Monday, October 31, 2011

My 100-Calorie Bowl of Spaghetti

I just want to start off saying that I was in no way compensated for this review and have no relationship with the manufacturers of the above products. I just wanted to share with you how I had a bowl full of spaghetti with sauce & cheese and was about 100 calories for the whole thing. 

I came across this product called Pasta Slim by Wildwood. It is in the refrigerator case in the organic food section. It is a product that is wheat & gluten free and only 20 calories per serving (the whole bag is 2 servings, which I think is a better 1 serving size). I bought the spaghetti version, but my store also carried the Spinach Fettuccine version as well. 

This literally takes minutes to make you whole meal as the noodles (made from tofu) are pre-cooked so all you are doing is heating the noodles & sauce up and sprinkling on cheese.

My sauce added on 40 calories for a 1/2C serving and the fat-free cheddar cheese added another 22.5 calories for 2T. Giving me a grand total of of 102.5 calories in the whole meal. 

My thoughts on the pasta (since that is really what is new to me) is that I love how quick it is and that it filled me up. The texture is a little rubbery and taste is bland, but once you add topping the blandness goes away. Another positive of the product is that the whole bag provides you with 6g of fiber and 12% of your DV for calcium. 

It cost $1.49 for the bag, which when I can spend close to the same amount and buy a box of pasta to feed the entire family it seems like a lot. But really it's not too bad. I would buy it again and have it around when I want to whip up a quick pasta meal or if I am trying to save calories for another meal or treat (and given today is Halloween, I'll need some extra calories for the candy I sneak from my children's trick-or-treat bags.) Next time I think I will add a few more calories and saute some zucchini, mushrooms & onions in there. Today I didn't have time for that and wanted to see what a 100-calorie bowl of pasta tasted like.

Real Moms Love to Eat

When I heard about the Real Moms Love to Eat Affairiate Program that included a book to review (I love to read!) and sample of food, I knew this was a program for me. The book of which I received an advance digital copy to review (to be posted later after I finish) is called Real Moms Love to Eat, which you can pre-order at Amazon. If you pre-order this book, be sure to enter you pre-order code here to win some great prizes. The next drawing is tomorrow, but there will be more! The drawing will occur on the 1st & 15th of the month until January 2nd. The book will be released on January 3rd.

I am so excited for this book and to share my review with you, which I will post in November.

Today, I was delivered my Food Affairiate Goodie Bag.

Included in it was:
Bare by Solo Plates (made with sugarcane!)
Flatout Flatbread - Light Original Flavor ( and server with Flatout Logo)
Tera's Whey Whey Protein
Popchips - Jalapeno Potato Flavor
Pirate's Booty - Aged White Cheddar Flavor
Rice Works Brown Rice Chips - Sweet Chili Flavor ($1 off coupon available)
Mary's Gone Crackers Sticks & Twigs - Curry Flavor
Peanut Butter & Co Peanut Butter - Cinnamon Raisin Swirl Flavor
KIND Bar - Pomegranate Blueberry Pistachio Flavor
Sticky Nuts - PB Fig Flavor
Dreamfields Linguine ($1off coupon on their website)
Justin's Maple Almond Butter
GoPicnic Ready-to-Eat Meals - Turkey Pepperoni & Cheese Flavor (15% code below)
SweetLeaf Stevia
Dermalogica AGE Smart system samples
Tracey Mallett Presents "Total New Body" DVD
Applegate logo'ed Flashdrive
Stoneyfield logo'ed Spatula & Coupons (coupons on their website too!)
So Delicious Coupons

FYI - you can get 15% off your order from GoPicnic by using code: BLOG15

Disclosure: I was gifted from Restoring Essence Nutrition, LLC-owner of Real Moms Love to Eat, a free digital copy of the book, “Real Moms Love to Eat” and an entry into the prize drawing on January 3,2012, for participating in this virtual tour and writing about this book pre-order contest.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Crock Pot Pumpkin Curry Soup

I asked my daughter what she wanted me to make with the pumpkin she received from her class field trip to the Oak View Nursery and Pumpkin Patch and after coming up with several ideas she decided on pumpkin soup. Thanks to the book Plumply Dumply Pumpkin for providing so many ideas (great book for kids!) I couldn't find the exact recipe I was looking for to make a crock pot, so I needed to come up with my own recipe. This was a very tasty soup!

Crock Pot Pumpkin Curry Soup
4 cloves garlic
1 medium onion
2 C cooked, pureed pumpkin (learn to bake you own pumpkin)
4 C broth
2 tsp. curry powder
salt and pepper to taste
10oz container of Philadelphia Original Cooking Creme

Mince onions and garlic. Heat some olive oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add garlic and onion and saute until translucent. Add onions, garlic, pumpkin, brother and seasonings to a crock pot. Cook on High for 3-4 hours or Low for 7-8 hours. Stir in cooking creme during the last 20-30 minutes. Enjoy!

Remember to save your seeds for roasting with this recipe I posted earlier this month.

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Thinking of Things as Fabric

 When you look at a shirt is that what you see? Or how about a curtain? Are they just a shirt or curtain?

Sometimes I have to remind myself to look beyond the stitched shape of an item and observe the fabric, stitching & texture because sometimes you will find something you just love the print of but it's not in the right garment or household furnishing.

Creating new stitched projects do not have to be all about buying a flat piece of fabric from Joann's; it can be, but not always. I challenge you to look at an item for use-able fabric whether it be a garment in a store or an item from your closet that has lost it's appeal for whatever reason.

This morning I decided to make a pillow case for my son's pillow "lovey". (I do have to admit it is more me that wanted this cute case since his pillow looks worse for the wear with it's recent tears & repairs.) I had leftover blue fabric from another project as well as these Pottery Barn changing table panels that I thought would make a very cute pillow case.

I really like the checked pattern on the PB panels, but we didn't own the changing table and they would not work for mine. I could see using them with some other type of embellishment (to join & disguise the seam to join the panels) to make a window valance. Sure, PB makes a valance in this print, but that wasn't clearanced out at such a deep discount.

From just one panel I was able to make one side of the pillowcase and will be making embellishment for puppet theater curtains, which I will also use the leftover fabric for. I will be using some of the leftover blue fabric to make a book sling to be next to my son's bed (which is why I wanted the fabric in the pillowcase.) I will be featuring tutorials on both of those projects, one on this blog and one on Northern Cheapskate.
But while you wait for those tutorials, please go check out how I used 2 sweaters as fabric to make Monster Stuffies for Christmas Presents for my kids.

Other things that you will have to look forward to will include my constructing the valance from this fabric, as well as other homemade Christmas presents for my kids, friends, family & teachers.

If you were hoping for a tutorial on how to make a pillowcase, you can find one here on eHow. A pillowcase is an easy sewing project with only a handful of straight stitches. But creating a new pillowcase out of some special fabric can really change how a room or piece of furniture looks.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Up & Coming

I am very excited to announce that I am going to start doing reviews and giveaways on my blog. Within in the last few days, I have received my first product and book to review. I am excited that I will be providing you with opportunities to win some fabulous products, let you know about discounts and sweepstakes. Please follow my blog and keep current with these opportunities.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Winter Hats for My Kids (Loom Knitting)

I have gotten a jump on making Christmas presents and these are the first two finished items, hats for my kids. I had bought the purple/pink yarn and previously made coordinating hats with it for my friend and her two daughters, but there was still so much yarn left. My daughter loved the colors and asked me to make a hat for her that matched her friend. Well, then it was a no-brainer to use my leftover yarn (I still have enough leftover to make another hat so I might get one) and ribbon to make her a new winter hat as a Christmas present.

The blue hat is made with a ball of Wool-Ease that I picked up at a thrift store for $1.50. I was thrilled, because this yarn is regularly priced at over $7 a ball.

I made them each hats last year when I was just learning to Loom Knit, but I did a single stitch and that really didn't create a hat warm enough for MN winter wind. So, I bought this Loom Knitting Primer book that taught me more than the basics that came with the loom set and was able to use a different stitch to create a much, much warmer hat.

I also used a little bit of leftover yarn to add hair to the Monster Stuffies I just finished making as another Christmas present for the kids. That post will appear later this month on Northern Cheapskate.