Happy harvesting – Pay It Forward

Sponsored post By Leanne, editor and founder

This girl should have been born on a farm. She’s never more at home than when we’re planting, sowing, and harvesting. But, unfortunately for her, our small urban lot means that the bulk of our fall bounty can’t be planted in our backyard. 6a0105362badb1970b01b7c6f3afa0970b-800wiThank goodness for the kindness of neighbors and family as well as local u-pick farms that allow us all to get our farm life fill, without all the work of actually owning a farm. Because can you imagine me owning a farm? It would basically become one big honey-do list for hubby who is decidedly much more handy than I am, and a whole lot less squeamish.

But, I love that in our glimpses of farm life we are teaching our children the simple goodness of harvesting fruits and vegetables. There is something so beautiful about preparing foods you picked earlier that day and canning and freezing for later. And, there is something even more beautiful about watching your kids devour healthy foods they previously wouldn’t touch. 

All of our recent harvesting couldn’t have come at a better time because they are coming in very handy on our Jenny Craig meal plan. Are you as surprised as I was to find out that the Jenny Craig meals are only part of the nutrition plan? Each meal and most snacks have a fresh fruit or a veggie on the menu that you add to supplement the branded foods. Jenny Craig chicken sandwichIt’s been two weeks on Jenny Craig and I have already learned so much about the program, about nutrition, and about myself. Here are just a few of my first thoughts about my experiences so far with Jenny Craig:

1)    I feel like I'm eating a lot. 6 meals a day {3 main meals with 3 snacks} is 4 more meals than I was eating before, so this shouldn’t really be a surprise, but it definitely has been a change for the better. It’s amazing how {comfortably} full you can feel while cutting calories.
2)    Fresh fruits and veggies are your friend. I thought I was eating lots of fruits and veggies before, and I probably was compared with most people. But, since I have been on the Jenny Craig plan I have since doubled, if not tripled my daily intake as part of the plan and I’m already seeing good changes because of this.
Jenny Craig French Toast
3)    Rules are made to be broken. As much as I love the idea of following the Jenny Craig line by line, life sometimes intervenes. Debie, our Jenny consultant, warned us from day one that if a plan can’t have flexibility it won’t work, and she has helped us come up with ways to make healthy choices when life happens. Knowing I have the tools to eat out for events, for when we can’t make it home to eat, or when the power goes out and I can’t cook at home makes me even more confident that I can do this by myself even after the program ends.
4)    I have never used my microwave more. Or my paring knife, or my veggie steamer. Or basically anything else in my kitchen. I guess that’s what happens when you are serving up a varied menu or fruits, veggies, and more and you are trying new things to keep things exciting.
5)    I should have cleaned out my pantry, fridge, and freezer first. Not because I’m too tempted to eat what I shouldn’t {we thankfully weren’t junk food stockers before}, but I should have cleaned out because I don’t have enough room for everything I should be eating. Freezer space is definitely at a premium here with two people participating in the Jenny Craig program and three kids keeping with their normal diet, and the fridge is at capacity with fresh fruit, veggies, yogurts, milk, and cheese. Thank goodness for deep freeze storage and a large pantry!
6)    My foods have never been more organized. They have to be now that I need to plan ahead for every meal and snack for everyone. We’ve come up with quite the system for keeping track of everything, prepping the night before, and crossing off our lists as we eat, and I know this is going to be a good habit to continue even after our weeks are up.
7)    I love modifying my Jenny Craig meals for variety. It’s not that I’m sick of anything, because with 100 different meals, snacks, and desserts there is plenty variety offered, but I like getting creative in the kitchen and I think it’s really cool that it’s permitted with the Jenny Craig plan. In fact, not only is it permitted, it’s actually encouraged. They call it volumizing, and they actually offer suggestion on the back of the boxes as to how to volumize each entrée. Jenny Craig Chicken Wraps8)    Health on the mind. Getting more exercise, drinking water, and taking vitamins is always on my mind. This is a really good thing because I tended to think of myself last. I’ve been watching my Fitbit more carefully these days and keeping better track of my health.
9)    It gets easier. The first week it’s hard to remember that you’re on a different eating plan and you find yourself mentally planning meals, thinking about eating out, and getting cravings out of nowhere. The second week is much easier as you get into the groove of the plan and you see some success that makes you even more energized to follow the plan.
10)    The one-on-one consultations are really awesome. I’m not nutritionally dense, I’ve always been health conscious and have even taken classes devoted to nutrition in college, but I have learned a lot in the two weeks since I’ve been working with Debie and her team. Jenny Craig Breakfast SandwichIt’s very clear already that the Jenny Craig program is very different. The structured plan and the support have made it easy every step of the way. They make it so easy to follow their eating plan because they basically do everything for you – from coming up with caloric intake just for you to helping you customize your foods. You get a weekly meal plan and menu right from them that requires no calorie counting or measuring on your part, and no stressing about if you’re doing things right.

As I said, I’m only two weeks into the plan, but already I’ve seen some progress that I wanted to share with you:
Starting weight:         too much
Week 1:                    - 4.40
Week 2:                    - 0.20
Total                          – 4.6*

I’m already seeing the “lose weight” part, and after everything I’ve been learning, I feel confident that I can follow through with the “learn how to keep it off” part of their statement. Since each consultant works with members to identify their strengths, challenges and personal goals in order to create unique weekly meal and activity plans that fit their needs, learning how to keep the weight off actually seems attainable.

With 600 company-owned and franchised centers in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Puerto Rico, there just might be an office near you. But, what if you don’t live close to a Jenny Craig center or you travel frequently? You can get one-on-one support via video chat or over the phone from a dedicated consultant as part of the Jenny Craig Anywhere program and have meals shipped right to your door. There are two plans to choose from: All Access or As You Go. Food costs vary but typically range between $15 – $23 per day, plus the cost of shipping. Jenny Craig burrito bowlDo you already love the Jenny Craig program? Share your experience and get free foods. They are inviting their members to spread the word about their experience on Jenny Craig using their Pay It Forward program and get $25 off food for every friend who joins the program before October 30th. 

You can find out more about the Jenny Craig program by visiting their site, or you can check them out on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Leanne Signature*Results not typical. Members following our program can expect to lose, on average 1-2 lbs per week. I received promotional consideration. I was provided a free trial Jenny Craig program and meals. However, the opinions expressed are entirely my own. The Pay It Forward referral program will run from August 22nd through October 30th.

3 thoughts on “Happy harvesting – Pay It Forward”

  1. We “farm” on about a quarter acre with my two young children. Both my husband and I are overweight, and that is the last thing I want for my children. They love eating what they grow and they take great pride in their work. My son has a collection of painted mountain and pop corn in his room that he helped to grow. We also have chickens. They make awesome pets and you don’t need a big lot for them. You also don’t need roosters to get eggs. My daughter is especially fond of the birds and she and I are their primary caretakers. Free range, organic chicken eggs are so healthy and diet friendly. For vegans, there are chickens that do not lay many eggs, but still provide benefits. The fertilizer the chickens give us for the garden, is the best! And they are so fun to watch! I highly recommend a backyard flock for those who have the ability to keep poultry and are legally allowed. Besides my children, my chickens are the best gardeners!


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