Saturday, January 23, 2010

#10. Being Healthy!

I've said it before, I'll say it again: Being healthy isn't a hobby, it's a way of life. But keeping it interesting and not boring definitely is a hobby of mine. I love to eat, and I like to find new foods I can enjoy without feeling guilty. So I thought I would share with you my favorite snacking staples of the moment! I get all of them at Cub Foods or SuperTarget in Shoreview, which means you can probably get them at most grocery stores (nothing is hard to find).

Fuze Slenderize juices: I have to have something sweet to start my day, and when I started Weight Watchers, I was sad that an 8 oz glass of orange juice is 2 points. Even with all that Vitamin C, I can’t waste my points on liquid! So now I usually drink Crystal Light, diet pop (not for breakfast of course), or Fuze juices. One serving of the Slenderize flavors is only 5 to 10 calories. One 18.5 oz bottle is two servings, so I usually drink half for breakfast and put it back in the fridge, or take the bottle with me to drink on the go. I like all the flavors: Strawberry Melon, Pomegranate Acai Berry, Cranberry Raspberry, and Tropical Punch are shown here (8 flavors total shown on their website). Usually they are $1.79 at Cub or $1.49 at Target; recently they’ve been on sale for $1 so I stock up, plus I had a coupon last week for $1 off 5! (Coupons kind of ARE a hobby of mine.)

MultiGrain Cheerios: The idea that Cheerios are good for you is nothing new (take the non-challenge!). My historic flavor of choice has been Honey Nut Cheerios, but I've switch to MultiGrain because a serving size of MGC is 1 cup, which has 110 calories, 1 g fat, and 3 g fiber; a serving size of HNC is 3/4 cup, with 110 calories, 1.5 g fat, and 2 g fiber. Both are 2 WW points, so not that much in the end, but i can make my bowl a little fuller with the MGC, and they are still a little sweet. But I can't forget to mention new Chocolate Cheerios!! seriously General Mills, what took you so long to come out with those?? Three-fourths of a cup of those is only 100 cals! more sugar of course, and less fiber, but it's like grown-up, healthy CocoaPuffs. awesomeness in a bowl.

Fuji Apple: My off-season apple of choice! They are consistently $1.49 a pound, and they are sweet and firm and big. My favorite even before I became a fan of Hungry Girl, who worships Fujis like...well i don't know like what. But there is an entire chapter in her second book devoted to recipes featuring Fujis. During the summer, I go for local creations Honeycrisps, especially if they are cheap.

Baby carrots: The candy bar of the veggie world? probably. I have to have a bag of these on hand to snack on while I'm preparing dinner (so I don't go for cookies or chips or something). I usually bite a stick in half and give my dog the other half! She goes crazy when she hears the plastic bag russling.

Special K crackers: Great with soup for lunch or dinner! Show here is the Italian Tomato and Herb, which I prefer, but the Multi-Grain are good too. 24 crackers has 120 cals, 2 g fiber, and 2 WW points. I always thought it was dumb that crackers claiming to be "whole grain" didn't have much fiber in them, or more fat than necessary. So these have replaced WheatThins and even Triscuits in my cupboard.

Garden of Eatin' Baked Blue Tortilla chips: Love these! not greasy, and just the right amount of salt. they happen to be organic, so they are in the special organic foods section, not with the chips. right now on the website you can get a coupon for a dollar off! I just printed it! I hope it doesn't expire soon because as you can see, the bag I have isn't even open yet! oh well, the Super Bowl is in 2 weeks, i'll need chips and dip then. Best with tortilla chips? Salsa. no Points. forget cheese, put it on a quesadilla or something.

Airborne Health Supplements: My dad left these at my house once, and i kept them for a long time before I tried them. you drop the pill in a glass of water (like an Alka-Seltzer) and it fizzes like pop and makes it yummy. sometimes it is my morning juice. It's an easy way to get extra vitamins and minerals to prevent illness, and it doesn't upset my tummy like my multivitamin does if i don't take it with food. The flavors I've tried are original orange and lemon-lime; i like both. Also out there is pink grapefruit.

Banana: you've probably seen these before! I used to get the biggest ones i could find, but those are 2 WW points, so now i get small-to-medium sized, so i can count them as 1 point. If they get too ripe, i toss 'em in the freezer to keep on hand for bread or muffins!

Newer snackies:

Smartfood popcorn clusters: i noticed these near the Baked Lays in the chip/cookie/cracker aisle at Cub today (they are also made by FritoLay) and gave them a look-see, and after calculating the points, i was IN! One "purse pouch" of the Honey flavor has 110 cals and 5 grams of fiber = 1 point!!! and they taste good too!

WeightWatchers lemon creme cakes: Okay, they aren't exactly "nutritious," but they are portion-controlled cakes for when i'm craving cake! This is my second box; i took most of the first to work as part of my snack stash (along with chocolate-roasted almonds, i should have put those in this picture!).

JollyTime popcorn: I had a coupon! and they put the points value right on the front! although, it is kind of universally accepted that if it's a light microwave popcorn, you can pretty much eat the entire bag for like 2 points. corn's a VEGETABLE, people. So it's a very good snack when i want to eat a lot of something (as long as i don't burn the bag, stupid tiny microwave...).

So those are just a few foods i enjoy! Try 'em, you'll like 'em!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

#9. Skiing

I said i'd write about skiing when I was on the computer that had all my old and new skiing pictures. well here I am.
Why? It's fun, and I'm good at it.
How long? I first skied when i was seven, in Big Sky, Montana. After we moved to SD when I was 8, we skied in the Black Hills a lot, and every January took a week-long vacation somewhere out west, usually Colorado. So that's how I learned.
Here's some pictures through the years.

2003: Steamboat used to have bubbles over some of their chairs. I miss them.
2005: At the base at Copper Mountain.
2007: Holly and I at the Steamboat Gondola base.
2008: On the slopes at Copper.
2009 (the trip over New Years 2010): Steamboat, on the Morningside Lift, the morning it was freezing rain! my goggles got all icy. You can see this year I got a new coat, and used mom's Camelback water pack a couple of days.

If you want to see pictures from 2000-2003, visit my old Angelfire website. Sorry if some of the links are broken.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Random stuff

I've been intending to write a post about a specific hobby (skiing, since our annual family ski vaca was last week), but the pictures are on my other computer, and it's cold down there, so I'll just write about other stuff on my mind.

  • Been watching lots of Food Network recently. Just watched the Good Eats about soybeans, although mostly edamame. I generally don't like edamame, but he made a hummus-type dip out of them that sounds interesting. Also, became a fan of Alton on Facebook and people mentioned his show from Monday was about how he lost 50 pounds without going on a diet. The episode, Live and Let Diet, is going to air again on Jan. 14 at 10 pm (Central time). I've already set my DVR. This is why I like Weight Watcher's mantra: it's not a diet, it's a way of life! Sometimes it's hard to resist the foods that taste so good to me (chocolate! cookies! chips!) but you'll love yourself more in the long run (for a longer time) if you eat healthier foods now. I'm trying to avoid of future of high blood pressure, bypass surgery, drug eluding stents, and Lipitor while I still have control. My annual physical is set for February, so I'm hoping that my cholesterol is below the high-risk level again!
  • I bought some packets of yeast (had a coupon, of course), and I think I'll make this recipe for Honey bread eventually. Tonight I got back into my baking groove with "Healthified" Oatmeal Peanut Butter Banana Breakfast Cookies (quite the name). even though it was about 9 pm I had to have one, and mmm. it calls for "natural" PB (no sugar or salt added), but natural PB as the same nutritionals as regular PB, so i say, just use what ya got. I wonder if could half the 1/2 cup of PB it calls for and use 1/4 c. of Better 'n PB, and less honey?
  • Got an idea for a video addition that maybe amanda and I could do together: Drunken Baking. Would anyone find that amusing? everything's funnier when you've had a few, especially things that involve sharp knives and hot ovens...
  • Other Amanda (no blog) has become a knitter! she has completed half of a set of wristlets. Here's a pattern from Joann's using circular double-pointed needles. My next challenge in knitting might be socks. Need to get a good pattern and the right supplies first, already got some bamboo yarn.
  • I accomplished a lot of knitting for the holidays. I made my sister a bulky black scarf (finished it on Christmas Eve!), hats for 3 people (and they all liked them! I was so happy!), a coffee cozy for Jen P, and I gave someone the white scarf I worked on last summer (instead of giving it to Project WarmHearts). So I have a completed black scarf to give away, and I'm halfway done with a thick grey scarf that I think a guy would like. But tomorrow I'm going to browse the Joann superstore in Maplewood...I received a crocheting calendar for christmas (I told mom to buy it for me) and there's a pattern for an afghan that struck my fancy, but it takes 15 skeins of moderately-priced yarn, so I'm not sure if I should plunge into that or start with something simplier. Someone at my work just had a preemie (4 weeks early, on my sister's birthday actually), maybe I'll knit him a baby cap!
  • Got a busy day planned tomorrow. Shopping at Joann's (for the aforementioned yarn, and maybe the new yarn by the Stitch 'n Bitch author, and i want to feel the new Hometown yarn, maybe make some maroon and gold scarves and hats...or just use the Minneapolis yarn, it's purple, in honor of Prince, I'd imagine), Joe's sporting goods (looking for stuff on sale), Half-Price books (for cheap 2010 calendars, a daily planner for food, activity, and events tracking, and any Charlene Harris books for cheap), Petsmart (to return the crappy booties i got and to get some pet-safe ice melt), and then to see Youth in Revolt at Rosedale with Rhi! and THEN, going to A Night at the Oscars at the orchestra with Jen P!
Now i'd better take the dog out to potty and get to bed!