Monday, January 16, 2012

Welcome 2012!

I suppose it's time to start blogging again.  It keeps me focused and it's kind of fun!  I had a great 2011...I even did Rugged Maniac and completed two 5Ks!!  Then...(enter evil music)...I ate and drank myself through the month of December.  Why is this an annual tradition?  Oh well, no time to answer that one.  Tomorrow, hubby and I start our next round of Biggest Loser at our fitness club.  I promise to be better to myself and to my blog.  Good luck and love to everyone out there for a great year!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Holy Sweat Glands, Batman!

I said that I’d try new things this year and I’ve been slacking.  So, I finally got out of my boot camp mentality and tried something completely new to me.  I Googled yoga places in my area and found Bikram Hot Yoga.  Sounded interesting ~ what the heck!

It was a very different atmosphere.  At most traditional gyms the room is filled with chatter of daily life while waiting for the instructor to arrive.  At the yoga gym, the opposite is true.  You take your shoes off at the door and then find your spot in the room (shhh ~ very quietly) and place your mat, two towels and two water bottles nearby.  There were a handful of people already lying on their backs relaxing.

Next, I went to the bathroom to put my personal belongings into a locker.  Uh-oh…they only had cubbies.  I asked a lady what she does with her purse during the workout and she responded in a hushed Zenlike voice, “I put it in the cubby.  We are very trusting here.”  These words were obviously not soothing to me, because in the middle of class while I was supposed to be centered, all I could think was, “Someone better not be stealing my credit card!”  

I was completely surprised by how demanding this form of exercise was.  I’m not exactly sure what my expectations were, but I’m now a fan.  I will incorporate this into my workout regime once a week now.  90 minutes of Bikram Hot Yoga followed by 30 minutes of a spearmint Epsom salt bath ~ ahhh!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Extreme Pantry Makeover

When I first started “eating clean” there were many ingredients in the recipes that were not in my pantry.  Nuts, oils, whole wheat flours, raisins and so on.  But, what I’ve noticed over the last six months, is that once you have the staples, all you need to buy are the fresh ingredients as the fill-ins.

Once I discovered that I used the same staples again and again, I decided to give my pantry a makeover.  I bought these inexpensive glass containers to give me that "Martha" look.  Then, one of my great friends sent me these wonderful labels for Christmas.  They are chalkboard labels that are so easy to use ~ just peel and stick.  Once again, they came from an Etsy seller (my favorite to promote)…Bradens Grace.

They always say that once your home is in order, then your life is in order.  Well, I’m not the neatest person in the world, but I LOVE a clean kitchen.  So, to piggy-back on the “home in order” theory, when my pantry is in order, I’m in order!

Suggestion…buy in bulk…it’s cheaper, fresher and uses less plastic in packaging.

Monday, January 10, 2011

A Couple of Losers...

Mozziz "Coach Mo" DeWalt

Saturday, my hubby, Sam, and I went to our local health club to get started on their version of The Biggest Loser which will run over the next twelve weeks (this is round two for me.  24 lbs lost last time around).  It was an unexpected surprise when “Coach Mo” from Season 8 came and spoke to us for an hour…he was very motivational and will be visiting our group from time to time for continued inspiration.  At one point he was asked the question, “Do you get bored with the same old food choices…berries, chicken, etc.?”  I just loved his no-nonsense response of “No…we are the only species that eats for pleasure.  You are here to lose weight and you need to focus on that.”  I don’t know how many meetings in the past I’ve sat through where people bitch about not liking veggies or how can they possibly give up burgers and fries.  Ugh ~ I loved Coach Mo’s “no excuses” mantra and straight-forward view of health.

After this initial meeting, Sam looked a little overwhelmed but once we were organized, he seemed to be getting more excited.  From past experience I highly recommend ~ it is a fantastic tool for food journals, weight tracking, exercise logs and articles about health in general.  Also, I am about six months into a “clean eating” lifestyle so that is the “diet” that we will continue during this twelve-week journey.   

To get prepared for eating for the following week, Sam and I browsed through some recipes and then headed to Whole Foods to get stocked up!  I made several recipes yesterday, dividing the recipes into pre-measured portions.  Some went in the fridge, some in the freezer (all labeled for easy food journaling) and some in our tummies!  Two favorites this week:  Italian Shrimp Stew from January’s Clean Eating magazine.  Another good recipe was the Sweet Potato Oat Bars from The Eat Clean Diet, Recharged!

Wish us luck ~ but with weekly preparation of food and continued exercise, I think we will be a couple of successful “losers”!!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Seasoning My Tweeps!

My zesty onion avatar on Twitter is sporting a Santa Hat for December.  So, because I have to be home between 11 and 3 today (ugh!) to accept a delivery package, I'm bored!!  With this boredom, I have to decided to "season" some of my tweeps' avatars.  (disclaimer:  if one of you tweeps don't happen to celebrate Christmas, please don't be offended and just enjoy the sentiment!!).!/dermiepie!/CrabbyVegan!/GraciousPantry!/KooKoo4Culinary!/MegVegLibrarian!/ShitServersSay

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Buy Handmade!

Tis the season to spend, spend and spend a little more.  The gifts I remember most were those that were handmade.  I had one grandma that crocheted and quilted and another that sewed and knit.  Now, I crochet a little here and there, but with a busy schedule, well ~ Target is where a lot of my "thoughtful gift cards" come from!!

So, a few years ago, I stumbled across  It is a fantasatic sight of wonderfully, creative folks that have online shops set up with their artistic goodies.  For the truly creative and funky-minded, a nice living can be made.  For others, it's a great creative outlet that provides some spending money.  There are subgroups of the site as well ~ the Vegan Etsy Team, Military Brats, etc.  Also, I love browsing the sites where people use old items and repurpose them.  When I lived in O'Fallon, Illinois, there is an annual festival called the "Strange Folk Festival" (thank you Autumn Wiggins!).  It is an amazing group of eclectic folks (most of whom have Etsy shops).  One lady took old ties and repurposed them into purses ~ sooo cute!

Yes, I still buy my girls Wii games, Kindles and overpriced clothes for Christmas and birthdays; however, I try to buy a few things each holiday for friends and family that are homemade.  Not only do I enjoy the uniqueness of the gifts, but supporting an artist or fellow SAHM just feels right.  Here are some of this year's finds:

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Buddha Fist Bump!

So, I walked into Whole Foods this morning and I looked up and saw a weird yellow dreadlock looking fruit.  I motioned toward the produce gal and said, “What the hell is that??”…she giggled and said, “It’s a Buddha Hand Lemon”.  Huh???!!  Wow, it smelled so good.  I asked her how much and she reported, “$7.99”.  Hell, I spend more on flower arrangements and none have the smell that this thing had.  Also, I have crazy wallpaper in my dining room, so traditional is not my protocol.  I’ve already painted pumpkins green and blue to match my wallpaper.  How appropriate that I have this weird, yellow thing as my centerpiece.

The Whole Foods lady told me that this particular fruit didn’t have much interior flesh as you would find with a lime or lemon.  I asked if the exterior was still good for zest…and, of course, she agreed.  The smell is incredible.  Buy this as an alternative to a floral arrangement…very weird…very cool!!