Blog Archives

Last one until Monday

Hey guys!

So after reading through your comments and giving it some serious thought, I know that I definitely still want a whole day’s eats as part of my blog. Just not every single day.

My food tends to get repetitive, especially when I make a recipe that only I will eat and I repeat a meal several times over the course of a week!

So I plan to do a full day of eats, drinks and everything one time a week…on Mondays!

The rest of the days of the week will be focused on other things like recipes, products, weight loss challenges, thoughts, etc. This way I can keep posting on the blog daily but not get overwhelmed or think it’s too boring.

So enjoy, this is the last full day for a few 🙂

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Raisin chocolate chip oatmeal.

Somehow I managed to leave my morning snack at home, so I had to break into part of my lunch early, which worked fine.

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Then an hour or so later, I ate the rest of it which was leftover chickpeas and brown rice.

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I drank a cup of Yogi Stress Relief tea but forgot to document it for you guys 😉

For my afternoon snack, I got to try a new flavor of Whole Soy & Co – apricot mango!

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This was tasty and even though I’m not a huge fan of the 18g of sugar, that is lower than a lot of other soy yogurts on the market.

I just try to only have them once in a while.

After my snack, I went to a yoga class before heading home.

For dinner, I made another Morningstar Farms Grilled Chik’n patty on whole wheat bread with mustard and a side of broccoli with Smart Balance Light.

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I think I will use my last one in spaghetti sauce again, they don’t have a whole lot of flavor on their own, but this dinner filled me up just fine.

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After dinner settled, I headed to the gym and ran a few miles on the treadmill.

I rehydrated with this! Told ya, it’s becoming a habit.

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I love these things. But does anyone know of any “natural” fitness drinks? I’d hate to keep spending $1 a pop since that is one of the reasons I gave up bars for Lent!

When I got home from the gym, I had a small serving of oats with almond butter and chocolate chips.

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Perfect end to a pretty great day. See you guys tomorrow 🙂

Mucho soy

On Wednesday night, Courtney asked me if I wanted some more tea. Uh, did she see my tea post? Ha, of course!

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I love you, Earl Grey. You are delicious!

Since you’ve already seen my breakfast from yesterday, let’s move on. I snacked on some nuts (and coffee) mid-morning.

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As much as I love tea, I can’t resist a cup of coffee at work 🙂

Since my breakfast was a bit skimpy, I got hungry for lunch rather early. I went ahead and ate my tangerine (loving Vitamin C these days).

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Then eventually broke into my leftover rice and beans!

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I ate a Larabar around 1:00!

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So it’s no surprise that I was starving by the time I was heading to the gym after work. It might just be full of air, but it got the job done.

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Then I rehydrated with some Lifewater!

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Dinner was some baked tofu (garlic powder, chili powder and sesame seeds) with a sweet potato and pita with Smart Balance Light.

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As if I hadn’t had enough soy for the day, I decided to finish off the leftovers of my Tofu Chocolate Pudding from Wednesday night.

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And a cup of Chocolate Cheerios!

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Must’ve been that awesome elliptical workout that worked up such an appetite! I almost went back for more cereal but I realized I wasn’t hungry anymore, but tired.

So I maintained my 9:00 rule, went to bed at 10 and felt just fine 🙂

I used to be “afraid” of eating too much soy, but I’m so glad that I learned that soy in it’s “whole” forms: soybeans, tofu, soymilk, etc. is safe. It is the overly processed soy “products” (like meat substitutes) that can be consumed too much.

I highly recommend this article written by my friend and fellow vegan, Carrie.

What is your take on soy?

Last day of the old mentality

Hey guys! Hope you saw my previous post on my possible vegan adventure. I’ve pretty much made up my mind that I at least want to try making a few substitutions and trying some new recipes if nothing else. No matter what though, I want it to be an adventure and learning experience 🙂

Breakfast this morning found me once again using up some stuff lurking in the freezer (to make room for more yummy foods):

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On the left is a Morningstar Farms “sausage” patty and on the right is a Holey Donut in raspberry fudge 🙂

Holey Donuts sent me a few samples to review for the blog a while back and I have covered most of them now. Once the box is empty (one more to go) I will do a wrap up of the entire experience, including Josh’s opinions as well!

Close up!

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Believe it or not this breakfast held me better than I expected. But when it was time for a snack, my hunger was pretty intense so I went for the bigger of my two snacks: greek yogurt with peanut butter!

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It was during this snack that I started having the Vegan Revelation.

Before I ate that though, I went for a 15 minute walk. A couple of hours afterwards, I went to the gym and did a nice strength and weight training routine with my bud Farrah. My arms were tired at the end of our session so I know I did some good work 🙂

For lunch (that snack held me for 3 hours!) I created a tuna salad but spiced it up a bit. I’ve seen paprika used on tuna at restaurants I’ve been to before (like McAlister’s Deli) so I thought I’d give it a try from home.

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This was such a good idea! I also used Smart Balance mayo mixed in with the tuna. The salad contained romaine lettuce, cucumbers and a tiny bit of raspberry vinaigrette dressing. It was delicious!

I went for another 15 minute walk on my break and I think this is an amazing thing to do on nice fall days. I’m so looking forward to the new season. I usually prefer summer but something about the fall is making me so happy. Pumpkin stuff, light sweaters, Halloween…the list goes on.

For a snack, I had some cheese (the last one) and fruity tea.

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When I left work, I thought I was needing another snack but as it turns out I was thirsty. I drink water all day long but for some reason after so much of that, I really need something with some flavor to really quench the thirst and taste buds. Today I opted for this again…

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Worked like a charm. I love this flavor. I’m still not 100% sold on Pure Via. What do you guys think? Is there such a thing as an all natural 0 calorie sweetener?

While I was waiting for my ride, I stumbled upon this article in my Health magazine called Stuff That Messes With Your Hormones.

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Hormones are a sensitive issue for me since I have struggled with abnormal and irregular menstrual cycles my entire womanhood. It got even worse when I lost all my weight and trained for a mini-marathon. Luckily the past several months, my cycles seemed to have regulated for the most part but they are still not the 28-day norm.

Anyway, for that reason alone, it always catches my eye when I see information about what can affect hormones in our bodies. This article brought a few things to my attention that I hope to address soon.

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1. Buy a new filter – We used to use a pitcher with a filter for our water when we first got married but we sort of got lazy and out of the habit. Also, our cities tap water is supposedly the best in the country. But according to this article, that may not be enough.

2. Check cleaners, soaps, lotions and cosmetics – I recently purchased a new cleaner for the kitchen that is more environmentally friendly. I also was inspired by Angela and other bloggers who have taken to safer cosmetics and skin care products. I’m going to start checking the products I already have, use what I can and then gradually replace them with safer alternatives.

3. Toss the plastic – I was aware that BPA was in lots of water bottles and I threw out the ones I had and replaced them with a stainless steel container. But I still own a ton of plastic for food storage and I often reheat things in those containers. I knew it wasn’t a great idea but I didn’t realize putting these plastic containers in the microwave AND dishwasher could cause this harmful ingredient to leach out. I don’t know how easy it will be, but I hope to find alternatives to these containers or at least remember to hand wash them and not use them to reheat things.

4. Meat goes bye-bye – This was not a surprise to me. We all know that unless we get meat from a source that we know does not use hormones on their animals, chances are we are ingesting more than we care to when we eat that hamburger or piece of chicken. Rather that spend a lot of time or money finding safer meat, I would prefer to just avoid it altogether. See my post on veganism.

Anyway, back to eats!

For dinner, I threw together a combination of barley, pinto beans, and mixed veggies topped with Sriracha.

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It tasted even better than it looks! I used 1/2 cup of barley, 1/2 cup of beans and 1 cup of veggies.

Here’s the barley. I get this for really cheap at Kroger and it lasts forever!

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For dessert, I finished off the last few Dove dark chocolates. As I’ve done research (including lots of “Is (fill in the food) vegan?” searches on Google) I’ve found that I’m going to have to step up my quality of chocolate if I want it to fit into this experiment.

Did you know…even though chocolate itself comes from a cocoa tree, the more processed a chocolate product is, the more added ingredients it contains including milk and milk fats (among other artificial ingredients). Here’s a good guide to vegan chocolate.

Still a good message though…

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“Keep believing in yourself and your special dreams.”

I’m off to go brainstorm my special dreams now. Hope you do the same.

Good night!

Hitting my stride

Yesterday was a really good day, all around. I love days like that and I try to remember them, especially when the not-so-good days come around. But luckily there haven’t been too many of those lately 🙂

I decided to be a food blogger again yesterday, so here is how the day started out for me:

Pumpkin Oats!

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This contained 1/2 cup oats heated in the microwave (gasp!) with 1/2 cup rice milk, 1/2 cup canned pumpkin. I mixed in some flax and pumpkin pie spice and then topped it with a sprinkle of brown sugar (a little goes a long way!), 2 tsbp raisins, 1 tbsp chopped walnuts, and a spoonful of Naturally More peanut butter.

I hadn’t had oatmeal in ages because Summer pretty much came to Kentucky early! But we’ve had a couple of “freak” days this week where its only been in the 50’s waking up. Once I take the dog outside for a walk, I’m definitely chilled enough for some warm, oaty goodness 🙂 I’m sure I’ll be back to smoothies before long though!

On the way to work, Mom treated me to a tall soy latte from Starbucks. I’m trying not to do soy too much but for some reason this latte just reminds me of a toasted marshmallow and it was just what I needed to get myself motivated to work. This had major caffeine-age though, so I made sure to watch it the rest of the day.

I also had a banana mid-morning to hold me over until lunch, which worked beautifully. Its amazing how eating what you want works better than eating what you think you should be having (most of the time). I’m loving it! Ugh, McDonald’s…haha.

For lunch, I had one of my new favorite vegetarian lunches…

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A sweet potato topped with black beans! Unfortunately, I was all out of sour cream at home, but soon learned I didn’t need it anyway. Some things are just better plain jane. I also had some unpictured blackberries. Ah, I almost forgot to mention…I ate lunch away from my desk!!

Yes, I am now eating a mostly vegetarian diet. This is by choice and by personal preference, there’s just something about the Spring and Summer that makes me want to eat meat less and eat fruits and veggies more. I can’t explain it really, so I’m just going with the flow. I also feel so much more in control of my eating, feeling more intuitive and balanced. Could that be related to going quasi-veggie? Maybe. I’m also getting to bed earlier and sleeping better too, hmm…

I still eat seafood as I need those good Omega-3’s and a girl can only eat so many nuts, ya know, haha. (I feel that someone out there might’ve just said “That’s what she said.” )

I think I surprise myself because I thought if I allowed myself to eat what I want, that I would choose junk or too many desserts. But that hasn’t been the case at all. I’ve been choosing some really great, fresh whole foods. I’ve been giving my body what it really wants.

Anyway, mid-afternoon, I tried this new Clif bar:

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I had really high hopes for this one but it was just okay. Actually, it left a really annoying taste in my mouth that I could hardly get rid of. So sadly, I don’t think I will get this one again. But the three that I had last week were great so I may just stick to those 🙂

Even before I ate this bar, I had been so thirsty all day. I must’ve drank my weight in water, which scares me a bit because I don’t want to overdo it. So at one point, I attempted a non-water beverage to see if that would help and it did.

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I sipped about a third of this bottle before I was satisfied. I had tried carrot juice once in the past from the Wild Oats smoothie bar (which I miss terribly, our Whole Foods doesn’t have one!) and it was kinda yuck. Of course that was ages ago before I was the self-declared health-conscious foodie I am today. This Odwalla Carrot Juice was AMAZING. It was sweeter than I expected even though all it contains is carrots. I would totally buy this again and most likely will — it was on sale! 

After work, I ran 3 miles on the treadmill because it was raining outside (boo). But it was still a good workout and I rehydrated (not that I really needed to, haha) with another Sobe Lifewater – Yumberry Pomegranate. I don’t have a pic but it was just okay too, probably won’t get it again. I like some of the other flavors much better!

I was “starving” when I got home but I managed to have enough patience to make what I really wanted instead of eating something that was quick and convenient. It contained lots of this:

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Purple Cauliflower – I immediately thought of K when I found this 🙂

I decided to make soup with it and based it off a recipe I used a while back for Cauliflower Soup. I made some substitutions from the original recipe, so I will go ahead and post this new one for the heck of it.

Purple Cauliflower Soup

1 head purple cauliflower (chopped into small pieces)

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 stalks of celery (chopped)

4 cups of water

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp salt

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions: Heat oil in medium-large pot over medium heat. Add celery and cook for 5 minutes. Add cauliflower pieces along with 1/4 tsp salt and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add the water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat back to medium and cover, cooking for 15 minutes. Dump contents into food processor or blender and puree until smooth and creamy consistency. Dump back into pot to keep warm. Stir in nutmeg, salt and pepper. Done!

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I had mine in a cereal-size bowl with some shredded cheese and some pita with butter. Perfect dinner if you ask me!

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So pretty, so tasty and so healthy!

Using bowls this size, I ended up with two very generous servings. If I were going to eat it more as a side to a sandwich, it would’ve made 4.

After dinner, I worked on some chores and projects around the house before dessert started calling my name. I have been eating some form of ice cream a few days a week, I think that is another summer thing. I had a coupon for this brand though so I thought I would give it a shot.

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Yum-a-licious 😉 The vanilla “rice”-cream with chocolate swirl and hazelnuts makes this stuff taste like a sundae in a cup. I would definitely purchase this again and maybe even some other flavors from Rice Dream. At my store, these are usually really expensive (like $6!) but they were on sale for $3.99 and I had a $1 off coupon so it was worth it. Hopefully they stay on sale for a while, I have another coupon!

I was left perfectly satisfied with my small dessert cup and didn’t go back for anymore desserts or snacks after this. I drank some water, went upstairs to brush my teeth, talked to a good friend and got in bed with a good book before conking out a little after 10:00. Yesterday was the model day for me!

Happy Friday, hope you have a fun weekend planned. 

5.37

I woke up this morning WAY to early, thanks to the dog. She doesn’t know what Saturdays are but really, neither do I. Ever since I turned 25, I have been quite the early bird. But I mean, 5:30 on a Saturday morning is pretty ridiculous, right?!

I was feeling food blogger-ish, so I took a photo of my breakfast…two slices of wheat toast with Naturally More PB and a sliced banana!

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I got on the computer for a bit, watched an old episode of (the original) 90210, the series finale, where David & Donna get married. Can you believe that was 9 years ago? The series ended my last year of high school, I remember it like yesterday, sheesh!

Then, around 8:30, I just got this urge. In the words of Forrest Gump, “I just felt like running!” Haha. I also think it might’ve had something to do with the fact that I had what I usually eat before a race! Magic fuel. I think I was also inspired by all the girls and guys running in races today 🙂

So I put on my clothes, shoes, sunglasses, iPod, and hit the road. I knew I had 5 miles to run this weekend but I went outside just to enjoy myself and not put a strict requirement or expectation on myself.

The weather this morning was FABULOUS! Its overcast, slightly breezy and less humid than it has been all week. Toward the end of my run, the sun came out but I loved every minute of it.

So…I totally ran 5 miles!

I warmed up walking for five minutes and then started running at an easy pace, picking it up gradually along the way. I just picked a route in my head and only checked my watch when I made it down a long stretch of road. Before I knew it, I had gone 30 minutes and felt like it had only been 10.

When I reached 45 minutes, I knew 5 miles was going to be attainable. I ran until I hit 55 minutes (or 50 minutes of running) since I usually pace about a 10-minute-mile. Then I walked and cooled down for 5 minutes and made it back home. I don’t think a shower has ever felt so good…except for when we got back from Nicaragua (no hot water) last summer, haha.

I decided to check Map My Run (since I still don’t have a Garmin or anything) and found out that my entire distance, including warm up and cool down was 5.37 miles!

I estimated that I walked probably around a half mile, so I pretty much ran almost 5 miles. I’m counting it as 5!

Once I was all refreshed, I rehydrated with this Sobe LifewaterFuji Apple Pear. It was DELICIOUS! This is by far my favorite one of all that I have tried.

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Hope you all are having a great Saturday, I know I’ve started mine off with a bang 🙂