Wednesday, October 28, 2015

21 Day Fix Buffalo Chicken Bites

Since starting the 21 day fix I haven't been too adventurous with trying recipes. I did however find a recipe for Boneless Buffalo Wings that was amazing here!!!! It's the perfect "cheat" meal and when I say cheat I mean you feel like you are cheating. I have made delicious baked chicken wings before and I was happy to find a great recipe for buffalo bites. These would be great with out the buffalo sauce for anyone who would prefer regular chicken nuggets too! 

BONELESS BUFFALO WINGS (adapted from HealthyFeelsHappy)


  • 2 small boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
  • poultry seasoning
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
For the Sauce

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup Frank's Red Hot Sauce
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 400
  2. Melt butter and set aside to cool
  3. In a small bowl whisk the egg. In a second bowl mix the flour, garlic powder, cayenne and salt.
  4. Season chicken pieces with poultry seasoning
  5. Dip each chicken piece into the egg to coat and then dredge in the flour mixture. Place on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray. I line my baking sheet with parchment paper too.
  6. Spray chicken with cooking spray to brown it while it bakes. Place in oven for 10-15 minutes then flip and cook the other side for 10-15 minutes, or until golden brown. 
  7. Stir the melted butter and Frank's red hot together in a bowl. I found you may need to heat the hot sauce a little if its been in the fridge. If its too cold the butter hardens when you mix the two. Mix in the salt and cayenne pepper.
  8. Dip each piece of chicken in the sauce and place back on the backing sheet. Return to oven for 1-2 minutes. Not too long or the chicken will be over cooked. 
  9. Serve and enjoy! I usually serve with carrots, celery and homemade 21 day fix ranch dressing.
21 Day Fix counts: 1 1/4 red, 1/2 yellow, 1 teaspoon

Makes approximately 4 servings (*depending on the size of the chicken breast)

Monday, October 26, 2015

21 Day Fix - New Round and New Foods

Hi everyone!

Well, we are back at it again this morning. Full on work outs and eating plans. Unfortunately, I have gained back most of my weight since I stopped doing the 21 day fix. Actually, I completely fell of the wagon. We have been having mostly junk food for the past 2 weeks. I have noticed it in my weight and how I feel. To be honest, I have felt like crap most days! Now, my coffee pot broke and I've been doing with out that but I'm going to blame the way I've been feeling on my horrible food choices. 

So here we are, back at square one. The goals are similar as before, as I suspect they will be for a while.

Taylor's Goals for the next 21 days:
  • lose 5 lbs and fit into clothing more comfortably
  • tone muscle and build up endurance
  • feel better physically and be less tired
  • be more creative with 21 day fix recipes
Andrew's Goals for the next 21 days:
  • reduce body fat and increase muscle
  • fit more comfortably into existing wardrobe
I have already planned out the menu for this week and just have a few more things to purchase at the grocery store and we will be all set. On top of all this Halloween is this weekend. I will be making some special treats for that. Some 21 day fix friendly and some not!

On todays menu:
  • 2 hard boiled eggs
  • carrot sticks and almonds
  • Paleo Chili (recipe to come later)
  • Vanilla Mocha Shakeology
  • 21 Day Fix Chicken Parm with whole wheat pasta
Now, the chicken parm I made I would not say is my favorite. I used a recipe outlining the ingredients in 21 day fix terms and will use this to develop my own recipe. Chicken parm was the first meal I ever cooked unassisted at 10 years old. It's a favorite in my house and this recipe was perfectly fine for plan old chicken parm, but there wasn't any crispiness to it. The panko bread crumbs became soggy as soon as I added the sauce. Once I find a good 21 day fix friendly chicken parm I will let you know!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Date Night Jar Project

So, as you read in my last post, I gave my husband a "Date Night Jar" as a gift for his birthday. He didn't really have anything specific he wanted and we have a big vacation coming up to Costa Rica in less then a month. So, while keeping our budget in mind, I decided to make him something we can use all year long.

Where did I get the idea of a Date Night Jar? Well, Pinterest of course! Specifically on the Life in the Green House blog.

Here's the finished product. I decided to go with tones of aquas, blues and whites so it can sit in our family room and double as decor. Its so cute and I didn't want to just throw it in a cabinet or something :)

First off, let me say, I do not typically consider myself a creative or "artsy" person. I have done some creative projects in the past but I don't normally know where to start. Sometimes I surprise myself and I hope that the more I do the better I become at being creative with our home decor. This is why I love Pinterest. Especially when you find a blog that explains things step by step. There are fewer than one might think that actually explain things step by step. I find a lot of the 21 day fix blogs are like that with their recipes too! Not many give away their recipes. Like its a secret or something.

I LOVE sharing. If we all shared a few of our secrets, whether it be for a craft/home project or a secret cleaning technique, we would help each other out a lot! So here's what I did:

I read on the blog I found this on what I needed and headed to my local Michael's Arts & Crafts. First thing I did was just walk around. I like to look down every aisle and see whats there. I love going to that store because I get so many ideas for decorating! Once I found the paint section I went straight for the spray paint. Man, I didn't realize paint was so expensive. I chose a cheaper option with the Krylon Color Master that was $6.99 a can. I chose my 3 shades of blue and a light off white for my filler color. Each color represents a different kind of date(explained below) Next I grabbed a larger mason jar, large popsicle sticks(yeah yeah I'm sure there is an actual name for them when they weren't used for popsicles)and ribbons for the mouth of the mason jar to make it look pretty.

Once I got home I pulled my list of "dates" out. I had 8 dates for each category. I started with one color first, just incase the paint wasn't right or didn't look the way I wanted. I did this in our garage with the garage door open on piece of large cardboard. Once I decided it would work I did 2 coats of paint per side flipping between every spray. I did this a week before I assembled the jar to make sure everything was completely dry.

Next I used a fine point sharpie to write the "dates" on the popsicle sticks. There are 8 dates in each category and I have 18 white filler sticks. Here are things I chose from reading various blogs on date nights and adding a few things of my own:

Blue sticks are more expensive dates that will require planning
  • Dinner at a fancy restaurant
  • Restaurant Hop (appetizers at one, dinner at the next, and dessert at the last)
  • Wine Tour & Lunch
  • RIT Hockey (let's face it we go to these game a lot)
  • Bed & Breakfast
  • Couples Cooking Class
  • Couples Massage
  • Try a new restaurant

Light Blue sticks are cheaper dates that don't require much planning
  • Dinner at our favorite local Mexican restaurant
  • Picnic in the park
  • Dinner & a movie (his/hers choice)
  • Brunch date
  • Coffee & Dessert date
  • Boll-a-Roll & Tully's - Andrew and I met on a bowling league at Boll-a-Roll. Neither of us are bowlers so this feels pretty special to me :)
  • Drive-in date
Turquoise sticks are stay at home dates(perfect for our long cold winters)
  • 1,000 piece puzzle & pizza
  • Take-out & Scrabble
  • Homemade pizza & a romantic comedy
  • Popcorn & movie (his/hers choice)
  • Cook a new meal together
  • Make a bucket list
  • Take-out& board games

Last but not least I found these tags at Michael's. They had a little embellishment on the front and the brown matched the ribbon I had tied around the jar. 

It was the perfect gift. Not only did my husband love it but it gave me a little creative bug. We will both enjoy adding a little fun to any typical date night. 

What are some of your favorite ideas for date night?

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Wedding Weekends and Fall Festivities

The past two weekends Andrew and I have had weddings. I'm not sure if its this way for everyone, but I feel like when I have a wedding it takes up a majority of the day. There's getting ready, picking out what I am going to wear, then of course the wedding itself. Don't get me wrong. I love weddings! We had so much fun at the 1st two weddings we had this fall season. We fell behind on some house work/yard work we should have been doing though. We had a good excuse :)

Going to a wedding can be hard when you are trying to follow a healthy diet. You can try to make healthy choices, but when the dinner is a buffet, which both of these were, its hard to stay away from the carbs. The first wedding we went to had both a pasta buffet and a baked potato buffet. The second wedding had a BBQ buffet where, other than a green salad, corn was the vegetable. Needless to say...amazing food...not so amazing for my waist line :) I could, and should, have made better choices. I didn't. 

All dressed up for Laura and Stephen's wedding in the Finger Lakes

Getting back on track this week after so many weeks off, and gaining almost all of my weight back, has been extremely hard to say the least. Not only do I feel like a failure for having gained almost all my weight back from my 1st two rounds of the 21 day fix, I have yet to do a work out. I did however make a delicious 21 day fix friendly chili that we have been having for lunches(I'll be doing a separate post with all my favorite recipes another time)

What are some of your favorite 21 day fix recipes? Please post them here so I can try them! get back on track this week I need to follow both the diet and exercise plan for the remainder of the week. This will get me motivated to continue getting healthier both inside and out. I will be taking my weigh and measurements tomorrow as its my new "Day 1"

On a lighter note, I purchased a few small fall themed docorations and I made some candle holders too! Also, my husbands birthday was on October 7th. I had been making him a special gift that I saw on this blog. It's a Date Night Jar. He loved it and I thought that this was a great way to help us be more spontaneous and try some new things. I will be posting my entire process tomorrow so stay tuned!!! I don't know where this creative bug came from but I am loving it!

Fall decor: both pictures are from Hobby Lobby, the candle holder is home made(future post on how to make)

More fall decor from Christmas Tree Shop(2012)

General family room decor from Home Goods and the Date Night Jar!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Where did September go?

It went to Surprises, Birthdays and Vacations!

I know...I know...I said I was going to blog every day in my last post. Time got swept away and I was totally off track. Let me recap my month for you.

My sister Bailey and her husband Andy came to visit the first week of September. We went out to eat almost every night that week except the one night my brother in law made the most delicious home made Mexican meal I have ever tasted. This was the start of the death of my diet. The reason for their visit was because my sister was invited to be a guest choreographer for a local dance studio. However, what I didn't know, was my entire family had something in the works...

That Friday my sister took me for a massage as a birthday gift. We always go to The Spa at the Delmonte. We both had hot stone massages, which was a first for me. I loved it! We had decided to have a movie night at my house that night, instead of going to the drive in due to lack of movies playing. So, after the spa, my sister suggested lunch and then we went back to my house to make all the snacks and appetizers for movie night. Little did I know, this was all a plan to keep me away from my parents house. 

The next day we had early morning plans to go to brunch with Bailey and Andy. Luckily, I did my hair and make up because when I got to my parents house I was in for a huge surprise. A surprise 30th birthday party to be exact. Unknown to me, my husband, mom and dad had been planning this for months. The day was amazing. My aunt, uncle and cousins even drove over night from Connecticut and we had other friends come from the Boston area to be there for the party. We started with a wine tour with about 25 of our family and friends. We visited three of my favorite wineries: Dr. Frank's, Ravines Wine Cellars, and Rooster Hill Vineyards. After the wine our we had a Dianosaur BBQ catered dinner at my parents house and the party continued all night long. Man was I hurting the next day!

We spent the remainder of the weekend visiting with my Aunt Debbie, Uncle Don, Lyndon and Chenda. By Labor day everyone was leaving and I was feeling a bit of sadness...keeping in mind that in 4 days we would all be traveling to the Outer Banks got me through :)

The week was filled with packing and planning for our Outer Banks trip. We traveled through the night Friday and arrived early Saturday morning. After meeting my aunt and uncle, Lyndon, Chenda and their son William for lunch we headed to our houses. The week was wonderful. We had perfect weather, amazing food and the best company! My family stayed in the same house we had last year, which is only two doors down from my aunts house. We celebrated 4 birthdays while we were there. Mine, which was September 10th, Aunt Debbie and Lyndon's, which were September 12th, and Uncle Don's which was September 13th. The houses alternate nights for dinner and one night we have a girls/guys night. Us girls go out to eat and the guys stay home with William and the pups. 

We made a short stop at Bailey and Andy's new house in Newport News, VA for the night on the way home. The new house is beautiful and the dogs had a fun time running around with Jack and Stew(their dogs). We went to one of their favorite dinner spots, Dog Street Pub, where we tried a few new dishes of English pub style cuisine. It was a wonderful end to our trip...and we went home for me to prepare for my next one. 

On Thursday my mom and I traveled to Connecticut for My cousin's son Jackson's 1st Birthday party. We had an awesome time helping decorate and prepare for the party, shopping, apple picking and watching the Super moon and Lunar eclipse. It was the perfect end to all of our summer travels. Now on to all our fall activities. Here's a few things we have coming up in the next few months:

  • Andrew's cousins wedding in the Finger Lakes
  • A friend's wedding in Rochester
  • Aunt Evies surprise 80th Birthday dinner
  • Andrew's Birthday!!!!
  • Night time tour at Genesee Country Village Museum
  • Halloween
  • Trip to Costa Rica for Matt and Kaitlin's wedding
  • Thanksgiving with the family

We leave for Penn Yan tomorrow for Laura and Stephen's wedding on Saturday. This fall weather should make for a gorgeous weekend in the Finger Lakes. Here's a few pictures from September. I will be adding a few from my Surprise 30th after I get them.

Brittney, Erica and I on the wine tour

Bathing beauties on the beach in Salvo, NC

Girls Night!

Gorgeous photo my aunt took

Tapas night in OBX, the start of a new tradition

The family at Dog Street Pub in Colonial Williamsburg, VA