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Day 5: Let the celebrations commence!

Even though Wednesday was the day before my birthday, I still got to start celebrating early 🙂

Reason number 5,682 why I love my sweet, sweet husband:

He had heard me complaining about how terrible my blender has been lately and here I thought he never listened? Ha ha. He showed me! Check out the beautiful new green smoothie maker:


And good riddance old friend. You’ve worked well the last 4.5 out of 5 years but it’s time to retire now.


Anyone know what to do with old appliances? Can they be recycled?

Of course I celebrated my first birthday gift with a delicious green smoothie. Just look at it go!

I even spoiled myself and used the dispenser!


Result: A yummy, creamy, delicious green smoothie (1 cup almond milk, 1 frozen banana, 1 tbsp natural peanut butter, three handfuls of spinach).

I made sure to send my husband a message about how awesome this smoothie was and how much easier it is to make in a shiny new blender. I’m so spoiled!

Mid-morning, I had some tea and grapes.

Then for lunch, I sort of threw together a new combination. One thing I realized about this challenge is that even though there are a ton of recipes out there that I could use, I love being forced to come up with my own based on what’s in the pantry. It makes me so creative!

Chickpeas on top of a sweet potato, drizzled with salsa verde! Definitely interesting, but totally delicious and filling too. I also had an organic apple on the side 🙂

I snacked on some almonds before heading to the gym for an awesome treadmill run. Wow, those are three words I rarely put together, ha ha.

Then I went home, showered and got ready for girl’s night. I am so lucky to have such good friends who make me feel special!

For dinner, Margie made what is probably my favorite food ever…FALAFEL!

A pita pocket filled with lettuce, diced tomatoes, hummus, and falafel balls topped with tahini. Yesssssss!

Note: this meal is technically not challenged approved, but still very healthy, delicious and special because it was my birthday. I thoroughly enjoyed it, which goes back to that comment about enjoying stuff more when you don’t eat it every day.

I had this plate times two!

For my birthday dessert, per tradition, we had some pink bubbly!

And some yummy vegan cupcakes that Courtney made herself!

She was not happy with them, but I thought they were delicious. Sometimes things can look funny but actually taste great. Plus when a friend makes something special for you, it tastes even better, am I right?

She used this recipe, including a special strawberry glaze that was full of sugar but oh so tasty!


I enjoyed my birthday dessert, very very much 🙂

Thank you girls for giving me such a special night! I love you all 🙂

No coffee

I started off the morning with a green monster!

001 This one contained: 1 cup Silk almond milk (vanilla), 1/2 frozen banana, 1/4 cup frozen cherries, and a few handfuls of spinach.

002I also had a leftover pumpkin pancake with almond butter & syrup!

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Mid morning I had two cups of tea and some nuts, which I almost forgot to take a picture of!

004I mentioned on the blog earlier that I was hoping to cut back on coffee this week. Well, I have had NONE today so I guess that is progress?

I did have three cups of herbal tea and it was nice. I had no desire to drink coffee today and if I had done so, it would’ve just been out of habit, which is not how I want things to be.

I want to drink coffee when I really want it and not when I don’t.

For lunch, I tried a new frozen meal that I found at Meijer over the weekend.

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Moo Moo’s “specializes in unique, healthy, flavorful vegetarian and vegan cuisine, providing the health conscious consumer unprocessed, well-balanced, palate-pleasing creations.”

The roasted cashew stir fry was pretty tasty! I will have to try some of their other meals soon. They aren’t cheap so it will be a once in a while kind of thing!

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I also had an orange 🙂

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Later in the afternoon, I had some more tea and yogurt with granola.

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I loved this blueberry yogurt! Gosh, I wish it wasn’t so high in sugar. I could eat it every day otherwise.

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For dinner, I decided to get a little creative with my tofu. I was inspired by Mama Pea’s slow cooker BBQ tofu dish she made recently.

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I didn’t end up using the slow cooker, but I did go the BBQ route! I pressed my tofu and then put it in a baking dish and drizzled this hot stuff on top!

011 The tofu came out pretty good, but that sauce was not lying. It was HOT!

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With the fire in my mouth tofu, I had some pita, a sweet potato with Smart Balance and cinnamon and some steamed broccoli with Smart Balance too.

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I let my dinner settle for about an hour before I headed out for a 3 mile run! There were a few moments where the only thing that kept me going was repeating to myself: wine and strawberries, wine and strawberries…

014After some stretching and a nice hot shower, that is exactly what I had, plus some DCD 😉

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Time to watch “24” with the hubby! I haven’t been too thrilled with it this season but it’s quality time with the man.

Good night!

Root canals and races

Today was one of the busiest days I’ve had in a while. I think this is the first time I’ve sat down at home all day!

I started things off right though, with a green monster 🙂

001This one contained: 1 cup Silk almond milk, 1/2 banana, a lot of spinach, 1 tbsp cocoa powder, 1 tbsp peanut butter and ice.

002I really couldn’t taste the cocoa powder very much. I’m thinking I might have to buy some chocolate soymilk and try that! 

Mid-morning, I had some coffee and nuts, as usual.

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I had to eat lunch kind of early because I had an appointment to get a ROOT CANAL done today!

What is wrong with me? Root canal on Friday, 10 mile race on Saturday…

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Leftover chickpea burger on a bagel thin with hummus and carrots on the side.

Plus, some pineapple!

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I’m very happy to say my appointment went VERY well.

I mean, if you could have a great root canal, this was it. I had no pain during or after, haven’t taken anything for it either. Woo hoo!

Afterwards, I had to go get my packet for the 10 mile race tomorrow, but it just so happened to be close to a Starbucks…more iced coffee please!

006 I was quite hungry too (my appointment took a LONG time) so I took the opportunity to try another new snack they had.

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These were yummy, plus they are gluten, dairy, nut and egg free. And $1.50. And portion controlled 🙂

After I got my stuff, I went on a hunt for some new running shoes. I ended up going with a pair of New Balance which I’ll have to show you all later.

It’s so funny, I have a new brand every time I buy shoes. First it was Adidas, then Asics, now New Balance. Ha ha!

I also got a new purse for $6 (regularly $32). I rarely buy stuff like this but it was too good to pass up!

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My friend Courtney and I went out tonight, which included dinner at Qdoba.

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Qdoba is a great place for vegetarians! Plus, we got to sit outside on such a pleasant evening 🙂

I got the grilled veggie burrito with black beans, rice, grilled veggies, lettuce, pico de gallo, salsa verde and of course, guacamole. I think there’s is my favorite. Normally, I would get it “naked” (without the tortilla) but I figured I needed just a few carbs for the race tomorrow 😉

We also made a Starbucks run afterwards but since I’d just had an iced coffee a few hours earlier, I opted for the unsweetened shaken green tea lemonade. It was yummy!

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Warm weather makes me Starbucks crazy! I’d better stop before it becomes a habit 😉

Time to go to bed now, I’ve got a big race tomorrow. Be sure to check back here and over at River City Fitness tomorrow for updates!

Three days in a row

So, here I am again! I guess when I’m are eating foods I am proud of, it is easier to post them on here 😉

I made another green monster for breakfast this morning. Again, not my favorite but it was pretty good and surprisingly filling.

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This smoothie contained: 1 cup almond milk, 1/2 cup POM juice, 1/2 cup strawberries, 1/2 banana, and some ice cubes.

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Mid-morning, I snacked on some leftover nuts from the other day (with my coffee) because I forgot to pack a snack. So glad I still had these!

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For lunch, I had leftover tofu scramble with asparagus and a bagel thin. I sort of made a sandwich out of it and I swear, for a minute, I forgot it was tofu 🙂

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I also ate the other half of my banana from this morning. And a second cup of coffee.

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Later in the afternoon, I snacked on some carrots & hummus.

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Then I headed outside, where it was a warm 77 degrees and I tried out run/walk intervals for a race I am doing on Saturday. I keep all my fitness routines on another blog, River City Fitness.

When I got home from my workout, I was starving, so I had a Primal Strip to hold me over (Thai Peanut, yum yum).

Tonight was our girl’s night potluck, featuring Vegan Cornbread Casserole. Thanks, Margie, this was delicious!

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With some pinto beans on the side. Beans ‘n cornbread y’all. Oh boy…

I also had a glass of Barefoot Moscato wine, which was actually really good. I’ve only had one other Moscato before and I thought it was nasty, so I was pleasantly surprised by this one!

I was in charge of dessert tonight 🙂

009 I brought the cream cheese dip for my non-vegan friends. I figured I owe them for always accomodating me 😉 The soy yogurt behind it was mine.

I made myself a plate. I love having fruit for dessert!

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The granola was delicious too!

I didn’t go back for anymore because I was perfectly satisfied and I had two cups of hot tea while my food digested.

I feel like I am really handling myself better this week. It took a lot of mental rehearsing and willpower tonight. We even talked about how we handle being stressed out and how that relates to food, ha ha!

Hope you had a good night too. I’ll think of a question one of these days 😉

New and improved

As I sit here at the close of this day, I feel so happy. It’s like a whole new me!

I have been so touched by your all’s comments over the past couple of days. To have this support system is truly amazing.

I also feel great and I have a sound mind about everything that I ate today. It feels good to get back to the basics.

I started the day off with a green monster, of course.

021 This combo was not my favorite, but it got the job done: 1 cup vanilla soymilk, 1/2 cup orange juice, 1 cup frozen strawberries, and a few cups of spinach.

022 My blender gave me a really hard time with this smoothie, so I have a feeling I’ll be in the market for a new one soon. I’d love to have a VitaMix, perhaps I’ll get a second job this summer, ha ha.

Mid-morning, I enjoyed some coffee with So Delicious Coconut Milk Creamer (French Vanilla) and some mixed nuts.

014For lunch, I had a very green salad with cucumbers, shredded carrot and a Morningstar Farms vegan burger with vinaigrette dressing.

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Plus a juicy apple!

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For a snack, I had some Stonyfield O’Soy yogurt. I really like this brand but I would like it even more if it didn’t have 25 grams of sugar. I also had cup of coffee #2.

025 Before I left work to go for a run, I got a really strong sense of hunger so I got the healthiest thing out of the vending machine I could find.

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I ate half the bag and then saved the rest for a future snack emergency. I felt better immediately and had a pretty great run considering I’m rusty!

For dinner, I knew I wanted some tofu.

027 I was going to stir fry it but something really made me want tofu scramble, so I just went with it.

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I enjoyed half the box of tofu (sprinkled with turmeric, chili powder and garlic powder) with some steamed asparagus and brown rice.

028After dinner, I managed to do some laundry, the dishes, change the bed sheets, take a shower and now here I am blogging. It feels good to have days like this again.

For a snack, I had a banana with a tablespoon of Dark Chocolate Dreams 🙂

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I’m going to have a cup of tea and go to bed. It’s been an amazing day, I’ll just leave it at that.

Good night!

First day of March

I love the beginning of the week and the month for many reasons, but yesterday was exceptional! I wish I’d posted about it last night but I ended up falling asleep on the couch before 9:00 🙂

I started the day off with a delicious green smoothie. This combo contained: 1 cup plain soymilk, 3 cups of spinach, 1 frozen banana, and a generous tablespoon of peanut butter.

A few weeks ago, Heather shared with me that she has made smoothies in her food processor before and had them turn out okay.

My blender is giving me trouble, so I gave the food processor a shot today.

It took a little bit longer for all the spinach to blend, but it didn’t get stuck and I didn’t have to add water to get it to start blending again. Success!

Mid-morning, I had some black coffee and nuts. Then I went to my Pound for Pound weigh in and got some measurements done too!

Lunch was leftover baked tofu that I made on Sunday night (just sprinkled on garlic powder, curry powder and sesame seeds) with some cauliflower that I roasted in the oven (sprayed with cooking spray, salt and pepper).

Oh yeah and a slice of whole wheat toast 🙂 I think this was even better leftover than it was the night before!

Later in the day, I started to get a sore throat (pretty sure it’s the constantly changing weather), and you know how it is when water just doesn’t feel good? I got the only other option I had (I was too warm to drink tea!).

I’m still doing good only having these once a week. Any more and I just feel “weird” and if I ever drink more than one in a day, my stomach hurts. I really need to just give them up already.

I snacked on some yogurt before my awesome 6-mile run after work!

Then I re-hyrated with some Powerade Zero.

This is definitely not my first choice, since it contains sucralose (aka Splenda), but I suppose it’s better than real Powerade with contains HFCS.

I’m just trying a few different things out to see how they work with my body. I’m definitely going to try coconut water next, per your all’s recommendations!

For dinner, I made Barilla whole grain spaghetti with a garden combination sauce. I added in my own red onion, green & red peppers, plus a Boca vegan burger for some protein.

After my dinner settled, I was doing some house work when the hunger monster struck, also known as my 6 mile run catching up with me! So I ate some of my favorite stuff in the world 😉

One slice of whole wheat toast with PB & chocolate chips.

Then 1/4 cup oatmeal with more PB & chocolate chips. This did the trick. I swear nothing fills my stomach or “sticks to my ribs” quite like oatmeal!

And yes, I stopped eating by 9:00. It helps that I got full and comfortable, then fell asleep on the couch!

How was your Monday? Any goals for the month of March?

I like it green

It’s good to start a new week off with a nice, refreshing and nutrient-dense green smoothie!

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This time I used almond milk and the taste difference is unbelievable, almond milk is so much creamier too.

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I also had a pita with a smear of peanut butter. Good breakfast for a cold February morning, ha ha.

I snacked on some nuts mid-morning and for lunch some leftover vegan meatloaf that I made for the Superbowl yesterday, along with some veggies and a tangerine.

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Before my run today, I snacked on a Larabar. I seriously don’t think there is any reason to switch to anything else, this is my perfect pre-run fuel.

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I was supposed to meet a friend for dinner but she wasn’t feeling well so I was on my own when I got home tonight.

I whipped up some spaghetti and topped it with sauce and broccoli and had a slice of leftover bread on the side 😉

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For dessert, I had a pita pocket with White Chocolate Wonderful and chocolate chips.

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And I scraped out the rest of the WCW jar (another tbsp maybe). I can’t believe it is gone already! The stuff is like crack.

What is your favorite meal of the day?

Mine is breakfast but there is also nothing quite like a nice, warm, homemade healthy dinner after a good workout 🙂

Old favorites

This morning, I felt like having something I hadn’t eaten in a while. This used to be one of my favorite oatmeal combos before I discovered including nut butter.

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Raisins and chocolate chips! I love when it all melts and you stir it up together. It’s like a raisin chocolate chip oatmeal cookie 🙂

I snacked on some nuts mid morning and drank two cups of black coffee because for some reason I was really cold today!

For lunch, I had leftover tofu stir fry from the other night.

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I plan on making it again sometime this week, I’ve got a new bag of veggies to try out, plus I want to take Mari’s suggestion of including peanut butter.

After lunch, I headed to the gym for a short run and weight training session. It was great!

I refueled with some soy yogurt and granola when I got back. I practically inhaled it.

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I’m all out of granola now so I think I’ll back off the yogurt for a while since that was really the only reason I got it. It’s just too high in sugar for my liking.

I had more leftovers for dinner: tonight it was red beans & rice leftover from Sunday.

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I also had a pita with Smart Balance after I realized that alone wouldn’t fill me up.

I’m having the girls over tomorrow night so I dove right into housework to get this place in decent shape for my guests. That worked up a little appetite and I had just the thing for it.

Green Monster at night!

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Just soymilk, banana and spinach. Love it!

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I also had a spoonful of White Chocolate Wonderful. It’s tea time 🙂

Quick poll: Are you into “Lost” or not?

The new season started tonight so I know a lot of people are freaking out right now, ha ha. I’m not a fan myself but my mom says I can’t call her while the show is on!

Aww, shucks!

Thank you all for the totally sweet comments on my revealing post. I honestly kind of thought I might get ripped for saying I want to lose weight!

But I should know that if anyone understands, it’s you guys!

Breakfast this morning was a green monster, WOO HOO!

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Just soy milk, spinach and a frozen banana. It rocked my socks. Along with a leftover waffle and PB.

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Mid morning, I had some coffee and snacked on some nuts.

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I had my evaluation at work today and it went well, but boy am I glad that’s over for another year 😉

For lunch, I had a sweet potato topped with vegetarian baked beans and a pita on the side.

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They were having chili in the break room today and I snagged a few crackers because I was still feeling hungry. That helped a lot!

Before the great run that I had today, I snacked on a Larabar, though not this one, ha ha. I forgot to take a pic of the peanut butter cookie one I had today so I had to borrow this photo from myself.

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When I got home, I was quite hungry so I whipped up the quickest thing I could think of…spaghetti with leftover sauce and some tasty bread with Smart Balance.

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And finished off the night with the best snack ever!

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Whole wheat toast with White Chocolate Wonderful and chocolate chips.

I’m not feeling so hot, throat kind of hurts, so I think I’m going to turn in early tonight. Hopefully a good night’s sleep will work wonders 🙂

I bid you good evening!

My “get buff” workout

I started off with another green monster this morning. These can just do no wrong by me, now that I have found the perfect combination of ingredients!

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For lunch today, I had leftover tofu that I made Sunday night. I used a brand I’m familiar with but this time I used “firm” instead of “extra firm.”

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I couldn’t tell a really big difference between firm and extra firm, both are good. Talk about a dish that can do no wrong now that I have found the right combination of ingredients!

It took me forever to perfect baked tofu. Totally worth the wait though.

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Before I left work, I fueled up on a Clif bar that I hadn’t had in a while.

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I read through the ingredients, didn’t see anything iffy, only a statement saying it might contain “trace elements” of dairy. Today, it was worth it. I love this bar!

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After work, I hit the gym for a KILLER WORKOUT!

I started off doing 10 minutes on the stepmill/stairmaster using an “endurance” program. I had it set for 15 minutes but didn’t make it all the way.

How does Kath do it? That machine kicked my butt!

Then I embarked on my weight lifting routine. These days, I am focusing on heavier weights and lower reps to build strength. I’m hoping to alternate it with the opposite to keep up muscle endurance as well.

  • Chest presses – 22.5 lb dumbbells; 1×10, 1×8, 1×6
  • Shoulder presses – 17.5 lbs; 1×8, 1×6, 1×5
  • Bicep curls – 17.5 lbs; 1×10, 1×7, 1×5
  • Tricep extensions – 20 lbs (1 dumbbell); 1×12, 1×10, 1×10
  • Squats – 15 lb bar; 3×30
  • Lunges – 15 lb bar; 3×30 (15 each leg)
  • Plie squats -  8 lb medicine ball; 3×20
  • Calf raises – 15 lb bar; 1×25, 1×30, 1×25
  • Abs – 6 exercises, 25 reps each

I kind of cut it short on abs because I ran out of time, so I think I will try for those tomorrow!

I took a one minute (timed) break between each set. By the time I was done, I was a sweaty, shaky mess, but in a good way. I’m running tomorrow so hopefully my legs won’t be too sore 😉

For dinner tonight, I made some lentils that had been in my cabinet for a while. I cooked them per the instructions on the bag and added some green pepper and onion that I sautéed.

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They were decent but could’ve used an extra “kick” ya know?

I steamed some green beans on the side (yum) and had a piece of toast with SB (Smart Balance Light).

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I also enjoyed a glass of Funky Llama 🙂

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Ew, ignore my dirty stove top! Well, I just told you about it so how did that help? Ha ha.

I just snacked on some cinnamon bread with peanut butter and chocolate chips.

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I “splurged” this week and got the Nestle brand semi-sweet morsels and OH MY GOSH, they are so much better than the generic ones I had been getting!

Sometimes when you buy an off brand there is no difference and it is good to save money but then there are times like this, when the extra $$ (less than a dollar) is totally worth it!

What about you? Do you buy the “name” brands or do you get the cheaper stuff? Do you notice a difference?

I’m off to enjoy some tea and rest these muscles of mine. Good night 🙂