Tag Archives: OOIAJ

Strange But Good~You Really Did That??

Good Morning! I’m excited to be back with the Strange But Good crew that gathers over at Laura’s Sprint 2 The Table.  I feel so at home with anything that includes the word Strange!

Sprint 2 the Table

I’m always finding food in my fridge that I forgot was in there.  Most of the time whatever I find is unrecognizable and only good as a science experiment.  Not so with dried things apparently.  I found a container of prunes that I forgot I had.  Now, I think most of you are probably turning your noses up right now, but don’t.  Spending so much time with my Grandmother, prunes or “pru-ins” as she called them, were a staple around the house. They’re good for you-lots of fiber and potassium.  I gave her recipe for prunes once before and if I could find the post I’d link it.  I’ll do some searching and link it up soon.

So there I was with prunes that I figured I should probably use up and breakfasts I needed to eat.

First one was prune overnight oats.

Prune overnight oats


I chopped up 4 or 5 prunes.  I mixed a 1/4 cup each of oats and oat bran, 1/3 a cup of fat-free vanilla yogurt, cinnamon and 1/2 cup of Almond Breeze unsweetened.  I recently found out that 1/2 cup of this counts for 0 Points on Weight Watchers.  I have to verify that with my WW leader but I’m pretty excited.  I love to save a point wherever possible!  I know that a lot of people like their OOIAJ cold, and I have eaten it that way, but when possible, I like to warm it.  I do 1 minute 30 seconds in the microwave.  This was really tasty and I could taste the prune-y goodness.  I’ll do this again when there’s no fresh fruit available.

My next adventure was a prune smoothie.

Prune smoothie


I had to think ahead a little bit for this one.  The night before I chopped up again about 4 or 5 prunes.  I poured 1/2 cup of Almond Breeze over them and put them in the fridge overnight to soften them.  Next morning, I added another 1/2 cup of the Almond Breeze, 1/3 cup of fat-free vanilla yogurt and 2 scoops of protein powder.  I whirred it up in the Magic Bullet.  It was delicious!  The soaking was a good idea and next time, I do need to blend it a little longer.  The prunes needed some more spinning time.  I had a lot of prune chunks sticking in my straw! Regardless, it was great and it made me think of my Gram.  I will be trying both of these again.

That’s Strange But Good for me for this week.  Be sure to check out the other strange people who hang out over at Sprint 2 The Table.  I always get great ideas there!

Happy Friday!!


Note To Self~

I’m a basically intelligent person.  I can see what’s going on around me and I can usually figure out a way to make most things work.

It seems however that lately, if I’m not paying close attention, I can really screw up!

This morning, Ralph was up when I didn’t expect he would be.  I had allowed him plenty of time to do his breakfast routine before I decided to have mine.  I knew what my breakfast would be.  I had diligently prepared my OOIAJ (overnight oats in a jar) last night.  I was looking forward to it since I got up at 5am.  I’m not really interested in breakfast at that time which I probably should change after today.

I like my OOIAJ warmed.  I know it’s not how it was intended to be eaten, but that’s how I like it.  I give it a minute and 30 seconds which is usually perfect.  I put it in the microwave.

Ralph and I were milling about the kitchen chatting about various things.  I suddenly realized there was an out of the ordinary sound coming from the microwave.  I leaned down to look inside and saw sparks!  Without mentioning it to Ralph, I quickly turned it off. 

Note to self:  Be sure to remove ALL of the metallic inner seal from the peanut butter jar Before you put it in the microwave.

Here is the proof-

Notice the little black crusty places around the edge?  The one on the right is actually plastic that burned away.  Thank goodness I realized this was happening.

The good news is…the OOIAJ tasted delicious!  It’s always very satisfying.  I think it’s the protein in the peanut butter that does that.  Perhaps I should add it to oatmeal when it’s not in the jar. 

At least I have enough sense NOT to use dishes in the microwave with any kind of metal on it!

Back to work on my sorting and packing!!

Happy Friday! Don’t set anything on fire!


WIAW~Snack Attacks-Snack or Meal?

You know that every Wednesday whether I’m home or away I NEED to be part of a unique party… What I Ate Wednesday the fabulous brain child of the lovely Jenn from Peas and Crayons. It’s the most fun you can have sitting in front of your computer.  Be sure to make the trip over to P&C when you’re finished here.

As she’s been doing for a while, Jenn is giving us themes…Which I like!

Peas and Crayons

Now seriously…I’m always moaning about trying to stay away from snacking so I’m miserably unprepared for this.  However, since I have all of June to deal with it, I’ll work with what I have and start here. Regular food mixed with snacks and regular food that is Great as a snack!

Overnight oats with blueberries and cream Spiru-tein mixed in topped with fresh frozen blueberries.  So delicious and filling.  This could work as a snack.

Greek yogurt with honey…sometimes breakfast, sometimes lunch, sometimes a snack!  I love this brand and it was on sale yesterday…Ok by me!

One of my favorite meal/snacks…rice cakes with peanut butter.  Tasty, filling, protein and good fats!

It was breakfast, but it could be a snack…Dunkin’ Donuts veggie omelette flatbread with the always beloved iced coffee.  We had coupons and a gift card.  Worked out well! 😉

Big salads can be a snack, when they’re this size though…they’re usually a meal! 😉

Another salad about to be spruced up by some home-made dressing!  I just love doing this now.  Only takes a minute and it tastes so good, so much better than bottled dressing!!

This coming week I’ll be looking at my food with a little more eye to what my snacks are.  Now that I know I have to report back, you can bet I’ll be on my best behavior. 😉

Have a great day and when you’ve had your fill here, be sure to visit Peas & Crayons leave some comments and Enjoy!!

Happy What I Ate Wednesday!!  Have a Snack!!

Sometimes I’m On Target

Well, who knew that when I was eating all of my Greek food on Saturday, that Sunday was Greek Independence Day?!  Thanks to my friends, Eleni and Angie I found that out.  So Oopa or however you spell it.!  I just know that I enjoy the food.  From comments, I guess I’m pretty lucky to have a place that makes veggie Gyros.  I’ve never seen it anywhere else so, if I want one, I’ll have to keep going to the Gateway Diner!

I mentioned yesterday about trying to get just one project accomplished and it might expand into something more.  I feel like that theory actually worked for me on Monday!

I had to miss out on my free Dunkin’ Donuts coffee last week, but I wasn’t going to allow that to happen again…

Grabbed it on the way to run errands.  The girl at DD actually got the point of “not too much cream” this time.  Yum and Yum!

Got a great deal at Shoprite.  Ralph and I like Miracle Whip Light.  For me it’s only 1 Point per tablespoon.  A jar lasts us a good long time.  They don’t have it sometimes which is frustrating and Walmart doesn’t carry it at all.  It was on sale for $1.50 off the regular price…of course I bought 2!

Ralph likes red delicious apples and I bought him some last week.  He’ll eat one, maybe two, then the apples sit there.  Never fear…enter Crock-ette!

Along with the second box of ancient raisins found recently while cleaning out a cabinet. 😉  I ended up having to eat one of the apples because there wasn’t enough room in Crock-ette.

The finished product.  Just cinnamon and a little Splenda added.  So tasty and they make the house smell so good.  Ralph doesn’t like scented candles, but he doesn’t complain when the good smell is coming from Food!  He doesn’t have quote the same reaction when I’m cooking beans…I wonder why? 😦

Speaking of Splenda, anyone who uses it knows how expensive it is in stores, even if you buy a store brand.  Aldi is usually the least expensive-100 packs for $1.99.  At BJ’s they sell it in quantity.  You can buy Splenda for $13.99 for 700 packets, but if you buy the BJ’s brand it’s only $9.99 for 700 packets!  You can’t tell the difference.  It’s such a good savings!

I had made overnight oats intended for breakfast but then it turned into lunch.

I’ve been talking about enjoying hot oats with half oats and half oatbran.  I tried it with this OOIAJ and it tasted great this way too!  I ate it with the lonely apple that wouldn’t fit into Crock-ette.

Afternoon tea is becoming a daily occurence for Ralph and Me.  We’re really enjoying it.  His is pretty standard old regular tea.  I’ve been trying some interesting things.  I’ve always loved Constant Comment.  I found it on sale, bought a box, then I got a box of it as a Christmas gift, so I have to start drinking it.  Recently, someone posted about finding Green Constant Comment.  Well…

I get the goodness of the green tea and they wonderful flavor of Constant Comment.  I always use my Huge mug, because I think it might end up too strong if I used a standard size mug.  Very enjoyable when I get some reading time in the afternoon.

Oh, yes and my project? As I’ve mentioned before, I have a tiny kitchen. The corner (next to my stove) where my trash can sits can become a catch-all area.  Problem is that my largest cabinet is next to it and it’s hard to get into sometimes.  I cleaned out the area and put the trash can flat against the wall so the  cabinet door opens so much easier!  I took a look in that cabinet and it needs some attention, so that is today’s project.  Makes me feel good to accomplish things!

Happy Tuesday!

They All Look Alike~WIAW!!

Well they don’t all look alike, but…close!

What doesn’t always look alike is What I Ate Wednesday.  What is that?  Well, it’s that wonderful party till you’re full party over at Peas & Crayons with the lovely Jenn wearing the hostess outfit!  Take a few minutes to visit and enjoy.  Most Wednesdays, I go back three or four times to catch up on all of the excitement.  Now play nice…don’t just sightsee over there…Be sure to leave some comments, because we all like to know when you’ve come to visit. So here we go…

Peas and Crayons

Why do I say they all look alike?  Well, because sometimes it seems like they all look alike!  I eat a lot of nut butter things.  I put them on apples…I put them on rice cakes…they still look like nut butters.  I eat a lot of salads and I do my best to make them look different, I  put them in my wonderful Big Purple Bowl, I enumerate all of my ingredients but in the end…they pretty much all look alike!  But, hey…what the heck.  They taste good and that’s all that really matters!

This was a wonderful salad from over the weekend.  It had romaine, tomato, green bell pepper, homemade black beans and leftover stuffing!  I like to put a grain in and was about to cook up something, when I thought about it.  I had stuffing, it needed to be eaten or I would have to throw it out so…it went in the salad.  With balsamic vinaigrette…it was Wonderful!  I certainly have made the most of this stuffing!  That’s good because my sister, Ele tells me she still has some more! Yikes!

I love it when overnight oats in a jar are done the right way…in a nearly empty nut butter jar.  This was a brand from Aldi’s.  It was tasty peanut butter, but even better with some O’s added in!

Very yummy and always more filling with the nut butter.

Speaking of nut butters…this following item needs to be listed under TIDNTKE (Things I Didn’t Need To Know Existed)  Ralph kept seeing commercials for Nutella and asked if I ever tried it.  I hadn’t.  I decided I’d get him some to surprise him.  Turns out he didn’t wanted it, just asked about it. 😦

I decided to be thrifty and I bought the Shoprite brand.  I have to confess…the jar is two-thirds empty.

However…this is the first time I’ve eaten it on rice cakes or crackers or bread or anything that wasn’t a spoon.  In other words, I’m addicted to it!!  It is just delicious.  Now I don’t know if the real Nutella could be any better than the store brand.  If it is better please don’t tell me because I’m going to have to lock myself in a closet Right Now!!  It is very yummy!

I tried cooking up some quinoa on Monday, which I promptly burned because I didn’t add as much liquid as usual…Duh!!  Most of it was good to use.  I would have been really disappointed if it hadn’t been.  It had that nice woodsy taste!  😉

Again…romaine, tomato, green bell pepper, black beans, woodsy quinoa and shredded cheese.

Looks like a salad doesn’t it.  That’s because it Is a salad!  Can’t fool me!  Can’t fool You! 

In life, I like things to be obvious.  I like people to be what they seem to be and I like my food to look like what it is.  I’m healthy and I’m happy and I enjoy the food I eat. So who cares if they all look alike.  I don’t think I do, I like things just the way they are.

So if you want to see some things that don’t look like this, be sure to hurry over to Peas & Crayons…you’ll see lots of pretty foods and hear interesting stories and ideas.  It’s some of the best food fun you can have and not have to worry about gaining any weight!  I’m on my way there now, myself!

Happy What I Ate Wednesday!!

Stumbling Into WIAW

I’m still working hard to get myself back on track.  It’s hard to settle back into life in general after being away for a month and I am still a zombie-like, focus-less being but I’m getting better.  Getting back into routines helps.  What has become one of my favorite routines is What I Ate Wednesday…the big time all out food party led by Jenn at Peas & Crayons!!  After reading BCDC, go join the party over there.  It’s food, food, food!!  I love participating!

Peas and Crayons

My WIAW is going to be a little odd and disjointed, much like I am at the moment.  Stick with me though.

Monday night we needed something quick and easy.  This was quick and it was certainly easy.

It’s probably sounds like cheating, but this was dinner.  Whole wheat pasta, a jar of pasta sauce and romano cheese.  It was there.  Can’t explain it any better than that.

I thought it was delicious and Ralph thought so too!  This cheese was not my beloved Locatelli cheese, but I’m trying to be thrifty and it was about half the price.  It was pretty good. I don’t even have any of the Locatelli in the house so this is it if I need cheese on something for the time being.  I give it a general thumbs up.

Last night’s dinner helped me start to feel like I’m back on track.

Yes, yes, YES!!  That is my beloved Big Purple Bowl along with the red bell pepper, plum tomato and romaine lettuce!  I’ve missed it so much!  I thought about taking it to New Mexico with me but I was afraid I would forget to bring it back with me!

All chopped up with the addition of ground black pepper, dried basil, 1 cup of my lovely pinto beans and light balsamic vinaigrette.  (Note to self:  ALL dressings do NOT have the little shaker tops on them.  Be sure to LOOK before you SHAKE!)

It all turned into a lovely, hearty salad, just the way I like it.  I’ve missed these so much and I feel so much better and so much more on track when I eat them. 

My last offering will actually be breakfast on What I Ate Wednesday!!

This was my first time adding pumpkin to my overnight oats.  I started with my usual-1/2 cup of oats, 1/3 cup FF vanilla yogurt, 1/2 cup soymilk, 1 1/2 tsp of chia seeds.  I added pumpkin pie spice (oops forgot it in the photo!) and 1/2 cup of pumpkin.  I’m trying the store brand of soymilk (trying to save money again.)  So far I like it for my OOIAJ.  I’ll have to try it with hot oatmeal and oat bran (mmm…oat bran…I forgot about that…) to see how it works with them.

The finished product.  It certainly filled up my jar!  I find OO filling the way I usually make them.  This will hold me for several days!! 😉  Just kidding, but I am looking forward to it!

So that’s Me for WIAW!!  I have GOT to get myself on track.  I think I should share something that should be listed under What I DIDN’T Eat Wednesday.  Ralph in the sweetness of his heart brought me home an apple fritter from the Wa Wa.  Do I love the apple fritters?  Yes!  Do I NEED an apple fritter??  NO!!!!  I told him I was going to save it until after my weigh in on Saturday, he gave me this face… 😦  .  I was almost tempted to eat it last night due to the pressure put on me by the Phillies playoff game but I resisted.  It’s waiting till Saturday.  It’s wrapped up…it’ll keep!

Now to focus and get my tiny little act together!!

Happy What I Ate Wednesday!!

What’s In It For Me?

This was the question asked by our Weight Watchers leader, Mary Lou on Saturday.  Considering the fact that I have work to do to get back on track this week, it’s a good question to ask myself.  The topics at the WW meetings always give me something to take away with me, but this one was very appropriate.

Her next question was “What do I need to do to make it happen?”  Also a very good question.  It’s not always easy to answer.

To answer the first question, what’s in it for me is health.  I don’t take any medication at my advanced age and I feel that in itself is worth it.  I come from a family that suffered from many weight related health problems.  Fortunately, I have not inherited any of those problems yet and I don’t plan to allow that to happen.  I give credit for that to 24 years as a Weight Watchers member. 

What I’ve accomplished at WW gives me a level of confidence I never thought I’d have.  I feel good seeing myself in the mirror most days and I think I clean up pretty good on special occasions.   😉  I have 2 weddings coming up in the next few weeks, I’ll take some photos and show you!

So, what do I need to do to hold on to all  that I’ve accomplished?  I have to get back on track from a very long road trip.  I am truly amazed that I was able to stay in control as much as was.  But in spite of that, I do feel off track.  I feel so much better when I have better control of my food and my environment.

I started by doing some grocery shopping yesterday.  I still need to make a trip for produce which I will do today.  I got a good deal at Aldi’s on dried beans.  Most 1 pound bags of beans cost about $1-2 dollars per bag.  Aldi’s had pinto beans for $1.99 and great northern beans for $2.19.  I thought that was a great deal.  I put some pintos in to soak last night and this morning I got them into the crock pot to let it work it’s magic.

They’ll be ready in time for dinner. 🙂

I got my overnight oats ready so I’ll be sure to have my breakfast on track.

I know that the major thing I didn’t do while I was away was writing in my WW journal.  I started getting it ready during the meeting on Saturday, setting up the dates.  I wrote all weekend, even some of the things that were a little hard to write because there might have been better choices.  But in truth, journaling my food is the best way to get back on track and the most useful tool through all my years at WW.

I keep it with me all the time.

It’s good to reevaluate the things we do sometimes especially when dealing with something such as Weight Watchers.  If you do it right, you need to do it for the rest of your life.  At the start, I thought that was like a life sentence.  Now I understand it IS a life sentence.  If I keep working the program, I’ll be healthy and have the life I want.  I’ll get to spend many years with the people I love.

This Monday morning started with a beautiful sunrise.  It makes me feel that I’ll have a successful week.

This is what’s in it for me.

Happy Monday!! Have a productive week!!