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Archive for the ‘Tips & Tricks!’ Category

Um, so due to my new love of finding sales and buying things with coupons (link to that blog here!) I have ended up with a stockpile of cereal that I got at a steal. And, not just any cereal, but the good stuff. Cookie Crisp, Life, Trix, Cocoa Puffs, etc…

I forgot just how yummalish cereal can be. Especially when it’s a nice little piece of carb heaven coated in sugar and cinnamon and practically melts in your mouth upon insertion. Yes, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, I’m talking about you. Oh mah gah…. My kids love it and that’s why I got it, but we have seriously gone through three boxes (Si, TRES!!!!) of it since Friday.

I don’t need math to tell me we are seriously over-eating it, but just for kicks, lets see: each box has 9 servings, 27 total for three boxes. For my little family of 4 to have dominated 27 servings of cereal in four days is crazy ridiculous.

Top of my “TO DO” list when I get home is to make single serving snack bags of la Crunch so the next time one of us gets a sweet tooth we grab a bag filled with one serving, instead of the whole box. I normally have to do this to control myself with snacks, but really didn’t think el Cruncho would get me so riled up. …it’s the little things.

Speaking of, I really need to get back into running. I’m not motivated and looking forward to it like I use to. I know I don’t need to start the C25K all over because the whole point of that program is to get into running long distance and I already know I can do it, but I’m thinking I may start back over just to get the motivation piece going again. Building up to long distance running is a goal to work towards and seems more momentous than just running for an hour waiting for the clock to tick the time away on the treadmill. I need distractions to keep me from just staring down the clock. And, there’s no way I can run outside without any distractions. It sounds so relaxing and fun to take a run out in the open air, but honestly the time just DRAGS for me. Maybe I need to find a nice trail or park or something different from just the route around my town? Too bad all of those places are at least a 20 minute drive away. I hardly feel like running after a full day of driving here and there and getting home from work. Highly doubt I will feel like driving again, just to run. Meh….

Here’s to hoping motivation comes soon.


This week is really my week! I’m feeling great from eating better and getting my runs back in. (Yes, I ran last night! Leg still hurt after about 10 minutes of running, so I alternated running/walking and altogether ran 35 minutes and walked 10 – not shabbs!)

Anyhow, my head is clear, I’m feeling great and have been able to spend time with the kids, get my work done, send in quality papers on homework nights AND clip my coupons/read the sale circulars. I have not been able to do all of those things regularly, or with quality, in forever. Feels great!
To top that little cupcake with a cherry, I was cleaning my email which is set up specifically for my couponing emails andddddd…. ran across this new efficient tool:

For any of you who coupon shop, or compare prices (or are interested in doing so!) will know that it can be difficult to go through multiple different store inserts or scan blogs for information on sales that are currently going on. Especially when some stores have sales from Mon-Sat and others are more like Thur-Wed. That can get confusing!!!! Well…. I have yet to really use it for my weekly shopping, but have played around with it since I discovered it and it looks amazing!!!! It has the sales listed for 7 of the stores that I normally spend time looking through ads – only all in one spot! Here’s a link to the short video that explains, if anyone is interested:

And, NO, I was not paid to advertise that, nor given any incentive to do so! I just love saving money and want to help others to do the same! I wish I had discovered coupons and how using those against sale prices could really save a TON of money! And, YES, I am still running and will continue to blog about that, but this blog is really all about ME! If I find a good site or something fun I will post it as well as updates with not only running, but things that are going on in my life.

PS If anyone out there has Sirius/XM – give the indie channel (35) XM U a shot. I have fallen in love with so many songs that I had no idea existed!! I love listening to Cosmo Radio’s “Wake Up with Taylor” in the mornings, but find myself switching over every commercial break and as soon as the show is over. This type of music speaks to me. I love all different genre’s and have so many different faves that range from rock to rap to grunge to southern rock – but this indie stuff is ME. Give it a listen!

PSS If you don’t have Sirius/XM but want to try out some new tunes and see what the heck I’m talking about, see if you can find any of the following:
Coming Down – Dum Dum Girls
The Suburbs – Mr Little Jeans (Also by Arcade Fire, but I really love this cover)
Vomit – Girls
It’s Real – Real Estate
Gay Human Bones – Harlem
Hurdy Gurdy Man – Butthole Surfers
Here Comes Your Man – Pixies
Stinking Cloud – Thee Oh Sees
Keep You – Class Actress
Mr Driver – Black Lips

Happy Hump Day. Til later, ta ta for now.

Driving to work this morning my thoughts were of bliss. I was in love. I realized I was in love in this same way as a kid – but then I lost my way. First it was that I became too busy …and then I thought I was better without …and then I had gone so long without that I forgot how good it could be.

Yes, but now I was back in love… WITH BREAKFAST! Ooh, sweet breakfast, how I really do love, love, luuuuh-hove you. And, I’ve missed you so over the years.

Honestly, I did love breakfast growing up. Who didn’t? My mom stayed home so she always cooked us fresh breakfasts or had plenty of things to choose from if we were in a hurry. Eggs, bacon, pancakes, French toast, raisin bread, pop tarts, strudels, muffins, cereal, oatmeal, cinnamon rolls… Okay, I’ll stop before there’s drool all over the keyboard.

But, seriously, the turning point for when I stopped doing breakfast regularly, was probably when I became a teen and started going out and staying up too late. Partying and having fun Doing homework and studying, of course.  At that time in my life it became that every single second that I could sleep in became more important than having an extra minute to grab something to eat. I was always sprinting for the door.

Then came the weight issues. Even on days when I got up early enough to grab breakfast, I declined because it was not only breakfast I was trying to cut, but also any extra meals or calories. I think I went through almost every eating disorder possible. Anorexia, bulimia, a bit of both, and then diet pills with ephedrine helped me to become anorexic again – only with energy. Oh, those were good. I took those for years. Thank GOD they were pulled from shelves and made illegal. (And, yes, I even stockpiled them at that time and treated them like gold.) Those pills got me to the smallest weight I’ve ever been, but it was just a matter of time before I had some serious health issues from them. I’m surprised I never did have any issues from taking them for so long. But, as much as I loved the energy they gave me and the euphoria they gave me – I LOVE eating AND being healthy now even more.

After I found the Weight Watchers lifestyle (it totally works for me and is NOT a diet), I gained the ability to go to dinner with my family and indulge in whatever I want and be okay with it. For the first time in years to have that feeling is the BEST feeling in the world and totally beats any euphoria those pills gave me. But, back to the breakfast.. I love it and thought I would share some of my favorite things to eat for breakfast that really make you feel like you are indulging without having too many calories or ruining your entire day.

Since I quit smoking I have to snack on a little something on the commute to the office. My faves right now are 90 calorie breakfast cereal bars. Here’s some I dig that are all 90 cals (and 2 WW PointPlus):

Fiber One Peanut Butter & Chocolate
Fiber One Chocolate
Special K Chocolatey Pretzel (The sweet/salty and only 90 cals – IN HEAVEN!!!)
Great Value Strawberry with icing
Great Value Blueberry with icing

I have to eat something more substantial once I get to work, though. My two faves eggs/bread type “dishes” right now:

155 cal Egg (white) sandwich:
Cook two egg whites in a skillet
One slice of 2% cheese
2 Healthy Life bread

140 cal French Toast w/syrup
Whisk two egg whites
Dip two Healthy Choice slices of bread in egg whites
Grill on a griddle or in a pan
¼ cup Sugar Free Syrup is more than enough to dip or pour over
*Sometimes I use spray butter, too, just not sure about the cal content, so didn’t include it!

As I mention on my twitter earlier, I am in LOVE with low-calorie drink mixes. My favorite right now is Cherry Limeade which is made by a brand found at Walmart, Great Value. It seriously tastes like a glass of pixie stix. So good!

I make jugs of the sugar-free drinks at home and buy the individual packets to make a drink while I’m at work or in the car. But, even 10 calorie treats can add up!

I’ve been tracking what I eat for a couple years now and normally didn’t count the occasional piece of gum, mint or low cal drink. However, when I quit smoking I noticed my intake of these items went dramatically up! Its gotten better now that I’m over the 2 week mark, but I decided to try to do what I could to start slowing down my intake of these items. Sugar free mints, gum & candy are not nearly as bad as smoking, but some studies have linked too much intake of artificial sweeteners to some bad health outcomes, too.

So, by counting each piece of gum, candy or drink and tallying them through a day or two can make a person more aware of just how many calories they are spending on these “treats”. Also, I drink a mix on the way to work, but then make myself drink two glasses of water before making another drink mix. This helps to not only drink more water during the day, but to slow down how much artificial sugar I’m drinking as well. Those drinks are so good I could seriously drink a whole 24 oz glass in 5 minutes.

No joke! Hope the tip helps someone.

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  • So, bear w/me while I try to figure it out. I'm thinking this acct will have to go and I'll just link all things running to @dancewithmandi 6 years ago
  • 'ello! I'm back... w/3 accts! Cleanup time! ;/ Love running, but I'm now a zumba instructor @dancewithmandi plus my personal @amandabrookers 6 years ago
  • RT @amandabrookers: If your profile picture is a vehicle, I'm feeling it's safe to assume your cover is blown...everyone now knows you a ... 6 years ago
  • “@EatThisNotThat BEST BREAKFAST @ Jack in the Box: Breakfast Pita Pocket + Fruit Cup = 491 calories & 23 g fat!” <-Best?!?! Not in my book!! 6 years ago
  • @WakeUp_Taylor so, has the #fkfc explored Zumba? It's amazing! I'm becoming a certified instructor next month! Maybe I come & teach Tay&K :) 6 years ago

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