Friday, July 23, 2010

Fish Tacos for Friday


This week has been a mixed bag. I want to start off with my high/lows.


  • I cooked some good food, had some good work outs.
Ratatouille 004 IMG_1760
  • I got my husband to walk on the beach with me, at night for the first time ever. He’s been promising me he would since before our very first date! It only lasted for 5 minutes, but it happened!Terrible picture of the moment:

jeff and me

  • I managed to spend some time on the blog and made some time to catch up on blog reading.
  • I enjoyed a great day on the beach Sunday, even though I was on-call for work.
  • I have maintained my weight for 3 weeks. It’s not a loss, but at least it’s not a gain.


  • I have allowed work to stress me out tremendously and I’ve been bringing it home with me.
  • Also, because of my job, I am missing my sister’s birthday celebration at the lake (about 5 hours away) with all of my family and some of my friends. This has me VERY down in the dumps.
  • I still am having a hard time keeping my stress eating in check. I’ve not been tracking my food very well at all. 
  • I am absolutely exhausted 99% of the time.

All in all, an OK week. This weekend will be tough knowing my family is having a blast and I can’t be there, and the husband will be working, but I am planning a special date night for myself after work on Saturday. I am going to watch a movie, maybe make a pizza and give myself a pedicure. It’s all about the little things after all.

Ok, onto the Fish Tacos with Peach & Mango Rice! IMG_1763

Fish Tacos – Tilapia Filet pan seared with lemon juice, salt and pepper. Break apart into pieces. 1 filet=2 tacos=1 serving. Easy. I top mine with a little fat free yogurt mixed with a little chili powder and lettuce.

Peach & Mango Rice (this is really complicated, are you ready?)

1/2 cup cooked brown rice

3 Tbsp Store bought Peach & Mango Salsa

1/4 cup frozen sweet corn, cooked

Mix all together and serve.

An easy, healthy meal is always just minutes away and it doesn’t have to be boring! This meal is full of flavor and spice, used little ingredients and took literally 10 minutes to throw together. This makes 1 serving, it’s easily doubled or tripled.

That’s all I have for today. I hope all had great weeks and have fun weekend plans! I have a 5 mile run scheduled for Sunday, I changed up training schedule a bit to allow for more time with the husband on our day off Thursday…but more on that Monday. :)

What's your high and low for the week?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The proof is in the pudding!


I was at Wal-Mart the other day and they have the most amazing selection of Sugar Free, Fat Free Instant Pudding. Have you seen it? It’s like a Jell-O Mecca! I was so excited, I bought 5 different kinds as visions of pudding pops, pudding pudding and possibly even pudding pies popped into my head. All made healthy because I had a secret weapon at home!


I rushed home with my goodies and immediately headed into the kitchen to whip together some white chocolate pudding. I look at the box to find out how much Vanilla Soy Milk I need to add, because that is what I have at home and I see this:


What’s the French, Toast? Are you KIDDING me? “Pudding will not set if made with soy milk.” How am I supposed to make pudding now? I don’t have regular milk. I rarely have regular milk.

Random tangent ahead, beware…

I feel bad for the milk cows. Have you ever heard the phrase “God Bless a Milk Cow!” uttered (haha) out of frustration? Well, I believe it! I don’t think it’s fair that they have to live in post partum state just so I can drink cow milk when I can drink soy milk. Do I still eat cheese? Yes. All the time. Does this make sense? No. Not at all. I love cheese and I will not give it up for any reason…but milk, that is something that I will usually pass on. I guess not, not anymore, because Instant Pudding is MILKIST! It’s Anti-Soy Milk!

/end random tangent.

Not one to give up on my dreams. I did some reading on the subject and found that if you attempt to make pudding with soy milk, which trust me, I almost did because I tend not to believe what packaging tells me…you get pudding flavored soy milk. Eww.

But, guess what? Upon even more research (I gave up quite easily the first time I looked into it) I found a LOOP HOLE! You just use 1 – 1 1/2 cups of soy milk per package of instant pudding instead of 2 cups of regular milk as called for. I like a thicker pudding, so I used 1 cup and 2 Tbsp of Light Vanilla Soy Milk mixed with the Cheesecake flavored Sugar Free, Fat Free Instant Pudding mix. The end result was a very smooth, luscious cheesecake pudding that was the perfect consistency (for me). So perfect in fact, I served it in a fancy glass, cause that’s how I roll!

IMG_1752 IMG_1753

The lesson in this pudding story? Never give up on your dreams. I dreamt of a cow milk-less instant pudding and with a little help of the interwebs, I made my dream a reality, so can you!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Ratatouille and Our Amazingness


Last night for dinner I made another recipe from Better Homes and Garden’s Slow Cooker Favorites Made Healthy. It was super easy, and pretty tasty.

Ratatouille 001 Ratatouille 004

I didn’t use the bread they suggested, instead I used just light wheat bread and it it into triangles. It’s 5 ww points per serving. For me, it was a perfect lunch portion today, but last night for dinner I was left a little hungry. I wish I would have beefed it up with a little pasta or rice.

So far this week, I feel great. I’ve been eating well. I’ve exercised. Work has been exhausting, but I am officially over the summer hump (as we call it) and have less than 50 days until Labor Day and my life turns back into something, somewhat, resembling normal.

I’ve had a few questions in comments lately about how my knees are holding up during training. They are doing pretty well. I just have to be sure to stretch them out and ice them at the beginning of any soreness. They are holding up better than I thought they would! Especially the one that was hurt awhile back.

There is so much stuff going on in the blog world these days:

Ryan of No More Bacon is celebrating his 1 year “healthiversary”!

Caitlin of Healthy Tipping Point and Operation Beautiful got some very exciting news!

Seth of Fit with a Purpose is hosting another challenge!

Lindsay at Healthy Stride completed her first cycling event!

I know I’ve said it before, but I am so happy to be a part of the blogging community. I get really excited for all of you when you achieve something amazing. It motivates me to get out there and do more!

We are all amazing.

For the first time in my life, I feel comfortable saying “We” instead of “You”. We are all amazing. We are proof that healthy living is achievable and fun. We didn’t go to a fancy ranch, we aren’t popping pills or crash dieting. We are just doing it.

Good for us! Let’s give us all a round of applause! Own your amazingness. I am finally owning mine and it feels pretty good.

Leave me a comment and tell me something AMAZING that you have done. It could be something as simple as cooking a healthy dinner to running a marathon. I know you have all done something…let’s hear about it. Let’s celebrate our amazingness together! :)

I’ll start: I ran a 10k when even at the starting line I was doubting my ability to finish. I ran it, had a great time running it and was very proud of myself at the end.

Lighthouse 10k 022

Monday, July 19, 2010



Savannah Diana 035It’s Monday. You know what that means, a plan to tackle the next 5 days. A plan to keep my ass in check. A plan that I am relaying to you so that you will give me a swift kick in the butt if I happen to tweet that I an lounging around in a hammock being fed chocolates by Greek God replicas. I’m helping you, help me. After all, that’s what’s important here. Me. :)   

Meal Plan!

Monday – Crock Pot Ratatouille with Parmesan Toast

Tuesday – Corn & Basil Cakes with a side dish of veg

Wednesday – Jerk Fish Tacos with Peach & Mango Rice (way easier than it sounds, I’ll show you the way)

Thursday – Crock Pot Chicken with Rice & Peas (a WW recipe I can’t link for some reason? Don’t worry, I will still share it, if it’s any good)

Friday – Surely there will be leftover food and I will eat it.

Work Out Plan!

Monday – 30 Minute Run (Boo-yah already done! My legs felt like lead, and the whole run was hard, but I did it.)

7.19.10 run

Tuesday – Weights or DVD

Wednesday – Rest

Thursday – 5 Mile Run (I am 1/2 Marathon training, let’s not forget!)

Friday – Yoga

Saturday – 30 Minute Run

Sunday – Rest

If I happen to get a little golf in there too…BONUS!

So there it is people. That is this week’s plan. I am going to do my best to stick to it. Because if you know you are doing your best, there is no need for excuses.

This post, like my run this morning, is brought to you by one my favorites:  Joan Jett and The Blackhearts.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Watch me cook up some time!


This time of year, my every free moment is savored. I live for each one. It’s hard for me to sit down in front of a computer when that is what I do all day every very long summer day. However, this blog is important to me. You guys are important to me. I care about your stories, your comments, your blogs…all very much. I need to make time for this. This is why my Unlikely Success Story is exactly that. Without this blog and without the wonderful blogging community I’m pretty sure the name of this blog would be “Watch Tonyne Booze and Eat herself into coma” or something equally as lame. So, that being said, while I may not have the amount of time to spend here as I do Fall-Spring, I will do my best to set aside blog time during the week where I can write and read until my little heart is content. That way I can hopefully stay an Unlikely Success Story and maybe I can give you a few hints, tips or tricks on how you can become one too.

I made another trip to the library for another cookbook, oh a whim I IMG_1742got  Slow Cooker Favorites made Healthy by Better Homes and Gardens. I happen to  think that the crock pot is the most underused kitchen appliance I own. It’s ridiculous. I mean, really. Do basic prep work like chopping, etc. before bed, go to sleep, wake up, dump said stuff with some more stuff in crock pot, turn it on, have dinner ready when you get home.  This is yet another way I can make time. For blogging, for running, for whatever! Be on the lookout for an increase of crock pot recipes. I’m going to search the internets for recipes like Jacques Cousteau searched for sea life because honestly, who couldn’t use more time? Think about having an hour saved because dinner cooked itself? Why do we under utilize this genius crockery so much? Also, by using the crock pot I’m not heating up my house with the oven making the A/C work twice as hard. Always a bonus.

IMG_1744 I used the crock pot on Monday to make sesame chicken lettuce wrap.  Tonight, I made Lentil Taco Salad. A meatless wonder of a meal, chocked full of protein, vegetables and yumminess. Sorry to post a picture of the recipe, but my not retyping it…guess what I saved? TIME! :) If you click on it, it will get big and you can read it, I promise. I did take the time to punch the ingredients into WW Recipe builder to find out that if you serve this as 6 servings (that’s what I did, it says 8, but you know I like big portions) it’s 3 points per serving, without taco chips, sour cream, etc. Not bad at all! Tomorrow I plan to wrap it in a sandwich wrap like a burrito! Very tasty and all I had to do was chop and dump. Love it!


Don’t be scared to try lentils if you haven’t before. They are a wonderful meat substitute or they go great with meat! You can cook them in stews or soups, make burgers with them, anything. They are so versatile. They are also very inexpensive and go a long way, saving you a buck or two! In a meal like tacos, they work great because they have a meaty texture and consistency. They hold flavor well too, so the chili powder and garlic really stand out.

What is your favorite slow cooker/crock pot recipe?

Monday, July 12, 2010

I don’t like excuses


I don’t like excuses, but I seem to be full of them these days.

I’m working my ass off at work, so I’m too tired to work out after work.

I’ve had a rough week, I deserve to indulge in too much (insert sinful delight here).

I have nothing good to blog about, so why bother.

I’m EXHAUSTED. Mentally, physically and emotionally.

Those are just some of my excuses that I’ve been using lately to be unaccountable. Unaccountable for taking care of myself. I just don’t think that’s acceptable anymore. I knew this summer was going to be rough for me. I thought I had planned accordingly. I guess I was wrong.

I need to get it together. I am going to focus on the little things.

This weekend was amazing. A friend of mine from Greensboro decided to come down. I was excited to see her, but then, my sister decided to come down too and surprise me. I had no clue she was going to be here! We had a wonderful time and I am yet again thinking how lucky I am to have such amazing people in my life.

Mason Lovette Weekend 010

Today, didn’t quite go as planned. I meant to wake up early this morning and run…I didn’t. I meant to work out after work but was late leaving the office, then got stuck at an open swing bridge and got home much later than expected. BUT, I still managed to eat a healthy lunch and dinner.

Lunch was a wrap with Asparagus, Sprouts, Granny Smith Apple, Laughing Cow Cheese, Dijon Mustard and Lettuce.


For dinner, I used my crockpot to make some Sesame Ginger Chicken (7 oz. chicken breast, Lawry’s Sesame Ginger marinade, a little water, onion, Sriracha sauce and soy sauce cooked on low for 6 hours) which I shredded and ate in lettuce wraps with some healthy fried brown rice, using leftover rice from Sunday. Asian Wraps 002


I managed to write and post a blog entry today…ok, well, I haven’t posted it YET, but you get the point.

And finally, tonight instead of being home alone wishing I had more time to spend with my husband, I am actually going to just unplug and do exactly that since we are actually both home at the same time…at least until he goes to work shortly.

I have a good life. I have a roof over my head. I know the right choices to make. I do what I can. Sometimes it’s the little things that make the big picture seem not so big.

You just don’t need excuses if you know you are doing your best. It’s time I start doing mine.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Curried Eggplant with Tomatoes and Basil


I have a summer cold. They are the worst. I am exhausted. I am constantly switching between insanely cold and insanely hot. I have had to work too. So I’m miserable. I did make an awesome dinner that I wanted to share. I got it out of an old Real Simple Magazine. It’s a recipe I’ve had forever, but hadn’t tried yet.

Curried Eggplant with Tomatoes and Basil (4 servings, 6pts per serving)

IngredientsCurried Eggplant 003

1 cup cooked brown rice

Kosher salt and black pepper

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 onion, chopped

2 pints cherry tomatoes, halved

1 eggplant (about 1 pound), cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1 1/2 teaspoons curry powder

1 15.5-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed

1/2 cup fresh basil

1/4 cup fat free sour cream (optional)


  1. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 4 to 6 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, eggplant, curry powder, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
  2. Add 2 cups water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, until the eggplant is tender, 12 to 15 minutes. Stir in the chickpeas and cook just until heated through, about 3 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in the basil. Serve over the rice with sour cream, if using.

Recipe mostly courtesy of Real Simple Magazine

Recipe was cooked almost exactly as published with just a few changes based upon what I had on hand. I made it based on a wing and a prayer. I couldn’t remember if I even liked curry! I knew I’ve had it before, but I couldn’t remember what it tasted like. I’m glad I tried it, because I DO like curry. :)

I hope to be back up to my old tricks soon! But for now, cooking dinner and writing this post took all I had left for the day. Time for my couch and a movie.

I miss you guys! I hope you all had great holiday weekends!

Friday, July 2, 2010

I’m a nerd and proud.


Yesterday my friend Kelly and I had an Eclipse brunch. We are Twi-Nerds. For the first movie, my friend Katie and I went to the midnight premiere. For New Moon, Kelly joined us, we had a whole Twi-Night. We ate “Wolf Stew”, “Vampire Dip” and “Sparkle Cupcakes”, we had several cocktails and went to the midnight premiere of that as well. Here we are that night:

Twi-Night 11.19.09 018 Katie, Kelly and Me

Katie moved to Orlando, and you all know how busy I am during the summer, so Kelly and I opted to go to a Thursday matinee of Eclipse. Katie went too, at the same time in a theater in Orlando. Because, that’s what BFFs do. We conference called after the movie! Kelly and I opted to have brunch beforehand. I made a Lemon Poppy Seed Cake and fruit salad with a yogurt drizzle. Kelly provided Mimosas. I made my stuff the night before, since I knew I was going to get up early to run.

Eclipse Brunch 002 Eclipse Brunch 005

Yes, that is a giant Edward head on my tee shirt and no I don’t wear it normally. It was a gag gift for my 30th birthday from Katie. I thought it was appropriate to wear since she wasn’t with us today. The brunch was amazing and the movie was as well.

The yogurt drizzle was the star of the show. I mixed 1 and 1/2 8oz. containers of fat free french vanilla yogurt with 1/2 of a container of fat free cool whip. Amazing. You should try it sometime! This was definitely one of the highs of my week. I am so lucky to have such wonderful friends in my life. Being around them, even talking to them on the phone brightens my day.

This brings me to my High Lows for the week!



  • I didn’t track my food as well as I should have.

That is honestly it for my lows. I had a great week, regardless of what the scale says about it. Speaking of the scale…I am 156.4 this week, up .3 from last week. I don’t like the up part, but I know why.

I hope you all have fun and safe 4th of July weekends! I will be working tomorrow, but I will have Sunday off. I’m hoping to enjoy some fireworks on Saturday night but now that the husband’s schedule has changed and he works weekends, I have no idea what my plans will be. I guess I’ll be winging it. :)

Are you doing anything fun for the 4th? Tell me all about it! :)

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Table for One.


Last night I made SkinnyTaste Italian Spinach Meatballs for dinner. Absolutely amazing. Best meatball I have ever had in my entire life, healthy or not. I didn’t deviate from the meatball recipe at all, except I made only half of it and I added fresh basil as well as parsley. Knock out hit. Making my random 001sauce I was able to use a tomato fresh out of my TopsyTurvey Tomato Grower! It’s a tiny “patio breed” of tomato. It tasted great in my sauce! Isn’t it adorable? :)

The meatballs were too glorious (sorry, I didn’t take pictures) for my usual sit down at the coffee table in front of the TV routine. They deserved much more than that. While cooking I was listening to some music, Band of Horses to be exact, and I left that playing and I sat at my bar table. 

random 002Beautiful, isn’t it? My brother made it. Yep, I said “made it” not “put it together”. He used scrap pieces of wood. The same wood was once an entertainment center in one of my old apartments, before that I’m sure they were someone’s bi-fold doors. The man is a genius. He put a lot of love into it. My sister also bought me the bar stools, so it’s kind of a double-love table.

I never sit at my table. Isn’t that terrible? I eat alone most of the time, so it just made sense to take my food to the living room. I sat at the table last night and enjoyed every bite of my food. It was peaceful. It was as if I could feel my mind unwinding from the day without distraction. While I may not sit there every night, this is definitely something I am going to repeat very soon.random 003

After dinner, I took Chaser for a 2 mile walk! He didn’t appreciate it, he’s lazy, but  I appreciated his exhaustion when a little thunderstorm blew up when we got home. After our walk, in a great mood, I even painted my toenails with a sparkly purple color nail polish that a Drag Queen left at random 004 my house many moons ago and I did laundry! I don’t believe any of the above things would have been accomplished had I just done the normal sit in front of the coffee table and watch TV while eating dinner. Eating dinner at the table changed my entire evening. Just that 1 little thing.

This leads me to my question of today: Where do you eat?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Workouts rarely disappoint.


I feel such a sense of accomplishment and happiness after work outs. Even after a not so good one, I’m still happy that I did something. I got a good run in after work yesterday, it was on the treadmill at a slight incline.

run 6.28.10

This morning, for my cross training day, I did The Biggest Loser Last Chance Workout on Exercise TV On Demand. Right now, I’m a sweaty mess typing this! It worked me harder than I imagined it would, that’s for sure. My arms are already a little sore too. Other than the fact I find Jillian insanely annoying, I liked this workout.

last chance

I would love to share the General Tso Quorn recipe with you, but it didn’t turn out very good. I mean it’s tasty, but it looks terrible and I’m not going to lie, I used a seasoning packet. You have some winners and some losers I guess.

Time to get ready for work! I’m hoping that maybe I’ll go to the driving range with a friend after work. If not, I may just go by myself! :)

Do you have a favorite work out DVD or TV Program?

The Total Body Sculpt with Gilad (The Israeli Stud-Muffin as they call him) always looks like I good work out, but I giggle every time I see the guy! Happy Tuesday!!! :)

Monday, June 28, 2010

So much for guns.


Friday, leaving work, this happened:


I backed into a huge metal trailer. The kicker? I have 1 car payment left. I made it through Friday night without a drink, probably because I was on-call for work.

Saturday, work was INSANE. I stayed late. I worked hard. I got mad as a hornet.  I came home and had two of these. I didn’t feel bad at all.


So, I didn’t make my goal of no booze until July 3rd. However, I am proud of myself for stopping at two and making it a whole week. The husband and I had a lazy movie night. It was our last Saturday night together until the fall. Sunday, I went grocery shopping for the week and then the husband left for work. I’m not used to him not being around on Sundays. It’s a bummer, I just keep reminding myself, it’s just until the fall. I used my Sunday time to make some homemade gnocchi and watch some chick flicks. That was my weekend.

Today, is Monday. Today, my half marathon training begins. I’m using Jeff Galloway’s training program. I want to build up slow and steady, especially to make sure my knee can handle it. I’m excited to get started!

Meal Plan for the week:

Monday - General Tso Quorn

Tuesday - Skinny Italian Meatballs (may flip flop with Wednesday if I go to the driving range after work)

Wednesday - Gnocchi with Vegetables

Thursday - Some sort of vegetable and polenta casserole type dish

Friday - Leftovers (I’m on-call again, leftovers are easier)

Goals for the week:

  1. Track food Monday-Friday at least.
  2. Continue the eating only food that I prepare until July 3rd rule.
  3. Do the work outs as dictated by my training schedule, don’t skip any.
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
30 min. run Cross-Train Rest 3 mile run Yoga 30 min. run

So, I’m ready to get this party started. I’m going to have a good week, you are too. Let’s just do it together.

How did you do over the weekend?

Friday, June 25, 2010

Weekly Update with Tonyne


So, this week was a good week.  I’m going to start off with my High/Lows.

Highsgolf 002

  • I am now the proud owner of a great set of golf clubs and an adorable new bag.
  • I worked out 4 times this week and had some really great runs. If you count the driving range as a work out (and I totally do, I was drenched when we were finished, of course it was 90 degrees with wicked humidity) I worked out 5 times!
  • I tracked all of my food and I ate within points. Staying true to my current goals.
  • I didn’t drink even when faced with temptation!


  • I’m fighting with the no drinking thing. I’ve realized that telling myself “No” only makes me want something more. Shocking, isn’t it?
  • I was very snacky. I stayed within points (for the most part) and tracked my snacks, but I found myself eating even when I wasn’t hungry.

That’s about it for the lows. I have just had a good, happy week and I feel so much better! I cooked lots of great meals this week, all made with REAL food and my body is thanking me for it by giving me more energy and a better mood. I am now a firm believer that Junk Food makes you feel like Junk. Occasionally, it’s ok, but like everything else…MODERATION is key.

As for weigh in, I will continue to report it on Fridays, but I don’t want that to be the focus of my Friday Updates. I want the focus to me my high/lows because I feel those are what is most important and those are what I learn the most from. My weight this week is: 156lbs, down 1lb from last week.

Tonight I’m on-call for work and this weekend I really don’t have any great plans. My husband starts a new schedule on Sunday which will give us less time together, so I want to be sure to spend lots of time with him. Saturday night will be tough because I know he will want to go out because it’s his last free Saturday night. This schedule change has thrown us both for a loop. Fingers crossed I can stick to my guns about not drinking!

I plan to get a rest day in on Sunday and maybe some Yoga on Saturday. It’ll be a nice, easy weekend before my half marathon training (it’s a long training plan for my half marathon in October) starts on Monday.  It builds up slow, which will be good for my knee.

What are you doing do be active this weekend? Do you have any fun plans? What was your high and low for the week?

Thursday, June 24, 2010

I’m not a lush, I promise.


I have to tell you. This no drinking until July 3rd thing is proving to be quite difficult for me. I’m not an alcoholic by any means, but I drink at least 1-2 times a week with my friends. That’s what we do. We get together and have a few drinks. I can’t go to a bar with them and not have a drink. I can not eat at a restaurant, but I can’t go to a bar and not have a drink. If we don’t go to bars, we go to each other’s houses or to the beach…where we have drinks.

Ta 11 09 031 Katie's Going Away Party 083 29914_426096749877_652804877_5574835_3749707_n
Planet Fun 012 Tree Trimming Party 132 NYE 2009 068

This is an especially busy time of year for me, I’m under a lot of stress at work and a few drinks are always welcome. I’ve been asked several times this week to go out, even to have “secret beers” that no one would know about. It’s been tempting, but I am trying to stay strong. I want to prove to myself that I can go 2 weeks without drinking. I am assuming I won’t see my friends much. My husband even said “It’s going to be a long two weeks” he’s so right.

Wow. I sound like a total lush, don’t I? I wouldn’t blame any of you for thinking that I have a drinking problem. :) IMG_1699

Last night for dinner, I made Zucchini Parmigiana. I only deviated from  the recipe in a couple ways. I used non-fat or reduced fat cheese and instead of egg whites I used 2 Tbsp of Italian dressing, 2 for the ricotta cheese and 2 for the zucchini before breading. It turned into a cheesy, gooey, delicious mess. Next time I will use more zucchini and less cheese and sauce. On the side I just had a random broccoli slaw, spinach, carrot and onion salad with a little miracle whip, horseradish mustard and seasoning. It was an easy, comforting meal.

Today is my day off, it’s supposed to be 96 degrees with a heat index of 110’ish. :/ I am going for a run in the air conditioned gym on the treadmill, then I’m off to the library to return a few cookbooks and to pick up In The Defense of Food by Michael Pollan and I’m thinking some pool time will need to be in there somewhere. The husby and I are supposed to go to the driving range to hit some golf balls, but I assume if the heat doesn’t break a little bit we won’t be going. We’ll see!

So, if adults don’t get together and have cocktails, what do they do? What do you do with your friends?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Polenta Triangles with Black Bean Salad


I have to tell you, I never imagined I would have so much fun cooking vegetarian food, but I’m not missing anything. You won’t either if you cook this recipe. I put this as 2 large servings, but this could easily be 3 regular size servings. I was just STARVING. :)

Polenta Triangles (2 servings, 2pts per serving)Black Bean Salad and Polenta 002


2 cups water  
1/2 cup yellow corn meal stone ground


1. Bring 2 cups salted water to a boil.

2. Gradually add corn meal to water, whisking constantly until it's the consistency of mashed potatoes. Add whatever seasonings you would like to add at this point. Parmesan cheese and butter is a personal favorite. Takes about 4-5 minutes.

3. Pour polenta into small casserole dish and allow to chill in fridge overnight, or until firm. (I completed up to point last night while my peppers were baking. I feel an overnight chill works best)

4. Place a cutting board on top of casserole dish and turn upside down allowing polenta to fall out of dish. You may need to run an knife around the edges of the dish before flipping so it will fall out. Cut into desired shapes. I chose triangles.

5. Sauté over medium-high heat in a non-stick skillet sprayed with cooking spray until golden. 

Creole Seasoned Black Bean Salad (2 servings, 5pts per serving)


1 tsp Creole seasoning  
1/4 cup onion, finely chopped  
1 cup frozen corn kernels  
15 oz canned black beans, rinsed and drained  
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar  
1/3 cup tomato, chopped  
3/4 cups green beans, fresh, cut into thirds and steamed in microwave  


1. Sauté onions in a non-stick skillet sprayed with cooking spray until tender.

2. Add beans, steamed green beans, corn and Creole seasoning and vinegar. Stir in tomatoes when corn thaws completely. Cook until warmed. Serve over polenta squares

I topped mine with a little fat free sour cream and dove right in. It is amazing! This is definitely one I will make again and again. I think, if I could, I would marry polenta. I love it. A lot.

So far, I’m having a good week. I feel so much better. My husband’s schedule changed again, so now we will have even less time together. This summer is going to be a tough one. On a good note, I think we are going to the driving range on Thursday and I am so excited! I haven’t been in a few weeks! That is, of course, if we can stand the heat. It’s been unbearable here! Highs in the upper 90s and Heat Indexes in the 110’ish area. HOT. Needless to say, my butt has been running in the gym on the treadmill.

How do you beat the heat? What’s your favorite summer activity?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Peppers stuffed with Quinoa, Feta and Corn


Peppers Stuffed with Quinoa, Feta and Corn (2 servings, 6 pts per serving)


1/2 cup uncooked quinoaStuffed Peppers 003   
1/2 cup onion, finely chopped  
1 clove garlic clove, minced  
1 tsp ground cumin  
1 cup frozen corn kernels  
2 cups spinach, chopped  
1/4 cup feta cheese  
2 bell peppers  


1. Bring 1 cup of water to boil. Add 1/2 tsp salt, then the quinoa. Give it a stir, cover and simmer over low heat until the grains are tender. About 15 minutes.

2. Spray skillet with non-stick spray and sauté onion. Once tender add garlic, cumin, corn and spinach along with 2 tbsp water. When spinach is wilted, add quinoa and feta. Toss everything together, remove from heat, season with Salt & Pepper as desired.

3. Slice the peppers in half lengthwise without removing the tops or stems, remove seeds. Simmer them in salted water until tender to the touch but not overly soft. About 4-5 minutes. Remove from water. Fill them with quinoa and set them in a baking dish.

4. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray the tops of the stuffed peppers with non-stick spray and bake until peppers are heated through, about 20-30 minutes. Switch heat to broil and brown the tops. Serve hot, warm or at room temperature.

Recipe was adapted from the book Vegetarian Suppers from Deborah Madison’s Kitchen

This was a pretty good meal. Next time I will add more spices, however I think it’s a GREAT base to play with. I didn’t follow the recipe exactly from the book because I didn’t have everything on hand. I’ve never boiled my peppers before stuffing and baking them, it makes them so soft and tender. They just fell apart when cut. I definitely will be doing that going forward with stuffed peppers. I topped mine with hot sauce, cause that’s how I roll. It felt good to cook a healthy meal at home.

I also premade my polenta for tonight’s dinner but I will give you all those deets tomorrow.

Healthy snacks I’ve been snacking on so far this week:

Frozen Grapes (Why oh why did I wait so long to try this? So easy and so AMAZING on these hot, hot nights!)

Cherries (I swallowed a cherry pit and while the adult Tonyne understood that a cherry tree could never grow out of your stomach, the kid Tonyne who still resides in my head was FREAKING out about it)

Frozen Chocolate Covered Bananas (At just 2 points a piece, who needs ice cream!)

Banana Soft Serve (It’s hit the blog world like a storm and I’m so glad it did!)

After two days of healthy eating and being mindful of my actions, I feel so much better already. Now to just keep the momentum going! I even managed to make it out for a run this morning!

6.22.10 run


What’s your favorite healthy snack? Do you prefer sweet or savory?

Monday, June 21, 2010

Hey stranger!


Honey, I’m home! I have missed blogging and I have missed being a more active part of the blogging community. Due to my summer work schedule, I’m not sure that I’ll be as active as I was in Fall, Winter and Spring, but I am going to try be around more. I enjoyed the break, but it’s time to refocus.

The past two weeks I have been living in the danger zone. I’ve been indulging a bit too much, drinking a bit too heavily and not being active enough. I feel terrible. Not mentally, I think a break was what I needed, so I do not feel guilty, but I feel ill. I’ve been getting headaches, indigestion and I’ve been exhausted all the time. The past couple weeks ware a big wake up call for me. It helped me to remember that I continue to live this healthy lifestyle not only for weight loss but because I feel better when I do. I’m not in my twenties anymore and late night pizza causes me more pain that happiness.

I feel as if I need to do a bit of a detox, so I am making some plans for success.

1. No drinking until July 3rd. Not a drop of alcohol.

2. Track all food Monday-Friday (and make a solid effort Sat-Sun), staying within my WW Points.

3. Do something active at least 4 times a week for a minimum of 30 minutes. Even if I just walk the dog or do Yoga.

4. Eat only food that I prepare. No eating out or overly processed foods until July 3rd.

Now, why July 3rd? I’m realistic. I know I will have a few drinks and eat at a cookout for the 4th of July. I will work that weekend so I will enjoy food that I don’t have to prepare.

I went to the library for motivation.

Cookbooks 001

The Best Light Recipe is definitely a book I will be buying. I love the original The Best Recipe cookbook, so I was elated to find a light version. It tells you the best recipe for all sorts of stuff. The best lower calorie/fat cheesecake recipe, the best veggie burger recipe, etc. They did all the work, you just have to cook!

Vegetarian Suppers From Deborah Madison's Kitchen has lots of great recipes in it and 2 of the meals from my meal plan this week will be adaptations of ones found there. I’m not going vegetarian, as I’ve said before. However, I do feel better when I eat a mostly vegetarian diet. I like to stick to vegetarian meals Monday-Friday and meats on the weekends. If I crave chicken, fish or beef during the week, I alter my meal plan.

I never thought much about getting cookbooks from the library before, but will be doing it again for sure! They are holding the book In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan for me to pick up this week. Not a cookbook, but I am excited to read it!

I’ll wrap this up with my meal plan for the week:

Monday – Quinoa, Corn and Feta stuffed Peppers

Tuesday – Polenta Squares with Black Bean Salad

Wednesday – Zucchini Parmesan

Thursday – Lentil Burgers

Friday – Leftovers (I’m on-call for work, it’s hard to cook with the risk of being pulled away at a moment’s notice)

I will share the really good recipes with you, I promise! It’s good to be back. :)

Monday, June 14, 2010

Taking a break...

Hi everyone!

Just a little note to let you know I'm still alive and kicking. I just need a break. I needed a break from the blog, from tracking food, from all of it. I'm not saying a break from tracking food was my best idea, but I think it was needed.

I am back to tracking food and I'm getting back to working out, even if it's not as much as I'd like for it to be. Work has me exhausted, but I'm doing my best. I have even started bringing my gym clothes to work with me so I'll just stop at the gym (which is literally only a parking lot away from my front door) on the way home instead of going inside and flopping down on the couch.

Anyway, I will be back when I have something new to share, but for right now...I just need to focus on me and not pulling my hair out at work. I could be gone for a day or a week. I just don't know right now.

Thank you all for your encouragement and understanding. Your kind words and support mean more to me that you will ever know.

I'm still around and reading...keep up the good work. You are all doing SO WELL! :)

Later gators!


Tuesday, June 8, 2010

A rough go of it.

I am having a rough time this week. Not really with bad choices, although my choices aren't great, they're not THAT bad...I'm having a rough time in my head. Here are some of the recurrent thoughts in my brain this week:

Do I really want to eat healthily for the rest of my life?

Will a non-serving size quantity of *insert sinful treat here* always haunt me until it's completely gone?

I don't feel like exercising anymore.

It's so hard to do this alone. It would be so nice to have someone who I share meals and work out with.

I'll never regain the endurance I lost this past month off from running.

I like how I look now, do I need to bother with getting smaller?

Why are you paying for, you aren't even tracking your food?

I am getting soft again, why bother working out, if I don't constantly monitor everything, I just gain weight. I'm too tired to deal with it.

Work is stressful, all of this can wait until the Fall when things calm down.

My knee is still hurting. I'm supposed to start my 1/2 marathon training this month. What if I can't do the 1/2 marathon?

I can't go to the doctor because I don't have insurance. What if I can never run again?

Needless to say, my mind has been...dark. I feel like I'm sprialling out of control into a downward vortex. This time it's not about bad choices. It's just about being tired and not caring anymore.

I didn't want to write this. You guys are an amazing source of support for me, and I know I'm not alone...but it sure does feel like it some times. Especially in my day to day life.

I am trying to get through this. I really am. Writing it out sounds pathetic, but it is nice to get it out of my head. If you add all of this, to the regular day to day stress of work and the husband's always changing health and problems...I'm just tired. Really, really tired.

I need a magic fitness fairy to come along, pick me up and take me for a walk or to the gym or for a swim. Or maybe just shake me until I come back to my senses.

Anyway, that's it. That's where I am. I don't like it here. I can't afford to drop anchor here. But I am having trouble mapping a safe exit route.

How do you get yourself out of a funk? This feels a little deeper than normal and with my past yo-yo'ing weight, this makes me nervous. Any help or advice would be so welcome.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Caribbean Jerk Chickpea Burgers with Mango Slaw. Amazing.


So, the weekend, yadda, yadda…bad food choices, laziness. However, on Friday I made this lovely dinner and it’s the star of today’s show.

Mango Slaw (4 servings, 0 points per serving)


1/2 a bag Broccoli Cloeslaw Mix  
1/4 cup onion, finely chopped  
1/2 medium mango, peeled and chopped  
2 Tbsp SPLENDA® SPLENDA No Calorie Sweetener  
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar  


In a bowl combine broccoli coleslaw mix, onion and mangos.

In a cup dissolve Splenda in vinegar, add to cabbage and toss. Serve cold.

Caribbean Jerk Chickpea Burgers (4 servings, 4 points per serving)Jerk Burgers and Mango Slaw 002


15 oz canned garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup parsley, fresh
1/2 cup cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped  
1/4 cup onion, finely chopped  
2/3 cup Panko crispy bread crumbs - plain  
1 egg, lightly beaten     
1/4 cup Lawry's Caribbean Jerk Marinade  


In a food processor, pulse the chickpeas and parsley until finely chopped.

Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl and stir in the bread crumbs, onion and cucumber. Stir the egg and Jerk marinade into the mixture and form into 4 patties.

Jerk Burgers and Mango Slaw 003Cook the patties in a large skillet or grill pan for 4 minutes per side until done. Serve with 1/3 of a cup Mango Slaw on top.

You know I love the Lawry’s Marinades. They are affordable and great in moderation. This is the one to look for.

The burgers fall apart a little, so try not to move them much when cooking. I used my Foreman grill.

I enjoyed eating vegetarian dinners so much, that I’m going to go for week 2…well, I will probably opt for pepperoni on Tuesday, but mostly vegetarian! ;)

Meatless Monday – Black Bean Cakes with Avocado Salsa

Tuesday – Pepperoni Polenta Pizza

Wednesday – Grilled Vegetable Panini 

Thursday – Greek Chickpea Burgers

Friday – Leftovers

I overslept this morning so I’m not kicking the week off with a work out and that bums me out. However, I am going to making the choice right now to make this a good week.

I hope you all had great weekends and are ready to have a great week!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Eggplant Parmesan and Usual Friday Hubbub


I love eggplant parmesan. It’s one of my favorite dishes. Some people like to layer it and bake it, some fry it, there are a million ways to make it, here’s how I make mine!

Eggplant Parmesan (6 points per serving, 2 servings)Egg Parm 001


1 medium raw eggplant, sliced into 1/2 inch pieces lengthwise  
2 egg whites  
1 Tbsp water  
1/2 cup Panko crispy bread crumbs - plain (seasoned with your favorite spices
8 oz canned tomato sauce
1 cup chopped frozen spinach  
1/2 cup Kraft Reduced fat Italian style shredded cheese blend  


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly spray a cooking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.

Whisk together egg whites and 1 tbsp of water. Dip eggplant slices into egg mixtures and then bread crumbs coating lightly and place on baking sheet. Cook for 22 minutes flipping once, until golden brown.

While eggplant cooks, heat tomato sauce with frozen spinach on the stove top over medium- high heat. Add any spices you desire (I like S&P, Italian Seasoning and Crushed Red Pepper flakes) and allow to heat on low until eggplant finishes.

When eggplant is removed from oven, top each slice with cheese and place under broiler until melted. Serve with sauce poured on top.

I like my eggplant to be crispy when I eat it, that’s why I don’t layer and bake, although it is good that way too!

If you’re not very familiar with cooking (or eating for that matter) eggplant, it may be beneficial to salt the eggplant first. Eggplant can sometimes taste a little bitter. So if you cut the eggplant into slices, lay it in a colander in your sink, sprinkle some salt on it and allow it to sit for 30 minutes, turning once. Then, rinse the excess salt off and pat the eggplant dry, then start making the recipe. This will remove some of the bitterness from the eggplant and also remove excess moisture.

Weigh In

Weight Last Week: 157

Weight This Week: 155.9

Difference of: –1.1

This makes my total loss since January 2009 right at 54lbs.



  • I have LOVED eating vegetarian meals this week. I have had some great food and haven’t felt deprived of anything.
  • I ran! For the first time in 4 weeks and it was awesome!
  • I was more active this week.
  • I was able to help some friends this week. I think it’s always a high point to help others!
  • Losing a pound is an awesome loss, that is a high for sure!


  • Work continues to be a point of constant stress and exhaustion. That’s led me to a lot of late night comfort eating. I know shouldn’t be doing it as I’m reaching for the 3rd or 4th snack of the night, but I continue to get it anyway.
  • I didn’t track much this week. I have to get better about that.
  • I’ve had a lot of “I don’t know how I’m going to keep this up over the summer” thoughts and thoughts about just going “off plan” for the summer. I have been having lots of “talks” with myself.
  • Like last summer (due to work, etc.) I’m starting to become introverted and hermit like.

I think for the next week, I have a lot of work to do on myself in the mental department. I also need to stop being hard on myself. I know this is a crazy-busy time of year for me and I know it lasts at least 3 months. It happens every year. Things won’t always be smooth and obstacles will constantly be thrown in my way. I need to roll with the punches.

Tonight I am making Caribbean Jerk Chickpea Burgers with a Mango ‘Slaw and I will be sure to post the recipe! I am excited to fool around in the kitchen after work. It’s such a huge stress reliever for me.

Ok, this has been a LONG post! Sorry ‘bout that! :)

What was your High and Low this week? Got any fun weekend plans?

Thursday, June 3, 2010

I just ran…


No meat since a little on a sandwich for lunch on Monday, still doing fine! I would love to make meat a specialty item in my diet. Something I only have once or twice a week instead of so regularly. I think I might be able to get there! However…

I was leery of last night’s vegetarian meal. I had selected two new recipes to try, Caitlin’s Perfect Baked Tofu and Spaghetti Squash Mac and Cheese from The Biggest Diabetic Loser’s site. Luckily, it turned out pretty well!

Mac and Tofu 001

I was most concerned about the Tofu. I didn’t think it was going to have any flavor based on the short time in was in the marinade, but it turned out great! Even if a bit over done. The only change I made was to use vegetable broth instead of olive oil to cut back on the calories.

The SS Mac and Cheese was YUMMY! I did use reduced or no fat milk, cheese and butter, I didn’t use jalapenos (I used crushed red pepper flakes) and I added garlic and onion powder to the milk. I also added a little more squash, I probably used close to 10 oz of cooked squash.

The squash, I may make again with some adjustments, but the tofu will for sure be a keeper! I may make it again for lunch today actually. I think the fact I over-cooked it a little made it even better. It was crunchy! :)

The big news of the day is…I RAN! I did a short run for my first one, I don’t want to reinjure and right now I’m icing my knee, just to be on the safe side. I’m not diving back head first into running, but I was elated to be doing it again! I ran this on the treadmill.

run 6.3.10

Well, it’s Thursday…my very wonderful day off. I’m going to go enjoy it! The husband is off today too!

What do you like to do on your day off?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Change of plans…


So last night’s dinner was supposed to be baked Tofu and Spaghetti Squash Mac and Cheese…but there was a slight change of plans. At the last minute I was asked to dog-sit for the evening for my friend Kelly. Our dogs are just beginning a very tentative friendship, so I really wanted to keep an eye on them. Since they are the Hounds of Hell and all…

Lilly and Chase 003 Lilly Beans and Chaser the Wonder Schnauzer

Ok, maybe not the Hounds of Hell. They are stinkin’ cute though, aren’t they? However, I did want to leave the two of them alone and up to mischief while I focused and worked in the kitchen for an hour. Trust me, they look cute, but they are plenty sneaky and crafty.

I had leftover Polenta Muffins and a Sweet Potato. It was delicious, and even the dogs thought so. They both had a little bite of sweet potato.

We had a nice relaxed evening and played outside for a bit. Both of them were very well behaved, but it made me think about how difficult healthy cooking and eating could be for people with kids! After last night, I couldn’t imagine. MAJOR KUDOS to you healthy-living parents! :)

That’s the nice thing about leaving my Friday nights free for leftovers or what have you; If I have to skip a night of my meal plan, I just shift things back a day! So, tomorrow will be Baked Tofu and Spaghetti Squash Mac & Cheese, Thursday will be Eggplant Parmesan and Friday will be Caribbean Jerk Chickpea Burgers!

I know this post wasn’t much of anything except, “look how cute the dogs in my life are!” but hey, they are pretty darn cute and who couldn’t use a little cuteness from time to time?

In other news…I think I might try going for a run tomorrow. Tomorrow makes 4 weeks. My knee is better. It hurts only occasionally. Just a short, slow run. We’ll see. Yoga after work tonight and then tomorrow is my favorite day of the week! Thursday! My day off! :)

Do you have any pets? If so, how many? I think we’re going to stay a 1 dog family for awhile. Although Lilly Beans is welcome over anytime!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A meatless week? You don’t say.


I hope you guys had great weekends! I did. I had a lot of laid back time, I spent some time with friends. I made it to the gym. I did a lot of reading. I’m reading the Sookie Stackhouse Novels…yeah, I’ve been living in a vacuum for about 4 days. I had to force myself to put it down to cook dinner last night!

I have decided to challenge myself to have a week full of meatless dinners! I’m a little nervous, but excited. I’ll share the good recipes with you! Speaking of which…

Last night I made Polenta Muffins! I love polenta but I have never made it myself so I was a bit nervous. There weren’t any fancy ingredients, it seemed simple enough.

Polenta Muffins (6 servings, 4pts per serving)

Ingredients Polenta Muffins 001

1 1/2 cups hot water
16 oz. (1 bag) broccoli florets, thawed, drained and chopped
1/4 of an onion minced
1 cup chopped asparagus
1 roma tomato, seeded and chopped
2 cups 1% milk
Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder, Onion Powder (to taste)
1 cup uncooked stone-ground yellow corn meal
4 Tbsp grated Parmesan Cheese
1 Tbsp butter


Lightly coat a 12 cup muffin tin with cooking spray, set aside. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a large heavy bottomed pot, combine water, milk and seasoning. Bring to a boil. Reduce health to medium-low and slowly add a little bit of cornmeal at a time whisking constantly. Continue to cook, stiring frequently until the polenta has the consistency of mashed potatoes.

Stir in vegetables, butter and 3 Tbsp of Parmesan cheese. Spread polenta mixture evenly into the 12 prepared muffin tins. Sprinkle the reamining Tbsp of Parmesan cheese on the top and place in oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the edges begin to brown. Cool for 25 minutes, serve at room temperature.

Packed full of vegetables, 2 of these muffins=1 serving. I made 6 servings, I figured I could have them for lunches or have 1 as a side dish to a meal later on in the week. Adapted from the WW Deep-Dish Polenta Pie recipe.

Now, these sound time intensive, but they are SOOOO worth it. Absolutely tasty and very filling! I can think of a ton of different vegetables to try mixing in. Which is a good thing, since I now have a bag of corn meal to use. :)

Here are the meals for the rest of the week! So, stay tuned! ;)

Tuesday – Baked Tofu with Spaghetti Squash Mac & Cheese

Wednesday – Eggplant Parmesan (I have to document how I make it)

Thursday – Caribbean Jerk Chickpea Burgers (This I will be doing on the fly)

Friday – Leftovers, I’m sure there will be some!

I needed to mix things up a little bit! I think this will be fun.

I just got back from the gym, I did 45 minutes on the stationary bike, with a book in hand! I find that reading on the stationary bike makes the time fly by. A terrific start to Tuesday!

What’s your favorite meatless meal? I’m always looking for new ones to try! :)


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