Seven Nights of Sexy, Part One
Oct10

Seven Nights of Sexy, Part One

I’m sure you’re wondering what on earth sex has to do with a healthy food blog?! Well… I recently asked a friend, who owns one of the top SEO (Search Engine Optimization) companies, how to make OrnaBakes go viral, and he jokingly said, “pictures of babies and puppies.” Since I’ve already exploited my little one as much as possible (kidding), and we don’t have a puppy (yet), I came up with what I thought was the next best thing! I remembered a young lady on TV, a few years back, guaranteeing that sex every single day = weight loss. I actually believe this to be true—not if you’re lying there counting how many calories you’re burning, but because it would make you feel happy and connected, and take the focus off the food. For me, there’s a strong connection between how I feel about my body—and what I put into it—and how sexy (or un-sexy) I feel.   I approached our wise friend, and Sam’s ex-girlfriend (call me crazy), Lou Paget—a widely acclaimed sex educator and international bestselling author—about writing a guest post relating food, body image, and intimacy.             This exciting two week series will inspire you to feel great about your body, and your present or future relationship. (And make for a very happy partner!)   I hope you’ll join us on Day One of the Seven Day Challenge: Monday, October 14th ** Look out for daily reminders and join the dialogue on Facebook/Twitter/G+ ** {Giveaway} One lucky reader will get a signed copy of The Great Lover Playbook (See details below)     Seven Day Sex Challenge, Part One: The Makings of a Great Lover by Lou Paget   Got your attention? Oh Good!! Because what I ‘m going to share with you is Week 1 of a Two Part, 7 Day, minutes a day program, that should you choose to do so will reset how you feel about yourself, your body, and your relationship or future relationship. These simple steps will connect you back to your body and your priorities. These two 7 Day Programs are results driven and I want you to get results. And aren’t you worth taking a few minutes a day to create a fresh, refreshed and revitalized you? I will tell you after 15 years of writing and speaking world wide in the area of sexuality, women and men have told me their Best Lovers were not the best looking, nor do they have the best bodies; what they DID have is the best attitude. And that is what we are going to be working on here starting with...

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Chopsticks and Change
Sep07

Chopsticks and Change

I had an epiphany on Erev Rosh Hashanah (the eve of the Jewish New Year), as I ate a bowl of vegetables at 11pm—something the old me would never have done! It’s interesting how religious holidays bring up such strong, varied emotions in us—some joyous and some painful. I learned from my wise, dear friend Judy—when I trekked around Los Angeles as her Weight Watchers receptionist and young leader in training—that while things change from holiday to holiday, the one thing that stays the same is the food. As people age and relationships change, our favorite childhood dishes bring familiar comfort of simpler times. That’s one of the reasons why traditional foods evoke such powerful emotional associations, and can trigger and spin us out of control. I, on the other hand, used to have extreme anxiety before the Jewish holidays, because the celebrations invariably meant breaking whatever diet I was on, and having to start all over again. After guiltily eating whatever I could legally ingest in public, I would secretly stuff myself as much as possible, swearing never to eat a grain of sugar or fat again after resuming my diet on Monday. This was followed by the usual onslaught of self-hatred and regret. Now that I know so much more about the negative effects of dieting and deprivation—and how willpower can only go so far—I’m not surprised that I gave in to the tempting treats surrounding me. Wednesday was a strange eating day With one batch of Apricot Squares in the freezer, I had  two more to bake. Norene Gilletz’s Cinnamon Nut Rogelach (divine!), and Brown Sugar Cookies—the ultimate chewy, sugar cookie with a rich, toffee flavor (recipe coming soon) My first time making both, so I had to QC them! (Quality Control) That was lunch. Two turkey meatballs at 4pm, so as not to arrive at dinner famished. Of course, when I’m in a brand new outfit and feel “all that,” no one takes notice, but when I’ve been baking (and sampling) bulkas, challah, and cookies, and haven’t worked out in 10 days, and find the darkest, stretchiest thing in my closet (booty camouflage), everyone says how great I look. Gotta love Spanx! I enjoyed a taste of each wonderful dish in the lavish spread at Uncle Norm and Auntie Carol’s house, resisting seconds of June’s Noodle Kugel! I did, of course, have to partake in above-mentioned cookies for dessert. (Definitely worthy!) Feeling slightly stuffed, the old me would’ve felt guilty and out of control, and would then have proceeded to eat whatever pastries and chocolate I could find at home. But after taking off my heels and putting my little...

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Input vs Output
Jun25

Input vs Output

Yesterday we went to gorgeous Newport Beach with Sam’s family, and I sat in hiding on the beach—long pants and a t-shirt covering my full, black bathing suit, as I watched all the bronzed, bikini’d babes go by. True, I’ve been working round the clock on the Fabio Viviani review, in the hopes that he would forward it to his 70,000 fans—which happily he did! Fabio Viviani’s Cooking Demo and Cookbook Review >> But I can’t blame the flabby feeling on the one meal we ate at his cooking demo, or his amazing meatballs that we made this Friday… or the leftovers on Saturday. My version of Fabio’s Mom’s Meatballs with Low Fat Ricotta Cheese and Laura’s Lean Beef coming soon! It’s the general slacking off—the extra bite here and extra bite there, paired with not doing my regular workouts. It’s quite simple: I’ve been taking in more than I’ve been putting out! There’s a very fine line between maintaining (or losing) and gaining. Today, I am re-committing to eating healthy, drinking water, and being active whenever I can. It only took 15 minutes for me to take a walk around the school, after dropping my daughter off at camp. I knew that if I came home and got in the office, a thousand things would keep me away from getting on the treadmill in our garage gym. So instead of putting it off, I just DID IT! And I already feel a thousand times better. That tingling in my legs when I walk is the tell-tale sign that I haven’t been working out enough. (Ugh! Hate that!) Does anyone else get that after not exercising regularly? My natural state of being now is to work out and eat healthy. When I’m over-loading on carbs and blowing off workouts to get a post done, I start to feel bloated and achy, and generally grumpy. I don’t know why it is that us moms feel guilty to take an hour to do something for ourselves. I think my smart hubby realizes that my working out is really just as much for him and my daughter as it is for me. I feel so much better when I am in control of my eating and am being active; and this in turn makes me more patient and kind, and more pleasant to be around. I might not have the luxury of doing the Santa Monica stairs for an hour, like I used to in my single days. I took the opportunity last month when we were in the area buying a car, and it felt SO good to work out in...

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Love + Kindness = Thinner Thighs

Do you ever have a day when you’re just in a slump and know you need something to pull yourself out of it? And then something magically appears that was exactly what you needed… The cover of my mother-in-law’s Spring Oprah Magazine caught my eye. (I knew that as soon as I cancelled my subscription—in an attempt to un-clutter—I would see an issue that I really wanted to read!)   Love + Kindness = Thinner Thighs Must read! I convinced my husband to purchase it THAT night on the iPad— well, actually, I was nagging him to run out and buy me the magazine, and he convinced me to get it on the iPad. (Which makes sense, since we own a Mac Consulting Company!) Don’t tell anyone that this is my first time reading a magazine on my iPad. Still getting used to it. And switching from article to notes to type this post! Hmmm. Not convinced. Do you prefer to read magazines the old-fashioned way? Or are you loving having access to all the issues on your iPad? Anyway, back to the article… Life Coach, Martha Beck’s kind, soothing advice was exactly what I needed—and if you’re still reading this post I suspect it’s what you need too: Feel about yourself what you would have others feel about themselves. Self loathing tends to increase stress eating and the production of fat-storing stress hormones. Apply SALVE (self-acceptance, love, value, esteem) to break negative patterns and improve yourself. As a former Weight Watchers Leader and Private Coach, I am great at giving people advice to be kind to themselves, not be hard on themselves, and treat themselves with the same tender loving kindness they would give to a friend who is hurting inside. But not always so good at following my own advice. The Jewish Holidays, family functions and get-togethers always seem to make me feel like I should be perfectly skinny, toned, and in control. And then of course the pressure I put on myself sends me straight to the comfort which food had always provided me with. And when I’m spending time cooking and baking (and tasting) for said functions—plus blogging, and being a mom to a toddler—something has to take a back seat; and it’s usually the exercise. You know you really need to get your butt back into the gym when your three-year-old starts pinching the schmaltz (definition: chicken fat) on the back of your arms. Not helpful! I don’t know why I put such pressure and stress on myself to be ‘skinny’ for yet another family Bat Mitzvah—this one (the last of three in three months)...

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Weight Watchers Power Foods – will change your life for good!
Mar02

Weight Watchers Power Foods – will change your life for good!

In my humble opinion, this is what it’s ALL about! When I started focusing on eating healthy, nourishing foods (that mostly grow or walk!) I really started to feel satisfied and the weight came off. Now I don’t even need to count points because I know and trust my body to tell me when I’m hungry and when I’ve had enough. I love that I don’t have to feel guilty to eat a banana. This delicious Butternut Squash and Apple Soup—topped with Fat Free Greek Yogurt—is a Weight Watchers Power Food.   When I first joined Weight Watchers (in 2001) I remember my mom asking me why I never ate fruit. Well, I didn’t tell her at the time, but the truth was that I didn’t want to “waste” points on an apple when I could rather eat some sugar snap peas and then save my points for the Weight Watchers frozen treat every afternoon and the giant bag of popcorn I would eat every single night. What I didn’t realize was that the natural sugars in beautiful fresh fruit would have stopped my cravings for sugar and treats. I also used to cook everything without oil and didn’t want to spend a point on parmesan cheese. What I didn’t realize was the fat free food is not satisfying and you end up eating more to compensate. I would choose 1-point “lite” hamburger buns instead of “wasting” two points on an egg. When the Core Plan was first introduced to us as Weight Watchers leaders—the guinnea pigs, before it was marketed to the general public—we could NOT believe that we could eat as many eggs, avocados, etc. as we liked. It seemed to be too good to be true. Well… it was! The people who ate 6 eggs and 2 full avocados a day (I’m not completely exaggerating!) of course, did not lose weight. Here’s a good rule of thumb to live by: if it seems to be too good to be true, it usually is! Here’s another one that I used to tell my members: if you feel like you are over-eating, you are! The key with the Core Plan back then—and the Simply Filling Technique now (choosing all Weight Watchers Power Foods)—is to eat (satisfying foods) until you are satisfied. (Not full!) For Weight Watchers newbies, this may seem daunting. My advice would be to start off counting points so you get a good idea of how much you should be eating, and learn what foods are higher in Points values and should be eaten more sparingly. But still try to choose the bulk of your foods...

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Wow—tracking really DOES work!

It is 9:48pm. I just sat down at the computer to enter the four Go Lightly “Sugar Free” (therefore guilt free, right?) Fudgie Rolls… and to my surprise realized that I had just downed 3 points. I thought that I was being so “good” eating these instead of the true love of my life… real Tootsie Rolls. (sigh) As part of the new 2013 me, I signed up for my free Lifetime member ETools online account, and have been looking up points (horrifying!) and trying to track most of what I’m eating. (I usually loosely follow the Simply Filling technique.) This is after having to try four of the “Crunchies” (South African traditional oatmeal cookies) that I made today… which sent me on a slippery slope of sorts. I was trying out a new version of the recipe, and as I have mentioned before—it’s when things I make don’t turn out perfect that I just can’t stop eating them. Self torture! Why is that?? Let me just try one more to make sure that’s not exactly how they should be! And why is it that I always cave RIGHT before I have some big event and really need to be pulling it together? (See family Bar Mitzvah in Vegas in… THREE DAYS!) And of course, my sick toddler prevented me from working out today (really)… and now I feel kind of like a blob. This was not the plan! Thank G-d for spanx! The moral of the story… Track, track, and track!!! I will now go to bed before I eat anything else… Goodnight. And Happy Tracking! With Love,...

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