Another whirlwind weekend is in the books.  What a crazy weather weekend we had in Chicagoland.  It was chilly on Friday, then Saturday it would be sunny and blue skies one second, then I’d look outside and it was snowing sideways like a blizzard, and we didn’t get out of the 30s at all.  Then yesterday it got up to 70 degrees – insane!  But that’s spring in Chicago for you.  Today’s high will be in the 30s again, and then maybe snow again on Thursday.  At least we know that the snow days will be fewer and farther between now that we are into April.

Party Pizza Friday went great at my neighbors.  Although only one of their kids was there, the other three were out and about with friends (well and the oldest one in college!) but I brought plenty of dough for them to keep and they recreated pizza night on Saturday night when they were all there.  To give you an idea of how long its been since we have connected – um, one of their twins was only 3 1/2 in the picture on the left, and now he and his sister are 9!

PicMonkey Collage - charlie

I ended up making a cheese deep dish pizza and a sausage and pepperoni deep dish and baked them at my house and took them over already cooked.  I brought along my Baking Steel for the thin crust pizza to heat up in their oven.  One child was getting picked up and we chatted with the Mom for a while, so I ended up popping the deep dish out of the cake pan and putting it on parchment paper and reheating it on the Baking Steel.  Um, that was a happy accident, because while I love the crust on the Baking Steel with the thin crust, I never thought I could do that with a deep dish.  Duh.  Once it starts to cool I can literally pick it out of the cake pan with my hands.

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Shelley, you will be happy to know that I did the Snapchat pics on the kids, and not me.   For the adults, I made my now famous by Weight Watchers spinach and cheese pizza with walnut balsamic glaze.   They both gave it two great big thumbs up.  I have to say that pizza is on the top 3 of my favorites.   We have already promised not to let too much time go by before hanging out again, and I couldn’t be happier.  Life is too short not to get along with your neighbors.  Tony always wished we had a house where you couldn’t even see a next door neighbor, and even with only having six houses on our block, that was five too many neighbors for him. Smile with tongue out

I didn’t end up going to the grocery store until yesterday, so was happy with the food I was able to put together with what I had on hand.  All last week I only bought ground sirloin, shrimp and cut fruit!

PicMonkey Collage - eats

  1. Sunday night I made Damn Delicious’s pork pot stickers.   I am going to do a recipe blog post tomorrow with my variations to her recipe to make it more WW friendly, and I did a great job and ended up bringing it down to 1 sp per pot sticker!  I greatly reduced the oil, reduced the pork by half and upped the veggies.  With 1/2 cup of fried rice and canned green beans, that plate was only 9 smart points.
  2. I lucked out and found deli Italian beef in my freezer.  I had two lone Thomas light english muffins in the freezer as well, and an open faced cheezy beef was born.   English muffin (3), 3 ounces of beef (2) which I sautéed with chopped red cabbage (0) and topped with one ounce of 50% reduced fat Cabot cheese (2) and made three ounces of sweet pototo fries on the side (2).   A delicious and filling 9 smart point lunch – oh, and I drizzled the sammie with Cajun seasoning to kick it up a notch.
  3. Saturday night I figured I’d give my body a break from beef and made my version of Skinny Taste’s bang bang shrimp.   The only difference I made was I subbed in Chobani yogurt for the mayo for the sauce because mayo makes me want to throw up in my mouth a bit.   That dinner ended up being 11 smart points.
  4. Um, game changer here guys.  CANDIED TURKEY BACON.  I buy my uncured turkey bacon at Sam’s Club.   It’s 1 sp per slice.  1 teaspoon of brown sugar is only 15 calories or 1 sp.  Turns out 1/2 a teaspoon of brown sugar is 0 points, and really that’s all you need to kick this bacon up.  Cook for 2-3 minutes on one side, drizzle the top with the brown sugar, flip and cook another 2-3 minutes.  Be careful not to walk away, because the brown sugar can burn if you aren’t careful.  Completely addicting and Jacob gave this breakfast two thumbs up.  Who doesn’t like a breakfast sammie?  And that whole plate was only 7 smart points.
  5. I had some leftover chicken noodle soup in the fridge that either needed to be used up.  I couldn’t refreeze it because I had already used frozen chicken in the soup the first time around.  I ended up adding 1/2 a cup of Hannah’s seasoned noodles from dinner #3, added the remaining spinach that was in the fridge, some sriracha sauce, and a spicy 5 smart point soup was born.
  6. Since it was so crappy outside on Saturday, I literally sat on my comfy couch for HOURS.  Both Hannah and Jacob were working, it was just me and the dogs, and I meal planned, watched FoodTV and read Andie’s new cookbook, which I already have a couple of her recipes on tap for this week:  Chicken Pad Thai for one of my lunches and grilled chicken souvlaki.
  7. Another delicious breakfast on Sunday – more candied turkey bacon!  And the last of our Easter hard boiled eggs with 3 ounces of red potatoes pan fried in 1/2 teaspoon of coconut oil.  8 smart points.

I do have a recipe to share with you today though.  On Friday it was still a bit chilly, and I decided to see if there was anything I could make into a soup.  Truth be told, any time of year is soup weather to me.  And unlike Tony, I do consider soup to be a meal.   One of the first meals I made him was homemade chicken noodle soup with homemade artisan bread and herbed butter.  He licked his bowl clean!  I went to clean up the kitchen, came back into the living room and he was like “what the hell is for dinner!”  After that if I made soup, I made sure there was a steak or pork chop on the side.

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Chili Mac Soup
Chili mac in soup form!

After my Saturday laziness, I more than made up for it yesterday.  I deep cleaned the kitchen, washed, dried AND put away my clothes, walked a full hour outside in 70 degree weather, did a lot of meal prep for the week by getting my grill going.  At 5:00 last night I was grilling in a tank top.  Love.

PicMonkey Collage - signs of summer

The dogs LOVED being outside, and were worn out after about 20 minutes of running outside.  That look on Rummy’s face is priceless!  And Mom, I blame the wind for the bangs being in my eyes.  My store had turkey wings for $1.50 each and bone-in chicken breasts for $1.69 a pound.  I’ll use the chicken breasts for a couple of my lunches later in the week, and Jacob will eat the rest.

So we finally have a WI after a month!  And what a month it’s been!  First month being off work, spending 11 days in Austin, trying not to eat in between meals now that I am home, which is proving to be difficult.  Mix in a couple nights of wine when I was out, oh, and a few delicious burgers during my birthday week.  When we last checked, my weight was 166.1, down from 177.9 on January 15.

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So I am up 1.9 pounds for the month.  But in all honesty, that number could have been much higher.  I’ve done a lot of mindless late night eating, even a couple binges because someone thought it was a good idea to buy 75% off Easter candy and keep some of it her room and help herself to it before bedtime every.single.night for days.  Gah.

But, I have to say that I’ve been doing some soul searching on why I do that -it is such self-sabotage!  Much like in Andie’s book , she couldn’t control the addiction that food had on her until she figured out the reason why.   I’ve been doing it for years – check out this post for 2011!

But guess what?  I think I have it figured out.  And this weekend I felt, well, awakened!  

You’ll just have to tune in tomorrow to find out my new discovery about myself.  It was staring me in the face for years, but I never realized it.  It feels good to be awake!

Make it a great day!