Posts Tagged ‘The Firm’

If a little of something is good, then a lot of it is better, right?

Peanut and I headed out to the craft store yesterday to buy a zipper for a sewing project. We came home with this:

Did I buy too much? Is there really even such a thing as ‘too much’ when you’re talking craft supplies? I like to think not on both accounts.

Our area has been in desperate need of rain for the last several weeks. Well, yesterday we got the rain. And the high winds. And the tornado warnings.

The rain was a good thing. Spending an hour in an empty bath tub with a 1-year old? It was a bit much.

The storms put a damper on my plan to run outside. I did this workout from The Firm instead:

while watching this on the DVR:

Was that workout overload? Nope. I call it multitasking. 😉

Meal swap pickup was delayed a day at the last minute. I have enough food in the house that I could have fixed something, but I was drawing a blank and the only thing my husband was craving was Chipotle. So, that’s where we went. My husband and I never go out to dinner on weeknights. Never. Neither of us can remember a time that we’ve done this in the 2.5 years we’ve been married. It was a nice change of pace. I didn’t photograph my barbacoa bowl, but I’m pretty sure you all know what that looks (and tastes) like. It’s a good thing. I ate the whole thing. On any other day that would have been too much, but my meager lunch wasn’t sticking with me and I was really hungry.

What good thing can you never have too much of?.

Note: I do realize that the above question is horrible grammar. What should it be?!? It’s driving me nuts, but I couldn’t figure out an alternative.


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a clean home.

I do a little cleaning every day, but it was nice to spend the entire day working around the house. Call me a big weirdo, but I love to clean and organize around the house. Decluttering calms me and using elbow grease is great stress relief. At the end of the day, looking around at a clean home makes me very, very happy.

Let me rewind a little bit. I got out of bed all geared up to run. The weatherman had predicted sun & warm temperatures so it looked like a perfect day…until I looked out the window. It was grey, cloudy and drizzling rain. Weatherman = dirty liar. I don’t mind running in a little rain, but there was no way I could take Peanut out in the elements with me.

I didn’t forgo exercise altogether, though. I did a little strength training (320 calories burned in 50ish minutes) with this DVD:

The post-workout hungries hit me pretty hard and I whipped up a little pasta dish:

~whole wheat penne
~can of diced tomatoes
~splash of white cooking wine
~spinach & asiago chicken sausage (review coming soon)

I watched Food Revolution last Friday and was in tears. Yep. I cried. Huntington, West Virginia is only about 2 hours south of where I live. The mentalities I saw in the show are mirror images of the attitudes I encounter on a daily basis. The show brought out every frustration I have with trying to eat healthy in a small town culture that just doesn’t get it. It’s not that people are stupid. They’ve just never been taught any different. I’m so glad that Jamie Oliver is finally stepping up and saying what needs to be said, regardless of whether or not people like it.

Dinner last night was inspired by the show.

Parmesan Chicken Breasts with Crispy Posh Ham


~2 sprigs fresh thyme
~2 skinless chicken breasts (I used boneless, skinless.)
~Freshly ground black pepper
~1 lemon
~1 1/4 ounces grated Parmesan
~6 slices prosciutto (I only used 4.)
~Olive oil (I used EVOO.)

Preparation: Grate your Parmesan. Pick the thyme leaves off the stalks. Carefully score the underside of the chicken breasts in a criss-cross fashion with a small knife. Season with a little pepper (you don’t need salt as the prosciutto is quite salty). Lay your breasts next to each other and sprinkle over most of the thyme leaves. Grate a little lemon zest over them, then sprinkle with the Parmesan. Lay 3 prosciutto slices on each chicken breast, overlapping them slightly. Drizzle with a little olive oil and sprinkle with the remaining thyme leaves. Put a square of plastic wrap over each breast and give them a few really good bashes with the bottom of a pan until they’re about 1/2 inch thick.

Cooking: Put a frying pan over a medium heat. Remove the plastic wrap and carefully transfer the chicken breasts, prosciutto side down, into the pan. Drizzle over some olive oil. Cook for 3 minutes on each side, turning halfway through, giving the ham side an extra 30 seconds to crisp up.

SOOOO good. A definite keeper. My husband and I were both in absolute heaven. Besides tasting great, this only took about 15 minutes start to finish. It’s the perfect example of how good, healthy food can be prepared at home in the same amount of time it takes to make a frozen pizza. We cut each chicken breast in half which was a perfect portion. Mr. Oliver recommends serving with “mash and green veggies or a crunchy salad.” We served ours with baked potatoes (sweet for the husband, Yukon gold for me) and steamed broccoli.

Do you think the area where you live impacts your efforts at a healthy lifestyle? How? Is it in a positive or negative way?

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My husband ended up staying home from work yesterday due to the weather. I got up with him at 3 to pack his lunch and because I was worried. He attempted to leave around 4:30AM, but the roads were horrible and the snow was drifting pretty badly so he didn’t make it a mile before he turned around and came home. I was relieved that he wouldn’t be driving in the mess and happy to be able to spend time with him.

He made coffee when he got back home, but he never saw the first cup because he passed out snoring like a trooper in the recliner before it was done brewing. I was starving so I dove into the coffee while fixing myself a little breakfast:

~Arnold’s Sandwich Thin
~2 egg whites
~deli sliced chicken & French dip beef
~wedge of Laughing Cow Light Swiss cheese

The rest of the morning was pretty lazy. Peanut and I snuggled in the chair and we all watched the Olympics. My husband has decided he’s going to start training for the biathlon even though he’s never been on skis. Riiiiight. 🙂

I didn’t make it to the gym, but I did break out another video from The Firm. It was a 45-minute sculpting workout, but I ended up breaking it into a few 15-20 minute increments. Peanut was super cranky and wasn’t interested in any one thing for very long before she melted down. I burned a total of 356 calories which was pretty good considering my HR was up and down when it should have been more steadily elevated. A workout is a workout though and it felt good to move.

Lunch was some delicious turkey chili that my sister-in-law brought over to share on Monday. She’s a teacher and she’s have plenty of snow days. Lucky for me, she likes to cook and bake when she’s off work. Double lucky is that she’s really into healthy eating. Her chili (which I topped with shredded cheese and a little sour cream) was delicious and perfect for a cold day:

I had a bad case of the munchies after lunch, but I knew I wasn’t really hungry. Instead, I cleaned like a mad woman and drank some Twinings Irish Breakfast tea. The mug was quite appropriate considering I’m absolutely addicted to the Olympics.

Dinner was a usual suspect in the UFC household, taco salad. I forgot to take the picture before I started eating. Pardon the not-so-pretty photo.

~romaine lettuce
~broccoli slaw (used in place of tortilla chips for crunch)
~diced tomatoes
~dollop of sour cream
~little blob of salsa
~Bud Light Golden Wheat beer

We vegged out the rest of the evening and watched it snow some more. My sister-in-law had concert tickets to see the Black Eyed Peas, but she decided not to go because it would have been a long drive in the bad weather and she just wasn’t comfortable. She’s pretty fearless so you know it’s bad when she says she’s too nervous to drive.

Have you been watching the Olympics? What’s your favorite event to watch? Which one would you most like to try?

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Saturday was a laaaaazy day in the UFC household. Well, for me anyway. My husband was up and at ’em at his usual time (2:30AM) and out the door at 4 for a Saturday work meeting. I got up long enough to see him out the door and then headed back to the cozy bed for more rest and cuddle time with the pup. We ended up lounging there until about 8:30. I was still tired, but decided it was well past time to get up and moving.

Breakfast was a fiesta for one:


  • flour tortilla (we were out of the healthy kind)
  • Morningstar Farms Spicy Black Bean Burger chopped into chunks
  • scrambled egg
  • shredded cheddar cheese
  • dolop of sour cream
  • salsa

It was delicious and very filling! It was enjoyed alongside a good book and some hot maple tea from Canada, courtesy of my aunt on her last visit.


There was also a hungry, hungry hippo at the table:


Breakfast was followed by reading on the porch and a nap on the couch. I had the brilliant idea of a 30 minute workout to boost my energy. It felt good to move, but afterward I was back to lounging.

My husband finally got home around 3 and was pooped. I’d purchased some video games for him from eBay and told him I’d at least like him to test them all out and make sure they worked before I left feedback for the seller. His comment? “I never thought I’d hear my wife tell me that I NEEDED to play my video games.” He did just that while I read some more. Neither one of us found motivation to do much more than that for the rest of the evening.

Sunday I was determined to be more productive than Saturday. We got up fairly early (AKA before 8:00), got dressed and headed to town. My husband got his hair cut while I walked the perimeter of the shopping center. Next was lunch out. We always think that we want Buffalo Wild Wings, but it turns out to be a disappointment every time. Too bad none of the local places are open on Sunday.

After lunch was grocery shopping. We came in under $75 which isn’t bad considering I didn’t shop at all last weekend. I also found this gem in the clearance carts:


Regular price $12, marked down to $5! I love videos from The Firm and have been wanting this one for a while. It’s high impact so I won’t be doing it anytime soon, but it will give me something to look forward to later.

I was putting groceries away when my husband walked in the back door with a stressed look on his face. All he said was “I’m going to need some help. Grab some bags.” I had no clue what the problem could be until after I’d followed him to the garden. We filled 4 bags with yellow squash, banana peppers, a few cherry tomatoes (FINALLY!) and some ginormous zucchini. Now I know what everyone meant when they told us that these things can quadruple in size overnight.


What’s the best way to prepare an arm-sized zucchini?

I spent the majority of the evening cleaning and organizing in the baby’s room. I filled the trunk of my car with things to take to my parents for their garage sale and listed a few items on eBay. I LOVE the feeling of getting rid of things I don’t need!

By Request

I’ve had some requests to see pics of the baby bump. Ask and you shall receive.


29 weeks down, 11 to go! I know that I am growing a life and that these extra 40 (!!!!) lbs. are necessary to protect the Peanut. That said, I really want my body back.

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