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A New Spin On Thanksgiving

The holiday season has officially begun (at least in department stores and in my mind.) And I couldn’t be happier about it. I love decorating and baking, having friends over for parties and listening to Christmas music. Perhaps it’s a little early for that, but I did it today. I even kissed a toy soldier….just keepin’ it real.

But this year, the season will bring some pretty big challenges because part of the fun, for me, is baking cookies and cakes and making homemade hot chocolate to drink while sitting by the fire…and while I plan to do some of that this year, I know I need to make a game plan because holidays are not a good reason to gain weight.

I’d like to reach 75 pounds lost by New Year’s Eve, and I think it’s a realistic goal. But I’ll have to be earnest in my attempts to limit the sweet treats and decadent snacking while stepping up the exercise. On Thanksgiving Day, I plan to eat pie, but I also plan to exercise a bit more than usual that day. And the same goes for Christmas.

Over the last several months, I have learned that I can thoroughly enjoy vacations and holidays without sabotaging the work I do on other days by making smart choices. And one way I can do that is by bringing something healthy to Thanksgiving dinner even though I’m not hosting it.

I’ll bring this amazing pumpkin cream pie which is only 5.25 WW points per slice. You can make it even skinnier if you use Fat Free cream cheese, but the Reduced Fat is my favorite.

And I’ll also bring this squash casserole because it is only about 2 WW points per serving, and it is delicious and filling. My ‘neighbor’ down south (more accurately, my mom’s neighbor) make this during my last visit, and she included ground turkey in it to make it a main dish.

I will enjoy the turkey and stuffing and ham, and some of the other “must-have” dishes on the table. But after we eat, I’ll go for a walk through the neighborhood that we’ll be in because I’d rather feel light on my feet than feel myself falling into a food coma.

The holidays will definitely be filled with rich, decadent foods, but this season means so much more than that. And part of changing my habits means recognizing that I can take part and enjoy friends and family without eating everything in sight. Food is necessary for survival, but it is not the most important part of the upcoming holiday or the following holiday.

I will be mindful of all of the reasons I have to be thankful, and one of the biggest things to be thankful for this year is the opportunity to take care of myself in ways that I haven’t before. I’m thankful for strength, the ability to exercise and the support system that has been in place since I started this journey to a healthier me. These are things that will make Thanksgiving 2009 special for me. What will make it special for you?

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  • Reply
    ♥Amber Filkins♥
    November 3, 2009 at 5:30 am

    Oh Kenz, I love this post. I love that you're already planning ahead for ways to stay on track and not sabotage all of the hard work you've put in. So many times people just throw in the towel around the holidays and decide to pick it up later, only to wish they'd just had a little self restraint through out the holidays. Then they wouldn't be set back as much.

    I think you are doing fabulously!!

  • Reply
    Deb Willbethin
    November 3, 2009 at 6:25 am

    Hey, Kenz! Glad to see this post since I began to think about the same thing at halloween. Thanks for putting it into words for me! 🙂 Deb

  • Reply
    November 3, 2009 at 6:35 am

    You are going to do great!!! You are already making such great choices!!! Keep it up girl!!! 75lbs by New Year's… I'm cheering you on!!!

  • Reply
    ♥ Kenz ♥
    November 3, 2009 at 7:18 am

    Wow, I cannot tell you how lucky I feel to be blessed with such supportive people cheering me on. 🙂 Thanks so much….! xoxo

  • Reply
    Chrissy MacCEO
    November 3, 2009 at 12:08 pm

    Thanks for sharing that recipe! Yum yum!

  • Reply
    November 3, 2009 at 5:54 pm

    Last year my mother-in-law and I participated in a Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot. We did a 5K walk and it felt great! I think it was the first Thanksgiving where I was not horrified by getting on the scale the next day. I tried to cook healthier since I was hosting and it was great. Food can still be delicious even if it's healthy or healthier than typical dishes.

    Making goals and planning ahead is a great idea. Go girl!

    PS Your Halloween costume was so cute!


  • Reply
    November 3, 2009 at 6:52 pm

    You can do ittt 🙂
    plus that is the nutcracker!
    no comment 😉


  • Reply
    November 3, 2009 at 8:36 pm

    When I was at WW a few years ago she said something concerning the holidays what I never forget since then. In Holland we don't have Thanksgiving but we do have "Sinterklaas", it's basically an old guy looking like Santa Clause and gives presents to children, this comes with lots of candy. Then we have 2 Christmas days (25 and 26) and we celebrate December 31th instead of New Years Eve.

    Everybody there was concerned about December: how to deal with al this extra food. She said: it's only 4 days and you can eat some extra then but all the other days of December aren't holidays so why eat all the leftovers then?

    I have to say since then I do eat to much at Christmas and on December 31th (we don't celebrate "Sinterklaas") but in the days between I'm doing okay.

    Maybe a helpful thought?

  • Reply
    November 3, 2009 at 10:47 pm

    You're always so inspiring. I'm going to plan on bringing some of my own low-point dishes to the holidays too. I love the pumpkin cheese cake recipe! I followed the link to Gina's blog…great blog! Thanks for sharing that!

    Hope you're having a great day!

    P.S. I'm ready for Christmas too! I can't wait…actually I'm already listening to Christmas music, but don't tell. 🙂

  • Reply
    ♥ Kenz ♥
    November 3, 2009 at 11:22 pm

    Wow, KT..that is a fantastic thing to do on Thanksgiving Day. 🙂 And I bet you felt fantastic.

    And Fran, that is a great idea. I'm not really big on leftovers so that shouldn't be a problem for me. And it's also not at my house so I won't have to deal with having anything in the fridge. 🙂

  • Reply
    ♥ Kenz ♥
    November 3, 2009 at 11:23 pm

    Oh Gordy, You're here! And so….you. LOL ♥ you anyway…

  • Reply
    ♥ Kenz ♥
    November 3, 2009 at 11:27 pm

    JennyKate, There are sooooo many fantastic recipes on Gina's site. I'm making roasted eggplant parmesan from her site tonight. I'll let you know how it is, but I'm guessing it will be fantastic.

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