Saturday, May 30, 2009

Oh Saturday...

Good evening all! Saturday was an interesting day...

Started it off right with the 30 Day Shred, Level 2.

KILLER! Boy oh boy... I swear she's out for blood. After sweating 800 lbs off, I decided to make myself a pretty hearty breakfast... 2 Egg white omlet with peppers and tomatoes, on top of a bed of spinach. Topped right with salsa, hot sauce (YUM, FRANKS!!), and a little bit of goat cheese. I also had a toasted piece of Trader Joe's Sprouted Wheat bread topped with almond butter and fresh strawberries. VERY YUMMY BREAKFAST.

I went along with my day; did some laundry, taught some flute lessons...

Then, had a quick lunch of a 'breakfast cookie' and a grapefruit. Weird lunch, but that's ok.

We went to see UP that afternoon, you know, that new Disney/Pixar film. I sobbed through most of it. UGH. I thought it was going to be much funnier than it really was... no such luck. This is a film we will NOT have in our library, and that's too bad. I don't want to discourage anyone from seeing it, so go!! I mean, it IS Disney afterall. I was so excited to see this movie because I thought it was going to be soooo funny! Boy was I wrong- and disappointed. Oh well, I still love WDW!

Until next time, go see an UPLIFTING movie that will make you laugh. It's much better than the alternative. Namaste.

Friday, May 29, 2009


Good evening, bloggies!! Last night was full of great things!

1- Almost all of the prep for tonight's family dinner was DONE! Yay for less stress today.
2- I found out that one of my best friends from HS (and his wife who is also my friend) is coming back into town! He got a job at our alma mater as the orchestra director. Very exciting!
3- The CAVS won!!!

This morning, I woke up ready to take on the day! TGIF after all! Made a FAB smoothie out of 1/2 banana, 1/2 organic green apple, big handful of organic spinach, 3 organic strawberries, 2 T Bob's Red Mill Flax Meal, a little bit of lemon juice, and a bunch of ice. WAY YUMMY!! I finished off the other half of the banana and apple with some raw almond butter. I wanted to see if it could tide me over until lunch...

Well, it didn't haha. Around 10:15am I had a Larabar (apple pie... YUM!). Then, I had an adventure to Circleville OH with a co-worker.... long story but it involved getting lost, a 1 lane rickety bridge, almost getting stuck in the mud, MAPQUEST giving us directions to 'turn right' off of the highway but didn't give a road name (and later we found out that the road HAD NO NAME...) all in the middle of nowhere! I WISH I had my camera. We were trying to find a rummage sale, and we found it alright... but boy... what a trip! VERY ENTERTAINING to say the least.

Anyway, back at home I hosted our family dinner! I made a yummy Greek meal. I made baba ganoush (did I spell that right?), hummus, and gyros.

Here is the baba... and hummus with veggies:

My husband chopping fruit for HIS fruit salad. He did it all himself: (do you see Dorothy Zbornak in the background?)

And the finished product:

Here's the table with all of the goodies on it:

Take a good look at that tv... yep, the Golden Girls are STILL on... I'm so obsessed.

I made some really nummy gyro meat- ground lamb, onion, garlic, black pepper, marjoram, and rosemary. I don't have a spit or a roaster, so I made it into a meatloaf of sorts...

Not shaved like normal gyro meat, but hey, you do what you gotta do!! Hahaha.

Here's my plate, complete with some really good white wine:

The bread in the top left corner is Trader Joes Naan Bread, and the bread on the right side is Trader Joes Whole Wheat Pita. Both were good, but the Naan was GREAT! Very doughy. Under that pile of tomatoes and shredded cucumber is my gyro meat. SO GOOD.

And then came dessert. My sister got baklava, and we had the fruit salad. YUMMY BAKLAVA!! My husband and I split a piece. We just can't eat a whole lot of sweets anymore. It's a good problem to have I guess...

That plate is not as big as it looks haha. It sure hit the spot!

After dinner, we went outside to enjoy the sunny weather and light a fire.

What a nice day!! I'm very excited about tomorrow because we're going to see UP!!! I don't know if we're going to see it in 3-D yet or not... just depends on what's showing when we decide to go. I'm SO EXCITED ABOUT THIS MOVIE!!! Have a great evening all. Until next time, try making some new food! Namaste.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Almost Friday!

Good evening, all! Today was a big day for me!

1- I was a presenter at the ACT Conference
2- I ate exclusively raw for over half of my day!!

I slept surprisingly good last night, and got up early to make a power shake.

It consisted of a whole banana, handful of organic spinach, tiny handful of frozen organic blueberries, 6 organic baby carrots, a kiwi, juice of 1/2 a lemon, and 6 ice cubes. That, paired with some almonds, and I was ready for the day!

I dropped of my raw lunch that I had made to my parents' house and headed up to the conference. I packed 2 raw almond butter stuffed dates for a quick snack before the fun began...

I was asked to speak at the conference about the role that support staff play in college visits (for prospective students and their families). The session was well attended (about 60-70 people), and seemed to be really well received! My first conference speaking engagement... CRAZY! Here's the room before everyone got in there, about halfway back...

Overall, a great success. Well, by this point, I was really hungry... and looking forward to my first ever RAW lunch!! I made zucchini spaghetti, topped with cherry tomatoes, carrots, onion, and garlic- all organic. For a sauce, I used 1 T of tahini, 1 t of EVOO, oregano, 1/4 avocado, and water, all mixed and mashed together. I liked it, but the oregano was a little overpowering. Next time I'll probably use some other herb... basil probably.

Here it is!! I didn't have a spiraler, so I just used a peeler. This, paired with a good size organic apple and a couple of grapes- it was a great lunch!!

After lunch, I went back to the office to do some work before the end of the day. Nothing too exciting happened there- I was only there a couple of hours! On the way home, I needed to stop at Trader Joe's to get some stuff for our family dinner tomorrow. I'm making a Greek dinner, complete with all of the fixins. While I was at TJ's, my stomach was GROWLING because I hadn't had anything since lunch... 5 hours earlier! So I grabbed a Larabar- Cherry Pie flavor. YUMMMMMY!!! I was so hungry that I ate it in the car on the way home!!!

And that ends the raw-ness... haha. For dinner, I made up some taco-ish type thing... without the tortilla. Just a glop of organic refried beans, chicken, veggies, salsa and hot sauce. Paired with some really good cantaloupe!

Tonight we're going to chop and mix and prep for the big family dinner tomorrow. Hopefully we can find some work out time too... Happy TGIF!!! ...almost! Namaste.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

It's Wednesday!!

Hi bloggies! It's Wednesday! I had a pretty good day overall... nothing too new or exciting, which is sometimes a good thing. I have had this nagging pain behind my right eye when I move it around... like an eye strain type of thing. Hopefully that goes away by tomorrow because I am PRESENTING AT A CONFERENCE! It's for ACT (you know, the test), and I'm helping present about college campus visits, and how all members of enrollment management are important. Hopefully all goes well!! I'll let you know...

This morning, I started the day off right with a YUMMY power shake!!

It consisted of 3 Organic Strawberries, 1/2 Banana, 3 Orange Segments, 1/8 C Frozen Organic Raspberries, 5 Organic Baby Carrots, Heaping Handful of Organic Spinach, 1/2 Scoop Protein Powder, 2 T Bob's Red Mill Flaxseed Meal, 3 Ice Cubes and a little bit of Water. SUPER YUMMY!!!

Looks a little yucky, but it was GREAT!

Then I packed my lunch and snack for work--

Snack was String Cheese, 1/4 Avocado, Organic Cucumber Slices and Organic Cherry Tomatoes. The tomatoes were GREAT!!!

A few hours later, I had my lunch--

Left over Whole Wheat Pasta with Organic Veggies and TJ's Tomato Sauce, and Low Fat Organic Yogurt (plain) with Frozen Organic Blueberries.

This kept me full until I got home from work for the day- which is a pretty big feat!! I did have a small snack while making dinner--

Dried Pineapple 'Leathers' and Organic Strawberries.

After turning on 'The Golden Girls' (which are still on by the way! Ha!), I made 'Low Carb Fajitas'. They were fab! I made Chicken for Brenton, and Shrimp for myself.

His is on the right, mine is on the left. Instead of rice, I made myself seared Tomatoes. Very easy, and VERY YUMMY!!

I finally have all of the dishes done, and am going to do pilates. It's been about a week since my last pilates session, so this is going to be interesting- and entertaining.

I'm very excited about tomorrow- I'm trying my first FULLY RAW 1/2 DAY... smoothie in the morning, zucchini 'pasta' for lunch. I'll let you know how it goes! I'm excited!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Happy Tuesday!

Good evening, bloggies! Today was a surprisingly good day! I got up around 5:30am (the birds woke me up! ...not a bad way to wake up, I guess!) and caught up on emails. Then, I ate my breakfast cookie that I made the night before. YUM!!

In this batch, I put half of a banana, 1/2 c oatmeal, 1/2 scoop protein powder, 1 T raisins, 1 T organic skim milk, 1 T raw almond butter, and a dash of cinnamon. Paired up with 'Zen' Tazo tea-- breakfast of champions! Since I was feeling so good, I decided to wear my favorite shoes!

Can't go wrong with Pour La Victoire!! FAB!

Work went on like normal- lots of phone calls, errands at lunch time, etc. Nothing too out of the ordinary.

I didn't pack enough lunch today because by the time I got home, I was STARVING! I had some Trader Joe's Organic Flax crackers, some cantaloupe, and some organic strawberries to tide me over before dinner...

Then, since Brenton was going to be home late, I made some veggi-sushi!! TOTAL YUM. I made it with brown rice and strips of carrot, avocado, and cucumber. I made 12 pices, 6 with rice on the inside, and 6 with rice on the outside. It takes about an hour to cook the rice... thank goodness I had a snack!

After a yummy shushi dinner, I sliced up an organic apple and put some yummy raw almond butter on some of the pieces. ...and as you can see by the empty plate in the background, I liked my dinner!!

Well, I'm off to help Brenton with his dinner, then we're going to do Jillian's 30 Day Shred... level 2!! Until next time, eat as clean as you can. Namaste.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day to you! Brenton and I had a wonderful, relaxing day today. After a lazy start to the day... waking up at 7:30am is our way of sleeping in!... we heard the smoke alarm chirp. No big deal- we just need to replace the battery. Ok, well, we couldn't get the darn cover off! Brenton broke off a part of it... so we just gave up. Then I wanted to try to get the other smoke alarm open, to see what we were doing wrong, and I broke the same part off of that one. GEEZ. So, we decided to get ready for the day and venture out to Lowe's, and the cemetery. I cut some flowers from our side bed, and we were on our way. Oh Lowe's... my favorite store!!! I could spend all day there. I did pretty well though- we were in and out with 2 smoke alarms in under 20 min! That's a record. Then it was on to the cemetery.

For those of you that don't know, which is most of you, I had an older brother that passed away before I was born. Every Memorial Day, we go to the cemetery to 'visit' the gravestone. Michael was only alive for a few months, and if he hadn't have passed away when he did, I wouldn't have been born. You see, my mom had an appointment to have her 'tubes tied' scheduled for just a day or two after my brother's passing. If he hadn't have passed away the day he did, I wouldn't be here today. It kinda creeps me out to think about it, and makes me very grateful at the same time. It's pretty amazing. How would the world be different if I wasn't here? Have you seen the movie 'The Butterfly Effect'? Very VERY similar concept. If you haven't seen it, go rent it. It really makes you think...

Even though Memorial Day is more about being thankful for the troops that have fought for our freedom, for me, it's also a day to remember ALL of those who have passed. Celebrate your life, and really LIVE it while you can. Like the Dave Matthew's Song says (Pig)-

Oh, isn't it strange
How we move our lives for another day?
Like skipping a beat
What if a great wave should wash us all away?
Just thinking out loud
Don't mean to dwell on this dying thing
But look at my blood
It's alive right now,
And deep and sweet within
Pouring through our veins

Until next time, celebrate your life and really live it to the fullest. Namaste.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Happy Sunday!

Happy Sunday, bloggies!! I hope you're all enjoying yourselves today! My day is full of grocery shopping, cleaning, and laundry. But, I can't complain- we're OFF tomorrow! YAY! What to do... what to do.

Last night we celebrated mom's birthday with a super yummy dinner of pork chops, sweet potato, and salad. ... then came the cake. With the yellow and pink roses, and green leaves all made of icing... I cut the smallest sliver ever, and could only take 3 bites. It's amazing how much your brain changes once you know what's in your food, and have changed your eating habits. That brings me to my next point-

Take a look at the video to the left- another food movie is coming out. I hope it goes way more 'mainstream' than the other food movies have. Not like 'Super Size Me' where it's all about fast food, but that same type of attention for GROCERY STORE FOOD. It could change eating as we know it forever. Very fitting that I find out about this after my rant about ANOTHER recall that I posted on Friday.

Watch the video, spread the news. Until next time, Namaste.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Yet ANOTHER recall...

Well, it's happened again. ANOTHER beef recall. If you want to read about it, go to I'm not going to talk about it here because I'm SO TIRED of these stupid recalls!!! Is ANY commercially prepared food safe anymore? I swear... from the pesticides on produce, to the chemicals that preserve foods, to hormones and antibiotics in meat... you have to be SO careful about what you eat. And unfortunately, I'm going to be bold and say that some 95% of Americans (at least 95% of the people I know, so that's a good estimate) DON'T HAVE A CLUE about any of this. WAKE UP!

So many people go out and buy raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, apples, lettuce, etc., and think that they're eating food that is good for them. Well it CAN be good for them- IF THEY BUY ORGANIC. For those of you who don't buy organic produce, you might as well be drinking weed killer, because THAT'S WHAT YOU'RE DOING!!! Why do people not get this?!

When you buy milk, you go to the grocery and buy the 2% (or whatever) that's on sale, in the gallon jugs, right? Do you understand that you're drinking EVERYTHING THAT THE COW INGESTED? Including anti-biotics, hormones, more corn than they know what to do with and in turn, more anti-biotics. Buy ORGANIC MILK, or drink ALMOND MILK.

The moral of the story is that you HAVE to eat clean. All of that crap that is not good, wholesome FOOD builds up, and causes things like cancer, weight gain, tumors, birth defects- the list goes on and on.

So, until next time, spend the $$ on ORGANIC food. It's better to spend the money now, than have to pay even more for treatment later. Namaste.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

My new dehydrator!

Good morning! So I want my Disers (and whoever else is interested) to look at this pin I won yesterday. It's a pin used for Pin Trading with Cast Members at Disney, and I am very grateful for being the winner of it... but... it is the weirdest pin I think I've ever gotten. I think this one will HAVE to be traded (HAHAHA!)

Yeah.... weird.

So on another note, I was very excited when I got home yesterday and saw a big box on the porch. YAY!! It was my food dehydrator that I got off of ebay.

I was very excited to get started, so I cored and sliced up 4 organic apples (3 small and 1 big), and a banana, soaked them for a few minutes in a mix of 1/3 c lemon juice and 1 c water, then spread them out on the tray. This was about... 5:30pm or so. Here's the 'in progress'...

As you can see, I didn't use all of the trays, but I thought that might make them dry faster. OH MY GOODNESS-- I was so impatient. It was like watching paint dry. Dry already, you little fruities!! Well, I went to bed, and got up this morning around 6am, and they were done!!

I've decided what my Christmas presents for my music lesson students are going to be this year!! They're all getting dried fruit! Hehehe! I'm so excited! I tried a piece of apple and a piece of banana. Both tasted REALLY good! So sweet, especially the banana (which surprised me). These are going to make GREAT 'on the go' snacks and good alternatives to my dark chocolate obsession. Hey Dis'ers... park snacks?? YEAH!!

Make it a great day everyone! Happy Thursday- it's almost a long weekend!! Until next time, Namaste.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Yummy Bean Burger Recipe!!

Hello bloggies! Last night I made some ultra easy, and ultra yummy bean burgers. Check out this recipe! It is a vegan, soy-free, and can be gluten-free (depending on the ketchup you use) recipe, and we were surprised at how YUMMY it was!

1 can Kidney Beans (I used Meijer Organic)
1 can Pinto Beans (I used Trader Joe's Organic)
2 cups of COOKED Brown Rice (which is about 1 cup dry) (I used the quick cook brown rice)
1/4 cup Chopped Onion
2 T Ketchup (I used Meijer Organic)
1/2 t Garlic Powder (I also added a T of pre-chopped jarred garlic)
1 t Oregano
1/4 t Thyme
1/4 t Sage
Salt and Pepper to taste

Blend all ingredients together in a food processor
Form into patties
Cook on Medium in a pan (lightly greased to prevent sticking) until browned on both sides

This recipe made 9 good size patties (we ate 3 for dinner last night, and froze 6 on a parchment lined baking sheet- see picture below).

Super yummy!! Have a good day, and until next time, Namaste!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

If you think you can't, you're wrong.

Hello bloggies! Do you ever get the feeling that you CAN'T do something?? I do sometimes. Sometimes I think to myself ''well, I can't do that because....(fill in the blank)". Well, it's the 'fill in the blank' part that really needs to be evaluated. WHY? Why can't you do whatever it is you want to do?

Last night my husband and I jogged 2 miles. Most of you that read this blog are very physically fit, and I'm sure you're thinking 'ok, 2 miles... big deal'. There was a time in my life that I couldn't even jog to the end of the street, or around the block- and it wasn't that long ago. Actually, it was about a year ago. About halfway through my jog, I kept thinking ''I can't do this. I can't go any further. I have to walk". And then, I would switch songs on my Ipod and get another burst of energy to keep going. And then I would let my mind wander, and before I knew it, I had jogged 2 WHOLE MILES!

The 'why', I realized, was because my mind was getting bored. It was psyching myself into wanting to do something else (walk) because I was getting tired. It was pretty amazing, though, because when I switched songs on my Ipod, and a song that I really liked played, I was able to forget about the 'why', and switch my thinking to the positive ('hey, I like this song!). In my head I would sing along, and forget about getting tired. The power of positive thinking, people.

So what can't you do? Are you sure? You're wrong.

Until next time, think positively. I'm positive that you can do what you think you can't. Namaste.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Operation 'Lose 9 Pounds'

Good morning bloggies!! Today marks day 1 of 170 of "Operation 'Lose 9 Pounds' ". Let me tell you a story-

Last year, I competed in our office 'Biggest Loser' competition. At the very end of the competition, thanks to some water manipulation and other factors, I lost 22 lbs. Of course, since most of it at the end was water weight (around 5 lbs...), I knew I wasn't going to be able to keep it off. And since I knew that going in, I was ok with it. Today, a year from when I first started the competition, I am still 15 lbs. lighter. (YAY!). Since I've been able to maintain weight for this long, I have decided that I want to drop one more dress/pants size. I'm going to lay it all out here- I want to be a size 6. I haven't been a size 6 (consistently- not including the brief pilgrimage to that size when I had an anxiety disorder my first year of college) since I was probably in middle school.
So why 170 days? We're going on vacation to Miami in October!!!! WHOOO HOO!!!! So, since this will be the first time in a bathing suit in a LONG TIME, and I'm not in a 'lose as much weight as fast as you can' type of competition, 9 pounds over 170 days should be MORE THAN MANAGEABLE!!
I know that your anticipation is rising, so here is my plan--
My BMR is 1521. I'm going to eat at my BMR, and exercise 180 to 200 calories off every day (or, eat 200 calories less on my off days). This will make a deficit, by the end of my 170 days, of around 34,000 calories. Crazy!! This is about 10 lbs... give or take.
As far as exercise goes, here's what we're going to be doing-
Day 2- Run for 30 min
Day 3- 30 min of Weights
Day 4- Billy Blanks Bootcamp (an hour long)
Day 5- Run for 30 min
Day 7- REST!!, then repeat the next week

As far as eating goes, here's what today's food plan is-

Breakfast: 1/2 cup of Oat Groats (soaked overnight) with Mashed Banana, 1 T Almond Butter, and 1/3 cup thawed Blueberries and Raspberries. ...and a cup of hot tea.

For a snack, I'm going with my trusty Larabar- in Cherry Pie. YUM!
Lunch today is a cup of Bean Soup that I made yesterday (thank you Trader Joe's Bean Soup Mix!), Celery and Tomatoes, an oz of Low Fat Cheese, a Small Apple, and a square of Trader Joe's Dark Chocolate. YUM!

Dinner tonight will be Chicken on top of a salad made of Spinach, Tomatoes, Onion, Celery, with a spritz of Lemon for dressing. It's not made yet... but my Chicken is cooking in Trader Joe's Chicken Broth in the Crock Pot as we speak!
This time around, losing weight should be pretty easy. We only eat quality foods anyway- not that crap that diet plans endorse (you know, the fat free, chemical laced death "food"...). It's all about the math, people!
Until next time, count your calories and get up and move. Namaste.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Your Car- Sanctuary??

TGIF! I wanted to share with you another 'me time' strategy that I have....

Is your car a sanctuary?? Or is your car an chaotic mess? My commute to work is no less than 35 min. per way, and if I have to run errands after work or on my lunch hour, I end up being in my car at least an hour every day, if not more. Why not create a serene space to make that time more enjoyable??? Here are some tips:

1- CLEAN OUT YOUR CAR. And I mean REALLY clean. Use a vacuum, wipe of the dash board, clean out the crevices, empty out your trunk. Your mind will be much clearer if your space is cleaner. Plus, you won't hear all of that junk rattling around all over the place, sliding here and there.

2- MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE ESSENTIALS. When you're on the road a lot, it's very important to have the following in your car/trunk at all times--
*Spare tire and jack
*Reflective Sun Shade for the windshield
*Map of the state you live/travel atlas
*Registration, Insurance Card
*Ice Scraper

Now, here's the fun part!!

3- FENG SHUI YOUR SPACE. Hang a faceted crystal from a blue ribbon from the rear view mirror if you are prone to road rage, or hang a silver ball from a red ribbon for protection.

4- CLEAR THE AIR. If your car has a stale or musty smell, consider opening the windows and leaving it outside, or in an open garage for a while. I like to use essential oils like Lemon or Lavender on the dash board, and sprinkled on the carpets. A little goes a long way! Stay away from air fresheners- the scents are not safe to smell all the time, and can cause headaches.

5- TIME TO GET COMFORTABLE. Be sure to sit up straight, with equal weight on both of your 'sits' bones. The seat should be adjusted so that you are as far away from the steering wheel as is comfortable. If you have back pain, consider buying a lumbar pillow for behind your back, or a wedge cushion for the seat.

6- PLAY SOME TUNES. I like to play 'smooth jazz' when I'm in the car, because it reminds me of being on vacation in Florida- my happy place. Play soothing music that appeals to you, whether it's classical, to pop. Stay away from hard rock, or anything that makes your blood pressure rise.

7- PACK SOME COMFORT ITEMS. Some items that I like to keep in the car, in an organizer (like this) are:
*Trash/plastic bags
*Travel kleenex
*Cleaning wipes
*Waterless hand sanitizer
*Hair comb
*Eco Bags (for those farmers markets!!)

8- AND DO NOT... Keep plastic water bottles in the car. When the plastic heats up, it leeches cancer causing chemicals into the water!!

Go make your car a sanctuary! Until next time, Namaste.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

When in doubt, grab a tea bag!!

Hello bloggies! Teenytiny post today- just have a tip!

Since it's summer time, bugs are beginning to fly! If you get bit by a bug, don't reach for the Cortizone 10! Instead, grab a TEA BAG!!! Let me tell you a story-

Three years ago, my husband and I were on our honeymoon in Sunny Isles Beach, FL. We were waiting for the valet to get the car for us so we could go to the mall, when all of a sudden, I get bit by what looked like a fat black mosquito. Twice. My arm swelled up so much because the venom from the two bites conjoined. We went to CVS to get every bug bite cream we could find... and NOTHING worked. My arm itched soooo bad! We called my husband's mom, who is a nurse, and she told me to lightly wet a black tea bag, and hold it on the bite for 20 min. AMAZING! It was the ONLY thing that worked! It drew the venom out, the swelling went down, the itching stopped... it was fantastic! Now, I always carry a black tea bag wherever I go, and so should you.

So, go buy some black tea bags for those annoying summer bug bites! Until next time, Namaste.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Read your ingredients!!!!!

I do not understand what is so hard about this. Why can't most of America understand that it is SO important to read what is IN THEIR FOOD?! Just because something is made by Kraft, for example, doesn't mean that it's GOOD FOR YOU!!! For Heaven's sake, people!!!

When I was on Weight Watchers, I was taught that Fat Free was the way to go. Knowing what I know now, that makes me sick!! It's amazing how deceiving food labels can be, and how so many people can fall into the trap. Fat doesn't make you fat- CALORIES make you fat. Sure, you can say 'oh well, a diet high in saturated fat causes heart disease, so fat isn't good' blah blah blah, but people, listen to me- if something is high in saturated fat, it is also high in calories. Fat is not the sole bad guy all you Weight Watchers fans... do your homework.


Uh, yeah, I'll eat my almonds, thanks. It's all of these, what I call death ingredients, that will kill you!! Maltodextrin!? Monosodium Glutamate?! Olestra?! Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil?! Come on, people!! Read your ingredients!! Take a little time, and find a brand of, chips lets say, that is made with natural ingredients! It's not that hard. Take the chips that I buy- Meijer Baked Tortilla Chips. What's in them? Corn, Oil, and Salt. That's it! Take the time, and read your ingredients. Just because something seems to be healthy, like spinach veggi soft tortilla doesn't mean that it's not colored green by Yellow #5 and Blue #1.

I made a big scene at Meijer on Sunday. I was looking for coconut. I found a bag that said 'Sweetened Coconut'. I thought... 'ok, let's see what's in this bag here'. I didn't get past the first three ingredients before my mouth dropped open, I yelled "OH MY GOSH!!" and dropped the bag. The ingredients were ''Coconut, Sugar, PROPYLENE GLYCOL" and others . AHH! Propylene Glycol?! Yeah, that's lighter fluid, also used in anti-freeze. From Wikipedia:

Potential health effects
Eye : Causes mild eye irritation. Contact may cause irritation, tearing, and burning pain.
Skin : Causes moderate skin irritation. Contact with the skin may cause erythema, dryness, and defatting.
Ingestion : May cause gastrointestinal irritation with nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Low hazard for usual industrial handling. May cause hemoglobinuric nephrosis. May cause changes in surface EEG.
Inhalation : Low hazard for usual industrial handling. May cause respiratory tract irritation.
Chronic : May cause reproductive and fetal effects. Laboratory experiments have resulted in mutagenic effects. Exposure to large doses may cause central nervous system depression. Chronic ingestion may cause lactic acidosis and possible seizures.

Did you know that???

Read your lables, people. If you can't pronounce it, don't eat it.

Until next time, Namaste.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Something to look forward to....

Well my bloggie friends, I'm home sick today. The cold that I thought I had gotten rid of returned. This weekend, after the 5k, I started feeling my cold symptoms again. Not severely, but more nagging than anything. So, I took a half day at work to come home and take care of myself. After almost a 2 hour nap, I'm feeling better. I'm sitting here watching Oprah, eating organic yogurt, and on her show is an American Idol of sorts. A young Chinese girl name Jane Zhang just performed with a BEAUTIFUL voice. She said that she got her motivation to be a performer one day by walking into a music store and hearing "There's a hero, if you look inside your heart. You don't have to be afraid, of what you are" (you know, that Mariah Carey song from way back when). That got me thinking- what motivates people to do (or not do) what they do? What motivates me? Here are some examples:

-My husband used to be the opposite of adventurous when it came to eating. Once he encountered the tv show 'No Reservations', starring Anthony Bourdain, and followed him in his eating adventures, my husband now will try new food items at restaurants, try my raw foods and my new recipes at home. His interest in Anthony Bourdain and his travels have inspired him beyond words. Now, instead of eating burgers... mac and cheese... and well, lets face it- CRAP, he'll eat more wholesome and healthy food-- even veggi sushi!

-A year ago this month, I weighed 168 lbs. The motivation to lose the weight started with a work 'Biggest Loser' competition. I had the desire and drive to win, because I am a very competitive person. I got 2nd place, but in my mind, I won in the long run because I have kept the weight off (now, 153 lbs-- that's 15 lbs for those of you not counting) and have a whole new outlook on food and exercise. In turn, I created this wellness blog that you're reading now...

Just to give some perspective, and to toot my own horn- toot toot- here are some pictures...
Here's a before picture (that's me on the right):

And here's an after picture:

Yeah, I'm pretty proud of that. Oh by the way, those jeans that I'm wearing in the first picture are tucked away-- far far away, for use at a much later date... aka- for baby time--- at a much later date... hehe.

What motivates you? I'm motivated by many factors, depending on the outcome that I want. And more and more, the limits I put on myself are becoming less and less. The mantra ''why not me?'' runs through my head now, more than ever. Why not me to be rich? Why not me to be healthy? Why not me to be happy? Why not me to do what I want to do in life? Why not me to try new things?

So, why not you, too?

Until next time, Namaste.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Raw Cookies! YUM!

Good morning bloggies! Yesterday was a busy day, and today will be the same. I made another breakfast cookie this morning (yum), but before I remembered to take a picture of it, it was gone!! Oh well, it looked like yesterday's!

We celebrated mother's day with my mom yesterday afternoon. I brought over some 'cookies':

These are chocolate:

And these are cinnamon roll:

Here are the recipes that I found here:

For each, blend in food processor until dough-like. If it's too dry, add a
little water 1 tsp at a time. Press into an 8x8 pan. With a sharp knife, cut
into 16 pieces. Wrap in saran wrap if desired.

Cinnamon roll
1 c. dates
1/4 c. Walnuts
1/4 c. almonds
1/8 c. cashews
7/8 tsp cinnamon
5 TBS raisins

Ginger Snap
1 c. dates
1/4 c. almonds
1/4 c. pecans
1/8 tsp ginger
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/16 tsp cloves

Chocolate Coconut
1 c. dates
1/4 c. almonds
1/4 c. walnuts
2 TBS coconut
½ TBS + ½ tsp cocoa powder
1 tsp water

They were VERY VERY similar to Larabars!! YUM!! I was able to make about 12 cookies per recipe. They were a big hit, especially the Cinnamon Roll ones. Note to self, and all DISers out there- these would be GREAT park snacks!!!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Happy Pre-Mother's Day!

Happy Pre-Mother's Day to all of you mothers out there!

I just got home from 5K #2 of the season. I shaved a minute off my time- WHOO! I'm going to be paying for it tomorrow I'm sure.... we'll see. For breakfast, I made the breakfast cookies from Ms. Fitnessista, and they were fab! Here's a picture:

These are my husband's... the one on the left was made with ginger and cinnamon, and the one on the right was made with coco powder. YUM!!

So last night, I tried my hand at making some veggi sushi- and it was Fab too!!

Here's the Nori on the mat, before I stuffed it with, well, stuff.

Here are the condiments to go in it- onion, avocado, carrots, and cucumber... oh, and short grain brown rice.

And then I layered the brown rice and veggies- here's the pre-roll picture:

And after rolling, here's the first attempt! Not, well... horrible, but surely not professional yet haha!!

So besides the stuff sticking out at the end, I think it went pretty well!!! I'd definitely make it again- and actually, might make some again with the left overs for dinner!! This was the recipe I used.

Make it a good day! Namaste.