My New Kitchen Gadget & The Weekly Menu….

by DanicasDaily on January 13, 2013

Happy Sunday all!  Thanks for all the compliments on the Wine Tasting Open House and our New Building on my last post.  Today marked the day that I headed back to my Weight Watcher’s meeting and started eating tracking again.  It’s pretty funny that somehow my body seemed to just “know” this as I was suddenly starving all day.  I guess that whole loss of appetite thing only works when you are super sick LOL.

On the brighter side, I was down 3.2 lbs.  My challenge this week is keeping that loss and making the scale go down……I am so up for that!

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Since Weight Watchers is celebrating their 50th Anniversary this year, we all received these all too tasty Celebration Cake 2 points+ bars.  They really do taste like a marshmallow cake….just don’t look at the ingredient list ~ it’s long and not so recognizable. (SF + 2 WPA).

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After the meeting, I had my first latte in over a week…..probably the best latte I’ve had in awhile.  Nonfat, decaf with caramel drizzled on the top and a banana. (SF) – 3 points+

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We spent the morning getting in our steps by FREEZING outside walking around the Sacramento Antique Faire.  Yes, 27 degrees is freezing for California….I had on 3 shirts, a jack, mittens, a scarf and a hat……

I was thinking that might have been a little overkill when The Husband asked me if I wanted some Malt-O Meal!  Do you all remember those commercials?! He’s funny…..

We warmed up with lunch at Crepeville.  All I can say is WOW ~ have you all ever seen a menu with so much on it?!

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I went with the exact same thing I ordered when we went to lunch here over the summer ~ Soup and Salad, surprised? lol….

Half a Caprese Salad ~ Mixed greens tossed with balsamic vinegar and olive oil topped with fresh mozzarella, tomatoes and fresh basil.

(SF + 3 WPA for the cheese) ~ oil & balsamic are both 100% Simply Filling! 5 points+

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Some of the best Split Pea Soup I’ve ever had and 100% Simply Filling. 4 points+.  I decided to save my foccacia bread until the end of my meal and by the time I was finished, I decided I didn’t need it  ~ Success!

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I have two pretty awesome announcements to share with you all…..First ~ The Husband gave me an early birthday present……drumroll please…….

The New Vitamix 6300!!!  I have honestly always wanted a Vitamix but could never ever justify the cost…..until now ~ I so get it!

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The newest model comes with 3 pre-programmed settings for smoothies, frozen desserts and soups and you can pick from 4 different colors.

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You also get this huge cookbook that has over 350 recipes and a pretty cheesy DVD to show you a full 6 course meal you can whip up in your Vitamix.

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Even though you can get the older models cheaper now that the new model is out, it is worth it in my opinion to pay extra for the 3 settings and the all new pulse button.  All you do is pick the setting you want, hit start and in anywhere from 30 seconds to 6 1/2 minutes, your meal is done.

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I’ve already made like 5 things from smoothies, juices, strawberry frozen yogurt, orange sorbet and now these Banana Ball Cookies.

I was intrigued by the 5 ingredient cookie recipe ~ it’s vegan and practically Simply Filling.

I mixed up 1 cup of old fashioned oats with a banana, 2 Tbsp applesauce, 2 Tbsp oil and 1 tsp vanilla in the Vitamix.

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Then, I stirred in 1 cup of old fashioned oatmeal and 1 cup dried cranberries.

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Scooped 15 cookies out on a cookie sheet lined with my sil pat, flattened and baked at 350 for 20 minutes.

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I am amazed that they are so sweet without any sugar, but, I would probably add some baking soda and/or powder to lighten them up down the road.  They are pretty dense and chewy which I do not mind, but, The Husband isn’t a fan. (SF + 1 WPA) – 2 points+ each.

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Served up with a Simply Filling Carrot, Banana, Orange & Pineapple Smoothie.

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Dinner tonight was more of a new Spicy Italian Minestrone Soup I developed as a guest post.  But, you all have to wait until tomorrow night to get the recipe Open-mouthed smile (SF + 1 WPA) – 4 points+

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STATS:

  • AL – 2 Activity Points earned, 96% (I am so finding 4 more % tonight!)
  • 9 WPA used, 40 WPA remaining, 24 daily points+

HERE IS WHAT IS ON THE MENU THIS WEEK:

QUESTION OF THE DAY:

What is on your menu this week?  What is one new food or recipe you are trying?

Night all!

{ 33 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Deborah Christy January 13, 2013 at 11:15 pm

You said you had TWO announcements…did I miss something??

2 Clements Davis January 14, 2013 at 1:26 am

So whats your 2nd announcent, are yall pregnant? Wow that stuff you made with your Vitamix6300 looks pretty good. Does the Vitamix6300 cook soups in that same container? I read that it is a glorified kitchen aid & cuiseart too that it creates, heats, blends, chops, creams, whips, kneads, frappes, emulsify, churns, purées, grinds, powders & crushes. Excited to see & hear about your new creations with your Vitamix. Oh, and your banana ball cookies-what’s the exact measurements? They look yummy! Also, that celebration cake looks wonderful, you gonna buy any? Your site is such a great inspiration & I so look forward to reading it daily :) thank you for ALL YOUR WONDERFUL EFFORTS AS IT IS MUCH APPRECIATED ;)

3 Gail H. January 14, 2013 at 4:04 am

Go so glad your Weekly Menu is back…you know it’s my favorite :) I’m still struggling with my AL…not a darn AP earned yet, and have gone over 100% several times..is there a way to do a new assessment week? I’m still thinking I did something wrong! I did get a new fitbit and am crankin out the steps on it! One of the things on my menu this week is your nachos…I was so cravin them and picked up a bag of scoops at Publix yesterday…also on my menu is broiled sirloin with bourbon mushrooms an sweet potatoes, grilled cheese & Amy’s butternut squash soup, and Naan pesto pizza (I use artichoke pesto)…trying not to drink any wine till the week-end…we’ll see :) So glad you’re back!!!

4 Reta January 14, 2013 at 4:34 am

Okay so I thought the celebration cake snack was awesome! Totally could cure a cake craving for me…:) The caprese salad you had looked amazing! I practically live on caprese salads in the summer. Makes me wish it was warmer already. What an awesome birthday present! I have heard people rave about the vitamix. I have been throwing around the idea of getting one of those or a juicer. Can’t make up my mind…especially given the cost. Last year the hubs got me a kitchen aid mixer for my birthday and I love it but would not spend that amount of money on myself. All that to say when the hubs does it I can appreciate it more. So major props to your hubs. In terms of recipes…I just made some awesome flank steak tacos in the crockpot and they are going back on the rotation but I also wanted to try a butternut squash and mushroom risotto that was on the ww website. Loving that the ww theme for the month is fruit and veggies…looking forward to getting some new ideas.

5 Miz January 14, 2013 at 5:57 am

IVE BEEN KNOWN TO PROPOSE TO MY VITAMIX:-)

6 Jennifer January 14, 2013 at 6:19 am

Danica, first let me say I LOVE your site. The recipes are great and your weight loss journey is so motivating. I’ve been following WW for years. Back in the day, we used to check off little boxes for the number of protein, breads, dairy, etc. So much easier now. I’ve been doing WW online for awhile now and my hubby is finally on board, counting points with me. I know your husband is also on the program. It makes it so much easier to do it together. I wanted to find the area on the online WW site to make sure I’m giving hubby the right amount of points. Our height and weight are basically the same right now so I was giving him the same amt of daily pts as me. He seems to be hungry more than I am. Then I remembered a couple of years ago, the daily points calculator in the meeting program materials had a cheat sheet to figure out points and I remember “gender” had some value in determining how many you get. Does your hubby’s daily points follow the same guidelines as you? Or do you think I’m totally cheating my husband out of food. I never thought about that until now. And I can’t find the section on WW online where I initially entered my height and weight to come up with my own daily points. Thanks for your help.

7 Nancy A. January 14, 2013 at 7:38 am

Two things… You can get Vitamix on QVC (different model), & my birthday is also on 1/18….

8 Carbzilla January 14, 2013 at 7:39 am

Congrats on the Vitamix! I only made smoothies in mine for the longest time but I finally branched out into soup. I just hate having to scoop anything else out of there, and would rather use my Cuisinart for other chopping/mixing.

Quick answer to Jennifer above – I believe that men get more points than women. Do some Google searching and you may find your answer.

9 Claudia January 14, 2013 at 8:23 am

Glad you are up and better. I have gained lots back so after my birthday week this week (bday is 1/17), too many people taking me to dinner. :) I have to get so serious and back on track. Thanks for all your ideas and letting us follow in your journey.

10 Jennifer January 14, 2013 at 8:32 am

Thanks. I’ve been looking for the points for men but I’m finding info that dates back to the older plan when the points values of food were a little different. Hmm…I do think he should be getting more. I’m just thrilled we’re doing this together but he’s one week into it. I don’t want him to get frustrated b/c he’s hungry all the time. If anyone can help I’d really appreciate it. If I could just find it on the WW online site, I could experiment and temporariliy modify my gender to see if it changes the points. haha

11 Kathy R. January 14, 2013 at 9:10 am

Jennifer, Here’s a link to an online calculator that you can put in his gender height , weight and age and it will give you the points plus for him.
http://www.exercise4weightloss.com/points-plus-allowance.html#calculator

12 Kathy R. January 14, 2013 at 9:16 am

Jennifer, here’s a link to an online calculator. Just put in gender, height, weight and age and it will calculate the daily points he gets on the points plus plan.

http://www.exercise4weightloss.com/points-plus-allowance.html#calculator

13 Denise January 14, 2013 at 12:45 pm

Yikes!! Your poor hubby! When I used the online calculator to calculate my daily points and changed my gender to “male” and still keeping my other stats…it added 11 extra points to the daily allowance! No wonder the husband was starving! :)

14 Biz January 14, 2013 at 12:51 pm

Lucky!!! I was just at Williams-Sonoma over the weekend and was oogling at the Vitamix’s – the one I wanted was $745 dollars – eek!

My menu planning was hard this week for some reason – I wish my husband liked spicy and/or ethnic food, but he doesn’t. I can meal plan my breakfast and lunches in about 30 minutes!

So I am making it easy – tonight is Cincinnati Chili – a favorite and I can use the leftovers over spaghetti squash for one of my lunches.

http://mybizzykitchen.com/2012/10/12/chili-mac/

15 Dotty January 14, 2013 at 12:54 pm

Danica,
Happy early Birthday! I see you have one coming up on Friday. My daughter got a Vitamix and loves it too. I have the Montel Williams endorsed one and I like it as well.
Do you have any pointers for tracking simply filling on my Iphone? Do I simply track the points and don’t put in the simply filling items? I sure wish they would have a meeting/class for simply filling. I think it is important. Glad you are feeling better.

Dotty

16 Jamie January 14, 2013 at 1:04 pm

Congrats on both feeling better and the newest addition to your kitchen! “Santa” brought me a VitaMix for Christmas and like you, I’ve wanted one all of my life but the price tag always got me. This year I figured I’d reached a point in my life where I deserved it and I do love cooking and spending time in the kitchen so decided to take the leap. I got the Professional 750 Series and love it!

17 Roz@weightingfor50 January 14, 2013 at 1:14 pm

Glad you are feeling better Danica. And big WOO HOO on the Vitamix. I’m sure you’ll get TONS of use out of it!!!

18 Jes January 14, 2013 at 4:13 pm

Danica, would love to have your smoothie recipe. Please share…
Glad you are feeling better!!!!

19 suzanne January 14, 2013 at 6:01 pm

Definitely jealous over here! I’ve heard a lot about those blenders.
Glad to hear your feeling better. A lot of people have been sick this year.

20 Jenn@slim-shoppin January 14, 2013 at 6:52 pm

I made chicken tortilla noodle soup for dinner.

Chopped up garlic, red and green peppers, jalapeno, onion and frozen corn,and 2 carrots, sauteed that in a big pot for a few minutes. Added 1 tsp. cumin, 2 tsp. chili powder, dash of salt and pepper. Add 2 chicken breasts (uncooked and cut into small pieces). Cooked the chicken until it was almost done, then added 1 small can of tomato sauce and 8 cups chicken broth and a package of egg noodles. Bring to a boil and simmer until the noodles are done. Delish! And on the table within 30 minutes of me walking in the door!

21 Becky January 14, 2013 at 8:03 pm

15 Bean Soup. I tried a kiwi fruit and didn’t care much for it. I would love to have a vitamix too but I have a Ninja blender that I couldn’t do without. I make the best smoothies with it. YUM.

22 DanicasDaily January 14, 2013 at 10:42 pm

Hi Deborah,

I forgot the part about Announcement #2 is coming up tonight :) Here is the link.

http://danicasdaily.com/light-wine-the-wurst-restaurant

Danica

23 DanicasDaily January 14, 2013 at 10:44 pm

Hi Clements,

No, no…no babies here…..good guess though. Yes, the Vitamix actually makes Hot Soup in 6 1/2 minutes….crazy, but, so cool!

Here are the measurements:

Blend 1 cup oats with 1 banana, 2 Tbsp applesauce, 2 Tbsp oil and 1 tsp vanilla extract.

Hand stir in 1 cup oats with 1 cup dried cranberries.

I bought some of the bars for The Husband….he likes things like that.

Thank you for all the nice words!

Danica

24 DanicasDaily January 14, 2013 at 10:46 pm

Hi Gail,

Yes, you can start a new assessment. There is a place you can change your goal or start a new challenge. Click on view challenge, adjust goal and then, start a new assessment. I am proud of you for being so stubborn with AL – he is just getting you to burn more that way :)

Your menu sounds delicious….artichoke pesto – I am intrigued.

Danica

25 DanicasDaily January 14, 2013 at 10:49 pm

Hi Jennifer,

First, I love that everyone chimed in to help :) Second, the app I used to calc the points for you that I emailed confirms the 50 daily points+ for your husband. This will go down as he loses weight. There are two pretty decent apps you can buy to give him a way to track and to calc his points. One is the Points Plus Diary ($0.99) – one of my readers husbands created it for her and the other is the Ultimate Points Plus Diary ($2.99) – both are pretty user friendly. Not as slick as the WW apps but not bad either.

Danica

26 DanicasDaily January 14, 2013 at 10:51 pm

Biz ~ check out Costco – they have the 6300 for $499 so they may have the model you want. My guess is it’s the chef one….I know what you mean….my husband is the same *sigh* Your dinner sounds fantastic.

Danica

27 DanicasDaily January 14, 2013 at 10:56 pm

Hi Dotty,

You can switch your tracking method to Simply Filling and that will help for items that are power foods. Then, for items that I know are Simply Filling and/or you count towards your WPA – I will search for it and/or just “quick add” with a description and either 0 or the # of points+ to count against my WPA. Does that make sense?

I am not sure if it helps or not, but, here is the post I did to explain how i work the Simply Filling Technique.

http://danicasdaily.com/weight-watchers-simply-filling-technique

Danica

28 DanicasDaily January 14, 2013 at 10:57 pm

Hi Jes,

It was so easy and so good. 1 banana, 1 orange, 1/2 cup frozen pineapple, 1/2 cup ice and 1/4 cup water….blend and enjoy. Makes 2 servings.

Danica

29 DanicasDaily January 14, 2013 at 10:58 pm

Hi Jenn,

Wow, I want to come have dinner at your house and Biz’s…..everything you two make always sounds so delicious! Thanks for sharing….I need to try your 30 minute soup.

Danica

30 Kim @ Living, Laughing & Losing January 15, 2013 at 7:57 am

I LOVED the Celebration Cake! :)

31 Tabitha Eden January 15, 2013 at 8:03 am

My vitamix just came yesterday :) I hope you keep posting about it because I have a feeling it will take forever to go through the cookbook that came with it ;)

32 Jes January 16, 2013 at 1:19 pm

No carrot??

33 DanicasDaily January 17, 2013 at 9:13 pm

Hi Jes,

I totally forgot to list that….yes, 1/2 cup shredded carrots – about 1 large carrot.

Sorry about that,

Danica

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Danicasdaily.com is not meant to be a substitute for any professional advice, guidance, or counseling. Any information contained on this site reflect Danica's experience and is not intended to take the place of medical advice from a physician. Weight Watchers® and PointsPlus® are registered trademarks of Weight Watchers International, Inc. The number of Points+ provided for food on this site was calculated by Danica based on published Weight Watchers information. This site does not imply sponsorship or endorsement by Weight Watchers International, Inc. Danica does not guarantee the Points+ information is correct. I am not associated with Weight Watchers and they have not endorsed this site. I highly recommend joining WW and attending regular meetings as a way to successfully lose weight.



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