Monday, October 29, 2012

Really Gets My Goat!

I love me some goat cheese.  It has the most wonderful flavor.  It's the fairy-dust of the food makes everything taste better.

Last week I bought this....

and although my first inclination was to eat it straight out of the container with a spoon, I decided to make two recipes with it instead.

Stuffed Poblanos with Goat Cheese

4 Poblano Peppers
1 can Red Kidney Beans, rinsed and drained
1.5 cup cooked Brown Rice
1.5 cup Corn
2 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 T Crumbled Goat Cheese

Move oven rack to highest shelf and turn broiler on High.  Cut peppers in half and remove seeds and stems. Place peppers skin side up directly on rack and broil until skin black and blistered, about 4 minutes.

Make filling by mixing beans, rice, corn and oil in a bowl.
Remove skin from poblano peppers.  Stuff with filling.  Sprinkle with goat cheese.


Goat Cheese Portabello Naan Pizza

1 Mini Whole Wheat Naan
1 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 t Garlic Powder
1/2 cup Baby Portabello Mushrooms, chopped
1/4 cup Grape Tomatoes, cut in half
1/4 cup Baby Spinach, chopped
1 T Crumbled Goat Cheese

Heat oven to 400 degrees.

Place naan on aluminum foil.  Rub with olive oil and sprinkle with garlic powder.  Top with tomatoes, mushrooms, goat cheese and spinach.

Place the aluminum foil with the naan directly on oven rack.  Bake for 12 minutes.


Week 2 went pretty well.  I got to the gym 5 times and have been cooking like a crazy person!!

Current Weight:  253.2
Last Week Weight:  254.2
Week Loss:  -1 lb

Monday, October 22, 2012

Eggplant Polenta

I am in love with this marvelous casserole.

Eggplant Polenta

1 Eggplant, chopped
1 Zucchini, chopped
10 oz baby Spinach
1 15-oz can tomato Sauce
1/2 c fresh Parsely, chopped
14 oz prepared Polenta, sliced
1 1/2 c part-skim Mozzerella, shredded

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Spray 9x13 casserole dish with cooking spray.
  2. Cook eggplant and zucchini in oil for 6 mins, or just until tender.  
  3. Add spinach and 1/2 c water.  Cover and cook until spinach is wilted.  
  4. Add tomato sauce and heat through.  
  5. Remove from heat and add parsley.  
  6. Put slices of polenta on bottom of casserole dish.  Top with half of the cheese.  Top with eggplant mixture.  Top with the rest of the cheese.  Bake 15 minutes, or until cheese in melted and casserole is bubbly.

Broccoli Cheddar Crustless Quiche

I absolutely love this breakfast recipe.  So easy to make and absolutely delightful!

Broccoli Cheddar Crustless Quiche

12 Eggs, scrambled
1 t Mrs Dash Seasoning
3 c Broccoli, cut into flowerettes
3/4 c LF Cheddar, shredded

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a microwave safe bowl, microwave broccoli on High 3 mins.  
  3. Spray a pie pan with cooking spray.  Layer the broccoli in the pan and top with cheese.
  4. Pour the eggs on top of the broccoli & cheese layer.  Sprinkle with Mrs Dash Seasoning. 
  5. Put in oven and bake for 35 mins.

Doesn't it look good???!  Enjoy!

Lentil Quinoa Salad

This Lentil Quinoa Salad recipe is absolutely wonderful.  Fresh, filling, healthful and delicious!

Lentil Quinoa Salad:

  • 1/2 c  Quinoa, rinsed
  • 1/2 c Brown Lentils, rinsed
  • 2 T Dijon Mustard
  • 2 T Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1/4 c Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/4 t Garlic Powder
  • 1 Lime, zested
  • 2 Scallions, chopped
  • 1 T Cilantro, chopped

  1. In a large microwave-proof bowl with a cover, add quinoa and 1 1/4 cups water. Cover and microwave on high for 9 minutes. Let it sit for 2 minutes then stir.
  2. Make dressing by mixing together the mustard, vinegar, oil, garlic powder and lime zest. 
  3. Mix the quinoa, lentils, dressing, green onions, and chopped cilantro.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

What's Cookin' Good Lookin' ?

I have been cooking like crazy trying to get some tried and true vegetarian recipes in my personal cookbook.  So far everything has been a major success.  I will be doing some rapid fire blogging very soon and posting all the recipes.

Even though I am in the middle of painting my cupboards and remodeling my kitchen....which means my kitchen resembles some of the deepest levels of Dante's Inferno...."Abandon all hope ye who enter here"

I have still managed to get in there and work around wet paint and rollers to make sure I stick to my healthy way of eating. I am loving this Mediterranean Diet and if the scale loves it on Saturday (my weigh in day) then I will be in heaven! I mean really, take a look at my lunch from yesterday.

No, it's not Chobani Yogurt.  My mom uses old food containers for Tupperware.  I like to think it's because she is thrifty and eco-friendly rather than fairly confident that I won't ever return her containers.  Which, despite every good intention I never do.  Anyways, what you see is actually Butternut Squash Bisque with a whole wheat pita and glass of red wine.  So satisfying!  I got a set of those wine glasses at the thrift store for $1.99 each. Turns out they are really high quality crystal. Score!

Hubs and I usually start our meal with a hummus appetizer with whole wheat pita.

(Hummus with olive oil and walnuts sprinkled on top.)

Some other tasty treats I have made are....

Mukimame Quinoa

Black Bean Burgers

Dolmades Casserole

Eggplant Polenta

I have been eating so good! The best part is that my jeans even feel loser and it's only been a few days.  They are buttoned right now WITHOUT the aid of a rubber band.  I am making progress people!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

End of Daze...Take Two!

Yeah, remember that last post where I was like "Oh I feel so much better!"  Not completely accurate. Wishful thinking?  Self denial?  Selective blogging?  Maybe all of that. I don't know what made me think I was doing better because I was not.  I have felt very disconnected.  I haven't felt like I am being "me" and I haven't felt a connection to the people around me.  I was trying desperately to ignore how bad I felt and to numb it with my drugs of choice:  TV and food.  Then a dear old friend sent me a short was only 2 sentences and basically just said "How are you?"  Something inside me just broke and I let it all out.  I got the most beautiful response back.  It was full of things like this.....

 I do feel like this is something you can overcome. I believe that so deep down to my core. have the most tender heart of anyone I have ever met...
 I think you will find the beautiful woman you feel is missing. I can see her. She is there. You are going to be your biggest critic, your biggest obstacle maker, and you’re going to try and stop yourself because it is just easier to not deal with it. But when you are ready to say I have had enough you will find the courage and strength beyond what you have ever known.

I am at a really low point.  I can't believe in myself. I can't believe this is possible or worth it.  I just want to give in and give up.  Wallow in the freedom and instant gratification that comes with binging and junk food and self-loathing.  This darling treasured friend believed in me when I was too low to believe in myself. It gave me a second wind.  It all feels worth it again.  Which is nice since I am at the heaviest weight I have been in years.....260.  **deep depressed sigh**

It feels like I gained all the weight right on my shoulders.  I have such a weight on me! Nothing fits.  My leg muscles hurt just walking to my car.  The last two days I have gone to the gym before work (**major points for getting to the gym**) and walked on the treadmill....AT 1.5 MPH!!!!!!   How embarrassing.  My body just hurts hurts hurts. I have to take it really slow. 

Even though I'm taking it slow on my body, I still need to eat right.  I did not feel like doing a diet that was high in protein again.  Even though I lose weight on those diets, I feel heavy and exhausted. I had heard of the Mediterranean Diet and wanted to read more about it.  I couldn't believe what I read.  It was basically telling me to eat the way I instinctively want to eat.  How is it possible to lose weight like this?  I don't know...but it works.  Well, I hear it works....time will tell I guess.

I like that meat is only eaten occasionally.  Meat has been grossing me out lately.  Also, I recently decided to only buy meat that is grass-fed, free range, vegetarian fed...which means DOLLAR SIGNS.  Now that I am eating less meat it will be much friendlier on my bank account. I have been eating like this for a few days now and I feel really really good. 

Timing was perfect to snap out of my daze (like for serious this time) because my best friend decided that she was ready too! She called me and asked if I would meet with her once a week to discuss our strategy and set goals and support each other.  LOVE IT!

We got together Saturday (which is also my weigh-in day) and set out some great goals for the week and targets for the year.

Week1 Goals:  
  • Drink 64 oz H2O
  • Exercise 3 Times
  • Write in Food Journal

YEAR TARGET (October 16, 2013):   
175 lb to Reach 100 LB Total Loss

1st Quarter Target (January 16, 2013)
230 lb...30 lb Loss (45 lb Total Loss)

2nd Quarter Target (April 16, 2013)
212 lb...18 lb Loss  (63 lb Total Loss)

3rd Quarter Target  (July 16, 2013)
193 lb....19 lb Loss (82 lb Total Loss)

4th Quarter Target  (October 16, 2013)
175 lb....18 lb Loss  (100 lb Total Loss)

It won't be easy but it can't be any harder than living like this!!!  This is really really really possible.  I am so tired of looking back on old blog posts and old journal entries and realizing that if I had just stuck to it...not gone over the deep end crazy with dieting and exercise... just plugged along....that I could be at my goal weight by now. Not this time. I am not going to screw "next-year-me" over!  Next-year-me will LOVE me. 

“The greatest weariness comes from work not done.” 

--Eric Hoffer

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

End of Daze & Weigh-In

It took all week but I finally snapped out of my daze.  It wasn't a pleasant awakening....  I felt like Rip Van Winkle.  I had been out of it for a long time and didn't even know it.  Worst of all, life (and the scale) had continue to go on without me.  I found I had gained 20 pounds in the last 3 months. I have a lot of work to do.  So much work.

I had to ease into it and gave myself a lot of flexibility last week.  I went out to eat.  I snacked more than I should have.  But I also got to the gym four times. I got all my weight workouts in.  Being on the elliptical was painful.  I can't believe the difference 20 pounds and 3 months of immobility can make.  I just keep telling myself it will get better.

I spent Sunday prepping prepping prepping.  I made this UH-MAY-ZING Lentil Quinoa Salad.

I grilled a lot of chicken and boiled a lot of eggs.  I made a ton of green salads in plastic containers to keep on hand. (Cuke, Carrots, Chickpeas, Baby Spinach, 1 T Craisens, 1 T Walnuts)

I made this tasty Broccoli Cheddar Breakfast casserole.

I cut it into 6 pieces and put them each in individual plastic baggies.  That with a piece of fruit makes for a fast and delicious healthy breakfast!

I have been trying to make myself feel like some one worth taking care of. It's hard when your clothes don't fit and you feel uncomfortable.  I've been doing my hair and makeup.  Does it make me super shallow that stuff like that actually works wonders for me??

Nails: Paint nails a neutral color. Let dry.  Dip in water for 5 seconds, hold a piece of newspaper to the nail for 5 seconds.  Top with clear.

Makeup:  Ulta is having an enormous sale! Hello BrONzERs!! And mAsCAra!! And eye sHAdoW!!

I love this baked bronzer as a highlight. Perfect!


And I love this bronzer for contouring.

These bronzers are normally $10 and $15.  But they are on sale for $5 each. AND THEN...there is a $5 off $10 purchase. So you can get these for $2.50 each. **Be still my heart!**

I am still trying to find a GREAT mascara.  I really like Rimmel Glam Eyes.

I also really like Maybeline Define-a-Lash.
But I want to find something new.  Any ideas??? Any mascaras that make you say "wow" when you put it on?

I traded in my bribe gift from Hubs.  As much as I wanted to love the Urban Decay Naked2 Palette...I just didn't.  The colors were muddy and not pigmented.  I traded it in for the Lorac Pro Palette.  Good call!! I love love love it!
It's so hard to tell in photos...but it's natural, bright, versatile, and oh-so-pretty.  There are 8 matte shades (on top) and 8 shimmer (NOT sparkly) shades (on bottom).  Highly recommend this palette!

Here's another one.  What do you guys think??

Hair:  Just been playing around with's something I came up with that I thought was kinda cute.

Now, for the weigh-in....drum roll not necessary....


Week Loss:

I will post the recipes for that Broccoli Cheddar Breakfast Casserole and the Lentil Quinoa Salad.  Stay tuned!


Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Restart Weigh-In: Read It and Weep

I have been really hard on my body.   I either ignore it completely or push it to its limit.  When it shows weakness I have absolutely no mercy.  I get mad that it's all stretched out (and will probably never bounce back) and that my foot hurts if I'm not ridiculously careful (plantar fasciitis).  It gets me angry to the point of tears when I get on the treadmill and can only walk 1.5 mph.  It makes me want to throw things and rip my hair out when I bend over and everything is stiff and hurts and my legs feel swollen and achy....from doing nothing.

The truth is that my body has held up under intense pressure.  And it has never let me down.  When I ask for change it responds. I know people who diet and do everything right and not lose a pound.  That's never been true for me.  When I eat right and exercise, I lose weight. But it's never good enough.

I feel this huge disconnect right now.  The person I am and the person I have become are so far removed from each other.  

I look in the mirror and hate myself.  I don't hate the way I look....I hate the person looking back at me.  How did I let this happen?  How did I let myself spend 30 years as this stranger?  Why was I so willing eager to accept living as a person so different than who I really am?  I'm so out of touch with myself.  It's like some one blindfolded me and spun me in circles.   I don't know which way is up and which way is down.

I'm really just going through the motions at this point.  Eat right.Exercise.  Maybe that will help me feel more grounded.

I weighed in at a whopping 259 lb.  I'm up 20 lb since July.  Feel sorry for me??  I sure do!

This is a recent photo of me in my bathing suit (which you can't really see but I absolutely love).  

So far Body For Life is underway... I have been tracking my food/water/exercise, doing weights 3 days a week and cardio 3 days a week, and eating the BFL way.  A pretty typical meal is what I had for lunch today:

Chicken breast (left over from dinner, cooked with chicken broth, mustard, spices, olive oil), kidney beans, baby spinach, spring mix lettuce, cukes, carrots, 1 tbsp craisens, 1 tbsp walnuts and 2 tbsp lite dressing. 

It was actually pretty good. I don't mind eating healthy and I don't mind exercising.


I just keep telling myself to go through the motions.  Do what I know I need to do.  Hopefully this unsettled feeling will pass.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

The Juggle vs The Jiggle

I know I'm supposed to care that only one pair jeans still button up.....and even those ones need a little "help"....

How sad is it that I actually DO this???? Why exercise when a rubber band and long shirt works just as well?

I know I should care that I am out of breath just from drying off after a shower or after putting on a pair of stockings.  And I do care. It makes me sad.

I do want to do something to change it.  But I have "done something" enough times to know that "doing something" takes every ounce of energy I have.  I can't do it all (work, meeting, studying, service, exercise, cooking, cleaning). I'm not a good juggler.  Most people I know just handle it all and make it look easy!  (I don't like these people and throw things at them.)

When I attempt it, things end badly....quickly.

Even though I haven't been paying attention to the scale, I have made major strides in other areas of my life. I have maintained those things for a while now. Those things matter a lot to me.  I feel like if I "do something" about my health then I have to trade in everything else.  And I don't want to. I'd rather live with the jiggle than try to juggle!

So I guess that leads us to the most obvious and cliche thing in the world. BALANCE. Boring. I hate the idea of balance because it means you don't excel in anything.  No glory.  No spotlight. No pats on the back.  Just a C average across the board. I need more than that.  I need results. I need something to SHOW for myself.  Great attitude, huh?

But then a certain some one said a certain something.  Hubs is the best person I know.  He has never ever even once (not even in anger or the heat of a moment or as a joke) made fun of my weight.  Not a SINGLE time.  Recently he (reluctantly and gently) told me that he's worried about my weight gain because he loves me and he can tell I'm uncomfortable and unhealthy.  I listened to everything he said, thought about it for a second and then from the bottom of my heart told him (reluctantly and gently) that I just don't care.  I don't have it in me.

That's when he resorted to bribery.  He made me an offer I couldn't refuse:  As an incentive to get going with healthy eating and exercise he offered me the Holy Grail of the make-up world.

Urban Decay's Naked2 Palette  You can do sooo many great looks with this palette!

Yes. I have a price and I can be bought.  The great thing is that this palette is so expensive that I don't even feel cheap!  I may be a Sell-Out but I'm a classy Sell-Out.

Hello Beautiful!! Why is it that just walking into an Ulta makes me feel happy all over???

Up and at 'em!! Cowgirl up!  I have my grocery list all made.  This weekend I will have my gym bag all packed.  Hubs let me pick the diet (we are both going to be following it...partly cuz he is super supportive and mostly cuz Hubs got a little chubs) and I chose Body For Life. Who cares. They all work as long as you stick to them. And I had a lot of success on that plan.

I hate to admit it but Hubs really picked the perfect "get your butt going" bribe gift.  It makes me feel pretty.  And girly.  I do feel super cute.   But it loses a little something when you're carrying around an extra 100 pounds.  I mean, if these girls can't pull it off, what chance do I have??

I feel motivated to want to feel better!!!!  Here goes nothing!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Weigh-In 238.2 lb

Weight:  238.2 lb
Week:  -1.2 lb
Total: -36.8 lb

This last weekend was amazing.  Hubs and I spent Friday, Saturday, and Sunday learning all about what the "heart" is when mentioned in the Scriptures and how to safeguard it.

We spent time with family and friends and loved every second of it. We didn't want it to end.  There were about 4000 people there each day.

Everyone who comes is encouraged to bring a lunch so that we can all eat at our seats and enjoy eachother's company.  This presents a problem.  Healthy yummy food on the go?  Yikes.

Both Hubs and I were burnt out on plain old salad.  At the last minute I threw something together and was pretty impressed with the result.

Veggie Lover's Pasta Salad (7 servings)

1 box Barilla Whole Wheat Pasta 
1 can Artichoke Hearts, rinsed, drained, and quartered
1 can Black Olives, rinsed and drained
1 can Chickpeas, rinsed and drained
2 cups Grape Tomatoes, halved
1 English Cucumber, chopped
1 bunch Italian Parsley, chopped
Zest and Juice of 1 Lemon
1 cup Ken's Light Northern Italian Dressing 
1/2 cup Feta Cheese

Boil the pasta according to directions on box.  Drain and mix with all the other ingredients.  Let sit at least 2 hours before serving.  I put each serving over a bed of baby spinach.  YUMS!

Here's another fast and easy recipe for ya!

Avocado Portabella Sandwiches (1 serving)

1 Portabella Mushroom Cap
1 t Olive Oil
1 t Mrs Dash Seasoning (or any yummy steak seasoning)
1/4 Avocado, sliced
1 T Plain Greek Yogurt
1 Mini Whole Wheat Pita

Rub the mushroom with olive oil and seasoning, grill or pan fry until tender.  Toast the pita and spread 1 T yogurt on each side.  Place the avocado on the pita and top with the mushroom cap.

Yum.  I had a steamed artichoke on the side...mmm...mmm good!!!

I rummaged around looking for more fun healthy clean lunches. I found a few and would LOVE any suggestions!! 

Monday, July 2, 2012

Blue Chicken Tacos

I made this recipe up myself because I needed something super easy, healthy and delicious.  It did not disappoint!

Blue Chicken Tacos (Serves 4)

6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 16-oz bottle salsa verde (I use this one.)
1 T cumin
8 blue corn taco shells (I use these.)
1 avocado, sliced into 8 sections
1 c fat-free plain greek yogurt
1 cup spring mix lettuce

Place the chicken thighs, 1 cup of the salsa, and cumin in a slow cooker.  Cook on High 3 hours.  Remove the chicken.  Shred and stir in 1/2 cup of the salsa.  Fill each taco shell with chicken, lettuce, one slice of avocado, and greek yogurt.

I served it with some cut up veggies and hummus on the side.

And cherries for dessert!



Weight:  239.4
Week: +1.2
Total Loss:  35.6

To say I had a rough time this week would be like saying the Captain of the Titanic had a rough time.  It wasn't good.  I was so tired. So very tired.  I felt hopeless and discouraged.  I was kinda sorta holding it together until I couldn't find my phone charger.....and collapsed on the bed in the middle of the afternoon in a pathetic state of tears and whining.

Hubs must have known something was wrong before I did, because earlier that day he surprised me with these....

I decided to spend a whole day getting rid of a ton of STUFF around my house. I brought two car loads of STUFF to Goodwill.  I cleaned and organized my kitchen cabinets and drawers. I did the same for the drawers, shelves, and cabinets in my living room.  Getting rid of all the extra THINGS immediately made me feel better. 

I don't really know where this exhausted feeling is coming from.  At one point I was diagnosed with anemia.  And I haven't taken iron supplements in years.  I got a mulit-vitamin that has iron and hopefully that will help.  I was also worried that my blood sugar might be high.  I got a blood glucose monitor from a friend who has diabetes (yes, new needle!)  and tested my blood.  Fasting is 112.  And 3 hours after eating was 75.  I have gotten so much mixed information about what those numbers mean.  But I think it means I am pre-diabetic.  Bleck....don't really want to think about that.

The only thing to do about it is what I am doing already.  Eat right and exercise.

"A pint of sweat, saves a gallon of blood." 
 - General George S. Patton

I don't really want to think about my weight either.  I did gain 1.2 lb this week.  And that is crappy. But I know why. And I'm not beating myself up.  I need to remember that I like eating healthy and exercising.  And I really really do.  Exercising is one of my favorite things to do.  I never thought I would say that.  I made some delicious stuff this weekend.  I will put the recipes in a future post.  

Right now I'm just focusing on enjoying my week of good food and good moves!