Eat In Month 2011 Recap

Happy Monday friends!

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend and an even better start to your week!

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I stayed up a bit too late blogging after our super fun Super-Dance-Bowl party, so this morning was rough.

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Nothing a little coffee and some oatmeal can’t fix, though.

And I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one who likes bananas on top of my oats.

Today was a loooong day at work. I got in around 8:45pm but didn’t leave until just before 7pm! Luckily, I at least took a real lunch break today (as in I didn’t eat at my desk…hooray!). I’m going to work on getting away from my desk during the day more. I think it’s healthy to try to balance your work day.

Two fortunate things happened on my way home:

  • I made it through almost every stoplight! That never happens. I feel like I usually catch them. lol
  • Hubby was ready to make dinner at home as soon as I got back.

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Hubby started us with a side salad with organic romaine hearts, cherry tomatoes, celery, bell pepper, and sprouts. I used sundried tomato vinaigrette on top.

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And for the main event – breaded chicken parmesan and tomato basil soup. Plus some buttered whole wheat toast that I was simply too exhausted to photograph. After staring blankly like a zombie for awhile eating a balanced meal, I was feeling much better.

I caught a couple episodes of Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations. Have you seen it? I think it’s my new favorite TV show! If there are any No Reservations marathons coming up, you let me know, kay? ;) I think a day spent eating yummy snacks and watching No Reservations sounds like a pretty awesome day to me.

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Eat In Month Recap

So, Eat In Month 2011 officially ended a week ago, and I’m feeling pretty relieved. Just like last time, I think it was a great experience, and I learned some lessons, but I prefer to live my life sans rules. I prefer guidelines.

So what did I learn? Well, there were some things I remembered from the 2010 challenge and some new ideas from 2011.

I learned that inside and outside of a challenge month:

  • A well-stocked pantry will encourage eating in, on a regular night or when you’re in need of a quick fix meal.
  • You can get a lot of satisfaction by pushing past your fatigue/laziness/whatever when you feel like taking the easy way out by preparing something tasty at home.
  • Meals IN don’t have to be perfect or gourmet – sometimes the simplest ones are best.
  • Sometimes it’s about making a better choice, not the perfect choice. While I think you should always eat whole foods as much as possible, if your choice is fast food versus some healthi-ER but not from scratch food at home, go with the latter.
  • You shouldn’t “not eat out” for the sake of it, if you’re in a situation where you need food and wouldn’t be able to eat in. For example, say you’re on a road trip. Now, if you can…definitely plan ahead and pack food ahead of time to enjoy later. But if you meant to pack food in the morning but spilled your entire container of oatmeal in the kitchen thereby making you late because you had to use your food-packing time to clean up rolled oats, by all means, eat something out! Don’t starve yourself!
  • Don’t skip social events just because you “can’t eat out.” You can always go after dinner and just have a drink. Or, if you’re not doing the challenge, go out to eat! Live a little.
  • Of course, you can very easily enjoy social events in the comforts of your home. Have a pot luck. Host a game night. Put on a movie marathon. Enjoy the company of your friends and eat in, too.
  • You don’t have to go out to eat to celebrate a birthday or other special event. Try cooking a special meal at home. Hubby and I celebrate in all the time, like how we celebrated his January birthday dinner IN during the month of the challenge.
  • Keep healthy snacks at work so you aren’t tempted to buy snacks out. It’s usually healthier and more cost-effective.

Check out this awesome recap by Brie Fit (click). Did you write a review? Let me know and I’ll link it up. ;)

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And because I haven’t shared a good quote in awhile, this one seems somewhat fitting at the moment:

Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved.
~Helen Keller

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Did you participate in Eat In Month? What did you learn?

Happy Super-Dance-Bowl 2011

I put an interesting twitter poll up today after seeing some interesting responses to a question I asked on my Facebook page (which just passed 400 Likes – yay!).

The poll asked: who are you pulling for today?

  • Packers
  • Steelers
  • Commercials
  • Glee

Most people said Glee! Yes! Nice guys. I love it!

So, did most of you have a fabulous super bowl party? I hope you did.

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I ended up participating in a Super-Dance-Bowl Party instead. Details in a minute.

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First some randomness. I think I found a sliced almond in my tea leaves today. Can you make tea with almonds? I think this needs some research and a potential cooking experiment. ;)

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Bailey was really working it today.

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I guess he really wanted me to take some pictures to share with you all. :)

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I spent most of my afternoon blogging and baking – two of my favorite things!

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I heart baking.

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After finishing my sweets, I packed them up and headed to Erica and Toya’s house for a Super-Dance-Bowl party.

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So what is a Super-Dance-Bowl party you may ask? Well, like most parties we have snacks…

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…and apps, like this tasty homemade cheese ball.

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But we also have dancing.

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Lots of dancing. :)

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Oh yea!

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Erica made a fabulous turkey chili for dinner.

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I especially liked how the chili was served over spaghetti noodles! I learned this was “Cincinnati chili” on Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives. ;) Though it looked tasty on the triple-D, I never thought to make it at home. I may have to have all my chili this way now, though. It was awesome! The flavor was great and I loved the melty cheese on top. Corn muffins were a must-have side. Yum!

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Dessert.

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Game snacks = caramels and tater tots.

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Games = Cranium and Apples to Apples.

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Our Elvis character wanted to go for a quick swim in some champagne.

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Check out Megan’s play dough sculpture…nice!

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Check out my winning Apples to Apples hand. The key word was “Boring” and I threw the red card down for “Watching Football.” What do you expect from a group of girls who would rather dance and play board games than watch football? lol ;)

I learned tonight that I’m pretty terrible at Apples to Apples. Have you played it? I also learned that I really like it. Hubby and I have been saying for awhile that we want to start having “game night” and inviting friends over…maybe we’ll start by buying Apples to Apples? We’ll definitely have to play Pictionary because that is my favorite!

How did you spend your Superbowl Sunday? And of the 4 options on the poll above, who were you pulling for??

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