I have moved, http://www.balancingpenny.blogspot.com
I made this decision so I can freely share about Beach Body and Link to anything they have without being censored.

I promise this is the last time.

wishing you good workouts and time outdoors
Penny Lane


I miss Sugar! Ok I admitted it, but I have to put in a side note, It has only been today that I have missed sugar, because I am horribly hormonal. Since the Daniel Fast I have not wanted sugar, I have wanted chocolate and tried to eat some cheap milk chocolate and received swollen raw lips that couldn’t be soothed by any amount of water or  Chap Stick. It is cool how when your body is allergic to something it can respond and tell you immediately when it hasn’t had it for a while. Ok honestly it is uncomfortable while I am in the middle of the flare up, but I at least was able to pinpoint the  cause of the swollen lips.

Today though I have been craving a piece of cake or a cupcake with butter cream frosting.

I might just settle for the frosting, looking at this just makes my lips hurt.  So I don’t have an answer for my current sugar craving, although  I am trying many things, including Agave Necter, Sucunant, Honey, Stevia.  I have been trying to eat more fruit for dessert when I am having a sweets craving.

  In the afternoon I have been having a Shakeology to try to curb my cravings.  I made a Raspberry Chocolate shake for Grandma and it tasted like a Raspberry Chocolate bar and had quite a bit of sweet. This excites me to know I can add some Shakeology to curb the sweet(row) teeth, BUT what about cake type things?  What is a girl to do?   I don’t know the answer to this but would be willing to try just about anything if you have a suggestion.  Please share anything you have, Please, Please, Please (is that enough begging?)

I will share my experiments, there might be some funny in there.

Your friend who is trying to replace tahini for sugar,

Penny Lane

Starting on March 21, 2011 I will be starting a new workout program. Turbo Fire which is distributed by Team Beachbody.  I have been watching this infomercial for a year wishing and hoping that I could do this workout. Well On Monday I recieved it in the mail as part of my Team Beachbody Coach Package. Have you seen this video?

http://c.brightcove.com/services/viewer/federated_f9?isVid=1I would like to get friends and family together so we can embark on this journey together, Turbo Fire and Chalean Extreme Hybrid. Really the best of both worlds, High Intensity Interval Training alternating with weight lifting.  Please let me know if you would like to do this with me or if you know anyone, I would like some workout buddies to share our success together.

Well I am headed to work, hope everyone has a wonderful Wednesday!

Jumping and Sweaty

Penny Lane

Happy Fat Tuesday

I have been trying to change more habits to become a healthier Penny. I recently wrote about changing my eating habits, again. Now after 5 weeks of removing meat and ensuring I have enough protein I have changed my workout time. Now I am only on day two of this adventured and statistics say I have 19 more days before I can consider this a habit.  With that being said I want this to be a habit to stick. Yesterday when I got home I was happy because I knew that I could relax before doing homework rather than the typical rush, to work out, rush to get dinner going and rush to start homework. It made the evenings feel 101 X’s less relaxing and make me long that much more for quiet mornings where I could quietly enjoy my coffee and bible readings.  In this it started a horrible cycle of staying up a bit longer to finish what I need and getting that extra time I felt I was entitled then trying to wake up early so I could get more quiet time in. This however did not work out well for me because I was burning the candle and both ends and my work and sanity was paying for it.

So Starting on Monday I made the decision that had been tweeted almost daily for weeks at me.  Work out in the morning, have your workout work for you. You know what I found, I love it! Yesterday I had to work at the BNP Paribas Tennis Tournament and didn’t get home until 8pm. The first thought I was  “12 hours is a long shift” (normal work day plus extra money work), on the heels of that I was practically jumping up and down that I had completed my workout. This meant I  could go home and complain about how tired I was.  Ok the complaining didn’t happen, I walked in and the first words outta Grandmas mouth was “You are tired.”

My plan is to continue this for the next 21 days and hope that it will stick, no more excuses about how I am too tired after work or becoming a lower priority than college classes. Well just a little notice to you, I will share more about my new workouts when I start them on Monday the 21st.  That is the day after my last day working in the retail tent at the tennis tourney. 

Have a wonderful evening and a blessed Wednesday.

Penny Lane

I have recently become vegetarian, yes I know again. I have done this once  before in the Summer and when it started to get cold again I was craving comfort foods so I went back to my previous eating habits.  With the coming of the new year I wasn’t feeling very well and through Tweets my   Beach Body Coach shared with her followers that she was doing the Daniel Fast. This got me thinking about cutting out dairy, meat and sugar. It made a lot of sense to me, because with the Holidays I had begun eating deserts every night and bread at every meal.  During the period when I was eating a lot of sugar (nightly in a delicious creation) I would have CRAZY dreams. Dreams that made no sense and were more like a Tim Burton movie then I was prepared to have in my mind.                                                                                                                                                                                                         


Now I like Tim Burton movies as much as the next person, but I don’t enjoy it nearly as much when my consciousness takes me on this wild ride and I wake up just as tired as when I fell into bed the night before.  Eating the bed products at every meal wasn’t doing me any good either. I love bread and I have grown to love homemade Gluten Free bread just as much. I was so bloated from this unhealthy diet that no matter how hard I worked out I wasn’t going anywhere on the scale and I was not having an easier time of buttoning my pants.

This is really how I felt, and you didn’t have to scare me to get me to this size.

After a week following the Daniel Fast which had cut out sugar, all breads, yeast, and processed foods I started to feel less bloated and was no longer lethargic and was beginning to see and feel like I was losing weight. It has been 5 weeks since I started the fast and 2 weeks post fast and I have stayed off the breads. I did try to eat processed foods, but have decided to stay off them because of the toxic smells my body omits when eating them and have once again discovered that I am allergic to sugar. (My mouth gets completely raw and lips get so dry there is nothing that satisfies them).

I am starting to read

This is as part of my final speech that I will hopefully be completing next week, as soon as I complete this speech which will be video taped I will post it to share with you. Hopefully my nervousness does not show on camera;)

Also if you noticed I have a new Page called Beach Body, this is because I recently decided to become and Independent Coach. If you have any questions free to contact me.

Wishing you Healthy days and non-Alice In Wonderland Dreams,

Penny Lane

Cell Phone pics image















Trying to free up phone memory. How did I get so many pics backed up?

 Hello from the 100th year senior.  Ok I may not be at 100 years yet, but having watched all my friends graduate and continue on with either life or career plans I am starting to feel as though I will never recieve my B.A. in Psychology.  Honestly it isn’t even a degree I will be using I am just so far into my courses at this point it would be idiotic not to complete it and also I will be able to go to graduate school in science even though I have a Psych degree. But what I am or am not going to do is not what this post is about it is about how plans go completly array when we lean on our own wisdom and strength to make them work. 

Let me give you a little background, I did not attend college in sunny California,


instead I started my college career in Rainy Bellevue/Redmond Washington.


I obtained my A.A. after 4 years of exploring classes and amassing a nice little debt because I couldn’t decide what I wanted to do. I have changed my mind about what I wanted to be more times than most people change their underwear and continue to change my mind to this day.  Thankfully I have had experience in the fields I thought I wanted to work in so it wasn’t a flight of fancy but rather an informed decision.  After I finally graduated we moved to California and I began navigating my way through Cal States University System. This has not been an easy process and every quarter I feel like this,

I should have realized when at my first meeting with the advisor and she looked at my transcript and said oh you have these classes to meet California’s requirments and when we get the rest of your transcript put into the system we will figure out what  you need, that I was going to be in for a bumpy ride. It took a year of me riding them and asking if my transcript had been entered for it to finally happen and when it came back that I hat approx 8 classes to retake, because Washingtons credits were not enough I was through with all but just a few upper division classes.  Since I did not and still do not have priority in registaration at the community college campus’ in California I have been SOL in trying to make these up.  So this brings us to this week as I am sitting in one of my last upper division classes preparing for a crazy 5 hour 2 day a week class that my professor says he will not take any more students because he is 5 over and can not handle more than that. 

What? Are you serious? Well I talked to him and explained my situation and as he looked at my transcript he said he would not clear me to be in class. Sitting with a Gentleman I don’t know with a classroom full of women and men I have never met I began crying, not the attractive  tears silently rolling down your cheeks, but rather the horribly embarasing snotty nose,  almost hiccups, can’t talk cry. I tried to thank him for his help but want to do this




I did get a good cry in and thanked the professor for offering me help with out loosing it completly and awkwardly left as the girl next to me tried not to look at me. 

And like always I began planning and started with the most drastic never going back to school and shaking my fist at the system. This will never work, because I do not have enough passion to continue in my current posission and I don’t want any of the children to suffer because of  me.

Second I could always go to the private University down here, but that would 1. cost more and 2. be dumb because I am so close to graduatating from CSU.

So last I will go back to community college and try to crash courses and work over the recommended course load so I can drive 70 miles twice a week to take this class I need during the summer.

So I made my plan right? Right! But, is it the plan that is going to happen or am I once again creating a plan that does not fit into God’s plan.

I thought of Psalms 139:13-18 (though I had to look up the actual verse)

13 For you created my inmost being;
   you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
   your works are wonderful,
   I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you
   when I was made in the secret place,
   when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed body;
   all the days ordained for me were written in your book
   before one of them came to be.
17 How precious to me are your thoughts,[a] God!
   How vast is the sum of them!
18 Were I to count them,
   they would outnumber the grains of sand—
   when I awake, I am still with you.

I always seem to remember this verse when the plans I make fall through or as I begin planning.  I really want to be done with my B.A. but sometimes I feel like Sisyphus pushing his rock up the mountain.




 Happy Friday From the Heavy rock!

Cinnamon and Sugar,

Penny Lane


Isaiah 40:31

31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

You Raise Me up!



I just ate dinner and I am ready to dig through the kitchen to find something that will subdue this lion that is trying to scratch its way through my stomach.  What am I to do?  Did I hears someone say chocolate? I think that is a great Idea!  How about Black Bean Brownies?  Really you agree, well I love you! <that is actually I would have with myself:).

To tame this wild beast I made Black Bean Brownies. I had first heard about these in December from a Gluten Free Magazine we were once subscribed to and was very curious since I love to put odd things in my meals to up the veggie or protein count.  When I saw  this


For a considerable discount at Borders a few years ago I  snatched it up and we ate veggie filled food for months. I think my favorite was the banana bread with cauliflower and peanut butter on top. Love I tell you.  So after at first being apprehensive about putting black beans and chocolate together I threw caution to the wind when I needed one more treat for my co-workers for their Christmas goody plates.  Of course I tried one before they were sent home with them and I fell in love. So in love that I made them for the Christmas party the same night.

I picked the recipe up here, because it didn’t require flour. If you did want to use flour there are many recipes you can find online by searching black bean brownies.


  • 1 (15.5 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon instant coffee (optional)
  • 1/2 cup milk chocolate chips (optional)

And don’t forget to pre heat your oven like I did. It needs to be set to 350 degrees. 

I started at the top of the list and worked my way down.

In went the black beans.

Then the remaining ingredients.

Then turn the processor on and blend it all together till it’s a nice smooth chocolate smoothie consistency.

I then poured it into the pre greased baking dish and and sprinkled with Chocolate flakes

I didn’t have chocolate chips so I used the Hot Chocolate flakes from Fresh and Easy

I would recommend that you use chocolate chips it added a moisture to the brownies that this batch seemed to be missing. I recall last time I also put more cocoa powder in and gave it a richer flavor. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t good, because it was.


Mmmm still tasty and it certainly tamed that lion trying to claw its way outta my belly and I know I was able to get a little more protein in me today.  Wooo hooo!  That is a goal I don’t often conquer, but yet I try to If I can get it in the form of chocolate all the better for me;).

Wishing you a rich chocolatey Monday,

Penny Lane

Hello! I am so happy for the end of this week and look forward to the adventures the weekend could bring. It was the first week back to work after the holidays (I work with a school district so I get all the fun holidays off). It is always so hard to return to work after having time off, I so enjoy being able to do what I want when I want, but alas I also need that schedule to keep me productive. It seems the more I squeeze into my schedule the better able I am to complete it. On the other hand this filled schedule may be the undoing of my brain. In the last two days I have determined this may be the very reason that I have become so  and find myself doing stupid stuff. For example yesterday I was preparing eggs with only two left I cracked one over the sink and watched it slide down the garbage disposale before I even realized what  I had just done.  This evening as I was preparing dinner for the blog post I picked up my camera and prepared to shake it in preparation to take my first picture. My day has been filled with spacey actions like this.  Anyways let’s get onto the reason I wanted to post. I made CPK’s BBQ Chicken Pizza! Oh my goodness this is one of my favorite pizza’s just barely taking 1st place from Amy’s Cheeseless Roasted Veggie Pizza.  When I was still able to eat wheat I would splurge every few weeks and purchase a single serve frozen pie.

When grocery stores first started selling these I was beside myself with joy, at the time we didn’t have a CPK close to our home.  Since I have given delicious gluten filled products up almost 2 years ago this pizza is something that has not touched my lips. 😥  I had avoided making the curst as well because I didn’t think that I could recreate the deliciousness that the Creators at CPK has perfected. I have been craving pizza all week and on top of that I have been craving a BBQ Pizza so this evening I dug out  a new GF pizza crust mix and set about making something delicious.

Last weekend on our Grocery Trip we picked up this new King Arthur pizza crust because I am always searching for a better crust. The definition of better in this case means something more like gluten filled crust.  This crust was a disappointment it tore easily and I had a horrible time moving it from the counter to the pizza stone.

When I patted this out on the counter it looked perfect. Then I had to move it to the warmed pizza stone and it turned into this  hilled and vallied crust.  I ignored this and place the Mozzarella medallions on the warm crust.

I then chopped the pre cooked BBQ  marinated chicken thighs on top of the cheese

I then topped the chicken with smoked gouda slicked onions and drizzled BBQ sauce on top to add a little more zing.  

I recommend this BBQ sauce it is quite good and it is gluten-free! I love random finds in Fresh and Easy.

MMmmm it looked so good!

So good infact that this little guy was begging for a taste! I don’t think dogs can eat pizza, well that’s the story I am sticking to. Well sadly the crust was awful, it had no flavor and really detracted from the topping.  I have scrapped the topping off (it tastes so good!) and will be using if for a sandwich tomorrow.

Hope everyone’s cooking adventure was better than mine.

Wishing you stretchy dough and zingy sauce,

Penny Lane


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