Category Archives: blueberries

Bargains and berries

Hope you all had a fabulous weekend!  I had a great one 😀

Can I share my super uber deal that I got?  Over the past 5 years since we got this house, we have been saving up and doing improvements on it.  One thing has always bothered me (doesn’t bother John) and that was not having a water softener, but there were other pressing needs to do first.  I have been saving since Christmas for one and had the money set aside.  We just were waiting for a rainy weekend to purchase, but the weekends have been so nice we just didn’t get around to it.

Yesterday, we went shoe shopping for John at Sears because there was a sale.  I heard on the overhead that there was a clearance in the appliance department for water softeners (serendipity anyone?).  I went over and they had the super expensive models on clearance marked down from $799 to $50.  I about fell over!  That was twice as nice as the model we were looking at and I saved $750!  I almost fell over myself going to checkout for it.  (It was also tempting to buy the other 4 and resell them for $200 each, which would have been an awesome deal for anyone LOL.)  I am still over the moon because now I have extra money to put in the Disney fund.  Every once in a while, life just works out really grand, you know?

Anyhoo, it’s time for breakfast!  I made up more ricotta puffs and had those with blueberries.

This actually only lasted me a couple of hours for some reason.  So, I snagged some cashews.

Work was so busy today.  So busy!  I think some MTs must be on vacation prior to school starting or something.  It’s good for me, though.

I took a lunch break and had some 2% Fage with strawberries, flax meal and honey.  Oddly enough  – the meal I miss grains with is really lunch time.  That seems to be when I tend to eat them more during the day and  I don’t have something else that I normally eat.  Breakfast I already had a lot of non-grain items in my arsenal.  Lunch is hard to sub the granola I usually have with yogurt.  I have 6 days left of the challenge.  Wonder what my first grain will be?

I feel so in control and in the groove right now.  I love, love, love that feeling.  It makes it much easier when life’s little irritants happen to roll with the punches when I am in the groove.

John made up lattes today, which I paired with a macaroon that I made last night.

These came out kind of falling apart, so not sure what I did that was so different.

I was really hungry for dinner tonight.  I just was a little hungry all day. Could be from a very active weekend.  So I had a big salad.

John and I did lawn maintenance today.  Edging – one of those things that you just keep putting off, which then makes the task that much harder.  Someone walking by asked if we just moved in LOL!  Guess it has been a while since we edged.  😳  I also planted a couple iris rhizomes that came in the mail.  I love how they wrote the name on the plant itself.

My first attempt at bearded iris in my garden.  I will have some fun ones next year.  I also have more tulip bulbs coming as well for fall planting (Fran, you will be proud!)

I am going to settle in with this yummy snack and a square of dark chocolate and get ready for some football!

I ate a lot of berries today :mrgreen:

Question: What is the best bargain you have had lately.

Happy Solstice!

Thank you all so, so much for the comments on my anniversary! Even though I have not reached my mind’s goal, I never stop trying. 😀

Happy Solstice, too!  The longest day of the year.  Funny how it comes just as summer begins, isn’t it?

I was ready to hit some iron today.  I have to say that the traffic was really annoying on the way to the gym today. Hello city bus? You need to give me more room! The dumbass driver came so close to me that it rocked my bike! Scary!

Exercise Set/rep/weight Muscle worked
Lying Leg press 3 sets of 10 at 100# Lower Body
Seated Cable Lat Row 3 sets of 10 at 55# Back
Bench Press 3 sets of 10 with 50# bar Chest
Reverse Crunches 3 sets of 12 Core
Low Back Extension 3 sets of 10 at 100# Low Back
Calf Raise 3 sets of 12 at 110# Calves
Biceps Curls 3 sets of 10 with 25# bar Biceps
Nosebreaker 3 sets of 10 with 25# bar Triceps
Good Mornings 3 sets of 10 with 35# bar Lower Back and Hammies
Upright Row 3 sets of 10 with 25# bar Shoulders

And hello gym people – wipe your sweat off the benches please! Even a woman did not wipe her sweat off today and she was wearing a little halter top, so got sweat all over the bench. Nasty! They provide us with wipes, so there really is absolutely no reason not to  use them other than no manners.  How about that for some complaining today? :mrgreen:

I actually had made breakfast up last night and reheated it this morning.  A banana bread pudding with coconut flour (GF!).  I baked it instead of microwaving it.  Need to put up a recipe page for it soon.

Topped with Teddie PB and strawberry jam!  I really, really liked this.  I swear one of these days I am going to eat breakfast for every single meal.

After a solid morning of work – I wanted some superfoods for lunch! This shake was packed with them.

  • 1 cup of blueberries
  • 30 grams of unflavored whey protein isolate
  • 8 oz of unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 14 grams of flax meal

Of course, I did spend the next 15 minutes picking flax out of my teeth, but it was tasty.  One nice thing about eating on the porch is that it keeps me from eating while working.  Not that I do that or anything, but just sayin’…

Funny thing about yesterday, John was looking at my lose-aversary post and had a lot of trouble reconciling the old photos with me now.  Even though a lot of my life with John I looked that way, he said it is hard to remember me looking like that.  It still can be fairly fresh in my mind, though LOL!

Back to work and a visit to pet the Great Napper!

I let her have the chair all day because I am so nice.

Made up a good latte today. I actually made my own as John was busy.  I can’t believe I had to make my own snack!

Plus I got to talk on the phone to my sis during break time and make plans.  We are doing a women’s outdoor weekend this weekend.  She is actually teaching some classes.  Bow hunting and shotgun.  I am just attending to do other classes like hiking and dutch oven cooking.  Should be fun, although our track record for weather is a little iffy when we do outdoor things. 🙄

Nice light dinner tonight.

I had some bread baking and I wanted a piece later, so I lightened up dinner.  I think this month is going pretty well on the weight loss front, so I am pleased about that.  If I can just hold on to that thought while away this weekend.

I decided to celebrate the longest day of the year with an evening bike ride tonight.  I went out solo tooling around.  Just a nice night for a ride with my magic shoes.

They may look dorky, but I love them.

Now to get a piece of that bread and practice some guitar!

Question:  What is your biggest peeve at the gym?

What’s blooming and blueberry bonanza!

Fabulous Friday!  I am still working on the IE/ME post.  I was hoping to get that done today, but it is taking me a while to write.

I did not go to the gym this morning because I don’t want to do a strength workout the day before the big bike ride on Saturday.  We are going to shoot for 80 miles…. gulp!  At least it shouldn’t rain 😀

I had a craving for carrot cake, so that’s what I had for breakfast.  In oatmeal version! (recipe here)

After breakfast, I called the blueberry farm and they were open for the first day of the season.  Yay!

Rows and rows of bushes:

These berries didn’t make it into the bucket…..

There were still a lot of immature berries.  This place is going to be exploding in a week or 2.  I still managed to get a nice big bucket full of berries!

6 pounds of blueberries:

You just can’t get blueberries like this in the store!  $2.25 per pound.

I was not all that hungry when I got home because I was snacking on a ton of blueberries, but I knew I needed some protein.  All-bran, greek yogurt and… well…

The garden is still in full bloom.  A couple new flowers popped open this week:

Rudbeckia Cherry Brandy (the ones I got early this spring)

White swan echinacea:

Another clematis bloom that is climbing up the porch post:

The monster yellow clematis (the one that ate Cleveland) leaves the coolest buds behind after the flower fall off – don’t they look like truffula trees?

It was such a gorgeous day today, too.  78 and sunny and low humidity.  It’s just perfect!  I like it when my days off coincide with good weather 😉

Dinner time and we grilled up some fresh corn with cube steak and brussels.  This was really tasty!

I do like red meat.  I stopped at the smokehouse to pick up ground beef for the picnic on Sunday.  We usually bring the meat it seems lately, but that is because we are picky that it be local meat and don’t mind doing it.

I had some peanuts while dinner was cooking, and I am trying to pay attention to whether I am hungry or not tonight to see if I need a snack.  As of now, I don’t feel hunger.  That may change in an hour.

I’m off to peruse some blueberry recipes!

Question:  Have you ever picked your own berries?

Easy blueberry sauce

I have a link to this in the recipe section, but thought I would give a step by step on making the sauce you see so often on here.

You can use any blueberries you want, but I happen to prefer Wyman’s because they are sweeter than other blueberries and they are the tiny wild ones, which gives you more blueberries in the sauce and makes it more cohesive, so to speak.

This is the big bag, too 😀

I weigh out 140 grams, which is one serving:

Okay, 1 gram over.  This is 80 calories of blueberries (another reason to like the little wild ones).

I set this on a little more than medium on the stove while I am cooking whatever these are going to go on.

In a small bowl, mix 1 teaspoon of cornstarch with 1 tablespoon of cold water:

When the blueberry mixture bubbles and has a nice amount of juice in the pot, dump in the cornstarch mixture, turn off the heat (if electric) and stir.

Stir as the sauce comes back to a simmer with the residual heat. It will thicken immediately.  Remove from heat and serve on waffles:

Or pancakes:

Or parfait-style Oats in a Jar

You can also put some granola on top for a quick cobbler-type dessert.

With the cornstarch, the topping is 90 calories.  You can add sweetener if you wish, but that’s why I like the wild blueberries because you don’t need it.  Honey would be nice for this, and also a touch of lemon juice.

This could also be done in the microwave.  I just don’t like to because it annoys me to start and stop the microwave and to keep having to check on it.  With the sauce pan, it’s easy to monitor.  That’s just me.  This takes about 5 minutes to make, so I do it fresh each time.


Saturday bike ride and my first bonk

I was a busy bee last night scrubbing the bathroom floor and doing some weeding and driveway cleanup.  My back actually was hurting, so I took a Tylenol PM in the hopes that I would sleep later (plus help my back).  We woke up about 8:30 –  which is really, really late for me!  Cooler weather for sleeping, too – we were in the upper 40s (Last I checked it was still August, right?)  John wanted to bike to breakfast before he went out of town, so I snarfed 2 dates with cashew butter before we left.  I should have had more, as it was a very long time in between those dates and the last thing I ate the night before (by about 15 hours).  The bike ride was 8 miles each way.  Felt fine for the first 7 miles and then  zoomed really fast up a hill.  Smarty me thought it would be a challenge to not change gears and just power up the hill.  Came down on the other side and I felt pretty sweaty, so I unzipped my jacket, but realized that I wasn’t really hot, but starting to feel hypoglycemic.  I thought “Uh, oh, my first bonk.”  Good thing we were pretty much at Panera Bread.  Unfortunately – they didn’t have any samples out like they usually do, and I was starting to get the shakes.  I grabbed my coffee cup and went over to the coffee area to get a bit of milk and coffee in me ASAP.  I started to feel a bit better.  Decided on a white, sweet bagel for the carbs:


Looks like raisins, but it’s not!  Chocolate chips 😀  After about 1/2 the bagel I felt sooooo much better.  Lesson learned.

For whatever reason, I am super productive when John goes out of town.  I managed to mow the lawn, do laundry, roast coffee, vacuum, sweep and mop, play a computer game 😀

I made lunch and was quite hungry.  This wrap has my favorite curry chicken salad in it.   And yes, that is a liter bottle of seltzer.  It was half empty, and being the bachelorette today, I drank right out of the bottle!  Bwhaaa!


It was stuffed full, and I tried to close it with toothpicks.  Didn’t work, so I ended up wrapping it in a paper towel after I dropped some on my lap.  Note to self: remove toothpicks before wrapping.

Plus a raspberry pluot.  Juiciest thing ever!  I actually had to stand over the sink to eat it.  It was very good, the skin was very tart and the inside was very sweet – amazing combo.


Proceeded to get through the above list and walked to the feed store to pick up food for some lazy cat:


Then put my feet up with a latte!


And some of these:


I have a confession to make.  As much as I love to tell everyone to eat real food, I have some secret love for instant potatoes.  I don’t know why, but I like the taste of them for whatever reason.  At the store the other day, these were on clearance, so I got a couple:


Made for an interesting dinner.


I probably wouldn’t buy them again (unless there is a sale 🙂  ), but it was fast, easy and pretty tasty.

Because it’s is so gorgeous out, I went out for an easy 2 mile jog post dinner.  Tonight is Netflix movie night and some more relaxing!

Have a great one!

NROLW and Blueberry picking at Winney Farm

First day of my weekend.  Started off with a good strength workout.  This doesn’t look like much on paper, but it takes a while to get through at the gym.

  • Dumbbell cuban snatch: 2 x 6 15 pounds, 1 x 6  20 pounds
  • Dumbbell single-leg deadlift: 3 x 6 at 25 #
  • Barbell bent-over row: 1 x 6 at 45, 1 x 6 at 55, 1 x 6 at 65
  • Dumbbell single-arm overhead squat 3 x 6 (using 10# and 20#)
  • Dumbbell incline bench press: 3 x 6 at 25#
  • Planks: 90 second holds 3 times
  • Reverse woodchop: 3 x 6 at 50 pounds
  • Bodyweight matrix:   3 times  – I actually graduated up to 14 jump squats on each set from 12.

Awesome thing today – there were 4, count ’em, 4 ladies working with free weights today while I was there.  And only 1 man.  The ladies weren’t messing around either – I think one of them could kick my ass big time, she looked great and lifted really heavy (more proof that you don’t get bulky lifting).

I have been totally obsessed with blueberries as of late (you think??) – so I decided to go pick my own today on my day off.  Drove to Winney’s Farm in Schuylerville.  This is a blueberry only farm on 20 acres with 14 different varieties of blueberries and something like 14,000 plants.  Let me start by saying that I did not even notice which type of blueberry I picked today, wish I had made note, though.

The blueberry bushes were in long rows, and you just park in a grassy area by the place you want to start picking and go in with your bucket.


The bushes were anywhere from 3 feet to 6 feet tall.  What I found interesting was that each bush had everything from tiny white berries all the way to ripe ones, all in the same cluster.


I don’t know how a machine could ever pick blueberries.  Here is a bush that just formed its berries and is all white:


My bucket of berries (I actually filled it to the brim):


I had to taste test them from each bush, though.  Had to make sure they passed the taste test!

Berries go in here....

Berries go in here....

You would think it would have been very tranquil there, but to protect the crops, a  constant recording of hawk screeching is played, which is a little weird.   I honestly don’t know how they keep the deer out of this either as there are no closed fences.   This was fun, though and I would do it again in a heartbeat.   $2.25 per pound (which is a lot more berries than a pint).

Of course, as if eating a pint of blueberries wasn’t enough – I had to have more with lunch when I got home!  This was an awesome bowl:

  • Oikos FF vanilla greek yogurt
  • Total Blueberry Pomegranate cereal
  • Fresh blueberries


Have a fabulous day!

NROLW and a blueberry day.

Nice workout time this morning, even though I was up too early because I couldn’t sleep!  Mostly cardio bunnies at the gym today and I was all by myself in the free weight area for almost all of my workout (yay!).  Then someone came in and got on the Smith machine, but I don’t care about that.  Mornings all the way for weights!

  • Dumbbell cuban snatch: 3 x 6 15 pounds
  • Dumbbell single-leg deadlift: 3 x 6 at 20
  • Barbell bent-over row: 1 x 6 at 45, 1 x 6 at 55, 1 x 6 at 65
  • Dumbbell single-arm overhead squat 3 x 6 (using 8# and 15#)
  • Dumbbell incline bench press: 3 x 6 at 25#
  • Planks: 90 second holds 3 times
  • Reverse woodchop: 3 x 6 at 50 pounds
  • Bodyweight matrix:   3 times

My variant of this is to do alternating lunges for the 3rd item and not jump with them, then to do the jump squats.  I could only do 12 jump squats on each repetition, though!  :O   It took me about 3 minutes to get through each set.  Gee…. I wonder what I will feel like tomorrow.  Video of someone doing the matrix at the end of this post – This lady rocks!

Came home hungry!  Protein pancakes with blueberries.


Here are my goals for this week:

  1. Stay within calories.
  2. No cereal snacking!!!  I mean it!!
  3. 3 weight workouts (1 done)
  4. 2 running days
  5. 3 biking days
  6. Take time to congratulate myself at the end of each day for the positive things I accomplish.

Lunch was like a little tasting plate:  Tuna mixed with 40 Spice Hummus, FSTG Sweet Potato chips (amazing!), more blueberries, baby carrots.  This was fun and interactive.


I have managed to consume a whole pint of blueberries by myself since yesterday!  John said I was going to need to get another job to support my fruit addiction 😛

Afternoon latte.  I think our machine is on its last legs.


I had even more hummus for dinner.  I cooked up some ground turkey and rolled it up in a wrap with the 40 spice hummus and spring mix. Yum!


I normally don’t have a bread-type carb at dinner, so this was something different.

Body weight matrix video – warning, lame music ahead!

And for kicks, here is someone who isn’t doing so well with the matrix – I will just put the link up because I don’t want to embarass him LOL (although he did post this on youtube).  And truth be told, I am a lot more like him than the woman above!

Lazy Sunday and too many snacks.

Well, today was one of those food days that happen from time to time.  The noshes got some control.  I woke up feeling pretty good after the long bike ride.  Legs a little tired, but not overly so.  Although, I think an early bedtime is on tap for tonight, as I am feeling more tired as the day goes on.

Our normal Sunday ritual of bagels (even though I had one last night – gotta knock that off!).  Panera Bread today.


Then it was grocery shopping for all those fresh things I so love on Sundays, like blueberries!

I got some tuna this time, I had really stopped eating it for a while.  Do you ever have a food you have in your routine and then all of a sudden just get tired of it?  That happened with me and tuna for quite a while.  But it is back and I had it on a wrap for lunch with some Tribe 40 Spice hummus –  you must try this stuff, it is wonderful!  So much better than mayo with tuna anyday.  Plus yummy blueberries (in fact, I got a 2nd bowl of them).


A couple hours after lunch the snack attack started.  Pria bar (too sweet), plus a latte.

pria Then some Total Blueberry pomegranate cereal snacking (I am kicking myself for buying cereal).

Then some dark chocolate chips and peanuts.  Hello???  Earth to Lori… snack

Work is slow right now, so while waiting for files I amble around and get snacky.

I am not exercising today as I really need a rest day.  I am learning that these are vital and actually help my workouts on those days.  Had the Tour de France on today and they were doing the mountain day.  I swear my thighs were singing along with them after yesterday’s ride – I know how I felt, I can only imagine how they felt!

I am going to sit down tonight and make a list of goals for the week and post it to have something concrete to look at ala Fitcetera!

Dinner tonight I got lazy and didn’t want to cook veggies.  How lame is that?  I just wanted the baked clam strips and cut up some berries.  Good though.  I think I am more tired than I thought.


Tomorrow is back to the Y on a more scheduled basis – and certainly in the early morning do avoid the meatheads from Friday.   My membership there ends on August 15th, then I will be joining the gym down the street.

Good news is that we finally got health insurance in place (after 2.5 years without), so this week I am getting all those appointments set up.  First one is the dentist – although I do normally go every 6 months, but this time it’s covered.  Yay!  Then get set up for a complete physical and blood work.  Fun, fun!

Tour de France and blueberries

Watching a bit of the Tour de France on TV.  Those athletes are freaking amazing!  Did you know that the average age of a tour rider is 40???  I am not sure I heard that right.  The average age of the winners is about 30.

The riders were just entering the feed zone ( a term which I find quite hilarious for some reason).  They were all taking bags full of food (not stopping of course).  The commentators were talking about how the riders need to make sure they get the bag in the feed zone or they are at the risk of using more calories than they can take in and will bonk on the ride.  Here I worry about that with my 30 mile rides!  Makes me feel like a wimp 😀

Don’t have many food pics today, as it was one of those weird days where I forgot photos because I got off schedule.

I was out looking at some houses as possible flip candidates today.  Not sure how I will fit that into my schedule (just to do the work), but you can always find a solution, right?

Munched on the last of these today:


Regarding the recipe on the pancakes – had a couple questions on those again.

Here it is!

Protein pancakes:

1/3 cup of cottage cheese (1%)
1/3 cup of rolled oats
1/3 cup of egg substitute, or 1 egg + one white
dash of vanilla
dash of cinnamon

1/4 tsp baking powder

(I do not use sweeteners, but most people probably would want to add some splenda or something to this.)

Blend in a blender and cook like regular pancakes.  I love my Magic Bullet for this! You must blend this, otherwise the oats will be too chunky. The batter should be nice and smooth. Makes 3 big pancakes!
Lots of protein and fiber!

Blueberry Sauce

1 cup (40 grams) frozen blueberries (My favorite brand is Wymans wild blueberries).

1 tsp cornstarch

1 tablespoon cold water

In a small saucepan or microwave, heat the berries to a simmer.  Mix the water and cornstarch and stir into the blueberries.  Heat gently until thickened.  Super easy!  The Wyman’s blueberries do not need any sweetener added, these wild ones are naturally sweeter and have more blueberry flavor.


Challenge Day 12 – Finished!

Felt like a busy day today.  Went to the Y and did a bit of biking and walking, then the extra bonus NROLW workout – goal to do as many reps as possible at starting weight.

Dead lifts – 25 # bar  32 reps (I could have kept going, but got bored LOL)

Pushups at 45 degree angle = 30 reps

Seated lat rows at 40# = 25 reps

Step ups with 20 pound dumbbells = 30 reps each leg

Stability ball jackknife = 18 reps.

Now I have a whole week off from strength training!  I’ll take that time to concentrate on bricks and fueling.

Came home to protein pancakes:


I left out the protein powder today since I had a lighter workout.  That makes them a little fluffier without the extra protein.

Got started at work early – since I have a 3-day weekend starting tomorrow! Woo Hoo!  Sooner I got done, the sooner my mini vacay starts 😀

Dinner was a buffalo chicken wrap.   I had some cooked chicken breast which I chopped up and put on a smart carb wrap with a tiny bit of blue cheese dressing, lots of hot sauce and some spring mix salad.  So good!  And fresh blueberries.  I am going to turn purple pretty soon!


After dinner, we went for a bike ride and got some frozen yogurt.  I tried carrot cake flavor, which was pretty good, but not great.  The ride there and back is around 13 miles or so, which is great to have a treat and burn off all the calories getting there and back!

So the challenge ends today!  I ate pretty well today to finish off the challenge.  I had 10 good days and 2 not so good days, so overall I am pleased.  Plus, I lost about 2 pounds, which is awesome for me!  I have gained a few while training for the triathlon, so it is nice to see the scale go the other way.

Tomorrow is my birthday (41 eeek!), and I have a nice long weekend to enjoy!  I’ll post pics of my dinner tomorrow.