Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Avocado…Fruit or Vegetable?


About the size and shape of a big pear, remains green even when ripe. It has a flesh that is soft and buttery in texture, yet has somewhat of a nutty flavor. Yes…it is the avocado! If you have been a long time reader…you already know I LOVE avocados! It’s name, avocado, is from the Aztec word ahuacatl.

The avocado first arrived on the scene in Europe in 1519 when Martin de Encisco brought it back with him during his first expedition to South America. He also introduced some other of my faves to the Europeans at the time…in particular chocolate!!

The avocado grows in a number of areas today where the climate is warm such as North and South America, the Philippians and Australia to name just a few. I for one am tankful to be able to have them also grown locally where I am thanks to the wonderful invention of the greenhouse.

The nutritional value of the avocado is outstanding! It is high in vitamin c, potassium and protein to name just a few. When you serve an avocado with a a tortilla some cultures even consider this a meal all by itself because of the nutrition found in the avocado.

There are a variety of avocados and because of this its important to know how to pick one out when buying them. The color of the skin will vary so you want to look for a slightly soft fruit…this will indicate it is ripe. That is what you want. At home store them in a warm and well ventilated area. If the fruit needs to be ripened a bit more, you can help the process by wrapping them in a paper bag. After they have been cut open you can sprinkle the open side with a bit of lemon juice or covering tightly with plastic wrap to stall the browning process of the “meat”.

The avocado may already play an important role in your diet today. If not why not give it a try? This fruit is a truly versatile fruit that not only wallops a nutritional punch but is tasty as well.

Ready to try some recipes?

  1. Spinach Avocado Salad
  2. Potato Pancakes With Avocado Mash and Eggs
  3. Chilled Double Chocolate Torte
  4. Gazpacho with Avocado
  5. Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes

Tell me…how do you use your avocados?!

Oh and in case you were wondering…the avocado is a fruit!

Until Next Time…


Quinoa…A Power House

day and frozen by night, the precipitation being as low as eight inches a year as well as devastating hailstorms, this rugged land is able to produce a desert plant… it is called quinoa.

Quinoa is a leafy herb that will grow up to six feet tall and can produce an abundance of seeds…seeds that are a nutritious and versatile food. It is an amazingly sturdy plant that will thrive even in the harshest of climates.

When its time to harvest arrives, these plants will be uprooted, dried in the sun, then threshed by hand. This shows yet another remarkable property of this plant called quinoa. It is able to be stored for years without spoiling. This makes it a real blessing during long dry seasons the world over. It is easy to see why it is the staple food not only of people in the dessert dry areas but again the world over.

We are just beginning to appreciate the real value of quinoa being the “newest grain in town,” as declared by the San Francisco Chronicle. Quinoa is low in sugar and starch. Rich in fiber and unsaturated oils. It contains many essential minerals and vitamins. High in protein. It contains the ideal balance of the amino acids we need, most importantly including lysine that is not typically found in vegetable protein. For this reason some experts call quinoa an “ideal food”.

Quinoa has a unique, nutty taste especially that can be bought out when lightly toasted. It can used as a breakfast cereal…served cold with or as a salad…hot as a side dish…sweet as a dessert. The versatility of this plant is virtually endless.

Ready to give this wonder grain a try? Try some of these recipes…

  1. Quinoa & Lentil Taco Bake
  2. Quinoa Salad with Grapes
  3. Curried Quinoa Salad
  4. Summer Vegetable Stir-fry
  5. Holiday Soup For the Soul
  6. Breakfast Quinoa
  7. Oatmeal Quinoa Cookie
  8. Quinoa Streusel Muffins
  9. Pumpkin Pie Quinoa Breakfast Bake
  10. Pumpkin Quinoa Bars

What kind of nutritional punch can you expect?

Not too shabby!

Do you use quinoa?

What is your favorite way to use this protein packed ancient grain!?

Until next time…


Saturday, February 25, 2012

Crazy Crazy Crazy

Good morning friends.

It has been crazy here to say the least. I have been wanting to write and share my daily eats, however between a personal family issue going on, the kids commandeering my computer for netflix (they have been on school vacation for the past week!) and the passing of a dear friend, the fingers have not met the keyboard.

Today that changes.

My day began with a cut up orange and homemade breakfast sammie.

I made 1 egg mixed with 1 T real bacon bits, carrot shreds and placed in on top of a slice of cheese and in between a sandwich thin. So good and a total of 7 PP

Lunch I made a Lean Cuisine meal and added a few chips and some sour cream for a lunch total of 12PP

Dinner was a pork roast slow cooked all day with a cranberry marinade. I had potato salad on the side and steamed broccoli for a total of 14PP, this included 2 t. of olive oil.

Snacks were some peeps(I fell victim to these cute little bunnies!) for 6PP

a couple pieces of muenster cheese and salami for 11PP.

That was my day. I actually had 3PP left for the day and just could not justify eating something given I was not hungry to just satisfy “eating all my points”.

I have yet to attend a meeting, pretty certain I will on Wednesday. I am hopeful I will. Being we are down to 1 vehicle…hopefully only temporarily…it will be tricky maneuvering it. I will succeed in it though.

If you read my last post about me joining Weight Watchers again…nothing has changed as far as sharing it with friends/family here. I need to keep it that way, at least for a while…just a reminder to those who know me “in real life”, not just from the blogoshere that I need to do this for me.

I am amazed at just how many points I have and because of that the head says it is OK to have sweets…I have the points for it. I definitely feel the need to move over to the Simply Filling Technique soon. I want to get the meetings in before doing that…the first 3 to jump start your program…

How has your week been?


Wednesday, February 22, 2012

I Did It!!

I did it.

I did it.

I did it.

I re-joined Weight Watchers for the last time! I will make lifetime…yes I will!

Pssthey Val and Sonja I do not plan on telling anyone here locally OK? At least not for a while because I need to do this for me and focus on what I need at this point. ok? This includes my kiddos and Kevin. I want them to see a difference in me first…then I will tell them. So please keep this to yourselves.

Last Friday I took the plunge and did it. I got my materials and am working out a time I can make the meetings regularly. It will probably be Wednesday mornings starting next week…kids are home this week…Hubs is still not back to work yet either so it will not be right now.

I do like some things that have changed this year with the program and after reading over some of the material it hit me!! I have been trying to run a marathon race without ever training or running a smaller race first! I dive right in expecting too much too soon. Not taking things in a progressive manner.

So I am going to begin “training” taking things progressively and one step at a time, trying to enjoy this process and making life changes that are doable for me as I go.

I welcome this with open arms!

One other thing a few years ago when I did so well I was doing it just for me because I had hit a wall…I am there again and know I need to go this road alone. That is when I was so successful. Not being alone…not getting support but fully doing it for me, by myself. I know to some this might sound contradictive but it is not. I have wound up dependent on someone else when I have a “partner” with this weight loss “race” and find when they change or give up or do not want to do it anymore I quit too. Thus the reasons I need to go and be part of this without anyone being my partner in crime. I sincerely hope I do not offend anyone or hurt feelings I just know me and I want and NEED to succeed in this effort.

I need encouragement and cheering. In this I need to be the center of my weight loss universe. If this sounds selfish it may be. It is the way it has to be.

Have a great day!


Thursday, February 16, 2012

A Day of Eats

For breakfast I made an egg with a little shredded cheese and bacon bits topped it onto a whole grain english muffin and sided with about a cup of blueberries.

It was really good. I made the egg in a dish in the oven.

Accompanied by a cup of tea.

For lunch I had a little bit of Roasted Beef Merlot and about a cup of peas. Very good and filling.

Dinner was a salisbury steak accompanied by steamed broccoli, green beans and mac ‘n cheese.

Not too bad of a day.

Hoping today will be another good one.

Have a great day!


Sunday, February 12, 2012

Sunday Scale Time ~ 2.12.2012

How have I done?

Weekly weigh in I was down 1.0. Oh it is going really slow. I have been sick all week, actually for the past 2 weeks and I have not paid a lot of attention to what I am eating and have not exercised….BUT I am finally feeling better!!!!

One more week to go in our challenge…though I am going to continue on despite it “officially” being done and over with.

How do I feel…

I am pretty disappointed in how slow this is going. I am really trying hard to not get too frustrated because I do know I have not really been 100% in eating or exercise so I can’t expect too much.

Moving on…new week…clean slate!

Goals For The Week:

  • Focus on only 5 pounds at a time.
  • Do 30 minutes of activity daily, something…anything
  • Aim for 6500 steps a day.
  • Aim for 64oz water daily. 
  • Keep things simple.
  • Meal plan my week.

I am not giving up and I am going to keep on fighting! How about you!?

Have an amazing week…


Sunday, February 5, 2012

Sunday Scale Time~2.5.12

How have I done?

Weekly weigh in I was down 0. I stayed the same but I guess I’ll take it. It is definitely better than gaining.  In the eating department I am still working things out, including getting back in the swing of photo'ing my meals.

My knee is still getting better, does not hurt as much when I walk but there is still pain when exercise. I am not letting it get me down though.

How do I feel…

Hmmmm, I feel blah. I have not been feeling the greatest all week and my mood is just blah. It is a fight to really do anything or even to want to do anything. There are some things crowding my mind of a personal nature and then on top of that I got some bad news regarding family down south today that is just adding to it.

I know this too shall pass and I just need to keep moving ever forward despite all these negative things because I do still have many many positives in my life.

I worked on my goals all week and did make some headway, just not enough that I want to move onto anymore this week. I will keep working on the following:

Goals For The Week:

  • Focus on only 5 pounds at a time.
  • Do 30 minutes of activity daily, something…anything
  • Aim for 6500 steps a day.
  • Aim for 64oz water daily.
  • Eat whole unprocessed foods 80% of the time.
  • Meal plan my week.

I am taking things one step at a time.

Tell me one non-scale victory you achieved this week.