Sunday, September 21, 2014

Yummy Eats

Hello Friends!

Today Josh and I are coming to a close on our week long staycation together. Waaaahh!  We had our weigh in this morning for our second week of Paleo. I lost another 2.6 pounds for a total of 5.8 pounds. Josh, on the other hand, lost a whopping 6.2 pounds for a total of 10.2 pounds! (Don't you just love that men lose so much faster than women??) I'm happy for him and definitely not at all jealous....ok who am I kidding? I wish I lost 6 pounds in a week. Week 2 was much better than week one. We both have been feeling great and most of the side effects we felt in week one have subsided.

So this week we made some pretty tasty treats! Josh even made something sweet all by himself, which was probably a first for him. So proud. He made some delicious raw brownie bites. These are so tasty, but VERY rich and you can really only eat one. They are the perfect after dinner treat when you are craving something sweet. These are mainly dates, cocoa, and walnuts. Here is the recipe for you to make your own.... Raw Brownie Bites

I promise I did not eat all three of these.
My sister and her husband had their gender reveal party last night and since Josh and I couldn't eat everything that was served, we made our own food. The entre was tacos, so I whipped up a batch of Paleo tortilla shells and we seasoned the meat with an all natural seasoning. I also made a delightful guacamole to go along with it that I found over on Cooking Classy . Everyone seemed to like it as well. It is a pretty standard recipe, but here it is for you to enjoy... Guacamole

I was pretty proud of how wonderfully green it turned out to be!

My third and final treat I made was the dessert for last night since we couldn't enjoy the cake, and let me tell you was delicious! I found the recipe on Life Made Full . They are Paleo-fied Pumpkin Pie Bars and they are the perfect ratio of pumpkin and crust. Try them out for yourself, you won't regret it! (But you may regret how many you eat because they are that good).

My apologies for this awful photograph. I failed to take a picture right after I made them and then didn't feel like setting one up for display. :)
I got to play photographer last night at the party, so here are just a few of the pictures I got.
Such a cute cake
What's your guess? Boy or girl?
It's a boy!

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday, now go and get to making some goodies!                                     

                                                                                          Eat. Drink. Be Happy.





Monday, September 15, 2014

I Survived My First Week of Paleo

I survived! Week one of Paleo is officially over! It technically ended yesterday, but since it was our one year anniversary, I opted not to blog. After one week of Paleo I lost 3.2 pounds and Josh lost 4 pounds. That loss was without exercise. We still are going through the adjustment period and aren't quite ready to get back to the gym just yet. We will get back to it either later this week or next.

So...week one. It was hard. There was a lot of cooking. There was a lot of dishes. We have an old house that doesn't have one of them there newfangled dishwashers. Yup, we're washing everything by hand. 

Throughout the week, I'm not gonna lie, I got cravings, and I got them BAD. All I wanted was something sweet. That is my main problem. Sweets and bread. The first day was pretty difficult because I couldn't have my bubbles, aka Diet Coke. We were both very tired and had some bad headaches. Days two and three were pretty good for the both of us, we felt more energized and weren't having those afternoon crashes that we would normally get.  Day 4 and I was back on the struggle bus. I wanted anything I laid my eyes on, BUT I did not cheat! After I got through that day, I was back to feeling pretty good about everything. I think the thing I'm most proud of is that I didn't cheat all week. On Tuesday when I came into work, pumpkin scones were held in front of me and I didn't snag one up. We had pizza at the support group I was leading and I didn't eat a piece, not even a bread stick! Then we had our annual AIDS Walk on Saturday at work and I didn't even grab one baked good or a bowl of chicken and dumplings. I think I just figured out the common denominator here. It's work. I guess I just need to stay home. :) Too bad that's not going to fly.

We haven't gotten too creative with our meals just yet, but we will get there. We had eggs, bacon (and I mean a lot of bacon), nuts, fruits, veggies, and meat, meat, and more meat. One of the hardest parts is nights like tonight when we are both tired and don't feel like whipping up anything and all I want to do is pop in a frozen pizza. Things will get easier once we get more into the swing of things, I'm sure. 

Here are a few of the pictures I took of the foods we ate throughout the week.    

Eggs, bacon, and strawberries for breakfast

Grilled pork chop and a salad with a simple balsamic dressing

Grilled chicken with roasted carrots, broccoli, and cauliflower

Paleo meat loaf with mashed cauliflower

That's all for now friends! It's time for me to go enjoy my "staycation" with my new Tempurpedic bed. Happy anniversary to us! 

                                                                                              Eat. Drink. Be Happy.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

The Great Food Purge of 2014

Today was a day of purging the old and restocking with new! Have you ever taken the time to really go through your cabinets or pantries to see what all kinds of food you have in there, and how much of it you really shouldn't even be eating? Today, I did just that. Because tomorrow is the big day of jumping into the Paleo way of life, we cleaned out our cabinets and our refrigerator. Oh. My. Gosh. We got rid of EVERYTHING. I haven't seen my cabinets this bare since I was living on my own and hardly went grocery shopping! (Josh was having none of that when he first moved in) We cleared almost everything out. I wasn't too concerned about getting rid of everything until we came upon all of my baking goodies...aka, butter and all the sugar groups (white, brown, know, all the good stuff). Remember I told you in my first post...if it has at least one stick of butter in it, you know it's going to be great. I have three large bags full of food to take to my sister's house...she won't have to go grocery shopping for a while. (You're welcome Brooke). Most of the canned goods we are saving for the "Trick or Treating for Cans" on Halloween. So have no fear, we didn't just chuck everything into the trash can. We have good hearts. 

After we cleared everything out, it was time to tackle the butcher shop and the grocery stores. Since this is the Paleo diet, we got all kinds of meat. Bacon (of course), ground beef, pork chops, sirloin, chicken breast. So. Much. Meat. Then we went and got all sorts of veggies, fruits, healthy oils, nuts, and flours. Josh is very excited about getting started. I'm excited, but nervous for such a giant change. We have gotten quite a bit of support, and quite a bit of the "I could never do that.", the "I tried that, but it was too hard and gained back everything I lost." and the "You know you have to be committed to it, right?" We know it is going to be a challenge, but this is a challenge we are going to tackle together. It is going to be so much easier that we are doing this as a team. 

We went and had our last meal of crap food tonight and from here on out, it's clean eating for this couple! Wish us luck! I'll be sure to update with how our first week is going, and as always, I will post yummy new recipes! :)

No more junk!
Our cabinets are still pretty bare, since most of what we bought is fresh.

Filling the fridge.

Raspberries for $1? Yes please.

Full fridge!

                                                 Eat. Drink. Be Happy.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Give in to your Sweet Tooth

So because I haven't transitioned into my Paleo ways just yet, I thought I would share this great peanut butter cookie recipe I happened upon last weekend. Not everything I post on here is going to be following a diet. I'm a baker. I enjoy the real deal and I want you to enjoy it as well. And let's face it, not everyone who reads my blog is eating Paleo.

I told you in the first post, I LOVE sweets, so when I get a craving for something, I just gotta have it! So yea, now you know why I struggle with my weight. Any who, back to these little gems!

So....these cookies... Greatest thing ever. Just ask my mom. She fell in love just as much as I did. Your typical peanut butter cookie always seems to be flat, with a little more of a crunch to it. I like my cookies soft and fluffy, and these babies are just that. Thanks to Sally's Baking Addiction for posting the original recipe. Here it is for you to check out ---> Peanut Butter Cookies
I got about 24 cookies out of mine.

You can totally make this your own by adding different mix-ins or toppings, but I went the traditional route and rolled mine in sugar before baking. Unlike so many peanut butter cookies you see, you do not press a fork into a criss-cross pattern before you bake these. I think that's why I like them so much. Trust me. It's hard to eat just one. And who really eats just one cookie anyway?

(My dog Sable ate three of these babies...who can blame her)

Why yes, I do drink wine and bake cookies. I recommend it. :)

                                                                                            Eat. Drink. Be happy.

Monday, September 1, 2014

A New Start

Hello world-I made a big decision tonight and naturally, I decided I should blog about it because I guess that's the thing to do now.'s my first attempt.

Whether you've stumbled across my blog through one way or another, or I forced this website upon you so I can feel better about myself, I guess you should know a little bit more about me. I know, I know, (should there be a comma there? Big debate in this household) that's what the "about me" section is for. Well guess what? I feel like talking about myself just a little bit more. Bare with me.

My name is Grace, Gracie, Gracula (as my husband so lovingly calls me), or whatever else you may want to call me. I'm like a puppy, speak to me in a sweet and energetic tone and I'll come running. I have a wonderful and adoring husband named Josh. We have been married almost one year...yay us! We have two furbabies, Penny Lane and Sable Jane. I am a Social Worker. I love to bake...if it has sugar and consists of at least one stick of butter, it has my undivided attention. Cooking is another thing. I typically leave that up to my husband, but I try! I like to pretend I'm good at painting. I also like to take pretty pictures that I never seem to have printed (I have almost 200 prints in my cart on Shutterfly that I have yet to order). Apparently I  also like to put things in parentheses if you haven't noticed. 

This blog is going to be a lot about a new food journey that Josh and I just decided to begin (I'll get to that in a minute) <----there are those parentheses again! As I find different recipes that I love, I will put them on here for you to love, too! It will also just be about anything in my life that I feel I should share with anyone who wants to read along.

Tonight Josh and I decided that we will be going *drum roll please*.... Paleo. We plan to begin next week. We are taking this week to get organized and do some more research. Now for those of you who do not know what the Paleo diet is, it can also be referred to as the "Cave Man Diet". It is basically meats and veggies. No grains, no breads, no processed foods, NO SUGAR *gasp!*. Now this is going to be a chore for us in the beginning. Especially me, the lover of all desserts, who just ate a bunch of mini Milky Ways. Josh and I, like so many people, have gone up and down with our weight like it's a roller-coaster ride. Last year before our wedding we both lost 20+ pounds, but quickly gained most, if not all of it back since we have been married. We decided we needed to make a change (cue Michael Jackson music) with our food habits. We are hoping this new life style will help us not only feel great, but also help us shed some of those unwanted pounds. 

I felt that if I started a blog about our journey, it might hold me more accountable because I can at least pretend I have THOUSANDS of readers who are counting on me to keep at it! 

I hope to encourage others who are also struggling with weight and healthy eating in some way, shape, or form. I'm new to this too, so let's start together. 

So come and follow along with me through my triumphs and my struggles of going Paleo, and just my day to day life. 

                                                                                                Eat. Drink. Be Happy.