Spring Cleaning the Pantry in 5 Easy Steps

Spring Cleaning Pantry

Spring cleaning is upon us, and I’m walking through various areas of my home and getting things decluttered, cleaned out, and organized.  The pantry seems to be one of those magical places where, no matter how hard I try, it becomes a twilight zone of random (usually expired) forgotten about granola bars, baking mixes, old holiday candy, and a can or two that was purchased ages ago.  While I’m trying to get better about regularly checking the pantry to make sure I use up what I have, it’s easier said than done. I decided that a clean slate was necessary.  Here’s how I went through my pantry and got it all cleaned out. Read more

How to Calculate Smart Points for Smoothies

How to calculate the Smart Points Value of your Smoothie

One of my favorite things about eating on Weight Watchers is that when I eat fresh fruits and veggies, they don’t count against my daily Smart Points intake.  Yes, there are a few exceptions (I’m looking at you avocados, potatoes, corn, etc.), but in general, that’s the rule..with one HUGE exception: when you blend produce to make smoothies.  I see “How do you track Smart Points for smoothies?” asked all over the place, and since I just learned the easy answer myself, I figured I’d tell you. Read more

Chocolate Overnight Oats |Weight Watchers Friendly, High Protien

Chocolate Overnight Oats

The other day I accidentally made a creation that is certainly going to become a staple in my breakfast routine.  I’ve seen overnight oats on blogs and Instagram photos a ton lately, and they always look so pretty and sound so good.  I was feeling inspired and decided to try my own twist on it.  I went over to Trader Joe’s and found rolled oats at a reasonable price (I’ll be honest, I don’t even know if rolled oats are the  “proper” oats to use) and the adventure began.

Many recipes called for using almond milk and many have things in it that, while healthy, makes the Smart Points values add up quickly.  Since I wanted more protein, I oped to try mixing them in with my fat free Greek yogurt (2 Smart Points) instead.  I used 1/4 C, mixed it up, and let it sit. It turned out to be quite thick, but to the point of dry and not all that awesome.  Back to the drawing board.

Thursday night I had a thought..because you know, I’m always thinking about food and random inspiration can strike at any time..  What if I used almond milk but put my Quest protein powder in it first??  Genius!  Guess what? It worked!  I ended up with the richest, chocolatey-est, dessert-esqe breakfast that only cost me 6 Smart points.  While it might not be the prettiest looking thing, I don’t care, because to me, it tastes awesome.

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Chomps Snack Sticks

chompsMeet Chomps

For people that enjoy their Slim Jims or meaty snack stick type treats, I’ve found a new brand that might spark your interest.  Chomps Snack Sticks are the healthier version of the snack you already know and love.  Chomps are made with 100% Non-GMO Grass-Fed Angus Beef, contain no artificial ingredients (no nitrites, nitrates, MSG, colors, flavors) and are shelf stable for a year with the help of celery juice. Yeah, you read that right: celery juice.

Chomps come in 3 flavors: Original, Hoppin’ Jalapeno, and Crankin’ Cran.  Personally, my favorite was the original flavor, as it’s the one without any spicy kick to it.  I tried the cranberry one thinking it would be safe, but I failed to notice the habanero pepper on the label.  Needless to say, I understand where the “crankin’ ” part of that particular flavor’s name came from.  I gave all of the spicy ones to my dad, who loves food that sets his mouth on fire, and his feedback was quite positive.  They taste delicious (and I agree, at least in terms of the original flavor), and are actually good for you too.

Snack time done right

Now lets take a look at Chomps from a nutritional perspective:

Original flavor (1 stick): Calories: 100  Fat: 6g  Saturated Fat: 3g  Carbs: 0g  Fiber: 0g  Sugar: 0g  Protein: 9g.  Weight Watchers SmartPoints Value: 3

Ingredients: 100%Grass-Fed Beef, Water, Sea Salt, Citric Acid, Celery Juice,Black Pepper, Red Pepper, Garlic Powder, Coriander, Stuffed in a Collagen Casing

 

Hoppin’ Jalapeno Flavor (1 stick): Calories: 100  Fat: 6g  Saturated Fat: 3g  Carbs: 1g  Fiber: 0g  Sugar: 0g  Protein: 9g.  Weight Watchers SmartPoints Value: 3

Ingredients: 100% Grass-Fed Beef, Jalapeno Peppers, Water, Sea Salt, Citric Acid, Celery Juice, Black Pepper, Red Pepper, Garlic Powder, Coriander, Stuffed in a Collagen Casing

 

Crankin’ Cran (1 stick): Calories: 110  Fat: 6g  Saturated Fat: 3g  Carbs: 4g  Fiber: 0g  Sugar: 2g  Protein: 9g.  Weight Watchers SmartPoints Value: 4

Ingredients: 100% Grass-Fed Beef, Habanero Peppers, Cranberries, Water, Sea Salt, Citric Acid, Celery Juice, Black Pepper, Red Pepper, Garlic Powder, Coriander, Stuffed in a Collagen Casing.

 

Bottom line: for 3 or 4 SmartPoints, these beefy little sticks are a great thing to keep around for when a snack attack occurs.  Chomps can be bought over on their website and are available in 5 packs and 24 packs.

 

*I was sent Chomps for review.  All thoughts and opinions are my own*

September Favorites

SeptemberFaves

Grace and Lace Two Fit Knit Cardigan– I heard of this company awhile back, and since they appeared on Shark Tank they’ve gotten even more popular.  I finally decided to take a look at their stuff and I was instantly hooked. I ordered this cardigan and once I put it on, I was in love. What is great about this open knit sweater (other than the fact it is quite warm) is you can wear it two ways: as full cover sweater or as a cardigan.  This makes it  a versatile addition to my fall and winter collection.

Tieks in Patent Nude: Odds are if you’ve stumbled across my blog you have found my post raving about why Tieks are worth their price tag.  I recently obtained my second pair in nude patent, and they’re fabulous.  The shiny patent leather makes them look so sleek, and the nude shade matches almost anything.  Versatile, comfortable, fashionable shoes are definitely a huge win. Read more

Edible Cookie Dough!

Edoughble is a company specializing in cookie dough that is egg free and meant to be eaten raw and not baked.  Cookie dough lovers, rejoice.  Your time has come!

I’m guessing if you read the title of this post then you know exactly what it’s going to be about.  Today I just want to give a little shoutout the joy of eating raw cookie dough.  Yum!

Now, you might be wondering why, on a blog that frequently mentions diet, healthy choices, and Weight Watchers, would I be mentioning cookie dough? Well, it’s simple really.  Healthy living is a lifestyle. In order to sustain said healthy lifestyle, in my opinion, no foods should be deemed “off limits.”  Have you noticed that once you tell yourself you can’t have something, you pretty much only think about that thing?

This diva loves to talk about things she thinks are divine (hence, part of the reason my blog’s name is what it is), and lets be honest, sticking your finger in the bowl (or tube, or bag) of raw cookie dough is a pretty deliciously decadent feeling thing.  Therefore, I fully endorse a spoonful of cookie dough every so often.  It’s good for the soul 🙂

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My Weight Watchers Friendly Grocery Cart

Everyone has their go-to items at the grocery store.  Being a Weight Watchers lifetime member has been a long journey.  Along the way, I’ve discovered many things that keep finding their way into my grocery cart, and I figured I’d share them with you, as these items are all Weight Watchers friendly, and have led me to weight loss success.

WWGroceryTitle Read more

Trader Joe’s Favorites

TraderJoes FavesTrader Joe’s, in my opinion, is a very magical place.  While it is simply a grocery store, the quality, prices, customer service, and variety are all top of the line.  Many people rave about the products they find at Trader Joe’s, and I am no different.  I have never picked up something from TJ’s that I didn’t like.  They are pros when it comes to seasonal offerings too.  Bottom line: I love me some Trader Joe’s.

I know that everyone has their own go to favorites, but if you’re like me, you’re always looking for something new to be your next Trader Joe’s love, so here are a few of the products from there that I adore and purchase regularly.

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My Favorite Easter Treats

EasterTreatsTitle

 

With Easter less than a week away, my tastebuds can’t help but long for the chocolate treats that I have been able to enjoy every single year: Fannie May Chocolate.  Every year, for as long as I can remember, a solid milk chocolate bunny rabbit by Fannie May has shown up in my Easter basket.  The confections that come out of this amazing shop fill my mouth and heart with chocolatey joy.  The only problem is, this year I’m in North Carolina.  There are a TON of store fronts in Illinois, and many in surrounding states, however, currently the nearest shop to me is in Ohio…  That kind of puts a wrench in my “day after Easter” chocolate shopping 😉  However, even though  I won’t have the tasteful pleasure of enjoying these confections this year, I still wanted to share some of my holiday favorites with you.

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The Japan Starbucks Sakura Season

 Starbucks

As you might know, I am a little bit of a HUGE coffee addict.  Lucky for me, we have a Starbucks right in the center of the area we are staying in Japan.  The other day it was so nice outside that I went for a walk and decided to give myself a special treat of an iced coffee, which I only get when I deem the weather warm enough.

When I walked into Starbucks that day (Feb 23, 2015) I was surprised to see signs indicating that a special time of year was upon us in Japan.  There was a special drink menu and everything, all of Sakura season, which is the blossoming of the cherry blossoms.

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