Stuffed Mushrooms

Does anyone else walk down every aisle at the grocery store to get more steps in?  No?  It’s good and bad.  Good that you are getting more steps in, but bad because you tend to throw stuff in the cart that wasn’t on your list.  This Scramble though, was a good decision.  It was in the egg aisle (duh) – they had several different varieties to chose from – I chose the rancheros one because it didn’t have any onions in it – black beans, yellow and red peppers, jalapenos.  

I won a gift card to Corner Bakery, so I picked up some egg whites and a cup of fruit, and topped it with the rancheros – two tablespoons below is only 30 calories and 1 smart point.  I thought it would be spicier with the jalapenos, but you all know I have hot sauce at my desk. 😀

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It was a gorgeous day yesterday – we have really lucked out with our weather while my friends on the West Coast are melting.  I had to private message my friend Rhonda my temps when I think it was 62 here and it was 119 where she lived.  Fuck dry heat – 119 is hot no matter what!

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My sister and I decided to do the River Walk at lunch.  

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We walked by this bike rental station, and one day this summer, we are going to rent one of those bikes – its only $30 for an hour – I think we would laugh so hard riding this bike!   

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I had more lasagna soup for lunch.  I really never get sick of this soup 😀

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I had defrosted ground beef to make a burger salad, but when I was doing a quick rearrange of the refrigerator, in the back saw that I bought these mushroom caps last Saturday and they needed to be used up.  I still had some Italian sausage leftover, so I decided on the spur of  the moment to make stuffed mushrooms for dinner.  I just used my teaspoon measure to scrape out the fills to make room for the filling.

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scrape the sides

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Now I know this doesn’t look that appetizing, but it was delicious!

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Stuffed Mushrooms
Serves 3
Who says you can't have stuffed mushrooms for dinner?! These are spicy, meaty and delicious - feel free to pair with a side salad or fresh fruit for dinner.
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
20 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
20 min
274 calories
8 g
54 g
21 g
14 g
8 g
189 g
497 g
5 g
0 g
12 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
189g
Servings
3
Amount Per Serving
Calories 274
Calories from Fat 191
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 21g
33%
Saturated Fat 8g
42%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 9g
Cholesterol 54mg
18%
Sodium 497mg
21%
Total Carbohydrates 8g
3%
Dietary Fiber 1g
5%
Sugars 5g
Protein 14g
Vitamin A
12%
Vitamin C
10%
Calcium
14%
Iron
8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 6 mushroom caps
  2. 6 ounces cooked Italian sausage
  3. 1/2 cup part skim ricotta cheese
  4. 1/2 cup tomato sauce
  5. 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  6. 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  7. 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper (reduce or eliminate for less spicy)
  8. 1 ounce cheddar cheese, finely grated
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 400. Prepare mushrooms by scraping out the gills of the mushrooms, careful not to cut through the bottom of the mushroom. Set aside.
  2. In a skillet, brown the Italian sausage (taken out of the casing) and garlic together until cooked through. Add in the ricotta cheese, tomato sauce, Italian seasoning, crushed red pepper and cook an additional minute.
  3. Divide that mixture among the six mushroom caps. Top with the shredded cheese and bake for 15 minutes.
Notes
  1. These could easily be prepared over the weekend to pop in the oven for a quick week night dinner. They would last a few days before they would need to be baked. You could also freeze them, and defrost in the fridge during the day while you are at work.
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calories
274
fat
21g
protein
14g
carbs
8g
more
My Bizzy Kitchen http://www.mybizzykitchen.com/
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SUMMER BUCKET LIST:

As yesterday was the first day of summer, I realized I didn’t have a “bucket list” of things I wanted to do.  I know the summer will be over in the blink of an eye – I am waiting to walk into Walmart any day now and see the school supplies lined up.

One of the things I wanted to do was go to Green City Market, and I am going on Saturday.  They are going to have a Chef’s demo at 10:30 and so many vendors – check it out!  Any Chicago peeps want to meet me there?  Either way, I am going to go.  I’ll be sure to get a lot of great produce and get in lots of steps. 

I need to start doing some research about what else I want to do this summer.  Kayaking on the Chicago River was one of them, but we watched a guy kayaking by himself yesterday on our walk, and there is just too much boat traffic for my  liking.  I may see if they have kayaking near where I live that isn’t so crowded.

What’s on your bucket list this summer?  Do you make a list or just wing it?!

On my way to Weight Watchers for WI – I was a bit snacky and had wine this past weekend, but I also killed it in the step department, averaging 16,000 steps a day.  We will see!  

Make it a great day!

Skinny Lasagna Soup

I am pretty bad about putting stuff in the freezer and then never remembering what’s in there, or stuff gets buried to the bottom – the only thing I don’t like about my freezer being on the bottom, is that even with the drawers, inevitably stuff gets shoved to the bottom.  I used to have a list of things on the refrigerator of what was in the fridge and freezer, and cross it off as I used it, but with a stainless steel fridge, I don’t have the magnetic capability to do that, and just taping a list to my fridge seems tacky.  Plus I like the clean look of stainless steel.

Usually the top drawer is for ice and the kadults ice cream, but I realized I stashed away some of my strawberry shortcake waffles, so this breakfast sammie was quick to put together.  Waffle (4), scrambled egg white with lite mozzarella cheese (2) drizzle of sf pancake syrup (1) and strawberries and bananas.  I used the everything but the bagel seasoning on the eggs and love this sweet/savory combo.

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My sister and her friend were available to walk – it looked like it was going to storm at one point, but we made it.  The temps were in the low 70’s – love!

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I had forgotten that there was a private event in our main lunch room yesterday, and the lunch I brought was being held hostage.  I couldn’t enter the room until the event was over at 2 p.m. – I saw the email that said we couldn’t use the room, just missed the part about not storing our lunch in there.  Luckily I accessorized my lunch with chicken tortilla soup from Corner Bakery – this was so delicious.  Note to self, make chicken tortilla soup!

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Well, so much for heating up the lunch I brought.  I got super busy and made this picky plate with stuff I had in my lunch bag and fridge and ate this at 4:00 p.m. – 3 points for the cheese, 1 for the ham and the rest was zero.

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Joe, I forgot to send you this picture below – it was as close as I could get because they had security all around the Civic Opera House for the Transformers new movie – it was the Chicago premiere last night.  

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Even though I drove to the train, it was only 68 degrees and sunny and I couldn’t not walk home.  I texted Hannah and Jacob “will one of you drive me back to my car later tonight?”

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Hannah texted me back, “no problem – I’ll drive you.”  Followed up with “we have a surprise for you!”

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Hannah and Jacob have become a landscaping duo – they bought chain saws and a couple hours later had the giant tree in my backyard cut to the edge of the woods and trimmed all the debris on the trees in the yard and driveway.  I tried using that giant saw, it was heavy!  I told them I’d be happy to help, but on the cleaning crew.  I quickly changed clothes, got my lasagna soup started and spent about 45 minutes clearing all the trimmings to the side yard so that the lawn service could mow the grass today.

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Even though the bottom trunk of the tree was pretty dry, the top parts were still green, and try as they might, they could not burn this pile.  It may take a couple weeks for it to dry out before we try again. 

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Is this not the cutest picture ever?!  Hannah bought a hammock – much like the one Shelley got her husband – I have to ask you though Shelley, does Paco go in the hammock by himself?  They sat in there while the kadults worked in the yard – and if Hannah is lying in it, the dogs pile on top of her too.  

***************

Long time readers will know that I’ve had a love affair with lasagna soup for several years now.  I love how versatile it is – you can switch up the protein, add in veggies, switch the type of pasta.  It suddenly dawned on me last night that I should try to make it a bit healthier by reducing the amount of Italian sausage – I bulked it up with zucchini and mushrooms and the result is that the base of this soup for 1.25 cups is only 3 smart points.  I left the points of the pasta out, because it depends on how much and what type you use – I never store the noodles in the soup if there will be leftovers because they will got soggy and gross.  I just reheat the noodles in the soup when I eat it later, and the noodles stay al dente.

I realized I forgot to download a picture of the soup, but I’ll fix that when I get to work.  I am sitting on the train right now about 20 minutes from downtown Chicago.  I love being able to blog on the train ride to work, the only downside is that I’ll sometimes get bumped off my server, so I have to save my blog post every few minutes just in case.  Not a big deal considering I have an hour train ride!

Another gorgeous day in Chicago – I finished my day with just over 21,000 steps.  I’ll likely walk home from work again tonight – it’s a great way to wind down the day.  

Make it a great day!

Skinny Lasagna Soup
Serves 6
I reduced the Italian sausage to just 8 ounces for the whole recipe, and bulked it up with mushrooms and zucchini - so good!
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
25 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
25 min
215 calories
16 g
29 g
12 g
12 g
4 g
467 g
863 g
10 g
0 g
7 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
467g
Servings
6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 215
Calories from Fat 111
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 12g
19%
Saturated Fat 4g
22%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Cholesterol 29mg
10%
Sodium 863mg
36%
Total Carbohydrates 16g
5%
Dietary Fiber 3g
14%
Sugars 10g
Protein 12g
Vitamin A
22%
Vitamin C
35%
Calcium
6%
Iron
19%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 3 cups no sugar added tomato sauce
  2. 6 cups chicken broth
  3. 8 ounces Italian sausage, removed from the casing and crumbled
  4. 6 ounces tomato paste
  5. 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
  6. 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  7. 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  8. 1 cup chopped mushrooms
  9. 1 cup chopped zucchini
Instructions
  1. In a stock pot, cook the Italian sausage for a few minutes, until it starts releasing some of the fat. Add in the mushrooms and zucchini, and cook and additional 5 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook for one minute. Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute. Add in the chicken broth, tomato sauce, Italian seasoning, crushed red pepper and reduce the heat to simmer, and cook for 10 minutes. Add in pasta of your choice, and add fresh Parmesan cheese.
Notes
  1. * I used my zero point marinara for the tomato sauce - feel free to use jarred sauce in place of the tomato sauce, just check the nutrition lable on prepared pasta sauces - lots of them have sugar as the second ingredient. I think Rio's brand is a low point option.
Adapted from The Farmsgirl Dabbles
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calories
215
fat
12g
protein
12g
carbs
16g
more
Adapted from The Farmsgirl Dabbles
My Bizzy Kitchen http://www.mybizzykitchen.com/

Greek Chickpea Salad

I know a lot of people would be upset at temps in the low 60s in the middle of June, but that is my favorite temperature.  Just cool enough to need a light jacket, but you aren’t sweating balls walking to work.  I really wished I could have worked outside yesterday!  Oh, but wait, when I did that, I worked farmers markets and had to be up at the crack of 4:00 a.m. – never mind!

I guess I was feeling patriotic because I didn’t realize my parfait was red, white and blue until I put it together.  With 1/4 cup of granola on top, this parfait comes in at 5 points.

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My sister couldn’t walk yesterday, so I stopped by her office for a bit on my walk.  Gorgeous puffy clouds.  Love.

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Last Friday my sister had a work event, so it was a solo Fun Food Day Friday for me.  I found a Mediterrean Grill called – Olive Mediterranean Grill (OMG) –  OMG is right – this plate was bursting with flavor.  The chicken was spicy and tender, the rice seasoned so well.  The hummus was so creamy, and that chickpea salad?  I would eat a whole plate of just that side dish alone.

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That chick pea salad . . . couldn’t get my mind off of it!  So over the weekend I tried to recreate the spicy chicken and the chickpea salad.

Here’s the marinade for one pound of chicken breasts:

  • 1.5 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 teaspoon parsley
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon lemon pepper seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin

Mix together and marinate chicken breasts for two hours, or overnight.

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Greek Chickpea Salad
Serves 6
A great side dish with spicy grilled chicken in a pita, or use it as a dip for sliced cucumbers or tortilla chips at your next BBQ.
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Prep Time
5 min
Total Time
5 min
Prep Time
5 min
Total Time
5 min
115 calories
13 g
7 g
5 g
4 g
1 g
114 g
235 g
2 g
0 g
3 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
114g
Servings
6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 115
Calories from Fat 48
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 5g
8%
Saturated Fat 1g
7%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 7mg
2%
Sodium 235mg
10%
Total Carbohydrates 13g
4%
Dietary Fiber 1g
3%
Sugars 2g
Protein 4g
Vitamin A
18%
Vitamin C
55%
Calcium
6%
Iron
5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups diced English cucumber
  2. 1 cup diced peppers (I used a yellow pepper)
  3. 1 cup canned chickpeas (from a 15 ounce can, drained)
  4. 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
  5. 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  6. 1 teaspoon dried dill
  7. 2 tablespoons Wishbone EVOO Caesar dressing
Instructions
  1. Mix everything together. I left out the icky red onions that are in most recipes, but feel free to add this if you like. I just mixed this together and left it on my counter for 30 minutes before serving it. Next time I'll add diced tomatoes or roasted red peppers.
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calories
115
fat
5g
protein
4g
carbs
13g
more
My Bizzy Kitchen http://www.mybizzykitchen.com/
I love this dish.  So light and fresh!  And I just realized I didn’t add radish to the recipe, but there is diced radish in there too – you could basically add any veggie you want – I imagine this would be delicious with grilled zucchini!  After putting the recipe into the Weight Watchers recipe builder, this is 3 points per 1/2 cup.

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My pita lunch:  homemade naan (2), 4 ounces chicken (3), chickpea salad (3) and fruit for dessert.

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I used to think that I didn’t like fruit salsas.  I texted this picture to my family last night, and my twin sister gave it the stink eye and said “No thanks!”  Jenn, you really need to try this, it’s amazing!  The recipe was from the Weight Watchers website, but I tweaked it a bit.  I left out the sugar completely because the fruit was sweet enough on its own, and I reduced the oil to just 1 teaspoon for the whole recipe, so it’s basically zero points.

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If that doesn’t scream smmer, not sure what does.  I think I am going to make this into a dish for my family reunion next month.  It’s typically finger food, but I may grill up some chicken and then slice them into medallions and top it with this salsa.  

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Since I did all my grilling on Sunday night, I just reheated my chicken in my cast iron skillet for a few minutes to warm it up while I made the salsa and butternut squash fries.  I have leftovers for lunch which makes me very happy!

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After dinner I put on a jacket (it was 59!) and got in a quick 25 minute walk before it got too dark.  Not a bad view at the end of the day.

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Hoping my sister can get away from work and we can get our walk in.  If not, no big deal.  I tried to wake up to walk to the train this morning, but I hit the snooze way too many times, even though I was in bed at 10:45.  I may walk home though and have Hannah bring me back to my car later on if it’s not raining.

Question of the Day:  are you a fan of fruit salsa?  

Strawberry Shortcake Buttermilk Waffles

Friday night I had Tony’s nephews and their families over for a BBQ.  It’s been way too long since we’ve been together, and I realize I have to make these get togethers happen, otherwise, the next thing you know we’ll look up and it’s Christmas!

These two little cutes were so fun.  Hazel (love her name!) was just an infant the last time I saw her.  Maddux?  Um, I think he was a bit sick of me saying “smile!” 

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The only time I could get a picture of him not in motion was when he was eating – look at that blonde hair!

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It was a fun night, and I hope to get together at least once a month this summer – it’s hard with everyone’s schedules, but family first, right?

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Not shocking, I thrifting on Saturday.  I am taking inspiration from one of the women at Weight Watchers, who purposely buys clothes in smaller sizes to keep her focused.  I found another size 10 pants, that also zipped but are still a bit tight – another 5 pounds and they should fit nicely.  Um, every piece was $1!

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This is my inspiration dress.  It’s Esley brand and when I looked that brand up, their dresses run around $60-80 – and since this had a blue tag, it was also $1.

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Excuse my closet mess, but I was organizing.  I love the bottom of the dress – it’s a size SMALL!  Hey, you never know, maybe one day I’ll fit into it!

***********

If you follow me on Instagram, you will have seen that I had 61 points on Friday – 20 of which was eating candy to get my blood sugar up on Friday afternoon (damn diabetes!) so after Friday night, I stuck with my new favorite water – lime and grape – so refreshing!

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Sunday morning I got up early and hit up my towns farmers market.  I was so happy to run into my friend Emily from the Cheese People.  I had a tent next to her last summer in Grayslake.  I would make her a veggie burger wrap for dinner and she would give me string cheese.  #winwin

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Your basic food groups, veggies, bacon, brats and granola!  OMG, this granola – this tent was also next to me last year and they make these butterscotch granola bites – I’ll have to take a picture of them and post it because they are amazing.  I plan to use it on parfaits later this week.

When I got back home, decided to make waffles – using strawberries and cream Premier Protein.  I know if I’ve been out of buttermilk, a simple trick is to just add vinegar to milk and let it sit and it will curdle up and get thick like buttermilk.  I wondered if that would work by adding vinegar to the protein shake?  

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The answer – it worked!  Look at how thick the shake got after letting the vinegar sit for just 10 minutes.

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Strawberry Shortcake Protein Waffles
Serves 5
Adding vinegar to your protein shake will make it thick like buttermilk - so good!
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
362 calories
34 g
144 g
22 g
9 g
13 g
215 g
561 g
5 g
0 g
7 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
215g
Servings
5
Amount Per Serving
Calories 362
Calories from Fat 191
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 22g
33%
Saturated Fat 13g
64%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 6g
Cholesterol 144mg
48%
Sodium 561mg
23%
Total Carbohydrates 34g
11%
Dietary Fiber 2g
10%
Sugars 5g
Protein 9g
Vitamin A
15%
Vitamin C
78%
Calcium
16%
Iron
7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1.25 cups flour
  2. 2 teaspoons baking powder
  3. 1 teaspoon baking soda
  4. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  5. 1 teaspoon McCormick sugar cinnamon
  6. 2 large eggs
  7. 1/4 cup liquid egg whites
  8. 11 ounce prepared Premier Protein strawberries and cream shake
  9. 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  10. 1/2 cup chopped strawberries
Instructions
  1. Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt together. In a 4 cup measuring cup, add the shake and vinegar and let sit for 10 minutes until thick. Add the egg and egg whites to flour mixture, pour in the shake/vinegar mixture and whisk, just until combined. Stir in the strawberries.
  2. I used 3/4 cup of batter per waffle, and got 5 waffles out of this batter. Cook according to your waffle maker instructions - mine took about 4 minutes to cook.
Notes
  1. I entered the recipe information into the Weight Watchers recipe builder and each waffle came out to 4 smart points.
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calories
362
fat
22g
protein
9g
carbs
34g
more
My Bizzy Kitchen http://www.mybizzykitchen.com/
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These are so light and delicious.  I had mine with 1/4 cup of sugar free Smuckers pancake syrup and two pieces of peppered turkey bacon from Trader Joe’s.  And since it was strawberry shortcake, it’s only natural to add a bit of whipped cream on top, no?!

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I have these for breakfast this morning, but I am making them into an egg white sandwich to add in a bit more protein.

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And we are back to Monday.  It’s going to be hot in Chicago this week (90s) so I may be hitting up the gym after dinner if it’s still too hot to walk outside.  I also need to buy another bathing suit, I only had one, and cannot find it even after organizing all my closet yesterday.  Jenn, I’ve got lots of clothes for you!  Are you able to walk today??

Hope you had a great weekend – make it a great day!

It Just Wasn’t For Me, so I Walked Out

I hadn’t had a breakfast baked potato in the longest time.  So good and such a great way to use up leftovers.  I used half of my baked potato from the dinner out the night before, scooped out the potato and scrambled that with spinach, then stuffed that back into the potato skin.  When I got to work I added an ounce of chopped steak from my kebob and added an ounce of Trader Joe’s lite mozzarella.  Six points for the whole plate, filling and delicious.

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Here’s the breakdown:

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My nephew came to work with my sister to do some stuff around her office.  He’s worked there doing odd jobs before, so I couldn’t not take advantage of seeing him.  Sadly, he doesn’t like to have his picture taken, so I can’t show you the evidence, but we sat next to each other!  He also squeezed me really tight when we hugged – he normally doesn’t do that either!

Since I was going to my WW Focus event after work, I decided to stagger my afternoon food.  I met them at Freshii, and just asked for a side of salmon.  According to the WW app, this was 5 smart points.  It wasn’t bad for fast food salmon!  I had my sister try it, she still said it tasted too fishy – thanks for trying it though!

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Later I had a small plate of fruit.  I used some of the Trader Joe’s lime chili seasoning on the pineapple – so good!

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Then later had a small bag of veggie straws for 3 points.  Finally around 4:30 I heated up my beef and tofu stir fry, using the last of the beef from my dinner kebobs – three meals!  

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I was so excited to go to the WW Focus meeing.  The tag line sold me alone:  “Even with the best intentions, it’s easy to get stuck in old patterns.”  I had a few weeks a couple weeks ago where I was just “out of whack” if that makes any sense.  I was snacking too much, mindlessly eating at night, those patterns were coming back.  Luckily I was able to steer myself around starting the weekend of Memorial Day.  But I was interested in having conversations with other members on what tips, tricks, etc. did they use to get the focus back.

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I walked in, there were about 7 women there with the instructor, and I smiled and said “is everyone ready to get focused?!”  Crickets.  No one said anything, no one laughed.  So I just sat down.  A few minutes later the instructor asked people to check in, get their name tag, and sit down.

We were asked a minimum of four times to not only silence our phones, but to turn them off completely.  I did that on the first request.  The leader said she was going to wait a couple minutes for some other people and would keep saying “seriously, this is not a suggestion, you NEED to turn your cell phones off completely.”  Okay, got it!

Then when the program began, she said it’s not going to be like your typical WW meeting, mainly because there wasn’t going to be much talking.  We were going to do meditation type stuff, and as soon as I heard that it wasn’t going to be an interactive event, I could feel myself checking out.

She had us close our eyes.  “Now start to smile, just enough to relax your face.  Now think of parts of your body that need a smile too.  We are going to work our way down our spine, to our spleen, our pancreas, our left lung, just feel the smiles radiating through your body…”  After that exercise we were asked to turn to page 8, where there was a blank page, and draw a picture of how we are feeling right at that moment – feeling all the smiles in all the parts of our body.

That’s when I checked out.  I couldn’t sit through another 45 minutes of that.  Don’t get me wrong, I think there were some women who were totally getting into it, but it just wasn’t for me.  A quick peek at the clock on the wall told me I could make the 6:25 train (which is express!) so I picked my bags up, mouthed “thank you” to the instructor, and had to be let out of the room because it was locked. 

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As soon as I got home, I changed my clothes and went to MY happy place, which is walking.  I smiled as the sunset hit my face, looked at the fish in the river, listened to dogs barking in the distance, watched boats on the water.  I even did sprints!  (check out my last Instagram post – even took a video of that!).   It was glorious.

So if meditation is your thing, by all means, try the WW focus group.  Maybe it will help you with your self-awareness.  I guess I thought I’d talk to other women and ask “what helps you not stop at CVS on your way home and buy gummie bears?!” 

I had leftover chicken that needed to be used up, so chicken tacos for the win!  People ask me all the time how I get my tacos crispy, and the answer is coconut oil spray.  Hannah bought this at Aldi, but people on Instagram said they have even found it at the dollar store.  It has a higher smoke point, so I can cook the tacos at a higher temperature.

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I am curious, how many of you mediate?  On a daily basis – weekly, monthly. . . never?!   Maybe I should give it another try?!

I am on my way to WW to weigh on – again, not sure how I’ve done since I don’t have a scale at home that works, but I got all blue dots for the week, even over the weekend, I didn’t have any wine, and no gummy bears at all.  But I did leave 25 weekly points on the table, which I normally use.

You’ll just have to check out my Instagram later today to find out. 😀  Or wait until tomorrow when I post it here. 😀

Make it a great day!

 

He Would Have Bought Me Flowers . . .

I woke up Sunday morning to my Timehop.  It reminded me that 17 years ago yesterday was the first day with my husband.  Can you believe he not only remembered but also posted it on social media?! 

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Long time readers will know that my husband’s name was Jeff, not Tony like I posted here on the blog – however, I called him Tony a lot too!   In fact the most googled thing about “my bizzy kitchen” is “my bizzy kitchen husband.”

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I miss him!  That picture was taken in 2004 – Tony would have been 44 years old, or just 5 years younger than I am now.  I would have been 36.  Bonnie (my MIL) I’ll be sure to email you this picture, as I am sure you’ve not seen it! 

As I lie in bed thinking about him, I thought of all things – carrot cake.  It was his favorite cake on his birthday and I made it every year.  It was my step-sons favorite one too – except Joe didn’t like raisins or nuts in his cake – just carrot cake with butter cream frosting.  So in honor of my husband, I made carrot cake protein waffles on the 17th anniversary of our first date, instead of heading to Dunkin Donuts for two apple fritters. 

Carrot Cake Protein Waffles
Serves 6
A waffle that tastes like carrot cake! #love And only 3 Weight Watcher smart points.
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
15 min
282 calories
34 g
31 g
1 g
4 g
0 g
132 g
25 g
13 g
0 g
0 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
132g
Servings
6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 282
Calories from Fat 10
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 1g
2%
Saturated Fat 0g
2%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 31mg
10%
Sodium 25mg
1%
Total Carbohydrates 34g
11%
Dietary Fiber 2g
8%
Sugars 13g
Protein 4g
Vitamin A
32%
Vitamin C
7%
Calcium
10%
Iron
4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2 medium bananas, smashed
  2. 1/2 cup shredded carrots
  3. 1 large egg
  4. 2 teaspoons baking powder
  5. 1 cup flour
  6. 1 teaspoon McCormick cinnamon sugar
  7. 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  8. 11 ounce prepared Premier Protein vanilla shake
Instructions
  1. Mix everything in a bowl and mix just until combined. Let the batter sit while your waffle maker comes to temperature.
  2. I used 1/2 cup measuring cup to get 6 waffles, at 3 smart points each according to the WW recipe app.
Notes
  1. These are great to make ahead on the weekend for a grab and go breakfast on a work day.
beta
calories
282
fat
1g
protein
4g
carbs
34g
more
My Bizzy Kitchen http://www.mybizzykitchen.com/
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Letting the batter sit for a few minutes lets the baking powder do its magic and you’ll be rewarded with fluffy waffles and pancakes every time.

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I had my waffle with 1 tablespoon bacon bits (1), strawberries and 1 tablespoon of real maple syrup (2).

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I could have gone the other way and just eaten like shit to deal with the sadness, or drink half a box of wine.  But instead, I bought myself flowers, because he would have bought me flowers.  Just a $3.99 bouquet from Trader Joe’s, but I chose to be kind to myself and not drown myself in food and wine.

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And I walked it out.  On Saturday I walked for an hour and fifteen minutes, and yesterday I walked for an hour before my blood sugar started dropping and had to come back home.

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And Saturday, I went thrifting and not only fit into a pair of size 10 jeans, they also zipped!  Although, they are a bit tight, but they were on the $1 rack so you better believe I bought them!  Another 5-10 pounds loss and they will fit comfortably.

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I am so proud of myself.  Proud that while I was sad and may have cried a bit while making the waffles in the house by myself, I let the emotions out, instead of filling myself with food.  #nsv for sure!!!

This popped up on Saturday on Instagram, but thought I’d share it here for Motivation Monday.   I especially like #1 – not that my past was bad, but I have to let go with the “what ifs” in order to be happy.  

Which number resonates with you?  Make it a Marvelous Monday!

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Vanilla Coffee Banana Protein Pancakes

I have five words to say about this weekend.  I ate all the food.  I didn’t eat a lot of one thing (i.e. deep dish pizza by myself), but I ate a lot of little things.  I didn’t track all my food. I woke up with a taste for apple fritters, but cooler heads prevailed and I made a hash waffle.  This time topped it with 2 tablespoons shredded cheese so the top is nice and crispy, which the sides are kind of mash potatoey.  You know what I mean Open-mouthed smile

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I had some errands to run.  Ran to Tuesday Morning for some tissue paper, and bought a small bag of gummies at the check out and ate the whole thing while driving around.  300 calories (not even sure about how many points).   Came back from running errands and sliced up cheese and had cheese and triscuits – did I weigh out my cheese or measure out my crackers.  Nope.  I had plans to meet up with my step-son Joe and his wife Lizz for Lizz’s brothers high school graduation party.  Make up on – with jewelry!

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Within five minutes of getting to Lizz’s parents house, I was presented with all this food:

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In case you don’t know this, the Mexican community makes A LOT OF FOOD.  Later Lizz’s dad threw grilled chicken on my plate.  Her Mom presented me with fresh homemade corn tortillas, two salsas, guacamole and chips.  Oh, and Modelo beer.   I had three over the course of the evening, which I now know is 12 points.  Even with all this stuff, I was trying to make better choices, and basically could drink this chile de arbol salsa.  I dipped all my food into it.  I asked her what the recipe was, and when she got to “then I add a cup of olive oil” realized I’d probably eaten 4 tablespoons of olive oil.  Amazing stuff though!

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That salsa above was just as amazing, but I could tell had all fresh ingredients.  Didn’t even mind the onions!  Lizz’s Dad was the BBQ chef:

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The chicken was outstanding. I am not sure if these were chicken quarters, just cut in half?

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It was great to catch up with Joe and Lizz.  The weather held out, and while it didn’t rain, when it got dark, it was chilly enough that you could see your breath.  I was still wearing a short sleeved sweater and was fine.  However, Joe and Lizz have been living in Texas going on five years, and have lost their midwest skin.  I was happy when Lizz changed into comfy clothes!

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Those are Lizz’s cousins – I loved being behind the scenes of this mini photo shoot 😀

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I realized after I got home that I never got a picture of Joe and I that wasn’t silly – but this will have to do. 😀  I still can’t believe I met Joe 17 years ago already.  He was a chubby little 10 year old when I first met him and this fall he’ll be 28 years old.  Crazy!

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Sunday morning I had the house to myself.  The kadults had to work at the coffee shop, and I got to meal prepping and recipe developing.  I tried a protein powder muffin – epic fail.  Then decided to make protein pancakes and these were amazing.  Made with Premier Protein vanilla whey protein powder, this recipe made 4 pancakes for a total of 6 smart points.  I actually started to put all of them on my plate, but decided to eat two, and if I was still hungry, could always go back for more.  Two was plenty!

Vanilla Coffee Banana Protein Pancakes (makes 1-2 servings)

  • 1 ounce vanilla protein powder (about 1/4 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tablespoons egg whites
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons strong cold coffee
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 mashed banana

Mix the protein powder, flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon together with a whisk.  Add remaining ingredients and mix just until combined.  Let the batter sit for 15 minutes to let the baking powder do its magic.  Cook for about 2 minutes a side over medium low heat.  I made a syrup of PB2 mixed with a teaspoon of real maple syrup.

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I have to regroup this week.  I am back to my old habits of doing great Monday through Friday, and then throwing all my hard work in the garbage by not tracking over the weekend.  The hamster wheel that kept me at the same weight (or gaining and losing the same five pounds) all of 2016.

So guess what I am bringing back?  INSANITY!  I started Insanity back on June 1, 2013.  I declared that June was going to be Insane.  I am not going to lie, a little piece of me was like “why not just wait until June of 2017.”  But I know me.  That would only give me more of an excuse on not to keep track because I am getting “back on” June 1.

Tonight is the fit test.  Back then I did the workout between 8-9 at night.  I am always home at that time, and in the beginning the workouts are only 35 minutes long.  Totally doable.  

Zen, I am shipping out your package tomorrow – I realized I never responded to your email, I will shortly! 😀 

Happy Monday!  I am actually looking forward to work this week because my boss that keeps me really busy is out of the country for the week on business.  I am finally going to have time to organize my files/desk/emails.  Jenn, can you walk today?  I need to text you.

How was your weekend?  I’d love to hear your highlights.  Mine, of course, was seeing Joe and Lizz. 😀