September 28, 2010

BL3 Week 4

Only 3 weeks left unless... about half of you (me, Claire, Bernice, Sharon, Tracy, Carolina, Melinda) got back with me today saying you were up for extending the contest to 12 weeks.  That would take us to November 23rd, just before Thanksgiving.  If the rest of you are up for it, I'm up for the added challenge!

Here it is, drum roll please!  Remember this is a running total, not a weekly result. (positive #'s are good, negative #'s not so much)

Keri  4.06%
Danielle  -3.44%
Karin  1.07%
Claire  1.68%
Lori  -1.64% 
Marcy  -0.33%  
Michelle S-B  0.43%
Tracy  1.56%
Chelsea  0.41%
Michelle M-K  -0.59%
Sharon  1.84%
Bernice  2.75%
Carolina  0.0%
Melinda  -0.64%

Personally I had a great week!  I got in a lot of workouts, juiced a lot, ate less and voila, results! Bernice and Sharon are in second and third followed by Claire.  Still any one's game at this point.

Last week I gave you my list of goals for the next 4 weeks until the cruise, here is my progress for last week:


1. no alcohol until the cruise - ummm, had two glasses of red with dinner Friday night
2. no ordering takeout (pizza, chinese) - success!
3. weights at least 2 days every week - success!
4. yoga at least 1-2 days every week - success! (ouch Carolina, in a good way)
5. cardio at least 2 days every week, one for at least 20 minutes and one long walk each week to get ready for the half marathon (6miles, 8+ miles, 10+ miles, 1/2 marathon on 10/17) - half way successful with one 3 mile walk
6. don't eat if I'm not hungry, stop eating when I'm full - success!
7. green juice, fruit smoothies, and salads for breakfast/lunch at least 4 days per week - success! (5 days)
8. I commit to putting all of my workouts on my calendar, so I don't forget to do them - success!
9. I will schedule a workout buddy, ensuring that I go even when I don't want to (Claire, Chelsea, and Carolina - this means you!) - success!

Week 1 Summary: 7.5/9, I'm happy with that! I think I can do better this week, even with a short trip to Orlando.  Danielle and Karin have written similar goals for themselves and we're holding each other accountable for the next three weeks until we set sail.

September 21, 2010

BL3 Week 3

Wow, no time for blogging this week.  Only 4 weeks left, unless you guys take me up on my offer to extend the contest a few weeks.  Hmm?  Any takers?  I'm watching the season premier of the Biggest Loser - the first episode is always soooooo slooooowwwww.  

Here it is, drum roll please!  Remember this is a running total, not a weekly result.  (positive #'s are good, negative #'s not so much)

Keri  3.04%
Danielle  -3.13%
Karin  0.83%
Claire  1.68%
Lori  -1.64% 
Marcy  -1.67%  
Michelle S-B  1.30%
Tracy  1.56%
Chelsea  -0.08%
Michelle M-K  -1.18%
Sharon  2.45%
Bernice  2.60%
Carolina  0.0%
Mindy  0.0%

Not a stellar week for me but I'm still in the lead followed by Bernice and Sharon!  Good job ladies!!! So we're struggling a bit this time around and maybe I can provide some added motivation/competition these next 4 weeks...

Some of you might remember that I'm going on a cruise next month with Danielle and Karin - it's a Jillian Michael's sponsored cruise.  We thought it would be a pretty fun girls weekend.  So Karin gets an email today stating that SHE won an exclusive meet and greet with Jillian herself - only 20 people were chosen!!!  How awesome is that?  I never win anything, so even knowing someone that wins something is exciting enough for me.  The good and the bad of it is she can bring ONE person with her. How does a girl choose?  Rock paper scissors?  I'm trying to talk Danielle into competing for the ticket...making a commitment to do our best for the next 4 weeks.  This whole thing just came up today so there are still some discussions to be had, but so far this is what I have committed to:

1. no alcohol until the cruise
2. no ordering takeout (pizza, chinese) - will make healthful substitutions at home
3. weights at least 2 days every week
4. yoga at least 1-2 days every week
5. cardio at least 2 days every week, one for at least 20 minutes and one long walk each week to get ready for the half marathon (6miles, 8+ miles, 10+ miles, 1/2 marathon on 10/17)
6. don't eat if I'm not hungry, stop eating when I'm full
7. green juice, fruit smoothies, and salads for breakfast/lunch at least 4 days per week
8. I commit to putting all of my workouts on my calendar, so I don't forget to do them
9. I will schedule a workout buddy, ensuring that I go even when I don't want to (Claire, Chelsea, and Carolina - this means you!)

Whatever our challenge turns out to be, I challenge you to give it your all for the next 4 weeks.  Are you up for it?

p.s. SO, it appears I start every sentence with SO.  SO, I had to go back and delete most of them.  SO that sucks, but at least I know.

September 14, 2010

BL3 Week 2

Only 5 weeks left, I don't know that I like this short format.  Typically I break up all of my goals, and therefore these contests, into 12 week periods.  I originally set the schedule to end before our cruise, but maybe we should go a few more weeks?  Thoughts?  I worry that people won't really get in the groove and will be discouraged by slow progress.  You know us Americans, we like everything NOW!  And as much as I love NBC's Biggest Loser, seeing really overweight people lose 5-25lbs in one week is not a realistic goal for any of us.

So, here it is, drum roll please!  Remember this is a running total, not a weekly result.  

Keri  3.31%
Danielle  -3.44%
Karin  0.47%
Claire  1.01%
Lori  ? 
Marcy  0.67%  
Michelle S-B  1.30%
Tracy  1.56%
Chelsea  0.08%
Michelle M-K  -1.18%
Sharon  1.23%
Bernice  1.83%
Carolina  0.0%
Mindy  ?

I don't recall if I was ever in the lead even once during the last two contests so I'm proud to report that I'm still leading after the second week!  Eating less, juicing, working out, and sadly (sniff sniff) saying goodbye to wine for awhile has been my strategy.  Living and eating in moderation has been one of my goals for this year and I hope I'm one step closer.  

Let me introduce you to some of your competitors: Lori won BL1, Michelle M-K won BL2, Claire, Marcy, and Karin have also been stiff competition.  Michelle S-B and Bernice are new to BL.  Again we have 7 Michigan Tech graduates (all engineers, yikes), at least 10 mothers, 13 wives, you know, regular hard working women.

I looked at past contest results and wanted to give a couple of high fives.  Since BL2's last weigh in on June 30th and BL3's first weigh in on August 31 Danielle maintained her weight!  Lori lost another 6lbs!  Sharon and Carolina each lost 1lb.  Maintaining your weight or continuing to lose is a great accomplishment that shouldn't go unnoticed.  Excellent job ladies!

I wasn't sure when the next NBC Biggest Loser was starting since the tv ads just said Tuesday and I was too lazy to check the internet but Karin sent me the info, thanks for sharing!  Setting my DVR now.

The Biggest Loser Is Almost Here!
Don't forget to tune in to NBC Tuesday, Sept. 21, at 8 p.m. ET to watch the premiere of Biggest Loser season 10 — it's all about second chances and inspiring stories!


September 13, 2010

Grow Dammit Grow, part 9

I was working in the garden this weekend when I heard someone ride their bike by our fence and comment in shock to his friend about our tomatoes.  They grew 7 feet tall.  I cut them down.  They grew back to 7 feet tall and then I staked some to the top of the fence.  I cut them back more last weekend and again this weekend.  Then this happened.  They grew up and over the fence.  
We finally have an eggplant and another one is just starting to grow!  This took so long to grow I almost pulled it up.  Patience, patience.
Leeks - they got too much shade from the tomatoes
a young Buttercup Squash
Yellow Pear Tomatoes - my fav!
 King of the North Peppers
 Tomatoes, Cukes, Squash




September 12, 2010

Sunday happy Sunday!

Had a lazy Sunday morning in bed with Bernie and Cooper.

Awesome green juice for breakfast.

Cooper had a pupcake from his friend Gino.

Panini for lunch, eaten in bed with Bernie and Cooper.

Found out an important Jewish woman in Denver's history lived in our house for 25 years from 1917 to 1942.  More to come on that one.  I've wanted to research the history of our home, and this was exciting enough to provide some motivation.

Mani/Pedi - finally!  Wicked on the toes.  Some Greige color on the nails.  Grey Beige, supposed to be very in.  The jury is still out on that one.

BLT's for dinner on rosemary sourdough and toasted in the panini pan.  Yum.

Back to bed.  In fairness, our basement DVR is on the fritz.  And I needed a down day.  

Hope you had a great Sunday!

Mozzarella, I think

I finally made cheese!  At least I think I did.  I'm not really sure it all went as it should.  I bought this kit from The authority on home cheese making, Ricki Carroll.  I bought her book last year.  Soft fresh cheeses are supposed to be the easiest so I started with Mozzarella.  It's unlike me to start small, I'm surprised I didn't buy a full on cheese press and bust out some Manchego.

It tasted okay, but a little weird.  Creamy.  I added it to a heirloom tomato, peach and basil caprese salad I made to bring to a dinner party and it was a big hit.  I think making cheese is going to require practice and more patience. I wish the instructions gave some modifications to account for the altitude, that might have been part of the issue.  Given you have to buy a gallon of milk to make a couple of balls of cheese, it is not much of a money saver but it is kind of cool to try.  I can't wait to try the goat cheeses!  If only I had a goat.

Editor's note: I forgot to mention, Bernie did not try the cheese or eat the tomato salad.  I'm still mad about it.

Supplies: 1 gallon of whole milk, pasteurized but not ultra pasteurized, cheese making kit
 Here's the part I'm unsure of, if my curd is as firm as it should be?
 Cutting the curd, the instructions show this looking much firmer
 Seriously, I don't think it is supposed to look like this
 Straining off the whey, I only strained half the pot at a time and had to throw out the second half because my strainer clogged up.
 Stretching the cheese, ignore our messy counter
 Final step, 10 minute ice bath.  Not smooth nor perfect.
A bit on the bumpy side

September 7, 2010

Biggest Loser 3 - Week 1

Well, we're off to a slow start this time around.  This is a short one, so only 6 weeks left.  Some people started a week late and just weighed in today.  Some people didn't send me any updates from last week.  So I don't have much to report.  Except that I won.  Me.  By a landslide.  Well,  in my mind anyway, 2.28%.  Suck it suckers!  :)  Better bring your A-games next week.  And as a word of wise to myself, every time I talk smack I end up second to last, so this will be my only time spouting off.

We had a few more join and I hope to have more to report next week.  Me, Danielle, Karin, Claire, Amy S-C (you still in?), Marcy, Michelle S-B, Tracy, Chelsea, Michelle M-K, Sharon, Bernice, Carolina, Mindy (?), Lori.  So that's a pretty big group, about 15 or so.  Good luck ladies, hope to hear from you next week.

p.s. I got in 3, count 'em, 3 workouts yesterday.  Power yoga, weights, walking.  And I'm super duper sore today.  After traveling to NY and sitting most of the day I can hardly walk.

September 5, 2010

Cherry Creek Farmer's Market

No words needed here really.  It was early so I didn't have a lot of sun, but the colors are still so beautiful.  One more month of Farmer's Markets!












September 4, 2010

Emeril's Buttermilk "Fried" Chicken

I've been telling everyone this is THE Best chicken recipe I've had.  Ever.  I don't know why I never posted it before.  You must try, I insist.  I've done it with both the Essence and the Creole seasoning, both are good.  Put it together before you go to work and then just pop it in the oven when you get home, voila, awesome chicken.  Word to the wise, read the entire recipe before getting started as there definitely is some waiting involved.

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