Saturday, April 30, 2011

Grandpa Woody's Grapefruit BBQ Chicken Recipe

Grandpa Woody's Grapefruit Chicken

At some point during my childhood, Mom and Dad decided that Sunday was BBQ day. Mom would buy a big chicken, cut it up like a New York butcher and hand it over to Dad.

We had 2 grapefruit trees at the time so he started experimenting with different grapefruit recipes. After years of experimenting and perfecting this dish, he passed it on to me.

Today I have decided to share this super special secret with you.

One chicken cut up. (Or, if you live in the year 2011 you can buy it already cut up.)

In a sauce pan, heat up……

The juice of 2 grapefruits.

1 stick of REAL butter.

1/2 cup of wine.

1/2 cup of vinegar.

1/4 cup soysauce.

(spices) This was the tricky part because he used what was in the spice rack and it was always changing.

Here are my favorites.


Herbs De Provence.

Garlic Salt.


Chili Pepper.

Black pepper.


Celery salt.

A little rosemary.

Preheat the grill to medium high. Put the chicken on grill, turn and baste every 10 minutes.

When done (about an hour) put your favorite BBQ sauce on. Turn once and put on again.

Take off grill and let set for 10 to 15 minutes.

This will be your new favorite BBQ chicken.

All I ask is that you keep the secret to yourself. Especially if you have a Hubby like mine that fancies himself the BBQ master. When I take over the grill and make the ultimate BBQ chicken Hubby gives me one of those, "Aren't you cute to try and grill something." But inevitably he eats the entire plate of food, licks his fingers and gives me that baffled look that says 'Did you just make the best BBQ chicken I've ever had?'

Yes I did. But I don't want to make anyone feel bad. I had help from a pro. My Dad the chemist. It's almost not fair.



Thursday, April 28, 2011


You know how you hear something over and over again but it doesn't really sink in until you hear it for the hundredth time? Embarrassingly, this happened to me a few days ago.

I was talking with my friend, Ava, and she told me a story about her visit to Paris.

She said, "You know in France they don't eat on the run, right? There's no grabbing a Starbucks and walking down the street drinking and eating. It's just not done."

I nodded like a bobble head.

"Here I was," she continued, "trying to not be an obvious American. Starving and getting on a bus in a few minutes, I hid a little croissant in my hand. I took a teeny tiny little bite, looked up and saw the most elegant 65 year old French woman walking towards me. She took one look at me, raised her eyebrows and said 'Bon Appetit'…… I was mortified."

I'm still smiling and bobble heading.

"Then we are on the bus, and all the Americans are asking the tour guide when we're going to eat. This goes on and on until she says "Look! This is France! We eat breakfast, lunch and dinner. We don't troll malls for food!"

Here's the embarrassing part for me. I never put together sit down to eat and don't eat on the run. I know. A whole year doing this and it suddenly dawns on me. I talked to Shaboom about it and she said, "Karen, that's what I've been telling you forever."

I'm bobble heading long distance.

For the last few days I've given up eating on the run. I'm always on the run. I'm sure I lost more weight……I just don't have time to check.

Bon Appetit!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Now What?

Photo by Karen at French Skinny

When I dove into the world of blogging I had a very specific plan. (You know I love a plan.) Journal a six month experiment where I give up dieting, eat like my friend in France and try to find a little French fun in the suburbs of California.

I found so much more, the amazing people that have supported me. Your lives are absolutely fascinating, every single person has a story to tell.

Once I completely shed my diet mentality I found I have a passion for cooking.

I'm no longer afraid of bread, butter, cheese or chocolate. (Although chips and salsa will always scare me a little.)

And surprise, surprise, if I follow my 4 year old around all day I get more exercise than any Zumba class!

Now what? Do I retire the blog or keep going?

It's time to make a new plan.

It's called..........

"Choose Carefully And Eat With Passion."

Food, Fashion and Fun.

No more diets.
No more sacrifice.
Real food.
French Skinny Portions.
Lots of laughs.
And passion is a must!


Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Easter Bun Bun

The Easter Bun Bun
Photos by Karen at French Skinny

My Neighbor Wife and her Hubby rescued this cute little bunny a few weeks ago. Their little 5 year old daughter, Ballerina Girl, and my 4 year old have given bunny a few different names. So far she's been called: Bun Bun, Daisy Flowers, Jewels, Jewelry Girl, Snow Bunny, Snowflake, Monkey Boo Boo, Sneaky Pete, Giraffe, Sweet Bunny and Fluffy. It seems that Bun Bun is the current favorite.

I swear I'm not into dressing up animals but I had this idea about putting a tutu on Bun Bun, and making her my Easter Bunny post.

I don't have a lot of experience with shooting bunnies but how hard could it be?

I mean look at her. She's so perfect!
Yeah. I got exactly 2 pictures that didn't look like these.

Where ya going Bun Bun?

But this is fun!

Bun Bun is so dramatic!

I promise not to put Bun Bun through any more crazy photo shoots.
But I will give her lots of treats.

Happy Easter!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

The French Skinny Finale!

My French Picnic

I had never considered putting up photos of myself for the FSE. But there were so many comments about it, you all changed my mind. I couldn't bring myself to show the before picture. Just pick one of these and imagine it blown up like a helium balloon.

I figured if I was going to do pictures let's have some fun. So I hired James Reese because he is incredibly talented and I knew he would shoot something special. (If you need pictures for anything, he's AMAZING!) I wanted it to have a French vibe so we started at the flower mart in Downtown L.A.

I had never been there before.
So much fun.

I bought a ridiculous amount of flowers.

Remember those black stretchy J. Crew pants?
Wearing them!

Then we were off to my house.

I found this dress at "It's A Wrap."
Somebody wore it on the show Big Love.
I threw on an apron my God daughters gave me.
4 was very shy.

Then we went in search of my boyfriend at Monte Carlo.
He wasn't there.
I waited and waited.
He broke my heart again.

We moved on to shoot some head shots.
This is Hubby's favorite.

At some point James asked me how I felt about The FSE.

This was my answer.

The last thing was My French Picnic above.
It was a spur of the moment inspiration and I think my favorite.

The French Skinny started out as an experiment but has become my lifestyle.

I want to thank all of you for your amazing support.

Merci Beaucoup!

*Oh yeah, I lost that last pound.......One week early.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Final Countdown

Photo by Karen at French Skinny

It's almost done. The last pound. The last day. I want to make something irresistible. Something so fantastic you are left wondering about my superpowers. But I was so crazed I made pasta with a sauce from a jar. (Trader Joe's sauce. Hubby thought it was from Grandma Dee's garden. I can't even process that right now.)
I didn't even make cheesy bread. And guess what? No one cared.
I added mozzarella and parmesan cheese at the very end. It's now one of my "secret fast meals."

I had to have some chocolate ice cream with chocolate sauce for dessert.

Next stop?
French Skinny Photos.
You asked for it!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

J. Crew is laughing at me

A few of my favorite things
Photo by Karen at French Skinny

At this point in the FSE my closet is a sad sad thing to behold. So, to be a good citizen and help the economy, I went out to buy some clothes.

I walk into J. CREW and pull this guy that works there aside. I tell him that I've lost almost 35 pounds and I'm not sure what size I am. He brings me some black stretch pants that zipper up in the back size 6.
"I'm not a size 6."
"Yes you are."
"No I'm not."
"Try them on."

I try them on and walk out of the dressing room. He looks at me and says "You're right, you're a size 4." "No I'm not." "Yes you are." This is not computing. But you know I'm buying these pants just because it says they are a size 4!

My face gets hot and I start trying on more things. I'm mostly a 6 in pants depending on the style.

I'm pretty sure, at this point, that J. Crew has completely changed their sizing and is having a big laugh on my account because I really don't feel like I'm that much smaller. (That strange phenomenon again.)

I call Smacksy and she assures me that J. Crew is not laughing at me.
But I'm pretty sure she is.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Saturday, April 16, 2011

A Splash Of Color

Photo by Karen at French Skinny

Just a few more days!

For the occasion, 4 is going to make me a custom necklace with these beads. Tre Chic!

Breakfast: Coffee with cream. Sorry Shaboomy I just need it.

Lunch: Brown Rice cooked with vegetable broth and half an artichoke with mayo. (I need to learn how to make my own mayo.)

Dinner: Grilled Rib Eye Steak with more of the rice and artichoke.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Last Week of FSE!

Photo by Karen at French Skinny

We are getting ready to celebrate the last week of FSE! Party hats, horns and pinwheels are standing by.

Chocolate croissants. Pasta. Bread with butter. Anything I want............This is my new normal.

Today was coffee for breakfast.
Lunch was sweet potato fries with mayo.
Dinner was a pork chop with green beans and a few slices of baguette with butter.

I'm into baking this week. Cupcakes. Blueberry muffins. Bread. But I have to say "I'm just not into eating it." So my neighbors benefit from my new found passion.

You know what's super fun? Give all the kids in your neighborhood party horns.

Party On!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Weigh In Week 25 - One and One

Photo by Karen at French Skinny

Weigh In Week 25
Goal: Lose 35 pounds the French Skinny Way in 6 months.
Pounds lost this week: 1 pound
Total lost so far: 34 pounds

One Week and One Pound to go! Shaboomy, can you believe it? Thank you all for your kind words and amazing support. It's been so much more than I had ever dreamed.

Je t'aime

Monday, April 11, 2011

Day 175 from France:
Virtual Fruit Stand Between My Thighs

Shaboom sends us her update from Paris Portugal...

Oh my word, I can hardly move. My inner thighs and butt cheeks are so freaking sore from the 65 miles I rode uphill, both ways, into the wind, through the mountains of southern Portugal yesterday. HELP ME. Everything is so swollen it's like I'm growing a lime out of each butt cheek and an orange out of each inner thigh. Oranges are made for squeezing into delicious juice. They don't belong under my very chaffed skin. I'm just saying.

Breakfast today...

Small seaside village in the Algarve...

A crazy 20º grade hill I managed to get down without re-breaking my shoulder...

Just so I could climb right back up this crappy hill...

I don't understand why anyone ever thought it would be a good idea to balance all their weight onto two teeny-tiny tires less than an inch thick. It's even more of a mystery as to how I was coerced into getting my out-of-shape lazy ass onto a bike for 65 miles a day. And why am I torturing myself by doing this more than once? How many days are left of this so-called vacation??? Just kill me now.

Did I mention 65 miles a day?

On a bike?

And that bike seats are very uncomfortable when you don't have what I've learned is called "bike butt"...

I don't care how gorgeous the scenery is on the ride, I'm too busy trying not to fall down and die of exhaustion to even look and my surroundings!

But I built up quite an appetite for dinner tonight and ate THIS ENTIRE FISH. I'm not kidding.

Mama mia, I can't move. I'm told it'll be even worse tomorrow.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Joyeux Dimanche - The Paris Apartment

I found this on a wonderful blog called The Paris Apartment. Really fun and beautiful things going on over there. Check it out.

Have a beautiful Sunday.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

I Love A Parade!

100 Years
Today was the 100 year Birthday Parade in Burbank. There were horses dressed up with party hats, pink ponies and a BBQ.

Have an awesome weekend!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Day 174 from France:
Beaches Are Tiring

Shaboom sends us her update from Paris Portugal...

Oh what a lovely country...

But I'm not just here to explore the countryside and beaches because, you know, they have FOOD!

I had a delicious filet mignon followed by some amazing dessert!

Caramalized bananas covered in CHEESE!

Chocolate Mousse...

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Goal

Little Black Dress
Photo by Karen at French Skinny

Oh how I would like to say that my goal was something more than this little dress. That I could rise above all the ridiculous ideals that have been stamped into my brain from the age of 12. That I could scream from the rooftop, I am the hope! The way! Your Oprah!!!!!

I would like to, but I can not. Because I long to fit into this dress. This idea someone I don't know sewed together and threw on a hanger.

A part of me hates that, but the other 95% of me wants to put on a push up bra, zipper this sucker up and head out for a night of fun and frolic. It makes me giddy to think of it. Breathless almost.

Which is silly because the idea of it has almost always surpassed the actual night.
I have a whole photo album of "getting ready for the party" photos.

What I see in those photos is a me that has accepted the inevitable: This night will probably be really boring but maybe, just maybe it won't and I'm hanging on to the anticipation, the possibilities and the dreams. So zip me up and get out of my way......or join me!

Just know that I'm kind of old now so it might be a little awkward wearing short black tight while getting into the car when it's still light out. We will be the super hot ones eating the early bird special, and the night will be over by.....9:00 at the latest. If I wear these 4 inch heels it will take at least 3 days to recover and there may be bandaids involved. But hey, let's do this thing and party on!


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Day 173 from France: Oh Paris!

Walked for miles and miles today with visitors from the States. They were hating me when we were done, rather their feet were.

We saw graffiti...

Dalida's home and a statue of her...

Montmartre and Sacre Cœur...

The Pantheon...

And we ate pain au chocolat until we dropped!!

J'adore Paris!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone 4

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Day 172 From Burbank: The Closet

The Closet
Photo by Karen at French Skinny

I put on my lone scrunchie and head into.....the closet. Starting from the farthest end I try on clothes. My skinny jeans from long ago are loose. But they are from sooo long ago no one wears them anymore. I am merciless. Tossing old clothes and too big clothes in the pile. I start to sweat over a pair of pants I bought in New York and have never worn. They are brand new but 2 sizes too big. I call Smacksy:

"What do I do with these? They are brand new but too big."
"But what if....?"
"Are they worth altering?"
"No, but.."
"Are you ever going back?"
".....No, you're right."

If the clothes were old, worn out or too big I got rid of them.
I kept catching myself trying to hold on to things that were too big "just in case".
At the end, there were 2 Heafty bags full of clothes to donate.

Vive La French Skinny!