Frozen yogurt strawberries recipe

Tonight I took an idea I saw on Pinterest and tweaked it to get a low calorie count. The finished results were so delish, so I thought I’d pass on the recipe to others!

Start off by placing a piece of parchment paper down on a cookie sheet. Wash and dry strawberries. One by one, dip the strawberries in a vanilla Greek yogurt of your choice (I used Yoplait’s Honey Vanilla Greek yogurt). Use a spoon to help cover the areas that need more yogurt. Place the strawberries on the sheet, then put in the freezer. Check them after an hour, and take out if the yogurt looks frozen. If not, check them every 15 minutes until they’re frozen to your satisfaction. After that, you can add another coat of yogurt and freeze again if you’d like, but I didn’t this time around.

According to my calculations, each strawberry is around 15 calories. Enjoy!

(Note: Some of my family members thought they were a bit too frozen when fresh out of the freezer. It didn’t bother me, but you may want to try letting them thaw for a short time before eating.)

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Frozen yogurt strawberries recipe

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Guys, I actually LIKE exercising (and other astonishing facts about my healthier 2013 plan)

ImageAs I previously mentioned on my blog, one of my main goals for 2013 (not a resolution–people give up on resolutions) is to get more in shape and eat better. We’re about a month in now, since I started just before the new year, and I just wanted to share some awesome things that I’ve learned/discovered/experienced since I started on this “journey.”

  1. I actually LIKE exercising. I know, I can’t believe it either. I mean, is it my absolute favorite thing to do? No. Would I much rather just head straight home after work? Yes. But I feel so good when I’m done. Like I accomplished something, something attainable because I know how my body feels after and it’s different than when I walked in. And trust me, it’s huge that I’m saying these things because I’m normally the girl who scoffs at the gym rats and rolls my eyes when people talk about a “runner’s high.” I thought it was all a big waste of time and not for me. But I was wrong. So if you’ve never tried, I encourage you to just give it a shot. If you are currently, let’s both keep at it.
  2. Eating better isn’t the worst thing in the world. It is a struggle for me because I am the world’s pickiest eater. I WISH I could just fill up on veggies all day and be happy. But I only like a handful and I have to stick with those. Changing my eating habits (I’m calorie counting) has actually been more difficult than the whole gym thing, which I did not anticipate. But I discovered certain foods have a strong hold on me, and it’s so hard to whittle those out. It’s hard to make the commitment to packing a lunch for the next day at work, when all I want to do is just grab something on the food setup we have there. And the hardest thing has been…
  3. Reducing the Coke intake. Anyone who really knows me knows I really, really love Coca-Cola. But I knew I couldn’t continue with my two-cans-a-day intake. So I’ve reduced it to one a day. I know that may not seem like a victory, but it really is. Because during my non-Coke meals, I think about Coke. I think about how much better the meal would taste if I had a Coke. But I drink that dang water. Hopefully someday on the horizon I can give it up all together, but it’s about baby steps right now. (And I despise diet sodas, so don’t even try recommending I switch to Diet Coke or even Coke Zero.)
  4. Tell as many people as possible about your goals. It’s really hard to admit “Hey, I’m pretty out of shape” to the world. But I had to, because on the days I want to quit, those are the people who keep me focused and going. Hearing “I’m so proud of you” from someone is encouragement beyond words. I have people at home, work and friends on Facebook all cheering for me, so there’s no way I could just slip off the radar and stuff my face. I’ve posted about it a lot especially on Facebook and found something fascinating: SO many people, people I would have never guessed have to care about their weight, are also trying to do the same thing or have in the past. I knew a few people who did (particularly because of their gym-related Facebook posts) but so many others never post about it, and I didn’t have an idea until the messages started pouring in. 
  5. Saying “no” feels really good. As most of you know, I’m surrounded by delicious food on an almost daily basis at work. Yesterday there was an entire platter of banana-vanilla cupcakes sitting right outside my cube. Normally, I would have had three at least (they were mini). But I said “no” for the entire day, and I felt like I was on cloud nine. It did help that I had four co-workers and my boss all yell out “Stay strong, Molly!” as soon as they hit the table. But every time I say “no” to something I would have normally inhaled, this song plays in my head.

I have a long way to go still, but the fact that something finally switched over in my head and I want to do this for myself is big. So don’t let me quit when I want to! Feel free to check in on me.

Also, I’m especially looking for low cal recipes. If you have one you love (and you think an extreme picky eater would enjoy), please pass the link on to me!

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Dedication

25 photos to celebrate 25 years (AKA be nice to me, quarter of a century!)

Well, here we are on the eve of my 25th birthday. It feels a bit surreal, but maybe because it doesn’t seem quite real. When I think about all that the 25 years of my life have brought, I realized I am blessed. But I also know I still have so far to go. Because, really, I didn’t start making a significant dent in my life until the past years. And that all comes with being an adult and branching out and making decisions, but I know the next 25 (which leads me to 50, GULP) will bring so much more.

Instead of boring you all too much with me waxing poetically about all the wonderful people and opportunities that have made my life to this point so memorable, I decided a better way to take this trip down memory lane is via photos. So I present 25 photos to celebrate 25 years of life. Thank you Lord for this life I love.

230677_10151160051531971_453135782_n1) So this isn’t a baby-baby photo of me, but I generally think babies are not the cutest, so I thought we’d skip a few months. And hooray for being the firstborn, AKA STUFFED ANIMALS OVERLOAD. I was also the first grandchild on one side of my family, so double bonus.

24423_10151160051681971_159558528_n2) My parents were really big fans of dressing me up in costumes during the early years. Here I am in lederhosen (Germany heritage represent!). Typically lederhosen are donned by men, but obviously that mattered not a bit.

01121300463) I had really great parents growing up (and still do).

734766_10151160051786971_1016333597_n4) I also had really great grandparents. Unfortunately, only one of my grandmas is still with us today, but I’m thankful for the time I had with my two grandpas and grandma. I’m pictured here with my Grandpa and Grandma J. I think Grandpa in particular would be really proud of where I am in life now.

406165_10151160051106971_217240176_n5) I was a stylin’ kid (until the teenage years hit). I wish I still had those sunglasses. 

207745_10151160051381971_1992341340_n6) Two years and four days after I was born, this squirt became my sister. We’ve basically been inseparable ever since (except when I moved away for a few years).

165880_10150786630656971_2021875514_n7) She’s still my bestie.

538409_10151160050851971_487584999_n8) Two years after my sister, this kid came along.

01111323419) We bonded quickly.

481315_10151160051431971_570351666_n10) Seriously, these two are the best.

12616_10151160051176971_1070688621_n11) There was one time, however, that Amanda and I got into a fight over a doll in our treehouse. She was 2, I was 4, yet somehow was the one who got pushed out of the treehouse and ended up with a broken arm. I’ll have that story FOREVER.

184418_10151160051226971_1130530302_n

12) My Grandpa J taught me how to fish when I was really young. However, the young fashionista I was, took over about .2 seconds after this photo was taken. A gust of wind blew my awesome trucker hat off, so I jumped into the pond behind me to rescue it. Grandpa wasn’t too thrilled.

184435_10151160051486971_1652413174_n13) I have some really great cousins, but there was that time my cousin Lauren gave me a box of our great-grandma’s hair.  I was 7. And it’s a long, weird family tradition story.

397667_10151160050951971_203894715_n14) We took a lot of family vacations growing up, which was simply the best. I somehow ended up in front of the White House on one of these trips in a glow-in-the-dark Tweety shirt, skort (skirt + shorts for the less enlightened), high white socks and Birkenstocks. Can’t say I miss the 90s too much.

165073_10151160051296971_797752295_n15) I had a rabbit for a few years, but this is probably the only photo of the two of us together that exists. Because she was basically a devil bunny. Just look at her eyes.

74332_10151160050116971_707113158_n16) I was the luckiest 15-year-old kid, apparently, because I won a family vacation to Disney World that year. It was, well, magical. I want to go back.

408408_10151160050726971_622747423_n17) It was during this vacation that I discovered I’m not the biggest roller coaster enthusiast.

0112130012a18) I went on two missions trips during my teenage years–one to the Dominican Republic and one to Peru. This photo is from Peru. Those two trips were huge for me in terms of personal growth. I am the woman I am today partly because of those trips.

16711_10151160051596971_1785165311_n19) I’ve been blessed with some basically lifelong friends. They’re kind of the best. I’m also incredibly thankful for all the friends I’ve gained throughout the years. Near or far now, they’re all so special to me.

11563_190050388818_5010413_n20) I went to college and joined the student newspaper for my junior and senior years. One of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I still have regular contact with the majority of the people in this photo, and when I think about good college memories, I think about them. Working on staff also gave me a boost on my resume, so that was just an added perk.

32557_388031611970_2390591_n21) I graduated with a degree in print journalism after four years, which was a mini-miracle for me. BUT I DID IT.

31107_393274461970_5340982_n22) After I graduated, I headed to Washington, D.C. for the summer. It was an incredible summer in the city of my dreams. I’d like to return one day. Eventually.

431920_10150587042216971_2065374074_n23) After D.C., I moved to Brownsville, Texas for nearly two years. It was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Though I always missed Wisconsin, that community was like none other and I miss them daily. I learned a lot living there.

563996_10151010806516971_1467229076_n24) Then I got a chance to move back to my home, which I obviously took. And I am so happy I did.

Molly's Packers bday 01925) Today I got to spend my pre-birthday with some of the people I love most in the world. I am a lucky girl. Two things would’ve made it even better: a Packers win and the ability to fly in friends spread out over the U.S.

Here’s to the first 25 years. Let’s see what the next quarter of a century brings.

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Daily Life, explanation, Funny stuff, Uncategorized

2013, I’ve got big plans for you

So here we are. We all made it to 2013. And for the first time probably ever, I’m PUMPED about getting to a new year. A fresh slate, new opportunities, all that jazz. Normally I hit New Year’s Eve and am a bit depressed because I hate letting go of Christmas and admitting the holidays are basically over. But this year I was ready and excited.

And the reason why? Here’s a quick look at why 2013 should be a great year. Why I’m motivated. Why I’m optimistic. I don’t like calling all these things “resolutions,” because I feel like that gives them a title that makes them easy to toss away once I’m bored with them. So they’re not resolutions; they are aspirations. Goals. Things I will MAKE happen.

* I’m working out. This is HUGE for me. I’ve always hateddddddd working out, mostly because I hate attempting to make the commitment and then failing at it after awhile. But recently my mom really pushed for us all to sign up for a family gym membership so we could all get healthy together. And I was really, really resisting it. Didn’t want to fail again. Didn’t want to pretend that I was excited about this. But then the flip switched in my head when my friend Christyn asked me to be a bridesmaid in her April wedding. Suddenly, it all made sense. Of COURSE I want to look good in that dress. Of course I want to be healthier. So I’ve hit the gym five times in the past week. And I actually LIKE going. It’s a crazy world we live in.

* I’m going to run/walk a 5K in September. It’s going to happen. And it’s not just any 5K I’m prepping for–it’s the coolest.

* I’m going to a bridesmaid. And I’m waaaayyyy excited about that.

* On a similar note, I’m making a return trip to Brownsville! You didn’t think it’d be that easy to get rid of me, did you?

* I’m also hoping for a return trip to South Carolina sometime this year. It’s been way too long since I saw my college friends. There’s also hopefully going to be a Collegian (my college’s newspaper) reunion, too. Because those people are the people I miss the most, basically.

* Alissa should come to visit. My former college roommate, Alissa, has promised a visit sometime this year. Which means I’ll have someone to share a closet with for a week. She’s the best.

* I’m going to get my finances under control. I basically have been winging it financially for waaaayyyy too long. 2013 is the year to change all that.

* I’m going to read more. My goal is to make it through five non-fiction and five fiction books this year. That may sound like a piddly mark, but that’d be BIG for me. I read all day at work, cut me a bit of slack!

And that basically sums it all up. If any of you have workout, budgeting, etc. tips, let me know in the comments!

I’ll leave you with this bit of inspiration which also helped me hit the gym.
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