Meal Planning and National Kale Day

National Kale Day

Did you know that today is national kale day?! It’s also my mom’s birthday (lucky lady) AND my nephew was born today!

National Kale Day is shaping up to be a very good day.

This past week I traveled to Dallas, which gave me another mini vacay from the kitchen. I can’t say I was disappointed. I cooked up a couple of easy peasy dinners on Monday and Tuesday but they weren’t up to their usual awesomeness because I was totally overwhelmed with work, presentation prep and packing. Matt had to fend for himself for the remainder of the week as I jetted off to Dallas for the best tacos on the planet.

Monday: Veggie Frittata (aka the usual)

  • Eggs: $2
  • Feta Cheese: Pantry item
  • Onions: Pantry item
  • Baby Kale: Pantry item
  • Sun dried tomatoes: Pantry item

Total: $2 for 4 servings

Tuesday: Taco Tuesday

  • Pinto Beans: $2
  • Cheddar Cheese: $3
  • Sour Cream: $2
  • Avocado: $2
  • Olives: $2
  • Lettuce: $2
  • Onion: Pantry item

Total: $13 for 4 servings

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Wednesday: TORCHY’s Tacos

Seriously the best tacos I have ever eaten. If you’re in Texas, look this place up and eat there, quick!

Thursday: 3 Stacks BBQ

The best BBQ sauce ever. I also had the cheesy corn bake and marinated mushrooms, both delicious

Friday: La Hacienda Ranch

I wouldn’t eat here again. My vegetarian meal came covered in beefy enchilada sauce. YUCK.

Total Cost: $15 for two meals and a lot of travel

This week I learned that when in Texas, only eat Torchy’s tacos. More meals next week!

Monday Stretch

Dallas Love Field

This past week/weekend I was in Dallas at a seminar. Exhausted has taken on a whole new meaning! We had long days and short nights; I’m really feeling it today. There’s also the whole “not sleeping in my own bed with my own pillow” thing and my shoulders and neck are tight and uncomfortable.

When my shoulders are in a pinch I usually do yoga to stretch them out. Instead of listening to my body and doing some much needed stretching when I got home yesterday, I curled up on my couch with my favorite people and watched a movie instead (which was therapeutic in it’s own way).

The video below is my favorite for a quick and effective stretch. It pulls all the tension out of my back, relaxes my neck and stretches all the muscles that get zero love when I sit at my computer for 8 hours a day; the best part is that it’s only 15 minutes long. This is what I’m looking forward to tonight. [Read more...]

Meal Planning and Pizza

Meal Planning continues to go strong. Last week was easy peasy because we ate at my parents house 2 nights and I had dinner with my BFF on Thursday. We usually eat dinner with my parents on Sunday night but with my grandmother in town we made two trips to visit them last week. Thursday night Matt had Open House so I opted for dinner with Jenny (Pizza, #winning). Three ‘get out of the kitchen free’ passes for me this week. YIPEE!

Monday:

Corn and Potato Crock Pot Chowder

  • Corn: $3
  • Potatoes: Pantry item
  • Cream: $2
  • Flour: Pantry item
  • Onions, Garlic, Thyme, Salt and Pepper: Pantry items

Total Cost: $5 for eight servings

Tuesday:

Farro, Feta and Kale Salad with Egg Salad on Toast

  • Eggs: $2
  • Farro: Pantry item
  • Feta: $10 (Large container from Costco)
  • Kale: $5
  • Bread: $2
  • Sun dried tomato: Pantry item
  • Italian dressing: Pantry item

Total Cost: $19 for four servings

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[Read more...]

The Bittersweet Truth about Sugar

Sugar Lips

Sugar is everywhere.

It’s in more food than you probably realize. And it’s pretty scary especially when you consider the consequences of over consumption.

Type 2 Diabetes is a life devastating disease and one that nearly 2 million Americans and more than 5,000 children and adolescents will be diagnosed with this year; it will claim the lives of nearly 200,000 people. Worst of all? Type 2 Diabetes is a preventable disease. Does sugar cause diabetes? Yes. Excess sugar, leads to excess weight which contributes to diabetes.

Added sugars make up at least 10% of the calories the average American eats in a day; one in 10 get 25% or more of their calories from sugar.  A study that looked at sugar consumption and cardiovascular disease found that individuals who consumed 25% or more of their calories from sugar had a higher risk of mortality from cardiovascular disease. These findings were largely consistent across age group, sex, race/ethnicity (except among non-Hispanic blacks), educational attainment, physical activity, health eating index, and body mass index.

Despite the evidence that sugar is contributing to preventable diseases in the United States, there aren’t federal guidelines in place that offer upper limits for sugar intake. We are given upper limits for salt and fat intake, but sugar is ignored. The American Heart Association suggests women consume less than 100 calories of added sugar (approximately 6 teaspoons) and men consume less than 150 calories (approximately 9 teaspoons). To put this into perspective: 1 can of regular soda contains approximately 9 teaspoons of sugar.

Spoonful of Sugar

[Read more...]