Going Orange

After waking up, I debated starting my day with a run, since Barry and I will be indulging in some Tony Luke’s later tonight. Somehow the concept of protein pancakes popped in my head, which, apparently, to priority over running. Then I remembered the bit of pumpkin I had left over from Saturday’s Pumpkin Cinnamon Buns! Never EVER throw away left over pumpkin!!!

Pumpkin Pie Protein Pancakes

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  • 1 scoop Vanilla protein powder
  • 2 Tbsp pure pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup liquid egg substitute OR 2 egg whites
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Whip together and cook away!

My kitchen smelled A-MAZ-ING! I topped mine with a little sugar free syrup and a sprinkle more of pumpkin pie spice and paired the plate with a mug of Butter Pecan coffee.

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So since I planned on doing a lot of work on the computer this morning and the modem died on me, my motivation to get outside kicked back in. What a beautiful day! I was surprised to walk outside to a sunny day of 57 degrees! I walked all over the city, first to ship a little something to Meaghen, then to the dollar store, and since I was out and about, over to my uncles to see how he was feeling. I took my time strolling home, and even though I didn’t do much running, I was able to get in

Barry came over after work, and after whipping him up something to eat, he laid down a bit to prepare for our night! Beauty needed a nap, too! She found comfort in my pile of laundry and could barely keep her eyes open, let alone her head up!

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Tonight was date night! Barry and I took our friends, Mike and Lauren, to the Flyers/ Ducks game for Mike’s birthday! On the way, we swung by Tony Luke’s to try to keep with tradition. While Lauren and Mike kept it simple with cheese steaks, Barry and I split the Chicken Steak Italian. I was definitely caught off guard. I was expecting a Steak-Umms-style steak, but it was way better! It was actual chicken breast, cut and laid in a roll topped with provolone and your choice of broccoli rabe or spinach. We opted for  the rabe and requested mushrooms, as well. We also ordered an order of chipotle BBQ fries, which were rather disappointing. We expected a yummy sauce, but it was actually a seasoning, similar to Old Bay.

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We rushed over the game to see the Flyers doing really well for the first 2 1/2 periods! We might actually pull through on this one! Nope! But at least Lauren and I numbed our pain with froyo and a mountain of mint chocolate chip and cookies and creme ice cream!

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Brunch and Dinssert

Kicking It With Christ:

What a nice Sunday! It began with 8am mass with my mom! Whenever we go to mass together, we are peachy for the rest of the day and we are both in great moods. My dad told her she needs to go every Sunday! Hahah

I was a bit puzzled by today’s Gospel, but Father’s homily cleared it up. It was entertaining, amusing, and kept my attention all the way through, and it really made me examine my life. I knew from the time he started I wanted to share it with you. Even if you’re not Catholic or Christian, its a universal message we can all apply to our lives.

He made me laugh as he began to discuss the criteria for a good husband, wife, sister, etc. “I can’t just say I’m a good priest because I show up to mass on time.” What’s the universal criteria that makes us do good? Father is an ex-cop and he mentioned the rewards that are offered for information about a crime. As helpful as the tips are, why should we have to pay or bribe someone to do the right thing? The Gospel, in short, was not just about doing good or the right thing. These are simple and innate obligations that Christ, as well as the community, expects from you. Christ is constantly challenging us to take it a step further. Not to remain stagnant in our lives and morals. I loved the analogy Father used… “Don’t just be please with yourself because you refrained from punching that guy in the head. Take it a step further and remove that hatred from your heart.” Not only did this make me chuckle, but it really made me think about my everyday actions, the roles of daughter, sister, nurse, friend, etc. that I play in life.

Am I really taking things a step further? Or am I simply fulfilling my obligation? 

Following mass, I talked to Father, who was an absolute outlet and source of strength during my recovery. Our conversation was followed by a proud hug and congratulations when I told him that my 1 year anniversary of beginning recovery was quickly approaching!

Great Homily, Father Hurley! And thanks for everything!

Brunch, Baby:

I have been loving brunch on the weekends I do not work. I would love to start making a tradition of it! This morning was the perfect brunch food: a frittata. I mention in my last frittata post the beauty of these things: the ability to throw anything you want in them. Like, when you have left overs, and either don’t know what to do with them or don’t have enough for another meal… throw it in a frittata!

The broccoli rabe that I used in my Sicilian-Inspired Rabe was grown by my uncle’s neighbor and was already blanched for me. I had so much left over that I could only remember how delicious the last frittata was! Oh, and then theres that eggplant from the fish wraps from the other night. I got this!!!!

Eggplant Parm Frittata

serves 8

  • 11.75 oz eggplant, 1/4 in slicedWP_004142s
  • 2 cups cooked broccoli rabe
  • 1/3 cup onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1 egg
  • 4 1/2 cup liquid egg substitute
  • 1/2 cup flax milk, or milk of choice
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper, or to taste
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp fat free shredded mozzarella, divided
  • 1/2 cup pizza sauce
  • 1/2 packet Splenda
  • 2 Tbsp reduced-fat grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 to 1 Tbsp dried chopped or minced garlic

Spray a skillet with non-stick cooking spray and lay the eggplant slices over high heat and brown. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 F. After you flip the eggplant and both sides have been browned, transfer the slices into a sprayed 9 in x 13 in pyrex. Layer the eggplant slices along the bottom, cutting and fitting the slices to fit the bottom of the pan. Respray the skillet, and add the cooked broccoli rabe, onions, and minced garlic. Cover with a lid, and heat on low.

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In the meantime, whisk the egg, egg substitute, milk, water, crushed red pepper, Italian seasoning, and black pepper. Flip the broccoli rabe. Pour 1/4 cup of water over vegetables and cover, steaming over low heat. Measure out 1/4 cup mozzarella and finely chop, and add to the egg mix. Remove the broccoli rabe, onions, and garlic and transfer to cutting board. Roughly chop the vegetables into 1/2 in pieces or so. Add to egg bowl.

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Ensure the pyrex side are well sprayed with non-stick spray, and pour the contents of the egg bowl in the dish. Finely chop the remaining 2 Tbsp mozzarella, and sprinkle over top casserole. Bake at 350 F for 30 minutes.  While baking, combine the pizza sauce with Splenda.

After the 30 minutes, turn the casserole 180 degrees and continue baking for 15 minutes. After the 15 minutes, evenly spread the frittata with the sweetened sauce, then Parmesan. Lastly, sprinkle the top with garlic spice according to your taste. (We love garlic!) Return to the oven for a final 15 minutes.

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Slice the frittata into 8 slices and serve!

Nutrition: per 1/8 of dish

Calories: 126, Fat: 1.2g, Sat. Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 25.9mg, Sodium: 430.5mg, Carbs: 8.6g, Fiber: 2.6g, Sugar: 4.6g, Protein: 18.3g

WP_004138Scrapple, by far, is in no way a healthy choice, even if one DOES eat the leaner cuts of beef scrapple. It is, however, a Bundo favorite! I sliced up a loaf of bacon scrapple (not impressive, by the way) for the crew, and we said Grace and dug into a delicious brunch! Argument free!

We were all stuffed until dinner! My dad raved about the frittata and couldn’t believe the creation and the taste, and how full he was even at dinner time. But I’m not surprised with almost 20g of protein per serving! Mom, dad, and I watched the Eagles/ Giants game, as we did some laundry (and blogging).

A quickie trip to the tanning salon (I have a wedding coming up and I’m a bit pastey), and I was inspired. I had “Brunch,” but pumpkin spice froyo is out… Dinner? Dessert? Dessert for dinner? Dinssert, it is!

Hey, Boo! Froyo at 5? “It’s a date!”

A quick text later, and we met up with one of my nursing school girlfriends! Yummy in our tummies! She text us awhile back asking for a froyo dinner dinner date and we had to decline since Barry and I were both working. I loved that I was able to return the favor, and that she, Aaron, and her kids could join us! My main agenda for the spur-of-the-moment dinner date was to attack the pumpkin spice soft serve! I repeated my mode of attack as I did at the Flyers game and grabbed a splash of each. And an extra splash of pumpkin. Next, come my favorite part! Topping! Mango, raspberries, strawberries, almond slices, toasted coconut, and an oreo all found their way to my bowl! Barry enjoyed his double-size PB and chocolate fix ,as usual.WP_004148WP_004149

So we had dinner. Whats next? Oh yeah! Ice cream for dessert! a scoop of Edy’s Slow Churned Salted Caramel and a decaf french vanilla coffee went down the hatch as we watch the FLyers pull out another loss. But guess what? My eating was controlled, I felt when I was full, and I felt no guilt!

I must say… good weekend!

Half Moon

I awoke this afternoon to more temptation. I feel like if you have support people, they won’t surround you with your trigger foods. My mom, although I know she cares, is not what I would call the most helpful in this aspect of my life. I woke to a bag of Taco Bell filled with Caramel Apple Empanadas. Every time I confront her about bringing these home, she always says she got me one. I hate that because she knows its a trigger food! Nonetheless, my lunch, which started as a Red Berries Special K bar dipped in Be Well Nutella, ended up in half an empanada down and a heavy chest full of anxiety.

Barry called me at work last night and asked for a lunch date, today, and I gladly accepted since its was to a place I’ve been wanting to go to: Half Moon in Kennett. Barry offered to postpone the date since I had a rough time at work, but I refuse to let these disorders disrupt my life all the time!

WP_003218Half Moon Restaurant and Saloon is a small place in the town of Kennett, about 20 minutes from my house. Barry and I drove past it! Whats nifty about this place is that it specializes in wild game meats. Each day is a different special.

I lucked out when I called the restaurant to find out the specials for today. Kangaroo burgers and Buffalo chili! I’ve had buffalo in the past, but I was most excited about the Kangaroo! Barry has been trying to get me to eat burgers (I’ve really wanted one since I haven’t eaten one in over a year). Kangaroo is the leanest cut of beef Half Moon offers (93 calories, 0.5g fat per 100g). All of the burgers are 6 oz portions, of which Barry and I split. We opted to split the Kangaroo burger, substitute the house made kettle chips for a salad, and split a bowl of the buffalo chili…

When in Rome!

WP_003214We strolled up West State Street and entered and narrow saloon. Greeted by a perky hostess, we were asked if we would like to be seated upstairs in the atrium-like setting or in the main dinning saloon. Since it was a temperate day with a nice breeze, we walked up the stairs to be greeted by another friendly face, Emily, who seated us and attentively served us. She was very patient with us, as I was so indecisive after viewing all of the specials! After questioning the waitress, there was no doubt about it… Chili and Burger special!

First up was Barry’s beer. This place is no joke when it comes to their alcohol. Theres a whole book full if specialty and imported beers and the wines are broken down into white and red, and then by place of origin. Barry tried Hop Devil. I’m not a beer drinker, but this was rather bitter in my opinion. We awaited a delicious salad on spring mix, with cucumbers, shredded carrots, and baby heirloom tomatoes, and side of Greek Goddess dressing. I love that they used heirlooms, since they are in season!

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My girlfriends told me how dry kangaroo meat was and suggested the elk. I’ve had elk and it reminds me a lot of roast beef. I had my heart set on the roo. They don’t cook the burger past medium rare, which is fine for us. I was surprised how moist the burger was, despite being so lean. It wasn’t sweet but it had a more mild flavor than a beef burger, and it was definitely a lot less dense. The burger is served on a kaiser-type bun with lettuce, tomato, purple onion, and a pickle spear. I ate mine topless, while Barry used my spare bun half for chili dipping.

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The Buffalo Chili was topped topped with jack cheese, It was a hearty chili with lots of meat and beans. I could not imagine eating this whole bowl by myself! I would have been stuffed! The tomato base was a mildly sweet and nutty, with a faint heat.

We really enjoyed the atmosphere of the atrium setting. We sat at rustic tables, surrounded by fresh air and potted plants. After chatting with out waitress, we decided we will most definitely be back for the Gator Gumbo! Apparently, its got a nice kick to it!

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We drove out of Kennett and into Hockessin to grab a bit of froyo from Berriyummi. Barry went to chocolate peanut butter heaven. I think it wound up being more like a hell for him in the long run. His chocolate and raspberry froyo was topped with cheesecake pieces, cookie dough, brownie bites, jimmies, peanut butter sauce, blueberries, hot fudge and loads of mashed peanut butter cups. By the end of it all, the peanut butter cups had formed rock sold balls of sweet and salty indulgence. From the little bite I took, I had my fill. I am honestly impressed by Barry’s sweet tooth! I had never seen so much reese in one bowl! I guess this was pretty fitting since its National Fudge Sundae Day.

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Mine was the typical sugar free vanilla with mango, raspberries and sliced almonds, with smidge of cheesecake crust.

After the creamy froyo, I had a hankering for coffee. When Barry and I arrived home, I made a mug of decaf with sugar free chocolate DaVinci syrup. With my sweet tooth in full swing, I remembered my Philly Swirl Sweet Delites. These are perfect size creamsicle bars that are sugar free and only 14 calories a piece! Talk about guilt free desserts!

I am spending the rest of the  night bonding with mom over “A Good Day to Die Hard,” and should be hitting the hay soon.

Happy Almost Friday!

Spontaneous

I slept… until 1130am yesterday! I couldn’t believe it! Actually, I could. I’ve been taking cat naps the last few days and have been feeling super exhausted so it makes sense. I really must have needed some sleep.

I woke up feeling really great. I did 50 push ups and 50 crunches,  ate a yummy bowl of cereal with Kashi Go Lean, Fiber One Chocolate 80, and sliced strawberries, took a shower, tidied up a bit and waited for Barry.

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Barry arrived with my graduation present, which he had been waiting for from Fed-Ex. He got me  a new stethoscope!!! Woo Hoo! Its pink and engraved!

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After beating him at another game of Phase 10 (he got me my own deck), we decided it was time for him to experience a real Philly steak. I’ve said it before, but I’m definiatly a Geno’s fan. “Four wit with wiz, please, and a cherry soda.”  (I was buying for the folks back home, too). I told him he had to eat it with the provided cherry peppers, as well. Barry enjoyed his first experience with Geno’s.

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We took a visit to grandma’s house to drop off her coleslaw container, and her precious Spumante. She was surprised by our visit and stayed there chit chatting for a bit. My aunt, who lives with her also told us the news of her adopting two puppies from a shelter in Georgia. She explained that the dogs were brother and sister, had come from an abusive home, and were about to be put down. They are absolutely loveable! I believe they were dalmatian and bulldog mixes, but they looked a lot like pitbulls with spots.

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By the time we arrived back home it was about 830 or so. The day really flies when you  sleep until noon!

We, for some reason, were pretty sleepy, so we laid down until we heard back from our friends. After Lauren got off work, we met her and her boyfriend for frozen yogurt at Yogurt City. I got the usual. Also delicious!

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I just realized, after looking at the picture, that our bowls all really fit our personalities!

During the conversation, Barry said, “Its weird… the longer I go since I’ve eaten Geno’s, the more I really want another.” A little fact about Mike and Lauren: if you mention Philly cheesesteaks… we are getting Philly cheesesteaks. In this burst of spontaneity, we piled into Mike’s car and drove back to Philly around midnight. Although Pat’s was open, Barry wanted another steak from Geno’s. Despite my warning about the hot sauce, Barry put it on his steak. When they state “hot,” they really mean it! Thank goodness he had a cup of Sprite!

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Following, yet another delicious steak, we drove around Philly to kill some time. We finally made it back home around 330am! Guess what we did. NOT SLEEP! We went swimming in the pool and played a round of pool basketball. Can you guess who won? The Girls, of course!

Finally, being the sleepy party pooper, I initiated the mosey out of the pool. Finally, sleep!

If you’d like to learn more about the shelter, Middle Mutts,  or donate to help fund the adoption of other pups like Buster and Coco, please visit their facebook.

Fruit is NOT the Enemy

Yesterday morning began with some competition: me whooping Barry’s butt in his favorite game: Phase 10!

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He looks so defeated, doesn’t he? HAHAH

Its okay, though, because we followed this the brunch of champions: froyo from Yogurt City!

I  know I’ve been on a froyo kick, but its just so good, and I choose healthier options such as sugar free yogurt and lots of fruits!

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Can you guess which cup is mine and which one is Barry’s?

The remainder of the day was filled with some personal stressors and I tended to crackers. Some how, I’m not sure how exactly, but by 4pm, I had eaten my normal allotment of calories… I was confused, already frustrated, and took it out on myself with purging. I felt crippled, again, by this disorder. As a curled into a ball in my bed, I called Barry, crying hysterically out of frustration. I felt bad putting him in that situation. I mean, what can he say? But it meant a lot to know he was there to listen. Talking to him on my way into night shift helped to mellow me out and set me up for a good night.

It turned out it was Associate Appreciation Day at the hospital and they treated us with a BBQ-esque lunch. I headed down to the caf to find burgers, wraps, and the like, along with salads and fruit.

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I avoided the salads for the most part, except for the cabbage salad, which I want to see if I can make, and grabbed some fruit. After eating this, I felt guilt.

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Why? I started back with smart choices at my next meal. There is no reason to feel guilt over fruit! I kept myself busy at work, and proceeded to have a fruit powered shift.

After a long and completely exhausted  2 hour staff meeting, lots of coffee, and half a French cruller later, I finally got some sleep!

After a brief nap, I woke up, showered, and got ready for date night. I was in a much better mind set after a good night of eating and self control.

Berri Yummy

This morning began with my Copy Cat Shake! I love this one! But I must admit, it was a rather clumsy morning. When I initially transfered my shake into my travel bottle, I spilled quite a bit onto the counter. Then, once I got into the car, I tipped the bottle over and some spilled onto the floor. And smart me, I don’t have floor mats. Despite trying to clean it up, I’m so nervous that the next time I walk in my car, I’ll be choked by the stench of sour dairy products.

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I have felt bloated all day! Seriously uncomfortable! I keep looking at my belly thinking What the heck is going on? Where did that come from? You look pregnant!

This gets frustrting, especially since I’ve been happy with my eating last last two days. When I arrived home, after todays events, I wanted something sweet. Not because I was necessarily hungry, but just because. I allowed myself two Nutter Butter cookie sandwiches. This quickly spiraled, not terribly, into pretzel sticks and nutella. Although it was not an earth-shattering binge, it was one of which should not happened. (And I’m sure all that salt did not help the bloate feeling.)

Anyway, todays events began around 830 with a drive to the funeral home. I attended the viewing and as I went down the line of daughters, my emotions were harder to hold back. “He loved you! He always wanted to best for you,” said his oldest daughter. That was it! The waterworks started. We headed over the church, were the euologies were presented but the 3 daughters, and some of the grandchildren. When the beautiful ceromony ended, I reunited with my grieving family in front of church. As I hugged my cousin, he grabbed me tight and began to cry. He is one of those people, who I can not see cry. As soon as I see a tear in his eye, I started crying… it never fails. The burial consisted of a bagpipper and a 21 gun solute.

We finished the afternoon at the luncheon. I didn’t feel it was appropriate to photgraph my food here, concidereing the circumstances. I filled my plate with loads of fruits and vegetables. The grilled chicken breast and roast beef were tops! I ket going back for more. I treated myself with a cookie and order three cups of coffee. Yes, three! Not because I was THAT tired but because the mugs were so tiny! It held maybe three ounce of coffee!

Feeling full and bloated, I was worried about my eating the rest of the day. After snacking on some rice cakes and nutella, I made a roasted cauliflower salad on spinach with some sliced honey ham.

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Shortly after, I recieved an interesting phone call from a friend from high school asking to help him with a film project. He is curently filming a trailer to get funding for a company to start production on an independent film. Our society is obsessed with zombies. I just don’t get it. Nonetheless, I played a mourner at a funeral (of all days to play a mourner), who at one point is killed and eated by a zombie. I can not wait for the screen shots to come back so I can share them with you! Its hilarious to think about some of the shots he got! It took my mind off how much body hating I was doing and it was a fun time.

After filming with some high school friends, Mags and I went out for froyo.

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I hadn’t had frozen yogurt in the longest time! I did not have any last summer because I was “sick.” The two of us used to go out every week for froyo back in the day. I made very smart decisions at BerriYummy! I grabbed a shot of no sugar added vanilla froyo and topped it with sliced almonds, strawberries, raspberries and mangos, and, I’ll admit, a sprinkle of crushed butterfinger! Spectacular! A winning combination! (Mags went with the chocolate cravings).

 

After departing, I headed home and went to pretzel town.