I am off today, and the first thing on my list of things to do is to go grocery shopping.  I am seriously deficient in the veggie department lately, and plan to fix that stat.  I spent this morning trying to clean some photos off of my desktop in the hopes to try to get it to work better.  I may have gotten sucked into a worm hole looking at all these pictures and by the time I finally post this, I am sure several of you are wondering if I am okay because it’s already nearing 12:30 in the afternoon!  It’s embarrassing how many photos I have on this thing.  But sadly, they go back to 2013, the last time I did a big photo purge and I can click on a folder from 10/1/16, then 10/1/15, then 10/1/14, and 10/1/13.

Photos from October 2013:

2013 Biz

That photo above was after my summer of Insanity, and I believe I was around 156 pounds in this picture.  My strength training was on fire and I was really getting into my grove having lost nearly 20 pounds since June of that year.  Sadly, six weeks later I had to take on a second job since Tony wasn’t able to work, and my exercise mojo went to hell in a hand basket.  I was working 16 hour days and there was just no time or energy to focus on myself anymore.

2013 tony

That picture of Tony was at my co-worker Janice’s wedding reception – J – can’t believe it’s been three years already!  It was a fun night and I was happy that he felt well enough to go out.

Photos from October 2014:tword 050

Tony's last outside picture

That picture of Tony was the last outdoor picture I took of him.  It was taken on October 24, 2014.  It still makes my head reel that six weeks later he would be gone. 

Photos from October 2015:

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I remember that day – it was super warm out in early October, and I had a tank top on underneath and five minutes into my walk I had to take it off.  I smiled when I did that because it was probably 68 degrees and I thought if Tony were with me, he’d be in a winter coat.

Photos from October 2016:

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Still putting one foot in front of the other.   Still trying to eat right, exercise and lose weight.   While so many things have changed over the years, those things have always been on my plate, and I have to stop talking the talking and walking the walk.  It’s kind of embarrassing being a Weight Watcher Ambassador when I see so many of the other women have success and inspire people.  Here are just a few that I follow on Instagram:

fullplateskinnywaist – These sisters Kyle and Kara are down respectively 68 and 110 pounds!

mamacupcakeww – Star is down 42 pounds, I love her food posts, her struggles from time to time, and just basically keeping it real.

thedailydoseofpepper – This link is Star’s blog – I love her recipe ideas that are full meals – like her chicken parmesan meatball sandwich she posted four days ago – and I follow her even though she is a Cubs fan Open-mouthed smile

trackingisthenewblack – I am new to her Instagram page but, um, I think she loves cheese as much as me!

So today I am also going to be meal planning, figure out a workout schedule as we end the month of October.  Seriously, where did this month go?!  Two months until 2017!!  So crazy.


I did clean out my fridge yesterday and was able to come up with a late breakfast/lunch.  When Jacob’s Mom was over last week to make some of his favorite foods, she left behind a cooked bone in chicken breast.  I had two tiny baby peppers, Cabot cheese (duh!) and I picked through a bag of baby spinach to pull out the good leaves, and I nearly always have some type of tortilla around – I had three remaining Mission extra thin corn tortillas, and about 6 strawberries.  Chicken tacos for 10 smart points.

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I was still plenty full from these tacos on my drive to work, but as I was walking into the Merchandise Mart, I could feel my blood sugar dropping fast.  Damn.  Luckily right next to my work is a Potbelly sandwich place – I had 10 minutes to spare before my shift started, so quickly ordered the sandwich (a skinny roast beef with hot peppers! – 10 smart points) and got to my pre-shift meeting.  Well, if anyone knows what it’s like to have low blood sugar, you know that you want that feeling to go away right away.  So I literally inhaled this sandwich in a matter of minutes.

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By the time the meeting ended and it was time to divide and conquer for our Iron Chef private party, my blood sugar felt fine and I was ready to go.  But one of the managers pulled me aside and asked politely “hey Biz, next time can you finish your food before the meeting?”  It never dawned on me to explain why I was eating during work – but once I told him, he was cool with it.  Damn diabetes! Smile with tongue out

Everyone was shocked that last night was my first Iron Chef private party.  Basically the party is separated into groups, and each group gets a Chopping Block Chef to plan out their menu.  Everyone got the same protein – cut up whole chicken on the bone and flank steak.  Each group had to make a dish using both proteins, and you could make any sides using the “pantry” of ingredients that were on the table.  However, if something was needed that wasn’t in the pantry, that was where I came in and would run back and forth from the kitchen to the party bringing the necessary ingredients to complete their dishes.  So I’d be walking around and one chef would yell “Biz – get a rice cooker and fill it with two cups of rice!”  “Biz, I need cilantro and red wine vinegar.”  “Biz, I need goat cheese!”  Before walking into work I only had 2,000 steps – by the end of the night I had 15,000!

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The only way to describe the night was controlled chaos.  It was loud, rambunctious and I enjoyed talking to the guests about grilling meat, about how to caramelize mushrooms vs. just steaming them, etc.   After everything is done cooking, each group put a “tasting plate” together for another Chopping Block chef to taste who wasn’t working the party to determine who the winner was.   Luckily there were several of us working to put the room back into shape – it probably took us a good 90 minutes to clean everything up, get the dishes to the dishwasher, and put everything away and mop.  The guests left at 9:00 a.m. and we left at 10:30.

Usually it takes me only about 50 minutes to drive home at that time of night because there isn’t much traffic.  Well, that is unless they decide to take I-90 from five lanes of traffic to one lane of traffic.   The spooky cat on the car in front of me was to hide the license plate number, but I literally sat on the expressway for sometimes minutes at a time without moving an inch.

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I didn’t walk into my house until 12:15 last night.  Boo!  And since I can’t come home and go straight to bed, I watched two more episodes of Grey’s Anatomy under my covers before finally shutting off the light at 1:30 a.m.  Um, so in addition to getting sucked into the worm hole of old photographs, I may or may not have slept in this morning as well. Open-mouthed smile

Tomorrow I am excited because I get to work at Lincoln Square for “Lincoln Scared.”  It’s a sidewalk open house in Lincoln Square and we are giving out candy, and having kid events in the downstairs kitchen.  I’ll be sure to post pics on Instagram tomorrow.  Then Sunday I am working a cupcake boot camp.  Our weather is supposed to be gorgeous – temps near 70, even on Halloween!  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to bundle Hannah up because it was freezing on Halloween.

Alright, time to chip off my to-do list.  Happy Friyay – make it a great day!