Long Distance · Self-reflection

Finally a day off and time to write…

I was hoping to make a post last week, unfortunately on the day when I normally would have time to cook and time to write, I was called in to work the night before and ended up sleeping all day with no time to do either cooking or writing.

Currently, I’m sitting in bed on my laptop watching Bones and contemplating the Noodle dish I plan on making for dinner tomorrow.  I bought whole grain linguine, fresh produce like Bell peppers, red onion, mushrooms, scallions, and it will all be combined with chicken breast strips and cajun seasoning for what I hope is a plate of dreamy deliciousness.

Today is or at this point, was the first day of Spring.  Here in my area of New York, we welcomed it with a 36 hour Lake Effect Snow watch.  Wonderful.  I still remain hopeful however that this is the last snow I’ll be seeing this season – after all, April is only about a week away!

Next week I’ll be traveling down to Massachusetts to spend Easter with Jarred and meet most of his family for the first time.  In preparation for that I will be making two batches of Oreo Truffles, one with peanut butter oreos, one with regular.  I’ll also be making a recipe from the Pioneer Woman that I’ve altered slightly to take out the pecans or nuts, called Knock You Naked Brownies.   Hoping to get recipes posted for all of these dishes.

Thursday morning I will be going to the dentist to have a Not-quite-a-cavity-yet tooth filling done.  My house has well water and a lack of fluoride, so apparently my molar needs a little extra protection and I have a new fluoride routine.

And lastly! A few questions that I hope some people will have the answer to and leave them for me!  I’ve lost a bit of weight probably too fast, my skin in my thighs, breasts and stomach is a little bit loose- not horribly so but enough that it bugs me.  I’ve been using Palmer’s Firming Butter to help tighten it up as well as drinking lots of water, any other suggestions?  I’m also going to give p90x a try starting this week – anybody have some excellent stretches to do before and after?

I’m also looking for some healthy lunches that don’t involve the bread part of a sandwich or if it does have bread – no cold cuts.  Any ideas or tips?

Cooking · Long Distance · Work

Minestrone Soup and “I-need-a-vacation-itis”

I woke up from a late night nap, looked out my window and was confronted with a vision of white. Actually getting out of my bed for closer inspection, I was delightfully surprised to see it was Fog. I’m not particularly a fan of fog, but I love it compared to snow. Bring on all the fog possible if it means the snow season is over this year.

That’s probably not the case.

But tomorrow it’s supposed to be a warm, no-jacket-needed fifty degrees, and that’s good enough news to make me wiggle my toes and do a little happy dance that has never been witnessed by another soul.

Requesting time off at my work is a not-so-complicated process, however actually getting the days is harder than you’d think.  This coming from a person who gets most of the days she requests – it’s still not easy.  I put my requests in six months ahead of time and usually schedule them around my days off so that I’m actually only requesting two days every other month instead of four or five.  It’s all put in through the computer at work, and then my Overnight Manager looks at it, and takes anywhere between a day or three weeks to Approve or Reject it.  I’m currently praying that I can manage to find somebody to fill my Easter shift that I requested in December and was denied for.  I’m hoping to meet Jarred’s family for the first time (sosososososososo incredibly nervous) and I’d like to not have to come home the day before Easter while everybody is on the highway doing the exact same thing.  I also just put in requests for July (Mayhem Fest 2013) and three days in August for a wedding.  I’m bracing myself for a long few weeks of “Bess, all these vacations, what am I going to do with you” followed by denying half of them.  All of this would easily be solved if they would give me Full Time (I work full time hours most weeks anyway) and allow  me to move out on my own.

Sigh.

On a brighter note, I broke out my trusty slow cooker yesterday and made soup! Vegetarian-Wheat Free- Minestrone to be exact.  I wasn’t able to completely follow the directions of the recipe as my Slow Cooker must be a different size than the one originally used.  A fact that I didn’t discover until after I’d already started the process of combining ingredients. It is delicious nonetheless though! Chock full of vegetables and that warm-you-all-the-way-to-your-bones comfort food flavor.
Minestrone Soup in the Slow Cooker!

Cooking · Self-reflection

Hot Chocolate Kind of Mornings

Diet or not, some mornings were made specifically for Big Mugs of Hot chocolate. When the wind is blowing against the walls of my house, and the snow drifts across the roads where the fields are, I already know it’s going to be one of these mornings.

Oddly enough, this new outlook on life and my cravings, makes me shut the lid on my Large Hot Chocolate from Dunkin’ Donuts and crave the feeling of a mug of nice green tea. This girl no longer runs on Dunkin’.

Work’s been stressful. So enough of that.

I made a healthy Macaroni and Cheese the other night, and while I was really worried about some of the substitutions I’d made – I was extremely happy with the result.

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Macaroni and Cheese – a healthy Makeover!

Cooking · Self-reflection

The Comeback and the laziness of a Friday

This post is incredibly overdue.

It feels like it’s been weeks. Months. Years.

219f11f4829b11e2842d22000a1f9ada_7As I sit on this slightly chilly Friday in Upstate York, I am perfectly content.  I have my Chai from one of my favorite places to eat here, First Cup.  I also have a delicious breakfast sandwich on an everything bagel – which does nothing for my breath but everything for my soul. Music in my ears and snow falling gently outside, with my best friend sleeping in a curled up pile of shedding fur on my bed.

It’s been a long time since I’ve posted and so much has happened! I have no idea where I could even start.  So let’s just address the biggest things and I’ll attempt to fill in all the rest later on in other posts and side stories.

Last August I got an iPhone which in itself is not all that important other than I’ve become an app fiend.  Play me on Ruzzle! Dice with Buddies! Magic Piano!  I found a calorie / workout app called MyFitnessPal that has since changed my life.  I started keeping a food diary in mid August and while I haven’t done it every single day I’ve been brutally honest about portion sizes and overeating so I can learn.  Since then I have lost 30 pounds.  In January I decided to take it up a notch and got a Gym membership to Planet Fitness.  I love it, nothing clears all the stress of work and a long distance relationship than planting yourself firmly on an elliptical trainer and just blasting music and “running” for an hour.  I can already see noticeable changes!  I’ve been trying to do my Zumba on days when I can’t make it to the gym.  I’ve also been trying really hard to change my entire eating life style.  I use Skim Milk or Almond Milk, whole grains instead of normal white or whole wheat, Vegetarian and vegan alternatives, smoothies, ect.  It’s been going pretty good but every now and then I’ll have a “cheat” meal so I can stay on track and not get run off my health road by cravings.

I only have one downfall.

This Chai is like my crack.  I’ve had three this week.  Bad Nemmie.

I’m going to try and get back to my SuperFruit Green Tea by Good Earth to deter myself from slipping into the delicious silky smooth flavor of Oregon Chai.

This evening I’ll be experimenting with a Gluten Free Brown Rice Pasta and Almond Milk to make Mac and Cheese for dinner, I’m a bit nervous. I love my Mac and Cheese.  I’ll cry if it tastes bad.  Bawl even.

Work has been work.  I’m looking forward to training in the Cash Office if I can ever get time to get in there and learn.  I’ve been trying really hard since New Years to get Full Time status so I can get my own place and start working on making my Long Distance Romance a Not-so-Long-Distance one.

I’ve had some health problems lately.  I was put on Trazadone for insomnia  and it’s been working, it’s so wonderful to finally get some sleep.  I was also diagnosed with an Ovarian Cyst last August and rechecked in November.  Still there.  My Birth control keeps her (I’ve named my cyst Francine, after four months of constant cramps and pain) at bay for the most part and keeps Francine from growing but as a naturally anxious person I have a lot of worries about just the fact that I have a Cyst and that there’s really nothing being done about it. I wish it was as easy as serving a body eviction notice.  Get Out Ms. Cyst, don’t come back.

Progress Photo Time!

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Time to get back to the real world and paying the rest of my months Bills.

Tata Lovelies,
Nemmie

Uncategorized

Upcoming recipes

As soon as I get a chance I’d like to type up a recipe I made this week, a couple actually.  This weekend I made a vegetarian Lasagna – sauce from scratch for the first time ever! But I was able to use my vegetable mixture in another recipe as well.  Today I might attempt to make those Broccoli Cheese pizza rolls, we’ll see.  Work’s been crazy this past week and it means I’m pretty much snoozing my days away after I do my Zumba Fitness when I get home in the mornings.

Happy Eating everybody!

 

Cooking

Summertime

…and the living is easy, fish are jumpin’ and the cotton is high…

Here in Syracuse, the past week has been up and down with the temperature. Just when I get used to being a hot and sweaty mess, it drops to 60 and I have to go and hunt down my blankets again.  I’m surprised I haven’t caught a cold yet, but I’m not going to complain. Where’s some wood? I need to knock on it.

About a week ago, I made this amazing recipe that I found over at Born To Entertain, I tweaked it a bit to what I had in the fridge/freezer and added an ingredient, it’s now quite possibly my favorite pasta dish.  Except for Mac and Cheese, that’s got a permanent spot in my heart. So, let’s get down to Business:

Rotini with veggies, chicken and a light Lemon Cream Sauce!

Cooking

Cooking, it soothes my soul

There aren’t many things in life that I can really just zen out an enjoy.  Reading is one of them, gaming is yet another of them.  Cooking however is the main one.  I could cook all day – and I have!  Two years ago I tackled Thanksgiving Dinner, no turkey – but I did make a giant beast of a ham, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, honeyed carrots, dinner rolls, sweet potatoes, and that’s all my now hungry brain can remember.  It was an entire days worth of work, but it was one of the best cooking memories I have!

This past week it was ridiculously hot in New York, especially at my house where we live in the dark ages of no Air Conditioning and no Central Air. I have a small tower fan and two windows, and a very energy usage conscious mother.  Turning on a TV in my room makes it feel like a Sauna, so I can tell you it was not a fun place to be at 90 degrees.  This did give me the opportunity to spend lots of time downstairs however to cook! Currently my oven is out of commission due to a Natural Gas Leak as well as a since fixed rodent issue with the insulation between the range and the oven.  As in, they took it all away.  Nice little pests we have.  it would make sense I’ve never wanted to make cookies as much as I have since pretty much the second they shut the gas to my oven off.

But let’s talk of happier things! And Peppers! This recipe is good Hot or Cold in my opinion, uses a lot of salt though so prepare your taste buds and your body for a little water retention.  Or you can experiment with different spices to add flavor boosts as you will.  I found this recipe over at the Pioneer Woman and had to adjust it to fit what I had in my pantry and fridge.  The substitutes I used worked perfectly though! It is important to know I doubled this recipe so I’d have lunch this week at work!

Roasted Red Pepper Sauce over Pasta!