Squashing Saturday

Happy Saturday, didja do anything good today?  Mhm, mhm, sounds fun.  Me?  Oh, the usual.  Got my workout in this morning, did some cleaning, trip to Costco, did some cookin’…….

Let me start with the workout though.  I have definitely been slacking on the strength training these last 2 months.  I haven’t even been in the gym since probably the beginning of the year (in my defense though, I’ve been waiting for all those New Year’s Resolution-ers to get the F out!).  What I have been doing is a lot of Zumba, Insanity, Kickboxing, and running.  Don’t get me wrong, I have been doing some ST, just not like I should be.  Today I put in my P90X Chest, Shoulders and Tris video and squashed it!  I better get some good pain tomorrow!

As for my cooking, well I was pa-rousing around Pinterest a little (okay, A LOT.  Is anybody else addicted to this damn website!?!?!) and saw a Spaghetti Squash casserole.  I didn’t even bother looking at the recipe, I figured I’d make up my own.

This is what I came up with:

3 cups cooked Spaghetti Squash

1/2 (10oz) pkg Frozen Spinach – thawed & squeezed

1/4c Onion

1/2 (8oz) pkg Sliced Mushrooms

3-4 cloves Garlic

4 pieces Sund-Dried Tomatoes (NOT in oil)

Olive Oil Cooking Spray

2 Egg Whites

3 oz Fat Free Greek Yogurt (or Sour Cream)

2 Laughing Cow Swiss Cheese wedges

1/2c Sargento Reduced Fat 4 Cheese Italian Blend

S&P to taste

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  In a large skillet, sweat your onions and garlic in the cooking spray.  Toss in the chopped tomatoes, spinach and mushrooms and sautee for 3-5 minutes.  In a large bowl, whisk your egg whites until they get a bit frothy then toss in your squash and sauteed veggies.  Mix well.  In a small bowl, microwave the cheese wedges for 12-15 seconds to really soften them up then toss that and the yogurt in the big bowl (S&P goes in now too!).  Mix it all up really well and then pour it into an 8×8 (or 9×9 or whatever small baking dish you have) that’s been sprayed with cooking spray.  Top it with the shredded cheese and bake it for about 30 minutes till hot and bubbly!

**Note:  This was a tad too spinach-y for my taste, so next time around I’ll decrease the spinach (or use fresh) and increase the tomatoes.

Stats for HALF THE PAN!!!!  Oh yeah, you read that right!

  • Servings Per Recipe: 2
  • Amount Per Serving
  • Calories: 254.2
  • Total Fat: 7.4 g
  • Cholesterol: 19.5 mg
  • Sodium: 633.2 mg
  • Total Carbs: 23.8 g
  • Dietary Fiber: 5.7 g
  • Protein: 24.3 g

I can’t wait to eat the other half of the pan tomorrow!

I’ve got the bug.

The CRAFTING bug!

Ever since I started my Christmas basket project, I’ve been itching to do more crafty things.  I used to do scrapbooks and things like that before the kids and well….then the kids happened!  Now that they’re a bit older and can entertain themselves a bit I have some time for this little hobby.

One thing that I’ve been meaning to do is the photos for our bathroom.  We remodeled, like, 8 months ago!

Last night I put on the IPod, and while my Butternut Squash Soup simmered away I got to work:

I also took the kiddies out in the snow yesterday.  Anyone with kids can understand the getting ready to time outside ratio.  Something like 75/25.  It took FOREVER to get on all their gear.  Within 15 minutes Reese had frozen snot all over his face (I’ll spare you that photo), but I did get some cute shots with the new camera!

As for the ‘Kickin’ part of the post…..well I’ve been slacking.  I decided last week that I would take it easy till the end of the year.  That doesn’t mean I stopped working out, I’ve just toned it down.  Being sick helped me to take a little time off.  January 1 begins my new regimen, I’ll get into that in another post. 

Happy hump day peeps!

Yeah. We’re THOSE people.

So I decorated the day before Thanksgiving.  Sue me.

Peyton had been asking since last week to put up the tree.  Who am I to squash her Christmas spirit? 😉

Speaking of SQUASH (like the seguay?)…….

While decorating for Christmas, I was pondering what to do with all of our lovely gourds from Thankshallowgiving.  I had 2 sugar pumpkins in the bunch so I did some recipe searches and decided to make Pumpkin Casserole!   The rest went with my dad out to the shooting range.  I think he had fun.  Who doesn’t love an exploding pumpkin?

Back to the casserole.  So I had 2 sugar pumpkins, BUT….Peyton had decorated one for Halloween and refused to let me cook it.  After a while of coaxing, it did seem morbid, I mean- he had a face ☺! – so I let her keep it.  To fill in for that pumpkin I decided to use an acorn squash.  PERFECT!! 

So without further ado – Pumpkin/Squash Casserole

(original recipe adapted [and then hacked to pieces] from allrecipes.com) 

1 Sugar Pumpkin

1 Acorn Squash

Butter cooking spray

Cinnamon

Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.  Cut the gourds in half and scrape out the seeds.  Place on a baking sheet, spray with sooking spray and sprinkle cinnamon.  They’ll need at least an hour to get nice and soft.  Once they’re done, let them cool completely and then peel the skins away:

Use an immersion blender to puree it. 

You’ll need 2 cups of this for the recipe.  I have enough left over for protien bars!!

Ok, next you’ll need:

4 egg whites

1/2c Evaporated Milk – Skim

1 c Wheat Bran (Bob’s Red Mill)

1/2c Sweetener (Splenda)

2tbsp Buttery Spread – melted (Smart Balance Light)

1/2tsp Baking Powder

1/8 tsp Baking Soda

1tsp Cinnamon

Mix everthing into the puree and pour it into a prepared casserole dish. 

 Bake this bad boy for 1 hour at 350. 

Slice into 6 servings:

IT WAS LIKE HAVING PIE FOR DINNER!  NO LIE!  MMMMmmmmmm…………

Now if you want something more savory you could reduce the sugar and add in curry powder.  Or you could add more sugar and pumpkin pie spice for a sweet dessert dish. 

Stats~ 6 servings:

112 cals  /  2 fat  /  22 carb  /  9 protein

And now for a quick survey:  Real tree or fake?

Redemption.

Have you ever made something and thought that it wasn’t gonna be that good and it turns out AH-MAZE-ING?  Yeah.  That happened today!

I’ve only made Butternut Squash soup once before and it was ok.  Not great.  Kinda bland.

Today was my redemption.

Butternut Squash Soup 

4 cups Butternut Squash – peeled and cubed

1 cup  Sweet Potato – peeled and cubed

1 cup Parsnips – peeled and cut into pieces

1/3 cup sliced Vidalia Onion

2 tbsp Cider Vinegar

1.5 tbsp Honey

1tsp Nutmeg

1-2 tsp Cinnamon

2 Garlic Cloves

2 cups Stock  (I used Wyler’s Sodium free boullion, but Vegetable or Chicken would work)

1 tsp Oregano

1 tsp Basil

1 tbsp Curry Powder

1/2 cup Fat Free Evaporated Milk

Olive Oil Cooking Spray

Salt to taste

Pre-heat your oven to 350.  Spray a baking dish with cooking spray. Toss the squash, potato, onion and parsnip in the honey and vinegar until coated.  Sprinkle on the nutmeg and cinnamon. Roast for about 45-50 min until tender (add a bit of water if necessary).  Stir it up after the first 20 minutes.

In a large pot saute garlic with some more cooking spray. Toss in roasted vegetables, stock, oregano, basil, salt and curry:

Simmer for 30 min until flavors combine and blend with an immersion blender:

Once it’s blended, add in the evaporated milk:

Yum.

Cals: 145  Fat: 1  Carbs: 33  Protein: 4

Makes 6 – 1 cup servings.


 

Kicking it up a notch.

Today is going to be a double.  Last week I felt kinda sluggish and my workouts were definitely suffering, so I’m gonna work a teeeeeeny bit harder this week. 

I started off with INSANITY Pure Cardio & Cardio Abs on Saturday:

  Ooooh.  Those videos get harder and harder!   

 Yesterday was supposed to be a run with Ivy, but weather conditions were just plain crappy.  Instead, I did a 4.5 mile run (on the treadmill, with a 1/2 mile warmup/cooldown).  I kept it at an incline the whole time because I really need to work on running uphill (the 5k in December is like, 60% hills).

So today’s workouts will consist of INSANITY – yeah I’m back for more – and kickboxing tonight.

As for the food portion of today’s blog – I went a little squash ♥ crazy while grocery shopping:

I’m craving more of that Stuffed Acorn Squash from last Tuesday so that’s the plan for that guy.  The butternut squash is destined to be a soup and the spaghetti squash – well, he’s just gonna get covered in some Roasted Tomato Bruschetta, feta and olives either tonite or tomorrow.

I’m off to let Shaunt T. kick my a$$.  Happy Monday! ☺

Squash Tuesday!

Looks like I’m on a gourd mission this week, huh?  

🙂 Keep reading…..

Today was supposed to be a rest day.  Up at 6:30 as usual, oat bran and coffee (mmmm…) off to the library for sing-along time, more bedtime books and some movies and then to Mom’s so the kids can play. 

By the time we got home it was 1-ish and Reese was rubbing his eyes.  I may have been too. 

Lunch was worth waiting for:

 

Olivia’s Baby greens, a chopped up Morningstar Farms Tomato Basil Pizza veggie burger, chick peas, grilled balsamic vegetables and a sprinkle of Sargento Reduced Fat 4-cheese Italian blend.  My salads get interesting when I have leftovers to use up…..

The BFF called to ask if I wanted to do a power walk today.  I have a hard time saying no to exercise, especially when it’s with Jess cause we don’t get to see each other as often anymore.  

I’m a bit tired from the last few days but I really like this particular route because of this:

THE BURNER HILL!!!  Dum-Dum-Duuuuuum!

In order to push the 100 or so pounds of toddlers and stroller up this thing I have to hunch forward so the handle of the stroller is even with the top of my head!  There was no way I was going to be able to push my stroller up it today so Jess pushed the toddlers up and I took the twins:

Burn, Baby, Burn!!!!!

Jess basically pulverized the hill.  Look at her.  Didn’t even break a sweat:

By the time dinner rolled around I was FAMISHED!  I saw a recipe for a stuffed acorn squash recently on Red Head Recipes and felt it definitely needed to be made.

Apple & Maple Sausage Stuffed Acorn Squash

Serves 2

1 Acorn Squash

1 tbsp + 1 tbsp Smart Balance Light

1 200-300g Apple

2 Links Maple Sausage (I used Trader Joe’s fully cooked kind to cut down time)

2 tbsp chopped walnuts

Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Salt to taste

Preheat your oven to 350.  Cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds.  Brush the insides with the first tbsp of ‘butter’ and bake for 50-ish minutes until soft.  Around the 40 minute mark, dice your apple up and saute with the other tbsp of butter (adding water if necessary).  When they’re just about the softness you desire, chop the sausage up and toss it in too.   Add in your spices.  Stuff the filling into your squash halves, top with walnuts and it should look something like this:

Jealous?  I would be too! 😉

Nite!

We have a SITUATION!

This morning I introduced Ivy to Shaun T.  She didn’t like him much at first, but by the time we were finished I think she was cool with him.

We did the first video in the set, I think it’s called plyo cardio or something.  It should be called “Get Ready For Complete Fatigue And Muscle Failure – Oh What? You’re Tired? Whaaa – Suck it up!” 

That was probably too long to fit on the DVD sleeve….

I am seeing a bit of improvement from the first time I did this video a little over a week ago 🙂   I wasn’t too wasted at the end so I pushed out some pull-ups right after (Ivy hung in there with me- HOLLA!). 

We were totally shown up by Elise though:

SHE”S A MACHINE!

Not to be outdone, Reese showed off his ‘situation’:

I spent the afternoon doing arts and crafts with Peyton and trying to teach Reese the names of his cars (he totally has ‘corvette’ and ‘mustang’ down!).  I also hit Ocean State Job Lot for party supplies for Peyton’s birthday party this saturday.  I managed to control myself and get only what I needed. 

And a Halloween costume for Reese. 

Race car driver of course!

Because I had the time and was feeling really munch-y, I did a quick 3 miles on the treadmill before dinner…..

….which was whipped up in about 10 minutes:

Spaghetti Squash with an artichoke/tomato tepanade, salmon and a sprinkle of parmesan.  ♥

Awesome and stupid easy.

Anyhow, hubby has the night off so I’m off to spend some bonding time with him.  Until 9.  Then I’ll be bonding with Grey’s Anatomy  😉

Toodles!

Do you say Fall or Autumn?

The brisk weather lately has made me crave fall-like things.  Like baked apples, down comforters, crock pot soup, tweed and THANKSGIVING! 

So in honor of the upcoming Autumn Season I made Thanksgiving Lite: 

 

Roasted Butternut Squash with Apples and Wheatberries: 

Savory, ground, 2-3 tsp   

Thyme, ground, 2-3 tsp  

Rosemary, ground, 2-3 tsp 

Oregano, ground, 2-3 tsp 

Black pepper, to taste
(Mix the spices together in a small bowl)
 

Apples, fresh, 1 cup, quartered or chopped
 

Red Onions, raw, 1/3 cup, sliced
 

Honey, 2 tbsp
 

Cranberries, dried, sweetened 1/4 cup
 

Wheatberries – Cooked, 1/2 c
 

 College Inn, Light & Fat Free, 50% less Sodium, Chicken Broth, 1/2c
  

Cider Vinegar, 2 tbsp
 
Butternut Squash, 20 oz 

Turkey Cutlets (Butterball 99% Fat free) 16 oz 

Preheat oven to 350.  Peel and cube the squash.  Pour the chicken broth into a 9×13 baking dish and add the squash and sprinkle with a little seasoning.  Bake for 15-20 minutes until the squash softens a bit.  While the squash is baking, slice the onion and toss it with the honey and vinegar.  Cube the apple.  Add both to the baking dish as well as the cooked wheatberries and stir well.  Bake another 15-20 minutes until the apple and squash are soft.  Remove the dish from the oven and stir in the craisins. 

Heat a large grill pan and coat with olive oil cooking spray.  Lay the cutlets in the hot pan and give them a quick hit of cooking spray also.  Sprinkle with the seasoning mix and flip when the edges turn white (4-5 min each side). 

Side dish stats: Serves 6 

 
Calories 116.7
  Total Fat 0.4 g
      Saturated Fat 0.0 g
      Polyunsaturated Fat 0.1 g
      Monounsaturated Fat 0.0 g
  Cholesterol 0.0 mg
  Sodium 42.5 mg
  Potassium 317.3 mg
  Total Carbohydrate 29.5 g
      Dietary Fiber 4.9 g
      Sugars 9.3 g
  Protein 2.1 g
I meant to make some asparagus with it, but Officer M had to leave for work and I ran out of time.  
But here’s a visual: 

 

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It’s raining and crappy this morning so that blows our plans for the park outta the water.  I’m going to get in some quality time with the E and do some strength training.   

Later I plan on experimenting with the Almond Meal and Peanut Flour – wish me luck! 

   

HAPPY FRIDAY 😛