Tag Archive: family


Today is Father’s Day so of course I’m thinking about my dad. He passed away about 5 years ago and even though we didn’t talk everyday I still miss him. Growing up in my crazy house, visiting him and his wife every weekend was the one piece of normality I had. All I wanted was for him to be proud of me. I know there were plenty of things about my personality he just didn’t get and I wasn’t good at some of the things I think he hoped I would be, like golf, but I did feel that pride when I did well in school and kept myself out of trouble…most of the time. On those occasions when I did get out of line he didn’t yell or scream or worse, he just told me how disappointed he was. That was much more effective than anything else he could’ve done.

I always knew he was concerned about my weight. He tried to do something about it and get me to be more active, but there’s only so much a parent can do when they see their child once a week. Divorce, it’s not good. Avoid it. When I was in my late teens, I lost about 100lbs over the course of a year. He was SO proud of me. I could feel it like it was a tangible thing. Slowly but surely, I gained it back plus more…a lot more. When he came to visit (mostly to see his grandkids ha ha) I could tell it made him sad. I never felt that he didn’t love me, but I could see the disappointment in his eyes…not with me, but with the way my life was going. I wish he was alive now so he could see I’m back on track and helping others, too. I know he would be proud. 

Everyday I need something to motivate me. Most of the time I just keep telling myself, “50lbs, 50lbs, 50lbs,” but today I’m doing it for my dad.

10:40am Breakfast – 12oz water and 2 Beachbody Slimming Formula tablets, Chocolate Shakeology made with 4oz water, 4oz 1% milk, 1 scoop Shakeology Fiber Boost, a little coconut extract and 3 ice cubes

1:00pm Snack – 1/2c low-fat cottage cheese

2:15pm – 12oz water

3:10pm WORKOUT (and an egg which I scarfed down just before starting) TurboFire HIIT15, FIRE55EZ and FIRE45 OH YEAH!!!  30oz water and 1 scoop or half a serving of P90X Results & Recovery Formula in some of it while doing 45

6:20pm Lunch – 12oz water and 2 Slimming Formula tablets, Chocolate Shakeology made with 8oz 1% milk, 1 scoop Shakeology Fiber Boost, 1 tsp instant coffee and 3 ice cubes – I didn’t do mocha because I was tired, but because it’s delicious

8:45pm Dinner – 12oz water with 2 Slimming Formula tablets, Guacamole Turkey Burger from Carl’s Jr. that my family brought home for me even though I didn’t ask for it. Other than the high sodium, it’s actually quite healthy for fast food…and tasty.

11:30pm Snack – 7oz Strawberries and 1 Fiber One Brownie, 12oz water

Total calories consumed – 1404 Total calories burned – 3985

Protein – 107g, Carbs – 167g, Fat – 39g, Fiber – 33g

Water – 90oz

Last day before 2nd weigh-in! Results with photos coming shortly!

Advertisements

Just two more days until my next weigh-in! I’m excited! I spent part of the morning watching videos of Chalene Johnson (Turbo Jam, TurboFire, ChaLEAN Extreme), Brett Hoebel (Biggest Loser, RevAbs), Tony Horton (Power 90, P90X, 10 Minute Trainer), Shaun T (Hip Hop Abs, Insanity) and more leading the Super Workout at Coach Summit in LA which is extremely motivating. Can’t wait for next year in Vegas!

11:00am 12oz water and 2 Beachbody Slimming Formula tablets

12:45pm Breakfast – I have really got to start doing better about eating right after I get up and BEFORE I get on the computer! Chocolate Shakeology made with 4oz water, 4oz 1% milk, 1 Tbs. natural peanut butter, 1 scoop Shakeology Fiber Boost and 3 ice cubes

3:00pm Snack – 1/2 large cucumber, sliced with 2 Tbs. Trader Joe’s hummus

4:00pm – 12oz water

6:00pm Lunch – 12oz water with 2 Slimming Formula tablets, Smothered chicken burritos. Here’s the “recipe” inspired by Sam the Cooking Guy. Love him!

1. Shred some rotisserie chicken (Costco has the best deal by far) I used 3 oz in my burritos

2. Warm the chicken and enchilada sauce on the stove – I used about 2c. sauce for the whole family – make sure there’s enough sauce so that after you take the chicken out there’s enough to spoon over the burritos

3. Heat tortillas in a dry skillet on medium until soft and pliable, about 20 seconds, flipping halfway through (don’t leave them in the skillet too long or they’ll become hard and difficult to deal with) – I used Mission flour tortillas for the family and whole wheat, low-carb, high fiber tortillas for mine. Let’s compare…200 calories for one regular tortilla or 80 calories and 12g fiber for one of the kind I used. Seems like a no-brainer to me. I had two which were fewer calories than one of the other. Why didn’t I give the same to my family? Because they taste like whole grain and getting them to eat stuff like that is a work in progress. Baby steps.

4. Put warm tortilla on a large plate and sprinkle the center with shredded cheese – I used part-skim mozzarella because that’s what we had. Monterey Jack would be great. I weighed out 2 oz for my whole plate and divided it between the two burritos and top.

5. Top the cheese with some of the shredded chicken. I used a fork and kind of pressed it against the inside of the pan so it wouldn’t be too saucy, leaving some of the sauce for the top.

6. Roll up the tortilla to make a burrito. I fold in the sides first, then fold the bottom up over the filling and continue rolling up.

7. Once you’ve made the burritos, place on each person’s plate, spoon the remaining sauce over the top, sprinkle with shredded cheese and shredded lettuce then top with some sour cream. I used 2 Tbs. and it was the light kind.

8:00pm 12oz water

8:05pm Was feeling really sleepy and knew I was in great danger of slipping into that mental state where I blow off my workout, finding a myriad of ways to rationalize it, so I went out for a walk/run.

9:30pm 12oz water

10:00pm Dinner – 12oz water and 2 Slimming Formula tablets, Chocolate Shakeology made with 4oz water, 4oz 1% milk, 1 scoop Shakeology Fiber Boost, a little mint extract and 3 ice cubes

12:30am Snack – 6oz Yoplait Light Blueberry and 10 raw almonds

Total calories consumed – 1343  Total calories burned – 2925

Protein – 116g, Carbs – 145g, Fat – 47g, Fiber – 52g

Water – 72oz

 BONUS – Photos from my walk. Please forgive me for getting so excited about pretty clouds, but when you live in a place that’s overcast 75% of the year seeing some blue sky and clouds that have actual shapes other than “blanket” is a big deal. Once the sun had gone down to the point where taking photos with my not-so-great camera was pointless I decided to try some running intervals again. This time I took the advice of a friend and payed more attention to being light on my heels. It made a huge difference and I found myself going farther each time. Instead of counting steps I looked ahead for a landmark and told myself I could make it…and I did. The last interval was even uphill and I went farther than my goal. Booyah!! LOL

It’s amazing how often we hold ourselves back from accomplishing things because we tell ourselves we can’t. We were watching a fascinating show on the Discovery channel earlier in the day about a man who, if you didn’t know what he was doing and you believed in that stuff, you’d swear was a psychic. He’s actually a professional mentalist and he did share a lot of what he was doing. In one part he was explaining how car salesmen use little “tricks” to get you to think a certain way and do certain things like buying a car you didn’t really want when you went in. He also gave tips on how to counteract what they’re doing so you can get the best deal.

Afterward, I was talking to my kids about how our minds are so pliable…so open to suggestion…and how we can actually use that on ourselves to our advantage. I gave the example of how Chalene Johnson does this in a very unsubtle way in her workout programs. She says things like, “Guess what? You’re not tired!” or “I know you saved some energy for me!” or simply “You can do this!” and you start to believe it. The next thing you know you’re pushing yourself harder than you ever thought you could and you are doing it…just like she said. We can tell ourselves things that will either hinder or help. I know I have been guilty of holding myself back with negative thoughts, but I’m learning just how powerful our thoughts and words really are. It’s a gift from God. We need to exercise our free will and use it to our advantage. We do not have to be victims of our circumstances. We can choose to believe that we are capable of so much more, even if no one around us believes it. If we say we can’t, guess what…we’re right because we won’t even try. We have to say we can, figure out how and do it. It’s 99% mental.

OH yes, I love the 80s!! Remember this one? What in the world does that have to do with my journal? Well…the food I made for dinner was “Thai inspired”. I do need to go to the Asian market soon and get some more authentic ingredients, though.

10:30am Breakfast – had actually been up since 7:30 and fully intended on going back to bed at 8:00, but once again got distracted by facebook. To be fair, I was welcoming a new coach to my team and helping some other team members with questions so that was pretty important. 12 oz water, Chocolate Shakeology made with 6oz water, 2oz skim milk (we’re out now), 1 scoop Shakeology Fiber Boost, a little vanilla extract and 3 ice cubes. Forgot the Beachbody Slimming Formula again…oops.

12:45pm Snack – 1 1/2 servings of the leftover veggie and cheese enchilada casserole thing from the other day. 12oz water

1:15pm Nap

5:30pm WORKOUT!! ChaLEAN Extreme Burn Intervals and Ab Burner, TurboFire FIRE45. Fun as always! Wanted to do FIRE45EZ, too, but realized it was getting pretty late and dinner wasn’t going to make itself. 40oz water and 1 scoop P90X Results & Recovery Formula (not all together – 1 scoop in about 10oz then kept refilling the glass)

8:00pm Lunch (Dinner for the rest of the family) – 20oz water and 2 Slimming Formula tablets, Sweet and spicy tofu and broccoli stir fry with jasmine rice. Browned the tofu pieces a bit before adding the broccoli and made a sauce from light soy sauce, fish sauce (oh yeah, that’s Thai), powdered ginger (really need to get some fresh or even better, galangal), palm sugar, seasoned rice vinegar (would’ve preferred tamarind for the sour) and chili garlic sauce. My serving had 1/2 c. cooked rice, 6oz tofu and about 1 c. broccoli.

8:45pm Took the kids out to the basketball court and shot some hoops with them – great bonding time

9:20pm 24oz water

11:00pm WORKOUT #2!!! Woot!! Yep, I decided to do the FIRE45EZ that I left out earlier and I’m so glad I did!! FUN!!! 20oz water

11:50pm Dinner – 8 oz water and 2 Slimming Formula tablets, Chocolate Shakeology made with 8oz water, 1 Tbs. natural peanut butter, 1 scoop Shakeology Fiber Boost, and 2 ice cubes

1:30am Snack – 1 low-carb tortilla with 2Tbs. hummus from Trader Joe’s and 1/2 a cucumber, diced

Total calories consumed – 1378  Total calories burned – 4094 (700 of those came from doing 45EZ so I’m extra glad I did it!)

Protein – 94g, Carbs – 187g, Fat – 38g, Fiber – 45g

Water – 114oz

What the hey…here’s another great song from the 80s! I used to have hair just like the guy on the keyboard. LOL Enjoy and I’ll see you tomorrow!! 

Today started off just fine, but soon after it went horribly wrong. Not to say that everything was bad. Some pretty terrific things happened, actually, but some pretty crappy ones did, too. For quite possibly the first time ever I didn’t respond by turning to food which is a huge step forward. Yay!

7:15am Woke up and got my older son up, too, so he could finish the computer project he worked on until midnight

7:30am Son finished project, removed thumb drive from computer and placed it somewhere in another dimension where it was completely forgotten about until a few mintues before his class started

10:40am Phone rang…it was my son asking me to bring the thumb drive to school

10:45am Called son to ask where he put it because I couldn’t find it anywhere

10:47am Began the complete and utter ransacking of our apartment to find the elusive drive

12:10pm Came to the conclusion that I was not going to find it on my own and left to meet my friend for lunch (the class was over by this point so it didn’t matter what time it was found) – Mongolian grill – chicken and lots of veggies – no noodles or rice, about 36oz water

3:15pm Son came home from school and was instructed to start cleaning his room which was a total disaster even before I began the ransacking

3:30pm Husband got involved and without understanding the situation fully got angry with me for going out to lunch before it was found

3:45pm Full-blown fight began between my husband and I that the whole building probably heard (just verbal, I did not use my awesome kickboxing skills ha ha) – not my proudest moment, but I had had it up to here (imagine me placing my hand horizontally at the top of my forehead) Did find the thumb drive, though. Something must have sucked it back into our world/hallway. Go figure.

7:00pm Stomach stopped churning enough to finally eat something – 2oz angel hair pasta, 1/2 c. Prego Heart Smart sauce, 1 c. green beans with a few mushrooms sauted in olive oil and seasoned with salt, pepper and granulated garlic. Felt famished (that’s what I get for going so long without eating) so added a breaded chicken patty I found in the back of the freezer. Definitely tasted a little wonky from being in the freezer so long, but I didn’t really care.

8:00pm Stomach still wasn’t happy, but instead of eating more I went for an hour and a half walk which was my workout for the day. All the drama and stress (not to mention I hadn’t had my Shakeology yet) left me completely exhausted (and it turns out my elevated heart rate during and after the fight did burn some extra calories, though I much prefer accomplishing that with something fun like TurboFire)

9:30pm Came home and put the kids to bed then finally sat down to log in my food and discovered I needed to eat more

10:30pm 1oz angel hair pasta with 1/4 c. sauce (leftover from dinner), Shakeology no-bake cookies made with 1 scoop Chocolate Shakeology, 1 Tbs. honey, 1 Tbs. natural peanut butter, 1 Tbs. skim milk and 2 Tbs. rolled oats (seems the quick oats slipped into that other dimension where the thumb drive went) – didn’t even bother rolling the mixture into balls, just ate it with a spoon…what??

12:30 8oz skim milk

I know I had some other water today besides the three glasses at the restaurant, but I don’t remember how much.

Total calories consumed – approx 1489 (hard to know for sure when you eat out)  Total burned – 3323

Protein – 90g, Carbs – 214g, Fat – 38g, Fiber – 32g

Water – ? Probably not enough

Sorry no food photos today, but here are the ones I took on my walk. It was gorgeous outside and reminded my to keep my head up because things will work out one way or the other if I continue to choose to be happy and not let the obstacles get me down.

Tomorrow is a new day…thank God.

I was still up at almost 4am and found myself frustrated about something. After much deliberation I turned to food for comfort like I have many, many, many times before. At least this time, because I still had my goal in mind, I chose somewhat healthier foods (as opposed to ice cream, candy and chips) and stopped myself before I had completely undone all the progress I’ve made. Also interesting to note is that this was the first day I hadn’t really worked out since starting this challenge. Sure I had walked for about 40 minutes, but that’s way different from doing ChaLEAN Extreme or TurboFire. Way different.

Early Morning Eating Binge – 8 pieces (yes, 8 more) imitation crab, 2 slices Kraft American cheese, about 5 corn puffs (the white cheddar kind from Trader Joe’s), a sip (maybe more like a gulp) of root beer, and 4 chocolate covered mini-pretzels

1:15pm (yes, you read that right…that’s when I woke up) Breakfast – Chocolate Shakeology made with 8oz water, 1 scoop Shakeology fiber boost, 1 tsp instant coffee granules and 3 ice cubes. Also had 12oz water with 2 Beachbody Slimming Formula tablets

4:00pm Snack – 2 c. homemade minestrone soup and 12oz water

6:20pm WORKOUT #1!! ChaLEAN Extreme Burn It Off and TurboFire FIRE55EZ then a short walk around the park while the boys kicked a soccer ball around. Why did I split up my workout? Because my family needed food so I threw together some dinner and baked it while we went outside. 36oz water.

7:45pm Snack/Post-workout – 1 scoop P90X Results & Recovery Formula with 10oz water

8:30pm Lunch (aka Dinner for the rest of the family) – 12oz. water and 2 Slimming Formula tablets, 4 c. shredded romaine lettuce with dressing made from 1 Tbs. Hidden Valley Ranch dressing, 1 Tbs. light sour cream, 2 tsp skim milk and a pinch of chipotle seasoning. It’s from Knorr and comes in little cubes.1/8 of the Veggie and Cheese enchilada casserole thing I made from scratch. The plan was to make actual enchiladas, but this was much easier and faster. Here’s the recipe. The veggies I used were just what I had in the fridge. I think this would be very forgiving and you could use lots of different combos. It could also be great with green sauce.

2 c. red enchilada sauce

10 corn tortillas

1 Tbs. olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

1 zucchini, diced

1 broccoli crown, chopped

1 c. frozen corn

1 serving frozen sweet potato fries (84g)

8oz shredded cheese (I used part-skim mozzarella because that’s what I had, but low-fat Monterey Jack or cheddar would be good, too.)

salt, chili powder and garlic powder to taste

Pre-heat oven to 350. Spray 9×13 pan with Pam.

1. Heat large skillet to medium-high and add olive oil.

2. Add veggies, salt, chili powder and garlic powder (or fresh if you’re not lazy or in a big hurry like I was).

3. Cook veggie mixture until crisp-tender and a little browned. Meanwhile, start prepping the pan with enchilada sauce and half the tortillas by spreading 1/3 c. sauce in the bottom and covering with tortillas then another 1/3 c. sauce.

Nope, I didn’t heat the tortillas or coat them in sauce. Just put them in straight from the fridge. Easy.

4. Spread the veggie mixture evenly over the bottom layer of tortillas. I was trying to keep the calories low and didn’t want a bunch of tortillas so I just did one layer.

5. Cover the veggies with about 6oz of the shredded cheese. Save the rest for the top.

6. Cover with remaining 5 tortillas, the rest of the sauce and sprinkle with cheese.

7.  Bake uncovered at 350 for about 30 minutes or until heated through. Mine stayed in the oven about 40 minutes because we were outside and the veggies ended up a little softer than I would’ve liked, but it was still good. If I had green onions and/or cilantro I would’ve sprinkled them over the top before serving for sure.

Each serving (1/8 of pan) had 11g protein, 29g carbs, 7g fat, 4g fiber and 215 calories.

10:15pm WORKOUT #2 – ChaLEAN Extreme Ab Burner (10 min.) and Recharge (20 min. stretch/yoga)

11:00pm Dinner – Chocolate Shakeology made with 8oz skim milk (organic as always), 1 scoop Shakeology fiber boost, a few drops mint extract and 4 ice cubes – tasted just like mint chocolate chip ice cream 🙂 12oz water and the last 2 Slimming Formula tablets

1:43am (now) – Celestial Seasonings Raspberry Zinger tea with stevia already in the bag – 10oz

Total calories consumed – 1517  Total calories burned – 3530

Protein – 99g, Carbs – 200g, Fat – 41g, Fiber – 41g

Water – 100oz

Today could have been a total disaster or at least a wash with the extra calories from my early morning mishap, but by incorporating lots of veggies into the rest of the day I stayed full and kept the calories right where I wanted them. Yay veggies!!

Today was a rest day from my intense workout schedule, but I still wanted to do something so I took a little walk around the neighborhood. It’s was great to be outside and take some new photos since it’s been a while. I’ve been eagerly awaiting the arrival of the honeysuckle blooms. I finally saw signs of progress and could smell just a hint of their intoxicating aroma as I was right next to them. Soon the air will be filled with their perfume. I can hardly wait!

Normally I would cross the street and head over past Autzen Stadium (GO DUCKS!) to Alton Baker Park, but I turned around to go home and see what the kids were up to. I hung out with them at the basketball court for a while where the older one was shooting hoops with a friend and the younger one was riding his brother’s scooter. As I stood there watching him we both learned a little lesson. While it’s important to look ahead at the big picture, be careful of the little things along the way because ignoring them can really trip you up.

Once I was sure he was ok, I took that photo of the tiny pebble that caused him to go sprawling on the ground. He survived with no major injuries and hopped back on which of course made me proud. I took one more photo and then attempted to sink some shots with my other son. It was definitely an off day for me, but that’s ok because we had a good laugh which I think is much more important than showing off my skills. 😉

A lot of people have been asking me lately about my opinion of Shakeology and how much I like it. So let me just make this clear. I’m a total addict and think it’s the absolute best meal replacement/protein shake out there (and I’ve tried a lot of them). To illustrate my point, here’s a photo of my shoes. Notice the gaping hole. I’m not saying my addiction has made it so I can’t afford new shoes. You see, I hate to waste things and I hate buying things unless I absolutely have to. I had another pair of shoes that I owned for about 7 years. I loved them, but I finally gave them up when they were literally falling off my feet and I could no longer hide the fact that they were falling apart. Have I replaced them? Nope. The other shoes I have are just fine for now (although my black flats are starting to fall apart and the soles are wearing very thin). If I find myself absolutely needing new ones I will buy them.

Here’s another example of how much I hate spending money. I used to have horrible, no, excruciating pain in my arches due to them being quite high and having a job that required being on my feet on a concrete floor all day. It got so bad that I actually crawled around my house when I got home from work and it often brought me to tears. This went on for years. Did I go to the doctor? Nope. Not until my husband made me. Did I have insurance? Yep. I just didn’t want to shell out the co-pay. When I finally did go I found out that I had heel spurs and agreed to wear custom insoles. Fifty dollars. Worth it, but I still hated paying for them.

I’m not saying this behavior is normal or even healthy. I think I’m this way because I grew up in a wealthy home, getting basically everything I wanted…except for a nice, normal, happy childhood. I also watched my mother waste away a fortune trying to find happiness. In my own strange way I’m trying to balance things out and realize I’ve gone to the opposite extreme. Don’t worry, my kids have everything they need and they have plenty of toys, too. They are not deprived in any way.  They could even stand to give away more than a few things that they hardly ever play with. But when it comes to things for myself I am obsessed with spending as little as possible. I even have a habit of saving all the healthy food for them and eating cheap junk myself just to save money.

So back to Shakeology. When I first heard about it I was intrigued. I could see the benefits and knew it would be perfect for me as I work on getting down to my goal weight, being healthy and having more energy, but I couldn’t bring myself to spend the money on it. Over the next few months I just couldn’t stop thinking about it and finally gave in. I’ve been hooked ever since. As a coach I pay $3 a serving and to me it’s worth every penny. I’d pay twice that!

Now, knowing how I feel about spending money on myself for unnecessary things, do you really thing I’d be drinking Shakeology everyday if I didn’t absolutely love it? Of course not!! And like I said, my kids are lacking nothing. They get a shake split between them everyday, too, and not one of us has gotten sick since we started in October of last year. For me that means not having to debate whether or not I’m really sick enough to go see a doctor and spend that extra money, especially since I no longer have insurance. Believe me, those decisions can really stress me out and my husband, too. It drives him crazy the way I won’t spend money on myself. So having Shakeology in our lives has been nothing but a good thing. I hope I’ve made that very clear to anyone who wants to know if I like it. It’s not that I like it, I looooooove it.

If you want to see what the big deal is all about, hover your mouse over my picture there on the right and you’ll see a link for The Healthiest Meal of the Day. If you have any questions or would like to try it before ordering some for yourself feel free to comment or contact me on facebook or twitter.

It’s another beautiful morning! It doesn’t hurt that I’m feeling skinnier already. Day 2 of the 5-Day Inferno. I’m feeling great and ready to do this! Last night I ended up doing the workout, FIRE 55EZ (don’t let the name fool you, there’s nothing easy about it) and Stretch 10 pretty late, but it felt great. Love, love, love TurboFire!! I’ve done a LOT of exercise videos over the years and this is by far my favorite, with Chalene Johnson’s other programs, Turbo Jam and ChaLEAN Extreme, coming is as a close second. Yep, they’re tied. If you want to try TurboFire for yourself you can get it through my facebook fan page AND I’ll be your coach AND you get a free bonus workout by getting through a coach…AND you’ll pay less for shipping than if you order through the regular Beachbody website. Just sayin’.

8:30am – Breakfast, which consisted of 6oz strawberry yogurt (the plan calls for lowfat, but I used Yoplait Light which is nonfat), 3/4c. cubed canteloupe and 1tsp. honey (I also added two smallish strawberries, quartered, because they were left over from the kids’ breakfast of Chocolate Banana Shakeology and strawberries).

10:30am – I was pondering if I should drink my Shakeology which was the AM snack and then try to get some more sleep or sleep first and then drink it. I opted to wait on the Shakeology because I know how much energy it gives me and was concerned that I wouldn’t be able to fall asleep which has happened before. So I drank some water, about 20oz and went to bed.

2:30pm – Back up again and having my Chocolate Peanut Butter shake! Yumm! If one would consider this eating plan a “diet” then this feels like cheating.

5:15 – Started my workout. FIRE45, HIIT20 and Stretch 10. WOW!!! Drank almost 40oz water.

7:20pm – Had my second snack, celery with peanut butter (no raisins because I didn’t have any and I was going to use Craisins, but was fine with just the p.b.) I was so ready to eat. Those workouts really kicked my metabolism into gear!

8:15 – Dinner – ginger short grain brown rice, garlic sesame bok choy, grilled pineapple and grilled teriyaki wild salmon.

10:45pm – Was feeling hungry again so I had my final meal and it really hit the spot. This would’ve been lunch if I hadn’t taken that nap. My friend and I found these great whole wheat low-carb tortillas at Costco (and also saw them at Winco, but of course Costco had a much better price) when we were out shopping for this together. They have 12(!)g fiber and 8g protein and they’re only 80 calories. That was topped with 4 slices (4oz) turkey, 1/2 tomato, diced, 3 Romaine lettuce leaves, chopped, 1/4 large avocado, sliced and 1Tbs fat-free Italian dressing. I have no idea how in the world I wrapped that all up, but I did and it was tasty. The avocado made all the difference. To keep the rest of the avocado from turning completely brown by the next time I use I put the two halves back together with the pit still inside and wrapped it tightly in plastic wrap before putting it in the fridge. I was also very pleased with the paper bag method for ripening. When I woke up this afternoon all the avocadoes were still hard so I stuck one in a paper bag and closed it up. By the time I made the wrap it was perfect.

I’ll probably be going to bed soon and plan on drinking at least another 20oz water before I do. Still feeling great and looking forward to tomorrow!!

TurboFire 5-Day Inferno shopping list

Day 1

Day 3

Day 4

Forgiveness in Fred Meyer

I had the most interesting experience today in the most unexpected place. My younger son was invited to a birthday party happening today (and he gave me the invitation yesterday) so I decided to save on gas and just get the gift on the way to the party. We were running a bit behind (I blame facebook) and dropped him off first so he wouldn’t be late then headed to the nearest store that sells toys which happened to be Fred Meyer. After I found the gift I walked around a bit to kill some time and ended up in the garden section. As I was looking at all the interesting plants and flowers, thinking about life and my kids and what I was going to write about next, I suddenly found myself in the indoor plant section.

Out of the corner of my eye I spotted a small jade plant, the only one left on the shelf. I instantly felt nostalgic because when I was growing up in my grandparents’ house there was a jade plant sitting on the kitchen table in front of the window. I loved that table because my grandfather made it himself and it was strong and sturdy with lots of scratches and dents from years of use. It had character just like my grandfather. I loved the jade plant, well, just because. I remember my grandmother taking care of it and watering it. I guess I would consider it her plant. The photo to the right is of me standing next to the table. That’s not the jade plant there, but I remember it loving it, too.

If you haven’t read my other posts that go into the relationship I had with my grandmother you may be forming a picture in your mind of a sweet old lady caring for her plant and smiling at me as she lovingly poured water into the pot. Yeah, not so much. Sure, she loved the plant, but there was no tender bond between us. Because of that and all the things she did to me over the years I’ve struggled with feelings of hatred toward her. At some point I stopped actually hating her and those feelings were replaced with indifference. I forgave her on some level and found peace with it. There’s no way I could’ve let go of the hatred if I hadn’t. But today, after years and years of nothing particularly new in my view of her or how my childhood affected me, something very strange happened.

As I stood there looking at the jade plant I suddenly felt we had a connection, a bond between us. My grandmother, not the plant. Don’t get me wrong, she passed away years ago and my personal belief system and understanding of the Bible does not include people going straight to heaven or wherever and looking down or up at us, but that they are waiting, knowing nothing for now as if in a deep sleep. So I’m not saying it was some spiritual connection from beyond the grave. I just mean that I can finally see her as someone I have something in common with. Something that, if she were still alive, we could share and talk about. I am able for possibly the first time in my life to see her as a person completely separate from all the crap that happened between us.

It’s as if a veil was lifted and I can now clearly imagine her growing up, having hopes and dreams. She had friends and boyfriends. Things she liked and disliked. Things that made her laugh so hard she cried. She was a person, not a monster. She just wanted what the rest of us want, what I want…a happy life with a loving family and to feel like she had a purpose in the world. It wasn’t her fault that all that was taken away from her when she too became the victim of abuse. Sure, it would’ve been nice if she had dealt with it and found healing instead of trying to hide it and eventually take it out on me. But that didn’t happen. And that’s ok. I am who I am because of everything I’ve been through.

As I stood there I felt a strong wave of what I can only describe as pure love pass through me. I’m not wanting to sound like a crazy person here. If you’ve ever experienced it you know what I’m talking about. I felt forgiveness on a much deeper level than ever before and could actually imagine myself genuinely smiling at her and hugging her, not because I was being forced to like all those years growing up, but because I want to. I want to tell her I’m sorry, not like all the times I had to because if I didn’t I’d suffer the consequences, but for everything she went through that made her the way she was.

So there I was in the indoor plant section of Fred Meyer having some kind of major breakthrough and thinking, “Wow, I actually love my grandmother,” with people all around me having no idea what was going through my head and heart. I wasn’t planning on buying anything other than the gift for the party, but I just had to have one more thing…

…oh, and a pack of watermelon gum. 😉

This recipe originated as one of those “dump everything in a bowl and hope it turns out ok” experiments. I’ve found that ground turkey can seem a little “wet” even after cooking so adding quite a bit of bread crumbs and only dry ingredients other than the egg seemed like a good idea. Turns out is was. Great flavor and texture. This is my attempt at coming close to actual measurements.

1. I started with a package of 93/7 ground turkey (about 1 1/4 lbs).

2. Then I broke up 4 slices whole grain white bread and pulsed it in the blender to make crumbs. It totalled about 2 cups. I added the crumbs and 1 large egg to the turkey in a large bowl.

3. Next I added about 1 tsp kosher salt, 1/2 tsp black pepper, 1 tsp dried basil, 1-2 tsp Italian seasoning that included rosemary and sage (crushed to break up the rosemary), 1/4-1/2 tsp granulated garlic and 1 tsp dried minced onion.

4. You can’t make meatballs without getting your hands dirty so I mixed it all up with my hands then shaped the mixture into balls. This batch made 48 that were about 1 inch in diameter.

5. While I was shaping the meatballs I was heating a large skillet on medium. Just before adding them I poured in 1 Tbs extra virgin olive oil. Then I browned them by swirling the skillet every few minutes. During that time I cooked pasta according to the package directions.

6. Once the meatballs were cooked through I removed half to save for another meal and added Prego Heart Smart Sauce which has less sodium and let it simmer for a few minutes.

7. I added the pasta to the skillet and tossed to coat, then served it with grated parmesan cheese. Yummm!!