Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Drop City



Finally, I finished the book Drop City, by T.C. Boyle.

It was a good book. Long, over 400 pages. It was mainly about a group of hippies (a lot of drugs and free love, but it's not graphic or detailed, you are just aware that it's going on) who are forced out of their California commune and go up to Alaska and start a group up there. There is also a lot written about a couple who are starting their marriage up there as well who live near them. I really liked the characters and how he wrote about them. Now that I'm done, I don't know what I think about the story, but I did enjoy it as I read it! I wish I would have had it finished so I could have gone to discuss it at Jodi's book club!

Good enough to buy? I don't know. I haven't read anything in a long time that I've bought! I love the library!

Monday, May 30, 2005

Memorial Day Weekend

I love three day weekends! This was a good one too! We laid low on Friday night, and got up early on Saturday and headed down to Madison. Chad met up with some of his friends and went golfing, I headed to Brat Fest with Karin and Shawn, and we also picked up our numbers for the relay we did on Sunday. We had dinner at Lisa and Ed's. Some Yummy Venison meatballs with spaghetti!

Sunday we were up early, but greeted the day with a view of the lake (I don't even know which one) in Madison. Headed over to the race. I ran the third leg which was 6 miles. I did much better than I thought I would. It's a lot easier to run when you don't know where you are or how far you have to go yet! Although I felt kind of bad passing the people who were running the whole marathon. People were cheering which was fun. Just a little bit of guilt when they yell "looking strong" at mile 15, because they don't know I've only been running for 2, unlike everyone else! At the finish line I ran into my college roommate, Stacy's parents who were there cheering on her sister! That was fun, because Chad runs into people constantly when we are in Madison, so it was my turn :)

Last night we finished up with a barbecue and hot tub and smores. I was pretty exhausted and was in bed before the party was over, but a fun weekend getting to see Karin, Lisa, and Angie!

Today the ride home was pretty smooth. When I got home I had a message from a friend telling me she got engaged, so it was just a nice pleasant weekend! With Lots of good things!!

Friday, May 27, 2005

Carrot Cupcakes

At book club last month, we talked about magazines we subscribed to. Well I had just ordered my Weight Watcher's magazine, but didn't have my first issue yet. Well I finally got it (May/June 2005 issue), and here's the first recipe I've tried! YUMMY! (although Chad won't touch them yet, the movie is still freaking him out!)

Carrot Cupcakes
Makes 24 servings

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar (I used light)
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
1/3 cup canola oil (I used vegetable)
1/3 cup apple butter
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups shredded carrots (about 3 medium)

1/2 cup reduced fat cream cheese
1 tbsp honey

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 24 mini-muffin cups with paper liners or spray with nonstick spray.
2. Whisk together the flour, granulated and brown sugars, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a mixing bowl. Whisk the eggs, oil, apple butter, and vanilla in another bowl, and fold into the flour mixture, stirring just until blended. Stir in the carrots. Spoon into the muffin cups, filling them halfway. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the centers comes out clean, about 15 minutes. Cool completely on a rack.
3. To prepare the frosting, combine the cream cheese and honey in a small bowl. Dab a teaspoonful onto the top of each cooled cupcake.

PER SERVING (1 cupcake):
111 calories, 5 grams of fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 0 grams trans fat, 21 mg Cholesterol, 157 mg Sodium, 15 g carb, 1 gram fiber, 2 gram protein, 13 gram calcium

WW Points = 2

COOK'S TIP: You can freeze the unfrosted cupcakes up to 1 month ahead; store them in a cookie tin or freezer container with wax paper between the layers. Thaw at room temperature 1/2 hour before frosting

Super Size Me

Wow... Chad and I just watched Super Size Me. For those of you who don't know, it's a documentary on eating fast food, and the director of the film, actually eats ONLY McDonald's for 30 days. And his doctors on day 21 were asking him to stop. His liver was being poisoned. Very scary! I'm kind of disappointed, since we are going to Madison tomorrow. McDonald's goes so well with road trips! But not this weekend! Yuk!

I think we were more freaked out about what our kids would eat for school lunches after they showed that!

But I honestly understand what they say when they say fast food is addicting! Because I love it, but whenever I don't have it for awhile, I don't crave it at all!

Definitely a good movie to watch. There are so many facts! And good things to know about how food affects you!

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Carrie Underwood!!!

I totally forgot to post! I have been talking about this all season!

The right person won last night! I think Carrie is super talented and appeals to a large range of people! And on Tuesday she really showed some emotion when singing, which had to appeal to a lot of people!

Very good! I was very happy, especially since I couldn't get through on Tuesday night!

Pumpkin Spice Pudding

When you're craving Pumpkin Pie, this is a quick substitute!

Pumpkin Spice Pudding

1 box Sugar-Free Vanilla Pudding
2 cups Skim Milk
1/2 - 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (I used 1 tsp. and it was pretty strong)

Follow directions on box of pudding, except add spice before blending.

Weight Watchers Points = 2


It's that easy!

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Our House

So hindsight is 20/20 and it's awesome that we didn't get those first three houses we bid on! This one surpasses it! and it will be ours on July 1st!!! Burnsville, here we come! :)

Run Run Run

So I went out running last night. I was gone for about an hour... I didn't run the whole time, but stopped about 3 times and walked for a few minutes and then started again... So I feel better about this weekend. I think I'll be able to do it. I have to get really hydrated this week though!

Monday, May 23, 2005

Yippee

I just got back from my Weight Watcher's weekly meeting. I'm down 10% of my total weight when I started! I was nervous, because I wasn't too good last week with all the house hunting and pizza eating that I did! Plus there were beers and chips at the bachlorette party this weekend!

Just 1.4 lbs left to go!!

Improvised Pasta Bake

Last night, I had thawed some spaghetti sauce that I had frozen a few weeks ago. And it was about all I had around that would work for dinner. Of course Chad didn't "feel like" spaghetti. So I tricked him! He got a hotdish instead!

I basically just cooked some pasta, poured the sauce over top. Took some fat free sour cream and spooned that over the top, and then kind of smeared it through, and then sprinkled the whole thing with low fat mozzarella cheese, and baked for 25 minutes at 350. And he loved it!

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Training Advice

I need some advice on what I should do to get myself ready for this 6 mile leg of relay that I signed up to do next weekend! Last weekend I ran about 2.5... and that's about all the running I've done in 2 weeks!!! (House hunting sucks and I thought it would be fun!)

I'm thinking a LOT of stretching, and maybe some light runs through Thursday?? Any thoughts?

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

My Bad

I have been horrible about blogging lately!

Chad and I have been hitting the pavement, trying to find a house. Our search has ranged from Burnsville to Shakopee... and of course Savage in-between!

Tonight we are checking out St. Louis Park and Hopkins though... so we'll see how that goes too.

Two offers out there, and 1 rejected, waiting on 1, but there is little hope of that. Sellers seem to be stalling to see if they can get more offers (they already have 3) so we have little hope in getting that house. Oh well... we'll keep looking!

Plus we're waiting to hear back on how our inspection went yesterday. Apparently they are concerned about some plumbing and electrical work... The only thing I would even fathom they might be concerned about are pretty minor, so we'll give them some change back or fix it for them... hopefully it's nothing deal breaking...

Sarah and Curt came over last night for AI. It was a good show. Everyone was pretty top notch. I like them all, although I think I like Carrie and Bo more than Vonzell. Next week is the season finale!

Then we'll be done with our prime time TV until next season, or if they introduce a new show this summer... Oh and I guess baseball and basketball playoffs, but whatever, that's Chad, not me.

Have a good one y'all.. I'll keep you updated on the house situation as we know more!!

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

UGHHHH

House hunting is Stressful!!!

Saturday, May 14, 2005

SOLD!!!

Pending inspection, our house is sold!! Now we have to find a place to live!!! Gotta love multiple offers!

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Anthony

Yeah, Anthony went home last night! Wish it had happened sooner, but I'm mostly glad he didn't go any farther!

I know I can enjoy the finale now!

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Spring Semester 1998

Geez! I just realized today it's been 7 years since I took my last college finals! Dang!!!

That last semester was a blast! Dogs N' Suds! Dots N' Boxes! Drinking Ski! Reggaefest! Our party before Reggaefest! Our graduation party (Kris, Sarah, Karin, and mine, the 4 Coolest Female Math Majors). Lisa was in love with the sun in our front yard. An Anti-Valentine's Day Party. Tiki Bar. Picnic on Karin's floor. Road trip to Orlando and Mickey Mouse! RJ shaking my hand good night!! ha! Hanging out with Dano and his roommates. Independent Study with Dr. Bruce Johnston that we totally blew off... Giving campus tours at 8 am! Meeting boys who said"What's your major?" "I'm a Math Major" "Oh... you're one of those smart ones".. and then they were gone!

Those years have flown by. Even the years after college... Like Nicki said the other day... "Remember when we used to spend a whole weekend partying and then sleeping all morning and then heading to Jimmy Johns for lunch and then taking showers, starting all over with partying the next day. " That seems like ages ago!

Wow! I'm 31! Time flies!

just another day...

I wish I had more to keep you all updated on! Life is pretty much just waiting for the house to sell! Keeping it clean, which is a lot easier now that we have less stuff! I've been really good about doing the dishes as they get dirty and washing towels and doing laundry.

That's really about it!

I watched American Idol last night, of course! I hope Anthony goes home, but Vonzell was not up to par last night at all. The judges blasted Carrie on her last song, even though I thought she did pretty good. But I voted for her, and only got through once! And couldn't get through for Bo at all. I know I'm a geek!

Also got sucked into the season finale of the Amazing Race last night. It was pretty good. I only watched on other episode this whole season of it, but was rooting against Rob and Amber, just because Rob can be an ass, and they've already won their million. I don't even know the name of the couple that won, but it was definitely a feel-good moment, because they were obviously really nice people.

That's my life. Work is work. And tomorrow we should get our "offer" letters from Oracle. I'm not worried about not having a job, just interested in what my title and position will be and if they want to pay me more! I can always hope!

Monday, May 09, 2005

Grecian Pork Tenderloin

I made this recipe yesterday for Mother's Day. Very Good! I got the recipe from allrecipes.com. Here is the original version, as I had to do some editing because I didn't have enough limes.

Grecian Pork Tenderloin
Makes 6 servings.

1 cup fresh lime juice (4 limes)
1/2 cup olive oil
4 cloves garlic, sliced
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
4 tablespoons dried oregano
2 (1 pound) pork tenderloins

Place lime juice, olive oil, garlic, salt, and oregano in a large resealable plastic bag. Shake sealed bag until ingredients are well mixed. Taste the marinade for tartness. If too tart, add a little more oil. Not enough zing, add more lime. The garlic and salt flavors should also be up front, yet not overpowering. Place tenderloins in the bag, seal, and turn to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for 2 to 5 hours.
Preheat grill for medium heat.
Lightly oil the grill grate, and discard marinade. Grill tenderloins for 20 to 30 minutes, turning once, or to desired doneness.

When I do this again, I won't bother peeling and slicing the garlic, just put it in the garlic press. I'll probably get more flavor that way.

The Answer is Yes



I just finished The Answer is Yes, by Sara Lewis. And let me start by saying that readers at amazon.com and and barnesandnoble.com, gave it ! That is why I decided to read it.

I don't know if I could honestly give it one star! It dragged. The plot was super predictable. The characters super boring. For example: The main character Jenny gets fired from her boring desk job at a bank, and her husband is a scientist working at a university. They are both adopted. But she is not sure if her marriage is working out, and meanwhile stumbles on a community education type school and ends up directing a play. Half way through the book you find out the realize she is having problems with Todd, is because they can't have children. Then at the end of the book (like the last 2 chapters), they finally talk about adoption, so they adopt AND she gets pregnant AND she gets hired on as theatre director at the school full time AND she finds her birth mother....

YAWN!
Not kidding, I was on page 200, and I thought about not finishing it!

I bought this book (used for like $2) but I'm not even going to offer it to any of you. It will just go straight to the book sale at the library!

I cannot wait for my next book!

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Our House Listing

We're finally up on the MLS with pictures!

MLS#: 3030807

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Angel Dessert



This recipe comes from Sarah! She made it for book club last week. It is super yummy! Probably makes about 12 servings, at about 4 points a piece. But really good and a great way to get some fruit!

Angel Dessert
from Sarah

1 angel food cake (discard crust)
3.4 oz pkg. instant vanilla pudding
2 c. skim milk
8 oz. container cool whip
1 pint strawberries, halved
2 kiwi, peeled and sliced

Bake cake.
Mix pudding and milk together. Let set in fridge for a few minutes, then fold in Cool Whip
Fill bowl with 1/3 cake pieces, top with 1/3 pudding mixture, then 1/2 strawberries.
Layer another 1/3 cake pieces, top with 1/3 pudding mixture, then sliced Kiwi crosswise, laying against the side of the bowl to make a ring.
Layer remaining cake and pudding mixture, top with remaining strawberries.

Refrigerate at least 4 hours.
Posted by Hello

"Get In Shape Girl" Music

I would love some music suggestions for running music on my MP3 player, for days like this when I have to run 45 laps at the gym to stay on track with my training!

Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

Friday, May 06, 2005

Friday Night

Sadly, it's Friday night, and I'm sitting here on my computer! But we haven't had internet since yesterday morning (our modem fried). But I'm finally back on!

So the last week or so, so many people have commented on how they enjoy my blog, and I must say, I enjoy writing it, so I'm glad people enjoy reading it! Otherwise, it would kind of suck...

In other news, our house is on the MLS! (#3030807) Unfortunately (and i need to call our realtor) there are no pictures yet! I hate it when I go to look at houses online, and there are no pictures! In the days of digital cameras, there shouldALWAYS be pictures! So I will have to get on the phone first thing tomorrow morning!

I'm off to catch up on TiVo... First on my list is "What Not To Wear"

PS. I bought some new shoes tonight at DSW. A pair of cute black mary jane type mules. They had them in this really great shade of green too, but I had to be practical, since this was not at all what I intended coming home with! I LOVE them! The cut is just a little different, so it doesn't make my feet look so wide!

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Finally!

Finally, Scott Savol is gone! He was just too cocky this week! Even when they were splitting the contestants into groups, he got sent to the couch with Anthony! And he celebrated. And then when Ryan told Anthony he had bad news, Scott celebrated. But the bad news was something un-related, just a cliff hanger and Scott finally went home! I was so worried for Vonzell! Thanks, Sarah for voting for her!

Yesterday I realized I am a bit of an emotional eater! I just am so frustrated with work, and I've been fighting a cold all week, so I was just not in a good mood yesterday, so I didn't pack my lunch, and Subway did NOT sound good... know what did??? Pizza!! I got a slice of margarita pizza at Rossi's with a side of fruit salad. It was so good and greasy! I even picked off the olives to get rid of some fat, but still it sucked last night, when I was trying to figure out what I could eat for 4 points! I ended up with an eggbeaters sandwich on 1 point bread and lowfat cheese. Not so bad, just not pizza!

Did any of you watch Oprah on Tuesday, Insiders' Guide to Make You Younger and Healthier? I watched it last night, that's the beauty of TiVo. Chad came down right after I started it. He didn't believe me when I told him Oprah was talking about poop! But they were! It was very interesting! Her guest was Dr. Oz. He was on several months ago talking about smoking and heart disease and he always brings organs, healthy and diseased to show. Yesterday he brought kidneys and the colon and intestines... Needless to say I will be eating much more fiber from now on! And getting the book that Dr. Oz co-authored, You: The Owner's Manual.



Oh yeah, and Oprah said the next big thing since low-carb diet will be a whole-grain diet... We'll have to wait and see if she is right! But soon the above label will be on products that are made from whole grains!

Just interesting stuff...

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

"Bald as a Ping Pong Ball"

A quote from a skit from Free To Be You and Me...

But that's what I'll be if this week continues like this! Bald! I'm so frustrated at work. I am barely managing to get in and stay my 8 hours... I'm counting down the hours all day long and playing Spider Solitaire everytime I think no one is watching!

On the home front... we have 3 people interested before we get it on the MLS and hopefully that'll happen on Friday... if Lloyd gets over to do our tuckpointing! Wish us the best seller's luck!

On to even better news... on Monday I was down 9.6 lbs over the last 4 weeks! Yea, Weight Watchers!

Monday, May 02, 2005

Good In Bed



Last Night I finished the book, Good In Bed, by Jennifer Weiner. It was a very good book. Mainly about a girl who struggles with her weight and dealing with a break up and other ups and downs through her life.

Very good book! One of my favorites this year!

Sunday, May 01, 2005

And We're Off...

Today was a busy day. Chad and I got up knowing that we might have an interested party coming to look at our house, so we worked very hard to get it clean and ready! And we did! We were done by 3:30, right before the showing! The house looks great!

So if these buyers aren't interested, and if the tuckpointer gets here early this week, then we'll have the house on the market by the end of the week!

I'm very excited!

Friday night I went to book club. We didn't talk about the book, but it had been a very long time since we had all seen each other, so it was a good time!

Yesterday, my brother came over to help replace our garbage disosal. It went really smoothly, so then I babysat Drew and Katelyn while he ran some errands. Drew and I also did some crafts and watched The Incredibles while Mike took Katelyn to the doctor.

It was a fun day! I always enjoy seeing the kids! And my brother too, I guess! :)

I'm off to get ready for bed. I know it's early, but I want to get up and run before work, because I didn't work out this weekend at all, and I have a hair appointment after work tomorrow.

Have a great Monday!

Spaghetti Sauce

I made this recipe that I got from Nicki tonight. It was very good. Definitely beats the stuff out of the jar! I know, it's pretty sad, that that is how I've made spaghetti up until now! This is easy, and makes a ton! So I have at least 2 more dinners worth in the freezer!

Spaghetti Sauce
From Nicki

2lb. hamburger or Italian sausage
2-15 oz. cans tomato sauce
4-6 oz. cans tomato paste
2 envelopes Italian style sauce mix—any flavor
2 sm. cans sliced mushrooms, drained (I didn't add any)
2 c. water
1c. red wine
1 Tbsp. sugar (I forgot to add this, but didn't notice)
2 cloves garlic, crushed
Onion, chopped—as much as you like. (I used about 3/4 of a large onion)
Green pepper, chopped—as much as you like (I used about 1 1/2)

Brown hamburger. Mix in rest of ingredients. Simmer for about an hour.

Notes from Nicki:

This recipe already doubled. Makes a nice big pot of sauce. Usually enough to eat and freeze for about 2 more meals. I usually throw in whatever I think might taste good!!

This is about 4 points per serving.

Parmesan Zucchini Strips and Lemon Aioli

Friday night for book club I made parmesan zucchini strips and lemon aioli sauce. I was inspired by Maggiano's. They have great fried zucchini and the sauce is wonderful. And since weight watchers doesn't go with "fried" I found a recipe for baked zucchini, then through some "googling" I found that the sauce was a lemon aioli sauce... even though I didn't know what aioli was, I "googled" for a recipe and found one! Turns out Aioli is basically mayonnaise! So I just used mayo and the seasonings from the recipe. And it was good!

I did bake the zucchini before I went to book club, so it was a little soggy, so it would be better straight from the oven!

Parmesan Zucchini Strips
From 3fatchicks.com

Serves 4

1/2 cup egg substitute

1/3 cup seasoned bread crumbs
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
4 small zucchini, quartered lengthwise

Preheat oven to 450*F. Pour egg substitute into a shallow dish. Combine bread crumbs and cheese in another shallow dish. Dip zucchini quarters into egg, then roll in bread crumb mixture to coat. Place on a baking dish that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Bake 18 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown and tender.


Weight Watchers points = 2
When I do it again. I'm going to try spraying the bottom of the pan with cooking spray, then sprinkling half the crumb mixture on the bottom of the pan, dipping the zucchini in egg, and then spreading the rest of the crumb mixture over the top of the zucchini, and spray with cooking spray... This should keep my fingers from getting messy, and avoid the clumps in the crumbs at the end of dipping!

Lemon Aioli
A spiced lemon mayonnaise great for topping crab cakes or substituting for hollandaise sauce.
adapted from a recipe by Paul Mayville,
www.mayville.net

¾ cup reduced fat mayonnaise
1teaspoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley (or 2 tbsp dried parsley)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard(plus a little extra as desired)
1 tablespoon olive oil (optional to thin sauce)


Combine mayonnaise, lemon juice, parsley, salt, pepper, cayenne and mustard with a whisk. Let chill for an hour or so to soak up flavors of seasoning. Add olive oil as desired to thin sauce if desired.

1 1/2 tbsp = 1 point