33 weeks + Double Chocolate Skinny-Fat Brownies

 in the beginning of the 2nd tri i remember sometimes forgetting i was even preggo.  didn’t feel anything on the inside most days and definitely wasn’t showing on the outside yet.  yeah, those days are OVER.  i actually feel great and my energy didn’t deplete like i expected at 33 weeks now, but as my little nugget grows, obviously the discomfort does too.

#magicbump now ya see it, now ya don’t!

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you know that hasn’t stopped me from moving though!  outside of teaching my Lifetime classes, i look forward to Zumba and Kickboxing for my cardio because they are just so FUN to take.   some days all i want to do is move, nothing serious.  i’ve been constantly reaching for healthy fat to nourish the baby and i and i’m slightly addicted to Dark Chocolate Dreams by Peanut Butter & Co on my early morning pre-workout snacks as you can see!

other healthy fat sources:

  • avocado! homemade guacamole (2 avocados, 1 roma tomato, sea salt, juice of 1/2 a lemon, 2 tbsp minced cilantro – BLEND)
  • raw or roasted, unsalted almonds, pistachios, and cashews
  • olive & coconut oil
  • lite & full-fat coconut milk
  • natural peanut butter, nut butters in general
  • flaxseed
  • mackerel & salmon

today was my last ultrasound scan until we meet baby Odego.  my OB just wants to make sure he is measuring correctly and will compare his progress to the last scan.

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Sonny always asks me why i cuff my bump. i don’t know!!!! it’s just something we do. my hand just goes there automatically. especially in pictures.

here are some recent eats! if you follow me on Instagram though you’ve prolly already seen all of these ;)

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lean protein, plenty of fresh & raw veggies, fruit, healthy fat, and whole grains, even when dining out.

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 remember, your postpartum ‘transformation’ starts the MOMENT you get preggo, not after you deliver your baby! smart food choices and physical activity from start to finish is what makes the difference in your recovery time.

for my Sunday Dinners cooking class last evening, we made Fit N’ Crispy Chicken Parm and Thai Coconut Curry Chicken (recipe coming up next post!) – two flavorful, fun, things you can do with those plain ol’ chicken boobs.

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i sent my students home happy and packed up all the leftovers for them to kill later.  which left me with, well, nothin’!! it’s all about you guys though.  sooo, i made a big pan of parm for mysel….err, my family today and my Italian fix has once again been satisfied.

they also went home with a sample of these guys: Double Chocolate Skinny-Fat Brownies! why? cause i used skinny / healthy ingredients (no processed sugar, whole wheat flour, no butter) but it still tastes like a brownie should.  i had my fingers crossed that they would be a hit and they were!  which means i’ll be whipping some up for a ‘Skinny’ themed private 30th birthday event next month.  YES, i do those too!  email me for all the details at le@fitfoodiele.com.

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ok, ok.

Double Chocolate Skinny-Fat Brownies

the stuff:(source)

  • 2/3 cup pure maple syrup or honey
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder + 2 tsbp
  • 3 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup semisweet or dark chocolate chunks, chips, or mini morsels
  • 1/2 cup white whole-wheat flour (i used King Arthur)
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 large egg, beaten and at room temp
  • 1/4 – 1/2  cup pecan pieces (optional;  can add to batter or save for topping)

do this:

  1. preheat oven to 350 degrees F and coat an 8 in square pan with no-stick cooking spray.
  2. mix the maple syrup and cocoa powder together really good (you’ll be stirring for a minute, just keep going).
  3. combine all dry ingredients in a separate bowl.
  4. in another bowl, add the applesauce, oil, egg, and vanilla.  work in the maple syrup / cocoa mixture.
  5. add the wet mixture into the flour and stir until well combined.
  6. pour into your pan and let bake for about 25 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

TIPS:

*remember, there are chocolate chunks in the batter so don’t mistake the melted chocolate on the toothpick for uncooked batter like i did.

*let the pan cool a little then place it in the fridge for about 20 minutes before serving. i just popped a piece in the microwave for 10-15 secs before eating.

*when cutting, run hot water on your knife for a few secs first to make clean cut squares each time.

 

makes 16! for 1:

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nighty nite!

le

oatmeal chocolate chip birthday cakes!!! – bday post

this year, my birthday fell on a monday. YIPPEEEEE :?

so Sonny started celebrating early (like i had hoped).  immediately after church service, we went to get our rings cleaned.

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i promise we’re only in our thirties. lol.  Chiso saw us placing our hands strategically on the display case for this pic and wanted part of the action.

over time, i have come to the realization that i’m a hint thrower.  what a lucky guy Sonny is.  rarely does one go over his head though, i gotta give it to him.  i forwarded him a Ruggles Green brunch email i received a few weeks earlier, you know, randomly.  high-five, Sonny.  high-five.

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so that was our next stop.  only the Heights location serves breakfast / brunch in Houston, and i had been eager to check it out for months.  i chose the delish crab & avocado omelette and Sonny played it safe with the breakfast plate (sausage, pancakes, eggs, potatoes).  Chiso handled up on his turkey sausage, scrambled eggs, and pancakes too.  we love us some eggs.

the next day, my actual birthday, Sonny got up and rushed off to work like normal, so i hit the gym early, like normal.

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but not before making this gorgeous stack of oatmeal pancakes! with the start of my cooking classes, blogging took a small backseat. obvi. but i believe i have a routine going now with my schedule. *crosses fingers, toes, and eyes*.  here’s that recipe:

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Pancakes 

the stuff: (source)

  • 3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/4 cup dry rolled oats
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (add more if needed- you be the thickness judge)
  • 2 packets granulated stevia
  • 1 tbsp agave nectar or honey (optional)
  • dash of sea salt
  • 1 tbsp melted coconut oil
  • handful of dark chocolate chips

do this:

  1. mix all ingredients except chocolate chips together in a large mixing bowl.
  2. if ya need more almond milk at this point, add it a tbsp at a time.
  3. heat your griddle or cast iron / no-stick skillet to medium heat and coat with no-stick cooking spray.
  4. spoon the cakes onto your cooking device as large or as small as you’d like them.  when bubbles start to form on top, check the bottom of the cake to see how brown it is first before flipping.
  5. you’re looking for a golden brown color (bout 2-4 minutes).
  6. eat’em up. sprinkles are optional but mandatory if it’s your birthday.

or, you can do blueberries instead of chocolate chips!

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 back to the birthday festivities.

little did i know that Sonny went right down the street to his mom’s house to hide out.

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i took a Barbell Strength class and worked my back a little more on my own in addition to some steady-state cardio on the elliptical. suddenly, i got a ‘lunch?’ text from Sonny, so i said ‘screw this!’ and sped home to get cleaned up.

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 i opened the door and walked right into .. Sonny!?, fit gifts, and cake.

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and a birthday song serenade from my boys!

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 just one small piece before lunch.

   Sonny shocked our palettes and drove us to an Indian inspired restaurant in Upper Kirby called Ponidicheri.  he didn’t know it was ‘meatless monday’ though lol. tasty  nonetheless and i appreciate the experience.

20140407_134832_1i got the Saag Paneer Omelette, Barley Salad, a piece of gluten-free, millet Roti, and one of their fresh, housemade juices, the Hari.

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 Sonny got an omelette too.  They didn’t really have a kids menu, but the guy taking orders suggested this concoction.  can you guess which two Chiso ate? yep, the fries and the Elephant Cookie.

i got a birthday nap back at home (YAAAAAY for daytime sleep) and we went back out for dinner that evening.  i was actually still full from lunch but went anyway just cause it was my bday and already on the agenda.

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my cups runneth over :shock: ! literally and figuratively.  we concluded the evening with Italian food and Neapolitan gelato from Sapore Ristorante, right in our own backyard.  which was awesome cause i had to be up at 4:15am  to teach my class the next day.

i feel like i’m at the age where i forget what i’m even turning and that my birthday is even coming up.  thankful to God for another year though, no doubt, and for Sonny’s impeccable planning skills year after year.

THANK YOU to my family and friends for the calls, texts, cards, gifts, and birthday wishes!!!!!!

and thank you for reading.

le

3rd triggity-tri update

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 it’s happening again :shock: . food aversions have returned and all i want for breakfast, lunch, and dinner is Subway!!!  so i had some last night for dinner.  yes, the entire thing in one sitting. don’t worry, it fit my macros, lol.  i’ve been randomly putting my meals in MyFitnessPal just to make sure i’m somewhere in the ball park of my daily requirements.  anyway, thanks Sonny, you’re awesome.

it’s a turkey breast sammich on honey oat bread with all the veggies except onions and jalapeños with honey mustard.  hadn’t had one since the 1st trimester and boy was it as tasty as i remember.

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uncomfy , eh? understatement. i enjoy the constant reminder that Odego is awake, moving around and doing his thing in here. however, i feel every single twist, turn, kick, punch, head butt, and cartwheel. all of it.  just like Chiso, he gets wired up as soon as i get settled in the bed at night.  but thankfully it doesn’t hinder my sleep one bit.

let’s talk about these energy levels though!  this baby is siphoning mine off day by day and i knew that was coming…just not so dang soon.  so most mornings,

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i wake up like that.

but this morning before teaching my 5:30am weights class i felt good. like really good again. maybe i should eat foot long Subway sammiches before bed more often.

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10 weeks left yall!!! :shock: WAT. i’ll explain more about that #pregnantNOTpowerless hashtag in a bit.

ironically, i’m most uncomfortable when i’m dormant or at home cleaning and picking up random stuff off the floor.  i do all this working out at the gym but when i see something on the floor at home that’s not where it’s supposed to be most times i just leave it there LOL. why is it so much more of a challenge then?!  idk.  i’ve been sleeping with one of those body pillows from Target for the past 4 months now and i highly recommend one.  you can splurge and get the real thing too.

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still not caring for sweets, just all things dairy, mainly cheese.  but every now and then i’ll make this guy instead of going to get fro-yo, soft serve at BK, or a McFlurry – a low-dairy chocolate milkshake at home.  i’m totally satisfied after slurping this guilt-free concoction down.  try it! throw this in your blender:

  • 3/4 cup cookies and cream or vanilla maple Arctic Zero ice cream
  • 1/4 cup + (2 tbsp or so if needed) unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 2 tbsp Hershey’s sugar-free chocolate syrup + more swirled in your glass ;)

before i made coconut whipped cream (which is dairy-free) for the first time a few days ago, i just used fat-free Reddi Whip and chocolate sprinkles for my topping.  legit yumminess for a total of:

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this little boy here. he has his ‘Odego Time’ every single day, multiple times a day.  he GETS it now.  his little brother is on the way and he can’t wait to slide down the slide with him at the park.  his words, lol. i was worried about how he would be affected (and still somewhat am after he arrives) and i’m reading up on how to make this transition easiest for him.  heck, all of us.  any tips moms, please share!

you have a bigger influence on your kiddos than you think!  i just knew the park would be way more exciting than lil ol’ me, but as soon as we got there he asked, ‘mama can we make a video?  i want to exercise with you.’ floored. so that’s how our 30 week playground workout came about.

check out this adorable article via babycenter.com that shows you how big your fetus is using fruits and veggies, love it.  Odego is the size of a cabbage this week!

le

 

 

3 SPOTS LEFT – HOMEMADE PIZZA COOKING CLASS!!!

it’s finally time… TO MAKE PIZZA!!!!!

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only 3 spots left for THIS coming Tuesday’s class (March 25th) so sign up right here!  remember, there are now 3 options to choose from.  bring a buddy and save.

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be prepared to WOW your little ones, significant others, look, your ENTIRE family will be happy you came ;)

email me directly with any questions whatsoever at:

le@fitfoodiele.com

happy sunday to you and yours!

le

food faces #toddlerfood

having a little fun with healthy breakfasts these days!  it’s whatever works and gets Chiso’s plate clean, and these have proven to do just that. he thinks it’s hilarious (telling a funny story along with it helps too) and i enjoy creating them. just some ideas for your picky eater(s) fueled by Pinterest.

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banana bear faces using Sara Lee whole wheat bread, natural peanut butter, and chocolate chips.

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 the original ‘recipe’ actually used blueberries for the eyes and nose, but they were a no-go.

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this morning we had whole wheat pancakes and i’d love to share this easy recipe with ya as promised.

easy whole wheat pancakes

the stuff:

  • 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk + 2 tbsp
  • 1 packet stevia
  • 1 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp melted coconut oil
  • 1 tsp baking powder

do this:

  1. heat your griddle or pan to med heat and coat it with no-stick cooking spray.
  2. mix all ingredients well in a large mixing bowl.
  3. drop 2 tbsp worth of batter onto your griddle and cook 2-3 minutes on each side (flip when you see bubbles form)
  4. top however you’d like and eat warm!

makes 15 (or more) silver dollar sized pancakes. for 1:

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i added natural pb and chocolate chips to Ralph too. happy friday :)

le

‘my kids didn’t ruin my body. Ben did. and Jerry.’

i snagged my blog title from a random preggo message board concerning weight gain and had to include it in this post somewhere!  while the commenter was being funny, there is so much truth to her statement.  i stated on IG that the full list for preventing ‘stretchies’ (as my best friend refers to them) would be posted here to my blog, but honestly the list is quite short and sweet and focuses on these 3 things:                              skin, diet, and exercise.

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overall great health begins on the inside, and so does the handling and even prevention of ‘tiger stripes’.  i do the whole cocoa butter & sometimes olive oil thing on my belly at night (ok almost every night..sometimes i’m already in the bed and say screw it) and sure, that helps to keep my belly smooth, moisturized, and the itching to a minimum.   does that actually prevent them from forming? in my opinion, not at all.  i don’t believe they are hereditary either, but eating habits can be.  nevertheless, stretch marks are caused by          —–>rapid<—— weight gain and / or weight loss.  for all the creams, treatments, and remedies i researched, avoiding aggressive weight gain is usually in the fine print somewhere and one of the biggest factors in avoiding stretchies altogether.  since babies don’t go/grow from 0 to 60 in the blink of an eye in your belly, it’s important to make the weight gain process a gradual thing as best you can.  now, i have a few preggo friends fighting hard to get through their first trimesters, and i can empathize with them greatly as the memory of my own is still pretty strong :shock: .  for the majority of women, you either can’t eat a thing, or you want to eat everything during that time span.  or, you can only eat certain things without…well, you know.  so when your appetite and normal eating patterns have pretty much been shot for a few weeks or more, motivation to stay active, be active, and eat healthy can be at an all time low. what has worked for me after getting back on track around week 14? read on!

1. eating a skin nourishing diet

  • antioxidantsnourishes and protects skin.  eat leafy, dark greens, blueberries, strawberries, and fresh, unprocessed produce, period.
  • vitamin E - protects skin cell membranes. eat nuts, seeds, avocados, broccoli, cabbage (pictured above and part of my dinner one night), and collard greens.
  • vitamin Arepairs skin tissues.  eat carrots, sweet potatoes, mango, squash, & red bell peppers.
  • omega 3s - keeps cell membranes healthy for glowing skin. eat fish (salmon’s a winner), fish oil supplements, walnuts, eggs and oysters.
  • prenatal pillskeep popping them, everyday.

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2. chug, chug, chugging that H2O

  • keep those skin cells plump and hydrated by drinking a full glass or bottle of water with every meal. how much in a day exactly? half your body weight in oz is a standard rule, especially if you are staying active.  i know, pee, pee, and more peeeeeeeee
  • all natural, flavored, herbal, decaffeinated teas (in the bag) sweetened with Stevia have helped me achieve my water intake goal these days.
  • seltzer water with a bit of 100% juice is awesome too and the closest thing to soda i will go.
  • snacking on water-filled fruits and veggies counts too. watermelon, strawberries, cantaloupe, honeydew, cucumbers, bell peppers, & celery are great picks.

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3. MOVEing

  • if you’re a reader of my blog then you know physical activity is automatic and understood! exercising keeps your skin elastic, flexible,  improves your body’s blood circulation, keeps those joint lubricated and from getting stiff…the list goes on.  plus it just makes you feel so much better in most cases.  you’ll need all the endorphins you can scrounge up.. every drop.
  •   staying active *drum roll* prevents you from gaining too much weight too fast which is what we’re trying to prevent!
  • as you grow, modify your movements and your workouts as needed.  as i near the 3rd tri, prenatal yoga, the elliptical, walking outside, zumba, and spinning will be my go-to activities.  light weight training here are there for my back and upper body, but that’s about it.  slow down, but don’t stop.

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postpartum

KEEP IT GOING.  exercise will be added back into your routine eventually, but use that inactive window of time to sustain those healthy nutritional habits as you enjoy your newborn, breastfeeding or not.   your skin and body will still need to get those vitamins and nutrients to renew itself from all the stretching.  no crash diets! you’ll need to lose the weight as gradually as you gained it.

if you get’em, treat’em 

  • bio oil – this method gets high marks and reviews across the WWW as it is great for both old and new scars.
  • glycollic acid – women who use this cream on new stretch marks saw huge improvement as it is proven to boost collagen.  the word ‘acid’ always makes me raise an eyebrow, but unlike Retin-A, which apparently causes severe birth defects if you are preggo or breastfeeding, you can safely use this cream during and after pregnancy.  it can be bought over the counter, but you can get a stronger dose from a dermatologist.  read up on the pros and cons of this method.
  • laser treatments – this is not my area of expertise, but according to Dr. Oz, banishing them completely is just not possible at this time.  laser treatments can successfully reduce redness, diminish the appearance of white marks, and improve the texture of the skin, making them a lot less noticeable though.
  • and then i came across a story that was shared on bodybuilding.com from a young lady with a surefire stretch mark treatment (and four kiddos later might i add). it’s worth reading and checking out her progress pics; some of her methods just might work for you too.

tiger stripes

battle scars, stretchies, war wounds, tiger stripes, etc…there are far worse things to worry about.  so nip them in the bud while you can, or minimize them as best you can.  these knuckleheads were worth it.

Q: what has worked for YOU?  prevention and  minimization? share and help another mama out.

le