Sunday, 31 October 2010

Weber Grill - Chicago

This weekend, my mom & I visited some Chicago suburbs for a Halloween getaway.  Our rule for food was - nowhere that we could eat at home.  (We made 1 exception - Starbucks on Sunday.  : )  )

Friday afternoon after we checked in to our gorgeous hotel (Staybridge Suites), we ate a late lunch/early dinner at Weber Grill.  I'd wanted to eat there ever since I saw one many years ago in a different area of the City.  First of all, the outside has this awesome huge grill!  

Once inside, the atmosphere is beautiful.

And then, the food.  DELICIOUS!  Fancy, but still good portions.  Our waiter, Ryan, was on the ball.  We ordered water - normally we order it w/ lemon, but for some reason we didn't that day.  He actually offered it - and then brought a whole plate of lemon wedges for us!  : )  

To start, he brought out these amazing pretzel rolls, served w/ butter and cheese, and they're all made fresh on-site.  They were even more delicious than the honey rolls at Texas Roadhouse.  Really!  I know it sounds crazy, but really!!  

Mom had a BBQ sampler, which included onion rings, beer can chicken tenders, ribs, and steak.  She gave me a sample of her sampler, and it was oh so amazing!  Also, Ryan brought out hot towels for her AND a silver bowl to put in the skewers & bones.  NEAT!  

I had a chicken capressi unwrapped, which came w/ pita wedges, pesto chicken, and tomatoes & mozerella w/ basil.  Mouthwatering!  It also came w/ a side of the creamiest cole slaw.  MMM!  

And, since we filled up on pretzel rolls, we had quite enough to take back to the hotel for dinner!  Oh, also, Ryan sent us home w/ a whole bag of extra rolls (8!) and cheese spread.  He really was an above & beyond waiter, and deserves an award or a raise or something!!  

I highly recommend this restaurant, and hope that I get to go again to try something else!  : )  

Until next time - have you been to a Weber Grill?  Did you enjoy the grilled smokey flavor as much as we did?  

Tuesday, 26 October 2010


I'm not the biggest cinnamon fan.  A little goes a long way in my book!  Cinnamon rolls?  Cinnamon coffees?  Not so much my thing.  But after hearing that cinnamon can lower bad cholesterol, and most importantly "Several studies suggest that cinnamon may have a regulatory effect on blood sugar, making it especially beneficial for people with type 2 Diabetes,"  I've begun making a conscious effort to find things to which I can add a bit of the spice.

Tonight, I added it to my pasta sauce.  Just a touch, just a bit.  I started out with Chunky Mushroom & Green Pepper Ragu.  I added the bit of cinnamon, a touch of milk, a pat of butter, sprinkle of salt, quite a bit of pepper and A LOT of basil.  I may have also added some oregano, I'm not sure now... I added a little cinnamon to the bowtie pasta after it was cooked, as well.  The combination of cinnamon & basil was interestingly delicious!

I ate the finished product without taking a picture.  Bad food blogger!  But it pretty much looked like bowtie pasta w/ tomato sauce.  Heh.  : )

Until next time... What "new" spice have you started using more of lately?

Saturday, 16 October 2010


Today I did not follow my meal plan.  Not intentionally, but I didn't get up until late, and then I had some shopping to do, so I picked up a cheeseburger for breakfast, then had a delicious Healthy Choice for lunch, then ... COOKOUT at Aunt Nancy & Uncle Gene's.  : )  

The HC lunch was good, but the flavor was not quite what I was expecting.  Might have been the rosemary, might have been the pearl onions I picked out of the dish.  I bought 2 because I thought I would REALLY like it (having sweet potatoes in it & all), but I'm not sure I'll get it again after that.  

By not sticking to my meal plan I don't mean to imply that I over-indulged at the cookout.  I actually think I made pretty good choices there.  It was just that all my meals were sort of in a 6 hour timespan instead of spread more through the day like they normally are.

There was lots of delicious food, and I sampled a bit of most offerings.  I didn't have a bun with my hotdog, saving those carb choices for Aunt Sharon's rice dish, some chips w/ Mom's taco dip, small portions of the apple crisp & Jell-O/pretzel desserts, a little of Johnna's pasta salad, some scalloped corn(bread), and 2 small cookies (scraped off the frosting).  

Cousin Kitty made two chilis, one with beans and one without.  I forgot to try it, but I the talk around the bonfire was that both were delicious!  : )  

The most important part of any family gathering is, of course, family time.  I'm very grateful to have been placed in such a loving and AWESOME family!  A loving and awesome family who cooks.  heh!  

Until next time, what's your favorite cookout food?  Do you go straight to the grilled hotdogs, or are you more of a bonfired marshmallow?  BTW, say marshmallow outloud a few times.  It's fun!  : ) 

Monday, 11 October 2010

New Design

What do you think of the new design?  I found it over at April Showers.  It's one of several free templates offered at A Blog To Brag About.  You get to customize your hair & eye color, which I think is way cute!  The only thing I don't like is that I can't figure out how to get my Navigation bar to show up on top of the template instead of behind it!  If anyone is good w/ html code & knows how I can do that, it'd be great!  (Edit - there was an explanation of how to do it on the A Blog To Brag About comments.  Yay!!)  

Today's been a tough day for my menu.  I'm out of yogurt, which is my normal breakfast.  Thankfully, God provides!  I had a bagel & cream cheese in the fridge at work from last week, and Marty brought me 1/2 a banana.  Voila!  Breakfast!  : )  I'd forgotten to bring a lunch, but I had one in the freezer at work from last week.  Voila!  Lunch!  *laugh*  Then for dinner... well, I'm still in my "I'm seriously craving pumpkin curry" phase, so nothing really sounded good.  I ended up making ramen & adding an egg for protein & veggies for ... well, veggies.  lol  It was good, even, but ... Ya know!  I did add in some pasta sauce, which made it a bit more flavorful, at least.  

Maybe tomorrow I'll have something more exciting to report, but I wouldn't count on it til Thursday's curry!  ; )  

Until next time... Seriously, what do you think of the new design?  Thumbs up or down?  I'd love to know!   

Sunday, 10 October 2010

Pumpkiny Goodness

I had one of these for breakfast this morning.  

The packaging isn't nearly so adorable anymore, but I couldn't find a Google image of the inside of a pumpkin pie.  Inside of a fruit pie?  Yes.  Inside of something called a Hawaiian pie?  Yes.  *grumble*  Anyway!  It's fall, even if the temperature outside (currently 80 degrees) feels like summer, and I am in the mood for some PUMPKIN!!!  

I want some Pumpkin Curry.  Why didn't I stop at the bank yesterday for cash?  Or have an ATM card for that bank?  lol  Ah well, I can be patient... (Stop laughing!)  : )  I have some pumpkin puree that I am trying to find a recipe for - well, there are lots of recipes, but they all involve other ingredients I do not have on hand.  And my desire to not go to the grocery store is winning over my desire to make that soup today.  Heh.  

Speaking of the grocery store - next time I'm there I need to look for these:

Who knew there were pumpkin pie PopTarts?!  They look uber-appealing now that I have a toaster!  And are the perfect amount of carbs for breakfast... Of course, not very much nutritional value, but that's what the Yoplait Light yogurt is for!  : )  

I also have some Pumpkin Bread from Tastefully Simple.  I'm holding off on making it until I have better carb self-control.  Right now I'm struggling w/ it - everything I like (including FRUIT) is a carb!  I know, I know, I was all excited about how I can eat as much spinach as I'd like... And that's great, except that I don't currently have any spinach.  I do have other veggies to munch on, but my tastebuds just keep screaming, "Potatoes!  Rice!  Noodles!" at me, over & over again.  Basically, I WANT CARBS!  

Or pumpkin curry.  With rice.  ; )  

Until next time - what're you craving that you're trying to be good about & reduce?  Do share!  

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Green Giant Healthy Heart Frozen Veggies

From the Green Giant website (and packaging): 
Healthy Heart - The soluble fiber in Healthy Heart can help naturally lower cholesterol to help promote heart health*. Your heart will skip a beat over this tasty blend: Pearled barley, sugars snap peas and julienne carrots in an herb infused extra virgin olive oil sauce.

This was a definite keeper and will be purchased again!  I'd never really had buckwheat before, that I know of, but it was quite tastey.  I did unfortunately forget that peas are actually a carb, tho.  Whoops!  I haven't had the Immunity Blend there in the back, but I'm not so sure about it.  Sometimes I like cauliflower & sometimes i reallllly do not!  *laugh*  

Now, it's time to watch a marathon of Hell's Kitchen.  My tummy is full of veg, so hopefully the good food (haha!) won't make me hungry.  Until next time - what's your favorite vegetable?  I'm not sure about mine, but I'm thinking garden tomatoes might be it.  I need to find some more of those!  : )  

Thursday, 7 October 2010

At the OK Corral...It's Golden! (Or is that the other way around?)

I truly love buffets!  You can have something different every time - or 2nds of the same thing, it's up to  you!  Sometimes it's hard to eat "correctly" or "healthfully" at a buffet, but it can be done.  It's all about portion control and making the right choices - and for me, keeping in mind that I only get 3 carbs for dinner!

I had two plates, a bite of cupcake, a bite of brownie, and a chocolate chip cookie, but I'm fairly confident that I was w/in my 3 carbs because of the portion sizes.  Eating out is always going to be kinda a toss up, or at least for awhile until I can gauge carb content in random portions!

Plate #1: 3 cheese tortellini, sweet potatoes, carrots, devilled egg, cottage cheese, stir fry beef & mushroom, green beans, and meatloaf.

Plate #2: Cheddar biscuit, cantelope, noodles (I didn't actually eat more than a bite of those, ew), more sweet potatoes, cole slaw, more cottage cheese, a sweet potato & apple thing that I didn't eat all of, either.  Mom also gave me some of her steak, not pictured.

Anthony's dessert plate.  I hate a bite of the brownie.  He liked the tuxedo one.  

Leyton's cupcake was delicious!  I had 2 bites, no frosting (I'm not really a fan of frosting...).  And, also, isn't he cute biting into it?  : )  

This is not even appealing to me, but Anthony was proud of his concoction!  

Good times had by all!  : )  

Until next time - where's your favorite buffet?  

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Healthy Choice Frozen Meals Part II

Today was my 2nd "Let's learn about living with Diabetes" class, and the Healthy Choice Steamers were brought up as a good source for a balanced meal.  Hooray!

After work, it was once again grocery day (I get groceries a lot, depending on what's needed when).  I picked up a few more Steamers to try.  When I got home, I nuked the Lemon Garlic Chicken and Shrimp.

I like everything that's in it (except the onions, but they were thankfully all on top & I scraped them out) - pasta, chicken, broccoli, shrimp, lemon, garlic... And yet, this was not my favorite dish, and I don't think I'll get it again.  There was too much of something and not enough of something else, but I can't explain what either thing was!  

So, what I've learned today is - Healthy Choice meals are good, balanced portions.  I like a lot of them.  I do not like this one.  

Until next time...What's something you ate that you thought you would love, but turned out to be not that keen on?  Do share!  : )  

Sunday, 3 October 2010

Weight Watchers Giant Latte Bars

I love coffee ice cream.  My favorite is Haagen Dazs, and the WW Giant Latte Bars are comparable, flavor wise.  Calorie and fat wise, the WW bars are way better, tho!  They are only 90 calories, compared to 1/2 a cup of the HD, which has 270 calories.  55mg sodium compared to 70mg, 1g fat compared to 18g.  It's the little things, the little changes, that have to make a difference, right?  

These are a good size, very satisfying for that ice cream craving.  And at only 21g of carbs, they are the perfect evening snack.  

Until next time... What's your perfect evening snack?  

Friday, 1 October 2010

Healthy (?) Choice Frozen Meals

Why hello there!  Welcome back!  I know, it's been so long since my last post.  (This is a joke, no need to look at the fact that I posted earlier & wonder what I'm talking about...LOL)

This week I'd been talking to a friend of mine about healthy, portion controlled options for dinners.  It is kind of difficult for me to cook for one person, and when I make things like normal, I'm never quite sure if I'm eating 1 serving or 2 before I put leftovers in the fridge!  So, Tricia suggested the Healthy Choice frozen meals, saying they were pretty good, and seemed fairly healthy, as their name implies.  

So, on my last grocery journey, I picked up a few different varieties.  Last night for dinner I had the Chicken Pesto Classico.  

Tonight I tried the Garlic Herb Shrimp, and it, too, was pretty filling.  Surprising, really, considering its small size!  I enjoyed the asparagus quite a lot.  

Now, both of these had a lot of sodium, but the carbs, fats, and other things were good.  I think I'll talk to my nutritionalist about them at my next class.  What's the trade off?  How much sodium am I supposed to be ingesting as a BP patient?  I mean, my doctor has made mention that, "No salt is good," when I said I was changing to sea salt rather than regular table salt.  So, if no salt is good... how am I supposed to eat??  Guess I'll find  Anyway, something I really like about these meals - aside from the flavor and portions, which were quite good - is the Dietary Exchange information on the labels.  I knew that the chicken dish was going to count for 2 carbs, while the shrimp dish only counted for 1.  I'm allowed 2-3 carbs per meal, but am unsure if I'm supposed to have AT LEAST 2-3 or ... More things to ask at next week's class!  

In the meantime, I have a couple more meals to try this weekend.  Will let you know how it goes!  : )  

Until next time, what are some of your recommendations for portion controlled frozen meals from the grocer's?  Do share!  

I found it on the site... and it looks SO GOOD!  I am seriously looking for this on grocery day next week!