Monday, December 16, 2013

What is that? A loofa?

I've had plenty of posts started for awhile now, but I had to post this recipe asap, it was that good!  I'm loving quinoa dishes, since Sakief eats rice with almost everything.  It's such a great substitute, though the texture is definitely different.

This one's for you Jared!

Blackened Chicken with Cilantro Lime Quinoa and Avocado Cream Sauce
adapted from

4 chicken breasts (if they're thick, pound them out with a meat tenderizer, or if you're like me, a rolling pin)
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup quinoa
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp cumin
lime juice
chopped cilantro
olive oil
2 Tbsp plain, nonfat Greek yogurt

Cook quinoa with the chicken broth in a rice cooker while you prepare the chicken.

Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl. Coat the chicken breasts. Heat 1-2 Tbsp of olive oil in a medium sauce pan at medium/high heat. Cook chicken for 7 minutes each side, covered, on medium heat. When chicken is fully cooked, remove from heat and let sit.

For cream sauce, combine the flesh of the avocado with the Greek yogurt in a food processor (or magic bullet, or blender, etc, etc). 

When quinoa is done cooking add chopped cilantro and lime juice to taste.

Slice chicken and serve over quinoa. Spoon cream sauce over top.

The original recipe called for the cream sauce to only be used if you needed to cut the heat from the blackening spices, but Sakief and I both agreed that it really makes the dish.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Armadillo Eggs

This is one of the easiest recipes I've made.  I grabbed this one from Pinterest, and the pin led nowhere, so unfortunately I don't have anyone to give credit.  But I certainly didn't come up with the name of this myself.  Thankfully the entire directions were in the pin, so here we are.

Armadillo Eggs:
Ground beef
Cheese of your choice (I used string cheese since it was easy to stuff the peppers with)
Varying peppers (I used sweet mini bell peppers, but in the future I'd try something with some kick, like poblano)
Seasonings of your choice for beef

Preheat over to 375. Cut the stem off of the peppers and de-seed.  Stuff with cheese (don't over fill). Season beef (I used pepper, garlic powder, salt and worchestershire sauce). Flatten out small patties of beef (make them as thin as possible).  Wrap each stuffed pepper so that the cheese is sealed inside. Bake 20-30 mins until the "eggs" are brown on the outside.

Even though I'm not a fan of bell peppers, this wasn't so bad (though like I said, I'd love to try this with spicier peppers).  I tend to find that the mini peppers have a milder flavor, which is probably why I could tolerate this.  The only reason I used them though is because we had them in the fridge (and I don't know why, I'm sure Sakief bought them for some reason). 

What I like the most about this recipe (other than melted cheese, noms) is that it's a different way to use ground beef.  Sakief and I often have ground beef in the freezer, and aren't usually so creative with it.  It's nice to be able to use it for something other than hamburgers and spaghetti sauce.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Winter Squash Soup

I had an excellent weekend, and as per usual, am sad that it's coming to a close. Sakief and I got a lot of our holiday shopping done, and Erin was kind enough to take our holiday card pictures today. I can't believe it's November already!

I also had a major win today. After pictures I accompanied Erin, Adam and my two favorite little girls to Chuck E Cheese... And I didn't eat any pizza! CEC has a surprisingly good/fresh salad bar, so I ate a TON of veggies sans salad dressing. I'm pretty proud of myself.

When I got home I did make a real dinner for Sakief and myself. Another new recipe, another win for the day! We had some leftover pumpkin (whole) and butternut squash from a recipe Sakief tried last week (I subsequently turned the pumpkin into purée and froze some as well), so I decided on a soup. I have realized recently that I really should be giving more credit to the original sources when I find a recipe, so with that, I give you Ina Garten's Winter Squash Soup ( :

2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 Tbsp olive oil (I actually didn't use this, mostly because I forgot...)
2 cups chopped yellow onion
1 can pumpkin purée (I used my homemade, about 1 3/4 cups)
1 1/2 lbs butternut squash (I used 1/2 of a large squash-chunked, no skin)
3 cups chicken stock or broth
1 cup half and half
Sour cream (as garnish)

In a stock pot heat the butter (and oil if you use it). Cook the onion until translucent. Add pumpkin, butternut squash, broth and salt and pepper. Cook until butternut squash is soft. The original directions call for the mixture to then be blended in a food mill, but I just used a stick blender. This means you don't have to transfer everything to and from the stock pot and simplifies the process (I think). Blend until smooth. Add half and half. Simmer for a few minutes. Serve hot with a dollop of sour cream. Makes 4 servings. 

This is an awesome meal for a cool fall evening, and is very filling. I'm glad I have leftovers!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai

Sakief wants me to start blogging again, and it can't say that I disagree with why. I've completely fallen off the wagon, and only been able to really get back on this week. I'm so afraid of what the scale will say that I've actually hidden it away. Give me a few weeks and I might be brave enough to dig it back out. Anyway, I've mentioned it before, but blogging helps to keep me accountable, so it makes sense to get back to it. That, and I've had posts starred for weeks now to share recipes and they've just been sitting, waiting for me to write them. Le sigh.

The following recipe is the first recipe I feel like I can after least somewhat claim as my own. I got the idea from Pinterest (duh), but the pin led to nowhere, and while the text of the pin told me the ingredients, I had to figure out the measurements. This was a HUGE win, and will make if again, soon probably. It was not only delicious and healthy, but Sakief (who is super tired of spaghetti squash) didn't complain because it had so much flavor to cover the squash.

I proudly present: Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai

2 chicken breasts
1 medium spaghetti squash
1 cup vegetable or chicken broth
1 Tbsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp rice vinegar
1 Tbsp smooth peanut butter
2 large carrots (shredded- I used my spiral slicer)
4 baby Bok Choy (chopped, no greens)
1/2 cup chopped peanuts
Green onion
Diced garlic
Lime wedges

Cook spaghetti squash. I cut mine in half length wise, scoop out the seeds and roast at 375 for 45 mins or so.

While squash is cooking: Chop chicken into bite size pieces. Add broth, garlic, soy sauce and rice vinegar to wok, or large pan. Over medium heat cook chicken in broth mixture. When chicken is cooked through, add carrots and Bok Choy. 

When vegetables are cooked, scoop out cooked spaghetti squash and add to wok. Mix together. Add peanut butter and stir thoroughly. Let simmer to cook off some of the liquid (not all). Add chopped peanuts and green onion and mix. Let simmer about 5 more minutes. Garnish with cilantro (not pictured, we were out) and squeeze some lime over the top before eating.

I hope you enjoy this as much as we did, and I hope to share more recipes and dieting life things soon. Back at it :)

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Italian Chicken

So the picture that goes with this post has been sitting in my drafts since the beginning of October... Whoops! Just goes to show that I really do need to blog more often.  Also, I need to not ignore the super awesome recipes that I've tried! Sakief and I have eaten this a few times. It's simple, cheap, but very flavorful.

Italian chicken:

4 4 oz chicken breasts
1 can artichoke hearts (I use quarters)
Olive oil
Shredded mozzarella
Fresh basil

Generously salt and pepper the chicken breasts. Place in greased glass dish. Drain artichoke hearts. Cut up tomatoes of your choice (pictured is cherry, but I've also used Roma, whatever I have on hand). Mix tomatoes, artichoke and about 1tbsp of olive oil together. Spread this mixture around the chicken breasts. Cover each breast with approximately a quarter cup of mozzarella. Bake at 375 for approx 30 mins. Sprinkle basil over the top and continue baking 15-20 mins until chicken is fully cooked. 

If you have enough veggies in the pan, this doesn't really need a side dish. Otherwise it goes well with just about anything. The original post suggested serving with pasta. I always suggest more green veggies!

My inspiration came came from here:

Spicy Guacamole Chicken Enchiladas

I have so many recipes to post, and I've been such a slacker.

This is a recipe that I can't believe I haven't posted before, because it's a new favorite in our home, and we've eaten it on multiple occasions. Since we had it again last night I made it a point to take a picture so that I could post it...finally! This is another Pinterest inspired recipe, though we tweaked it quite a bit for our needs.

Rotisserie chicken (hand shredded)
2 large avocados
2 Roma tomatoes (diced)
Shredded Mexican cheese (or cheese of choice)
Low carb tortillas (8)
Diced onion
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup salsa verde
1/2 cup sour cream + dollop for guac
Serrano or jalapeño (1 or 2 depending on desired spice level)
Minced garlic
Garlic powder

To make guacamole:
Mash together avocados and dollop of sour cream. Mix in cumin, salt, pepper, garlic powder and diced tomatoes. Add diced jalapeño and cilantro if desired. Set aside for enchilada construction.

To make sauce:
Sauté jalapeño/Serrano pepper and minced garlic (to taste) in medium sauce pan with butter. Whisk in chicken broth and add cumin, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat and whisk in salsa verde and sour cream. 

Preheat oven to 375. Grease large glass pan. Spread approx 1/3 cup sauce across bottom of pan. 

To construct enchiladas:
Layer guacamole, shredded cheese, onions and chicken on a tortilla. Roll tightly leaving ends open. Place into glass pan. 

After all enchiladas are in the pan (approx 8), pour the rest of the sauce over the top. The open ends will allow the sauce to integrate into the enchilada. Sprinkle more cheese and cilantro over top. Bake 15-20 minutes until bubbly. Serve hot with any left over guacamole on top.

Sakief and I each eat two for a meal and that's more than enough. Delish!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Breakfast cups

I'm down another 3lbs! And we are now less than a month from Corrie's wedding, and just days from her shower and bachelorette! Ah! I am so beyond excited!

I have found recently that as much as I love my breakfast quiche, if I don't switch up my breakfast routine, it just gets old.

I got my inspiration for these from Pinterest, of course, but as with the Hawaiian burgers I made awhile ago, I had to use pictures without directions, so it required a little creativity.

12 slices of your favorite lunch meat 
Shredded cheese of your choosing
4-5 eggs

Foil cupcake liners
Cupcake pan

Preheat oven to 375. Place liners in cupcake pan. Put one slice of meat in each liner. Sprinkle a tiny bit of cheese into the slice of meat. Beat eggs (I used a two cup pourable measuring cup so it was easy to pour the egg into the cups). Pour a tiny bit into each slice of meat. Top off until all of the egg is used. Bake for 15 minutes.

I have now used both jalapeño turkey and honey ham for the cups. I recommend that the meat not be sliced too thick or it's hard to get the cheese and egg into the cup. I eat three cups for breakfast, along with avocado slices, and it's plenty. The also keep well, so it's a nice make ahead meal, which I love during the work week.

I listened to Sakief and remembered to take pictures of some of the food that he made in the past week. Since he cooked it, I'll need him to sit down with me to write out the recipe, but I'm looking forward to sharing his tasty food!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Spinach and Artichoke Chicken

I got the chance to cook last week and tried another new recipe from my Pinterest boards. Sakief keeps griping that I don't ever document his successes, so I'm going to try to do a better job of that, but for now, I'll stick with mine!

This was a very yummy win. It's basically just chicken topped with spinach and artichoke dip. Yum! It's also really simple!

4 chicken breasts
1 block frozen spinach (thawed and drained)
1 13-14oz can artichoke heart quarters (drained)
2 shallots, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1/2 cup mayonaise
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
Salt/pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375. Spray or grease baking dish. Place chicken breasts in baking dishand salt and pepper each side. Bake 15 mins. While chicken is baking mix together the other ingredients. Spread over chicken and bake an additional 20-25 mins. 

Sakief and I both agreed that the dip on its own was awesome, and I'm planning to try it during football season. I kept it healthy with low fat mayo and cheese. Each serving was about 350 calories, with the chicken. I honestly can't wait to try it again!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Spiral Slicer

In the past few weeks I've started following several of the blogs that I have been stealing recipes from. It's nice to read others' stories and struggles with the low carb lifestyle. And other than recipes, these blogs give me tips on new ways to below carb.

I have been wanting to try a veggie spiral slicer for awhile now, as I've seen it all over these blogs, as well as constantly popping up when I search "low carb" on Pinterest. I bought the GEFU spirelli spiral cutter off amazon for about $30. I've only used it once and I'm already in love!

There are basically two reasons to use a spiral slicer. 1) to make fancy veggies for your salad and 2) to make veggie "noodles".

I used it for noodles last night. Sakief and I had spaghetti with zucchini noodles for dinner. It couldn't be more simple to make the noodles either. I read a few reviews saying that the slicer was difficult to use, but they clearly don't know what they're doing. All you do is pop whatever veggie you want onto the twist cap, insert into either end of the slicer (two settings, thin and less thin, haha), and twist the cap. It took me less than 10 mins to slice 3 zucchini, and it only took that long because I was playing.

To make the zucchini a better consistency for noodles, I steamed them. They were pretty al dente, but zucchini isn't an overwhelming flavor, and they were twirlable! I think Sakief and I both agree that zucchini noodles are better with spaghetti than spaghetti squash (but I still LOVE my spaghetti squash). 

I'm excited to try the slicer with other veggies like carrots, cucumber and yellow squash, yum!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

30 day challenges complete!

It was definitely a struggle, but I am pleased to say that I successfully completed both the squats and abs 30 day challenges. By the end I did 250 squats, 125 sit-ups, 200 crunches, 65 leg raises, 120 seconds plank (in one day). Sakief is the only reason I was able to finish. Every time I wanted to give up, he was there to get me back in it. He didn't just hold my feet while I did sit ups, but encouraged me the whole way. 

While you can't see a lot of changes, I can really feel it. Under my padding there are definite abs. Not a six pack mind you, but if I can keep up ab exercises, I know I'll have a nice flat stomach when I lose the rest of this weight. My thighs seem to have slimmed a bit, but more than anything I actually noticed a reduction in cellulite. The main thing that I noticed is the reduction in what I call "my lump". When I fell in February, I caught the back of my left thigh on the corner of the chair. I had a small cut, but seemed to do more soft tissue damage than anything else. It's still tender to this day. Anyway, a lump formed, and won't go away, but the squats have definitely helped.

My plan is to continue with 100 squats, 50 sit-ups, 50 crunches, 25 leg raises, and 30 seconds of plank 3-4 times a week. 

Losing weight is still a struggle, but it's coming off!

I managed to get the most ridiculous sunburn on my face yesterday, so I'm just taking it easy and applying aloe. I do plan to get my exercises in today though :)

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Shrimp fried spaghetti squash

That's right, I went there.

Recently I found a recipe for sesame spaghetti squash with edamame (which I have yet to try), but it got me thinking about other Asian inspired foods that I miss, and fried rice came to mind immediately. So why not try? The worst thing that could happen is that Sakief and I hate it and we never eat it again.

Turns out that subbing out the rice for spaghetti squash is actually quite good. We will absolutely eat it again.

1lb shrimp (I used uncooked, but you can use precooked)
1 medium spaghetti squash
2 cups mixed vegetables (frozen)
2 large eggs
4 Tbsp olive oil
4 Tbsp soy sauce

Wok and baking sheet

Preheat oven to 375. Cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out seeds. Place upside down on baking sheet and bake for 45 mins or until squash is easy to scoop out (typically you can poke the skin with a fork and it will pierce with little pressure).

If you're using uncooked shrimp, cook in wok with 2 Tbsp olive oil. Set aside (including any left over juice). In a hot wok, add 2 Tbsp olive oil and the soy sauce. Add veggies and cook until defrosted. Scoop out squash into wok. Stir. Add garlic and eggs. Stir constantly until eggs are cooked. Toss in shrimp. Cook until most of the liquid has evaporated. 

I hope you enjoy this as much as we did!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Dinner tonight

I tried two new recipes for dinner tonight, both were absolutely delicious! It's all healthy, but turns out to be high in calories, so I probably won't eat them together again, although they do compliment one another.

Jalapeño popper chicken:
3 chicken breasts
4 oz cream cheese (half a brick)
1/2 cup shredded cheese (I used Mexican blend)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1/4 cup mayonaise or Greek yogurt
2 jalapeños (chopped)
3 slices of bacon
1/2 cup diced onion

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake chicken for 45 minutes and drain juices. While chicken is cooking sauté jalapeños, onion and bacon until bacon is crispy. Place in small mixing bowl. Add shredded cheese, Parmesan, mayo/Greek yogurt and cream cheese. Mix together. Spread over cooked chicken. Sprinkle top with a little Parmesan and put back in oven for 15 minutes. Serve hot.

Parmesan cilantro corn:
3 cups corn
1 Tbsp garlic
1/2 cup Parmesan
Chopped cilantro

Sauté corn and garlic. Slowly sprinkle in cheese and allow to melt. Stir in cilantro and serve.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Finding New Strength

More like finding new muscles... I'm now just over a third of the way through my squats and abs challenges, which are beginning to really suck, and my entire body is telling me about it. I expected my thighs and abs to burn, but I've been surprised by the other soreness I'm experiencing... My back. It makes sense to me, but I just hadn't thought about it. And despite the additional soreness I'm feeling, I'm quite pleased to know that I am strengthening my back. I think it's an often overlooked area for people who are somewhat making things up as they go when it comes to working out (such as myself).

I had another good week of weight loss, and am now down a total of 6.5lbs! This weekend will be a good test of willpower as Sakief and I are headed to Dallas in the morning for a John Mayer concert. I'm pretty stoked for a little time away with him. It's been a rough week for both of us between work and school, and it will be nice for a brief reprieve from real life.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Playing Catch Up

It was a really good first week back.  I can't even describe how much better I feel.  And I'm down three pounds, so that helps!

I'm also only two pounds away from my first mini goal, so *fingers crossed* I'll hit that by next Friday.  I'm feeling pretty confident that I can.

However, I felt like I needed to give myself a little dose of reality, not to discourage myself, but for some addtional motivation.  I said last week that I wanted to lose 45lbs by Corrie's wedding.  Corrie's wedding is now 11 weeks (!!!!!!!) away (begin the countdown!).  If I am to actually lose the next 42 lbs before her big day that would equal about 3.8lbs per week.  Unlikely and improbable.  BUT, that just means I have to work my butt off to get as close as possible (without overdoing it of course). 

I've started a couple different month long programs to help me get back into the work out routine, a squats challenge and an ab challenge.  My coworker introduced me to them and said that the squats challenge really worked for her, slimming out her thighs and making her pants fit better.  I'm all for that! Both challenges are three days on, one day off for the month, so it's easy to do it all together and be done for the day.  I have also added an arm workout into it, so I'm getting a full body workout.  I still need to add cardio back into my routine, but it's all coming.

As per usual Sakief has been my biggest support.  He planned an incredibly delicious low carb menu for us this week, some of which I'll have to share when I have the time.  I think my favorite was the paleo-style lasagna.  We ended up using cheese (hence style), because it's just not lasagna without it, but yum!  We also had butter chicken with green beans (no rice), stuffed poblano peppers (vegetarian dish) and gumbo sans rice.  I'm pretty spoiled.  And it just goes to show that you can eat well, while eating well. Tonight is finally my turn to cook and I'm making spicy avocado enchiladas.  They are insanely good (we've had them once before) and I will definitely share the recipe.

He's also encouraging me in my workouts without pushing.  Despite the fact that my body feels better this week, I have been feeling sick off and on (maybe cold coming on, maybe allergies, who the heck knows!).  He's been running everyday, and always invites me to join.  Unfortunately I'm just not there yet, but I will be.  One day I really am going to finish the C25K program...

Today we are trying out a yoga studio.  They are donation only, which keeps cost for us low since we don't have to purchase a membership.  That's definitely something I miss from having my gym membership... the classes (mostly yoga). Here's to hoping we like it!

I hope everyone had a wonderful 4th of July!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

I haven't blogged since April... What?!?

And I've suffered for it.

I won't do the whole "boo hoo, woe is me" bit because the fact of the matter is, it's my fault anyway. 

When you don't do the things that keep you accountable, you gain weight, simple as that. And the reality is that I've still lost a LOT of weight, so whatever.

However, this is still unacceptable, and I have three months to lose as much weight as I (safely) can before I walk down the aisle as maid of honor in Corrie's wedding. Hello motivation!

It's been interesting, because I could tell that I was gaining without stepping on the scale, and I know others noticed too, but no one said anything. Hopefully it's because you have the same faith in me that I have in myself, and that is, that I will still do this!

It isn't a ridiculous amount of weight, but enough that I don't really feel like sharing right now. 

I will say that I've set a rather lofty goal of losing 45 lbs before the wedding on September 21. Not very probable, but shoot for the moon, right?

I also want to be in a lower decade by two weeks from now.

I've made a lot of healthy living mistakes (or lack thereof) mistakes in the past few months, but I will fix it, and I will be better.

Stay tuned friends, and thanks for your continued support!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Salmon Cakes with Chipotle Mayo

As Sakief said tonight, "I like salmon, I like cake" so what's not to like?

I have to admit, I was skeptical before trying this recipe because I'm not typically a fan of canned meat. But seeing as how I've fallen in love with canned chicken (it's just so easy to use!), I figured it couldn't hurt to try the salmon. Then I opened the can and it looked (and sorta smelled) like cat food. I was not thrilled, but in the end I actually really loved this.

This is my take on another recipe I found on Pinterest. Honestly the only real substitution that I made was salmon for tuna. I love me some tuna (steaks, sushi), but canned tuna? No way, no how. Unless it's in my mom's tuna casserole. Noms. But I digress.

This tastes very much like a crab cake, and is essentially the same thing, but salmon instead of crab (or tuna for that matter). Each cake is quite large and has less than 200 calories (approximately, not including mayo).

For the cakes:

One can salmon (14.75 oz)
3 egg whites
1/4 cup bread crumbs (I used matzah meal again, it's what I have)
1/2 chopped onion
Old Bay

Combine all ingredients. Shape into 4 equal patties. Cook in frying pan on medium heat with a tiny bit of olive oil. Brown each side.

For the mayo:

Mayo of choice (I love with olive oil)
Lime juice
Chili powder

Combine three ingredients to taste, whatever quantity.

Serve salmon cake with a dollop of mayo. Enjoy!

Sakief and I also tried a new salad dressing tonight, ranch from Bolthouse Farms. Bolthouse Farms dressings are yogurt based. I haven't tried others, but the ranch was incredible. Only 45 calories and 3g carbs per 2 Tbsp. Way better than any other "healthy" ranch I've tried before. My coworker introduced me to it, so I'm very grateful to her.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Good, Good Friday

Technically I don't have today off, but I am working from home, so it's basically just as good.

This has been a good week. I feel incredible. All the bloat and yuck that I'd had from before the 7 day diet has stayed gone and probably decreased even more. Some work pants that were getting a little tight are now fitting beautifully again.

I really thought I'd see a big loss, and even though I didn't, I'm not discouraged. I'm betting next week will be 3 or 4 lbs since this was a small week. I'm also hoping after getting lots of rest this weekend that I can coax myself back into a regular work out routine. It won't hurt that Sakief is starting a job next week so there will be several evenings that I'm not worried about having dinner made, etc. it definitely helps my motivation to work out, which seems silly, I know.

I think I briefly mentioned in a previous post that I signed up for a weight loss coach through work. I only talk to him once every few weeks, however, it's just one more person that I'm accountable to. I'm amazed at how much I don't want to let him (or myself) down.

We tried another Pinterest win! recipe this week, avocado chicken Parmesan. I recently bought a stoneware pan from pampered chef, and was pretty excited to try it, so this was a perfect recipe.

4 chicken breasts (pounded flat)
Two eggs (whisked)
Bread crumbs (I used matzah meal, go Jew!)
Tomato sauce
Parmesan (I cheated and used provolone, no parm in the house)
Spices of choice

Coat chicken in flour, dip in egg, then coat in bread crumbs. Sprinkle with spices. Bake at 350 approximately 20-30 mins. Remove from oven. Spread tomato sauce over chicken. Place several slices of avocado on each breast, then place cheese on top. Put back into oven for 5-10 minutes until cheese is fully melted.

Stats for the week:
Lost this week: .5 lbs
Current weight: 221 lbs
To go: 36.5 lbs

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

On Marriage Equality

I try very hard not to get political in public forums, because the potential argument with someone over my beliefs and opinions isn't worth my time or frustration. And if you argue with me, instead of discuss, well that really isn't worth anyone's time is it?

I also believe that the subject of marriage equality shouldn't be a political issue, but alas, we are forced into a situation where lawmakers get to decide who we are allowed to marry.

Marriage equality is an issue near and dear to my heart, and not just because I have many incredible LGBT people in my life, but because of my own relationship.

It was less than 50 years ago that interracial marriage was legalized in the United States. That means that less than 50 years ago, my relationship would have essentially been illegal.

Thankfully I can honestly say that Sakief makes me happier than anyone else ever has. The color of his skin, his religion, or lack thereof, isn't a factor in our relationship, and vice versa. We just respect one another.

I had someone tell me that dating Sakief "isn't American". I'm pretty sure that the white Jewish chick dating an Indian guy who was raised Muslim is the epitome of American, because we are free to do so. And yet, many people I know and love aren't free to to marry the person they love. I've also had people ask me how our relationship works. Uh, how does YOUR relationship work? We are people who love each other, that's how it works. It's the same for anyone who loves anyone else, regardless of race, religion, creed or sexuality.

I don't miss the old ladies staring at us as we walk through the grocery store together. It makes me want to cry every time; I have nothing that I need to justify to anyone.

I'm hoping that most of you reading this will be even the tiniest bit horrified. Because if we don't allow all Americans the same rights, imagine how many years of hate we have ahead us.

Ask yourself, how, and why, does someone else's marriage affect your life? Why do the old ladies stare? It's not fear, it's not religion, it's hate.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Chicken Tomato Melt

I had originally planned to try this recipe last night, but it definitely worked out better for today's lunch. Especially because we had delicious kabobs with Adam and Erin last night.

I adapted this recipe from one I found on Pinterest, shocker. It originally called for tuna, but since I'm not a fan of tuna, I used canned chicken. Honestly this is one of the best things I've tried/made recently. I really loved it. Super simple with tons of flavor, and of course, low carb.

13 oz canned chicken
4 Tbsp non-fat plain Greek yogurt
Diced onion
Fresh basil (chopped)
Cheese of choice
Two large tomatoes

Hollow out the tomatoes so that there is a large pocket for stuffing. Drain tomatoes on a paper towel for 10-15 minutes. Combine chicken, yogurt, onion and basil. Press stuffing firmly into tomatoes, it will be over flowing. Top with cheese. Broil 3-5 minutes.

One stuffed tomato is plenty for a meal, very filing. Only about 250 calories depending on the type of cheese you pick.

Insanely good.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Post 7Day

So I'm thinking that while I hated basically everything about last week, it at least appears that it wasn't for nothing. Not only did I not gain weight back since stopping, I have continued to take more off. I still would never put myself through that again, however, at least it did me some good.

Unfortunately I'm still a long way from my lowest weight film last year, and even a few pounds off from my 2013 low. But that's ok. I'm finally feeling really good about my eating habits, and am having a much easier time with my self control. This may also be attributable to las week, so yet another reason I can't hate it. I've been so happy eating normal food this week (HEALTHY normal food), that I have zero desire to eat anything unhealthy.

I also feel really good about myself for the first time in quite awhile. I'm liking what I see in the mirror again. Truly speaks to how important the psychological factor is in losing weight.

This week I made my triumphant return to cooking dinner, and mostly had wins, so says Sakief. Unfortunately last night's experiment of cabbage rolls wasn't the best. It wasn't awful though, so worth tweaking. Anyone who's made cabbage rolls knows hat they typically call for rice... I used quinoa as a substitute and it seemed to work just fine.

This week's stats:
Current weight: 221.5 lbs
Total weight lost: 63 lbs
In 2013: 3 lbs
To go: 37 lbs
Work outs: I'm getting there...

Monday, March 18, 2013

Day 7: Throwing in the towel

Day 7 was a bust, in fact the whole diet was a bust, for me at least. I haven't done a final check in with Corrie to see how it went for her.

Yesterday was "miracle soup" aka cabbage soup day. I thought it wouldn't be so bad. I was wrong. I got through breakfast no problem. But once I got to lunch, it all went down hill. I made it about 5 bites in and had to quit. I was done.

I skipped lunch after that as I had lost my appetite, but ate a delicious healthy dinner of chicken and veggies.

I ended up super sick today as well, and have been very uncomfortable. I'm blaming the cabbage.

In the end I only lost 3.5lbs. While that's a great amount of weight, it's way less than promised, and totally not worth the torture of the week. I'd rather lose 2lbs and enjoy my food than go through the last week again for some extra weight loss.

Thumbs down 7 day diet, thumbs down.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Days 5 and 6: The return of protein!

Days 5 and 6 were very similar, and also the easiest days by far, mostly because it was normalish foods.

Day 5 was beef and tomatoes. Other variations on the diet said chicken. I'm guessing that the idea is to add protein back. I was also supposed to eat 6 tomatoes. It was the first day all week that I was truly full and satisfied after every meal. I am lucky enough to have Sakief who cooked me delicious steak in a cast iron skillet, noms. He even prepared Friday's breakfast for me Thursday night so that I didn't have to be up super early Friday morning. It is suggested that you drink extra water because of the acidity of tomatoes.

Today was beef and veggies (or chicken/turkey). Pretty self explanatory. Other than the fact that I usually have breakfast foods for breakfast, it's essentially my normal diet.

I can't believe that tomorrow is finally the last day! Here's to hoping I see some nice results on Monday morning!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Day 4: Orange you glad I didn't say banana?

I realize that I should have posted last night, but I have a good excuse, promise.

Day 4 threatened to be difficult as the only food allowed was milk and bananas (and plain low fat yogurt). Up to 8 bananas to be exact. I prepared myself with bananas three ways... Bananas, yogurt and cinnamon for breakfast, banana smoothie and well, bananas.

Breakfast with the yogurt was delish, and I was really looking forward to my smoothie as an afternoon snack. I ate just bananas and drank a ton of milk for lunch, and it filled me up just fine.

What was most annoying about yesterday is that despite the fact that my bananas looked perfect, most were very mushy on the inside and had to be discarded, so I bought new ones on my lunch break.

That turned out to be a good thing, because just as I finished my lunch I received a phone call that Adam had been in a car accident outside of Abilene. He's fine other than a broken wrist and overall soreness, however, I immediately hopped in the car to go get him. I also left my smoothie at work, so I didn't get to enjoy it... Oh well. But the reason that buying the bananas at lunch was a good thing is that I had my two dinner bananas in the car, so I was able to stick to the day despite the adventure of traveling to west Texas.

I am so incredibly thankful that Adam is ok. Count your blessings friends!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Day 3: Now I'm Grumpy

I started off today so positive. I got to have an even greater variety off foods since I could have fruits and vegetables, I got to eat an avocado... Life was good. Until breakfast. Yeah, that lasted long.

Broccoli for breakfast, yeesh! I had to toss the last few bites before satisfying my other needs with an orange and an avocado. I know, weird breakfast. Well you know what? This whole diet is weird!

I was hungry for dinner around 5, but couldn't convince myself to eat until 7 because I am so sick of veggies. And it's just the veggies that are bothering me, I could eat fruit all day everyday I think. But gosh do I miss protein. Meat. Cheese. Come back to me!

I am feeling much better now that I've eaten, and as weird as tomorrow is, I'm looking forward to it as well. At least I get some protein finally with yogurt and milk! I also made the cabbage soup (for day 7) and I'm allowed to supplement tomorrow with it, which may help since it's a very savory soup.

I really can't wait for Friday and Saturday though when I finally get some meat, yum! It makes my mouth water just thinking about it, haha.

I'm also finally seeing some movement on the scale, so I want to focus on the positive. Along with that I'm feeling really good about getting my willpower back. I'm saying to myself "you can't eat that" instead of "you shouldn't eat that" which makes all the difference.

I think I can, I think I can...4 more days!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Day 2: Veggies only

Day 2 was a lot harder for me than day 1. Not because of hunger, I actually found I was able to stay full longer, but I just don't find veggies as interesting flavor wise.

I did have a really lovely breakfast since I was allowed a potato today. I chose a sweet potato for a more flavor and something sweet. I mashed it and added some cinnamon, yum! Otherwise I stuck to all green veggies.

It's amazing how few calories you consume when you only eat veggies. No wonder this diet s successful. I may be full, but I only consumed about 500 calories for the day.

Not having any protein is weird. I'm not grumpy per se, but I just feel... Off. I can't wait for day 5 when I get to eat meat again!

I'm excited for tomorrow too... Combo fruit and veggies, so I'm treating myself with avocado! Yum!

The best part of today though is that Sakief came home from his bro trip to Pensacola. I missed him :) But I did have a great weekend with my parents in town and getting to see Adam and Erin's new house!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Day 1: An apple a day!

I mentioned in my very brief post from Friday that I am starting a "cleanse" this week with Corrie.  Today is the start day and I'm actually kind of excited now.  I found several variations on the same thing, so I will post substitutions as I know about them.

I haven't seen a consistent name for this cleanse/diet, so I think calling it the 7 day cleanse works just fine. According to the different posts I've seen about it, it's actual weight loss, but as with the 3 day diet I tried last year, I'm skeptical until I see it stay off (assuming I don't just start gorging after I'm through this week, ugh).

My starting weight is 226.5 and I have been promised anywhere from 10-17lbs of weight loss in the next 7 days.  A girl can dream right?  The different posts I've seen also say that you can repeat the process as often as you'd like, with no breaks in between.  Overall it seems healthy enough (no starving yourself, rather balanced later in the week, etc), so I don't have any concerns about repetition if I decide to go another week at some point (or next week if it works!).

Restrictions are mostly on a day by day basis, however, the first week it's done there is no alcohol allowed, and you pretty much drink only water.  I did have a cup of coffee this morning (and plan to continue my coffee habit) and will probably be drinking my cleansing tea in the evenings, but otherwise plan to stick to water only (no Crystal Light, juice, soda, etc). If you decide to go for more than one week, the plan says that you can have white wine or beer, limited to two of the same beverage per night.  As per any diet, it warns of drinking your calories.

The first few days are pretty simple in terms of what to eat, and don't seem too weird (just wait until later in the week...).

Today is fruits only (NO BANANAS).  One of the websites I found recommends lots of melon on the first day because of the water content, but it doesn't really make sense to me because of the high sugar content.  You decide I suppose.  Unlimited fruit intake, except bananas of course. 

Because fruit is unlimited, I didn't have much trouble staying full, however, there were some moments of hunger if I had underestimated how much would make a good meal. Basically I should have had better snacks.

Tomorrow is all veggies... I'm guessing it will be harder because I don't find veggies by themselves to be as tasty as fruit alone. I have all of my meals prepped though, and I'm ready for it!

Corrie seems to have done well today too. One day down!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Quick update

As you probably know by now, my elbow is no longer thought to be fractured, but it is sprained (read, I'm still dealing with pain, boo).

I can't complain too much though, at least I have my arm back, limited use, but I have my arm.

Next week I'm trying a cleanse that Corrie wants to do. We are going to be each other's long distance support system. I plan to blog about it throughout the week, so I'll go into details then. 7 days... Ahhhhhh!

My weight has continued to creep up, and I'm a little nervous to weigh in Monday morning before we start. I'm not sure what I need to do to get my head back in it, but something has got to change so I can get this weight off. I know that I won't give up though, and even signed up for a weight loss coach through work.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Give me a break!

Ok, that pun isn't so funny, but as you probably know by now, I fractured my right elbow on Thursday night. I am slowly teaching myself to do things with my left hand, or figuring out how to still use my right fingers (or realizing my limits and asking for help), but there are some things that won't ever be easy... Like typing.

Because of that I've decided that until further notice I am taking a break from full blog posts (I may post short updates every now and then). It just takes entirely too much time to type with the hunt and peck method and only one hand.

I'm annoyed, frustrated, and a little angry, but thankfully I have Sakief who is taking such good care of me (and thankfully was there when I fell to rush me to the ER). He's been doing everything for me that I ask (and lots that I don't), and putting up with my crappy attitude. I'm trying to make light of the situation, but it's less and less funny the longer I'm in the splint. 4-6 weeks in this thing is not going to be easy.

I'll be back! After this short break...

Friday, February 8, 2013


I've been a blogging slacker, and just a slacker in general. I meant to post a recipe earlier this week, and didn't, so see below. Also, and more importantly, I'm less than surprised to learn that I'm back to even on the year.

It seems as though I can keep my head in the game for three or four days, and then blah for three or four days. The blah always more than undoes the good though, so I end up gaining. Sakief and I were talking about it last night, and both of us agreed to help one another more. We are both out of shape, and not always eating the healthiest.

I am slowly starting to get back in the work out routine. I had big plans for this week, and then ended up sick at the beginning of the week, and for only one day of illness, it's been quite a struggle to fully feel better. My stomach still hates me a little bit. Anyway, I did get in some home weight lifting, and last night restarted C25k, week 1 day1! This time I fully intend to finish it, no excuses. I have such easy access to the gym now. It was kind of a beautiful thing to walk into the apartment gym later than I used to go to the gym, and still be home earlier, just because I no longer have a gym commute. Ahh.

We are slowly settling into our new routine, and one of the things that I'm enjoying most, and I know Nora is too, is our new walk route. In many of the places where I have lived before there hasn't been a great place to walk with Nora, or much green space, so we did a lot of standing and waiting. Now we have a pond behind our building with picnic areas and a paved path for me. I estimate it's about a quarter mile if not a bit longer. I've made it a point that our morning and after work walks take us all the way around the pond, so in theory I'm adding an extra half mile or so of walking to my everyday routine. It's not much, but I know how much of a difference that can make in the long run.

To wrap it up, I present the latest of my Pinterest wins! I got this recipe from Ari on Pinterest, and even though she highly recommended it, I was still a bit skeptical. Anyway, Sakief has been asking for pancakes for awhile now, and I've been itching to use the griddle that he got me for Chanukkah. Obviously traditional pancakes aren't exactly low carb. This recipe could not be more simple... I present, low carb banana pancakes:

For one:
2 eggs
1 soft banana

Mix eggs and banana together (I used a potato masher since my bananas weren't as soft as I'd hoped). Scoop onto griddle and cook as you would a traditional pancake.

That's it! Sprinkle with cinnamon, serve with fresh fruit, or, as we did, find a tasty sugar free syrup. The texture is amazingly pancake like, however, they are much thinner than traditional pancakes.

Warning, if you don't like bananas, this recipe is not for you... It still tastes like banana. Also, if you have leftovers like we did, they do keep, however, just like with any banana, the flavor gets more intense with age (and transfers flavor to other foods they may be stored with, I learned the hard way when I took a bit of banana flavored sausage, ugh!).

Enjoy! This is definitely something I'll have many more times.

Friday, February 1, 2013

We moved!

Missing last week's weight check wasn't intentional, I was just too dang excited about moving that I didn't post. BUT the good news is that I made it back into the teens last week! This week is just the opposite though... I remembered to blog, but didn't step on the scale. Adjusting to the new apartment and just getting all around settled in has thrown me off of my habits.

In terms of working out, I haven't ventured into the gym at the new place yet, but other than the work out that moving gave me all weekend, I did join Erin and Laura at the gym on Tuesday, and lifted weights at home Wednesday morning. I expect that it will take a little more time for me to find my new normal, but I'm excited about my work out plans.

As far as the apartment goes, we love it! There is still a lot of work to do which has been a little overwhelming to me, but I know it will get done. Lots more was completed last night since Sakief's stuff was delivered yesterday morning. We now have all of the furniture for the guest room/Sakief's office, and are only waiting on our couch, Sakief's dresser, and the tv stand for our bedroom. Unfortunately, except for the couch, everything else is "some assembly required". I've found that it's not so easy to assemble these things. The tv stand for the living room took three people and several hours, and our nightstands took several hours and my sacrificed right hand.

I discovered a new chicken marinade last night that I really enjoyed (Sakief said he did too). It's very simple, so here you go:

Half cup fresh cilantro
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame oil
2 minced garlic cloves

Blend ingredients in food processor (I used a bullet since it's such a small recipe). Rub on 4 chicken breasts and let sit for at least 15 mins. Cook chicken as desired (grilled, broiled, baked, etc).

I actually used chicken thighs since that's what we had, but this original recipe called for breasts. I don't think it matters at all.

Stats this week:
Current weight: 219 lbs
Weight lost in 2013: 5.5 lbs
Total weight lost: 65.5 lbs

Friday, January 18, 2013

One more week!

Despite my lack of willpower last weekend, I still managed to lose some weight this week! I'm still disappointed about how much weight I still have to take off to fix my holiday mess, however, I am feeling so much better right now, finally! I had started to lose confidence that I could do this, and it's slowly coming back. It's just going to take longer than I thought, and that's ok.

This wasn't a particularly interesting food week in our house, but I did introduce Sakief to cauliflower pizza and he loved it! Last night's experiment of crock pot beef and broccoli resulted in decent flavor but chewy meat. Meh. I've made beef and broccoli before in a pan, and that was way better. On to the next.

Most importantly, next Friday we get the keys to our new place! It's been very taxing living together in such a small apartment, and I can't wait! This weekend will be lots of packing, though much of the apartment is already boxed up. I'm so excited for everything that this apartment means, mostly that it will be our home for at least the next few years. It's been a long time since I've gotten to stay put for awhile.

Stats this week:
Weight: 222 lbs
Weight lost this year: 2.5 lbs
Total weight lost: 62.5 lbs
To go: 37.5 lbs
Work outs: 2 plus house packing

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Meet Me in St. Louis!

I'm writing this from 10,000 feet and climbing as I head to Dallas and then on to St. Louis/Mt. Vernon for the weekend. I'm taking a long weekend to spend with Corrie, doing some wedding stuff, but mostly just quality time with my best friend.

I got to the airport early today, and hoped to get on the 1:30 flight (instead of 2:20) to Dallas; I only have 50 minutes in between flights, which made me nervous. I was incredibly peeved when the gate agent told me that it would cost $75. Seriously?!?! If you have seats let people have them! Turns out I'm actually better off. I may only have 50 minutes in between, but I'm flying on the same plane! That seriously never happens. I'm going to have to get off in Dallas because the crew is switching (I think), but at least I won't have to run to a new gate. How convenient. Thanks American... For once.

This was a pretty good week weight loss wise. I could have been better on what I ate, and I could have worked out more, but can't you say that every week? I'm definitely pleased, down 3.5 lbs from last week, and finally negative on the year. Considering that I had a complete breakdown last night and was crying to Sakief that I'm a failure, that I will never lose the weight I want to lose, etc, I'm now in much higher spirits (and literally quite high, we've reached our cruising altitude).

As much as I am mentally back in the game for meal time, I'm having trouble with snacking and controlling my sweets (particularly chocolate) cravings. I'm really going to have to go cold turkey if I'm ever going to be fully back on track. Forget I think I can, I know I can :)

Sakief and I are back to meal planning, and as you might be able to tell from my several recipe posts, eating well! Do yourself a favor and try both of the recipes I posted this past week, they are seriously amazing. I want more soup and burgers! Jared and Ashleigh tried the soup earlier this week, and I got a good report from Jared. Always nice to hear that food your recommend goes over well with others.

Sakief and I are also two weeks from moving into our new apartment (yay!) and he starts classes on Monday. It's a very exciting time for us. If only those two weeks would move a little quicker... We are both so over my current place.

To new and wonderful things in 2013! Cheers!

Stats this week:
Weight: 222.5
Weight lost in 2013: 2 lbs
Total weight lost: 62 lbs
To go: 38 lbs
Work outs: 2

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Hawaiian Burger!

Tonight was finally my night to cook dinner (not that I'm complaining about Sakief cooking most nights...) and I wanted to try something new from Pinterest. I've pinned almost 200 recipes that I want to try (not all main dishes mind you), so I had a lot to choose from. I decided on the Hawaiian burgers that I first came across a couple of months ago but haven't tried yet (I haven't tried most of the recipes, let's be honest). Of course I chose one where the link to the recipe has been flagged as spam, so I couldn't get to it from my iPad, blah. The following recipe I essentially made up based off of the picture, so bear with me.

I used 96/4 ground beef, but obviously you can use your favorite ground meat. I also used a thicker cut bacon, but for those who avoid/don't like pork bacon, I suppose turkey would work as well.

32 oz ground beef
8 slices pineapple
16 slices bacon
Onions (minced, as much as desired)
BBQ sauce (use your fave)
Garlic powder as desired
Wood toothpicks

Combine beef, onion, 8 Tbsp BBQ sauce, and garlic. Make 8 4oz patties. Lay each patty onto 2 crisscrossed slices of bacon. Lay one slice of pineapple on each burger. Wrap the ends of the bacon slices over the burger and pineapple and use a toothpick to hold it in place. Bake in oven at 350 for 30 mins (burgers will be well done). I cooked most of the burgers on a rack over a metal pan so that the fat would drain off a bit, but I did cook 2 in a glass pan with no rack. I definitely recommend the rack. There is so much grease/fat that is rendered off that the burgers cook better when it can fall away. But if you don't have a rack, they will still taste just fine.

Add more BBQ sauce if desired. Sakief likes his smothered! I was fine with the taste as is.

Obviously this made lots of leftovers for us, and I'm glad for it! Super yummy, and healthy. I served it with broccoli, but given some time to think about it, I probably would have done something a little more creative to go with Hawaiian burgers. Next time!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Pumpkin Black Bean Soup

I can't take any credit for this recipe, I didn't find it nor did I cook it, that was all Sakief. However, I did eat it and it is delicious! I've had it for leftovers several times and still like it, which to me is the true test of a recipe.

2 cans pumpkin purée
2 cans black beans
1 can corn (not creamed)
1 can diced tomatoes
2-2.5 cups chicken (or vegetable) broth
Chili powder
Sour cream

Drain black beans, corn and tomatoes. Combine broth, pumpkin and drained vegetables in large soup pot on medium heat. Stir until pumpkin is evenly distributed. Add spices to taste. Allow to simmer several minutes. Serve hot with a dollop of sour cream.

What I love best about this recipe is that it's great as a whole meal (very filling) or can be eaten as a side dish. I also love that it's easy to make vegetarian or vegan just by making a few easy substitutions.

Friday, January 4, 2013

What the...?

Ok, so I need to keep in mind that I've only been "back on track" for two days, have worked out only once this week, and let's say it again for good measure, two days back on track... I gained more weight! Ugh!

It is so discouraging and also disappointing as I kind of expected the first few pounds to just fall off as I got back on track. And now I'm even heavier.

I won't let this get me down (for long), I've come way too far to give up now, but I'm pretty upset.

It was nice to hear Sakief say "you're beautiful" this morning when I was first upset about it.

If next week doesn't show decent progress I'm pretty sure I will actually cry.

Current weight: 226
Weight lost: 58.5 lbs
To go: 41.5 lbs

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year all!

I realize that it has been almost a month since I posted, and there is probably a lot to catch up on, but I am still going to try to keep this post somewhat brief.

There are many reasons that I haven't posted in so long, but let's just go ahead and chalk it up to pure laziness.

Also something we can chalk up to laziness is the fact that I've gained back a pretty significant amount of weight in the last few weeks. Considering that I don't feel much different, and my clothes are still fitting the same way, I'm going to go ahead and hope that some of it will fall off rapidly.  It just goes to show how important food choices are though, as I continued to work out through the holidays, but basically allowed myself to eat whatever I wanted. 

That changes today, and it seems an appropriate day to do so as well.  Last year on January 2nd was the day I began this journey, so today is perfect to recommit myself.  Thankfully I can already tell that my mind is already back in the game, and I have Sakief at home to keep me motivated constantly. 

As disappointed as I am in the weight that I've gained back, I am still commited (recommited, whatever) to losing this weight, and I'm going to choose to focus on the positives of the year, instead of the negatives of the past few weeks (which were actually pretty amazing).

So to sum up:
**I lost a total of 60 lbs or approximately 5 lbs/ month.  That's pretty awesome if I do say so myself.  And a great number to be at after a year.

**I went from a size 22/20 to a size 16. 

**I have a lot more confidence.

**I wore shorts for the first time in years.

**I am exercising regularly and *gasp* actually enjoy it!

That's a lot of positive change, and I can't wait to see what 2013 has in store for me :) Hopefully a lot more good! 

My goal right now is to reach my goal of 100 lbs lost by my birthday (which I think I mentioned before).  I feel really good about getting that done.  I am also becoming even more confident that I can actually take off more weight than the 100 that I want to lose.  I guess we will see when the time comes, don't want to make any big predictions yet!

I'll be back to my regular Friday weigh ins starting this week, and plan to get back to blogging on a regular basis as well.  With Sakief moved in we are back to cooking together (sort of, our current kitchen really only fits one chef at a time).  However, we already have plans for new recipes and other fun things (I hope) that I can share with everyone here. 

Sakief bought me a hand weight set for Chanukkah, so I'm planning to start a weight lifting program before work, and be doing cardio after work.  Gym time has been/will be hard to come by since apparently I don't have guests passes on my account, so I can't always take Sakief with me (bummer) but I know Erin will help get my butt in gear.  He also starts school soon and will have access to the UT gym, so I won't feel as bad about leaving him behind when I work out after work. OnceSakief and I move at the end of the month we will have a great apt complex gym, which will be much more accessible (and I may give up my pricey gym membership), and I have big exercise plans.  More on that later.

I wish nothing but wonderful things for all of you in 2013.  Let's make it a good year!