Thursday, September 23, 2010

Adventures in Cooking

September has been a month of cooking/experiments! Check out some of my creations below!!

A nice acorn squash with salt, pepper, and roasted pumpkin seeds. YUMMM!!!

Then, Justin wanted a Weight Watchers meal (you probably heard me gasp around the world) I made a healthy pizza - from scratch. Whole wheat crust, fresh tomatoes, fresh cilantro, mozzerella and pizza sauce. Also YUM!!!
And I had purchased some butternut squash at a Farmer's Market recently, and I wanted some soup so I improvised. See the amazing recipe below!!

Butternut Squash Recipe:

1 large (or 2 small/medium) butternut squash
1 cup Fat Free Milk
1 cup Fat Free Cream cheese
Garam Masala spice
Curry spice

Peel and cut all the squash. Boil over the stove for 20 minutes, or until squash is soft enough to smush with a fork. Drain the pot, and mush all the potatoes to as smooth or lumpy as you'd like.

Put all the mashed squash back in your pot and put the stove top at about medium heat. Add the milk and cream cheese, and stir until all the cream cheese has melted and you reach desired consistency. Add the spices to your taste preferences. (I just did a dash or two until I got it right where I liked it).

This recipe will make a very thick soup, almost like a paste. But I looove really thick soup. You can slowly add more milk to make it thinner until it gets to your preference. And I just picked those spices because I love Indian food!

And I made sure I picked fat free cream cheese and milk because I'm on Weight Watchers. But it reallllly tastes yummy!!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Update for Accountability

Well, unfortunately, I had another weigh-in yesterday, and I gained back almost as much as what I lost the first week. So I'm not sure where I went wrong, but I'm going to try 10 times as hard this week!

I made sure I had a WW meal for lunch, so it could be easily counted, and I picked a healthy frozen stir-fry option with lots of veggies for dinner. I also got some WW desserts so I could still feel "bad" but still stay within points. I will have 2 points over after dessert, so I'm doing good for today!! (I hope this shows up next Wednesday in my weigh-in!)

Monday, September 13, 2010

Weekend Update

Boy it was a busy weekend!!

I got home from work and Justin called from his office and invited me to go downtown with a bunch of his co-workers. Fortunately, I had already fed Bailey, so I left and met up with them downtown. We hung out at a few places and headed to our final destination because a girl we were meeting wanted to do karaoke. So Justin and 2 of our friends, Kyle and Amanda, all drove back to our place and hung out for a few minutes first, while Justin changed out of his work clothes. We then headed over to Hatch Cover and met up with Megan and Mike, and it was a great time!! We ordered a bunch of food and it was like we had a buffet at our table! We never actually ended up doing any karaoke (thank goodness!) because it was the conversation was great, and it was extremely crowded, but we did pick a bunch of songs on the jukebox and it was a blast!!

On a side note – Amanda LOVES Hindi movies almost as much as I do! At my place, we had a blast going through my movie stash and I explained plot lines, gave recommendations, etc. Plus, the girls drove home separately from the guys, so Amanda and I rocked out to some Hindi soundtracks I have in my car. We made plans for when the boyfriends go on a business trip later this month to go to a local Indian restaurant for lunch and then go back to my place and watch a movie! (Or two! Or three!)

I managed to get up around 6:45 am and shower and meet up with my parents at Panera Bread at 8! They go each Saturday at 8 am – it’s a “tradition”! I brought Bailey with me, and they brought their puppy Cody, but they had errands to run, so they left and Bailey and I went to the dog park – go figure, right? Plus, the weather was still pretty nice and wasn’t miserable yet, so it was nice.

Then I had a quiet lunch at home while Justin was out fishing and I watched a new Hindi movie on Netflix called “Welcome”. I say “new”, but it came out in 2008, but Netflix just made it available to add to your instant queue, so I could watch it on the Wii without having to wait for them to ship a disc. I definitely won’t buy the movie, and I didn’t really enjoy the music all that much. But, you win some; you lose some. It was good and funny in some parts, and it was a Bollywood movie, so that much I enjoyed.

I wanted to watch the UT game, but it wasn’t televised in my area. Booo!!! I ended up just watching some documentaries on the History channel about 9/11 and then went to bed.

I got up somewhat early, and realized that I had a TON of laundry that I forgot to do Saturday, so I was a “Laundry Queen” all day. I think there were about 3 or 4 loads of laundry total. Whew!! Around 11, I ran some errands with Justin and got some brats for NFL Kickoff Weekend!! We also bought ingredients for homemade chili on Saturday, which has become a football Sunday tradition. That bad boy started in the crockpot around 9 am and kept it nice and hot all day long! YUMM!!! (And it’s like 85% veggies, plus beef, so I could still enjoy it and stay on WW!!)

Football Sunday consisted of watching the Broncos lose, then the Eagles, then finally the huge disaster that was the Cowboys/Redskins game. Not a good day for us. I started to watch another Hindi movie in between games, but I wasn’t really focused so I’ll have to finish it tonight!

Sunday, September 12, 2010


I'll probably give a full weekend update tomorrow (once I have a chance to remember it all!) but I wanted to document that as of my self weigh-in last Wednesday, I was down 2.8 lbs!!

So I can do it. I can be smart about food. I just realized - it's hard to think about what you eat. Why can't all the Sonic food and the junky stuff just be enough for me??? Oh well, making some good progress so far... yay!!!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Back on the wagon...

For Weight Watchers, that is.

And I must say, it seems so much harder this time!!

In the 4 ½ months since I finished my 13-week session, I’ve gained back approximately 5 pounds. It isn’t the end of the world, and I can still fit into the clothes I could back then, but I’m just disappointed. Plus, when I finished back in May, I was only 5 lbs from my goal weight, and now I’m at 10 lbs away.

I don’t know if it’s the meetings that make the difference or not, but I’m not going to be attending them this time, but I did on my last time on the program. Granted, I only started it up again last week, but it seems so much harder this time already.

I know all about the point system, how many to start with, how to get extra, what foods are good and filling and which are not, etc. I know exactly what I should be doing, and yet I’m finding it really hard to stay within my points for the day. I can’t remember if it was this hard the first week for me last time or not, because that was back in January. But I lost 5 lbs that first week!!

I just seem to be finding myself having a 7 or 8 point lunch or dinner, and then feel good about only a 1 or 2 point snack and then boom – it’s 7:30 pm, I’m starving and I’m already close to or over my allotted points for the day. I know that there are 35 flex points for the entire week, but I don’t want to keep dipping into them each day and then halfway through my week, they’re gone. It just seems that what I ate the first go-around filled me up more then than they do now, which is weird.

I am getting some daily exercise, in the form of taking Bailey to the dog park. I walk to the park, spend about 30-40 minutes there, and walk back, totaling about 45 minutes round trip on average. It’s low intensity, so I don’t earn as many activity points, but it’s hard to go and “haul-ass” around the park with a dog that likes to stop and smell and run off, and stop and play, etc. Plus, it’s also a great mental break for me, because I love dogs (especially Bailey), and it makes me happy to see him enjoying himself and being silly. So I go for a nice leisurely walk – better than sitting on the couch all night. And then he gets exercise too – maybe even more than me!!

I’m just a little frustrated with myself this time around. I do need to give myself some slack though, as it is still in the first week of this for me, and I should allow myself some time to re-adjust back to eating well and controlling portions. As long as I keep up with that and work hard at it, and continue to exercise, I can see this working for me again. I didn’t even do any exercise last time, so I’m hoping that gives me a slight advantage the second time around.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

200th Post - Road Trip to Missouri!!

200th Post – Road Trip to Missouri

So 2 weeks ago, my dad and I had lunch at Schlotszky’s on Thursday and he was telling me about a camper that he was interested in getting. He had been dreaming of getting one for years, but my mom has always been opposed to it. One night, he happened to show this camper to my mom and she said “ok”…and then he had the green light to get the camper!!

So then on Friday, August 27th I got into work and had an e-mail from my dad. The subject was “Are you up for an adventure?” In the e-mail, he invited me to take a road trip with him that weekend. He was able to get an amazing deal on a camper that someone was selling, who had only used it once. The only problem –

He lives in North Carolina.

He either wasn’t willing or able (or maybe both) to ship it or bring it to Colorado Springs, so he and my dad worked out a deal where they would both drive halfway (about 12 hours) and meet in St. Louis, Missouri. My mom couldn’t go because they had a house guest staying with them who was flying out at noon on Saturday and she was taking her to the airport, plus she had a dinner party on Saturday night. So my dad asked me to go! It took me all of 2 minutes to realize that I had no plans and I was going!!

Friday night I went over for dinner at their house, planning on staying over so that I could leave with him really early the next morning. We had a great dinner and then I convinced my dad that if we drove a few hours that night, then we wouldn’t have to spend the entire Saturday in the car, and we’d get to St. Louis earlier. He loved the idea, so we started out at 6:45 on Friday! We drove through the night and ended up at a hotel in Colby, Kansas. Boy – there was NOTHING out there. It was about 11:30 pm (10:30 Colorado time) but I was starving and we hadn’t eaten in about 6 hours, so we stopped at the McDonald’s next door for a late night snack.

We decided to get up at 5 am (4 am MT) to be on the road by 6, and then we were on our way again (after, of course, another stop at McDonald’s for breakfast). I’m not really into audio books, but thank goodness my dad had one with him, because it really helped the time fly by. It also was great to just talk with him and catch up on things, and tell funny stories and memories and between all that and the several stops for gas and bathroom breaks, we were in St. Louis before we knew it! Throw in another stop at McDonald’s for lunch, and I was starting to feel like the guy from the documentary “Supersize Me”.

The man’s name who was selling my dad the camper was Jeff, and he was really nice. We got to St. Louis around 4:15 (3:15 MT) and spent about 1 ½ to 2 hours getting the rundown of all the features and hooking it up to my dad’s car. Then after driving it around the parking lot to get used to it, we were ready to get back on the road. Seems kind of silly to drive 12 hours just to spend 2 hours in St. Louis, and then drive back, but it worked out so well driving a few hours Friday night, so we were ok with it. Plus, it was also equally silly to set up camp at 6 pm and then just sit around, waiting for the next morning to arrive.

After only about 2 hours of driving, my dad and I decided that we should probably start looking for a campground before we got to Kansas and there were practically none. Plus, we also wanted to set-up the camper and make sure it all worked, and we didn’t know how long that would take (since we’re both first-timers). So around 8, we finally got a campsite and I convinced my dad that we should probably eat something other than McDonald’s for dinner. The campground host recommended a 50’s Diner close-by, and since we didn’t want to fiddle with un-hooking and hooking the camper from the car (since we didn’t know what we’d do if we couldn’t figure it out!) we took it to dinner with us. But, it was a little rushed so that we could get back and settle in. Thank goodness for electric hook-ups and A/C in the camper – it was so humid and muggy that the A/C was awesome! After checking Facebook and watching an episode of Law and Order SVU on Netflix, we headed to bed.

We got up again at 4/5 and made our way back home and, for convenience, had McDonald’s for breakfast one last time. For those of you counting, that’s 4 times in 2 days we had McDonald’s. So it was a mutual decision to get Quizno’s for lunch that day, so we could actually say we had fresh veggies and whole wheat bread at least once, and to feel better about our food choices.
We finally arrived back in Colorado Springs around 5, had dinner with my mom, and then I had to rush home to finally take a shower!! Whew…

It was a great weekend, and it actually went by too fast. I love road trips!! I can’t wait for my next one! Here are some shots I took on the way back so that I could share:

Dad test driving the car with the camper...

Good morning Kansas. Really??

Here's my dad getting the run through from Jeff...
Here's my dad at the campground on Saturday night getting everything ready...
Place in Kansas where we stopped for gas had this in the window - thank goodness they were closed.

More of was actually kind of therapeutic...

Driving through Kansas...

My dad drove the whole way - what a trooper!!

Always the photographer, never the subject.

Thank goodness for audio books...this one was great!!

Bales of hay guessed it...Kansas!
Finally back to the mountains!!
Thanks for reading!!