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Friday, 31 May 2013

Do you like your reflection?

Friday 31st May 2013
If you are still looking for that one person who can change your life, take a look in the mirror.
It’s Friday which is fabulous, however I’m going away today which makes it even more wonderful.  Just a few things to do then we can start to pack, yep we haven’t started yet, either of us, totally unprepared!  Hey ho, anything we forget we can buy I’m sure or do without. 
I’m looking forward to a week of turning off from all the day to day things, I may blog, I may not, if I do it’ll probably only be to record my memories of my holiday for  me because my memory sucks and I like to remember stuff, it also helps mom with her diary ;)
I shall be turning my phone off and staying off Facebook most of the time too, give my brain a rest from social networking and technology.  I want to spend some un-distracted, quality time with my mom and loved ones.  Work can wait, so if you are one of my members, they’ll be a delay in answering any of your messages because I’m going to enjoy a well earned rest.  Fingers crossed the weather forecast is good too, I want to walk on the beach, I want to climb me a mountain, I want to chill out and read, this is my ideal holiday.  I adore Wales, the scenery is stunning and it’s not far away so all we need now is some dry weather.
We re-tweaked our shopping list yesterday and removed some of the sillier stuff we’d added, we’ve decided we want to eat relatively healthy all week, don’t get me wrong we’ll enjoy the odd indulgence but we don’t want to feel yak because of our eating, I know when I overindulge too much I feel gross, I get heartburn and indigestion and I’m then uncomfortable.  So tonight we’ve already got steak and salad planned, we’ll also be enjoying a couple of roast dinners this week, of course there has to be egg and chips involved but I’m taking my Actifry so that will make them healthier.  We’re keeping the cooking simple so there’s fish fingers on the list and risotto and I’ve even ordered a couple of Weight Watcher ready meals, I can’t remember the last time I had one of those but I fancy the Beef HotPot, thought it’d make a quick meal if I’m hungry.
So whatever you have planned this weekend, remember if you do want to lose weight and make permanent long term changes to your life, you can’t treat every weekend like an ‘all inclusive’ holiday where you go into ‘sod it’ mode, not if you want success.  As I said at the beginning of this blog, if you are still looking for that one person who can change your life, take a look in the mirror.
Today realise how amazing life is, how fortunate you are, look at your loved ones and appreciate them.  None of us are perfect but we are all unique and perfect, so embrace that, love yourself, BeYouTiful and EatGorgeous because if you have your health, you are truly blessed. xx

Thursday, 30 May 2013

It’s called WeightWatchers not WeightLosers

Thursday 30th May 2013
“Forgiveness is a gift you give yourself.”  Suzanne Somers

It’s called WeightWatchers not WeightLosers – I’m sure there’s a reason for that!  I believe as I mentioned yesterday that we can’t always be ‘in the zone’ so as long as you’re keeping your eye on your weight, and it’s not going up and up and up then that’s better than just giving up.  It’s important to do the best you can and be gentle on yourself, because a happy person functions better in the world than an unhappy one that’s beating themselves up all the time for not being able to ‘do it’!   I love this photo because it sums up my belief of slow and steady wins the race, there are no quick fixes or cheats, and you have to make permanent, long term changes to make get permanent long term result.
So with this in mind and the realisation that underneath it all I am and will probably always be a little bit greedy, I love to shop and spend money on food, I think it goes back to my childhood when mom didn’t have much in the way of cash so all we really ate was eggs and chips (still one of my favourite meals I add),  but anyway, it doesn’t matter why I am the way I am, it matters how I cope with it.  Yesterday we did our holiday shop online to ensure I didn’t do that, “lets just have this and this and this and this” as we walked round the store!  We’ve planned and ordered everything we’ll need to stop us going crazy.  I know my limitations, sometimes I’m more in control than others but at the moment, I know, hand on heart if it was raining when we went to the supermarket, I’d be filling that trolley full of so many goodies, it’d probably double our bill!
I’ve taken temptation out of our way; if we’re going to want to mindlessly eat then we shall mindlessly eat better!  We shall still indulge of course because it’s our holiday but we won’t get ridiculous.  Once the treats we’ve bought have gone, that’s it for the week, we shan’t go get more.
I’m looking forward to reading, resting, walking on the beach, taking photos and spending time with my loved ones, my holiday isn’t just about eating thankfully!
Just one more days work and I can have 10 days off J, just hoping for some dry days as walking in the rain was all I did over Christmas, I’d like a bit of sunshine please.
Thinking about it what could you do this week to help you with your weight loss journey, or to help you turn the tide if you’ve been going in the wrong direction?  It’s about small realistic changes, a tweak each week, we’re looking at moving more this week, the power of the pedometer, could you move a bit more, could you cut down on the treats you have or swap them for a lower ProPointed version, could you just start to keep a journal to make you aware of what you are eating, maybe write down how you’re feeling too, try to sort out your thoughts and emotions?
Right I’m off and doing it, raining yet again, I’m hoping the sky runs out of water by tomorrow and it’s dry for a few days, I want to enjoy that beach.
EatGorgeous, BeYouTiful & Take care of you because you are worth it. xx

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Go over, go under, go round or go through but NEVER GIVE UP!

Wednesday 29th May 2013
Today is your day, Your Mountain is waiting.  So… get on your way.” Dr Seuss
60 years ago today Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay became the first men to reach the 29,028ft (8,848 metres) summit of Everest on May 29 1953, what an achievement; something that was thought couldn’t be done!  Just one of many astonishing accomplishments by man proving that if we put our mind to something we can achieve most things, yet some things i.e. weight loss, at times seem much more difficult that climbing Everest don’t they!  And knowing how to do something doesn’t mean you will do it, I heard a statistic recently that 65% of the health care profession are overweight, that’s statistically more than any other profession in the country and yet they like me know better, they know the importance of healthy eating and taking care of yourself.
Last night we touched on how in the real world it is unlikely that you will be ‘on track’ and losing weight all the time, real life gets in the way doesn’t it.  Sometimes your head just isn’t focused on the importance of healthy eating for numerous reasons, it may be that there’s so much other stuff going on in your life you just can’t focus on it, or you may be having a fab time in the sunshine enjoying a bbq and a bear and what you weigh is the last thing on your mind.
What’s really important is you don’t think ‘sod it’ and just start neglecting yourself and eating junk and not thinking about your health at all.  Just because you don’t lose weight for a few weeks doesn’t mean you have to give up on making healthy choices altogether, weight loss is not the only reward for eating healthily and moving more!  It’s really important to realise that and it can help if you turn healthy eating and moving more into a habit, part of your everyday life style so that when those times hit when you’re not so focused, you are still automatically making wiser choices without realising it as that’s the norm in your house. 
Take emotional eating for example – everybody does it at some time, so if you have a tube of Pringles it’s going to set you back 27pp (an entire daily allowance!) whereas if your home is full of healthier snacks you’re likely to do less damage, it’s all in the preparation.  You can’t eat what isn’t there!  Mom bought Pringles last week and we ate them – I would never put Pringles in my trolley because I know I’m going to end up eating them, I’m the same with multipacks of Cheese and Onion crisps, if they’re there I won’t settle till they’ve all gone (I’ve convinced myself they’ll go off!)  And don’t worry healthy snacks are good, or at least healthier which can just mean smaller portions of stuff, for example I’d allow myself to bring one bag of cheese and onion crisps home because that’s only going to cost me 4pp, not the 24pp that would be in the multipack, or the 27pp in the Pringles!  Same works with chocolate, a 100g bar of Cadbury dairy milk will set you back 15pp, a Weight Watcher bar is 2pp, no brainer really or even a smaller bar of your favourite chocolate, I’m a galaxy girl myself and a 50g bar is 8pp, so they don’t get purchased very often!  Yes you can save yourself lots of ProPoints or calories just by thinking in the supermarket before you buy it and by making those decisions/choices regular habits.
We’re off on holiday next week and I’ve already decided I will be enjoying myself and having a good time, indulging in the good stuff, however I won’t be being ridiculous and thinking sod it, one because I don’t want to gain lots of weight and two because I know overindulging too much gives me and mom heartburn and indigestion and messing with her sleep too!  It’s just not worth it in my opinion; it’s all about the balance and being selective with what you indulge in!
On that note, I’m off to make me a cuppa, I’m still drinking my glass of water before my first cup of tea, a nice new habit I plan to continue, 1/3rd of a litre of water consumed within half hour of getting out of bed can only be a good thing.
Whether you’ve got your own personal mountain to climb today or not, remember all the reasons why you’re amazing and you can do anything that’s important enough to you.
Eat Gorgeous & BeYouTiful xx

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Back on track from today ;-) again!

28th May 2013
“All I really need is love, but a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt!”  Lucy, Peanuts
It feels like ages since I’ve been to work yet it was only last Thursday, nice weather sure does make the weekend seem longer because you actually ‘do’ things.  Yesterday was spent tatting about up the garden, we’ve decided to slab it all but before we can do that everything’s got to come out and there’s lots to come out.  Mom just can’t cope with the weeding and gardening anymore and I don’t want to do it, even just having spent a few hours doing it yesterday and my hands are really hurting this morning, plus my back doesn’t like it either, so slabs it will be.  We can always add pots of pretty stuff if we want to later.  So that’ll be the project for the new month or so! 
I stopped tracking Friday and better start again today, I’ve not been the best this weekend but I’ve really enjoyed it so I’m not going to complain, I can’t do that every weekend though, I know it was a Bank Holiday but every weekend is like a bank holiday for me now I don’t work Mondays so I need to learn to manage that extra day. 
So in line with the Summer Body Confidence 8 week journal, I’m going to do what it suggests for week two and focus on Filling & Healthy foods this week, it might help me with my appetite (yet again!).  I won’t do F&H days but will try to include some Filling & Healthy foods in all my meals this week.  Think I’ll start with scrambled eggs this morning mmm nice, I do like eggs it has to be said, they’re up there in my top ten for sure.  If I was to do a F&H day today though I could have baked beans with those eggs, mmm starting to get tempted!
What could I have for my other meals though, hold on I’m going to have a look in the cupboards, back in a minute…
Mmm maybe, could have gammon and some Actifry potatoes, the problem with F&H is I start to think about all the things I can’t have but also my portion sizes might get silly.  However if I just do it for the day it won’t be going without for too long.  I’ve fancied a proper cooked dinner all weekend so I might get a joint or a chicken and make one tomorrow, won’t really have time or the inclination today.
I’ve also noticed my pedometer hasn’t made it round my neck since Thursday either, and because of that I don’t think I’ve walked as much, Alfies been a bit lazy with his morning walks so we haven’t gone as far as we normally would and he didn’t get a second walk yesterday from me, mom took him.  Good job we did that walk Saturday at Attingham Park or I wouldn’t have covered much ground at all, I was a bit active in the garden though so all’s not lost of the activity levels.
It has been a fab weekend though, we’ve really chilled out and enjoyed it, I even managed some housework which is always a good thing.  My bedroom is transformed into a tidy palace yet again, my closets have been cleared out and sorted, six bin bags removed and given away, my office is as good as it gets ;-)
Yep starting my working week fully refreshed and ready to go, finally got the balance back between work and home life and it feels fab.
All I need now is a lottery win to pay for the work on the back garden! 
Have a fab day, EatGorgeous stay hydrated, if you haven’t already go drink a glass of water. Xx

Monday, 27 May 2013

What a beautiful bank holiday...

27th May 2013
The best things in life are free…
So true that statement is - for me anyway or is it more money can’t buy them nor guarantee them – health, happiness, sunshine. We had a fabulous day yesterday drove out to Attingham Park near Shrewsbury and walked round the grounds for a few hours, enjoying the scenery, the deer, the flowers were just glorious. I would definitely recommend it for a visit, lovely grounds, a cracking playing field for the kids and deer roaming over their land, absolutely amazing. Not a bad cup of tea either, of course we had to force the scone and clotted cream down though ;-)
Posing - Laughing - Loving Life x
Spending time with my mom and watching her enjoy herself really is lovely, and she’s so comical, walking round the park watching the children play she looked at me with all seriousness and said, “I’d make a good granny, I just don’t like kids”.  Then when we get to the shop there’s a child with a yo-yo and she insists on showing him how to do it, he watches her, copies then runs back to his mom saying, “I can do it mom, that lady showed me how”.  Yeah she hates kids!   It was rather embarrassing listening to her say, “Oh it must be national no smiling day Bev”, as we walked passed people, yep as she gets older, she has absolutely NO shame whatsoever!
Driving was a joy, the fields of yellow just look stunning and we have really pretty countryside.  When we got back I decided to tackle a bit of weeding up the back garden for an hour, then I cooked chicken jalfrezi from the hairy bikers diet book, a few people have recommended the recipe but I’m real fussy about home made curries, they’re not my forte, but I have to say I really enjoyed it.  I didn’t have any chillis so as I don’t like heat anyway I made it without them, instead I used about 6 cloves of garlic because I am a fan of garlic, I also realised I didn’t have the green pepper so instead I added an extra onion, and it was delicious, I’d definitely use it again, I may even make it and add veggies rather than chicken.  If you fancy a go, here’s the recipe.
Chicken Jalfrezi - from the Hairy Bikers diet book
(recipe total 31pp, serves 4 - 8pp each)

6 long green chillies (or less according to your taste)
4 (x 165g) chicken breast, skinless & boneless (16pp)
2 tablespoons Sunflower Oil (8pp) you could replace & save ProPoints by using 10 sprays of Fry Light (1pp) personally I like the flavour the oil adds.
2 garlic gloves - peeled and finely chopped
3 ripe tomatoes - chopped
1 tbsp ground cumin (1pp)
1 tbsp garam masala (1pp)
1 tsp turmeric
1 tbsp caster sugar (2pp)
1 tsp flaked sea salt
200ml cold water
2 tbsp low-fat natural yoghurt (1pp)
1 medium onion, cut into 12 wedges
1 green pepper, deseeded and cut into rough 3m chunks
2 tomatoes - quartered
2 tsp cornflour (1pp)
1 tbsp water

Finely chop 4 of the chillies - deseed a couple or all of them first if you don't like very spicy food. Split the other 2 chillies from stalk to tip on 1 side without opening or removing the seeds. Cut each chicken breast into 7 or 8 bite sized chunks.
Heat a tablespoon of the oil in a large, fairly deep, non stick frying pan (or wok) over a high heat.  Add the garlic, chopped chillies, chopped tomatoes, cumin, garam masala, turmeric, sugar and salt, then stir fry for 3-4 minutes until the vegetables soften. Don't let the garlic or spices burn or they will add a bitter flavour to the sauce.

Next, add the chicken pieces and whole chillies and cook for 3 minutes, turning the chicken regularly. Pour over the 200ml water, stir in the yoghurt and reduce the heat only slightly - you want the sauce to simmer. Cook for about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally until the chicken is tender and cooked through and the sauce has reduced by about a third. The yoghurt may separate to begin with but will disappear into the sauce.

While the chicken is cooking, heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in a clean pan and stir fry the onion and pepper over a high heat for 3-4 minutes until lightly browned. Add the quartered tomatoes and fry for 2-3 minutes more, stirring until the vegetables are just tender. Mix the cornflour with the tablespoon of water to form a smooth paste.
When the chicken is cooked, stir in the cornflour mixture and simmer for a few seconds until the sauce thickens, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat, add the hot stir-fried vegetables and toss together lightly. Serve immediately. And just in case you were wondering - don't eat the whole chillies!
It looks like another beautiful day out there, however you spend it, enjoy spending time with those you love because life really is short. xx

Sunday, 26 May 2013

What a wonderful countryside we have...

26th May 2013
Death twitches my ear; 'Live,' he says... 'I'm coming.' - Virgil -
Good morning world it’s a brand new day, and what a glorious one it looks from my office window -  better still because I slept till 7am.
A lovely day I had yesterday busy doing nothing for most of the morning, did a bit of housework, good Tandoori paneer biryani (don’t bother – not a good recipe at all!) , massage at lunchtime, then mom and I took a drive through the countryside and what a beautiful countryside we have.  The fields of yellow are just glorious at the moment, and I popped to the M6 services at Hilton to get an M&S meal and I couldn’t believe the beautiful field of bluebells there – stunning they were.

Yesterday filled me with a calmness, being outside in nature always grounds me and makes me feel good, and we all want to feel good don’t we, to be happy and enjoy our lives.   Sometimes though our attention gets focussed on our problems, we find ourselves constantly trying to fix the problems then life’s in danger of becoming one big problem!  We can get into the position of thinking “when I’ve sorted this or done that, then I’ll do…..” we’re in danger of running out of time.  We think we’ve got years yet, but you know what we may not have, a friend of mine lost her best friend earlier this week, it was sudden and unexpected and unfortunately she won’t get to any more“then I’ll do…..” bits. 
I’ve done the big things on my “then I’ll do…” list, I started writing it when I was a poorly child, I spent my 20’s and 30’s fulfilling all those dreams of things I wanted to do, places I wanted to go.  I still get things that I want to do obviously and I do them as soon as I can.  What’s on your “then I’ll do…” list?  When are you planning on doing it?
I’m fortunate that these days my list is full of things that are easy to do, easy to achieve and don’t cost a great deal, luckily I did the expensive stuff back in my 20s.  The only expensive thing I’d like to do is learn, but I don’t know if I want it enough to pay the cost, I'm happy to continue to read books on the subjects that interest me, I don’t need the qualification unless I intend a change of career and I don't!
So it’s a sunny day, do I do some of that stuff that needs doing round the house and in my office, or do I fill a bottle full of water, go fill up with petrol and get mom and Alfie in the car to go enjoy this sunshine, or maybe just sit up the garden enjoying the sunshine and a good book - mmm you guess?  The question is – what are you going to do?

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Happy & Healthy is the goal!

Stop hating yourself for everything you aren’t… Start loving yourself for everything you are…
Why is losing weight important to us?  I saw that question written on Facebook yesterday and for some reason the question often puts me on the defensive and my answe is usually, “it isn’t!”  Thinking about it, the reason that question rubs me up the wrong way is because it puts my mind immediately into a ‘diet mentality’ and that’s how I got fat in the first place.  When I focus too much on the numbers on the scales I focus less on the quality of the food I eat and the exercise that I undertake.  So instead of asking ‘why is losing weight important to me’, I ask why is eating healthy and feeling well important to me. It's not just about numbers on a scale it’s about taking care of yourself so that you feel good.  The goal isn’t size zero, the goal is Happy & Healthy!  So today instead of thinking “what can I eat that will help me lose weight” do something to head towards that goal of Happy and Healthy.  Maybe change the way you cook, try something new, carry a bottle of water round with you, go for a walk or in my case today make your housework, your workout!  You don’t have to be great to start but you do have to start to get anywhere close to great - small changes make a massive difference especially when you make them permanent ones and you build on the weekly.
So yesterday to make me happy I had sirloin steak, chips, caramelised onions and mushrooms.  To make it healthy, I cooked the steak on a George Foreman, the chips in the Actifry with only a tiny bit of oil and the onions and mushrooms were in a measured amount of oil and syrup.  The total for the meal was 15pp which is at least half of what a similar meal would have cost me had I cooked it the old fashioned way or eaten out.
My glasses of red wine make me happy; my keeping the quantity under control is what makes me healthier.
It’s all about balance, beating yourself up constantly for not ‘being in the zone and on track’ is just as damaging if not more so as being overweight to start with.
Watched fat family tree yesterday, very interesting, if you get the chance to watch it – do so, its on again Sunday, 8pm on 4seven or its on demand http://www.channel4.com/programmes/fat-family-tree/4od
Some great information on there, presented well, especially the bit about not drinking your calories, and how a walk can do you the world of good in so many ways.
Anyways, I’ve got a house to continue blitzing, my bedroom is now wonderfully tidy and clean with fresh bedding, I’ve filled bin bags full of old clothes and I can move in there now.  Think I’ll do the kitchen and living room today, then tackle my office tomorrow.  Rock and roll lifestyle I’ve got going on here!
Enjoy your day, be happy and healthy xx

Friday, 24 May 2013

What’s 12in x 12in and has the ability to change your mood in an instant?

24th May 2013
It is wise to direct your anger towards problems -- not people; to focus your energies on answers -- not excuses. William Arthur Ward
Still playing in the park though ;)
What’s 12in x 12in and has the ability to change your mood in an instant?
Yep a set of weighing scales!  I’ve been as good as gold since last Friday, done the veggie thing from Monday and got on the scales yesterday and gained half pound – go figure, bless my guest blogger yesterday after all her efforts she too gained Wednesday night which just goes to show the body doesn’t react immediately to any changes you make!  Frustrating but true….
So all I can say is it’s a good job I was weighing myself yesterday morning or my leader would have been getting a load of earache, it didn’t help that all my darling helpers and the members standing in the vicinity started laughing when I told them ;-/ nor did it help that I’ve been a hormonal, emotional wreck this week for god knows what reason – one minute I’m absolutely 100% fine, the next I’m sat crying (as my poor brothers witnessed when they decided to facetime me from Corfu Wednesday morning – poor boys!)
So once I got over the fact I hadn’t lost, I’d actually gained and gone through the “I hate scales and diets” argument in my head, I calmed down, realised I was wearing totally different clothes to the week before which weighed heavier (I had only gained 1/2lb after all) and without going into details my toilet habits had been different this week possibly due to the veggie thing but not in the way you’d expect!
I’m over my drama now and my hormones seem to finally have settled down, can I just had they suck, they really do but I’ve decided it happens for a reason so I’m embracing it, when I get the urge to cry – I cry, because underneath it all I know I’m not depressed as ten minutes later I’m absolutely okay again, its just my hormones taking me towards the menopause and out the other side, sooner rather than later I hope. 
The brain works in funny old ways, because I failed to get a weight loss by lunchtime I was craving meat, my mind was convincing me that was why I hadn’t had a weight loss because I’d had more carbs than protein than I usually do - who knows it may have been true, I hadn’t eaten brilliantly Tuesday because of being in a rush so it had been a day of carbs, breakfast had been egg, mushrooms, tomatoes on a warburton thin, lunch was a cheese and beetroot sandwich and tea was crumpets with goats cheese so yeah might explain the bathroom issue too (too much info I know but it’s my blog and my memories for when I’m old with dementia to reminisce ;) so sorry, what am I talking about when I’m old – my memory has been shot to pieces for years already, so my blog is my memory NOW!)  Anyway, I folded, last night for tea I had chicken with my salad pittas, and it was amazing, I’ve loved the veggie meals I’ve made the effort to cook this week but I do like my meat and how I managed 8 years as a vegan I will never know because you can not beat a bit of chicken skin or a nice steak, mmm.  I shall still make my tandoori paneer biryani today, as I said the veggie stuff is lush, but I will also be indulging in a steak today or tomorrow with Actifry chips, fried onions and mushrooms.  Oh my mouths drooling – I could never be a skinny mini could I, food is just too delicious to go without just to be a size 8 – nah, size 12 and scrumptiously full is my nirvana ;)
On that note, have a fabulous Friday – the weekend is upon us, a bank holiday one too.  I intend to have a good sort out in my house, I’ve already started, filled 6 charity bags yesterday full of clothes.  I’m thinking if there’s less stuff in the house, it’ll be easier to stay on top of all the chaos – I’ll let you know how long that lasts ;)
EatGorgeous, be BeYouTiful and embrace your foodie cos she’s scrumptious and curvy xx

Thursday, 23 May 2013

C'est La Vie!

23rd May 2013
Life inflicts the same setbacks and tragedies on the optimist as on the pessimist, but the optimist weathers them better. Martin Seligman.
Yesterday was a busy day, from 9am till 8.15pm I spend 90 minutes in the house, so my normal eating routine didn’t go to plan.  Instead I had a cheese and beetroot sandwich for lunch and crumpets for tea, I also indulged in the new Weight Watcher peanut bars when they arrived!  So my Tandoori Paneer Biryani will have to wait, if I get chance I’ll make it today if not tomorrow.  Now I did know I was going to be out and about all day but I didn’t think to plan my lunch, so when I got back at 3pm I was absolutely ravenous which doesn’t bode well for eating plans. 
A lady who did plan is a member from last night, she sent me this email which impressed me and hopefully will give you all something to think about too;
I just thought I would share something with you about my weekend which I think demonstrates the power of a) tracking, and b) having a goal to work towards.  My mother in law who's 84 moved house on Saturday. She hasn't been well and so all the family worked together to get it done whilst she was whisked away to spend the day with her great-grandson. Now of course I knew that the day was likely to be long and chaotic so - remembering that planning is everything with weight loss control - I made myself a food box for the day. This was so I wouldn't be tempted to just shove anything in my mouth the moment I got hungry, but would have some healthy, pointed options to hand instead. I was really pleased with myself (but as they say, pride comes before a fall.....).
During the course of the morning, whilst packing up the remaining stuff at the old address I ate my zero pointed fruit selection (whilst all around were sending out for bacon, sausage and tomato butties etc) and a WW chocolate and orange snack bar (I really like them and they certainly fill a gap). We then moved on to the new address and started to unpack everything and, mid-afternoonish, I decided to eat what was left in my food box. This was when disaster struck as the box had quite obviously become the victim of someone's over-zealous rubbish-chucking and was nowhere to be found. I was ravenous by now after several hours of physical activity and coupled with exhaustion and the emotion of moving day; I crumbled and ate 2 chocolate mini doughnuts. Then a couple of hours later fish and chips were sent for and my loudly grumbling tummy insisted I indulge in a small portion of chips and a couple of spoonfuls of mushy peas. I could almost feel the failure as a physical pain so later on, whilst practically sofa-bound by aching muscles and fatigue, tried to blot it all out with a can of cider.
Now here's the thing: in days gone by this type of experience would have been the trigger to write the whole week off, think 'what's the point, I've failed anyway', stop tracking and wait until weigh day to start again. But thinking about the meeting last week and the importance of setting a realistic goal, I summoned up the courage to actually sit down and work out the points - someone famous once said 'feel the fear and do it anyway'! - and do you know it wasn't nearly as bad as I thought. Being honest about the blip, counting the pro-points and planning for the rest of the week has meant that here I am on weigh day still with 6 weekly points to use up as well as today's allowance. And keeping in mind my goal of getting to xxx stone or less (8.5lb to go) before I depart for Gran Canaria on 13th July somehow gave me the extra impetus to get back on track, and I'm so pleased now that I took the bull by the horns and did it.
So: here's what I've learnt from this experience:
·         Being honest pays off. Instead of assuming that I'd blown my points allowance I worked it out and was pleasantly surprised.
·         Even the best laid plans can go wrong - and sometimes you just have to accept that 'c’est la vie', shrug and start again.
·         Keeping a goal in mind can be a powerful motivator. But do make sure that the goal is SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-limited) to give yourself the best chance of success.
She has a point doesn’t she, my day ended on way more ProPoints than I expected, but I’ve totted them up and I’m back on it this morning, yesterday firmly swept under the rug.
He’s to a terrific Thursday full of mindful eating and a bit more vegetarian food. X
Have a great day, EatGorgeous & BeYouTiful.

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Zero Meal anyone? Or pies for 4pp each? This veggie stuffs good!

22nd May 2013
You are not stuck unless you decide to be. Wayne Dyer
Still waiting for a new router for my Sky broadband and getting a little bit frustrated by it all, I have to admit.  I didn’t resort to food though and finished day 6 of the first week of my summer challenge on track and within budget, I also earned 8pp on my WineOmeter).  I better lose weight this week or I’ll shout at my leader!  Oh I am my leader, that won’t help much ;)
Just a quick shout out for a donation, remember Denise who lost 300lb well she's about to undertake a 13 mile sponsored walk for Free Radio for Kids which raises money for childrens charities around the Midlands, wouldn't it be fab if every person who reads this blog sponsored her £1, follow the link and donate x
Well the old saying if it looks too good to be true it usually is was valid yesterday when I found a recipe for ice cream for 1pp, BBlend 1 cup strawberries, 1 small banana, and 1/3 cup almond milk. Freeze and you have ice cream!BBBBlend 1 cup strawberries, 1 small banana and 1/3 cup almond milk – freeze, mmm I did it but it wasn’t anything like ice cream, more like icy sorbet and I wasn’t eating it.
I did however have success with my stuffed mushroom pie tops and they are so simple to make. Using the remainder of the puff pastry roll I’d bought for my tart, I cut circle lids for the large mushrooms (they weighed 28g each which was 3pp per lid), in a bowl I grated carrot and diced spring onion, red pepper, tomato, the stalks off the mushrooms (use any veggies you have) then mixed in 100g Philadelphia light (4pp) (I used sweet chill flavour). I then spooned this into the mushroom and topped with the pastry lid, popped in the oven and baked until the pastry was cooked and each mushroom was 4pp each.


I’m enjoying my week but I have to say I’m shocked at the reaction I’m getting of people when I tell them it’s National Vegetarian Week and suggest they try a meal or two, some embrace the idea others look at me like I’m planning to steal their first born!  Don't knock it till you've tried it I say, egg and chips are the ultimate veggie meal and there ain't nothing wrong with them.  I have to say this last two days has already proven to me veggie food can be delicious and people really do miss out on a lot of delicious food.  Don’t get me wrong, I have no intention of giving up my meat any time soon, to be honest I don’t plan on giving anything up ever again but I will most definitely continue to regularly enjoy veggie dishes.
How about a totally zero veggie meal – might that sway you to try?  Over the years people have shared zero vegetable curry recipes with me but of course you would have to ProPoint the rice, however if you’re a regular reader of my blog you’ll remember the cauliflower rice recipe from a while back which tastes as good as rice without the ProPoints!  Don’t knock it till you’ve tried it! Add the two things together and you have a zero meal, here’s the recipes or google zero ProPoint vegetable curry, or make your own up of course.  Another idea would be to blend any leftovers and have as a soup the next day!
Serves 4

1 onion
2 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons mild curry powder
1 teaspoon black onion seeds
1 aubergine
1 red pepper
1 green pepper
8 mushrooms
1 small punnet cherry tomatoes
1 mango
1 banana
1 tablespoon low salt soy sauce
Frylight Sunflower oil
1/2 cup water
1/2 jar passata

1 small cauliflower

Fry the onion, garlic and curry powder in some Frylight Sunflower oil until soft. Add a little water if the mixture becomes too dry.

Chop up the aubergine, peppers and the mango, leaving them chunky. I like to keep the mushrooms and the tomatoes whole. Add to the pan. All these different textures are very important in a dish like this. Braised in the sauce in this way, the aubergine takes on an almost 'meaty' texture. Add a tablespoon of low salt soy sauce, the black onion seeds, the chopped banana and the passata. The banana acts as a thickening agent for the sauce and gives a slight sweetness to the dish to counteract the spices.
Allow to simmer and bubble for about 20-30 minutes until everything is cooked but still has a good 'bite'. Add more water if necessary to make the consistency of sauce you prefer.
While the curry is cooking, grate the cauliflower into a bowl or throw it in the food processor. Just before serving, either microwave or steam the cauliflower for a minute or two - just to warm through and take the raw 'bite' away.
You could flavour the cauliflower 'rice' with a little lemon zest, dried mint, cinnamon or spice of your choice. I like it plain so it acts as a bland 'carrier' for the delicious curry.

There you go and thank you to slice of slim for her recipe.
Here’s another one;
5 spray(s) Cooking Spray, Calorie Controlled
1 large Onion, All Types, finely chopped
2 clove(s) Garlic, crushed
1 tablespoons (grated) Ginger, Root
2 tablespoons (level) Curry Powder, (or according to taste)
450 g Butternut Squash, peeled, deseeded and chopped
1 portion(s) (medium) Cauliflower, Raw, broken into florets
1 medium Courgette, sliced
1 medium Pepper, Red, deseeded and chopped
125 g Beans, Green, sliced
800 g Tomatoes, Whole or Chopped, Canned, chopped
1 cube(s) Stock Cube, Vegetable, made up to 450 ml (3/4 pint) as per packet instructions
2 tablespoons Coriander, Fresh, a handful, including stalks, roughly chopped
1/2 teaspoons Salt, to taste
1/2 teaspoons (ground) Pepper, Black (Whole, Cracked or Ground)
Mist a large saucepan with spray cooking oil. Sauté onion, garlic and ginger until softened, but not browned, about 3-4 minutes.

Add curry powder and stir well, then add all the vegetables, canned tomatoes, stock and most of the coriander. Heat until boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 45 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.

Check seasoning, adding salt and pepper to taste.

Serve, garnished with coriander.
Here’s to another delicious veggie day, whatever you’re eating ensure you EatGorgeous and have a worthwhile Wednesday.

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Enjoying the meat free so far!

21st May 2013
Dr. Wayne W. Dyer - "You are not stuck where you are unless you decide to be."
Well the Beetroot and caramelised onion tarte tatin I made yesterday was delicious and I will definitely be making that another time, really tasty.  Wasn’t so impressed with the Gobi Matter recipe from the day before, I had to add some curry paste to add some flavour, I will eat it today, I thought leaving it overnight might improve it.  Indian food is possibly my favourite and yet it’s the one food I cannot cook for the life of me, it never tastes as good as what you can buy.
I really enjoyed my first veggie day; it’s making me think more about what I can eat as I haven’t got the obvious chicken to add to the dish.  I made a smashing celery soup yesterday afternoon, very filling it was too and only 2pp, could’ve made it a zero ProPoint recipe if I hadn’t added the olive oil but I believe the oil adds some flavour.
1 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic clove, chopped
1 red onion, chopped
300g celery, chopped
400ml hot chicken stock
Heat the oil in a saucepan and cook the garlic, onion and celery over a low heat for five minutes, until softened.  Add the chicken stock and simmer for 10-12 minutes.
Transfer the soup to a blender, liquidise and serve.
Obviously because of the veggie week, I used a veggie stock ;-)
Here’s another recipe I plan to cook tomorrow when I’ve gotten the paneer cheese as Morisson’s didn’t have it yesterday, Sainsbury’s will have it though.  I’m really looking forward to this one, it’s quite high in ProPoints for a serving but it’ll be super filling and I can have a light breakfast.
Tandoori Paneer & Vegetable Biryani
Serves 2 – 15pp each
1 tbsp tandoori spice mix (1pp)
150g paneer cheese, cubed (14pp)
Zest of lime
Low fat cooking spray (1pp)
½ onion, diced
½ cauliflower, cut into small florets
1 carrot, peeled and diced
125g dried basmati rice (12pp)
300ml boiling hot vegetable stock
75g cherry tomatoes, halved
75g fine green beans, chopped into small pieces.
2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander leaves.
Serve each biryani with 1tbsp low fat plain yogurt mixed with ½ tsp mint sauce, and a sliced red onion and cucumber salad per person.
In a bowl mix together the tandoori spices, paneer cubes and lime zest.  Heat a deep, wide lidded, non stick frying pan and spray with the cooking spray.  Remove the paneer from the bowl and reserve the excess spices.  Add the paneer to the frying pan and cook for 3 minutes until lightly golden.  Remove and set aside.
 Spray the pan again with the cooking spray and cook the onion, cauliflower and carrot for 5 minutes until starting to soften.  Stir in the reserved spices and rice and cook for 30 seconds.  Pour in the stock, cover and simmer for 5 minutes.
Add the tomatoes, beans and cooked paneer.  Cover and cook for a further 5 minutes until the rice is tender.  Stir to combine everything then scatter over the coriander and serve. 
In the zone is what I am this week and not struggling with it at last, I’ve still got 10pp from my weekly allowance and 3 days till my new week starts, I’m very pleased I have to admit ;-)
So here’s to a Terrific Tuesday of Eating Gorgeous and Veggie, on the menu today is Gobi Matter for lunch and Walnut Pasta Twists for tea.  Breakfast will be some fruit and maybe scrambled egg. Here's the pasta recipe;
Walnut Pasta Twists
Serves 2 – 11pp each
600ml hot vegetable stock (use 3 stock cubes) (1pp)
125g dried small pasta shapes, (12pp)
25g fresh basil, leaves only
½ 35g pack fresh parsley, leaves chopped
30g walnut halves (6pp)
1 garlic clove, crushed
25g Parmesan cheese, grated (3pp)
Put the vegetable stock in a saucepan and bring to the boil.  Add the pasta and cook for 7-9 minutes or according to the pack instructions until al dente.
Meanwhile, whizz the basil, parsley, walnuts and garlic in a food process until finely chopped.  Reserve a ladleful of the pasta’s cooking liquid in a jug and drain the pasta.
Return the pasta to the pain and stir in the reserved cooking liquid, the walnut mixture and the cheese.  Stir to coat the pasta and heat through.  Check the seasoning and serve.