Friday Favorites

My Friday favorites are a few days late, but here they are anyway. In light of the holidays and all the tempting treats that abound, and my sweet daughter's very astute observations, my favorites this week are things that I love that help combat all those calories!

1. The Food You Crave: Luscious Recipes for a Healthy Life by Ellie Krieger - I saw this cookbook at Costco earlier in the year and was interested by it, so I checked it out of the library, tried a few recipes then went back to Costco and bought it. I had never heard of her but Ellie Krieger hosts a show, "Healthy Appetite", on the Food Network. Her recipes are old favorites, redone in a more healthy way. She uses good, fresh ingredients and her recipes are fairly simple and fast. Also, the nutritional info is calculated out for each recipe. We have not tried a recipe yet that my family did not enjoy. Some of the favorites at my house have been the Steak Tacos with Cucumber-Avocado Salsa and the Turkey Meatloaf (I know you're thinking - meat loaf, gross - but it was really good and I do not like meatloaf!).

2. My ipod shuffle - A few months back Finn broke my nano. So, not having a new nano in my budget, I decided to get the cheapest ipod I could and ponied up $50 for a shuffle. I just simply cannot survive with some good workout tunes. Can I just say I could kiss the little rugrat for destroying my nano! I LOVE my shuffle. I love that it has a little clip so I can clip it anywhere I want, pants, jacket, shirt, front, back or side. It is so tiny and convenient I completely forget I have it. And since I really only listen to it when I workout I don't miss the display one little bit. I have it loaded up with about 100 good workout songs and occasionally if I hit I song I am not feeling, I just skip it. Love, love, love it!

3. My playlist - I have already mentioned it, but I love and need music when I work out. I think it helps for two reasons. Number one: It gets me out of my head. I try and drown out myself trying to tell me that it's hard, or it hurts, or I'm tired. I feel like if I can drown out those thoughts that it allows my mind to wander or focus on something more positive. Second - a good external beat keeps me moving and helps me keep my pace. Studies have been done that prove that an external beat can help you work up to 20 percent harder.

So, here are a few of my favorite songs that get me/keep me moving right now: Just keep in mind that these aren't songs I would listen to in my car or because I like the song (trust me, I have one and only one song by Avril Lavigne) they are songs that just have the right tempo or bass or beat that keep me moving:

Hands Open - Snow Patrol
Girlfriend - Avril Lavigne
The Way I Are - Timbaland
Around the World/Harder Better Faster Stronger - Daft Punk
Seven Army Nation - The White Stripes
Beautiful - Goldfrapp
Pain - Jimmy Eat World
SexyBack - Justin Timberlake
Just Dance - Lady Gaga and Colby O'Donis
Cha Cha Slide - Mr. C
Don't Stop the Music - Rihanna

I also love anything by the Clash and the Ramones. So, I would love to hear what your favorites are - I'm always looking for something new!


Kids Say the Cutest Things....

...and sometimes it would be great if they couldn't talk, at all!

For example, the other day I was sitting on the ground in my room doing my hair and make-up in front of the mirror. I had on jeans and a snug-fitting layering shirt that I was going to wear under a sweater. I hadn't put my sweater on yet b/c I get too hot drying my hair with 3 layers on.

So, anyway Ella was sitting beside talking to me about some of her cousins that are going to have a new baby in their family. Then she says "I think we're going to have a baby soon!"

Me: "Really, why do you say that?"
Ella: "Because your tummy is getting big and I think there is a baby in there."

OK, for the record - nope - no baby in there. Apparently just too many mashed potatoes, gravy and rolls. Honestly, the funny thing is that I was just saying to Jeramy the day before that I was feeling extra "squishy" and felt like I needed to reign things in a bit. He, being the sweet and smart husband he is, denied any existence of any "more of me" and was able to, temporarily, allay my fears. So, for Ella to make that comment the next day just fueled my anxiety about the situation.

Really, the whole thing is pretty funny. I can't blame her for her calling it like she sees it. Plus, she really, really wants a baby sister so who can blame her for seeing my mid-section overhang as a sign of hope?

Time to hit the gym......