Sunday, May 31, 2009

Something to Be Excited About

Over at one of my favorite blogs, Little Miss Crafty Pants, something great is happening. She is giving away a Mothers Day Scrapbooking Kit.

Be sure to check it out! Go here to see.

But please check out the rest of her blog while you are there. It is so fun!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Educational Links

Lot's of links for you to visit! There are so many great resources on the web for prinable worksheets and activites for your kiddo's. Mandee and I have compiled a list of websites that have online activites and also a list on links with printable worksheets and activities!

First School is full of great activites for your preschooler. They have great printable alphabet sheets in many diffrent styles.

Mommys Little Helper is another great sight for preschool aged children. Ton's of lesson theme idea and schedules.

Sugardoodle!! Melanie is not only an awesome mom, but an awesome teacher! She has some of her summer themed lesson plans available on her sight. Each theme is for preschool but totally adaptable to older children.

TLSBOOKS Free educational worksheets for early childhood through fifth grade.

Writing Wizard allows you to make your own handwriting worksheets and they also offer math worksheets!

Starfall is an amazing interactive sight that starts kids out learning their abc's and offers interactive books and activites for early readers.

KidZone offers a variety of activites for kids up to grade 5.

PBS Kids and Nickjr are full of fun interactive activites. My kids could play on these sights all day long and never get bored. Scholastic is another fabulous website that is full of great ideas. is a great place to find fun games for every subject. This site also has stuff for older grades. Is another great place for educational games for all ages.But I have a 6th grader and the things on here for him are great. He is learning but it is still fun. is a really cool site for grades 3-6. I actually played on it for awhile. It has games and also has printables. is a great place for art ideas, printable activities and online activities. We have spent alot of time on this website because my son has HUGE interest in science. I just have him look for something to prove and we do it.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Family Game-Killer Bunnies

I know this sounds like a crazy, harsh game, but it is our families very favorite game to play together. It is a card game that you can buy booster packs for. You start out with the blue box and add each color as time goes on. But you don't have to have all the cards to play.

It is a funny and satirical game. This game is played with only 1 copy of the game, so players don't need to bring their own decks to play the game unlike other card games.

The object: Collect as many "Carrots" as possible, hoping that one of them is the randomly drawn "Magic Carrot". While doing this, you MUST keep your bunnies alive as long as possible, while doing away with your opponents Bunnies because once all the Carrots have been claimed you must have a living Bunny to win. That is the whole point of the game-is to have THE winning carrot at the end.

The problem: Your opponents are armed with crazy, outrageous weapons (from level 1 weapons such as a "Kitchen Whisk" to level 12 weapons such as the "Nuclear Warhead") and you must roll higher than these levels to survive.

Use cards to protect and defend your Bunnies, such as the funny "Magic Spatula" or other "special" cards, or use a "Feed The Bunny" card to force your opponent to buy cabbage and water (if they have the money to do so)

Your opponents, as the back of the box quotes, "will stop at nothing to keep you from winning the game, which can get dreadfully vengeful,and just plain fun!" It is really fun to play with competitive people. And don't worry-there are ways to bring the bunnies back to life.

This game can be found at Toys r us and I have also seen it at Barnes and Noble. We will be playing this game during the summer break I am sure of it. What are some of your favorite games to play as a family?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

HCG follow up

So I finished out my 40 day's on the HCG diet two weeks ago. Happily, I've been able to add a wider variety of food to my life. I've found that with more freedom though, I've sorta lost control. Every morning I weigh in and see where I am at. If I go higher than 2 pounds of my last weigh in date, which was the last day I took a shot, I'm in trouble. So far I have yet to do that. I am maintaining my weight loss. I've been able to add in a wider variety of fruit, some cheese, a little milk and a variety of other fun food. Stuff that I would probably never eat before, but it's like manna from heaven!

I lost 29 lbs in 40 day's. You would think that I would be overjoyed about that, right? I am extremely happy, but yet I still feel really fat. I think that is society. Or maybe I am just crazy. I know I still need to lose about another 40 lbs, but I can't seem to be really happy about the 29 that I have lost. I'm happy and yet disappointed that it wasn't more. Does that make sense? I think that society has made me this way. I will never be twiggy thin, and while my idea of beauty is far from meeting the ideals of the media, I still let the media affect me. My own standards do not apply to myself. How does that work?

I am going to do the HCG diet again in 6 weeks. This time instead of shots I am going to use the drops, which are taken twice a day as opposed to the 1 shot a day. I am excited to see if they work better than the shots. The shots work great! I just got really tired of sticking myself every day.

Would I recommend this diet? You bet! It's a great way to lose weight and fast, but it also has really changed my eating habits and my portion control. I thought I was going to starve those first few days, but it really is all in my head. I feel much better and I feel empowered and motivated! I will lose the rest of this weight. I started going to Zumba this week and it makes me excited that I care enough about myself to continue this journey. It's a struggle and it probably always will be, but I have to do it. I want to be around for my kids and I want to be a fun mom who gets out and plays with them. I want to be healthy and happy! I deserve it.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Barnes & Noble Summer Reading Program

I am so excited about this. The 2009 Barnes and Noble Summer Reading Program is open for participation for children in grades 1 though 6. This is a great opportunity for your kiddo's to earn free books!

First thing you need to do is help your child pick out 8 books to read. As you read each book, have your child write down their favorite part of the book in the Summer reading journal, which you need to download and print from the above link. Then you bring in your completed Reading Journal to a Barnes & Noble bookstore between May 26th & September 7th, 2009. Each child will be able to pick a fantastic paperback novel of their choice from the list provided in the Summer reading journal!! Each grade has several diffrent books to choose from and there is a great selection available! From the Barnes and Noble website - "* Eligible books will be listed on the coupon. Choices must be made from available stock. No special orders. Limit of one (1) form per school-age child (grades 1-6), please. Incomplete forms will be ineligible for free books."

Also, each journal that is turned in, will be entered for a chance to win an autographed novel from Percy Jackson! Pretty cool, huh?

We are defiently going to do this!! Kids love being able to work on goals and to see what they have accomplished! This is just a great activity all around! Happy reading!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Memorial Day

Let us remember and pay tribute to those who have given the ultimate sacrafice in the defense of this great country. It is because of them that we have our freedom and that we live in the greatest nation in the world. Thank you. Your sacrafice is not forgotten.

Happy Memorial Day!!! We hope you spend it with those you love, making memories, and having fun!

Cookie Salad

Yummy is all I have to say about this salad! I took it to a BBQ and it went super fast once the word got out. I felt good to know that something I brought was a success.

1 small box instant vanilla pudding
1 C buttermilk
2 8oz containers frozen whipped topping, thawed
2 8 oz cans mandarin oranges
1 pkg fudge striped cookies

In a medium bowl, combine the pudding mix and buttermilk. Stir in thawed whipped topping. Add drained oranges. Stir in crushed cookies. This salad can be served right away, but it is still good the next day. Makes 8-10 servings. I added bananas to it and it was wonderful.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Creative Park

This is a goldmine! Seriously, the best website I have found in ages. I found it via Creature Comforts, which is also a seriously fun blog to look at.

Creative Park is an online collection of printing resources, all of which can be downloaded for free.Download various different materials, and have fun making your own original goods!

They have everything you could ever imagine, from scapbook pages, paper crafts, cards, calendars, and an amazing photo gallery full of images that are copyright free! I love those words! I spent hours looking at all the fun projects they have!
I have dozens of projects to now do! I will post pictures as we go! I just hope I will have enough time now that school is out to do some projects! Go check it out.

Friday, May 22, 2009

The BFG Book Review

First of all I just have to say how much I love Roald Dahl. He is such an amazing author and it was so hard to choose just one book to review that he has written. From Charlie and The Chocolate Factory to James and the Giant Peach. He is one of those authors that carry from generation to generation.

My son who is in fifth grade has read two of his stories this year. At the beginning of the year we read The BFG together and I laughed so hard through the whole book. In school they have a breakfast book club and he just finished Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I must say that The BFG was way more entertaining to me. I hope some day they do a movie.

The BFG was hard at first to get into because of the poor English that is used. But hello, what giant would speak correct English anyway? The title is short for Big Friendly Giant-and man is he friendly. He captures a little girl named Sophie and he tells her all about the Giants and he tells her that if the giants see her then they will eat her. She stays in his pocket to be safe.

Sophie is an orphan and the BFG takes her and tells her that it is his job to deliver pleasant dreams to little orphans. Sophie ends up getting the Queen on her side and together Sophie, The BFG, and the Queen end up defeating the mean giants.

This is a book that I looked forward to reading each night with my son. It was humorous and very good for any child's imagination. I definitely recommend it.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Make Your Own Coloring Pages

Maybe everyone knows about this! I just stumbled across it the other day and I think it's like the coolest thing ever. You can take your pictures and turn them into pencil sketches. You create your own fun coloring pages of your personal photo's in your home!

What a fun way to commemorate special memories. I changed a few pictures from our recent Disneyland trip, and I am going to have each of my kids color these and then tuck them away in their scapbooks!
Go here to check it out! It's so easy! Which is a plus. Simply upload your picture, give it a minute and then save the picture to your computer and print! Great boredom buster!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Easy Teacher Gift

I know we just had teacher appreciation week, but I alway's like to give a little something on the last day of school. Here is something that is way easy and super cheap and super cute!

We used a 2 liter of pop and attatched a box of Crunch & Munch. You can also use a box of popcorn. Super cute and easy!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Summer Scheduling

I can't believe that Summer vacation is approaching so quickly. We aren't fortunate enough to have year round school here so we are left with a two and a half month long break in the hot sun.

The past two summers have really flown by with fun activities and I think that is because I try to have a schedule for each week. Now the schedule can be flexible but I really try to stick to it. Each morning they do chores and then they will each do a couple worksheets a piece with each day a different subject. One day will be writing, one day will be math, one day we will do a science experiment, one day we will research a subject. When this is done we will do something fun.

Last year Mondays were library days. Tuesdays were a park day. Wednesday was a local attraction day. Thursday was a luck of the draw day where they pull an idea out of a jar. Fridays are "free" days. Saturdays we clean the house. This works really well because it maintains some sort of schedule for the kids. Each day after lunch we read for 30 minutes. Last summer it got to the point where my son wouldn't even hear the timer when the time was up and he would read for a long time. He would look forward to reading time and I hope that continues this year.

I love summer and I love the memories we create. I love the fact that summer camps exist. My son will be going to a couple this summer. I think they are great for older children.

What are some of your ideas for summer and do you know of any great websites that have cool worksheets? I have a few sites I use that I will put in a later post.

Have a HAPPY SUMMER!!!! We will be blogging all of our summer crafts and boredom busters!!!!

Monday, May 18, 2009

It's Now Official

Dana one of our loyal readers has kindly awarded us this cool blog award! Thanks Dana, we think your awesome too!

So, our Queen duties include:1. List 7 things that make us awe-summm.2. Pass the award onto 7 bloggers that I love. 3. Tag those bloggers to let them know they are now Queens too (and link back to the Queen who tagged you).So, here goes...

7 reasons we are awe-Summm!!!
1. There is no reason for our awesomeness! We just are what we are! (HA, HA, HA!)
2. We have been best-friends for 7-years
3. We are both stay at home moms.
4. We are both crafty
5. We are thrifty
6. We both have good taste in men!! **husbands and HOT movies stars**
7. We both are very good cooks!!!!

Hence, we are awarding a few of our cooking friends whose blogs we love to visit!

1. Haylee @ Haylee's Food ~ If you haven't visited her you must! She has the best recipes!
2. Ericka @ Ericka's Sweet Tooth ~ LOVE her sight! Lot's of great recipes.
3. Jadi @ Jadi's Favorite Recipes ~ Fun, fun place to vist. We also visit her Homemaking Fun, blog. Lot's of great idea's there!
4.Kathryn & Melissa @ Nannygoat ~ Ton's of great craft idea's here! Fun, fun sight!
5. Kim @ All About Food Storage ~ I (Brandy) am a food storage junkie! This is actually one of my friends who has an awesome sight!! Go check her out!
6. Sky @ The Varty Party ~ Because she is awesome and her blog makes us laugh. She's also one of our loyal gals!
7. Shauna @ Shauna-na-na ~ Because the girl is funny and she has great ideas!!

Congratulations ladies!! Pass along the love and makes someone Queen of the day!


Thanks to everyone who entered our 365 post giveaway contest!
Drum roll please............
and random integer says the winners are...........

#15 Shauna who said...

Inventive I am thinking. We take turns every other week planning a date.I have sent balloons to my husband and work and invited him to meet me at the beach after work. I brought a picnic dinner, candles, fancy dishes, etc. and we watched the sunset.Sometimes, we have a date at home and send the kids upstairs for their own date. We give them a Movie, pizza, and tell them to pretend we are not home.

Misty who said...

Our favorite family activity is going to the park and letting the kids play. Pretty boring, but it's fun for us!

Yeah!! Shauna wins the 365 Great Date Nights book and Misty wins the 365 Fun Family Activities. Shoot us your mailing information at and we will get these out to you!!

Thanks again for playing!! We'll do it again soon! We promise!

Friday, May 15, 2009


I stumbled across this website and it is amazing! They are offering 5 darling fonts for free! But hurry quick, it looks like they change up their freebies often! They were super easy to download and they have a TON of really cute fornts for under $3.00.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Ghosts of Girlfriends Past

Ok, so Friday night we celebrated another birthday and took a girls night out to another movie. We went and saw Ghosts of Girlfriends Past and we give it two thumbs up. This was such a funny movie that I dare say it wasn't a "Chic Flick" at all. I am madly in love with Hottie Matthew so I thought it would be a movie just for "Chics" but there was enough humor to make it great for the hubbies too. At first I had a hard time focusing on the movie instead of his beauty but he turns into a jerk of a character and I noticed that when that happened, I lost interest in him. But when he starts being nice, his charm came back. I found that to be very interesting and true to life. When people are mean and nasty, we don't really want to be with them but once they are willing to change, so do our feelings.

Ghosts of Girlfriends Past follows the story line of The Christmas Carol and the main character, Conner, is played by Matthew is a famous photographer for a popular magazine and is known for being a player with the ladies. He takes a break from his player lifestyle to go to his baby brother's wedding. It is there that he runs into Jenny (Jennifer Garner) the only girl who ever captured his heart.They have been friends since they were very young. Conners parents were killed when he was young and her and his brother were the ones that stuck with Conner. After Connor delivers a speech at the wedding rehearsal dinner , he's met in the bathroom by the ghost of his Uncle Wayne (Michael Dogulas), a player amongst the ladies as well who in fact led a poor example taught Conner everything he knows about picking up chicks. Uncle Wayne informs Connor that, over the course of the evening, he'll be visited by three ghosts who will lead him through his romantic past, present, and future.

Through Connors adventure he comes to see himself in a different light. As he is visited by these ghosts, you are taken through a musical memory lane and I found myself wanting to stand up and dance to the sound of 80's music. At some points it got a little ronchy but overall it was a great movie and we all left laughing. I strongly reccomend this movie if you need a little laugh.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Easy Chicken Dinner

Barbecue Chicken:

Take 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts and place in a 9 x 13 pan. Smother in Barbecue sauce. Cover pan with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Take chicken out and sprinkle your choice of Colby or mozzarella cheese on top. Replace foil and place chicken back in the oven just until cheese is melted! Super yummy and easy!

Monday, May 11, 2009

I love Chick fil A and I love free food! Unfortunatly we don't have one here in St. George but all Utah locations are offering a free sandwich today only from 2-8 pm. Just thought I would pass this on!

Mandees Monday Menu

Another week already? A couple of the nights are rollovers from last week.

Monday: Tortellini w/alfredo sauce/salad/garlic bread

Tuesday: BBQ with some friends (hamburgers, salads, desserts)

Wednesday: Stroganoff/brocolli

Thursday: Sloppy Joes/french fries/salad

Friday: Papa Murphys

Saturday: Poppy Seed Chicken/brocolli

Sunday: Pot Roast

Save $50.00 with Kraft

Starting today and with limited quanities, you can go to Kraft Foods and print off coupons totaling $50.00 in Kraft and associated brand products!! I'm excited to see what I can use with my double coupons that came in this weeks papers!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mothers Day

We would like to wish all of you mothers a happy Mothers Day! Put your feet up and take the day off.

Dear Lord, it's such a hectic day
With little time to stop and pray
For life's been anything but calm
Since You called on me to be a mom
Running errands, matching socks
Building dreams with building blocks
Cooking, cleaning, and finding shoes
And other stuff that children lose
Fitting lids on bottled bugs
Wiping tears and giving hugs
A stack of last weeks mail to read
So where's the quiet time I need?
Yet when I steal a minute, Lord
Just at the sink or ironing board
To ask the blessings of Your grace
I see then, in my small one's face
That you have blessed me
All the while
And I stop to kiss
That precious smile

-author unknown

Friday, May 8, 2009

A Fun Freebie For You

In honor of Mandee's Menu obsession and my grocery shopping obsession. I found this and had to pass it a long.
I found this little gem, via A Feathered Nest.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Craft Stick Flowers

I posted these back in March. But we have a lot of new followers that probably haven't seen these and this is what we are sending today for the teachers. I originally made them for the Relief Society birthday party. They were simple and turned out so cute.

Each flower uses eight sticks and I did it the same way you would cut a pie. I glued the sticks together with good old Elmers Glue. My 6 year old daughter was helping me so I opted to not use a glue gun. They held together just fine. The stems are made by gluing two green sticks together, then I just added the flowers. SO EASY and SO CUTE!!! I can hardly wait for the party to be over so I can use them in my house for spring decoration!!!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Teacher Appreciation Gift

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This is one of my favorite weeks of the school year. Especially when you love your childs teacher. I love the younger grades, the kids are so excited to make things for their teachers. My older son just wants to buy his teacher things. My first grade daughter and I made this pencil holder for her teacher. I took an empty baking powder can and modgepodged cute paper on to it. Then I found a picture I had taken of the two of them together and put that on with some more modge podge. I let BayLee put what stickers she wanted on it. On the front we put "BayLee" and on the back we put "Mrs. Murphy Rocks". Way fun and turned out really cute.

Free KFC Meals & Free 8x10 from Walgreens

Want to try the new KFC Grilled chicken for free? This offer ends tonight, but click here, to be taken to a coupon for a free 2 pc Kentucky Grilled Chicken meal! I printed off 4 coupons! It's redeemable from 5/5/09 to 5/19/09. Not reedemable on Mothers Day!


I got an email from Walgreens, and they are offering Free 8x10 at Walgreens, today only!

Use code MOTHER at checkout. Choose pick up in store to avoid shipping charges.

*Coupon code MOTHER valid for one use per account only on May 6, 2009. Online orders must include 8x10 print at time of checkout to qualify. Code must be entered at time of checkout to apply discount. Multiple coupon codes may or may not be used based on cart contents. Does not apply toward collage prints, taxes or shipping charges. Order must be placed by logged-in customer by May 6, 2009 at 11:59 p.m. Central Time to qualify. Timing will be determined by Walgreens server clock. Offer valid online only. 8x10 print format not available at all locations.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Bean Dip

Bean Dip

3 15 -oz. cans refried beans
1 8-oz. pkg. cream cheese
1 lb. cheddar cheese, shredded
2 envelopes taco seasoning mix
1 pint sour cream
A few shakes of chili powder (optional)

Blend all ingredients together and spoon into a 9 x13 pan. Sprinkle a small amount of shredded cheese on top. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 50-60 minutes. Serve with tortilla chips.

This makes a ton! I made it for a family bbq tonight and it was gone! Completely gone. It was a huge success. I'll be making it agian. Another recipe from the Worldwide Ward Cookbook

Am I The Only One

Ok, I have a confession to make! I simply CANNOT get into the Twilight series. I finally finished book one in time to watch the movie.....and I really liked the movie but not as much as the book. They left out some of my favorite parts and added parts that weren't even in the book, which then confused me even more.
I have been trying and trying to read book two but I just can't get into it. First of all I am so not into sci fi type stuff. If it is far out I just can't do it. I just have a few things to say about Twilight and I know it will probably make diehard Twilight fans upset. I think Edward is bad for Bella. Hello! He will eat her if she isn't careful. He is cold, he is sneaky and he sneaks into her bedroom and watches her sleep!! HELLO red flags. :) I say this in all good fun but it is kinda creepy isn't it?
A lot of you are probably asking yourselves, "Well, Mandee. If you don't like it, why are you reading it for heavens sake. Put the book down and start a new book". Well, I can't do that. Haven't you noticed that every group of ladies will bring up the book at least one time during a girls night out? It is the talk at church groups, playgroups, PTO meetings, school functions (even my 6 year old is convinced she is Alice-thank heavens she isn't Bella :) ). If I don't read this series, I will have to sit like a muntint with nothing to say. I can't be the only person in the room that hasn't read this bizzare series. When I say I am only on book two eyes seriously bulge out of their shocked faces and they say "YOU ARE???YOU HAVEN"T READ THE WHOLE SERIES???" See my problem????
Thank heavens my friends still love me and still invite me to midnight movie primeires and book releases. I am always up for a girls night out as long as they will go with me to movies like Die Hard and Taken!
Any advice on Twilight? Do the books get more interesting?

Monday, May 4, 2009

Mandees Monday Menu

This week I am being a little more lazy. I need easy meals this week, since the end of school is coming up. Thanks again to lovely bloggers that have great recipes. Hopefully next week I will be able to pull my menu from the Worldwide Ward Cookbook! (my mothers day dream. :)

Tuesday: Enchilada Casserole (from HayLees food-have I mentioned I love her blog)/Chipotle
Tomato Rice (Good Eats n sweets)

Wednesday: Lemon Herb Chicken (HayLees Food-my family would starve without her blog!),
Roasted Potatoes/Vegetable

Thursday: Brown Sugar Meatloaf (Jadis favorite Recipes-another blog I LOVE)

Friday: Cheese & Roasted Garlic Tortellini with Alfredo sauce/steamed brocolli/garlic bread

Saturday: Pork Chops/Baked Potato/Spinach salad

Sunday: Pot Roast and Veggies

Free Shipping at Oriental Trader

Free shipping on any purchase over $20.00. Use the code SUMMERFUN at checkout!! Stock up now for fun summertime crafts! Valid until 5/18/09.

Teacher Appreciation Week

I'm sure that we all have teachers whom we remember. I have several who shaped and influenced my life in way's I don't think they even knew. Mr. Bagley was one of my favorite teachers! He inspired a love of good books and writing. He was also very patient and unjudgemental. He realized that we were just teenagers and that we needed a chance to learn from our mistakes and to grow up. I also loved Mrs. Seegmiller. She lived in my small town and influenced me not only as a teacher but as a person of influence in my community. She started a youth council in my hometown and encouraged us to have pride and to participate in our community.

Teacher Apprecation Week is a week which is dedicated to all of our teachers around the world. It is a time to say thank you to our teachers for all of their help and show our gratitude for all the time and effort that they have put in our education.Make sure to say thank you to those who educate and care for your children. They help us as parents to shape the lives of our children. Their influence can last a life time!

With that said, what do you give that special teacher? It doesn't have to be anything extravegant. A card, a picture from your child, an apple and a thank you note! You don't have to go crazy to let them know how much they are appreciated. I know that Mandee likes to do something each day of the week. Her parents are both teachers and she has felt the profound influence of that in her life and has a deep appreciation for those who choose this career path.

There are so many idea's out in the blogging world. Here are a few that we've found.

Sugardoodle, has an amazing list of ideas! From super simple to super cute to super fun!!!

Skip To My Lou, has compiled a great list. She alway's has great ideas!

Little Birdie Secret's has some darling idea's!

Family Fun is alway's full of great ideas!

Here is a great article, written by teachers about the best gifts they have recieved. Some of the ideas are so inventive!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Recipe Swap

You must go visit this great blog!! They are having a recipe swap! Don't know yet, if I will enter, but they have some great recipes that I want to try!!

Friday, May 1, 2009

My HCG diet (The Longest Post Ever)

I've had a lot of interest in the HCG program that I am doing. First of all, I am doing this on my own, I am not going to a clinic or being supervised by a doctor. If you google the HCG diet, you will find a ton of information online that you can read. You will also be able to find HCG in many different forms that you can purchase online. There are a lot of people who have had a tremendous amount of success with this diet and there are those who have not.

At this point I have been giving myself shots for 28 day's and have lost 23 pounds. I had several days where I did not lose weight, in fact I gained 1 lb., but was suffering from a serious sinus infection. I was taking tons of Emergen-cee and Nyquil at that time.

The first 2 days of the diet, are called your load up days. These days are fun! You eat and you eat and you eat. You eat all the things you love and all thing high in fat and sugar. I actually gained 3 pounds in those 2 day's, but I lost them on my very first 500 calorie day. For 21 days, following the loading day's you give yourself an injection of HCG. Then you are allowed around 500 calories a day. Sounds crazy, right? The first couple of day's were really hard. But at this point, it's not to bad. I am actually full when I eat my meals. Here is the breakdown of what you would eat in a day.

I have several friends who have done this diet and I am just following what they did. They have all had great success with it and have modified it a little bit here and there. Here is the breakdown of what foods you are allowed.

Meat: You can pick 2 servings of meat per day. Each serving is 4 oz. Grill or bake.

~Extra Lean Ground Beef
~Beef, roast

Chicken Breast ~ Skinless & boneless

Wild Chilean sea bass. Wild Flounder
Wild Halibut, Wild Sole
Lobster, Shrimp, Crab

Buffalo or Veal

You can also do 1/4 cup lowfast cottage cheese or you can do 1 egg w/ 2 egg whites.

Vegetables: You can pick 2 vegetables to eat per day:

Lettuces of any kind / 2 cups
tomatoes 1 cup
Spinach 2 cups
cucumbers 2 cups
Asparagus 2 cups
white, yellow or red onions 1 cup
cabbage 2 cups
Broccoli 2 cups
Cauliflower 2 cups
Beet Greens 2 cups
Chard 2 cups
Red radishes 2 cups
Celery 2 cups
Fennel 1 & 1/2 cups
Chicory Greens 1 cup

Fruit: You can pick 2 servings of fruit per day.

medium sized apple
medium sized orange
1/2 medium sized grapefruit
10 medium sized strawberries

Melba Toast. You can have 2 slices of Melba Toast per day. Or if you can find them you can have one Grissini Breadsticks.

I think that each person has to individualize this to themselves. I tried making a vinegar dressing for my salad and I ate it every day for about 10 days and I couldn't eat it any more. I found Fat Free Italian dressing, by Kraft that has 16 calories per serving. I opted to add 16 calories to my diet, because it gave me another option. Your not really supposed to have oil, while you are on this diet, but I figured it's such a small amount, and it hasn't stopped my weight loss. I also use Fat Free Non-dairy coffee creamer. Your allowed 1 tbsp. of milk a day. So I use that on my strawberries. I have also found that herbal tea is very helpful. I try to drink 2 glasses a day to help me meet the water intake requirements. Green tea, is also very good for you as it is full of antioxidants and aids in weight loss. I was able to find several different brands that carried decaffeinated green tea. I sweeten the tea with Truvia, which you can find at Walmart in the sugar section. It is a calorie free sweetener and it is very good. I use it sometimes on my strawberries or grapefruit. On my very bad day's I have sugar free posicles. They have 10 calories per popsicle, and it just makes you feel like your having a little treat. Your also not suppossed to have diet drinks or Crystal Light, but I have been allowing myself 1 Crystal Light a day. At 10 calories, this hasn't altered my weight loss either. On day's I have a popsicle, I will opt not to have the Crystal Light. You can also find sugar free Creme Savers that have 9 calories per piece.

So here is my normal day.

Breakfast: Melba Toast, strawberries w/ 1 Tbsp. fat free French Vanilla Creame & 1 cup tea

Lunch: 4 oz. chicken w/2 cups steamed broccoli

Snack: 1 orange w/ melba toast

Dinner: 4 oz. fish w/2 cups spinach & 2 tbsp. fat free Italian dressing & 1 cup tea

This diet takes an amazing amount of willpower! One thing that I have learned is that I REALLY need to watch my portion control. I don't miss sweets as much as I thought I would. I miss milk and cheese more than anything. This isn't for everyone. My sister started it with me, but she did not do the shots. She lost 18 pounds very fast, but was very tired and wore down, so she stopped after about 2 weeks. I'm not exactly sure how the HCG works, but it does!!