We just returned from a long weekend in Tennessee. What’s in Tennessee, you ask? Lots: Jim’s parents, my parents, and Kate, Scott, & Bean.

And there’s food.

Lots of food.

It seems like our Tennessee trips consist of short stretches of time in between meals. It’s an awful, yucky-in-our-tummy feeling for the duration of the visit. But we’ve always got meal plans with somebody, so the eating just. does. not. stop.

Over the past couple of years, I have found ways to cut back a bit. First, soda. Our parents have soda in the house all the time (much like we did a few months ago: until I stopped buying it!). Although I did have a few cans over the weekend, I didn’t have a can in my hand the majority of the time like I used to when we’d visit years ago. That helped.

The other thing I cut back on this time? The containers of snacks that are scattered literally all over the house: jelly beans, Ghirardelli chocolate squares, and especially trail mix.

“Trail mix?” you might be thinking. “Why would you feel the need to cut back on trail mix?”

I’m gonna tell you.

My mother-in-law makes this “trail mix”, and now I suddenly feel compelled to put it into quotes because it’s not a traditional trail mix, really. It’s more of a “Sit on your a$$ and watch TV mix”. Here is a partial list of what’s in it:

Chocolate-covered fruit, like cherries, apricots, blueberries
Raisins: plain AND chocolate covered
Chocolate chunks
Milk Duds

I know there’s more, but I think you get the idea. Anyway, when she started making it, she would keep a coffee pot-sized container of it in the family room. Over the past couple of years, the containers have increased in size. This weekend? We walked in the door to see this larger-than-life jar of trail mix on the mantel:

I felt like I was the new star of “Honey, I Shrunk The Kids”. The size of this jar full of that stuff blew me away. (If I had to guess, I’d say it was 3 1/2-4 gallons) We were going to tussle over the weekend, and at that point I wasn’t sure who would win.

There was still some mix left when we got on the road, so I’m declaring myself the winner. Yay!