Monthly Archives:

May 2017


30 Days of Brave Challenge

I can’t say enough good things about these Lavash wraps.  The texture, how easy they are to turn into wraps without tearing, how filling – I can’t wait to try making a pizza with one on my baking steel.

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I found them on the same aisle as the bread and tortillas at Walmart.  Although I will say that they are out of them a lot, so when I find them, I stock up.  I bought that package on May 26 – so with a use by date of June 10, they have a pretty good shelf life.  Not sure how they would be frozen and defrosted though.  I made a ham, egg white and lite mozzarella cheese wrap (6) with the sweetest strawberries for dessert.

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Even though I have a dedicated lunch from 12:30 – 1:30 so that I guarantee to leave my desk, I had a doc that needed to get out, so missed my window to walk with my sister.  I finally left at 1:15 and walked south and found another smaller farmers market.  You know I had to get some cheese – I’ll show you that later, but I got a $3 section of a spreadable white cheddar with a pistacchio crust – yum!  And I bought another basket of cremini mushrooms from River Valley Kitchens.


I recently received some turkey loot at my friends from Jennie-O Turkey.  I am a 2017 Ambassador for them, and was thrilled to try out this turkey.  I accidentally threw out the package, so thanks google for this pic.

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4 ounces for 2 points –I love that you can cut it thick or thin, It’s fully cooked so you could throw it in a fried rice, or in soup, or on top of a chopped salad.

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This sammie was delish – four ounces oc turkey (2), lite mozzarella (1), spinach, mustard, the lavash (2) and veggie straws (4) with sliced apple.  9 points for lunch.

I knew I wanted to grill last night, which meant I had to take into consideration how long it would take for my coals to get to temperature, so I had a Premier Protein shake on the train home.  I asked for a doppio shot in a Venti cup over ice.  It costs $2.17 and as luck would have it, I had $2.15 left on a gift card, so this only cost me two cents. Open-mouthed smile  I really love the caramel flavor.

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It’s the perfect snack because I didn’t walk in the door starving and eat my way through meal prep before my dinner is even ready.

I got more loot when I got home – this time from Simple Girl products.  You all know what a condiment whore I am, and when they told me that their products were low or no sugar, I was instantly intrigued.  You would be surprised at how much sugar is hidden in a lot of condiments.

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I decided to use the sample pack of the balsamic vinaigrette to marinate my veggies – the whole package was only 15 calories for 1.5 ounces and I marinated the veggies for about 30 minutes while I lit the grill and got everything else ready for dinner.

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If you are looking for a lean cut of beef, look for sirloin tip steak in your local grocery store.  It’s super tender, not a lot of fat, but just enough to give it some flavor.  This is the regular store price – $3.49 a pound.  I’ll easily get two more meals out of my steak – Jacob ate all of his.  😀  

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5 ounces of beef is 4 points, 5.5 ounces potato (that I nearly burned!) was 4 and the rest is zero.

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These mushrooms are amazing!  they held onto the marinade.  I still can’t believe I didn’t like mushrooms until a few years ago.

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You know I am all about challenges – although sometimes I declare a challenge and then by day five just stop talking about it and pretend that I never joined a challenge.

But this one is different.  It’s a 30 Days of Brave Challenge.  It can be anything you want it to be.  You will get daily emails that will help reaffirm whatever it is that you choose.  For me?  Self-Love and no binge eating for 30 days.  And by binge eating I mean not eating half a bag of Doritos because they are in the pantry, or stopping at CVS on my way home to buy gummies.  No keeping food in my bedside table anymore (you know, just in case I have low blood sugar – can’t use that as an excuse to keep peanut m&m’s in there and eat them even if my blood sugar isn’t low).  You get the idea.

I plan on keeping up my journal for 30 days as well.  I know that keeps me focused too.   I just thought I would share this challenge in case it’s something that could help you along your journey, no matter what that is.

I can’t even believe it’s the last day of May already – this year is flying by.   Before we know it, we’ll start seeing school supplies at Walmart.

Make it a great day!  Let me know if you decide to join the challenge – there is strength in numbers! 😀

Pork/ Sauces

East Carolina BBQ Sauce

Going into this weekend, I had a couple of events that I knew could throw me off my plan, but that I semi planned for.  The first one was a birthday party on Saturday – I enjoyed two beers and half a sandwich, and managed to avoid the cheese tray and the ice cream cookie dessert.

On Sunday, my twin sister and I met up with our best friends who are twins to meet at Wildfire.  I always get a burger at Wildfire because they are amazing.  I even told my sister earlier in the week that I was going to get one.  But when I woke up, I asked myself – do you really want to spend 40 points on lunch?

I ordered the shrimp cocktail with a side of broccoli with lemon vinaigrette, and had two glasses of wine.  It was perfect.  I wasn’t overly stuffed, because as much as I would think I’d only eat half of the burger, I knew I would eat it all, as well as all the fries.

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So remember how I told you last week that I just up and decided to rip up the back carpet on my back stairs – with no plan in mind?   Even Roman was like “what the F?!”

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I think I showed you all the layers that were part of the back room – my house was build in 1922, and I think that this back part of the house at one time may have been a three season porch as one time?

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I was blown away when Jacob told me he bought me new flooring, and he, Hannah and Jacob’s Dad spent hours peeling up the old flooring, sanding, sawing.   Not only did they pay for everything, I also found out that they paid some of Jacob’s Dad’s bills to thank him for his time.  So thoughtful.

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It turned out beautiful.  I am planning on hiring the guy who painted the rest of my house come in and pain the paneling the same grey color that’s in the front of the house, and stain all the wood beams from the front of the house to the back of the house so they are all the same. 

And the front of my house that’s been stacked with boxes for the move that Hannah and Jacob didn’t make, Hannah finally got to a point where she was over the disappointment of not moving out, and the clutter trumped her disappointment.  So on Sunday night, we did a clean sweep, and yesterday morning it was so calming to walk out of my bedroom and see this:

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Not only is my house put back together, but since my boss was out of town last week, I finally got rid of a bunch of stuff to offsite storage, and have my desk exactly the way I want it.  There is just something so calming about having things in order.  And it reflects my eating as well.  I had no temptation to each any junk this weekend at all.  It feels good to be back in control.

My Mom came over yesterday, and we had plans to go to a thrift store that was having a 50% off the entire store sale.  I didn’t want to be tied to my grill yesterday, so I pre-grilled a pork roast on Sunday to make chopped pork sandwiches.  That’s grilled sweet potato on the board too – so good!

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Obligatory picture of me and my Mom – spending yet another holiday together.  Once again proving that I am her favorite child.  Oh, and your welcome for the no make up!

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When my Mom comes over I try to fix her stuff that she wouldn’t cook just for herself.  She’s a great cook, but living alone, she’s not about to buy a 4 pound pork shoulder just for herself.

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Her Dad, my grandpa, who died when I was 11, still made the best North Carolina BBQ I’ve ever eaten.  Let me clarify that – best EASTERN North Carolina BBQ.  And that’s a pretty impressionable food memory to have nearly 38 years later.  I think that’s where I got my love of spicy food and vinegar from – I remember a carafe of hot vinegar peppers on my grandparents dinner table when we went to visit.  While my Aunt Martha makes the second best North Carolina BBQ, this is a close third.

East Carolina BBQ is always vinegar based, and what I would call a “mop” sauce.  Next time I will definitely use this as a mop, but since its a new recipe, I didn’t want to put it on there and people not like it, but my Mom and Jacob loved it.  #winning

My Aunt Martha does her pork bbq in the crock pot, cooking it slowly overnight, then dousing it with generous pours of vinegar, Tabasco sauce and crushed red pepper.  She also chops her pork up really fine.  Since Hannah wasn’t eating any, I just did a rough chop on the pork.

And a pork bbq sandwich wouldn’t be complete without topping it with cole slaw! 

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East Carolina BBQ Sauce
Serves 20
A delicious vinegar based bbq "mopping" sauce - can be used to mop your pork while it grills, or drizzle over your grilled pork sandwich.
Write a review
Prep Time
2 min
Cook Time
13 min
Total Time
15 min
Prep Time
2 min
Cook Time
13 min
Total Time
15 min
32 calories
7 g
0 g
0 g
0 g
0 g
41 g
490 g
6 g
0 g
0 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 32
Calories from Fat 1
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 0g
Saturated Fat 0g
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 490mg
Total Carbohydrates 7g
Dietary Fiber 0g
Sugars 6g
Protein 0g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  1. 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  2. 1 cup ketchup
  3. 1/3 cup brown sugar
  4. 1 tablespoon salt
  5. 1 teasoon crushed red pepper
  6. 1 teaspoon black pepper
  7. 1 tablespoon onion powder
  1. Mix all the ingredients into a stock pot, and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Once it boils, boil for one minute while whisking, then remove from the heat and let cool. Store in a mason jar.
My Bizzy Kitchen
It was a great weekend.  I stayed on track – used some weekly points, but still have 18 points for the next few days before Thursday’s WI, I didn’t declare it “holiday weekend!” and just go crazy with the eating and drinking to get “back on” today.  I just followed the program, much like I did in January and February and it felt good to be back in control of my eating, instead of it controlling me.

I’ll leave you with this picture of Hannah and Jacob’s dogs – they love me so!  Turns out I love them too Open-mouthed smile

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Breakfast/ Premier Protein

Premier Protein–Your New BFF for Weight Loss

Premier Protein my friends is your new BFF for Weight Loss.  I get a lot of requests each week to partner with certain products, links to articles, advertising – most of which I just immediately delete after receiving them because I am not going to promote anything that I don’t already use, or think that other people will find value with.

I am happy to say that I am a Premier Protein Ambassador!  I tried to jump on the protein bar/protein shake bandwagon several times.  Only one teeny tiny problem.  Turns out most of those have some sort of ingredient in them that makes me need to find a bathroom within five minutes after eating/drinking such products.  Not going to name and any names (ahem, Pure Protein, EAS, Atkins, – just to name a few).

So I tried Premier Protein after Instagram Weight Watcher peeps were buying these 2 smart point shakes and adding them to a two shot espresso from Starbucks.  A great, quick on the go mini breakfast as I like to call it – for only 160 calories and a whopping 30 grams of protein.  I recently bought an espresso machine at Goodwill, so now can make my drink to go at home, saving me $2.17 a day. Open-mouthed smile


I recently made vanilla coffee protein pancakes using the powdered protein mix:

coffee protein pancakes

Coffee Protein Pancakes

But yesterday?  Holy balls, I made the best fluffy protein pancakes out there. 

Elvis Protein Pancakes

I am calling these Elvis Banana Pancakes because they have banana, peanut butter AND bacon.  And each fluffy pancake is only 4 smart points.  I use the Weight Watchers recipe builder to figure out  the points using my exact ingredients, so please don’t go by the nutrition label that is auto generated on generic ingredients.  My guess is that each pancakes is about 170 calories.

Elvis Premier Protein Pancakes

Print Recipe
Serves: 8 Cooking Time: 20 minutes


  • 1.5 cups flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons powdered peanut butter (PB2)
  • 3 tablespoons sugar*
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup Premier Protein vanilla protein powder
  • one 11 ounce Premier Protein bananas and cream shake



Mix the flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, peanut butter powder and protein powder and mix with a whisk, just until combined. Add in the egg and bananas and banana cream shake, and using a fork, mix just until combined. It's okay if its a bit lumpy.


Now here is the secret to fluffy pancakes. Let your batter sit a minimum of 15 minutes to let the baking powder do its magic. I used a 1/3 measure cup to get 8 fluffy pancakes. Because these pancakes are so fluffy, after the first flip, place a lid on the pan so that they cook in the middle.


Premier Protein can be found in most stores, but I have found that the cheapest place is Sam's Club in the Chicagoland area. *On the WW Freestyle Program each pancake is 4 points using sugar, or 3 points if you substitute Splenda no calorie sweetener.

For my breakfast yesterday I took the top pancake (4 points) used my sugar free syrup (1), ate all the banana and blackberries, the tablespoon of real bacon bits (1) and the two slices of peppered bacon for a very filling and protein packed 6 point breakfast.

I have also tried their protein bars:


They are 8 smart points.  I’ve eaten half for breakfast on the train before work if I am extra hungry, and saved the second half for the train ride home so I don’t feel like I have to eat the second I walk in the door.



I also like to chop up half a bar and top it on my parfaits for a bit of texture.  I think the chocolate one tastes just like a snickers bar.

I now have found these products at Walgreen’s, CVS, Walmart and Sam’s Club.  Sam’s Club by me (Chicago area) is the cheapest – a 12 pack for only $16.68. 

Have you tried Premier Protein yet?  If other protein products bothered you in the past, I’d recommend trying these.  I am down 15 pounds this year, and I think in part because I’ve been able to drink a 2 point shake on my train ride home and have time to make a sensible dinner instead of coming home starving and driving through the Burger King drive through.

Enjoy your Sunday!

Note: This is a sponsored recipe post.  However, I will only endorse products I use and recommend.