blueberry and banana baked oatmeal
spinach with scrambled eggs, shallots, shrooms, cheese
slice of toast with strawberry jam
Afternoon Snack
strawberry banana smoothie
cheeseburger on whole wheat bun
handful of chips
1/2 serving baked oatmeal
Late Snack
slice of toast with peanut butter and jam
cup of milk
 Posted by at 9:15 PM

I feel great today! This is the first day in a long time that my knee didn’t hurt at all. I ended up having 4 days off from the gym. Nick, Sally and I headed to the J on Thursday before our CSA pickup. When we arrived just after 4pm, two of the Kid Kare staff people were leaving. They were closed due to a power outage and flood. Apparently, the power went out during the thunderstorm and the Kid Kare room and part of the gym floor flooded. So, Kid Kare was also closed on Friday while they could clean and dry things out. Saturday, we don’t go to the J and Sunday was Father’s Day. Sally also went sick on Saturday and Sunday.

So, 4 days of rest must have done the trick. Today, I had a great (but cautious) workout and no pain.

20 minutes on the E Spinner averaging 80 RPMs. I was sweating and actually felt like I got a cardio workout. After that warm up, I completed some core floor exercises and PT exercises. I still had time and felt great, so I did the following:

2 sets of 20 @ 90 pounds on the abdominal machine
2 sets of 12 @ 70 pounds on the row
2 sets of 12 narrow and wide on the lat pull down

I made sure to stretch when I was done. I didn’t have a long workout, but I’m super excited to add more to my next workout.

Next up: strawberry picking if the weather cooperates, otherwise we’ll head to the J in the morning.

raw oats, milk, peanut butter, peach, cinnamon
Morning Snack
handful of grapes and a few nuts
big salad
Afternoon Snack
2 muffins
chicken sandwich
few potato chips
Late Snack
smoothie, banana, peanut butter, milk
 Posted by at 8:45 PM

This week in our CSA, we received many items that fit into a Mexican theme.  It seemed appropriate to create a taco salad.


Recipe: Taco Salad

Summary: All ingredients are approximate as I don’t really measure much.


  • 1 T olive oil
  • 3 garlic scapes, chopped
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1 pound local grass fed ground beef
  • 1 cup black beans (already cooked or canned)
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 4 T Penzeys taco seasoning
  • 2 cups quinoa with cilantro, prepared
  • handful of corn chips per person
  • bed of lettuce per person


  1. Heat olive oil in skillet.
  2. Add garlic scapes and onion and cook for a couple of minutes.
  3. Add ground beef and cook until beef is almost done.
  4. Drain off grease and return to pan.
  5. Add tomatoes, beans, water and taco seasoning.
  6. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil, simmer until tomatoes are done and sauce is thickened.
  7. Assemble 1/3 cup quinoa and 1/6 of the filling on top of the lettuce.
  8. Add a handful of corn chips to each plate.

Quick notes

To make the quinoa, use a rice cooker. You need 1 part quinoa to 2 parts water. I used previously frozen chopped cilantro that was frozen into ice cubes with water to make up some of the water. Add the cubes to a measuring cup and fill with water to desired level. You can always add fresh cilantro or leave it out.

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Cooking time: 20 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 6





whole wheat waffle topped with pecans, banana and maple syrup
cup of milk
Morning Snack
handful of nuts
taco salad
Afternoon Snack
whole wheat crackers w/2 Laughing Cow cheese wedges
spelt berries topped with vegetable sauce mixed with white sauce and Parmesan
 Posted by at 9:04 PM

Nick turned 3 in February.  So, he’s 40 months old now.  Recently, his imagination has taken off.

He routinely makes dinner for me.  His props are things like small Frisbees for plates, plastic forks from our kitchen, a pitcher, a stuffed egg (compliments of Eggland’s Best at Fit Bloggin’), various wooden flat vegetables and a few wooden spoons.   With these few items and the mantle/wall of our living room, I can watch him make pizza, soup, pretzels and many other concoctions.  He often will use a switch on the wall for a timer and his garden gloves as oven mitts.  He also has several water faucets available.  One day last week, he wouldn’t let me start making dinner because he was making it.  So, I sat in the living room and played and we ate real food later that night.

A week or two ago, Nick created a couple of cats.  He named them Suzie and Dredger.  Then, he added mommy cat and daddy cat.  Daddy cat has a sore nose and had to get it fixed, so we need to be careful with his nose.  (This was surely a result of my husband’s nose surgery about 2 weeks ago.)  He also has a dog named Marsha.  Marsha comes everywhere with us.  He ties her up to posts when we go shopping and never forgets to untie her so she can get back in the car.  Just when I was getting used to the 5 animals, he named his stuffed dog Who.  Now, I am tracking Who along with 5 imaginary animals.  He takes us forever to get ready to go anywhere.  I even had to put socks on Marsha yesterday.  I have no idea where any of these names came from.  I can’t even think of any shows that have used these names.  It’s fun and exhausting.

Making up songs has really taken off lately also.  My husband and I routinely will use the melody from a popular kids tune and make up our own words.  Nick has started doing the same thing.  It’s so awesome for him to be creative.

Sally is almost 19 months.  Usually, she doesn’t understand what Nick is doing, but occasionally I catch her with a Mmmmm as she tries a pizza fresh out of the oven.

It’s never dull!

 Posted by at 9:41 PM
raw oats (peach, milk, oats, cinnamon, cashew butter)
Morning Snack
piece of honey wheat bread w/strawberry jam
bok choy tofu stir fry
Afternoon Snack
corn chips
taco salad
Late Snack
banana w/chocolate, maple and peanut butter
 Posted by at 9:27 PM

I haven’t written much about my weight lately.  So, I thought I’d give everyone an update.  I love Weight Watchers, but since I stopped going a few weeks back, life has so much less stress.  I didn’t realize how hard it was on me to take the kids to the meetings.  Paying $40 a month to not be able to participate in the support part of the experience didn’t make sense.  I love having Thursday mornings free as well.  We’ve been trying out the local U-Pick places and it’s been a blast.

Now, my trainer weighs me once a week.  That gives me some accountability.  Several weeks went by without a trainer appointment due to my knee, but on Wednesday, I weighed in.  I was down over 9 pounds.  I am very happy that the lack of activity didn’t impede my progress.  Obviously, my food choices are paying off.

I’m happy to be in the 270’s and on my way down!  Some members of my family recently had some health issues and when things hit home, it’s a bit easier to take care of yourself and work even harder to become healthier.

I’ve had several big changes lately.  I cut out all sugars except honey and maple syrup.  So, I’m not eating white sugar, powdered sugar, brown sugar, rice syrup, corn syrup etc.  I’m on the fence about agave sweetener.  Since we have an unopened bottle in the cupboard, I will probably go ahead and allow it.  It’s similar to honey and maple syrup, but it’s not available locally.  I haven’t been perfect – like when I didn’t realize that Penzeys Pizza Seasoning had sugar in it and I allowed some cranberry bread and I’m sure the cranberries themselves had sugar added.  But, if my only sugar is contained in a bit of spice or a few cranberries, I’ll call that a WIN!

I also quit eating white flour.  So, anything with white flour has been eliminated.  It’s amazing how many “whole wheat” products really aren’t whole anything.  I’ve been focusing on more whole grains and making bread or buying 100% whole wheat bread from Great Harvest.  They make it with honey and grind their own wheat.  Along with this, I’ve stopped eating white rice too.  Most of the time, I’m having quinoa, brown rice, whole wheat pasta, wheat berries, corn meal, etc.  I love it and I’m so much more satisfied.

Between the new flour and sweetener plans, I have essentially eliminated fast food, soda and unplanned desserts.  I don’t even miss it one bit.  I still have lots of treats, but they are whole grain and honey based or made with other “real” foods and take some planning.  For example, we enjoyed homemade strawberry ice cream last weekend.  We had to plan ahead.  I also make banana bread fairly often.  It’s been fun to learn how to cook with honey and my taste buds have adapted so many items are tasting great without any added sweetener.  I can’t remember the last time I had fast food.  I feel great about that and the example that it sets for Nick and Sally.  I also don’t feel deprived one bit.  That is extremely nice.

I’m still working on vegetables.  It’s getting better and I’m definitely eating less meat and more vegetables.  I’m enjoying some spaghetti squash while I type this post.  Now, I do need to figure out some more vegan recipes that are tasty so I can work on my biggest food vice left – CHEESE!  I just eat way too much cheese.  But, it’s a process.

I’m also glad both CSAs have started along with U-Pick season.  Our kitchen is well stocked with fresh fruit and vegetable that will rot if we don’t eat them.  This provides extra motivation to eat at home and cook fresh yummy dishes that everyone will enjoy.




 Posted by at 9:05 PM
raw oats (I shouldn't call them overnight if I don't make them until morning) - banana, raisins, oats, yogurt, jam, cinnamon
spaghetti squash, sauce, olives, cheese
Afternoon Snack
left over quinoa salad
taco filling (meat, beans, veggies) over lettuce with quinoa
bowl of local corn chips
Late Snack
slice of high five with homemade jam
1/2 c milk
 Posted by at 9:00 PM

Today, the kids and I traveled to Boughton Farm in Akron, Ohio.  From our house in Mayfield Heights, it’s about 45 minutes away.  It’s also close to Earth Fare grocery store and a Great Harvest bakery.  So, we were able to run errands after our picking.

The U-Pick at Broughton opened at 7 AM.  We arrived about 9:15 AM.  They have a barn set up for U-Pick information, containers, and pricing.  Looks like you can also pick pre-picked items there as well.


Everything was well marked and it was easy to find.


Nick loved sitting on this bench.  Inside the barn, a white board shows what’s available and the costs.  We were happily surprised that peas were available for U-Pick.  Strawberries were $1.10 a pounds and all varieties of peas were $.90 a pound.


On our way to the back of the barn to pick peas, we saw this tractor.  Nick was very excited since we were able o take the tractor ride to the strawberry field.  He also liked the peas sign.


Sally enjoyed the stroller for a bit before wanting to run around.


This was not a good year for peas, but we still had fun picking them.  The strawberries at this farm are never sprayed.  The set up is a bit different because you can pick where ever you want.  Other places usually assign you a spot or row.  I’m not sure which I prefer.  They had a port-a-jon available which is always nice with the kids.

We ended up paying $2.77.  That was for about 2.5 pounds of strawberries, .5 pound of snow peas, .5 pound of sugar snap peas, and a small handful of English shelling peas.  I thought it was the best deal yet.  Boughton offers other U-Picks and we’ll be heading back there again soon.