Saturday, September 4, 2010

Chop Wizard

  This is gonna be quick because I have chili to make! That’s right – its chili weather in Minnesota!  40-some degrees outside this morning.  But the sun is bright and the lake is like glass!  Renae and I are going running in a bit and the weather couldn’t be better for it.  But first, let me show you the amazing work of the Chop Wizard!  We’ll demonstrate with a tomato.  DSC_0062

Take the stem off. DSC_0063

Chop in half. DSC_0064

Put half in the Chop Wizard. DSC_0065

Press down. DSC_0066

Behold!  The amazing-ness that is the Chop Wizard!  Perfectly cut in no time at all! DSC_0067W

e made bruschetta!   DSC_0070

This took minute to make!  Amazing! DSC_0072 DSC_0074

While the bruschetta was being prepared, the boys worked out in the yard. DSC_0081

Jon is stylin. DSC_0082 DSC_0083

Later, we went to the lodge for Mexican Night.  But first Grandpa (aka, the shriner) had to ride down the big hill on Dylan’s bike.  Move it Avery! DSC_0089

This. DSC_0091

Is. DSC_0093


Avery walked up the entire hill by herself.  Its a pretty steep hill! DSC_0096

It’s coming….. DSC_0097Crazy face Jon.


Grandma showed off her flower making skills.  Not her best work. DSC_0103

We had to haul our bunnies back to the cabin quickly because of a diaper emergency.   DSC_0104 DSC_0106

But we stopped for a picturesque photo shoot with Avos.   DSC_0107DSC_0109

Ok, gotta get running.  Literally.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Fitness Friday – A Testimonial

Physique 57 asked me to write a client testimonial for their website because of the great results I had using their dvds at home.  If you missed my first post professing my love for Physique 57, it is here.  Here is what I wrote:

I first heard about Physique 57 from US Weekly magazine not long after I had my 2nd child in June of 2009.  I had only ever done one other barre type workout and was definitely interested in trying Physique 57.  I clipped the page out and made mental note to check it out once I was a few more months post partum.  Fast forward to 6 months later and I had not lost a single pound from the day I left the hospital after my c-section.  I had been doing lots of other more athletic, plyometric type workouts that included jumping jacks, squat thrusts, etc.  My knees were hating me and I was definitely not getting results.  Literally, I did not lose A pound.  I ordered Physique 57 in February of 2010 and couldn’t wait to jump right in and get started with them.  When I first started, I could barely squeeze into my “fat” jeans – they were tight.  And my “skinny” jeans (2 sizes smaller than my “fat” jeans) were no where near fitting.  I could barely even pull them on, let alone zip and button them. 


When I first started doing Physique 57, I couldn’t believe how tough the videos were.  I started out following the beginner modifier and often had to stop and take breaks to shake out my legs.  The thigh section of the workout was the most intense leg work I had ever done before in a workout.  My legs would shake uncontrollably for most of the thigh and seat portions, which I learned was a good thing.  It meant that my muscles were working to the point of exhaustion and getting stronger and leaner.  The warm up was also very tough to complete.  I remember thinking the first time I did the workout, “that was just the warm up?!”  I wanted to collapse after that and it was just the warm up!  But I enjoy a good challenge and looked forward to the day I could do all the pushups on my toes with Shelly Knight (the advanced modifier).  I also had trouble completing the ab section.  I remember thinking I was in trouble when Tanya Becker said, “you can do anything for 60 seconds.”  I certainly couldn’t do it right off the bat!  But I knew if I kept at it, I could.  The stretch portion of the DVD was always such a relief to get to.  The music is so soothing and the stretches always felt amazing after all the hard work I had just completed.  The 57 minutes of the Classic workout always flew by and before I knew it, I was sitting on my couch feeling accomplished and wiped at the same time.  I always loved the feeling of “jell-o legs” when I was done.  It meant it was working. 


I also loved the mental boost I would get from it.  The workout was so intense and I always felt like if I could get through that, I could tackle the rest of the day no problem!  Physique 57 always has a way with clearing my mind and setting me up for a wonderful day once I had completely one of the workouts.  I really can’t compare it to any other workout – it has been the only one to give me that kind of “high.”  I was definitely addicted to it. 

Within a few weeks, my jeans started feeling looser and I was pleased with what I was seeing in the mirror as well.  I’m a stay at home mom, so I live in yoga pants most of the time.  I would try my jeans on once a week to see how they were fitting.  Each week, my “fat” jeans got looser and my “skinny” jeans got closer to fitting.  1.5 months after starting Physique 57, I was shocked when my “skinny” jeans fit me again.  I had never seen a workout work so fast.  It really was amazing.   Since then, I have gained a lot of strength in both my upper and lower body and have continued to shrink all over.  I can now do all the pushups on my toes (and even on one leg!) and I follow Shelly for the entire workout.  I have to laugh now when Tanya says, “its okay to take a break” because I very vividly remember thinking to myself, “Yes please!” and taking that break when I first started.  And when she says that you can do anything for 60 seconds – I totally can now!  Physique 57 really made me believe in myself and see how strong I am mentally and physically.  I love when I introduce someone who hasn’t done it before to Physique 57 and they tell me how hard it is and how they don’t think they will EVER be able to do the whole thing without stopping.  I tell them to just keep going and believe in themselves and before they know it – they will be at this place too.  Thank you Physique 57 for giving me my pre-baby body back, a renewed strength in both mind and body and a love for barre workouts!  This really has changed my body for the better and I couldn’t thank you enough!


   Before P57, December 2009               After P57, May 2010                    September, 2010
Christmas, New Years 2009 001DSC_7903DSC_0044-1(here are the “skinny” jeans)

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Delicious Day!

Dylan was over at Larry and Ingrid’s most of the day again!  No, that’s not why the day was delicious (though, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy the peace and quiet – thanks Lingy!) - this is why the day was delicious! 


I took a page from OSG Angela and stacked these pretty babies up! 


These cookies have not been “healthified.”  We are going up to Loon Lodge (yes, I know, again) this weekend and I was asked to bring cookies for the masses.  The masses would not be happy if I showed up with something that has been “healthified.”  Though, to be honest, I haven’t tried a “healthy” version of Snickerdoodles.  I’m pretty sure it doesn’t exist!  A cup of sugar is a cup of sugar, people!  Tongue out I may still show up with a pan of TTT Bars though!  Open-mouthedDSC_0049

I got this recipe on All Recipes.  Had good reviews, so I went for it.  Its AWESOME.  They are crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside.  Perfection!  And they photograph very well outside!  (Took another page from OSG – I have what she doesn’t have though – a lake in the background! Ha!) DSC_0053

Next bit of delicious-ness – Roasted Chickpeas from Mama Pea.  O.M.G.  These are good.  REALLY good.  All 3 of my people ate them and there was no complaining.  (Oh, okay, the baby who is teething didn’t eat them – but I think she will once she’s not all, “molar-y”) DSC_0054

Alright, if this taco looks awesome, its because it WAS.   DSC_0059

Ok, one more picture of it!  Mmmmm.  Perfect meatless meal!

DSC_0060 That’s it for tonight.  Time to get these kiddies in bed and relaxxxxx!!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Day of Beauty

It was my favorite day today.  Hair cut day.  I started out just trying to style Avery’s hair.  We are letting her hair grow out, but in the meantime I had to figure out what to do about her bangs.  They keep getting in her eyes and she rips out barrettes and rubber bands immediately.  Today I sat her down on a chair and sprayed her hair down with kiddy hair product.  Then I buttered her up with some nice hair combing (she likes that).  Finally, I pulled her hair into a ponytail (her first real pony!) and clipped her bangs back.  Somehow, it worked.  She was too distracted by the bottle of hair product she had shoved in her mouth (whatever works!).  DSC_0008She decided to dance to celebrate her new ‘do. DSC_0010 DSC_0011 DSC_0012 DSC_0013

And then it was Dylan’s turn to get beautified.  Before: DSC_0017After: DSC_0024

Looking good my man! DSC_0025

He has wiped out on his bike several times in the last couple of days so the rest of him is looking a little ragged.  He declared that he was “NEVER GOING TO RIDE MY BIKE AGAIN!!!” after last nights major crash.  Guess who was back on his bike this afternoon?  Eye-rolling  He spent most of the day with his buddy Blake again and even ditched us for dinner (and I made the little jerk Belgian Waffles for dinner too!) to go have pizza with Larry and Ingrid and the kids.  Whatever!  There was more for us! 


Well, I’ve got nothing more to say to you.  Good night!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Spiced Quinoa Cereal

Dylan went over to play at Lingy’s house this morning with their grandkids Maya and Blake.  He has been looking forward to their weeklong stay ALL SUMMER and was all prepared for a day of play from the second he opened his eyeballs this morning.  He came into our room carrying clothes that he picked out when he got out of bed (he NEVER does that) and said he didn’t need breakfast because he was going over to PLAY!  I finally convinced him that it wasn’t quite time to go play and to eat first.  But as soon as he heard his buddy Blake knock on the door, he was OUTTA HERE.  Which gave me some time alone in the kitchen while Avery napped!  Woohoo!  I have been wanting to make quinoa into cereal for awhile now, so I figured what better time. 

Spiced Quinoa Cereal

1.5 cups cooked quinoa (I bring 2 cups of water to a boil, dump in 1 cup of quinoa, bring back to a boil and then reduce to medium heat and cover.  Cook until all the water is gone)

2 TB Maple Syrup (the good stuff, don’t be skimpin’!)
1 tsp allspice
1 tsp cinnamon

1 TB chia seeds (optional)
1 tsp vanilla

Put your cooked quinoa in a bowl.

ir in your spices. DSC_9987 DSC_9989

Pour on the maple syyyyyrup. DSC_9990

Thow in some chia seeds.  Or not! Its your call! DSC_9991

Give it a dash of vanilla. DSC_9992

Stir it all together and plop it down on a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper. DSC_9993

Spread it out. DSC_9995Drink iced coffee while you wait.  Or not.  It’s your call! DSC_9996B

ake at 375 degrees for 30-40 minutes (flipping the cereal halfway).  As you can see I ditched the parchment paper half way thru.  The cereal kinda stuck to it.  Don’t know if you could use cooking spray on it or what, but it definitely took some scraping to get it off.   DSC_9997Then it was on to lunch!  This is a La Tortilla Factory tortilla with Roasted Red Pepper hummus, carrot “ribbons” (just used the vegetable peeler to make them), cucumbers, tomatoes from my garden and a little bit of avocado.
DSC_9998  It was fab!  I added some blue cheese crumbles after I started eating it.  Hit the spot for sure!


And for dessert – a bowl of the quinoa cereal with almond milk.  It was good!  It wasn’t overly sweet, so I guess if you wanted it to be sweeter, you could always add brown sugar or sucanat to the mix.  I like it though!  Good stuff.


And right now, Avery and I having our daily dose of green via the Green Monster – I swear, its the only way to get her to eat veggies lately.  Whatever works! Eye-rolling  We’re heading back over to Lingy’s house for more play time and then burgers tonight at Harding.  Its much too hot to cook! Later!