Monday, December 7, 2015



14 tablespoons (1 stick, plus 6 tablespoons) butter
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cold water
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Dash salt
1 (6-ounce) bag semisweet chocolate chips or thin chocolate bars
Generously butter a cookie sheet.
Put butter, sugar, and water in a heavy pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Bring to a bubbling boil, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, about 10 minutes. Remove spoon from pan, and cook to a very brittle stage (300 degrees to 310 degrees F on a candy thermometer). Or, make a cold water test: candy will separate into hard, brittle threads when dropped in cold water. Remove from heat and add nuts to mixture. Add vanilla and salt. Pour onto prepared cookie sheet and spread to 1/4-inch thickness. Cool slightly, top with chocolate chips or chocolate bars, and spread as it melts. Cool completely and break into pieces. Store in an airtight container.

Recipe courtesy of Paula Deen
© 2015 Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Instead of a Kit Kat Bar

Kit Kat bar is 463...Well....the old Kit Kats. The newer ones are smaller I noticed recently at the store. less calories.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Green Goddess smoothie

From a place at Newport Beach along the beach

Tuesday, September 8, 2015


Just picked this up at the SAFEWAY in Mesquite Nevada. So crispy sweet and light!!!!! 2.99 a lb. This apple was 

1.79. It is so good I would pay 5!!!!

Our ambrosia

Chopped apple. Chopped celery. Chopped walnuts. Chopped prunes. Yogurt.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Raspberry Season

September is traditionally raspberry season.  They were 2.99 at Costco Monday...then up to 3.49 Wednesday....and now there are none on the shelves. So I am hoping there will be more on Monday.
Oh...just looked up Labor Day schedule...Costco closed Monday.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

New things I Am Learning Re: Cholesterol

Found this awesome site....

I will continue what I was doing this last 2 months....but...
I have added some more things to my list of NEW goals:

 Reduce stress!!!
Use lemongrass oil to help reduce cholesterol. It is anti inflammatory.
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon each day.
Have blueberries daily.
Take the magnesium/calcium supplements.


Cod Liver Oil

picture and paragraph from

Many of the great historical cultures had one sacred food which they relied on to ensure strong mind, body, and spirit: Fermented fish/fish liver oil. The Mighty Roman Soldier was given a daily ration of fermented fish oil. The Stoic Scandinavian Viking had a drum of fermenting cod livers outside the door of his home. Grandma always had a bottle of cod liver oil in the back cupboard. Nutrient assays, including vitamins A and D, for our fermented oils vary widely depending on methodology, lab and batch. Current science struggles to answer the questions we have on our sacred fermented foods. There are many naturally occurring metabolites and co-factors that make the issue of measuring natural nutrients difficult in the fermented oils. We do know that historical cultures liberally consumed these sacred foods to great benefit without today's standardization of knowledge


I am happy to report that the lab report from my Aug. 28th blood draw revealed this:

LDL      170   ( should be between 0-99)  so   HIGH
Vldl         10    (should be between 5 -40)
Hdl           67   (should be over 39)
Triglycerides  51  (should be 0-149)
Total Cholesterol    247   ( should be between 100-199)

Pretty good since my last blood test 3 months ago showed my total cholesterol to be 326!

SO......basically, I reduced my total cholesterol 79 points in the 2  months of watching my diet. I did not exercise that much so now....


To get my LDL down to 99  !!!!!
If I do that, my total cholesterol should then register as 171



Continue to avoid junk food.
Exercise MORE!!!! 1 hour cardio every other day.  Weight lifting every other day. Hoop 20 minutes a day. Starting tomorrow...(this will be hard.)
Eat soaked oatmeal with apples and nuts daily!!!!
More fiber!!!!!

By the way. I lost 12 pounds in these 2 months. I had weighed 166 when I started ( Yes, I was getting fat!) Now I weigh 154.4
I would like to weigh 144!!!!! So that is a goal, too.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Day 57 of 57

I did it! 57 days of no junk food.
Went and got my blood test today and can't wait to see the results. 
Since I had no breakfast...For lunch I had a nice big bowl of chicken kluski noodle soup and for dessert...John's barbacoa cheesy burrito that he bought yesterday at Bakers.

Post Script: the rest of the day's food intake I have not posted. Basically thus is the rnf of the 57 day project. Results soon to be posted. 

Day 56 of 57

No pictures today.
Breakfast was a big bowl of Asain cashew salad. It is mainly cabbage.
Then second breakfast: a big bowl of my homemade chicken noodle soup.
Afternoon..after substitute teaching...I had a lettuce salad with cukes and tomato chunks in it plus a big bowl of Campbell's bean and bacon soup.
Supper: john and I had a bowl of chopped apples, chopped celery, chopped prunes and chopped almonds with a dollop of vanilla yogurt.
Tomorrow I have a fasting blood test at 11:30am.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Day 55 of 57

My breakfast today: a quart of salad!the fat in this meal is privided by the jalepeno ranch dressing I put on it plus an ounce of munster cheese (diced) and some sunflower seeds.

Later my hubby and I had a banana shake. I also had some curry chicken soup. 

Supper was a huge bowl of Asian cashew salad that had some almonds and apples(chopped) in it. I just had to have lots of crunch today.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Day 54 of 57

Breakfast was the bowl of crunchy fresh goodness: 1/2 chopped apple, 20 chopped almonds,  5 chopped prunes,  1 chopped celery stalk and 1/3 cup vanilla yogurt stirred in.
Second breakfast was a strawberry banana shake with chia seeds and protein powder in it,too.
Lunch at 3:00...a real treat. A bowl of my favorite Campbell soup: bean with bacon!
Then I had some curry chicken soup. Then I had a bowl of homemade chicken broth.
Supper was actually a bowl of oatmeal with some stir ins of oat bran, ground flax and a chopped apple. I thin it with milk and add cinnamon.
Tomorrow I will have a salad for breakfast.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Day 53 of 57

I wanted something crunchy in a bowl so I had a small bowl of leftover Asian cashew salad from last night. Then fixed a big bowl of chopped apple prunes and almonds with a dollop of vanilla yogurt. 8:00 am.

Then later. .some whole grain cereal for fiber and more chopped apple and nuts.

I had another serving of Asian salad.

Supper was 2 big bowls of homemade chicken noodle soup.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Day 52 of 57

All the stewed prunes yesterday were a shock to my system. I feel fatter today and extra thirsty. I have my blood test Friday. I need to ramp up my cholesterol fighting efforts.
Breakfast is 24 almonds, 5 prunes, 1/2 sliced apple.

Lunch: 2 cups kefir

Snack: Frozen Hot Chocolate

Supper: chicken curry, asian salad, cooked carrots.small amount if rice. More frozen hot chocolate.

Day 51 of 57

No picture today. Had 20 almonds and 5 prunes. Then a cup and a half of stewed prunes since I was constipated. John wanted to go to Rubios where we had a big beer battered fish burrito. Supper was deli chicken, asian salad, beans.

Day 50 of 57

Went to party in evening...for Chinese exchange students. Had orange chicken and beef and broccoli and 1 fried eggroll.
No rice or noodles. Had carrot sticks and jalapeno ranch dip for breakfast. A big banana shake for lunch.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Day 49 of 57

Breakfast: 20 almonds, 5 prunes.
Lunch: 1/2 bratwurst and 1/2 can chili beans. 2 cherry tomatoes.
Dessert: a cute tinybboel if vsnilla Greek yogurt with a spoonful of my chocolate syrup.
I am still hungry but able to deny myself.
How?  Just leave the kitchen!

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Day 48 of 57

Eating the extra cup of rice last night affected me a lot. Going light on carbs today. I had my quart of lemon water.Some chai tea and later some kefir...2 and a half cups fit in my mug. All this before 8 am. IT was a WEIRD DAY RUSHED. NO TIME TO EAT. Had banana shake when I got home at 2. For supper: A few cherry tomatoes. 2 prunes. An ounce of cheese. Some yogurt. 1/2 salmon patty.No supplements.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Day 47 of 57

Wow. 10 more days to go. Today I had 2 cups kefir for breakfast on the go. Bought it while shopping at Walmart and drank it in the store. John wanted to go to Del Taco. Had 4 tacos. Yikes! Supper
Was a salmon patty, salad, and rice pilaf. See the photo? Well...I had another big serving of the pilaf!
I need to get more serious about controlling my portions of carbs!

Day 46 of 57

We went to Glendora and had lunch with John's mom...I had a tostado and a cup of refried beans. Passed up a rootbeer float. Did I eat breakfast? Can't recall.  But supper was big banana shakes.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Golden kiwi

I have been searching in every store I happen to go to....for this and found some at a grocery store in Carpinteria.  I is smooth skinned and sweeter snd bigger than your usual kiwi. 99 cents.

The other 2 temptations

I saw. I was curious. I wanted. I walked away.

2 temptations I resisted

I am a potato chip connaisseur.  I passed these new flavors up but my mouth was watering.

Day 45 of 57

Okay...througout the day I had 2 cups kefir, 20 almonds, 5 prunes, 1oz. Cheese, yogurt with chocolate sauce, a nectarine and the plate below from om Dickie's BBQ.

Day 44 of 57

I felt like not eating today...just drank a lot of flavored water. I knew we were going to Amys for supper. The Chinese gals were planning a meal for us. Here is the plate I started out with. Then I had second and third helpings!

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Day 44 of 57

I wanted to explain my hydration system. I have in the past been diagnosed as being chronically dehydrated.
I try to drink a lot of water each day because of that plus because of the fact we live in the Mojave Desert.

My habit for years is to consume a quart of either lemon or lime (fresh squeezed) juice within the first hour of being awake in the morning. I once read we should not have more than 2 cups of water at a time. It stresses the kidneys. So I have 2 cups first and then a bit later have another cup and then a bit later...then last cup. 2 cups fit in my pretty glass. I use a straw to protect my teeth enamel.
Then throughout the day I have water that is flavored with juice (whatever we have in the fridge) and a pinch Vitamin C powder. There...that's it.
I have a great hydration routine/well established habit.
By the way...I try to get distilled water and use that and sometimes just tap water.

Day 43 of 57

Saturday started with 20 almonds and 3 prunes. Lunch was a big bowl of homemade chicken noodle soup. "This is the best soup I ever had" said John.
Indeed! There was a sweetness to it which I attributed to the carrots I 
Used when making the broth.
Snacks included a cup of leftover Asian cashew salad.  (Again..loved all that raw cabbage) and 3 ounces of cheese.
Supper was a banana yogurt coconut cinnamon shake.
Heat wave today! It hit 106.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Day 42 of 57.

Home again. Trying to get back in the swing of things.
Had 20 almonds and 3 prunes. Had 3 cups of hot cocoa. Just wanted some chocolate in me. Had 1/2 cup of honey greek yogurt with blueberries and green grapes.  Some wonderful walnut raisin yeast bread from Costco...  with butter. Supper was a pile of Asian salad (lots of raw cabbage in it) and some pickled beets and a salmon pattie. Watered down blueberry juice with ice.  Glad I had some raw veggies!

Days 35-41

This period of time saw me on vacation to Minnesota and Wisconsin.  I did not take pictures of my daily meals nor record what I ate. I had a great time and ate out several times. I bought a bag of honey BBQ potato chips just to taste them. Had 2 chips...they were amazing. Rachel's Kettle Chips was the brand name ...from Perham, Minnesota.  The best I ever ate. VERY low sodium. Yummy. I resisted eating a lot of them. Gave the rest to my brother.I also resisted Culvers frozen custard.  I did have some Freddies frozen custard as dessert at my nieces house. I had cheese curds,  fresh from the cheese factory and ate some every day. Generally....I ate less than I would have eaten normally.

The picture below shows the best sandwich I ever ate in my life: A turkey sandwich with bacon in it on wild rice cranberry bread with cranberry aioli. I ate half...the other half I ate the next day at the airport while waiting for my flight. Dennis is showing his filet mignon wrap and waffle fries. I had a nice size serving of coleslaw with my sandwich.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Day 34 of 57

Ate so much. 30 almonds 5 prunes...then off to downtown Minneapolis and thus Ukrainian Deli. Ate bowl of chicken soup half of a kaiser roll. Half of Lebanese sausage sandwich (pictured below). Half of giant cabbage roll. Half order chips. Half order sweet red cabbage. Bought bread there also.
Then farmers market. Bought honey. Supper..
shish-kabob. 7 layer salad. Had almost half of Chocolove chocolate bar. Yikes!

Day 33 of 57

Traveling day. No breakfast. No lunch. Supper was 2 wonderful mahi tacos at Sea
Salt Eatery at Minihaha Falls in Minnesota.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Day 32 of 57

30 almonds 5 prunes for breakfast.
Lunch was a big bowl (pictured) of raspberry banana coconut milk "slush".
About an hour after this I was hungry and had a frozen meal (pictured)
Supper: corn on cob and a sloppy joe and some frozen hot chocolate later.
Joanie...more greens please!!!!

Monday, August 3, 2015

Day 31 of 57

30 almonds
5 prunes
Bowl oatmeal with chopped apples
Bowl greek yogurt with my healthy choc syrup
Bowl pesto pasta  salad with a few beans and 1 oz. Cheese cubes.
Watermelon yogurt shake
Supper pictured below. Blurry picture of rice and beans (cooked with lots of onion and garlic) and veggies.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Day 30 of 57

Fast Sunday. Kept hydrated with water or watered down cranberry juice. One meal today:  salmon patty with dill sour cream topping. Tossed salad, grated caerot, pesto pasta salad AGAIN. Handful of mixed nuts for dessert.

Day 30 of 57

Again my 30 almonds and 5 prunes for breakfast. Then lunch was a bowl of oatmeal ( 1 1/2 cups ) with cinnamon, chopped apple, cinnamon and coconut milk. Since I was still doing my garlic regime, I had little snacks all afternoon. Mainly small portions of my pesto pasta salad. I had a small bowl of blueberries with honey Greek yogurt on it. I made macaroni and cheese fir Christines family and sampled 1/2 cup. Also lots of cranberry juice to help my UTI.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Day 29 of 57

Breakfast was 30 almonds and 5 prunes.  Lunch was that lovely plate you see below.  And I ate it with full mindfulness...not reading, not looking at my iPad...just enjoying everything. I needed some color today! The red kidney beans and the red sweet and sour cabbage and the shredded carrot with its bright orange color supplied that need.
I am currently trying to chase away  a UTI so decided to eat a clove of garlic (chopped fine and piled on a spoon and gulped down with water) every hour after 12 noon. So I ate a little something  each time: some canned peas and chopped tomato in it (had that twice), small portion of yogurt and blueberries,  half piece of bread,  1 golden kiwi, 1/4 apple with a tablespoon of peanut butter.Also throughout the afternoon I consumed a total of 4 cups cranberry juice.
Needless to say I was not hungry at supper so had crudites and onion dill dip.
Oh...and a scant half cup of my version of "dirty rice". John had a plateful.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Day 28 of 57

Back to my morning routine with a slight change. I needed something juicier so added a half an apple sliced and reduced the prunes to 3, planning to eat more prunes later but I didn't.
Lunch and supper was rolled into one because I got home after 3 from Family History Center and Urgent Care.
I had a big serving of my pesto pasta salad with 1/2 oz cheese in it. Also a small turkey sausage burger in a bun. 3/4 cup pinto beans and half an apple.
Again I ask...where are the green vegetables ? There was celery along with red pepper in the pasta salad. A thick slice of tomato in the burger.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Day 27 of 57

I must step up my efforts and have a strategy for special events or days. Like days when we have company and I am making special foods.
Today was the first day since my commitment that I did not have a single almond or prune. I had tons of watermelon morning afternoon and evening. No room in the fridge. I had 2 pancakes for breakfast with a half bratwurst and 2 for supper with a whole bratwurst.
Complete with a small smear of butter and syrup. I did have half of an apple at one point.  Also some leftover shish kabobs of chicken with rice and humus. Also, because I have a UTI...after coming home at 8:30 pm pfrom a meeting, I had to have the pills Sheelah gave me with food and also had to have chopped garlic with food so I had a bowl of my pesto pasta salad.

Day 26 of 57

Breakfast: 30 almonds, 5 prunes and an orange!
Lunch: various bites of leftovers from the fridge plus a shake.
Snack: frozen hot chocolate.
Supper: beet greens, beans and parmesan cheese. A tomato sandwich with mayo.
Later snack: watermelon.

Analysis: I need more veggies!!!
I did 30 minutes on the stationary bike!

I have been faithful with my quart of lemon or lime water every morning!

Monday, July 27, 2015

Day 25 of 57

Strange order today.
Breakfast was a bowl of pesto pasta salad. It was leftovers from another day. I added a chopped tomato and 1/3 chopped cuke. What can I say? I was in the mood.
Then lunch was the 30 almonds and 5 prunes plus a half cup of green grapes.
A handful of peanuts in the afternoon and a raspberry banana coconut milkshake. Then some fresh cooked beets.
Supper? It was 7:30 when we sat down. John had leftover salmon stroganoff.....wuth sauteed chopped onions added. I had oatmeal with apple chunks and milk and cinnamon.

Very random eating patterns today. I was following my hunger and cravings.