#Blizzard2016

This year, we were spoiled here on the east coast.  Christmas was in the 60 degree range.  It hasn’t dipped much below 40 for most of January.  We have had, literally, 0 inches of snow.

Until today.

snow

Today we got walloped (as I’m sure you know, unless you’ve been living under a rock). 3 feet.  Three. Feet. Of. Snow. In less than 24 hours.  So what do you do when you are snowed in?

You make bread.

bread

 

 

And graham crackers.

crackers

 

And sweet potato chips.

sweet potato

 

 

And yogurt.

yogurt

 

 

And of COURSE hot chocolate.

hot chocolate

 

 

And then you make a fire.

fire

 

 

Today was a good day.

Homemade Fruit Leather

Have you ever noticed what is in the ingredients of the “healthy” dried fruit you are eating?

I got dried papaya slices at the store a few months ago.  They were AMAZING.  But when I looked at the ingredients, I realized I might as well have eaten a bag of candy.  Coated in sugar.  Anti-sticking agents.  Artificial colors.   Blech.

I bought myself a food dehydrator for Christmas.

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Presto Dehydro. And no, they aren’t paying me. But if anyone reading this works at Presto, hit me up!!!

My first attempt at dehydrating was fruit leather.

*Confession:  I have a thing for gummy fruity snacks.  I can resist a bowl of chocolate all day long.  But put me in front of a bowl of gummy bears…or Twizzlers…and I’m done.  My daughter got a few bags of fruit snacks in her Halloween candy this year.  Guess what was the first Mom Tax taken out?

It took about six hours total for it to dry.

Then I ate half the tray.

I mixed an overripe pear with the bottom of a jar of unsweetened apple sauce and some frozen fruit blend I had lying around in the freezer.

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It’s very important to make sure you use only FANCY fruit in your fruit leather!

The edges dried before the center did, even though I THOUGHT I did a good job of evening it all out.  Whomp whomp.  So the edges are a little crispy rather than chewy,but still delicious.

It’s actually a little sour, rather than sweet, probably because of the pomegranate and raspberries.  I don’t mind it, but some people may want it sweeter.

Also, next time I think I will strain the seeds out.  But they do give it an interesting texture.

All in all…I’ll call this a win in the healthy (er) snack column!

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The finished product. Magnificent.

My Story- Part 1

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No decision is made in isolation.

Ripples in the pond.

A journey of a thousand miles.

In May of 2008, I graduated from college in Pennsylvania.  Two months later I moved to South Carolina with my then boyfriend (later husband).  A perfect storm of unhealthy habits began:

– I moved away from everyone I knew (except for one) and was thrust into a job that was MUCH harder and MUCH more emotionally taxing than I expected.  Cue emotional eating.

– I had disposable cash like I had never seen before.  While I wasn’t exactly rolling in the dolla’ dolla’ bills, rent was cheap and responsibilities were few.  Thus began eating out four or five nights a week.

– Speaking of restaurants, South Carolina isn’t part of the heart attack belt for nothing.  After only a few months of being there, we went to a local town festival.  There was a food truck with fried fruit.  FRIED FRUIT.1927909_520329997935_7961_n

Now, I will be the first to preach to you about personal accountability…no excuses…responsibility for your decisions and accepting consequences for your actions.

But you also need to have the tools and information to make the best decisions (see: life philosophy).  Which, at the time of this story, I didn’t have.

 

Two years and thirty pounds later, we decided to move back home.  The physical for my new job was the first time I had stepped on the scale in a long time, and I realized then that I was heavier than I had ever been.  And I knew I never wanted to see that number again.

Coming soon:  How I changed things, and how you can too.