Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Minestrone Soup Recipe

Here is the recipe for Minestrone Soup. As usual I will add the original recipe that I got online and then after I will post how I changed it a tad.


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 can (19 ounces) ready-to-serve minestrone soup
  • 1 can (15 ounces) pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) stewed tomatoes
  • 1 can (11 ounces) whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chilies
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder


  • In a large skillet, cook beef and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Transfer to a 3-qt. slow cooker. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Cover and cook on low for 4-6 hours or until heated through. Yield: 8 servings. 

    Editor's Note: The cost per serving does not include optional ingredients such as garnishes. When there is a choice of two ingredients, the cost is figured with the first one listed.
  • Nutrition Facts: 1 serving (1 cup) equals 221 calories, 6 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 29 mg cholesterol, 901 mg sodium, 24 g carbohydrates, 5 g fiber, 15 g protein

Now when I made this recipe, I added an extra can of Mixed Vegetables: Corn, Carrots and Green Beans. I also cooked this on my stove top, bringing it to a boil until heated through and the flavors really mesh together, instead of the slow cooker. I don't have time to use a slow cooker because I am gone from the house a good amount daily. At the end of cooking, I added a half of a can of Beef Broth because there didn't seem to be enough "soup" to it and also I added a pinch of beef bullion. In the end it was great and my only regret is that I didn't have a nice, crunchy baguette to go alone with it! 

Let me know if anyone tries this!

Day 3...

... has been the best so far. A mixup with my boyfriend and I caused me to oversleep this morning and I missed my exercise time :'( But I ate extremely well today. Probably didn't eat enough food though. For breakfast I had a hardboiled egg with mustard, whole grain toast with about a tablespoon of peanut butter and a half a glass of skim milk. I have never been a big breakfast person and when I do eat breakfast, it's rare if I eat anything related to breakfast at all. I'll eat leftover dinner for breakfast, sandwiches, soup, anything but breakfast. But now I find that I really enjoy eating my breakfast and I think it's because I know how important breakfast is for you and I know that I am eating some really great foods for my body. For lunch I ate a salad with kidney beans, garbonzo beans, and 2 pieces of tore up turkey lunch meat. So far I enjoy the salads as well but I know that soon I will get seriously sick of them so I need to look into something better for lunch. For dinner I made homemade minestrone soup with loads of vegetables. My boyfriend loved it too, maybe I'll post the recipe. And later in the evening when I felt the urge to munch, I ate 3 dill pickles. 1 1/4 pickles only have 5 calories. They have 280mg sodium though and I'm not sure if that's ok or not.

So in a nutshell: ate well but didn't exercise. And I'm pretty sure you need to have both for good results...  I have no class on Friday so looks like I have NO EXCUSE not to exercise :)

Stay Tuned

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Brita Filter

I recently got a Brita Filter from Bed Bath and Beyond for I believe $31. It's PINK (of course!) and I love it! Having the filter around with fresh cold water has actually prompted me to drink more water. And it tastes great. I have this thing, where I can seriously taste the difference between certain bottled water brands and the only 2 I would drink were Dasani and Aquafina. Ice Mountain or other brands tasted metallic to me but the Brita filter has no such taste to its water.

Since I am no longer using plastic water bottles which I seemed to be going through like crazy (thus polluting the planet because plastic does not decompose) I also bought a new reusable water bottle to take with me to class. I bought it at Foods For Living which is similar to a Trader Joes, and I believe it is by the brand Green Bottle. It is stainless steel and completely BPA free. You can put it in the refrigerator to keep it cold but can't freeze it. If you are still using plastic water bottles, NEVER freeze it. BPA is a chemical in water bottles that makes the plastic more pliable. By freezing or heating the water bottle, some of the BPA molecules are released into the water and you drink it. Same with plastic wrap and plastic food storage containers. Take food out of the plastic before you put it in the microwave. Glass storage containers seem to be the way to go, though they are a bit heavy and cost around $9 a container.

I will be doing a blog on PBA very soon so stay tuned

Day 2...

... was a medium success. Medium.

Before I start I just want to say that I don't plan on updating every day on what I am doing, but I figure since the beginning is the hardest part (to me anyway) of losing weight, that in the beginning I will post my trial and errors so everyone doesn't have to make the same mistakes as me :) just think of me as your own personal guinea pig :)

So last night I couldn't sleep for anything. I tried to go to bed at midnight and I tossed and turned until 1:30am when I finally got out of bed and watched youtube videos until 2:30am when I finally was falling asleep. I was finally able to fall asleep then but when I have to wake up at 7am I was exhausted. I felt sick to my stomach and had to sit on the edge of my bed for awhile trying not to vomit. I decided that there was no way I could go to my classes that early and so I drove my boyfriend to work and came home and slept a few hrs. I feel like I caught up on my sleep but when I headed out to class later in the day I felt drained and tired. I'm not sure if it's because of last night or maybe I slept a bit too much? For breakfast I ate a hardboiled egg with mustard and a cup of skim milk. I planned on eating some toast with peanut butter like I mentioned before but this was super early in the morning and I just went back to bed. When I woke and got ready for school I had a lunch of a small salad with kidney beans, garbonzo beans, 2 slices of thin turkey breast lunch meat that I tore and put into the salad, and a bit of salad dressing. Now let me tell you, it was a hard thing to not eat the entire bottle of dressing. I made a mistake of buying a delicious salad dressing (Kraft Tangy Tomato and Bacon) but I really tried not to use much of it. As Americans we consume a TON of calories in condiments that we don't even think about. A little ketchup here and there, some mayo. Mustard has 0 calories, which is why I chose to spruce my egg up a bit with it. And I'm talking normal plain ol' yellow mustard, not dijon, not spicy brown, because all of those have other things, like sugar, added to them. What I noticed I have been doing well is not drinking pop or juice. Yesterday I had a diet Snapple that I got while on my candy binge, and I did notice after that it was flavored with aspartame. isn't there anything left out there that is flavored with real sugar? And today I had the skim milk and then water. I will be posting about my brita filter next. I didn't work out today, I have the same excuse as yesterday, that it was dark when I got home. I have been racking my brains trying to figure out what to do about it since I have an obvious dilemma so I decided that on Monday/Wednesday/Friday I will work out in the morning before school, that way it wont be dark, and Tuesday and Thursday might just have to be the days that I take a break from exercise. I planned on only working out 5 days a week anyway. This weekend I also plan on taking my measurements so I can see if I am actually losing some weight. I just ordered 2 pairs of jeans in a size 16 so left pray that they fit :) I remember when I was a 9... before this PCOS thing started. Makes me sick just thinking about it. But then I think back a year to when I didn't own a single pair of jeans that fit and I wore the same pair of sweat pants every single day because I refused to get a side 20 pair of jeans. Now I'm back in a size 18 and the jeans I have are lose, so lets hope the 16s will give me a nice boost of confidence :)

Hope everyone is keeping well!
Stay tuned!

Monday, November 16, 2009


Trade Secret (a store that is in most malls that sells hair, skin and nail products and also have a salon) is having a sale on MATTE O.P.I nail polish: Buy one get one FREE. This is a VERY good deal considering one O.P.I nail polish is $8.50. I was going to take advantage of this sale but the 2 Trade Secrets that I went to both were sold out of almost every color but white. Any other time I would NOT suggest buying the O.P.I matte colors, even though it is a huge trend right now, because ESSIE is a brand that actually makes a matte top coat. It turns any nail polish into matte.

Don't know what matte is? Take a look:
See how the color has no shine to it, it is just dull, or matte? Awesome, huh?

Day 1...

... was a total flop. I set my alarm for 10:30am since I went to bed at around 2:30am (a friend came over and then after they left I had to read for class). But, of course, I couldn't get myself out of bed. When I'm half asleep I make terrible decisions. I turn my alarm off, I oversleep, I decide to stay home from class when had I been awake I would have realized that that is a horrible idea. Anyway, couldn't wake up and decided I'd sleep just until 11, until a telemarketer called me at 12:30pm and woke me up! AH! so much for the getting up early thing... And now it is 8:30pm and I'm already sleepy. I had class today and then ran errands with my boyfriend and by the time I pulled up to my apt it was already dark :( I don't know what to do about exercising since it gets dark so early and I usually don't have time to exercise until the evening. I guess I will figure it out. But to make matters worse, I have been fighting a lot lately with my boyfriend and I have been very stressed. Stress is badddd for weight loss and so is buying $5 worth of candy that the stress makes you crave! I did have a salad today, though, with kidney and garbonzo beans an I went light on the dressing, so I guess that's a plus. And I made some hard boiled eggs to have with breakfast from now on. I am going to have whole grain toast with a bit of peanut butter and a hard boiled egg for breakfast until I figure out a better GI alternative.... So hopefully tomorrow is a better day, complete with the Biggest Loser for a bit of inspiration.

XOXO Stay Tuned

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Tomorrow is the day!

Hi everyone! I just had to stop in and say that tomorrow is the day that I start changing everything around :) My mom generously bought me a new pair of trainers because I had bought a cheap pair from Walmart and  after just a few uses, they were already hurting my feet. So of course I retired them to the closet and couldn't afford a new pair. Owning a good pair of shoes is so obvious now that I look back on it. Comfortable shoes will make you want to use them, plain and simple. If your workout shoes are more comfortable than the shoes you wear every day to class, work, etc. then working out should actually be a vacation for your feet :) I couldn't find a great pic online, but the shoes that I got are the "womens nike zoom nucleus MC+". I went with my mom to Playmakers, an athletic store in my area, and they actually make you take off your shoes and they watch how you walk back and forth, to see if your feet roll or have any arch to them. Apparently I needed a pretty supportive shoe because my feet roll in when I walk. Who knew? And this whole time I have been torturing myself with shoes made for just normal feet. I did not have time to exercise today, especially because here in Michigan it gets dark at about 6pm. Tomorrow on the other hand, is a new day. Tomorrow I have vowed to get outside with my new shoes, and just go for a walk. How hard can that be?

I'm thinking about making an 80's playlist on my iPod to really give me something to be excited about. I love 80's music. Any suggestions?

Also, I am heading to the grocery store in about an hour to get groceries for the week. Since I live with my bf, I can't (for now) eat 100% healthy, since he is a skinny-mini and he hates having to eat healthy ALL the time. I have cookbooks for GI diets, which I will be doing a blog on shortly, that I like to take inspiration from, and typically it is VERY tasty. The problem is, the recipes require a lot of ingredients which means more money for me to spend. So I'm taking it one day at a time, I will most likely be doing my recipe of the week for a GI recipe, so you PCOSers out there have something yummy to cook for yourself :)

Wish me luck! I will blog regularly to let you know my progress :)

Stay tuned!

Movie Review

Hey everyone! Sorry I have been a bit MIA lately, I have been trying to take care of some lose ends and get homework done, clean, etc. But I did get a chance to watch a movie last night! I watched Julie and Julia, the movie about the girl (Julie) who goes through Julia Childs cookbook and re-creates her recipes. It tells some of the life of Julia Child as well and how she came to write her famous cookbook. I have been meaning to pick up a copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, which is her cookbook published in 1961. It was the first French cookbook for American women to read and use. Anyway, I thought the movie was great! It was heart warming and really made you want to set a goal for yourself as well. I encourage anyone who loves food, loves cooking, or loves Amy Adams and Meryl Streep (I know I do) to check out this movie :) tell your boyfriend/husband that there is food in the movie and I'm sure they will watch it with you, unlike my bf haha.

If everyone would like me to do more movie reviews, please let me know. I love movies and I consider myself a mild movie-buff. And please leave me some suggestions for movies that you would like me to see!

Stay tuned!