“It Has That Green Smell”

Posted on February 21, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Glad you all liked my Lennon this morning 🙂 Clearly, I was the missing Beatle. Anyway, right after potsage I hopped on out for a long Sunday morning gym extravaganza!

Mint Chocolate Attune

I didn’t have any probiotics(a superfood of mine) at breakfast because I was out of yogurt, so I grabbed this mint chocolate Attune bar on the way to out the door. It was pretty tasty! I like that it tasted like dark chocolate even though it’s milk. I was not a fan of the rice crisps, but I never am. According to the package, this was 5x better than a store brand yogurt would have been! Score! Plenty of probiotics to work my digestion while I ran.

6 Miles in 54:21

I don’t know what it was about today, but time felt like it went at a snail’s pace. I set my treadmill to go 6 miles; when I could have sworn I was getting close, I looked down and saw a disappointing 4 :-/ At that point, I had to put on a movie to finish me through. Afterwards, I was inspired to keep watching the movie and do 20 minutes on the elliptical at resistance 7 and 20 minutes of treadmill walking. Getting back the last thing I wanted to do was shower and make a meal, but that’s what ended up happening somehow.

Grass-Fed Burger, Broccoli, New York Pizza Pirates Booty

After a quick one I was downstairs cooking my burger in the dorm kitchen. I might have forgotten a shirt. Oops. The Naked Chef, anyone? I actually overcooked it for the first time! Well that makes up for yesterday when it was undercooked and I ate it anyway; I love my meat red 😀 On the side, I had some new snack’ums.

New York Pizza Pirate's Booty

I thought about giving up chips for Lent; that would have gone horribly horribly wrong. I opened up a bag of New York Pizza Pirate’s Booty I was sent to review. The flavor was not what I was expecting. That being said, I liked that it had flavor. It was very heavy on the paprika with some sharp cheddar to it. It didn’t knock me off my feet but I liked it. Maybe I need to spend more time in NYC?

After that my parents and grandmother took a trip down to see me with mail and such. It was good because I needed supplies like paper towels; I’ve been pressing too much tofu! My mom even vacuumed and in response my grandmother had to say “It smells good in here. You know, it smells clean. It just has that ‘green’ smell, like somebody’s been eaten broccoli and brussels sprouts.” LOL She nailed it on the head. I guess I don’t notice the smell since I’ve lived with it so long?

Zevia Twist

While I had the ride, I took the chance to get a trip out for groceries; how could I deny that? I grabbed a Zevia and we were out the door. First up: Trader Joe’s! I’m actually becoming more apathetic about that store. I feel like the best things from it are the plain stuff that you can get in bulk for cheap. And I’ve already gotten those in bulk! Well, it certainly is a good place for everyone to find something, at least, so while others finished shopping I had a snack:

Carob Chip Perfect Foods Bar

In the mail I got from home was some Perfect Foods bars. These are made primarily with organic peanuts and raw honey along with all different forms of protein and are meant as a meal replacement, but I’m pretty sure for athletes they’d just qualify as a snackypoo. This flavor was carob chip. I’d actually never had carob before! And I still don’t really feel like I have; this bar was pretty heavy on the peanuts with the carob only coming up in chip form even though carob powder is the 5th ingredient. BUT it was also really tasty so I can’t complain too much. It tasted a lot like peanuts and honey–duh. And it kept me fueled for all the serious grocery shopping, so it was definitely hefty.

Oatbran And Oatmeal

I got 2lb of oatbran from Trader Joe’s and then 2lb of oatmeal from Whole Foods. I’d say I’m pretty well stocked! The oats were on sale 99 cents a pound from the bulk bins(organic), so I had to load up. I also completely lost my shopping list in Whole Foods which freaked me out, but I was able to remember what last scribbles were on it. Seriously though, who would even have picked that up and taken it if they came across it? Weird.

Whole Foods Groceries

I liked using the pound of grass-fed beef I got last weekend so much I decided to do it again! Unfortunately, they didn’t have the fattier cut, which I would have gone for, so this one ended up costing a little more, but it’s still not bad since it will work over 4 meals. And I might have snuck one of my favorite ice creams and favorite chocolate bars into the shopping cart–not going to lie.

Trader Joe's Groceries

At Trader Joe’s, I was all over the proteins and fats. I also had my parents bring me whole eggs, too; the egg whites are more for oats. I feel like I should have gotten another block of tofu now that I think about it :-/ It’s such a perfect protein!

Apple

I grabbed an apple while I was in the dining hall scrapping up veggies for dinner. I really felt like I needed to eat something “clean” for one reason or another. “Clean eating” in my mind is something where each ingredient is a raw ingredient or has only a few components to it. I was planning on a Thai dish with Trader Joe’s coconut milk curry sauce but that long list would not have fit as “clean” :-/ Instead, I went ahead and just used coconut milk and honey.

Tofu And Tempeh In Honey Coconut Milk, California Vegetables, Cayenne Parma

Pretty clean, if I do say so myself. The tofu and tempeh were cooked in coconut milk, watter, and honey, then drained and splashed with coconut milk and honey(it’s a flawed process). On top I sprinkled some cayenne Parma, which, if that’s the most unclean thing I was eating, I was doing damn well. All the flavors fought a bit but it was still very much enjoyable. I just think it needed more cruciferous veggies! OK, I can cross my word of the day off 🙂

Blah, today was fun but I felt like the productivity took a dive. I got about 20 pages of reading done in the car and… yeah. I actually got into my PJ’s before dinner just to be able to cross that off my mental to-do list. Is that crazy? That’s not something I want to hear the answer to. Hopefully, tonight will be better.

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Where No Coconut Flour Has Gone Before

Posted on February 11, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good morning(at least I hope it’s still morning by the time I finish typing this)! Don’t forget that I pick a yogurt contest giveaway winner randomly tonight!

Uli Mana Raw Desserts

Uli Mana Raw Truffles

Last night was “one of those nights” where I just needed something really good for dessert. I pulled out my little treasure trove from Uli Mana and picked out 2 of their truffles to try out. These are made with cacao powder, cacao butter, agave, and a few other ingredients. The first thing that surprised me was how rich and decadent these were; the inside was like super soft and melty chocolate–delicious! I think my favorite was the Goji Cherry Raw Truffles

Goji Cherry Raw Truffle

So so good. I would have thought the nibs would add an unpleasant bitterness but they actually worked super well here; I could easily eat a container of these in one sitting. They were just that good. Also good but not quite as much so were the Dark Cacao Raw Truffles. Don’t get me wrong–I loved these as well. But the flavor was a little 1-dimensional whereas the other truffle had so much going on to make it exciting. Either way was a winner, though. All these superfoods had me excited to try something else exotic.

Coconut Flour Oats With Chocolate Coconut Butter, Hemp Seeds, And Goji Berries

Coconut flour oats! Can you say yum? The Bob’s Red Mill product actually made this more of a batter than oats, but it was still super nice; I think it needed either more sweetness or saltiness to really be “interesting”. On top I made a new butter using Xagave and Tropical Tradition’s coconut oil along with other flavors. Holy yum! This was jsut as I expected cacao bliss to be. It’s not perfect, but I can’t wait to play around and make a big batch once it is! And then some hulled hemp seeds and Navitas Naturalsgoji berries made this feel like a real superfood treat. I was still craving a little chocolate, though, so I had to have a little more.

1/2 Raw Vegan Chocolate Bar

Even though it was just 1/2, the sugar did not help me sleep soon or well; I ended up waking up around 2am but feeling absolutely paralized from a bad dream. I’m honestly surprised(and happy) I didn’t jolt up screaming and punching only to wake everybody else up. Somehow, I still managed to get out of bed at 6:15 to hit the gym.

Running Stats

I would not say getting up at 6:15 to run is ideal. BUT it is only 2 days a week I have to do it, and for that I can definitely deal. I was debating running 5 miles and doing a 30 minute bike or just running 7. To save my legs for 8 miles tomorrow, I went with the former.

My Gym

The gym was completely empty; that I was not expecting. At least I got my choice of a few televisions(and chose The Today Show and Cartoon Network, as always). I have to say that I do not like the bike and this might have been “my last ride”. I just find it uncomfortable and it’s hard to keep my HR over 100. Elliptical? More running? I’ll find something to entertain me. For breakfast, I turned back to my new friend…

Oatmeal With Chocolate Peanut Butter

Pomegranate Yogurt With Coconut Flour

More coconut flour! It’s becoming an addiction; this time I added 2 tablespoons to greek yogurt and the result was fantastic. For flavor, it came out a mellow but present coconuttiness. In terms of texture, this made it super thick and almost like soft serve that wouldn’t melt(that much coconut flour has 6g of fiber!). It may look like there’s not much chocolate peanut butter there, but that’s because I stuck it back in the microwave for the oatmeal to surround the giant clump o’ nut butter; that way, when I got to Greek and opened up my oatmeal, the inside was still perfectly soft and melty.

On my way back from class, I ordered the last book I need for classes–$51 out of pocket! It’s not even noon and today’s already expensive… Anyway, I’ve now sampled all the products sent to me by Navitas Naturals and so am recapping my reviews for them! As always, any of these can be found under the Product Reviews page at anytime.  My general impression was that a lot of care was put into all the products I’ve sampled and that really shined through. I don’t know that the items themselves were my favorite, par say, but I definitely look forward to exploring the company more and seeing what else they have to offer.

Sweet Cacao Nibs

8.5/10: Cacao nibs are as close to the rainforest as you can eat when it comes to chocolate. So pure and raw, these were an excellent treat. “Sweet”, however, was a big overstatement. These might have been sweetened with sugar, but make no mistake in that they were still quite bitter like raw cacao nibs. No matter which was you spin it, the flavor was far too bitter to be called sweet. I liked the big clumps which were almost more like granola and the tiny individual nibs for a good variety over yogurt and oatmeal. If 100% raw cacao nibs aren’t your thing, this just might be a nice stepping stone.

Goji Berries

9/10: Why don’t you see goji berries more around America? Because the real deal come only from the Himilayas. And that’s what these are: The real deal. Navitas Naturals brings the Himilayan superfruit to your pantry. Of course, the real question when it comes to dried fruit is whether they’ll be soft and not stale. These, honestly, felt a bit on the cusp, but I’m hoping it was just my mouth fooling me and I’ll get used to the true texture.

Mulberries

9/10: I can’t say I was in love with these berries, but I can’t find much fault with Navitas, either. I’m really impressed that they can grow these organically in their native Turkey and deliver them to your home. The berries themselves read like a pill with their nutritional benefits, but it’s hard to know whether they’re any better than any other berries. Navitas claims to dry them to “the perfect” moisture content; I don’t know if perfect is the word, but at least they aren’t stale. If you’re dead set on getting mulberries, by all means get Navitas Naturals’. Just looking for something new and different to try? Look again.

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Locked Out

Posted on December 1, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

So much for getting back into the swing of things! I couldn’t have been more off my game yesterday if I’d crashed my car into a tree and then drew attention to myself by releasing a sketchy statement about it. I completely forgot the first rule of morning time management: The days you want extra time are exactly the days you won’t get it. Regardless, I skipped doing the dishes and ran out the door at 10:45 to grab coffee before class. For the first time, I forgot my camera. What if yesterday was the day I ran into Emma Watson and explained to her about my blog and she offered to pose for a photo with me?… I like to dream big so that whatever happens in the day isn’t a disappointment. Well that wasn’t the case, but I did get my coffee, sit through an rough hour of “welcome back, now work” class, and hustle on back to my dorm to pick up where I left off. After cleaning, emailing, and blog reading, I made another meal of leftovers.

Cheesy Broccoli, Tofurkey Slice, Acorn Squash With Caramel Mustard

I think from now on I’ll just cook everything on the weekend and only eat “leftovers” all week long because they’re always the best. The broccoli was simply steamed and mixed with a slice of cheese from Trader Joe’s. The acorn squash was delicious with the caramel mustard, which I definitely had a heavy hand with(how could I not?). And the Tofurkey roast was still mighty fine, though I made sure not to overdo it again because apparently too much Tofurkey is rough on the stomach! Cost for calorie, these aren’t so bad to buy on sale after the holidays eat throughout the week. Here’s hoping to more in the future!(besides what I still have as leftovers :-P)

I don’t know where my head was because I almost left my room and went to class without any of the books I needed. In history we got back our 3 midterm essays, all of which I did really well on and lifted my spirits. Then we got our final paper topic–yikes! That’ll be 12-15 pages of get-me-out-of-here. After class I “had” to dash back to my dorm to pick up stevia packets for a coffee before epic poetry(going to class without a coffee would be dangerous). Unfortunately, as New Englanders know, the weather was awful in the afternoon and my plans to grab something at Whole Foods were no more. I headed back to my dorm, at which point I was struck with a Jimmy Neutron brain blast.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter And Shortcut Cream Cheese Frosting

I loved this recipe so much, I had to post it immediately. That is seriously going to change the way I eat anything carby(probably not for the better but oh well). Oprah had some awesome guests on, including Sugarland, all singing Christmas songs! It was pretty awesome–I wish I’d known to tivo it. Afterwards I had to get out even if it was raining. Naturally I chose the bookstore.

Coffee At The Bookstore

I realized I forgot all my cold-weather clothes at home, as well as an umbrella and q-tips. Again, where was my head? After perusing I couldn’t find any good coats, and the umbrellas were a bit much(and I completely forgot about the q-tips :-() so I left empty handed. I was still feeling a bit snackish, though, so I dug up this bar back at the dorm.

Lemon Ginger Gnu Bar

Wowza! I think this bar had the most flavor out of any of their bars, and I really really liked it. The lemon and ginger were both loud and it made a fun study snack. While doing some work before dinner, I realized I hadn’t heard from my friend if we were doing dinner. That’s because I forgot to turn my phone on in the morning and it’d been off all day… wtf. After getting some texts and finding out I was too behind for the rest of the world, I ended up grabbing something and eating in.

Vegan Roasted Vegetables, Sweet Potato, Wildwood Teryaki Tofu

Do you see the sun? It needed to come out at some point. Before I dug into this, I realized, I took my only fork home before break and forgot to bring it back. What’s wrong with me? Chopsticks and my baby spoon it was. Unfortunately, the flavors were not nearly as sunny; this was one of those meals that just felt like a waste after eating it(except the sweet potato, which would take a lot to feel like a waste). I wish this tofu had half the flavors on the ingredient list but in the end it tasted much like their savory flavor and wasn’t teryaki at all. As for the veggies, I tried to ignore the massive amounts of olive oil, but I had to stop 3/4ths the way through and throw out the rest. I don’t mind healthy fats, but I’m not a big fan of olive oil :-/ Nuts, peanut butter, avocado–all good. But this was too much to an absurd amount.

The night just went downhill from there. Heroes was OK but nothing to draw my attention, and my stomach just felt off, which I’m going to go ahead and blame on the vegetables. I did some light reading but realized I was tired. Could I go to bed at 9 and be asleep at 10? Was that allowed? Why the hell not, so I shut down my computer early, and figured out what to have right before sleeping.

 

2% Greek Yogurt With Strawberry Jam And Strawberry White Chocolate

Well the night wasn’t a complete bust; I removed 1oz plain and replaced it with 1oz full fat yogurt to give the base a 2% taste. Then I swirled in strawberry jam(technically “conserve”) and topped with a shaved Divine bar and some more jam. Just what I need before going to be–sugar. Midway through this I realized I forgot to brush my teeth, and so went to the bathroom to do that. In the 3 minutes I was in there, my roommate must have came home and grabbed something, locking the door and leaving. I was locked out in my pajamas, glasses, barefoot with a toothbrush–glorious. I freaked out for a minute and tried running outside to find him but no luck. Thankfully, one of the RC’s on the other side of the dorm was home and called campus services on my behalf. She also lent me slippers to wear while I waited outside(in 40 degree weather) for the campus security to show up. By the time I got in my room, i completely missed Big Bang Theory and was quite livid. The only thing I could do from wanting to tell someone off was eat this.

 

Deep Chocolate Vitatop

I’m not sure how well that worked, but heating it a little extra and just holding it in my hands for warmth made me happy. I totally didn’t get to bed early like I had planned, and the entire night felt like a waste. I maybe got 20-30 minutes more of sleep than normal–maybe. When I woke up I just needed to run it out, so I grabbed this and just left:

 

Amazing Grass Berry Energy Bar

I swear I always run farther than planned when I have an Amazing Grass bar. Stock up while they’re still on sale! I was first thinking 8, then pushed it to 10, then settled at 12. 3 days in a row? I think that’s a new favorite distance. My time was a little slower(1:41:11) but not bad. I was very pleased that my room wasn’t locked when I came back this time, and I was able to get in and make a quickie breakfast.

 

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Smart Balance And Maple Syrup, Plain Chobani With Blueberry Jam And A Double Chocolate Pillow

Is there anything better than opening up a new jar of PB? I bought this Sart Balance with agave to replace the one I had with molasses–it’s just better! And perfect on some salty oats with maple syrup. And the yogurt–yum! I love the combination of chocolate and blueberry but it’s so hard to find in foods unless I make it myself. The pillow cookie made a perfect, rich cocoa topping.

How about a question of the day, shall we? Tell me either your worst story of being locked out(fortunately this hasn’t happened too me more than 2 or 3 times in my life) or your most annoying roommate story(I realize my roommate could have been a lot worse so now I want to hear about those who were). And here’s to December not being as bad as November ended!

 

 

 

 

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The Swing Of Things

Posted on November 30, 2009. Filed under: Book Review, Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good morning! In case you were travelling over the weekend, there was a new recipe dreamed up on Black Friday, a review of Clif bars, a day that had me blushing beet red, and a 2nd, meatless Thanksgiving.

After that awesome lunch, I needed time to digest on the couch with Montana, and then got to work on my next project.

Christmas Tree

The Christmas tree. After chopping it down yesterday and leaving it in the cold overnight, we finally brought it in. Traditionally, I do the lights and the cranberries while my mom does the ornaments afterwards; since I was moving back to my dorm I needed to do this snappily. I was happy at the end 🙂 I love the lights on a Christmas tree. I think the ornaments are always nice and personal but it’s just not a tree to me if it doesn’t light up.

Afterwards we got to packing up. I dreaded this. It always feels like I have more going back than coming home, and this time I knew I did because of all the leftovers and extra clothes. Ugh. Thankfully with enough helping hands in the house this wasn’t too bad and shaped up pretty quick.

Packed Bags

I think it was a backpack, 3 bags of food, 2 of laundry, 2 of random machinery, and a stevia plant. Because, really, how could I live without all of that? We swung by my grandmother’s apartment to pick her up because she likes to come “just for the ride”. Wouldn’t it be nice to have time to go for a ride just because you have nothing else to do? 60 more years and I’ll be there.

Double Chocolate Pillow

Of course before hitting the highway we wento McDonald’s for some decaf and I broke out one of these cookies. I think it’s always the case that things grow on me after a few days, because 4 days later and I’m now becoming obsessed with them. Seriously, just smelling the cocoa–bliss. On the way down we stopped at Target looking for a movie. Alas, no luck 😦 But underwear was on sale and that’s close enough to grab, right?

Moving back in was actually quite quick and painless with enough helping hands(again). The rug looks awesome since my mom brought down her vacuum to clean it up(thanks!). I definitely lost track of time in all of this and realized I was hungry. A little cookie is not a substantial afternoon snack, but you know what is?

Laloo's Strawberry Darling Goat's Milk Ice Cream

Ice cream. I’m surprised this has survived the common freezer for so long, but yesterday I decided it was time to polish it off(only about 1 serving left anyway). I love the tang of the balsamic vinegar in this. Something tells me adding balsamic vinegar, even an organic one, to strawberry chobani wouldn’t work the same. When all the groceries were away I enjoyed staring at a full fridge.

Full Fridge

Really? Is there anything more blissful? I’m surprised I managed to cram it all in there; it looked like it might not make it and I’m glad I left some tofu at home for another weekend. I also found this which I snuck into my bag:

The Killer Angels

I don’t really “pleasure read”, and if I had time to, I’d probably choose a book I haven’t read, so I’m not sure why I brought this. But I do love and recommend this book for anyone wanting to read a psuedo-historic novel. I did a huge paper on it and the battle of Gettysburg in 11th grade. As you might know, I’m a Classics major, but besides that American history 1640-1865 is my other area of interest. There’s a movie, Gettysburg, based on this book I have yet to see but I can’t wait to find it some day.

Dinner started off a little disgusting; I went to get one of my sweet potatoes and found it covered in mold–yuck! That’s actually never happened with the food I keep under my bed but I guess there’s a first for everything. Instead, I had to improvise.

Broccoli, Turkey Breast, Cinnamon Raisin English Muffin With Lightlife Breakfast Sausages And Maple Syrup

You know how sometimes your eyes are bigger than your stomach? Yeah, story of my life day. First there was being stuffed from a stuffed tofurkey and acorn squash, and then there was this. The turkey wasn’t anything special, I just wanted to eat it up before it got moldy like a sweet potato. The english muffin with sausage was the real money maker here. Does anybody else remember McGriddles from McDonalds? That’s EXACTLY What this was like, except with infinitesimally less trans fat. Oh my God, so good. Rest assured it will be made again. Unfortunately, there was one casualty during dinner.

 

Broken Amazing Grass Bottle

 

My Amazing Grass bottle 😦 I dropped it on the floor while it was full and water went pretty much everywhere–fun. After cleaning it up I went to the bathroom and tried refilling it, wondering why it kept being empty. Smart one, Evan. I think they carry these at Whole Foods? That’s what I’m hoping at least. After getting ahead(ahead! not catching up!) on work I made a snack and settled in for A Dog Named Christmas.

 

Peanut Butter Soy Yogurt With Fig Jam And Peanut Butter Chips

 

I don’t expect much from cheesy, holiday, made-for-TV movies, but this one was even below expectations. I expect them to suck, but to also be cutesy, and the child acting in this was not cutesy. This snack also did not disappoint even though I was iffy on the flavor combo. I think I forgot to sweeten the base but thankfully I bought a Vanilla flavor. I completely forgot I even had fig preserves but they were still just as good. And the pb cheeps were nice and sweet, nothing at all like real peanut butter and yet just as magical 🙂

After I’d put up with bad child acting for an hour, it was time for a new Brothers & Sisters. Last weeks episode was not on because Adam Lambert needed to whore it up at the AMA’s, but this week there were supposed to be great plot twists and secret revealings–it did not disappoint. Midway, I snacked on this:

 

English Muffin With Pumpkin Cream Cheese And Honey Maple Peanut Butter Topped With Me And Goji Granola

2 english muffins in one day? I was on a roll. I liked the crunch from the granola. And the gojis I’m sure were some decent brain food. I also love “rediscovering” peanut butters I forget about. Brothers & Sisters I thought was awesome–can’t wait until the wedding(or will there even be one?) next week.

I was exhausted so I knew I wanted shut eye but for some reason, as tired as I was, I wasn’t getting to sleep. I don’t know how much I slept overall or how many times I woke up/had weird dreams. This was one harsh “welcome back” to the swing of things. When I woke up, though, I was ready to meet my old friend–the gym. I made a quickie snack.

Kashi Strawberry Flax Waffle With Banana Peanut Butter

Normally I like bars that I can take on the treadmill but for some reason this was what appealed to me best. When I got there, it was packed for 6:50am(read: 3 other people). But then it quited down and the regulars started showing up. I didn’t concern myself too much with pace or anything; I was plenty happy to be back and watching the Today Show(does anybody care about Tiger Woods’ car crash at this point? really?). In the end I did 12 miles in 1:38:59. That’s almost exactly like yesterday, which is good because I tend to be slower inside than out. When I got back, I relearned how to make a dormroom breakfast.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Pepita Butter And Maple Frosting, Eggnog Yogurt

This microwave just ain’t the same as the one back home. For the oats I used Caitlin’s pancake frosting recipe with a little vanilla stevia. I think my cooking skills were on vacation and are just getting back, too, because everything was underseasoned/sweetened. Afterwards, I added more stevia and cinnamon to the yogurt and some vanilla sugar and salt atop the oats and that perked things up.

And so, clearly I’m relearning dorm life after a week of bliss. I suppose with finals and papers coming up I won’t even notice the time between now and Christmas vacation, right? Now if you’ll excuse me, it’s cyber Monday, and as dirty as that sounds I have some deals to catch.

 

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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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Eating The Alternative

Posted on October 5, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Beside my daily grind, today I want to point out some of the foods I ate yesterday that are something of an alternative to the traditional. I hope you find something fun and funky to try; and I’d love to read comments about any alternatives you’d think I like because I love trying new foods(and all the better if they’re delicious :-))

So I’m kind of bad with rest days, case in point: I run on them. Write after I wrote and (thought I) posted, I got to thinking about a walk. And then I thought “why walk when you could run?” Well that did it for me. Plus there were some old streets I hadn’t been by in a while and I thought it’d be interesting to run around and see if anything’s changed. One thing I don’t like about running any other time than first thing is having food digesting, and feeling my body switch from running on simple carbs to stored energy. About 2 miles in I felt the switch and got a little dizzy for a minute, but thankfully that past and I continued on feeling like I do every morning. I saw a skunk as roadkill and about a mile later almost made a baby squirrel road kill, too; he darted right in front of me and it took a hop, a skip, and a jump to avoid him I ended up running 7.18 miles in 59 minutes. When I got back I showered and it was pretty much time for lunch.

Bison Steak Medallion, Sweet Potato, Brussel Sprouts

Bison Steak Medallion, Sweet Potato, Brussel Sprouts

Alternative first: Bison. Consider bison and yam the meat and potatoes of the new millenium, because they’re here to stay. Bison is a much leaner red meat than beef yet has the same robust flavor and is very very tender. My 6oz medallion had 180 calories, 1.5g saturated fat, and 38g protein. Amazing, isn’t it? It cut as well as butter and was perfectly fulling. If you’ve read this for a while, you’d know I don’t eat meat unless I think it’s quality, and this definitely was. Of course, it went great with the sweet potato, which is an alternative we all already know a lot about probably. I top mine with salt but cinnamon is a great alternative for something with a bit of a punch. What’s Sunday lunch without dessert, right?

Vitabrownie

Vitabrownie

Not really alternative, just delicious 🙂 I ate this in the car to my second Massachusett’s home, also known as Trader Joe’s. I stockpiled things for the dorm including bread, cheese, mac n’ cheese pouches, canned tuna, and peanut butter filled pretzels. If you haven’t had a TJ peanut butter filled pretzel, you have experienced life. We stopped at Whole Foods because it’s literally across the way(how cool is that?) where I got another one of my favorite alternatives for dinner. Not too much time was spent back at home; it was mostly pack the car, serve some ice cream, and go. Or was it?

Purely Decadent Mocha Almond Fudge Coconut Milk Ice Cream

Purely Decadent Mocha Almond Fudge Coconut Milk Ice Cream

Alternative second: Coconut milk ice cream. I love all types of ice cream, frozen yogurt, soy yogurt, etc. And don’t get me started on the joy of goat milk ice cream! Coconut milk is just one of the many great alternatives. It is higher on fat, particularly saturated, but it’s all plant based so it has no cholesterol(and I think plant saturated fat doesn’t have the same negative effect on cholesterol as animal meat but someone might want to correct me here). That’s why coconut milk is great, but here’s why this ice cream is: I first had it after seeing Jenna gush about it. I love anything mocha and the fudge in this blends with the coffee so well. And the almonds are a perfect touch, especially since they’re roasted and salted to really bring out the flavor for a salty/sweet punch.

Getting back to college this time around was much better than the emotional disaster of last. My roommate was not in the room, so I invited my whole family to actually come in the room this time. Of course, we had to yell at grandma when she started picking up my roommates clothes on the floor, haha. My dad even scraped down the freezer that was all iced up so it hopefully will run better now. This time the goodbyes were much more normal and after they left I got a case of the munchies:

Peach, Toast With Cream Cheese And Pumpkin Butter

Peach, Toast With Cream Cheese And Pumpkin Butter

It’s been so long since I’ve had a good peach, too long. This one was a bit soft but it was not a disappointment at all. I’m missing the perfect peach season 😦 Summer, come back! Oh wait, we have pumpkins and apples to comfort us. Meh. I also had some T light whole wheat bread with cream cheese and TJ pumpkin butter. This sweet/savory combo works really well. And I like this bread for toast when I’m not looking for a real artisan bread because it has a light, wheaty flavor that toasts well and doesn’t impede on the spread. Gotta watch out though; 5g insoluble fiber per slice can get a little dangerous if you know what I mean. I met up with a friend for dinner but I already had what I wanted in mind so I brown bagged it:

Gardenburger With Light Cheddar Cheese And Tempeh Bacon, FSTG Potato & Chive Chips

Gardenburger With Light Cheddar Cheese And Tempeh Bacon, FSTG Potato & Chive Chips

Alternative third: Tempeh bacon. Try getting a bacon cheddar cheeseburger at any burger joint and I bet you won’t find this. The flame-grilled gardenburgers have a great flavor on their own, but with the smokiness of the tempeh bacon it was just out of this world. Obviously, tempeh bacon is a great vegetarian alternative. It has no cholesterol and has heart-healthy fats; and the Lightlife brand uses all natural flavorings to give it that bacon-essence. The potato and chive Food Should Taste Good chips totally top and greasy fries you’d find at a burger joint, too. There’s something so deliciously intriguing about them that makes it hard to stop eating them.

Last night I started off with The Amazing Race. I don’t really think it’s all that great of a show, especially not worthy of the crap load of Emmy’s it’s one. But I also have an addictive personality and aren’t too picky about reality shows so I’ll probably be watching the whole season. Usually each season has a pair of charming old people but I think this season’s missing that, which is so disappointing. Instead, I tihnk I’ll be rooting for the couple that came in 2nd last night and the gay brothers. I don’t really care for those shrewd poker players. One of my latest kicks lately has been the black and white cookies. I’ve never tried them, but after seeing them on blogs I got curious. I’m told I’m not missing anything special, so I don’t really feel like I’m missing out anymore, but that quest did inspire some kickassbutt oatmeal:

Black And White Cookie Dough Oatmeal

Black And White Cookie Dough Oatmeal

Ok, I can stop questing for the cookie now that I have this. I used P.B. Loco’s cookie dough peanut butter, which has vanilla bean extracts and chocolate morsels, and used 1/2 serving grain sweetened dark chocolate chips and 1/2 serving ghiradelli’s white chocolate chips. This was definitely a “dessert” oatmeal, and it was so perfect. It took me almost an hour to finish because I was also watching Family Guy and working on my essay(1/4 of the way there…). I thought Family Guy wasn’t as great as last week but still decent enough to keep up its reputation. Afterwards I made some homemade pumpkin pie yogurt with double alternatives:

Pumpkin Pie Yogurt With Turbinado Sugar Glaze

Pumpkin Pie Yogurt With Turbinado Sugar Glaze

4th and 5th Alternatives: Stevia and Turbinado sugar. There are a lot of ways to sweeten our favorite dishes; and when it comes to sweeteners, while none might be all that great for us, in moderation there are some better than others. Stevia is an all natural zero-calorie sweetener from the stevia. Normally, I’d be suspicious of things like that that seem too good to be true. But since I own my own stevia plant and can see what this comes from, it puts my mind to ease. NuNaturals has a great line of products, too. Another better option is turbinado sugar. This is the unrefined crystallized form of evaporated can juice. Because of the method employed, it’s more slowly absorbed into the body than other table sugars and retains more of the nutrients. Again, though, these are all sugars and need moderating. I topped off the night with some more of Holly’s amazing cookies and toast with peanut butter cookie spread and watched Brothers & Sisters. I fell behind last season but I’m trying to get back into it and feeling really bad for Kitty at the moment 😦

This morning I felt decent enough. I decided to keep it in the gym because there was one part of my important morning routine that wasn’t happening and I wanted to keep it close to a bathroom, if you catch my drift. My first machine was definitely broken, telling me I was running 7 mph but going wayy faster than that. I hopped over to another machine and tried readjusting. I’m not quite sure I trust all the stats but according to the machines I went 8 miles in 66:46. I’ve also been lucky enough to make a gym friend(i.e someone who you constantly run in at the gym and awkwardly acknowledge each other’s presence). She’s a rockin’ 60 or so year old who kicks her butt out of bed to walk for a few miles and even do a bit of jogging while watching the Today Show. Clearly she’s a woman after my own heart. Breakfast was a little bit of a nuissance; my kitchen scale has run out of batteries so I needed to measure everything with tablespoons and measuring cups. I really love using a scale for oatmeal and other grains because it gives me the perfect amount with the perfect amount of water every time. Nevertheless, I trudged on:

Peanut Butter Flax Oikos With Granola Bar Granola, Eggy Oatbran

Peanut Butter Flax Oikos With Granola Bar Granola, Eggy Oatbran

Alternative Last: Peanut Flour. A while back, when I came in 2nd at The Peanut Butter Boy‘s recipe contest, The National Peanut Board sent me some peanut flour to play around with. This very easily became a new food obsession with me. Peanut flour is the roasted, ground, defatted product of a peanut. It retains much of the flavor and essence but is in a dry form, much more easily mixed in to liquids and cold products such as Oikos. I recently ordered 2 more pounds of it from Byrd Mill to continue using. A 24g serving has a whopping 12 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber and I typically will use 1/2 a serving in my yogurt. I’ve also added it to bread and cookie recipes to add nutrition. This breakfast was pretty decent; I think the oat bran came out a little dry because there wasn’t enough water, but hopefully I’ll get batteries for the scale later on today. For the granola topper I used Cascadian Farms Vanilla Chip, which is extremely delicious, but on its own will not fill you up at all.

Not much for the day ahead other than batteries and essay writing. I hope you enjoyed and learned something from all these alternatives. Again, please share anything you love that’s a little bit different so we can all learn and experience a little more.

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