Monthly Archives: December 2012

Holiday Treats: Naughty and Nice List

Merry Christmas! I hope you and your family are enjoying this Christmas Eve. We woke up to rain & I look forward to an afternoon of coffee and movies, hoping it clears up long enough to go on a nice long walk :)

Our old Christmas tradition was to open all of our presents on Christmas Eve night, saving only Santa’s gifts for Christmas morning. Christmas Eve Day would seem to drag on as I eyed the presents wrapped under the tree, waiting until nighttime when we would finally sit down to unwrap them all. Now we’ve decided to wait until Christmas morning, but tonight we are turning our kitchen into a pizzeria and creating three unconventional pizzas! (Mine is BBQ pulled pork & sweet potato!)

Holiday Treat Naughty n Nice List (

There’s a lot of extra sweets and treats around the house this time of year….the See’s candy box your boss gave you; the cookies your neighbors brought over; the package of Peppermint Bark you had to buy because it’s limited seasonably. Of course at a time of celebration is natural to think “I can take a day off from dieting to celebrate the holidays.” There’s no problem with that! But do you really want to dig yourself into a 4000+ calorie hole that you will have to pay for at the gym next week? Some sweets are ‘nicer’ than others, so be picky when choosing what to put on your plate!

Holiday Treats Naughty and Nice List (

But calories aside, enjoy your family and the holidays! Take a post-dinner walk, dance to some Christmas tunes, or if you’re lucky enough to be having a white Christmas, have a snow ball fight for me!


Apple Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal

3 days left until Christmas, we better pack them with holiday festivities! Over-the-top Christmas sweaters, trips to Santa at the mall, baking for the neighbors, wrapping presents, watching The Santa Clause, last minute gift shopping, skinny peppermint mocha lattes, ice skating, lots and lots of Christmas tunes on the radio, and beautiful Christmas cards in the mail. Have I got you in the spirit yet?!

I’ve got a festive breakfast for you! Baked oatmeal is like eating a warm cookie for breakfast. Its sweet and cinnamony and perfect in a bowl with milk. Our house smelled delicious this morning when this apple and cinnamon-loaded dish was in the oven.

Baked Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal breakfast (stronglikemycoffee

It’s also got dried cranberries and almond slivers (leftover from our awesome salad yesterday) for some crunch and color. This morning started with some errands, and by 9:30 we were starving. This oatmeal was perfect for 2 people!

Baked Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal (

Lots of baked oatmeal recipes include vegetable oil, melted butter, brown sugar and white sugar. All unnecessary ingredients! I’ve made several baked oatmeal with none of the above, all delicious and sweet on their own. All the more flavor from the fruit and spice when you take the junk out!

Apple Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal:

1 1/4 cup oats

1 Tbs Cinnamon

1/4 cup applesauce

1/2 cup skim milk

1 egg, lightly beaten

1 Tbs Vanilla Extract

1 Tsp Honey

3 Tbs dried cranberries

1/2 apple, diced

1/4 cup almond slivers

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray a 9×13″ dish with non-stick spray
  • Combine all ingredients in the order listed; spread out in dish.
  • Top with almond slivers and additional cinnamon
  • Bake for 25 minutes
  • Serve warm; pour milk over if desired.

Baked Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal with almonds (

If you’re as addicted to Pinterest as I am, follow me & Pin this recipe here:

Detox Salad

Do you ever feel like after a vacation or a particularly-indulgent weekend, your body is just begging for some vitamins and minerals?! Even though the past week and a half wasn’t necessarily a “vacation” for my mom and I, we definitely compromised our daily healthy eating habits while in New York and while I recovered from surgery. After over 12 hours of traveling yesterday, my mom and I are home for the holidays. Felt so good to reunite with my dad and polar-bear-puppy-dog Missy last night! But it also felt good to be able to start eating regular foods again, and we wanted to add all the usual veggies back into our diet ASAP!

*I can resume my regular blogging schedule again now that the major hurdles of surgery and travel are over. Yay!

After surgery, I was on a soft-foods diet for ten days. I cheated a little bit with some chicken and carrots, but primarily ate lots of oatmeal, sweet potatoes, rice, applesauce, ice cream (shame shame, I know). Meals lacked nutritional balance and included lots of extra carbs over the last week; so today we stocked up on MEGA VEGETABLES! Our Sprout’s grocery cart was overloaded with peppers and greens and broccoli and brussel sprouts. Plus cucumbers, carrots, celery, tomato, yams, cauliflower and avocado. Holy Health! :)

Some slicing and dicing and we made a pretty colorful medley, what I’m calling the “Detox Salad.” This is a low-carb lunch that still has plenty of protein and healthy fats without anything starchy like bread or pasta (exactly what I overdosed on last week, hence the salad).

Detox Salad, beautiful medley rich in vitamins and minerals to get back on track after those not-so-healthy weekends of indulgences(

Guess what you DON‘T see here…..? Oatmeal! I must’ve had almost twenty bowls of oatmeal in the last 10 days and I will happily welcome some variety ;) Instead you see plenty of delicious and healthy toppings that add up to one very happy body.

Avocados for mono-saturated fats (the good stuff!)

Cranberries for antioxidants.

Almonds and Edamame for some protein.

Spinach for Iron!

Lettuce for Fiber and Vitamins A, C, and K.

Bell Peppers have 300% of your Daily Value of Vitamin C (fun fact: that’s 3x more than a medium orange)

Cucumbers because they taste yummy…

Detox Salad Mix (

Salad Dressings can make or break a salad! I have never understood why someone would kill a perfectly healthy salad with gobs of fatty dressing like ranch; it negates the whole purpose of making a simple and healthy salad when upwards of 250 calories per serving and 30 grams of fat are liberally drenched on the vegetables. Today we used a Fat-Free Raspberry Pecan Vinagrette, 50 calories per serving. Even a simple homemade oil-and-vinegar dressing, while not fat-free, would be preferable as a salad topping than something creamy like bleu cheese (more calories than a slice of pizza!)

It’s the perfect lunch for the holiday season when you need to balance out party food or baking treats that this weekend may bring. Your body will thank you for the extra shot of vitamins and minerals and a break from starch, salt and sugar. Feel free to share any additional favorite salad toppings!

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