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After falling off the bandwagon again, and gaining back the 20 pounds I’d recently lost plus 10 more over the holidays, I decided something needed to change.

Obviously, Weight Watchers has worked for me in the past, and I was excited to hear about their new changes to the program.  So I’m back on Weight Watchers, but I’ve also added something to that.  There is a wonderful blog I read by Lysa TerKeurst, who also happens to be a great Christian author.  When she mentioned she was writing a book about food issues, I was really curious.  I purchased her book, Made to Crave and have been reading it the past couple weeks.

I’m really enjoying this book because it’s not just another “diet book.”  It’s really about getting to the core of this struggle with food and weight and our need to rely on God.  So far, I’ve lost 11 pounds in two weeks, but I think my real accomplishments have been resisting foods that aren’t so good for me.

Way back in July, I went on an amazing trip to NJ and NY with Morgan and her mom and sister.  It was really so much fun.  Here are some of the food highlights.

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We ate pizza in NJ (I ate the pepperoni side—mushrooms are not my thing!).

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We had chicken cordon bleu and garlic mashed potatoes in a Spanish restaurant.  Weird, I know, but it was really delicious

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They had really good veggies, too.

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This isn’t food, but I just thought it was really pretty.

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Of course we had to try out Shake Shack.  They had a really good-looking mushroom burger for the vegetarians (which Morgan’s sister is) that almost made me want to taste a mushroom.  But not quite!

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Again, this isn’t food—just thought it was pretty.

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Back in NJ, we ate at the Summit Diner.  This was my first experience in a real diner, and it was quite an experience!

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No biscuits or grits here!

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We ate at this little cafe in NYC and my prosciutto sandwich was very tasty.

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This ice cream truck had the best Pepsi floats, and I don’t even like Pepsi.  It also could have been the fact that we had just been on the Subway for a long time and I was thirsty!

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We ate pizza in NYC, too.

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This cheesecake was from Juniors, and it was honestly the best cheesecake I have had in my life.  My only regret is getting the little slice instead of the big one!

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This restaurant was underneath the High Line, which is a park built on an old railroad track in NYC.  I would definitely recommend checking out the High Line if you go to NYC before it gets too touristy.

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The food was yummy, but on the expensive side.  This was an eggplant, mozzarella, tomato, and pesto sandwich.

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The floors of this restaurant were made of pennies. 

 

Thanks, Morgan, for making my first trip to NYC such a wonderful experience.  And thanks to my parents for making it possible for me to go.  I hope to go back soon! ;)

In case any of you haven’t heard, my sister is pregnant, which means I’m going to be an aunt!baby cakes 005 

Emily and Andrew brought over a Baby cake to announce their good news.

baby cakes 002 Isn’t it cute?! Of course, this inspired me to make a cake of my own babycake.

baby cakes 008 I made this cake for Father’s Day, when Emily and Andrew announced the pregnancy to the rest of the family.

baby cakes 012 I made the cake pink and blue since we don’t know if the baby is a boy or girl yet.

baby cakes 009 I must say, the cake turned out pretty delicious for a boxed cake mix.  The trick (which I learned from the amazingly talented Morgan) to getting super moist cake from a cake mix is adding a little more oil than it calls for.  Super healthy, no; super moist, yes.

I did make the buttercream frosting from scratch.  It’s so simple to make, and tastes  waaaay better than from a can.  You can find the recipe here (there are only 4 ingredients!).

Congratulations, Emily and Andrew!

On March 5th of this year, I logged back onto Weight Watchers online.  I’ve mentioned before how I was happy I didn’t need Weight Watchers this time around.  I’ve also mentioned the fact that when I lost over 50 pounds about 6 years ago, it was by using the Weight Watchers online program.

So I guess I finally broke down and admitted to myself that I do need the structure that I get from doing a program like Weight Watchers.  I’ve kept off a 10 lb. weight loss for about a year now, as well as losing an additional 10+ lbs. since beginning Weight Watchers online in March. 

Now that I don’t have 100 lbs. to lose anymore, it feels more attainable.  Just knowing exactly how much I should be eating each day, as well as knowing that I can have a few treats throughout the week (but not too many), is really a great thing for me.  Unfortunately I’m simply not at a point where I’m able to eat “intuitively,” so having structure is really helping me.

Here’s one of those “treats” that I’ve just learned to make about a week ago.  It’s called Yorkshire Pudding, but it’s not like any pudding I’ve ever had before.

 

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All you need is 3/4 cups milk, 3 eggs, 3/4 cups all purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 cup canola oil (you’re really supposed to use beef roast drippings or something like that, but who keeps that around?).

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Add the dry ingredients together in a bowl.

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Beat the eggs and milk together until frothy, then add in the dry ingredients and mix until combined.

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Distribute oil evenly into 6 (or 8—I think I’ll try doing 8 next time) parts of a muffin tin.  Place in a 450*F oven for about 8 minutes, to get the oil steaming hot.

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Get the muffin tin with the oil out of the oven.  BE VERY CAREFUL because the oil will be very hot.  Pour in the eggs-flour-salt-milk mixture into the hot oil, then carefully place back in the oven for 15-20 minutes.

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You can use those 15 minutes to clean up the mess.

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They come out so hot a crispy on the outside, but soft on the inside.  A wonderful little treat!

Have you learned to make something new lately?

Look at me blogging about something that happened less than a week ago!  I’m getting so much better at this blogging thing! 

Sunday was, as we all know, Mother’s Day.  I must say I’m pretty sure I got the best mom in the world.  I know so many people say that, and I honestly think it’s true for everyone who says it.  Some things I love about my mom:

  1. She always wants to have home-cooked meals for me when I’m home.  And she always wants for us to eat together at the kitchen table.  I may complain about this sometimes, but I know it’s really for the best.
  2. She always wants me to come into her room and say good night to her every night.
  3. She still asks me to call when I get to school safely, and call before I leave to come home so that she knows when to expect me home.  Again, this is one thing that I may have complained about before but I do know it’s just because she loves me and worries about me.
  4. She always checks with me to make sure my car has gas before I leave for college.
  5. She is extremely supportive of me through my weight loss.
  6. She is also very supportive and proud of me about my training for the Peachtree and running it.
  7. She always wants to do things with me like getting pedicures or going shopping.  She even painted pottery with me last summer.
  8. She has always put her family before herself, working longer hours to allow for wonderful family vacations.  I know she sacrifices for her family and I don’t thank her enough for that.
  9. She’s not like most people when she offers to let you choose which slice of cake you want before her.  You know how most people ask you to choose first because they know you’ll pick the smaller one just to be polite?  Well she’d let you have both pieces if that’s what you really wanted.
  10. She’s put up with me for over 21 years!!!

Okay, enough of the sappiness (is that a word? Spell check thinks it is…). I’ll spare you anymore mushy mush and just show some pictures from the day.

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Mom wanted salmon and shrimp with sweet potatoes, so that’s what she got!

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I also made this margarita cake (don’t worry, it’s non-alcoholic!).  It’s got a pretzel crust, and was aMAZing!  It’s not low-cal, but totally worth it if you want to splurge a little.  You can get the recipe here.

~~~

I think it’s time to give an actual update on how I’m doing health-wise.  Hopefully tomorrow I’ll get one up.  Losing weight is quite a journey for me, and I’m happy to report things have been going well these past few months.

Let’s just pretend this isn’t almost a month late, okay?  Let’s rewind to before school got out, before my 5 finals, before my too-many-to-count projects and essays (are you visualizing this?), to that beautiful Sunday at the beginning of the month that was Easter.

Emily and Andrew came us in the morning, and then we came back to the house and got cookin’.

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Of course my mom had beautifully decorated the dining room table.

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Mom made the ham, baked beans, and potato salad.  Dad made the yellow squash casserole.  Andrew made the deviled eggs.

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We also had an amazing fruit salad.

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It was a great Easter feast!

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Easter picture time!

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I made these cupcakes, using a kit from World Market.  I thought they turned out really cute.  I also made some gluten free ones for Andrew (the ones at the bottom with no lady bug).  Those were… interesting.  The frosting was good, though!

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The Easter Bunny still comes to our house, even through my sister and I are out of our teens!

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He was very good to us this year.  My grandma’s Easter Bunny showed up late, so those things didn’t get in the picture, but he brought some yogurt and Clif bars!  Thanks, Easter Bunnies!!!

~~~

I’m home from college now for a month.  I got my grades and was very happy to see my hard work paid off.  I guess staying away from the blog was a good decision, but I’m glad to be back!  I missed you all!

Bunco was fun last night, and everyone seemed to love Mom’s Light Texas Caviar.

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Light Texas Caviar

1 c. corn

1 can black beans

2 tbs. balsamic vinegar

3 tbs. lime juice

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. cumin

1/2 c. cilantro

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and let marinate a few hours before serving (overnight is best).

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~~~

This morning I woke up and was craving some FIBER!

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I made a smoothie using this Amazing Grass Berry flavor Greens SuperFood that I bought at Whole Foods with the gift card I won in the Stonyfield prize pack.

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I was so excited to be able to buy this because it’s so expensive and something I really wouldn’t have been able to buy had I not had a gift card.

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Loved it!

~~~

Tonight we had the most delicious dinner (full of fiber, too!).

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Mom bought this salmon and baked it to perfection.

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We also had baked sweet potatoes with a little sea salt.

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And also Brussels sprouts with a little EVOO and sea salt.

Thanks for the amazing dinner, mom!

~~~

I’m so sad that Spring Break is almost over, but my summer break will be here before I know it (hopefully)!

Do any of you have any fun Spring Break or summer plans?

Night!

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