Wednesday, December 31, 2008

My Last Post of 2008

Thankfully the snow has stopped and we only ended up with 8 inches.  It is a very light and fluffy snow which makes it much easier to clean up.  The wind has really picked up out there so a lot of snow is flying around from that.  D is all tucked into bed and fast asleep – I just peeked into his tent and he is out.  I am actually ready to turn in myself – I feel like such an old lady.  I managed to get in a nice yoga session this evening.  The stretching felt so good having run 6 miles this morning. 

I tried making ice cream in the Vita-Mix blender again tonight.  This time I used much less ingredients and only ended up with a normal serving.  I used a very small banana, 1/3 cup 1% milk, 1/2 a tbsp agave and about 2 cups of ice.  It came out pretty good – I loved the texture. I have to tweak the recipe because I would have liked it to be a little sweeter.  I am loving this thing – who doesn’t adore fresh ice cream and it is super healthy. 

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The rest of my eats went like this:

I added this little baby to my afternoon snack.

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In my bowl was 1/2 a cup Greek yogurt, 1/4 cup Cinnamon Puffins, 1/4 cup Original Puffins, the mini box of raisins and Orange Ginger Almonds.

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For some reason that snack did not last more than 2 hours so I had a pear to hold me over till I made some dinner.

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For dinner I had a Dr. Praeger’s Veggie Burger topped with 1/2 a slice Swiss cheese, a mini whole wheat bagel topped with a tbsp PB and a teensy bit of cranberry apple butter. I also ate the rest of the cheese that would not fit on the patty on the side.

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Even thought I had the banana ice cream a few hours later I needed a little something so I had a cup of tea and a Z Bar.

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Hopefully my what seems like a bottomless pit today has had its fill.  Time to go see what Charlie is up to.  I doubt we will be staying up much later.  My early morning sure is catching up with me fast.

I hope you all  have a safe and spectacular night.  See you in 2009.

Keeping Him Occupied

Since it is such a crummy day, D and I have been staying busy doing lots of artsy stuff.  Check out his drawing of Thomas the Tank Engine.

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We broke out the Colorforms – one of his Christmas presents.  Great idea Daddy – these things are so cool.

This is on the white background.

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And this is the black background.

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Here is the low-down on lunch.

I stuffed 1/2 a red pepper with 1/2 a cup cottage cheese, on the side I had zucchini slices and I topped the whole thing with 1/2 a cup of my homemade pumpkin hummus.  The hummus stayed thick and creamy even the next day.

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I also had 2 pieces of Ezekiel Cinnamon Raisin toast with 1 tbsp PB and All Fruit Blueberry spread.

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Tonight we don’t have any big NYE plans – that is what happens when you have a little child.  I can’t see us venturing out in this mess anyway.  I probably will not even be able to stay awake to see the ball drop – I have been awake since 4:30 AM.  Charlie is at work and I am sure his commute home will be brutal – he has an hour long drive without snow on the roads.  So I am probably going to be on my own for dinner.  I know my evening sounds super exciting :)  I hope you all have a safe evening, whatever it is that you may have on the agenda.  Time to get back to the entertainment or should I say entertaining.

A Bad Batch of Apples

This week I purchased Gala apples at the store and the 2 that I have had from the batch have tasted funny.  They are not the least bit sweet and I am finding them to be very unpalatable.  I am wondering if I cook them if their flavor will change – I hate to toss them out.

I love to add apples in my morning mess so on my way home from the gym this morning I ran to Stop & Shop and bought some Golden Delicious apples. I quickly threw together my breakfast because D and I had our babysitting shift this morning.  I had a bowl of oat bran mixed with water in the fridge waiting for me to jazz it up.  I added 1/2 a cup of Greek yogurt to the 1/3 cup bran that was moistened with 1/2 a cup of water. It is amazing how creamy the bran gets without even being cooked.  

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I added a chopped golden delicious apple, a Weetabix biscuit for some crispiness and a tbsp PB. 

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We made it home before the roads got too cruddy.  It is snowing like crazy out there right now.  I think it is safe to say we are home for good today.  My Nana asked me to give her a perm but I think it is a good idea to just stay home and go to her house another day. 

I hope you are having a great day.  See you after lunch.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Can’t beat the Heat

This afternoon D and I managed to not blow away in the wind. I replenished our soap supply and a few other much needed household items.

While we were out running our errands hunger struck but I was prepared this time. I packed a Z Bar which held me over for a little while.

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When we got home I mixed 1/2 a cup Greek yogurt, 1/2 a tsp Honey-Cinnamon Camp Mix seasoning, 1/4 cup TJ’s High Fiber cereal, 1/4 cup Original Puffins and a few Orange Ginger Almonds.

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I kept diner simple because I was hoping to make it to Hot Yoga tonight. I didn’t know if Charlie would make it home in time – thankfully he did. I had 2 pieced of whole wheat toast – 1 topped with pumpkin hummus and the other a tbsp PB and cranberry apple butter.

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For some protein I had 1/2 a cup cottage cheese with a little more pumpkin hummus.

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I did indulge in a little dessert – 1/2 a cup blueberries and a Vita-Top.

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Yoga was awesome tonight. I know it sounds grows but sweating out the toxins is so refreshing. After a serious sweat session I came home and ate an apple and a piece of string cheese.

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I have an early start tomorrow – it is a work day. We are supposed to get snow too – I think they are predicting 4 to 7 inches. Ugh!!! Have a great night.

Hummus in Ten

Hummus is one of my favorite things to eat on my veggies but I hate when I buy a brand and all I taste is salt. I have made hummus in the past and it came out so-so – not thick enough for my liking.  I was so excited to try making hummus in the Vita-Mix. I found a recipe for Pumpkin Hummus in The Eat-Clean Diet Cookbook by Tosca Reno.  I left out the pumpkin oil because I don’t have any and the hummus still came out amazing. 

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I consulted the hummus recipe in the cookbook that came with the machine to make sure I was blending it properly.  I can not believe how thick and creamy this stuff is.  I made it in seriously 10 minutes – that includes gathering the ingredients.  AND I cleaned the container with some soapy warm water in no time at all.  There is no reason for me to buy hummus at the store ever again.  I did not taste it right away because I made it before going to the gym.  I was really looking forward to lunch this afternoon.

 

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When I got home I was in need of a little something to tide me over while I cleaned myself up.  I had an apple and a piece of string cheese.

 

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When it was lunch time I made a salad that contained spinach, red pepper, zucchini, 1/2 a cup cottage cheese and 1/4 cup pumpkin hummus.  This is the best hummus I have ever had – I must try not to eat the whole bowl in one day.  The Vita-Mix whipped so much air into it which made it soooooo creamy. 

 

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I also had 2 pieces of Ezekiel Cinnamon Raisin toast with a tbsp PB and strawberry preserves.  That plate was a Christmas present from my lovely mother-in-law.  She knows how much I love toile and always gives me the nicest stuff adorned with the pattern. 

 

 

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Here is who ended up coming home from the gym with me – he is Swampfire from Ben 10 Alien Force.  I love the face painting but man it is a pain to wash off – especially red & black.

 

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Unfortunately I must venture out into the WIND.  Hopefully we don’t blow away – it is so windy my house feels like it moves every time the wind blows.  We ran out of bar soap so unless we want to be stinky I must go get some more. 

Have a great afternoon.

Can you see the difference?

I have been using the photo station my honey gave me for Christmas when taking my pictures and I can really see the difference.  I am just wondering if you can see it too?  My kitchen now looks like some sort of photography studio and anyone new coming into my house would really give me some funny looks.  It is amazing how my blog has become such a huge part of my life - even my kitchen has been transformed. 

This morning I had a very cinnamon flavored breakfast.

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I started by cooking 1/3 cup oat bran with water in the microwave which results in a super thick mass.  I then mixed in a itty bitty banana and the mass turned soooo creamy – it was like the banana melted into the oaty goodness.  

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My toppings were 3/4 cup Cinnamon Puffins, 1/4 cup 0% plain Greek yogurt and an ounce of Blue Diamond Cinnamon Brown Sugar Almonds.  The almonds gave this bowl of goodies a much needed crunch.  The Puffins do not stay as crunchy as when they are mixed with yogurt or cottage cheese.  I think the heat must make them turn soft much faster.  Whatever texture they take on I still find them delicious. 

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So when I looked outside this morning I was greeted with some white stuff – yes it is back.  Just when I could see pavement and grass the junk had to come back.  Like I said the other day, you never know when the snow will make an appearance again.  At least it was less than an inch but enough that I will not be able to run outside.  I am not taking my chances, there could be some ice under that white fluffy blanket.

Charlie has to return to work today and he might have to go in tomorrow too.  At least he has the rest of the week off.  I am taking D to the gym – he hasn’t been there in so long.  I am not sure what the rest of the day will be like. We will probably play with some new toys – he got plenty of them.  By the way, his new bed tent does not keep him out of my bed.  He still wanders into my room in the middle of the night.  I can’t win. 

Have a great day.  See you later.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Poor Planning = Headache

Our errands took us longer than I expected. Silly me didn’t pack a snack to have when hunger struck which resulted in a headache.  I had to whip up something quick for dinner so this is what I came up with.  I mixed 1/3 cup oat bran with 1/4 cup Greek yogurt, 1/2 cup cottage cheese, about 1/4 cup water, 1/4 cup Original Puffins and about 2 tbsp Orange Ginger Almonds.  I bought the almonds at WF today.  The sad thing is they don’t taste a thing like orange or ginger.  They just taste like a candied nut.  Oh well, they are tasty regardless of the lack of flavor. 

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For some veg I just had a little butternut squash. Some did make it’s way into the bowl which tastes pretty yummy.

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I did indulge in a little dessert. I started with a bed of frozen blueberries (1/2 a cup) then I added 1/2 a cup of Stonyfield Farms Low Fat Minty Chocolate Chip frozen yogurt and topped it off with a tbsp of PB.

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I managed to do a great yoga session tonight.  I started with a little Fluid Power followed by some Power Yoga.  I can feel my arms and legs shaking from the workout but I feel so relaxed and rejuvenated.

My honey has been in the basement since D went to bed. He set up a stereo system down there – I think he has his own “Man Town” going on.  He has the music pretty loud but not loud enough to wake up our little monkey.  I think I will go spy on him and see what he is up to :) I might need to have a piece of fruit or a big old glass of water because I am feeling a bit hungry.  I hope you all had a great day.  See you tomorrow.

A Break for Lunch

We ran a couple errands but still have a few more left. Lunch was in order so it’s a quick break back home for a feeding then we are heading back out again.

For lunch I stuffed 1/2 a red pepper with 1/2 a cup cottage cheese, then sprinkled on some secret seasoning. I also had some slices of zucchini – my plate needed something green - drizzled with a bit of mustard. And the meal would not be complete without my PB fix. I topped 2 pieces of Ezekiel Cinnamon raisin bread with a tbsp PB and All Fruit Blueberry Spread.

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I was really in the mood for a nice warm cup of tea so what better to accompany Sugar Cookie tea – a Chocolate Brownie Z Bar.

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We are off to tackle the rest of our errands. Have a great afternoon.

Another Day with my Mr.

My honey took today off too -  another day that we all get to hang out together.  He has to go in to work tomorrow and maybe Wed. but then he has Thursday and Friday off – not a bad work week for him. 

This morning I went to the gym at 5:30 and got in a great workout.  Before leaving I had the usual banana.

I was really in the mood for some oat bran for breakfast but my container has maybe 2 tbsp left so I had to go with oatmeal.  I cooked 1/2 a cup oats with 3/4 cup water and 1/2 a chopped apple.  When it was finished cooking I added 1/4 cup Cinnamon Puffins, the rest of the apple, 1/4 cup Greek yogurt and a tbsp PB.

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We are off to run some errands – one stop will be to Whole Foods to get more oat bran.  I hope that you have an awesome Monday.  See you later.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Vita-Mix Ice Cream

This afternoon we tried out the Vanilla Ice Cream recipe that came with the Vita-Mix blender. It is so simple, only 5 ingredients. The result was delicious and very flavorful.

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My guys really enjoyed this healthy treat too. D was very excited that he was getting home-made ice cream instantly. We have an ice cream machine which takes 20 –30 minutes to produce soft serve. This was so quick.

It makes a big batch so I think the next time I will make half the recipe because we couldn’t eat it all and this isn’t the type of ice cream you can pop in the freezer. I think it would turn into a solid brick of ice. I ended up tossing half which I felt was wasteful.

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We but the vanilla ice cream back into the blender and added some Ovaltine and more ice because it had started to melt. We were trying to get some chocolate ice cream too. It tasted good but I think I added too much ice.

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I can’t believe how powerful this blender is. It really whips some serious air into the food/liquid. I can just imagine making hummus in this guy. I bet it would be sooooo creamy.

So that was my first experience with the Vita-Mix and I am soooooo thrilled that I am able to test out many more things. It is an awesome addition to my kitchen and I can see myself using it ALL the time. You can whip up batter for pancakes, waffles, bread, muffins – the list is seriously endless. There is even a recipe for insect repellent (for your garden plants) using chili peppers – how cool is that.

The rest of my day was very low-key. I hung out with my little man while my huz cleaned the basement (he has actually retired back down there for more action). I just might be able to find what I am looking for on the workbench when he is finished – it was a disaster.

Here is a recap of the days eats. Nothing exciting so I am leaving you with a photo gallery.

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We set up D’s bed tent tonight – that thing is cool. I would have loved to have something like that on my bed when I was a kid. Who am I kidding – I would love one even now :) I wonder if he will stay in his own bed ALL night???? He always sneaks into my bed and I don’t even know it until he starts kicking me in the middle of the night. I let you know in the morning what happens.

That is all for today. I am off to call my mommy – I miss her and really want to hear her voice. See you in the AM.

Is it Winter?

We are having very crazy weather here this December.  Last weekend we got buried under more than a foot of snow.  Now this weekend we are having a heat wave – it is almost 60 degrees already.  The sun is not shining, it is actually very cloudy, but it sure is warm out there considering what we just went through less than a week ago.  I am going to venture out for a run in a little while.  I mine as well take advantage of the ice free pavement while I have the opportunity – you never know when the next storm is going to come rolling through around here. 

For breakfast I made a messy mix using Weetabix which I moistened with 1/2 a cup of water – these things sure are absorbent.  I then mixed in 1/2 a cup Greek yogurt, a banana, Cinnamon Puffins, honey roasted peanuts and a little strawberry preserves. It was super thick, creamy, crunchy, sweet, salty and of course delicious. 

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I have already had a productive morning around the house.  The dishes are done and I have managed to do some laundry.  I don’t think there are any big plans on our agenda today, which is really a nice feeling. All the running around last week really made me feel behind in my house work.  Have a great day.  I’ll be back later.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Fluid Power

That would be the title of my new yoga DVD by Shiva Rea. I did a few vinyasas (sequences) tonight, about an hour total. It is totally different from Power Yoga, but still very challenging.  I am very happy to have something entirely different to further my yoga practice. 

I managed to get a good amount of laundry done today – thank goodness the piles were looking ready to attack.  D and I did some coloring with his new Crayola Pip-Squeaks Mix’ems markers – these things are way cool.

Here is the run- down of the rest of my eats for the day.

My afternoon snack contained Camp Mix Honey-Cinnamon Sugar.  My sister-in-law gave this to us yesterday because D had some over her house and loved it.  I had to try it because it contains my favorite flavor – that being cinnamon. 

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This stuff is awesome.  I mixed 1/2 cup Greek yogurt with 1 tsp Honey-Cinnamon – which is only 15 calories. I e-mailed the owner and he gave me the nutritionals.  I tossed on some TJ’s High Fiber cereal, Original Puffins and honey roasted peanuts.

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For dinner I was in the mood for some eggs so I cooked 1 whole egg & 1 egg white.  I seasoned the eggs with a spice mix my sissy gave me on Christmas.  It is my Memere’s family secret recipe so I am not able to share the goods with you – it is super delish.  The veg was zucchini with a little mustard (I love to use mustard as dressing or dip).  I also had 2 pieces of Ezekiel Cinnamon Raisin toast. One slice topped with Swiss cheese and the other a tbsp PB.

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Dessert was a Vita-Top topped with 1/2 a tbsp PB and 1/2 a tbsp All Fruit Blueberry Spread.

 

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I read my little man a few chapters in his new Bionicle Book that he bought today at Borders.  He didn’t fall right to sleep but came down to go potty once already.  I hope he is off to dreamland – my honey and I want to watch The Dark Knight. 

I hope you had a great Saturday. See you tomorrow.

Another Present for Sammie

I am so glad to be home right now.  It is a cold rainy day and I am nice and comfy in my house. We had to go out this morning for D’s karate class and then we stopped at Borders where D picked out a couple things to buy with his very own gift card – I got another yoga DVD (I am addicted). 

This morning I used the WaterRower because it was raining outside and the gym was not open yet.  I am so glad that I have an option available to me in my own home.  I need to get some sort of physical activity every day or else I feel very sluggish and often end up with a headache. 

I made some breakfast beforehand – I woke up with a very hungry belly. I mixed 1/2 a cup Greek yogurt, a banana, 1 Weetabix biscuit, 1 cup Cinnamon Puffins and a tbsp each PB and Strawberry Preserves.  I love the combo of strawberry and banana – add PB and it is divine.

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On the drive to karate I had a Z Bar for a snack.

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For lunch I made a nice healthy plate of goodies – a bed of baby spinach, 1/2 a red pepper (mmmm, my favorite), a chopped golden delicious apple, 1/2 a cup cottage cheese and a tbsp tahini which was an awesome alternative to PB.

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I also had a TJ’s granola bar (this has become a new favorite of mine).  It is not too sweet, super chewy and I love the crunch from the almonds. 

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So here is the excitement, I had present at my door yesterday.

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That’s right I am a proud owner of a Vita-Mix blender. I was asked to test it out and write about my experience with it – THANK YOU Allison!!  It came with a TON of recipes which are all very healthy.  This baby can make ice cream, soup, nut butters – the list is endless.  I made a special spot for it on my counter next to my other appliances – they all look so happy together.  I have not made anything yet – like I said it just arrived yesterday – but I will be playing around with it soon.

I have so much laundry to do today so that is what my afternoon is going to be spent doing.  I hope you all have a great day.  See you later.