Tuesday, July 24, 2012

First "Skinny" Recipe

With this new lifestyle I am going to have to learn to make "normal" food but make it healthier or "skinny".  I love pinning food recipes on Pinterest.  I see all this food that is high in fat, sodium, and sugar and I want to make it so bad!

Here is my first attempt at making a normal recipe "skinny."

The recipe calls for: (What I used to make it skinny)

4-6 Chicken Breast (I used tenders)
1 Can Green Beans (Rinse the beans several times and soak overnight in cold water---helps eliminate salt)
4-5 Potatoes (sliced)
Mrs. Dash Original Seasoning (I included this in the recipe)
Mrs. Dash Chicken Seasoning (I included this in the recipe)
1 pack of Italian Seasoning (I used half the pack)
1 stick of butter (I used Pam Original)

Pam Original, Mrs. Dash, Italian Seasoning

Green beans...any green veggie would work great

Spray baking pan with Pam and season the bottom of the pan with the Mrs. Dash seasoning.  Place chicken over that and add the green beans and potatoes.  Then spray Pam over the food generously covering the entire dish. 

Add Mrs. Dash seasonings and 1/2 pack of Italian Seasoning

Cover with foil and bake in the oven for 1 hour at 350 degrees.

I was surprised how much juice was in the bottom of the pan.  The chicken was tender and moist and great flavor.  Mrs. Dash does amazing stuff for my food!

 This was the original picture that I found on Pinterest.  Looks good huh?
This was not a hard dish to make "skinny" but it is a start.  Baby steps!  I wish I had a picture of what mine looked like after, but the hubs dug into it before I got the chance to.  We loved it!

Daily Tidbits:

-I'm still wanting that apple pie I can just taste it!

- Another 1.5 lbs lost this week!! What What!?

- Just because he is just too cute not to share...

Love him!!!

Mountain Vacation

Mountain Vacation

This past weekend we were able to head up to the mountains for a much needed vacation.  It was a quick weekend vaca but still wonderful.  Luke's grandparents live in the mountains and they have a beautiful home with a gorgeous view.
Luke's parents decided to rent a house/cabin for the weekend that was so nice.  I wish I took pictures of it.  The managers keep the place spotless.  We had a group of 8 in the house which made for an even better weekend.  I love having a large group of people together.  It is amazing what you can learn.
Anyhoo, Luke's grandfather hosts a Wildlife Exhibit with wonderful wildlife and information on the animal.  This is my 3rd year going to this and I always always enjoy it.

We were able to sit in on the raptor show and saw some amazing animals.  Sorry for the poor quality.  I was worried about using a flash.

Barn Owl

Barn Owl

Red Tail Hawk



It was pretty interesting how all the birds are "glove" trained.  Most of the birds that they had at the exhibit were either wounded or abandoned. 

It was a quick, relaxing, much needed small vacation for us.  It is just great to get away from things sometimes and breathe the fresh air!  Even though it is always good to get away there is no other place I rather be than with my husband and Ellie girl.  We were soooo excited to get her back!

Daily Tidbits:

- I have been craving a homemade apple pie for over a week now...and I don't even like apple pie.
I think I will try to make a homemade one in a couple of weeks.  I'm excited!

-I made my first "skinny" dinner tonight using a non-skinny recipe. I was worried about the taste but it was the bomb!

- Our Anniversary is a month away...I can not believe that it has already been a year.  So so thankful for him. 

- The above tidbit makes me what to do a picture blog everyday for the month of August from our wedding.

- Any fellow bloggers out there know why my pictures are turning out blurry?  They look fine on camera and I upload them here and....boooo!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Buyers Remorse

Primers and Highlighes
Liners and Mascaras
Is there something in your life that you usually buy in excess and maybe splurge on?  For some it is jewelery and for others it is home decor.  The things that I usually spend money on are makeup and hair products.  I'm one that enjoys trying out new products to see if they are better than what I already have or if they are easier to use.  I need fool proof products.  ;-)
Lately I have been going through all of my products and really seeing how much excess I have.  I have a lot of doubles and items that are in the same shade.  A lot of the products I have, have not even been used yet. 
Primers and Concealers     

 The products that I pictured above are only about 1/4 of the items that I have stored in my home.
I'm wanting to try and challenge myself not to buy any other hair or makeup products until what I have are used up.  Here's why I'm wanting to do this challenge:
- I want to use what I have:  Instead of buying that new mascara or the newest primer I want to use what I have until it is empty.  Even if the item isn't my favorite and even if I have other products that would work better...I want to use it up until it is empty or I hit pan.
- I want to save money: I am always looking over our monthly budget to see where I can improve on things.  This is something I do spend money on...even though I have a bathroom full of products.
- This will allow me to reevaluate products: If I am able to use the products for a longer period of time, it will help me decide if I want to repurchase it or not.
-Takes up space and no more wasting: Our bathroom is very small with not a lot of storage, so the storage we do have is full to the max.  I hate wasting.  I don't want to throw these products away just because I have something that will work better.

Anyone want to join me in this challenge?  Whatever it is that you seem to accumulate over time.  I can only imagine how much money I will save over time by using up all the products that I do have stored in my house.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Lifestyle Change

Lifestyle Change in Progress

If you know me personally you know I have been on a diet lifestyle change for the past 9 weeks.  I know I am only 26 years old, but I have had a lifelong struggle with weight and it is a hard road and lifestyle to change.
Growing up I always had "skinny" friends and I always felt like the bigger friend.  Luckily I had great friends around me and they never made me feel that way, it was always a way that I made myself feel.
Through the years I have loss weight and gained it...several times.  It is such a vicious cycle.  I have been on so many fad diets that worked for the time being, but the day I stop the weight came back on and then some.  I have blogged before about a meal replacement shake I was doing a few months back.You can read that post here.  I enjoyed that and will be back on them soon.  The reason I stopped them back in April was that I wanted to learn to eat.  I was sick and tired of loosing weight just to put it back on again.  I needed a lifestyle change, not just a diet.  I wanted to devote myself to a healthier lifestyle. 
Throughout the past 9 weeks I have learned how and what to eat or not to eat.   I am essentially now a Clean Eater
The first week of eating clean was an adjustment to my body.  I had to get used to eating smaller portions and not eating the processed foods I was used to. 

I wanted to write a blog about my new lifestyle/ weight loss journey for myself.  Seeing it written down keeps me accountable for what I am doing.  I usually weigh in every Monday, so I hope to write a blog once a week on my progress -regardless of a gain or loss-...this well help keep me in check.  I think this will also help me focus on something else beside what the scale says.  It is also an outlet for me to write my feelings on my struggles, progress, and frustrations.

I have kept up with my stats the past 9 weeks and I also have before pictures..but I'm saving them for later. Not ready to show those yet.  Before I started this journey I wanted to lose 20-25 pounds.

I started on May 16, 2012.

May 21- Down 7lbs
May 28- Down 4.5lbs (11.5 Total)
June 4- Down 2lbs (13.5 Total)
June 11- Down 3.5lbs (17.0 Total)
June 20- Down 1.5lbs (18.5 Total)
June 25- Down 2.5lbs (21 Total)
July 2- Down 0 (21 Total)
July 9- Down 2.5lbs (23.5 Total)
July 16- Down 0 (23.5 Total)

I have no clue what happened on July 2 and July 16.  My trainer says I am getting close to my target weight so it is going to come off slower.  I guess I am okay with that, as long as I don't gain anything that I have worked so hard to get off.  But like I said, even if I gain I will blog about it. 

Even though I am close to my goal of what I wanted to lose I am going to try my hardest to lose 12 more pounds.  I would be OK losing 7 more but I would like to give myself 5 pounds to play around with...just in case I was craving a good southern home cooked meal.

Now for a little motivation for the week.

A fellow blogger has this saying. "If it is important to you, you will do it...if it isn't important, you will find an excuse not to do it."

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Project Day

A good friend and I decided we would do a home project today.  I wanted a wreath for my front door but I didn't want to spend on arm and a leg to get one.  The picture above was my inspiration, however I wanted it full of hydrangeas.  Luckily, the craft store had the wreaths and silk flowers on sale.

The hydrangeas were on long stems, so I cut them close to the flower with wire cutters.

I arranged the flowers how I wanted and placed the stem through the wreath.

I wanted to make sure the flowers were secure, so I placed a dab of hot glue around the bottom of the stem where it touched the wreath. Then cut the excess of the stem again.

Here is the final product.  I am still working on fluffing it out just how I want it.  I'm sure I'll tweak it as I walk by.
 I absolutely love how my wreath turned out.  I think it is great for summer time and can easily go into fall.

 Here is a sneak peek of what my friend did.  She will be using this in her revamped laundry room.  Don't you love it? 

Besides having a great workout this morning, I enjoyed our project day with a great friend.


Friday, July 13, 2012

DIY Chalkboard

Today on


After looking on Pinterest, of course, I finally found an easy process to make my own Chalkboard.  I  wanted one for lists, menu, and recipes for my kitchen.  I'm sure I will use it for cute notes for Babe too. 

For my board, I wanted to find an old framed picture at Goodwill (preferably a water color painting...that way I could just use my chalkboard paint over it).  I was not able to find one, however I did find a picture frame at our local craft store. 

The first process was to take the backing and glass out of the frame. 

I got the Chalkboard paint at Lowe's.  I checked other stores for the chalkboard spray paint but could not find any in the color black.  All they had was green...why would they have green chalkboard paint?

I used the backing that was originally in the frame and painted one side with chalkboard paint and a foam roller brush.  The painting process was quick and dried fairly fast. 

I did several coats of the paint just because I had a little extra on hand.  I also read a review on making your own chalkboard and it said that sometimes the backing can soak up the paint...so I just did a few extra coats just to make sure.

I'm still on the lookout for the perfect oil on canvas or water color picture with a great wooden frame.  Until then..this will do.

Daily Tidbits:

- This rain has been great for my flowers and my house...getting a lot of cleaning done the past 3 days.
-Any ideas for hanging up your handbags or purses? 
-Babe and I took my mother in law and her mother out for dinner last night to celebrate both of their birthdays.  I absolutely love both of their company.
- Looking forward to doing more Pinterest Projects....it is very therapeutic.
-Curious why I blog?  Stress Relief!!!

Happy Weekend

Monday, July 9, 2012

Pinterest Hit or Miss Monday

******* Before I start Monday's Post, I have thought about doing a Giveaway on Southern Newlywed Blog.  I thought about either doing a Giveaway of some of my June favorites or possible my July favorites.  What do you guys think?  Interested in Winning some cool free stuff? *******

It's Monday again.  Why does the weekend always come and go so quickly? 

Well, we are back for another Pinterest Hit or Miss Monday.  If you don't already, you can follow me on Pinterest here.  I Pin awesome stuff! ;-)

OK, here is today's Pinterest Hit:

 Glass cook top stove are so nice to have in your kitchen.  But it never fails that I have boil overs or food spill out of the pan while cooking.  The food stays caked on the stove because you have to wait till the stove cools down enough to touch it.  Pinterest showed my how to clean my glass top stove by using baking soda and warm soapy water. 

Apply a good amount of baking soda to the spots that need a little bit of TLC then use your warm soaked rag to wipe up the baking soda.  That's it! 
Enter Jackson 5 ABC song!  ABC, easy as 123, oh simple as do re mi, ABC, 123, baby you and me girl!

Dry up the surface and clean with your standard Windex cleaner to make it smooth and shiny!

Pinterest Miss:  Texas Roadhouse Cinnamon Butter (You can find the link to the recipe here)

I love the Cinnamon Butter that you can get at Texas Roadhouse...so when I saw this recipe I jumped on it and made it the same day I found it on Pinterest.  I followed the recipe to the T and was very disappointed in the texture.  I was shocked when the butter was very runny.  I tried placing some of them in the fridge to harden up and some stayed out at room temperature...but neither worked. 

Maybe if some of you out there try this recipe and it's a success...let me know.  I love the Cinnamon Butter!

And just a little something extra for ya... I did this to all of my t-shirts and it is amazing how much more room you have.  It is nice being able to see what T-shirts you actually have.  There were many shirts that I have forgotten about and never wore because I never could see them!  Give it a try. 

****Don't forget to let me know what you think about Southern Newlywed doing a Giveaway*****

Thursday, July 5, 2012

5Things That Make Me Happy

Nope, this is not going to be a blog about how my husband, family, and friends make me happy.  While they mean the world to me this is more of a post about the little and simple things in life that make yours truly a happy gal. 

Before I get down to the 5 simple things that make me happy, here are a few pictures of my family....they make me the happiest girl in the world!

Okay, now I am going to share the top 5 things that make me happy....and you may be surprised on what they are.

1.  Target

Target is one of those stores that can really suck me in.  It's almost like the Target Bulls-eye sign puts you in a trance.  I usually like to blame me spending money in Target on a good friend of mine, MA.  Target is our favorite place to go. Now that the Target in our area is a Super Target...I can really get in trouble.
Target Makes Me Happy

2. Nail Polish

I could honestly paint my nails a different color every single day of the week.  Sometimes...I try.  I love any and every color of the rainbow.  


Every feel like your right hand looks like this for you Right Handed people out there?? HA!

Nail Polish makes me the happiest during the summer/spring months.  Color is popping and what greater way to bring in a little color to your day than to add a polish!
Painting my nails definitely makes me happy.

3. Hats

Whether it is be a baseball hat, a gatsby hat or a floppy hat...I love a good hat. I can't explain why hats make me happy besides the point that it gets the sun off of your face.  Hats can be an awesome show stopper.

4. Working Out

Insert LMFAO song "I Work Out."  How could you not laugh and smile at that picture?  The past 8 weeks have been such a lifestyle change for me...and its not over yet.  I never thought I would say this in.my.life but Working Out Makes Me Happy!  Working out has been a great stress reliever and it makes me a better person at the end of the day. (I'm sure Hubs appreciates that!) 

5. A Clean House

  Yep, I said it..a clean house.  There is nothing like having a clean home where everything is spotless and all items are in its place and organized. After my house is clean, I walk around and am so much more appreciative of our home and what has made up our home.  Silly?  Maybe, but its what makes me happy.

That's me in a nutshell.  Have you ever really thought about some of the simple things in life that makes you happy besides your family and friends? Sun beaming down on your face?  A good yard sale or finding a good deal? The way your feet feel while getting a pedicure?  Home cooked meals from your Mom or Grandmother?  

What Makes You Happy?