Blog Archives

Oatmeal Goodness

I really loathe change.  Don’t you?

When I know something works for me, I like to stick with it…  If it’s not broken, why try to fix it, RIGHT?

Well, sometimes even when we don’t change, our body makes choices without our consent.  I think it’s called…AGING.

For women, this is often dramatic with hormone levels – having babies, nursing, cycles…  lots of things can throw off our systems.

Often times I find myself going back to some core Scriptures of how I have been created with a purpose – by Him, and for Him.  It helps me embrace “unasked for” change.

I love Quaker brand (and boy haven’t THEY had a boost with the latest health craze, and their products!  Go Quaker! – Sorry, the marketer in me!)  For months I enjoyed these chocolate granola bars for 90-100 calories each.  Then they made a change, and about 2 months ago – I could no longer get them.  I guess they weren’t as popular with everyone else.

(*I even tried to order online – I was desperate!  No dice.)  So I switched to something new… it wasn’t AS good, but it was ok.  Then it seemed my body was rejecting something in them.  Chocolate chips.  Boo!  So I’ve had to get rid of them altogether for now.

Since I love oatmeal, I’ve found this great substitue that doesn’t contain lactose…  and if I’m around home, and don’t have an apple – this is a tasty option and filling!  (2pts for those of you who watch those!)

Yum! We get this at Target, but have found it at HyVee and Dillons/Kroger too.

What unasked for changes have you encountered, and how did you handle them?  Read today’s Scripture and be filled up.  Sounds like SOMEONE had a plan all along, whether we knew about the changes or not!  May God greatly bless your efforts and your weekend!

“For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”  Eph. 2:10

Worth It or NOT?

Whoa.... crazy image of what these are worth in "workout" calories.

My friend Kori shared this picture image with me yesterday. (Thanks Kori!) It’s a great picture of what we should have in our minds as we consider our non-necessity foods…

Yes, I know… donuts are NOT a necessity.  Who knew?

I looked at a few of those and thought – NO WAY is that worth it.  Now… there are plenty of things out there that are worth it – just make sure it IS worth it to you.

Just a shout out to Kori – who has been on an “Insanity” challenge.  Way to go!  For those of you who have done some of the Insanity workouts, they’re not for the faint of heart.  Kori was an encourager to me years ago to try out Jillian Michaels and the 30 Day Shred.  I never did it as a 30 day workout challenge – but I kept improving, and working at it.

I still go back to Jillian now and then for a quick workout that works – but God has allowed me to be able to tackle much longer, and more difficult workouts…  and for that, I’m thankful.

What workouts are you enjoying right now?

“You, Lord, are forgiving and good, abounding in love to all who call to you.”

Psalm 86:5

Out Eat Your Work Out

Do you really need tips on how to gain weight?  Probably not.

Most of us could figure out a way to gain weight….   add in more of our favorite fatty foods and desserts…  take about a month hiatus off of working out.

Seems easy enough.  It can actually happen more simply, and quietly than that, even when you’re working so hard for the opposite effect.

As our metabolism naturally slows as we age, we need few calories.

It’s a bummer.  I know.

The shorter you are, the fewer calories you need.

AGAIN … can be a bummer, and why a lot of women get frustrated with the husbands.  It’s true, if we’re built differently, and most of us are… our caloric needs are different too.

I look at my kids devouring things and burning calories like the pros.  Their heart rates are also going about twice as fast as mine while resting.  They’re growing… they NEED those additional calories from good nutrition.

I just WANT the extra calories.  My body certainly doesn’t need as many as I’d love to squeeze in on any given day…  especially the types of calories I’m prone to desire.

We hit on hidden sugar this week… a nice little eye opener on where things can get way off track quickly, but a great reality check.

Nothing burns me more than seeing a “balanced” breakfast portrayed with 2 eggs, 2 pieces of a “wheat toast” (Not even WHOLE wheat – but just to make it sound healthy!) and then a TALL glass of Orange Juice (worth 2 servings)…  all the while – people think they’re making good choices because this is what has been shown to us.

If you’ve just started your day off in the red like that – overloaded on carbs, don’t wonder why you’re crashing at your desk at 10am.  Unless you’re super physically active at your job – you probably don’t need that many calories, or carbs…  you can still make better choices.

If you’re going to be realistic with what your body NEEDS…  you’d be better off having a 1/4 to 1/2 of an orange, cutting out a piece of toast and skipping the added sugar in that juice!  Some might even suggest taking those eggs back to just egg whites… but for me, I need that protein, AND… I don’t fight cholesterol issues.

Here are just a few more examples on how small changes in your diet can subtract OR … add up!  (these are estimates!)

Apple = 130 calories, Banana = 170… a serving size is HALF that – so 65 calories. vs.  85.  Might not seem like much right?  But if you only chose banana servings vs. apples – after 7 days that’s  140 additional calories, and after 1 month, that’s 560 additional calories, and after ONE YEAR… that’s 6750 additional calories.. {and if not worked off} – over a pound of FAT without even trying!

That’s fruit people.  Yes, it’s something we need, but that’s why portion size, and calorie intake are so important.  Just because we’re eating real food, that is good for us… doesn’t mean there still isn’t knowledge to be had!  Be energized and aware!  Ask God to put a new song in your heart.

Let’s take a look at some others…

Green bean serving?  40 calories, Corn?  140 calories…. Hmmm….  YES, corn is more of a fruit, and fruits ARE higher in natural sugar.  Natural sugar… is still sugar.  Keeps your wits about you.  Personally I *love* my green veggies.  I love corn too – but we often mix a little corn in with our green veggies, for added color.  We can get our fix without having so much sugar (for what we consider our veggie serving!)

Bran flakes… good for you – right?  about 200 calories per serving.  Now let’s compare with granola… of course this can vary – but MOST people would consider granola a great choice.  I used to top it onto my yogurt and it is very tasty.  While it can be good for you – just like fruit, moderation is the key.  A full serving of some granola can load up to 780 calories!  Whoa!!!!   I won’t do the math for you… but you can imagine the difference in a year…  So while many people are working out, and consuming a bunch of “healthy foods” – you can see how easy it is to out-eat your work-out!

How about drinks?  Cooking with milk vs. water is always going to add in calories…. juices – as you saw on that website yesterday, they’re not all they’re cracked up to be.  While again you can have a “good thing” – sometimes it can be way too much of a good thing.

“I waited patiently for the LORD; He turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.  He put a new song in my mouth,  a hymn of praise to our God.  Many will see and fear the LORD and put their trust in Him.” – Psalm 40:1-3

Discovering Your Health Monster

With all of the hub-bub about Paula Dean’s hidden Type II diabetes announcement… I thought I’d say, we need not be in fear of desserts and other things that seem to stress people out.  Is her announcement REALLY any surprise?  No.  Common sense can tell you if you ate what she cooks 365 days a year … you’re going to feel and look like a tank.  That said, diet isn’t the only thing going on with diabetes… but eating right is 80% of the equation in losing excess weight, so it’s important to know how to eat right.

The keys are self-control {a fruit of the Spirit}, and moderation.  IF you lack self-control, you’re probably going to REALLY lack moderation ability…  and that’s where you’re going to need the Holy Spirit.  That said, you will find strength in finding new ways to enjoy LESS the things you love.  Don’t do it with the mindset that you’re depriving yourself.  Remember that you’re filling your mind with Truth, and education so that you’ll WANT to make choices that help you to feel well and function at your best for His glory.  Do NOT live in fear over food.  Make better choices.

How about a healthified monster cookie recipe?  YUM!  These are some of our favorites:

Some of the softest, yummy cookies!


1 1/4 cups organic sucanot

2/3 cup light agave

3 eggs

1/2 cup butter or 1 cup natural applesauce

1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 tsp. baking soda

4 cups of oatmeal (or often I use 3 cups, and one cup of whole wheat/white flour so they have a little rise)

1/2 cup dark chocolate chunks

1/2 cup dark choc. M & Ms

** any other extra you might like to add… white chocolate chips or health toffee bits… 🙂 🙂  I said healthier.  NOT perfect.


Preheat over to 350 degrees

In large bowl beat together butter/applesauce, peanut butter, sucanot, agave, eggs, and vanilla.  Combine well, then add in oatmeal/flour as directed.   Lastly, add in chocolates, and the goodies.  Place heaping teaspoon blobs onto pan and heat for 10-12 minutes.


“No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able,

but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it.” – 1 Cor. 10:13

Workout Review Time

So, if you’re still following along – I mentioned a few weeks back that I got some new workout DVDs from Bob.  He was having a special… some friends and I teamed up and ordered a few to get cheaper shipping.  Unfortunately, the company sort of fell through on shipping all of our orders!  We each ended up only getting one DVD!  Thankfully we each got a different workout though, so we could trade them and at least see what they were about!

Despite contacting the company twice, I’ve yet to hear where my order is, and unfortunately – their big sale they were having (at $4.99-$6.99 per DVD) is now over!  I guess if we never hear something back we’ll just order again.  I’m too dedicated to get THAT upset – since I obviously haven’t been charged!

Okay…  all of that to say – these are some GREAT workouts.  The “MY WORKOUT” (meaning – Bob’s workout) is fantastic.  It has two 25-30 minute workouts, which can be done separately or together.  Personally, I wish it was set up with the first one second, and the second one first, like my friend Steph suggested – and then maybe I’d feel like doing them combined.  By the time I get done with the first part for a quick workout… I feel like passing on the second part, because the “hard work” is done.  The second one is definitely less cardio madness.  Both are still great workouts, just in different ways.  This workout is only available on Bob’s website… it’s still not available on

Personally, I don’t think they’re offering it yet, because most beginners would be running for the hills after this workout… it’s high paced, and non-stop movement.  Different from his circuit training where your body takes more of a break in-between the heart throttling.  I wouldn’t suggest it being your first workout you buy from Bob Harper.

Bob's TOTAL BODY Transformation - totally worth the money!

The next workout we ordered will be available on soon.  You can pre-order it now actually.  It’s called “Total Body Transformation” – and he says several times in the workout, “This will be the hardest workout you’ve ever done!”  I’ve done it three times so far, and it’s gotten easier every time… like most workouts.  Don’t confuse that to mean it’s easy… because it’s NOT.  It’s an arm sculpting, rear busting workout.  I spent most of the workout rotating between which part of my body hurt the worst… my arms… no, no… my legs… uuuuugh….  OUUUUCH.  LOL!  I really do have a love/hate relationship with Bob.   I keep telling myself that pain is weakness leaving the body… I’m getting stronger.  Someday I’ll have abs again!

Side note:  Women have to have about 8-14% body fat to see their ab muscles defined.  This core strength isn’t about vanity (at least for me, my bikini days are long gone, nor would I go there again if I could – modesty yo!) it’s about over all strength and back strength for LIFE!  Being healthy for Him – in every way.

“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.  The spirit is willing but the body is weak.” – Matthew 26:41


Did you miss me?  I missed you!

Did you think I abandoned you for my chips?  Not a chance.  Although – I’m happy to report we got a great price on some of our chips online – AND they came in pink bags to support breast cancer awareness to boot!

YEP! A full case of PINK bagged chips! Excuse my hair - I forgot to comb it!

I really have missed you… and I’ve missed writing.  I’ve almost dug myself out of this 4th quarter work pile.  It’s deep – and I’m thankful.  SOON you won’t be able to shut me up!  Looking forward to that, I know.

I’m thankful for cooler temps, and even some precipitation that allows our stores to thrive selling things people need during those times!

I’m also thankful so much, not just this time of year – but each day.  God has been good to remind me that I have it far better than most, and to keep on MOVING more and eating less vs. snuggling in and loading up with extra “happy fat” this time of year.

As we turn our minds towards that nearly forgotten holiday, we call Thanksgiving – let us truly be thankful for our ability to do what we can in the bodies we have been blessed with.  Let us use our mind to make wise decisions that are pleasing to the Lord.  This blessed meal many have with relatives and those they love near and far, surely will NOT be the last meal or meals you have that day.  Let’s focus on not eating like they might be.  Prepare for the day as best you can and come to the table to enjoy, but not become a glutton.

I know many people have to attend SEVERAL Thanksgivings in a week or even a few days time.  This has the potential to be a train wreck if you’re not keeping your eyes on Him.

Already I’ve been reading about how people over eat because…

– They’re from the south

– In our family it’s just what we do… (maybe a new hobby would be good?)

– Everything is just soooooooooo good… I can’t stop eating!

– No one is going to tell me how to eat! (what about God…  does it matter what He says?)

– I’m just fine, everyone else needs to go away.


I know it’s tasty… buuuuuuut we don’t need to eat 3000 calories in one sitting.  We don’t even need 1500 calories in one meal.  If you are consuming that much, I hope you’re running a marathon following THAT.

Unfortunately, most likely you’ll be sitting, driving, or watching tv…   last I checked, those activities don’t burn that many calories.  If only….

Remember – it’s eat, burn… eat, burn… eat, burn…. (NOT eat…. eat… eat…. SIT, expand, EAT…. sleep).

If you are going to be around family and others you love, NOW is your chance to share first-hand some of the things God has been teaching you!!   What a blessing you could be to others.  Make a dish that is “healthified” – or perhaps just modeling not eating to the point of a carb coma.

I better run.  My FRIEND let me borrow a workout that is sure to “transform me”…  I’m up for the challenge for God’s glory!  I’ll keep you posted!

“Do not join those who drink too much wine or gorge themselves on meat,  for drunkards and gluttons become poor, and drowsiness clothes them in rags.” 

 – Proverbs 23:20-21


I Wish I Had Time For…

I get lots of compliments when I take my salad places... don't have salad envy! You can make one too!

We’ve all said it before.

Perhaps we didn’t realize what we were really implying.  But, when I hear this… I sometimes think – people must think someone else has a boatload more time than they do, if they’re fitting in whatever it is that person is longing to do.

Guess what?  That’s not the truth.

You’re fitting everything in that is important, that needs to be done…. and if you’re not fitting it in, it’s not a priority.

Hey, I know sometimes it feels like you don’t have enough time – believe me, I feel it too.  When I’ve over scheduled… and under prioritized, and said yes to everyonebut my MAKER, and my family.  I fail and am miserable.

But honestly, think of how things go when someone passes away… and there are “emergencies” to be taken care of – and you rearrange your schedule, and you MAKE it fit, because that is just what people do.  They MAKE time for what is important to them.  We do this without a funeral too – EVERY. DAY.

Well, on a much lighter note – making a salad is important to me, EVERY lunch time.

I plan for it.  I make sure I have my supplies on hand… and lo and behold, it happens!  Crazy.

I’m not some guru, nor am I’m not trying really hard – I just make it a priority – so it’s not a pain, and it doesn’t take a lot of time!

So here’s the scoop!  Are you ready for this secret revealed??

I get several bunches of green leaf lettuce every week, along with a cucumber and a pepper or any other veggie I’m desiring that week.   [We are able to go to the grocery store mid-week also, so we are able to restock if we need to on the green leaf lettuce bunch.]

I clean my lettuce and cut it into big leaves – and put it in my crisper from Wal-Mart.  I put down 3-4 paper towels, then the cleaned lettuce leaves – and then more paper towels to soak up extra moisture and keep the lettuce fresh.  I them put my uncut veggies into a separate crisper just for smaller veggies  and I got it from Tupperware.  The rest of the things I always stock – low sodium, Sara Lee oven roasted chicken (shredded), sunflower seeds and cottage cheese.  Easy!  I just pull my items out at lunch, or pack it in the AM to take it with me.

My Tupperware crisper (blue) and salad crisper from Wal-Mart

Then I have no excuses… because it’s really NOT. THAT. HARD.  Would you agree?

Don’t tell me you “don’t have time” for a nice salad.  I won’t believe you.  God is worth it – plan ahead and get into some new routines that will help you have the RIGHT items on hand!  This will make it SO much easier to be healthy for Him!

“So teach us to number our days, That we may present to You a heart of wisdom.” – Psalm 90:12

Flapjacks for You… Flapjacks for ME!


Our homemade pancakes cookin' up!


This new move by some restaurants to post their nutritional information is a great move in the right direction.  I’ve read reports that say people are eating 300-600 fewer calories when they’re eating out – AND paying attention to the information provided.  That will certainly add up over time – in your favor!

Personally I think it should be offered as a courtesy and then the restaurants might try a little harder to make things better for their consumers because I can almost guarantee some of those dishes wouldn’t sell NEARLY as well as they currently do, as people ignorantly gobble up endless calories and FAT.

When my husband was in Portland on business, he said that it was a state law that all of the menus had the information.  Which, while helpful… also made him feel a little ill about eating out so much.  For those of you who travel a lot for business or otherwise, I feel for you – it’s much more difficult to be creative meal after meal on the go.

One of the most difficult meals for him was breakfast.  He always used to enjoy pancakes on trips such as these… and those meals had 1000-1500 a pop.  Whoa.  Can you say almost a days worth of calories for someone like me?

When we first looked and curbing our intake to be inline with what our bodies were designed to handle, we were shocked at several of the breakfast restaurants information online – pancakes especially … because it almost didn’t seem to matter if you got “plain” pancakes, vs the wheat germ ones… the portions, calories and carbs were just TOO much for one person.  Maybe not a big deal once in a while (but you still are going to have to use or burn through those calories SOMETIME so why eat them all at once if they’re going to just turn into FAT?) but if you’re on a vacation, or a business trip… those are REALLY going to add up day after day.

(People WONDER why they gain 5-10 pounds on a trip like that?)  BINGO!

We’ve tried out some healthier pancake options at home… because we LIKE them, and we wanted to see what we could do to improve the option, vs doing away with pancakes altogether!  There are two great mixes we’ve used, and we also have a homemade recipe that was modified from a friend that I will soon share.  Both are much better options, and still enjoyed very much!  That’s the key… we don’t have to STOP eating EVERYTHING we enjoyed… we just need to cut it back, change it up… and make it BETTER for us and our families.

A couple of the mixes we enjoy! We have pancakes maybe 1-2 times a month.

“For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things.  To Him be the glory forever. Amen.” – Romans 11:36

Don’t Be Fooled!

Today on Facebook, I caught an article by Fooducate (the helpful app for your smart phone).  They reported on their blog about the “Facts Up Front” plan, that is supposed to helpful to consumers on making better choices, when buying foods.

Facts Up Front is a nutrient-based labeling system that summarizes important  information from the Nutrition Facts Panel in a simple and easy-to-use format on the front of food and beverage packages.  Facts Up Front is a voluntary initiative aligned with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) guidelines and regulations.  If you’ve seen this at all on some packages – it looks like this:

Have you seen a nutrition key like these yet?


While it’s definitely a START…

BUT…without some other information, most people aren’t going to know if these numbers are too high, or if something is even good for you if they’re not educated.

Moral of the story?  If your health is important to YOU (because we know it’s important to HIM who created us!)  GET. EDUCATED. about what you’re putting in your body.

We know all ready by looking at a label like these example – 450 calories?  That’s a lot.  I’m hoping that’s a meal that includes all of the food groups…  Not knowing what this is, the sugars is high too (we shoot for under 10 grams).  While the fiber is great to know, without knowing the total carbs, you don’t know what the net carbs are?  See the holes in this idea?

When I see things like this – I think of how important it is to know all aspects of what you’re looking at:

Serving Size







….and then I think – what else am I going to be consuming WITH this – and how high is this meal total going to go??

Obviously, marketing gurus could use these “helper boxes” to their advantage, and it’s YOU and I that will pay, if we just pay attention to what they spoon feed us.   The fact that it’s voluntary and not being fully regulated, could pose a lot of problems as well.

I was reading this past week about the word “NATURAL” not being regulated…  while the word Organic is…  but even that isn’t always what we think.  When you see NATURAL on a product?  Aren’t you going to assume that it’s not containing additives?  Unfortunately…  it really doesn’t mean much at all.

Do you have any “surprises” you’ve unearthed lately that might help us all be more aware as we keep striving to be healthy for Him?  Please share!

“God did not keep His own Son for Himself but gave Him for all.  Then with His Son, will He not give us all things?” – Romans 8:32

Too Good To Be True?

You’ve heard it before… if it sounds too good to be true – it almost always is.

And yet…

We hope for some magical, awesome tasting goodness that is bottomless, that is 3 net carbs, contains no artificial anything and stays around 100 calories – yes?

Sorry all, it doesn’t exist.  I’ve looked.

My husband and I enjoyed some Orange Leaf yogurt, after our date night this weekend.

The thought of this made me recall the commentary I hear all too often about new frozen yogurt place in our area.  (Similar places are setting up all over the country… maybe you have one near you too!)  Ours is called Orange Leaf.  It sells yogurt that YOU dispense into a bowl, or a waffle bowl, or.. if you’re really feeling wacky – onto a brownie (although I don’t recommend this, I hear it turns the brownie into a frozen ROCK,  not to mention it throws out the “fat free” theory further out the window).

So you take your bowl of whatever flavor is your favorite (choose from about zillion combinations) and then scoop on whatever toppings you wish until you can no longer see anything resembling the ice-cream in your bowl.  (Give or take a spoonful!)

You get the concept?

Thankfully, because God opened my eyes to schemes like this one, I go in – fully aware of what I’m doing.  (Sure, I’ve filled my bowl too full on occasion, it’s very easy to over-estimate your smallish amount – but I’m sure to work that off too because I can calculate what that is going to do in my system.  Remember: Calories in, calories OUT!)

So I see the “7 carbs per ounce”, and I don’t immediately think, “This is good for me.”   I do the math that a 6-7 ounce dish is going to be 42-49 carbs, and about 300-400 calories, depending on what I’m putting on there.  Not quite as healthy as you were thinking huh?  (Especially considering their totals are for the yogurt ONLY).

What is the first thing I hear MOST people say about this place?  Usually something like,  “Oh, it’s so great … because it’s FAT FREE, so it’s guilt free.”

First of all, not all yogurt is fat-free, and as we know – this is a marketing scheme and doesn’t mean good things, and it doesn’t mean that it’s harmless.  It should make you wonder what IS in it if it’s FREE of other things?  Secondly… that’s an easy way to get into BIG TROUBLE over consuming calories very quickly.

Maybe you didn’t want to read that… (we prefer NOT know – right?) 🙂  But the truth is… you need to be aware for the sake of being healthy for Him, and taking care of your body.  There is a reason why you don’t feel FULL when you consume it… it’s empty carbs, and it should be treated as a dessert or special TREAT.

Did I mention I’m thankful I don’t live closer to it?

Pray for opportunities to lovingly share with others about the myths out there you used to believe before God opened your mind to the Truth about your health.  As Mark Hall said at the Casting Crowns concert this summer,  we are the BODY of Christ – not the audience.  We don’t learn things to “sit back” and only soak in.  We need to encourage others, and spread the message of what He’s done for us! 🙂  (Don’t be hurt if people don’t immediately feel convicted that being healthy is for them.  Just plant the seed and let God do His best work.  In His time, for His glory alone.)

“Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me”. – Matthew 25:45


%d bloggers like this: