Thursday, May 27, 2010

Who does the building?

Isaiah 9:9-10
9 And the people of Israel[e] and Samaria,
who spoke with such pride and arrogance,
will soon know it.
10 They said, “We will replace the broken bricks of our ruins with finished stone,
and replant the felled sycamore-fig trees with cedars.”

To think that I can make anything of my life, of the ruins of my sin, that my efforts will count for anything is pride. Psalm 127:1
[ The Blessing of the LORD ] A Solomonic song of ascents. Unless the LORD builds a house, its builders labor over it in vain; unless the LORD watches over a city, the watchman stays alert in vain.

When I try to make things happen in my life, or to be something, or change something in my life, IF God is not the One initiating the changes, my efforts are vain and very prideful.


Isaiah 6:5-7
5 Then I said, “It’s all over! I am doomed, for I am a sinful man. I have filthy lips, and I live among a people with filthy lips. Yet I have seen the King, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.”

6 Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a burning coal he had taken from the altar with a pair of tongs. 7 He touched my lips with it and said, “See, this coal has touched your lips. Now your guilt is removed, and your sins are forgiven.”

When driven by conviction to the point of crushing under the weight of sin because of seeing the Holiness of God and the state of my own heart, crying out for mercy is an act of hope. It is the belief that God is loving and merciful that drives the soul to cry out for reprieve. It is the belief that God longs for reconciliation that cries out for mercy. If the sould did not have hope, the weight of sin would crush and the soul would sear its conscience and turn from the One who could save it. Hope believes, hope cries out, hope receives mercy.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Easy meal/ menu planning

***NOTE*** You can choose 1200, 1500 or 1800 calories and will give you a menu to follow complete with links to the recipes! Click on the title of this post to go to the website!

EatingWell 28 Day Diet Meal Plan

Calorie Level: 1200|1500|1800

Sample: Day 1, 1200 calorie diet.

Whole-wheat toast (1 slice)
Apricot jam (1 tablespoon)
Skim milk (1 cup)
Dried Fruit Compote with Green Tea & Lemon

Herbed Zucchini Soup or Green Gazpacho Whole-wheat pita bread (1/2 medium pita)
Peach (1 small)

Cottage Cheese Veggie Dip Multigrain rice cake (1 cake)

Strawberry-Raspberry Sundaes Tilapia & Summer Vegetable Packets or Grilled Sirloin with a Coffee Bean-Peppercorn Crust Steamed broccoli (1 cup)
Brown rice (1/2 cup, cooked)

Leek and Potato soup

***NOTE*** really good to add leftover ham or some bacon to it. Increases the calories, but it's still really low cal.

Leek and Potato Soup

6 servings, about 1 cup each

Active Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes
Nutrition Profile
Low calorie | Low cholesterol | Low saturated fat | Heart healthy | Healthy weight | High potassium |

View Our Nutrition Guidelines » Ingredients
1 1/2 teaspoons canola oil
3 leeks, trimmed, cleaned and thinly sliced (3 cups)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme, or 1/2 teaspoon dried
6 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 1/4 pounds all-purpose potatoes, (about 3 medium), peeled and cut into small chunks
1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream
Salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste

1.Heat oil in a large heavy saucepan or stockpot over low heat. Add leeks and cook, stirring, until softened, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and thyme; cook for 2 minutes more. Pour in broth, increase heat to medium and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
2.Pour the soup through a strainer set over a large bowl. Puree the leeks in a food processor or blender until smooth, adding some the broth if necessary. Return the puree and broth to the saucepan. Add potatoes and simmer, covered, until the potatoes are soft, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and mash the potatoes thoroughly with a potato masher.
3.Stir in sour cream, salt and pepper. Return to low heat and heat until hot, but not boiling. Serve hot or chilled.
Per serving: 162 calories; 4 g fat (2 g sat, 1 g mono); 13 mg cholesterol; 25 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 7 g protein; 2 g fiber; 206 mg sodium; 507 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (15% daily value), Vitamin C (40% dv).

1 1/2 Carbohydrate Serving

Exchanges: 1 starch, 1 vegetable, 1 fat

Sweet & Sour beef-cabbage soup

***NOTE*** I add the apple close to the end so it doesn't get all mushy. Also, I would suggest using less caraway (unless you really like it).
6 servings, about 1 3/4 cups each

Active Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes
Nutrition Profile
Diabetes appropriate | Low calorie | Low cholesterol | Healthy weight | High potassium | Heart healthy |

1 tablespoon canola oil
1 pound lean (90% or leaner) ground beef
1 1/2 teaspoons caraway seeds
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 1/2 cups frozen bell pepper and onion mix, thawed, chopped
1 medium Golden Delicious or other sweet-tart cooking apple, unpeeled, diced
6 cups reduced-sodium beef broth
1 15-ounce can crushed or diced tomatoes
1 1/2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon paprika, preferably Hungarian sweet
3 cups coarsely chopped Savoy, or green cabbage
1-2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste

1.Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add beef, caraway seeds and thyme and cook, stirring and breaking up the beef with a spoon, until it is mostly browned, about 4 minutes. Stir in pepper-onion mix and apple; cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes more.
2.Stir in broth, tomatoes, honey and paprika and adjust the heat so the mixture boils gently. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes to blend the flavors. Stir in cabbage and cook just until barely tender, 3 to 4 minutes more. Season with vinegar to taste, salt and pepper.
Per serving: 250 calories; 10 g fat (3 g sat, 5 g mono); 54 mg cholesterol; 20 g carbohydrates; 20 g protein; 4 g fiber; 705 mg sodium; 717 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (45% daily value), Vitamin A (30% dv), Iron & Potassium (20% dv).

1 Carbohydrate Serving

Exchanges: 2 1/2 vegetable, 2 lean meat, 1/2 fat

Mini breakfast casseroles

***NOTE*** don't have ramekins? You can use a muffin pan! I can't wait to try this one!

Mini Italian Breakfast Casseroles

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Makes: 4 servings

What You Need
3 Tbsp. milk
1 Tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese
Dash pepper
1 cup baby spinach, chopped
4 slices ham OR 8 thin slices prosciutto (about 4 oz.)

Here’s How
1.HEAT oven to 350°F. WHISK eggs, milk, 1Tbsp. cheese and pepper in medium bowl until blended. ADD spinach; stir to mix.
2.LINE four greased 10-ounce ramekins or custard cups with ham, pressing against bottoms and sides. DIVIDE egg mixture among ramekins; place in baking pan.
3.BAKE in center of 350°F oven until custard is just set, about 20 minutes. REMOVE from oven; let stand 5 minutes. SPRINKLE with cheese.

Nutrition Information
Per Serving

Excellent source: protein and choline

Good source: Vitamin A

calories: 115
total fat: 6 g
saturated fat: 2 g
polyunsaturated fat: 1 g
monounsaturated fat: 2 g
cholesterol: 226 mg
sodium: 404 mg
carbohydrates: 2 g
dietary fiber: 0 g
protein: 13 g
vitamin A: 485.0 IU
vitamin D: 22.4 IU
folate: 24.2 mcg
calcium: 59.7 mg
iron: 1.3 mg
choline: 145.3 mg

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Clam Chowder

*****NOTE***** I did not use the bay leaf and I added some cooked crab that comes in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. OK, so I didn't add clam juice, bacon or thyme either. And I used red potatoes and 2% milk. I also didn't use the flour and used some cornstarch instead. Mine turned out WAY awesome and was even better the next day!

This low calorie chowder makes a satisfying lunch or a hearty dinner on a chilly day. Sprinkle the clam chowder with oyster crackers, and serve with a slice of crusty bread.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutesIngredients:
•2-6 1/2 oz. cans chopped clams, undrained
•2 8-oz. bottles clam juice
•2 slices bacon
•2 cups chopped onion
•1 1/2 cups chopped celery
•2 garlic cloves, minced
•5 cups peeled, chopped yukon gold potatoes (two pounds)
•2 cups water
•3/4 tsp salt
•1/2 tsp dried thyme
•1 bay leaf
•3 cups 1% low-fat milk
•1/2 cup flour
1. Drain the clams through a collander, reserving the liquid. Combine the clam liquid with the clam juice, and set liquids and the clams aside.

2. Heat a large, heavy-bottomed stock pot over medium-high heat, and cook the bacon until crisp. Reserve 2 tsp of the bacon drippings in the pan, and remove the bacon. Crumble the bacon, and set aside.

3. Add the onion, celery, and garlic to the bacon drippings, and cook for 3-4 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.

4. Add the potatoes, water, clam juices, salt, thyme, and bay leaf to the pan. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.

5. With a wire whisk, whisk together the milk and the flour. Slowly add the milk mixuture to the pan, and continue simmering the soup for 10 minutes, stirring often as the soup thickens.

6. Discard the bay leaf. Add the clams and crumbled bacon to the chowder. Simmer an additional 2 minutes.

Serves 8

Per Serving Calories 200