About Amy

picture of Amy Lawrence

About Amy Lawrence Creator and Owner of Gourmet Done Skinny

Hi! I’m Amy Lawrence.  Welcome to my blog post! I create delicious, healthy, skinny gourmet recipes that help people lose and maintain weight for life!

My Family:

I’m happily married to my husband of almost 20 years, this year. I have two wonderful sons, Thomas and Jacob.  Thomas is attending college working on a fire science degree to become a firefighter.  Jacob, my youngest graduates this year from high school and is still deciding what career path he’ll take. We live in a gorgeous house in the Pacific Northwest that we built with my dream kitchen. I’m a very lucky gal and I know it!

A Little About Myself and My First Business-An Afternoon to Remember Fine Teas

I’ve been in the food and tea industry officially since 2003 (unofficially since the day I was born).  I grew up loving food and cooking.  I learned to cook at an early age.

In 2003 I opened Afternoon to Remember Tea Parlor and Gifts in California. This was my first taste at owning a restaurant and cooking for people consistently every day on a large scale. In addition to serving afternoon tea, my husband and I published 11 books with my own tea room recipes as well as a few books on resources for tea room owners.

Unexpected Stroke from a Pilate’s accident

In 2009 we closed the tea room and moved to Seattle, I continued to keep my online tea business and opened a retail shop in Bothell, Washington. In the front was the tea retail and in the back was a commercial kitchen where I blended and flavored my own different teas. This was going along great until late July of 2014.  I suffered an accident from pilates (of all things) where I tore my left vertebral artery (vertebral artery dissection) which led to a mild stroke.  Luckily it was caught in time and I recovered in time almost completely, just a few minor issues.  This incident however led me to reevaluate my life. In 2015 I decided to sell off the retail and wholesale part of my tea business and keep my consulting and cookbook business.

Joining Weight Watchers

In December of 2016 I decided I needed to take control of my weight. After the stroke, my main focus had been to run my business again and eating healthy was not a priority.  I was up to almost 170 pounds on a 5’3″ frame, that’s a lot! I joined Weight Watchers for the second time and really started working the plan. My mom joined me a week later.  (For more of my weight loss journey, see the “Weight Loss Journey tab”).

You Never Know Where Your Journey Will Take You:

I was so close to goal but developed the complacency bug. I felt I looked, “good enough,” but in reality I wasn’t quite there. In April of 2017, I started listening to, “Whys Advice.” Fatdag and his podcasts got me to goal in August of 2017. His podcasts are so motivating and helped me stay on track. I continue to listen to them every day when I walk. Little did I know then that I would join his Operation Fatdag team.  Our first official meeting in person is in March of this year. I can’t wait!

Here’s a little about Operation Fatdag as explained by a fellow member:

Operation FatDag was founded November 22, 2017 by a band of patriots working to change the world and save others from the prison of obesity and show people that obesity is not a life sentence and need not control your life because when you discern your “WHY” and walk with your Wingmen, goal is just a matter of time.

The Operation FatDag pledge is simple, the Wingmen community is always there for you and we believe in you because we’ve been where you are and know that with focus and community, what feels impossible to you is not.

OFD works in several tiers, we are a community of people living our lives as best we can having managed to control our obesity. The organization is comprised of a board, a non inducted wingmen community and our Operation FatDag Wingmen. Our primary goal is to educate anyone in the military on the cusp of losing a career to obesity that all hope is not lost and offer assistance to an elite group within this community who our board believes would thrive with a mentor who understands the journey and can offer support to the individual as they work a bespoke plan of action that our board believes will help that inducted Wingman to thrive in their community and inspire them to help others on the same journey. We are about saving lives, careers and communities from the scourge of obesity.

As a military brat and a Weight Watcher member, this cause profoundly spoke to me. I’m proud to be a member of Operation Fatdag Team! I’m still working on my role with the team but you can bet it will have something to do with education and healthy cooking.

Why I Started This Recipe Blog and Website:

I have started this recipe blog and website because I’m passionate about cooking healthy for life. I love good food and have discovered that you don’t have to sacrifice taste, just to be healthy. Most of the recipes on this blog (with the exception of Not So Skinny) are all smart point friendly. These are the recipes I use to feed my family and friends every day. I am constantly reading, researching and creating recipes. Early on in my weight loss journey, I realized that it takes quite a bit of time to input the recipes into “Recipe Builder,” from Weight Watchers to determine the Smart Points, but I wanted my food intake count to be accurate. That gave me the idea that if I needed gourmet recipes with Smart Points, I’m sure others would appreciate them as well and thus Gourmet Done Skinny was created.

I also enjoy checking out other food blogs for inspiration. Gina from Skinnytaste.com is my idol. She made me realize that the recipes I create and adapt can be healthy and delicious.  Be sure and check out her website.  Before I discovered her I was in a quandary about how can I still be a good cook and create recipes without all of the calories?

My recipes aren’t always, “quick,” but if you make a big batch and freeze for later, they can be. I’m not necessarily about simple but more about taste. One of my mottos is: make a big batch- once, eat twice. It’s much easier to make a big batch, portion it out and freeze it for later.

I hope you enjoy my recipes as much as my family and friends!