Can I Petition A Petition?

Posted on May 1, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Happy Saturday! I for one am more than happy to be closer to Summer and living at home with a full kitchen and refrigerator. Have you all seen this petition yet? Basically, it’s a petition for Obama and his family to become vegans for their influence. Uhhh, what?! I fully support those who are vegans, or vegetarians. But how on earth could anyone want to dictate how another person eats? Especially when some of those are just little girls?

If I posted this when I first heard about it, I’d have some not-so-choice words, but I think by now my minds mulled it over to speak better of it. If anything, we should be preaching tolerance–tolerance of those who have a different way of thinking or path in life. This petition shows no more tolerance than the intolerance you could find against vegetarianism in a Southern cattle farm community. More importantly, you can eat ethically and aware without being a vegan, which is part of what Michelle Obama has already done through her time in the White House. What do you think of this petition? Besides that it’s going nowhere, I think it’s a little rude. And–as always–I’m on a mission to show you can eat well and ethically without devoting yourself to any label.

Naturally Nutty Vanilla Almond Butter

Naturally Nutty Vanilla Almond Butter

I had this little bowl of Naturally Nutty Vanilla Almond Butter and a scoop more before hitting the gym. What is it about almond butter that makes me just want to eat out of the jar?! It’s so delicious! Especially with a little vanilla. I felt extra fueled after that.

10 Miles In 88:59

10 Miles In 88:59

Fueled enough to runner a faster 10 miles as the last training run before my half-marathon. That feels weird to even think about. Enough, enough. Lunch!

Maple-Walnut Oil Salmon With Craisins And Golden Raisins, Baby Carrots, Hemp Oil Greens

Maple-Walnut Oil Salmon With Craisins And Golden Raisins, Baby Carrots, Hemp Oil Greens

Motivated by Kath, I’ve been getting in to canned salmon for extra omega-3’s without much fuss. I mixed mine with maple syrup and walnut oil for something packed with even more essential fats and tasty! Over the top was Tierra Farm‘s dried fruit and baby carrots, with salad dressed in Foods Alive hemp oil dressing.

Organic Red Delicious Apple

Organic Red Delicious Apple

An organic apple for dessert!

Trilogy Synergy Kombucha

Trilogy Synergy Kombucha

On my way back from my grocery trip, I picked up a trilogy kombucha at a cafe because I felt a little down about the whole trip :-/ A lot of it was on the store’s sale, which was good. But I probably could have saved more in coupons if I was better organized. At least I didn’t blow the project cleanout challenge too much. And you can’t say I don’t eat what I buy:

Soy-Free, Dairy-Free Chocolate Sundae

Soy-Free, Dairy-Free Chocolate Sundae

Isn’t it dreamy? My whole point in going was to get some whipped cream to make a sundae. They didn’t even have regular–just non-fat sugar-free or Rice Whip, which is dairy and soy-free. The latter seemed less processed, so I went with that and made a sundae with So Delicious chocolate coconut milk ice cream. The fudge sauce was simply cocoa powder and agave nectar mixed together. Voila! OK–the Rice Whip tasted REALLY fake; if you’ve ever had rice milk, just imagine that in an airier form. Besides that, this Friday sundae was delicious and a perfect before-dinner treat 🙂

Grass-Fed Burger, Sweet Potato Fries With Mozzarella Daiya

Grass-Fed Burger, Sweet Potato Fries With Mozzarella Daiya

If Obama wants to eat his beef and have his vegan cheese, too, I fully support that! I made a 1/3 a pounder hamburger but undercooked it far too much 😦 I really wanted to try the daiya so instead of eating it straight from the bag I made some sort of vegan cheese fries–YUM. This was better than mozarella cheese; it was crack. I’d be lying if I said I’m not planning on having it again today(maybe twice).

Endangered Species Dark Chocolate With Deep Forest Mint

Endangered Species Dark Chocolate With Deep Forest Mint

I love mint. I could eat a salad made of mint leaves. This bar doesn’t have a great minty flavor like alter-eco’s mint bar. But it was what the Whole Foods I was at had, and I don’t terribly mind it.

Oatmeal With Chocolate Almond Butter And Coconut Milk

Oatmeal With Chocolate Almond Butter And Coconut Milk

And some oatmeal with homemade chocolate almond butter because nowhere near me carries Justin :-/ Oh well, now that I’ve pinned down the secret to making good homemade chocolate nut butters, I’m less enthused to go out and pay $10 for someone to do it for me.

This morning I woke up nice and early to not run. Maybe it defeats the purpose of a rest day to keep yourself from sleep. But I want to be nice and tired tonight so I can go to bed early and sneak 8 hours in somewhere before the race.

Oatmeal With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter

Oatmeal With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter

Cherry 2% Fage With Almonds

Cherry 2% Fage With Almonds

I love Fage, especially their cherry flavor. Unfortunately, it’s about expensive as they come around here. At least it’s on sale at Whole Foods this week. The cherry here tastes just like the cherry dips at Dairy Queen! Yum! Next time I’m trying full fat. The peanut butter–again, since I’ve figured out how to make cookie dough nut butter, I’m less enthused about paying someone to do it for me. Besides, this one seems really fake since half of it melts over oats and the other half is still solid :-/ Until it’s gone, though, I’ll live it up and enjoy it.

What are your thoughts on mint? I made my gluten free chocolate brownies with a lot of mint extract once and was told it was like mouthwash; hell, I thought they were great! The more mint, the better in my opinion. Even though it’s often paired with chocolate, I wouldn’t mind a dessert exclusively with mint as the flavor. Speaking of chocolate, here’s a Bubble Chocolate Giveaway. Now I get to go to my very first race expo! I hope it’s nifty.

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Homemade Nut Butters And Ten Tips To Tweet

Posted on April 16, 2010. Filed under: Book Review, Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Thanks for all the great veggie burger suggestions; keep them coming! I’ve got a whole slew of brands to look for next time I go to Whole Foods and can’t wait to find some fun flavors. I’m also loving the recipe suggestions. I didn’t even think of making my own! For the remaining time at school, I don’t see that happening. But over the Summer it sounds like a fun project.

Sweet Utopia

Sweet Utopia

Last night, my entertainment was Survivor, old SNL skits, and reading some of Sweet Utopia which I mentioned I was sent from Books Publishing Co. to review. I like how it didn’t jump in to recipes but laid out what a vegan kitchen should have and everything that’s going to be called for in this book. What I wasn’t a fan of was the overemphasis on everything vegan; I think I’d rather be wowed by a recipe and look back in hindsight thinking “that was vegan?!” than be convinced going in these recipes will be “different”. I only got 2 recipes in after all of that, but one definitely struck my eye as the most decadent chocolate cake I could think of and I can’t wait to make it some time soon.

Green & Black's Cherry Dark Chocolate Bar

Green & Black's Cherry Dark Chocolate Bar

There’s so few joys in life lesser than opening up a new bar of chocolate and seeing the shiny tin foil.

Green & Black's Cherry Dark Chocolate Bar

Green & Black's Cherry Dark Chocolate Bar

I snacked on 20 squares Green & Black’s cherry dark chocolate while watching Survivor. I’ve had this a lot on Greek yogurt but not so much on its own. Eating it like this made me realize how intense the cherries were in flavor. Wow! I bet that also means they’re packed with antioxidants, just like the dark chocolate? Yeah, we’ll call this one healthy.

Organic Cripps Pink Apple

Organic Cripps Pink Apple

We picked up a few organic apples on sale at Whole Foods before I moved back in to the dorm. I didn’t care so much that they were organic that they were fresh; eating this definitely made me feel better than eating one sitting in the cafeteria for who knows how long.

Chocolate Pecan Butter Ingredients

Chocolate Pecan Butter Ingredients

I got a fun idea in my head watching SNL reruns: chocolate pecan butter. Don’t you love it? I just took a scoop of my homemade pecan butter, some cocoa powder, and vanilla agave and a touch of sea salt.

Oatmeal With Chocolate Pecan Butter And Coconut Milk

Oatmeal With Chocolate Pecan Butter And Coconut Milk

Yum! I think this could be called German’s Chocolate Cake oatmeal; it was that good. The sea salt was definitely the touch that made the chocolate flavor more pronounced, as with the coconut milk. I can’t believe how long this batch is lasting! I tell ya: if you move it to a plastic, seal-tight container in the fridge, it stays fresh a lot longer.

10 Miles In 89:29

10 Miles In 89:29

I knew I’d be running inside since rain was in the forecast, so I wanted to get up early and run at the gym. Still, I knew I needed to rest, and resisted setting the alarm. After enough sleep(sleep bores me), I hit the gym for 10 miles a bit later than usual. Apparently, the later crowd does not have the same TV preferences as the earlier people. I’m referencing the girl who changed The Today Show to 16 And Pregnant. Really? Really?

Oatmeal With White Chocolate Almond Butter And Coconut Milk, Strawberry Vanilla Yogurt, Vitabears

Oatmeal With White Chocolate Almond Butter And Coconut Milk, Strawberry Vanilla Yogurt, Vitabears

Breakfast was filled with flavors of Spring and Summer: vanilla, strawberry, coconut, almond. This was actually all inspired by my favorite white chocolate bar, and was a good substitute short of eating that for breakfast. The yogurt was plain Greek sweetened with Madhava’s vanilla agave and Crofter’s organic strawberry conserves

Raw Almond Butter With Fair Trade White Chocolate With Strawberries

Raw Almond Butter With Fair Trade White Chocolate With Strawberries

This is an almond butter I made over Winter break. It has raw, organic almonds and pieces of my favorite white chocolate bar, which is fair trade and has bits of strawberries in it. I think the vitamin bears wanted a taste 😉

Do you ever feel like for every Twitter follower you gain, you lose 2 more? Well, the good news is some of those are just people who follow you hoping to be followed back who then go back and unfollow. I wouldn’t worry about them. But you might also be doing things to genuinely annoy people. I know I have, and am in no way touting perfection righting this list. If anything, it’s a bit of self realization on places to improve. If nothing else, it was educational and comical. Enjoy!

  1. Don’t tweet every little thought that comes to your mind. “I wish my portable laptop had a portable toilet” may sound  cute, but someone on the other end is probably saying to themselves “What were they thinking?!”
  2. If you’re conversing with someone in particular, put @theirtwitID first. This way, only people who follow both of you will see the relevant conversation. If it’s really personal, direct message.
  3. Care about who follows you. Don’t just follow to be followed.
  4. Retweet! People follow you because they have the same interests as you. If you find something to your liking, share it.
  5. NOT EVERYTHING NEEDS TO BE SHOUTED!!!!!
  6. Cap your tweets. No one wants their Home to be filled with one face.
  7. There are other ways to communicate with people close to you. If you know someone well, use the phone to tell them what to add to the grocery list. Not Twitter.
  8. A Twitpic says a thousand words, which is useful when Twitter only lets you type 140
  9. Use #hashes and trending topics to get your voice in a stream of people with the same thing on their mind.
  10. Shortened words and syncopated grammar for space reasons is understandable. Misspelling and wrong grammar just looks poor.
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Hung[ry] over

Posted on March 21, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

No, this hasn’t turned in to a blog reviewing organic ales. Give it a few more years, the right sponsorship, and we’ll see where it goes 😉 But as for last night, it took forever to fall asleep(lets blame the people who probably are hungover), which drove my hunger up a wall and this morning I’m feeling a little hungry over. Why does the keyboard type so loud?

Vivani Organic 72% Dark Chocolate

Because all good nights should start and end with chocolate, I broke out a bar to satisfy my sweet tooth. I’ve ran out of my favoritedark chocolate but luckily remembered I still had some Vivani 72% Organic Dark Chocolate and broke off 8 squares. I love that this has 3 ingredients(cocoa powder, cocoa butter, and sugar), all of which I have. How’s that for simple eating?

Apple

Once that was gone, I snacked on an apple. When you can’t remember when you got the apple, it’s not a good sign for the freshness :-/ I swear this was turning to cider on the inside already. Come to think of it, maybe that’s why I’d be hung[ry] over today…

Oatmeal With Chocolate Almond Butter And Dried Cherries

A little later and it was time for oats. This I topped with Justin’s Chocolate Almond Butter and some dried cherries, the combination of which was fantastic. Good news: 2 readers, Kim and Carolyn, commented on this post saying chocolate Justin’s has reached New York! It’s comin’; I can feel it.

Tazo Rest

Vanilla Yogurt With Cherry Butter And Organic Cherry Dark Chocolate

After that oatmeal, I tried to go to bed. How’d it work out? Not so well. Oh well, at least I’d get to see Betty White on SNL, right? That wasn’t last night, either. Shucks. I hoped that some Tazo Rest tea would lull me to sleep, which was followed up with a vanilla chobani topped with cherry butter and 4 squares Green & Black’s cherry dark chocolate. Despite that this was mostly sugar, it must have worked because I don’t remember being up much longer; Sigourny Weaver on SNL was just not cutting the entertainment for me.

Soy Yogurt With Hemp Seeds, Oatmeal With Pepita Sun Butter And Mulburries, Bedtime Tea

The plan for this morning was either run on the treadmill 10-11 miles while watching a Scooby Doo movie(hey, it was what’s on) or stay in for breakfast and run later. The sun and my stomach led me to the latter. I think the fact that I’m having “bedtime tea” at 9:30 says my mood.

Oatmeal With Pepita Sun Butter And Mulberries

Since I plan to run withing the hour, I opted for So Delicious soy yogurt sweetened with vanilla stevia instead of greek because it’s easier to digest. And I topped that with Bob’s Red Mill hulled hemp–gotta love the hemp. My oatmeal turned out more like a salty, watery pancake because I ran out of oatbran 😦 That, too, will get fixed today. And I hardly noticed after deluging it in Naturally Nutty’s Pepita Sun Butter with some of Navitas Naturals’ Mulberries to sprinkle on top. Come to think of it, the pepita sun butter has hemp in it, too; I guess it is a hempy morning, afterall 😀

I have 11 outdoor miles on the agenda for today. I’m a little worried how this will feel after yesterday’s 9.5 felt “long” but I have some great motivation waiting for me at the end to look forward to 😉 And I’ll be packing jolly beans for fuel; can’t run around Easter time without your jolly beans! Happy Sunday! What are your plans?

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Not On My Time

Posted on March 9, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

If you had told me I would spend the past 15 hours like I have, and appreciating them, I would have said you’re nuts(I use this expression a lot for obvious reasons)

Burnt Homemade Chocolate

7:54- I have no sense of wasting food, so I eat this homemade chocolate I burnt trying to melt the cocoa butter in. It tastes gritty

7:56- Hey–on the bright side that tasted like burnt chocolate, not like some horrible dorm-made concoction. Go me!

8:17- Oh my God, I’m exhausted. Can I go to bed now?…

8:20- I can totally go to bed now. Bye, bye computer and hello bed.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple, Nutritional Yeast, A Wild Peanuts

8:40- 20 minutes of lying in the dark has felt good, but something’s not working. I’ll try some oatmeal to get me sleeping.

8:55- Wild jungle peanuts… do not taste wild. In fact, they taste a bit more like cardboard than regular peanuts? Maybe I’ll roast the rest. Or would that devalue them? Or do I not care…

8:57- Mighty Maple is goooood.

9:20- Sleep. Glorious sleep.

2:40- Great, now I’m awake. Do I want sleep or cookies? I want to sleep.

2:45- Sleep’s not happening; it’s tea and cookie time.

Bedtime Tea And Chocolate Cherry Goji Cookies

2:58- Hey, Anderson Cooper’s on TV!

3:00- And now he isn’t…

3:04- God, these Goji Gourmet goji cherry cacao cookies are good. How do they get them so sugary gritty? It must be in creaming the butter and sugar. I need to bake with more butter(always more butter).

4:00- How am I still awake?! This is ridiculous.

4:15-4:20- Self-diagnosing myself with wayyy too many problems to deal with at 4am. Thinking is dangerous, people. Don’t do it.

4:35- I give up. I’m checking my email

4:44- Will my dad notice I’m responding to him at 4:45am? I don’t think he’ll be savy enough to look at the time stamp.

4:56- And now I’m tired again. I’m not sure how that works out, but I’ll take it.

6:15- Why do I set my alarm for 6:15?

Fudge Mint Back To Nature Cookies

6:29- 3 Back To Nature Fudge Mint cookies are juts as good pre-run as an apple, right? I’m going with that line of thought.

6:32- Oh my God, are these cookies good. Thin Mints who? Take that, needy girl scouts.

6:41- There are 4 other people at the gym. Now that’s odd; I wonder what time they set their alarm for.

10 Miles In 28:33

7:34- That guy better not touch my 2nd TV. Just because I have 2 TV’s and a movie going on my iPod doesn’t mean I don’t need them all to pull through 10 miles.

8:11- Wow! I never thought I’d squeeze in 10 miles on a Tuesday/Thursday before me. Sweet! Now get ready!

8:29- Showered and dressed. What for breakfast? What for breakfast? What for breakfast?

8:34- More cookies? Sure, why not.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Honey Maple Protein Peanut Butter, 2% Greek Yogurt With 3 Fudge Mint Cookies

8:48- Portable breakfast packed and ready. I’ve got pumpkin oatmeal with honey maple protein peanut butter and an agave sweetened greek yogurt with 3 fudge mint cookies.

8:56- Oh thank God, I did my homework for this class.

2% Greek Yogurt With Fudge Mint Cookies

10:02- Don’t call on me; I’m still savoring the last few bites of this yogurt. Oh God, that was good. Why don’t cookies come in yogurt more often? If I’m hungry in 10 minutes, it was worth it.

10:22- Do I want coffee? Or tea? Or just water? Why is it so sunny now that I don’t have time to spend idly outside?

10:34- Oh. I should write a post.

10:59- OK, I should probably make a review page for these cookies, since I’m not sure they’re going to last the night.

11:19- Time to let out some lies…

1. My favorite candy growing up was Snickers! False. I was all over anything Reeses. I loved the peanut butter cups, reeses pieces, and fastbreak bar the most. Holiday eggs anyone? I’m just happy Newman’s Own Organics has my back on all-natural ones.

2. I was debating between going to Princeton, Stanford, and Brown. While I think I might have got a better education at Princeton, I stuck more local to be near my family. False! Wow, anyone who thought this was true must think highly of me 😀 To be honest, there was no choice involved. I applied to Brown early decision, and when I got accepted for that it was binding. I wasn’t even sure if it was the right school when I sent in my app and was still debating about Williams. Who’s to say there’s ever any 1 “right” school anyway?

3. I’ve been on every continent but Antarctica(I’m coming for you, glaciers ;-) ). False. I’ve been only to North America and Europe.

4. I left my passport on a plane on a school trip to Greece, but thankfully we got it before the plane left the gate. False! I’m always overprotective about my things even just in Boston so this would (hopefully) never happen to me. It did happen to a friend, though.

5. I speak fluently 3 languages. False. I wish! Really, the only other languages I know are Latin and Greek, and I definitely couldn’t “speak” those, especially not fluently.

6. My parents were extremely strict on anything electronic growing up, so I never owned a video game console until I got one as a High School graduation present. False. My parents had a gameboy in my hand by my 5th birthday.

7. The first time I had greek yogurt was in Greece on restaurant sidewalk with peaches and honey. True! I don’t even remember if I liked it at the time, and didn’t have another until 1 and a half years later, but on a school trip to Greece in 10th grade, we were served yogurt with honey and peaches as a complimentary dessert, and I remember being the only one at our table to eat it(I think I picked out the honey and peaches, mostly).

11:31- Publish!

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Oh Really?

Posted on March 7, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Some things recently have made me question the sanity of certain humans(myself included). I stumbled on a Mythbusters marathon last night and watched it for 3 hours. I love that show, but I have to wonder who’s funding The Study For How Much Popcorn It Takes To Blow Out A Window. Oh really?

Chocolate Avocado Pudding With Coconut + Vanilla Macaroon

I took my mind off those things by making some chocolate avocado pudding made with almond milk and NuNaturals‘ vanilla stevia. I don’t know why, but this particularly batch tasted amazing On top I broke up my last Emmy’s Organics Coconut + Vanilla macaroon. These had SUCH a good vanilla flavor to them; if you can find them, I’m jealous and would highly recommend grabbing them if only to flaunt in my face.

While I was doing that, I was of course playing around on the internet. I haven’t even been away from Facebook for very long, and already I wonder things every time I log in. Like since when can you become a fan of any random object such as brownies? And for the love of God if I get one more invitation to be a farmer, or a vampire, or a vampire farmer…

Better Than Roasted Sprouted Almond Butter

I wasn’t cute sure whether to have oatmeal or more pudding after that. I debated this for 10 minutes like it was a matter of life or death. Oh really? Do I have nothing better to do? Apparently not. And then after decided I wanted pudding, I realized I was out of avocadoes. Oatmeal it was!

Oatmeal With Sprouted Almond Butter And Sweetened Chocolate Coconut

Call me coconut-crazy if you want; I mixed some organic unsweetened shredded coconut with raw cocoa powder and raw vanilla agave. Oh really? Did I just discover how to make quick and sloppy macaroon shreds? Because that tasted a little too good to be true… Concerning the sprouted almond butter by Better Than Roasted, it took me a good 5 minutes to decide what it tasted like: raw almonds. I know–aren’t I a genious? But after chocolate almond butter, roasted almond butter, and white chocolate cherry almond butter, this was definitely unique and delicious in its own right. I’m sure you’re asking yourself, “Oh really? He got in to Brown?”

Maple Butter

I woke up at 4 and couldn’t get back to bed. I knew I was hungry, but was hoping I could shake it off and fall back to sleep. Eventually, I told myself, “Evan, you’re an A——. That’s right, you’re an athlete. If you’re hungry now at 4:30, for God sake’s stop being lazy and eat something.” Clearly, I also thought that maple butter, which is pure sugar, would be another good choice for falling back to sleep. Oh really?

French Toast Oatmeal

I went downstairs to the basement to make french toast oatmeal. And you know what? This was actually perfectly cooked; apparently the secret is to do it at a ridiculous hour, half in the dark, and not involved–go figure. And the secret to a “keeper” of a photo? Moving the red Solo cups out of the way.

Morning Apple

I can say that, after that, I fell asleep nicely. And for the first time in longer than I can remember, I overslept. I got up, looked at the clock, and realized it was 9:30! OK, can you oversleep when you really don’t have any “plans”? Probably not. But that’s later than I prefer. I decided the weather looked perfect for another outdoor run, gobbled down this apple, and hit the outdoors.

9.55 Miles In 1:20:53

Before I get into the run, I’d like to point out that’s 3 1/2 minutes faster than yesterday, meaning I shaved off 20 seconds per mile. Wow! Where did that come from? When I looked at this, my first thought was Oh really? Apparently! It was just so gorgeous out again how could I not get into it? I also had motivational support via a country playlist with Taylor Swift telling me “These things will change” and Brooks & Dunn that cowgirls(and cowboys?) don’t cry.

March/April Whole Deal Flyer

Can I also mention my favorite part was running in to Whole Foods, grabbing the new Whole Deal flyer, and running out? I think I got odd looks, but it was worth it. There are fantastic coupons in here, including $1 off their 365 peanut butter! With only peanuts and salts for ingredients, it’s delicious, and that’s a steal. When I first heard about that sale, I had to thing “Oh really? Have they lost their mind?”

Oatmeal With Chocolate Cherry Peanut Butter And Coconut Milk, Cherry Vanilla Greek Yogurt With Cherry Dark Chocolate

And then I made breakfast, right at 11:50. I’m glad to have slipped under the wire; I’d have hated to have missed this and then feel like I should eat “lunch”; breakfast is better anyway. I sweetened the plain 2% yogurt with cherry butter and vanilla agave in an effort to keep stevia out of my breakfast. For the oatmeal, some chocolate cherry peanut butter and coconut milk was perfect! Coconut milk keeps forever if you put it in a thick plastic container sealed off in the fridge. And it makes fats more readily available as a fuel source! Perfect for fueling.

I have to sound like “Much to do, gotta run” but… much to do, and gotta run(not literally)! There’s a Vitamix presentation at the Whole Foods nearby today I might get to see(along with some friendly faces), and my grocery list is turning in to a catalog. But first, I need to ask, breakfast, lunch, or dinner? Clearly, breakfast foods are my favorite!

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The Downside To Christmas

Posted on February 17, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

For Catholics, the time has come to pay up. Remember getting goodies from under the tree almost 2 full months ago? Yes, that last part depresses me, too. I feel like the Christmas season of family time, holidays from work, and gift giving are far enough back to be “gone” but way too far off to be considered “coming up”. Any, now we’ve came to “the downside of Christmas” otherwise known as lent. On the one hand, you have the feeling of I can eat cookies and cake and candies so long as they’re all shaped like a tree or an ornament. And now we’ve come to Lent where, not only should we work off those cookies and cakes, but we should give something up, too. Well that’s just a kick in the shins. I thought about it long and hard, and the answer became clear soon enough…

Just kidding! But really…

Preflavored soy! It took a lot of thinking to come to this one, but I feel really good about it all around. Even though one of my money-saving tips is always buying the “raw” material, I have to admit I go against that from time to time. Especially with soy, it’s so easy to pick up a log of “meat”, a veggie burger, or marinated tempeh. My fave fave favorites have been fakin’ bacon tempeh, Lightlife’s buffalo wings and soy sausage, and a whole tofurkey loaf at Thanksgiving! And on days that I have no time, these have been quite useful. But now I’m saying no to them for Lent. I’m a little wary that I might get home at 7pm one night and just start eating raw tempeh, but if that’s the case I’ll deal; and it’s only about a month, right? Anyway, on to the eats.

Vegan Sweet Cherry Coconut Cup Over Oikos

I hate to tease with these amazing coconut cups before I’ve put up a recipe page but… I will. Oh my God are they good. And they have a name! Vegan sweet cherry coconut cups. I’ll clue you in that the inside is a blend of cherry butter, unsweetened coconut, coconut oil, and agave nectar–yum! It was perfect with some yogurt for protein while flipping back and forth between Idol and the Olympics. Last night, I wasn’t a huge fan of either, though, honestly. Idol’s kind of at that boring stage where no one’s bad but no one’s great, and men’s figure skating just isn’t my sport to watch. A little bored, I made a not-so-boring bowl of oats.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple, Coconut, And Dried Blueberries

I was thinking for some reason this might look more “American” than it did: orange, white and blue. I guess I’m supporting Holland these Olympics? Haha, those uniforms are styling. Not styling were. Shredded coconut, even unsweetened, is definitely growing on me as a dry and fiberous fat. And Bob’s Red Mill‘s dried blueberries are sooo delicious! They reminded me of wild Maine blueberry pie. I stayed up long enough to see the Canadian skater and then hit the hay; I felt bad that he didn’t do “perfect”, but he still did well and especially for still being a teenager! And I thought I had pressure on me…

10 Miles In 88:14

This morning, I had 10 miles planned again–yikes! I woke up feeling good, but I just couldn’t tell how good. I got to the gym and started running. After a while I wanted to get off, more from boredom than anything else. For a long time, I debated stopping at 8 miles. And then I looked down and realized I had gone through 9 1/2. 1/2 a mile more? Yeah, I could do that. And it was faster than Monday’s pace! That’s the part that made me happy.

Green Chocolate Dreams Superfood Snacks

Green Chocolate Dream Superfood Snack

Back at the dorm and I felt like a mad man trying to refuel! First I took a superfast shower. It’s a good thing I was so quick because someone was waiting behind me. Then I started tearing at things trying to figure out what’s for breakfast. I’m very noisy making breakfast; it’s something that annoys even me. But I have oatmeal flying here and there and a microwave beeping at me and dealing with underbed storage–it’s kind of a mess. Needless to say, these raw balls from Superfood Snacks worked their way in there.

Breakfast

I think you’re supposed to fast on Ash Wednesday? Whoops. Well, I really needed to eatsomething a lot. And, yes, I’ve already eaten fake meat, but I’ll justify it in a bit. I was dying for chocolate avocado pudding since I didn’t have any yesterday. It tasted sooo good; absence really does make the heart grow fonder. The green chocolate dream balls were… “interesting”. I don’t mean that to sound like how your high school art teacher described your painting; after all, I did give them an 8/10 in my review. They just needed a touch of fat to taste richer. I am glad to have gotten so many green in at breakfast, though.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With White Chocolate Wonderful And Tempeh Bacon

This is not an Erkel “Did I do thaaat?” moment. I decided I was giving up prepared meat for lent last night at around 10:30pm, still havings 4 strips of tempeh bacon in the fridge. It is not the point of Lent, in my mind,  to be wasteful; I’m pretty sure even the opposite is true. So I used 2 strips at breakfast and will work in the other 2 at some point just to “use them up”. After that, any tempeh bacon I want I’ll have to cure myself–simple enough.

And so that is my kick-off to Lent. I still need to figure out how/when/if I’ll be able to get ashes today. And I have 3 1/2 straight hours of class now that history discussions are running. Whoopdie doo. Here’s a contest for some booty(of the pirate kind). Happy hump day!

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I Need A Dentist

Posted on February 16, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I think I need a dentist because my sweet tooth has been out of control recently! Now, you might say, “But Evan, that would mean that it was once in control, and you can’t honestly expect that, can you?” Well, I would say that on the whole it pretty much is; if anything, I overdo it with the salt in food. I love my oats salty! But recently, it’s been all about the sugar. For example:

Agave Soy Yogurt With Milk Chocolate Peanut Sunspires

It shouldn’t be a shocker that I enjoy something chocolate every night after dinner. Last night my thought process was along these lines: “I think I want dark chocolate. Yeah, dark chocolate. That’s nice and full of antioxidants. And it’s vegan. I’ll have vegan dark chocolate, and a vegan yogurt. I’ll have soy yogurt. But if I’m having soy yogurt I’ll need… milk chocolate!!” And that’s how we arrived here.

Bleeding Colors

That amuses me oh so much. This snack had plenty of sugar between the agave in the yogurt and the chocolate. At least there were peanuts in there, too? Those made them healthy. These are actually one of the few “candies” I eat, so if they’re my biggest vice, c’est la vie. I ate this while trying to get in to the Olympics, but pair skating is just not my sport 😦 Bring back the speed skating! Not an hour later, my sweet tooth struck again.

Cherry Coconut Oatmeal With Chocolate Peanut Butter And Coconut Butter

I usually like salty oats; last night was a huge exception. I made oatmeal with 1/4 cup oats, 2 tablespoons Bob’s Red Mill coconut flour, a spoonful of cherry butter, and vanilla stevia, and then topped them with coconut butter from Artisana and Justin’s chocolate peanut butter. Notice how there’s a big plop of the sweet nut butter and a little bit of the fiberous one? Yeah, me neither. Well I had that and then got to bed nice and early(10:30!) for some sweet dreams and 8 hours of sweet sleep.

18 Rabbits Cheeky Cherry Chocolate Granola Bar

This morning I woke up half-hungry? It just feels like my hunger’s going to be off today, but I’d hate to think pessimistically like that. Anyway, I ate about 2/3rds of the cheeky cherry chocolate bar from 18 Rabbits on my run. Overall, the most satisfying thing here was the chocolate(of course). Otherwise, thought that the cherries and cacao nibs were bit slacking. The coconut in the granola was a nice subtle flavor, too. Still, it was pretty sweet and almost like a dessert with the chocolate.

8 Miles In 68:57

The “plan” for my run was 5 miles. I started out going faster than I would have thought: 7mph. That was my treadmill pace last semester but has been elusive so far. Today, however, I had no trouble with it, and I felt like I could just keep going, so I did! The way my (lack of) training plan works is that I’d rather run “how I’m feeling” today than plan too far ahead. I ended up doing a speedy 8 miles, which was fun but put the rest of my morning in a rush.

Banana Oats With Barney Butter, Cherry 2% Greek Yogurt

Banana Oats With Barney Butter

FINALLY I had a thought to try and cap the sugars. I was at least somewhat successful? I still needed to sweeten my oats and yogurt, and topped both with spreads that have sugar in them :-/ But cherry butter and Barney Butter are definitely some of the lesser evils that I could have gone for. Maybe I need a sugar challenge like this daring blogger and Ellen?

Vanilla Decaf Coffee

And now I’m enjoying my favorite new tradition of Tuesday/Thursday: a warm cup of coffee with stevia after class. And I feel thrifty because I brew it myself instead of going to a campus coffee stop 🙂 I also polished off the remaining 1/3 of the cheeky cherry chocolate bar while writing this. And you can damn well bet I savored and enjoyed the chocolate chips 😉 But now I’m just hoping a straight and proper lunch will smack things back to “normal” again. And… I’m off!

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Today Was Not S.A.D.

Posted on February 14, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Today has been a lot, but you know what it wasn’t? Singles Awareness Day. I must have been living under  rock, because I first heard the term driving up to my house this morning. I have to say–it made me laugh at loud! I love it 🙂 It’s totally a great attitude to have if you can “wear it”. I think I can defiitely wear it and proud; I will 100% celebrate V-Day single with a box of chocolates and not give one bit. If you’re single, would you embrace S.A.D., too?

Making Chocolate Cups

Today for me was not S.A.D. or V-day but B-day, or my Aunt Leslie’s B-day at least. We rushed home and got their at 12:30 after stopping at a few stores to get baking supplies. I always feel like I need to make a dessert. And while I know I don’t need to really, I think it’s fun 🙂 Today, I made simple milk chocolate peanut butter cups, and a new recipe for vegan coconut cherry dark chocolate cups! How good do those sound?

Next Generation Cheddar And Caribbean Cheddar Raw Cheese

I also was able to provide some appetizers for the crowd; Next Generation Dairy really did send me 2 moo’s worth of cheese to sample and review so I loved the chance to share. This later sparked some great conversation about raw cheese and Canada and “the old days”. Yes, 1/2 of me stems from cow-milking Canadians 🙂

Sour Cream & Onion Popchips, Cheddar Cheese

As we waited for the relatives I made a snack plate of sour cream & onion popchips and cheddar cheese. Yes, we found them! I’ve been looking for this flavor for so long since I loved them so much and now I have a brand new bag along with the cheddar flavor 😀 I do have yet to review this flavor of cheese, but I’d rather do it when I’m not rushed so will the next time I taste it. From what I could tell, it was very good! It didn’t have a strong tang like raw cheese tends to so I think it would be a great start for beginners.

Carved Chicken

It was my job to carve the chicken, as usual. First off, my dad had the sniffles all day, so we didn’t want to infect anyone. Besides that, I’m just better than anyone 😉 Not going to lie. And I totally stripped the 2 we have down to the bare bones. My mom made a point that the were Amish and from Whole Foods. Do you think that means they would have protested to being cooked in an electric oven?

Table Set Up

As always, there was an impressive spread of food, of which we could not begin to eat all of. Whenever there’s so many options in front of me, I like to keep it simple and just pick the 3 that look most appealing. Then I feel free to load my plate with those. I think that’s so much better than “sampling a little bit of everything” because it leaves you so much more satisfied with what you did it.

Golden Beets, Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Dark Meat Chicken

I went with roasted brussels sprouts–a favorite, obviously–, golden beets which were a new find at Whole Foods, and the dark meat chicken. I love the dark meat, and since I only eat meat so rarely and in small amounts, it makes sense to go for dark in my opinion. And if you’re buying naturally fed animals, all the better for the fats in there. It all was delicious! I’m sure the same goes for what I didn’t taste. A good home cooked meal was a major perk for making the trip.

Blowing Out The Candles

A little later, we sang happy birthday to my aunt who turned 46, and then my cousins blew out the candles. They love Carvel cakes and I cannot begin to imagine how many they’ve eaten in their lives–100’s for sure. There was all-natural vanilla bean ice cream from Hannafords for me, but honestly this wasn’t 30 minutes after lunch so I couldn’t care less for dessert and passed.

PB And Coconut Cherry Cups

From what I could tell, everyone who had one of my cups found them delicious! I’m always worried trying out a new recipe, especially when I myself haven’t even tried it. I’m so glad they worked out. Most of the time, my cousins were playing my video games as we were eating. They couldn’t figure out how come I’d only gotten through so few worlds on Mario; I don’t think they quite understand what it means to not live at home. Oh to be young again 🙂

Acorn Squash With Maple Syrup, Cinnamon, And Sea Salt

While they were doing their 30 minute farewell tour(as anyone with young children understands), I totally got hungry for real food again. I heated up an acorn squash that was meant for lunch, and added maple syrup, cinnamon, and sea salt. It’s an unusual “snack” for sure but so good! This is absolutely the best combination of flavors, and was 100% necessary to suffer the parade of hugs.

Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream

After the relatives left, it was then time for my family to get back in the car and bring me back to campus. My grandmother even came “just for the ride”. Oh, am I jealous of having time like that. Right before we hit the dorm, we hit Whole Foods for this, which I was waiting for all afternoon. Seeing everyone else have ice cream really gave me a craving for some, but we didn’t have any flavors/types that would fit that craving. I knew I needed to give this one a shot if only to quench my curiosity.

Vegan Coconut Cherry Cup With Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream

This would be my dinner. Oh yes I did 😀 I figure–If I’m ever going to go all-out dessert for dinner, it might as well be on Singles Awareness Day, and might as well be vegan, right? The ice cream was a little bit of a let down because it tasted a bit too coconutty, but besides that was decent. The vegan coconut cherry cup was incredible! Oh my God, now I get why people were raving about them. I will get a recipe page up for them, but first I want to submit them in to Tropical Traditions and want to keep it under wraps until then.

Speaking of Tropical Traditions, I’m picking a coconut oil giveaway winner in the morning! Now’s your last chance to enter! Also in the morning, I have a long run of 10 miles planned! Yikes! I’m a bit nervous to go for double digits again, but I’ll give it a whirl. I also need to do my laundry, but that’s a bit less frightening, haha.

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Time Zone Curse

Posted on February 13, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good morning! Or is it afternoon where you are? Did you stay up for all the opening ceremony? I tried. I really did. But by 10:50 my body was screaming at me for sleep! I figured that, since I’ve had trouble falling asleep this week, it’d be really stupid to ignore this clear sign to get some shut eye. Backing up:

Orange Zevia

It felt like a special night, so I popped open some soda–delicious. I started watching NBC right at 7:30, but I didn’t realize they weren’t starting anything good until way later. Oh well, lots of sports coverage gave me time to do work. This weekend might feel a little crammed, but I’m OK with that. It also gave me a chance to try something new.

Cherry Coconut Oil Creme, Dark Chocolate, Vanilla Chobani

New and delicious. I don’t want to give away too much because I’m hoping to make this into a real recipe for Tropical Traditions, but I was inspired by Christine in this post to make something like a cherry cordial with the limited supplies I had on hand(very limited, I’d have to say). It was delicious! But needs some tweaking. Is there anything you can’t do with coconut oil? Another fun fat: Cocoa butter. As used in my favorite endangered species bar here, and…

Oatmeal With White Chocolate Cherry Almond Butter

I’ve actually never gotten my hands on cocoa butter, but I want to! It’s what’s used in white chocolate to give the rich flavor. I’m sure there’s not much in the Naturally Nutty white chocolate almond butter, but it’s delicious nonetheless. Next time you see that, you just might see the whole jar 😉 Which also means I’m almost out 😦 Such is life.

Apple

Talk about restful sleep–I got 9 and 1/2 hours! There’s no point in setting my alarm when the gym won’t open till 9, so I slept in happily until 8:30. Bliss. I decided it would be better to get to the gym first thing to avoid any 10am rush, so I grabbed an apple and was good to go.

7 Miles in 62:58

This morning can be described as “Slow and steady wins the race”. It felt a little difficult, so I kept the speed modest, tried to get in to random television shows, and had my iPod to distract me as well. It still felt like a long time going, but gave me time to think about things, like how last weekend I took Saturday as a rest day and had a fantastic dinner documented here. That was only a week ago? This semester is going to go by so. slow. ly. The standard quick shower and then breakfast applied.

Oatmeal With Chocolate Peanut Butter And Peanuts

Vanilla 2% With Gluten Free Peanut Butter Chocolate Brownie

Isn’t it a great thing when breakfast tastes like a dessert? For the yogurt, I mixed 1/2 a vanilla chobani with 2oz of full fat yogurt; it came out the perfect creaminess with the perfect sweetness and needed no other touch. I dethawed a gluten free brownie made by this recipe from New Years to top it. Brownie sundae on Saturday? And then some peanuts added to the oatmeal for some crunch!

I would love to get to a grocery store today(I haven’t been in almost a week!), but since I’m going home tomorrow that doesn’t seem like such a good use of time. Does someone want to airdrop me a case of So Delicious Soy Yogurt? Instead, I’m catching up on the parts of the opening ceremony I missed online, soon to be followed by more shows. It’s a rough life 🙂

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On An Almond Butter Kick

Posted on February 12, 2010. Filed under: Book Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

With so many nut butters around here, my taste buds can really go any which way they desire. Obviously, I have plenty of peanut butters, a good number of almond butters, a few varieties of cashew, and then 1 or 2 jars of sunflower, pumpkin, pistachio, pecan, hazelnut, and–of course–coconut oil. But lately I have been all about the almond, baby!

Endangered Species Organic 1.4oz Dark Chocolate Cherry Bar

OK–I lied. First I was all about the chocolate 😀 To be honest, I didn’t care much on what flavor I was grabbing for(in fact I would have preferred plain dark chocolate but thankfully the cherry isn’t too pronounced in this bar). What I wanted was just toe at a whole chocolate bar! Not break of 2 chunks from a HUGE one, or finish a half eaten one. I just wanted to eat a chocolate bar. I think that’s the strongest feature of Endangered Species 1.4oz organic line to me.

A lot was going on while I was eating this. First and foremost: Survivor! I love the new season already, and hate the villains already. They get my blood boiling! I was bummed that the whole thing was 2 hours. Now I need to watch Greys and NBC shows online. I also found out that my peaceful, catch-up weekend on campus might not end up like that; I might need to take a trip home Sunday where my relatives and us would celebrate my aunt’s birthday. Of course, that’s  a pretty darn good reason to put down the books and go home, so 95% chance I will. Now I just feel as though I need a new recipe to try. Suggestions? Anyway, that all went down and my hunger went up; now bring on the almond butter!

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Dark Chocolate Almond Butter

Almond butter and chocolate? My heart be still. This bowl was a salty/sweet mess; that’s one of the best kinds of messes, in my opinion! So in love with Justin’s chocolate almond butter, but not quite as much as his maple almond butter. And how have I never reviewed that?! I’ve gone through pounds(literally). Adding that to the list of things I might not get around to this weekend… And after that I got to bed(finally!) to cap off the work week. Woohoo!

Honest Foods Choco Peanut Butter Bar

I wasn’t particularly starving before my run today but I wasn’t exactly “topped off” either. This choco peanut butter bar from Honest Foods(which I also ate 1 of yesterday afternoon…) was what I needed to hit the spot. What’s the 3rd ingredient? Almond butter! That’s interesting for a chocolate and peanut butter bar, but the flavor works regardless so it’s good with me.. I’ve been asked if I eat something before I run in the morning; the simple answer is “If I take a picture/mention something, then I ate it”. I always have a unpictured, single cup of black decaf coffee before leaving my room, but that’s it otherwise.

Running Stats

This morning’s run was a dilemma, but a happy one indeed. I felt very on top of my game throughout the whole planned 8 miles; I think watching about Olympians on The Today Show had me all fired up! Naturally, I just didn’t want to stop, and I thought today I could reach double digits again. Well, after talking myself down from increasing my mileage that much, I went with my schedule: 8 miles(70:42) and 30 minutes cross-training.

Elliptical Machine

I also took ya’ll advice and swapped to the elliptical from the bike. My verdict: I loved it! It felt like a “real” workout. I put on resistance level 5 and did about 4500 strides in 30 minutes, trying to stay above 150/min. It kept my heart rate at 120+ and got my sweat on. Lovely, right? Thankfully, I then got my shower on and eventually my eat.

Breakfast

Hemp And Oatmeal With Vanilla Almond Butter

My grandfather always says “Holy Hannah!” as an exclamatory but I think “Holy hemp!” could be my own thing 🙂 In place of 1/6th a cup oat bran in my oatmeal, I swapped 2 tablespoons Bob’s Red Mill hulled hemp seeds. This was a bit of a haphazard swap; oat bran is the outer, fiberous layer of a grain whereas hulled hemp is the innermost part of a seed. Naturally, that meant the “fluff factor” was not there in the oats. But it was delicious! Nice and nutty(or “hempy”). And perfect with some vanilla almond butter from Naturally Nutty, which is made with hemp ground in! On the side I had some vanilla-y green tea and vanilla 2% Greek yogurt. I think today might be a vanilla sort of day 🙂

Speaking of “the day”, I may not have classes, but now I might have to get at working to make up for the weekend! And yet, for some reason I can’t stop looking at recipes for a lunch or dinner here or thinking about things I might want to order from iHerb. Do you ever feel like you need someone whose sole role is to tell you what you “need” verse “want”? Yeah, I “need” that person now.

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