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Threw a bunch of stuff together and called it DINNER!

4/04/2012 *Sara-Marie* 0 Comments

Wow, three posts in one day. I must be on a roll.

Tonight I struggled with what to make for dinner. I had about 15 points left and I debated on getting some take out or trying to come up with something in the kitchen. Since Mark is working until 11pm tonight, there wasn't too much pressure to present a wonderful meal. Some times on these nights, I settle for PB&J and call it a night!

After staring at my pantry for a good 5 minutes, I decided to get creative. I had black beans, diced tomatoes with green chilies, and whole berry cranberry sauce. Hmmmmm. Could that taste good together? What if I threw that all in a wrap and called it a burrito?

And that's when I started throwing a bunch of stuff together and calling it dinner!

I have named this Black Bean & Cranberry Chicken Chili?
 I started by making the black beans as I normally do: some sofrito, sazon, dash of cumin seeds, oregano, black pepper, drop of olive oil, etc.

I then added about 10 oz of already cooked chicken breast, roughly chopped.

After a minute or two, I added the whole can of diced tomatoes with green chilies (slightly drained) and the whole can of whole berry cranberry sauce. I let that simmer for a few minutes.

Lastly, I added a small bunch of fresh cilantro (straight from my little herb garden!), a dash of salt, and 1 oz of pepper jack cheese. I stirred until the cheese melted into the mixture and let it simmer for another 5 minutes or so. The pepper jack cheese added a nice little kick plus thickened up the mixture a bit (without adding too many points!)

The mixture came out kind of like a chili, and was tasty enough to eat on its own. I measured out 10 - 1/2 cup servings at about 4 points each. I had enough points to go with the full cup, which was more than enough. I did end up pairing it with two small wraps and a side salad:

the more plates you use, the more you think you're eating!!

I have to admit that the cranberry sauce added a lot more points than I had originally expected, but the hint of sweetness  in the dish complemented the spice of the green chilies and the pepper jack cheese! I would definitely make this again.

And since I mentioned it - here's my little herb garden! Growing strong!

Italian Parsley, Rosemary, and Cilantro

It is so convenient to have fresh herbs at your disposal! I would love to expand to grow basil, oregano, thyme, and sage in the near future. And I have to say that these herbs smell and taste so much stronger than when you buy them in the store! All I have to do is slightly touch the rosemary and my fingers smell for hours. It's crazy!

On that note, have a good night!



Yummy French Toast!

4/04/2012 *Sara-Marie* 0 Comments

I love getting new ideas for satisfying and yummy meals. Especially breakfast! Below is the recipe I followed to come up with that beautiful plate of food above. It is adapted from a recipe I found on Since I changed it quite a bit, I wanted to document it so I can make it again! AND share it with all of you, of course.

French Toast with bananas and almonds

1 slice of whole wheat bread (2pt)
1 egg (2pt)
1 banana, sliced
1/2 oz of slivered almonds (2pts)
Dash of: vanilla, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves
Drizzle of honey

1. Heat skillet over medium heat
2. Beat the egg and add a dash of each of the seasonings listed above
3. Soak bread in the egg mixture
4. Place in skillet and pour any remaining egg on top of the bread in the skillet. Cook until browned and then flip.
5. Once cooked throughly on both sides, place on plate and cut in half. (mind trick to make you think you have more food on plate!)
6. Slice bananas over the French toast and add the slivered almonds.
7. Sprinkle with more cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves
8. Drizzle with a tiny bit of honey. (4 grams or less is 0 points)

Eat up!!!


Weigh-In Wednesdays! 4-4-12

4/04/2012 *Sara-Marie* 0 Comments

Good Morning!

As I stated in my last post, it's been almost two weeks since I've posted about my weight loss journey. Today, I'm going to reflect on the last few weeks and hopefully try to kick my butt back into high gear!

During my weigh-in this morning, I stayed the same. No gain, no loss. I'm actually kind of happy about that, since I was fearing a gain. I splurged a lot more than I should have over the weekend, and due to traveling for work I didn't get any exercise in last week. Terrible, I know. And definitely just an excuse.

As I was plugging in my stats into my Weight Tracker, I started to realize that in comparison to the last couple of months, March was a good month for me! I refocused, started exercising again and tracking my meals. I started blogging and taking pride in making healthy, delicious decisions for each of my meals (and as you know, taking pictures of them!)

First week of March, I lost 2 lbs
Second week of March, I lost 1 lb (I'm feeling good!)
Third week of March, I gained .8 (TOM - so I wasn't too concerned)
Fourth week of March, I lost 1.4

So for the month of March, I had a net weight loss of 3.6 pounds! That is right on target for healthy weight loss! About a pound a week. Nice.

Although I had a so-so week and a 'stay the same' for my first weigh-in in April, reflecting on the month of March gives me the encouragement that I CAN do this. If I can lose, on average, 3-4 pounds per month, I will be at my goal weight in no time.

Just eat well and exercise! Why do we make it so much harder than it has to be?!

This upcoming week (weight watchers week 4/4 - 4/10) my goal is to earn 14 Activity Points - an average of 2 points per day.

A pedicure! And I need one badly!!

I personally think that I enjoy my meals more when they taste good (that's a given!), smell good, and LOOK good. Taking pictures of my meals also helps because it gives me a sense of pride in what I've put together.

Here are a couple from over the last week or so:

Baby red potatoes with honey balsamic glazed chicken

Baby red potatoes with rosemary lemon chicken

Two turkey wraps, stuffed with grape tomatoes, spinach and red butter lettuce drizzled with Lite Sweet Onion dressing

Simple salad and orecchiette pasta with turkey sausage and broccoli

Yummm...looking at these pictures is making me hungry!! Time for breakfast!


Food for thought

4/02/2012 *Sara-Marie* 1 Comments

"Dear God, Your will, nothing more, nothing less, nothing else. Amen." 
~Bobby Richardson

It's been almost 2 weeks since I've written a post. Some of you may be expecting this post to be about my weight loss journey, but it isn't. If you need to know, it's going pretty well. Trying everyday to stay on track. But enough of that for now.

Yesterday, I read the short and sincere prayer that I quoted above and I haven't been able to get it out of my head. As you may or may not know, I'm a pretty talkative person and that doesn't change when I have my conversations with God. I regularly remind Him about how awesome He is and how grateful I am for what He is doing in our lives. I tell Him about our struggles, our hopes, our desires. I pray for our family and friends. I also like to remind God that we trust Him, above all else and that we want Him to continue to be in control of our lives. Now, I don't think there is anything wrong with having a friend-like conversation with God every day (in fact, I encourage it), but there is something about the simple prayer above that really struck me. 

Your will, nothing more, nothing less, nothing else.

Wow. If that's not wholeheartedly trusting in God than I don't know what is.

I wonder what would happen if for just one day, I put aside all of my desires and simply asked for God's will and His will only. Is there really any need to say anything more? anything less? or anything else? 

Probably not.