Category Archives: food

True Confessions Tuesday

It has been a long time since I’ve done a True Confessions post, since April 10, to be exact. Which means, I have A LOT to confess to! Let’s start with these…

  • I CONFESS I have just gotten back into what I hope is a regular routine for working out. I don’t know why I let myself slip so badly. Despite the guilt I feel in not doing it, it still isn’t enough sometimes to get me moving again. I wish I could figure it out.
  • I CONFESS I need to make changes to my eating as well. Some aspects of it are good – I’m drinking a lot of water and eating a lot of fruits and veggies. My biggest downfall is portion control. I am still trying to be that person who doesn’t have to be on a “diet” or specific weight loss program. Clearly that isn’t working for me, but I am determined to somehow figure out a happy medium and make better choices.
  • I CONFESS that I am highly frustrated with myself and my lack of motivation over the last several months. I set a goal for myself to log 600 miles on dailymile running and walking for the year and I am WAY off where I should be at this point. But beating myself up over it isn’t going to help it, so I just need to keep it up and make up for lost time.
  • I CONFESS that I am not a fan of riding a bike, I really just DON’T like it. But, I have been thinking about it lately, that it may be good to add to my routine. And I’m not sure what I think will be different about it this time than in the past. I can walk for hours and not feel winded or out of shape, but if I ride a bike for 15 minutes, I’m done. And I hate that.
  • I CONFESS that I have gotten lost in my brain far too many times this past week. I get anxious at times and then I start to think things and it’s a downward spiral from there and before I know it, I’m lost in my brain. It’s the reason I wrote the letter to myself on Sunday. I have to dig myself out before I am too far gone sometimes. It’s best for my overall wellness.

 Yep, no shortage of confessions in my world today. I hope that saying these out loud (so to speak) will help keep me a little more accountable to myself.


Meal Planning

I decided to take stock of what we have in our kitchen and see what kind of meal planning I can do for the rest of the week and even into the next week. When I grocery shop and I buy chicken or ground beef, I package it up into single servings and freeze it. I buy boneless, skinless chicken breasts and freeze one per bag. I split up the ground beef into single-serving patties and freeze them. Depending on how I need the ground beef for whatever it is I’m making, I can either cook it as a patty or crumble it up. Over time, it starts to add up in my freezer and I am pleasantly surprised at what I have.

After taking stock today, this is what we have both fresh and frozen:

  • 17 chicken breasts
  • 3 pork chops
  • 2 Italian sausage links
  • 4 pcs. Tilapia
  • 3 hamburger patties
  • 1 new York Strip Steak

The chicken, considering I make 2-3 pieces at a time depending on what I’m making and if I am making extra for lunch the next day, could make 5 1/2 meals alone! The pork chops is 1 meal, the sausage links are 1 meal, the tilapia is 4 meals, the hamburger will likely be 2 meals, and the steak is a bonus for hubby. Technically, we have enough for 13 dinners.

After checking to see what meats/poultry/fish we have, I went through the freezer to see what frozen veggies and foods we have:

  • 1/2 box fried shrimp
  • 1 bag hushpuppies
  • Chicken and Vegetable Steamer meal (for 2)
  • Garlic Chicken Steamer meal (for 2)
  • 1/2 bag sweet potato fries
  • Chicken rice
  • Brown Rice
  • Brown and Wild Rice Medley
  • Garden vegetable medley
  • Mixed veggies
  • 2 bags broccoli
  • Asian medley

Next up were fresh veggies and cheeses:

  • 3 baking potatoes
  • 2 sweet potatoes
  • 1 zucchini
  • Onion
  • Mozzarella cheese
  • Mild cheddar cheese

In our pantry, we have the following:

  • 1 can Italian diced tomatoes
  • 2 cans black beans
  • 1 1/2 box penne pasta
  • 1 box angel hair pasta
  • 1 bag No-Yolk egg noodles
  • 1 jar spaghetti sauce
  • Soft taco dinner kit
  • Italian bread crumbs
  • Panko bread crumbs
  • Carolina BBQ sauce
  • Turkey gravy
  • Mexican rice
  • Teriyaki noodles

All this, while possibly boring to you, means A LOT of meal options for us over the next two weeks and hopefully, a much lighter grocery bill! And while not all of these items are super healthy, they can be made healthier by how I prepare them. So many options for yummy meals in our house!

Do you meal plan? Do you use any specific websites to enter your ingredients to get ideas?

Sunday in the kitchen: 04/29/12

The last few Sundays, I have enjoyed trying new recipes. I go grocery shopping early and then I have the day to make whatever delicious looking recipes I’ve saved. Today was no exception. I was in a real fruit and vegetable mood, plus I wanted to make something new and different for dessert. I remembered the recipe I had for Whoopie Pies in the WW recipe book I bought a few months ago. Off to the store I went. I spent alot of time in the produce section, and I bought enough to last the week. I bought asparagus, red cabbage, mushrooms, tomatoes, red pepper, sweet potato, and onion. Good assortment that can be used in so many dishes or salads. I also bought a couple mangos and watermelon. As I always do when I get home from the store, I cut up the fruit. The easier it is for me to pull out of the fridge and eat, the more likely I am to eat it. The watermelon and mango looked soooo good! The mango was really ripe, which is how I like it. It has kind of a meaty texture to it and it was perfect.

Super sweet watermelon - great on a warm day.

Really ripe mango

After preparing the fruit, I decided to try the Whoopie Pie recipe. I just happened to have all the ingredients I needed since they are pretty basic. This recipe can be found in the Best Darn Food Ever recipe book that I purchased at my WW meeting. If you’d like me to email the receipe to you, let me know and I’ll be happy to do so. The batter for the cookie part of it was AMAZING. In my world, you have to eat some of the batter when you’re baking. I don’t care if it’s wrong.  Hubby really liked them, too, which means I will for sure make them again. A couple things about these…. the cookie part of it came out too big. I would have liked for them to be smaller, like the picture in the recipe. Also, I prepared them with the marshmallow fluff and put them in a cake tray with a lid, lined with wax paper, so they are all ready to eat. The marshmallow expanded and they are now a little on the messy side. I told hubby that next time we will add the marshmallow fluff when we are ready to eat them. I will, of course, only show you the amazing pictures of when they were first made. Not bad for my first time, huh? They really taste as yummy as they look and they are super easy to make.  

For dinner, I knew I was going to make something with the colorful veggies I bought today. I decided to make sauteed chicken and vegetables. I cut strips of boneless skinless chicken breast and sauteed it in some olive oil with salt and pepper. When that was done, I set it aside and added a little more olive oil to the pan. I cut up zucchini, mushrooms, white onion, and red pepper. When it was cooked just to the right tenderness, I added a little butter and minced garlic. Okay, ALOT of garlic. I also cooked some red cabbage in olive oil and vinegar for a side. My goodness, it all smelled so good. I made enough to have left-overs for lunch tomorrow. This meal was perfect enough, no other side orders were needed. Is it obvious from the pictures how much I love garlic?  

I find it really amusing that I enjoy cooking and trying new recipes so much. I used to be really afraid of cooking. And seriously, how do I possibly measure up to my mom’s cooking? She is the best cook ever! Maybe a little bit of that rubbed off on me. I am pretty proud of myself. 🙂


I am confused. If you were to ask my hubby, he would tell you this is nothing new. And he’s right. I think-and-overthink things constantly and confuse myself even more. I don’t know why I do it, but it’s part of who I am. You should be so glad you are not me.

What am I confused about, you ask? It’s simple really. I don’t know if I want to stay on Weight Watchers. It’s many reasons, not just one. I guess the best thing to do is make a list of whys and why-nots.

Why I want to stay on WW…

  • I need the accountability.
  • I enjoy the WW philosophy and the resources they offer.
  • I like the structure it gives me.
  • I like the celebration of it when it is working.
  • I like, no LOVE, the idea of making Lifetime again.

Why I don’t want to stay on WW…

  • It’s not cheap. Whether I pay weekly or save money with the monthly pass, it’s still an expense that I have a hard time justifying these days.
  • I don’t like the structure it gives me. Ha! How can I both like and not like this??
  • It can be hard to get to the meetings. When I don’t go, I feel guilty.
  • I want to be able to eat what I want and not think about how many points it is.
  • Tracking can be a chore sometimes.

See? I’m confused. I like the structure it gives me because I know how I am and I need that. But I don’t like the structure it gives me because I want to enjoy foods without having to calculate it first. And I’m not talking about junk food and food that’s bad for me. I’m just talking about food in general.

On several of the blogs I follow, the bloggers do not specifically diet or follow a  certain food plan. Now, I will say that I do not consider WW to be a diet, because you can eat whatever you want if you plan accordingly. It is a way of life. That’s not the issue. My problem is I’m 40 years old and for probably 20 of those 40 years, I’ve either been on a diet or some sort of food plan to lose weight. Frankly, I’m tired of thinking about it. Does that mean I can eat anything and everything? By all means, NO. The way I am made and how I think and my emotional eating habits, I know I have to be very mindful of what I’m eating. But you know what? Life is too short to always be thinking about what foods I shouldn’t eat. Seriously. 

In what I would consider to be a perfect little food world for myself, I would focus on eating the things that I know are good for me, and that I love for most of the time. Fish, fruits, veggies, and more. It’s no secret that I love to try new things and to cook delicious meals. Why do I have to go and ruin it by tracking the points and weighing in once a week? But do I have the will power to do it on my own? I haven’t before and that is what scares me.

I haven’t been to WW in 3 weeks now. Life has gotten in the way. All I have are excuses. But this has prompted me to think about this. When I don’t go to WW, I feel guilty. Why do I do that to myself? I hate putting myself in a position to where I feel guilty for not doing something. Like I don’t already have enough to worry about. (See? You should be SO glad you are not me….)

I’m being a little dramatic here, because I really do love WW. I could even change my mind in a few weeks and go running back to WW with my head down, ready to confess all my eating sins. But that’s what this is all about, right? Finding what works for each one of us. Maybe I can’t be that person who is just mindful about what they eat. Or maybe I can be. How will I ever know if I don’t try?

Sunday Dinner: Eggplant Stacks

This morning I came across a recipe that would be perfect for dinner today. I like to try new recipes on Sunday when I am not rushed. This recipe was super easy to make, with very few ingredients.

I found the recipe on a blog I just started following, Grace Got Healthy.You can see the recipe here: .

I followed this recipe almost exactly except instead of the garden tube of herbs, I used basil and italian seasoning. I also served the eggplant stacks on penne pasta.

I enjoyed this. Normally I would eat breaded eggplant, so this was a nice change. The tomatoes were perfect and I can never pass up melted and browned mozzarella cheese.

Eggplant Stacks

It was as good as it looks!

Sunday Lunch

This girl LOVES nachos. I decided to make a lighter version today after I made another batch of the Southwestern Black Bean Salad that I found on Skinnytaste last weekend. A handful of the Blue Corn Tortilla Chips from Garden of Eatin’, some reduced fat cheddar cheese, and a side of the Southwestern Black Bean Salad. An easy, tasty, and colorful lunch on a Sunday!


I love colorful foods!

Super easy pulled pork

I’ve been wanting to make pulled pork for a longgggg time now. I’ve either been afraid to try it or did not have the time. Today was the day. I decided not to be afraid of it and I found a super easy recipe.

Hubby and I are big fans of Bulls-Eye Carolina BBQ sauce. It is a mustard base sauce and as the label says, it’s tangy, sweet, and spicy. I had the brilliant idea this morning to see if the Bulls-Eye website had any recipes for pulled pork. And they did. And miraculously, it was using the Carolina sauce.

The recipe called for 4 ingredients. 1 bottle of Carolina BBQ sauce, 1/2 cup packed brown sugar, 4 tsp. hot sauce, 1/2 tsp. paprika, and 1 bonesless shoulder pork (3 lbs). I chose to leave out the hot sauce as hubby is not a fan of spicy. It was also my first time buying shoulder pork and I was pleased to find that it is not expensive.

So, the recipe as I made it is as follows:

1 1/4 bottle Carolina BBQ sauce

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 tsp. paprika

3 1/4 lb. boneless pork shoulder

Mix the sauce, sugar, and paprika together. Put pork in slow cooker and pour sauce mixture over it. Cook on low for 8-10 hours.

The aroma of the sauce cooking quickly filled the kitchen. It smelled SO good! At the 8 hour mark, I checked it and found that it was easily pulled apart with a fork. I took it out, pulled it all apart, and put it back in the slow cooker and mixed it with the sauce. I cooked it on low for another 25 minutes.

I can’t even begin to tell you how tender it was. It almost fell apart just looking at it. The sauce and brown sugar were the perfect mixture and complemented each other very well. I definitely chose an easy recipe going into this, but there wasn’t a darn thing wrong with it. It had the flavor we love and it was so incredibly tender. I *might* try and make my own sauce from scratch next time. Maybe. This might be hard to top for easy and delicious.

Here is how it looked when it was all done…. Hubby had his on a bun, I just ate mine with a fork. De-lish!

Homemade pulled pork

Sunday morning in the kitchen

Yesterday I found a recipe on Skinnytaste for Southwestern Black Bean Salad and could not wait to try it. I went to the store this morning to get all the goodies. It was very easy to make. I searched for the recipe that appealed to my taste the most on this. I found several. One thing for sure, it had to have fresh cilantro in it. I love the smell and flavor of it. Some recipes do not call for it. One thing I did leave out this time around was the avocado. I love avocado but wanted to do without this first time. You can find the recipe here: .

This is a very fresh, colorful treat. I am a chips and salsa girl so this is a nice twist. I will also have this on fish, baked potatoes, and more. It could be used in so many ways!

Here is how it came out…

So colorful!

I also had the urge to make something sweet and decided fudge brownies sounded yummy. To make the skinny version of them, I simply replaced the the egg, oil, and water ingredients with a can of pure pumpkin puree. Doing this also makes them super moist.  How do these look?


What are you making on this fabulous Sunday?

True Confessions Tuesday

It’s that time again!

  • I CONFESS that I did not run this morning. I put my clothes and shoes out yesterday evening, so they’d be there ready and waiting for me this morning. But I just did not have the energy to put them on and run out the door this morning. And because of that, I’ve been irritated with myself all day. #blah
  • I CONFESS that it messed me up a little mentally not running over the weekend. While I enjoyed the time doing other things, it just didn’t seem right to not be out there on the two mornings a week when I have  no pressure to be somewhere else.
  • I CONFESS that my reading of a couple good books lately has me wanting to read every spare second I have.
  • I CONFESS that I need to get my mind back in the game as far as my eating goes. I have fallen back into a few bad habits such as drinking coke (only one a day if I have one), not paying as close attention to my portion sizes as I should, and not eating as many fruits and veggies as I should.
  • I CONFESS that on this 13th day of no Starbucks, I am really craving one. It seems harder now than when I first decided to stop them for awhile. Tomorrow will be 2 weeks which is HUGE. I would like to enjoy them once a week, perhaps on the weekend. But, I don’t know if my will power will be enough to stick to that. (remember me? all or nothing girl…..)
  • I CONFESS that I need to step up my water intake this week. Maybe a fun water bottle would help me with that. Time to change it up a little….
  • I CONFESS that ALL I can think about today is going to see Daughtry in concert tomorrow night. Tomorrow will be the longest day ever until it’s time to go.
  • I CONFESS that over the next couple of days, it’s quite possible you will only hear about Daughtry. I apologize in advance for this.

Friend Makin’ Mondays: Trigger Foods

Friend Makin’ Mondays: Trigger Foods










If you’ve taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you’re new, please take a moment to answer this week’s question on your own blog then add your link in the comments section here at: so we can all see your FMM questions and answers. Please invite your blog readers to add their links here too so everyone has to opportunity to be seen. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Now it’s time for this week’s topic!


  1. Are there foods in your life that always seem to trigger overeating?  Ohhhhh yes….
  2. If so, what are they? Chips and salsa, pizza, donuts
  3. When are you most likely to give into strong cravings?  When I am stressed, emotional, upset, etc…. If I’m not in a good mood, whatever the reason or mood may be, it can send me to the nearest food that is bad for me.
  4. Are you more likely to be triggered by salty foods or sugary foods?   Salty, but then I’d want to follow it up with sugary.
  5. How do you get back on track after overeating? Generally, the better I am about running, the better I am about eating. I also step up my water intake because that just naturally fills me up.
  6. Are there any foods that you allow yourself to eat without limits? Veggies. Everything else has to have a limit of some sort otherwise I am out of control with it. (I’m telling you, I could be a walking/talking public service announcement for emotional eating.)
  7. Do you notice a change in your emotions while eating trigger foods? Kind of. It makes me momentarily happy to eat that bad food, but then it is followed by guilt. And it doesn’t really help the situation that made me upset, stressed, mad, whatever…
  8. Do you have a strategy to keep yourself from overeating trigger foods?  The easiest thing is to not buy the foods that set me off. If I keep chips and salsa in the house, it’s next to impossible to stay away from them. If I’m at a restaurant, I’ll either ignore them altogether or set a limit. Being the all-or-nothing girl that I am, it is sometimes just easier to not have them all then to have just a limited amount.

Now it’s your turn to answer this week’s questions! Don’t forget to come back and link up in the comments! Happy Monday!