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Eleven Simple Things to Do to Get Healthy and Stay Healthy

Monday, February 28, 2011

I love lists. I like to make lists. I like to read lists.
I ran into this one today. I wanted to see if the items on this list really were “Simple” and “Healthy.” As I scanned the list I did a mental inventory. “Do I” or “Don’t I” do these things?
And, "Do they make a difference?" Here’s what I discovered.
You can ask yourself these questions too.

Eleven Simple Things to Do to Get Healthy and Stay Healthy

1 Eat a Healthy Breakfast - Yes, I eat breakfast everyday. It’s usually a serving of Multigrain Cheerios with 1 cup of low fat milk and 1 cup of 100% orange juice. I know, I need to add more protein.

2 Drink at Least 8 Glasses of Water - Yes! I do drink at least 8 glasses of water each day. In the warm summer months, it’s easy for me to drink 12-16 glasses of water.

3 Take a Good Quality Multiple Vitamin/Mineral - I take a daily multivitamin. I also take supplemental calcium. And recently added some supplemental fiber.

4 Connect with Other People - I have a good support system. Family, extended family, friends…and now Spark Friends.

5 Express Your Emotions Appropriately - This one says to me: “Don’t eat your emotions, Maria.” I need to figure out how to express them, rather than bury them. Still working on this one. * Needs more work.

6 Eat Fruits and Vegetables – I’ve come along way on this one. I eat at least 6 fruits and vegetables each day now. 2 servings at each meal. It wasn’t always that way before Spark People.

7 Spend at Least 30 Minutes Outdoors - This is very easy for me to do in the spring, summer & fall. I haven’t been good at this one during the winter. I know that the sunlight really improves my mood. * Needs more work.

8 Do Something Physically Active - I really have come along way with this one. I exercise for 50-60 minutes at least 6 days a week. I have always enjoyed walking. Now I am into faster, more fitness style walking. Walking with Leslie Sansone. It’s been a great stress releaser, a good bone strengthener, it’s loosened up my knees. It’s just been a great investment in my future!

9 Take Some Quiet Time for Yourself - I know this one is hard for a lot of people. But I do make this one a priority and it’s not an luxury; it’s a necessity. It’s nourishing my spirit. It helps to relax and rejuvenate me.

10 Keep Regular Sleep Hours - This is one that I am finally getting. My weekday and weekend nights are about the same in length: 7 hours. But I do wake up several times a night. Exercise is helping with some of this. Cutting back on caffeine has also been helpful.

11 Establish a Relationship with a Doctor You Can Trust – I have had the same doctor for the last 17 years. He is very easy to talk with. I feel I can ask him anything and he’ll give me a straight answer. He knows me – inside and out. It’s because of his prompting that I found Spark People in the first place. He told me to eat a little less & exercise a little more. Keeping track of the calories in and calories out. How was I going to do that? Enter…Spark People!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

THINRONNA 3/2/2011 3:17AM

    Oh if you love lists than you would LOVE the way we work at the restaraunt! Each day we grab our lists...we all have different ones we have created based on what is needed in each station and then we start marking off what needs to be done. Nothing gets left behind if it is on the list. Plus...the satisfaction of checking off things on the list! I love it!

The list you have found is great! Kudos to you for doing so well on it! I think it is wonderful that you can also recognize where you still need work. I would say I need some work on the last three. Plus I could still be eating more fruits and veggies...I do OK but the selection here gets boring and I have a hard time especially this time of year. Thanks for the reminder!

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-CHERI- 3/1/2011 1:19PM

    Love this!! Very motivating! Going to print this out for a reminder to me. You are doing so well - really a great inspiration to me!! Together we are going to conquer this!!

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LILLYPILLY24 3/1/2011 1:49AM

    This is a great list - and what a wonderful way to measure you're progress and achievements, while at the same time gently highlighting other areas to keep working on. Thanks for sharing!

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ONEGREATCAT 2/28/2011 9:02PM

    I'm a "full-time" list maker. I make lists for lists. And those lists have lists for the other lists!!!! I am teased about my lists...but it works for me!

I need to work on #5. With regard to #7, I am like you Maria: The winter just makes it a little harder...but I intend to work on this (easy to say now that winter is nearly over). And I should expand upon #8. The remainder...WhooHoo...I'm good!

Thank you for sharing a list and your responses.

YOU GO GIRL!!! emoticon

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ROSEWCI 2/28/2011 7:19PM

    EXCELLENT list Maria! emoticon
As you know, I love lists too! I don't take a multivitamin but I do take Calcium tabs & a B vitamin supplement daily.

emoticon to your doc for putting you in the Spark mode!

Hope all is well my friend! emoticon

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SMILEYBEE 2/28/2011 6:34PM

    Love the list Maria! You post such interesting and helpful "stuff" ... thank you!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon (I need to get more vegetables and fruits on a consistent basis!)

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SUSIEPH1 2/28/2011 6:27PM

    Love your Lists a list becomes a habit ..and a habit becomes you!!

Enjoy your journey ... hugs Susie emoticon

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LNXLADY 2/28/2011 6:10PM

    Great list! I love lists, too. I also love mind maps. I made a mind map about a week ago (with a new android app I had just gotten) about the things I need to do to get and stay healthy. Most of these things were on my mind map!

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COOKWITHME65 2/28/2011 4:53PM

    Great list. I make list often also but seem to never hit upon each one.

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ISHIIGIRL 2/28/2011 4:44PM

    Love your list and how accountable you are to each one. Great job!

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PRETTYLILHEFFER 2/28/2011 4:18PM

    YES! Another list maker! I love them, I could make lists for just about everything! 3,5,6 and 11 I gotta work on. Vitamins are out for the moment, they actually make me sick. And, the doc, well I just got a new one, not sure I like her! But I love the list, thank you for sharing!




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My Motivating OUTDOOR Walk this Morning!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

I am an indoor exerciser during the winter.
It's either that or I probably won't exercise at all.
I can count on one hand the number of times I have walked outdoors since November.

Well, this morning I saw the UPS Delivery Truck parked at the end of my driveway. He decided NOT to venture up our 1/4 mile long driveway, as the snow had once again drifted into parts of the driveway. My husband had left for work a couple hours earlier with one of our 4-wheel drive vehicles - so getting out the driveway wasn't a problem for him. The UPS truck has a very low clearance and I am sure it would have been a real challenge for him getting up here into our yard. So he hung the package he was delivering onto our mail box - put it in a plastic bag and tied it the post.

Now, we live on a very busy county road. There are sugar beet trucks hauling frozen sugar beets to a near by processing plant - lots of traffic. I didn't want to lose the package. And I didn't want to wait for my husband to pick it up with the mail when he comes home later this afternoon.

Plus, I knew what was in that package & I HAD to HAVE it NOW!

So I pulled out my LL Bean snow boots, my large red Land's End parka and 'oh so chic' trapper's cap from Cabela's, complete with ear flaps - bundled up and headed out on my mission - I mean, hike. It's sunny this morning with a temperature of 12 degrees. The wind is from the North. My drive way faces directly North. So on the hike out it was pretty crisp and cold. There was a thick layer of ice under our most recent 10 inch snow fall - making my steps a bit slippery. I tried to cover my mouth as the cold air was a shock to my lungs. But I just had to reach that package. Coming back - it would be a breeze. No wind and the trip back up the drive way always goes so much faster - even in the summer!

I got it! And the walk back was faster and more pleasant.
I got a brisk 10 minute walk outdoors today. Woohoo!

But what was in that package I so desperately wanted?

Three new exercise DVD's - by Leslie Sansone.

(Can a person really get excited about an Exercise DVD?)

I needed to add a few lower impact workouts to my collection - since I have to stay away from the higher impact ones atleast for now.

Here's what I got today:

1. Start! Walking At Home - a Beginner/Intermediate 20 Minute Gentle Walk & a 30 Minute Brisk Walk.

2. A Closer 2 Mile Walk

3. 5 Day Slim Down - A Mile Each Morning.

The last one looks really interesting:
Day 1: Classic Walk
Day 2: Sculpt Your Arms
Day 3: Slim Your Legs
Day 4: Trim Your Tummy
Day 5: Speed Walk

Plus there's supposed to be Super Breakfasts - Meal Plans to Kick Start Your Metabolism in the Morning.

I will let you know what I think of each of these as I get into them.

I am glad I took my brisk, outdoor walk this morning!
Now I can take another walk with Leslie in the warm, coziness of my livingroom!

Woohoo for Leslie Sansone Walking DVD's!
They are helping me 'stay the course' this winter!

Make it a great day, everyone!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

THINRONNA 3/2/2011 3:21AM

    Amazing! I bet there are a million people out there who would never make that brisk walk in the deep snow and MN cold to go after exercise videos of all things! This really says something good about you lady!

Enjoy your new DVD's! emoticon

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REYVE01 2/26/2011 11:41AM

    emoticon Come back summer so we all can get outside.

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SUSIEPH1 2/26/2011 3:24AM

    Loved that you enjoyed your walk !!
Well done !! emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 2/26/2011 3:24:50 AM

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1BEACHWALKER 2/26/2011 2:07AM

    emoticon emoticonWhat we will do for exercise sometimes! emoticon

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NPDSLEUTH 2/25/2011 11:53AM

    You won my heart with the LL Bean and Land's End references. Aren't those the best?

I am so proud of you and your walk - and yes, I would have done the same thing for the package! It's so funny the things we get excited about now (Wow -- I bought a new medicine ball! Woo hoo -- hand weights!), isn't it? Sometimes I can hardly believe it's me.

So proud of your positive attitude -- and action! Love, Nikki

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ONEGREATCAT 2/24/2011 7:58PM

    emoticon emoticon Maria!

I can SEE the hat with earflaps!! But believe me, it's not nearly as "interesting" as the "hat/scarf" I got as a Christmas present...it's a "one-piecer". The scarf starts out really skinny at the bottom and gets progressively larger until it forms a hat with a "relaxed" form of earflaps.

While I would have liked to have seen a picture posted here in your winter "wonder-gear", your description did it all!!!

LOVED THIS BLOG!!!
emoticon Gwen

Comment edited on: 2/24/2011 7:59:16 PM

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ROSEWCI 2/24/2011 6:51PM

    WHAT a trooper you are to weather the weather! emoticon

emoticon Go Maria! emoticon

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SMILEYBEE 2/24/2011 6:47PM

    My, how adventurous you've been today! Ice under snow can be really treacherous ... glad you made it safely down the lane and back. I'll look forward to hearing how you like your new tapes.

Have a fun evening! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BIGMAMAT 2/24/2011 6:12PM

    I loved the description of your walk. I felt like I was right beside you! Glad you are enjoying your package. emoticon

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GRACEISENUF 2/24/2011 3:50PM

    I worked out with Leslie this morning! ENJOY your new stuff!

emoticon

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MRSBENNETT2 2/24/2011 3:34PM

    Brr! That was some descriptive writing...I am shivering as I type this. emoticon Makes me want to be there enjoying the snow, but you probably think I'm crazy!

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REEDSKI 2/24/2011 1:54PM

    This is such a well written blog! I was on the edge of my seat awaiting in anticipation for what would come next as I moved from paragraph to paragraph. I could feel the COLD and I could picture you so clearly in my head. I think I was seeing an LL Bean model!!!
Well worth the walk!
Thanks for sharing!!!!

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SHELLEY147 2/24/2011 1:46PM

    emoticonMaria!! You REALLY wanted those tapes, huh? I am not sure I would have ventured out in 12 degree weather...but you DID IT!! I'm so excited for you! You got it all dear...motivation, determination and great attitude!!

Next time, here are some hiking boots to get you to the mailbox :) emoticon

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SNARDEESNIFF 2/24/2011 1:36PM

    I am really impressed, Maria! Even living the South, there are winter days when I don't venture outside, and other days when I don't want to, but must! So I am very proud of your accomplishment today! WooHoo fo YOU!

Lois

Comment edited on: 2/24/2011 1:39:02 PM

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LILLYPILLY24 2/24/2011 12:51PM

    You walked. Outside!!! And now you can walk inside with Leslie - this is great. Thanks for sharing your adventure with us!

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ISHIIGIRL 2/24/2011 12:06PM

    Great Job! Getting outdoors for just a few minutes always makes me happier. I think it is the vitamin D. I love the sunshine even if it is 12 degrees outside! Enjoy your new dvd's, they sound great!

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~ 30 Healthy, Salty & Sweet Snacks ~

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

~ 30 Healthy, Salty & Sweet Snacks ~

Sometimes I get cravings for some thing "Salty" and sometimes the craving is for something "Sweet." I went looking for a list of "Healthy" Ideas and I found this on www.self.com in their Food & Diet section.

Here are great snacks with less than 200 calories compiled by Wendy Giman.


Craving Something Salty?

• 5 olives (any kind) (45 calories)
• 1 small Martin's pretzel (50 calories)
• 2 oz Applegate Honey and Maple Turkey Breast wrapped around 2 bread-and-butter pickles (80 calories)
• 1/4 cup hummus, 3 carrot sticks (80 calories)
• 1 Laughing Cow Light Swiss Original wedge, 3 pieces Kavli Crispy Thin (85 calories)
• One 1-oz package tuna jerky (90 calories)
• 1 oz buffalo mozzarella, 1/2 cup cherry or grape tomatoes (94 calories)
• 1 bag Baked! Cheetos 100 Calorie Mini Bites (100 calories)
• 15 Eden's Nori Maki Crackers rice crackers (110 calories)
• 1 cup unshelled edamame (120 calories)
• 50 Eden's Vegetable Chips (130 calories)
• One 1-oz package of Planters NUT-trition almonds (130 calories)
• 1/4 cup Trader Joe's Chili con Queso, 18 baked tortilla chips (140 calories)
• 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds in shell (143 calories)
• 2 pieces (30 grams) prosciutto, 4 dried figs (154 calories)
• 1 Subway Turkey Breast Wrap (190 calories)


Craving Something Sweet?

• 1 package Original Apple Nature Valley Fruit Crisps (50 calories)
• 1 packet O'Coco's Mocha cookies (90 calories)
• 1 Jelly Belly 100-calorie pack (100 calories)
• One 100-calorie pack Trader Joe's Chocolate Graham Toucan Cookies (100 calories)
• One 100-calorie Balance Bar (100 calories)
• 1 Starbucks Mocha Frappuccino bar (120 calories)
• 1 package Back to Nature Honey Graham Sticks (120 calories)
• 1/2 banana rolled in 1 tbsp frozen semisweet chocolate chips (123 calories)
• 2 tbsp Better 'n Peanut Butter, 4 stalks celery (124 calories)
• 1 bag Orville Redenbacher's Smart Pop Butter Mini Bags topped with a spritz of butter spray and 1 tsp sugar (126 calories)
• 24 Annie's Chocolate Chip Bunny Graham cookies (140 calories)
• Half of a 1.08-oz container of M&M's Minis mixed with 1/3 cup lowfat granola (145 calories)
• 1 McDonald's Fruit 'n Yogurt Parfait (160 calories)
• 1 container Fage Greek Total 2% fat yogurt, 2 tsp honey (173 calories)

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

THINRONNA 3/2/2011 3:23AM

    Great list...things to try when I get back to the US!

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1BEACHWALKER 2/26/2011 2:00AM

    There you go making me hungry again! emoticon One thing I love is those boxes of 100 calorie snacks-hits the spot when you need it!
emoticon

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NPDSLEUTH 2/25/2011 11:51AM

    Great lists, girlfriend. Thank you.

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GRACEISENUF 2/24/2011 3:51PM

    emoticon I love, love pickles when I crave something salty!

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KJMPEACHES 2/23/2011 9:23AM

    emoticon for great ideas. emoticon

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SNARDEESNIFF 2/23/2011 9:11AM

    There are some great ideas here, Maria. Thanks for sharing. Some of these I have never heard of.

One of my salty snacks is Tostitos Baked Scoops. A serving is 14 chips @ 120 calories. I am often satisfied with 1/2 of a serving. I am very careful to count out whatever serving I decide to have. I sometimes have some of my own salsa with them, but sometimes I have them alone.

One of my sweet snacks is Publix's "fat free light Yogurt". The calorie count varies with the flavor, but they run between 90 and 120 calories. The low calorie count allows me to add different things to this yogurt if I want. I like to add a 1/4 cup of a healthy cereal or granola. I know that Publix is not in every place, but many store brands have similar yogurt choices.

I m thinking that the hummus with 3 sticks needs a few more carrot sticks! SP lists 3 carrots sticks at 8.9 calories for thick and 2.5 calories for thin. You could have 8 or 10 strips and still be well under the 200 calories.

I appreciate you, my friend! Thank you once again.

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COOKWITHME65 2/23/2011 7:49AM

    Great list. I didn't know Subway made wraps. I'll have to check that out. My Mom and I usually split a veggie $5 foot long.

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ROSEWCI 2/23/2011 7:05AM

    Thanks for the post Maria! Great ideas for snacks! I especially LOVE the fage yogurt & have one between breakfast & lunch everyday! Love the strawberry! Yum!

Have a GREAT day! emoticon

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REEDSKI 2/22/2011 6:13PM

    I didn't know starbucks made bars. Mmmm...

One thing I read that I'd take off the list is Better 'n Peanut Butter. I bought it, tried it, and threw it out.

But I have been eating almond butter from Sprouts. Just ground almonds with nothing added.
I keep trying natural peanut butters but haven't found one that I really enjoy.

Now, if I could stick to one serving of any snacks I'd be so skinny already!



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KANDIS91 2/22/2011 2:48PM

    Thanks for sharing. These are some really good snacking ideas emoticon

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HOT4FITNESS 2/22/2011 2:44PM

    Great ideas! I always enjoy snack ideas. I strt getting tired of the same ol' thing. Thanks for sharing

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SMILEYBEE 2/22/2011 2:42PM

    Thanks for sharing this info Maria!

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PRETTYLILHEFFER 2/22/2011 2:37PM

    I love your blog! And nice to keep handy! I definitely run to olives for salt!

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Hungarian Mushroom Soup Recipe

Monday, February 21, 2011

I have made this recipe for years. I did post it in a blog months ago - but was asked for it again. So here it is.


Hungarian Mushroom Soup

Ingredients:
4 Tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups chopped onions
1 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced – choose a variety of different mushrooms, if you can for added texture and flavor
2 teaspoons of dried dill weed
1 Tablespoon of paprika
1 Tablespoon of soy sauce – you could use the low sodium version
2 cups of Chicken broth – vegetable or beef broth or Water
1 cup low fat or skim milk
3 Tablespoons of all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt – could use less
Ground black pepper to taste
2 teaspoons of lemon juice
¼ cup of chopped fresh parsley or a couple Tablespoons of dried parsley
½ cup of sour cream – could use reduced fat or fat free sour cream or even Greek yogurt would work here

Directions:

1. Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Saute the onions in the butter for 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and sauté for 5 more minutes. Stir in the dill, paprika, soy sauce and broth. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

2. In a separate small bowl, whisk the milk and flour together.
Pour this into the soup and stir well to blend. Cover and simmer for 15 more minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. Finally, stir in the salt, ground black pepper, lemon juice, parsley and sour cream. Mix together and allow to heat through over low heat, about 3 to 5 minutes. Do not boil. Serve immediately.

This re-heats very well and is good also on the second day!

I have not entered my recipe in the Spark Recipe section of this site, because there is a very similar recipe already posted there.

Here is the nutritional information on my version of this recipe:

Servings Per Recipe: 6

Calories: 201
Total Fat: 13.5 g
Cholesterol: 32mg
Sodium: 829 mg (using chicken broth)
Total Carbs: 14.8g
Dietary Fiber: 2.4g
Protein: 7.5g








  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

THINRONNA 3/2/2011 3:26AM

    My kids love mushrooms and I am always looking for good one pot dishes. This seems like one to try. I am also going to keep ahold of it for the fall wen the woods here are full of different types of mushrooms. We are always looking for different ideas at that time.

Thank you for the wonderful recipe! emoticon

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1BEACHWALKER 2/26/2011 2:02AM

    Bob loves mushrooms- I will show this to him! You know how he loves to cook! Thank goodness-because you know I don't!! Sounds good! emoticon

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NPDSLEUTH 2/25/2011 11:49AM

    I LOVE soup and haven't found one I can really have without bloating up like a balloon. Sounds like this may well be it. I'm copying it now. THANK YOU!!!!

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DARBOYMOM 2/22/2011 8:49PM

    Oh, wow -- I am definitely going to give this one a try. Yum!!! I loves me some 'shroom soup, but can't do the canned stuff. This looks great!

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SNOWYOWL56 2/22/2011 7:29AM

    Is this the same recipe from the Moosewood Cookbook? I've made this and it's really good!

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MYSTERY4EVER 2/21/2011 10:48PM

    This sounds fabulous. Will try it soon.

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MEADSBAY 2/21/2011 9:52PM

    Why, thank you, my friend- looks delish- just copied and pasted it to my docs for future use.
emoticon

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CARRENK 2/21/2011 9:24PM

    OMG - this sounds so good, especially after the canned tomato soup I called lunch, dinner.... whatever you call a meal you eat at your desk at 3:30 p.m.
I will definitely have to make this this weekend.

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JDFAN448HS 2/21/2011 8:10PM

    I love mushrooms. This look yummy, thanks.
Cheers. emoticon

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ROSEWCI 2/21/2011 7:35PM

    Thanks for the recipe Maria! I LOVE Mushroom soup! It's one of my favs 'cause it's so creamy & rich! Gonna give it a try!



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MRSBENNETT2 2/21/2011 7:07PM

    Mmm....I'm going to try this! I'm so ready for autumn here, you can't believe it. I'm hoping to hurry it along abit by making soup.

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COOKWITHME65 2/21/2011 6:56PM

    Thanks Maria. I have been craving soup lately. It is so comforrting. I saw a sausage, kale and lentil soup recipe today on Rachael Ray's new 5 day show on the cooking channel and I want to give that a try also.

Comment edited on: 2/21/2011 6:57:04 PM

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This & That

Friday, February 18, 2011

This and That

Yesterday was an interesting day.

I woke up to very dense fog. We have been having warmer temperatures this week, 40’s even.

I had a Physical Therapy follow-up appointment in a larger city about 20 miles away. It was for 10:30 a.m. and I was hoping the fog would lift by then. No such luck. I had to make a left hand turn onto a major highway and almost couldn’t see if there were cars coming until I was in the intersection. I just hate that! Luckily, I could stay on that highway for my entire drive until I got to the medical center. It was a little clearer in the city. By the time I was finished with my appointment and went to my vehicle I figured that surely the fog must have lifted by now – it was 12:45 p.m. It hadn’t. So another cautious drive home. About 1:30 p.m. – shortly after getting home, it did start to lift.

My Physical Therapy session went well. I am trying to a more positive person, so I seek out the positive. It’s too soon to know if therapy will help my condition, but I have a plan with exercises. I CAN walk. (I really wish I could stop thinking about the therapist mentioning that I won’t be able to run or jog – ever. I knew I probably wouldn’t be able to run, but I had high hopes of becoming a jogger.) I try to put the thought out of my head that surgery probably is in my future at some point. Hey, 12 years ago that was being talked about and I sidestepped it then.

Trying to be positive. I was given some additional core-strengthening exercises. And I finally had a mystery explained to me. I have always had one leg a bit longer than the other. I just have lived with it. Nothing major – no shoe inserts – just I always knew that. And when I started taking my measurements monthly here at SparkPeople, I found out that one thigh in about an inch larger than the other – the longer leg. The therapist discovered this why doing an exam yesterday and so I asked what’s up with this? Appears that my left leg is weaker, less muscle – the right one is working harder, compensating for the weaker one. Just interesting to find that out. So I have an exercise I can do to help align that weaker leg. Don’t know how to really strengthen it yet by its left. She talked about watching to see that I do things in a balanced manner. That I don’t favor the right over the left – crossing my legs or sleeping on one side, etc.

So I will continue to see my cup half full (& not half empty as I have in the past). I will be happy for what I can do! I go back in three weeks for follow-up. So I will work hard at home getting stronger.


Weight loss has stopped. I haven’t been able to do interval training like I have in the past. That seems to boost the weight loss long for me. Also, I haven’t been eating in the lower range of my calories. Been still in the middle to upper range. So that probably isn’t helping with my reduced exercise intensity. Better re-evaluate and re-formulate a plan - eating and exercise.

Yesterday afternoon, I accompanied my husband on a trip to teach a class on: “Growing Your Own Food.” (My husband is an Agricultural Instructor at an area college & teaches Community Education Classes for College Credits some times.) This was about 90 minutes from our home – closer to the metropolitan area of Minneapolis & St. Paul. It’s a 2 part class and it's about basic backyard gardening and poultry farming for suburban areas. He customizes the training to suit the students. These were a group of Moms that wanted to be able to grow healthy vegetables and fruits for their families – but didn’t know where to start. He discussed the basics of what grows well here in Minnesota, what to plant, when to plant it, how to do it and he supplied a “Raised Bed” garden plan for limited space. They have an assignment to check out what their various city ordinances allow, construction of a raised bed, poultry in city limits if that’s something they want to raise, etc. I think I will attend next week’s class too. Even though we grow our own veggies and do some commercial vegetable growing – just being in the discussion last evening – helped me learn more too. So it was a fun way to spend the evening. We left home at 4:00 p.m. and got back at 11:00 p.m.

On the way home we stopped at a convenient store. I wanted something to eat. I can now have a small amount of chocolate back into my diet – so I was looking for a little bit of dark chocolate. Then I saw a product that I have never seen before: “Original Cheese Jerky.” It was 1.5 ounces. It didn’t have the nutrition information on the package. But I knew I probably could find it on line. (And I did today!) It was 137 Calories and it hit the spot! While it had 9 grams of fat – it also had 10 grams of protein. It fit into my ranges for yesterday just fine.

Better stop rambling for now!
Have a nice weekend, everyone!

~Maria~

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

THINRONNA 3/2/2011 3:51AM

    Maria,
I agree with Carrenk, I was surprised to read that you work hard at staying positive...well I am glad you do...not only for yourself but I must say that I'll bet you are one of the most positive people on Spark for many of your friends. I am constantly amazed at your positive outlook!

Your husbands class sounds very interesting. How wonderful that he is so able and willing to reach out and help so many people. I think itis great that you can learn something too!

I am sorry to hear about your not being able to run but you just never know in life. I imagine that you will find your way and be able to achieve amazing things walking or exercising in other ways. Can you cross country ski? It may seem like an odd question but it is what most of the people do here all winter and it is great exercise.

I hope your plateau ends soon!
Ronna

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NPDSLEUTH 2/25/2011 11:48AM

    Hey girlfriend,

I am SO PROUD of your positive attitude looking at what you CAN do instead of what you can't.

I'm sure you know this, but I've read for YEARS that walking is actually so much better than running, jogging, or whatever. One of my girlfriends convinced me to buy a wii fit program that has a pretty cool walking program on it. I've just started using it and it's great (for inclement weather of course -- during warmer times, I like to be outside, too).

LOVE the cheese jerky story too. Isn't it amazing what you discover by happenstance?

You go girl! Love, Nikki

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DARBOYMOM 2/22/2011 8:47PM

    Kudos to you for staying so positive!

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PRETTYLILHEFFER 2/22/2011 3:44PM

    Cheese jerky?! Sounds VERY interesting!! Good job with the positive side of things, it can be hard, but worth it!

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1BEACHWALKER 2/21/2011 3:19AM

    I will never be able to run or jog either and even if I got a knee replacement or two - I still will not be able to run or play tennis or things like that, from what the Dr. told me. So, I just accept my limitations and be happy for what I can do. Like you -I have put off surgery as long as I can- my left knee is almost bone on bone and the right one not too far behind. But, the ortho Dr told me lose weight and exercise-nothing with jumping or jogging, walking is the best he said. I started taking Glucosamine HCL which rebuilds cartiledge and the difference it has made in my knees is amazing! Plus I have lost the 40 pounds they recommended and have been exercising ever since. So I may be able to keep going and not have surgery! Hope you do too! Good for you that you are staying positive and have help with the therapy. Take care! emoticon

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WARMSPRINGDAY 2/19/2011 11:18PM

    I have found that flexibility is important for me on this journey and adjusting goals is okay if we need to. Hope things turn out better for you than you anticipate.

I have wondered if PT would help me. I have nerve damage in my left leg, some drop foot and definitely what feels like weaker muscles.

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SMILEYBEE 2/18/2011 9:14PM

    Wow Maria ... the foggy trip sounds intense! So happy you navigated through that soup safely! Keep up the positive vibes! Your husband's class sounds interesting too! Thanks for sharing yourself with us!

emoticon emoticon Onward & upward ... emoticon

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ROSEWCI 2/18/2011 7:08PM

    Oh Maria, I've driven in dense fog before, and it's quite frightening! I'm glad you made your way to & from your appointment safely! And you'd be surprised on how common it is that people have discrepancies with various parts of the body. We're not as symmetrical as one would think! Often times, back problems arise from having an altered gait...& eventual back problems as a result!

I know you've been told you'll probably never be able to jog or run...but don't give up hope! Just say, not for now. Never say never...cause ya just never know my friend!

LOVE your positive attitude! Yes! You CAN walk! emoticon

Being a part of the teaching team sounds so fascinating! And it sounds like such a great program for the children & parents! It gives them an appreciation for veggies! It's ALL good! And how nice that it's something you can share w/hubby! Doubly nice!

I know it's frustrating that you've hit a plateau w/your weight. And I can imagine how discouraging it may become. It seems realistic that you would want to re-evaluate & re-formulate a plan for food & exercise. I know you'll do what's best for you. Just realize it's temporary my friend! You'll be up & at 'em in no time! And you'll enjoying your interval training & bumpin' up that caloric intake!

Have a GREAT weekend Maria! emoticon

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GRACEISENUF 2/18/2011 5:10PM

    emoticon Cheers to a friend who glass is always half full...I love it!

An attitude of gratitude can change ANYTHING!

emoticon

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COOKWITHME65 2/18/2011 4:18PM

    Never heard of cheese jerky before. Glad you were able to fit in your plan. Sorry your loss has slowed down but things will get better once you can exercise more. Take care of that back. Back pain can become unbearable and totally freeze all other aspects of your life. Once you get thru this and your back is stronger things will get better. Keep plugging away girl, you will get thru this and be on top of things once again.

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CARRENK 2/18/2011 2:27PM

    Maria,
It's sort of startling to me to read that you feel you need to actively remain positive, when I think of you as one of the most positive people I know! Obviously, you're doing it well!!
I'm glad to see that PT is looking promising for you. Even if it only delays the need for surgery, I bet the work now will make the surgery much easier for you. I'll keep my fingers crossed!
You husband's class sounds like a great idea. I'm glad you're going with him. Not only are you learning new things and meeting new people, you're also getting some quality time with your husband on the trip!
Have a great weekend! emoticon

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HOT4FITNESS 2/18/2011 1:30PM

    Great Blog!! I am glad you are attempting to stay positive, in some negative situations. About 4 years ago when i had my first knee replacement I was told I couldn't run or jog. This depressed me greatly, considering I wanted to lose weight and my husband is a runner. I would never be his runnng partner. I started power walking and found that I get about the same endorphins flowing. This year myself and another sparker are going to Powerwalk the half. So that is always an option open for you.
Sounds like yu had a very productive and learning day yesterday! Keep up the great work!

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