Monthly Archives: December 2009

Cookie balls

My dear friend Mari is having an awesome Dunkin Donuts coffee giveaway over at her blog Namaste. Go check it out now!!

We are having a small Christmas / Monday Night Football party tonight and I wanted to take the opportunity to try out a vegan dessert. I went through the ingredients I had in my pantry and decided on Lindsey’s Vegan Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies.

I didn’t have agave so I just used the pancake syrup I had on hand. I think that was the only substitution I made, other than once again using my chunky applesauce instead of opening up another jar.

They tasted really good but the first batch came out looking more like balls, so I smooshed down the second batch to make them look more like cookies 🙂

I can’t wait to try more vegan cookie recipes!

One thing I would like to invest in is one of those standing mixers. They are so expensive but I found that some of the ingredients in this recipe did not mesh together well and I wish I’d had a mixer like this one:

What is your favorite cookie recipe?

Chunky pancakes

Sunday was the first full day I was able to eat real solid food again, so I took the opportunity to make a special breakfast before church.

I’d been eyeing Mama Pea’s recipe for Apple Cinnamon Pancakes for quite a while now and I finally had all the ingredients and time to make them 🙂

Since I wasn’t too comfortable with “crunching” just yet, I left out the chopped apple and used some Musselman’s chunky applesauce (the recipe already calls for applesauce so I just used that amount).

It was neat to get little bites of chunky apple that were still soft enough for me to chew in my delicate dental state 😉

Topped it off with this bad boy…

I’ve had this brand before but it had been a while. I love almond butter but I have a hard time with the squeeze packs. I think they would be great for traveling, but at home before dawn, they are just plain annoying, ha ha.

Mmm, coffee…

I made a couple pancakes for Josh too who said “They were okay.”

Someday I hope to blow him away with my cooking skills, but for now I’ll take a small victory in getting him to eat a “partially-vegan” meal — he had eggs with his.

I think next time I’ll use more cinnamon!

Dodged the bullet

Holy heck, it feels so good to be back!

A lot has happened these past several days but the first thing on my mind is that I am so thankful that in my section of Kentucky, we’ve managed to dodge the major winter storm bullet. We have had some freezing rain and flurries but NOTHING like what many others in the Eastern parts of our state have had, not to mention you guys up in the Northeast.

I thought my tooth debacle was not a very fun early Christmas present, but at least we aren’t snowed in without power. My heart goes out to all those people.

Breakfast this morning was a lovely, warm, crisp bowl of oats with a honeycrisp apple, cinnamon and peanut butter. Need I say more?

I feel like I have so much of my life to catch up on before Christmas that I don’t even know where to begin. But don’t worry, blogging is a part of that again, thank goodness 🙂

Are you ready for Christmas?

I’m alive!

Hey guys, sorry for the lull in posting. The ironic thing is that this is a food blog but I haven’t eaten hardly anything the past few days so it makes sense not to post.

If you remember, my really bad tooth pain took a turn for the worse on Tuesday and I suffered through, trying different methods and painkillers, none of which were working. I called my dentist back on Thursday and she got me a prescription for Vicodin but warned me it would not help much, that only getting this tooth out would.

So I formed a back up plan. I called a couple of places, one of which was closed for the holidays already (what the…?) and an oral surgeon who could get me in on Tuesday. Okay, Tuesday, I might make it.

NOPE!

I did okay throughout Thursday night, the Vicodin worked well and I was able to sleep a little more than I had the past two nights. I woke up in some pain on Friday morning at 6, so I took a pill and then went to eat breakfast. I could not eat. I tried to eat a banana with peanut butter on it but just looking at it made me want to puke.

Bad news. Need food to take pain pill. Already took pain pill. Can’t eat food. Uh oh.

I was so sick you guys. I stupidly went to work and managed to get down some Ginger Ale and crackers that my mom bought for me but around 10:00 it all came back to greet me. I haven’t thrown up in years! But strangely it made me feel better and I still had no pain so I thought I could manage.

Since I couldn’t eat, I was getting really fatigued and still groggy from the pills and I just felt like everything was shutting down. The pain started to come back in my mouth so I just stuck to Advil. I suffered through a meeting, trying to stay awake and then while I was at my desk I found myself blankly staring at the computer screen and not exactly writing coherent sentences anymore.

I’d had enough.

I emailed my mom to come and get me and we went directly to a place called Urgent Dental, which is like an immediate care center only for your dental needs. I had already printed off the patient forms they needed and handed them in when I walked in the door. They were so kind and the place was really swanky, with comfy chairs in the waiting room and even comfier exam room furniture!

The dentist explained everything to me that he would do and he had his dogs in the office! I had this little terrier named Sid on my lap all throughout my consultation and procedure. It really made me feel comforted. It’s funny because on the way there I thought to myself I wish I’d had my dog there. This was the next best thing 🙂

Once we agreed on the course of treatment, I was done in about 10 minutes. My evil tooth has been extracted!

I wish I would’ve taken pictures of it all but after this week of hell I’ve been through the only thing I could think about was getting it done. I was really pleased with the place I decided to go. I’m probably going to go back there to have my bridge work or implant done, whichever I decide on.

I am feeling so much better!

Last night was rough though, I had to keep gauze in my mouth until it quit bleeding and that meant I couldn’t eat or drink for a long time. At the end of the day, I’d had about 1/2 sleeve of crackers (before tooth removal), 1 small cup of applesauce and a few bites of sorbet. Yikes!

Today, I was able to get some oat bran with peanut butter down which made me happy because it’s almost normal for me. I still have to eat “soft” foods for the rest of today but then after that I am back to normal, woo hoo!

I have no pain but a little swelling, mostly my top lip, and other than that it just feels weird. There’s like a big hole where the tooth used to be, ha ha.

Thank you all for all the encouraging comments and messages on Facebook and Twitter. I’m definitely on my way back up, finally!

Be back soon 🙂

Good news, bad news

Hey guys!

The thing I wanted to happen the least, happened anyway. My tooth pain became severe and I had to see the dentist this morning 😦

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Good news: I was able to see the dentist this morning, didn’t have to pay anything and the treatment we decided on will make sure this doesn’t happen again.

Bad news: I am still in A LOT of pain as my pills aren’t really working and the treatment is an extraction and an implant that will cost $2700!

I’m trying to see the silver lining in all of this but I have to tell you guys, this one is hitting me hard. I have had nothing but trouble with this tooth for like 10 years and I’ve had a lot of pain before, this is by far the worst.

I’m hoping and praying though that this final thing is it. Ugh.

Before this all went down, I ate a decent breakfast (luckily the tooth isn’t affected by hot, cold or chewing).

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Also had some coffee with almond milk in a seasonal mug to try and cheer me up.

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Once I got done at the dentist and picked up my prescriptions, I came home to a great lunch! Here is the star ingredient:

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I found this at the store while I was waiting on the pharmacy.

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I made a delicious Lindsey-inspired grilled hummus sandwich which I cooked on the Foreman.

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I also happened to have my favorite split pea soup in the cabinet to go with it.

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All together, a great lunch that almost made me forget how bad my face hurts.

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For dessert, I had a couple spoonfuls of this. It’s not helping either but it sure does taste good.

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Hope you are having a better day than me! I promise to be more chipper next time 😉

Avoiding burnout

I have a final this afternoon. I have not looked at my notes since our last day of class, which was the 7th. I probably won’t between now and 2:30.

So barring any possibility that our teacher decides to make the final open book, I don’t think I will be looking at them again any time soon.

I went to almost every single class, paid attention and took really good notes. I know that cramming does not work for me anymore. I have a high B in the class so assuming I don’t completely bomb it, I should be okay. I just don’t feel like studying!

It might be the toothache making me cranky.

But I think I am really experiencing burnout. This semester has seemed so long and even though I only have one class, I’m still just ready for it to be over. I have enjoyed the class, learning about Exercise Science has been quite interesting to me, but I am ready to be free of the time commitment. Thankfully, that will be so after today.

But I frequently experience burnout in other areas of my life too: work, food, exercise, music, etc. It just happens.

In order to keep my burnout of school from overflowing into other areas of my life (hello, Christmas!), here are some things I’m going to do:

1) Write out all the tasks I need to accomplish at work before our break (December 24-January 3) and break it down into what I need to finish each day, including a little bit of each task per day.

2) Decide what I absolutely have to buy before Christmas and do a little bit of shopping each day instead of all at once. Save the buying for those we’ll see after Christmas for later.

3) Say a polite “No thanks” to any more social commitments between now and New Year’s. You guys should see my calendar, it’s ridiculous, but I’m so grateful to have friends, family and co-workers who want to spend time with me.

4) Plan a few runs for the next couple of weeks, but also print out the YMCA calendar and take some classes over the break (can’t wait to do Cycling again this year). Don’t be afraid to go against the “plan” or take a day off if I’m too tired.

5) Smile, laugh, have fun, and RELAX!

Things I have already done:

1) Started Christmas shopping (finally, on Monday)!

2) Planned what dishes to bring to holiday and retirement parties (I’ve got three this weekend!) and Christmas Day at my parents house.

3) Naps!

Do you ever experience burnout? What do you do to prevent it or treat it?

Toothache

Hey guys, sorry I went MIA! I haven’t felt like blogging until now because I have had a toothache since yesterday afternoon 😦

It’s been off and on so I can’t really figure out what’s caused it but pain killers and orajel are working for now so I’m going to monitor it and see if I need to go to the dentist. This particular tooth has a long history so I’m sure I will.

Breakfast the last two days has been pretty similar. More Whole Foods bagels!

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This one from Sunday was an “Everything” bagel, which I think was my favorite of the group. I spread one side with peanut butter and the other with this locally made apple butter.

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Sadly, I am not enjoying this nearly as much as the pumpkin butter by the same brand. But it’s still decent and I will use it up.

The rest of the day is kind of a blur, especially from this 2 hour nap I took! But I had a good lunch (you’ll see leftovers later) and dinner at my in-laws who made me some delicious veggie soup 🙂

Today, I had a cinnamon raisin bagel (and more clementines, which are so awesome right now):

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I liked this bagel but after three days it had started to get a little hard (that’s what she said?) so I think next time I will just buy one at a time and eat it ASAP!

Mid morning, I used my intuition as I navigated two retirement celebrations. At the first one, I just had coffee because I wasn’t hungry yet. Then an hour later, I had some hummus, veggies and pita chips (no pics).

I ate lunch a lot later since I snacked, which was a black bean burger in a pita pocket with mixed veggies (and more un-pictured pita chips, oops).

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With organic ketchup, of course.

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Today, we had a high of 62 degrees (random) and I had the most glorious outdoor run in a LONG time. We did our usual 3.2 mile loop but doing it in 60 degree weather was just 1,000 times better and we did it about 30 seconds faster than our normal time!

Afterwards, I went back to work for a bit and snacked on what I believe might be my new favorite Larabar:

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I had always wondered how to pronounce Larabar (and whether that umlaut actually did anything). From Larabar themselves, it’s Lah-ra-bar. Or like the name Laura-bar. Now I can sleep, ha ha.

All day long, I had “meat” loaf on the brain but in the car on the way home, my tooth started hurting again and all I could think about was oatmeal. So oatmeal it was.

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This really hit the spot! I used 1/2 cup oats, with 1/2 cup water and almond breeze and cooked it on the stove top 🙂 Then added 1/2 cup pumpkin, a sprinkle of pumpkin pie seasoning and brown sugar, topped off with peanut butter and apple butter.

YUM! I’m so glad I ate this for dinner.

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After “dinner” I made a run to the store to get the aforementioned orajel, which was 7 freakin’ dollars, but once I used it, oh so totally worth it.

Eventually I wanted a snack and fell back on an old favorite.

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Peanut butter and chocolate make everything better 🙂

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My tooth is still feeling pretty good so I’m hoping this is just a minor irritation. I guess we will see!

Just incase, I’m going to have a green monster in the morning. No chewing required 🙂

Good night all, hope you had a good Monday.

Reindeer Romp 4k

Hey there! The race went really well this morning, considering the conditions and a few obstacles along the way. I’m very happy with it 🙂

First, a little lesson in layering. Disclaimer: This is just what I do and isn’t necessarily expert advice, although I have read a lot on the subject!

Pants – I don’t worry as much about pants although I did get a little cold “burn” on them today so I may do more about this in the future. But normally, a regular pair of running pants suffice.

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Layer 1 – A synthetic material (mine is polyester) closest to the skin. It keeps you warm and allows the material to breathe so you aren’t soaking in sweat and thus cold. I have this one and one that is long sleeved but I decided on this one today.

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Oy. All I can say was it was 6 a.m. I made myself smile in the rest of them!

Layer 2 – A close fitting shirt to go over top of the first one. You can use another synthetic shirt, but I like this one because it’s cotton and spandex. So it keeps me warm but it still pretty light, fits pretty close and stretches.

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Layer 3 – Long sleeved cotton tee shirt. I’ve use a short sleeve shirt before too, but I felt like being a little extra cautious today.

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Layer 4 – A vest of some sort. This one is thinner and breathable, but I also have one that is fleece that I use too. If you are able to keep your core warm, you will do great in the cold weather. So that is why I almost always use a vest – that and I can put stuff in the pockets if I need to.

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Extras – A hat (or ear warmers) and gloves are a must! This is where the vest comes in handy again, if you decide to take them off during the race, they can go in the pockets.

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Don’t forget your Road ID!

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And last but not least, a hooded sweatshirt. What you do is take off all the layers down to the first one and then throw the nice, warm and dry hooded sweatshirt on since your other clothes are likely wet and cold!

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I did not take an iPod today since it was a short race and I wanted to be able to hear people around me. Actually, that wasn’t hard to do because it was sooo crowded.

When we started the race, I had to walk for a minute to get through the crowd, then I started jogging. I was a little frustrated because I knew I could’ve gone faster but I took it in stride (pun intended).

Throughout the first mile, I felt as though my fingers might freeze and break off. But by the time I saw that mile marker, I was getting the feeling back and getting pretty warm all over.

There were more hills on this course than I knew about and I definitely felt like walking a few times but I just slowed down up hill and made up for it down hill.

I’m not sure what my “official” time will be but my watch said 24:00!

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Since I had 0.8 of a second up there, I went ahead and calculated my pace based on 24:01 (for a 4k or 2.486 race).

I averaged right around 9:39 minutes/mile! That is just a mere 10 seconds slower than the pace that I had a PR with on a 5k back in May. I was really pleased, especially considering the delay at the beginning.

I felt so good afterwards 🙂

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I actually did a short little video to talk about the race but I’m having trouble uploading it. If I get that fixed later I’ll put it here!

Edited to add: Here is the video, finally!


Hope you guys are having a great Saturday 🙂

Racing jitters

I don’t know why but for some reason I had a heck of a time falling asleep last night even though I was exhausted! I think perhaps it was nerves over the race this morning but it’s really no big deal.

I laid out my breakfast the night before to help:

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Loaded up the coffee pot!

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And a snack, just in case (for after the race):

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4K = 2.486 miles, so it’s totally an easy distance for me. I’ve been running 3 pretty regularly now and have done a few 4’s, 5’s and one almost 6. So it’s not the distance that intimidates me.

I think it’s just that this is my first race (running) since June so I’m sort of out of practice? It was so hot that day that I said:

I think next year, I will quit racing at the end of May! And I will never complain about racing in March again, ha ha.

Little did I know I was going to sign myself up for December, January and February but oh well. It’s helping me stay motivated for those March races instead of taking a few months off!

Breakfast live!

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Multigrain bagel from Whole Foods (spoiling myself) with peanut butter and banana. Coffee + water.

Time to start getting ready. Thanks for all the good luck wishes, you guys are the best!

Playing catch up

I’ve got a really busy couple of weeks coming up so I decided to take a day off from work today to catch up on some things. I hadn’t set an alarm but this sweet face woke me up at 7.

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For breakfast this morning, I had leftover baked oatmeal and banana oats from Wednesday with some PB on top and a small glass of OJ.

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I hardly remember eating this because once I was done and watched a few minutes of TV, I passed out on the couch for another hour! Guess I needed it.

At 11, I got hungry so I snacked on a faux rice krispie treat, then headed out to meet my aunts to pick up our race packets (they are still walking a lot and doing races, I’m so proud of them).

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We had lunch at Qdoba, where I got a grilled vegetable burrito with rice, guacamole, pico de gallo, and salsa. It was yummy and took me a while to eat it! [Sorry no pic]

I did a lot of shopping today so I was hungry and came home to get a snack.

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I found this at Whole Foods and haven’t been able to find it anywhere else! Sadly, my WF did NOT have the seasonal Clif bars, what gives?!

The Zbar was good but it contains organic honey for those of you who don’t eat it. Just FYI.

I was still hungry a couple of hours later, so I had another snack when I got done grocery shopping. I so cannot buy these again:

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They were delicious, especially when dipped in hummus – I had two servings. I think I liked these better than the Naked pita chips.

Since I ate more than one serving, I kept dinner on the light side.

We went to McAlister’s Deli and I got the half salad and cup of soup.

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Their vegetarian chili is delicious and vegan. I got the Greek salad with no feta but it isn’t listed on the Vegan Eating Out website, so I guess maybe the dressing wasn’t?

Either way, it was a good meal.

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We went to Target for a while (love that place if you didn’t already know) and then I came home and made some decaf coffee because it’s freaking cold! I can’t believe I’m running a race tomorrow!

With my coffee, I had some of this:

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Love it!

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No night is complete without some peanut butter and chocolate chips, for me at least.

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Hope you all had a good Friday. Even though I had the day off, it went by way too fast and I don’t feel like I got much done today, other than grocery shopping and getting some ideas for Christmas.

Oh well, tomorrow is another day. Good night!