Category Archives: Cooking/Recipes/Low Carb Lifestyle

Pineapple Glazed Pork Loin Recipe

I really can’t say enough about Dana Carpender. Between her 300 15-Minute Low-Carb Recipes and her Slow-Cooker recipes, I have really all I need for our efforts to eat low carb. She uses down-to-earth, rather than super-fancy, hard-to-find ingredients. I really like that.

I can either start something in the crock pot early or I can opt for a dinner than takes about 15 minutes to put together. I really like that, too.

A couple of nights ago I tried a recipe from the 15-Minute book called, “Pineapple Glazed Pork Loin.” My husband immediately declared it a winner and asked if we could have the leftovers the next night. :0)

“Pineapple Glazed Pork Loin.”


  • 3/4 pound boneless pork loin, cut about 1/2″ thick*
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons canned, crushed pineapple in juice
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Splenda
  • 1 teaspoon spicy brown or Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic or 2 cloves garlic, crushed

*Feel free to use thinnish pork chops, instead.


  • First, pound the pork until it’s about 1/4 inch thick. Heat the oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat and saute’ the pork, covering it with a tilted lid. Give it 4 to 5 minutes per side.
  • While the pork’s browning, combine the pineapple, vinegar, Splenda, mustard, soy sauce and garlic. When the pork is browned on both sides, add this mixture to the skillet. Turn the pork over once or twice to coat. Put the tilted lid back on the pan, cook for 1 to 2 minutes, turn, re-cover, and give it another 1 to 2 minutes. Remove to serving plates and scrape any remaining liquid from the pan over the pork before serving.


2 servings, each with 4 grams of carbohydrates, a trace of fiber, and 22 grams of protein.

MY NOTE: Since I served a veggie and a salad, we were happy to eat half the pork loin for one meal and then the rest as leftovers the 2nd night. My husband has already asked if I have another pork loin on the grocery list. :0)

His grade – “YUMMY!”

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Low-Carb Blueberry Muffins?

Laura in the Kitchen Wild - Wikia

Laura in the Kitchen Wild – Wikia

I’m trying a new recipe this afternoon for Low Carb Blueberry Muffins. They are in the oven now. I’ll give you a report if they’re good.

My husband went to get the mail, coming back with, “It’s yucky out there!” The rain is wonderful, we agree, but the cool temperatures and wind make it seem pretty raw. We’re thankful for a warm, dry house today.


The muffins weren’t great, but they were better than NO blueberry muffins. Since we haven’t eaten any in more than a year, they tasted pretty good. Will keep looking for another low carb recipe, though. That said, my husband just asked for a second helping…

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“Seriously Simple Chicken Chili” Recipe

To Simply Inspire

To Simply Inspire

I didn’t have a photo to go with Dana Carpender’s “Seriously Simply Chicken Chili” recipe, but the one above is representative.

If you’re trying to eat low-carb, I highly recommend at LEAST two recipe books by Dana Carpender :  200 Low-Carb Slow Cooker Recipes and 300 15-Minute Low-Carb Recipes. You can find other nice ones, but between these two books, you have a wealth of healthy meals, either from the slow cooker or quick meals. She uses basic ingredients and simple techniques that have my husband wanting more – a rare thing with healthy eating!

We’ve eaten her “Seriously Simple Chicken Chili’ from the Slow Cooker book several times before, but I failed to pass this recipe on to you.


  • 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 16 oz jar prepared salsa
  • 1 tablespoon Chili Powder*
  • 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon concentrate*
  • 3 oz shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 6 tablespoons light sour cream



  1. Put chicken in your slow cooker
  2. In a bowl, stir together the salsa, chili powder and bouillon, making sure the bouillon’s dissolved. Pour the mixture over the chicken. Cover the slow cooker, set it to low, and let it cook for 7 to 8 hours.
  3. When the time’s up, shred the chicken with a fork. Serve topped with the cheese and sour cream.



6 servings, each with: 263 calories, 9 grams fats, 39 grams protein, 6 grams carbohydrates, 2 grams dietary fiber, 4 grams usable carbs.



  • I cut up the chicken before I put it in the crock pot. THEN, I use two forks to shred the chicken a bit before serving.
  • I use 1 TEASPOON chili powder because my husband and I don’t like spicy or hot.
  • I use 1 TABLESPOON chicken bouillon concentrate because we love it.
  • I haven’t done it, but it seems like this would freeze well. One of these times, I’ll double the recipe and freeze half for another time.

ENJOY!  Thank you, Dana Carpender!

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The Egg

Ron Leishman - via Mothering Multiples

Ron Leishman – via Mothering Multiples

Every morning I have a hard-boiled egg, meat, cheese and butter – microwaved –  for breakfast. Lately, my husband has decided that HE should peel the egg for me.

We’ve had trouble peeling eggs. I found a suggestion that if you put a teaspoon of baking soda into the water in which you boil the eggs, the shells will come off more easily.  We now do that and it HAS helped, but not always. We also put the eggs into ice-cold water directly after boiling them. That helps, as well – but not always.

My husband watched a few YouTube videos on the subject a couple of days ago.

He came into the office with a hard-boiled egg. He got my attention, then peeled off a bit of each end of the egg-shell. He BLEW into each end and then looked at me like, “VOILA!” He proceeded to try to take the eggshell off, and had as much trouble as we sometimes do. I told him that even if it worked, I didn’t want him doing that to MY egg. If he wanted to blow into HIS egg, that was fine, but NOT MINE!  I then pointed to the desk top and the floor. Both were littered with tiny bits of egg-shell. He called the dogs over, but they weren’t interested. He finally got a dust pan and cleaned things up.

I had just gotten my concentration back at the computer when he came in again. This time, he wanted me to go to the kitchen with him. He put a second hard-boiled egg into a glass, filling the glass about half full of water. He then started shaking the glass violently. The result was water all over the cabinets, counter tops, and floor.  I just looked at him. He looked like a little kid caught with his hand in the cookie jar. He tried removing the egg-shell. It worked, but I was still looking at the mess all over my kitchen. He then took a towel and wiped up most of the mess.

Today, when I was fixing my breakfast, he was already working on my egg. He came over in just a second with the egg nicely shelled and ready for our egg slicer. I said, “That was fast.” He smiled, saying he’s perfected the egg in the water-glass technique.

THIS time it worked, my kitchen wasn’t awash in water, and my egg was shelled in a sanitary fashion – quickly and easily!

AND, my husband is still alive to tell the tale…


Filed under Challenges, Changes, Childlike Fun, Cooking/Recipes/Low Carb Lifestyle, Innovation - Great Tools

Concentrating on Shutting My Mouth…

Huffington Post

Huffington Post

There are lots of good reasons for trying to keep my mouth shut.

Most of the time it’s a good idea to keep me out of trouble for saying the wrong thing in the wrong company. This time – keeping the other in mind – my efforts are focused on not eating after dinner time. I made it last night for the first time in a LONG time.

I followed that with an hour long session of yoga this afternoon emphasizing “Joint Mobility” and “Overall Flow.”  I had a talk with my husband about helping me carve out an hour either in the morning or in the afternoon for my yoga practice. He is seeing how much better it makes me feel, and was encouraging about my efforts today.


Michelle Cazares

Michelle Cazares


I’m re-reading The Shift by Tory Johnson


the book that initially got me excited about trying to get the lard off and get in better shape. I’m happy to say that it’s beginning to do its magic on me again, motivating me to stick to my guns and start impressing the scales and my tape measure again. I’m about half way to where I think I would like to be weight-wise. If I’m successful enough to get there, I’ll decide if more is needed or if that’s enough. (I’m trying for the middle of a healthy BMI weight range for my height.)

Our low carb lifestyle and our new low or no sugar emphasis should help both my husband and me feel better.

*2 new finds! –

  • Swiss Miss Sensible Sweets Light Hot Cocoa Mix. (It’s 25 calories, 4 grams carbs and 2 grams of sugar per serving.)  My husband really loves hot chocolate and he says he cannot tell the difference between the awful mixes he WAS using and this. Hooray!”
  • Arizona Zero Peach Tea – My husband used to drink already sweetened iced tea mix, drinking several LARGE glasses per day. This is 0 calories, < 1 gram sugar, <  1 gram carbs. It’s delicious and we both drink it.

In a little over a year I have lost 40 lbs. and 23+ inches. Albeit slowly, I AM making progress on being as healthy as I can be. I look forward to seeing what 2017 brings!


Filed under Acting Like a Grownup, Attitude, Challenges, Changes, Cooking/Recipes/Low Carb Lifestyle, DIET!, exercise

Superfoods Chili Recipe

Recently I told you about a new recipe book I’m really enjoying: Low Carb Recipes for Diabetics by Don Orwell. He concentrates on Super Foods that boost immunity, promote weight loss and slow aging.

I gave you the recipe for his Minestrone. Today I’m sharing his recipe for Superfoods Chili.

My husband’s first reaction was, “This isn’t chili. It’s a stew.” But then he started eating. Then got a second bowl. Wanted it for dinner the next night – and we finished it for lunch yesterday. And he’s requested more…

This recipe is Sugar Free, Gluten Free, Dairy Free,* Egg Free, and Nut Free

SuperFoods Chili


  • 2 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 3/4 pound beef sirloin, cubed
  • 1 cup diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup strong brewed coffee
  • 1/2 cup tomato paste
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 cups cooked kidney beans
  • 4 fresh hot chili peppers, chopped


Put all ingredients in the slow cooker and cook on low for 4 hours.


I hate using half a cap of something, only to have to throw away the remainder several days later, so I used

  • one can of diced tomatoes
  • one can of tomato paste

We don’t like ‘hot’, so I eliminated the cayenne pepper,  and hot chili peppers, substituting some regular ground peppercorns and some chili powder.

I used 2 cans of kidney beans, draining and rinsing them in a strainer before adding to the slow cooker.

*We sprinkled on some shredded cheese, so our version was not dairy free.

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Low Carb Minestrone Soup Is a Winner!



My husband’s firm opinion is that Campbell’s Soup is the best and that no one should even try to compete. He ate his words – as well as the soup – last night! :0)

The recipe is for “Minestrone” and the source is Low Carb Recipes for Diabetics by Don Orwell.

He looks as food as medicine. He promotes what he calls Super Foods that boost immunity, promote weight loss, and slow aging. This is the first of his recipes we’ve tried, and we’re really impressed.

The Minestrone Recipe serves 8 to 10. It’s sugar fee, gluten free, dairy free, egg free, and nut free. So what’s left? Really good soup!


  • 3 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 cups chopped celery
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup tomato sauce*
  • 1/2 oz red wine (optional)
  • 1 cup raw cannellini beans*
  • 2 cups green beans*
  • 2 cups baby spinach, rinsed
  • 3 zucchinis, quartered and sliced*
  • 1 tbsp. chopped oregano
  • 2 tbsp. chopped basil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil or cumin oil


Put all ingredients in the slow cooker and cook on low for 6 hours


  • I used a whole can of tomato sauce
  • I used a CAN of cannellini beans
  • I used a CAN of green beans
  • I used ONE zucchini
  • I went lighter on the herbs and spices
  • At my husband’s request, I added some cut up roast beef (about one cup, diced)
  • I added some xanthan gum thickener about half an hour before serving

I really liked this soup, but I’m much easier to please than my husband. HE liked it, too. He requested we eat some of the leftovers tonight, along with garlic bread made with our new low carb bread.  He sounded surprised when he told me it was “good – really good,” and then mentioned it again when we were cleaning up. I have two large glass bowls of soup left. I’m thinking that I’ll serve one of them for us tonight and freeze the other to enjoy later.


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Bullets, Spaghetti Squash and Cauli-Rice


It’s important to my husband that I am able to defend myself if the need arises. To this end, he built this set of metal ‘falling plate’ targets. We shoot at the plates, knowing that if we miss the bullets go into the high hill of slag behind the targets.  (This pic was taken about a week ago, when I hadn’t taken the fabric shade off the garden behind the slag pile.)  When you hit a plate, it falls back and down. When all the plates are down, you stop shooting, set the plates up again, then go back to kill them again. :0)



Here’s another view of the targets. Today he added half a brick to each of the plate rods, making a nice counter-weight. I hit more than I missed, but need practice again soon. He wants to work on the targets more, since the small one on the end fell down if you hit any of the other three plates.



Beyond Zucchini

I’ve gotten lax about eating, my excuse being I’m trying new things to satisfy my husband’s sweet tooth now that he has to avoid anything with sugar. I’m trying to get back on track, so I bought a spaghetti squash and a head of cauliflower at the grocery today.

I split the spaghetti squash in half long-wise, then put the halves face down on a tray lined with aluminum foil. I baked it for 45 minutes at 350 degrees, then pulled it out and let it cool. When it was easy to pick up without burning myself, I took a fork and scraped out all the squash inside. The one spaghetti squash yielded 4 cups of nice spaghetti-looking squash. I put a cup into each of four sandwich bags and then put the bags inside one gallon freezer bag, labeled it and put it in the freezer. That will be good for four dinners for me, while I make some actual spaghetti or elbow macaroni for my husband, topped with spaghetti sauce, Alfredo sauce, or other goody.



Yup! It’s Vegan

I cut up the cauliflower into chunks. I put the chunks through the food processor, pulsing. I measured out the cauliflower into one cup increments, putting them into sandwich bags, then into a gallon freezer bag. I got 5 cups of cauliflower, meaning 5 meals for me, when I make rice for my husband.

My husband is really turned off by eating spaghetti squash or cauliflower, but that’s okay. He’s trying to avoid sugar and I’m trying to limit my carbs. This works well because I can make the starchy stuff for him, heat up the squash or ‘rice’ for me in the microwave, and make one sauce to go over both.



Filed under Cooking/Recipes/Low Carb Lifestyle, DIET!, Healthy Eating

Sugar-Free, Low Carb Blueberry Muffins


I’m not sure there IS such a thing as sugar-free, low carb blueberry muffins, but the mix is in the oven as I type. I’m making them for my husband, primarily, since his sweet tooth is very appreciative. I’ve been scouring the net and our stores for things he’ll consider a treat even though he’s having to really watch his sugar these days. If these pass muster, I’ll write more about them tomorrow. Fingers crossed!

*P.S. Judgment – Pass

They smelled wonderful, both while I mixing it up and later, when I took them out of the oven. I was hopeful. I served us each one hot, with a small pat of butter.

My husband ate one half of the muffin. He thanked me for trying, but gave the other half to our pit bull, who thought it was wonderful. I wasn’t enthusiastic, either. It wasn’t worth the 8 carbs. Sigh.

At least the doggies can have a healthy treat mixed in with their dog food for several days. And the search goes on…

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Laila Ali via Akiva Huber

Laila Ali via Akiva Huber


I’m going to print this one and hang it up so I see it over and over.  I’m impatient by nature and have to really talk to myself (I know – I’m nuts) to keep going, whether I’m trying to lose weight and build strength and flexibility, undo several years worth of ‘stuffing’ things into drawers or onto shelves in our master bath, or get our garden and yard under control.

I’m looking at this as a character-building exercise, something that will make me a better person in the long run. I AM making progress on learning my own limitations as I age and modifying my expectations of what I can now do in a day. I still tend to overdo, spending the next day trying to recover. I’m learning to do projects in ‘sessions,’ stopping when I’m feeling overwhelmed, then doing another session until the job is done.

With my weight and strength, there is no time limit. This isn’t a ‘diet.’ It’s a lifestyle change. Now things are complicated because we need to do low or no sugar for my husband. It’s a worthy goal to achieve because it’ll do both of us good. I want my husband to live as long as he is able, feeling as good as possible. Scrambling to learn what I can do to help is something I really want to do. An example, I’ve discovered that avoiding gluten for him is counter-productive, since the gluten is offset by alcohol sugars and other additives. We MUST do a good job of reading labels!

On the master bathroom going through/throwing out/reorganizing/cleaning project – right now it looks as if a bomb exploded in there again, since I’ve emptied out my three large drawers and put things on the step that goes around or bathtub. I’ve already thrown a bunch away and plan to do more of that before deciding what do to with what’s left. Assuming I can finish that today, I’ll plan on the last session tomorrow – pulling out the rugs and doing a deep cleaning of the whole area, including the tub, shower, vanities, floor, and rugs. If I falter, I’ll reread the reminder above…



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Filed under Acting Like a Grownup, Attitude, Challenges, Changes, Cooking/Recipes/Low Carb Lifestyle, DIET!, Healthy Eating, Housekeeping - Maintenance, I'm a slob

Sugar Free BBQ Sauce – Take 2

G Hughes Smokehouse Sugar Free BBQ Sauce Gluten Free Hickory Flavored

G Hughes Smokehouse Sugar Free BBQ Sauce Gluten Free Hickory Flavored

I wrote recently that, after looking all over Greenwood and Fort Smith AR for a sugar-free BBQ sauce, I found a recipe and made it. My husband was very grateful, since he loves BBQ sauce. He said it wasn’t the best he had ever eaten, but that it tasted ‘fine’ and that he was SO glad he could use it.

I later got on the net and found some I thought we should try. The name of it is G Hughes Smokehouse Sugar Free BBQ Sauce. It’s gluten free and hickory flavored.

We received it recently. I had made a crock pot chicken that was good – but that my husband thought needed something more. I brought out this sauce and we both tried it.

WE LOVED IT. I can’t say enough about the flavor.

I can’t believe the nutrition label:

  • Total fat 0 grams
  • Saturated fat 0 grams
  • Trans fat 0 grams
  • Cholesterol 0 grams
  • Sodium 190 mg
  • Total Carbs 2 grams
  • Dietary Fiber 0 grams
  • Sugars 0 grams
  • Protein 0 grams
  • Vitamin C 2%
  • 0% Vitamins A, Iron, and Calcium

Ingredients: Crushed tomatoes, water, apple cider vinegar, white vinegar, modified cornstarch, salt, Black pepper, ground cinnamon, natural hickory smoke, spices, natural hickory smoke flavor, natural caramel, color, xanthan gum, sucralose. No allergens.

We feel that we have won the lottery on BBQ sauce. My husband asked if we had more of the ‘good chicken’ so that we could have it with the BBQ sauce tonight…


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Getting the Lard Off – Progress Report 9/15/2016

Today I’m feeling more upbeat about my progress. My weight loss is still at 46 lbs, but the exercising I’ve been doing is finally paying off again with a loss now of 25-1/2 inches!

I’ve been either walking with annoying Leslie (DVD) for two miles OR doing half an hour on the elliptical trainer, and then either upper or lower body exercises with weights. Besides the progress in inches, I’m FEELING a difference.

I’ve had to miss a few days lately due to overdoing on working in my garden and having to baby my poor fat body when I strained muscles around my hip on the left side. I have no clue why only my left side was strained, but thanks to a combination of heat pad, Ibuprofen, and massages by my husband, I’m now fully recovered and dangerous again. :0)


*My garden, by the way, is under good control now. The fall garden is now planted in the new raised planters. The old stuff is out of the three square foot planters that remain on the ground on the north side of the garden. The fence I was using for climbing plants has been removed. I have dug the Mel’s Mix out of one of the ground planters and it’s waiting in trash cans until we get the first raised bed planter installed on that side of the garden. We need to remove some big metal pipes we used to hold up the fence before we can go any farther.


My husband is newly motivated to eat low carb with me. He’s trying to watch his sugar – a thing our low carb diet does well. I’m studying the extra stuff he’s been eating, reading labels and doing lots of research on the net to find out what things are good now and what he should avoid, what his sugar limit should be each day, etc.  We can be cheerleaders for each other – encouraging the other to ‘be good,’ ‘be strong,’ and take each meal at a time.

Hopefully, by next week I’ll be able to report a larger weight loss, but at least I’m seeing some actual measurable progress to spur me on.

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Filed under Cooking/Recipes/Low Carb Lifestyle, getting the lard off