Tag Archives: family

Where’s My Nutella?

5 Feb

Today is National Pancake Day or National line up and wait forever for a free pancake at IHOP day. Either way I can get behind a good pancake.

National Pancake Day ecards

Guess what was for dinner tonight?

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Tonight I used a new pancake mix: Bob’s Red Mill Buttermilk Whole Grain Pancake Mix. (Tell me that graphic artist didn’t earn their money trying to get that name on such a small bag). I like making pancakes from scratch but my go to recipe must have at least10 lbs of butter–I really need to find a lighter recipe.

I used an old trick I learned from Allan Todd. He was my youth pastor and dear friend. He always used Sprite to make pancakes on retreats which makes for super fluffy pancakes and very little clean up. Mix + Sprite= Pancake Goodness. I didn’t want the sugar from a Sprite so I added seltzer water instead. All the bubbles, none of the sugar. Maybe it was the weight of the whole grain mix or my seltzer trick didn’t work because these were not the light and fluffy pancakes I was hoping for. They were tasty if rather flat. I added Al Fresco Chicken Breakfast Sausage and fresh fruit on the side.

Pancakes as prepared~3 points a piece. Sausage~1 point per link and fruit~0 points plus.
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Sorry for the blurry photo. I might have deleted the two clear shots I had as I attempted to download them. What? delete and download both start with D and it is after 8 p.m.

I wish I could say no one was injured in the making of this meal. Me+wet hands+sharp knife= a band-aid. I had to call in Kevin to help me finish prepping the fruit salad. I wanted to be all Iron Chef and throw a glove on over my bloody hand and keep chopping heroically but, then I remembered Alton Brown was not commentating my meal so I could just stop and go ask for help. In my defense I was hurrying because Kevin had to be back at the church in just a few minutes for a visitation for one of our church members who passed away. Pastors should never be late for anything that has to do with weddings or funerals. I am pretty sure that is in the Bible somewhere.

Kevin was on time. My finger is nicely bandaged. All is well except I somehow missed the fact that today was also World Nutella Day. Really, that would have been good to know three hours ago. Warm pancakes and Nutella….yummy.

This is going on my calendar for next year.

Right now.

When CB was 4 years old she would always say as she learned something new..”Do you know this, Mama?”

No, Mama did not know this? Really, how did I not know this? Nutella, I won’t forget you again.

What is your favorite kind of pancakes? I like fall flavored ones like pumpkin or spice.

Out to Lunch

5 Feb

Today I had a quick but fun lunch outing with ZB and Kevin. We let our three-year-old pick the place. She picks based on the kind of book or bag her food comes with.

photo (89)Subway won with their Phineas and Ferb bags. I have to be honest Subway is not my favorite place. (Especially after my ordering debacle last week).  Apparently I eat here a good bit for someone who doesn’t really like the food. When you live in a small southern town and are trying to make better food choices your options are LIMITED!

Chopped salad with tuna salad (no cheese or salad dressings)~8 points. I read in the March Runner’s World Magazine an article, Fast Fish,  about getting more fish into your diet and it stressed that canned/pouch fish is just as beneficial as fresh. ( I have to confess I have read this magazine cover to cover at least twice but I am behind in my Daily Bible Reading plan–may need to shift my priorities a bit)

This cute face made the blah meal so much better.

photo (88)She might have figured out how to take self portraits with my phone. I mean really, how great is that face.

To top off the meal I grabbed a cookie when I got home.

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Sugar cookie~2 points plus.

I was planning on making fish tonight for dinner but I may have hit my seafood quota for the day and the other meal I have prepped is a slow cooker meal. Meal plan fail.

No worries.

Do you have a restaurant or a type of food you eat often but you don’t really enjoy?

 

 

Turkey Makes You Sleepy, Right?

4 Feb

What can Monday bring that can top blackouts and Beyoncé?

Frankly, I’ve got nothing.

Before I go further let’s do breakfast:

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Poached egg, fresh berries, 3 Jones Farm Light Sausage, and 2 pieces of Nature’s Own bread~7 points plus.

While we’re talking food, let’s do lunch:

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Salad with mixed greens, beets, carrots, mushrooms, chickpeas, cranberries, sunflower seeds, avocado, pasta salad, and 1TB ranch dressings~10 points plus.photo (73)

 

Check mix~4 points plus. (Do you pick through the bag to make sure you ‘handful’ has the crispy bagel bites? I do.)

The day started off with a beautiful sunrise that dissipated into a gray day. How does that happen? I admit that if it was up to me I never would have seen the sunrise this morning but alas, there are buses to catch and jobs to get to. The five-year old version of myself wants to yell–That’s not fair! I want to stay in bed!

I am one sleepy girl. My head-fog matches the gray clouds outside. My sleep patterns are shot. I haven’t been sleeping well for over a week now. Sleep does matter. I can tell when I haven’t been sleeping well. Besides being tired I get irritable, munchy, and achy. It is not fun nor helpful for weight loss. I make horrible food choices when I am sleep deprived. I feel like I should treat myself for just rallying through the day. I have also read that lack of sleep makes you crave sweets or starchy carbs.  I would say I have found that to be true.

I think my insomnia has been part of my life for so long that I just write it off as “that’s just the way I am” and I haven’t put any effort in trying to get into a more normal pattern. I am going to take some real steps to try to get a good night’s sleep more nights than not.

Step 1: go to bed by 10:00 pm. Lights out.  It takes several weeks to make a habit….

Dinner: The secret ingredient is….

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I added a heaping 1/4 of rolled oats to my ground turkey to make the burgers juicy. You use it like breadcrumbs. The rolled oats just have a greater nutritional punch.photo (75)

Mexican inspired Turkey Sliders: Mix 1 lb of ground turkey, 1/2 rolled oats, garlic, dried cilantro, cumin, salt, and pepper to taste~4 points plus per patty (the bun was an added 3 points plus)photo (76)

I served them with roasted sweet potato ‘fries’ on the side. Two sweet potatoes sliced into fries and mixed with olive oil, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Roast at 425 degrees for 25 minutes~3 points plus per serving.
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Homemade guacamole:~3 points plus  per serving.

2 Hass avocados

1/2 onion, diced

1/2 tomato, diced

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

1/4 garlic powder

juice of one lime

I made things easy and used my mini food processor. I added the onion and pulsed them till they were the right consistency  Next, add avocado, spices, and lime juice. Mix until the texture you like. Remove from processor and stir in tomatoes.

I have to say every time we make this at home I vary the recipe depending what we have on hand.

 

Now if I can just keep away from the cookies the girls made last night until bedtime….those cookies do have a siren song.

Do you have any tips for hitting the hay and getting a good night’s sleep?

 

 

 

 

100 Thing Challenge

31 Jan

I want to share out my 100 Thing Challenge but first let’s catch up on my meals.

Yesterday’s Lunch and Dinner:

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Leftover Slow Cooker Pork Pernil on bed of spinach and my new favorite drink!~7 points plus.

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I was home all day with a sick kiddo. We didn’t even make it out for Wednesday Night Supper at church. Thankfully, after the bad storms and pouring rain I was happy to leave ZB in her pj’s and go grab a takeout box from church for dinner.

photo (43)photo (40)photo (42)photo (45)

Taco Dinner~13 point plus.

Today’s Late Breakfast

ZB is still feeling under the weather so the two of us snuggled up on the sofa and went back to sleep this morning. I like taking full advantage of her extra naps for my own sleep needs!

By the time I ate it felt more like lunch so I made a chicken salad English muffin.

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I added some flax-seed to the top of my chicken salad for a little extra punch of nutrition.~7 points plus total.

Whew, that was a lot of ground to cover. Sick kid or no it is much easier to post those meals in smaller batches.


My Hundred Thing Challenge:

For the last couple of years I have been struggling with our family’s, and mine specifically, growing amount of stuff.  If you live a lifestyle where you know moves are inevitable (click here to find out why) I think you become more aware of what you have and what it will take to move it all again one day. My faith also tells me we are to do a better job as caretakers of God’s creation and like so many other Christians I was/am not doing enough.

I want…

  • to have less but to be fulfilled.
  • to make less but do things well.
  • to waste less and reuse more.
  • to do less but be more.
  • to weigh less and have a lighter life.

Sometimes I get discouraged within the Christian community of the blind acceptance of a consumer way of life. There are voices who say otherwise but they are drowned out.

I was, and still am to some degree, a top-notch consumer. I wanted more stuff. I wanted my home to look just so. I wanted books on every shelf so people would be dazzled by our intellect.  I wanted new clothes that made me feel pretty. I wanted the kids to have the best toys. I wanted…

However, all this stuff was not making me happy. I finally figured out it was bringing so much stress into my life by trying to keep things cleaned, organized, and uncluttered. I wanted to buy more stuff to manage the stuff I already had. Sad.

So I have been on a journey to lighten our load. I have been donating like a mad woman for about two years as I tried to really look at why I have the things I do.

One blogger I often read, Be More With Less, presents projects to simply your life. The first one I started playing with is her Project 333 challenge but my focus for 2013 will be The Reverse 100 Thing Challenge. I have adapted the challenge to my goals. I plan to give away 100 items a month for the duration of 2013. Yep, that is 1,200 items by the end of the year.

On January 31, 2013 I have already donated my 100 items for this month and I have a box where I am gathering items for next months total.

The whole family is on board. I will be sharing more of this challenge as we go through the year.

Live Well,

Becca

What is the first item that comes to mind that you could give away right now? Are you ready to do it?

The Big 100

30 Jan

A Look Back To The Starting Line:

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Kevin, CB, and I at Louisville Zoo in KY 2007.

I started this blog five years ago as Kevin, my husband, and I were away from our family and friends while at seminary in Kentucky. It was a way for me to process that amazing and formational experience. Those early posts I also wrote a lot about my mom and her battle with cancer.Three Coffins and No Funeral

Back then my posts were filled with self-reflection and thoughts about where I have been, hence the roots and reflections name. I posted just over 40 posts in those four plus years. I know a blazing pace. I didn’t really have any direction about what I wrote or where this blog could go. It was really just a journal–and I was never a very consistent journaler.

In January 2012 I started reading healthy living blogs as I began my path to running. I first started reading Will Run For Coffee (to see how this blog impacted me click here). I am not going to be hyperbolic saying that reading a blog changed my life but for once I related to someone. It made me feel less crazy. It made me feel like the best was not behind me physically. I started finding other blogs like Meals and Miles, Healthy Tipping Point, and Run Eat Repeat. Each one influenced and inspired me in different ways. I got good ideas for meals, good tips for running gear, and a good dose of humor. All things a rookie needs. However, they are all a lot younger than me and until recently none of them had kids so sometimes I felt like my life was just in such a different place. Sometime I felt like I missed my window to truly have the time and freedom to focus on myself and my health.

In the Race:

Finding my Footing

Each of those bloggers planted a seed in me and I as I read post after post I thought to myself I could do this. I too have a voice. My journey is so different and that is OK because I bet there are other people who are like me…trying to be a good wife, a good mother, and take good care of myself. So almost a year after reading so many other bloggers do what I really wanted to do…I got in the race for myself. I told Kevin that blogging would be an important focus for me in 2013 and I would give it three months of my attention and effort to see how I really liked writing everyday not just thinking about writing everyday. So here I am one month in and over 5o posts later I have reached a milestone, my 100th post for the blog.

Ingrid, Suzanne, and I just before my first half marathon in Kiawah Island, SC.

Ingrid, Suzanne, and I just before my first half marathon in Kiawah Island, SC.

Down the Road:

One month in and I am really enjoying blogging. I enjoy the writing. I think I am benefiting from the discipline it takes to sit down everyday and do this (several times a day). I really can’t wait to see where this path will take me. I have some decisions to make. Do I need to change the name of the blog since the name came from a different place and time in my journey? How much effort do I put into this?

100th Post

For now, I am pressing on and enjoying journey.

If you have been a part of the path to 100 posts let me know! I would love to hear from you!

Sick Day

30 Jan

ZB and I are home from school today because she has a fever. Poor little thing. It is a dreary day with storms on the way so we are hunkering down and getting comfy.

Breakfast:

Comfort food was on the menu for breakfast today.
photo (33)

Van’s waffles~4 points plus. Jones Farm Light sausages~3 points. Berries~0 points plus. Maple syrup~1 points plus.photo (34) photo (35)

Total Points: 8 points plus.

The to do list and chore can wait. I have a three-year old that needs some snuggles. I see a lot of Disney Jr in my future today.

Live Well,

Becca

 

From Cuba with Love

29 Jan

I love the calm a slow cooker meal brings to meal time for me. There is not frantic cooking as I try to get dinner on the table before someone has to be somewhere. No, it was easy because the pork had been simmering away all day making my house smell great. I mean it smells so great that if someone were to stop by they would be impressed by my domestic prowess by the sheer aroma. They would forget the mess, overlook the laundry, and dismiss the clutter and think, “this gal knows what she is doing”.

Tonight’s meal was a home run in that everyone in the family liked it. Success! I have used the Slow Cooker Pernil before and it is always tasty. Tonight I adjusted the recipe for the ingredients I had on hand and it was still good.

I made rice, guacamole, and roasted sweet potatoes for the sides. I had originality planned to make soft tacos but I realized too late that we were out of tortillas. So, I made some rice and decided to serve it over the rice.

I cubed two large sweet potatoes and tossed them in one Tb of olive oil. I added 1/4 t of cinnamon and nutmeg. Salt and pepper to taste.
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I placed them in a pan and roasted them for 25 minutes at 400 degrees. They were soft and sweet and yummy. I didn’t think they needed any brown sugar but if you wanted a sweet treat you could definitely sprinkle some sugar on top. The nutmeg and cinnamon made a good flavor match to the heavy cumin in the pork.
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photo (32)I always feel so fancy when I use whole nutmeg and grate into my recipes. It does taste so much better than the dried spice.

photo (29)

I shredded the pork using two forks directly in my slow cooker.

photo (27) photo (25)

 

Pernil pork~4 points, homemade guacamole~3 points plus, 1/2 cup of roasted sweet potatoes~2 points plus.

I opted out of the rice and just stuck to the pork, guacamole  and potatoes. I added a few extra tomatoes slices to the top of my guacamole. I would have taken pictures of the making of the guacamole but CB was helping me make it. It seems like when I have a ‘helper’ in the kitchen I am busier keeping calamity at bay. We added two avocados  half an onion and tomato diced, cilantro, garlic, salt and pepper. Topped with the juice of one lime (I used lemon because that is what I had on hand.)

Total Meal: 10 points plus

ZB, our youngest, came home with a fever and cough today from school…I am contemplating how long it would make the smell of rubbing alcohol to dissipate if I sprayed the whole house down.

We won’t get sick. We won’t get sick. We won’t get sick…

The rain has started outside and we are all tucked warmly at home tonight.

I see coffee, reading, and maybe some tele in my future.

How do you judge if a meal was a success?

Live well,

Becca

 

 

Meatless Monday: The Secret Ingredient Is…

28 Jan

This Monday morning was rough.  Real rough. Occasionally I have bouts of insomnia that come on out the blue and keep me from sleeping well sometimes for days sometimes for weeks. I dragged myself out of bed with just over three hours of ‘sleep’ last night.

Not my favorite way to start the day…

It took a lot of these to even be able to utter complete sentences.

Coffee

Because I slept late, I only had a few minutes to throw together breakfast. I used the leftover pancakes from yesterday and just added some fruit.

Lite Pancakes

Pancake and one Tbs of maple syrup and fruit~6 points plusPancakes

I used a mix to make the pancakes Sunday morning. I doctor  up the mix by adding a tsp of vanilla and let it sit on the counter for about 10 minutes before I start cooking them up. The extra time allows the mix to activate and the pancakes turn out extra fluffy. I like to make pancakes from scratch but you show my a preacher’s wife who is making from scratch pancakes on a Sunday morning and I will stand in awe.

Several cups of coffee later I was able to yawn my way through preschool today. The kiddos came in ready to play and have fun. I had to really rally to keep up with them! Kevin asked ZB and I out for lunch after we got done with school. One of the perks of us working on the same campus are our occasional lunch dates.

Lunch:

El Toro Loco…

chip

Seven Tortilla Chips~2 points plusKevin and ZB huevos rancheros meal

Lunch portion of huevos rancheros~13 points plus (I didn’t eat the tortillas served with the meal).

Total Point: 15 points plus
huevos rancheros

I shared my meal with ZB as she is never hungry after school. She takes her snack seriously during school and doesn’t  usually eat much lunch. I still counted all the points for the meal because her few bites won’t change much.

diet cokeMy vice…diet coke.  I only drink them when I am out somewhere…maybe one day I can clean these out of my diet. Today is not that day.

Zoey

I manged to fit in a cat nap while ZB was napping and before CB got home. Zoey claimed the sunny spot so I had to make do but I think we both needed our beauty rest.

Me and ZBPost nap snuggle time.

Meatless Monday Dinner:

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Did you spot the secret ingredient? Pumpkin!

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First, I started the mushrooms in a small pat of butter. ( I already had the mushrooms in the pan before I took the ingredient shot- sorry)

spag with pumpkin

I added a jar of spaghetti sauce and one can of pumpkin  I heard about adding pumpkin to sauces to up their nutritional value sometime back and it took me awhile to try it because I am the only one in my family who likes pumpkin. Gasp. I know. I started by adding just a few Tbs. then 1/4, 1/2, and so on because I was convinced you would be able to eventually taste the pumpkin. You can’t!  I added a whole can of pumpkin tonight and no one could tell.

spag with pumpkin  mixed Just stir in the pumpkin. If it thickens your sauce too much you can add stock or just water to get it back to the consistency you like.

pasta spag with pumpkin

I tossed it with whole grain thin spaghetti.spag with pumpkin bowl spag with pumpkin close up

8 points plus for one serving of ‘pumpkin’ spaghetti. (The added fiber of the pumpkin brings down the points value).

It is 8:15 and I am seriously thinking about putting out the THE END sign on this day and call it a night.

Do you have any secret ingredients to help boost the nutritional value of one of your go to meals?

Sharing the Love

25 Jan

Right after school we headed out to get the girls’ hair cut. I love their long locks of beautiful flowing waves but I am DONE with the tears, the fights, and the overall drama my long-haired dears have brought into my life. I realized sometime last week that there was no need for all the stress dealing with long hair. This was a choice and I could make a different one. I told the girls it was time for the hair to go and scheduled an appointment for all three of us. CB was hesitant at first but I reminded her the reason she originally started growing out her hair was to donate it. She was on board and once I convinced ZB it wouldn’t hurt the whole family loaded up and drove to the studio where I always get my hair done.
CB and ZB

Last moments of the long hair.

CB donating her hair

CB had far more than the required eight inches to donate (she ended up donating 12 inches) in four separate pony tails! She has a ton of hair like her mama! She is sending her hair to Pantene’s Beautiful Lengths program. My mother passed away from ovarian cancer just after CB’s fourth birthday. She and CB were very close and CB wanted to donate in her honor. She remembers Grammie having ‘hat hair’ or what she called her wig. She like the idea of her hair going to help make someone else a pretty wig like her Grammie had. So sweet.

ZB not sure about hair cutZB was too young to donate her hair but she had just as much cut off. I love her “what you talking about Willis” facial expression here. I am not sure she believed me when I told her it wouldn’t hurt.

ZB short hair CB short hair dinner datesPost haircut celebration at Beef O’ Brady’s.

Beef O Brady's Grilled Chicken

Dinner:

Grilled Chicken Plate with rice and broccoli. I only ate one chicken breast~6 point plus. Broccoli~2 points plus. Seasoned rice~7 points for the portion I ate.

Total points-15 points plus

Dessert:

Greek TCBY

 

Coffee Espresso TCBY

TCBY

I made as smart of choices as I could with the yogurt so I could have a few tasty treats in the bowl. I added strawberries, blueberries, five whoppers, and a couple of cheese cake bits~5 points plus for the lot. I am a huge cheesecake fan but these bites were not tasty. I could eat the entire bowl full of whoppers. I love malt candy. I counted out five and then put the spoon down and walked away.

So my whole night out on the town was just over 2o points plus for dinner and dessert. I tried to use as few as possible while staying satisfied so I wouldn’t binge on something later.  I definitely dipped into my weekly allowance today and I know that this week’s trip to the scale will probably be tough (to see why click here).  However, I am trying to make the best choices I can on this day and hopefully those each of these days will add up to something good.

Good Night!

 

Take Out Tonight

24 Jan

Take Out BoxThank goodness for take-out! There are some nights when I want to sit around the table and laugh with my family and not have to worry about cooking a meal, fussing with the kiddos about eating, or dealing with the hassle of getting out of the house. Yeah, for take-out!

Kevin and CB ZB at DinnerIt is a good thing my family likes Chinese food because I think I would force feed it to them. I could eat Asian food every single day. Every day. Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Korean, or Indian it doesn’t really matter. I love them all. If I make smart choices they offer really healthy meals!

Egg Drop Soup

Egg Drop Soup~1 points plus for one cup.

Steamed Chicken with Chinese Veggies
Steamed Chicken with Steamed Chinese Vegetables. My local take out restaurant has a spa menu. I order off of that menu and my meal is steamed with no oil or sauce. The sauce of your choice comes on the side and you can add as much as you like. There is no entrée like in on the WW etools database so I use the best fit..~5 points plus for veggies and chicken and ~5 for steamed rice.

Steamed Chicken with Chinese Veggies close up

I added a little Schezuan sauce to make it hot and spicy. I also ate two steamed dumplings ~ 4 points plus.

Meal total: 15 points plus.

ZB as duckie

All cleaned up and ready for bed.

Live well, friends.

What is your favorite take out food?

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