Start Your Own Food Blog!

Or beer blog, or dessert blog, or healthy eating blog or Vegan blog!

grilledchicken photo (16)

If you look back at my first year of posts, you’ll notice a serious difference. My blog design is all over the place. I don’t have a program in place to keep all recipes looking the same, with a print option. My widgets were limited, my photo sizes were off the charts and my lighting needed some serious help.

2011-11-17DSC03507 

Long story short, I went to blogging school! I had planned (if you remember) to go to a food blogger conference this year. I was all set to go to Seattle in September, until I found Food Blogger Pro!

After holding off for a couple months, I jumped in and went to food blogging school and was amazed. I shouldn’t have waited so long. For $25, I had a month’s worth of blogging videos and tutorials at my fingertips. By this time, I was two years into food blogging and figured I knew most of what I needed to know. By month three, I still hadn’t done all I had wanted to and couldn’t wait to watch more blogging tutorials!

If you are thinking of starting a blog, Food Blogger Pro will take you from the very first step to your blogging goals. Seriously worth a look!

Learn how to start and grow your food blog with Food Blogger Pro.

Flash DAMY Sale. Melt Off that Ice Cream!

20130705-211138.jpg

I’m on vacation, but I needed to stop and send a message! DAMY programs are 20% off this weekend. If you missed the last flash sale, don’t miss another.

You have until July 9th at midnight to join DAMY and you’ll receive 20% off your program.

Use one of the links below and use code HOTJULY to get going on creating a healthier you!

Here’s how to choose your plan:

  • Past or current Member – Lifestyle Membership

The Bikini Body Program is for you if:

  • You are looking to take your fitness to the next level
  • You want to lean down to look great in your bikini or slim outfit
  • Your goal is to be tight and tiny
  • You are serious about your fitness goals
  • You are a no-excuse kind of woman
  • You are ready to jump in and commit
  • You can workout 5-6 times per week and give this program your all
  • You are ready to achieve a lean, sexy body
  • You understand that this program is a commitment and is intense
  • For more information about the Bikini Body Program click here.

The DAMY Method could be for you if:

  • You have 30lbs or more to lose
  • Are new to working out or just getting back into it
  • Are looking to start a healthy lifestyle
  • You want to workout 3-5 times per week
  • You want a variety of fitness levels to choose from
  • You are a nursing Mother
  • You want to lose weight but not be overly restricted or regimented
  • For more information about the DAMY Method Program click here.

Use coupon code: HOTJULY for your 20% off. You only have until July 9th!


Bikini Body Program


Food Finds and a Lunch Favorite

I’ve been shopping for groceries for a good 15 or so years now and I think I’ve gotten worse at it. I have still not managed how to keep my shopping to one store and only visit once a week. In college, I loved that I could go to Safeway with $40 in my wallet and have plenty of food for the week. Yoplaits, seasoning mix for “Chicken in a bag”, Diet Coke, cottage cheese, bagged salad, Life cereal. That was the constant list.

The next stage of shopping happened when Jy and I moved in together. We tried to spend $80 a week and ate plenty of processed food. The weeks we had $100 to spend felt luxurious. Lots of frozen meals, canned beans, spaghetti and more cereal.

Stage three. Married with two boys. $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Here I am, 15 years from the $40 Safeway trips, feeling frugal if I can make it through the week having only spent $200. My husband eats a lot. My boys eat a lot. I eat…uh, never mind. The majority of our food budget goes to all things dairy. Lactose-free for one child, regular milk, eggs and eggs and eggs, yogurt times a thousand. Then meat, then produce.

I usually hit three stores a week and they vary. My store tour changes depending on sales, my time, our cravings and needs. Here’s what I prefer from each store:

  • Fresh & Easy – Ready made food in a pinch, produce, breads
  • Sprouts – Sale produce, natural meats and yogurts
  • Costco – Produce, dairy, organic chicken
  • Whole Foods – Organic meats & fish
  • Safeway – Pantry or last minute items, sale stuff, coffee
  • Trader Joe’s – Fun snacks, hummus, nuts, fruit

I don’t think I’ll ever get it down to a science and I think I’m finally ok with that. I’ve even added online shopping to my tour, which I’ll talk about below.

I wanted to share some treats as well as a new favorite meal. Who doesn’t love new food ideas?

Let’s start with some Trader Joe finds.

This isn’t a new product, but if you haven’t tried it, you really should! I think it goes for $3.99, which is more than the other hummus options, but it is really worth it. It’s so creamy and full of flavor, my kids love it too. It doesn’t have that dry, pasty taste that so many pre-made hummus’ do.

IMG_0182

Still at TJ’s:

Crunchy Black & White Rice Rolls. My mom turned my family on to these little rolls of 45 calorie, sweet and crunchy bites. They taste like little logs of Sugar Smacks. Not bad, eh?

Almond Butter with Sea Salt. I just described it.

Chocolate Almond Granola Cereal is just what it says! You’d expect 1001 ingredients in this cereal, luckily you would be wrong! It’s made of pretty basic stuff, including sugar. I’d consider this another treat as well and found it to be really tasty mixed with some flavored Greek yogurt.

Dried mandarin oranges! Clever, right? Just as the bag claims, they are soft and juicy! A tiny bit tangy, but mostly sweet, these dried oranges are a perfect way to distract your taste buds at the movies or on a long drive. Just be careful, there are SIX portions in the small bag.

The roasted coconut chips are such a treat, they are sweet little slices of coconut. After asking another mom at the park about what she was eating, she gave me a few to try. I’m sure she was just trying to make me go away, but I was really interested and so happy she shared! There are two servings in a bag and I think they are a great little treat.

IMG_0177

 

I’ve gotten super into tea lately and bought a load of Teavana. You know, that expensive tea store at the mall? Yeah, that tea. It wasn’t until I got home and read up on their sales practices that I realized I wasn’t the first person pressured into way more tea and pricey tins than I would need. I didn’t love their customer service and won’t be supporting them until they change the way they work. Instead, I’ll continue to buy Adagio Teas!

My tea-loving cousin introduced me to this brand and though I was leery at first, it turns out buying tea online ain’t such a bad way to go! Their website is easy to navigate and the reviews are really helpful. Dorie (my cousin) suggested a specially blended tea, called Bilbo Brew. You’d have to check out their shop to really understand just how many tea blends there are! What I love about the blends (other than the actual tea) is the fun packaging! While I can’t say I understand the whole fandom thing, I do love that I can get a cute bags or tins of tea with some Game of Thrones, Sherlock Holmes or Harry Potter artwork on the packaging. (There are others too)!

Dorie was right, by the way. I do love the Bilbo Brew. I don’t know if you can read the package in this photo, but the blend consists of Irish Breakfast, sweet potato, vanilla green & cinnamon bits. Basically, it tastes like cinnamon roll tea. It’s wonderful and comforting. I have a ton left, so I don’t have to worry, but it looks like Bilbo is out of stock at the moment.

IMG_0163

 

So let’s say you want to drink some tea and don’t have a few business days to wait for it. Hit the grocery store and look for tea that has actual leaves or flowers in it. Not the remnants of tea, I’m talking real tea. I found a box of Two Leaves and a Bud’s chamomile and have to say it was totally worth the $6 for the box. That seems so steep for a grocery store tea, but check out the photo below. It’s legit! You won’t need two bags for flavor and you can feel good about the source of the tea.

If you become addicted to buying online tea, you can shop Two Leaves this way, too.

tea

And one more yummy suggestion. Grilled chicken over spaghetti squash with grilled apple chunks. It’s my new favorite. Be sure to season your chicken with some sage, because it totally works. The key to this meal is taking the extra hour to let your chicken brine. It’s worth all 60 minutes (or more). If you need a good recipe, I’d suggest giving Adam Perry Lang’s grilled chicken breast a try. If you don’t have that kind of time or that amount of spice on hand, just read over his basic technique and use what you’ve got on hand. If you put this meal together, snap a photo and let me know what you think!

DAMY_Healthy_Lunch

Surprise Giveaway!

Happy Mother’s Day! Before we get to the giveaway, take a minute to read what I found on Facebook. I love it.

To those who gave birth this year to their first child—we celebrate with you
To those who lost a child this year – we mourn with you
To those who are in the trenches with little ones every day and wear the badge of food stains – we appreciate you
To those who experienced loss this year through miscarriage, failed adoptions, or running away—we mourn with you
To those who walk the hard path of infertility, fraught with pokes, prods, tears, and disappointment – we walk with you. Forgive us when we say foolish things. We don’t mean to make this harder than it is.
To those who are foster moms, mentor moms, and spiritual moms – we need you
To those who have warm and close relationships with your children – we celebrate with you
To those who have disappointment, heart ache, and distance with your children – we sit with you
To those who lost their mothers this year – we grieve with you
To those who experienced abuse at the hands of your own mother – we acknowledge your experience
To those who lived through driving tests, medical tests, and the overall testing of motherhood – we are better for having you in our midst
To those who will have emptier nests in the upcoming year – we grieve and rejoice with you
And to those who are pregnant with new life, both expected and surprising –we anticipate with you
This Mother’s Day, we walk with you. Mothering is not for the faint of heart and we have real warriors in our midst. We remember you.

A very, very fun drink post will be on it’s way, but for now. A 25 hour giveaway! But first….my mom is going to try and tickle you.

mom

I hope anyone else in the world is even kind of laughing, because I’m cracking myself up. My mom’s gonna get ya. I used a filter (obviously) on this photo, so she doesn’t really have a plastic, white-gloved right hand. Or does she?

You’ve got until Mother’s Day is over to enter the giveaway of a lifetime. You may be the lucky reader who wins $20 to spend on anything you want at Amazon.com. Call your mom, call your friends, call your boss and quit. You could be a dollarnaire by this time tomorrow. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wordless Wednesday – Foodie Style

Ok, so it would possibly kill me to try and actually be wordless. But, I’ll be keeping it to a minimum today while I work on some St. Patrick’s Day food! I thought this would be a good time to share some of my favorite finds (and snapshots) from the Gluten Free Expo in San Francisco.

I came home with a bagful of samples and some new favorite products. Red Apple Lipstick  sold me a lipstick-shaped lip balm and I am in LOVE with it! They are a gluten free (and chemical free) lipstick company, which sells a few other types of cosmetics as well. I’ve never loved a lip balm as much as I love my Red Apple! They are actually sold out on their site, but keep checking for it, totally worth it!

Another fave is my kids’ new shampoo/soap/bubble bath, from Monkey See Monkey Do. With hesitation, I dropped $10 for a bottle of natural, unscented 2 in 1 Body Wash and Shampoo. The extra $6 I wouldn’t normally spend was well worth it. Max doesn’t have little baby bumps all over his back anymore. Johnson’s Baby Wash ain’t as gentle as you might think, Google it! Max’s skin is totally smooth and I can’t go back to the gold stuff. I’m hooked.

The last love I will mention is my peppermint tea from Teatulia, an amazing company in Bangladesh, who grows their tea in a single, organic garden. It’s a company you can feel good about buying from and a tea you will love!

So much for being wordless, right? 

App’ing It Forward

My heart is leaping for joy and breaking to bits over this blog move to WordPress.org and GoDaddy from WordPress.com. I have lost so many links to Pinterest pins, old posts and other pieces in the move. The possibilities on this new site however, are proving to be worth the momentary struggle. Most of my time has been spent out of my kitchen, so I don’t have any food to share. I have great news to pass along instead!

 

My friend Pete’s game has finally hit the app store and is ready for purchase. There will be a special Mr. Jabbs post coming in the next couple weeks, with a special celebration recipe attached. For now, head over and drop the .99 cents on Mr. Jabbs’ Epic Waste of Time and keep checking back in to Food It Forward!

 

14042_116955685154741_571337357_n

iDinner – Broiled Tilapia and Potato Soup

I’ve joined the cult of i. Man, I had no clue how much better life would be once I became an iPhone user. Sounds awful, I know, but it’s kind of true! Dinner apps are making my family much happier and I sense my grocery bill headed in the right direction. No more grabbing what is familiar or what we typically stock the fridge with for dinner. I can actually go in with a meal plan and a list. Yes, I know, thank you for welcoming me to 2003.

First dinner up came from the Whole Foods Recipe app. I love how I am able to build a quick grocery list and check off the items I already have at home. I was able to shop fairly peacefully with both kids in tow.

Knowing I needed a quick and easy dinner, I searched for a fish recipe and took my chances. After hearing Tilapia referred to as a “gutter fish”, I stopped buying the versatile, inexpensive, dinner saver. However, yesterday’s recipe helped me forget about the humble beginnings of a fish that seems to be plentiful and best of all, boneless! It may not win any beauty contests, but this fish came out really creamy and FULL of flavor!  I am super impressed by this recipe!

Broiled Tilapia with Parmesan and Herbs

chicken parm

Your fish will probably turn out a little crispier if you keep your pan close to the broiler, my rack was set a little low. I also used larger fish than suggested and worried about the dish drying out under a high broiler for a lengthened amount of time.

Tilapia with Parmesan and Herbs
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Fish
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 2 tablespoons low fat mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons Greek-style yogurt or sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
  • one small lemon (about 2 tablespoons juice), Juice and zest of
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon dried tarragon
  • ⅛ teaspoon onion powder
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 4 (6 to 8 ounce) farm-raised tilapia fillets
Instructions
  1. Combine ¼ cup Parmesan cheese with remaining ingredients (except fish). Coat fillets with mixture and place in baking dish or shallow platter and let marinate for 15 to 20 minutes. Preheat broiler. Transfer fillets to a foil-lined broiler pan. Spoon a few tablespoons marinade on top and sprinkle with remaining Parmesan. Broil 4 to 6 inches from heat until topping is lightly browned and fish flakes easily with a fork, 5 to 8 minutes.
 

You can also find the Whole Foods recipes on their site.

The carrots on the side remind me of Nana. I’m pretty sure she used to make them. No, I’m sure, she did. This is Nana as in banana. See “Just Like Grandma Used to Make” for further Nana discussion. I simply melt a chunk of butter (I know, let’s just move on) and stir in a small heap of brown sugar. While the butter is melting, I steam sliced up carrots for a few minutes before letting them saute in the butter/sugar pan. Easy as you pleasey.

 

Next dinner, Perfect Potato Soup.

Potato Sopu

The lights are low at home tonight, so the soup looks more yellowish than it truly is. You can see a beautiful photo of the soup at The Pioneer Woman’s page with the original recipe. I won’t repost it here, because it’s not a friendly blogger thing to do.  That lady has a ‘spensive camera and more importantly for her photo, daylight.

This was good. Ga-hood. Hubby and kids will eat it and ask for more good.

The ingredients are not expensive, with the exception of bacon. The soup is comforting and we are all happy on this chilly January night. Thank you Pioneer Woman!

I found this recipe by searching another fun app, Food on the Table. I’ll let them describe their own magic.

With our app you can:

✓ Make a weekly menu with the meal planner
✓ Find budget meals and shop based on sales
✓ Get in shape with a healthy grocery list
✓ Shop with kid friendly recipes
✓ Create a family meal plan for everyone
✓ Get sales from USA grocery stores

I’m still learning to use my Foodily app, which I can best describe as a Facebook/Twitter platform for food. I don’t get it, but I’m hooked!

What are your favorite food apps? I can’t get enough!

Next time I see you I’ll have another Oscar posted ready. Off to clean and work my part-time super modeling job. Goodnight!

 

2012, Don’t Let the Door Hit You On the Way Out!

SAMSUNG

Happy New Year’s Eve FoFo readers! I was so sad to take down our big light display today. We always light up our backyard as you see from the photo above.

For those of you who have visited the Oakland Zoo and perhaps have seen that exact same display there, please don’t ruin it for the rest of the internet by tattling about me lying. Does anyone else have a home that looks super bare without all the holiday decorations? I need some color back in my life!

I’ll be cruising through all of 2012′s top 10′s and looking-back posts around the web, after my kids are in bed. We plan to celebrate NYE New York time, which is 9 pm for those who are even worse at math than I am. My little party planner has tonight all mapped out.

SAMSUNG

It reads:

  • TV
  • Cookies
  • Barbies
  • Slurpees
  • Dinner
  • Freeze Dance
  • Chess
  • Countdown

Who says we don’t know how to party? Everyone? Oh, yeah, everyone says that.

My friend Jody gave me a great recipe, which has inspired my second new favorite salad. (My first is a few posts down and it’s buffalo chicken-licious).

Paso Uno (That’s step one, Gringos): Buy a fat pomegranate at the end of the farmers’ market for $1.00

Step Two: Read the photos below. You’ll be slicing off the top, scoring the corners, peeling back the pom and pulling out all the seeds.

SAMSUNGSAMSUNGSAMSUNGSAMSUNG

Next: Toast some nuts. Any nuts! Pour raw nuts into a dry pan and turn the heat to high. Once the pan is hot, keep the nuts moving for 1-2 minutes and you’ve got yourself some flavor!

Step Twelve:  Use a dressing which is light in flavor. I don’t think you can go wrong with a Poppy Seed or Balsamic.

Step C: Mix seeds, nuts and dressing into a giant bowl of lettuce.

Step Last: Crumble blue cheese, feta, cojita or whatever crumbly stuff you’ve got over the top.

Step Eat: Eat it.

SAMSUNGSAMSUNGSAMSUNG

Before I go party with my family in my pajamas, I’d love to wish you all a Happy New Year! 2013 has great things in store for us all. Yes, it will have some poop as well, but it’s all in how we look at it and deal with it, right?

Thank you all for making 2012 a bigger, better year for Food It Forward. As of yesterday, FoFo has had a little more than 82,000 views this year. I plan to triple that number in ’13. Lucky number 13, right! Be safe tonight!

As my Grandfather would love to say on NYE,

“I’m not brushing my teeth until next year,”

Kim

We Survived the Mayan Apocalypse

Starred Photos13

Happy last week of 2012, FoFo friends! I vowed all December to not have the attitude of “I’m so glad it is over!” I didn’t vow hard enough I guess, because I am glad we are quickly rolling towards January. It isn’t necessarily all the shopping and wrapping that knocks me out, it’s the ridiculous amount of time I spend running quick errands or buying groceries. It’s all the extra cleaning and baking, balanced with keeping a cheerful demeanor and ensuring I squeeze in every tradition my five year old can remember. He can remember a lot of them! The class party, field trip, church parties, brunches, lunches, dinners, parties and decorating, it’s all so much fun, but exhausting too!

I haven’t really kept it a secret that I have been battling the weight I put on after working so hard this spring to take it off. Between a pulled neck and a head cold, I haven’t been able to really give it the big start I  have wanted to. Luckily, I am now set up for success and ready to say goodbye to the pounds that don’t belong to me.

Starting with, protein shakes! I wish I took a photo of the shake I am drinking right now, it’s great! Dates are the best way to sweeten a tart smoothie  and I’ll have to remember to post more about that. For now, check this out:

It’s the 6300, baby!

The mother of all Christmas gifts! The Vitamix 6300. It’s beyond amazing and it’s proof that my parents can buy my love. Just kidding, I loved them first and actually now feel a little bad they spent that much money on me and Jy.

Stop! Grammar time!

old-hammer

I’m pretty sure it was my friend Jody who taught me this trick, remember it, it’s good!

If you are unsure whether to use I or me in a sentence, take out the name of the other person (or object) and see which sounds best. If you aren’t sure whether you should say, “The cashier gave Max and I a free cupcake” or “The cashier gave Max and me a free cupcake”, use the trick.

The cashier gave I a free cupcake.

The cashier gave me a free cupcake.

Bingo!

Now you know to say, “The cashier gave Max and me a free cupcake.”

Back to regular programming.

I found a nice See Jane Run gift card in my stocking. The hilarious errand of the day involves this gift. I’ll be taking my boys with me today to be fitted for a sports bra. Please, please pray for me.

My fridge and pantry are both stocked and I am ready to make 2013 my healthiest year yet. Not too late to DAMY with me!


DAMY Method Natural Online Weight Loss Program


Some Fresh & Easy Notes

If you can find this tea, you must buy.

DSCN0219

It tastes like a wintery, magical Hallmark movie, that’s pretty much the only description I can come up with. Delicious find from Fresh & Easy. Oh! I almost forgot, I wanted to show you what F&E sent me!

SAMSUNG

The Fresh & Easy holiday party was on a weeknight and I wasn’t able to attend, so they sent me a goodie box instead! I had already made two boxes of the Ginger Bread Mix, which is super simple and totally yummy, the whole family loved it. When the box arrived, we were just about out of the Jolly Java Peppermint Coffee too, so the timing was perfect. This coffee doesn’t taste like overtly sweet, it just has a hint of pep to it, no pun intended. Jolly Java is great for bleak, rainy mornings. The caramel corn was new to our house, but quickly devoured. Can you see how 70% of the bag is gone?! And you KNOW I love me some coupons!

I am heartbroken about Fresh & Easy being bought and possibly resold by Tesco in the coming future. Hopefully, someone will figure out a way to keep the doors open with a bit of restructuring.

A Kick in the Pants

I’ve been able to drink some Peet’s Holiday Blend for the past couple days, as Jy scored it in our family’s White Elephant gift exchange. I love this stuff! It’s seriously the best. The best. Sorry Auntie Didi, I love you and I love Starbucks, but this stuff rules!

Now, I am off to spend my sports bra and Sephora gift cards (hand cream, woot-woot!). I’m strapping my BodyBugg back to my arm and saying adios to my tight jeans (which used to be my loose jeans). Shake off your latke hips, your egg nog bootie and poundcake thighs with me!

I hope you live no where near me, friendly readers. I’m learning how to run. Yeah, you read that right. It is NOT pretty! So much bouncing and hunching over. If you see me, pretend not to recognize me, ok?

Happy Thursday!
Kim

Good News First!

2012-12-18

What you are looking at here is a bit of good in the world! These are a few shots of generosity found this December.

The girls in the top left photo volunteered to collect some of what you see in both the top and bottom right corner photos. The bins in the pictures are full of sports bras, t-shirts, socks and shorts, all of which will be making their way to Uganda this month. There is an amazing program with an even more amazing story behind it, in Jinja, Uganda, called Children of Grace.  I was invited to work with this table at a church Christmas luncheon and was able to chat with one of the program directors who told me all about this beautiful organization which helps children in Uganda who have lost their mothers to AIDS. 

The photo in the top center and the one on the bottom left are both items from the family we adopted this Christmas. I am in no way trying to pat myself or my husband on the back right now. The generosity found in these gifts came from others! We had planned to give each family member in this small family of three, one item. However, my mother and grandmother stepped in first. Between the two of them, the seven year-0ld of the family was given a pair of pajamas, a school outfit, a dressy skirt and top, some fuzzy socks and a sparkly pair of Hello Kitty shoes. THEN, our good friends Jody and Travis stepped in and gave the family two seriously generous gift cards, one for groceries and the other was a Visa card, they could use wherever they choose. I feel like it was my family who was adopted this year!

The photo in the bottom center and the right center are some of the gift gathered for a family adopted through my women’s group at church. I wanted to show you all the bikes that were generously sold for only $25 to one of the groups who were searching for the gift that a needy family really wanted. These bikes are said to sell for somewhere around $600! What a gift this family will have this year.

If you are a personal friend on Facebook, then you already know about my friend, Jen. She spent the past month collecting donations for a struggling single mother, who has had a long, hard battle with cancer. Jen asked for $10 gift cards to make this lady’s Christmas a little brighter. Over $3,500 later, the generous spirit of Jen’s heart has made this Christmas a very special one for a mom and her daughter.

The best part? I know more stories than these!

There is another sweet lady I want to tell you about. Her name is Melissa and I’ve been able to work in Dallas’ class at church on the occasional Sunday and play with Melissa’s adorably sweet daughter, Kate. Check out Melissa’s blog, The Larson Lingo. If you’d like to help someone out this Christmas, consider sending Melissa’s friends in Newton, Connecticut a small donation or gift card. These friends of Melissa’s include two children who left Sandy Hook safely, but witnessed things no child should ever have to. Melissa plans to send some gift cards to Panera, Starbucks, Cold Stone and other fun spots for this friend to take her 1st and 4th grade kids. The hope is to offer a few escapes that will lift the spirits of these heartbroken children. If you’d like to send $5 or a gift card, please email me at KimNowlin@hotmail.com or leave a message on the Food It Forward facebook page. I’m sure Melissa’s friend could arrange to pass out or share any extra donations that come her way!

Here comes the bad news.

SAMSUNG

I took Dallas to See’s candy to pick up ONE piece before he got his flu shot. Look what found its way into the car and then to my glutes. Well, they didn’t make it to my actual glute muscles, but they are sitting comfortably near them. I can tell you, it was NOT on my DAMY plan. Neither was a lot of what I have recently eaten. However, I’m not giving up! I am still only at about 50% of being on-plan, but I am trying desperately to shed my all or nothing attitude about a healthy lifestyle. I ain’t quittin’ honey (even if my jeans have).

Look what I found in the waiting room that infamous flu shot day:

SAMSUNG

So much guilt!

You know what is a better find? The magazines you’ve been wanting to read, but will not buy. I always find those at my Grandma’s house. My Grandma is friggin’ awesome.

SAMSUNG

I would like you to meet my new favorite salad, buffalo chicken with greek yogurt dressing!  To make the chicken, you simply heat up some precooked chicken pieces in a skillet with one part water, two parts buffalo flavor hot sauce and a few dashes Worcestershire sauce. Get the mixture nice and bubbly, then let simmer for 5-10 minutes. The dressing is a mixture of greek yogurt and blue cheese with a splash of apple cider vinegar. Lots of flavor, tons of heat and a bit of creamy coolness!

SAMSUNG

I’ve been surrounded by holiday food lately, which I am sure you have to. You can’t escape it! Carby and sugary foods are the new Kardashians. My kids aren’t helping either. They are not so slowly evolving into little candy canes. Aaaaand, would anyone mind inventing a candy cane that isn’t sticky? Thanks.

So, I found a great deal on a gingerbread house at Fresh & Easy which was already assembled and contained no crazy ingredients. I had big hopes for the little cottage. Here is the reality:

SAMSUNG

And here is the other reality, there was NO way my kids were going to let this puppy sit and dry overnight. This is what the shack looked like a good 20 minutes after start time.

SAMSUNG SAMSUNG

As added DAMY incentive, I am posting this photo of myself in all my weight gain glory. Quick, someone sing something angelic for me!

DSCN0278

If you have read more than two or three posts here, you may remember I mentioned that I am writing a book. Just wanted to update…still writing it. Yeah, that’s still about all that I have to say about it. Just wanted to let you know it’s still coming. It mostly writes itself when I have the rare chance to be alone and walk the streets. Uh, you know what I mean.

SAMSUNG

Glad to have to chance to sit and chat again! Happy a couple days away from Friday, friends!