Author Archives: brokencookiesdontcount

Saturday Snapshot~March 22

It’s time for Saturday Snapshot, the great link-up hostessed by the lovely Melinda at West Metro Mommy Reads.  I love Saturday Snapshot because I get to see great snapshots of all of our friends’ lives all over the world.  Pretty exciting if you ask me.

SaturdaySnapshot

 

I’ve been moaning and groaning about snow and cold for…well…all Winter! Just a bit more groaning and I think we’ll be over it.   At least, I think I’ll be over it.

Ralph and I were heading out to a St. Patrick’s Day lunch with his family on Monday and what happened?!?  It Snowed!! I was not happy.  We weren’t traveling far but some of the other family members had longer drives and I was concerned for them.

Last snow

 

This was what I saw as we was sitting in the parking lot waiting for the others to arrive.  It actually was pretty, but I am so tired of it.

But they tell us that on Wednesday, Spring arrived.  Most of the snow was gone and I took this photo.

Finally spring

 

No leaves yet, but when I look, I can see the buds starting.  In fact, just below that center tree is where the crocus usually show their pretty heads each year.  I checked this morning and not quite yet, but I bet I know what my photo will be next Saturday!

Be sure to stop by at West Metro Mommy Reads to see what everyone else is sharing!

Happy Saturday! Happy Spring!

WIAW~True Confessions and a Recipe!

I have been among the missing for a bit and I do apologize for it.  No real explanation except life gets in the way sometimes. But I wanted to get back for What I Ate Wednesday because I missed playing along with Jenn and all of the fun kids over at Peas & Crayons.  So Here Goes!

What I Ate Wednesday GOES GREEN

Well, it is the week of St. Patrick’s Day so I’m using this logo.  Since I wasn’t around to say it…Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

First the true confessions part.  I have been off track with my eating and I would be truly ashamed to show some of the things that I’ve wolfed down in recent weeks.  No one’s fault but my own.  However, I always have a safety net, a trick in my back pocket that works wonders for me.  Weight Watchers vegetable soup.  With all the updates to the program, I’m not even sure what the current “Garden Vegetable Soup” recipe looks like.  Over these many years (almost 27 years) of being a Weight Watchers member, I’ve made some changes and made it my own.  This is my current version.

Veggie soup in crock pot

Weight Watchers Veggie Soup

1 large onion chopped (or more if you Like)

2 or more tbsp of chopped garlic ( or more if you like)

4 peeled, chopped carrots

3 celery stalks

3-4 cups of chopped cabbage

1 large jar ( think it’s 12 oz but it might be larger) salsa of choice

I have for a number of years made my veggie soup in a crock pot.  I like it because I can make it and then it takes care of itself.  All of these veggies can be adjusted as to amounts depending your preferences.  I sometimes add others depending on what’s in the fridge, but this is the basic.  That’s one of the best parts of this soup, you can make it your own as I have.

When it comes to spices, I vary that again depending on my whim. Right now my spices are cumin (liberally sprinkled), turmeric (good for me for anti-inflammatory purposes, so I’m told, also liberally sprinkled), a dash of cayenne or several, depending.  I also like to add a few teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce.

I cook in the crock pot for usually about 4-6 hours on High.  You can cook as long as you like depending on how crunchy you like your soup.  I like mine still a little crunchy.

This soup as it is counts for 0 Points on Weight Watchers.  For anyone who is following Weight Watchers and want to make this, I have a suggestion.  If you want to add something else to it, pasta, rice, quinoa, beans or meat if you are a meat eater, I suggest that you make the basic soup.  Then take out the portion you want to eat.  After you’ve done that, then measure and add whatever else you want to add in.  That way your big pot of soup stays “pure,” it still counts as 0 Points.  You can then calculate the Points for whatever you might be adding to your portion of soup.  Just makes life simpler and you’re left with a pot of 0 Point soup in case you have a day when you’re Hungry and need something that counts for 0 Points.

The finished product…

Veggie Soup completed

 

It is so delicious and so versatile.  It’s a great tool for helping me stay on track.  Even if you’re Not a Weight Watchers member, it can be a help.

That’s it for me today for WIAW.  Be sure to join in all of the fun over at Peas & Crayons.  Have a great day!

Happy What I Ate Wednesday!

Week In Review~March 10

I can’t believe that it’s time for another Week In Review.  That’s the great link up hostessed by the lovely Meghan at Clean Eats, Fast Feets.  I also can’t believe that it’s another week when I Didn’t write my post on Sunday so here I am Monday morning scrambling to get it written.  We WILL correct that next week.

Week In Review Button Final

So here goes.

~Last Monday was another and hopefully our last snowstorm.  I am so sick of snow and any of you who read BCDC on a regular basis know that and are also sick of hearing me talk about it.  I’m seriously hoping that this will be our last.  I thought that if I approached the snowy day with a positive attitude, I might get some spiritual or real world reward out of it.

I decided to get busy.  I’d heard about the storm in advance and was ready.  That preparation and readiness allowed me to put at least my morning to good use.  Commence the tale of the Three Crock pots.

Three crock pots

 

Yes, you see three, count ‘em three (how many times can I use that?) crock pots all at work at the same time.  Beef stew for Ralph, lentils for me and Weight Watchers veggie soup for me.  I felt pretty excited about this whole thing.  Ralph thought it was pretty funny.  We have relatively little counter space so this was an accomplishment.  During the cooking process the veggie soup was actually working on a tray on top of the stove.  All worked out well.  It was a first time for the beef stew recipe and Ralph really likes it.  With a few seasoning adjustments, it will enter the rotation.  Love my crock pots and I think they’ll be working today later on.

~I worked on my morning pages for The Artist’s Way every day.  Again, I have to say, that I’m amazed that I have continued with this routine.  I love writing my pages and can’t imagine allowing myself to miss a day.  I actually completed my very first notebook.  That’s a lot of writing!!  I’ve started a new one and I plan to keep going.  I can’t believe that there are only three sessions left.  Twelve weeks seemed so daunting when I first started.  It’s been great and I’ve met some interesting people who I think have become friends.  I’m happy that I joined.

~I also meditated every day.  Each day I do it, it becomes more and more natural.  I love the music apps that I’ve downloaded to my phone.  They’re great and I have several so that I can switch them up.  Have I said that before?  If I haven’t, now I have.  If I have said it before it’s still true.  I keep trying to fit in an evening meditation.  That hasn’t worked out yet.  I’ll keep working on it.

~As I look at this Week In Review, I see that I’m not accomplishing much else other than my usual routine.  I was actually writing about that in my morning pages today.  I need to get some real projects accomplished.  Now that the weather is better, it’s warmer and there’s no ice and snow outside, I think I can do that.  My goal for this week is to get together all of the thinks I’ve been gathering (in different parts of the house…) that need to go to the thrift store, get them out of the house and into the car.  Then make the trip to the store.  That’s a good goal.  If I get the stuff out-of-the-way, then I’ll have a clearer idea of what to do next.  I also have a LOT of papers that need shredding.  Tomorrow the recycling goes out.  Perhaps that would be a good goal for today.  Then it will be out-of-the-way for real and can go to live in recycling land.

I’ll let that be my two goals for this week.  Something is better than nothing.  Usually, once I get myself started, I’m more likely to keep working.  Everybody has to hold me to those two projects now.  I’ll let you know next week how I did!

Be sure to check out the Week In Review link up over at Clean Eats, Fast feets.  Meghan is my inspiration.  I want to be her when I grow up!

Happy Monday!

Saturday Snapshot~March 8

This is our second Saturday Snapshot for March and I suppose I’m still complaining about Snow!  I know the folks who participate in Saturday Snapshot hostessed by Melinda at West Metro Mommy Reads come from all over the place and some of them are not dealing with snow right now.  Well, in New Jersey, we still are.  I’m hoping that this past Monday’s snow storm will be our last for the year.  Fingers crossed anyway.

SaturdaySnapshot

The day after the snow storm, I had dug myself out and needed to run some errands.  I had gotten a feel for this scene from my kitchen window but because of the screen on the window, I couldn’t get a good photo.  Outside, I had better luck.

Tree Shadows

 

I just loved the way the shadows of the trees were captured on the snow.  It made me feel a little less resentful for the snow storm.  I think this photo was worth it!

Be sure to check out all of the fun photos you’ll find at West Metro Mommy Reads.

Happy Saturday!

WIAW~New and Old Edition

Good Morning and welcome to the umpteenth edition of What I Ate Wednesday here at BCDC!  So many of the people who link up with Jenn at Peas & Crayons seem to know how many WIAW’s they’ve done.  I do not.  I just know that I show up Whenever possible and yammer on about food and stalk what other people eat over at P & C.  You should take the trip over there too.  I get such great ideas over there! I know it’s no longer Love your Veggies month but it’s Always love your veggies month here, so I’m sticking with it.

What I Ate Wednesday: Love Your Veggies

I’ve titled this post Old and New because there are things here that you’ve seen before and some wonderful new things.  First the most exciting new.

Veggie kabob

 

Ralph and I went to dinner on Friday night with some ladies I used to work with.  It’s always fun but we went to a new place this time.  It’s at a semi-local mall and it’s called Firesides.  I had checked it on-line and knew I’d be Ok for food choices.  I love when I have dinner at a restaurant where I don’t only have one choice.  This was listed as a Veggie Kabob.  Portobello mushroom, red pepper, tomato and red onion grilled on two kabobs.  Half a quesadilla with spinach, pepper jack cheese and something else that I forget inside.  I think that was pesto aioli drizzled around.  It was SO good and I was very satisfied.  I wish the restaurant was closer because I’d go again for this.  Everyone was pleased with their choices.

What would WIAW at BCDC be without a diner omelette.  You’re welcome, Meghan!

Diner breakfast

 

This was spinach and feta cheese.  I splurged and had the potatoes although I probably only ate a third of them, and an English muffin.  Yummy!

I so sick of saying this but…Monday we had a snowstorm!!!  Hopefully the last for the year.  I was tired of complaining and tired of hearing myself complain.  Since for some reason I woke up at 4 am, I got to work early on some cooking.  I needed to make my Weight Watchers veggie soup for the week and I wanted to cook up some lentils.  I also wanted to try an experiment.  As a very long time vegetarian, I’m starting to lose my powers of cooking meaty things.  I had seen a crock pot recipe for beef stew.  It seemed simple and I could deal with the meat without touching it. All of these things led to this on Monday during the snowstorm.

Three crock pots

 

Left is the beef stew, center is the lentils and on the right is the WW veggie soup.  I had so much fun!!  The good news is that Ralph loved the beef stew.  It’s a good thing, too because there is a LOT of it!!  I was excited because it really was pretty simple.

I put the lentils to use for dinner.  I had leftover salad from a big salad I had made to take to my sister’s house on Saturday.  I topped it with lentils, parmesan cheese and some balsamic vinegar.

Lentil salad

 

This was very tasty and surprisingly filling.  I love cooking lentils this way.  They go a long way and they are so good.

That’s What I Ate Wednesday for me today.  Not sure I can top that three crock pot trick.  My other big one is in New Mexico.  I only have one other small one.  Guess I’ll have to wait until I get to New Mexico to go Five for Five!

Happy What I Ate Wednesday!!

Week In Review~March 3

Here we are, it’s March 3 and I haven’t changed my calendar yet! Meghan, can I use that as the first thing on Next week’s Week In Review?!  Meghan is our lovely hostess for Week In Review.  Be sure to check out all of the other bloggers who link up at Clean Eats, Fast Feets every week.  I love WIR because it helps me to see exactly what I’ve done in a week.  Makes me feel much more accomplished than I did before I joined in.  Besides, I’m starting to appreciate Meghan’s love of  lists that started the whole thing!

Week In Review Button Final

~It snowed!! I realize that I had nothing to do with the snow, but it had an impact on my week and helped to contribute to my general feeling of craziness.  I am truly tired of the snow as I’ve been saying again and again.  You’re probably sick of hearing it, but I’m sick of experiencing it. Ok, that’s off my mind now.

~Another good week of going through the Artist’s Way program.  We completed Week 8.  I did my morning pages every day and I’m amazed that I only have about 6 pages left in my current MP notebook.  I have another at the ready.  I’ve been saving up journal books for years never knowing what I was going to do with them.  Now I know.  I love the exercise of doing the pages.  They are a great way for me to start the day, dump out a bunch of things and I do believe it will be a practice that stays with me.

~We got all of our tax paperwork in the mail.  So glad when that’s accomplished.  Come on Refund!

~I exercised six out of the last seven days.  I feel so much better doing this.  I am now realizing why I always did my exercise bike each morning even when I was still working.  It makes me feel so good. Especially now with my hip issues.  This is truly a wonderful thing.  I’m up to 35 minutes now and I may try to raise that as this new week progresses.  I may even try to add a short ride in the afternoon.  I’m feeling so good about it.

~I have decided that something that is missing in my life is meditation.  I had meditated for quite a while in 2013.  I believe at one point I was up to 109 days in a row without missing.  I’ve downloaded several apps to my phone which are quite good.  Each one has several choices of either music or sound (chimes, chanting, wind, water) that are very good for calming and focusing me.  Today for some reason, it didn’t work, my mind kept moving to things I have to do today.  This blog post was one of those things.  One of the main reasons I usually do it on Sunday is because then I have time to think about it and not be rushed on Monday.  Note to self…Do Week In Review on Sunday…Always!!  Here’s a little look at what I see when I meditate.

Buddha and candle

 

A flickering candle and the wonderful Buddha that my sister, Ele got for me.  Very peaceful.

~I read poetry.  Not something I’ve done in quite a while.  Monica who is the leader of our Artist’s Way cluster, loaned me a book of poetry by Mary Oliver.  I must confess that I am ashamed that I don’t think I’ve ever heard of her.  She won a Pulitzer Prize for poetry.  However, I’ve found her now and I’m a fan.  I need to read more poetry.  It will probably encourage me to write more as well.  When I get to my project of going through the books at my sister’s house, I need to pull out some of my poetry books and get into them again.

That’s about it for me for Week In Review. I have big plans for this coming week, so I intend to have a much longer list next week!  Be sure to check over at Meghan’s Clean Eats, Fast Feets  to see what everyone is up to.  Have a great week!

Happy Monday!

Saturday Snapshot~March 1

Even though it’s the first of March, it’s still winter here in New Jersey. But I’m still going to share some sunshine for Saturday Snapshot hostessed by the lovely Melinda at West Metro Mommy Reads.  Be sure to visit there when you’re finished here to see all of the great photography.

SaturdaySnapshot

 

As with last week, I’m in need of some warmth and sun.  We had two more snows this past week and when I got up this morning the temperature registered 11 degrees.  That Is Too Cold!!!  In an effort to stop complaining, I wanted to share something sunny and warm.

Harbor in Boothbay Harbor

 

This is a beautiful photo taken at the harbor in Boothbay Harbor, Maine.  I spent 2 weeks there in August with my best friend, Gail.  It is wonderful and peaceful and just so much fun.  I hope I get to visit again this summer.

Be sure to check out West Metro Mommy Reads to see what all of the other great photographers are sharing.

Happy Saturday!!

WIAW~Another day in Veggie Land

It is time for What I Ate Wednesday again.  For the possibly five people in the blog world who do Not know what that is, it is the Fun Food Fest hostessed each week by the lovely Jenn at Peas & Crayons.  When you’re finished here, be sure to visit P&C to see what everyone has cooking over there!

What I Ate Wednesday: Love Your Veggies

As usual, every month is Love Your Veggies Month here at BCDC.  Let’s see what’s on the menu.

Pepper and egg sandwich

 

One of my favorite meals in the whole world, one because it’s Delicious, and two because it reminds me of the sandwiches my Mom would make us when we were kids.  Pepper and egg sandwich from the local pizzeria.  My change to it is having them use sweet peppers instead of regular and adding some American cheese.  So good!

Diner salad

 

Salad at the diner.  I had forgotten to take my balsamic vinegar with me so I survived using their balsamic vinaigrette, just not much of it. 5 Points for the entire package…No Thank You.

Dinner to go with the salad was this…

Diner veggie dinner

 

One of my favorite things to do at the diner is to come up with things I can eat by using what they have on the menu.  They have a sandwich called a veggie cheese steak. It is a big roll with a grilled combo of mushrooms, onions, romaine lettuce, peppers and a bunch of other veggies topped with cheese and it’s delicious. But sometimes I don’t want to eat all if that bread so I decided I’d ask if they would put it over rice.  They said yes and I get a side order of brocolli.  Then I just sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top. So Very Good!

Monday at my house it was Two Crock Pots, No Waiting!

Two crockpots

 

The one on the left is my Weight Watchers veggie soup bubbling away.  On the right is Ralph’s country ribs cooking, soon to be topped with barbecue sauce.  It’s one of his favorite meals and it’s easy for me.  He usually gets at least two meals from it and that again, is a good thing!

My finished product…

WW veggie soup

 

How many different ways can I show you my Weight Watchers veggie soup?  This time it’s cooked.  This is so good and makes the house smell so good as it cooks.  I get so many meals out of it that it’s crazy!  It goes a very long way and it’s very inexpensive.  One of these days, I’m going to try to figure out how much it costs.  Not a lot, I can assure you.  It’s a wonderful tool for me on Weight Watchers because it counts as 0 Points.  Sounds good to me.

So that’s WIAW for me for this week. Be sure to stop over to see what all the fuss is about at Peas & Crayons.  Just be careful, because I usually end up incredibly hungry after checking out all of the blogs over there.  Eat breakfast first!!

Happy What I Ate Wednesday!!

Week In Review~February 24

I can’t believe that today begins the last week of February, but yes it does! That’s not going to stop me from being part of Week In Review hostessed by the lovely Meghan at Clean Eats, Fast Feets.  Be sure to check out the other Reviewers when you’re finished here.

Week In Review Button Final

It’s been a week with its ups and downs, but I made it through and that’s what matters!

~I wrote three blog posts.  Still working on getting in Number Four.  I think I’ll have to have a serious sit down talk with myself in order to get the fourth one in this next week.  I’ll get there!

~I wrote my morning pages for the Artist’s Way every day.  I’m still enjoying it so much.  There’s a lot that I’m learning about myself from this process.  It’s all very helpful.  I was able to go to the meetup for the Artist’s Way this week because the weather cooperated.  I was actually the only one to show up, but I truly enjoyed a few hours of chatting with Monica the leader of the group.  She’s a fascinating lady.  I’m enjoying the process in general.

~I FINALLY unearthed my exercise bike.  During my big purge back in November, all of the empty boxes just got tossed on the porch.  Well, that made it a little hard to get to the bike, so I slacked off.  I’d sort of already been off track with the bike prior to that.  Anyway…I actually can’t remember whether it was Sunday or Monday, but I reorganized the boxes and gave myself access to the bike.  I exercised 30 minutes on the bike five days in a row.  I have to admit that it has done wonders for me.  My hips and back which have been bothering me a lot lately, feel much better.  I’m going to continue with this daily.  I’m feeling better every day and I’m pretty excited about it.

~We took care of some very necessary bank business and of course got caught in this week’s huge thunder-storm.  We had more errands planned that day, but headed home to avoid the traffic in the rain.

~On Saturday, as is my routine, I was at Weight Watchers bright and early.  My reward was a .8 (three-quarters of a pound) loss.  I was happy.  I’ve been working hard to stay on track and that made me happy.

~After Weight Watchers, Ralph and I headed to the county library for one of our favorite things…the semi-annual book sale!

Book sale

This isn’t the whole thing and I’m sure I missed some good finds because we didn’t get there until afternoon.  I was being very careful because I’m really on the mission of weeding out the books I have, but I did buy 4 books which I think was considerable restraint on my part.  I love being around books, old or new…it doesn’t matter.

~Since I’m writing this on Sunday, I’ll tell you what’s up for today.  I need to go grocery shopping quickly this morning.  I just need things to make my Weight Watchers veggie soup because that has been such a good tool for me over the last few weeks.  Then my sister Ele and I will be going to a spiritual Gathering that we attend every few weeks.  I’m really looking forward to it.

That’s the Week In Review for me.  Be sure to check out the other linkers over at Clean Eats, Fast Feets.  We all love when you visit!

Happy Monday!

Saturday Snapshot~February 22

Another Saturday…Another Snapshot!  I love the friendly group of people who are part of the Saturday Snapshot link up.  Always so supportive and friendly.  Sponsored of course by Melinda at West Metro Mommy Reads, Saturday Snapshot is Great Fun!

SaturdaySnapshot

 

Sadly, we’re back to the discussion of snow again.  However. we were in the 50′s yesterday and expected to go there again for the next few days.  I am actually catching glimpses of sidewalk and some brown stuff in my back yard which I can only guess is the Earth!!  I’m getting pretty excited.

I wanted to share a photo of a sunrise I took a few days ago.

Sunrise blocking the snow

 

I specifically took the photo with the idea of blocking out the snow.  I Was So tired of it.  Some still worked its way in but for the most part it’s just sunrise.  I’m so happy that the snow is on its way out! At least, I hope so.  Maybe I’m being a little to optimistic.  It’s got to be going away because if not I’m going to go out to have myself fitted for a stylish straight jacket!!

Be sure to check out all of the great photos over at West Metro Mommy Reads.

Happy Saturday Snapshot!!