Friday, August 30, 2013

Meal Planning and Food Porn

One of the things I find most helpful for sticking to any eating plan is to figure out what you're going to eat the following week, making a grocery list, and then (in a perfect world) STICKING TO IT!!! I however have three children and a husband so invariably things end up in the cart that I never put on the list. But that's them. Not me. I stick to the list. Always. Mostly. Okay, I'm just as guilty!

Some of the fun of meal planning is surfing food porn to get ideas of different stuff to eat. Because, another helpful tip to sticking to an eating plan is variety. If you're always eating the same ol' thing. You're going to go INSANE, black out, and wake up covered in the tattered remains of an eating orgy. No one wants that.

So I have been food experimenting and it has been a lot of fun. And this week is no different. I'm excited to try making low carb:

Coconut Shrimp with dipping sauce
Chile Verde Chicken Enchilada 
Chicken Alfredo w/ "Zoodles"

I don't know if I've mentioned this already, but I hit my surgical goal weight. I go in Tuesday morning to do the official hospital scale check-in. From there I have to get and EKG and a surgery date. But I'm super happy that I've lost 25lbs since July 15th.

In other news: 

I went to "Back to School" Night at 4ft's school. Yeah, I had to schedule a one on one meeting with his teacher. Apparently, 4ft is a talker. Who knew, right? And he was the only one that had to change his color to yellow yesterday, which is a warning. So I get the fun of going and trying to come up with a "Silence 4ft Plan" with his teacher to help him be more successful with the closing of the mouth motion. When approached with the need to work on not talking so much he told me, "This is going to be the hardest skill I will EVER master." He also added, "Maybe we should just stick tape to my mouth." I told him, "I don't think there is a strong enough tape out there to keep that mouth closed." "Duct tape, mom. Everyone knows that fixes everything."

My kid. Is. Awesome. 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

And So It Begins...

The busy hectic crazy life of having 2 little ones at home and one in school. It doesn't help that every morning it's a battle with Grumpers to get him dressed and out the door to take 4ft to school. It's an orchestra of "No thank you's", "I want to stay home", "I don't like it", and general whining. But since I'm the adult and he's only three, I win and he is dressed, shoed, and out the door at the appointed time. I however am a frazzled mess that is being driven into an early grave. (Gray hair is the new black, right?)

We started up Cub Scouts again last night. I'm now the Bear Den Leader (I still can't believe they put me in charge. Clearly it was desperation.) and it was a lot of fun to see the boys after the summer break. We even got a new cub and he was really sweet and a lot of fun. So I spent a big portion of yesterday getting my Bear Den Binder ready (yes I really am a big ol' nerd) with meeting plans, and excel sheets for checking off achievements and electives. 

I had a serious "pat your back" moment yesterday. I had to go to the bank after dropping 4ft off at school and I vacillated between driving so I could just drop and bank and home or walking to and from school, loading kids in the van, and then going to the bank. I chose to walk. Yay me. I made a pact with myself that we would walk to and from school everyday unless it was raining -- I don't want anyone getting sick after all. 

The walking on top of eating no more than 20 carbs a day (and they only come from fruits and veggies) is really paying off. I'm ONE pound away from my goal weight. So I've lost 24lbs since mid July which is a 7.8% weight loss. Go me. 

So far (knock on wood), I haven't been craving anything. I make a sour cream yogurt when I just don't think I could stomach another egg (I'm pretty sure some days I bawk like a chicken). I have single servings of sugar-free lime cheesecake when I need to feed a sweets need. And you'd be amazed how zucchini and cauliflower can fill a pizza, mashed potato, or noodle need. You can also make zucchini chips which fill a crunch need when you don't want to munch on pork rinds.

Fabulous. Sassypants has stacked 7 cans of coke like blocks and they fell over and one exploded. Hooray. (yes that was sarcasm). Now I'm off to wash a baby and clean a kitchen floor.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Discovery Kingdom Trip

On Monday we planned to take the kids to Discovery Kingdom for the last big hurrah before school started. So, after forcing Grumpers out the door (he didn't want to leave, he was playing trains) and into the car and after driving the hour (some of which was during commuter time), we pulled up to the gates in Vallejo and it was CLOSED. Apparently August 19th was the first day of Fall hours to where they are only open on the weekend. I wished I'd have gotten that memo before driving all the way there and breaking three kids' hearts and then having to turn around and drive all the way home. So instead of a fun-filled coaster-riding animal-watching day, we had McD's for lunch (at least the family did -- I ate at home) and I took 4ft swimming for a couple hours. 

In other news, I'm excited to say I'm five pounds away from my surgery goal weight!!!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

The Thief

Sassy has a problem. She cannot walk by a pair of shoes or clothes without wanting to put them on. Doesn't matter if they're hers or not. Doesn't matter if they belong to her brothers or not. She doesn't even care if they belong to someone we know. Seriously, they don't even have to be clean. 

And shoe cubbies everywhere aren't safe when she's around.

Today, I was changing Grumpers' Pull-up (Yeah, he's never going to be potty trained. I just hold on to the idea that no kid ever went to college wearing a diaper so he too shall figure it out at some time...hopefully) and when I had finished clean up duty on Grumpers' butt, I reached for his shorts next to me but they weren't there. When I couldn't find them, I looked around for Sassy and didn't see her either. I found her in my room, behind my bed, wearing Grumpers' shorts over her clothes. She must've ever so slyly snuck by, snagged Grumpers' shorts and sprinted into the other room. 

To fully accessorize her ensemble, she also had on one pink sandal, one of 4ft's sneakers, and was putting one of my sports bras on her head. 

Unfortunately, by the time I got the camera, she had removed all the evidence so there would be no record to blackmail her with later. She's too smart for my own good. 

This was after her bath. She insisted (at the top of her lungs) that she still needed Grumpers' shorts on!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Pizza Casserole FTW!

I had to immortalize this for-EV-ER because it was seriously delicious. Three layers of cheese, pepperoni, mushrooms, onions, garlic, and peppers. I might not have been able to pick it up and eat it like a slice of pizza but it sure tasted like one! 

Not bad for a back up plan.

I had meant to make a cauliflower pizza crust to put my toppings on so I could have pizza night with my kids and not cheat on my low-carb lifestyle. However, in a fit of forgetfulness last night, I ate the cauliflower I was saving to do so with. With sad face, I figured I was going to sit through the smells, sounds, and sights of pizza night while I ate scrambled eggs or something. Well, okay, it probably wasn't as dire as all that but it didn't sound nearly as appetizing as PIZZA!

I started rummaging through my almost empty crisper (shopping day is tomorrow) and found a wayward half of zucchini that had manage to survive the "zoodle" carnage. It would not live to do another day. One of my favorite food bloggers, Marye Audet-White (from and fame -- to name a few) made a lasagna out of zucchini and I thought why couldn't I make pizza casserole out of it instead? 

So I did!

9 thin slices of zucchini
1/2 cup shredded Mozzarella Cheese
9 slices of pepperoni
1/4 cup diced onions
1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
1 tsp minced garlic
3 TBS ranch dressing (I don't like red sauce on pizza so use whatever sauce you like)
add peppers to taste

1.) steam zucchini until slightly tender
2.) saute the onions, mushrooms, and garlic with a pinch of salt until mostly cooked and really tender
3.) in a dish w/sides (otherwise the cheese is going to ooze everywhere) -- put down three slices of zucchini, 1 TBS ranch, 1/3 of the cheese, 3 pepperoni, and 1/3 of the onion-mushroom mixture. Rinse. Lather. Repeat three more times. Top it with the peppers.
4.) cover with plastic wrap and microwave 2-3 minutes until hot, bubbly, and everything is delicious looking.
5.) let it cool for a couple minutes and then slide it out of the bowl onto a plate and devour! (... or just eat it out of the dish to save clean up after.)

Monday, August 12, 2013

The 4ft Has Landed

So 4ft finally decided to come home -- or you know, his Uncle and Aunt brought him home from Oregon on Saturday. The little ones were so happy to see him that they tackled him in hugs and slobbery kisses. So back to bedlam of three kids and the noise levels are back to what I'm used to so I can tune them out better. The quiet was deafening, I swear! LOL And what did we do to celebrate his homecoming? Clean house. Sunday is chore day. Hey, it's not my fault he didn't come home Friday to party with us on Saturday which is errand-running and shopping day. LOL

I tried some new recipes this week that turned out really good:
Spicy Chicken Fried "Rice"
No Bake Caramel (Maple -- because I didn't have caramel) Pecan Cheesecake -- I already spammed FB with pictures of these. LOL

This week on the menu is:
Pizza's (I'm either going to make mine on zucchini rounds or make cauliflower pizza crust)
Chicken Pad Thai (because yeah, it was seriously amazing)
Taco Casserole (instead of chips I'm going to use pork rinds)
-- I'll post pictures next week.

I have 8 more pounds to lose before I've hit my surgery goal (I've lost 16 lbs since July 14th). And then it's maintaining (and hopefully losing more) while I wait my turn on the waiting list.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Did You Know...

...that talking fast can be a sign of a manic personality?

I know this because the food shrink I talked to today told me I talked way fast and she was a little concerned about it. I assured her, I'm just a speed talker and the more I have to say the faster I say it to keep up with my brain. She looked skeptical but could find no other indicators of that particular problem and deemed that, okay I was just a high revved motor mouth.

Who knew, right?

Shut up, all of you!

Other than that, I've been deemed fairly food healthy and that not only have I implemented the changes that I have to do for the Bariatric surgery that I have in fact embraced them cognitively and that she has no doubt that I will succeed with the surgery and a long-term maintained weight loss.


Tuesday, August 6, 2013

18 and life you got it...

So, yes, I have "18 and Life" by Skid Row stuck in my head this morning. It's better than having Meatloaf's, "I Would Do Anything For Love" which was the case the other morning. But then ANYTHING is better than that -- even like the "Macarena" or "Tom's Diner", you know? Great, now I have that stuck in my head. Thank you ear worm, thank you ever so much.

I've lost 14 lbs now which is cool. I only have 10 more to go. I meet with the food shrinks tomorrow morning to make sure I'm not a complete whack job. Lucky for me, I'm a great actress!

I am still loving "zoodles" and how versatile they are. I'm also really getting into using cauliflower as rice. There's a Spicy Chicken Fried Rice that I'm going to try out soon that looks absolutely delicious and Marye, the author of the blog, hasn't steered me wrong yet! So far I'm not missing the breads, pastas, and potatoes. I'm not missing the desserts either. But then, it helps that there is a "Fried Apple" recipe using zucchini that is amazing and really does taste like apples and a couple times a week I make an "egg crepe"* and fill it with fresh strawberries and a fresh whipped cream

4ft is in Oregon and I'm missing him terribly. Every night he calls to say goodnight and tell me what he's done that day. The first night he was gone he called me to tell me about having pie for dessert, the second day he called to say that he was good on the drive and he'd played on the beach , the third day it was he had french toast and climbed a tree, and the next was he'd had cookie dough ice cream. Thankfully his Uncle Josh gets on the phone after him and fills in with the trip to the lighthouse, swimming in the hot tub, and all the playing and running around he's doing. Grumpers and The Terror miss him terribly and walk around the house looking for him. We all can't wait til Saturday when he comes home. It's too quiet without his motormouth constantly running.

Egg Crepe

2 eggs
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 TBS Splenda
1 tsp cinnamon extract
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp butter extract

1.) beat all the ingredients together in a bowl until well mixed
2.) heavily spray large nonstick frying pan (I use a 12 inch) with cooking spray and turn on low
3.) pour mixture and make sure it covers bottom of pan and then cover with a lid.
4.) when almost done carefully flip the egg to get a cooked finish on the other side
5.) slide onto a plate and fill with 1/2 cup quartered strawberries (I add a little Splenda to get them juicier), roll up, and cover with fresh whipped cream or you can use a canned as well.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

"Zoodles" FTW

I made Pad Thai with "zoodles" on Monday for dinner. It was seriously delicious. I am ridiculously excited about the idea of zucchini noodles and am already planning to use them for spaghetti and lasagna and anything else I can think of. It was so good, and it was even better the next day for lunch. 

On Tuesday, the husband took the day off, and we packed up the kids and went to Discovery Kingdom. We got season passes last year for my birthday and we've used the heck out of them -- definitely got our money's worth out of them. It's perfect for us because 4ft and Husband like the rides and the Terror and Grumpers loves the animals. Although the little ones have a couple rides they love:

Yep, that's a photo booth outside of the train ride. It was their second favorite "ride" at the park. Those two kids played in there for a half an hour before I could convince them they wanted to go see the Sharks for the 5th time. Which is their favorite ride. What is it about kids and conveyor belts, I wonder?

Here are my adorable munchkins outside of the Walrus habitat. At least one of them was looking at the camera. That's pretty good for us. Normally they all look away in opposite directions or start running out of the shot (which you can see is what the Terror is trying to do).