Disclosure: Diary of a First Time Mom is proud to partner with Denny’s as a #DennysDiners Blogger Ambassador. Stay tuned for exclusive content and menu news. Although we’re being compensated in some form, all opinion remain our own.

Dear Diary,

Tis the season to gain weight. Halloween candy, Thanksgiving turkey, Christmas cookies and New Year’s eve champagne all add up to a wider waist line. From now through January, my family will celebrate the season with food–lots of delicious, mouthwatering meals. When we’re not around our dining room table, we’ll head to restaurants like Denny’s, which recently debuted its holiday menu filled with sugar and spice and everything nice.

Denny's Holidays 1

As soon as we walked through the door, Rudolf worked his magic and drew Caitlynn closer. He had her at pancakes and whipped cream, and her face lit up as bright as the famous reindeer’s nose.


Denny's Holiday 2

Caitlynn immediately knew what she wanted to order. We also split the Milk and Cookies milkshake. But I wanted to order something a bit lighter for my main meal. Fortunately, Denny’s offers Fit Fare® menu items, which are loaded with flavor but not calories. Using a key, you can select something light, lean or packed with protein or fiber.


Breakfast options include egg whites scrambled together with fresh spinach and grape tomatoes, plus two turkey bacon strips, an English muffin and seasonal fruit.

Fit Fare Menu 1

And a loaded egg white omelette  filled with fresh spinach, mushrooms, sautéed zucchini and squash, diced tomatoes and melted Swiss cheese.

Fit Fare 2

So this holiday season, I’ll work to stay fit by making healthy choices at table and when I get up. Here’s how:

Eat Out

It’s not how much you eat out but what you eat when you go out. Thanks to the Fit Fare® menu, I don’t  have to stress about what I’ll order. If I ate a few candy bars from Caitlynn’s Halloween sack, I can balance my diet by ordering a light, lean entree.

Work Out

My gym membership has collected dust recently. Time to shake it off and shake things up. By packing my workout gear and keeping my gym bag in my car, I’m more likely to make the stop when I get off work. I signed up for a gym with child care, so I don’t have an excuse if I can’t secure a babysitter.

 Visit a Farm

Check the local listings for fall farm festivals. Picking apples and running through corn mazes burns calories and creates fun, family memories. Be sure to purchase the apples you picked to make a mug of cider when you get home. Or continue the fun and bob for apples!

Go Leaf Jumping

Rake the fallen leaves into a big pile and dive in! Jumping in leaves is a fall favorite for our family.

Take a Walk

Go on a nature walk at a local park or even in your backyard. Make a list of items to collect along the way, like acorns, pine cones and cloves, that you can use to craft throughout the fall.

Hey DFTM Fam–How are you staying fit throughout the fall?

About The Author

Vlog Mom/DFTM Creator

Not long ago, Heather Hopson hosted a television show in the Cayman Islands. Today, she's back home writing a different kind of story as a new mom. In her 15 years working as a professional journalist, this by far is her best assignment! Growing up, she dreamed of becoming Oprah Winfrey. She was the features editor for her school’s newspaper and a teen talk show host for her city’s most popular radio station. She went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Michigan State University. After graduation, she worked as a television producer and reporter at CBS, NBC and Fox affiliates throughout the U.S. Instead of heading to Chicago to join Ms. Winfrey on her set, she bought a plane ticket to the Cayman Islands instead. She arrived five days before a category five hurricane! She lived in paradise for seven years, hosted an award-winning television show and traveled the globe with a government delegation. She also served on the board of directors for Big Brothers Big Sisters and spearheaded a Send a Kid to Camp campaign. Then, she relocated to Washington, D.C. to obtain a teaching certification and instruct 8th grade reading at a high needs middle school. She later returned to her hometown of Pittsburgh, PA to raise her daughter Caitlynn, now 4-years-old. During her 10-month-stint as a stay-at-home mom, Caitlynn inspired her to create this blog, and Diary of a First Time Mom was born on Mother’s Day 2012. Two years later, she expanded the family to include 20+ writers. Currently, Heather serves as the communications director at Allies for Children. In addition, she is the owner of Motor Mouth Multimedia, which ranked #49 in Startup Nation’s Home-Based 100 Competition sponsored by Discover Card and Sam’s Club. Recently, The Pittsburgh Foundation and The Heinz Endowments selected Heather to receive an Emerging Black Artist award to develop Diary of a First Time Mom.

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