I’ve Caught A Bug And I’m Burnt Out

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

If you haven’t yet got to read my post on food combining and the comments, it’s well worth it! There are good opinions weighed in by experts, and if anything I know I’ve mentioned I’m no expert. What’s there is what I’ve noticed and what works(or doesn’t) for me, but if you have a different experience, please share!

This week, I caught 2 bugs. There was the bug that made me so sick, I couldn’t so much as move out of my chair for 2 hours. That’s not gone, but it’s a lot better now, and I’m sure I’ll feel great again in a few days. When I went home, though, I caught a second bug: The Summer Bug. Since then, all I’ve been able to think about is time not at school. I can’t wait for the opportunity to make real recipes from scratch like when I made white bean and kale soup, or do Summertime activities like pick blackberries and raspberries(with better quality pictures, this year). It’s definitely burnt me out of school with just 1 month to go. I’m trying to stayed focus; I even did homework first thing when waking up this morning. But this bug could be too strong. Have you caught this bug yet? What’s the remedy? Or, let’s just embrace the bug. What are you looking forward to most about Summer?

Local White Chocolate Cranberry Gelato

Local White Chocolate Cranberry Gelato

As proof I’ve caught the bug: A shamefully large portion of my night was spent trying to find ice cream shops around Boston and Massachusetts that don’t use artificial ingredients. I’ve got the name of a store with organic gelato in my pocket. Meanwhile, this gelato tasted heavenly. I’m not even a huge fan on cranberries generally but put them(or anything) with white chocolate and you’ve got me. Since I only had a serving of yogurt at breakfast, this clocked me in right around my 3 daily servings of dairy.

Oatmeal With Vanilla Peanut Butter

Oatmeal With Vanilla Peanut Butter

Another new obsession on the warm front this time is mixing 365 peanut butter with Madhava vanilla agave: ah-mazing. I’ve found adding a little peanut oil makes it a bit runnier, too, but not super thin, so this bowl was perfect. The joy of the night was falling asleep to the sound of rain; I hate being out in the rain but I love listening to it, and the same with thunderstorms.

Tazo Thrive

Tazo Focus

Like I mentioned, this morning I woke up with a goal: to focus. Fittingly, I gave Tazo’s new Focus tea a try. The cocoa peal and orange essence made this smell like orange dark chocolate–yum! The flavor was a lot more subdued, much like any black tea. I think the real therapy came in the aroma, but the flavor was nice with a hint of zest. I probably won’t be drinking it much just because I avoid caffeine generally but this was fun for a change of pace.

Oatmeal With Chocolate Almond Butter And Coconut Milk

Oatmeal With Chocolate Almond Butter And Coconut Milk

Raspberry Greek Yogurt

Raspberry Greek Yogurt

Hopefully the Summer will include finding a place that sells Justin’s chocolate butters because I’m almost out of the almond, too 😦 Meanwhile, have you jumped on the coconut milk train with me? I could drink the stuff if anything would fit after that. To turn some plain greek yogurt into something fruity, I added Crofter’s Organic raspberry conserve and Madhava raspberry agave; this agave I wasn’t so much a fan of as the vanilla. Do you see my multi-vitamins at breakfast? They’re hiding.

After much delay, I’ve finally given oatmeal a recipe page! I should seeing as how I eat it year round 😉 Check out my way on how to make oatmeal and enjoy the weekend! It’s all rain and gloom here. Perhaps that’s good to quash the Summer bug.

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But I Just Want A PB&J!

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

Wow. The comments on this post have been phenomenal. Whether it’s vegan guilt or any other kind, there is something so therapeutic about writing it down. It doesn’t have to be on a public place like I did, but if you have anything inside, consider writing it on a piece of paper, even if that only thing that sees that paper is the inside of a trash can. You’ll feel better.

Celestial Teas

This morning, while running errands, I was sipping on the Bengal Spice Celestial tea and I had to mention it because it’s phenomenal. It’s very earthy with cinnamon and nutmeg, and has a definite Indian spice to it. And I got both of these for $3 total with sales and store coupons at Stop & Shop Sunday–good deal! I managed to pry the cup out of my hand long enough to do laundry and make a trip to the dining hall before a phenomenal lunch.

Garbanzo Bean Salad

Chickpeas, Raw Cheddar Cheese, Hemp Seeds, Hemp Oil, Mulberries, Spinach

Normally, I couldn’t care less for salads, but WOW was this good. The base was just a spinach and greens medley with plenty of hemp oil sweet & sassy from Foods Alive. On top of that was 1/2 a can of chickpeas and a diced cheddar raw & probiotic cheese stick from Next Generation Dairy; I’ve nibbled on this cheese before(so I knew I liked it) but I finally got an accurate review up. If you love cheese, check it out, because this practically redefines cheddar from a flavor and nutrition point. Lastly, I topped it with Bob’s Red Mill‘s hulled hemp seeds and Navitas Natural’s Mulberries. I’ve had the mulberries before and wasn’t a fan, but here there mellow sweetness really worked, almost like golden raisins but duller and more superfoody. This held me over for a good while until my chocolate tooth struck.

Chocolate Avocado Pudding With ChocAlive! Dark Chocolate Crunch Truffles

From raw cheese I went to raw pudding and truffles. I made a batch of chocolate avocado pudding using 1 tablespoon coconut milk and 2 tablespoons water for the liquid. The topping was no question; recently, Chocalive! sent me a couple of samples to review. They’re completely raw, vegan, and endorsed by Alicia Silverstone! I tried the dark chocolate crunch ones first. The inside was to die for–so chocolaty and soft. The cacao nibs were a bit too bitter in contrast for my taste :-/ I’ve never really liked those sucker. Can you imagine that? A part of the cacao pod I don’t enjoy? Go figure.

Cranberry Crunch Perfect Foods Bar Lite

Before dinner, I snacked on a Cranberry Crunch Lite bar from Perfect Foods. There’s nothing particularly “lite” about this bar; it’s just not a full meal replacement bar like their other flavors and filled with brown rice crisps for volume. I liked how, even though they cut the calories from 300 to 180 in here, they kept the same mentality of a bar with a focus on healthy fats, protein, and a whole food blend. And their signature raw honey made this so sweet! It seemed like there was something raw in everything today.

Oatmeal With White Chocolate Raspberry PB, Greek Yogurt With Organic Raspberry Conserves

For dinner, I had an odd craving for me: PB&J. Maybe it’s the fact that it’s National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day? Well, anyway, I don’t keep any bread around; gluten-free breads are usually more expensive, I don’t know of any good brands, and I don’t need bread that much, so what’s the point?(Sidenote: When I told my mom I don’t eat bread over the weekend, you would have thought I shot her in the chest. She loves bread, especially the Italian white stuff.) Sooo I improvised with some PB oats and J on the yogurt.

Oatmeal With White Chocolate Raspberry Peanut Butter

My poison PB of choice was the last of the raspberry white chocolate peanut butter from P.B. Loco(who apparently have fallen off the face of the earth since I did a review for them in the Fall). I just go loco for anything white chocolate and/or raspberry. I’m sure there’ll be more peanut butter celebrating in a little bit but this was definitely a delicious start 🙂 Did you celebrate? How so? And now I’m going to do a little research to figure out what the heck happened to P.B. Loco.

Here’s a giveaway for Tropical Tradition’s coconut oil and here’s another for their coconut creme concentrate–both great products!

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A Second Thanksgiving

Posted on November 29, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I’m glad to hear that I delighted some of you with my embarrassing beet story(and that I’m not the only one!). On my run today, which I’ll get to, I asked myself this: What makes someone a “full-time blogger? Is it the amount of posts they make per day? Surely I or someone else isn’t less of a blogger for posting all at once what someone else posts spread over 3 times. Is it someone who can live off their blog income alone? Ha! If somebody can do this, congrats to them and they can go f— themselves(jk here ;-)). Or is it someone who just loves posting and is inspired by the whole community and blogs when and because they feel like it? I’d argue the last one. What do you think makes a full time blogger?

Oatmeal With An Egg, The Heat Is On Peanut Butter, And A Morningstar Breakfast Patty

Unfortunately, today was one of those mornings when my hunger was there but my appetite wasn’t. I had no clue what to make and went through a number of dishes before settling on this. Most mornings my tongue tells me what dessert(because my breakfasts always taste like a dessert to me :-)) I want but on the rare occasion that it’s vacationing in Rio I feel up a creek without a paddle. These oats, Green Dog Wine style, were delicious nonetheless. I decided that this morning I would run(2 days off and I feel like a sloth, haha) so after letting breakfast settle for 5 minutes I grabbed some fuel.

Apple And Double Chocolate Pillow

This fuel was fun(oh em gee, the title of this blog!). The apple was adorably small; I think any fruit that’s a little abnormal is adorable(plantains, anyone?). And why didn’t I realize how good these cookies are? When I had it on my oats Friday, I thought it was pretty decent, but needed a milkiness to it. Today, however, it was perfect: like bittersweet chocolate but with a cakey texture. That had me revved up for a strong run. I first went around the neighborhood 6 times for 6.7 miles. After that I set out on the road for my small loop around town of 5.3 miles. Both of these were my “long run” at some point so it felt awesome that I could do them both on one day now. When I got back in the neighborhood I noticed my dad had been sent to drive around and find me so I figured it was time to stop 🙂 I did a great 12 miler in a little under 1:39. Not a bad “welcome back” to running. When I got back, I was ready to try a new recovery drink.

Vega Acai Berry Sport Drink

Vega was nice enough to send me some of their powders to try out a while ago and I’m just getting around to them. I’ve never experimented much with energy powders but this one seemed simple enough: just mix with 1 cup of water and shake what your momma gave ya’. It says drink before a workout but I think the nutrition still works for post-run recover. I’ve never had an acai berry, but this was rather nice; the flavor was a lot like a diluted blueberry flavor and definitely nothing I minded drinking. I’m not quite convinced yet specialty powders and drinks are necessary for optimal recovery but I guess I’ll see how this makes me feel tomorrow. Once I showered, it was time for our family Sunday lunch, which felt like a second Thanksgiving!

Carving The Tofurkey

Yesterday we picked up a Tofurkey on sale at Whole Foods and I couldn’t wait to give it a try; this is like the epitome of fake meat products, right? We cooked it in the oven according to directions, and it looked beautiful all done. It was both my dad and I’s main protein, and my grandmother even took a slice!(though I’m not convinced she had any clue what the hell she was eating). After I made my plate, I could have sworn it was Thanksgiving all over again.

Tofurkey, Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Acorn Squash Stuffed With Canned Cranberry Sauce

I actually think I ate more here than at Thanksgiving lunch. Oops. Well there wasn’t going to be much leftovers so I thought I’d seize the moment 🙂 The tofurkey was excellent, but it felt like a little much. I seriously think this is sitting like a brick in my stomach right now. The stuffing was amazing for being whole wheat; I wonder if they sell that seperate? I’ll need to try Tofurkey deli meat to see if it’s the same. The squash + cranberry sauce was equally excellent. I still can’t imagine how cranberry sauce is accepted as a lunch item and not dessert but I’ll take it!

Speaking of dessert, let’s not. I don’t think I have any room :-X Now I’m off to decorate the tree! And then it’ll be time to pack the car and go back to campus 😦 Boo. Can’t I just live here again and pretend like work doesn’t exist? I’ll just dream on…

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Thanksgiving 2009

Posted on November 27, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Hopefully with a title like that it’ll be easy to find in the archives 😉 How was your Thanksgivings?(if I haven’t already read about them on your blogs). Mine was pretty fantastic I’d have to say. But why take my word–the proof is in the pictures!

Firstly, the relatives were running “a little behind”. This is absolutely expected every time. So it didn’t really change anything. I knew Thanksgiving lunch wouldn’t be for a few hours, and I had no plans to touch the appetizers, so I got a head start on dessert.

Deep Chocolate Vitatop With Cocoa Greek Yogurt

Can you tell I had a chocolate tooth? I just mixed cocoa powder and sweetener with the yogurt and voila–it was so thick I think had it been frozen for 30 minutes it would have been like ice cream. At around 1:15 the relatives showed up(which impressed us who thought they wouldn’t be here until 1:40). They came bearing gifts.

Organic Balsamic Vinegar And Lemon Pepper Oil

Maple Syrup From Berlin

*Swoons* Something tells me my relatives are finally starting to “get” me; the maple syrup actually was on my Christmas list!! Now I need something to take its place, right? As predicted, my little cousins had one thing on their mind: video games. They aren’t allowed to have game systems besides a computer(they’re only 8 and 3) so my house is like gold. When they were doing that, the adults had appetizers:

Homemade Meatballs, Whole Food Stuffing Stuffed Mushrooms, Cheese Platter, Trader Joe Chicken Wontons

I’m pretty much the opposite of a grazer, and was still satisfied from my vitatop, so I was fine skipping all this. My mom’s meatballs are kind of famous within the family; maybe some day I’ll steal borrow the recipe and make it with bison and organic sauce. I don’t think I’ve seen someone attack appetizers like my grandfather on those wontons. Apparently he’d been “saving” calories all last week for today. Probably not the healthiest thing but when you’re 75 who’s to say you can’t do what you want.

Carved Turkey

The turkey rested while people chatted and then we got to carving. Notice how on the left it’s pulled like pork and on the right it’s nicely carved in tact. Guess who did the right 😉 My mom was anally organized about the table and had labeled everything a place so set up was fast.

Thanksgiving Table

Like usual, my mom and I were the first to the table with the old people behind only because they’re… slower. And the uncle, aunt, and cousins were running around enthralled with video games, haha. My cousin wanted me to help him on a level but I told him I was hungry, and when my grandmother said I’d need to prioritize with my own children I assured her that’s a ways away. And then there was food.

Turkey, Stuffing, Roasted Brussels, Organic Jellied Cranberry

Delicious. The turkey, from Whole Foods, was free-ranged so I felt perfectly fine digging right into it. Ironically, I probably took less than 2oz of meat! I think meat being absent so much while I’m at school makes a little seem like a lot and have me appreciate it more. My “strategy” going in was just to take 3 or 4 foods, even though there were plenty more on the table. I didn’t want to do a “sampler” of everything; I knew I’d have all this for leftovers so I’d rather eat what I did take and ignore what I didn’t. No regrets here or in the foods I did choose. I’ve loooooved cranberry sauce from a can since being a boy and am so happy that this didn’t have HFCS in it. Here are my 3 living grandparents also enjoying the meal:

Enjoying The Meal

We swiftly started heating up pies, defrosting desserts, and cleaning plates. I completely failed on taking a picture of the dessert line up but there was my pie, Trader Joe lemon bars, homemade berry pie from my grandmother, store bought cheesecake, chocolate and vanilla ice cream, and a Carvel birthday cake.

Blowing Out The Candles

Tuesday was my grandfather’s 75th birthday. Happy birthday! Hopefully he doesn’t eat like that everyday or there’s no way he’s hitting 76, haha. There was also another unique item welcomed to the table.

TruWhip

This week I received a coupon from TruWhip to try and review their product. Could you think of a better time than Thanksgiving? Unlike its competitors, TruWhip is 100% natural, 70% organic, with no hydrogenate oils or HFCS. Not only was I happy to try this but it felt great to serve to my family. I took plate of the natural goodies that fit my hunger.

Pumpkin Pie, Trader Joe Lemon Square, TruWhip

What a sweet way to end the meal. The pumpkin pie came out as good this time as last time. The lemon square from Trader Joe was good but not superb; it was definitely better than any lemon bar I could’ve made from scratch. The real shocker here was the TruWhip, which everyone seemed to enjoy. It really tasted just like the competitor to me. I must admit there are some things I miss since eating all-natural so it’s always fun when groceries like this come along. It was light and airy, sweet with a hint of cream. I think the only one who wasn’t convinced it was an identical match was my mom, who went in with a slanted opinion to begin with. I think a carton is only 4 or 5 dollars, and since it can be refrozen for another holiday, this is completely worth buying and keeping around for a naturally special event.

Everyone had a good time and piled out by 5 o’clock. I think the most tired of the day was Montana, who was already sleeping on the couch. We tried passing off as much leftovers as we could but in the end our fridge was full. At least what we have is real food we can work into any meal over the next few days. By 5:45 I was feeling munchy.

Raw Vegetables

I started to work on the leftovers with the raw veggies. My mom couldn’t understand how anyone would still be hungry after Thanksgiving; I believe it’s called not eating 3 slices of Carvel cake? I was happy with eating until I was comfortably full and knowing how much was enough–I absolute despise that “overstuffed” feeling. Right like clockwork I had a dinner for one made and ready for 7.

Brussels And Tempeh Bacon With Maple Syrup, Grand Marnier Sweet Potatoes, Lightlife Breakfast Sausages

3 delicious meals in one day–how lucky am I! I wasn’t quite up to real meat for the time, so instead I let my protein be soy sausaged and tempeh bacon. I steamed and then pan seared some brussels to add some crust, and drizzled maple syrup at the end. The sweet potatoes were one of the dishes I passed over at lunch because I knew there’d be leftovers, and I rather liked this because it made it feel like I was eating a completely new meal! They were pretty good, but I think my mom had a heavy hand with the alcohol because these were pungent, haha 🙂

You know I was right there for the Charlie Brown Thanksgiving Special(it helped that Survivor was just a clip show, too). After a cup of coffee for good digesting, I got to work on more leftovers.

 

Plain Soy Yogurt With Cranberry Sauce

 

I will never understand how something like cranberry sauce has become accepted with dinner and not as dessert but I’ll just be thankful for that 🙂 We got 365 organic and it is perfect. Not only does it not have HFCS but it’s and also a little less sweet so that the tartness is evenly balanced. Between the textures of jellied cranberry soy yogurt and the flavors this was just to die for.

I was also thankful for NBC’s People Of The Year special. I really hope it wasn’t just me. I think I’m becoming old, because in my head I thought of this as “The Today Show + 60 Minutes + Miracle Grow” and practically wet my pants in anticipation. It lived up to what I hoped. I’m really tired of the Octomom and balloon boy, but I could never get tired of hearing praise for Taylor Swift. Right before I went to bead I had what my day was lacking–whole grains.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Almond Butter And Smart Balance Peanut Butter

That brought me back to my roots. I’m liking the double nut-butter topping now as opposed to the nut butter and a topping(like chocolate). Not sure why, maybe I truly am just nuts for nuts 🙂

This morning there were plans to maybe attack Target for Black Friday sales with my dad, but my parents had to leave for a funeral at 8:30(irony) and the sales just weren’t as appealing as last year so we called it off. Today it’s planned raining all day so it will, by all likelihood, become a rest day, and I will be between the kitchen baking and my computer studying. Again, hope you had a great Thanksgiving! Now get to work on them leftovers 🙂

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What Makes A Good Day?

Posted on November 19, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Is it setting a distance PR?

Is it starting the day off with this Amazing Grass bar?

Decaf Coffee And Plain Chobani

Is it abusing using your meal plan to hook yourself up with coffee and greek yogurt before class?

Is it getting an email that you have a package waiting for you in the mailroom after Latin class?

Wildwood Sample Products

Is it getting a great box of soy products from Wildwood including burgers, yogurt, and baked tofu to sample and review?

Is it making lunch with a new condiment?

Wicked Natural Caramel Mustard Dip

Caramel Mustard Tofu, Broccoli And Sliced Carrots, Flamegrilled Gardenburger

Is it having a lunch that tastes almost like a dessert, except with a vinegary kick to it?

Is it vegetables that taste fresh with a little salt even though they’ve been in the dining hall God-only-knows-how long?

Is it an old, favorite vegan veggie burger with a smoky kick?

Lemonade Vitamin Water 10

Is it standing 1 foot next to Emma Watson when you go to the convenience store in the mail room to grab a drink between classes?

Epic Poetry Paper

Is it getting an A you totally didn’t expect because, even though your work kind of sucks and you gave up hope half way through a paper, the teacher sees enough progress and takes enough pity to give a damn good grade?

Peanut Butter Chip Cascadian Farm Granola Bar

Is it eating a granola bar with very low fiber and protein and no fortified vitamins or minerals but that has peanut butter chips in it?

Is it forgetting your water bottle in Greek History class, invading the room and another class 2 years later, and getting mistaken as an “escort” for a sick girl?

Is it watching Oprah, but an episode that unfortunately has no porn stars, ex-vice president nominees, or ex-vice president nominee’s grandbaby’s daddy who’s becoming a porn star?

Pumpkin Oats With Cranberry Frosting And Cranberry Vanilla Peanut Butter

Is it having a colorful bowl of oatmeal that reminds you you don’t need artificial ingredients or colors in your life for edible things to look and taste amazing?

Is it being inspired by New England to make a dish with pumpkin, vanilla, and cranberry as the flavors?

Carrots And Caramel Mustard Dip

Is it dipping carrots straight into the jar?

Is it convincing yourself that this is better than just eating straight caramel because there’s mustard and vinegar in their, too?

Local Products

Is it a day when, despite the fact that the Farmers’ Market ended two weeks ago, local companies arranged to send their products to Josiah’s for a special night?

Is it buying more caramel mustard for Thanksgiving and a new jar of local jam and paying with 2 breakfast meals because you eat oatmeal in your room every morning?

Baked Scrod, Sweet Potato, Steamed Vegetables

Is it the dining hall having fish, sweet potato and steamed vegetables all on the same night?

Is it laughing at how the one night that you don’t get food from the vegetarian line your friend, a completely careless meat eater, won’t touch the fish?

 

Greek Yogurt With Raspberry Chocolat Jam And Shaved Newman's Own Organic Super Dark Chocolate

 

Is it having a dessert with fruit and chocolate that clocks in with 20+ grams of protein?

Is it being convinced that because fruit is the first ingredient, jam with chocolate is still reasonably good for you?

Is it having no unread emails in your mailbox for the first time at 8:45pm?

 

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter And A Vegan Pumpkin Molasses Cookie

 

Is it having your favorite bowl of oatmeal, with the same exact combination of ingredients/nut butter/topping that you’ve had umpteen times?

Is it watching a new Modern Family and laughing a little too hard at “she came to the Halloween party as Sigfried and half of Roy”?

Deep Chocolate Vitatop With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter

Is it eating one of your favorite desserts ever with a blend of chocolate, peanut butter, and toffee just because you can?

Is it getting 50% your daily value of iron in said dessert?

Is it knowing and respecting your body well enough to listen to it when it says it wants to go to bed at 10:20?

Amazing Grass Chocolate Whole Food Energy Bar

Is it waking up and feeling energized, and grabbing this bar you’ve been dreaming about on the way to the gym?

Is it watching television shows you’re about 8 years too old for because they make the treadmill an enjoyable experience?

Is it running 10 miles in 83:41 when you only planned to go 7 miles because you feel so darn good?

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Pepita Sun Butter, Nog And Cinnamon Soy Yogurt

Is it that your room smells like fresh cinnamon, vanilla, and nutmeg at 9am?

Is it when you realize that you won’t have to give up anything going vegan for a day–again–but rather just find different ways to love the food you normally eat?

 

Is it the thought of winning this amazing coffee filled giveaway?

I think it’s all of those things(especially the Emma Watson one ;-)) What about you? What makes it a good day?

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