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Weekly Menu

(Courtesy of Org. Junkie)

Here’s our weekly menu from the past week (1/18-1/24) and what we really had in red:

  • Monday
    • Lunch & snacks – Tuna sandwich with mustard and fresh spinach on wheat, small orange, carrots w/ almond butter, one low fat cheese stick
    • Dinner – We are having guests over and they are bringing dinner.
  • Tuesday
    • Lunch – Tuna sandwich with mustard and fresh spinach on wheat, veggies, orange, yogurt w/ apples and granola, nuts (Crab & shrimp melt with fruit salad courtesy of work, carrots & almond butter, orange, banana, granola bar)
    • Dinner – Large pot of ribollita
  • Wednesday
    • Lunch – Leftover ribollita, strawberry greek yogurt, low fat cheese stick, carrots, banana
    • Dinner – Leftover ribollita
  • Thursday
  • Friday
    • Lunch – Standing Friday lunch with friends
    • Dinner – Leftover butternut squash dish (Lean turkey chili w/ leftover sour cream)
  • Saturday
    • Dinner – Leftover butternut squash dish or odds & ends (Game night! Homemade pizza w/ pepperoni & veggies, chocolate chip cookies from scratch)
  • Sunday
    • Dinner – Leftover chili

Weekly Menu for the week of 1/25-1/31

  • Monday
    • Lunch & snacks – Salmon salad w/ mutli-grain Wasa crackers, orange, zucchini spears, one low fat cheese stick, diced apple & yogurt w/ granola
    • Dinner – Farro and Roasted Butternut Squash (Again!  I have leftover squash and cheese and another onion, and finally found farro!  It was delicious the first time so I have no problem doing this again.)
  • Tuesday
    • Lunch – Leftover salmon salad, veggies, orange, yogurt w/ apples and granola
    • Dinner – Leftover butternut squash dish
  • Wednesday
  • Thursday
    • Lunch – Some sort of sandwich, yogurt with apples & granola, zucchini spears, orange
    • Dinner – Leftover broccoli dish
  • Friday
    • Lunch – Standing Friday lunch with friends
    • Dinner – Poached eggs, multi-grain pancakes, and fruit
  • Saturday
    • Dinner – Odds and ends
  • Sunday
    • Dinner – Super Bowl Sunday – pizza with friends (reminder to self: soak beans overnight for eight bean soup on Monday)
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Weekly Menu

(Courtesy of Org. Junkie)

Confession:  For the first time in my life, I am really enjoying having a weekly menu plan.  It has not only made my life easier during the week and saved me from almost-daily dinner waffling with D (“What should we have for dinner?”  “I don’t know, whatever you want.” “I dunno, what do you want?”  “I don’t know.” “Aghhh, I hate this!”), but it has also saved me money and trips to the grocery store.  The small block of time on Sundays spent planning our meals for the week provides much more payback than flying by the seat of my pants.

Because I’ve had leftovers for lunch and “planned” how we would use the produce and refrigerated foods in our house, there has been less food wasted.  I’ve also spent less money on food this month than normal, yet I feel as if we are eating better than ever.  Once again, allowing myself the flexibility to swap meals among different days has been key.

Here’s our weekly menu from the past week (1/11-1/17) and what we really had in red:

Week of 1/11-1/17

  • Monday
    • Lunch & snacks – Already packed: tuna sandwich with mustard and fresh spinach on wheat, small orange, carrots w/ almond butter, one low fat cheese stick, banana
    • Dinner – Pounded walnut strozzapreti
  • Tuesday
    • Lunch – Leftover strozzapreti with veggies, orange, banana, low fat cheese stick
    • Dinner – Mushroom casserole
  • Wednesday
    • Lunch – Leftover mushroom casserole, strawberry greek yogurt, low fat cheese stick, carrots, banana (hamburger with cheddar, lettuce, tomato, mustard, fries courtesy of work; yogurt/apples/granola for snack)
    • Dinner – Veggie lasagna
  • Thursday
    • Lunch – Salmon salad, yogurt with apples & granola, zucchini spears (leftover mushroom casserole with yogurt/apples/granola and veggies)
    • Dinner – Girls’ Night for me; leftover veggie lasagna for D
  • Friday
    • Lunch – Standing Friday lunch with friends (no Friday lunch this week so I had leftover veggie lasagna, raw veggies, a low fat cheese stick, apples/yogurt/granola, and a banana spread throughout the day)
    • Dinner – Easy mushroom sauce on whole grain pasta with veggies on the side (breakfast for dinner – hash browns cooked in olive oil, veggie scrambled eggs w/ a sprinkle of cheese, and donut holes with guests as a treat 🙂 )
  • Saturday
    • Dinner – Breakfast for dinner (whole grain pancakes, hash browns cooked in olive oil, scrambled eggs w/ cheese and veggies) (leftover veggie lasagna & veggie scrambled egg sandwiches on sandwich thins)
  • Sunday
    • Dinner – Lean turkey burgers with thick slices of fresh mozzarella, spinach, mustard, and any leftover mushrooms

Weekly Menu for the week of 1/18-1/24

  • Monday
    • Lunch & snacks – Tuna sandwich with mustard and fresh spinach on wheat, small orange, carrots w/ almond butter, one low fat cheese stick
    • Dinner – We are having guests over and they are bringing dinner.
  • Tuesday
    • Lunch – Tuna sandwich with mustard and fresh spinach on wheat, veggies, orange, yogurt w/ apples and granola, nuts
    • Dinner – Large pot of ribollita
  • Wednesday
    • Lunch – Leftover ribollita, strawberry greek yogurt, low fat cheese stick, carrots, banana
    • Dinner – Leftover ribollita
  • Thursday
  • Friday
    • Lunch – Standing Friday lunch with friends
    • Dinner – Leftover butternut squash dish
  • Saturday
    • Dinner – Leftover butternut squash dish or odds & ends
  • Sunday

PHD + Sweet Potato Risotto + Kale Chips

Yesterday I took a PHD (Personal Health Day).   The plan was to remove myself from the world for a day to recharge, catch up on sleep (I have sleep issues, another post for another day), and tidy up my life, which would in turn tidy up my brain.

It sorta kinda happened.  I did catch up on sleep.  I did do several loads of laundry and dishes.  However, I did not unplug myself from the world.  I ended up working for a few hours later in the day.  It had to be done but I won’t say I was thrilled about it.

One thing I did do that was fun was make Real Simple’s Sweet Potato Risotto.  So good and *much* less fattening than the butternut squash risotto.  It wasn’t quite as rich and creamy due to the lack of exorbitant amounts of butter and cheese but it was still darn good and a lot easier.  Btw, I added almonds for wonderful texture.  I also went easy on the wine for D’s sake and on the oregano (loved the added flavor, though).

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Garlic the lazy cook’s way.

That becomes this:

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Becomes this:

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Becomes a full stomach of yum.

So it was that + wine for dinner.  Later, when D got home, I heated up some left over chili for him and had a little bit myself in the process for protein and veggies (zucchini, mushrooms).

Because I temporarily didn’t exist yesterday, I also decided not to work out.  No worries!  It’s good to take a day off sometimes.

Today was spent on the road and at our branch farthest away.  We had a welcoming party for two new employees and I rarely get to go to that office so I packed up one of my coworkers and away we went!

Lunch was from a local cafe.  It was delicious and I regret not taking a picture.  It was a turkey, white cheddar, tart apple, dijon mustard on whole wheat sandwich.  On the side was homemade red potato salad and a healthy slice of carrot cake from scratch.  I also picked up a tall nonfat misto from Starbucks as I hadn’t had my morning coffee.  Everything was SO. GOOD.

After a conference call and a few things that had to go out the door, I stole a lamp and then headed over to the restaurant for the party.  I think fun was had by all.  Since I was DD I stuck with cranberry juice + selzer.  Tasty.

On the way home I went grocery shopping for a few things and used a few coupons:

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  • Listerine
  • Vitamin D supplements
  • spinach
  • black grapes
  • shampoo
  • kale
  • organic dark chocolate mint bar – can’t wait to try this!
  • lite Laughing Cow cheese for my breakfast english muffin with apple butter
  • spinach fettucini
  • one of my favorite cereals on sale
  • organic tomato sauces that are fairly low in sodium and sugar
  • not shown: toilet paper

After reading about Nate’s success with kale chips last night, I had to make my own, which were a little fluffier than his:

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Yum!  I oversalted them a tad so I could only tolerate three but the flavor was rich and the crunch was fun.  I had them with leftover sweet potato risotto, a glass of organic skim milk, and two mini Twix bars from H’ween.

11-12-09 009

I had hoped to run today but it just didn’t work out.  Tomorrow then!  I am in the mood for a morning run so if I can get my tush to bed asap it might be a possibility.  Over and out and sweetest dreams. 🙂

Food For Thought:

If every American Family wrapped just three presents in re-used materials during the winter holidays, it would save enough paper to cover nearly 50,000 football fields.

– Standford University Recycling Center

My Day In Reverse

Random quote of the day:  “If you guys need to teleport, that’s fine.  Just let me know.”

D and I watched the pilot episode of “Flash Forward.”  I find the main character to be sufficiently cheesy but I like the other actors (especially the woman who plays his wife – hello, Penny from Lost!) and the premise of the show is interesting.  It definitely had a Lost-esque feel, and also brought to mind Journeyman with Kevin McKidd.  I’m looking forward to another episode.

I made chilli for dinner when I got home: lean ground turkey, organic chunky tomato sauce, pine nuts, low sodium chili packet, zucchini, mushrooms, dark red kidney beans, northern beans, garlic, EVOO, and a bit of water.  It was easy and delicious.  We had just enough left over for another meal so I can’t wait for tomorrow’s dinner!

For the first time in a month I went to swim practice tonight.  YAY.  I did not not not want to go (7pm when it’s raining and 50 degrees outside? No thanks!) but once I got about halfway through I decided I was thrilled to be there.  I shared a lane with a nice girl who doesn’t do triathlons but is a friend of one of the tri-ers and decided to tag along today.  She was a self-professed out-of-shape swimmer but her form was very good and natural.  She did fine but is probably pretty fast when her endurance is up to speed, no pun intended.

I don’t think a single person had printed out the workout :), including myself since we don’t have a printer set up yet, and the coach wasn’t there so we winged it.  I think I ended up doing:

250 warm-up

8 x 50 free (with one backstroke thrown in)

4 x 150 – pull 50, kick 50, swim 50

3 x 200 free

50 easy

At this point a bunch of people started forming random relays.  It looked fun.  I watched for a bit and then joined in at the very end.  I practiced a relay start (so fun!) and dove (dived?) off the block for the first time in forever, then sped down and back trying to stay light in the water.

That 50 sprint brought the total to 1950 yards.

It was an easy practice and I appreciated it.  I wasn’t interested in working my ass off tonight.  My goal was simply to propel myself along at my own steady rate and enjoy the feeling of using my muscles in the cool water…

reach and cut through the glass, roll, pull, recover, kick, total silence save for splashes and thoughts,

there’s the wall, pull, exhale bubbles, flip, feet snap and push, streamline, surface, feel your heart in your chest, the water against your forehead, long arms, light and smooth

Swimming feels like such a complete workout (if you use your legs like you’re supposed to; I’m not the most consistent kicker).  I love waking up the next morning and feeling slightly achy in places that don’t normally ache after a run or a typical day at the gym.  I think I’ve said this before but I find the post-swimming high to be the very best exercise high you can get.  I might even go so far as to say that it’s better than a running high and I love running.

I ate a ginger snap LaraBar around 5:30pm to top off my fuel tank for swim practice.

3:15pm: Hmm…I remember packing up a chocolate bar last week.

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There it is!

Yum x 3

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Around 3 I started craving chocolate.

(no water cooler yet so I needed back-up)100_5067

Around 2 I started craving a Starbucks frosted pumpkin scone.

Focus.  Water.

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1:00pm: Lunch was so-so.  I had a conference call to make, so I got slow take-out from the restaurant nearby.

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Chinese chicken wrap with veggies and cranberries.  It was a little too saucy and sweet.  I balanced it out with half of the pickle.  I ate all of the fruit.

Work was less lonely today!  Again, there were only three of us but this time one of those people was one of the software developers in the office next to mine.  We get along well and had a meeting together so it felt like a more normal workday.

We moved my filing cabinet this morning so I finally got to unload all of my files.  My office is mostly unpacked now:

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It’s not done but for now it’ll do.

Breakfast was a mug of coffee with skim milk, a sprouted grain english muffin with natural apple butter, and 3 Laughing Cow cheese squares.

No workout this morning.  I’m swimming tonight!

Lean ‘N Mean Turkey Chili

This is one of D’s favorite dishes right now. I made it last night and had leftovers for lunch today.

Lean ‘N Mean Turkey Chili
Ingredients
1 lb. 99% lean ground turkey, thawed
1 can dark red kidney beans, rinsed
1 can black beans, rinsed
1 can no salt added diced tomatoes
several handfuls fresh baby spinach
generous sprinkling of pine nuts
3/4 cup all natural tomato sauce (more if you like a soupier chili)
minced garlic
extra virgin olive oil
1 packet of McCormick’s 30% Less Sodium Chili Seasoning Mix
water
Directions
Heat a couple of glugs of EVOO in a deep sauce pan over medium heat.
Add garlic to your liking. Cook briefly but don’t let it turn brown.
Add thawed ground turkey, breaking it up, and cook until almost all pink is gone. Add a tiny bit of water if things are looking dry.
Mix in seasoning mix, both sets of beans, diced tomatoes, pine nuts, about 3/4 cup tomato sauce (add more for a soupier chili), spinach.
Reduce heat and allow to simmer for about 5-8 minutes. Sometimes I add water during this step to reduce viscosity.
Once everything is heated through and the spinach is fully wilted, turn off the heat and serve. Enjoy!
Makes 4-6 large servings. More if you aren’t a pig like we are.