Pumpkin Spice Cookies

Putting together holiday cookie trays will be a snap, when you make these  pumpkin spice cookies ahead of time and freeze.in-style-1
I’m a fan of repurposing. It’s economical, efficient, and reduces waste. Oh the pleasure of seeing used or ‘old items’ take on a second life!  Here’s what I’ve recently recycled.

Item number 1: My Grandma Tillie’s china takes on a starring role on my tabletop… img_5205I love the whimsical pattern, and the touch of black ties in with my decor, don’t you agree?

Item number 2: A vintage console table gets moved to the second floor and transformed into a peaceful vignette. It’s as quiet as it appears and this work space is without distractions! (I’m planning on writing my Chirstmas cards here and hopefully img_5203 finding some blogging inspiration in the coming year!)

Item number 3: My favorite pumpkin bread recipe is recreated into a recipe for soft pumpkin cookies,  perfect for holiday party trays and for this month’s Recipe Redux theme: favorite baked holiday desserts. img_5196

These  pillow like cookies are not only delicious, they’re nutritious  providing the goodness of  pumpkin (hello beta carotene), healthy fat and only 145 calories per cookie (more nutritional details posted below).  I especially like that these  can be made ahead of time and frozen #preparefortheavalanche.

What your favorite baked holiday desserts?  Have you repurposed anything you’re excited to share?  

Remember to visit the links at the bottom of this post to see what desserts my colleagues are baking for the holidays! Have a Happy and Safe Thanksgiving!

img_5179Nutritional Profile (One cookie) : 145 calories, 21 grams carbohydrate, 2 grams protein, 5 grams fat, 1 gream fiber, 10 mg cholesterol, 120 mg sodium, 25 % the DV for vitamin A (base on a 2000 calorie diet).

Pumpkin Spice Cookies

by Diane Boyd

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients (4 dozen)

  • 4 cups flour, unsifted
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 16-oz. can pumpkin
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 4 eggs


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Line 4 baking sheet with parchment paper.

3. Mix dry ingredients thoroughly in a large bowl.

4. Beat pumpkin, oil, and eggs together. Add to dry ingredients. Stir until dry ingredients are just moistened.

5. Drop batter by rounded tablespoons onto parchment lined baking sheets.

6. Bake about 10 – 15 minutes or until edges are from. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes and then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

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Chai Tea Latte Lite

Beverages with warm spices are comfort for me. It’s even more comforting being able to prepare them (and show others how to prepare them) with less sugar  without compromising taste!chia-tea-latte-3

Disclosure: I was asked to participate in the #UseNectar sponsored campaign as a member of the Healthy Aperture Blogger Network. I was compensated for my time.

Lifestyle matters. It’s the centerpiece of my blog and it’s relevant to this month, November, designated as National Diabetes Month. Here’s a sobering fact:

29 million Americans have diabetes and another 86 million are at risk of  developing type 2 diabetes.

THESE NUMBERS ARE ALARMING! But people at high risk for type 2 diabetes can lower their risk by more than half with these lifestyle changes:

• Healthy Eating

•Physical Activity

• Weight Loss (if necessary)

•Weight Maintenance

As a registered dietitian, I’m passionate about helping others on their journey to a healthier, happier life. I encourage my clients to focus on small, sustainable change. Today,  I have the pleasure of sharing information about Truvia® Nectar. img_5008With 50% fewer calories than sugar, Truvia® Nectar is a simple switch that adds honey sweetness wherever you use agave, sugar or honey. Blended with stevia leaf extract and honey, Truvia® Nectar may help with you with weight maintenance and/or weight loss, by improving your ability to  manage  sugar intake and reduce calories as part of a balanced diet.

Because Truvia® Nectar is twice as sweet as honey, you only need to use half as much. With 2 grams of carbohydrate per 1/2 teaspoons serving, Truvia® Nectar can be a delicious part of a balanced, carb-conscious lifestyle. Try it when you want a touch of sweetness in hot or cold beverages, on oatmeal, fresh fruit, and yogurt. I love it  in my Chai Tea Latte Lite, for a sweet n’ spicy afternoon pick-up with only 48 calories. The recipe is below.


Chai Tea Latte Lite (serves 4)

by Diane Boyd


  • 10 whole cloves
  • 10 cardamon seeds
  • 4 black peppercorns
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 inch piece of fresh ginger, chopped
  • whole nutmeg
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 black tea bags
  • 2 cups skim milk
  • 4 teaspoons Truvia Nectar


1. Combine first 5 ingredients to a medium saucepan. Using a mallet or wooden spoon, lightly crush and bruise the spices.

2. Add 4 cups of water; bring to boil over medium-high heat.

3. Reduce heat to medium-low ; partially cover pan and simmer gently for 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

4. Add tea bags and steep for 5 minutes. Discard tea bags.

5. Strain chai tea through a sieve lined with cheese cloth or a paper coffee filter. Add Truvia® Nectar to strained tea. Stir to combine.

6. Using a frother, froth skim milk.

7. Pour hot tea into  mugs and top with frothed milk. Garnish with  fresh grated nutmeg.

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Cranberry Roasted Breakfast Bowl

Roast cranberries  to add color and health benefits to a variety of good for you foods including Greek  yogurt and oatmeal.

Disclosure: I was asked to participate in the Cranberry Marketing Committee‘s  #CookwithCranberries campaign as a member of the Healthy Aperture Network. I received fresh cranberry samples and I was compensated for my time.

Timing is everything! Like my trip to Boston to attend the Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo that allowed me to experience the  cranberry harvest in nearby Carver, Massachusetts. Here I am, posing as a cranberry farmer between dietitian colleagues Kristina LaRue, RDN, CSSD of Love & Zest and Kylie Mitchell, MPH, RDN, LD of immaeatthat.8pm-%2f-macenzie-hotel-%2f-47-park-avenue
Lucky me! Lucky you!  Because cranberries are harvested just in time for Friendsgiving and the holidays making it the perfect time to entertain with fresh cranberries in delicious dishes and drinks! You can even surprise your friends by decorating with them.  For a chance to win one of eight $500 prizes, feature cranberries at your Friendsgiving celebration! Just snap a picture of your Friendsgiving cranberry creations, post it on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or Pinterest, with the hashtag  #FriendsgivingCranberryContest,  and upload it at CranberyFriendsgiving.com For more information and contest rules, visit CranberryFriendsgiving.com.

As a registered dietitian, I must tell you, fresh cranberries are a versatile fruit that offer BIG health benefits in a little package, including unique polyphenols not commonly found in other fruit. These  nutrients, called PACs (proaythocyanidins), play a role in helping to maintain urinary tract health. In addition to antioxidant polyphenols, a serving of fresh cranberries is a good source of vitamin C, fiber and contains only 1 mg of sodium.  They ‘re  in season in the fall, but you can  enjoy fresh cranberries like this all year long
img_4964 if you buy one bag for now and freeze two for later. Note: freeze them in their original packaging for up to one year!

I am building on my cranberry traditions with a novel twist: roasting.  It’s simple to do and roasted cranberries are  the perfect way to add color and health benefits to some of your  favorite good for you foods.  I like to combine  them with  brown and wild rice,  toss into salads,  spread onto sandwiches, and  use as a topping for my Greek yogurt and oatmeal bowls.

img_4949This  eye-catching   breakfast is  brimming with protein, whole grains, calcium and polyphenols in a delicious, satisfying warm meal.  Please join me in taking advantage of the many  reasons to love cranberries!

Cranberry Roasted Breakfast Bowl (serves 4)

by Diane Boyd


    for the roasted cranberries

    • 2 cups cranberries
    • 2 teaspoons olive oil
    • 1 Tablespoon brown sugar

    to assemble breakfast bowl

    • 2 cups vanilla Greek yogurt
    • 2 cups cooked oatmal
    • 1/2 cups pecans
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon


    for the roasted cranberries

    Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

    2. Toss fresh cranberries with oil, and brown sugar.

    3. Roast in oven until softened and slightly caramelized 15- 20 minutes. Use immediately or refrigerate and reheat in microwave oven until warm.

    to assemble breakfast bowl

    1.In each of four cereal bowls, divide Greek yogurt, cooked oatmeal and pecans.

    2.Top each bowl with warm roasted cranberries. Sprinkle with cinnamon.

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    Smoky Quinoa Breakfast Bowl with Avocado

    Boosting protein at breakfast can be as easy as adding two scrambled egg whites to a  delicious and trendy  plant-based  bowl.in-style I enjoyed seeing many of my registered dietitian (RD/RDN) friends in  Boston last weekend at the Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo (FNCE); all committed to staying abreast of the current  scientific research  in the field. Please take note: this is what makes registered dietitians your source for credible nutrition information. I hope in the coming weeks to share nuggets of knowledge learned and more yummy ways to  integrate that knowledge into your meals and snacks.

    On the heels of my trip to Boston, is the October Recipe Redux. Here’s our challenge: Plant Protein Power Bowls: Packed with protein, fiber and color, plant protein bowls are trendy and delicious.

    Today I share

     Using  the whole grain quinoa as a base (flavored with smokey paprika), I  slip in some high quality protein as egg whites  allowing me to  keep the calories low and still meet my protein needs early in the morning. Here’s a little fact that influences my food choices:  older adults need less calories, but NOT less protein.  To this high fiber,  lean protein base,  I add sauted grape tomatoes in olive oil and top with heart healthy avocado cubes. Tossing in some fresh oregano from the garden adds even more color and flavor. Please visit the links at the bottom of this post to see how my Recipe Redux colleagues are packing in protein, fiber and color into their trendy bowls.
    Smoky Quinoa Breakfast Bowl with Avocado

    by Diane Boyd, MBA, RD, LDN

    Cook Time: 20 minutes

    Ingredients (serves 4)

    • 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
    • 1/3 cup chopped onion
    • 1 clove minced garlic
    • 3 teaspoons smoked paprika
    • 1 cup rinsed tricolor quinoa
    • 2 cups vegetable stock
    • 1 ripe avocado
    • 2 teaspoons lime juice
    • pinch of salt
    • 8 egg whites
    • 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
    • fresh oregano


    1. Heat one teaspoon of oil in a saucepan. Add onion and cook over medium -low heat until soft, about 3 minutes.

    2. Add minced garlic and cook 1 minute more. Add smoked paprika. Stir and cook 1 more minute. Add rinsed quinoa and stir to combine.

    3. Add vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 10-15 minutes.

    4. Sprinkle the cubed avocado with lime juice and a pinch of salt. Mix and gently set aside.

    5. Place egg whites to a microwave safe bowl, and microwave on high for 1 minute. Stir. Continue to microwave about 30 seconds longer or until egg whites are set.

    6. In a separate saute pan, heat the remaining 1 teaspoon oil. Add halved tomatoes. Cook over medium heat until tomatoes soften and the skins begin to wrinkle, about 2 minutes.

    7.Add quinoa and cooked egg whites to sauted tomatoes. Stir to combine. Spoon into serving bowls.

    8. Top each bowl with cube avocado. Sprinkle with fresh oregano.

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    Running with the Ta Ta’s: Tips for Buying A Sports Bra + Review of My Favs

    Sports bras  are fashion forward,  but make no mistake, they ‘re invaluable gear for  female runners.  I like to  think of ’em as an insurance policy for your breasts. IMG_4737Disclosure: I received  the sports bras mentioned in  this post free  of charge. I was not compensated financially  for my time. Opinions are my own.

    Female runners tend to agree with males when citing their most treasured running equipment: shoes! I concur, but would add a good fitting sports bra, for reasons of comfort and maintenance of shape. Here are 2  facts to remember.

    No bounce = Comfort

    Minimal movement  =  Maintenance of Shape

    The first point is no secret.  You learned this early on.  The second point, isn’t quite so obvious, and if you’re young, you might get fooled.  But make no mistake,  less movement =  less damage to your ta ta’s. Yes I’m talking about sagging and drooping : ( .   Saddly, there is no exercise or diet that will preserve the youthful appearance of  breasts. Unlike biceps and tricips, your breasts DO NOT tone with exercise; they aren’t made of  muscle.  Rather, breasts consists of glands,  fat and  fibrous tissues, and  they will eventually succumb to gravity. Further problematic is the fact that when you move, so do your breasts. The repetitive bouncing can stress, stretch and irreversibly damage the Cooper’s Ligaments (fibrous strands that keep breasts attached to  the chest wall, and are first defenders for holding up the girls and maintaining  their shape).    Preventative measures, like  extra support while you exercise, are prudent and may help you maximize your lift. I was shocked to hear that 44% of women do not wear a sports bra. Geez, does this mean  they’re not exercising? IMG_4748_edited-1

    Please make exercise part of your lifestyle  and get the insurance policy for your breasts I call  a sports bra. There are a daunting number to chose from, so here are two tips for selecting the right one for YOU!   First : Get fitted by an expert. It doesn’t matter if you buy  a recommended bra  or one touted the best.

      I had Stella, the owner of Lillies and Lace in Wilmington,  fit me.  If you can’t find an expert in your area, there are sites on the web. Secondly, “test drive” the sports bra in the store. Many shoes stores now have treadmills onsite offering the ability to run in the shoe before you buy it.  The same concept applies to sports bras. Check the support by trying on the bra and moving. I like to do some running in place in the dressing room.. you can also jump, and stretch while trying on the bra. Does it support? Is it comfortable?

    Here are few new sports bras I most recently tested during a 5 miles run..IMG_4741

    Panache Sport

    A new name in sports bras for me.  Where have I been? This cute little number has underwire wrapped in silicone making it both comfortable  and supportive.    The bra cups encapsulate breasts rather than compressing them, so it is ultra flattering! It was a hot morning when I  ran in  this one and thank goodness for the fabric that wicks away moisture!    I love the versatility of the wide straps that also adjust to racer back with a hook and eye closure. (The racer back is my preferred way of wearing when running.)  Don’t you think the colors are beautiful?..

    The flat seams of this bra make  it  look  great under any sportswear. Love love love this one!!!IMG_4772

    IMG_4740Ta Ta Tamer III  by Lululemon

    This is the first  Lululemon sports bra I have ever had, but it won’t be the last! This bra holds the girls in place and is NOT compressing.  The bra features secure mesh fabric side  panels to keep bounce at bay.  The sweat-wicking Luxtreme fabric with added LYCRA fibre keeps it’s shape while keeping me dry! This gem gives you two ways to wear the straps, up and down as pictured or crossable in the back. It comes in a variety of colors , but aren’t the blue bubbles adorable?




    Run Stuff Your Bra IIIIMG_4779

    If you like your girls packed in and compressed, you’ll love this  sports bra also by Lululemon!







    Attachment-1-11Do you ever use the cup of  your bra as a pocket? If you do, this one is made especially for you!! The built-in pocket feature  allows you to stash keys,  lip balm , money or snacks. LOL!  The  fabric feels like a second skin.  Pull it on  overhead and you’re good to go..



    with  comfortable wide straps that crisscross in the back . It comes in a variety of colors; choosing just one will be tough. But every gal should have a black sports bra. Am I right?

    RUNSTUFFYOURBRADo you wear sports bras? If so, what do you look for in a sports bra? What are your favorites?

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