Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Shredded Pork and Black Bean Chopped Salad

 Yesterday, I was making my lunch, and it turned into such a pretty salad! So, I decided I would share with you how I made it. It is quick, super easy, and very tasty!

On Monday, I cooked a BBQ pork loin in the Crock-Pot, and we ate that for supper. I used some of the leftover pork in my salad yesterday, so I though I would let you know how I prepared it. I don't have pictures of my process because I decided on the spur of the moment to share my salad.

Crock-Pot BBQ Pork Loin
  • 1 pork loin (mine weighed about 2 lbs.)
  • 1 bottle of your favorite BBQ sauce
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  1. Mix together the BBQ sauce, vinegar, brown sugar, and garlic powder. 
  2. Put the pork loin in the Crock-Pot, and pour the sauce mixture over it.
  3. Cook on low for 7-8 hours.
Easy as that! After it's done, you can slice it into pieces or shred it. I chose to shred mine. You can also put it back in the sauce, so it all gets coated, or you can spoon the sauce over the meat. I chose to spoon the sauce over ours.

Okay, now, fast-forward to Tuesday at lunch. Here's how I prepared my salad.

Shredded Pork and Black Bean Chopped Salad
  • 1/4 cup pork loin, shredded
  • 1/4 cup Mexican blend cheese, shredded
  • 1/4 cup yellow corn, drained
  • 1/4 cup black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 10 grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 an avocado
  • 2 cups hearts of romaine, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. BBQ sauce
  1. Chop the romaine, and put it into a bowl.
  2. Top the romaine with all your add-ins (meat, cheese, veggies).
  3. Drizzle with BBQ sauce.
  4. Toss everything together.
This salad could not be any more simple! The great thing about it is you can put any kind of add-ins you want. Don't like pork? Try shrimp or chicken. Adding sweet bell pepper or red onion would be good. The possibilities are endless!

I even plugged everything in to SparkRecipes and calculated the calories and fat grams.

Calories: 399.1 
Total Fat: 21.8 g

Most of the fat is from the avocado, which is a 'good fat.'

I also went to Chili's and Applebee's websites to compare my salad to a couple of theirs.

Chili's Santa Fe Chicken Salad
Calories: 700
Total Fat: 51 g

Applebee's Fiesta Chicken Chopped Salad
Calories: 860
Total Fat: 42 g

The salad I made at home is considerably lower in calories and fat than the salads at either restaurant. I was AMAZED at the difference in fat grams.

If you make your own chopped salad, I hope you enjoy it! Looking forward to sharing more recipes in the future (with more pics included too)!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

First Things First

Good morning y'all! The meteorologists in my area were predicting a light dusting of snow would come through last night. I was hoping they would be wrong, and I would wake up to a winter wonderland. Boo that they were right!

Today I am linking up with Halie, and her co-hosts Ricci and Gayle, for First Things First.
First Choice of Dessert: Cheesecake, specifically Cheesecake Factory's 30th Anniversary Chocolate Cake Cheesecake! Absolutely sinful but so delicious!
First Choice of Beverage: Well, if I wasn't getting healthier and losing weight, it would be my grandma's sweet tea, but now it's water, water, water. All. The. Time.

First Choice of Breakfast: Breakfast used to be my least favorite meal of the day, but I have started eating it more often now that I'm working out afterwards. My go-to breakfast, at the moment, is scrambled eggs, turkey bacon, and a slice of whole-grain toast with a cup of hazelnut coffee.

This was my first time to link-up for First Things First, and I look forward to doing it again!

Join the link-up, or leave me a comment letting me know what your first choices are!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Weekly Weigh-In #7: Starting to Click!

This Week: -4.8 lbs!!!
Total Loss: -6.8 lbs

Okay, y'all, I am beyond excited about this week's weigh-in! I lost more weight this past week than I have in the previous six weeks combined. What did I do differently to have such a significant change? Well, only one thing really...I worked out five times this week! Previously, I had been working out once or twice, three times max per week. This week, after setting my goals, I decided to step it up and work it out. I am happy to say that I think things are finally starting to click for me.

Workouts for the Week
Wednesday-2 mile walk on the treadmill
Thursday-2 mile walk on the treadmill
Friday-4 mile walk on the treadmill
Sunday-3.8 mile hike at the refuge
Sunday afternoon at the refuge
I haven't been running because of a toenail injury. This might be a little TMI, so if you don't want to read this, skip to the next paragraph. A few days after I started running in December, I noticed that my big toenail had a spot that was turning white. I lost both my big toenails after a hiking trip a few years ago (eww, gross!), so I knew that white toenail was not a good sign. Well, now my toenail has a horizontal crack in it about halfway down my toe and only halfway across my toe. So far, there has been no pain involved, but I'm scared to run because of it. With that said, I'm not sure what to do about my long-term goal of registering for a 5K. I may need to find one that allows walkers.

So, I met BOTH my weekly goals of losing 2 pounds and walking 10 miles! I'm going to keep that goal for this week.

Weekly Goals
February 25-March 3
  • Lose 2 pounds
  • Walk/jog/hike 10 miles
Monthly Goals
February 18-March 18
  • Lose 8 pounds
  • Walk/jog/hike 40 miles
Long-Term Goals
  • Lose 10 pounds by Easter (March 31)
  • Register for a 5K by the end of April (April 30) 
  • Lose 28.4 pounds in 14 weeks, which will put me at my high school senior weight (June 3)
Ultimate Goal
  • Lose 101 pounds 

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Sunday Social: The Awkward Years

Good Sunday morning night to you all! I started this post in the morning, and I'm just now finishing it up. Busy day! I'm linking up with Neely and Ashley for Sunday Social, and today is all about middle school and high school. Awkward does not even begin to describe my years in middle school, as you will see in some of the pictures that go along with this post. Enjoy!
Sunday Social
1. Biggest Middle School Fashion Mistake: Immediately after seeing this as one of the questions, I knew exactly what picture I wanted to include with it.
This picture was taken on my first day of 7th grade. That outfit is wrong on so many levels, I don't even know where to begin. Maybe the Winnie the Pooh t-shirt with rolled up sleeves? The shorts down to my knees or the socks up to my knees? Perhaps the platform shoes that, at the time, made me feel like a Spice Girl? Let's not leave out the glasses or the bangs with that outrageous cowlick! I'm basically Sue Heck without the braces.
Sue Heck from ABC's The Middle (Source)

2. Who were your best friends in high school? Mallory and Ashlee

3. What was a typical weekend like for you in high school? A typical weekend included football games on Friday, all-day band contests on Saturdays, and homework and relaxing on Sundays.
 This picture is from my freshman year of high school, aka the only year I played an instrument with the band. I joined the color guard my sophomore year. That band uniform is possibly the #1 reason why.

 4. Did you have any boyfriends? You did see my picture from 7th grade, right?, no boyfriends.

5. Did you have any secret codes with your friends? Whenever it was our time of the month and we needed to borrow a pad or tampon from each other, we would call the pads 'paper' and the tampons 'pens,' so nobody else would know what we were talking about (e.g. 'a guy is sitting with us, and we don't want him to know about it' kinda situation).

6. If you could relive one day/moment/experience from middle school or high school, what would it be? I would want to relive my junior year all over again. For me, it was the best year of high school! I loved our marching show, my friends, my classes, and we went to California that year for our band trip. So much fun!
Ashlee is in the Weezer shirt, and Mallory is the one crossing her eyes in the bottom pic.

Thanks for reading today! I have a few blog posts I want to put up, so hopefully, I'll get to some of those this week. Tomorrow is weigh-in day!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Setting Goals

When I’m weighing in or working out, I have this big cloud looming over my head: 100 pounds…you need to lose 100 pounds. Then, when I see only 0.8 pounds lost, I get discouraged. Or, if I consider working out, I think to myself: ‘Is this 30 minutes really going to help?’ And, yes, sometimes I let that negative thinking get to me, and I end up not doing a workout at all, which certainly does NOT help.

So, when I was on the treadmill today, I realized I need to make some goals for myself…short-term and long-term. Really, my ULTIMATE goal of losing 100+ pounds is the only goal I’ve set for myself, fitness-wise. While it’s great that I have this goal that I want to achieve, it doesn’t help me in my day-to-day process because it is such a lofty goal. Yes, I will reach it one day, but it’s not going to happen tomorrow, next week, or even next month. Heck, a whole year may go by before I am there, but I WILL GET THERE.

The point of all this is that I spent part of my afternoon making a list of goals I would like to achieve: weekly, monthly, long-term, and ultimate. This list of goals will become part of my Monday weekly weigh-in and will help me to see that I am accomplishing something, no matter how big or small it may be.
Weekly Goals
February 18-24
  • Lose 2 pounds
  • Walk/jog/hike 10 miles
Monthly Goals
February 18-March 18
  • Lose 8 pounds
  • Walk/jog/hike 40 miles
Long-Term Goals
  • Lose 10 pounds by Easter (March 31)
  • Register for a 5K by the end of April (April 30)
Ultimate Goal
  • Lose 101 pounds

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Tuesday10: Favorite Handmade Shops

Time to link up for Tuesday10 with Mindy...this week's theme is your favorite handmade shops. Today, I would like to share my list of favorite Etsy shops and Teachers Pay Teachers sellers. Now, being a substitute teacher doesn't really leave me with a lot of disposable income, so I haven't bought things from many of these places. Although, I do have my eye on different things from their stores.

**For the sellers from Teachers Pay Teachers, I've included links to their blogs in addition to the links to their TPT stores.

1. Adeline Mae Design: When I lose my first 20 pounds, I really want to buy myself one of the 20 bracelets. She also has bracelets for racers: 13.1, 26.2, TRI, and she will do custom orders.
Image via Adeline Mae Design
2. Ricci Alexis Designs: I first discovered Ricci's blog, Ricci Explains It All, and then I found out she makes wreaths and sells them on Etsy! I love this pink one with the leopard print bow, and when I get a full-time teaching position, I would like to buy one for my classroom door.
Image via Ricci Alexis Designs
3. Clearique Boutique: For Christmas last year I ordered a necklace for my grandma from this seller. I can't find a picture of the one I ordered, but it had all her grandchildrens' names stamped on it with beads representing our birthstones. My grandma loves it and wears it all the time. The one I ordered looks similar to the one below except it was a necklace instead of a keychain.
Image via Clearique Boutique
4. Peace Love Freckles: I love this colorful and funky metal art company! I really want one of the owls or an initial or hey, maybe even both of them!
Image via Peace Love Freckles
Image via Peace Love Freckles
5. Ruffles With Love: I found out about this store from Mama Laughlin, and this past month I asked FatChick2FitChick where she got one of her workout shirts to which she replied, "Ruffles With Love!" I go to this store at least once a month to look at which shirts I would like to buy. These two are a couple of my favorites.
Image via Ruffles With Love
Image via Ruffles With Love
6. Ashley Hughes from The School Supply Addict: The Fry Words Mega Pack is one of her many products that I have on my TPT wish list.
Image via Ashley Hughes
7. Deanna Jump from Mrs. Jump's Class: Deanna Jump has made over a million dollars with the products she has created and sold on TPT! She is such an inspiration! If I am fortunate enough to have my own classroom next year, I will definitely be starting the year with her Back to School Math and Literacy Fun unit.
Image via Deanna Jump
8. Katie King from Queen of the First Grade Jungle: I love her 'Busy Teacher's Best Friend' units. Both the Thanksgiving and Christmas products are on my wish list.
Image via Katie King
9. Clutter-Free Classroom: The CFC Teaching Classroom Procedures and Routines Workbook was one of the first purchases I made on TPT. It has 38 pages chock-full of procedures and routines to teach the students in your class. This will be a wonderful resource for me when I am in my own classroom.
Image via Clutter-Free Classroom
10. Hope King from Second Grade Shenanigans: Her 100th Day Craze packet is on my wish list and includes 91 pages of resources for celebrating the 100th day of school.
Image via Hope King

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for any of this. Considering I only have four followers at the moment, it will probably be a while before I'm contacted to do anything for compensation. :-D

Monday, February 18, 2013

Weekly Weigh-In #6: One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

This Week: +2.2 lbs
Total Loss: -2 lbs

I did not want to write this post after I stepped off the scale this morning. I didn't want to weigh at all because I knew I would probably have a gain. Ultimately, I made the decision to do it because, good or bad, this is part of my journey to a healthier me. Some weeks will be better than others, and hopefully, this week that is ahead of me will have a much better outcome than last week.

I know why I had a weight gain. I visited my sister this past weekend, and we ate a lot of junk: popcorn at the movies, Mexican food, candy, pizza, and donuts. Ugh! I don't regret going to her house; we needed to spend some sister time together. I do regret eating some of the junk we had, and I absolutely regret forgetting my tennis shoes at home before I left. I was so mad when I got to her house and realized I did that!

Ouch! Harsh reminder but much needed
Okay, moving on to something more positive! Katie, from KTJ Weighing In, emailed everyone their accountability buddies this morning! It could not have come at a better time for me. I'm excited to contact my new buddy and learn some more about her.

Here's to moving forward and seeing some progress! Hope you all have a happy, healthy week!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Tuesday10: Favorite Couples

Happy Fat Tuesday! I am subbing in a second grade bilingual class today. I love the school it's at, so I'm ready for an exciting day.

Since it's Tuesday, that means a link-up for Tuesday10 with Mindy. Tuesday10 is one of my favorites to do during the week. This week's theme is your favorite Valentine moments (from the movies or your own life). Well, I don't have too many personal Valentine moments, so I played with the theme a little bit and decided to make a list of my favorite couples from movies and TV.

1. Jim and Pam
from The Office
2. Princess Buttercup and Westley
from The Princess Bride
3. Sawyer and Kate
from LOST
4. Angelique and Jean-Rene
from Romantics Anonymous
5. Charming and Snow
from Once Upon a Time
6. Nickie and Terry
from An Affair to Remember
7. Sheldon and Amy
from The Big Bang Theory
8. Captain Von Trapp and Maria
from The Sound of Music
9. Eric and Tami Taylor
from Friday Night Lights
10. Belle and the Beast
from Beauty and the Beast
Lovely couples, don't you think?
Feel free to leave a comment, and let me know which couples you love to watch!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Weekly Weigh-In #5 and 5 for Five

Monday means time for me to weigh in!
This Week: -0.8 lbs
Total Loss: -4.2 lbs

Ack! I haven't lost more than a pound since the first week I started. I'm lucky though because I'm pretty sure I know what I need to change. I should be exercising more! That has to be one of my goals for this week.
Now, on to the 5 for Five link-up with Jessica and Jenn!


Last Week's Goals
1. Try a new recipe :-(
2. Work out at least three times :-(
3. Finish my scarf :-(
4. Get caught up on my daily devotional :-(
5. Do my taxes :-)
  1/5...sheesh! All I can say is that it's better than last week.

This Week's Goals
1. Sign up for an accountability buddy with Katie from KTJ Weighing In. (You have until midnight tonight if you would like to sign up as well!) 
2. Get caught up on my daily devotional
3. Work out three times during the week
4. Find two more sub jobs
5. Complete a 5K on Friday (This wasn't one of my goals last week, but I did it and shaved 00:01:22 off my time!)

Let me know what your goals are this week!    

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Sunday Social: Blast from the Past

It's Sunday, which means it's time to link up with Neely and Ashley for Sunday Social! I'm having so much fun linking up each week and finding some great blogs to follow along the way!

Sunday Social

1. What was your first car? I was very hesitant to learn how to drive, so I wasn't anxiously awaiting my 16th birthday like most teenagers typically do. I got my first car during my junior year of high school (2002), and it was a black 1993 Ford Mustang.

2. Who was your favorite childhood teacher? Without a doubt, Mrs. kindergarten teacher. She was probably the teacher that most inspired me to become a teacher.

3. Were you involved in any sports/extracurricular activities? In middle school, I played the trumpet, sang in the choir, and played volleyball and basketball. In high school, I was in colorguard during marching season and played the trumpet during concert season. I also participated in UIL Spelling from elementary through high school.

I still have the same dream about once a month where I'm in band getting ready to perform, and I don't have my uniform on or know any of my colorguard routine. Freaks me out EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

4. What was your favorite birthday party? I don't have one favorite birthday party, but I do have a special memory from my childhood birthdays. If our birthday fell on a school day, my sister, my cousin, and I would go out to my memaw and papaw's house where there would be one of those cookie cakes waiting for us. We got to eat the cookie cake and open some presents. It was something I always looked forward to. I want some cookie cake!

Okay, I never find anything with my name on it, but it's on a stock picture of a cookie cake! Meant to be...
5. Who was your teen celebrity crush? J.C. walls were plastered with pictures of him

If they do a reunion tour, I will forgive them for these overalls.
6. What show/movie did your parents not allow you to watch? There's Something About Mary...I was 13 when it came out, and I remember going to my aunt's house with my mom. They made my sister and I go play with our cousins in the other room while they watched it. I was so mad because I could hear them laughing in there, and I wanted to know what was so funny! When I was older and finally watched it, I realized why I shouldn't have been watching it at the age of 13!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Tuesday10: 10 Things I Can't Live Without

Today I'm linking up for the first time with Mindy for the Tuesday10! This week's prompt is 10 Things You Can't Live Without. I thought it would be difficult for me to create this list, but I had my 10 things in less than 10 minutes!

10 Things I Can't Live Without

1. my relationship with God
2. family
Mallory (my sister), Emily (my cousin), and me
3. water

4. iPad

5. laughter

6. books

7. fingernail polish

8. toilet paper

9. Pinterest

10. Eva Lou!

I loved making this list! I can't wait to see what next week's prompt will be. Tell me, what are some things YOU can't live without?