Awaiting April

Yes, I honestly can not wait until April! I am craving warm running weather! I’m pretty darn tired of these blizzards whirling into the area every few days! But besides the month of April, Barry’s sister, Katie, is also awaiting a little April. Zak and Katie have decided to name their future baby girl April! I love it!

With the help of her mom, mother-in-law, and best friend, I attended a lovely surprise baby shower at the mother-in-law’s house. Ever since I found out about Katie’s pregnancy, I’ve been shopping for baby things! I have a weakness for baby things!

While her mom and mother-in-law handled the food and snacks, I worked on a few surprises of my own. Katie had been posting all these things that she wanted for the baby. Needless to say, I gave in! The first thing I tracked down was a onsie that said “Lock Up Your Sons, My Daddy Has Guns.” I found it in both long and short sleeved. And, of course, being the Eagle’s fans that we are, I had to get her Eagle’s onsies! Oh, and LOTS of diapers!

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I was really pleased with her reactions to the gifts! One of my favorite reactions of the day was to the cupcake cake I made her. She went me a Pintrest link, knowing I love to bake, and mention how much she would love it with butterflies! Well, there ya go! The cupcakes were a huge hit and I could not have asked for a better reaction from Katie!

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Katie’s mother-in-law, also got a cake! Very cute!

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I was introduced to an odd combination of cream cheese spread. I have never been a particular fan of any type of olive but Barry’s mom combined cream cheese and chopped green olives and wow! I couldn’t get enough of the stuff! In fact, I ran to the store to get fat free cream cheese so I could make my own! For every 1/4 cup of cream cheese, I chopped 10 green olives! Yum!

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Some highlights of April and Katie’s day were the baby bath with jet stream! And the boppie that vibrates!

By far, the best part of the day was Nanny! One of Katie’s aunts drove Nanny down to the party. Nanny is Katie’s most favorite person in the entire world! Katie had a surprise for Nanny, too! One of Katie’s friend’s mother is a knitter/crocheter and made baby April a bunch of owl hats. So that Nanny and April had something to share, Katie had one made for Nanny since she began chemo again.

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Congrats, Zak and Katie! I can’t wait to meet Baby April!

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Merry Christmas, Darlings!

Merry Christmas!! I hope you all had a wonderful day! I am so excited to celebrate our first Christmas together. Yes, this is Barry and my first Christmas together, but I am referring to our first Christmas together… Yes… YOU!

Last night, I attended two celebrations. I really lucked out with not having to work. I first drove to Frank’s nephews house. How cute are the boys?! Cal and Anthony were preparing a four-course meal of The 7 Fishes! Not to mention, Cal baked a bunch of favorites, like her famous Angel Food Cake, pignoli cookies, and cocoa pistachio sables!

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Unfortunately, I was not able to stay and celebrate dinner, as I was expected at my grandmother’s house. I was so so excited to see the family, but pathetically excited to eat some kielbasa! Every year, we had three main dishes in the Higgins house: kielbasa and sauerkraut, roast beef, and meatballs! I’m surprised I didn’t turn into a piece of kielbasa! Haha!

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I had a couple favorite moments from last night. The first was a mommom combo. I first handed grandma a bottle of Spumanti from Barry and me. She loves this stuff! This is the drink she got completely buzzed off of at my graduation party. She was so excited she started kicking her feet, yelling, “My drink! Oh my drink! Oh I love this stuff!” (Keep in mind that this is a 79 year old woman with both knee and hip replacements, kicking her feet in joy… PRICELESS). The second was when grandmom opened an ornament I made for her. She immediately pulled it out of the box and kissed the picture of my grandfather that was in the ornament.

Another, came at my Aunt Linda’s House where cousin Eddie proposed to his girlfriend, Cindy! My Aunt was telling Cindy about Eddie’s First Christmas ornament, and when Eddie went to show her it… He showed her an ornament of a bride and groom on a motorcycle and tied around the couple was a ring. “So what do you say, babe? Will you marry me?” She was speechless. “Uh, I kind of need an answer. so I know what to do here…” We all laughed, she held out her hand and said, “Yes.”

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WP_005128Aunt Linda was really excited about the gift she made me.. In all honesty, I normally would have had some serious anxiety with this gift, but I was so well-thought-out, I couldn’t help but love it! Its the Nurse’s Survival Guide, packed with goodies and a paper included that stated the following:

Nurse’s Survival Kit

Lifesavers– A reminder of the times your are a real lifesaver. Starburst– For that extra burst of energy. Mints– A reminder that your compassion is worth a mint to your patients. Kisses– because you deserve many. Tissues– To dry tears, yours or someone else’s. Bandaids– To help with all the “little stuff.” Gum– To help your through the sticky situations. Paper clip– To help hold things together. Tea bags– Sit back and relax after a hard day at work. Taffys– To help you lick the problems you face. Jolly Ranchers– To remind you to laugh when you feel like crying. Tootsie Rolls– To help complaints “roll” off you back. Rubber Bands– For when you need to stretch beyond you limits. Battery– To keep you going and going and going. Candle– For when you feel completely burned out. Snickers– Because laughter is the best medicine. Button– Because you may need to button your lip. Marbles– To replace the ones you will lose.

Everyone asked about Barry, but he had to work. He came over at 6am Christmas morning and we began the holiday early.

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After opening presents with mom, Frank, Barry and my brothers, I headed over to dads with the pup.WP_005051

WP_005046We had a great morning. Money was a bit tight this year so we decided not the get a tree. Instead, we took a ceramic tree out of storage. My grandmother used to make ceramics and this one is one of my favorites! She even put a circuit in the base for a light bulb! It was a great substitution! Yay, for talented mommoms!

Who needs the avengers when youve got the Bundos??

Who needs the avengers when you’ve got the Bundos??

I thought it was pretty humorous that I got dad and Barry Captain America and Iron Man t-shirts, respectively, and my parents got me a Supergirl shirt!

Following a nice morning of family and gift exchanges, dad and I went to my uncle’s house. Before we headed over a prepared a few desserts. One of my cousins was on a low carb diet, so I made some dessert cups using Quest Bars. I cut a Lemon Creme Pie into 8 pieces, and and Apple Pie bar and a Double Chocolate Chunk bar into 4s.

Quest Cups

  • Quest bar of your liking
  • mini muffin tin
  • filling of choice

Preheat oven to 350 F. Cut the Quest bars into the desired about of pieces. Space on a plate and microwave for about 8 seconds. Using dry hands, roll each piece into a ball. Flip over a mini muffin tin and spray the bottom of the pan with non-stick cooking spray. Flatten each ball into a disk and form over the coated muffin tin. Bake for 5 minutes and remove from oven. Once cooled, fill the Quest cups with whatever filling you desire.

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I filled the Lemon cups with the left over fig and walnut filling from my Sicilian Crescents. I chopped up half a small fuji apple and mixed it with a packet of Splenda and apple pie spice. I, then placed the apple mix in the microwave for 30 seconds and filled the Apple Pie Quest cup. Lastly, I placed the Double Chocolate Chip quarters in the bottom of the mini muffin tin and baked for 5 minutes, as well. Upon removing the bar, I found 4 perfectly round Double Chocolate Chunk cookies, that RJ loved! Dessert would not be dessert with some fat free Cool Whip to top it off!

Aunt Carol and I took over the kitchen, preparing ravioli, Lightened Gnocchi, salad, gravy, sausage, and meatballs.

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Great minds must think alike. Barry and I, both bought each other robes for Christmas. My parents got Barry a pair of slippers, and us matching pj pants. Barry’s parents got me a new pair of slippers, and us matching pj pants!

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Some of my favorite gifts, this year, included the ornaments I made my family, the Cutco knife Frank gave me, Dad’s laptop and Mom’s pendant, the onsies dad got me, my Ninja (thanks Barry), and the collage I made Barry’s sister.

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I hope you all had a wonderful holiday!

It’s Bacon… Brunch!

Today’s brunch features yesterday’s chicken soup, and a recipe I found on Wholefoods.com, that I immediately knew I needed to make!

I woke up nice and early to get the soup back on the stove and  and the bread in the oven, only to find Frank had used the last of the grated Parm! He was a good sport, though, and quickly ran out to the store to pick some up.

Bacon Bread

altered from Wholefoods

makes 24 thin slices

  • 8 slices turkey bacon, choppedWP_004611
  • 1 3/4 cup organic 100% whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 cup finely chopped baby kale
  • 1/2 cup reduced fat grated Parmesean cheese
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8-1/4 tsp ground thyme
  • 1/3 cup flax milk
  • 2 Tbsp unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup liquid egg substitute

Preheat oven to 425°F. Spray a 9-x5-inch loaf pan, heavily, with non stick cooking spray; set aside. Cook chopped bacon in a skillet over medium-high heat until just crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer bacon to a medium bowl, and add flour, greens, cheese, baking powder, salt, pepper, and thyme. In a large bowl, whisk together milk, oil, applesauce, and eggs. Add flour mixture and fold together just until combined. Transfer to prepared pan and bake until cooked through, 30 to 35 minutes.

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Set aside to cool and settle until warm. Flip the loaf from the pan and carefully slice.

Nutrition: (per slice, 1/24 recipe)

Calories: 54, Fat: 1.3g, Sat. Fat: 0.3g, Cholesterol: 4.6mg, Sodium: 140.2mg, Carbs: 7.7g, Fiber: 0.8g, Sugar: 0.2g, Protein: 2.8g

The soup and bread combo was a hit and almost everyone had seconds! I was lucky to have both my little brothers over for brunch, today, and they went to town on the bread. Wholefoods recommended serving the tea bread with fig jam, I figured the apple butter in the refrigerator would suffice.

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The next time, I’d like to try a little liquid smoke or something to add a little flavor to the turkey bacon…

Following brunch, dad and I squeezed in a catch before the Eagles/Redskins game! Go EAGLES!!! We won!

Around dinner time, I got smacked with a hanckering! Ever since dad and I split “The Julian” from Fresh Thymes, I’ve been thinking about sauerkraut. And with Frank making black beans and rice the other night, I wanted beans. I would up creating an odd quesadilla that hit the spot!

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I threw fat free refried beans, sauerkraut, fat free shredded cheddar cheese, and salsa on a sun-dried tomato wrap! I topped it with chili powder and hot sauce!

First’s Together

Talk about nervous eating!

So the food news is that I think u figured out why I get hungry at night. The bad news is that I have another mystery to figure out.

A girlfriend of mine suggested that I’m hungry at night because I work shift work. Since most of my shifts are at night, it could be throwing my body’s rhythm off.

Totally valid.

But I realized last night that on the days I sleep late, I eat more. One would think I’d eat less because I’m awake less hours, right?

Any ideas?

Moving on…

Yesterday, I experienced a few firsts:

  • Seafood in breakfast
  • Tony Luke’s
  • Hockey game

I slept in yesterday until a phone call woke me around 1130 am. I was still pretty hurt by the happenings with my mom from the night before and I think I slept to cope. Barry came over after his dentist appointment and I made brunch.

WP_004092Yesterday was National Fried Scallop Day. I wasn’t about to go hog wild with scallops but I remembered I had a small convenient frozen package of small bay scallops. After browning them in a skillet, I  combined it with crumbled turkey bacon and fat free cheese to create omelets for Barry and myself, while he made us some coffee.

While eating, I took the opportunity to apologize for how hard-headed I had been the night before. I  was terrible to him. I wouldn’t look at him or talk to him. He didn’t do anything wrong, I was just too caught up in my own head. In fact, Barry, and my girlfriend for high school, Maggie, really tried to make my day special. Barry had flowers delivered to the house, pink lilies, of course, and they were beautiful. They wound up being the center-piece on the table of my birthday dinner. And Maggie surprised the heck out of me! I had no clue she was coming over! To top it off, she got us tickets to see Demi Lovato in March!

WP_004121After a few odd and ends, Barry and I drove to Philly. We had time to kill and decided to grab dinner before heading to our destination. I suggested Tony Luke’s on Oregon Ave. Neither one of us had eaten there, but its a pretty popular joint. Its got a pretty decent-sized menu for a joint of its size. A few things caught our eye on the menu, but I begged Barry to get the Italian. I forgot to tell them no cheese, but delicious nonetheless, delicious. The Italian is a pork sandwich with spinach or broccoli rabe and provolone cheese. I, of course, opted for the rabe and asked for red peppers. While we were waiting for our sandwich, I grabbed hot sauce, sliced pickles, and cherry peppers for snacking! I love peppers, if you couldn’t figure that out by how often I eat them 🙂

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One of my favorite things at Pat’s and Geno’s is putting cherry peppers on my steaks, so I was rather pleased to see that Tony Luke’s had them. I must have been pretty hungry, because I had eaten three cherry peppers, straight up. And they were good! Barry and I shared the Italian and we can not wait to go back!

With full stomachs and firey mouths from the hot sauce and peppers, we headed off to our destination: The Wells Fargo Center!

Barry is a huge Flyers fan. I, on the other hand, barely know anything about hockey, but love sports! Barry took me to my first hockey game and I had an absolute blast! I was learning the lingo, yelling at the officials, and screaming, “Knock’em out!” I had an absolutely wonderful time at the game and I can’t wait to go back! We discussed this concept of returning to the stadium and I voted that we make a tradition of it! Tony Luke’s for dinner and then the hockey game! What a great birthday present and nice way to spend our 5 month anniversary!

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WP_004097“Look! They have a Sammy stand, hun!” I turned to see a concession stand called Melissa’s Farm to Fan, offering products like trail mix, Nutrigrain bars, black bean burgers, and apples. I had never seen that before in a sports complex, but I’m glad to see that the center is offering healthier alternatives.

I thought it was really neat how the soft pretzels were shaped, too! These are one of Barry’s weaknesses. My weakness? FroYo! Yes, froyo at a hockey game! I find it funny that I am always cold, I bought a cup of coffee, and I am bundled up, chowing down on a bowl of delicious frozen yogurt! As Barry and I circled the complex, smelling the wings and hot dogs in the air, I tried to figure out if ice cream was what I wanted, or if froyo was the way to go.  After some debating, I went with the frozen yogurt, because I love topping bars!!!!  I got a small squirt of all 6 flavors (chocolate, coffee, apple sorbet, salted caramel, vanilla, and cake batter),  from Gozen Yogurt, and topped  the bowl with cookie dough pieces, strawberries, and some mint chip pieces. Oh yeah!

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While I allowed Barry about 3 bites of this bowl, I watched the couple in front of us attack this bad boy! It looked spectacular! I could not believe how huge it was, but they tore it up!

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I also came to the conclusion that Phillies and Eagle’s fans go to Pat’s and Geno’s, while Flyer’s fans head to Tony Luke’s. The line of bright orange pretty much helped me come to this conclusion.

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After the game, I came home to finalize all of my paperwork for my job interview. While I was doing so, I had some serious nervous energy and ate. But the beauty of it was that I did not freak out and I did not purge. My one focus was on nailing my interview.

Ahoy, Foodies!

Today is National Butterscotch Pudding Day, so lets begin our Thursday with a little, shall we Mateys?

Sammy, what’s wrong with you? Why are you talking like that? Oh, because its also National Talk Like A Pirate Day. To avoid the scurvy, let add a little Vitamin C into our meals, today, too!

WP_003957Cinnabon Protein Bowl

  • 2 scoops cookies n cream protein (1 and 1 of chocolate and vanilla will do)
  • 1/2 Tbsp butter buds
  • 1/2 Tbsp sugar free fat free butterscotch pudding
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp chopped pecans
  • 1 tsp xanthum
  • water
  • ice

WP_003956My vitamin C came in the form of spinach, if you couldn’t tell by the green colored bowl. Oh, and I topped it with ground flax! I experimented with making this into a smoothie by substituting 1/4 cup of Greek yogurt for the vanilla shake mix and 1 tsp cocoa powder. I prefer the shake version better, but not bed.

Frank’s Ascorbic Acid was made with a ton of cantaloupe and half a banana.

I grabbed a shower, hoping that it would get me out of this lazy funk I’ve been. I felt like I was falling asleep in the shower, but after a good facial scrub, smoothie bowl, and a cup of caramel coffee, I felt a little more like myself. I threw on my sneakers and iPod and took a 2 mile walk. My fitness goal was not to go full on running, but rather work on form. It so easy to lean forward when power walking. Instead, I focused on keeping my shoulders back, and my abdominals tight. After a few blocks, you can really feel the muscles on your stomach, obliques, and shoulder muscles!

I felt even better coming home to a bottle of water and having enjoyed a brisk walk on a beautiful day!

WP_003958I made sure to set aside a solid hour and a half to send our resumes! But after that, I actually felt hungry! I had discussed the possibility of making seafood for dinner, with my dad, and he had put in the idea of a tuna melt. Simple! I mixed together a rather delicious tuna salad!

  • 1 can solid white albacore
  • 2 Tbsp light mayo
  • 1 oz roasted red pepper, chopped
  • 3 large black olives, chopped
  • 1 scallion, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp reduced fat grated Parmesean
  • black pepper, taste

I ate mine just microwaved, and I made Frank a tuna melt! Not only was it tasty, but its colorful! Spectacular!

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After Frank and I ran a few errands, and a little tidying up was done, I got a hold of mom to see what her plans were for the night. I’m really in the mood for Saladworks, I said. “Do you want a turkey sandwich?” No, because then I’ll wind up eating it. “Well, I’m going to get one anyway. You can just eat the turkey.”

Thanks, mom! But it worked out really well! I ate half a Luna Carrot Cake bar to hold me over until dinner, and when it was time, I offered to pick it up. I power walked another half mile, and was pretty stoked that I ran the last block uphill! I ordered a turkey sandwich with extras pickles and onions, American cheese, lettuce, on rye bread, with sweet peppers on the side. Mom typically orders extra mayo. No way, woman! You can add your own mayo!

I took this….

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And transformed it into this….

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A delicious salad over spinach! And Beauty got the treat of rye bread and a slice of cheese.

WP_003967This was so good, that I made another small salad! Every time mom and I get a hoagie from Degnar’s Deli, we get into onion mode. They have the best onions! They are perfectly sliced, crisp, strong and mom and I always wind up slicing onions as a snack. To the second salad, went a whole cucumber, two sweetened gerkins, and a bunch of onion, all topped with salsa! Sooooo good! I thought the combination of pickles in my salad was odd until dad reminded me that they technically are the same thing… duh, Sammy.

This meal put me in quite a veggie mood, and I snacked on celery and sugar snap peas with salsa until mom and I met up with dad and Barry for the Eagles/Chiefs game.

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I stuck with my pirate theme and got Captain and Diet Pepsi. Barry got a little intoxicated! But on the bright side, I got to drive his car. (It’s a stick shift, and hes been teaching me.) But I drove home and didn’t stall! Woo Hoo! And Melissa, my favorite bartender made bacon mac n’ cheese, which was good sober-up food. She also let me play around with two new Pinnacle vodkas on the shelf. The first was Caramel Apple, but the one that grabbed my eye was the Pumpkin Pie! Yes, Pumpkin Pie vodka! We started thinking about things that you could drink it with. I suggested Rum Chata and it worked beautifully! Like a pumpkin egg nog!  Melissa, then, added a few drops of Bailey’s. It cut some of the alcohol bite, and I would have poured that shot right into a cup of coffee! MMMM!

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A Side Note:

Teresa mentioned to me that I used pigeon peas to make yesterday’s Split Pea Soup. I forgot to address why. Thanks, Teresa!

I grabbed the wrong bag of peas from the farmer’s market, but did not realize it until they had already been soaking overnight. I watch shows like Chopped, Cupcake Wars, and Iron Chef because I believe a great chef goes with the punches. I always challenge myself when I watch the shows to try to come up with what I would do if I was on the show. Therefore, once I realized my mistake, I rolled with it, and made it work!

Giving

The past few days I feel like I haven’t slept… I wake up tired…

Today, I hit the snooze alarm until the last possible minute. I finally got up, slammed a bottle of water and headed off to the blood bank. I try to make it a point to donate blood as often as I can… Mostly for the free Nutter Butters that follow…

I’m totally kidding! I am a universal donor and love feeling like I’m saving lives for the 1 hour I take to donate!

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Following my donation, a little blurred vision, and getting my purple badge of courage, I meandered over to the canteen. The older volunteers are so sweet there! One of them showed me a variety of K cups to choose from and brewed me a Southern Pecan coffee. I sat down at one of the tables, and after examining the goods (ie. the snacks), I switched up my usual Nutter Butter craze for an adorable two pack of Oreos! Who doesn’t like chocolate in the morning??

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Afterwards, I snuck into Barry’s house to wake him up to go to Cowtown. I know I was just there, but the day was beautiful, Barry had never been, and it kept us out of the house. We explored for about 2 hours, and I showed him around the barns. My last stop of the trip was to an older gentleman that I always buy gladiolas from. These are my moms favorite flower and since we have been getting along the last few days, I wanted to surprise her. The generous man, then asked if I like eggplant and gave me one for free along with a handful of jalapenos!  How nice!

Mom had picked up eggplant on Saturday when we went and now with all the eggplant in the house, it was time for Eggplant Parm (but we’ll get to that in a second)!

As we drove over the Delaware Memorial, Barry and I could both feel hunger approaching, as neither one of us had really eaten and it was much hotter day than we anticipated. I suggested Saladworks, one of my favorite places to eat out, and their was definitely no regretting this decision.

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Both, Barry and I, got the “Create-your-own” option. Mine consisted of spring mix, egg whites for protein, roasted red peppers, corn and bean mix (so sweet), cucumbers, and chopped tomatoes with fat free Balsamic vinaigrette on the side. I like to load up on toppings with moisture and and high flavor so it limits the amount of dressing I need. I adored the colors and fragrant of my salad! Its so pretty! I omitted my beloved wheat roll, but I really didn’t need it. One thing I adore about the Saladworks website is that I can calculate everything on their without a hassle!

Barry and I were content with our meals and it really hit the crisp stop that was need to break up such a warm and humid day! We took advantage of an hour to watch some Twilight Zone in the new living room, at Barrys, after which we went separate ways… Barry to the firehouse, and I home.

I couldn’t wait to play with the Hungry-girl eggplant parm recipe. I was inspired by my salad today and decided to add roasted red peppers to dinner. I have grown up on eggplant unlike Barry who only recently tried it when I made stir-fry. My mom always double breaded and fried it. Don’t get me wrong… its delicious… but it pretty much takes every thing nutritious out! My mom would make eggplant parm layer upon layer of the breaded, fried goods, with lots of full fat cheese in between the slices. I have learned ways to stretch flavor, resources and calories, and this dish was created with huge portions!

Eggplant Parm

serves 4

  • 1 large eggplant

Breading:

  • 1 cup Fiber One bran cereal
  • 1/2 tsp reduced fat grated Parmesean cheese
  • 1/4 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper
  • WP_0038511/4 cup liquid egg substitute

Sauce:

  • 1 cup jarred sauce, plus 1/3 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/8 tsp to 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)

The Rest:

  • 2 oz jarred roasted red peppers
  • 3/4 cup fat free shredded mozzarella, divided
  • 2 Tbsp reduced fat grated Parmesan, divided
  • 1/2 tsp basil

Preheat oven to 375 F. Cut the end off of the eggplant. Slice the eggplant in large coins, to produce about 10. Dab the sliced with a paper towel to try to grab some excess moisture.

In a food processor, blend all the breading ingredients, except egg, until the cereal becomes a bread crumb texture. Dip both sides of the eggplant slices in the egg and then coat with the bread crumbs. Transfer the coated slices to a well sprayed (with non stick cooking spray) baking sheet/ pan. Bake for 25 minutes. Flip the coins and bake an additional 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, over low heat, combine all the ingredients for the sauce. In the mean time, Further chop the shredded mozzarella cheese (this helps the cheese spread more). Then chop the roasted red peppers. Set aside until assembly time.

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Spray an 8 x 8 baking dish with non stick spray and spread a thin layer (about 1/4 cup of sauce) evenly over the bottom. Lay half the baked and breaded eggplant on top. Sprinkle half the chopped, shredded cheese, and 1 Tbsp grated parm over the eggplant. Spoon about another 1/4 cup of sauce over this, and top with the remaining cheeses. Lastly, Pour the remaining sauce over the entire dish and sprinkle with basil.

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Cover the dish with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Carefully remove the foil and let set for about 3-5 minutes. Cut into 4 squares and serve it up.

We paired ours with salad.

I love the sweetness that the roasted red peppers add to the dish! MMMM! I forgot how much I loved roasted red peppers!!

It was so good, nothing was left! Not a drop in the pyrex! With so much eggplant on hand, I made another, this one turning out even better than the first. Whats also nice about this is that it can be frozen.

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Nutrition: (1/4 recipe)

Calories: 160, Fat: 1.5g, Sat. Fat: 0.2g, Cholesterol: 6.2mg, Sodium: 648.7mg, Carbs: 33.1g, Fiber: 14.8g, Sugar: 8.4g, Protein: 12.7g

A big topic of conversation at dinner was the madness that ensure in college town last night. Main Street was flooded with kids, jumping on cars, yelling, etc… I thought it was about the Eagles winner! I was wrong! Apparently, the cops broke up a huge party and the 1000 kids flocked to Main Street and swarmed! Thats just dumb! It caused enough of a ruckus, though, that not only did campus police get involved, but also, city, county, and state! Here one guys YouTube video of the events…

Blew my mind! I’m so glad I was in the safety of my home, last night, 20 minutes away from the mayhem!

Mean and Green

I spent the remainder of last night awake! I didn’t fall asleep until 130am or so. Oh well! At least I came up with delicious ideas for this week’s meals. It began this morning with a change of pace from my usual shake. It was also a good morning, as I was able to sense hunger, again!

I’ve been craving quinoa for weeks now, but with the madness going on in my head, I couldn’t get myself to eat it. Alas, I microwaved Amy’s Light & Lean Quinoa & Black Beans bowl. Meanwhile, I whipped up some egg whites, for myself, and a sunny-side up, for Frank! Frank and I really enjoyed this. We are both huge fans of black beans! Plus, we got a boost of protein and fiber bright and early to start our week! Yum!

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WP_003806I’ve planned today to see green! Not as in envy, but as in E-A-G-L-E-S, Eagles!!!! Eagles/ Redskins game baby! Dad and I are all about the green, but mom won a bet at work like 20 years ago on a Skins game, and has been a fan ever since. Silly woman!

To get on my game face, I whipped out my Eagles jersey to rock for a day of errands.

After unpacking the groceries, I make another batch of Bundo Broccoli Salad, since the first batch went so quickly neither Frank nor Barry got a taste.

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Afterwards, I was feeling tired but couldn’t sense if it was due to a lack of eating. After all, it was 2pm and I ate my filling breakfast around 10am. I decided to whip up a super green shake! Its one of my favorites!

Pistachio Ice Cream Shake:

  • WP_0038121 Tbsp sugar free fat free Pistachio pudding mix
  • 1 to 2 scoops vanilla protein powder
  • lots of spinach!
  • 1/8 to 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • water
  •  ice
  • shelled, unsalted pistachios (optional)
  • xanthum and/or guar gum (optional)

After my last few shake bowls, I’ve rediscovered my love for ground flax and chia seeds, so to play off the nuttiness of the pistachios I added both to today’s bowl!

This held me over for hours! I attempted a nap before Zumba, and, sadly, it just didn’t happen. When I got up after an hour, my mom took one look at me and said, “You look tired. I don’t think you should go to Zumba.” I felt guilty not going, since I didn’t go last week, but I truly was tired. I then spent the next few hours working on a new recipe for you!

If at first you don’t succeed, try and try, again. Although, I wasn’t hungry, mom was and we kicked off our first Monday Night Football of the the 2013-2014 season!

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I prepared a plate of crudites, featuring scallions, sugar snap peas, green beans, celery, and baby carrots. I served it with Honey Mustard, blue cheese dressing, and PB. We split one of my favorite personalized pizzas, VitaPizza Cheese and Tomato. Mom and  I also split a strawberry daquari, topped with a dollop of fat free Cool Whip.

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I was not hungry, tonight, but had tons of nervous energy and filled up on veggies. No harm in that…

After the Eagles started kicking some serious butt, mom went into a sore mood and said, “That’s it. I’m going to bed.” I, now, find myself, here, with you, reminiscing and working on yet another new recipe for you.

Sweet Green Dreams!

Never Too Old for Animal Crackers

After yesterday mornings excitment, I enjoyed sleeping in this morning.

Last night, Barry came over during his lunch break from night shift, around 9pm. I greeted him with a chicken sandwich, from the left over chicken we grilled the other day, a tray of broccoli and cheese, a chocolate chip cookie and a chocolate cheesecake for work, that mom had had picked up from Wholefoods.

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After Barry left, and some studying, I laid in bed for about 2 hours tossing and turning. As tired as I was, I just could not fall asleep. I think that having a disagreement with my mom, yesterday, on top of Beaut getting out, really ampted up my anxiety. I felt similar to when I was really sick… I would lay in bed, up until all hours of the night, planning my meals for the week, stressing about calories… planning my every move for the coming days.

Finally, I fell asleep!

This morning began with a shake for Frank and myself. The tricky thing about cafe latte flavored shake powders is that besides bananas, flavoring syrups are typically used to flavor them. But I like fruit in my shakes, darn it!

I used to work in a nutrition store, and a really popular shake was the Carmel Latte shake. Wanting fruit plus a little pick me up, I experimented with a Caramel Apple Latte shake.

  • half a fuji apple (about 3/4 cup), chopped, preferrably frozen
  • 1 Tbsp sugar free caramel Torani syrup
  • 1 scoop Herbalife Cafe Latte powder
  • (1/4 tsp xanthum, optional)

Not to shabby…

After Beauty’s escapades, yesterday, and some time to kill before work, I ran to the pet store to get a new name and address tag for her. It was a toss up between a pink heart and and Eagles tag. While she went to pull out the pink heart, she found a pink heart with the Eagles logo on it! Score! I think Beauty has learned her lesson, though, at least for now, because she has been a sleepy pup since she came home. While at the pet store, I also snagged her one of her favorite canned foods, as well as a free sample.

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I felt so silly while on my way to work, today. Its 95 degrees outside and I’m in a long sleeve shirt… in a car without AC…

I swung by Dunkin for an iced coffee on my way to help cool me off. (I wear longsleeved shirts to work because its always cold!!!!) It was much needed!

I arrived at work a bit early, which gave me time to cool off and grab my assignment for the night. I was in a 1:1. That shake this morning really filled me up! I didn’t have much of an appetite at all today! I finished up the left over brussel sprouts from the other night (lightly drizzled with yellow and honey mustard), and celery sticks and peanut butter for snacking. Around 6pm, when I took my dinner, I was very hungry! Luckily, I spotted animal crackers! I don’t care how old you are, but you are never too old for animal crackers!

I was surprised by how hungry I was, but I hadn’t been very hungry since my shake, so I guess I shouldn’t be that surprised. The important part, is that I recognized that I was full and I stopped eating before I lost control. Recovering from binge eating, just like anorexia or bulimia, has no boundaries. Eating disorders can strike anytime, anywhere.

Once my shift ended, I came home and snacked on some Fiber One 80 Chocolate cereal, but soon found myself nibbling on many items. I finally tasted that kick from the KIND Dark Chocolate Chili Almond. After realizing that I was beginning to have a mild binge, I quickly jumped to a warm glass of flax milk and began this post.