Monday, September 28, 2009

S'mores Cookies!!

Let's see if you can guess what I made from the following ingredients:

S'mores Cookies
recipe from make and bake

3/4 cup butter, softened (1 1/2 sticks)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups flour
1 cup graham crackers
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup mini marshmallows
2 Hershey bars, chopped up (baking size)

Preheat oven to 350. Process graham crackers in a food processor until they become crumbs. They do not need to be super fine crumbs but there shouldn't chunks either.

In a stand mixer or large bowl, cream the butter and sugars until fluffy.

Mix in the egg and vanilla until no longer visible. In a small bowl, combine flour, salt and baking soda. Add the flour mixture and graham crackers to the wet mixture. (The seperate bowl isn't entirely's just a habit I've picked up from Alton Brown while watching Good Eats lol)

Fold in the chocolate chips.

Drop by rounded tablespoons onto prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 6-8 minutes or until mostly done and remove from the oven. Push 3-4 marshmallows and a few pieces of Hershey bar into each cookie.

Return to oven and bake for an additional 3-4 minutes or until fully cooked. Cool cookies on a wire rack.

YUM!!! These cookies were phenomenal. I had trouble keeping my hands off of them and had to take the extras into work. The original recipe said it made 3 dozen...but I halved the recipe and only got 1 dozen. Maybe I just make my cookies too large! lol

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Nutrition, Exercise and Weight Loss

**Sorry: I deleted and reposted in an effort to get the layout back to normal...I didn't mean to delete anyone's comment! :(

I haven't mentioned anything about my weight loss (other than that I've been doing it lol) on here because, honestly, I've been kinda embarassed by it because of how big I let myself get. But, then, out of nowhere, I realized that should make me even more proud of how far I've come. So, I would like to share my story. (haha that sounds so corny) Even still, I'm nervous as I type this; as I post it out there for the whole world wide web to see. Oh well, here goes.

I woke up mid-July of 2008 and realized that my size 13 work pants were too tight. I then proceeded to cry in the shower for at least 15 minutes. How could I have let myself get this far?? I checked myself on the scale that I never used...180 lbs. SCARY. I'd never been that heavy in my life. Which then proceeded to make me cry again. All day, I just sat wondering how it happened. 2 years from that point I weighed probably around 135-140 lbs. I'm not really sure since I never used scales. But, I know this: I was a size 6. Size 7 in shorts because I've been blessed with a booty. haha I was an avid runner. I had no problems with the way I looked and could walk around in a bikini with the only thought that I was too pale. Then two years of not exercising and eating whatever I wanted happened.

It wasn't that bad pre-marriage. I had a job at a daycare so I was pretty active. But, we did eat at all the cool restaurants and always picked up fast food to eat. I was bigger than I wanted to be on my wedding day but I didn't think it was that bad. It was after the marriage that things got bad. I got a job as a receptionist. I sat on my ass all day long and did nothing to change my diet or activity level. I started making meals at home that were convienent since our first kitchen was terribly small and convienence foods are rarely good for you.

Something snapped later that day, and I'm glad it did. I started an exercise program and started eating better. I even got my husband involved. I was very dilligent about exercising 6 or 7 days a week. By November, I was exhausted. I was completely burnt out. I took a week hiatus...which turned into two...and then three. All through the holidays, I just didn't do it. I wasn't eating near as bad as before so I didn't gain all the weight back but I'm not sure how much I lost to begin with because I wasn't very good about recording my weight. By February, when I was fed up and wanting to get back on track, I was back at 170. So, I started eating healthier and I taught myself how to cook healthier (which has been a HUGE help). I can now look at a recipe and automatically fix it in my head to make it healthier. In March, I had to buy a new pair of jeans because my 14s wouldn't fit, so I went down to 12s. In April, I started exercising again. Two weeks ago, I had to stop wearing my 12s because they were literally falling down. I did a happy dance in my bedroom when my OLD pair of 10s fit.

As of today, I am down 24.8 pounds since last July, 14.8 since April. The picture shows my 90-day weight history and although I had a blip where I got sick and it was hard to jump back on track, the general direction is down. According to the CDC, I am 3.2 pounds away from being a healthy weight for my height! This makes me so happy, I can't even explain. How did I do it, you ask? Plain old diet and exercise. I'm an avid believer of just eating right and being active. If you read my post on that Time article a couple weeks ago, you know how avid I am about this. I think support groups are fine. But, apples to apples, it comes down to eating right and being more active. No cutting carbs or eating only protein. They're all essential parts of a human diet. It's just about eating the right amounts of each. And, I eat treats all the time. It's just about portions. Knowing that if you don't eat it today, you can always eat it tomorrow really helps.

I read constanlty about exercise, diet and overall Fitness. I subscribe to Shape and Self but am always careful to not believe everything I read. I've grown accustomed and trusting to these magazines but at the same time, I know that every body is different. It's all about finding what works for you. Read all you can but read with your brain, not just your eyes. Don't believe it just because it says so. But, for the most part, these magazines have a great outlook on diet and exercise and articles like this one that I received in my inbox today help keep my perspective.

I still somewhat cringe when I think that I'm excited to weigh 150 pounds and be a size 10. But...I just have to remind myself that I'm not done. That was just my first goal: to be healthy again. I'm not exactly sure of my final goals. My body has changed since high school and I'm not positive that I'll even be able to get back down to my high school weight. I just want to get to the point where I feel good about myself. I want to be at a weight that can enjoy treats every now and then and not have to exercise like a madman. I don't have the time to run 3 hours a day like I used to. I'm not even sure how I did then!!

And it's days like today when I look back at all that I've written, just for the heck of it, that I really believe I could have a career in nutrition. :)

Until next time, have a fabulous day!!

Designed by Simply Fabulous Blogger Templates