Had a blast at the OH National Conference in Irvine. I loved spending more time with Becky. Meeting my "bosses" Amy and Tooter. I met so many awesome people Kim G, Sarah, Sally, Laura, Kathy PF, Mary Ann, Mish, Holly, Jolene, Fredling... the list goes on. If you ever get a chance to attend an OH event I highly recommend it. The speakers are wonderful and very motivational and you get oodles of freebies but the BEST part is meeting people who truly "understand" our journey.

Awesome. Can't wait for the next one.

Here's a link to our crazy pics (Newport Beach and Durty Nellie's karaoke on Friday, The conference, dinner Saturday night, The 80's costume party, etc.) Fun times.

New Recipes

Here's a few recipes I've made and enjoyed lately. Hope you like them as much as I did.

This is really tasty when you want an Italian food fix...

Shelly's Chicken Cacciatore

1/2 red onion, chopped
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
olive oil
kosher salt
black pepper

7 chicken breast tenders cut into 1" piece, marinated in a few T's of Italian Dressing for 4 hours (at least)
1 tsp. Italian Seasoning
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 can diced tomatoes (14.5 oz S&W brand is my fav)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Toss onions and pepper with olive oil, salt and pepper and roast in oven for 50 minutes, turning once halfway through cooking time.

Saute chicken that has been marinated till golden. Add Italian Seasoning and garlic. Add diced tomatoes. Simmer 5 minutes. Add roasted vegetables with all juices. Mix to combine.

For non-ops serve over angel hair pasta. For post-ops serve on its own with shredded parmesan over top.

I practically live on chicken so here's another fav...

Chicken Marsala

1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon marjoram
3 tablespoons flour
4 (4-ounce) boneless chicken breasts, pounded to even 1/2-inch thickness
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup Marsala

Combine the salt, pepper, marjoram and flour on a plate. Coat the chicken in the mixture. Heat the olive oil. Add the chicken and cook 5 minutes on each side. Transfer the chicken to a plate and cover loosely to keep warm. Add the broth, lemon juice and Marsala to the skillet and cook, stirring to incorporate any bits on the surface of the pan. Bring to a boil and continue to boil 3 to 4 minutes, or until the sauce is thickened. Serve the sauce spooned over the chicken. Makes 4 servings.

What to do with all your hardboiled Easter Eggs...

Egg & Pea Salad

8 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
1/2 cup frozen green peas, cooked (or fresh if you are lucky and they are in season)
1/4-1/2 cup of mayo
1 T of dijon mustard
1 green onion, diced
1 stalk celery, diced
kosher salt
freshly ground pepper

Mix all ingredients together. Serve scoops on a leaf of boston lettuce or in a low carb tortilla wrap.

Shelly's Meatball Minestrone

2 Pints Homemade Chicken Stock
2 Small Zucchinis, sliced
1 Summer Squash, sliced
2 Carrots, sliced
2 Leeks, sliced
1/2 Yellow Onion, chopped
1 Green Onion, chopped
1/2 Can Chopped Tomatoes
1 Can Butter Beans, drained
10 Turkey Meatballs
1/2 bag Baby Spinach
1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 T Olive Oil
1 T Butter

Lightly brown the leeks and onions in butter & olive oil. Then pour the chicken stock in. Whiz it with an immersion blender till semi smooth texture. Add all the veggies (except the baby spinach). Add the turkey meatballs (Foster Farms, dropped them in frozen). Transfer to crockpot on high. After 1 hour add the spinach leaves. Stir once. Cook 1 hour more. You can certainly finish on the stovetop I just made it early in the day for later so it kept simmering in the crockpot. Serve with grated parmesan.

Advice for weight loss surgery pre-ops

Are you pre-op and waiting for your new healthy life to begin...

Here's some positive things you can do to pass the time:

1. Research everything about your surgery (here's a great start)

2. Make wls friends (you'll need support from others who've been there done that post-op: a great starting place)

3. Add more exercise into your day (it will build you up for your surgery) if you are able.

4. Lose some weight (cut back on simple carbs and up your protein a little practice of your post-op lifestyle), your program and/or insurance will likely require it.

5. Drink more water (it will help with #4 and prepare you for post-op)

6. Eliminate soda, smoking (this is required) and it will be an easier transition.

7. Figure out the why's of why you gained weight, what your eating issues are, what your trigger foods are (this is an operation on your body and not your head so it's important you deal with all of these ASAP.) Seek out a therapist if needed.

8. Take your measurements and pictures (you'll want comparisons), when the scale doesn't move you (and stalls will happen many times) will have other methods of seeing your progress.

9. Journal, blog, or if your crafty scrapbook your journey (its a good outlet for frustrations and fun post-op to look back on)

10. Make a list of everything you are looking forward to (buying new clothes, fitting in places, different activities...) that your health or weight has held you back from.

Best wishes on your journey!

Protein Tips
Liquid Phase Essentials and Recipes

What have you lost?

Someone posted this on the main board awhile back and I loved it! Sorry I didn't note who but if you e-mail me I'll credit you. Thanks for the inspiration... edited to add: she stepped forward: TY to Bette B.

Your weight loss =

1 pound = a Guinea Pig
1.5 pounds = a dozen Krispy Kreme glazed donuts
2 pounds = a rack of baby back ribs
3 pounds = an average human brain
4 pounds = an ostrich egg
5 pounds = a Chihuahua
6 pounds = a human’s skin
7.5 pounds = an average newborn
8 pounds = a human head
10 pounds= chemical additives an American consumes each year
11 pounds = an average housecat
12 pounds = a Bald Eagle
15 pounds = 10 dozen large eggs
16 pounds = a sperm whale’s brain
20 pounds = an automobile tire
23 pounds = amount of pizza an average American eats in a year
24 pounds = a 3-gallon tub of super premium ice cream
25 pounds = an average 2 year old
30 pounds = amount of cheese an average American eats in a year
33 pounds = a cinder block
36 pounds = a mid-size microwave
40 pounds = a 5-gallon bottle of water or an average human leg
44 pounds = an elephant’s heart
50 pounds = a small bale of hay
55 pounds = a 5000 BTU air conditioner
60 pounds = an elephant’s penis (yep, weights more than his heart!)
66 pounds = fats and oils an average American eats in a year
70 pounds = an Irish Setter
77 pounds = a gold brick
80 pounds = the World’s Largest Ball of Tape
90 pounds = a newborn calf
100 pounds = a 2 month old horse
111 pounds = red meat an average American eats in a year
117 pounds = an average fashion model (and she’s 5’11”)
118 pounds = the complete Encyclopedia Britannica
120 pounds = amount of trash you throw away in a month
130 pounds = a newborn giraffe
138 pounds = potatoes an average American eats in a year
140 pounds = refined sugar an average American eats in a year
144 pounds = an average adult woman (and she’s 5’4”)
150 pounds = the complete Oxford English Dictionary
187 pounds = an average adult man
200 pounds = 2 Bloodhounds
235 pounds = Arnold Schwarzenegger
300 pounds = an average football lineman
400 pounds = a Welsh pony

Copyright 2005, Bette B. May not be reproduced with permission from the author. Please do not repost without proper acknowledgment.