I just want to take a second and thank everyone for their comments on yesterday’s blog post, as well as text messages, instant message on Facebook and comments on Instagram – I have the best virtual support group anyone could ever have! It means more to me than you’ll ever know, but just wanted to say . . . thank you! It’s weird how the emotional baggage can weigh you down more than the extra pounds on your body, no?
I’ve had several window replacement companies come by the house the last two days, hence the delay in getting today’s blog post up. Yesterday one guy was here for TWO HOURS talking about the honeycomb construction of this windows, yadayadayada. And this is just to replace 5 windows in my house. The funny thing is that Tony was an awesome salesman. He taught me so many “tricks of the trade” so to speak, so when this guy was talking to me, I know he was just doing his schpeal to get me to go with his company. He pulled up a chart on his iPad and showed me all the fellow (insert company name here) neighbors I have that have used their company within a 5 mile radius of me. And wouldn’t I be in good company if I just went along with my neighbors and used the same company? But it got weird when he asked for my email address to send the quote to. I gave him “firstname.lastname@example.org” (email me anytime – love getting mail!) and he asked what I did for a living. I didn’t tell him I was “self” employed, but just told him I recipe developed, and that I was diabetic. He told me his brother was diabetic, but he thought it was weird because his brother was never overweight in his whole life.
I then told him that would be the same as someone who has lung cancer, but has never smoked. He told me it was his belief that if you “willed” your body enough, that it could cure cancer, and that if I just thought long and hard about it, I could will my pancreas to start producing insulin again and stop taking insulin. Gah. Not only that – his quote for 5 windows? $6,900! And that was after some mysterious 28% discount and he didn’t want to part with his sheet that had the breakdown on the cost for each window, but would “touch it up” and email it to me later. No thanks. Oh, and the wait time on the windows? 9-12 weeks before installation!
This morning though, I had the owner of a local company come out and give me a quote. Same double hung windows, same UV protection, same everything as the other windows, and he is going to include all the trim work to match my existing new windows in the front of the house, repair any rotten wood frames in the front room windows that weren’t replaced last fall (they suffered water damage to from the leaky roof) and installation will be 3-4 weeks. Total cost with a 20 year warranty on everything? $2800. Quite a difference, no?!
I had so much caulk on my bedroom window because Tony was always so cold, and was convinced there was a draft, that when I took all the caulk off, there is almost nothing left holding the window in place. I now have nails holding the window in, and when this guy came in today, he completely taped it up so no rain would get in. Nice! This will also most likely be my only home improvement project this year, but I’ll be safe knowing all my windows will be more energy efficient.
I’ve been enjoying reading Andie’s new cookbook. And by reading, that’s exactly how you’ll read it too – each section of the book has anecdotes, stories on why certain recipes remind her of a point in her life. It’s the best of both worlds – mini memoir and cookbook!
One of the first recipes that I flagged first was her peanut butter granola parfait. You guys all know how I love my parfaits! But the downside of granola is that it is so calorie/smart point heavy, and sometimes I feel I can get much more food for the buck if I just skipped the granola all together. But then I quickly realized, that’s one of the best parts of the WW program, you can incorporate your favorite foods into your plan and still be on plan.
I did tweak her recipe a bit. I belong to a private Facebook group for her book and one of the members graciously figured out the WW points for every.single.recipe in her new cookbook. Unreal. I have an email to the woman who did that to see if I can share it with you guys. In any event, the WW points for Andie’s peanut butter granola is 7 WW points for a heaping 1/4 cup – or 1.25 ounces. Which isn’t a lot of granola for that amount of points. But, I remembered I had PB2 in my pantry, and thought I’d give that a try. Guys – it worked! I also ended up adding 2 tablespoons of sugar free pancake syrup to sweeten it up a bit. And I never thought I’d have granola read in 15 minutes, but this worked!
This breakfast parfait comes in at 8 points. One cup Chobani yogurt (3), banana (0) 1/2 cup homemade strawberry sauce (1), and one serving of the PB granola (4). This was delicious – the yogurt and strawberry sauce were tangy, the banana gave this just enough sweetness for me to not be overly sweet, and then the crunchy granola on top? Perf. And this kept me full for hours.
My store had a bag of baby peppers on sale this week – I am a sucker for tiny food! I went on Pinterest to get some ideas, and I stumbled upon Kevin of Closet Cooking’s mini pepper nachos. Um, genius. I, of course, had to switch it up with what I had on hand. I cut 6 pepper in half. I cooked down 3 ounces of chicken breast (2) with 1/4 cup corn (2) and 1/2 cup of Goya brand fiesta baked beans (4) and 2 tablespoons of Taco bell hot sauce (0). I divided that mixture in the pepper halves, then sprinkled with 1 ounce of 50% reduced fat Cabot cheese over the top, then broiled it. Holy yum – best 10 point lunch I’ve had in a long time. The spiciness in the baked beans was perfect. Now, I like a crunchy bell pepper, so I liked the contrast to the hot filling, but you could always pre-cook the peppers if you wanted to. I grilled up some of my baja fresh salsa (first of the season!) and had that for dipping.
My store also had ham off the bone on sale for $1.99 a pound. Um, yes please! So fricken good. I hadn’t made ham breakfast cups in a while, so decided to throw some together for breakfast yesterday with what I had on hand.
- 3 ounces ham off the bone (each slice of my deli ham was 1 ounce each)
- 1 large egg
- 3 tablespoons egg white
- 3 tablespoons unsweetened almond milk
- 1 ounce leftover cooked potato
- 1/2 cup chopped baby spinach
- 1/2 ounce 50% reduced fat Cabot cheese
Heat oven to 425. Place each piece of ham in a muffin pan and press down – oh, be sure to spray your muffin tin! Mix together the egg, egg white, almond milk and any seasoning you want. I did a pinch of Cajun seasoning and some dried parsley, salt and pepper. Divide the potatoes between the three muffin cups, divide the baby spinach, the pour the egg mixture between the cups and sprinkle with the cheese. Bake for 12-15 minutes. Best part?
The best part is that all three cups are only 8 points. And I actually only ate two before being interrupted by the TWO HOUR WINDOW SALESMAN and that kept me full for a long time. #winning!
I also made a batch of Gina from Skinny Taste’s broccoli potato cheese soup. So simple, hearty and delicious. The only changes I made was to up the carrots and celery in her recipe – I added 6 carrots and 6 celery sticks to the soup, and used unsweetened almond milk in place of skim milk, so that each 2 cup serving is 7 smart points. Sadly, it’s been overcast, rainy and in the low 40s the last couple days, so this soup is really comforting – I’ll probably have it again for lunch today.
I haven’t talked about these corn tortillas in a while, but Mission makes an extra thin corn tortilla that is delicious. It’s still 4 points for 3 tortillas, but because they are so thin, with just a little bit of oil, they pan fry up really crisp. I sauteed 2 ounces of ground sirloin, with 1/2 a red pepper. I divided that mixture between three tortillas, added 1 ounce 50% reduced fat cheese (I am almost out!) and pan fried them in 1 tsp. of oil. The rest of my plate is zero points – carrot chips dipped into my homemade salsa, and strawberries and grapes for dessert.
And after dinner I realized I still had 5 points left to “spend.” I decided to make a no ice cream banana split. I sliced up one small banana and two large strawberries. Stacked the bananas on top of the strawberries, then drizzled 1 tablespoon Smuckers sugar free caramel sauce (1) over the top and 1/2 tablespoon Hershey’s chocolate syrup (1) and 1.5 tablespoons of chopped pecans (2). Holy balls – for 4 points this was an amazing dessert. It would be a nice dessert for company too – just plate up a bunch and pass them around. Salty, sweet, crunchy – yum!
Alright, it seems like I’ve been really busy this morning, but I haven’t really gotten a whole lot done! Planning on doing an HIIT workout on the treadmill today. For strength I have calves and legs. I also plan on doing a yoga video on my Exercise on Demand for stretching.
We made it to Wednesday! Hope everyone is having a great week. I decided I wanted to share the love and offer up a copy of Andie’s cookbook. Just leave a comment below – could be just a one word answer like the state you live in, or your favorite food (pizza!). I’ll pick a random winner on Friday. Good luck – you will love this cookbook.
Make it a great day!