Thursday, December 31, 2009

I Think My Job is Making Me Fat

Okay people, it's the start of a new year (okay, it will be tomorrow), and this is the time when many of us make resolutions to lose weight.  I've been one of them for...I don't even know how many years now.  And today I sit here typing, the heaviest I've ever been.

I've had the pleasure of being off work for over a week now, and it's given me a lot of time for reflection.  I've said before that the times in my life when I've lost the most weight, it seemed to just fall off effortlessly.  I wasn't ever on some fabulous new diet plan or working out like crazy.  So, I've been thinking lately about what exactly was going on in my life at those times that could have contributed to the weight loss.

The time I lost the most, and got down to my all time low as an adult (112), I was 28, married, and teaching 6th grade.  The interesting thing is that my husband and I separated right after I hit that weight.  So, clearly, things in that department had not been going well while I was losing the weight.  What was going well was my job.

I was teaching in a really small school and had a self-contained class of 17 6th graders.  I loved them.  This is the only time in my life when I would wake up Monday morning and be excited about going to work.  (Maybe because I wanted to get away from that husband?)  I had a gorgeous classroom, I loved the small class, and yes I had a couple challenging students, but I loved all 17 of them as though they were my own kids.  We had a lot of fun that year.  I look back at pictures of me during that time, and I swear I was beautiful and glowing.

The next year, they moved me up to teach Junior High Language Arts, and I hated it.  And I gained a lot of the weight back.  Plus I spent that year separated from the husband.

The husband and I got back together, and the next time I was able to lose a large amount of weight, we were desperately trying to build a business (I think this is where the term "epic fail" originated) and to resuscitate our failing marriage.  I wasn't working a typical job, just working on the business, and I could pretty much set my own schedule.  I did exercise during that time, but nothing crazy.  And I lost maybe 20 pounds.

Then I got my current job (and eventually got rid of that husband!) and gradually built my fat stores up to their current levels.

Being off work all this time for the holiday break, I've been pretty calm and content.  I did some visiting with friends and family, slept in a lot, ate whatever I wanted, got snowed in with my cuddly pups, and have done virtually no exercise.  And I swear I've lost weight.  I haven't actually stepped on the scale, but I can tell.

Then the other day one of my co-workers called me, and I kid you not, after a 2 minute phone call with her, I hung up the phone and cried for an hour.  I can't even explain why, and if I tried, it wouldn't make any sense to anyone else.  But just speaking to that person threw me into a tailspin.

I do stress an awful lot about my job.  There are things about it that I love an awful lot too.  But a lot of things I don't love.  I've debated quitting (briefly) but I truly don't think that's the thing to do right now.  However, I do need to find ways to minimize the stress, including minimizing my time with that particular person!

My plan, going into the new year is to right away schedule myself some time off.  Having two weeks off in a row is pure heaven, so I'm going to plan another long vacation for about 1/2 way through the year.  I'm also going to look at the months in between and make sure I have at least a long weekend every single month, whether through an actual holiday or through my own vacation time.  Hopefully regular time off will help keep me sane.

I have also talked to my boss about cutting back a bit on my late nights and weekends.  We all are, not just me.  So, hopefully that will ease a little more stress (for everyone in the office).  Also, I have a new duty that will require me to spend one more day per month on the road, rather than in the office.  I'm going to make sure that day I'm gone is a day when you-know-who is there, and make sure I'm there all day if you-know-who is to be out.

The other thing is that I truly need to let go of this need to make sense of all the craziness that my job entails.  I work for the state, which means government red tape and bureaucracy (I spelled that so wrong the first three times that spell-check couldn't even figure out what I was trying to say) and a lot of nonsense.  In the past, we've had a bit of a say in eliminating some nonsense, but anymore it seems like the more we protest, the more nonsense is thrown at us.  I don't handle nonsense well.  But, I think, in the interest of my own sanity, in this case, I can't beat 'em so I need to join 'em.  Which means just accepting the nonsense and doing what I'm told and not expecting anything to be logical or reasonable.  Regina and I are going to work together on this.  And try to get our creative and intelligent outlets outside of the job.

I hope all of these steps, combined with making more of an effort to exercise and eat right, will help me find the magic formula that makes this body let go of her fat.  What do you plan to do differently in 2010?

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

A Moment of Reflection

Before the whole world goes insane with setting those crazy / unattainable / self-defeating goals (to become a super model, to get ripped abs with 10 min workouts, to win the lottery, to change your whole life in 30 days or less, to poof up your personal Mr. Dreamy etc) - I wanted to take a moment to look at the big picture. There is something to be said for reflecting, planning, and as I often say to my son "engaging your brain".

The poem below certainly could apply to many areas of our lives - but could also describe the struggle with weight loss. So take a moment and then put your pencil to the paper and set a goal that will give you reason (and good odds) to celebrate! And please, by all means, invite us to the party!

Autobiography in Five Short Chapters
by Portia Nelson

I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in
I am lost...I am helpless
It isn't my fault.
It takes forever to find a way out.

I walk down the same street,
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don't see it.
I fall in again.
I can't believe I am in the same place.
But it isn't my fault,
It still takes a long time to get out.

I walk down the same street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall's a habit.
My eyes are open.
I know where I am.
It is my fault.
I get out immediately.

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

I walk down another street.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Simple Sweets (guilt free)

In case all of your holiday indulgences have left you with a sweet tooth that demands to be fed. Give this recipe a try - from Hungry Girl 200 Under 200.
gimme gimme s'mores sandwich
1 sheet (4 crackers) low fat honey graham crackers
1/4 cup Cool Whip Free, thawed
1 tsp mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
8 mini marshmallows
In a small bowl, lightly stir together Cool Whip, choco chips, and marshamallows. Don't over-stir.
Break graham crackers into two squares and make a sandwich filling with the above mixture.
Freeze until solid, about 1 hour. Store in freezer until you are ready to dine!
Entire Sandwich - 133 calories, 2.5 fat Not bad - for an ice-cream-like snack, hmmm?

Monday, December 28, 2009

Fact of Crap?

Okay - pop quiz. Remember long ago, I said I was a lady on fire with the purging / de-cluttering of my house? Yes? Aw, thanks for listening. Well, the FIRE has flickered down to some hot ashes - hmmm, maybe we are warm coals by this point. But I'm still working on it from time to time.

Any-hoodle, in my mission to use what needs to be used and sort the loved from the unloved - I came upon an embarrassing amount of magazines. Still wrapped in plastic. From 2008. My face reddens. In an effort not to be wasteful, I have stuffed a few in my various work / wait bags and read them from time to time. This has lead to a wealth of information. First, I find myself needing (read as: falling for) the ads for products that are likely obsolete at this point.

A moment of silence for their departure, please. If only I could have been a better consumer...maybe they would still be here. *small sob*

Okay, back to the useful stuff...I found an article on the scientific approach to weight loss. Is it possible that this was fate? After all, in 2008 I was not in need of / ready to hear this info. But today, it has great meaning. Because I believe that all of our readers have the sh%* together and likely are no longer owners of the June 2008 Allure issue I will share the info that was scientific experts, no less....

  • There are two stages of weight loss. Losing and Maintenance.
  • Losing goal should be around 10% of body weight or less.
  • The focus here is NOT exercise but food restrictions - any method that you can stick with long term is fine.
  • If you haven't lost in in 6 months you are likely not gonna. Move on to maintenance for some time (months) and then try again. *let us NOT reflect on how long we've been at this already*
  • In Maintenance exercise is key. It gives you more room to eat - therefore, making the restriction more bearable. Daily, vigorous activity - like 60-90 mins a day. *weeping in corner*
  • Good habits include FREQUENT weigh ins (yeah- I'm a daily gal), food diaries or calorie counting (boo! but I know it works), eat breakfast EVERY DAY (yeah - permission to eat).
  • Myths about exercise include: strength training will NOT increase your metabolism unless you are a ripped bodybuilder (if this is the case, please go away or offer trainer services), a harder workout is NOT better - it increases the odds that you will be lazier the rest of the day, the idea of a slower workout being the key to a "fat burning zone is b.s."
  • Stop drinking your calories. They don't fill you up.
  • Stop trying to do the extreme-makeover. Set reasonable goals and stop beating yourself up for the crazy ones that were never attainable.
  • Prevention is key - know thine own self and find a new method of coping and setting yourself up for success.
  • Have a plan that is practical.
  • Your body has a built in target weight - with a range of 20 lbs or so.
  • Sleep deprivation messes up your chemicals and actually stimulates your appetite.
  • Stress makes more calories get stored as fat.
Now, some of that was reinforcement - but some was a bit eye opening. I'm going to have to break out a calendar and calculator and put this to the test. Anyone else want to re-define the way they've been trying to reach their goal?

Saturday, December 26, 2009

You Won't Find It In A Box

Recently (okay sometime in the last 6 months) my place of work participated in a family activity where we needed to bring an activity. We landed on the idea of using homemade blocks to build larger than life towers / buildings / etc. So, obviously with this plan - you need a LOT of boxes. We sent out the call to our whole building and soon we found ourselves surrounded by piles of boxes. As we began the work of sorting through and prepping them to become building materials, I noticed that most of these boxes were from food products. Being someone on the mission of improving my diet - I took a moment to reflect on the food choices of others - and guess what I found? 99% of those boxes were total CRAP food! Crackers, Meal in a Box, Chips (okay, there's really only a few chips that comes in boxes), cookies, snacks, processed cheese-like items and the list went on.

So do you see the theme? No veggies, no fruit. You would never hear a dietitian / doctor EVER say "Try to increase your consumption of this___________ (insert product in a box)." So the lesson learned here? First, most of these empty boxes would have filled our landfills (therefore infuriating my inner green-ness). Second, if you had to have ONE SIMPLE rule to improve your eating habits I would go with - "Don't buy your food in boxes". Want to test my theory? Go to your cabinet right now. Open the door. Count how many natural / nutritious / chemical free foods you find living there - that came home in a box. I'll wait...

Frightening, isn't it? Now, I know, raisins can come in boxes. Oatmeal can come in a box. There are a FEW cereals that come in boxes and don't have enough "extras" to be classified as junk food. So I will admit there are a FEW exceptions. But even if you ONLY bought 3 boxes (that were like the above "good examples) on each of your shopping trips -how much better off would you be?

And am I the only one that thinks maybe all these boxed wonders are the very things that derail our healthy eating plans? It's all those goodies that I would rather pack up for snacking. All of the easy to grab items that have a long shelf life that I store in my office. Those food-ish products that I easily consume multiple servings of before I've been satisfied - they all come in boxes too. So, I'll add this to my process of self-improvement.

Now, in case you see me in the grocery aisle - I know that going box-free will not be a cold turkey process. But I'm going to make a real effort to examine WHAT I'm buying in boxes and what kind of nutrition it's offering me. Without being surrounded by my favorite boxed temptations - maybe I'll get better at reaching for healthy choices instead. Nature doesn't come in a box...but here's a thought - does it come in a bag? Maybe we'll leave that for another day...

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Getch-Ya Drink On!

With the holidays closely approaching us - you really don't need much of an excuse to put a little schnocker in your day. So if you were looking for an excuse ....let me aid and abet you with this tasty treat as part of Cole's (All the Small Stuff) Tuesdays at the Table!! Or as it may turn out....Tuesdays UNDER the Table! No seriously, drink responsibly!


Boil 7 cups water and 1 cup sugar
Boil 2 teabags in 2 Cups water

Mix above ingredients with these:

1 12 oz frozen Lemonade
1 12 oz frozen Orange Juice
2 cups vodka
OR you can use 4 cups vodka if you plan to pour a little 7Up or Ginger Ale over it later

Put all of this into a milk jug and freeze if for 24 hours.
Then drink up! (recipe stolen with permission from my mother)

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Stuff About Potatoes

Do you know how many tater tots equals one serving? (Don't try to act like you don't eat tater tots, I know you do. And if you don't, you want to.) Nine. NINE. Have you ever in your life eaten nine, and only nine, tater tots?

I made tater tots for dinner last night. I know, it's not the best choice, but that's what I wanted. I turned on the oven (hey, at least I didn't deep fry them!) and poured out the number of tater tots I thought I wanted to eat. Then for some reason, I decided to check out the nutrition information. Serving Size: 9 tots. 150 calories. And how many tots did I have on my plate? 26. Close to 450 calories. And virtually no nutritional value. One gram of fiber. (Hey, that means I ate three grams of fiber! Let's look on the bright side.)

One potato dish I've really become fond of lately is sweet potato fries. Again, I know this may not be the all around best choice of vegetable, but I figure it's better than regular french fries. So, I searched a little bit about nutrition information on those. This is what I found:

Serving size: 12 fries (Have I ever eaten only 12? No.)
Calories: 150
Fiber: 3 grams
Protein: 2 grams
Vitamin A: 100% Daily Value
Vitamin C: 10% Daily Value

Compared to a small order of McDonald's fries:
Serving size: one
Calories: 230
Fiber: 3 grams (I'm shocked it's the same.)
Protein: 3 grams (I'm even more shocked that it's MORE.)
Vitamin A: 0
Vitamin C: 8%

All this information came from The Daily Plate at, which is a pretty cool site.

What's your favorite way to eat potatoes?

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Christmas Yoga

Tonight was the last yoga class before the holiday break, and my instructor sure made it a good one! We came into the room, and all the lights were out, and she'd strung Christmas lights across the front. She had really mellow Christmas music playing, and she informed us all that this was to be a special relaxing Christmas yoga session.

We each got a towel and a band, in addition to the usual mats. She did some of our usual poses, but she threw in a few different things, and even had us dancing at one point!

I really loved a lot of the things she did with the towels. Sometimes it was just used to assist with our usual poses. For an example, she had us sit on the folded up towel when doing seated forward fold and butterfly, and it did add a little different angle to the stretch. But she also had us do some things where we just laid on our backs and put the rolled up towel in different positions and were instructed to just fully relax and let the towel guide our stretch. It provided a nice lower back stretch by putting it there, and it helped open up my chest (Lord knows my chest needs all the help it can get) to put it behind my upper back.

At the end, she had us all move our mats against the wall, and we did a stretch where you put your behind right up against the wall, lie back, and stretch your legs straight up the wall. Okay, granted, it was quite tricky to maneuver myself into this position! But it felt really good once I was there.

Then, during our final relaxation, she came around with some lavender essential oil and gave each person a little mini foot massage. It was heavenly.

I'm so looking forward to getting back into going to yoga regularly after the holidays!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Leftover Turkey? Enchiladas Recipe

I originally got this recipe from Good Housekeeping magazine, and if you'd like to see the original (which includes nutrition information) you can see it here.

The original is yummy, but kind of mild for my taste. Plus, I don't much care for cilantro. And, I don't follow directions well. So, I've modified the recipe considerably. Here's my version:

1 lb. ground turkey (or about 12 ounces shredded cooked turkey if you have leftovers)
1 small onion minced
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. chili powder
salt and pepper to taste
1 can Mexicorn
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
8 oz. reduced fat sour cream
1 1/2 cups shredded reduced fat Mexican cheese blend
10-15 6 inch corn tortillas
10 oz. can of medium enchilada sauce
1 cup medium salsa

Spray 9 X 13 baking pan with cooking spray (or use two smaller pans like I did). Preheat oven to 400 degrees. If using ground turkey, brown and drain. Then add minced onion to the pan and cook until translucent. If using shredded turkey, brown onion in a little oil.

In large bowl (or original pan if it's big enough) combine turkey, onion, corn, beans, seasonings, sour cream, and about half the cheese.

Warm tortillas by wrapping in a damp paper towel and microwaving on high about 30 seconds. Then place about 1/3 cup of filling inside tortilla and roll up tightly. Continue with all tortillas, placing them in pan.

In small bowl, stir enchilada sauce and salsa together. Pour sauce over enchiladas in pan. Top with remaining cheese.

Bake in 400 degree oven 15 to 20 minutes or until cheese melts and enchiladas are heated through.

Visit Cole at All the Small Stuff for more Tuesdays at the Table!

Friday, December 11, 2009

I'm Working Without A Net Here!

Without the Internet, that is.

After a week with many inches of snow, enough snow days to make me think Christmas Break had already begun, and an infections case of snowflake crafting...the universe decided to bless me with the ADDITIONAL gift of lost cable, Internet, and the threat of stealing away all electricity as well.

For those doing the math -it is hard to do office work, parent work, emergency school closing work, and SANTA work. The Internet is CRITICAL! Luckily, I'm back in action today and had to let the world know! (I know you were worried.)

The past weeks have been an odd balancing act of way too much fast food (Thank you McDonald's for the "gift" of free Coke glasses...a constant reminder that I am NOT trying to put COKE in them.) and a total loss of appetite at other times. Were it not for my child insisting on meals - I think I would have forgotten completely.

The ticker has gone down a bit. And while this pleases me, I can't help but think - imagine how much better it could be if you'd actually exercised. It's a thought. My exercise ball has been taken hostage by my son - who now believes it is the only piece of furniture worth sitting on. Mother nature is not my friend. And it's hard to want to take your break on a treadmill which will undoubtedly lead to sweating when you have to dress as if you are trying to avoid hypothermia in your office. All excuses aside - I'll be getting serious about making changes any day now....really. This time of year has additional challenges - for some reason THIS is my "Ice Cream Season". It happens every year - did I eat ice cream all summer...not that I remember. But put a chill in the air and I can barely think of anything better! I've given into the craving a few times - but have avoided the habit of skipping dinner and going straight to milkshake. Progress? I think so.

On the soda front - I've made it several weeks at this point. Hubby decided to be ever so helpful in my mission - by picking me up a Diet bubbly at the gas station. In his defense, there was a day that returning to the car without a beverage for me would have resulted in a travel delay. So far, I'm trying to avoid the meltdown and the beautiful bottle is still safely sealed in the fridge. His days are numbered - but I'm really thrilled at my willpower...I've had access, I've had fast food, and I've had stress - and yet, I've had success. Yeah, me!

Here's some additional holiday strategies you may want to use:
1. Consider asking someone else to make the desserts for your holiday feast - and order something that you don't like. Let's face it - you'll be full by then anyway.

2. If possible, burn your mouth periodically with hot cocoa or latte. It really detours your ability to mindlessly chomp down on snacks.

3. If hot glue is involved in your gingerbread house construction - it becomes much less tempting to nibble.

4. Muster up some family drama - your overall dread of the event, walking on eggshells, and constant biting your tongue may just be enough to keep you from over eating!

5. Have faith. This too shall pass and then we will enter the season of bikini dreams-where the whole world will join us on the quest to have a little less of us to love. =)

Any strategies that will keep you from the "last meal" mentality this holiday season?

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Random Stuff to Let You Know I'm Still Here

It's that time of year. The time when Janet falls off the weight loss wagon and forgets to blog. I thought I'd better shoot off something here to make sure you don't all forget me.

I'm hanging in there and doing the best I can with the working out and eating, but I'm far from perfect this time of year. I did walk with Kathy over lunch today, and we hit the actual gym Monday, where I did the elliptical and some arm and ab machines. I haven't done my push ups and crunches for probably two weeks, so I need to get back into that. I've done pretty well walking 3 days a week or so, but that's not as much as I'd like.

I went to yoga last week, which was rough but awesome. And I did actually stick to my "must do yoga every week" decision two of the three weeks I couldn't go to class. I can't go to class again this week, so I'll plan to do my video tomorrow or Saturday.

Eating... well, I haven't started any baking yet, and nobody has started giving me their baking either (what's the deal people?!), so that's not a problem. I did make X drive me to Dairy Queen last night for a pecan mudslide. You'd be surprised how many people in Missouri decide they need ice cream when it's 12 degrees and snowing. Go figure. Anyway, the doggies got to tag along and collect their free biscuits, so a fun time was had by all.

Regina and I talked the other day about the dangers of just letting it all go until Jan. 1 and that whole "Last Supper" mentality that can result in major gains. So, I'm still trying to make better choices, while not being hard on myself for slacking a little on the workouts or giving in to a treat here and there. But I do for sure plan on getting back into my program full force in January.

I haven't even weighed myself since the last time I weighed in and posted. I'm kind of afraid to look, but I don't think it would be THAT bad. Maybe I'll do it this weekend and update my ticker.

So, that's where I'm at. How about you? Sticking with your plan through the holidays, or allowing yourself some slack?

Monday, December 7, 2009

Christmas Meme

I'm tickling the fancy of Janet @ Stuff I Think About and answering all the stuff you need to know about me and the goes!

1. Have you started your Christmas shopping?
The answer became YES, just this weekend. For those keeping score - I'm usually done before Thanksgiving...this December has crept up on me, I swear I was robbed of November!

2. Tell me about one of your special traditions.
For the past several years it has become a tradition to get lost, run inexcusably late, or have scheduling mis-communications - all of which lead to us MISSING Christmas eve service. Do you get credit for "intending" to be there?

As a better example of a tradition that actually involves "doing something" - we have a count down nativity scene that my son takes great pride in doing every year. Each day he is thrilled to tell me what he found - which is amusing b/c at the end of the year - HE is the one that packs it back up for the next season. This year he's disgusted with his decision to put all the animals first - it's Dec 7th and we have no PEOPLE in the scene yet!

3. When do you put up your Tree?
I LIKE to do this on Thanksgiving day while watching the Parade. It works very well if you are NOT the host of the lunch...this year, we do have it up - but we're still working on that whole "decorating"'s a process, right?

4. Are you a Black Friday shopper?
Uhm NO. I don't like people that much - especially crazy, possessed, "gotta have it" people. And - I don't like 4AM. Period.

5. Do you Travel at Christmas or Stay home?
On that day - we will be home. We will travel a bit somewhere before or after.

6. What is your funniest Christmas memory?
It involves Doc Martin wishes, a misleading box, and a disappointing pair of sheets. I can't talk about it without a therapist!

7. What is your favorite Christmas movie of all time?
The Snowman - it's a silent cartoon with great music.

8. Do you do your own Christmas baking? What's your favorite treat?
Please tell me where to sign up to NOT have to do your own baking. Seriously, this is an option? Yes I do it. I mostly like anything that is yummy - I'm flexible.

9. Fake or Real Tree?
I have allergies. Real Tree Equals Death.
You do the math.

10. What day does the actual panic set in to get it all done?
Whatever day I happen to overhear the "....days until Christmas."

11. Are you still wrapping presents on Christmas Eve?
No - wrapping must happen soon after entrance to the residence to avoid snoopers!

12. What is your favorite fun time at Christmas?
Is there a fun time for adults? Oh yes, it's got to be the excitement before the opening of the gifts - that anticipation is the BEST.

13. What Christmas craft do you like the best?
This year I'm loading up on origami cranes -they are said to bring good luck. I'm hoping for an overdose!

14. Christmas music? Yes or no? And if yes, what is your favorite song?
Usually it's No. There are a few times that I can stand it - when decorating the tree, on that day or that morning. Carol of the Bells is likely my favorite - but it's recently been ruined by the Burger King song - ding, fries are done, ding, fries are done. It will never be the same.

15. When do you plan to finish all your shopping?
Moments after I'm done. Really, I recently learned that if you have low expectations - you are less likely to be disappointed. So I'm going with this answer OR before that morning - which ever comes first.

Want to play along? Here's what you do...
Just simply copy and paste the questions into your blog, and then answer them.

•Then tag 5 or more of your favorite blogs, and leave them a comment telling them they’ve been tagged.

•When you post on your blog, please spread some Christmas Cheer, and leave a link back to the blogger who started the meme: Heather @ (Top 10 Christmas) Heather would like any blogger to participate in this meme, so let her know if you do it.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Healthy (well...healthiER anyway) Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

If you're looking for a way to make your holiday baking a little better for you, you've come to the right place! This is my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe. I found it when searching for a healthier version to use during a nutrition workshop I was teaching. I love them so much that these are the only chocolate chip cookies I bake anymore.

The recipe uses canola oil for part of the butter, and ground up oatmeal for part of the flour. Also, I figure dark chocolate is always a "health food." tee hee!

They are officially called "Bev's Chocolate Chip Cookies" and I got the recipe originally from
Healthier Chocolate Chip Cookies

3/4 cup rolled oats
1 cup whole-wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup canola oil
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips (my favorite kind to use is the Hershey's Special Dark)
Also, it's not on the original recipe, but I put in about 1/2 cup ground flax seed when I make them for a little extra omega 3 and fiber.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat 2 baking sheets with cooking spray.

Grind oats in a blender or food processor. Transfer to a medium bowl and stir in flour, baking soda and salt.

Beat butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add oil, granulated sugar, brown sugar, egg and vanilla; beat until smooth and creamy.

With the mixer running, add the dry ingredients, beating on low speed until just combined. Stir in chocolate chips.

Drop the dough by heaping teaspoonfuls, at least 1 inch apart, onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake cookies, 1 sheet at a time, until firm around the edges and golden on top, about 15 minutes. Cool the cookies for 2 minutes on the baking sheets, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Per cookie: 99 calories; 5 g fat (2 g sat, 2 g mono); 11 mg cholesterol; 12 g carbohydrates; 1 g protein; 1 g fiber; 64 mg sodium; 55 mg potassium.

1 Carbohydrate Serving

Exchanges: 1/3 starch, 1/3 other carbohydrate, 1 fat

I love them. Sometimes I bake them for "supper" and eat half the dough raw. I know that's bad for me, and raw eggs can give me salmonella. I also firmly believe that it's worth the risk.