Chocolate · Cookies · Dessert · Healthy · Winter · Winter Treats

My childhood memories become my adult addiction

Only 4 days left to the Olympics and I am starting to get concerned about how I will spend my time moving forward. For two weeks every two years I completely shut my life down and do nothing but watch athlete after athlete do the impossible. There is a great commercial that references every time the Olympics happen you, the normal folk like you and I, get inspired by these athletes to go out there and do the impossible. I am the number one culprit of this. For two weeks every two years I go to work, rush immediately home and wait until the Olympics are on and then I watch them until well past my bedtime.

This year I am at least doing something with that inspiration and have started pushing myself workout wise AND focusing on my eating. Anya on the daily burn always says “its not just about working out, diet is also important.” Well she says something like that and I have finally said ok, fine, you are right, maybe the pound of gummy bears I eat almost every day, although made with fruit juice so technically a fruit, may not be helping in my progress to lose weight.

I don’t believe in Diets and I don’t believe in denying yourself. I have an addictive personality. No I am not an addict, but I am someone that struggles to say no in a lot of ways whether it be more one more cocktail, one more piece of pizza, one more beige colored cardigan sweater because this one has pockets and the three I already own don’t! Its taken me until just this year to realize that I truly struggle to do things in moderation and also tell myself no, in many ways in my life.

In November I tempted the Whole30 Diet. I made it about 23 days ( probably more like 20 because I think I cheated a couple of times). The problem with this is I was telling myself a COMPLETE NO to things. This doesn’t work for me, it might for others, but not for me. I did it but I did not do it well or enjoy myself. Instead, I am focusing on moderation and not denying myself what I want.

I have set a few rules for myself:

  • Desserts or sweets only on the weekend
  • If i am going to go out to eat or drinking, I need to make sure I workout in the morning
  • Workout, especially when you don’t want to. If you are at home and just watching TV, you have to do a light weight and ab workout.
  • No more drinking at home, only when out (if I have to pay for it, I am less likely to consume as much #poorlife)
  • Cook for the week every weekend
  • BAKE! and then Bake again!

Maybe calling these rules is a bit harsh, I think perhaps they are life mantras, or mantras at least for the moment. Focusing on these mantras or rules should hopefully open my eyes to not how little of something I am doing, but how much of it I was doing prior to now. For me, this is where change can actually happen and become a life change rather than a quick fix.

This weekend I got real crazy and started a new puzzle and spent about 6 hours on Sunday working on it.
When I was a kid I spent summer nights with my mom and sister working on puzzles. We would go to the local multi-purpose store, this was before Target and Walmart existed and buy a new puzzle every few weeks or so. I think we bought every Charles Wysocki puzzle that was every manufacturer in the 90’s and only Charles Wysocki puzzles. Why? Honestly, I have no idea but they are the only puzzles I like to do. There is also a solid chances these were the only puzzles the store sold and thats why we always bought them. Either way, I fell in love with them.

I have fond memories of sitting on our screened in porch at night, with tons of candles and a table lamp, basically in the dark working on our puzzles and listening to the crickets chirping in the summer night. I can’t pinpoint when this all basically stopped. Likely when I started playing soccer in my teen years, which quickly became my life obsession.

A few months ago the store we used to buy our puzzles from, a local family owned business finally closed its doors. It was really sad. It was just a store, but its one of those things in my childhood that holds a lot of memories. My mom and I were reminiscing and I brought up all the puzzles we used to get from there. Two days later, I got a package when I cam home from work. Now, every time I come home and there is a package in the doorway of my building I always look at it. You know, just to double check if its for me, not that I bought anything and not that I am expecting anything, but you never know when someone might just randomly send you something right? Never happen to you either? Well it finally did for me! It was literally so thrilling to actually see a random, spontaneous package waiting for me. I may have squealed a little. Turns out, while we had been chatting my Mom was on Amazon and mailed me a Charles Wyscoki puzzle.

This was about 4 months ago. I blame my father for what happened next. My Dad insisted on buying me Amazon Prime at Christmas. Dad loves Prime he also LOVES Alexa. He asks her to tell him jokes and the weather. He now has her in the living room and the kitchen where she plays music for him while he eats. He wanted me to have an Alexa even though I asked him what would I do with an Alexa? I have a two room apartment so small that it feels cramped when there is more than just myself in it. He just so happened to have an extra Echo to give me and in order to have an Alexa… I had to have Prime.

What comes with Prime?
-Two day free shipping.

What can you order on two day free shipping?
-Every new 1000 piece Charles Wysocki Amazon sells, thats what!
This might go back to the whole addictive personality thing. Also, if you have an Alexa, ask her if she knows the Muffin Man?

Puzzling… I think that’s an actual word… has been really stimulating for me. It gives me something to do on my days off and something that I can easily start and stop if I need too. Its also great to do while you are impatiently waiting for things to cook! This weekend I came across a recipe I made a few times last year for a friend who is GF. I thought I would whip up a batch of these PB and Nutella Crinkle Cookies because I was craving something a little sweet and they are fast and super easy to make. What makes it for me is the chopped, toasted hazelnuts on top.
There are a lot of things you can do with hazelnuts, but like Almonds, if you do not toast them prior to eating them or baking with them,they will taste very raw and almost flour like.

Cocktails · Dinner · Healthy

Secrets and Celebrations!

Yesterday was National Margarita Day and I was too busy consuming said Margaritas to actually sit down and share with you all my favorite Margarita recipe. I figure a day late is still better then never for the best darn Margarita you will ever have!


I woke up today feeling really happy, tired, but happy for the first time in a long time. I had an awesome interview for a new job yesterday that I feel very positive and hopeful about. To celebrate I met up with two of my favorite people for Margarita’s and Nacho’s at my favorite Mexican restaurant, something we have not done in a while.

A year ago I spent almost every Monday night saddled up to the bar stuffing my face with Nacho’s and beers while trying to process my breakup. It was not a pretty sight but I have moved on from those pathetic times. Well, mostly moved on.

On my way to work I also rode the T with the cutest Pug named Milton. Dogs with old man names just seem that much cuter then they already are! But seriously, what is it about animals that just make everything better?

So seriously, yesterday was a great day and I have to mention it was great because its rare when a perfect snow storm of great days happens.

As I sit at my desk and mentally waste away from the mind numbingly dumbness of my day to day workflow all I can think about is the rice noodle and spicy pork dish I have waiting for me for dinner tonight.


I kind of threw a bunch of stuff together but will work on putting together a more cohesive recipe since the end product was amazing.

Happy Thirsty Thursday!





Breakfast · Healthy · Juice

I made a Detox drink and didn’t hate it

I have been having a lot issues over the last year when it comes to my weight and how I feel. A large reason for this was the 6+ months living off of nachos, tater tots and beer while I was trying to mend a broken heart. Through this period of time my anxiety was so overwhelming, I ended up losing a lot of weight. As I started to become human again and get back to normal, my habits didn’t change much and before I knew it I put on a ton of unwanted weight.

With the unwanted weight which seems to still be coming, has come a lot of other issues. One of them is feeling bloated all the time. I have been reading up on some of the things I could do to aid this problem. One of them is I realized I was eating too many carbs and zero protein. So, I started eating yogurt again in the mornings and chicken for sandwiches or dinner.

Other articles highly praise drinking warm water with lemon in it first thing in the morning. They say it gives you energy and helps flush out your system and starts your day off right! I don’t know if i am buying this… I think it’s just making me pee even more than usual.

Next up the magic of Turmeric and Ginger! Again, lots of articles on the health benefits of Turmeric and Ginger with digestion and bloating. There are a thousand and one recipes of various detox drinks out there so after looking over a few, I made up my own with a little bit of everything that is supposedly going to help me start feeling better.

  • Turmeric for Inflammation
  • Ginger for Digestion
  • Grapefruit for Fiber and Potassium
  • Oranges for Vitamin C
  • Lemons for Iron
  • Mango for Sweetness, Fiber and B6

I find the juice VERY intense, especially with the Turmeric in it so I am finding I prefer to do a couple of quick shots of it in the morning to get me going, rather than gingerly sip it over time!


Orange Ginger Turmeric Detox Drink


2 Oranges, 1 Pink Grapefruit, 2 Lemons, 3-4 inch piece of Fresh Ginger, 2 tsp Turmeric


Juicing by hand: If you have a bowl or large measuring cup with a spout, I suggest you use that. With a handheld juicer, juice the oranges, grapefruit and lemons into the bowl.

Add the flesh of the mango to a food processor and pulse until smooth. Add mango puree to the juice.

Add the turmeric and with a microplane, grate in the ginger. Wisk juices together and when ready to drink, strain juice through a small mesh strainer into your drinking cup! This will catch any chunks of ginger and mango.

Using an Automatic Juicer: Follow your machines instructions for juicing. Cut away the peels on your oranges, grapefruit and lemons making sure to cut away all of the white pith (this is really bitter). Add the citrus and mango to the juicer, a little at a time.Using a peeler, peel the ginger and remove all the outer skin. Cut into small chunks and add the ginger to your juicer. Add the turmeric to your juice and whisk until dissolved.

I drink about 4oz of this a day. Depending on how juice is in your citrus, this recipe will last you 2-3 days. Store juice in an airtight container in your refrigerator.