Finally . . . sorry I’m a slacker! Southwest Meatballs and fixin’s!

I found these recipes on one of my FAVORITE new sites, I changed a few things, most specifically, I made the meat mixture in the processor and used a cookie scoop, which meant I didn’t have to dirty my hands. It also made the meatballs completely green in a fabulous way! This would be the perfect meal or snack on St. Patrick’s Day. Best of all, my three year old, who usually has an aversion to all foods green, devoured this meal. Enjoy!

Southwest Turkey Meatballs

  • Honeysuckle White – Extra Lean Ground Turkey Breast, 20 oz. (I’ll use the 93% fat free variety next time. Mine were a tad dry.)
  • Jalapeno, 1 pepper, seeded (unless you want it SPICY)
  • Garlic – Raw, 2 clove s minced
  • Fresh Cilantro, 1/4 cup
  • Scallions (includes tops and bulb), 3 large (I suggest slicing before processing)
  • Italian Style Bread Crumbs, 1/4 cup
  • Eggs – Whites only, 2 large
  • Ground Cumin, 1 tsp
  • Oregano, 1 tsp
  • Pepper, black, 1 dash

Combine garlic, jalapeno, cilantro, scallions, and spices in Bosch Universal Plus Food Processor. Blend well. Add egg whites and meat. Blend. Slowly add bread crumbs until meat mix pulls away from the sides of the processor. I then used a Norpro Stainless Steel Cookie Dough Scoop (a small one would work for smaller meatballs) sprayed with olive oil cooking spray to scoop the meat mix into meatballs and placed them directly onto a cookie sheet lined with a Silpat. Bake at 400 for 10 minutes. Do NOT over cook. I let them cook an extra two minutes and they were a little too dry, but still tasty. Serve with cilantro lime rice and creamy cilantro tomatillo sauce, or as Hors d’œuvres with dipping sauce. Yum!

MFP nutritional info. I split it into 5 servings of 3 meatballs a piece, each serving has: 161 calories 1 gram of fat 30 grams of protein 151 milligrams of sodium



Creamy Cilantro Tomatillo Sauce

  • 1% Buttermilk, 1/2 cup
  • Olive Oil Mayo, 4 tbsp
  • Nonfat Greek Yogurt, 1/4 cup
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded (unless you like it SPICY)
  • Fresh Cilantro, 1/4 cup
  • Tomatillo, 1 medium
  • Garlic clove, 1
  • Scallions, 1 large
  • Lime juice from 1/2 lime, or about 1 oz

Combine all ingredients in Bosch Blender for Bosch Universal Plus or Bosch Universal Plus Food Processor until smooth.

I said it made 6 servings, each has (according to MFP): 53 calories 4 grams of fat 2 grams of protein 109 milligrams of sodium

This rice was tasty, but next time I will add 1/2 yellow onion, sauteed, for a little more flavor. I didn’t add salt to any of my recipes to keep sodium levels low. If you need some, add it afterward. Or use a salt substitute, like Morton Salt Substitute.



Cilantro Lime Rice

  • Long Grain White Rice, 4 cups prepared
  • Fresh Cilantro, 3/4 cups
  • Lime Juice, 1/4 cup
  • Olive Oil, 1 tbsp

Prepare rice in Zojirushi Rice Cooker and Warmer with water and oil. As soon as it’s ready, add chopped cilantro and lime juice. Mix well. Serve.

MFP: 4 servings, each has: 234 calories 4 grams of fat 4 grams of protein 2 milligrams of sodium

Day Three: Yippee! 27 more to go! Also, dang good meatballs.

My third day of Jillian Michaels – 30 Day Shred was painful, once again. But I made it through more push ups than the prior two days, hurrah! Progress! My calves are KILLING me. They’re SO sore. Anyone else experience this? Tonight’s dinner was fabulous as well. I got all three recipes off of skinny taste, a site I’m really growing to love. We had Southwest Turkey Meatballs, Creamy Cilantro Dipping Sauce, and Cilantro Lime Rice. Mmm mmm good. And I stayed way below on sodium today, which is amazing. I’ll post the recipes and pics in the morning. I am barely functioning enough to type at the moment. I’m so so so so so tired. Yes, all those so’s were necessary. Well, goodnight my loves. Look forward to some awesome things this week. I know I am.

Day Two: Ouch!

So, I didn’t want to, sitting like a loaf, a very sore loaf, on the couch. But I did it. I guess that’s how I’ll have to make it through my thirty days of Jillian Michaels – 30 Day Shred. Taking it one day at a time. Every time I force myself to work out, when I’d rather curl up in a comfy ball and eat something fattening, I win. I wish I could honestly say that today was easier than yesterday, but it wasn’t. I was sore and really had to push through it. But I felt GOOD again afterward. I look forward to tomorrow.

Also, look forward to some YUMMY recipes tomorrow! Turkey meatballs, cilantro tomatillo dipping sauce, and cilantro lime rice. I can’t wait to try them, and let you know how it goes. Best of all, it’s healthy! Sleep well.

It may be April, but I’m not foolin’, THIS IS FOR REAL!

Hello lovelies. Today I started my first day of Jillian Michaels – 30 Day Shred. Boo flippin’ ya baby. It was tough. I’m not going to lie. I don’t care what day it is. At one point I was close to puking, which is a little pathetic yes, and could be attributed to the fact that I ate a very healthy (whoa sarcasm) breakfast of Lucky Charms beforehand. Bad choice. Either way, I was happy with the winded, shaky, and lobster-esque red face I ended up with. It was totally worth those twenty minutes of my morning. I am so glad I have the next nine days to get better at level one before I move up to level two. Let’s just say my attempts at push-ups are lacking. Mmm hmm. Nevertheless, I feel hopeful. I will keep you all posted, and on days ten, twenty, and thirty I will chart my progress. Off to do some dishes! (I’ve also been slacking in the Sink Reflectionsdepartment. I need to get back on my game. Life is happier when I’m on my game. My UN-FRUMPY game that is.)

Fancy Fabric Flower Hair Clips . . . say that five times fast! I dare you! I double dog dare you!

So, several months ago my two year old started talking about her upcoming birthday. Seriously, it’s been months. I asked her about themes several times, but she always said, “I’m going to have a PINK party.” As in the color, not the singer. Her third birthday is now rapidly approaching. Only six more days, I can’t even believe it. Luckily, it falls mid week so that buys me a few more days to party plan. It’s going to be an explosion of pink goodness. I wanted to share with you the announcements I made for her party, because, to say the least, I am thrilled with how they turned out. They are TOTALLY un-frumpy. Mmm hmm.

It all started with the idea of PINK as a theme. I was an English Minor in college, so I decided to muster up whatever skills I gained from that aspect of my education and create a catchy rhyme for her invites. I came up with, “Oh my goodness I didn’t think, that time would fly by in a blink, but it has, oh gosh, oh gee, come Pretty in Pink, Hadlee’s turning three!” Poetry, I know. HA! (And I paid HOW MUCH for that degree?)

Next, I KNEW that there would be a photograph on her invite. Although you cannot tell from my less than mediocre food pictures, I am a professional photographer in real life.

Of people, not food.

I snapped a shot of my little girl recently standing by the window of our back door and loved it. It was mainly of her face, and I knew I wanted to use it as the invite. That’s how I got the idea for including hair clips on the invites. The little girls could keep them and wear them to the party if they could come. Clipping them onto the invite would make it look as if my little girl were wearing the clip in the picture. Cute!

So, I found this awesome tutorial on mrspriss and decided to give it a go. Check out her tutorial, then come back and check out my results. Awesome.

This is the overall idea of what I came up with. I followed the mrspriss tutorial to make the flowers. One of the comments on her site said to try using a candle and tweezers. Genius. It makes the process much easier and less painful. I used the extra long tweezers from my surger which made it even better. Don’t get the material too close to the flame because it will singe too much or burn, and your fingers will hate you for it too. I also suggest having a little more fabric than you plan on using. You will have some flowers that cut out crappy or don’t singe right. It’s better to be prepared than have to run to Walmart, yuck, and scrounge for any material that will work. Yes, this happened to me half way through.

Some other handy dandy tips: First, instead of trying to cut out each piece individually, the route I originally, and foolishly, took, fold your material over itself however many times you need to create however many pieces you need, be it the flowers or petals. Once folded, you can pin the layers together in the middle and cut around the pins. Your pieces still probably won’t be identical, unless you’re WAY better than me, but imperfection is pretty in this project, so no worries. We’re going for un-frumpy, not perfect, remember?

Second, accessorize. I had some net-ish material (I don’t know what it’s called, I’m only a wanna be seamstress,) feathers, and little scrapbooking gems on hand from past projects. I got the feathers and gems at Sierra’s, I’m sure Michael’s would also sell them. The fabric came from Joanne’s. Use whatever you have access to that fits your fancy. Or your un-frumpy.

Last, add an alligator clip and clip it anywhere. On a headband, directly in hair, somewhere else, on an invitation. Viola. It made my idea complete, and everyone commented on how cute the invites turned out. I should tell you, I hot glued everything, but needle and thread wouldn’t be much harder, also, I used CS3 to put the invite design together, and ordered the invites as postcards from Costco. They turned out great. Most of the ones I made clips for were for people who live close, so I just dropped them off as opposed to sending them. Long distance ones I left the clip off and mailed. They were still cute without the clip, but the clip was SUCH a nice touch. Thank you mrspriss! I plan on using her tutorials again. The yarn wreath is in the plans. YAY!


Huevos Rancheros and Mexican Rice . . . Yum!

SO, I love Mexican food. As I sat on my couch tonight agonizing over what I could make for dinner, I started craving mexican food. But I WOULD NOT give in to super fatty delicious temptation again! So I looked at what I had on hand and came to a brilliant solution (if I do say so myself.) I decided to develop a recipe for Huevos Rancheros (why I’m always abounding with eggs, I don’t know,) and a lighter mexican style rice to accompany said eggs. This is what I came up with. I hope you enjoy it.

Huevos Rancheros

  • Corn Tortilla – sprayed with olive oil spray, baked at 400 until crispy
  • 1 fried egg
  • 1/2 package Marketside Guacamole (app. 1/2 cup)
  • 1/2 cup black beans, low sodium
  • 1/4 cup pico de gallo
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro
  • 1 tbsp crumbled/grated cotija cheese
  • shredded lettuce – as much as you’d like

Bake tortilla until crispy. Fry egg on non-stick pan. Warm black beans in microwave safe bowl. When finished, place fried egg over baked tortilla. Top with beans, guacamole, pico de gallo, cotija, and cilantro. Serve with shredded lettuce if desired. Enjoy.

According to MFP, one serving has: 336 calories 13 grams of fat 16 grams of protein 597 milligrams of sodium



Mexican Rice

  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 cups white rice, long grain, dry
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup salsa ( I used the black bean and white corn kind, it had lower sodium than others I checked)
  • 1/2 large onion, diced
  • 1 stalk celery, sliced
  • 2 tbsp garlic powder

Preheat oven to 400. Combine all ingredients in a 13×9 pan. Bake for one hour. Stir and let sit for five minutes. Serve.

MFP nutritional info, 6 servings, each has: 217 calories 0 grams of fat 5 grams of protein 498 milligrams of sodium

Chicken and Pesto Pasta

Try this one for sure! It’s not the healthiest meal I’ve posted, but it’s definitely very quick and very tasty! I needed a last minute dinner idea, and luckily I had everything on hand for this. Things I almost always have on hand: frozen boneless, skinless, chicken breasts, whole wheat pasta, and shredded parmesan. My husband’s first response to this thrown together meal was, “ah, this reminds me of Italy.” Nice. One thing the Italians get right: keep it simple. And pretty much everything else when it comes to food, in my opinion.
Buon Appetito!

  • whole wheat rotini, 2 cups dry
  • basil pesto, 1/2 cup
  • cooked and cubed boneless, skinless chicken breast, 1 pound
  • yellow onion, diced, 1/4 of whole onion
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • olive oil cooking spray
  • garlic powder, 1 tbsp
  • basil, 1 tsp

Boil pasta according to directions on box. Drain. In a pan, saute onion until tender. Add cubed, prepared chicken. Add spices and 1/4 – 1/2 cup water. Cook until water evaporates. Add drained noodles to the pan. Spray once with olive oil cooking spray. Stir. Add pesto and parmesan to pan. Stir to coat. Serve.

MFP nutritional info for 4 servings, each has: 439 calories per serving 22 grams of fat 35 grams of protein 426 milligrams of sodium

A Commitment to Change!

So, as you know, this site is about more than just food and weight loss. It’s about overall change for the better, and getting to like myself more. It’s about becoming un-frumpified in all aspects of my life. A while back, I planned on dedicating 30 days to testing out Jillian Michaels – 30 Day Shred, but had to postpone it to April. Well, April is fast approaching and I haven’t forgotten. I’ve also began some other plans as well. Check them out:


April - Jillian Michaels – 30 Day Shred – I will be dedicating April to testing this video. I will split the thirty days up into tens, so the first ten days I’ll do level one, the second ten I will do level two, and third I will do level three. I will compare my beginning weight and measurements with my progress every ten days, with updates in between. I’m even toying with the idea of including update pictures…yikes! We’ll see about that one.

May/June – This one is REALLY going to be a challenge. Ok, so, I’ve always had this dream in the back recesses of my mind that one day I would like to be a runner. Not just a runner, but actually run in a 5K, and maybe bigger races later. I am not a runner. But that doesn’t stop me from dreaming. Then, recently, I stumbled across a program that might really assist me in obtaining this dream. It’s called “Couch to 5k,” or C25K. You may have heard about it. It’s a program that’s set up to take you from a couch potato to running a 5K in app. 9 weeks. I will be on vacation for one week in May, so I’ll have to stretch it at least one extra week. Possibly more if I need more time to get in shape. Either way, I hope to start the program in May and get my start into becoming a runner. On my off days, I still plan on including some Zumba and other fun exercises. Nothing wrong with cross training, right?


I’ve had so much success with that I plan on continuing to use it as my diet plan. It’s so great. If you haven’t checked it out yet, do so.

Up Keep (I didn’t know what to call it):

I will continue to try to progress in the “Sink Reflections,” program. I have seen it work for me, but haven’t been as consistent as I need to be. I will keep working on cleaning up my life with the guidelines in this book.


This is an important aspect of my life I haven’t mentioned much, but it is probably the largest part of my life. And it’s HARD. I could use any help I can get. I’ve started reading about the, “Love and Logic,” method. I’m currently reading, ”Love and Logic Magic for Early Childhood: Practical Parenting from Birth to Six Years.” I hope to study it more and start implementing it with my toddler. As soon as my baby is old enough, I will start young with her. I will let you know if this helps me in maintaining my sanity.


I’ve already graduated college, but I believe in always learning new things. I want to learn to use the surger and sewing machines my husband bought me for past holidays. I’ve always wanted to learn, and I can do some things, but I want to get better. And, I can’t wait to recycle a bunch of old t-shirts and jeans into useful products.

Savory Cottage Cheese Crepes

I had a ton of eggs to use up before they went bad, so I went looking for recipes that called for egg whites. I found this here and knew it was worth a try. My husband and I love crepes. I made a few minor adjustments, and they turned out really tasty. Enjoy!

  • Instant Oatmeal, 3 packets
  • Nonfat Cottage Cheese, 1 1/2 cups
  • Eggs, whites only, 3 cups
  • Garlic Powder, 2 tbsp
  • Italian Seasoning, 2 tbsp
  • Olive Oil Cooking Spray

Combine Oatmeal, Cottage Cheese, Egg Whites, Garlic Powder, and Italian Seasoning in a blender and mix until smooth. Add water if needed, no more than 1/4 cup. Heat skillet over medium. Spray with olive oil spray. Pour 1/2 cup of crepe mixture onto heated skillet. Tip skillet in a circular motion until mix spreads into a circular shape. Heat until bubbles cover all of the surface. Carefully and slowly flip the crepe to the other side. Heat for one to two minutes, then check. If golden brown, remove from heat. Serve with savory toppings (i.e. I used reduced fat feta, spinach, sauteed red onions, and 2 oz of deli turkey. Next time, I think I will try turkey sausage or prepared chicken breast instead of the deli meat.) Put toppings on center and fold outsides over the toppings.

MFP nutritional info for crepes (without toppings) for 12 crepes, each has: 81 calories 1 gram of fat 11 grams of protein 222 milligrams of sodium

It’s about to get heavy up in here . . . and I’m not talking about the scale!

So, when I started this journey I initially just considered the, roughly, 110 pounds I wanted/needed to lose. As I began my weight loss leg of the journey, I got infused with the feeling of satisfaction self improvement brings. I decided, there is so much more I want to improve about my life. If I could control my weight, why couldn’t I control the other areas I’m lacking in as well? So I began my full on journey to un-frumpiness. I’ve had small trip ups, which I’ve learned are normal, and you just have to get back up and brush yourself off and start hiking again.

Once, when I was eleven or twelve, my Dad took my younger brother and sister and I hiking to the top of Multnomah Falls, just outside of Portland, Oregon, on our way back from a family trip. As you get higher up, the hike gets harder, and more slippery. Plus, I’ve been overweight for pretty much my whole life, so I wasn’t exactly fit at the time. Anyway, I remember as we were beginning the journey back down, my tired legs began to get shaky. I hid it well because my father and siblings were much healthier than I was, and there was a man with his cute son hiking in the same group. A pre-teen girl cannot lose face in front of a pre-pubescent hottie. All of a sudden, the terrain got really rocky and slippery and my legs gave out and down the HUGE hill I slid, terrified. Heights have NEVER been my thing, and I’m pretty sure this moment intensified that phobia. Thanks to the help of strangers (including hottie’s dad), and my Dad being my super hero, I didn’t slide far. But, I got pretty tore up. As if my legs hadn’t already been sore and shaky, they were know scraped, bleeding, and embedded with gravel. As well as my arms and hands. I think I even scraped my face. I knew that despite the pain, it would be impossible for anyone to carry me down. Hurt or not, I had to push myself to make it back down. And I did. My poor dad, unable to accompany me or help, sent me into the women’s bathroom to clean up the best that I could. As I stood by the sink dabbing with paper towels and crying, a stranger came up to me and got to work. She had a first-aid kit with her. She took out alcohol pads and cleaned my wounds, blowing on them as they stung like a mother would, and picked out rocks with tweezers. A perfect stranger.

Why do I bring this up? Since starting my journey I’ve been loved and supported by family and friends, but some of the most instrumental people in picking me up and pushing me forward have been perfect strangers. I’m a paranoid person by nature, another thing I’m working on, so I really had to break out of my comfort zone and let my guard down to add friends I didn’t know on MFP. But I’m so glad I did. These perfect strangers have been like angels in helping me on my journey. Just like the lady in the bathroom.

Sometimes we fall. We have to get back up and keep going. Mostly, we have to let people, sometimes perfect strangers, help us and be the angels we need. I’m grateful for the angels on my journey.

Also, It took me app. 2 months to lose my first 15 pounds. If I keep it up at this pace, by next May, a little over a year, I can reach my ultimate goal. That feels pretty awesome. I can do it. Thank you all for your support.