Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Watch Out, Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue!

Here I come!  This is my new, size 2X (22) swimsuit from Land's End that came today, right in time for my trip to Captiva Island this week!  Hurray!  Don't ever need to see a 24 again in my life, and I can't wait to say bye-bye to this 22 in return for a 20 or an 18...then a 16...and a 14....and then finally, my goal of 12!

It is hard for me to believe that I am actually posting a photo of me in a swimsuit (and with my new cut and color!--though not styled lol).  But honestly, I can SO tell I've lost 30 lbs!!  I need to go find a pic of me when I first started.

So, without further ado...warts and all...and no makeup too!

I can't wait to leave for FL tomorrow!  I can't help but think that I might be close to or at my goal this time next year...wow....

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Met First Goal!

I am down to 262 :-D  I met my first goal of 30 lbs!  I got my hair cut and colored to celebrate.  I will have to post a pic!
Next goal is 12 lbs to 250.  I am giving myself a charm from James Avery to go on my bracelet that Matt bought me.


Sunday, June 12, 2011

Tamale Pie...olé!

Well, if you know anything about me at all, you know that I love when I take a standard recipe and amplify it with a small change or two that just blows my tiny little mind.  It doesn't always happen; in fact, sometimes my changes backfire (blame it on a lack of interest in my high school chemistry class).  But sometimes....every once in a while....the stars align...and I'm rewarded for my experimentation.

Observe...the Tamale Pie.

What you see here is oodles of deliciousness, and a staple in many Texas Housewives' recipe box.  Generally, Tamale Pie is served at picnics or family get-togethers, and I have to tell you, I've never been too impressed with what I've been served.  However, the IDEA of Tamale Pie has sucked me into the vortex for many years now, and after trying a few lackluster (or downright awful) choice recipes from various Eastern Star, Garden Club, and other such community cookbooks, I finally turned to the person I consider THE expert in Texas cuisine: Robb Walsh.  I went through his Tex-Mex Cookbook and found a recipe with which I knew I could work.  The first change I made in order to make it my own was I used more beef, about a quarter of a pound more (and chuck at that, not lean). The second change was that I seeded the serrano pepper.  Serranos are too hot, hotter than jalapenos, so if you take the seeds and membrane out, you get the flavor without the heat.  The third, and probably most significant change I made was using bacon fat.  "Bacon fat?" you shudder.  Yes, bacon fat.  Really, if I had pure lard, it would actually be better.  I only use 2-3 T. bacon fat rather than the 1/4 c. of vegetable oil.  It gives a MUCH better flavor to the meat, and not only that, when you save all your drippings and use them back in the cornbread mix, you just have no idea what a tender, flavorful crumb it creates.  No dry cornbread here, folks.

So here is my modified Tamale Pie recipe...definitely a keeper.  I'd be proud to take this to any picnic or event.

3 T bacon fat or pure backfat lard
2.25 lbs ground chuck or sirloin
2 c. chopped onion
1 chopped green bell pepper
1 serrano pepper, minced (I do not use seeds, just fyi)
1 8-oz can tomato sauce
1 small can of corn
1/4 c. chili powder
1 1/2 t. salt
1 T. ground cumin
1 T. garlic powder
1 T. dried Mexican oregano
2 packages of cornbread or muffin mix (I use Pioneer)

Preheat oven to 350*F. Heat the vegetable oil in a large frying pan and brown the meat over med-to med-high heat. Stir in the onions, pepper and serrano pepper and cook 3 to 5 minutes, until veggies are limp. Add tomato sauce, corn, chili powder, salt, cumin, garlic, and oregano. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Drain fat, reserving 1/3 cup.  Set aside.

Prepare cornbread mix according to the package, except subsititute the reserved drippings for 1/3 of the milk in the recipe.  Once stirred, add just a bit of milk extra to thin it to the consistency of pancake batter (add a tablespoon at a time). Spread about half of the batter in the bottom of a greased 9" x 12" glass pan. Gently spoon the meat pix evenly over the top, then spoon the remaining cornbread batter over that (it won't cover completely, and that's okay). 

Bake for 30 minutes. Cool 10-15 minutes (important!) and then slice and eat!

The best part is, this works well with my band.  You don't eat a whole lot, so it's not super caloric.  I served it with Bush's Black Beans that I heated up on the stove with salt, onion powder, cumin, and garlic powder.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Looky What I Got!

I bet you didn't know I had an adorable blog!  Well, my fellow bandster Ronnie at Ronnie's Bandumentary sure thinks so.  And I really appreciate it!  Thanks, Ronnie--and everyone else that has been a supporter of me through the beginnings of my journey.

Part of this award is nominating someone else for it, but also to offer up 10 things about myself.  What a great way to get to know your fellow blogger.  I enjoyed reading Ronnie's list, and doubt I can come up with anything nearly that interesting!  BUT--in the spirit of things, here goes:

1.  I curse like a sailor.  As a Christian, this is my biggest challenge.   I try not to do it around my little ones, but if I hurt myself, holy moley I go off.  I have been trying to insert silly words in for the bad ones, but what I really need to do is figure out a different way to express pain/anger/frustration.

2.  My 6 year old daughter, Phoebe, has diagnosed "moderate autism".  She is such a sweetheart and the joy of my life, along with her younger sister.  I never knew I would love being a mom so much. If I could have 2 more I would.

3. I love my husband.   He is my best friend and my biggest champion.  He is my sweetheart and there is no one else that understands me better.  I love that he still holds my hand, opens doors for me, and stands up from a table when I do, even after almost 10 years of being together.

4.  I think my minivan is quite possibly the most kickass car I have ever driven.  It does everything except wipe your butt.  It's freaking fabulous and I can't believe I used to say, "I will NEVER drive a minivan!".

5. I hate my toes.  I have my mother's toenails which have a slight curve to them.  My sister's toes are fabulous and I'm jealous as hell of them. LOL.

6. When I was at my heaviest, I refused to attempt to make any friends or socialize on any level other than facebook.  If you know me, then you know how CRAZY that is.  I used to be a very social person.

7.  I have been accepted into the Culinary Program at St. Philip's College here in San Antonio.  My passion is cooking and I have been a home baker for several years now, selling baked goods to local folks.  My specialty is Texas Sheet Cake.

8.  Although I have owned a condominium, the home we bought here in San Antonio is our first official "home" as in "house".  We love it and are very happy here.

9.  I'm a Texan, but not a native.  *gasp* I moved to Houston with my parents when I was 18 months old.  I was born in Wilmington, Delaware.  Neither of my parents are from DE, either!  It was a job transfer, and a short one at that.  My dad was from PA and my mom from NJ.  My older sister was born in CT.  They all considered themselves Texans in the end and so do I!  (and yes, I have an accent!)

10. I spent lots of my summers and Christmases in south Florida because in the 60s my grandparents, aunts, and uncles migrated down from Connecticut.  I consider FL my second home and adore it (Ft Myers, Naples, Captiva/Sanibel, and the Keys).  We hope to someday have property there.

So there you go!  I told you it was kinda dull!!

By the way, my nomination for this award goes to.... my pal Jes and her blog http://mamamonner.blogspot.com

Jes, steal the badge, and write 10 things about yourself on your blog!  Congrats!!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Wow...my Aunt is visiting...

...and I haven't gained a single pound!

That's right, my hormonal Aunt Flo is visiting, and miraculously, I have managed to actually stay the same weight I was which is now 263.4 lbs.!  Niiiiice!  I'm diggin' that.  I almost don't mind all the other baggage she brings with her because hopefully she'll take it all when she goes.