Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Tubby Tuesday: Breakfast Smoothie

I've been on the on-again off-again "diet" thing for a long time.  A really, really long time.  Thus far, two things I've stuck with.  No more cokes (going on three years!) and getting my fruits through smoothies each morning (going on three months!).  So far, I'm fitting into a pair of jeans that I haven't managed to squeeze into in over two years. 

I'm happy.  I'm feeling better.

I've eliminated morning breakfast sandwiches and stopping at Panera or Starbucks for a scone and a coffee.  Well, let's be honest.  It was never just "coffee," but almost always some form of chocolate/peppermint/pumpkin spice/blah blah blah.  So much useless sugar.  So likely to lead to a crash later in the day.  I'm not starving at my desk at 10:30.

Of course, my decision to try going to smoothies came from seeing so many recipes on Pinterest!  Specifically a pin that took me to this page:  How To Make a Smoothie on superskinnyme.com 

Totally easy, right?  All you need is a blender and stuff.  Most stuff you probably buy at the grocery store anyway.  Or, if you aren't buying it, you should be!

Each morning, I load up my blender and make my own smoothie, which goes in my Super Special Smoothie Cup, and I drink it on my drive to work.  This is one of my go to simple smoothies.

Bling, bling!

 Simple Smoothie

1/4 Cup Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
8 oz. 100% apple juice
1 banana
1/2 cup HEB frozen Papaya, Mango, and Strawberries
1/4 cup Bulgarian or Greek Yogurt
ground flax seed
sprinkle of cinnamon or a smidgen of local honey

You can also add in some spinach, but I found that I'm not going through spinach fast enough and it goes bad before I can eat it.

Here's the trick.  Blend in sections unless you have a Nutribullet or something similar.  I have a pretty basic Oster blender.

1.  Combine raw rolled oats, apple juice, and flax seed.  Liquify it!
2.  Add banana, frozen fruits, yogurt, and cinnamon/honey.  Grind it until smooth.  I normally pulse a little bit on liquify as well. 

What I learned very quickly is that throwing everything in the blender at once doesn't get your oatmeal broken down and leaves you with a really lumpy smoothie.  The whole point of a smoothie is that it's smooth, amirite? 

There is a lot you can do with a smoothie.  With frozen fruits and berries readily available at your grocery store, it's super easy.  And it can be cheap.  The bags of papaya, mango, and strawberries I bought at my local HEB (a Texas grocery store) were $1.38/each.  A buck and change!  Bonus is that you can also thaw it and mix it with yogurt for a nice treat.  Make sure that you are buying JUST the frozen fruit, not fruit in sugar or syrup. 

Have a great one!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

My New Little Sister

I can't believe that I have said there is nothing new to write about when it comes to my crazy family.  There is.  There's a new addition to the clan.  My darling new little sister, Sophie.
Ain't she just the cutest?
October 2011 this little bundle of joy entered my parents' hearts.  She came from the barn where I keep my show pony.  A little darling accident of a puppy my mother refers to as a "Southern Comfort Terrier."

When we first heard that one of the barn dogs was expecting, my mother was very excited and mentioned that she would like to have one of the little darlings.  Time went by, we didn't see any puppies, and we forgot about it.  Until one day.  That fateful day when I was going to lunch with a friend from the barn and saw a cute little bundle of white fur playing outside the barn worker's house.

I found out the dog was available and called Mom.  Who hesitated.  What?!

The next day, I convinced her to come out and at least meet the little dear.  She agreed and fell in love.

Now here's the part of this story that should give you pause.  My dad hates little dogs.  HATES them.  He makes fun of those people who cart their Chihuahuas around everywhere with them, and feed them treats constantly.  He HATES dogs in the house.  When I had a Chihuahua, Twiggy, (haha, I was one of Them as a 12-year-old) she was not allowed anywhere near my parents bedroom.  Now that you've read that, I should point out that is my father with Sophie in the picture above.  Whhhhaaaaat?

When Mom and I were on the way to their house with Sophie in tow, my mom was panicking.  Despite Dad saying he didn't care if Mom got the dog, she was convinced this was the worst idea ever and wanted to take the dog back.  She didn't.

A few days later, I went by and my dad was laying on his bed watching Judge Judy, with the dog on the bed next to him.  This is the man who didn't like having a dog in the house.

"Is Dad sick and you guys haven't told me?" I asked Mom.

"What are you talking about?" She replied, confused.

"Dad and the dog?"

"Oh, yeah, he put her up there.  Apparently, he really likes her."

That would be an understatement.  This dog is the light of their lives.  After I do or say something stupid, I'm given an exasperated look and then regaled with a tale of how smart and perfect and amazing Sophie is.  I hear more about how great that dog is than anything else.  If I call my Dad, the first thing I hear is a Sophie story.  He has even texted me about her.  Sophie is so smart.  Sophie is so funny.  Sophie is so cute.  Sophie is so athletic.

Suddenly I know what it's like to be the older, disappointment of a daughter.  Second to the dog.  Perfect, darling Sophie.