Friday, June 29, 2012

Can I really do this?

The day has come. The Biggest Loser contest at work starts on Monday! I have been slowly getting my habits in place over the last few weeks so that I'm not just jumping into everything and failing again. I read a friends blog today about constantly picking yourself back up again after falling off the weight-loss wagon. It really hit home. I feel like that constantly. I did so wonderful for around 3 months, and then its been this on-again, off-again relationship that I'm really getting tired of.

I've set some goals for myself lately. Small and attainable ones. The real fun will be seeing if I can stick with them. Its been a high stress time for me at work and home lately. Work is a mile and minute, while home life has me worrying about wedding planning and trying to move in July. Its just a lot to deal with lately. I get stressed way too easily and it really takes a toll on me!

So, here are my goals that's I've set up.

  • Exercise with my Your Shape: Fitness Evolved game at least 3 days a week for 30 minutes
  • No more soda - period!
  • try to go on one long walk or hike every other weekend
  • While in California (first 2 weeks of August) try to eat in at least 5 nights a week.
  • no buying lunch unless it is a team lunch activity. MUST MAKE OWN LUNCH
There ya' have it. My simple list of goals I want to accomplish for this year. Notice how there is no weight goal listed? I have one in my head, but I am tired of putting it down and being extremely disappointed when I don't reach it. We will see how this goes!

Weigh in and my personal measurements will be on Monday, so I will probably make a special post just for that!

Other than that, stay tuned and lets see what I can accomplish in the next 9 weeks!

Peace and Good JuJu,

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Trying to win my Dream Dress - Won't you help?!

This is my pathetic plea! I don't normally do things like this, but this is probably my only chance to get my dream dress!

If you've read any of my posts, you understand that I don't come from a rich family, I don't have lots of money, and I live a rather average lifestyle. But its my life that I'm completely happy with! Since becoming engaged, I'm realizing just how expensive the whole wedding planning/process is.

I know we will have to have a budget wedding, and the vision I have is totally doable! I think I've finally settled on a venue too! The one thing that really concerns me, that is most important to me, is my wedding dress. A budget wedding doesn't really have the wiggle room to plan for my dream dress. Not to say my dress is outrageously expensive, but its over my budget. This means that I will probably have to settle for a  very pretty dress, knowing that its not truly the one that I want!

And what is my dream dress? THIS is my dream dress!
The Ariel Disney Princess dress from Alfred Angelo's Disney Bridal collection! Its absolutely gorgeous and everything I want in a dress. Its just the right shape and style to make me look great on my wedding day! I stare at the dress a lot and I can completely envision myself wearing this dress down the aisle! But alas, it is outside of my budget.

That's where the HELP part comes in! I recently found a contest through Pear Tree Greetings, the company we are looking at to do all our wedding invites and other stationary items, to win $1500 towards my dream dress. That is more than enough to cover the cost of the Ariel Dress! The contest rules stipulate that I must enter a picture of Pre-Hubby and I and tell our engagement story. After that, I am to get  friends to vote for us! For the first two days after I entered, we were in the lead, and now we are bordering on 5th place! I need to be in the top 5 to even be considered for the grand prize!

The contest is held on Facebook. You have to go to the contest page and vote for the couple you want to win. You can only vote ONCE during the whole contest. I need as many votes as possible to win this dress and would love if you all would vote for us and share with your friends to vote for us as well! Vote for us here! You may have to like their page in order to vote, but I know people who have unliked the page afterwards and the vote still remained! If you see this picture, you know you are in the right place!
Pre-Hubby and I all dressed up in Vegas!
EVERY VOTE IS FOREVER APPRECIATED!!! And any shares with your friends and votes from them are greatly appreciated as well! Please help us win. I want nothing more than to wear my dream dress on my wedding day!!

Thank you to everyone!

Peace and Good JuJu,

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Summer lunch for the kids!

A couple months ago, I made the "long" drive to go visit my best friend. I live almost 2 hours north of her, so to us, it is a long drive! Her husband was out for the day, so it was just us and her 2 kids, my adorable niece and nephew! I was so happy to spend the day with them all, so I found a couple Disney Junior recipes to make a fun filled lunch for the kids. Well of course, it was a total hit! And why wouldn't it be, Auntie Holly is one pretty cool lady who makes awesome food! We made Meatloaf Cupcakes and Veggie Skateboards! Not only did my niece and nephew love them, but even the neighbor kids who came over enjoyed them. So, first up, Meatloaf Cupcakes.

2 medium russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 1/4 pound lean ground turkey
3 large egg whites
2 medium carrots, peeled and grated
1/4 cup shredded asiago cheese
1/4 cup low-sodium tomato sauce
1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
3 tablespoons fat-free milk
Salt and pepper to taste
First up, preheat oven to 350 degrees. With the oven going, place the potatoes in a medium saucepan and fill with cool water. Bring potatoes to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-high and cook until potatoes are soft. Drain the potatoes and set them aside.

In a medium bowl mix together turkey, egg whites, carrots, asiago cheese, tomato sauce and bread crumbs. Use your hands to completely combine the ingredients. Line a muffin tin with 8 cupcake liners. Scoop the mixture into the cupcake liners, mounding mixture so that it rises higher than the surface of the muffin tin. Bake until cooked through, about 22 minutes. Let cool somewhat before removing from muffin tin.

Next up is the potatoes. Place potatoes, milk, salt and pepper in a medium bowl and beat with an electric mixer until fluffy. Last step is to spread the potatoes over the tops of cupcakes and serve. You can do this by either scooping on top with a spoon, or using a cupcake tip and a pastry bag!

And now for the veggie snack!
1 extra large carrot, peeled
2 small cucumbers
3 slices mozzarella or Swiss cheese
These are extremely simple to make and super fun! First, trim up the carrot by cutting off the ends. Then, cut carrot in half. To make the board part of the skateboard, slice carrot lengthwise into four 4-inch-long slices.

Trim the top and bottom ends from the cucumber. To make the skateboard wheels, cut cucumber into eight 2-inch-thick slices.

Cut cheese slices into strips, circles, stars, or any other shaped desired. For fancy shapes, use small fondant cutters.

Last thing to do is to assemble skateboards, place a carrot strip on top of two cucumber wheels. Decorate carrot with cheese. Now, in my photo it will look different because we did it backwards with carrot wheels and cucumber tops, but either way works great!

So, there you have it. A fun weekend meal for the kids! Let me know if you try it and what you think of it!

Peace and Good JuJu,

Friday, June 22, 2012

Warning: Yoga is DANGEROUS!

I would like to tell a story about my exercise session from Monday!

First off, I'm doing a lot better with my eating habits! I know that if I can just conquer my eating habits, I'll be on a better path towards a healthier me. If only I could just keep going with the exercise part, I would be much better off!

Now, onto my Monday story. I own the Your Shape: Fitness Evolved 2012 game for the Xbox Kinect. I have used it a number of times, but never consistently. I know, I'm bad, but I'm getting better! So, I decided to start small and do a mix of routines for 20 minutes, 3 times a week. I know its something that I can commit to and start with. Eventually I hope to build up to more time, and maybe 5 times a week.

The main thing I love about the game is the wide variety of different programs and exercises you can do. There are activities set up for specific body parts, for toning, cardio, dance type classes. and even yoga. With all stress I've been under lately, I decided to try the yoga part.

I've done yoga before. My experience isn't broad by any means, but I've done a few yoga DVDs in the comfort of my home and also tried Hot Yoga (which I loved by the way!). So, I figured doing Yoga with the Your Shape game would be a nice mix up and could possibly help alleviate some stress. I love how the game plays calming music as you are doing the yoga poses. I started with some breathing exercises. Then moved into some light poses. Everything was going great. Until I started moving into a Warrior III pose.

Warrior III is a pose I've done a handful of times, but never inside of my cramped spare room. So there I am. Doing a light squat, stretching out my arms, reaching forward and beginning to pull my left leg up. Once I have my leg up, I begin to stretch my leg behind me and balance on my right leg.... only instead of balancing, I stretched my leg back a LITTLE too forcefully and slammed my foot right into the closet door. And I don't mean lightly. Let me tell you, I fell face first on the ground! Immediately followed by hysterical laughter! I realized then that I was standing way too close to the closet doors. 4 days later and my leg STILL hurts.

After telling my friends and coworkers about why I was limping, everyone just laughed. The most common response I got was "You know, yoga is supposed to be a peaceful exercise!" This I know, but now I know just how dangerous it can be too! HEHE!

Okay, cheesy story, I know, but its all I could think of right now! Its been a crazy busy and stressful week. I'm just trying to keep up my light workouts and keep sticking with my eating habits. Before long they will just be second nature and that's when the real fun begins!

Peace and Good JuJu,

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

To do or Not to do - Engagement Photos?

I've been in a battle with myself since the Pre-Hubby and I got engaged.. should we do Engagement photos or not?

To me, I feel like everyone I know has some sort of photo session shortly after the engagement and before the actual wedding. But is it worth it? Is it cost effective? Remember, we're trying to have a fun but budget friendly event. So is this something we can cut for the sake of saving money?

And then I found the following photo and I realized we MUST do an engagement photo session.

The photos, by DWJ Studio, were just amazing and made me FEEL happy! I realized that I wanted that for myself! I wanted those photos, that memory, that happy moment before the crazy begins! I want it to remind us that we can have crazy fun together.

I immediately started looking up other engagement photo ideas! I was filled with ideas and thoughts, and so much wonder. I wanted pictures of us making a heart shape, pictures with the sunset, pictures on the beach, pictures running from zombies (so awesome, right?!) and so much more. Then I realized I had NO IDEA where to start!

So I emailed the above photo to my photographer friend at Luminous Photography, who we want to do our wedding day photos, and said this is what I wanted to do! At the end of our Washington summer (which only lasts 3 weeks here, so its gotta be planned perfect!) I want to do a small session with Pre-Hubby and have these wonderful memories to take us all the way to the big day! She said she would help find locations and I got so excited! I know for a fact that I want some photos taken at Kerry Park, the place that Pre-Hubby proposed!

Now, I just wait. I need to find a couple relevant ideas I like, order some awesome color powder, get white t-shirts, and plan a fun day at the end of summer for photo fun!

So let's hear it! Did you do engagement photos? did you do a theme, or just have fun with it? If you decided against them, why? I'd love to hear other peoples thoughts!
Peace and Good JuJu,

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Angel Hair pasta with Pesto, Mushrooms and Arugula

This meal is delicious and super filling. The recipe calls for only 1 cup per serving, and it is definitely enough! I made this meal during the week and it is super delicious and Pre-Hubby loved it! Finding healthy things that he will eat makes me so happy! I will apologize now for not having a slideshow showing the whole process. My camera cord is broken, so I wasn't able to download my pics. I will make sure to add a photo as soon as I get the camera cord fixed!
1 tsp. Kosher salt
8 oz uncooked angel hair pasta
1 TB extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup diced onion
8 oz baby portobello mushrooms, sliced
1/3 cup Pesto
3 cups Arugula
Freshly shaved parmesan cheese

First, fill large pot 2/3 full with water, add salt, and place over medium-high heat. Bring to boil, add pasta, and cook per package directions. Once fully cooked, drain the pasta and put off to the side.

Next, Heat a large skillet on high. After the pan is heated, spray with a bit of olive oil cooking spray and add onion. Cook for 4 minutes until onion is soft. Then, add the mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes or until liquid released from mushrooms has evaporated. Remove the pan from the heat. Add the arugula to the mushroom mixture. I like to put a lid over the top to help wilt the arugula a bit faster. Wilted is fine for this meal.

With the veggies done cooking, toss the pasta into a large bowl and add the pesto. Make sure to mix it all together well. All that's left to do now is serve up pasta on a large serving dish or on individual plates and top with Arugula and mushroom mix and some freshly shaved Parmesan cheese 

It was so easy and quick to make and tasted so good! I even had left overs to bring for lunch so I can make everyone at work jealous :)

Let me know if you try this recipe yourself and if you enjoy it!

Peace and Good JuJu,

Friday, June 15, 2012

Let the Contest Begin... almost!

***OH NO!!! I just realized that this post was still in Draft mode and didn't post Friday night like it should have! My apologies! I'm posting now!***

So, today was an awesome day! I've gotten the full go ahead to do a Biggest Loser contest at work and today I sent out the rules email!  I'm so excited to get it started. My boss and I even went down to the 24 hour fitness on the floor below us and are working to get a couple prizes donated, as well as getting them to host a group fitness class or two during the duration of the contest!

Here are the rules for the contest:
  • First – HAVE FUN! Eat Healthy, Exercise, and listen to your body. More than losing weight, this is about getting healthy! 
  • First weigh-in will be Monday July 2nd (shoes off!) 
  • The final weigh-in will be Monday September 3rd 
  • There will be a $5 entry fee for all contestants that must be paid by the first weigh in 
  • Weigh-ins MUST be submitted by 11AM on Mondays to the Moderator 
  • Any weigh-ins NOT submitted on time, will be charged a $1 penalty 
  • There will be a $1 penalty for each pound gained ($.10 for each .1lb gained)

The winner of the contest will be the person who loses the largest percentage of body weight, not pounds lost. I'm so excited for the contest and for the opportunity to get healthy WITH my co-workers. I keep hearing flutterings around the office of people wanting to lose weight and get healthy, and I'm so excited to be able to bring the opportunity to them! The owner has even  signed on to MATCH the buy in pot to get a nice prize for the winner! Its great to work for a company that really wants to help people get healthier!

Well, I'll keep you updated on all the happenings of the contest! Hope you all have a great week!!

Peace and Good JuJu,

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Searching for Wedding Venues

I'm gonna make this short and sweet and share with you all 2 of the venues I am leaning towards for the Pre-Hubby and I's wedding. Both are water-view venues and located in the Seattle area. They are both gorgeous and great fits for us, as well as our theme! I'm hoping we can make a final decision on one of these places within the first couple weeks of August.

First up is Golden Gardens Bathhouse. Located at Golden Gardens park in Ballard, WA, this place is my absolute favorite! Its RIGHT on the beach and is absolutely gorgeous. The pictures I've seen of real life weddings that are held at this venue are simply stunning. Its got the water view and beach setting I want, and that old school flair that I want. Back in March, right after our engagement, Pre-Hubby and I went to the park to take a look at the place. Of course there was an event going on when we got there, but we were able to wander around the outside, take a look at the open meadow where ceremonies are typically performed, and wander along the beach. I was in love!

My only concern is that this place is a hot venue and because of this, they have rolling lotteries for reservations. That means that since we want our wedding in August 2013, we have to submit our application before August 1st of this year. They will perform a lottery and if our application is pulled for that day, we have 3 days to submit the $250 deposit. If we don't get pulled, we just don't get it or we have to choose a different date. Also, this venue is a mandatory 8 hour minimum rental, plus a handful of other fees because for being a venue in a city park. Still within our price range, but slightly discouraging to think about. Here are a few of my favorite photos of this venue.

The second place that's hot on our list is Lake Washington Rowing club. This is a last minute find that never came up in my initial venue searches. The pricing is great, the venue is big, and its right on the water. This venue includes a large rounded patio/deck that the woman said many people have chosen to get married on. It provides a great view of the dock and the water and there is a small spark/walking trail nearby. The other advantage of this location is the picture opportunities. This place is 2 blocks away from the famous Fremont Troll. I think it would be awesome to have wedding photos taken there!
While this place is well within our budget, and allows for a rental for the WHOLE DAY (12+hours) with just one fee, they require a much larger deposit to reserve the space (1/2 of the rental fee and a $150 cleaning fee that is refundable as long as the place isn't trashed). That's a lot of money to come up with in a short amount of time, just to reserve the site. The plus for this site though, is that its not as popular as Golden Gardens, therefore we can potentially wait longer to reserve it and have our date still available. Here are some photos I love of the Lake Washington Rowing venue.

So there you have it. Our top two venues. I'd love to know what other people think of them, so let me know your thoughts. I'm really excited to take a second look at each of them in person and really narrow down which one we want to decide on. SO EXCITING!

Peace and Good JuJu,

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Spaghetti with Sauteed Chicken and Grape Tomatoes is a great website for finding quick and simple recipes. In my quest to find healthier recipes that fall within my diet guidelines (see Fitness Friday post about diets), I've found this website to be extremely helpful. This weekend I decided to try the Spaghetti with Sauteed Chicken and Grape Tomatoes.
The meal is delicious and even the Pre-Hubby thought it was great!

2 chicken breasts, diced in 1 inch cubes
cooking spray
1/2 tsp each of dried oregano and dried basil
kosher salt and fresh pepper
8 oz spaghetti
2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
6 cloves garlic, smashed and coarsely chopped
4 tsp extra virgin olive oil
4 tbsp chopped fresh basil

The first thing you want to do is get your spaghetti cooking. Follow the package instructions and get some water in a pot to begin boiling.

With spaghetti started, dice up the chicken into 1 inch cubes. Once complete, put in a large ziploc bag with pepper, salt, oregano, and basil. Heat a large skillet on high. After the pan is heated, spray with a bit of olive oil cooking spray and cook the chicken for 3-4 minutes, until there is no pink left.

While the chicken is cooking, cut your grape tomatoes in half and chop up the garlic. Your chicken should be done by now, so remove it from the stove and set aside. Using the skillet, respray with a light dusting of olive oil cooking spray and add the garlic. You will want to saute until golden brown, but do not burn it! Next, add the diced tomatoes and turn heat to medium-low. Add a dash of salt and pepper and saute the tomatoes and garlic for another 3-4 minutes.

By now your pasta should be done and drained. Add the pasta to the tomato mixture and toss well. Add the fresh basil and the chicken to the mixture and toss together. Serve and top with cheese if you like!

Here is a slideshow of the process.

A quick and simple meal that everyone will love! Let me know if you try this recipe yourself and if you enjoy it!

Peace and Good JuJu,

Friday, June 8, 2012

Choosing the right "Diet"

Over the years, I've tried a large number of diets. I've tried Atkins, the Rice Diet, South Beach, Slim fast, and I even tried doing different cleanses. Everything was always temporary and never lasted! Every pound I lost, I gained it back plus more. It was always so discouraging!

When I went to my doctor last August and talked to her seriously about me losing weight, she asked me what I've tried so far. I told her about all the various fad diets I've tried. Even how I've tried just eating "healthy foods" in smaller portions and exercising. I could keep up with the exercising, as long as it was interesting, but what she told me was the most important is the types of foods you eat.

The doctor asked if I'd ever heard of the Mediterranean diet. In my head I thought "oh great, another diet with crazy requirements and I'll fail like everything else" but also figured that my doctor wouldn't mention some wild fad diet that doesn't work. When I told her I knew nothing about it, she gave me a few informational sheets on the diet and gave me a few pointers. My issues with food are staying full and finding foods that taste great without having to eat alot. With this diet, it wasn't just about making sure to get in the appropriate number of calories into my body, but the types of calories, the kinds of foods I needed to eat.

The Mediterranean Diet is a food guideline following the traditional dietary patterns of those from Spain, Greece, southern France and Italy. It is a largely plant based diet that emphasizes minimally processed foods. It relies on olive oil to replace other fats and oils. It also restricts red meat to only a few times a month. Luckily for me, that last one was rather simple. I like burgers and steaks, but my stomach can only handle so much red meat before it hurts.

I spent three months following the guidelines of the Mediterranean diet. It really came down to different ways of preparing the same foods I already love. I stayed within my calorie limit without any problems. I was even able to fit in some yummy desserts to satisfy my sweet tooth. The foods I was eating kept me energized and feeling full longer. I didn't have the desire to snack consistently because I was eating more nuts and seeds filled with fiber. I really feel like following the Mediterranean Diet Pyramid was a big contributor to the weight I lost before the end of the year.

Its my own fault that I stopped following these guidelines. After the holidays, I started eating more processed foods, snacking all the time, and indulging in fast food frequently. I felt bad because I know how far I had come and what I was throwing away. So many times I've heard that eating healthy is a lifelong change. You can't just "diet" until you get to where you want. I spent months limiting my fast food and amount of processed foods I ate and I threw it all away when the stress of the holidays came.

No More! Stress is still my biggest weakness, but after talking with the Pre-Hubby, we both felt better when we were eating better foods. And the fresh unprocessed foods in the Mediterranean diet were quick and easy to make and helped keep me full! I created various weekly eating plans for when I would go shopping. I've resurrected my shopping lists and menu plans and plan on going shopping this weekend to restock my home. I'm at a perfect starting point too! With the vacations that we've had in the last 2 months, and lack of funds until recently, our home is virtually empty of food (including the bad stuff)! It will be nice to have fresh foods in the fridge again. And wholegrain unprocessed items in the cupboards.

So, have you tried fad diets? Have you found something that works for you successfully? Have you tried the basic "Eat Healthier" method? What successes or failures have you experienced in choosing the right foods to eat? Let me know!

Before I sign off, check out the bottom of the post for a list of links/books that I've found beneficial in learning about the Mediterranean Diet.

Peace and Good JuJu,

Oldways Mediterranean Diet Info
The Complete Idiot's Guide to the Mediterranean Diet

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Beautiful Philadelphia Wedding!!

So, I know I still haven't posted about my vacation to Philly, but there was a reason I traveled 3000 miles from home to the city of Brotherly Love! WEDDING!!

In August of 2002, I hopped on a plan and flew to Central Pennsylvania where I attended my first year of college at Penn State. It was good times. I was far from home, which made me terribly homesick, but I met some great friends that I still have to this day. When I left after that year (i moved back home for school), I promised one of the girls who had plans of going to law school, that if she ever made it and graduated law school I would come back for it! Sure enough, 4 years ago I flew to Pittsburgh to watch her graduate. And now, almost 10 years after we became friends, she got married!

I could go on and on about the ceremony and reception, the food, the desserts, the dancing, the people I saw that I haven't seen in 9 years, and the new friends I made. However, I really just want to talk about one piece of the ceremony that I really enjoyed.

You know that part in movies, when a couple is standing at the alter and the priest says "If any one objects to these 2 getting married, speak now or forever hold your peace?" I've never been to a wedding where it was said exactly like that, but at this wedding, it wasn't said at all! Instead, there was a part in the ceremony called "The Support of the People". The Reverend began by talking about how marriage is tough and there will be many struggles. He also mentioned that there will be times that you will want to give up, but you must remember that you have made this commitment together and must work through it together. And then the cool part started.

Reverend Max then looked out into the crowd. He stated that friends and family are just important to a couple having a successful marriage. They are there to help the couple remember the good times and assist with the struggles the best they can. Through their support and friendship, they must stand by this couple through it all. Then he asked everyone "Will you stand by this couple and help them in the good and the bad, and support them in their commitment to each other?" To this, everyone responded with "WE WILL".

This is something I would love to have done at my wedding. I think its important that a couple have a great support system around them. I see so many couples who just give up when things get tough and walk away without remembering the reason why they chose to marry the person they are with. Without friends and family around to help put those minor annoyances with your spouse into perspective, some people walk away from their greatest love for the stupidest reason.

So tell me, do you have a great support system to help you through the tough times? Did you do a similar event at your own wedding? I would love to know if other people did similar things during their ceremonies!

Peace and Good JuJu,

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Tonga Toast from Kona Cafe - Guest Post

Last week while I was on vacation, I had wanted to have a guest spot for Savory Sunday. The only problem was I wasn't anywhere near a computer to get the information and post it up! Have no fear, because I am posting it today! The guest blogger is a wonderful person! I guess I have to say that, since she is my best friend! Mia ( has provided us a recipe from a challenge she is doing. I have asked her to give a brief intro to the challenge and all the recipe goodness! So, without further ado, TONGA TOAST!

Hello everyone, I am Mia. Two of the women from the MAGIC 24.7 Radio Crew and myself are part of a project that is reminiscent of the Julie Powell experience of making one Julia Child's recipe a day for a year. As the three of us (myself, Ashley from, and Krystal from are Disney fanatics, we have decided to take on this challenge with a twist: One full year of daily Disney inspired recipes!. The ‘365 In Home Disney Dining Challenge’ will showcase these Disney recipes with a difficulty key, and detailed instructions/images. Our challenge began on March 26, 2012 and we are now 50 recipes in and loving it! Below is one of the first challenge recipes I tried, Tonga Toast from the Kona Cafe! 

2 or 4 slices sourdough bread
1 banana
1/3 cup sugar 
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Oil or shortening for frying
Whipped butter and/or syrup
(this recipe is rated Easy)

To start, cut bananas in half cross wise, and then lengthwise. Then, take sourdough bread and cut into 1-1/2 inches thick. Take the bananas and insert into the bread pocket.

Now, it is time to mix the egg, milk, and vanilla together and dip the bread. Make sure to completely cover both sides of the bread.After the bread has been soaked, transfer the pieces to a pan full of oil (should be about 4 inches full) that has been heated to 350 degrees. Fry bread on each side until lightly browned (approximately 3 minutes per side)

Once the toast is completely cooked, start mixing the sugar/cinnamon topping and generously sprinkle on top. Then, either top with butter or syrup and enjoy!

I hope you all enjoyed the guest post today! Be sure to check out some more recipes from the 365 In Home Disney Dining Challenge. Be sure to let me know if you try this recipe yourself and what you think of it!

Peace and Good JuJu,

Friday, June 1, 2012

Fitness news that's work related!

First off, my apologies for not posting in over a week! I went to Philadelphia for vacation (will try to write about that this weekend) and found myself not near a computer the whole time! It was great though, fully enjoyed myself!

Now, onto Fitness!!

A few years back, I worked for a large health insurance company. The longer I worked there, the lazier I felt. I had a customer service job, followed by a claims processing position, so I spent more than 8 hours a day sitting on my lazy bum! I was in one of my highest weight gaining periods ever. I was unhealthy and miserable almost all the time. I noticed that a lot of my co-workers were the same way.

One day, one of my co-workers and I started talking about the Biggest Loser TV show. We always talked about how successful WE would be if we ever got on the show. this went on for a couple weeks before we decided to try a contest with a few co-workers, Biggest Loser style. To make it fun, we all pitched in $5. We each had to weigh in Monday mornings and at the end of a 2 month period, the biggest "loser" won the buy-in money!

It started out small, with just a handful of us, and over the year it grew into a huge contest, involving multiple teams, and having prizes like gym memberships, yoga session, cash, and gift cards for sports stores. I never one, but my weight slowly started to go down. I was mainly impressed with how many people started to take an active role in their health.

A year after starting the contests, I left the company. I still had over a year left of school, and lost the competition, motivation, and desire to keep up with my healthy habits. Needless to say, I gained all of it back, plus some! Occasionally I think back to those contests and how they kept me going.

I've been at my current company for almost 2 years (I had 1 job in between this one and the health insurance company that was NOT a healthy environment!). I've been trying to stay on track with getting healthy for a while now, and noticed that many co-workers are doing the same thing. So, 2 weeks ago, I came up with this brilliant idea! I know my company is small, but what if we did a Biggest Loser style contest?

I presented the idea to a friend at work. She thought it was a brilliant idea. With that, I went to my boss, who again thought it was a brilliant idea and said I should take it to our HR man. I ran over to his desk, borrowed 5 minutes of his time, and pitched my idea! He loved it! He tasked me with creating a proposal of sorts to explain how the contest would be run, the rules, and what prizes would be offered.

Sadly, I was leaving for vacation the next day, so I didn't have time to present my info to him right away. However, yesterday I was able to sit down with the HR man and my boss for an hour and talk through the rules and requirements, pentalities, prize options, and how to incoporate our Costa Rica and Atlanta offices into the contest! I was so excited!

This will be the most thought-out BL contest I've ever done. One of the things that my boss brought up was how we have a 24 Hour Fitness on the floor below us in our office building! Next week, I will be speaking wtih them about possibilities of using their scales, possible prize donations, and if they will hold a class for all the participants in our program!

I can't wait to share this new adventure with you all! It doesn't kick off until July 2nd, so plenty of time to prepare for the contest, and get my eating and exercise habits in check!

That's all for today folks! Stay tuned for more info later! HAPPY FRIDAY!

Peace and Good JuJu,