Healthy Recipe! Deconstructed Cabbage Rolls!

I have the weekend to myself…well not really to myself as Mister S is here but Lady S is spending the weekend with my parents. She could not wait until Friday arrived and she could leave the house ūüėĒ. She adores my parents and I love that! One of the most precious relationships are those between grandparents and grandchildren! This freedom so to speak, has given me time to share a recipe with you that was SO good!

I love me some cabbage! Stewed, fried, prepared in rolls….bring it on I say! I make cabbage rolls about once every two months because they are so labor intensive. I typically prepare them in the crockpot and they come out all luscious and praiseworthy, but I didn’t want to do all that work so I searched for an alternate recipe!

Deconstructed Cabbage Roll Soup is what I found! This recipe is to die for! Mister S ate it up and the leftovers for the next day were divine as well! You can always omit the cheese for a healthier version but all things are better with cheese ūüėČ. We used lean ground turkey to reduce the calories per serving. Serve with a side of crusty bread for dipping and there you have it…dinner!

Try it out and let me know what you think!

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Where have I been? Living. Where else?

Greetings Readers!

I have been MIA for a few weeks but I am back. ¬†I haven’t forgotten about all of the people who follow my blog nor have I given up on my journey. ¬†So where have I been? ¬†Simply put. ¬†I have been living. ¬†Over the summer, (seems so long ago) our entire family soaked up the sun. ¬†We took evening walks. ¬†We went to the park. ¬†We played soccer in the street. ¬†We really soaked each other in and took the time to recuperate and rest from a long school year. ¬†And then the school year started again. ¬†For those of you haven’t caught on, I am a teacher. ¬†A special education teacher and my position is so demanding especially during the first part of the school year when everyone is adjusting and they need a lot of TLC. ¬†Teachers and students included! ¬†I will freely admit that working out simply was not on my agenda. ¬†And I am OK with that. ¬†I took the first quarter to get situated with my new students. ¬†To work on lesson plans, long-range plans, setting goals for my students, and working with my colleagues. ¬†By the time I got home, gave TLC to Lady S, some QT with Mister S, cooked dinner and fulfilled all those roles, I was exhausted. ¬†My body and my mind was simply tired. ¬†And I rested. ¬†Rest I did!

We did not abandon everything that we have learned along the way. ¬†We continue to cook at home making healthy choices with a few indulgences tucked in there. ¬†We continued our evening walks until the time change. ¬†We continue to promote healthy eating choices in Lady S, although as of late she is obsessed with Zaxby’s ūüė¶ ¬†She still won’t eat veggies but that is a work in progress.

Mister S recently had his blood work done and it all came back great with the exception of one area related to cholesterol and unfortunately the only thing that will help is medication which we aren’t comfortable with. ¬†At the beginning of this journey, his blood work was less than stellar and he had been warned repeatedly about heart disease which runs in his family. ¬†With the healthier lifestyle and working out, he has come such a long way and I am proud of him. ¬†We are continuing to do research on how to get ALL of his blood work positive because we need for him to be around as long as possible (although 100 years with him won’t be enough *swoon*).

As for me…my body has been tired. ¬†Very tired. ¬†I attribute it to too much work, not enough water, and not enough sweating. ¬†My spirit gets wobbly when I haven’t worked out in a few days. ¬†There is some gratification that I feel when I break a sweat a couple of times a week. ¬†Hard lesson learned. ¬†More proof that this is not some temporary part of who I am. ¬†This is WHO I am. ¬†Being healthy and living this lifestyle are permanently ingrained into who I am. I am back working out regularly. ¬†Work has slowed and Lady S has settled beautifully into her Pre-K year!

My goal continues to be healthy living.  Am I still trying to lose weight?  Not necessarily but if it is a result of hard work then great!  If not then the mere fact that I am toned, happy, and healthy is enough!

Til The Next Time!

Ro

Knock knock? Anyone home? ,

Howdy readers! It’s been a month since I last posted. Please do charge it to my head and not my heart. It’s been a very busy first quarter of the school year and I am just now coming up for air. Lady S is in the preschool class at her school and is doing well! I can’t believe that this time next year she will be a kindergartener. Mister S is still doing his thing in school so needless to say we are BUSY!

I’ll have to admit that we spent a great deal of September eating. Oh man….we just threw caution to the wind and started enjoying some foods that we typically shied away from. Nothing too crazy and through our little eating charade we didn’t gain any weight so that was good!

I slacked off big time from working out. The turn of the seasons are especially hard on me and Lady S. We both typically come down with a wicked cold, tonsillitis, bronchitis…..something that requires days off and lots of medicene. We’ve both had our bouts of sickness. Being that I was busy being mom and taking care of Lady S and than had to nurse myself, working out was the last thing on my mind. Now that everyone is in good health, we are back on a regularly scheduled program of sweating and working out!

I’ve had to limit my weight lifting because I’ve developed what I think is a bone spur in my shoulder! It hurts sometimes and sometimes not. My intention is to head to the doctor and see what’s up!

So there is our update! I’m back and will be posting more….

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Ro

The Nicki Minaj Effect

At this point I am almost sure that most people have either seen or heard of Nicki Minaj’s new song “Anaconda”. ¬†It samples Sir Mix A Lot’s “Baby Got Back” song from back in the day when booties were just becoming the rage. ¬†Wait…has booty always been in style or not? ¬†Heck I have no idea! ¬†All I know is that right now booty is the rage. ¬†In case you have been under a rock and have yet to see the video click HERE to see it. ¬†I should say before you click the link that I¬†do not¬†like the song and I am not a Nicki fan¬†butt but¬†the video made me think about some things.

In media, magazines, print, online and elsewhere, women’s bodies are characterized by their shape. ¬†Apple, Pears, Strawberry, Blueberries, Bananas…it goes on and on although I have never seen a kumquat shape. ¬†Guess that isn’t a popular fruit! ¬†ūüėČ ¬†For a visual see the below chart.

The Pear. ¬†The description above is definitely me although I take some offense to that whole statement about saddlebags! ¬†Whoever put that in there should be reprimanded and heavily. ¬†One of the greatest challenges I have encountered is making sure that my workouts focus on the areas that need the most toning up. ¬†If you read the above description of a “pear” shape, it hits my body to a tee. ¬†(Again minus the saddlebags ūüėČ ) ¬†I try to make sure that I spend time working on my glutes, quads, hamstrings, all the muscles in my legs. ¬†The majority of my weight is carried in my lower half. ¬†It was just the luck of the draw that I got dealt. ¬†All of my life, I’ve tried on dresses that fit on the bottom but are too big on the top. ¬†To this day, I still have this problem and well…there isn’t a cure for it so….I trudge on happy with what I have ūüôā

So why the Nicki Minaj reference? ¬†Well it’s simple really. I have heard women and men alike fantasize about having her body and having her booty. ¬†For real? ¬†I get that she appears¬†to have this body that men idolize and gawk at and a behind that women do endless squats for. ¬†If what I see is right, she looks like a pear shape as well and suppose if she weren’t famous with millions, she might face some of the same challenges that I have!

The moral of the story is simple.

If you idolize anyone’s body, let it be your¬†own.

Let that sink in for a minute….You will be amazed at what a miraculous body you have once you start to love it instead of loving someone else’s or treating it badly. ¬†I’ll gladly take my chest which is the smallest in all of my family….at least I don’t have to buy a big bra ūüôā ¬†I’ll smile a little when I hear someone else complain about their “flat” bottom because I know that the booty God’s blessed me although I think they may have gotten distracted and gave me a tad too much ūüėČ ¬†I’ll smile when the belt hits my waist just right because I’ve worked hard to make it what it is! ¬†So love what you have and do what you need to do to make it the best you.

Ro

Working out….How long? How often?

I am often asked how often I work out and how long I work out for. Back in the beginning of my journey, I could easily rattle off something like “everyday other day for an hour…”. That has definitely changed. With my focus ever evolving, my workouts have evolved as well. Gone are the endless minutes of cardio workouts where I would have to eat a snack afterwards because I burned so many calories. Gone are the days of numb, jelly legs because I had done an hour on the elliptical machine. While I needed to be locked into a set schedule in the beginning because it had been so long without working out, at this point I don’t need a schedule that is so stringent.

But don’t get confused by my last sentence. ¬†I do have to keep up with working out for my health. ¬†Most people find that once physical exercise becomes part of their health journey, they get hooked to it. ¬†If I go more than two days without some sort of sweat inducing physical activity, my mood shifts. ¬†Bless Mister S’s heart, he knows exactly when to say….”Let’s take a walk this evening” or he will ask with the best intentions “Are you working out today?” ¬†I find working out to be not only a great physical challenge but it clears my mind. ¬†As a teacher, there are so many issues that I carry home in my mind that I need that time to just release it all so to speak.

So on to the questions at hand.  My general disclaimer is that every person is individual and so is their journey.  For some people, working out is every single day.  For others it is a few times a week.  It all depends on how fit you are and what you can physically endure.  For example, as a working mother, I have to budget every single minute of my day so that all the people who need me in the course of 24 hours gets what they need and more importantly that I get what I need.   Part of who I am now is greatly defined by how I feel physically.

As a general rule, a person should workout about 2.5 hours per week of moderate activity or about 30 minutes per day for 5 days. ¬†It seems like A LOT of working out, but once you get into the habit of it, you’ll find that it goes by rather quickly. ¬†Now, do I workout 5 days a week? ¬†Absolutely not. ¬†I simply don’t have the time. ¬†Instead, I shoot for 4 days per week for about 45 minutes each. ¬†Some days less and some days more.

I will say the key to working out and doing it so that you get the most benefit is to switch up your routines. ¬†If you stick with the same thing over and over, you won’t see the results you want to see! ¬†Use those weights ladies! ¬†You will not end up looking like The Rock or Vin Diesel. ¬†Take a run/jog/walk one day. ¬†Complete a HIIT workout another day. Variety is the spice of life as they say and it definitely applies to working out!

Ro

YouTube Challenge!!! Fitness Blender!

I’ve talked about my love of YouTube workout videos on a ton of posts so I wanted to share with you a challenge that I recently finished. I have been working out to Fitness Blender for a few months now and have found that their workouts have just enough umph to make me feel the burn a few days later. This particular “challenge” was five days long and it kicked my arse! I didn’t do all five days in a row even though it was designed to be that way. I am very much a believer that the body needs time to recuperate and recover after a workout. The workouts target all of the major muscle groups as well as incorporating cardio into the routines. After completing all five, I definitely felt stronger although I was really sore after day four. This is probably due to the fact that I upped the pounds on the weights I use.

If you need a kick start to your fitness regime or just want to switch it up, this would be a good five day starter!

Click the link below to get started and enjoy!

Go make breakfast….YES! Right now!

The hour of reckoning has come. It’s time for me to go back to work and I am not excited. Nope not at all. Let me explain…..I am ready to see my students, some of my coworkers, and none of the paperwork that my job involves. But alas, here we are! Lady S is starting preschool and Mister S is on year two of college with a full course load! That means we do a lot of prepping and planning in this house.

Lady S is provided breakfast at school which is a huge timesaver for us in the mornings. We like to give her something homemade anyway just for the ride there. I am thinking muffins this year and rotating the recipes I use. I can only imagine how hungry she must be by 8 when breakfast is served. For the Mister and I, we keep it pretty simple with different breakfast sandwiches, CLIF bars, yogurt and granola, and the occasional burrito.

I’m jumping on my soapbox for a minute here. I’ve probably said this a million times before, but the blow to success is inconsistency and lack of planning. Being healthy is not some bandwagon to jump on and off. It truly is a lifestyle change and a major part of it is cooking and what you eat! There are tons of excuses as to why someone can’t cook but please…if I can go from thinking hamburger helper with a salad was a meal to fresh foods and veggies then you can too!

Yes McDonald’s is easier but do you really know of that patty is sausage? I’ve always thought it was hamburger on a smaller scale. Yes iced coffee is delicious….a grande, French vanilla, iced coffee with extra cream and sugar is not. And I’m not judging here…I used to do both of those things above. A little planning goes a long way.

I’ve been asked for the recipe for breakfast sandwiches/burritos and I’ll share it with you!

To Go Breakfast Sandwiches
Ingredients

  • 1 pound of bulk sausage (avoid Jimmy Dean small tubes, Swaggerty’s Gwaltney–they all have MSG and/or fillers) OR 1 package of Canadian bacon
  • 1 pack of mild cheddar cheese
  • 1 dozen of eggs
  • 1 pack of English Muffins (12 pack) OR 1 tube of biscuits OR 1 package of tortillas
  • Salt and pepper
  • Dried parsley
  • Baking pan
  • Muffin tin
  • Plastic wrap

Directions

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. If cooking biscuits, set the oven to the temp the biscuits say. This may reduce the time the sausage and eggs cook.
  • While the oven heats, line a baking pan with aluminum foil and spray a muffin tin (holds 12) with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Cut sausage to desired thickness being sure to end up with 12 total pieces and place on baking pan. If using place Canadian Bacon, just lay on baking pan.
  • Place meat in the oven and let sausage cook all the way through about 15-20 minutes depending on your oven*Canadian bacon will take a shorter amount of time*
  • In a bowl, crack 7-8 eggs and season with salt and pepper. Add dried parsley to your liking. I don’t measure the parsley. Just eyeball it y’all.
  • Pour egg mixture in each muffin tin to about 1/3 full. Repeat until all cups are full. Place in the oven.
  • Go watch tv or fold clothes or read the other posts on my blog. ūüôā
  • Once all components are done cooking, make an assembly line and begin to assemble your breakfast!
  • Place cheese on the bottom, then egg, then meat. Wrap in plastic wrap and place inside a freezer bag for storage.
  • The night before eating, defrost in the fridge. In the morning, cook in the microwave for 30 seconds to 1 minute keeping an eye on the sandwich. When the cheese has melted, it’s warmed through.

Voila! You just made breakfast for a week or more in one hour!!!

Pointers
* I LOVE bacon. I really do, but it does not reheat well. Do not even attempt turkey bacon. Thank me later ūüėČ
* To cut down on calories, buy a thin sliced version of mild cheddar cheese. Target has one and Sargento does as well.
* You are welcome to add veggies to your eggs or do a vegetation version without meat if you prefer.