Thursday, September 30, 2010

One Mom to Another

CEE-LO'S NEW SONG?!


So I'm sure many of you have heard Cee-Lo's new song titled "F*CK YOU!"  Julianna and I walk on a daily basis at one of our local parks and listen to an application on my phone that plays random music from the category of my choice which was "Top 40."  When we walk there are approximately 25-30 people walking on the trails with us, most elderly enjoying their morning walks.  Sometimes, we stop and talk to some of the little women because they just love the baby; basically what I'm trying to say is we know quite a bit of those people that we pass on the trails.

Ok, back to my story:  One morning the radio was pretty loud because my 14 month old daughter LOVES Katy Perry.  So that day the TOP 40 station was playing quite a bit of her favorite songs, so I had that sucker pumped up to it's highest volume.  Then all the sudden, a song I didn't know came on.  I walked around bopping my head and then "AHHHHHHH"  Cee-Lo just really said "F*CK YOU!"  Not one time or two, but about 20 times.  I scrambled around to find my phone before someone walked beside me and heard this foul language that in addition my sweet 14 month-old is listening to; on accident of course.  Not but 10 seconds later, I heard a fast paced walker was coming up behind us and I couldn't get my phone to stop playing the song, turn the volume down, nothing!!  MY PHONE FROZE!!!!  I quickly grabbed my sweater and shoved it over the phone to muffle the continuous "F*CK YOUS!"  Thankfully, once the walker was far enough in front of me my phone had unfrozen itself and I quickly clicked on "ban this song" on my phone.

This morning while in the car taking Jackson to school the radio was on and I heard this song come on the radio, I was chatting it up on my cellphone so wasn't really paying attention much.  Then I heard Jackson singing that song!!  He hadn't gotten to the bad language parts, but seemed to know the other words?!  I don't know how..maybe Jey..hmmmm, I'm going to have to ask him tomorrow about that.  Anyways, I left the song on to see what Jackson would do and the anticipation was starting to build up...I waited and waited and then here it coooooomes.........Jackson says "oh Mommy, I can't say that word." and goes on to singing the other words.  At that moment I was so proud of him. 

Next thing I'm going to walk to a park and get told "f you lady get off my swing" because of this song.  Grrrrrr!  To mothers and future mothers, ban this song!!!  I don't understand why they allow it on the radio?!

Photobucket

Penne with Vodka Sauce

The Weight Watcher's website has come through with some very impressive, healthy and delicious recipes lately.  The only thing I would do next time with this recipe is add some grilled chicken, but other than that it was perfect!


Recipe courtesy of:  WeightWatchers.com

Ingredients:

*1 Tbsp unsalted butter
*2 medium shallot(s), minced (about 1/2 cup)
*2 medium garlic clove(s), minced
*2 Tbsp parsley, fresh, minced
*1/2 tsp sea salt, or other coarse salt
*1/4 tsp black pepper, freshly ground
*3 Tbsp canned tomato paste
*2 oz vodka
*1/8 tsp table salt, or to taste (for cooking pasta)
*12 oz uncooked penne
*1/2 cup(s) heavy whipping cream
*20 leaves basil, fresh, cut into ribbons (chiffonade)

Directions:

*Heat a large skillet over a medium-low heat. Add butter, shallots and garlic; sauté until shallots start to caramelize, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add parsley, sea salt and pepper, stirring once or twice. Add tomato paste and mix to form a paste. Cook for about 5 minutes, moving paste around pan occasionally; add vodka. Scrap bottom of pan with a wooden spoon and cook for about 5 minutes more.

*Meanwhile, bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain.

*Add cream to tomato sauce; reduce heat to low and simmer for about 3 minutes. Add pasta to sauce and mix to coat; top with basil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Yields about 1 cup per serving.


(On a side note: Squeezable tomato paste is the way to go!  I recently came across it in Publix, and never again will purchase the canned stuff!  I seem to waste so much when buying the can because I usually only need a tablespoon or two, and it lasts a long time in the fridge.)

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Pork Chops in Country Onion Gravy

Recipe Courtsey of:  Pillsbury Fast and Healthy Cookbook    

Since last night, I abandoned the breaded pork cutlet recipe I moved the pork over to tonights dinner. 

I was honored to have recently received my mother-in-laws cookbooks.  She had passed away just this past February, so with missing her so much I was eager to flip through one of them and find a recipe she cooked before.  The best part about getting roughly 30 cookbooks from her were the handwritten notes she made about the recipes she cooked.  It was such an awesome feeling to see her handwriting on this recipe I was about to cook for dinner and know that she probably had touched that very spot I was touching on the page not long before she passed.  ::Sigh:: Missing someone so much is hard knowing you'll never get to talk, see or touch them again.

So here is this wonderful recipe that my wonderful mother-in-law wrote "very good" about in her cookbook.

Ingredients:

*4 (4oz) boneless pork loin chops
*2 cups chopped onions
*1 cup beef broth
*1/8 teas pepper
*1/2 cup skim milk
*2 Tbsp all-purpose flour

Directions:

*Generously spray 12-inch nonstick skillet with nonstick cooking spray.  Heat over high heat until hot.  Add pork chops; reduce heat to medium-high.  Cook 3 minutes.  Turn pork; cook an additional 2 to 3 minutes or until browned.  Remove pork from skillet; cover to keep warm.

*Reduce heat to medium.  Add onions to same skillet; cook 3 minutes.  Add brother and pepper; mix well.  Add pork; spoon onion mixture over pork.  Cover tightly; simmer 12 minutes or until pork is no longer pink in center.

*In small bowl, combine milk and flour; blend well.  Add to skillet; cook and stir 2 to 3 minutes or until thickened.

Weight Watchers: 4 pts.
*I also served this with broccoli, and brown rice for an additional 3 pts, broccoli is 0 pts.


Confession of the Day

September 29, 2010
Here it is everybody.....my nemisis!  Today, I was doing my step aerobics down in the basement and was on a roll.  I was movin' to the music, following along and was going pretty fast; that is until I busted.  Yes, that is correct.  I was doing some twist, step-up, backwards, turny thing and my ankle just gave out.  You know, like when you are walking and all the sudden your ankle just turns on itself?  Yup, that was me!  Somehow, I flew across the stepper, twisted my ankle, fell on the floor and busted my head on the corner.  At that very moment I was wishing I had one of those little red button things that the elderly wear around their necks to call for help.  I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to get up.  I laid there for just about 15 minutes catching my breath, and then hobbled up on my jacked up ankle.  Thankfully, everything is fine and the only thing hurt is my pride.  Grrrrr, and I was getting so good at doing step aerobics, at least that's what I thought.  I can't wait for the week to end!

**Get caught up on all my confessions and embarrassing moments by clicking on the "Confessions of the Day" at the top of the page!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Creamed Spinach-Lightened Up

I recently came across this amazing food blog.  It's called skinny taste, and the owner Gina re-creates some of her favorite recipes to use along side the Weight Watchers program.  Tonight, with my pizza mishap, I was able to make this creamed spinach recipe.  It is soooooo good!  I couldn't find the Boursin Light cheese, so I substituted with light cream cheese and it worked well.  FYI, I did notice that I had to add quite a bit of salt.
Photo Courtsey: http://www.skinnytaste.com/
Gina's Weight Watcher Recipes Servings: 8 • Serving Size: 2/3 cup • Points: 2 pts
Calories: 95.8 • Fat: 4.9 g • Protein: 5.9 g • Carb: 8.2 g • Fiber: 1.8 g 
  • 2 tsp butter
  • 1/2 cup shallots, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 1/2 cups fat free milk
  • 2 tbsp parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp fresh pepper
  • salt to taste
  • 4.4 oz Boursin Light
  • 16 oz bag frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained of all moisture
In a large saute pan, melt butter. Add shallots and garlic and cook on medium about 5 minutes. Add flour to shallots, mix well and cook one more minute. Reduce heat to low and slowly add milk, whisking well. Add parmesan cheese, nutmeg, salt and pepper and mix well. Add boursin light and mix with until smooth. Add spinach and combine well with sauce, cook one minute, until heated through. Adjust salt and pepper if necessary. Makes 6 1/2 cups

Weight Watchers: 2 pts.

Breaded Pork Cutlets


Ingredients:

*4 spray(s) cooking spray
*1 pound(s) lean boneless pork chop, four 4 oz chops
*1/2 cup(s) all-purpose flour
*3/4 tsp table salt, or to taste
*1/2 tsp black pepper, or to taste
*1 large egg(s)
*3 Tbsp fat-free skim milk
*1 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard, or to taste
*1/2 cup(s) dried bread crumbs, panko-variety (see note)
*1/2 medium lemon(s), cut into 4 wedges

Directions:

*Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat a nonstick baking sheet with cooking spray.

*Place pork chops between 2 sheets of waxed paper; pound to 1/4-inch thickness (to watch a video of this technique, click here).

*On a plate, combine flour, salt and pepper. Beat egg in a shallow bowl; stir in milk and mustard. Place panko on a plate.

*Dip chops, one at a time, in flour mixture to lightly dust both sides; shake off excess. Dip each chop in egg batter and then lightly coat both sides with panko. Place on prepared baking sheet; lightly coat with cooking spray.

*Bake for 8 minutes; flip and bake until cooked through, about 5 to 7 minutes more. (Coat with cooking spray and broil for a minute or two if you like the coating extra crisp.) Serve with lemon wedges.


Yields 1 chop per serving.
Weight Watchers: 6 pts.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Confession of the Day

Todays confession is waking up late and calling Jackson's school to tell the director that we were stuck in traffic.  Can you believe that they actually count him as "absent" for being 1 minute late?!  Good gracious, they only get 10 unexcused absences a year. 

Today, I was lucky enough she did not count him as absent for being 10 minutes late, whew!

Chicken Teriyaki with Broccoli

This recipe reminded me a lot of the chinese version of Chicken and Broccoli.  It was very good and will definitely make it again.

Ingredients:

*1 spray cooking spray
*2 medium garlic cloves, minced
*1 pound boneless/skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
*4 medium scallions, chopped (both green and white parts)
*1/2 cup fat-free chicken broth
*2 Tbsp teriyaki sauce
*4 cups broccoli, fresh, florets, steamed

Directions:

*Coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray and set pan over medium-high heat
*Add garlic and cook 2 minutes
*Add chicken and brown on all sides, then add scallions to cook through
*Add broth, teriyaki sauce and broccoli; cover and simmer 6-8 minutes until chicken and broccoli cooked through.


**I served this on top of brown rice

Weight Watchers:  5 pts (chicken & broccoli), 3 pts additional for 1/2 cup brown rice.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Julianna Walking

Our sweet Julianna is getting really good at walking, and we are so thankful and proud of her! She started walking right at the same time Jackson started walking, 14 months. Go girl, go!

Baked Chicken

The picture doesn't do this dish justice.  It's a very quick, healthy and kid friendly dinner.  I made the potato wedges with just salt, pepper and olive oil on them.  Cooked on 400 degrees as well.

Ingredients:

*1 spray cooking spray
*1 pound, boneless/skinless chicken breasts (four 4oz. halves)
*1/2 tsp table salt
*1/4 tsp black pepper, freshly ground
*1 tsp olive oil
*2 tsp fresh lemon juice
*2 tsp rosemary, fresh, chopped
*2 tsp parsley, fresh, chopped
*1/4 cup chicken broth
*1/2 medium lemon, quartered for garnish

Directions:

*Preheat oven to 400 degrees
*Coat a small, shallow dish with cooking spray
*Season both sides of chicken breasts with salt and pepper, then put in dish.
*Drizzle with olive oil, lemon, rosemary and parsley
*Pour chicken broth around chicken to coat the bottom of the pan

*Bake until chicken is cooked through, about 30-35 minutes and garnish with lemon slices.

Weight Watchers: 3 pts.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Fall Foliage Wreaths-Part 2

I finally finished part 2 of my fall foliage wreaths.  I had to make one for the side door, which was the rectangle one and then I needed to make two round ones for our front doors.  I am happy to report: after 8 glue gun finger burns and one major leg burn (that went down 2 layers of flesh), I am finished with the two round wreaths and they look AWESOME!  It was well worth all the pain!

I will take a new picture in the morning when the sun is a-shinin!

Homework for a 4 Year-Old?

Jackson came home on Thursday with an "assignment sheet" listing his project which is due on Monday.  He was to make a family tree.  I discussed his homework with him and soon realized he didn't understand a word I was saying and I was stuck with his homework to complete.

Jey and I rushed out today to get all the supplies for our family tree.  Yes, it has become OUR family tree.  Jey and I found ourselves thinking of creative ways to make the tree, using landscaping nuggets from the yard for the tree trunk, glitter glue to make a sun and clouds, and even green fabric for the leaves.  As we bickered about needing to make the tree look good, it hit me that this was a 4 year-olds project and not a 28 and 31 year-old's project!  I reminded Jey that this was Jackson's project and he was only 4, but Jey had already taken over this project and calmly mentioned to me we needed to get the brown puff paint for the branches.  Needless to say, this 4 year-olds family tree trunk looks a little better than expected; although, Jackson did a lot of the work.




 

Poor thing put his little finger in the scolding hot glue from the glue gun!  Not a happy camper!


Baked Shrimp in Lemony Garlic Sauce



Ingredients:

*1 1/4 pound(s) shrimp, peeled and deveined
*1 spray cooking spray
*1/4 cup(s) fresh lemon juice
*2 Tbsp light butter, melted
*3 medium garlic clove(s), minced
*1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
*3/4 lemon pepper seasoning
*1/4 tsp ground red pepper (optional)
*2 Tbsp parsley, chopped

Instructions:

*Preheat oven to 425 degrees
*Arrange shrimp in a single layer in a 13x9 baking dish coated with cooking spray.
*Combine lemon juice, butter, garlic, worcestershire sauce, lemon pepper and optional ground red pepper in a bowl and pour over shrimp.
*Bake at 425 for 8-10 minutes or until shrimp are done. 
*Sprinkle parsley over shrimp and serve immediately.

Yield: 4 Servings (Serving Size: 3oz, 2 Tbsp sauce)
4 Weight Watchers Points

Friday, September 24, 2010

Sharing is so painful sometimes!

My friend Wendy and I are self proclaimed "Diet Queens." We always joke that the two of us could write a book together about all the diets and what not that we've tried. She and I are just not cut out for dieting, but we sure do try! I recently got an email about the new Mini DQ Blizzard and found myself relating to this video. Jey can literally eat ANYTHING and not gain a pound. I'm pretty sure he still weighs the same he did when he was 12 (I'm not kidding), so it's a constant battle with him being able to shove his face full of deliciousness and me having to eat celery sticks. WTF??? Sometimes, I just want a bite! :)

Publix Shopping Trip


I love saving money, especially on groceries.  The joy I feel when I look at my receipt with my total savings on it, is indescribable.  My favorite grocery store to shop at is Publix, and my favorite blog to get my weekly coupon match-ups is SouthernSavers

Here is everything I purchased today, and my savings:

*Boneless Pork Chops
*Boneless/Skinless Chicken
*2 boxes of Jimmy Dean Breakfast Sandwiches; Printable Coupon
*2 boxes of Eggo Pancakes
*Ready Bake Nestle Cookie Dough; Printable Coupon
*Vitamuffin Tops (such a wonderful thing for those of us on a diet!)
*6 Bags Green Giant Valley Fresh Steamer Vegetables; Printable Coupon
*2 Bags Birds Eye Steam Bags (these ended up being FREE with the B1G1 when you purchase Ms. Paul's Fish products)
*Fiber One Cereal; Printable Coupon
*4 Boxes of Kelloggs Apple Jacks/Fruit Loops Cereal; Printable Coupon
*2 Boxes of Mrs. Pauls Fish Sticks (a new staple in our house since Jackson started Pre-K); Printable Coupon
*2 4-Packs of Fiber One Yogurt; Printable Coupon
*NEW Squeezable Garlic (if you haven't used this yet, you must!  It is so easy!)
*Wishbone Salad Dressing; Printable Coupon
*2 Bottles of Glass Plus Cleaner; Printable Coupon
*4 Baking Potatoes
*1lb. White Shrimp (cleaned and devained)

Grand Total: $39.70
Savings: $73.05

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Fall Foliage Wreath

One blog that I check on a weekly basis is Thrifty Decor Chick.  This blog is amazing and gives decor ideas that are both fun and inexpensive.  What could be better?  The best thing about fall to me is the gorgeous orange and red leaves and she posted a craft on making a fall wreath.  This wreath accents all the beautiful colors of the season and makes me feel warm and cozy just looking at the finished product. 

Based on her blog, she spent a little less than I did on mine.  My dollar tree didn't have the leaves, so I went to Michael's and found some.  I also had to buy a wreath holder, glue gun, glue sticks, foam board, the big flower clip on the top and then bought a bag of fall items (tiny pine cones, little stick bundles, and berries).  So, the total for my wreath was $15.98--still not bad!

I love how it turned out!

"Homemaker"

So it's official.  I am classified as a "homemaker."  Today, I was filling out paperwork for Jackson's school and it asked me my job title.  There was an "oh-so-convenient" list of job titles with tiny little boxes to the left.  As I looked down the list to find my job title, I realized that I didn't know what my job title was exactly.  Yes, I could check the box "self-employed," "manager," "teacher," "counselor," "babysitter" to just name a few, but to my surprise there was a job title "homemaker!"  I quickly checked the box and felt appreciated.  There are many of days where I feel that people take for granted the SAHM.  Yes, we stay at home with our kids, but that doesn't mean we are sitting around eating bon-bons all day!  I am making breakfast, lunch and dinner; washing, folding and putting away clothes, doing the dishes, taking and picking up my son from school, grocery shopping and cleaning the house, you see I don't sit around and eat bon-bons, I simply eat the bon-bons while doing the daily errands, I can assure you it's not while sitting! 

So I say this with great gratitude to the people who were so kind to make a job title "homemaker," thank you for appreciating the SAHM!

"She looks well to the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness."  Proverbs 31:27
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