Tag Archives: cake

The Most Money I’ve Ever Spent on Juice

Last night, we stopped at Target, and I bought the ingredients for the Jillian Michaels detox water/tea. I went to three different stores and Target was the only place that I found the dandelion tea bags and unsweetened cranberry juice.

Every time I picked up a bottle of juice that said “cranberry 100% juice”, it turned out to be a blend of four different juices. 100% juice yes, but not 100% cranberry juice. Go ahead and check next time you’re at the grocery store – 100% just cranberry juice is pretty hard to find, especially unsweetened.  Even though the picture on the front of the bottles shows just cranberries, it’s not actually just cranberry juice most of the time.

Luckily, at Target, I found unsweetened organic just cranberry juice. Not so luckily, the juice was insanely expensive. $8.09 a bottle. For one bottle! Crazy!

I really debated buying it. Did I want to spend $8 on juice and $5 on tea bags?! In the end, I did up buy it (obviously). It was the only place I had seen both the dandelion tea bags and cranberry juice. It figured it would be a good experiment to try put. That way if it helps me lose weight, you can run out and spend $8 on cranberry juice too :)

Another thing – the Ocean Spray No Sugar Added Cranberry Juice (a blend of four juices) has 140 calories and 36 grams of sugar per 8 oz. serving. (And that’s the no sugar added version.)

The R.W. Knudsen Unsweetened Just Cranberry 100% Juice has 70 calories and only 8 grams of sugar per 8 oz. serving. I’m guessing that this is the cranberry juice that’s supposed to be used in the detox tea.

This darn tea better work because it wasn’t cheap. I plan on making the first batch on either Sunday or Monday morning. We’ll see how it goes!

Today’s Workout

  • 3 miles, treadmill (3:4 interval)
  • Stationary Bike – 12 minutes

I didn’t set my alarm for Boot Camp last night, and I told myself that if I woke up in time to make it, I would go, otherwise I’d just go to the gym when I woke up. I woke up at 7 am. Boot Camp starts are 7:10 am. I was glad that I slept though because I haven’t been sleeping well lately.

I got to the gym around 7:30 am and did a 3:4 interval workout on the treadmill. I walked three minutes, followed by four minutes of running for a total of three miles. After the treadmill, I hopped on the stationary bike for about 12 minutes. Today, I rode through the lost trails. There were a lot of palm trees and grass huts. It was nice.

When I was leaving the gym, a dentist’s office was there handing out toothbrushes for kids.

If you thought my kids wouldn’t be excited for toothbrushes, you’d be wrong. After fighting over who would get the floss, they sat on the couch watching cartoons and clutching their new toothbrushes.

Well, I off to finish baking some treats for Jaden’s party today! (And I really need to stop tasting so much of what I’m baking – it’s just so darn good!) Have a wonderful Saturday!

Questions of the day:

  • What was the last thing you baked?
  • Do you set an alarm on the weekends or just wake up naturally? What time?
  • Any plans or workouts for today?


Filed under Family Fun, Fitness, Recipes, Working Out

Birthday Fun


Yesterday afternoon, we went to my grandparent’s house to celebrate Marlene’s birthday.

There was so much delicious food. I indulged, but I don’t think that I went too overboard.

Even though, I am not a tomato fan, I tried the bruschetta because it looked delicious. I was surprised at how much I liked it, since I don’t really like tomatoes.

My grandpa made beer can chicken on the grill, which Danny said was fabulous.

I ate salmon, which was cooked in a grilling basket. So good.

And the night isn’t complete without a little love from Baby McCutie. She gave Danny a ten minute hug. It was so sweet.

My dad took the guys outside to show them some new frisbee golf techniques. Frisbee golf, also known as disc golf, is a sport that my dad recently discovered and has been playing.

From the PDGA website:

Disc golf is played much like traditional golf. Instead of a ball and clubs, however, players use a flying disc, or Frisbee®. A golf disc is thrown from a tee area to a target which is the “hole”.

As a player progresses down the fairway, he or she must make each consecutive shot from the spot where the previous throw has landed. The trees, shrubs, and terrain changes located in and around the fairways provide challenging obstacles for the golfer. Finally, the “putt” lands in the basket and the hole is completed. Disc golf shares the same joys and frustrations of traditional golf, whether it’s sinking a long putt or hitting a tree halfway down the fairway.


My dad really likes it, and Danny has played a couple of times with him. They don’t ask me to play because apparently they think that girls can’t play frisbee golf. That’s dumb. They’re probably just scared that I’ll kick their butts. Actually, they just leave me at home to watch the kids.

A birthday party isn’t complete without cake. Since Marlene is a professional dessert chef (is that the proper name for it?), my Grandpa decided that he would bake her a cake since she’s the one always baking. It was his first cake that he made all my himself and it came out delicious! Jaden did help by putting stars on the top of the cake.

It was three layers of chocolate and one layer of vanilla with French butter cream frosting. Amazing!

And cake isn’t complete without ice cream.

That slow churned ice cream sure is delicious.

It was a great night celebrating with family!

Questions of the day:

  • What’s the best thing you ate this weekend?
  • Favorite ice cream flavor?
  • Have you ever heard of frisbee golf?
  • Any plans for today?


Filed under Dinner, Family Fun, Fun

First Birthday

Happy 1st Birthday to the world’s cutest and best niece! We love you!

Today is my niece’s first birthday, and tomorrow is her birthday party to celebrate. They grow up so fast! I remember being in the hospital with my brother and sister-in-law this time last year waiting for her to be born. I’m a pushy aunt, if you can’t tell. And there was a number of times when she was first-born that I tried to keep her, but Paul and Crystal kept wanting her back. Geesh.

 Happy Birthday!


Last night, my family came over to cookout and eat a special surprise dessert. I made garlic roasted potatoes that came out really tasty.

Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture of them once they were cooked. We also had burgers, salmon, grilled broccoli, chips, strawberries, and cherries.

A few weeks ago, my step-mom saw a Jack Daniels chocolate cake featured on Good Morning America. The bakery that made it was offering a special one day half price sale. So, she called me to order it as a surprise for my Danny, my dad, and brother.

The men in my family love Jack Daniels. If he was alive today, they’d all be BFFs with him…or stalk him. They love collecting Jack Daniels items, and when my step-mom saw this cake, she knew it was perfect for them.

It was a chocolate cake infused with Jack Daniels and topped with fudgy ganache frosting.

I had a small sliver, and it was delicious. You couldn’t taste the Jack Daniels in it, but you sure could taste the chocolate.

After eating the cake, we played Catch Phrase for a while. We haven’t played that game in so long, and it was so much fun!



  • Biggest Loser Boot Camp

I was tired this morning because I didn’t get to bed until after midnight and then had to wake up for boot camp. And boot camp was tough today! We did a little bit of strength work, then we flipped tires up and down a field and did sprints. We finished up with some ab work. It was a great workout.

After I ate breakfast and showered, we headed out to pick up our packets for tomorrow’s 5k.

I actually really like the race shirt. It is by far my favorite color shirt that I have ever gotten from a race. But I also have an intense love for neon colors. Danny didn’t love it as much as I did.

We stopped at Subway for lunch and are just finishing up a few errands this afternoon.

Tomorrow will be busy with our 5k and my niece’s birthday party!

Questions of the day:

  • What do you have planned for this weekend?
  • What’s your favorite color? What’s your favorite color to wear?
  • Any races coming up?


Filed under Biggest Loser, Dinner, Family Fun, Fitness, Working Out

A Baby Shower and Some Time at a Farm

Good morning! In case you missed anything over weekend:

  • I went to the library and farmers market
  • Ran a 5k
  • Celebrated my mom’s birthday


Yesterday was my sister-in-law’s baby shower, and it turned out wonderful. I can’t wait to meet my new niece or nephew in a couple more months!

My sister-in-law, Mandy, with the kids:

It was decorated so pretty, and there was so much food and really cute drink stations.

Marlene made the owl cake and a variety of cupcakes. It was carrot cake, and it was so awesome.

If you get a chance, could you please vote for Marlene’s business here. She needs at least 250 votes to be eligible for a small business grant. Just type in Sweet Temptations and click on Illinois. Thank you :)

After the shower, we went back to my brother-in-law and sister-in-law’s house. They live a legit farm.

The idea of living on a farm is so foreign to me. They only live about 30 minutes away from us in the Chicago suburbs, but it’s like a whole different world. Life on a farm is hard and constant work. They get woken up by roosters, they have horses and donkeys, they eat fresh eggs from their neighbors chickens.

Jaden loved it. He is such an animal lover. He loved learning how to brush the horses and ponies.

They also have a bunch of cute puppies from a nearby shelter. When the shelter is full, they house the extra puppies and dogs.

It’s amazing how different life is on a farm.

This weekend was super busy, and I woke up this morning feeling exhausted. I feel like I could sleep another eight hours, but Jacob has band this morning, so I figured since I have to be up anyway, I should go to BodyPump.

Have a great morning!

Questions of the day:

  • Do you like carrot cake? It’s funny that a cake with a vegetable in it would taste so sweet and delicious!
  • Do you know anyone that lives on a farm? Have you ever had fresh-straight-from-a-free-range-chicken eggs?
  • Any plans for today?



Filed under Family Fun

The Biggest Loser Program


Last night, I went to The Biggest Loser Orientation at my gym. There was a lot more people there than I expected. There was at least 40 to 50 people there. I thought that I would at least know a few of them from the gym and classes, but I only knew the trainers and one of the women participating.

Everything was very well-organized and informative. We all got an information folder outlining the program. It included the program expectations:

It had a list of each workout and nutrition information days:

It also had a workout and food tracker log:

I prefer to write my food journal in a small notebook, so I’m going to stick to that.

Then came in the weigh-in part. I ended up gaining a few pounds over the past two weeks and wasn’t very happy. Then, I realized that it was completely my own fault. I haven’t been making the healthiest choices that I could be lately. We ate out at a restaurant for dinner for almost a week straight. And I haven’t tracked one food or counted one calorie.

I’m glad that I joined the Biggest Loser Challenge, and I think that it will help get me back on track. Being held accountable really seems to work for me.

My plan to get back on track this week includes:

  • drinking lots of water
  • writing down what I eat in my food journal and counting calories
  • eating lots of veggies, fruits, and whole grains
  • eating most of my carbs during the day rather than at night
  • avoiding sugar (if a sweet craving hits, eat sugar-free jello)

I also got a Biggest Loser t-shirt that we’re supposed to wear for workouts and stuff. By the time I got there last night, they only had size large and bigger t-shirts left. It’s a bit big, but I just plan on wearing a tank top underneath if it gets in my way during a workout. I’m excited to start this program and go to the first workout!

Today’s Breakfast

Breakfast #1 this morning was half a grapefruit. I was smarter than the grapefruit this time and cut it in half the right way.

Why do people only eat half a grapefruit? Once you scoop the fruit out, it’s not all that much. Why can’t I just eat the whole grapefruit?

Today’s Workout

  • BodyPump – 60 minutes

BodyPump was crowded today. It was hard to fit everyone in. My lower back is sore from Butts and Guts class yesterday so I took it easy during the back track. I normally lift 25 pounds during the back workout, but today I stuck with 20 pounds.

Jaden must take after me when it comes to crazy hair. (Actually Jacob had crazy hair day at band today, and Jaden wanted crazy hair too).

Breakfast #2

After BodyPump, I came home and had what I considered my “real” breakfast. I opened the freezer and was happy to see that I had one Van’s English muffin left. I haven’t had an egg sandwich in forever (a few weeks seems like forever when you’re used to eating an egg sandwich every day).

I topped my English muffin with two egg whites and half a slice of provolone cheese. I also had some blueberries on the side.

My grandmother, Marlene, is an awesome dessert chef and makes the delicious cakes and desserts that you often see on my blog. She even made my 30th birthday cake. She is in the process of opening her business but needs a grant to do so. In order to get a grant, she needs at least 250 votes to be considered.

I would be forever grateful if you could please help support the small businesses and vote for her at Mission Small Business. All you have to do is click on “log in & support” button and then type in “Sweet Temptations” and click on Illinois. Thank you so much for helping out!

Questions of the day:

  • Do you like exercising better in group settings or alone?
  • What’s your favorite way to eat eggs?
  • What’s your favorite kind of cake? Mine is any cake. Any cake at all.


Filed under Biggest Loser, Breakfast, Fitness, Working Out

Bikes and Birthdays

I got my new bike yesterday!

And Danny got surprised with a new bike too. It’s an early birthday present from me, my dad, and step-mom. Danny’s actual birthday is Thursday.

Taking the bike for a test spin.

I also picked up some mini Clif bars at the bike shop to take to Wisconsin Dells with us.

After the bike shop, we stopped at Jersey Mike’s for lunch.

I knew I’d be having cake at my mom’s house later, so I went with a sub in a tub, which is basically a sub sandwich minus the bread. They just throw everything is a big ol’ tub instead.

We brought the bikes home and got them safely in the garage, then we headed to my mom’s house to celebrate my brother and Danny’s birthdays.

My mom got them both fuzzy dice – Cubs for Danny and Sox for Paul. It’s a feud. Little does my brother know that I dress his daughter in cute pink Cubs outfits when he’s at work.

Just kidding. Relax, Paul.

The cake was so delicious and chocolately. Oh, chocolate, how I’ve missed you.

My brother called this my “crazy stalker smile.” Thanks, Paul.

I don’t know my eyes are so puffy daddy in this picture.

After leaving my mom’s, we stopped at the store to pick up some food for our road trip to Wisconsin Dells. The room has a fridge and microwave so we also got some food that we can easily eat in the room.

Besides macaroni and cheese cups, I made sure to pick up some healthy options. Greek yogurt, regular yogurt for the kids, salad, fruit cups, apple slices, hard-boiled eggs, Kashi oatmeal packets, sugar-free jello, Clif bars, and almond milk.

Since we will be in the car for 3+ hours, I made activity books for the kids to do.

I found a few websites with free car trip printables, like mazes, word searches, license plate games, etc. I figure that it should keep the kid’s occupied for about 10 minutes. Then I only have 3 hours and 20 minutes to worry about…

I also made little tickets for the kids to turn into me at a certain time in exchange for a little treat that I have. I’m hoping all this will keep the car ride nice and calm so that we don’t all want pull our hair out by the time we get there.

This morning, Danny and I are off to BodyPump. Danny’s been to BodyPump before but not in a while, so I’m looking forward to it!

Questions of the day:

  • Any ideas for Father’s Day? Do you get your dad something? Your significant other if you have kids?
  • Do you pack snacks for long road trips? Do you bring food with you to the hotel?
  • How to you keep your kids entertained on long car rides?


Filed under Family Fun, Fitness

Gimme That Cake


Last night, we went to Bingo night at my son’s school. It was pretty fun, even though Danny felt the need to be extremely loud, especially when he got a Bingo. I don’t think I’ve ever heard him yell so loud.

Bananas and Bingo – Life is good.

Danny was the only one out of the four of us to win, and he let Jaden pick out the prize. He picked out a gumball machine. Great, that gum will last two days. My son seriously has a gum chewing problem.


This morning, I pretty much rolled out of bed and went to the gym. Yoga started at 8:30 am, but I wanted to get there a bit early so I could walk on the treadmill for a little while. I got there at about 8am, and walked for about 20 minutes.

Then I went to yoga, which was a little more fast paced today. And I was done with my workout by 9:30 am. During the whole yoga class, I kept thinking about coffee, so as soon as I was done, I headed over to McDonald’s for some $1.08 coffee. Cheaper than Dunkin Donuts.

After I got my coffee, My dad called me to tell me that he was on his way to the gym with my stepmom. Way to go, Dad!

Talking to my dad. It had to be documented on camera, right?

Then I headed to the grocery store to pick up three things and walked out $65 later. This always happens to me – I go in for a couple of things and leave with a whole cart full. I should be banned from quick trips to the store in order to save money.


For lunch this afternoon, I made a roasted veggie  flatbread pizza and roasted brussels sprouts.

I also had a glass of Horizon chocolate milk. I am trying to add more protein to my meals, and one cup of this chocolate milk has 8 grams of protein. I checked the Almond Breeze chocolate milk, and it only had 1 gram of protein, so Horizon it was.

This evening we’re going over to my grandparent’s house for dinner and to play cards. I bought some veggies and dip at the store so that I have something healthy to munch on. It doesn’t help that Marlene owns her own dessert company and makes awesome treats, cakes, and desserts.

Here’s a Thomas cake that she made for Jaden’s 2nd birthday:

My baby shower cake and my sister-in-law’s baby shower cake made by Marlene:


And a birthday cake that she made for my Grandpa:

So, it’s pretty hard to pass up dessert at my grandparent’s house. Unless, of course, you hate delicious things. Which I don’t. Pass the cake!

What’s your favorite dessert? I pretty much love them all.

Any plans for the weekend?


Filed under Family Fun, Fitness, Lunch, Working Out