed them together and dipped Special K Cracker Chips in it.  It was actually quite good.  The best part about it is that the whole container is fat free and only 80 calories.  I think next time I’ll try it with French Onion Soup mix to make French Onion dip instead.  Either way, it’s a good way to eat a lot of what I love and I LOVE chips and dip.

I also made “Yogurt Dots.”  This idea was found on Pinterest like so many of my food ideas have been lately.  All you do is find a cup of yogurt with your favorite flavor, put it in a baggie, cut the tip of the baggie and squeeze dots out on a pan.  Once you’ve done that, stick them in the freezer for about 45 minutes and then pop them off the pan and eat them.  They have the good flavor of the yogurt but since they’re frozen, they lose some of the consistency that I don’t like about it.  I would recommend them…especially if you are looking for something to snack on for several minutes.

I am training for a 5K that I am doing this Saturday.  I’ve been running a little outside over the past couple of weeks and progressively increasing the distance as I go.  I run on the treadmill but running over 3 miles outside is a whole different ballgame.  I ran my fastest mile ever outside at just under 13-1/2 minutes and then I ran 2 miles in under 29 so I was pretty happy.  It actually felt good and I ALMOST enjoyed it.  I don’t usually get excited about exercise so I’ve been sharing the accomplishment.  I can promise you if you had asked me 10 years ago if I could run 2 miles without stopping, I would have laughed in your face.  Sometimes you have to celebrate the small victories!

I don’t know if y’all know this or not but Halloween is by FAR my favorite holiday.  This the door at my apartment.  I put this in the Pinterest corner because I got the idea from there and with the creative help of my mom and my roommate, I think our Frankendoor looks even better than the one I saw on Pinterest.  I’m so excited about Halloween this year! I got lucky because I got invited to three Halloween parties and they all just happened to be on different nights so I get to dress up 3 times at least.  I could potentially dress up at work and on the night of Halloween to hand out candy.  Basically, I can barely wait! Prepare yourself for more pictures to come!

Alabama is off this weekend which is good because after the injuries and the not so hot playing, they could use some rest.  It also means no football so I think I will try and relax.

I am participating in the 5K Color Run on Saturday so hopefully I’ll have some pictures from that and I also hope I’ll be able to run the whole time.  It sounds fun.

I hope y’all have a good week!


“Is this the real life?
Is this just fantasy?
Caught in a landslide,
No escape from reality. 
Open your eyes, look up to the skies and see…” Bohemian Rhapsody - Queen