Posts in Health, Fitness, & Food


on April 5th, 2010 by

I have issues taking pills – I have for a long time – but I really like taking daily vitamins. I was determined to find a solution this time.

Since I exhausted all of my options at GNC, or at least all of the options from a few months ago, I went to Vitamin Shoppe to see if they had an alternative. I even talked to the girl behind the counter. She helped a lot and told me she had the same problem. She showed me what she uses and told me some hints & tips other customers have told her too. I ended up buying the Vitamin Shoppe Multi Vitamin & Mineral Powder to mix with water, milk, juice, or a liquid of my choosing. She also recommended a product called Perfect Food Berry that adds even more good stuff to the vitamin shake and said that it really helps mask the taste of the multivitamin powder. I bought that too.

The result. I have taken my vitamins all week and with no issue or stress. The little extra money is so worth it to have that stress lifted. I just have to gradually increase my intake over the next few weeks to coincide with my weight and all should be good. I mix the vitamin powder with Simply Apple Juice and it actually tastes good. My bamboo whisk that we got with our DoMatcha tea also has a second purpose now – to mix my vitamins.

To me, the look doesn’t even make it unappealing either…

Crab Soup

on February 12th, 2010 by

I made crab soup for the first time ever. I found a recipe and tried to follow what I could and then add replacement items for stuff I didn’t have. I purchased crab meat in the grocery store about a week or so ago in hopes to make something with crab and all of the cold weather made soup seem like the perfect option.

Substitutions (that worked well) since we didn’t have certain items :

  • Edamame for the lima beans
  • Lemon juice and ground pepper for the lemon-pepper seasoning

Maryland Crab Soup Recipe

It was awesome. A little spicy and good flavor. And it made about 8 2cup servings.

Scalloped Potatoes

on April 22nd, 2009 by

I had never made scalloped potatoes before today. I looked at over 5 recipes and wasn’t happy with any of them. So, I took bits and pieces of different recipes and added an idea of my own. Below is the result of the concoction. It is not the typical scalloped potatoes but all of the major ingredients are there and it tastes great. Plus, 4 out of the 5 ingredients are organic. The only ingredient I haven’t found in an organic variety is cream cheese… one day.

Scalloped Potatoes


  • 4 oz – Neufchâtel cheese (1/3 less fat than regular cream cheese)
  • 1/2 c – sour cream
  • 1 1/2 c – half and half
  • 3 lbs – red potatoes
  • 8 oz – shredded cheddar cheese


  1. Heat oven to 350°F.
  2. Mix cream cheese, sour cream, and half and half in a bowl.
  3. Thinly slice potatoes, place in bowl with cheese mixture, and gently mix to coat potatoes.
  4. Spoon into 9″ x 13″ baking dish and scatter 2 oz of shredded cheddar cheese on top.
  5. Bake for about 1 hour until cooked through.

Nutritional Information
Serving size 8oz

  • Calories: 278
  • Fat: 15.7g
  • Cholesterol: 45mg
  • Sodium: 548mg
  • Carbohydrates: 26.6g
  • Fiber: 2.7g
  • Sugar: 4.7g
  • Protein: 11g

Makes 10 servings

Trail Mix Recipe Mod

on February 20th, 2009 by

Recently, we have been making our original Trail Mix recipe on the lighter granola side (maybe a winter thing) and since I make our granola from this blog every time, I thought I would update the recipe. There are only 2 modifications: double all of the non-granola ingredients (or cut the granola in half with respect to the other ingredients) and remove the dates (we were not enjoying them) and replace them with 1/2 raisins and 1/2 cranberries.

Trail mix

In a large bowl, mix the following ingredients:

  • Raisins (45 grams/1.6 oz/4.5 Tbsp)
  • Dried Cranberries (45 grams/1.6 oz/3.5 Tbsp)
  • Almonds (28 grams/1 oz/4 Tbsp)
  • Peanuts (28 grams/1 oz/4 Tbsp)
  • Cashews (22 grams/0.8 oz/4 Tbsp)
  • Walnuts (28 grams/1 oz/4 Tbsp)
  • Pepitas (aka. Pumpkins seeds without shells) (30 grams/1.1 oz/4 Tbsp)
  • Chocolate Chips (60 grams/2.1 oz/4 Tbsp)
  • Granola (110 grams/3.9 oz/1-1/3 cups)

Note: All ingredients are listed in grams, ounces, and measuring device depending on how specific you want to be and what your scale reads. If you want something more exact with a closer repeatability, use the grams/oz measurements. If you want something a little bit more random or want to put it together really fast, use the Tbsp/cup measurements.

Store in an air tight container and enjoy. We store the bulk of it in a large air tight container and then put small 30 g servings in small air tight containers that we can take to work or throw in our bags when we have to run out the door quickly. It gives a whole new meaning to fast food.

Nutritional Information… coming soon
Serving size 30 grams/1.1 oz

  • Calories: –
  • Fat: –
  • Carbohydrates: –
  • Protein: –

There are lots of substitutions that can be made. Some substitutions are:

  • use one type or other types of nuts
  • use one type or other types of fruit
  • use sunflower seeds or pretzels in place of pepitas
  • use M&M’s or peanut butter chips in place of chocolate chips

If there are any allergies, remove those foods and either add more of something already in the recipe or something else. The trick is to keep a preferred ratio of granola to the additional ingredients. If you like it more on the granola side, then add more of it and if you don’t, then add less. Trail mix is so easy to make and it relatively good for you in small quantities when not exercising; and, it is a great energy food when hiking or such. Just remember to write down what you do end up making so you can make it the same way or know what to increase or decrease next time. Just remember, trail mix is supposed to be an energy food not junk food.

More Peanut Butter Product Recalls

on February 6th, 2009 by

I received an email from today notifying me that there was an update to the “Peanut Butter and other Peanut Containing
Products Recall” that has been in the news for a little while now. The FDA has a new list of the foods. Please check it out. I don’t want anyone I know getting sick because another stupid company wasn’t careful with food.

Body + Soul Challenge Day 2

on January 27th, 2009 by

Today has been interesting. I woke up before 10am. I drove in the snow. And, the laundry is almost done and it isn’t even mid-week yet.

Let me digress to update you on my progress yesterday. As for what I needed to accomplish yesterday, I did better than average on most things and not so hot on a couple. For starters, I only drank 4 cups of water rather than the 8 recommended, but I know I will improve. Bedtime was supposed to be 10pm. I pushed it to 11pm since there was a really good movie on – Something About Mary – and I intended to go to bed right after, but I checked my email before shutting down my computer and had an issue that I had to respond to – well, it probably could have waited until morning –  pertaining to my Amazon Selling Account. I stayed off the computer pretty much the rest of the day minus my blog post. At least I was still in bed before 12am. I think the reason it snowed today is that I was in bed before midnight! Tonight I will shoot for 10pm again and we will see what happens.

So, about today. Waking up before 10am may not be a big deal to most people but for someone who likes to stay up late and get up late it is a big deal. There are morning people and there are night people and I most definitely am a night person. By noon, I had breakfast, checked my email, started laundry, and drove to the post office to ship a package  – in the snow mind you. I love snow but I do not like to drive in it. I have a 4-wheel drive vehicle but that still doesn’t help me in the snow and ice. My theory is that if I am sliding in a 4-wheel drive vehicle, I am no better off than most other vehicles. But, today, I thought I would boost my confidence and go out. Now, I only had to go about a mile and the whole way there I went less than the speed limit. I know the people behind me were so annoyed but I might have saved them from an accident, right?

Now onto the goals of The Challenge Day 2

Scale Back

No caffeine. Check. Eating fruit instead of sugary foods. Peaches instead of a brownie with lunch. Check. Cow’s milk is recommended to be replaced with rice milk, but I usually drink soy milk so I will have to see what to do there. At this point today (about 5pm) I have drank the 4 cups of water that I did all day yesterday, so that is an improvement.

Tune Out

The goal is to keep TV watching, emailing, web surfing, and newspaper reading all to a minimum or as little as absolutely possible. I am usually technology immersed, but today I have been on email for only a couple minutes and watched one episode of Color Splash – one of my favorite HGTV design shows – on TV. Today has been a big day for laundry and making lunches so that I can eat the way I am supposed to this week.


The questions for today are: Do you eat in response to stress or emotions? What types of foods do you crave? What, if anything, would you like to change about why or how you eat? As for stress and emotional eating, my experience is that I don’t eat. Calming myself down is the only answer. Only then can I actually hold food down. As for my changes on how I eat, I want to create structure on when I eat. The time I eat is usually pretty random and sometimes not at all for some meals – not good, not good at all. I was just talking with a friend two nights ago about how long it takes me to eat. It is a while – my grandmother taught me that. It is healthy and I am proud of it. Yes, I am left at the dinner table quite a bit, but when you are a slow eater, you shouldn’t expect others to hang around and wait – I don’t expect it – but sometimes people will hang around which is really cool.

Go Whole

I have to admit that I used minute brown rice today. I used up the whole wild rice in dinner for the next few days, so I had to improvise. The rice was still good and it was better than not eating it. Our dinner however will have lots of whole grains: wild rice and quinoa. It is the first time I have cooked quinoa before so we will see how it goes. If the recipe turns out well tonight, I will post it – a bean, rice, quinoa, and veggie soup.

Tune Into Yourself

I think I feel the detox already working. I have more energy today that I usually do. I accomplished so many things – maybe part of that is that I was not on the Internet – but I don’t want to discount my increased energy.


Rice, veggies, beans, fruit, water… this detox is so much better than others out there and I haven’t felt hungry yet. With the publishing of this post, I have already achieved one of my goals for week 1: blog at least twice a week. Yea! This is actually fun. To be writing about something that is not technical nor science or design related is an interesting experience. Until next time…

Body + Soul Challenge Day 1

on January 26th, 2009 by

I thought I would get to look at the details of The Challege Day 1 this weekend, but it  just flew by. Not looking like this is getting off to a good start, but it is, really. So, today I read through day 1 and I felt pretty good about myself. Some of the major points I already do – maybe not all of the time but more often than not.

Scaling Back

Good Points: I don’t drink alcohol and the only caffeine I get is in chocolate and decaffeinated green tea every so often so that is a good start. I am a non-coffee drinking girl. Tried it once in 11th grade and thought I was going to hurl and now I can’t even bear the smell of it sometimes.

Not-so-good points: I don’t drink enough water. I really need to work on that. I get so dehydrated sometimes that I think I cause heart flutters and that isn’t good at all. If the water isn’t in front of me I don’t drink it, so my goal will be to fill a glass or two and have it next to me at all times. And as for sugar, while I don’t have too much, I want to decrease it even more in my day-to-day eating. Over the last couple of years, I went from sugar to artificial sweeteners (which are bad for you) to sugar and herbal/healthier sweeteners. Now, I just need to decrease it all together. I just have to finish the brownies that are in the house right now and I will be on my way to decreasing the sugar. Both of my parents are Type 2 diabetic, so I want to try my hardest to not be.

Get Organized

Yea! Organizing! Well, this is not exactly my type of organizing. Organizing the house – yes – but organizing me – that is another story altogether. Through blogging about my process I am hopefully informing friends and family of my plans like it recommends. As for the food supplies, I have all of that. I might need to go to the grocery store for more rice and beans, but it shouldn’t be too bad. And the funny part is about a month ago I learned about putting lemon in water, so I am already ahead in that respect.


20 minutes. No problem. It will take me that long to write my post everyday about The Challenge. I will just have to think a little more about what I write so reflection is built it. Healthiest aspect of my diet: careful dinner meal planning. Least healthy part of my diet: lunch since I sometimes eat it and sometimes don’t depending on how busy I am. Food weaknesses: chocolate, dessert. What I would change about my food choices: If I put as much planning into breakfast and lunch as I do dinner, I could be super healthy.

Detox Tips

This week is all about detox: Skip raw foods, Eat whole grains, Eat beans, Find sweet substitutes, Tune into yourself.  Please read the section on Body + Soul for more info. My biggest interest in this week is to see which foods I miss – which ones I miss at first and then which ones I miss toward the end of the week. I hope that I feel less tired and get more energy as the week goes on.


Now, I have to figure out my challenge goals this week. Hmm… what will they be? I think I may have already come up with one or two writing this post today. I will share my goals at the end of the week.

So the biggest thing I have already realized about blogging about my Body + Soul Challenge adventures is that you, my readers, are going to get to learn a lot about me and in the process; hopefully, I will learn a bit about myself too.

A New Year, A New Me

on January 21st, 2009 by

Well, maybe not a new me, but we all have things we want to change and I have a LIST of things. I love change and since I have drastically decreased my rearranging of the furniture in my house – not that the house is completely organized yet – I thought I should focus on me for a little bit.

While going through my email for the first time in about 2 weeks – and I mean really going through it like actually reading and deleting them not survival mode of scanning for people I know and replying to them before they think something happened to me – I came across the Body and Soul Challenge. I attempted it last year but made it about a week before I forgot all about it.

This year, I really want to make it the 5 weeks and complete their plan for each day. I figure, the way to actually get me to do it is to complete another one of my “changes” at the same time – getting back to blogging at least twice a week. One of the tasks of The Challenge is to write daily, so if I work on a blog post of a couple days and post a couple times a week, I will satisfy that – I might actually post every day, but I am not promising anything. I need to do this is smaller steps. I have learned when I jump in full force that I lose interest, so a gradual warm up should work. Also in looking on the Whole Living website (the one that has The Challenge), the plan starts on a Monday, so this coming Monday, January 26th is when I will start.

Good Luck to Me!

Chicken with Peppers & Zucchini

on October 19th, 2008 by

Chicken with Red Peppers & Zucchini

  • Red Bell Peppers, organic (2 large)
  • Zucchini, organic (2 medium)
  • Chicken tenders, natural (1lb)
  • Canned Tomatoes, organic (28oz) (type depends on preferred liking)
  • Water (optional) (1/2 cup)


  1. Place chicken separated in bottom of baking dish.
  2. Cut up veggies and place on top of chicken in baking dish.
  3. Pour tomatoes and water over veggies and chicken.
  4. Bake at 350°F for 45 minutes.
  5. Check chicken temperature to make sure it is 165°F to verify it is fully cooked.
  6. Enjoy!

Nutritional Information

  • Calories: 142.5
  • Fat: 1.3g
  • Cholesterol: 48.8mg
  • Sodium: 229.6mg
  • Carbohydrates: 11g
  • Fiber: 3.5g
  • Sugar: 6g
  • Protein: 22g

Makes 4 servings

Will change nutritional information

  • Swap out peppers and zucchini for preferred veggies

Egg Salad

on October 19th, 2008 by

Egg Salad

  • Eggs, large brown natural cage-free (12)
  • Mayonnaise, light canola (1/4 cup)
  • Mustard, yellow organic (1 tsp)


  1. Hard Boil eggs using desired method (See Egg Boiling Steps).
  2. Cut up hard boiled eggs into a large bowl.
  3. Add mayonnaise and mustard to eggs and mix thoroughly.
  4. Enjoy!

Nutritional Information
Serving size 3oz

  • Calories:118.1
  • Fat: 8.1g
  • Cholesterol: 322.5mg
  • Sodium: 121.9mg
  • Carbohydrates: 1.5g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Sugar: 0g
  • Protein: 9g

Makes 8 servings

Will change nutritional information

  • Add more or less of the ingredients depending on preference

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