Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Big savings at the grocery store...

I just had the yummiest dinner. Nothing fancy, just good ole American comfort food.

Cheeseburger (5pts)
Fried potatoes (6pts)
Fordhook Lima Beans (2pts)

All home made, of course, so I can control the points+. Sure, I coulda made a little better choice instead of the fried potatoes because they're a little high in points+, but I had to get my healthy oils in because I hadn't had any for the day. So I made the sacrifice and fried the potato. :)

I'm a little disappointed that lima beans aren't free points+. But I really love 'em. Especially Fordhook. Usually, I can't find them in the grocery store, but I lucked out. We shopped at Walmart this past weekend rather than Publix and Walmart carries Fordhook. SO much better than baby limas!

Speaking of grocery shopping, because hubby got laid off last month, we've taken up a new hobby--couponing! And this past weekend, we spent $100 on groceries and saved about $50 altogether.

Publix had a bunch of buy-one-get-one-free items and we had a bunch of coupons on top of the sale. I never knew you could do this, but did you know you can use two coupons on a B1G1F offer? I never knew you could use a coupon on a free item, but evidently you can! So we made out like a bandit.

Course we had to go to three different stores to catch all the deals. We even ate in between all the grocery madness and used coupons for lunch, too. Spent $11 and saved almost $7 with coupons.

Do you guys coupon? I watched "Extreme Couponing" on TLC last month and then just a few days later, my husband got laid off so it was perfect timing. Now I'm hooked up with several couponing websites and they send me email updates and even Tweets for hot deals. It's so much fun!

It's about turning a dire situation into a sport. (kinda)

I have no intentions of becoming a hoarder like the people we saw on the Extreme Couponing show, but if I can save 40-50% or more on my regular groceries, that'd be freaking awesome! We need the savings right now, too.

So, do you guys do couponing? Where do you find your favorite deals?

(If you're not sure what "couponing" is, here's a link that explains it fairly well.)

Saturday, April 16, 2011

How to get your family to eat healthy...

That is the question, right?

You've started on this new journey of eating healthy and losing weight and it's going great for you. You're losing weight. Feeling great. And so you naturally start looking at the one's closest to you and wanting the same great thing for them.

So... I ask... How do you get your family to eat healthy?

I'm afraid I'm going to have to stop you right there. Is there really a sure-fire way to get your family to eat healthy? Oh, sure, there are plenty of tricks you can do to include healthy foods hidden inside the unhealthy-looking food. Like putting cauliflower in the blender and adding it to chili or spaghetti. This works for the little ones. They won't be able to tell that there's something healthy in there.

But what about the one's who are old enough to know that you're tricking them. The one's who will SWEAR they can taste a difference between chili made with turkey and chili made with lean ground beef. Sure, you can buy healthy snacks for them to choose from, but you can't force them to eat them. You can set "healthy traps" for them with the hopes that they'll get caught in them.

But what's the answer?

How do you get your grown children or your spouse to start eating healthy?

Well, I'll tell you, I don't have the answer for that. I wish I did. I wish it was as easy as appealing to their senses and kindly telling them that you love them and you want to see them live a long and healthy life, but let's face it, that's a conversation that'll almost never go as you think it will.

You can sit and think up all the right things to say and all of the kind words to use and all of the loving supportive things to encourage them along, but when it comes right down to it, the only way you're going to get your (older) family to eat healthy is if it's their idea. Just like it had to be YOUR idea for YOU to start losing weight, right?

I can't tell you how many times my husband so lovingly had that conversation with me. He said he would love me no matter what size I was. And I know for a fact that he TRULY meant that. But he wanted me to be a healthy weight for my sake, not for his. And I can't tell you how many times I told him that I didn't want to lose weight. I was happy the way I was. I didn't need to lose weight. I was healthy as a horse. No high blood pressure, no high blood sugar, no high cholesterol. And I had plenty of energy to do whatever I wanted.

But the fact was, I was almost 300 lbs. And even though I felt completely healthy, I was not. But no one was going to be able to convince me of that, until it became my idea. Were you like that too?

I'm not saying that you shouldn't try to encourage your family to eat healthy and lose the weight they really need to, I'm just saying that if you can't succeed in getting them to "see the light" don't be discouraged, just think back to the way you used to be. And know that it WILL dawn on them, JUST like it dawned on you. Be patient with them and be encouraging, and know that pushing them isn't always the most helpful.

And when they're ready, they know they can come to you because you've already gone down the road that's ahead of them. Just wait patiently for that day. It will come. I know it will.

Is anyone going through something this right now? Or in the past? How did you handle it?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Broccoli and cheese... my old friend...

I’m not sure how I feel about this, but I thought I’d ask your opinion.

I saw a commercial over the weekend for Green Giant’s frozen veggies with sauce. The commercial says they’re now endorsed by Weight Watchers and as I look, sure enough, it has the new blue box with the Points Plus values right on the box. Then I noticed how low the "points plus" values were; only 1 or 2 points plus. Hmm. I seem to remember they used to be between 4 and 6 "points" depending on the type of sauce.

Now I’m wondering if this is a good thing or a bad thing?

Sure, the veggie part of the frozen box is zero points plus and so it only make sense that the sauces would only be just a couple of points plus. So I get it. But I wonder if this isn’t encouraging bad eating habits.

I mean, don’t get me wrong, I love cheese on my broccoli and creamy butter sauce on my green beans and peas, so I’m thrilled that I can now eat these sauces on my veggies. But, most of these sauces are loaded with carbs, in addition to the natural carbs that are in some veggies. Not to mention the fat and sugars and salts that are in these sauces.

I’m just wondering if we’re going down the wrong road with this. Is this creating unhealthy eating habits? Is this encouraging our taste buds to crave the cheese sauces and butter sauces? But is this such a bad thing? I mean, it gets us to eat veggies, right?

I'm torn. Part of me is so happy that I can finally have cheese on my broccoli again, but another part of me is wondering if I start eating cheese sauce, am I gonna want to eat more, or will it fill a void in my diet that I've been denying for years?

What do you guys think?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

God is in the donut...

So, God helped me through a moment of weakness, today...

I had decided to go through the drive-thru at Dunkin’ Donuts today to get some coffee to take back to the office for my “afternoon treat”. First, though, I had to stop by Publix to pick up some fat-free creamer (cuz I was out).

Did that.

Headed to Dunkin’.

Problem... I had a coupon in my purse for a free donut with the purchase of a beverage. I’d gotten it last week when I stopped by and did the same thing (coffee for my afternoon treat).

So, I told my husband, before I left home and headed to the store, that I wasn’t going to get the donut. Because it’s best to speak it out loud whenever you’re having to make a tough decision. But secretly inside, I really wanted to go ahead and get the donut.

#1. It was free.

#2. It was within my daily points plus allowance because I’ve made a list of 5 donuts I can get that are either 6 or 7 pts+ (As long as I plan for these extra pts+ I can have them!). Hey, I like donuts, okay?!

#3. I could eat it on my way back to work and no one would be the wiser.

So I pull up to the Dunkin’ drive-thru and order my coffee—decaf, black. I pulled up to the pay window and it dawned on me that I forgot to order my free donut!

I thought, well, it’s not too late, I can still order it when the guy comes and hands me my coffee. But then my mind went blank as to what the 6 and 7 pts+ donuts were. Completely blank!

I pull out my phone, because I’d made a sticky note on the desktop of my phone that had the 5 donuts listed out.

Too late.

The guy came with my coffee and I would have had to have him hold on while I look on my phone, which I felt woulda been silly for me to do. So I gave up. Handed him the money for the coffee and drove away.

No free donut.

So, I think God did something like holding his hand over my eyes, or rather in this case my memory, so I wouldn’t remember to order the donut and I couldn’t remember what type was the lowest in pts+.

Thanks, God. Wait, did that sound sarcastic? Uh, yea, it sure did.


But I REALLY wanted the donut!