Have a chuckle on me!
May15

Have a chuckle on me!

Well… did you make my soup yet? You probably heard by now that the secret ingredient is curry powder. It’s almost impossible making a video when you have a 5-year-old in the background! I thought you’d get a kick out of these OUTTAKES from the two soup episodes of Friday Food Finds.   Please give a THUMBS UP if you’d like to see more #FridayFoodFinds and/or more bloopers! And don’t forget to follow OrnaBakes on YouTube so you don’t miss any of my vids. (I promise I’ll do some more as soon as I have time. Let me know what you’d like to see…)...

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I couldn’t have shared my weight loss journey if…
May06

I couldn’t have shared my weight loss journey if…

OK, so I’m about to share some very personal things and I hope it isn’t too personal or makes anyone feel uncomfortable. You might have seen me on CNN or even read my book. But there’s something that I didn’t say in my book and I think it’s time to say it here. It’s true that I have completely changed my life and my relationship with food and that I am actually a different person now than the unconfident young girl that I used to be. But a lot of people don’t know just how hard it was for me to share my story with others. In fact, I hid it for years. I wouldn’t have dreamed of sharing my old photos with anyone, even my dear husband, Sam. But, what I didn’t say in my book (mostly because I didn’t want to get too personal and alienate anyone) was that the full story of me sharing my journey and weight loss wouldn’t have been possible without the unconditional love and support of Sam. It doesn’t mean that you can’t reach your goals without finding the love of your life. But it does mean that it’s imperative to have the help and support of someone who believes in you and can help you see yourself through loving eyes. If you did read my book you already know that growing up heavy was incredibly painful for me, and I started this life with low self esteem and deep sadness. When I met Sam, I had already lost most of the weight. But I was still fearful of food, and my head was still in a diet mentality. But in the eleven years that we have been together, he has enabled me to work out my food issues in the open, without any judgement. He has helped me to love my body. He was such a strength for me through years of struggling with infertility. He was also there through the pregnancy with my darling Aja. He still thinks I am beautiful if I gain a few pounds and he understands that sometimes I need alone time with a pizza! He encouraged me to shout my story from the rooftops, even though it might be difficult for some members of his family to really understand why I would do such a thing. I don’t think either of us ever realized how cathartic it would be, or how many people would be able to relate to my story and reach out to me. Whenever I wrote how amazing he has been, I was advised that people don’t want to hear about that. And...

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The Secret Stairs
Apr13

The Secret Stairs

I just discovered the best kept secret. And it’s so amazing that I think I have to keep it that way! Someone kindly told me about these magical stairs in Santa Monica today. Shaded. Beautiful. Serene.   Unfortunately, I can’t tell you who… and I can’t tell you where. (So why am I writing this post, you’re thinking…?)  Well, I felt inspired, and I was hoping to share some of that inspiration with you all. Hubby was off to a client—deep in the gorgeous hills of Brentwood—just for a couple of hours. And you know how much I love and miss the Santa Monica stairs, so any opportunity that I have to go climb them, I’m in! (Even if I already did Pilates today). And anyway, let me think… Get away from the chaos of dinner time with kid and puppy Get outdoor exercise where it isn’t 80 degrees Spend quality time with hubby on drive without any nagging or whining Umm… Yes please! Not a bad place to get back on the horse, right? (Let’s just say Passover and Spring Break left me feeling a little… well… “off” the horse!) So… as I was passing people on the hills and the stairs, while smelling the flowers and enjoying the fresh air, it struck me that Santa Monica is filled with beautiful people. Well, actually, LA… in fact, California, is filled with beautiful people. And I don’t think it’s because they ALL moved here to be in the movie industry. I think that the weather permits an outdoor lifestyle. And there’s something motivating about doing outdoor “activity” with a bunch of other people. Don’t you think? I specifically didn’t use the word “exercise.” Because this doesn’t feel like exercise. It feels like I’m doing something wonderful for my body and my soul. No wonder everyone looks so happy. You might have seen on my Facebook page that a new study of identical twins highlights the extent that exercise shapes our health >>  Interesting read. Next time you’re in Los Angeles, bring your sneakers and walk up and down the Santa Monica stairs a couple of times. (Trainer, Kellie Blackburn, advises walking slowly up, skipping a step and pushing through your heels, and then lightly trot down.) Just don’t overdo it or you won’t be happy with me the next day! I’m sorry I can’t tell you where my new “secret” stairs are, but you’ll find the famous concrete or wooden ones are pretty awesome, and fun people-watching. And the view of the ocean is magical. Send me a pic of you there! In the meantime, forget the gym. Spring is here!...

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Friday Food Finds: what soups to buy?
Mar27

Friday Food Finds: what soups to buy?

Last week I showed you how to make your own soup, but what if you just don’t have time to cook? In this week’s Friday Food Finds I share the soups you’ll find in my fridge, freezer, and pantry… so I ALWAYS have something healthy standing by and it’s easy to make good choices. Remember, good choices begin in the supermarket!   Please give this vid a big THUMBS UP if you’d like more food vlogs! And sign up for my newsletter and YouTube channel so you don’t miss any new Friday Food Finds. What are your go-to store bought soups? Check out my Trader Joe’s and Costco Shopping Lists for more food finds and recipe ideas! (With Weight Watchers PointsPlus and Power Foods for those of you doing Simply...

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How low should you go?
Mar19

How low should you go?

I was chatting with a girlfriend at boot camp today (between squats and lunges) about how annoyed we are with ourselves that our bodies are not where they were at a couple of months ago. She had gotten down to a super-skinny, tight and toned size 4 for her son’s Bar Mitzvah. And even though she’s still diligently going to boot camp and working out regularly, her food intake has relaxed since she doesn’t have the red sequin dress and people flying in from far and wide to motivate her. I, on the other hand, had to get my super-skinny on for the photo shoot for my book cover. (Obviously I had to look great for my “after” shot!) So now here we are. Both of us look pretty good. (If I say so myself 😉 ) I might not be at my all-time super-skinny, all-my-clothes-feel-AWESOME weight. (I don’t ever seem to be at that incredibly happy place for longer than one day!) But should I even be striving for that number? Isn’t it better to have balance in my life and be able to enjoy the delicious things I make and bake (okay, I know it wasn’t necessary to “taste” FOUR Crunchies yesterday!), and go for a family walk with the puppy instead of killing myself to get to Pilates on a Saturday. If you’ve been following me for any length of time, you know I’m a bonafide foodie. Should I really be eating chicken and salad when we go out instead of trying the dishes that sound most interesting—even if not the “healthiest” choices? For me, it’s not at all about the number on the scale, but how my clothes feel. Nothing makes me crankier than feeling my “schmaltz” (translation: chicken fat) rolling over my pants!!! Perhaps the solution is to never go clothes-shopping on a super-skinny day…?!  Staying in shape takes hard work, and a huge time commitment. And you have to be consistent. The next time you see someone who is “naturally thin” and is toned and tanned—don’t for one minute think that this came “naturally.” And if she’s over forty chances are she has to work even harder at it! So what do you think…? Should we be listening to our bodies? Or society? Should we be doing what it takes to get to that magic number, or rather be accepting ourselves where our bodies are more comfortable? Or is that just an excuse? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this! Please leave a comment at the bottom of this post or on OrnaBakes on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google Plus, LinkedIn. (You’re already following me, right?)...

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Friday Food Finds: My TOP SECRET Skinny Soup!
Mar12

Friday Food Finds: My TOP SECRET Skinny Soup!

The first thing I do when I need to get back on track is MAKE SOUP! I’ve only shared my unbelievably delicious, super-easy TOP SECRET 8 Vegetable Soup recipe with a few clients who kept nagging me for it… but now here I am on my Friday Food Finds on YouTube telling you exactly how to make it! (If you aren’t already following me on YouTube, hurry up and do it already!) But… you will have to guess the SECRET INGREDIENT! Hint: it’s a spice So what do I get if I guess correctly? (that’s what you’re thinking, right…?) The FIRST person to guess correctly will receive a FREE signed copy of my book “The Yummier You: 7 Secrets to a Happy, Healthy, & Yummy Life”. (now available on Amazon—Click here to purchase) Just follow OrnaBakes on your favorite social media site (what is your favorite social media site, BTW??) and leave your comment wherever you see “Can you guess the SECRET INGREDIENT?” Oh, and don’t forget to give this vid a big THUMBS UP! Also, don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter and YouTube Channel so you don’t miss any new Friday Food Finds. (Next week I’ll show you my favorite store-bought soups) Let me know how you like the soup!...

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