Monday, December 27, 2010

Shoepeg Corn and Baby Pea Salad

Another favorite from Christmas, this year! I am officially addicted to this- which is saying something because its all veggies. It's another recipe from my mother-in-law, Denise. She has the most amazing and unique recipes. This is originally from and by "Pam-I-am" whoever that is. It makes 8 servings and is 179 calories per serving. You could cut it back if you used splenda instead of sugar. When I remake this, I'll post the alternate nutrition info if you use splenda.

What you need:
  • 1 large green pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups celery, chopped
  • 1 (15 oz) can baby green peas (Le Seueur brand)
  • 1 cup green onions, chopped
  • 1 (4 oz) jar diced pimentos, drained
  • 1 (11 oz) can white shoepeg corn (Green Giant Brand preferred)
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar (or substitute Splenda)
  • 1/4 canola (or olive) oil
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp dried dill
What to do:
  1. In a large bowl with a good top that seals, combine all of the vegetables and toss to combine.
  2. In a separate jar or bowl mix together dressing ingredients.
  3. Pour dressing onto salad and mix. Place tight fitting top on bowl and refrigerate for at least 2 hrs.
  4. While salad is in refrigerator, reach in about every 30 mins or so and give the bowl a shake upside down to help dressing cover all veggies.
  5. Serve cold with slotted spoon.
Complete nutrition info:
  • 1 serving= 1/8 recipe, 186 g
  • Calories = 179
  • Total Fat= 7.5 g
  • Sat Fat = .6 g
  • Polyunsat. Fat = 2.3 g
  • Monounsat. Fat = 4.1 g
  • Trans. Fat = 0.0 g
  • Cholesterol = 0 mg
  • Sodium = 97 mg
  • Potassium = 386 mg
  • Total Carbs = 25.4 g
  • Dietary Fiber = 4.9 g
  • Sugar = 10.8 g
  • Protien = 4.8 g
  • Vit A = 21%
  • Vit B6 = 13%
  • Vit C = 92%
  • Vit E = 6%
  • Calcium = 3%
  • Magnesium = 8%
  • Iron = 8% 

Hope to see less of each other next time!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Fresh Fruit Compote

This recipe is AMAZING! If you want something delicious and not too heavy, make this to bring to a pot luck...or to snack on all day every day like I have been doing over Christmas. (The cinnamon makes it a versatile dish for summer or winter. I loved it!) My mother in law made this for Christmas. She got the recipe from Southern Living Light Cookbook (1983). It makes 12 servings (105 calories per 1 cup).

What you need:
  • 1 (15 1/2 oz) can unsweetened pineapple tidbits, drained- save the juice!
  • 1 can mandarin oranges, drained (don't need the juice, or use fresh if you want to peel seed and chop)
  • 2 medium apples, unpeeled, seeded, chopped
  • 2 medium bananas, sliced
  • 1 medium yellow apple, unpeeled seeded and chopped
  • 1 medium pear, unpeeled, seeded and chopped
  • 2 cups seedless grapes (red, white, or black- your preference)
  • 1/2 the juice from pineapple tidbits
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp sugar (or splenda)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • zest of 1 orange (this is a modification from the original)
  • zest of 1 lemon (this is a modification from the original)
What to do:
  1. Combine cornstarch, sugar, and cinnamon in a medium saucepan
  2. Gradually add water until smooth
  3. Cook over med heat, stirring constantly until mixture comes to a boil.
  4. Boil 1 minute.
  5. Remove from heat.
  6. Stir in pineapple juice, lemon juice, and zests.
  7. Cool.
  8. Combine all fruit in a large bowl.
  9. Pour sauce over top
  10. Toss gently
  11. Chill thoroughly.
Then you're done!

Hope to see less of each other next time!

Merry Christmas!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! Matt, Bear, and I enjoyed it among his family and with lots of food!
Fruit Salad for Breakfast

Matt, Matt's Nana, his brother Jordan

My lunch: potatoes with gracy, pea salad, fruit salad, turkey,  sweet potatoes. Didn't finish it all, but it was soooo good.

Cleaning up after lunch at Nana and Pepaw's Chirstmas Eve

Matt's Parents

My Christmas Puppy

Christmas Day, Aunt Beth and her food. She's lost about 40 lbs this year!

My Christmas Dinner: Mini Turkey Taco with 1/2 cup tortilla soup and pea salad (below).

Pea salad

Demolished steamed artichokes
My favorites were the shoe peg corn and pea salad, the fresh fruit compote, sweet potatoes, and the turkey/ham sandwiches with oyster sauce (not pictured). I'm posting a few recipes shortly!

Merry Christmas!!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Vacation Day 2

Apple for breakfast 1pt 80 calories, tortilla soup with cheese for lunch 2pts 150 calories. I ran 3 1/2 miles in 33 mins and did legs and abs routines after +6 activity pts.

We celebrated Matt's birthday at Outback. I had the salmon and veggies off the light menu advertised under 500 calories.

We went out after dinner and I had around 2,000 calories of alcohol...this morning came early. Have a Merry Christmas! I can't wait to tell you about our Christmas Eve Celebrations!

Points: ??/23
Calories: 2,700
Weekly Allowance Points: 20 used / 15 weekly left
Exercise: 3 mile run, sit ups, legs
Water: 50 oz.
Weekly Weight Loss: +1.8 lbs / 34.8 lbs total

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Vacation Day 1

Hey everyone! I hope your holidays have started off as well as mine! Matt, Little Bear, and I are in Little Rock with his family now enjoying family and our time off.

Tuesday morning I got out before 8 for about a 3 mile run +5 activity points. It felt so good to choose to be active and not sleep in. I am not used to the hills around here though and am paying a little for it today. It took me 31 minutes and it was slightly under 3 miles. When I got back, I did sit ups, leg lifts, and a few yoga positions for good measure (+1 activity point). I have no idea how much to count for resistance training pt wise- I always end up giving it a 1 despite how much I do.

When I got back, I had an apple 1pt and 80 calories which I brought on the plane, but didn't end up eating the night before. Then, I looked at the picture and what is in the background? A photo of my shining star on the tree- at age 6! Hubby was such a cute child. I have high hopes our little babies will look like him with his baby blue eyes and angel face and not like the little tub of lard I was as a baby.

 Matt finally dragged himself out of bed a little before lunch. We had chicken tortilla soup from Fresh Market. It is soooo good! I had 1 cup 2pts and 130 calories. I amped it up with 2 tortilla chips and a tbsp of cheddar cheese 1pt and 35 calories.

We had some last minute Christmas shopping to do so we went out. It went by so quickly. Most everyone made Amazon Christmas lists this year which made shopping SO easy!

Matt's mom, Denise, slaved away in the kitchen most of the day. She is such a great host! She bakes Christmas trays for all of their friends and neighbors. I stole a cheese bite 1pt 50 calories- DIVINE. I have to stay away from the kitchen. There are dark magics going on in there.

We popped over to Matt's grandparents' house for a hug and a kiss before getting dinner at Jason's Deli with Matt's family. I got the Mediterranean wrap 6pts and 320 calories with a side of steamed veggies 0pts 40 calories. I also stole 1/2 an egg from Matt's plate off the salad bar (1pt 60 calories)! It was delicious! Although, next time, I'll probably ask for no turkey and extra veggies and humus.

After dinner, I had a large gin and tonic at the house while enjoying the fire and company 5pts and 300 calories before calling it a night.

Monday follow-up: I've had a lot of time to reflect on the great feedback I got from everyone on Monday's post. It ranged from advice like "hang in there, you've done so much and are doing great," to "screw it, have fun on the holidays and deal with it later," even to practical advice about choosing wholesome foods. All of it was great, and a much needed kick to keep going as well as guidance on where to go from here.

Since WW started the points plus program, I've continued with the old plan, canceled my membership, and added calorie counting to the blog. While those are minor changes to you, I've been doing a lot more behind the scenes to try and find a new path for my diet. I've been tracking hunger, exercise, time I eat, food groups, vitamins, notes on how I feel, pts, calories, and weight everyday. I'm hoping to look back after a few weeks, compile the data, and analyze what I need to work on more and what seems to be working the best.

I think that a lot of the feedback was right to focus on the quality of food I'm eating. Here's part of my response to one reader about how I'm planning to work on that (no need to retype, right)?

...I definitely agree that the types of foods I eat affect me. The thing that keeps me from doing my diet based off that alone is the loss of framework. Pts values are easy for me because they quantify the "weight losing potential" of foods. I can count them in my head and see the weight come off. With choosing foods that are nutritious, I lose some of that power.

When I started losing weight, my thinking was "Its more unhealthy to be obese at age 22 than it is to miss out on some protein or vitamins for a few months." Which, at the time was true. I was diagnosed (officially, the dr. assumed before then) with PCOS. Also affecting my weight, hormones, and insulin. My blood pressure was also getting into the "pre-hypertensive range." My dr. suggested medication for both, but I asked if I could lose some weight if I could avoid meds. Sometimes, I wish I would have tried the meds for PCOS because it probably would have made losing the initial amt easier, but I was so freaked out about medication after my run in with birth control when I gained 20lbs in 4 1/2 months. Losing weight wasn't just a thing to be pretty anymore, it was my health.

Now that I've gotten a lot of the weight off...
...I am at an odd transition period where its no longer the weight that's the super unhealthy part and I should free up and focus on other things- like feeding my body what it needs. It is a little daunting because I am pretty good at the weightloss "formula" now, calories in < calories out = goodbye fatass, and changing that focus to listening to my body's signals and responding accordingly is like hearing 1+1 doesn't = 2 which blows my poor engineering brain. Add feelings into an equation?? Freak out.

So yes, you're right. Focus on food I eat. Sigh. All signs were pointing that way when I noticed 1/3 of the calories I ate in a week were from bread and beer- my biggest passions aside from designer shoes and tequila. The hard part that I'm going through now is figuring out how much of that I can manage and how much I want to keep my lifestyle the same.

Thanks for the input and the encouragement! It means the world to me that you gave me feedback...even though it means I gots some work to do! :)
I would post the reader's comment because she had a ton of great insight on how to listen to your body and comments on why WW may not be the greatest for that reason, but I haven't heard back with permission. You'll just have to take my word for it that it was thought provoking.

I love ya'll's (two apostrophes in one word? Can I be that southern? yes.) input and I learn so much from the blogging community and how everyone manages their food, weight, and exercise with their daily lifestyles. I really am privileged to be given your input! Keep it coming please, good bad and indifferent!


Points: 16/23
Calories: 955
Weekly Allowance Points: 6 used / 29 weekly left
Exercise: 3 mile run, sit ups, legs
Water: 50 oz.
Weekly Weight Loss: +1.8 lbs / 34.8 lbs total

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Tuesday Travel Time

First let me say, thank you all for the feedback and encouragement you gave me after Monday's post. I've gotten some good perspective that I'll share tomorrow about my journey/goals. For now, just THANK YOU!

So hooray! The start of our holiday vacation is FINALLY HERE! I worked all day Tuesday- the center was crazy. I missed my breakfast I packed and was soooo ready for my artichoke by lunchtime. 1pt steamed artichoke 1pt butter and lemon (90 calories). I also had 1/2 of a piece of peanut brittle 1pt. Presents from students are awesome! I did manage to skip the Lindor chocolate. I knew if I had one piece, I would eat it all.

Chimmeny presents from work

Artichoke w/ lemon sauce

After work, I was starving again. I had a Santa Fe salad 5pts 250 calories and a small piece of my sour dough 1pt 80 calories.

I had packed my bags the night before to leave so all that was left was situating Bear, getting it all into our friend, Jamie's car, and heading to the airport. Around 9 I was hungry again and got a small chicken burrito from Salsitas in the Charlotte airport guess 8pts 450 calories with chips and salsa (split w/ matt), guess 5pts 200 calories.

Bear popped his head out of his carry-on bag and made me feel like Paris Hilton.



What's going on?
We finally got into Little Rock around 12:30 and Matt's parents met us at the airport. Bear sure was glad to stretch his little legs!


Points: 20/23
Calories: 1,050
Weekly Allowance Points: 6 used / 29 weekly left
Exercise: none
Water: 50 oz.
Weekly Weight Loss: +1.8 lbs / 34.8 lbs total

Monday, December 20, 2010

Monday #Fail

I am frustrated with my weight. I feel like ever since weight watchers introduced the points plus program, I have been in a rut. I don't know what it is- maybe the holidays setting in, seeing the scale go up, yet again, my ever present thesis deadlines? I'm sure that working 65 hours last week didn't help the situation. Whatever it is, the weigh in today was a huge dismay. +1.8 lbs. UHG.

I feel like I need to do something else to rekindle my love for dieting. I feel gross. I feel full. I feel out of control food wise, but at the same time, looking back I can't figure out anything terrible that I ate- plus I worked out an hour and a half every other day this week. This morning, part of me thought, "To hell with it," so I ate a lot that I really shouldn't have. I skipped breakfast before my first student. My boss made Matt and I his famous sourdough bread for our Chimmeny present, so I couldn't say no to that. I had one piece for breakfast for 3pts (guessing 200 calories).

I went back to work for another student and I had two more slices of sour dough before lunch for 6pts (400 calories?). I had a Smart Ones for lunch for 4pts 220 calories. Followed by five nilla wafers (100 calories) 2pts with peanut butter 5pts (200 calories).

One of the bad decisions. ... X 5
I napped for a lot of the rest of the day until my afternoon student. Maybe I am fighting off a cold or maybe it was staying up a little late to finish Die Hard last night. I'm not sure, but I felt "off" all day.

For dinner, Matt and I went to the brick oven again. I had 2 slices of veggie pizza for 9pts. It was good, but I felt a little sluggish after eating it.

I'm not really sure what I'm going to change at this point, if anything. I think I need to buckle down and set a goal. I've been dancing around the 160s since mid October and I really need to kiss this "decade" of weight goodbye. I was so pumped with last week's loss, but I feel like I am floundering now. I'm nervous about the holidays since we leave town for two weeks starting tomorrow night and holidays are known for their treats, traditions, and celebratory libations. I hope I can navigate through the chaos and manage to lose a little in the process.

I really want to get down to 149-150 so that I can at least say I'm no longer overweight. 13ish pounds isn't much compared to how much I've lost, but it is killing me trying to get there. Anyone have motivation to share or recommendations/support moving forward? I'm all ears!! I want to kick the 160's out of my life!

Points: 29/23
Weekly Allowance Points: 6 used / 29 weekly left
Exercise: none
Water: 50 oz.
Weekly Weight Loss: +1.8 lbs / 34.8 lbs total


uhg. Sunday was my first full day off in what seems like forever. I tried to convince myself to write my thesis, but I just couldn't do it. I had 2 nilla wafers with pb for breakfast 2pts 100 calories.

I did manage to drag myself to the gym even though I didn't want to. I keep hoping for warm enough weather to run outside. When we're at freezing and below, its just not going to happen for this warm-weather kid. I got in an hr on the cross trainer (760 calories), situps, and leg lifts. +7 activity points.

Matt and I went to tropical smoothie cafe for lunch. I had the garden veggie wrap. It was soooo good. I took off most of the dressing so I think I brought it down to 8pts and 410 calories.

Chris and Amy cooked dinner and invited us over. We had spinach feta stuffed chicken wrapped in prosciutto with Italian bread, and butternut squash risotto. I hope to get the recipe for the risotto soon. It was my favorite part, but it was all good! I ate 1/2 the meat and the rest of everything else. (I'm not much of a meat person anymore.) I have no guess about the points or calories (esp adding in my 2 1/2 glasses of wine!!). It's the last day in my tracking week, so I just called it a wash and resetting points tomorrow. I don't think the scale is going to be kind.