Moving….

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Well, we all have that one friend that we grew up with. I’m not talking about a childhood friend. No, this is the friend that you grow up with as adults. We raised kids together, cried together, fought and made up together, got crazy together (more times than not), learned how to be responsible adults together. You know what I mean. That ONE friend… Well, mine is MOVING away. Granted, she is only moving an hour and a half away, but that seems like 500 miles when you are used to walking over to her house at any time of the day or night.

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Our babies grew up together.

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They are like brothers and sisters. We watched them go off to school together. Graduate from high school together…We traveled with them. Celebrated special times together.

IMG_0295Watched our kids get their hearts broken. We were always there for each other, good times and bad. We celebrated holidays together. Halloween seemed to be our favorite.

We helped at a golf tournament in honor of our good friend who passed away from colon cancer. We had the privilege of praying with, and for that friend during her suffering.

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Even when I am upset with her and want to ring her neck (usually because she is too worried about everyone else and not herself)I can’t help but smile form ear to ear when she walks in the room. We have celebrated 17 years of birthdays together.

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We spent summers at the lake together. We have done LIFE together. Even our hubby’s like each other! You KNOW how hard the “spouse” situation can be. We are like one big family. Our kids fought like cats and dogs as they grew up. Especially Tristan and Kayla, the two oldest of each family. They both wanted to be “top dog.” UGH.

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We were there when Kayla married her prince charming. What a blessing he has been to the family. It was a joy seeing Kayla grow to become such an amazing young woman.

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What a treat to be a part of Kayla’s big day.

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And now Kayla and Lance have done the unthinkable…they had a baby. A beautiful grand baby for my best friend. She is PRECIOUS! I can’t imagine being an hour and half away from a grand child.

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This would be the reason my Tammie is moving. Although my heart is breaking it also is overflowing with joy for my friend. I look forward to the day that I get to experience not just the joy of a grandchild, but the joy of being a mother-in-law. I hope and pray that I can be a blessing, not a curse, to my future daughters-in-law.

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I am so excited for this next stage in life for my sweet friend. I only (for selfish reasons) wish it could be closer to me. Tammie, I love you with all my heart. I plan on wearing out the turnpike between us. Please know how much joy you have brought to my life and how big the hole will be after that moving van pulls out of town tomorrow. Hugs and kisses!

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Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

9 Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor. 10 If either of them FALLS DOWN, ONE CAN HELP THE OTHER UP. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up.

Thank you for always being there to help me up. I will always be here to do the same for you. =)

 

Spring Break Pancake Breakfast

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It’s spring break here in Oklahoma. =) I have been hanging out with these two munchkins this week. We have watched a movie, slept in, and worked on the fire pit in the back yard. My hubby has been building us a firepit. It is now done and ready for some s’more cooking action!!  I sure LOVE my boys! Looking forward to seeing my oldest munchkin, my Flyboy this weekend.  I fixed cinnamon applesauce pancakes for breakfast yesterday per the request of my medium and small munchkins. This is one of our favorite Weight Watchers recipes. I hope your family loves them as much as we do.

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Cinnamon Applesauce Pancakes

Ingredients:

2 cups of White Lily self rising flour

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

4 teaspoons of canola oil

1 cup unsweetened applesauce

3/4 cup of fat-free milk (I am really loving the Fair Life Fat-free milk)

Directions:

Combine all of the dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Mix well. Yes, I know I am using self rising flour AND baking powder. These are extra fluffy pancakes and we like them that way. Set aside.IMG_0248

Combine all of the wet ingredients (eggs, applesauce, oil and milk) in a small bowl and mix well.IMG_0250

Combine the wet and dry ingredients and stir just until combined. IMG_0252Set aside.IMG_0255

Heat a nonstick griddle or pan on medium high. Spray the pan with nonstick spray. I gently wipe the skillet with a paper towel to remove the excess spray. IMG_0251

Can you tell this is my pancake griddle? There are tell-tale marks that show where I place my pancakes! I cook six per batch. Once the griddle is hot, place about 2 tablespoons of batter for each pancake on the griddle. IMG_0254

These will puff up nicely. If you prefer more of a “flapjack” style pancake, just add more milk to thin the batter. We like ours fluffy! Once the bubbles form on the surface, it is time to flip those babies!

IMG_0256They should be a nice golden brown on the other side. Let them cook for about 1-2 additional minutes. I like to sit down with my family when we eat pancakes. I put an oven-proof platter in the oven on 200 degrees F before I start cooking. As they are ready, I place them on the platter in the oven. This keeps them warm and allows us to all sit down together to eat. When I was a little girl, I remember my sweet mom cooking the pancakes as we sat at the table.  We DEVOURED them as they came off the griddle.  She was always the last one who got to eat breakfast. Not fun for the mommy!! IMG_0253 These are great with butter, a nice warm syrup or fresh fruit and vanilla yogurt. Try them out and let me know what you think!

FYI…these babies are 5 Weight Watchers smart points per serving. Serving size is 3 pancakes. I like to eat mine with bananas, blueberries, or strawberries with just a splash of syrup on them. I need just a TINY amount of syrup to get that maple flavor without adding a gaggle of smart points. This recipe makes 7-7.5 servings if made as directed. Happy eating friends!

Sip and See and Oopsie

sip-and-see-invite-1-of-1I had the pleasure of hosting a Sip and See with friends for a precious family this past weekend. We were so excited because everything seemed to be falling in place perfectly…I loved how the invites turned out, the food was the perfect combination of sweet and savory,island-end-1-of-1 the mimosa bar turned out just like I had pictured it in my head,mimosa-bar-1-of-1 the dessert table was a perfect shade of pink….we even had pink popcorn! dessert-table-pic-1-of-1We were organized, unified and ready to open the door to guests with plenty of time to spare. This was truly a miracle! I fly by the seat of my pants in pretty much EVERYTHING I do.  Just when we thought all was well in the Sip and See universe, the ugly truth reared it’s head. Sooooo… you see that sweet little pink cake sitting right there so innocently on the table? It was a masterpiece of Pink Champagne cake, three layers, with two layers of cheesecake delicately placed in between those luscious cake layers. It was topped with a pale pink cream cheese icing. It was hiding a deep, dark secret. As I was cutting into that innocent looking cake, it started to fight me as I got down towards the bottom layers. The knife slid easily through the first three layers and then it just stopped. I was baffled. As I struggled to pull out the first slice it was a mangled mess. I assumed the first piece always looks a little ragged, so I proceeded to cut a second piece. It still fought me. Ok, I thought, third times a charm. Well, that is when the ugly secret was revealed…I failed to remove the layer of parchment paper from the bottom layer of the cheesecake!  How could I have done that? So what was I to do? I improvised and just served the top three layers and all was well. The cake was a HUGE hit. Thanks to a couple of glasses of champagne, I was able to laugh off the mistake and enjoy the rest of the party. The moral of this story is simple…go with the flow. Mistakes are going to happen even when everything is planned out perfectly.cake-table-1-of-1This sweet little family was tickled to share their baby girl with friends and family AND have a little rest for their arms for a few hours. Congratulations Lance and Kayla on your sweet baby girl! I am blessed to have been a part of your celebration. XOXO  Love you!reid-family-1-of-1

A sweet little 2 point salad.

This is such an easy salad to whip up quickly. It is a nice change from a traditional green salad. You can bulk it up with more apples and celery if you like without adding any points.  The points come from the dressing, nuts and Craisins. I hope you enjoy this Waldorf Salad as much as I do!waldorfsalad-1-of-1

Ingredients:

2 medium apples, chopped

2 medium celery ribs, sliced thin

1/8 cup Craisins (sweetened, dried cranberries)

3 tablespoons of chopped pecans

1/2 cup plain, fat free, greek yogurt

1 tablespoon low fat mayonnaise

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

2 packets of Stevia sweetener

 

Directions:

Place apple, celery, pecans and cranberries in a medium bowl and toss. In a small bowl, combine the yogurt, mayonnaise, lemon juice and Stevia. Spoon the dressing over the fruit, veggie and nut mixture. Stir to coat well. Can be served immediately or refrigerated for 30 minutes to an hour. Fresh, crisp, nutty and sweet! It’s such a sweet, low point treat that I even eat it for dessert sometime. I hope it tickles your tummy!

 

6 Smart Point Breakfast

Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes

As a 50+ years young girl, the pounds have started to creep up on me. UGH. I signed up for Weight Watchers 15 years ago after my youngest son was born to help drop my baby weight. This was waaaaaay before IPhones, IPads and all the fun little apps that we use everyday. A bunch of The Girls of Greystone (our neighborhood) would go to meetings together. This was our only WW option at the time. Now we are so fortunate to be able to use our phones to participate in Weight Watchers. This recipe is from a cookbook I bought back when I first joined. My munchkins eat these with Maple syrup. I like to top mine with a tablespoon of sugar-free maple syrup (Mrs. Buttersworth is my go to) and fresh fruit. This gives me the much-needed maple flavor I crave with pancakes but does not add any extra points.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes

img_9144Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 packet of Stevia or 1 tablespoon of Splenda sugar substitute (the kind that measures cup for cup like sugar)

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon ground ginger

2  ripe bananas mashed

1 cup fat-free milk (I am LOVING Fairlife fat free milk)

1/4 cup egg substitute

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

1/4 cup of mini chocolate chips

Directions:

Sift together flour, sugar substitute, baking powder, salt and ground ginger in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, combine mashed bananas, milk, egg substitute and vanilla. Add to the dry ingredients and mix just until combined. Stir in mini chocolate chips and set aside for 15 minutes. Heat a nonstick griddle on medium high and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Pour scant 1/4 cups of pancake batter onto griddle and cook until bubbles form on the edges of the pancakes. Flip and continue to cook 1-2 minutes more.

Serves 6 (3 pancakes per serving) 6 Smart Points per serving