Resolutions! - The wonderful world of 'Manda Blog at - 263759

The wonderful world of 'Manda

Jan. 11, 2012 11:40 am 
Updated: Jan. 12, 2012 12:29 pm

A new year means it’s time to make some resolutions!

This year, I have two healthy resolutions I’m looking forward to keeping.

The first is to cut soda back out of my diet. I was soda-free for five years, and last year, for some reason, I picked up the bottle again and started drinking. True, I only drink diet soda, but I know that despite the lack of calories, diet soda is NOT a healthy drink. Instead, I am going to make sure I drink at least 8 glasses of water a day and when I feel like something sweet, I’m going to sip some apple juice.

The second is to cut fast food out of my diet. It was gone for almost two years, but as I got busy with work and school, it slowly snuck back into my life. This year I am resolved to kick it back out!

Resolutions don’t just make themselves happen, and I know if I didn’t plan head and get ready for this year, I would find myself at a drive-thru in no time. That is why I have a plan of attack!

Attack one – Plan simple bulk lunches I can make on the weekend that keep well in the fridge to grab when on the go! Recipes like Simple Pasta Salad, Classic American Potato Salad and Homemade Black Bean Veggie Burgers are perfect!

Attack two – Keep it fun! If salads start to get boring, I’ll put it on a stick! Like this recipe for Caprese on a Stick. If I get tired of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, I’ll make some Peanut Butter and Jelly Sushi Rolls! If soft tacos and wraps get boring for lunch, I’ll make a Taco Dip and pack some crunchy chips to go with it! Having fun food will keep me away from that drive-thru.

Attack three – Have a few quick and easy go-to dinner recipes at home, things that take 15 minutes to a half hour to prepare, for those late nights on my schedule. Asian Roll Lettuce Wraps are perfect for such nights (since I generally have brown rice already cooked and in my freezer - it keeps so well!), as well as some Fast and Friendly Meatballs and Lazygirl’s Ground Turkey Stroganoff.

Attack four - Take advantage of my wonderful slow cooker! I know I’ll rush home to some hot, ready to eat food when I make recipes like Slow Cooker Chicken and Sausage Chili, Baked Slow Cooker Chicken and Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore. These recipes will make it easy for me to avoid the drive-thru since they are already hot and ready at home.

Hopefully with this plan of action, I’ll be able to cut fast food out of my diet once again. I know with a few simple plans of attack, I can get back on the no-fast-food train and kick my soda habit as well. In 2013, I hope my resolutions will be something completely different!

Jan. 11, 2012 12:07 pm
Nice job Manda! Getting rid of those diet sodas and fast food is great. One trick I used when I was commuting was to bring an apple or granola bar and a bottle of water with me in the car. Easy to eat on the road and it would help me avoid the dreaded drive thru.
Jan. 11, 2012 12:43 pm
Good luck Manda, I know how a busy lifestyle can play havoc on what we eat. Eating breakfast out used to be one of my big weaknesses. I now reserve it for one weekend morning only. When I am tempted to grab a breakfast on the run, I try to rationalize the PRICE of it versus making the same thing at home. I can have organic fair-traded coffee and a toasted omega-3 egg and cheddar sandwich EVERY day for a week at home for the cost of one breakfast out! Good luck with your plan of attack!!
Jan. 11, 2012 4:16 pm
The trick to healthy eating is...drum roll, to think about it. That's it! If you leave every meal to the last minute, start planning when you are starving, thats when the fast food soda monster will win. It sounds like you have made the choice to think about it, you'll do fine!
Jan. 11, 2012 9:03 pm
Great planning, Manda. I can see you waving "buh-bye" as you drive right past the drive-thru. Well done.
Jan. 12, 2012 7:02 am
Great job Manda. Thanks for inspiring me to make some changes.
Jan. 12, 2012 8:15 am
This is inspiring, Manda!! Great post, I enjoyed reading it!!
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About Me
I hope to be a future teacher. Right now I major in English and Political Science. One day I might aspire to be a local politician - who knows! Maybe even an acclaimed author. Oooh, acclaim! Right now my possibilities are endless. I also love to cook. I live with my best friend, my god child and my boyfriend. We're all a happy little family in which I do all the cooking since no one else in the house likes to cook. I also watch my god child one day a week and we try to do kid friendly recipes together to introduce her to cooking and nutrition. I try to plan meals but we usually end up going to the market once or twice a week to pick up food items on sale. Almost everything in my pantry, fridge and freezer come from a sale. We try and be very conscious of how we spend our money and what we spend it on. I have a coupon book and I do clip coupons regularly but we usually just end up getting "the store brand" of whatever is on sale because it's always cheaper anyway.
My favorite things to cook
I have a lot of favorite things to cook! This Christmas my boyfriend gifted me my first ever stand mixer. I try and use it at least a few times a week to show him I appreciate the gift. I've been making a lot of breads from scratch in my household. I also love love love to use my slow cooker! It not only makes delicious roasts, soups and sides but it makes them super easy too. I do go to school and I do have a lot of things to take care of at home, so when I know I'm busy I just throw something in the slow cooker and it always turns out fabulously! I make the best, non fried, not butter rich hot wings for my little sister who is a junk food enthusiast. My turkey three-cheese lasagna is a highly requested recipe by my junk food loving sister as well as my healthy conscious boyfriend. It's a recipe that can't be beat. I also do a four hour roasted chicken that is requested in my household a few times a month. I tend to do it on weekends when I have four hours at home to spare.
My favorite family cooking traditions
My mother is not the best cook in the world. My grandmother, on the other hand, has made everything from scratch since she was a little girl. Growing up I remember helping her cook before she moved to another state. We had a great time together and she is my inspiration for learning to cook myself and not just eating the junk food, frozen food and canned food readily available in the house I grew up in.
My cooking triumphs
My mother made THE WORST everything, especially pot roast. Her idea of a pot roast was to stick a piece of meat in water in a steamer and let it cook all day, as if it were in a slow cooker. That was not good eats. My boyfriend is a huge fan of pot roast and I happened to have won a slow cooker last year at his family's gift exchange. I decided to chance it and make my first ever pot roast that hopefully didn't taste like shoe. It was amazing and delicious! I was so happy and now it's something we both enjoy eating regularly, usually when roasts go on sale at the market.
My cooking tragedies
What's tragic right now is that I don't have a BBQ! We've recently moved and while I have my whole kitchen set up I lack a BBQ in my yard.
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