Squee! I made my goal, 16 pounds lost in 3 1/2 weeks.

My goal was 15 pounds by Cancun (12 more days) and I did it!  This is the first time I have ever tried to do any type of diet, and it wasn't nearly as difficult as I expected.  I wasn't going to weigh but I was eating my breakfast (day 4, I'll post it tomorrow) and just had the urge.

I lost 9 lbs the first 3 weeks on my eating to lose weight plan, but still felt puffy and bloaty (and looked it) though my jeans slid down without unbuttoning them so I know I was better than I had been.

Mom told me how great she felt on the Cinch diet so I did a lot of research, really liked what I read (from the book, the author's site/facebook, a couple bloggers who stuck with it, etc).

I was a little wary because most of the bloggers who reviewed the book didn't do it as it was so restrictive, they thought it was a lot of work to prep meals, they thought they couldn't eat out etc.  (My first thought when I was offered the chance to sign up to review it.)

I almost said heck with it but mama saying she felt better than she has since she was in her 20's even though she is still in a lot of pain from her accident made me keep pressing on.

I noticed a couple of things-  the people who did just the fast forward didn't give it (imo) a chance, quitting after anywhere from 2 meals to 2 days, or were still sneaking in their sodas or whatever.  

The people who did stick with it, whether they did the fast forward part or not, felt good- so much so that when they tried to go back to their old ways they felt a huge difference.

I basically decided it can't hurt to try, modifying for my specific needs where need be and doing the best I can.

I haven't felt good in a very, very long time, and I know I will have to continue living with my medical issues, but I got over my why bother attitude and am taking charge of my health to the best of my ability.

When you get disgusted with yourself, and are ready for a change, it is worth it.  Some of the foods on the FF part of the plan aren't my favorites but I decided to do them (if I could overcome the yogurt issue) and boy am I glad I was at that point because I feel better than I have in forever with only 3 days down on the FF, and though I may or may not have slip ups, I believe this will be a lifestyle change that I can keep, and even if I only do a modified version it's still doing more for me than I have done in a super long time.

We went to Ken's mom's house today and she noticed a big difference in the puff factor (I am naturally tiny so an extra 20 - 30 lbs- I blew up when I was put on Lyrica when I was in the hospital- to lose and it is extremely noticeable).  She asked what I was doing and I told her and I'm going to be copying some of the recipes from my book so I can eat while she's borrowing it to see if it is a plan she wants to try.

I sound like a commercial but I am not getting paid to say this, I bought my copy of the book, mostly on my mom's recommendation - on Amazon for a very reasonable $15 and change, almost $10 off retail.

I would recommend this to anyone wanting to lose weight, but even more, to anyone who wants to feel great!

To track my progress see eating to feel great.
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Cinch Diet Fast Forward Day 3

Since there was a very noticeable lack of puffy, I couldn't resist getting on the scale 2 1/2 lbs in 2 days of the detox/cleanse.  I really wasn't expecting this since I had lost 9 lbs in 3 weeks on my own in the 3 weeks before starting this, so yippee.

Even though I am not thrilled with the 2 sweet meals together in the middle, it works better for me than either the first or last meal, so I am sticking with it.  I am feeling good, which is the main criteria for sticking with this instead of jumping to the core program, and not having cravings.  I find myself pushing right up to the last second (of the 3-5 hours between meals) I am not feeling hungry, either when I wake up or during the day.  This could be because my stomach is so screwed up (I talk about that here in Can I Do This?) if you are just joining me.

The spinach and egg scramble I switched up using the tomato basil blend from Mrs. Dash (they are all salt free, so happy I am working with them on our other blog and have a wide variety) and a dash of garlic powder.  Raspberries and blackberries with almonds.  YUMMY.  I am not sick of this yet. Except maybe the almonds.  If you read our blog you know things like this are what we like to eat anyways, just not quite so often.

Dreading the parfait, not because it's gross or anything just not hungry and not in the mood for sweet.  I have decided to cut my portions back just a little since she talks about feeling hunger being normal-  just a little bit less of everything.  Not bad, just not hungry, so didn't want anything.

I just can't do another smoothie, I think it's a texture thing-  I do smoothies and shakes etc maybe once or twice a month in the summer and that's only sharing with the girls if we're at Tropical Smoothie or something, maybe once all winter long so since it is the same ingredients I am making another parfait, but this time I used frozen mixed berries and smooshed them in after adding the spices and vanilla-  and instead of the almond butter I did regular almonds-  I can't think it would make a difference whether they are made into butter or not since almonds are the only ingredient in the almond butter and the oil is still in the nuts.

Really pushed it to the 5 hours and had no appetite at dinner time but I am determined to work the plan to the best of my abilities and I do understand her reasoning for the spacing out of meals.  I did just a bit over half portions of everything, though, except for the egg (I shared probably about that much with my little dog who hates hard boiled eggs but loves them doused in balsamic vinegar).  He was sitting by me barking - prior to the eating plans and diets I shared everything with my 5 dogs, now I am giving them cheese or something before I eat so I was like fine, you want it, try it, you won't like it but just like a little kid, he has to make a liar of me and loves them.

Another day down, no cravings, no deprivation felt and I'm feeling better than I was although I feel like I got punched in the nose when it is at that sort of not bad but tingly feeling (It's a sinus thing- I usually have sinus and other headaches, this time I believe it is strictly seasonal allergies.)  As long as I am still feeling better I will keep on with the other 2 days of the 5 day detox.

To keep up with my progress see eating to feel great.


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Cinch Diet Fast Forward Day 2

After even more research I found that I could mix up the berries- frozen blueberries make the sweetest smoothies. I went into today knowing that I had made it through yesterday, could eat the foods and that if I found I needed to do something different (I have very specific medical issues) that I would, and again the cleanse part I am only doing because I want to feel good and not have cravings. I did not like ending my day with a sweet so thought I'd reverse the sweet and savory times but I couldn't stand the thought of a parfait first thing in the morning.

Breakfast- I really, really don't like sweet in the morning so ate the scrambled egg and spinach along with berries and nuts. I forgot to buy Olive Oil spray or a mister and just used a touch of oil then wiped most out with a paper towel and wilted the spinach before adding the egg mixed with a salt free blend and a little garlic powder. I am not a fan of regular garlic but use powder and salt (no more) in everything. It was really good and I ate it just a bit after the hour once I got Dev off for school.

Lunch(?) was the parfait- this time I added vanilla and a lot of cinnamon and a touch of nutmeg and I used fresh mixed berries, since everything is cheaper than raspberries in my area at the moment. 2 Tbsp is a lot of almonds- a LOT.

I really really really didn't want a sweet thing for my last meal so did the smoothie for my third meal- this time I used frozen blueberries and it made all the difference- except I remembered before I was halfway through I forgot the almond butter and dumped it back in the magic bullet and EWWWWWWWWWWWW it ruined the whole thing. I seriously could barely gag it down- and in fact made it about 2/3 of the way through and said I am not going to torture myself any more. I know it is some peoples fave part (I did a lot of research) but to me it was vile. If you are going to try the fast forward, try it for yourself and see, it may just be your favorite.

Dinner was spinach (I didn't pack the 2 cups as tightly since it was just a HUGE HUGE salad and more than I felt I wanted or needed). I did raspberries, blackberries, strawberries and blueberries because I had read where you could sub different berries if you wanted and I wanted fresh on my salad and all the others are cheaper than raspberries here now. This time I dressed the spinach and egg with the balsamic and a touch of the cutie orange juice before adding the berries and nuts. Much better. And my little dog, who usually hates hard boiled eggs loves it drizzled with balsamic vinegar. Who knew? I was seriously tired of eating by the time I got done and feeling more than stuffed but a little before bed Dawn said I was looking less puffy.

Have I mentioned that 2 Tbsp is a lot of almonds?  I don't mind them, but it's a lot more than it sounds like.  (I am excited to get off the 5 days and mix things up with seeds and almonds since I love most of them and I love variety.)  It's a choice to stay with almonds for what I do of the 5 days.

Dawn and I went to Kroger and I wasn't tempted by anything, including the fresh bread (usually my downfall).  I am not hungry even a little bit, but trying to eat at least most of the amounts. 

To stay abreast of my progress, see eating to feel great.


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Cinch Diet Fast Forward Day 1

I was completely taken aback by the parts of the diet that were hard for me versus the ones I am struggling with. I thought the yogurt would be the hardest, mainly because I am not overly fond of yogurt and it always makes me feel blechy. Well guess what? While I thought it was the yogurt itself that bothered me since I get a similar blarghy feeling with milk, it didn't bother me at all- I am guessing the sweetener was the problem. (All the ones I've had used aspertame.)

I was going to take it like medicine unless it made me sick, but I don't hate the taste, apparently it is just the taste sweetened. Today in a nutshell, here's what I did.

I also don't eat in the mornings, in fact sometimes I will notice it's 4 or 5 and I haven't eaten all day and will force myself to (bad habit, I know, but I really want to feel good so I will do this). I NEVER like my first meal to be sweets.

Woke up at 6 and did the normal getting Dev off to school- this part can't be helped, she leaves just before 7 so I am a teeny bit over the hour, but I don't think 10 or so minutes will make a difference.

Ken makes scrambled eggs in a dry pan so was going to do that with my egg but I have never been able to make them as light and fluffy as his plus, I just tossed my baby spinach in sort of on top and scrambled together- unappealing looking but tasty. A cup of raspberries is almost the whole pint, and the two tablespoons of almonds is a LOT.

Even Ken and the girls said it looked like plenty of food. I ate it but could have stopped at half.

Noon I made the yogurt parfait (and boy, was I a drama queen around everyone who was home whining and complaining) and I love cinnamon so loaded it down with that, some ginger and nutmeg- I have a pumpkin pie spice we really love that we get at TJ Maxx Homegoods, have to check what's in that because they get the blend perfect- but I digress. I did yogurt, frozen raspberries and gave it a dash of vanilla then the spices and mixed it (next time I will mix the SASS part (spices and seasonings) into yogurt then add the berries and almonds. Once again, more than enough food but I actually much preferred it to any yogurt, even the frozen ice cream ones, that I have ever tried.

Dinner was a HUGE I mean I have those giant pasta bowls and the spinach was dang near overflowing and that's before I added the hard boiled egg, raspberries and almonds. I doused it well with balsamic vinegar (I keep tons of vinegars because I love them and can eat salad with plain vinegar or lemon or lime juice and just salt and pepper so didn't think I'd have a problem since we frequently do salads with fruit, nuts or seeds and a protein. Aside from the overwhelming size, next time I will mix the vinegar with the spinach first then put on the egg, berries and nuts.

Snack was hard- for one thing I wasn't hungry, for another I do not like sweets last thing at night, that's my salty snack time. I did like the smoothie okay though, but I really really did a lot of spices since frozen raspberries are WAY more sour than fresh ones in season. I also added maybe a Tbsp of juice from a Cutie orange.  I forgot the 2 Tbsp of almond butter so ate them plain-  the taste is okay but the texture thing grosses me out- same with peanut butter.

All in all I followed the plan exactly except for eating the almond butter separately and never got hungry or felt deprived. (My family is old enough to make their own meals and since we have such wacky schedules it's not uncommon to do this.)

Dev made a parfait for work, but she added stevia (natural raw sugar). She's not following the plan exactly but she likes the salads and parfaits so is doing those (we have a TON of sweetened yogurt but she wanted to try it this way) and she liked it as well- again she added Stevia, which on some forums and msg boards people say is a natural sugar).

See eating to feel great to keep up with my progress.
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Shopping for the Cinch Diet 5 Day Fast Forward Cleanse

Interesting and not cheap are what comes to mind when I think of the gathering of my supplies to begin the 5 day fast forward.  Where are the coupons for berries, spinach, nuts and organic nonfat yogurt?  Ha.

Actually, I buy yogurt for the kids anyways, but the organic yogurt in our stores only had the lowfat plain, full fat plain and flavored.  Not what I needed.  I went to several stores, including one of the local health food stores since it was open and nearby while I was waiting to pick Dev up (it's smaller than my bedroom and more than half is devoted to supplements.  I was hoping to find the coconut milk based yogurt since I thought with my stomach issues I might have a better time digesting it - if it is in fact because of the type of dairy and not the cultures that make me feel icky.  No go, she hadn't even heard of it, but she did have other So Delicious products in stock so could order it for me.  When I inquired about the price and found out it was $2.69 for a 6 oz cup I knew I had to at least try my other options.  (Had called the other health food store after checking all the markets and they do not carry it either- just the "ice cream" options.  I found that amusing for health food stores, but then I think about where I live.)

Went on a mission and decided to hit Kroger and Wal Mart (The Harp's store, our other option, is much more limited in selections.)

It's all laid out in a handy shopping list in the book, but in a nutshell the plan calls for (organic when possible)

(2) 32 oz or (10) 6 oz containers of organic nonfat yogurt
     I could not find the nonfat in organic and did not have the time or inclination to drive to Little Rock to check out Whole Paycheck, which I love, because we were under severe tornado and flash flood watch.

(10) Whole large eggs or equivalent eggwhites

(20) cups raspberries, fresh or frozen 
     I got several cartons fresh and a couple bags frozen no sugar added because of the cost of the fresh- $3.99 per carton and my girls love them too and will want to share lolol.  I'll use the fresh on the salad and make the smoothies and parfaits with frozen because I simply can't afford $80 on just berries for 5 days.  I also got a bunch of blueberries, strawberries and blackberries because they were much more reasonably priced and the girls love them-  they will sit and taunt me along with the other fresh produce I bought the day before I committed to this-  both drawers in fridge and half of bottom shelf along with several bowls that we can leave out.  Peaches are sooooo good right now, but I digress.

(30) Tbsp slivered or sliced almonds and All Natural Almond Butter 
     I had a bunch of the tiny 4 oz packs in the freezer that I picked up for 10 cents each after the holiday baking season, but still bought a bag of sliced to make sure there were plenty.  We already use a lot of nuts in our salads and for snacking though I must admit my cashews are usually salted- wonder how that will go.  The almond butter *brace yourself* I found on SALE for 9 something a tiny jar.  And I bought two (one dry roasted, one raw as they both have almonds as the only ingredient and it was on sale and if I am doing this, I'm doing it as right as I can- this way I can have variety if it gets too boring (roasting really brings out flavors) and I have the plain if the roasted won't work - when these are out I believe I will buy more nuts and make my own, the girls love the nut butters and esp sunflower butter, so I do try to stock up when I find a deal, but if we're using it regularly it would probably be a lot more economical.

(15) cups fresh baby spinach - we use this all the time so got the big clamshell we usually do and several bags (for easier storage in case I don't make it to the store for whatever reason)

There are other (optional) things you can purchase for the 5 day fast forward, I got clementines (cutie oranges) and a new brand of balsamic vinegar (I use vinegar regularly, many kinds, but mix them and if I was going to be eating it without the other dressing components besides spices I wanted the best I could find/afford) as well as fresh mint, green tea (we had EVERYTHING but green lol) and a couple other things- all herbs and spices, citrus and vinegar are supposed to be used in this stage of the diet.

Not perfect as it's not all organic, and not all fresh (she says frozen on the berries and spinach are fine, I just prefer fresh with the berries and frozen spinach is nasty, gross, slimy, vile and tastes nothing like the baby spinach I buy.  LOLOL  I tried it last week in one of the soups and wasted a whole big pot of ingredients trying to save $- and yes, I got the better grade).

Ready to do this with me?  I'm cautiously hopeful, truly even if all it does is make me feel better I'll be happy.  (My goal was 10 lbs, 15 if I was uber lucky before Cancun and I lost 9 so while I want to lose a bit more, I'm not displeased.)

Let me know what and how you are doing, and if you are blogging about your journey to better health, weight loss or both and I'll be sure to cheer you on when I can.  I know support is an important part of success, so if you want a buddy through this just drop a note. :)


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Taking it to the next level - Cinch Diet - Can I Do This?

Based on mama's recommendation, a lot of research and the fact that the author has very impressive credentials, I have decided to try the Cinch diet by Cynthia Sass.  The book hasn't come in yet (sometime today, though, thanks to Amazon Prime) but between yesterday and today I did a ton of research online and am ready to get started.  I very carefully considered my specific needs and obstacles (click here to see them)- while I realize that this may or may not work for me, I believe in Cynthia Sass's expertise and feel that what I learn (all the latest in nutrition, which I studied eons ago) will benefit me greatly even if I ultimately only incorporate some of the principles.

This is my first "real" attempt at a specific diet (I did my own eating plan for the first 21 days to lose 9 lbs) I love some of the plan and have reservations on others, specifically in regard to my own challenges.

The reason I chose this plan is manyfold, the primary reasons being that the basics make good, solid sense based on my own knowledge; it is much, much more than a "diet" it is a way to eat cleanly (remember, I spoke about food tasting off and how I feel when I eat certain things that I used to like here and here) and while there is a 30 day meal plan with an optional 5 day fast forward specifically designed to help you lose weight, it is a program that can make a difference in my quality of life, even though it won't fix my "problems".  If I don't choose or can't for whatever reason to continue with this as a lifestyle choice, I will still gain knowledge that can only do good for me, even if I only adopt a few of the principles.

I have decided to try the 5 day fast forward, although I am going into it fully knowing that it may be impossible, not because I lack willpower but because my body doesn't absorb nutrients like it should as well as the fact that you have to eat yogurt twice a day.

I don't like yogurt- well I take that back, some of the ice cream things are not too disgusting, but honestly if I don't like even full fat flavored yogurt how am I supposed to eat nonfat yogurt with no sweetener (artificial or otherwise).  Even the yogurt I can eat, I always get that uncomfortable blech feeling and distended belly with lots of rumblies and whatnot when I do eat it.

The food is not cheap.  You don't have to buy anything "not normal" but it's a lot of food and she wants you to get all organic etc (and there are very sound principles for doing so, we of course buy organic locally grown whenever possible), but you won't find a coupon for any of this and our budget is pretty limited.  I decided to heck with it, when possible I will buy organic and follow the plan to the best of my ability, otherwise I would do what I can and it will still be better than what I had been doing.

Because of my specific health, I may not be able to eat this way-  in my attempt to feel better when I was at the very worst of my health problems, I tried food combining and not doing carbs and I was passing out left and right and trying to keep myself from passing out the rest of the time and I felt better immediately after adding whole grains or other starches.  The core diet calls for whole grains at every meal, but the fast forward leaves them out.

I really can't expect the dramatic results that the 5 day jump start promises because I just lost 9 lbs in the last 3 weeks and got rid of the easy to lose water weight etc (though I am still puffy-bloaty, and I really want that to go away).

With this running through my head, I of sound (HA!) mind and body chose to try to go ahead with the jump start anyways because of one reason and one reason only:  I want to give myself the best chance of success and while even Cynthia says that it is not for everyone (I took the quiz and was borderline whether it was for me or not, possibly on the very low end of borderline) I love coffee, Diet Coke and salty snacks and doing the fast forward, I believe, will quickly cure my cravings if indeed this works for me, and get rid of the crap I have built up inside.
This sounds like I am setting myself up for failure or making excuses to "quit" when the going gets tough, it is not meant that way at all, I just want and need a realistic look at the whole picture and I also need to be able to not beat myself up if I can't do it perfectly so this will be my reminder.  I do that a lot, beat myself up that is- or I used to, so it is important to me to remind myself that I do have certain things I have to live with whether I like them or not and can't necessarily do everything others can do.

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Taking it to the next level with Cinch!: Conquer Cravings, Drop Pounds and Lose Inches by Cynthia Sass

Even though the weight came off almost too easily. as in no cravings or hunger with my eating plan/diet (9 lbs, or 3 lbs a week) which I think is great, at the end of the three weeks I noticed something-  I was starting to feel blech- the food, while it tasted good was super salty and tasted "off" to me.  I don't know how to explain it, but there you have it.

In that same time frame, mama, who has been let's say feeling lousy and having a lot of crap to deal with started the Cinch Diet by Cynthia Sass.  I had vaguely skimmed the plan as they were looking for bloggers to review it but I passed on the opportunity because I thought it was too restrictive and wouldn't fit with my lifestyle.

Mom and I both lost a decent amount of weight, but here's the difference- she felt fantastic.  This is huge because she lives in chronic pain from a car accident many moons ago (entirely different from my medical issues) and though she still has the pain, only minimally helped by the chiro, she said "I have not felt this good since I was in my twenties".  I wanted to feel good too.

Here's a VERY condensed version of the plan:  You eat 4 times a day, choosing from the puzzle pieces (specific amounts from each of 5 categories), you have to have a dark chocolate break every day (mom's fave part, but I could take it or leave it), you have to eat within an hour of waking up (! horrors) and every 3-5 hours thereafter, and there is an optional 5 day fast forward cleanse to get the crap out of your system and curb cravings.

My specific challenges-  I NEVER eat when I wake up (usually 6 am) there are times I will notice it is 5 pm and I haven't eaten yet.  I drink coffee (1 cup a day is allowed-  I have my cup by my side and sip from the time I get up til the time I go to bed).  I drink Diet Coke- big no-no because of the sodium and artificial sweeteners).  No red meat-  this is one of the very few ways my body can absorb minute amounts of iron, even iv's once a week for 7 months didn't add iron so I figure even the tiny bit is better than nothing and keeps me that much longer from needing blood transfusions.  I like salt- not overly excessively, but what's a baked potato or fresh ear of corn without salt? which you can't have any added salt.  I love condiments (mayo, mustard, ketchup, steak sauce- more than food itself) which you can't have, except for certain types of mustard.  My eating plan is the first time I have ever actually attempted to diet and it may only have worked because I made up my own rules. ;-)  I have no idea if I can or even really want to follow a strict regimen.

A little background:  For the last almost 10 years, I have had serious medical issues, everything from a surgery for a stricture to save my life that basically bypasses my stomach to my body not making blood to replace what is lost to not absorbing potassium (among other things).  Any and all of these were/are life threatening, so in my wisdom (not) even though I studied fitness and nutrition I was kind of all screw it what's the point I am going to live with chronic pain and still need transfusions why bother? so didn't really take care of myself like I should have. You can see from our menus, we do a lot of salads and fruits and veggies, but also added the crap way more than I needed to.  I would justify it to myself as a balance, everything in moderation, but I knew better.

I'm telling you these things because I know better than most that every one of us is different and comes with our own unique circumstances, which of course include challenges and hurdles and while it would be easy to say - oh not for me, I thought if I shared things I would have to find a way to overcome and what I was doing to make the plan work for me it might encourage or motivate you- if I can do it, anyone can.  Now, let's hope I can do it.

I spent the last couple of days neglecting my other interests and devouring everything I could find online re: Cinch, waiting for my book to come in from Amazon (love Amazon Prime, only 2 days w/free shipping.)

I would love it if anyone else is doing the Cinch diet or anything else to get healthy if you could share, maybe trade secrets and recipes, things that work or don't, etc.

Wish me luck.
XOXOX Dddiva
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Taking it to the next level with Cinch!

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Losing it, Day 21

It has been relatively easy for me to stick with this plan- no real cravings, the weight did come off (although the last couple of days have been up and down with the fluctuations up to 2 1/2 lbs in a day- for some reason yesterday and today I have been stepping on the scale every time I passed it). These types of fluctuations are very normal and I know this- it's why many experts will tell you NOT to weigh more than once a week.

I was feeling really good, but the last little bit I have noticed a few things- even with the pounds off and a noticeable difference in the way my jeans fit (I can slide them up and down without unbuttoning them) I still feel really puffy and bloaty.

Also, everything has been tasting extremely salty to me. I haven't been adding extra salt to things, and using low sodium versions when available but things have just not tasted right- still good, this is so hard to explain, but I just had a feeling of blech - and that is really odd, like I said, the food tasted good but wrong. Not sure if that makes sense to anyone but me but there you have it.

I guess it's like this - when I ate a ton of fast food, it tasted good- now, if I get a burger from a fast food joint, I literally taste the grease, can feel it coating my tongue, my throat, my insides going down. (Every now and then I still grab one but I much prefer making our own at home.)

Dev said the same thing about snack cakes recently- and remember, she's the sweet hound, but she said you know how good those delicious cream filled cakes were to me- well when you don't have one for a long time and then eat one you literally think "eww how could I ever have liked these- she can tell the cream is oily crap, the cake is overly sweet etc. Now she's not about to give up her sweets, nor should she, but I believe she'll be making better choices and eating "real" food when she does it.

So, although eating this way is continuing to work, I am ready to move on- to eat to feel good and not worry about the scale, though I am sure that will continue showing an improvement as well.

I am going to continue sharing my journey, but this time instead of eating to lose weight I will be eating to feel great! I hope you will join me as I take things to the next level.

XOXOX Dddiva

For the record, consumed today was: fruit- lots and lots of fruit, it's in season and sooooo delicious- strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, pineapple, cherries and honeydew melon; the best best best grilled portabella mushroom "burger" on a sesame seed bun spread lightly w/mayo with grilled yellow squash, baby spinach, tomato; most of a Smart Ones tv dinner; coffee; unsweetened iced tea; water; Crystal light pomegranate lemonade.

If you want to see my plan, track my progress and get the recipes, you can find them here in eating to lose weight.

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Menu for week of 5/23 -5/29

We're doing more easy meals this week, what can I say, we like the simple and yummy.

Easy cheesy oven baked crispy pork chops; spinach salad with strawberries, blackberries, kiwi, roasted sunflower seeds and a raspberry vinaigrette.

Breakfast for dinner:   Fried egg sandwiches on english muffins; fresh fruit.

Crockpot corned beef with potatoes, carrots & onions; hot fresh dinner rolls w/butter; green beans.

Easy baked tilapia w/veggies; tossed salad.

Crockpot split pea soup with carrots and onions made from the leftover corned beef liquid; corn muffins.

Eat whatever doesn't eat you first aka leftovers aka eat what you want night.

Fruit & cheese plate; fresh blueberry muffins.

What's cooking at your house this week?




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Easy baked tilapia w/veggies

This is another one of those almost embarrassingly simple meals that I came up with on the fly after reading about doing fish in parchment with zukes and squash.  I didn't have parchment (the horrors) and Ken hates squash, Dawn hates zukes etc etc so I changed the type of fish, type of veggies, cooking method and time, but it really, really worked.  So much so that Ken said this is the kind of thing we would order out at one of the fancier restaurants.

Because I got the fish on sale it was less than $2 a serving and we would have paid min $10 each out.  For 1/5th the price, here's a fancy schmancy fish dinner for four (can easily be adapted for any size gathering) that is so easy and so delicious that the first thing mentioned about it is- that has to go in your recipe book.  (I'm not writing one, just the blog, but really, what a compliment, eh?)

Easy baked tilapia w/veggies

Ingredients
  • 4 serving sized pieces of tilapia
  • 1 bag sliced, frozen tri colored peppers and onions
  • 1 small zucchini, sliced
  • 1 yellow squash, sliced
  • 1 roma tomato, halved and sliced
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • To taste salt & freshly ground pepper
Cooking Directions
  1. Lay out four sheets of aluminum foil.
  2. Divide the veggies up evenly in the center (making them about the size of the fish). Top each with tilapia, sprinkle with lemon juice, salt and pepper.
  3. Fold up foil to make a pouch, place on cookie sheets and bake in a 350 degree oven for 40 minutes*
  4. They came out absolutely perfect and beautiful (we forgot about taking pics- we'll get them next time).
  5. *The cooking time is based on how our oven runs and having some of the veggies frozen to start. If using all fresh or defrosted vegetables, I would check at 20 minutes, there is little worse than overcooked fish.
Enjoy.
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Losing it, Day 20

Big bowl of cantaloupe and honeydew; 2 bowls beef based fat burning soup; 1 cup chicken based fat burning soup 3; artichoke w/a little garlic butter; 1/2 sandwich- very very thinly sliced salami and swiss w/mustard on 12 grain toast; pretzels; 3 m&m's; black coffee; water; Crystal Light pomegranate lemonade.

To see what I am doing and why, keep up with my progress, get recipes and more, join me at eating to lose weight.

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Losing it, Day 19

Epic fail as far as soup making goes.  UGH.  It was sooooooo good, I made another tomato/beef based one then I had to go and ruin it.  I love spinach-  in omelets, in salads, in florentine almost anything, but instead of using the baby organic pack I had I took the advice of Rachael Ray and other chefs who say frozen spinach is one of the best values in the market cuz you get a ton of spinach for very little and got a pack of recipe beginnings frozen chopped spinach.  Ewwwwww that stuff is so nasty-  like collard or mustard or whatever greens which everyone says you just haven't had them done right and makes me take a bite of theirs and it is always disgusting.  Always.  I should learn. 

I digress.  I added the whole package to a huge stockpot full of deliciousness.  It made the whole thing taste woody and just altogether gross.  I made the little divas that eat spinach try it thinking it might just be me but nope, even Ki who eats EVERYTHING and I do mean things that I wouldn't even consider eating try it and yep it's just nasty. 

I wanted to cry at that whole pot of yummy goodness going into the trash, but there's just no way we could eat it.  I thought I was doing a good thing by spending a dollar as opposed to the $6.49 for the carton of baby organic spinach, but next time I will spend the money and produce something edible or leave out the extra greenage altogether.

No soup again today.  Oh well, tomorrow is another day.

Consumed today:  1 slice 12 grain toast w/peanut butter; 1/2 grapefruit; fruit plate with a little squeeze of lime; oven baked sweet potato fries; handful of cashews; pretzels; black coffee; water.

To see what I am doing and why, keep up with my progress, get recipes and more, join me at eating to lose weight.

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Losing it, Day 18

Today was another pretty good eating day- kept it pretty down and didn't have any cravings or anything.  No soup though, either.  Oops.

Consumed today:  1 eggwhite omelet with Laughing Cow cheese wedge and salsa; 1 Lean Cuisine frozen dinner (nothing to write home about, but edible); cantaloupe and honeydew melon; strawberries; pretzels; black coffee; water.

To see what I am doing and why, keep up with my progress, get recipes and more, join me at eating to lose weight.

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Losing it, Day 17

Consumed today:  2 cups of fat burning soup, (1 ea of chicken based 2 and beef based); fruit (melon and berries) with a couple of cheese wedges and a small handful of cashews; pretzels.  Black coffee and water rounded it out. 

I am finding that less (usually) satisfies me and that the pretzels are more for crunch than a real desire for a snack.

To see what I am doing and why, keep up with my progress, get recipes and more, join me at eating to lose weight.

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My Happy List 5/21



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I am happy my family is as screwed up as I am.  (I know, right, seems like a dumb thing to be happy about but honestly, I don't think I'd fit as well with anyone else.)

So this am Casey and I are talking on MSN about Rapture - she's so what do you think it is?  I told her that the most prevalent versions are that all of the "true believers" would be whisked away to heaven and the rest of us are stuck here in hell on earth (basically, no change); or that there would be some sort of implosion; and that I personally thought there was a better chance of a zombie apocalypse.  Here's her response:
Oohhh
Zombie apocalypse!
I vote that one.
Yeah, I heard like "The dead will be raised"
and I'm thinking: Oh yeah, party with the messiah guys! ahaahahahahha

So, there you have it- proof positive my family is as nuts as I am-  or that I messed them up bad raising them and they need immediate therapy.  You be the judge. ;o)


I am happy that although I've been a slacker most of this week- my bad- I remembered to make my happy list.

I am happy that I am eating really yummy foods and still losing weight-  I think it helps that so many awesome fruits and veggies are in season  (still expensive, but manageable).  17 days, 11 lbs, 6 ozs down. 

I am happy that our plans are set- we're leaving for Cancun on the 10th and getting to meet up w/Trina and the gang while we're there.

I am happy about a lot of other things too but in keeping up with slacker week I'll post them another time.

What are you happy about?  Head on over to Mamarazzi's Dandelion Wishes and join in the fun.



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Losing it, Day 16

Today was an up day- and I ate plenty, still lost weight, though.  12 pounds in 16 days.  I am having a sip or two of soda when my sinuses are all gloched up, it helps with the hacking up crud.  Other than that, I'm not sticking exactly to the plan, but am really happy with the results since I am being much more mindful of what I am eating and not just grabbing the handy and convenient and filled with preservatives.

Consumed today:  Chinese chicken salad version 2 (cashews, chunky cabbage instead of shredded); chicken sandwich on whole grain with baby spinach and thin coating of mayo; strawberries, blueberries and blackberries; 1/4 huge portabella mushroom stuffed with parm and woody herbs; cheeseburgers w/sauteed onion sliders on hawaiian sweet rolls; snow peas; black coffee; water; sip or two of diet coke.

 To see what I am doing and why, keep up with my progress, get recipes and more, join me at eating to lose weight.

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Losing it, Day 15

Still doing great, 11 pounds in 15 days and I feel good.  (Well, sinus headache but we can blame that on seasonal allergies, not my eating plan.)

Consumed today: kiwi; mango; egg white omelet w/Laughing Cow tomato & basil cheese wedge & salsa; watermelon; grapes; cantaloupe; Chinese chicken salad - version 2; pretzels, a few cashews when making the salad; grape tomatoes, cucumber slices; pretzels.

To see what I am doing and why, keep up with my progress, get recipes and more, join me at eating to lose weight.



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Eating to lose weight - week 3 menu

10 lbs, 6 oz in 2 weeks, I am not unhappy with my progress since I am not feeling any hunger pains, cravings or deprived in any way.  I will be sticking with my UDDD and fat burning soup plan, once more with a free day for whatever I want.  I think the reason it is coming relatively easy for me is because I am not being super strict, I am letting myself eat "real" food and I am not letting my body get used to any type of pattern.  Just by paying attention to what I am eating, I am making big changes in how I feel and of course the weight loss can't be discounted.


All days:  To drink: black coffee; unsweetened iced tea (black, green or white); water; Crystal Light; cranberry juice.  For snacks:  nuts; pretzels; Laughing Cow cheese wedges, minibabybels; string cheese.  If the sweet tooth kicks in and fruit doesn't satisfy: Skinny Cow ice cream treat.

Day 1: All the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits and vegs I want; egg white omelet w/cheese & salsa; some type of salad with a lean protein (chicken or beef).

Day 2: All the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits & vegs I want; whole grain toast with peanut butter; grapefruit; baked potato w/broccoli & cheese; big tossed salad with chicken, some type of nuts or seeds and a light salad dressing.

Day 3:  All the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits & vegs I want; artichoke dipped in sea salted butter; Chinese Chicken Salad.

Day 4: All the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits and vegs I want; Instant Breakfast; cottage cheese w/fruit; pasta salad made w/tons of vegs and a zesty light Italian dressing of some sort.

Day 5:  All the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits and vegs I want; whole grain wrap w/grilled veggies, sprouts and either hummus or some type of spread, oven baked sweet potato fries.

Day 6: All the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits and vegs I want; fruit and cheese platter; TV Dinner; tossed salad.

Day 7: Anything I want in moderation along with all the fat burning soup and non-starchy fruits and vegs I want.

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Losing it, Day 14

I feel great about the progress I am making, so going to continue with this plan as long as it is working for me.  Today was an up day, so I ate what and when I wanted.

Consumed today: 1 bowl beef based fat burning soup; Chicken salad sandwich (made with dill pickles, mayo and paprika) on whole grain bread with lettuce and baby spinach; Chinese chicken salad; pretzels; water, black coffee.

To see what I am doing and why, keep up with my progress, get recipes and more, join me at eating to lose weight.

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Eating to lose weight - week 2 menu




Celebrate Spring Salad
Last week went incredibly well, I think-  7 1/2 lbs lost in 7 days (halfway to goal) so not bad at all.



I am going to be continuing like I have been with the combo fat burning soup / uddd eating plan.  To see what I am doing and why as well as keep up with my progress, see Eating To Lose Weight and a free day.  You can also find links to the recipes- so far 3 diff varieties of soup which I think helps me stick with it.  I felt no deprivation and ate things I really like, but in a more mindful manner.



All days:  To drink: black coffee; unsweetened iced tea (black, green or white); water; Crystal Light; cranberry juice.  For snacks: baked chips; crackers; nuts; Laughing cow cheese wedges and minibabybels.  For the sweet tooth: Skinny Cow ice cream treats; Smart Ones desserts.





Day 1: All the fat burning soup I want; refreshing berry salad; all the non-starchy fruits and vegs I want.  Lean protein (chicken or beef) if I feel like I need some.



Day 2: Cereal (probably some variety of Special K) with strawberries and skim milk; scrambled eggwhite omelet with green chilis, cheese and salsa; all the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits and veggies I want; chicken parmesan and a big tossed salad with greens and tomatoes and a light salad dressing or just some lemon juice squeezed on with salt and pepper.



Day 3:  All the fat burning soup I want; artichoke dipped in sea salted butter (diet calls for baked potato w/butter, I'd rather have it with my atrichoke-  if I want a potato, I'll put the tomato based soup or salsa on it); celebrate spring salad



Day 4: Whole grain toast with peanut butter; grapefruit and strawberries; all the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits and vegs I want; panini made on whole grain sandwich thin with brie and one of Kyra's friend homemade fig preserves; Caribbean black beans with mango salsa served over brown rice; Skinny Cow ice cream treat (these are really, really good, better than most non-skinny varieties.



Day 5:  All the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits and vegs I want; pineapple salad.



Day 6: Instant Breakfast; fruit and cheese plate with 2 laughing cow wedges or mini babybel; all the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits and vegs I want; TV Dinner (I got several varieties of Smart Ones on a killer 10 for sale at Kroger, I'll pick whatever I feel like eating this night) and tossed salad.



Day 7: Anything I want in moderation along with all the fat burning soup and non-starchy fruits and vegs I want.



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Latest winners

Congratulations to our two most recent winners, we really appreciate everyone who took the time to enter.

Our winners, chosen via Random.org are:

Shabby Apple Winner: #150 
Bani said... 150
i follow your blog via google friend bani127 & our $50 AmEx winner Courtesy of Pampers is:  #198
Jan said... 198
I clicked on "like". FB name is Jan Peoples tweety800265(at)yahoo(dot)com
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Light and Easy Chinese Chicken Salad

This goes together so quickly and is so delicious that no one thinks about it being healthy and lower calorie.  We make several versions, this is our fastest, easiest and low- cal version.

1 bag coleslaw mix
1/3 red cabbage, shredded (optional, I added mostly for color and because I had some left)
2 cooked boneless, skinless chicken breasts (made w/no skin), shredded, diced or chopped
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/3 cup roasted sunflower seeds
1/3 cup slivered almonds
1 cup Asian Toasted Sesame reduced fat dressing (I used Kraft that was on clearance- approximately 1/2 bottle, use more or less to taste) here are a couple of myo delicious ginger sesame dressing & marinade recipes - you can marinate your chicken in them for at least 30 minutes before grilling, baking etc- delish!

Mix everything together, cover and refrigerate at least an hour to give the flavors a chance to mingle and get to know each other.

Serve as is or with a nice Hawaiian sweet roll to non-dieters.


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Avocado Salad


Although a bit higher in fat than some fruits, Avocados are one of the superfoods and for good reason.  There are tons of health benefits, and the calories are from the healthy, good for you kind of fat.

Here's a delicious, simple salad that you can make as much or as little of as you like.

Since it was my entire meal, I used one recipe just for me, if I was making it as a side for 4 I would double everything.

Makes 1 main dish or 2 side salads.


Avocado Salad

Ingredients
  • 1 Avocado, diced
  • 1 Roma tomato, chopped
  • 2 - 3 TBSP Mild onion, chopped (red, vidalia, green)
  • 1 Small lime, juiced
  • To taste Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • To taste Fresh cilantro*, chopped
Cooking Directions
  1. Toss gently to evenly distribute ingredients and enjoy.
  2. *You can add fresh chopped cilantro, but I am not a fan so left it out.

*Strange but true factoid-  some people have a genetic predisposition to dislike cilantro, and get a soapy rather than fresh taste.


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Losing it, Day 13

Today was a down day so eating lighter-  and very, very pleased with my progress-  13 days, 10 lbs 2 ozs lost.  Not bad at all.  If you read my food diaries, you know I am not depriving myself of what I want or starving myself.

I am much more aware of portion sizes, stopped the mindless munching and take just one portion at a time of snacks- and am making overall better choices (mostly, not always) and that's okay, because it is working.  I am, for the most part feeling less sluggish and except for the sinuses/allergies and accompanying headaches I'm feeling pretty darn good.

Consumed today:  1 bowl beef based fat burning soup; avocado salad;  Chinese chicken salad; handful of pistachios; pretzels; black coffee; water.

To see what I am doing and why, keep up with my progress, get recipes and more, join me at eating to lose weight.


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Menu for week of 5/16 - 5/22

Chinese chicken salad; Hawaiian sweet rolls; mixed fruit

Regular or eggwhite omelet with cheese and veggies; whole grain toast; kiwis and strawberries

Loaded baked potatoes w/ choice of toppings: broccoli & cheese, chili and cheese, etc; spinach salad with berries and roasted sunflower seeds drizzled with raspberry vinaigrette.

Big salad with grilled chicken, fruit and dressing of choice, Italian bread w/butter

Swedish meatballs served on egg noodles; tossed green salad

BLT's, ice cream floats

Marinated pork chops; Casey's favorite potatoes; oven roasted veggies, sweet and sour cucumbers



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Losing it, Day 12

Today was my birthday so I used today as my free day even though yesterday was an up day.  Birthday calories don't count, right? 

Ken wanted to take me out for lunch and Dev for dinner, so lunch was a local Mexican place and dinner was TGIFriday's.  I got what I was in the mood for and ate as much as I wanted.

Consumed today:  A handful of tortilla chips, queso blanco and salsa; vegetarian something or other (the #3 special) that had 3 different items; avocado salad (I ate between half and 2/3 of my meal and split the salad with Ki); 1/3 of the fried green bean appetizer; 1/2 cheeseburger; 1/2 slice vanilla bean cheesecake; pretzels; black coffee; unsweetened iced tea; water; sip of diet coke.

To see my plan, check my progress and get recipes, check out eating to lose weight.


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Losing it, Day 11

Today was an up day and I knew better, but I waited to long to eat and ran to the store hungry and picked up a deli sandwich, which I split with the dogs.  At least I added veggies first, but I definitely did not feel great after eating the processed cold cuts and white bread.  I am going to make more of an effort to make sure I eat whole grains when possible.

Consumed today: 1 bowl beef based fat burning soup; 1 deli hoagie style sandwich with veggies added (shared with dogs); baked potato chips; 2 ears sweet corn on the cob with butter and sea salt; large tomato, sliced with bit of mayo, salt and pepper; black coffee; water, unsweetened iced tea.

To see my plan, check my progress and get recipes, check out eating to lose weight.
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Beef based fat burning soup recipe

This is a very basic beef based veggie soup that I am seasoning as I heat it up so I can vary the taste-  everything from Italian seasonings to salsa and Mexican spices.  Lots of myo seasoning blend recipes here.  Play with these recipes and make them to suit yourself-  you are, after all, the one who is eating them.  Once again- tons of veggies with a bit of broth-  definitely hearty.  I am using what is on sale in my area, making this very affordable.  You can use beef boullion with fresh clear water to make the stock.


Beef Based Fat Burning Soup

Ingredients
  • 1 bag Coleslaw mix (can use shredded cabbage)
  • 1 1/2 lbs Carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 1 1/2 lbs Mushrooms, sliced (baby bellas, white, whatever is on sale)
  • 1 1/2 lbs Green beans, trimmed and cut in half or thirds
  • 2/3 bunch Celery, sliced
  • 1 large Onion, diced
  • Beef stock
Cooking Directions
  1. Put veggies in a big stockpot. Add beef stock to cover + 2-3 inches. Bring to a good rolling boil then turn down to a low boil for a few hours or simmer overnight (I would have used crockpot but it would have filled more than one and I didn't want the extra dishes).
  2. Can be frozen.
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Losing it, Day 10

Today was a down day, so mostly soup.  I'm happy with my progress and how (relatively) easy it has been for me.  It helps, I think, that I am customizing the plan to my own tastes, I think that's the beauty of it.

Consumed today: 2 bowls chicken based fat burning soup 2; artichoke with butter and sea salt; 1 cup tomato based fat burning soup; pretzels; black coffee; water; unsweetened iced tea.

To keep track of my progress, get recipes and see the plan, check out eating to lose weight.
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Losing it, Day 9

The skim milk was bad so I skipped the cereal and had fruit and ran to the store and by the time I got home didn't feel like eating any after all.  I veered off the menu plan (which is just a loose guideline to give myself ideas) and ate what I felt like.

Consumed today:  2 kiwi; handful of big fat blackberries; 1 wedge Laughing Cow cheese; Thai style chicken and rice noodles Smart Ones frozen dinner (I gave most of the chicken to the dogs, I just didn't need or want it); 1 bite of Dev's sub-  turkey, cheese, spinach, tomato and black olive on honey oat bread w/mayo (we were in car she was eating it after her testing and had brought it with her and it just sounded - and tasted - really good); 1 bowl tomato based fat burning soup; baked lays potato chips; Skinny Cow truffle ice cream bar; black coffee; water

To see what I am doing and why as well as keep up with my progress, see Eating To Lose Weight
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Losing it, Day 8

I have a cold and just wasn't really hungry today so didn't eat much.







 
Consumed today was: 2 bowls of the chicken based fat burning soup 2 and 1 bowl of tomato based soup, 1 serving baked goldfish crackers; black coffee; water; 1 piece sugar free gum.
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Chicken based fat burning soup recipe 2 - crockpot

This is my second chicken based version of the fat burning soup-  totally diff vegs but still yummy- was going with what I had- and because it is getting warmer I made it in the crockpot so I didn't heat up the house.

I made it very basic and am seasoning as I heat it up so I can vary the flavors.  Lots of myo seasoning blend recipes here.


Chicken Based Fat Burning Soup 2 for Crockpot

Ingredients
  • 1 bag Coleslaw mix (can use shredded cabbage)
  • 1 bag (frozen) or 1 1/2 cups fresh Mire poix mix (or diced carrots, celery & onion)
  • 6 stalks Celery, sliced
  • 2/3 lbs Carrots, sliced
  • 2/3 lbs Green beans, trimmed and cut in half or thirds
  • 1/3 small Red cabbage, shredded or chopped
  • 6 cups Chicken broth
Cooking Directions
  1. In large crockpot / slow cooker layer veggies.
  2. Cook on high for 6 hours (I have a very slow cooking model this time around - well I have several but I used the one that runs coolish- if I was using one that runs hot I would change it to 4 hours on high or 6-8 on low).

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Eating to lose weight - week 2 menu

Celebrate Spring Salad
Last week went incredibly well, I think-  7 1/2 lbs lost in 7 days (halfway to goal) so not bad at all.

I am going to be continuing like I have been with the combo fat burning soup / uddd eating plan.  To see what I am doing and why as well as keep up with my progress, see Eating To Lose Weight and a free day.  You can also find links to the recipes- so far 3 diff varieties of soup which I think helps me stick with it.  I felt no deprivation and ate things I really like, but in a more mindful manner.

All days:  To drink: black coffee; unsweetened iced tea (black, green or white); water; Crystal Light; cranberry juice.  For snacks:  nuts; pretzels; Laughing Cow cheese wedges, minibabybels; string cheese.

Day 1: All the fat burning soup I want; refreshing berry salad; all the non-starchy fruits and vegs I want.  Lean protein (chicken or beef) if I feel like I need some.

Day 2: Cereal (probably some variety of Special K) with strawberries and skim milk; scrambled eggwhite omelet with green chilis, cheese and salsa; all the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits and veggies I want; chicken parmesan and a big tossed salad with greens and tomatoes and a light salad dressing or just some lemon juice squeezed on with salt and pepper.

Day 3:  All the fat burning soup I want; artichoke dipped in sea salted butter (diet calls for baked potato w/butter, I'd rather have it with my atrichoke-  if I want a potato, I'll put the tomato based soup or salsa on it); celebrate spring salad

Day 4: Whole grain toast with peanut butter; grapefruit and strawberries; all the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits and vegs I want; panini made on whole grain sandwich thin with brie and one of Kyra's friend homemade fig preserves; Caribbean black beans with mango salsa served over brown rice; Skinny Cow ice cream treat (these are really, really good, better than most non-skinny varieties.

Day 5:  All the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits and vegs I want; pineapple salad.

Day 6: Instant Breakfast; fruit and cheese plate with 2 laughing cow wedges or mini babybel; all the fat burning soup I want; all the non-starchy fruits and vegs I want; TV Dinner (I got several varieties of Smart Ones on a killer 10 for sale at Kroger, I'll pick whatever I feel like eating this night) and tossed salad.

Day 7: Anything I want in moderation along with all the fat burning soup and non-starchy fruits and vegs I want.

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We want to know Wednesday Q & A 5/11

Once more we're going to play along with Mamarazzi and the gang for We Want To Know Wednesday (not cuz we are lazy and don't have a real post, but because last time was so fun.  And we have a wicked bad cold and don't have a real post besides the link up-  if you are hosting a giveaway, feel free to add your link.)

WWTK is hosted by that wonderful quad of bloggers:
Impulsive Addict, Janette, Mamarazzi and Seriously Shawn

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This week's questions come from Janette

{1} What game show have you always thought you could be on and totally WIN!
{2} Do you have a tattoo(s)? What are they and what made you chose them? If not, would you get one, yes/no/why?
{3} What is your favorite piece of jewelry that you own?
{4} What is your driving pet peeve(s)?
{5} What was your favorite sitcom growing up that you wish was still on?

Here are my answers; hope you play along and link up and join the fun.  I'll try to hit them all again this week, but if I don't have time, feel free to add yours here because we're nosy divas and love knowing you better.

{1} What game show have you always thought you could be on and totally WIN!
My ex and his in-laws were Jeopardy fanatics-  I was a smartass and would walk by and count the squares - more than once I blurted out the right answer even with no letters up.  And I would know when it was time to buy a damn vowel. ;-)
{2} Do you have a tattoo(s)? What are they and what made you chose them? If not, would you get one, yes/no/why?

Nope, mainly because it wasn't super popular when I was growing up so drunk soldiers and bikers had them.  Even when I was in the service I didn't get one.  If I was growing up in today's world I would have at least one and it would be where I could cover it, but not telling what it would be.

{3} What is your favorite piece of jewelry that you own?

I have a very few pieces from my late gramma- they are all my fave because of what they mean to me.

{4} What is your driving pet peeve(s)?

I have two- people who text and drive (the ones who are crap drivers anyways and make it dangerous for the rest of us) and when you are nice enough to let a car or two out ahead of you the *sshole who has to come on through anyways even when they see you are inching up.  WTF is up with that?

{5} What was your favorite sitcom growing up that you wish was still on?
I Love Lucy (It was reruns even then but sheer genius.)

I don't really remember that many, we didn't watch a whole lot of TV even then, but remember this was the days of Who Shot JR (I still don't know-  I know someone told me once but I really have no clue) and Dynasty.  Bad shoulder padded power suits and lots of lushes.  I am not sure what the comedies were.

Oh, Happy Days was one.  That was usually pretty fun.

How about you, are you playing along this week?   Let us know so we make sure to stop by.

XOXOX Dddiva
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Lightened up Tuna Salad Sandwich

A couple of simple changes and tuna salad gets a fresh new taste and drops some unnecessary calories.  I personally prefer this to the full fat version, and as always, play around and use what dressings and veggies work for you.

Makes 3 sandwiches

1 small can tuna in water
1 stalk celery, diced
3 green onions, sliced
1 healthy spoonful  mayo - if you have a blender or food processor it's easy to make your own mayonnaise
Kraft light balsamic vinaigrette parmesan asiago dressing*
3 100 calorie sandwich thins (we used Orrowheat multi grain since they were on sale b1g1) Greens of choice - we used an organic baby spring mix, about half was spinach
1 large ripe tomato, sliced

Drain tuna and flake in small bowl, add celery and onion then put in a generous spoon of mayo and mix.  Add salad dressing to taste.  Divide evenly among the bottom half of 3 sandwich thins, add greens and tomato then top with other half of sandwich thin. 

Enjoy.

*If you are not a fan of balsamic vinegar, any vinaigrette or oil/vinegar type dressing you like, or even straight up red wine vinegar is good.  Here are some myo vinaigrettes, I am sure you'll find at least one that you'll love.


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Losing it, Day 7

7.8 lbs lost, and no feelings of this is a diet or deprivation.  It helps a lot, I think, that I am allowing myself to have what I want.  For those wondering at me allowing 2 up days in a row, the main reason is that I  don't want my body to get used to any type of pattern.

On my week 1 menu yesterday was supposed to be an up day then today an eat whatever I want, but I swapped them out due to it being mothers day and wanting to have fun with the family.  I think if I had put myself on a more rigid diet that I probably would have cheated, and if not certainly felt deprived.

If I had to choose the main reason I think this is working it would be the flexibility.  I am going along with both what my body is telling as well as eating more mindfully, whatever I am choosing to eat- today for instance, I just didn't feel like breakfast so I skipped it.  No use forcing myself to eat when I am not hungry.

I ended up using regular sour cream in the southwest salad because I didn't feel like looking for the fat free greek yogurt (I stocked up on like 120 of them w/sales and coupons two diff brands 60 of each and they ended up being either 40 or 50 cents a piece - long expiration date and we froze about half) naturally the plain ones were not near the front, and do you know how full your fridge gets if you load up on veggies esp when artichokes that usually cost 2.49 are a dollar a piece, and sweet corn for the girls is 4/$1?  LOL  I also used full flavor cheese.  And still, I lost.  Yay.
Consumed today was:  1 lightened up tuna salad sandwich - instead of all real mayo, I used part mayo, part Kraft light balsamic vinaigrette parmesan asiago dressing and lots of veggies and using a 100 cal sandwich thin for the bread (these have so much flavor- more than regular whole grain bread.); 3 Claussen mini dill pickles; a couple of bites of my newest fat burning soup (another chicken based, but different veggies); a few sips of a skinny mocha frap at Starbucks that I shared with Dev (moderation, not deprivation- it was enough to enjoy the flavor and satisfy my craving for a treat); southwest salad; black coffee; water; hint water.

To see my eating plan and have links to recipes, menus etc check out eating to lose weight.


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Losing it, Day 6

This has been the first time in my life I have actually tried to lose weight and I didn't want to fail, so I devised a plan I hoped I could  stick with, and so far, so good.  It's a lot easier than I thought because I am depriving myself of nothing that I want to eat.  How well am I doing?  Glad you asked-  6 days of eating with my plan, 6.8 lbs lost.  No extra money spent on special foods.  (I did get a stack of Smart Ones for days I want fast and easy-  they were on the buy 10 get super cheap at Kroger deal- between $1.38 and $1.88 depending on what they are, and we got some Skinny Cow ice cream treats- they are really good, Dev had one at work a while back and we really like them.  If you are a sweet eater, we all highly recommend them).  Can you tell I am stoked?

I am choosing to eat in moderation, and to savor when I do splurge.

According to my menu plan today was supposed to be an up day calorie wise and tomorrow my whatever I want to eat, but in honor of mother's day, and wanting to take Ian on a super-secret mission and he, Ki and I went to lunch - they had free gelato for mamas (others were invited, they just didn't feel like coming) I chose to swap the days around.  The flexibility of the plan I devised for myself is a big part of why I believe it is working.

(The reason I am doing up day, down day, up day, down day for 6 days and giving myself a free day for the seventh is twofold- I don't want my body to get used to any type of pattern, and I believe one of the reasons that this is working so well for me is that I know even on down days- I am eating until I am full, and I am not saying anything is off limits-  I can eat whatever it is I am craving, just making sure I am paying attention to what I eat (I have a bad habit of mindless munching) and if I want something really badly, the most I have to wait for it is the next day.

Our super-secret mission was to Shipley's Donuts (but mommy told Ian - he KNOWS that's our super secret mission place but we're not allowed to mention it) so we made a pit-stop at a garage sale so he didn't get all bent out of shape-  50 cents for a Ker-plunk game and 25 cents for 100 tealight candles.  Score.  We had no idea if the game had all the pieces as it was taped up but since Ian wanted it and it was so cheap we picked it up.  Best 50 cents we've spent in a good long while.  Ian calls it Ker-plop and says it is the best game ever, he had to have played for a couple of hours yesterday off and on.

We got half a dozen donuts, the adults each got a Kolachi (I probably butchered the spelling) it's a sausage with cheese in it wrapped in dough) and Ian got a bacon, egg and cheese croissant.  Since most of them stayed home, we didn't eat there and Ian was asking for his sandwich so when we got to Redbox I told him he could have a couple of bites of mine while mommy got his movie.  He didn't think it looked all that great then he tried it and fell in love.  I had about 3 or 4 bites, Ki a couple and he devoured the rest (it's not a tiny thing).  He wasn't kidding when he said he was hungry.

When we got home I had a bite of Dawn's, a bite of Ki's (hers had jalapenos) and a bite of Ian's sandwich when we got home, it was plenty for me (probably half a Kolachi, all in all).  I had no desire for a donut so didn't even have a bite.

Consumed today was:  about 1/2 a Kolachi (see above); a bowl of tomato based fat burning soup; 2 slices of four seasons brick oven baked pizza (it had artichokes, kalmati olives, proscuitto and fresh shaved parmesan) and a couple of bites of Ian's cheese pizza- he got pepperoni but I didn't eat that) they are pretty small-  6 slices is a 2 person pizza at Zaza's pizza; I let Ian choose our free gelato and he picked mixed berry- I had a couple of bites of that and a bite of Ki's pistachio gelato.  It was plenty to satisfy my sweet tooth.  For dinner a steamed artichoke dipped in sea-salted melted butter; a serving of baked goldfish crackers. To drink, black coffee, unsweetened iced tea, citrus splash Crystal Light and water.

When I woke up I weighed myself and six days of my eating plan yielded 6.8 lbs lost.  Yes!

To see what I am doing and why as well as keep up with my progress, see Eating To Lose Weight.

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Menu for week of 5/9 - 5/15

I am trying to shed a few pounds (ha, more like 10-15) lbs before we go to Cancun in June.  So far, so good-  6 days on eating plan, 6.8 lbs lost.  If you want to see what I am doing and how I am doing it, see eating to lose (weight).  The family still has to eat though, so I am still doing a menu plan for the week.  On my up days (higher calorie) I am eating the same basic meal as everyone else, anything I modify will be specified on my eating to lose weight updates.  On all days I will be eating as much of my fat burning soups as I want. 

Southwest salad (lower fat version for me); corn muffins for non-dieters

Refreshing berry salad; pepperoni, cheese and crackers for non-dieters

Chicken parmesan; angel hair pasta with marinara for non-dieters; tossed green salad

Oven baked pork chops;  baked potato w/butter;  celebrate spring salad

Caribbean black beans with mango salsa served over brown rice;  watermelon and cantaloupe

Spaghetti and meatballs or meatball subs; pineapple salad

Easy dinner-  tv dinners; tossed salad; fresh fruit


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Losing it, Day 5.

I finished up the chicken based fat burning soup today (the rest of the family loved this one and had some as well- for a regular meal, not to lose- it's just that good).  I will have to get the stuff to make more soon.

Got another container of the tomato based one out of the freezer, it is even better today (I liked it before, but the flavors have melded beautifully).

Consumed today: 2 cups chicken based fat burning soup; orange; 2 bowls tomato based fat burning soup; water and black coffee.

I would have eaten more, but listening to my body this was all I was hungry for and I was truly full all day, so I didn't.

To see my eating plan and have links to recipes, menus etc check out eating to lose weight.

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My happy list 5/7

I remembered again, yay me.  That's a happy for sure.  Don't know what I am talking about?  Head on over to Dandelion Wishes where Mamarazzi has a link-up to post our happy lists every weekend.  Join in or add your happys here in the comment, we'd love to celebrate with you.


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Dev won an all expenses paid trip for two to Cancun and we're making plans to go on June 10th if possible (we'll know within the week if they can get the date we want or not) and meet up with my *5th* daughter (we have created family as well as blood) and her husband and 6 kids.  

I have been on my eating plan for 4 days and lost 3.8 lbs.  And it wasn't hard since I tailored it to things I can/will do.  *knocks wood*

We're planning a little surprise for Geeky Mommy tomorrow (combo mothers day and late b-day) and she has no idea.  Just a little party with a cake specially decorated by Ian (pics to follow) and a few pressys-  she thinks we didn't do much for her b-day just gave her some $ and gc's I won so she can get what she wants/needs for the little cottage she's moving into and what she did with her friends on the actual day.  Love surprises.

The lake is still high but the water is off the bridge/road and the sun is shining.  (That was really trippy having it blocked and the school telling Dev she can't get home- luckily Ki was in town and they had a friend to stay with.)  When Dev's work found out she couldn't get home to her stuff they gave her some $ so she could get what she needed even though she said she didn't need it - they insisted.  Not sure if that is store policy or her manager or what but TJ Maxx rocks for that.  (And the great prices and really, really cute clothes.  And housewares.  And if you are a foodie the spice selection in the gourmet aisles are extremely reasonable and they have a wonderful selection.)  Yeah, we're Maxxinista's and if you aren't one too, you should check them out-  you will be.  Great products and super low prices, every day.

Dawn has almost everything she needed to do done and will be going to UCA this fall- she's trying for extra scholarships now- wish her/us/them luck!  The other girls are gathering all they need as well, but Dawn had stuff to get from several states and they lost her shot records along the way somewhere so she had to get all that done too.  It's all coming together, though.

They finally finally got to the paperwork to get some help with the medical bills (from my weeklong stay in December) so we'll hear on that sometime in the upcoming week as well hopefully.

I can have as much coffee as I want with the eating plan I devised.  Which is good, because I don't believe I would have made it otherwise, probably not even tried.

Our local stores (especially Kroger) are doing great about getting more better for you foods in-  the organic produce section has expanded, there are a lot more all natural, free range, hormone free, etc choices and they aren't completely ridiculously priced.  (And lots of times I can find them marked down on a manager's special.)
Have I mentioned that Kroger and I have a deep and passionate love affair going on?  They love   my money and I love the deals and choices.  And the girls love the sushi-  for around here in the land of meh food, it's really quite good and not horribly spendy.


I have found some new bloggy buddies through these meme's I find at Mamarazzi's (I love these ones because they are not just follow me and I'll follow you back to boost our numbers so we can get better sponsors, you actually get to find out about the other bloggers).

What are you happy about this week?  Inquiring (nosy) divas want to know.  If you post, link on up and join the party, or share here and we'll stop by your blog and say hi as soon as we can.

XOXOX Dddiva

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