Posts tagged ‘Food’

Healthy Meal Options I’ve Been Loving

It’s been almost a year since I started my weight loss journey. I did fall off track a bit in the fall (by off track I mean I wasn’t consistently eating healthy, and more or less ate anything I wanted on the weekends), as the holidays were just way too full of delicious meals, treats, etc… But lately I’ve been doing much better and even entered myself in a “biggest loser” challenge between some co-workers as added motivation. I thought I might as well share some yummy dishes I’ve been eating lately that taste great but are great for you! Some are to be made, while others are just products you can find in stores!

1. Morningstar Farms Veggie Burgers
I absolutely love these. My favorites are the Original Grillers, Tomato Basil Burgers, and the Roasted Garlic Quinoa Burgers. I was never too keen on the idea of veggie burgers in general. Several years ago I tried a Boca burger and was far from impressed with those. Luckily a co-worker had me try a bite of her Morningstar Farms griller and I was surprised to find that I liked it! Liked it a lot, actually. I usually will pair them with some ketchup, onion, and a whole grain wheat bun.

2. Taco Salad
This is something I came up with using taco leftovers one day, and ended up being obsessed. I know taco salad is not something that’s never been done before, and is done several different ways, but this is just my way. I start out with lettuce and add in other veggies (usually for this salad I only add onions and red bell peppers). I then top it with fat free or reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese, fat free or light sour cream, some low-sodium taco sauce, and I sprinkle a bit of taco seasoning over the top. SO GOOD! It tastes seriously just like a taco. To bulk up the salad I’ve also added some grilled chicken, or even leftover ground turkey that was used to make actual tacos.

3. Lettuce Wraps
I literally just ventured into using lettuce as a bread substitute like a week ago, but I am hooked. I use heads of iceberg lettuce and carefully pull the leaves off in big enough sheets that I can fill them and wrap them up. I add different types of veggies depending on my desires of the moment, a lean meat such as chicken or turkey breast, and then use either low fat cream cheese or hummus as a spread. I was worried that it would more or less taste like a wrapped up salad since that’s basically what it is (and after eating salad SO. MUCH. I have a tendancy to get sick of it every now and again), but I was pleasantly surprised and this has become one of my favorite lunches for work.

4. Spaghetti Squash
I am a hardcore pasta/spaghetti lover, so I use spaghetti squash to help curb my cravings. I bake it with a bit of olive oil and garlic powder, scrape it, and top it with my favorite pasta sauce (which at the moment is a Tomato Vodka Cream Sauce by a brand called Paesana.)

5. Zucchini Pizzas/Lasagna
Another pasta substitute! To make the pizzas I cut my zucchini in long planks, reminiscent of the shape of french bread pizzas. I top them with spaghetti sauce, a little big of garlic powder (I’m a garlic fiend), and low-fat mozzarella cheese. Stick them in the oven until the cheese is melted and the zucchinis are a bit tender, and enjoy! For the lasagna I like to cut the zucchini in medallions, and slice a tomato as well. I then get an oven-safe container and start layering…zucchini (laid out so they cover the entire surface), sauce, tomato, garlic powder, cheese, sauce, etc… Bake it for about an hour or so at 375 and serve!

6. Special K Cinnamon Pecan Cereal with Vanilla Almond Milk
This is amazing. The cereal is amazing, and the milk is so good even my 9 year old loves it. It’s a not-so-guilty way of satisfying my sweet tooth.

7. PB2 and Oikos Vanilla Greek Yogurt
Another dessert favorite of mine lately. I like the Oikos brand vanilla the best out of the few I’ve tried because I find it to be more vanilla flavored and a bit sweeter than others. It’s delicious on it’s own, but to really take it up a notch I like to add a 1/2 serving (1 TBSP) of PB2 powdered peanut butter. It’s super addicting.

8. Frozen Breakfast/Dinner Favorites
Now I know there’s some controversy over frozen meals. That they’re not really that good for you, that there’s too many preservatives, etc… but sometimes I’m running late and don’t have time to make breakfast or even put together my lunch, or I get home after a day of work and am too hungry and tired to wait for something to cook, so these are ideal. I usually grab either the Lean Cuisine brand or the Weight Watchers’ Smart Ones brand. For breakfast my favorite is the Smart Ones English Muffin Egg and Sausage sandwiches. The canadian bacon ones are pretty good, too. As for lunch/dinner favorites I like the Lasagna Bake with Meat Sauce from Smart Ones, and my favorite Lean Cuisines are Four Cheese Cannelloni and Sesame Chicken.

So there are some of my favorite current healthy eats. What are some things you like to eat when watching your weight?


February 24, 2014 at 8:35 pm 1 comment

TruMoo Vanilla Milk Review

When I got the e-mail with the invitation to try the new Halloween edition of TruMoo, I was genuinely excited. Not only for me, but for my 9 year old son, too. He loves flavored milk, and vanilla has always been his favorite by far. Don’t get me wrong, he loves chocolate milk, but when vanilla is an option he always goes for that. When I saw that TruMoo had a limited edition orange-colored vanilla milk for Halloween, I knew immediately that this was going to be a huge hit in our household, and I was right.

The problem with my son loving flavored milks is they tend to be on the not-so-healthy side. Milk is very good for you, yes, but when there are sugars, syrups, and other variants added into what’s usually the fattiest of whole milks, it becomes more of a milkshake than just milk, which isn’t the healthiest of options by far. TruMoo, on the other hand, gets that children (and adults!) love chocolate and other flavors of milk and still manage to maintain the good nutrition that milk is known for. With less sugar, fat, and essentially no additives (such as high fructose corn syrup and artificial ingredients) TruMoo is the obvious choice when shopping for flavored milk.

We set out to the grocery store and easily found the Halloween Orange edition of vanilla TruMoo in the half gallon size. Although we’ve tried their chocolate options before, we picked up a half gallon of that, as well, just for good measure. 🙂 The vanilla flavor was absolutely delicious, and best of all it was mostly guilt-free! It wasn’t overly sweet or thick, making it refreshing but still sweet and flavored enough that it felt like a treat. Needless to say, the half gallon that was purchased on a Monday was gone by Tuesday evening, with the chocolate milk not lasting long after. I certainly have been utilizing the generous coupons that came in my Bzz Kit, as my family just cannot get enough. Not to mention the festive color made it that much more fun to drink!

Another bonus about TruMoo having the vanilla flavor was the big size it comes in. This may sound weird, and it may be much different in other places, but I’ve rarely seen vanilla milk in half gallon or gallon containers- only regular, and chocolate. Because vanilla is my son’s favorite, I end up having to buy several 16-20 oz. bottles which really add up financially. I’m glad I can not only save money on my son’s favorite drink, but I am also giving him a healthier option.

Note: I am a member of BzzAgent and was able to try this product for free in return for my honest opinion.

October 13, 2013 at 5:10 pm Leave a comment

Green Pineapple Banana Smoothie

Since I “officially” started my diet back in March (and by officially I mean that I started one and have actually continued one) I have been addicted to smoothies. They’re healthy, satisfying, and perfect for the warm weather we’re finally starting to have! Not to mention, my son loves them even after finding out I’ve been hiding spinach in it. 🙂 I typically have been drinking them 3-4 times a week… at least. It’s a great way for me to attack my sweet tooth without compromising my diet. I finally bought a new memory card and battery charger for my camera, so you can best believe there will be several recipes complete with pictures being posted on here. Eating healthy has somewhat taken over my brain, and I’m practically obsessed with finding and trying new healthy foods. This smoothie is Pineapple Banana with spinach. I love adding spinach to my smoothies. Even though the color doesn’t always turn out very appealing (red strawberries + green spinach = vomit brown), you can’t taste it at all. If my son will drink it, anyone will! I have yet to experience with other veggies, but I definitely plan to sometime soon. The ingredients can be altered slightly according to your taste, which will obviously effect the overall nutritional values slightly, but for simplicity’s sake I’m just going to post exactly what I used and the calories I came up with.

*1 Banana
*1 Cup Pineapple Chunks in 100% Juice
*6 oz. Oikos Vanilla Non-Fat Greek Yogurt
*3/4 Cup Blue Diamond Unsweetened Almond/Coconut Milk Blend
*1 Cup Baby Spinach
*3 Splenda Packets

Like I said earlier, you can make several different changes in this recipe to meet your personal tastes. I prefer the Oikos brand vanilla greek yogurt just because I think it’s creamier and sweeter than most other brands that I’ve tried. You can replace the Almond/Coconut milk that I used with any kind of milk, same with the Splenda. If you’re watching how many calories, carbs, sugars, etc. that you’re consuming, just be sure to adjust them likewise, as different kinds and even brands will have different nutritional contents. Also, I strain most of the juice out of the pineapple, so my totals are probably a tad bit higher than what they should be. Keep in mind that these totals are for the whole recipe (I believe it made about 3 1/2 cups worth, but to be honest I forgot to look at the measurements), so if you make this amount and split it, be sure to make the proper deductions.

Calories: 425
Carbs: 79g
Fat 3g
Protein: 18g
Sodium: 181mg
Sugar: 60g
Fiber: 5g

Step 1: Strain out most of the juice in the can of pineapple, and slice up the banana. Put the banana and pineapple pieces, along with the yogurt, almond/coconut milk, and Splenda, into the blender. Blend until smooth (I use the “Puree” button).

Step 2: Add in the baby spinach, and blend until smooth and green. This step is particularly important if you’re going to be serving to a child. They will surely catch on if there’s little leafy bits floating in their drink! 😉

Step 3: Add ice and blend (I use the “Ice Crush” button). This step is pretty much up to you, depending on what kind of consistency you like. I typically add about a cup, and blend it pretty good. Enough so that there’s not huge chunks floating around, and small enough that it can fit smoothly through a straw.

Step 4: Pour, garnish, and enjoy!!! 😀

May 5, 2013 at 5:18 pm Leave a comment

3-Day “Military” Diet Review

I’ve mentioned on here several times about my desire to lose weight. It was last May/June, I believe, that I decided I was going to take getting healthy seriously. I managed to lose 10 lbs by the end of last summer, which I was proud of, but at some point I just totally let it go. While I luckily did not gain the 10 lbs back at any point, my eating habits were back to pure crap. Fast forward to early March of this year. Not only is it a good time to start dieting for summer, but my brother is getting married this September. We went in to have our bridesmaids dresses fitted and ordered, and I was not happy with how I looked in the dress nor the size I had to order. Size 16… for a 5 ft. tall girl. Ick! Now these dresses run much smaller than most other clothes, and my pants size is easily 3 or 4 sizes smaller than 16, but it still made me feel disgusted with myself (and it didn’t help that two of the other girls were ordering sizes 2 and 4!). On the bright side, it finally clicked in my head that I need to pursue a healthier lifestyle. Not only that, but I love fashion, and at the moment I absolutely dread shopping for clothes.

That following week I started dieting. The only reason I waited a few days to begin was because I had a few gift cards to restaurants that would likely have been major speed bumps in my road to weight loss had they have been staring at me in my wallet during my journey. I started out by searching the internet for some fad diets. I went in knowing that they are just that- fads- and that the results are not only varied, but not permanent. I needed to do something drastic, though, so I decided on trying the 3 day diet. It claims that you can lose up to 10 lbs in three days, but I would’ve been happy with 5! I will post the exact diet at the end of this entry, along with the few substitutions I made. The first go was really successful. I lost 7 lbs! Was it hard? Absolutely. The portions are so much smaller than I was used to, so I was hungry a lot. Not to mention many of the foods weren’t something I typically cared for, especially without much seasoning or flavor allowed to be added, and not everything was easy to substitute so I just sucked it up and did it. I did gain 3 or 4 of those lbs. back after going off of the diet, but then lost 5 more lbs. the 2nd week.

I only did this diet twice over the span of 2 weeks. After doing so well the first time, I had originally planned on doing it once a week until a big chunk of the weight was off, however, the food is just so bland that it was highly unlikely I’d stick to it. It did help me with portion control, lowering my carbs, and giving me a whole new appreciation for the taste of veggies and meats (that aren’t covered in sauces)! I decided to try eating healthy by myself without a strict diet controlling what I put in my stomach, and the weight is still coming off (I’m going to do another post about my current eating habits)!

Anyway, while most people would advise you to avoid fad dieting and anything that claims to help you drop heaps of weight in a small amount of time, I have to say this experience was a positive one for me. I do agree that it’s unhealthy and unrealistic to continue a diet like this for a prolonged period of time, but it worked as a great motivation for me. Seeing 7 lbs come off made me have more confidence in myself and gave me the push I needed to continue with my healthy eating. I’m sure it also gave my metabolism a boost and helped shrink my stomach a bit so I was used to smaller meals. It also made me realize that I could actually get full off of just meats and veggies! My new mentality is eat to live, rather than live to eat!

Here is the diet, with the substitutions I made marked by an asterisk (*) and in italics. The plan I followed and copied is from this website!

Breakfast: 1/2 Grapefruit, 1 Slice of Toast, 2 Tablespoons of Peanut Butter, and Coffee or Tea
*I drank a cup of water with 1/2 tsp of baking soda and an orange in place of the grapefruit. I used whole wheat bread, untoasted, and put the peanut butter on it. I added 2 packets of Splenda to my coffee.
Lunch: 1/2 Cup of Tuna, 1 Slice of Toast, and Coffee or Tea (any brew, as long as it’s caffeinated)
*I substituted the tuna for a 1/2 Cup of plain chicken, cooked with Pam Cooking Spray, and seasoned with a small amount of salt and pepper. The bread was whole grain wheat, and I added 2 packets of Splenda to my coffee.
Dinner: 3 ounces of any type of meat, 1 Cup of Green Beans, 1/2 Banana, 1 Small Apple, and 1 Cup of Vanilla Ice Cream
*I ate (roughly) 3 ounces of chicken for my meat. I don’t have a scale to measure food, so I more or less just eye balled about a half of a small chicken breast. I cooked it in a pan with Pam Cooking Spray and a small amount of salt and pepper, as well as on the green beans.

Breakfast: 1 egg, 1 Slice of Toast, and 1/2 Banana
*I ate my egg scrambled, with a small amount of salt and pepper, with whole grain wheat bread toast. I still drank 2 cups of coffee sweetened with Splenda. I need my caffeine not only to maintain energy, but it’s an excellent appetite suppressant, too!
Lunch: 1 Cup of Cottage Cheese (Or 1 Slice of Cheddar Cheese), 1 Hard Boiled Egg, and 5 Saltine Crackers
*I went with one slice of cheddar, and cooked it with 1 scrambled egg into an omelet, as I just cannot eat hard boiled eggs. Scrambled eggs aren’t my favorite thing in the world, either, but much easier to swallow!
Dinner: 2 Hot Dogs (no buns), 1 Cup of Broccoli, 1/2 Cup of Carrots, 1/2 Banana, and 1/2 Cup of Vanilla Ice Cream
*I used Oscar Mayer regular pork hot dogs. I cooked the broccoli in a pan with cooking spray and seasoned with a small amount of salt and pepper. I boiled the carrots and used salt and pepper on them, as well.

Breakfast: 5 Saltine Crackers, 1 Slice of Cheddar Cheese, and 1 Small Apple
*I broke up the slice of cheddar to eat with my crackers. I saved my apple to act as more of an in between breakfast/lunch snack to try and curb my hunger better at work, and it really helped! I still drank 2 cups of coffee sweetened with Splenda.
Lunch: 1 Hard-Boiled Egg, and 1 Slice of Toast
*I ate a scrambled egg with salt and pepper on whole grain wheat toast.
Dinner: 1 Cup of Tuna, 1/2 of a Banana, and 1 Cup of Vanilla Ice Cream
*I ate 1 cup of plain chicken cooked in a pan with Pam Cooking Spray and a small amount of salt and pepper in place of the tuna.

April 6, 2013 at 3:20 pm 121 comments

Green Mountain Coffee Antioxidant Blends Review

Let me start out by saying that my Keurig is one of the most used, if not the most used, appliances in my whole house. I cannot start my day successfully without getting some caffeine, and making pot after pot of coffee was not only a pain in the neck, but I never quite knew exactly how much coffee I’d drink and would end up wasting so much. The ability to make a cup of coffee with such convenience and ease is ideal for someone like me, and I suspect many others.

With that said, I was excited beyond belief to be invited to participate in this campaign. When I read what kind of coffee I’d be sampling, I was intrigued yet somewhat hesitant. It sounded like an amazing idea to get some extra antioxidants and vitamins in the coffee I’d be drinking anyway. The focus blend especially stood out to me, as I typically drink my coffee before work, and who couldn’t use some extra focus while working?! My concern was the taste. Would it taste like regular coffee? Would it have the bitter after-taste that so many vitamin-enhanced waters and beverages tend to have?

I received my kit, tried the focus blend the very next morning, and was pleasantly surprised. It tasted no different than regular, unflavored coffee. I took a few small sips while it was black just to get a feel for the taste, then added my usual flavored creamer. The next day it was the antioxidant blend, and same result. It felt great knowing that I was getting an extra boost of vitamins just by drinking my daily coffee. To be honest, I probably wouldn’t have even thought twice about purchasing this product while shopping. Keurig K-Cup packs aren’t the cheapest coffee options available, which typically makes me stick to what I already know I like. The fact that so many other types of “enhanced” beverages have a bitter, sour taste and/or aftertaste definitely would’ve put me off to antioxidant coffees, so I’m glad to have been given the opportunity to try these new blends risk free because I’ve found that they’re wonderful! I will definitely purchase them in the near future, as my trial packs are almost gone!

Note: I am a member of BzzAgent and was able to try this product for free in return for my honest opinion.

November 29, 2012 at 10:59 am Leave a comment

School & Pineapple Smoothies

I promise the title of this entry will make more sense as you read along. 🙂 I had a fun and somewhat relaxing 4 days off, but yesterday it was back to the grind. The worst thing about having that many days off in a row is going back to work. Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled to be making money again and my job really isn’t bad at all while I’m there, but there were a few times I had to remind myself how miserable I was not working and how antsy I had become just sitting around the house most days. Friday we met my dad and stepmom for a delicious dinner. He surprised me by giving me a stack of gift cards as a “Christmas in July” sort of thing (even though it was August), and they couldn’t have come at a better time! Earlier that day Jon took his car in to get the long overdue 2 new tires we’ve been needing, and ended up needing a new alignment and tire rod (or something…) which cost about $600. Nice. Luckily, his mom has a Goodyear credit card that’s accepted at the garage he went to, so we’re paying her in installments, which helps a lot. Not to mention Jon’s car insurance was due this pay, so that’s $73 more that we didn’t have to spend. He gave us a bunch of restaurant gift cards (Cheesecake Factory, Friday’s, Chili’s, and Olive Garden = om nom nom!), Target, and some gas cards. Very nice, indeed! Plus, I have a $25 gift card to Macy’s that I earned on that I have yet to use. I’ve already done a lot of damage on the Target and gas cards, and we got take-out from Chili’s Saturday and I got Friday’s last night, but hey, that’s what they’re for!

On Saturday we sucked it up, woke up before 9am, and went to the zoo. I had originally wanted to go Friday, since weekdays tend to be a little less crowded and to be completely honest I can’t stand people in those kind of situations. I go there to see the animals, not to wait in line and get frustrated with pushy people, lines, and parents who allow their children to run around and do whatever the hell they want. Unfortunately, it rained and stormed most of Friday, so Saturday it was, because I’ve been dying to go for almost 2 years and I wasn’t waiting anymore. The zoo opens at 9:30am, and we got there around 10ish, so it wasn’t too bad. Still more people than I would have liked, but not nearly as bad as I’ve seen in the past. To my delight, it wasn’t as expensive as I had thought it was going to be. I could’ve sworn the last time I was there it was getting close to $20 with Tyler being just as much as an adult entrance, and prices seem to go up each year, so I was expecting the worst. It was $14 for adults, and $12 for Tyler. Still sounds crazy that we paid $40 to go walk around and look at animals, but I validate that by thinking, “At least a lot of the money goes towards the wellbeing of the animals.” In that case, I’m happy to pay. I always love the zoo, aside from the overwhelming smell of “nature” at some of the exhibits, lol. The elephants, who are usually the worst smell-wise, have an outdoor area, as well as a small indoor area where the zookeepers bring them in from time to time for various reasons. I usually bypass the indoor section because they smell bad enough outside, but that particular day they brought one of the elephants inside to hose it down and whatnot. Normally that wouldn’t interest me, either, but the elephant they brought in just so happened to be the one that had a baby not too long ago, so the baby was inside with it. And I just can’t pass up baby animals! About 6 months ago one of the sea otters had a baby, too. There are actually “It’s a boy!” billboards and ads all over the greater Pittsburgh area, so I was super excited to see this cutie. He was a lot bigger than I had anticipated (maybe about 35lb. or so?) but still adorable. They had him inside in his own little area. He was swimming around in circles in what looked like a baby pool, holding a little dumbbell and interacting with everyone, and barking! At least it sounded like a dog bark, only at the pitch of a cat meow, if that makes sense, haha. I don’t know if there’s a proper term for the noise otters make, lol, but whatever it is, it was loud yet so cute. My favorite exhibit is always the penguins (and the big cats, whenever any of them get off of their lazy butts and actually do something! The tigers/leopard/snow leopard/lions are almost always plopped in a corner somewhere sleeping when I’m there!). We stayed and watched them for a good 10 minutes, at least. They’re always so cute and funny to watch, which is why they are one of my top favorite animals. I loved watching them “dive” into the water (more like belly flopping, lol), and hop up out of the water. Plus, it was feeding time so one of the zoo keepers came into their space with fish and handing them out one by one. It was so funny, as soon as the person came in they all bolted and crowded around her like a bunch of 12 year olds standing outside of Justin Bieber’s hotel, lol. I didn’t get to take any pictures or video like I usually do, because my camera still doesn’t work. It stopped reading the memory card for some reason, and even though I can afford to buy a new card now, I managed to lose the battery charger. 😦

Later that day we went out shopping at Dollar Tree and Five Below to get Tyler his school supplies. When it comes to that kind of stuff I’m all about cheap. After we got his list checked off we headed over to Target to take advantage of my gift cards, and for the first time ever I left with only things I needed, such as razors, hair ties, make-up remover, and mascara. WTF?! I can be flat broke and still manage to spend my ass off in Target. That’s the funny thing about having money to spend; when you have it, you never find anything. But when you’re broke, there’s $100 of things you want. Oh well, at least I have about $20 left on my card to spend. 🙂

Later that evening we were just relaxing and watching TV, when I got a craving for a smoothie. Normally I make smoothies with vanilla ice cream, which turns them into more of a milkshake, but that wasn’t the type of sweet tooth I had, so i opened the fridge and found the vanilla greek yogurt I was hoping I still had. It was a day or two past it’s sell-by date, but I tasted it and it seemed to be fine, so in the blender it went. I’ve recently found my new favorite flavor of Chobani greek yogurt- pineapple- and figured since I love the yogurt, a pineapple yogurt smoothie would be great. I originally planned on a banana smoothie, but remembered Jon’s mom had several cans of crushed pineapple in the pantry, so I grabbed one of those. I had intended on making it pineapple-banana, but being the moron that I am, I accidentally dumped the entire large can of pineapple in the blender, which turned out to be too much of a pain in ass to fish out, so I left it all in there with the yogurt, lol. I added milk, sugar, and ice, blended, and enjoyed. It was SO GOOD! I know pineapple smoothies are made all of the time, and the ingredients I used are very basic in smoothies, but rarely do I make something without a strict recipe that turns out so wonderful. Next time I’ll definitely limit the use of pineapple, and maybe add some cream of coconut or coconut shavings for a piña colada smoothie! The best part is it was really healthy! Well, I used sugar and 2% milk, but if I were at my house I would’ve used artificial sweetener and skim milk, making it much healthier. In case you’re interested, here’s what I used:

*1 Large Can of Crushed Pineapple (by accident- measure according to your preference)
*1 6oz. Container of Vanilla Greek Yogurt
*About a 1/2 Cup of Milk
*Ice (measure according to your preference)
*About a TBSP of Sugar (again, measure to your preference, or use artificial sweetener)

Major yums!!! Anyway, Tyler is all set for school, aside from a box of kleenex I need to get for him to take in. I can’t believe he goes back TOMORROW! And that he’s in 3RD GRADE! This summer really flew. In fact, this year is really flying. I know he’s excited to see all of his friends again, but that’s about it. He definitely takes after me in the sense that school isn’t his favorite thing in the world, aside from recess and socializing. Last year was the first year I really started struggling with him to do his homework and whatnot. I have a feeling it’s only going to get worse as he gets older, and the work becomes more like work rather than fun projects. Oh well, karma’s a bitch, lol. What sucks is for the past month or so Jon and I haven’t both had a day off from work that was swimming-appropriate (at least not warm and sunny enough for me to get some color), and this Friday is finally supposed to be perfect, but we’ll have to either wait until Tyler gets home from school around 4pm, or go over and swim and come back to my house to pick him up. I had a good tan going in June, but it has since faded almost entirely, so I NEED this sun before it’s too late, and I’m pale until next year. I think one of Jon’s friends is coming over to swim, too, so I guess we’ll just have to make sure we’re out of the pool and at my house by 4 to pick up Tyler. Hopefully next time I blog I’ll be darker… fingers are crossed. 🙂

August 22, 2012 at 1:49 pm Leave a comment

Chef Amy

Let me start out by saying that cooking and myself don’t go together unless it involves a joke or catastrophe. I’ve never really enjoyed cooking, and never was good at it unless it involved a microwave. Two humorous (or pathetic) times in particular come to mind; once I made a tomato/garlic/onion/basil pasta that tasted like dish soap thanks to my not rinsing the pan I had just washed enough, and the other time I actually managed to burn Easy Mac by putting it in the microwave for 33 minutes instead of 3 and a half minutes. While those times can more so be categorized under general stupidity rather than bad cooking, they still made people weary when I’d enter the kitchen with intent to prepare a meal, lol. Over the last year, I took it upon myself to make an effort to learn a little bit since I wasn’t working or doing anything, really. I still have a lot to learn when it comes to buying ingredients in general, especially meat. I’m always on a budget, so I buy cheap. If I see a package of meat that says “steak” on the label for $5-$6, I grab that shit up. Those of you that know anything about meat will know that it is pure crap, lol, but hey, it’s edible (kind of, haha). I’ve certainly come a long way. I still wouldn’t say I’m a great cook, but I can at least make a decent dinner for my family without it tasting like pure garbage.

Anyway, to get to my point, I made some damn good pork chops last night. I’m not really a huge fan of pork. I don’t hate it but it’s not usually something I’d buy over, say, chicken or beef. The grocery store was running a buy one, get one special so I couldn’t pass up getting two 5-count packs for under $9. Grilling is usually my preferred method of cooking meat, so I’ll do it if it’ll work. I looked online for some pork chop marinade/rub recipes but most of them included at least one ingredient that didn’t appeal to me, so I decided to take a little inspiration from a few of them and create my own on a whim. Thinking that it wouldn’t turn out to be amazing, I didn’t measure any of the ingredients I used and just kind of winged it on my own. I’m pretty certain that I’ll be able to come pretty close to it again the next time I make it, so when I do, I’ll try to remember to measure everything and post a real recipe. I used soy sauce, teriyaki sauce, water (I used a lot of soy sauce and didn’t want it to be super salty, so I diluted it a bit), brown sugar, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and almost an entire can of Coors Light (I’ll probably cut back on the water or not use it at all next time- I used it before I got the bright idea to throw in a beer, lol). I stirred it up, threw in the pork chops, and let it soak from about 2pm until about 9pm. They were sooo, sooo yummy! Tyler said that it kind of tasted like the teriyaki chicken samples they’re always offering at the mall food court, haha, and he was right. I was so proud of my little creation. Although, in all honesty, it’s very similar to a lot of marinade recipes out there. But the fact that I just threw in ingredients as they popped in my head without a strict recipe to follow in front of me made me proud, and I wanted to share, lol. 🙂

August 8, 2012 at 7:06 pm Leave a comment

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The Amy Blog

Hello, I'm Amy! I was born in '85 and live in Pittsburgh, PA. I became the mama of my wonderful son in 2004, and also own 3 kitties that I treat like children. I am a self-admitted cosmetics and beauty addict, but I also enjoy fashion, music, art, and am totally guilty of reading way too much celebrity gossip. :P

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  • Someone is sitting outside playing the guitar and singing blink 182 at 10:40 on a Thursday morning. Umm... why tho? 1 day ago
May 2018
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