Elements of Fitness – A Mother's Memoir

Tired of Eggs for Breakfast?

I love eggs for breakfast… but there’s mornings where I don’t have enough time and just want to grab something fast.

These are healthy, delicious and simple to make.  I made a batch this morning and I wish you could taste them!   Oh wait-  YOU CAN!   Here you go:




  • ½ cup oat flour (can be made by grinding whole oats in a blender or food processor)
  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • ¾ cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 medium banana (mashed)
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries (optional)
  • 1 tbsp unsalted walnuts or almonds (optional)
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. honey


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a non-stick cookie sheet with zero-calorie cooking spray (i.e. Pam).  Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and fold mixture together until well combined (**important to mix by hand and not in a blender**).  Scoop batter onto cookie sheet into ¼” balls.  Bake 12-14 minutes or until edges are golden brown.


October 4, 2014 Posted by | Being a Mom, Children, Cooking, Diet and Exercise, Dinners Kids Devour, Eating Clean, Eating Low Carb, Family Friendly Restaurants, Low Fat Recipes, My Low Carb Recipes, Nutrition, P90X Recipes | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

All Vegetarian Minestrone Soup

Who loves Olive Garden?  Out of all the chain restaurants out there I think Olive Garden is the best!  It’s really the only one that doesn’t make people cringe.  After all, who doesn’t love soup, salad and breadsticks??!!  YUM!

I just went to Olive Garden for my daughter’s birthday (her fave place) and while ordering any entrees can throw you off any diet you are on, your plan doesnt have to go awry if you stick with their salad and soup (skip the breadsticks if you can!)

And if going there is too tempting then make their soup at home.  I am pretty positive you will think this soup came from Olive Garden’s kitchen.  Give it a try and this recipe makes enough to serve a dinner party of 10-12 plus more for anyone who wants seconds!  🙂

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small white onion diced small
  • 1/2 cup chopped zucchini (skin on)
  • 1/2 cup frozen cut green beans
  • 1/2 large stalk celery
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 cans (15 oz) red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cans (15 oz) great northern or small white beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots
  • 2 tablespoons fresh minced parsley
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil (fresh for more aromatics while it cooks)
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 cups hot water
  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup small whole grain shell pasta

Measure olive oil into a large stock pot and heat on medium and saute the next 5 ingredients for about 5-7 minutes or until the onions become see-through.

Add the vegetable broth, drained tomatoes, beans, carrots, hot water and spices to the pot.

Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes.

Add the spinach leaves and the pasta and cook for an additional 20 minutes.


December 27, 2011 Posted by | Cooking, Diet and Exercise, Dinners Kids Devour, Eating Clean, Family Friendly Restaurants, Low Fat Recipes, Nutrition, P90X Recipes, P90X2 | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Aloha! Take Advantage of the Recession Deals

I haven’t written in a while but now we’re finally back from Hawaii and I’m not sad at all!  We were there for 6 days with all 3 kids and Frank and I were both happy to come home.  It was fun taking the whole family but also completely exhausting!  Now if we were there just the two of us I’m sure it would’ve been a different story having to leave.


Waimea FallsPolynesian Cultural Center





We stayed in Waikiki and this was our first trip to Hawaii for all of us.  It was absolutely beautiful and we did a lot in 6 days. 

We stayed at the Aston Waikiki Sunset (ResortQuest) only because it was the best deal for a one bedroom suite.  We wanted to stay at the Hilton Village because that’s where everyone told us to go but their price for a 1 bedroom suite per night was the grand total we spent at the Aston (which needless to say is why I booked it!).  But then when we got to the hotel we very quickly realized why the price was so appealing.  The place was in desperate need of remodeling.  Thankfully, we were only there to sleep so it served it’s purpose.   However, we will never stay there again.

The next day we had to make our way over to Hilton Village to board the Atlantis submarine and Frank said “Oooh I wish we would’ve stayed here” until, of course, I reminded him of the money we were saving by not staying there.   🙂

The first day we were there we went to the beach which was 4 blocks from our hotel and then we went back to the room and us girls got all dolled up for the luau. 

Moana Surfrider

We all got ready early so I suggested we walk down to the Moana Surfrider hotel to get “The Best Mai Tai In Town” per The Today Show.  It was very strong and not very sweet.  But Frank was very happy with it.


Then we missed our bus to the Paradise Cove Luau in Ko’olina so we had to drive ourselves.  But that worked out and we didn’t end up missing much:  just the pig roasting which I’m glad the girls didn’t see anyways otherwise they’d probably want to be vegetarians by now!

The following day we headed up to the North Shore and I told everyone we’d just take a drive and see the sights so the baby could take a nap.  No one knew I secretly packed our swimsuits and towels!  Not sure how they all missed the big bulky beach bag but it was a great surprise!  This is also where I got my crazy sunburn (hence the reason there’s no picture here).  I thought my oversized sunglasses covered more of my forehead so I ended up getting burned and looking really strange.  I also thought the one finger spread of sunscreen across my forehead would keep me covered so that’s why the name ‘stripes’ was so fitting for Frank to call me the next couple of days.  

waimea falls.jpgThen we went to Waimea Falls Park and it was breathtaking especially because I didn’t know Oahu had any waterfalls so not expecting to see any and then seeing this was awesome.

They told us they do a lot of weddings there and after the 25 minute walk through the park we know why.


The next day we did a dinner cruise and the kids really loved the entertainment on board.  There were hula dancers, a Hawaiian singer and a little magic show.  We also did the Polynesian Cultural Center but we weren’t very impressed with it.   That could also be due to how hot and humid it was though. 

IMG_7752The real highlight of the trip for Frank and I was the snorkelling at Hanauma Bay.  What a beautiful place to snorkel.  As you all know we had planned to do our first dive on this trip after getting PADI certified but we had a problem bringing the baby on the boat so we didn’t do it.   This was still a great experience though and no regrets about not scuba diving.

We were able to take all the kids on this trip to Hawaii because of all the spectacular deals there are online.  The islands are really hurting right now because of the recession so if you can afford to take advantage of the deals US Airways is offering I suggest you do it while there’s still time.  Also, check out www.sidestep.com.  They have some great deals and are generally about 15% lower than priceline and all the others.  For those of you who made a face when I said US Airways, yes I know, we feel the same way about them.  But are you more loyal to an airline or your own wallet? 

All and all it was a great trip and we’re glad we shared it with the kids.  Next time we’ll do Maui or Kauai and we’ll just hang out on a resort and never leave.

Mahalo and Aloha!

July 31, 2009 Posted by | Children, Family Friendly Hotels, Family Friendly Restaurants, Family Night, The Critic, Things To Do, Traveling | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Low Carb Shrimp Fettuccine

I am still amazed that my low carb tuna noodle casserole  recipe is one of my top 5 most visited posts.  So for that reason, I am compelled to share more low carb recipes.

Last week we took the kids to Brio Italian grill.   We all love the food there.  They even give the kids dough balls to play with while you wait for your food.  It is possible to go there and not eat the carb loaded food but Frank and I know how good their dishes are so even our best intentions go out the window as soon as we walk in! 

We both ended up ordering the shrimp and lobster fettuccine.  We had never ordered it before and it was delicious.  But I couldn’t help but realize the same dish could be made without all the carbs!   So here’s my low carb version and, might I add, just as delicious.

1 box Dreamfields fettuccine
extra virgin olive oil                                      
2 TBL butter
2 cloves garlic, or minced
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup sherry wine
pinch of sea salt
pinch of dry parsley
1 large bag of frozen shrimp (buy organic if you can)
artichoke hearts (if desired)
1 small on the vine tomato (diced)
Pecorino Romano cheese (as much as desired)

Thaw shrimp as directed on bag.  Cut tails off shrimp and set aside.  Prepare pasta as indicated on box but add 1 TBL butter and a splash of EVOO for taste.  In a skillet on med high, coat with EVOO,  butter, lemon juice, sherry, salt, parsley and artichoke hearts.  Saute for about 4-5 minutes until shrimp is golden brown.  Serve your pasta, pour shrimp on top and sprinkle with tomatoes and cheese.

I promise you will love it!   Each serving yields about 10-15 carbs depending on how ‘big’ your serving spoon is.

The pasta is controlled carb pasta so while it is significantly lower in carbs than traditional pasta you should only eat 1-2 servings because too much will actually convert to sugar in your body thus, being totally counter-productive to a low carb diet.  But, if you don’t eat much that means leftovers! 

So enjoy it for dinner tonight and again for tomorrow’s lunch.  And sorry I didn’t include a picture.  I will take a picture the next time I make it and post it.

Happy Low Carbing Everyone…

For some more recipes visit  https://amothersmemoir.wordpress.com/2009/06/08/another-delicious-low-carb-recipe/.

June 12, 2009 Posted by | Cooking, Diet and Exercise, Eating Low Carb, Family Friendly Restaurants, Nutrition, Organic, The Critic | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment


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