An Eventful Day In Boston Part 1

Posted on May 17, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good evening! What’s a perfect way to spend an evening?

Homemade Iced Tea

Homemade Iced Tea

Sipping half-caf iced tea with lemon and stevia. Superb. Last night, I was flipping back and forth between Survivor and Brothers & Sisters. All I can say is WOW to both of them. Brothers & Sisters got a little predictable towards the end, but that didn’t make it any less good. Anyway, the food.

Green & Black's Ginger Dark Chocolate

Green & Black's Ginger Dark Chocolate

I absolutely love this chocolate now on my 2nd bar. And I might have bought another at Whole Foods since it was on sale. Maybe. Anyway, I’ll have to throw up a review page for it. All I can say are ginger and chocolate were meant to be. I also had a handful of baby carrots around this time, which I saw a better option than more chocolate. Again, maybe.

Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter, Local Raw Honey

Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter, Local Raw Honey

Before hitting the hay I made a bowl of oatmeal with Naturally Nutty‘s butter toffee peanut butter and some local raw honey on the side for dippage. Yum! The honey is definitely a new addiction; I snuck down stairs afterwards for another scoop. Did it help me fall asleep? Probably not, but it was good.

Speaking of sleep, I woke up with my alarm, hopped in the bathroom, and then started getting all my clothes ready, and still felt really really tired. After I put in my contacts, I saw that I set my alarm for 6:20 instead of 7:20. Whoops. I couldn’t fall back asleep, so I just made an extra special breakfast.

Cooking A Hash

Cooking A Hash

Practice makes perfect; that’s what the owner of Nick’s On Broadway told me himself. Let’s just think of him as my hashpiration 😉 This one started with earth balance, sweet potatoes, white potatoes, red onion, and basil. I then added some EVOO for a different flavor.

Sweet Potato And Potato Home Fries With Basil, Scrambled Tofu, Mighty Maple

Sweet Potato And Potato Home Fries With Basil, Scrambled Tofu, Mighty Maple

This one was much better than the other ones I’ve made(all 2 of them); I think the earth balance added a much needed butter flavor but from a vegan source. The scrambled tofu was so much simpler than I would have thought: just tofu and nutritional yeast cooked in whatever fat the potatoes didn’t take up. And it was all super tasty and filling.

Maybe it’s just because I’ve been stuck home the past week, but Boston seemed so alive today. Several schools, including my dad’s college, were having graduations, so joyful families were everywhere. I started my day at Whole Foods to get some coffee(the same one where Gisele Bundchen shops), and then meandered to the graduation I was attending.

Cashew Cookie Larabar

Cashew Cookie Larabar

I snacked on a cashew cookie larabar beforehand. It was a terrific ceremony and it was great to congratulate everyone. But rather than stick around I was really excited to go to my favorite Boston restaurant and keep the raw vegan theme rolling. I took the T and walked down to the North End(not easy for someone self-proclaimed “T-literate”). But look what I found when I got there!

"Grezzo Is Closed"

"Grezzo Is Closed"

Yes, it’s true, unfortunately. The owner explains the reasons on her blog here. In the larger picture, I’m very sad to see the very thing that introduced me to raw veganism disappear like that. I felt like it was a Boston institution. On a much more limited scale. What was I to do for lunch? I was starving by this point and in a part of Boston I almost never go. Would I find somewhere good? Would I ever eat raw again?

Have you ever had a favorite spot close down on you? Where was it?

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Race For The Border Half Marathon Recap

Posted on March 28, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Race Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

In short, I survived! And with all my toes and fingers, too 😉

Vanilla Soy Yogurt With Mini PB Cups

Vanilla Soy Yogurt With Mini PB Cups

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple, Maple Cashew Butter, And Maple Butter

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple, Maple Cashew Butter, And Maple Butter

The night before was filled with carbs, of course. I meant of went a little overboard with the maple-flavored goods, but how could someone not? I love the duo of mighty maple and maple cashew butter with some New Hampshire maple butter. Mmmm. I also had a reunion with the Food Network; after 4 weeks of 20 channels, being at home with my DVR was heavenly until I had to get a good night’s sleep for the race.

Nature's Path Peanut Energy Bar With Butter Toffee And Peanuts, Pomegranate Yogurt With Organic Dark Chocolate

Nature's Path Peanut Energy Bar With Butter Toffee And Peanuts, Pomegranate Yogurt With Organic Dark Chocolate

Nature's Path Peanut Energy Bar With Butter Toffee And Peanuts

Nature's Path Peanut Energy Bar With Butter Toffee And Peanuts

The run itself started by the New Hampshire/Maine coast border, which was a good 90 minutes away. We left bright and early and I had a breakfast to eat in the car. I mist have been nervous because I didn’t even want oatmeal; I needed something with some crunch! I smothered a Nature’s Path peanut butter energy bar with butter toffee peanut butter and roasted peanuts. Holy peanut power, Batman. That’s fuel! And of course there was plenty of anti-oxidant rich organic dark chocolate on a pomegranate Chobani.

Waiting To Start

Waiting To Start

If there’s one thing you can’t control, it’s the weather in New England. Today, it was below 40 with a strong coastal wind, too. In line for the bathroom, the man behind me said I was “brave” for just having basketball shorts on. I didn’t want to admit it to him but I don’t own running tights and my shoes have been the same pair since July. Whoops!

Organic Jolly Beans

Organic Jolly Beans

My pre-run fuel was some of these runner’s magic bites. I also had about another 1/2 a handful while waiting to start. If you’re going to boredom eat jelly beans, it might as well be right before a big run, right?

Race Recap

So we’re all on the same page, this was my longest outdoor run yet. My previous outdoor distance PR was 11.25. On the treadmill, I’ve ran 17 miles, and had a half-marathon time record of 1:46:28. That was all the past. My goal for this was sub 1:40.

Miles 1-3: I started off with “the runner’s high” and was really enjoying myself, listening to country music and practically dancing along. I passed a lot of people in this time, and it felt great to be going so fast. I also decided not to look at my pace ever; my time goal seemed lofty, and like if I pushed for it I’d burn out.

Miles 3-5: I really enjoyed the scenery. We were on the New Hampshire Hampton coast, so there was plenty to look at. I couldn’t imagine how many millions of dollars those houses were worth. This was also difficult because the entire run practically was against the wind.

Miles 6-9:

Miles 10-11: My left leg first started hurting around here. At 11.5, I could feel soreness in both of my legs. I started to think about it, and it made a lot of sense; why wouldn’t my legs hurt then when it’s the farthest on terrain they’ve ever run?

Miles 12-13.1: I kicked it in gear, gave it what I had left, and pushed for a good time. The endline was confusing, cars were driving in between me and the finish line, and it wasn’t even really made clear where that was :-/ That sour not aside, I tried to finish with a smile.

After The Finish Line

After The Finish Line

Alright, really I was thinking “Can we get in the car and turn on the heat?!” I still haven’t gotten an “official” time, but here’s what my Garmin had:

Garmin Stats

Garmin Stats

Whoopee! It wasn’t the 1:3X I was hoping for, but I couldn’t complain with the winds being what they were. That was still a huge distance and time PR, and in some of the worse conditions. I’m very happy with all of that… for now.

Lemon Pie Larabar

Lemon Pie Larabar

I did make one very big rookie mistake. I overlooked the time when I’d need to refuel. I did not realize that this half-marathon was 90 minutes away in virtually a black hole. The only restaurants we could find clearly did not have ethical meat or even vegetarian options besides pasta, which would not work when avoiding gluten. And so I had a lemon pie Larabar to hold me over until we got back to my hometown. It gave me plenty of time to think about how much better I could be at refueling. We all need to learn our lessons somehow, right?

Chipotle Menu

Chipotle Menu

Near home,w e stopped at Chipotle, which I heard was very eco-friendly after watching the CEO on Oprah. It may be eco-friendly, but I thought the options were really limited. No brown rice? What’s up with that? They didn’t even have fresh tomatoes… I just got what I could and then added more when we got home.

Black Bean And Sweet Potato Mexican Salad

Black Bean And Sweet Potato Mexican Salad

On top of lettuce was all the black beans/salsa/peppers from my burrito bowl, 1/2 a sweet potato I microwaved with salsa, and the leftover black beans from last night with a dollop of Chipotle’s guacamole. My mouth was on fire after this! Even if their options aren’t great, at least what Chipotle does have is pretty tasty. And at this point, I think we were all pretty hungry, so there was no judging shoveling Mexican food into our mouths while standing up.

Sweet Potato And Salt

Sweet Potato And Salt

After a much needed hot shower, no one wanted this sweet potato, so I’ll take it! When these are nice and soft, they’re pretty much candy to me. They taste a lot better roasted but who has 90 minutes to think about how their sweet potato will taste?

Ginger Root Beer Zevia

Ginger Root Beer Zevia

And since I’ve been writing this, I chugged my favorite flavor of Zevia. I don’t know why I didn’t think about this earlier. All in all, my first race was an excellent experience, and there will be more 🙂 I just need time to recoup while the weather realizes how hot it should be in March, almost April.

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20 Minutes

Posted on February 28, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

20 minutes is the length in 1 period of an Olympic hockey game(more on that later). It’s also about the amount of time I spent on anything today.

Natural Food Store

After blogging and while I was still around home, I wanted to go to my favorite foodie store nearby. I only spent about 20 minutes perusing the 3 aisles but I could easily spend twice that if we had the time. It feels so good to go in to a store and know that I can eat anything I find, and it doesn’t even matter if I would never want to but just that I can. I found 2 really fun finds and then we were back home. I made lunch for the family which took–you guessed it–20 minutes.

Simple Italian Beef Over Cauliflower With Cheddar Cheese

20 minutes and 4 ingredients is all you need for a really simple and flavorful dish. I browned 1 pound 90/10 grass-fed beef in a large pan, and half way through added a diced onion and red pepper to sweat. Then with about 7 minutes to go I added 1 1/2 cups tomato sauce and let that cook down. Voila! A little salt, pepper, Emeril’s seasoning, and cheddar cheese and it was fantastic. Most of the meal was spent explaining what a gluten intolerance was and why I limit wheat and pastas now. After having a whole wheat cookie in my breakfast(a fantastic choice, by the way), I’m pretty darn confident of the intolerance. For a pasta and pizza loving family, this was tough news to digest 😀

After lunch, we picked up my grandmother and great aunt who wanted to go to the Casino near my school(my mom did too, of course). Can you imagine being in a car with a couple of chatty 80 year olds? That was my afternoon. I wish it lasted 20 minutes but it was more like 60. I’m always amused by the random “Did you know so-and-so died?” and “I did call you but the operator said you wouldn’t take the call” followed by “I don’t have an operator, I have a cell phone with an answering machine”. Is that how I’ll be in 60 years?

Coconut Cream Pie Larabar

When I got back on campus, I felt really crunched for time, so I whipped out this bar I”ve been seeing on so many other blogs, threw my stuff on the bed, and hit the gym, eating it over the first 2 miles in about 20 minutes. From what I could taste, it was pretty good, but very much tasting like a date; I was looking for more coconut oil. And eating it running was not a smart move for digestion.

7 Miles In 62:02

It did, however, give me energy to extend my run from 5 to 7 miles. That and the fact that I got really in to the hockey game on TV and didn’t look down until 5.4 miles had gone by. I thought the period was only 20 minutes but didn’t realize the clock kept stopping. It turned out to be a really exciting game!

Olympic Hockey Match

When I finished up the run, we were in the 3rd period, so I hopped on the elliptical for 20 minutes to watch “the end”. When America scored that last point, all of let out a sweaty “Woohoo!”

Carrot Juice

At that, I rushed back to my dorm and chugged this carrot juice within 20 minutes of my workout to absorb all the nutrients. I don’t drink much juice, but carrot juice is easily my favorite. And it’s so nutritious, too! A cup has more potassium than a banana and a good amount of sodium to replace salt. The downside of this all was that I missed the last goal while I was showering 😦 Fail. After that, I whipped up an easy Asian dinner in 20 minutes.

Tofu And Broccoli Cooked In Soy Sauce, Cheddar Popchips

OK, “Asian dinner” in my terminology means dicing soft tofu, letting it steam in a pan over soy sauce, and adding steamed broccoli for the last 5 minutes to cook down. But it’s simple and good! And the cheddar Popchips were another easy side because I did not feel like getting that involved with dinner after a day like today; 20 minutes was more than enough 🙂

Normally, I might wait another 20 minutes before brewing up some decaf coffee to start off dessert, but tonight I feel hungry, and there’s a lot of work to be done. Boo 😦 But on the bright side the closing ceremonies will be on! And an excellent Brothers & Sisters. These are definitely things to look forward too 🙂

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I Have No Shame

Posted on February 3, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I feel no shame.
I’m proud of where I came
From. I was born and raised
In the Boondocks.

Almond Milk Hot Chocolate

Don’t have shame in drinking your calories. Didn’t you hear? Hot chocolate and wine(once you’re 21) have been scientifically proven not to have calories. Joke’s aside, you probably won’t find a healthier hot chocolate than this.

  • 1 cup warmed vanilla unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons organic cocoa powder
  • stevia to taste

Did I just de-carbify the hot chocolate? I think I did. And no shame here making up words.

I have no shame admitting I do not care for LOST one bit. If it’s your thing, go right on ahead. I’ll take Idol, and The Biggest Loser, please.

I also have no shame turning off my computer at 9:40, with things still in the Google Reader, at a time when other students are just getting back to their room to start homework. I need my sleep–no lie.

Oatmeal With Mighty Maple And Chocolate Chips

I feel no shame in turning my oatmeal into a candy bar with Trader Joe chocolate chips. Holly’s amazing oat-creations have reminded me how much I used to adore these things, and now that I’m back to high milage, I’m pretty sure candy is encouraged, unshamefully.

Morning Dusting

I have no shame in admitting how much I love snow. Are you maybe a Virginian or who’s been getting pummeled and hates it? Well here’s me admitting I’m totally jealous of you and would trade in an instant. Pretty please?

Peanut Butter And Jelly Larabar

Larabar has no shame in throwing some salt in to their peanut butter and jelly bar–thank God! A lot of the flavors of Larabars I just don’t care for, and they coud probably be improved tenfold with a touch of salt for sweetness. Dates and nuts need salt!

Who turned Pokemon on at the gym? Shamelessy–me! I needed something to get me through 8 miles in 71:53. And you know what? It worked!

Bicycle Stats

Do you know what else I shamelessly love? The Today Show with sound, which I wouldn’t have gotten if I went straight back to my dorm. So I stayed around for 30 minutes with my friend, Mr. Stationary Bike.

Bike Riding

And no shame here admitting I was peddling as hard as this little tyke would be at resistance level 3.

Whoever left their soap in the shower clearly has no shame or germaphobia because that’s not something I’d do.

Trader Joe's Organic Avocado

I have no shame admitting I don’t eat as much organic vegetables as I’d like. Hell, I’d like to be able to say I grew this and everything, but that’s just not the case and buying organic isn’t always wallet friendly. This avocado, however, was a) organic and b) cheaper than the non-organic ones from Stop & Shop. Score.

Justin's Chocolate Almond Butter

It’s a shame that I haven’t shown my nut butter collection in a while; it’s just too big to fit into a photo! And it keeps growing.

Normally, I like to review new products and post them here. I have to say, though, that I don’t have time this morning, and I don’t feel shame in skipping this review right now because all these Justin’s Nut Butters I bought with my Christmas money and wasn’t sent for review(and they were worth every penny).

Oatmeal With Chocolate Almond Butter

Chocolate Avocado Pudding

Clearly, I don’t feel shame piling on the fat for breakfast. And the way I shamelessly poured the sea salt on the oatmeal after this picture, you’d think I missed the ocean.

I’d feel no shame plugging any company who sends me avocadoes, cocoa powder, or coconut beverage every time I eat one of these pudding, but sadly that’s not the case(yet). Anybody? Please?

I have no shame plugging my own Coconut Oil Contest, but I also want to tell you about this coconut oil giveawaythis cookbook giveaway, this maple syrup giveaway, this giveaway for Zevia, and this freebie from Kashi.

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Sweet 16

Posted on December 3, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I did it! As I mentioned in a 6:29am mad rush yesterday, The Biggest Loser inspired me to get out and try for a distance personal record. More specifically, what I was inspired by was the contestant’s goal: not necessarily to “run a marathon” but more “to move their bodies 26.2 miles”. Every morning I’ve gotten up and ran until it was time to stop(which, if the time is a literal thing, around 8:30). Yesterday I decided no time excuses–that I was going to get up and “move my body 16 miles”. While I wanted to run it, I acknowledged I might need to walk, to hop off the treadmill for the bathroom(which happened a lot), or to take a water break. Regardless, I was determined to hit the distance and not factor in anything else. While it was long, it wasn’t nearly as grueling as I anticipated. I overprepared like a pro.

Peanut Butter And Jelly Larabar

I brought 3 bars and only ended up eating what you don’t see of this PB&J Larabar. And, yes, I made it 16 miles. Needless to say, it felt quite good to finish after a time of 2:17:50 and I was into the 3rd hour of The Today Show. Best of all, I learned a new way of thinking; I loved the mentality shift from running to moving myself a certain distance. It makes all sorts of distances look possible for the future. Also needless to say, I was a sweaty mess when I got back to my dorm at 9:20, so I showered and made this salty and sweet mess:

Sweet And Salty Oats

1/2 cup pumpkin
1 tablespoon Smart Balance PB
1 tablespoon peanut butter chips
2 strips Fakin’ Bacon
Maple Syrup
Sea Salt

If this is at the end of 16 miles, I’m running 32 tomorrow. I was short on time after ignoring it so I went with the throw-everything-in-a-bowl method and wow was this good. I don’t know where to begin, so I’ll just let your imagine soar 🙂 I still wanted to get some breakfast probiotics though, so I gave a new product a try.

Vega Vanilla Chai Whole Food Health Optimizer

You can read my review here, but to sum it up I’d say the nutrition was ridiculously amazing, the flavor decent, and the coloration scary. I think that’s how it works with most green drinks, at least the last part anyway. I ended up walking into class right with the bell(score!) just in time to do teacher evaluations… I’m sure I’ll stick out like a thumb on my evaluations in the classes where I’m the only freshman(and that’s the first question on the paper) but I tried being honest in all of them. After class I picked up something at a campus convenience and made my way home for emails and lunch. Lunch came in to parts:

Trader Joe's Mac N' Cheese, Broccoli

Chocolate Peppermint Stick Luna

It just felt like a mac n’ cheese day; I don’t think that needs any explanation 🙂 When I saw a chocolate peppermint bar at the convenience store, I had to grab it. Yes–it’s a bar marketed for women. But I see you gals eat Clif bars all the time so if you can gender-bar hop so can I 😉 Plus it just felt so nice and seasonal. I really liked it and even bought another one afterwards to enjoy with cocoa some time.

All I could think about in classes 2 and 3 was how I almost spent as much time on the treadmill as I would in class yesterday–insane! When i got out, I wandered around a bit up and down Thayer street. I bought 2 magazines even though I had 3 I hadn’t read yet(whoops), and managed by Blue State for some coffee. Eventually, I realized all of this was procrastination since I had an overflowing inbox and homework to do, so I hung my head and got back to the dorm. I also picked up this delicacy while I was out and about:

Pizza Strip With Lightlife Breakfast Sausage

A pizza strip is a local food comprised of a yeast dough topped with a thin layer of herby sauce and nothing more. I added some breakfast sausage to make it a “faux meat lovers” pizza–yum! I think this officially makes me a Rhodey now, right Big Girl? The afternoon was filled with busy work. I got pretty hungry by 6 but didn’t want to ruin my appetite for meeting folks at the dinning hall at 6:30 so I snacked on an apple.


It’s really unfortunate this is my pre-dinner snack because my dining hall serves some pretty bad apples and I refuse to buy produce with my grocery money that’s not some sort of tuber or I can’t store under my bed 😦 For dinner, I knew I didn’t want the veggie option so I made my main in my dorm and relied on the cafe for side veggies.

Maple Mustard Tofu Steaks, Sweet Potato, Steamed Vegetables

It feels like ages since I’ve done the maple/mustard combo, so it was welcomed to have it back. I cut up 3 slices(2 servings) of firm tofu and tried letting it marinate for 30 minutes and “glaze” in the microwave but in the end it was more of a sauce. I don’t know why the sweet potato doesn’t look like much here because it felt HUGE and sat like a rock in my tummy. I was honestly stuffed when I got back to my dorm and just wanted to put on stretchy PJ’s and my glasses to watch TV.

I’m sure I’m not the only one who was glued to the tree lighting ceremony? Rudolph was also on, and so were some new ABC shows, but how often do they light the Rockefeller tree? I never knew Jane Krakowski was an actual singer; I never would have guessed that from her 30 Rock character. Eventually, when there was room, I had a seasonal snack.

Chocolate Peppermint Stick Luna

Haha, guess I’m getting a little repetitive? I blame this blogger for giving me a peppermint craving(and by blame, I mean utterly adore). It was still as good as the first time and prompted me to write a review so I can spread the crack love. Other than that, I got an embarrassingly low amount of work done 😦 It’s just that time of year when things are piling up so high doing the “normal” amount of work won’t cut it. I realized when enough was enough(aka, quitting time) and tried getting out with my sanity. I was ready to get under the covers and enjoy one last night time snack.

Oatmeal With Peanut Butter Frosting, TJ's Mini PB Cups, Smart Balance PB And An Advent Chocolate

Holy oats! So good. True fact: I’m all for dark chocolate and it’s antioxidental power, but when it comes to chocolate and peanut butter I need my milk–it’s just better if you ask me. For the peanut butter frosting, I did 2oz greek yogurt with 1 tablespoon peanut flour and 5 drops stevia. Expect to see about 22 more of those little hearts before Christmas.

Newman's Own Organic Mocha Milk Chocolate

I might have snuck a little more milk chocolate. At least I’m good enough to take pictures of it? Sleep felt so easy and natural last night; it was raining when I went to bed and I love falling asleep to the sound of rain. Unfortunately, when I woke up, it wasn’t rain but a full blown torrential downpour. I decided to sleep in and not run(and since I run in the gym, you can imagine how bad this ran seemed at the time). I got up an hour or so later and realized I’m so lost when I’m off my “routine”. Regardless, I tried to normalize things with oats and yogurt.

Banana Oatmeal With Banana Peanut Butter, Pumpkin Yogurt With Pumpkin Flax Granola And White Chocolate Chips

Normal tastes gooood. I think I underseasoned the oats because I tried to make them taste more like my banana goodness bread but they came out just banana with a touch of cinnamon. Salt and this peanut butter perked it up. I completely forgot how nice and flaxy the Nature’s Path granola is. Yesterday I got awesome news that I was their “fan of the week” on facebook and am getting some products I’ve never had before!! I can’t wait to try them.

As the sun is coming out, it’s making me feel bad about not getting a great run in. Well where was it at 6:30am? I might take the rest day, or might be drawn out after class. Or I might just call a trip to the Whole Foods salad bar a “workout”. Any of those are good options.

Giveaway over at the PB queen herself’s blog!

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Larabar Review

Posted on November 21, 2009. Filed under: Product Review | Tags: , , |

I don’t think I need to give these bars too much of an introduction. With their simplistic ingredients of dates, fruits, nuts, and the occasional seasoning, Larabars have won the hearts of many foodies and healthy livers(as in people who live healthy. Not properly functioning livers). After some not-so-great experiences with my first Larabar, I was geared up to give these 4 flavors a try when the company sent them my way for product reviews. There were definitely some winners among the bunch, and I can’t wait to find more flavors that I might enjoy.

Cashew Cookie

7/10: The texture thankfully wasn’t too dry with this flavor which is a problem I’ve had in the past with other Larabars. In terms of flavor, this was dead on for a cashew cookie, which isn’t hard to do when your first ingredient is cashew. I did, however, wish the cashew wasn’t ground so small, almost into a flour. It would have been much more enjoyable had there been whole cashew pieces in there. Overall, for a 2 ingredient bar this is much more complex than I’d expect.

Lemon Bar

8.5/10: This bar was a perfect, sweet rendition of a good slice of lemon bar. The tartness of the lemon perfectly is balanced with the natural sweetness of the dates. The ingredients are simple and nutrition wholesome. The only problem I had with this was the inconsistency of nut size; most was crushed beyond recognition but I also got a whole almond. And I found it odd that they used both cashews and almonds instead of picking just one. The two have and gave distinct flavors, either of which would have been great but together was a bit confusing.

Peanut Butter And Jelly

9/10: How can anyone recreate something so memorable as the PB&J and put it in portable form? I don’t know how, but I know that Larabar has. This was absolutely great with flavors; the peanut and salt combined to be just like fresh peanut butter and the dates and cherries together made a sweet but tart, raspberry jam-like flavor. I loved the addition of salt in this bar. I know Larabar tries to use as little ingredients as possible and usually thinks of this as extraneous but here it truly was necessary. I only might have preferred a greater variation in texture and size of ground nuts. With fiber and protein, it’s a great snack that I’d gladly have again.

Tropical Fruit Tart

7/10: In some ways, this seems like the anti-Larabar from the start. Larabar, to me, means simple ingredients and single flavors. This bar, however, seems to tie in a medley of tropical flavors into one, tart bar. While it succeeds in giving an overall tropical impression, this one really didn’t grab me. The nuts felt secondary to the whole flavor. And I got more of a pineapple sense than any other ingredient, which makes me think it could do without the others. This was decent but not something I’d buy again.

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Mister Antebellum

Posted on November 10, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

After yesterday’s run I was so dehydrated. I didn’t even realize how bad it was until I took a trip to the bathroom and remembered when my mouth felt dry back at mile 2… I will definitely 100% be bringing a water bottle with me whenever I go to the gym from now on. I did this morning and, though it was a bit fumbly drinking on the tread, I’m glad I did. Yesterday, after about 2 full water bottles at breakfast, I grabbed this on my way to class:

November 9th 001

Zevia Cola

Some people like their caffeine from coffee, I prefer Zevia cola 🙂 I must admit, I was considering not going to class at all yesterday; if I didn’t I could just dedicate a large chunk of time to essay writing and I’m much better at doing projects all at once than split up. Nevertheless, I was a good student and went to them all. That was good for Latin because we got our old essays back.

November 9th 008

Catullus Essay

See that little thing that looks like a teepee? Yeah, that’s an A 🙂 This was definitely needed to give me a boost of spirits. By the way, this professor has the tiniest, neatest hand writing ever. Times New Roman’s got nothing on her; I can hardly read half her comments. After that I swung by the dining hall and went to my dorm to finish up computer stuff and lunch.

November 9th 002

Broccoli, The Heat Is On Tofu Salad, Brussel Sprouts And Carrots

November 9th 006

Lemon Bar Larabar

Lunch was magnifico. I also bought some Chobani and baby carrots but decided not to go with them. I love that The Heat Is On tofu salad though so I’m sure those carrots will get used yet. And this Lemon Bar was the first of the Larabars I was sent. Loved it! It was so pure and lemony, but also sweet. The only thing I thought was weird was cashews and almonds; why not one or the other instead of mixing flavors? Also, I got a whole almond among the mostly chopped nuts, which threw the texture off a tad. But overall this was not a lemon 😉 Oh, and we got more graded back in class.

November 9th 012

History In Class Midterm

Double wahoo! Ok, this was a little expected after the teacher called me out in class, but it was so nice to hold it and see it was real. I still have 1 midterm essay to write but since I did so well on this and feel pretty good about the other two, I’m not going to sweat or rush this last one. Epic, on the other hand, would have been a great choice to skip to get work done. Oh well, but the good thing about that was I got to check my mail and find this.

November 9th 009

One Lucky Duck Samples

The people at One Lucky Duck sent me these 4 samples of raw, organic, and vegan snacks! How exciting; of course all my eats are all-natural and a good portion organic, but raw and vegan is something I haven’t tapped in to much. Thanks, One Lucky Duck! I’ll have to think of a special time and place to enjoy these delightful cookies 🙂

When I got back to my dorm I had a coconut craving. I think I need to explain something here about coconut: I hate it in anything that is not coconut flavored(i.e. when granola randomly has it as an ingredient). But as a distinct flavor, if I’m in the mood, I don’t mind it at all. This was all I could find, though, that had coconut that I had:

November 9th 011

Tropical Fruit Tart Larabar

2 in 1 day? I’m burning through these babies. The tropical fruit tart was good, but nothing like the lemon bar. The only flavor that I really got was pineapple. Still, it was better than I thought it’d be. From the stories I’ve heard I expected to be spitting this out on the floor. I watched the newest SNL in the afternoon. I’m a huge Taylor Swift fan so that was great to see; she wasn’t hysterical, but she was decent, and for someone who’s only 19 and not an actress or comedian it was a job well done. I don’t get why her musical performances weren’t online, though. Anyone know where I can watch those? I also got a bit of inspiration for some oatmeal.

November 9th 019

Frosting Ingredients

November 9th 015

Pumpkin Oats With Eggnog Frosting

This was inspired by Sunday’s breakfast and snack, and it was sooo good. For the frosting I did 2 ounces Greek yogurt(full fat) and 2 tablespoons eggnog with vanilla stevia to taste. Seriously, that was some of the noggiest, best frosting I could have hoped for. I think I should have let the oats cool just a bit, though, because the yogurt did not like the hot oatmeal. After some working I ended up at The Ratty with a friend for dinner.

November 9th 023

Sweet Potato With Black Bean Taco Filling, Beets, Broccoli Spears

I was having a moment where I couldn’t decide if I was hungry or full; I think the heated up yogurt wasn’t sitting well in my stomach(still make the frosting for a cool dish if you get the chance!). After seeing what was available, I realized I was hungry. There was huge broccoli spears, whole beets, and roasted sweet potatoes. To eat a little something other than just plain veggies I took some taco filling and mushed it on the potato–yum! I love the sweat heat it added. Catching up was equally exciting because we hadn’t been both available for dinner in a while.

When I got back to my dorm I blasted a bit of Lady Antebellum(hence the title ;-)). By 8 I couldn’t quite understand why I wanted to go to bed. I mean, I know I’m practically a grandpa, but 8? That’s way before Leno. Then I remembered the <5 hours of sleep I got and it started making sense. I decided it’s worth staying awake if only for the emails I get from my parents. One was from my mom, complaining my dad takes forever to get home from work and about how much she loves pineapple Chobani(and I don’t think I ever saw her even eat a yogurt in the 18 years I lived at home). Then 1 and a half hours later I get an email from my dad(I guess he does take a while getting home) telling me about blog contests for gas relief products. Thanks.

November 9th 002

So Delicious Soy Yogurt With Chocolate Chips And Vanilla Sugar

Naturally there was yogurt and chocolate chips. I t’s definitely a full blown addiction now, which is sad because Agave Sweetened So Delicious Soy Yogurt is no longer a sale item 😦 I do love that this is a completely vegan snack though, not to mention one with a hefty dose of fiber 🙂 Heroes really didn’t grab me last night. As in, I was too busy working/staring at my yogurt to even notice what the plot was.

November 9th 004

TJ Carrot Ginger Muffin With Smart Balance Peanut Butter And Ginger Cream Cheese

This was gingerlicious as well; I don’t remember the last time I had this flavor muffin in my fridge. I forgot how good it is! The ginger preserves suggested pairing it with cream cheese, and they were sooo right. Then again, I pair everything with cream cheese, so they had a good shot with me. Naturally, I needed to dehead the muffin like I was Henry VII to eat it.

November 9th 007

Chocolate Brownie Z-bar With Butter Toffe Peanut Butter

I discovered I’m out of chocolate vitatops 😦 But fortunately a Z-bar was there to lift me up. I’m honestly thinking I should buy the 5lb tub of butter toffee peanut butter next time from Naturally Nutty because I am going through this like wildfire. I decided to go to bed early because I was so exhausted, but Kathy Griffin was on Leno so I knew I needed to stay up at least until 10:30. Did anybody else see her new stand up special? Hysterical. Even my mom laughed at most of it. Anyway, 10:30 and I was out like a light. I heard my roommate come home some time but wasn’t awake for more than 2 minutes, and slept in until 7.

This morning I wanted something lighter and simpler at the gym so I decided on 7 miles in 58:26. I must be a very influential person because this morning while I was watching the Today show the 50 year old weight lifters turned another TV onto the Cartoon Network! There is something very amusing watching a 300 pound man stationary bike to Pokemon.

My Oats: Pumpkin Patch Oatmeal

Pumpkin Patch Oatmeal

November 9th 009

Eggnog Yogurt

Tis definitely the season 🙂 I used only oat bran today instead of an oatmeal/oatbran mix(because I overpoured). It’s so nice and creamy with pumpkin but I think I prefer the oats for a little bulk and texture. Of course, what makes pumpkin oatmeal if not pepita sun butter and pumpkin seeds mixed with a little bit of honey> So sweet and delicious! And I need to buy about 5 more cartons of the Silk nog at the rate I’m going through. Just 6oz Greek yogurt and 1/4 cup makes the perfect, noggy protein.

Today I have just Greek which will be a guest lecturer(aka a waste of time), and then the whole afternoon to do work(aka go to University Plaza Whole Foods). I completely forgot to get nutmeg for my nog while I was home so I’ll definitely be on the lookout for that, and I think coconut is still on sale, too! Enjoy your day!

PS. Holly has a giveaway for some amazing sounding protein powders. These are seriously gourmet.

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Bars, Bars, Bars

Posted on November 3, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Bars are a runner/blogger/anybody health conscious’ best friends, aren’t they? There was some serious bar lovin’ yesterday on my part. Normally, I really hate leaving a dirty dorm room. Yesterday, I had time to make my bed and clean my dishes and still be at class on rime. Or I could screw all that and get coffee and be at class on time. I chose the second option. The not-so-fun part was doing it all when I got back on my lunch hour while catching up on emails. The fun part was that I got mail when I got coffee.

Nugo Bars

Nugo Bars

Nugo Bars. I won these in a contest, so I’m not going to feel the same pressure to write reviews for them the way I would if they were from the company. But if any of them really stand out, good or bad, I’ll give you the 411. I read my emails; apparently ya’ll do a lot of blog commenting after I’ve gone to sleep, you night-owls. That or a lot of people just live on the west coast. Before going off to class I needed to make a lunch.

Italian Veggies, Maple Mustard Tofu

Italian Veggies, Maple Mustard Tofu

November 2nd 005

Maple Nut Clif Bar

“Make” is an interesting word here since this is probably the least effort I’ve (had) to put into a meal. The veggies were straight from the dining hall, so all I had to do was toss tofu with mustard and maple syrup. I really like this tofu I picked up(read: had my parents buy me) more than the one they serve at the dining hall. It’s softer and just tastes fresher. Even though it’s one of those things I *could* get for free, I think I’ll start paying for my own ‘fu. And the Maple Nut clif bar was just the perfect thing to get me through my next two classes.

Don’t you hate it when a teacher or anyone is awkward and they just don’t stop? My Epic Poetry teacher made a joke about nymphs stealing young boys with their lust(it was relavent to what we’re reading) and wouldn’t stop “warning” us to watch out. For 5 minutes. Really? I think I’ll be set walking to Eastside Market from the nymphs. After that class, I had another package waiting for me.

November 2nd 011


More bars! I feel so behind in the blogosphere: I actually haven’t eaten more than 1 or 2 of these, ever! I’ve made my own, but not had the original, so I was excited when they sent these 4 flavors to sample and review. I’m really pumped to try the PB&J one, of course. I met with my advisor to talk about classes next semester. It looks like I’ll be following up on my History and Greek classes, taking a Latin translation course, and then a 4th literary course outside my concentration that I’ll take Pass/Fail so it’s not so much of a pressuring course. That being said, I actually need to find said classes being offered, so I’m not entirely sure what I’ll really be taking. When I got back to my dorm, the afternoon had practically gone by and I was starving.

Carrot Muffin Bottom Yogurt With SB PB, Deep Chocolate Vitatop With Cream Cheese

Carrot Muffin Bottom Yogurt With SB PB, Deep Chocolate Vitatop With Cream Cheese

No bars here. I feel bad eating bars when I’m in my dorm room and could be eating “real” food, even though most of the bars I have are made with simple ingredients. I love the cream cheese and vitatop combo–perfect savory sweet. And normally my muffin bottom yogurt tastes more like carrot cake but this time it just wasn’t happening 😦 Maybe it needed more cinnamon? Or just a fresher muffin. I was still decently hungry after this and needed more.

November 2nd 020

Oatmeal With Sunland Banana Peanut Butter And PB&Co. Mighty Maple

I couldn’t decide between banana peanut butter, or maple peanut butter. Silly me–together the two are tastier than the 1! These worked so well together for some nice sweet oats. After this I was quite satiated, enough so to realize how little I’d accomplished for the afternoon. Ugh. I made the decision then to stay in for the night and hopefully get stuff done, starting with sharpening 5 pencils, putting on some PJ’s, and thinking “if only I owned a snuggie right now…”. I ended up having a late-ish dinner, which usually happens when I fend for myself.

Broccoli, Acorn Squash, Zesty Lemon Tempeh

Broccoli, Acorn Squash, Zesty Lemon Tempeh

This was the last of the Lightlife tempehtations I had to review. And boy did I enjoy it! I think all the flavor that was lacking in the other two wound up in this one, because it really was zesty. All that garlic flavor really pleased my Italian heart. Similarly, the acorn squash from under my bed(because that’s where all acorn squashes grow) tasted delicious as well.

I didn’t really care for Heroes last night. Let’s face it; it was a clip show. A clip show with a unique plot twist, but a clip show nonetheless. I translated Horace’s 10th and 11th ode. I’m sure you all know the phrase carpe diem but did you know that’s from the last line of his 11th ode and the full phrase is carpe diem quam minimum credula postero? I bet you didn’t (want to) know that. What you will want to know is how I made the most amazing yogurt mess clean.


Gourmet Organic Chocolate Cherry Oikos

Gourmet Organic Chocolate Cherry Oikos


I can’t call this a mess; it was too crisp and clean. And gourmet is definitely the right word. I took a plain Oikos and fruit sweetened it myself with a tablespoon cherry butter(American Spoon), vanilla stevia, and some vanilla infused sugar from the Dedham Whole Foods. Then I topped that with the dried cherries from WF the bulk bin and 3 squares of the Green & Black organic Dark Chocolate Cherry bar my mom gave me for Halloween. Oh my God. This redefined dessert in my book. There was tart, sweet, bitter, creamy, crunchy, smooth, and chewy all in the same bowl. Creativity like this is the best reason to opt for plain yogurt.

English Muffin With Pumpkin Butter And Chocolate Chips And Mighty Maple

English Muffin With Pumpkin Butter And Chocolate Chips And Mighty Maple

After seeing this sammie on The Inner Workings Of A College Graduate so many times, I knew I needed to try it. That, and I needed an excuse not to just eat chocolate chips out of the bag 🙂 This was really good! I ate it open faced, because that’s how I have every sandwich(not just PB&J’s, but everything save burgers), but I loved how the flavors still managed to find each other. It kind of bums me out TJ pumpkin butter isn’t vegan 😦 Is it just me, or does maple syrup make more sense to sweeten pumpkin butter with anyway? Maybe we can make a motion for that for next season. Unfortunately, what this didn’t do was hit my chocolate chip tooth.


November 2nd 020

Whole Wheat Bread With Cream Cheese, Vanilla Bean Sugar, And Chocolate Chips

I like to think I made the healthy choice by having this with whole wheat bread and cream cheese, a source of calcium. I also like to think cream cheese is a source of calcium, that princess Di is still alive somewhere, and that the moon is made of cheese. Anyway, this was good and the non-melted chocolate chips totally hit the spot.

When I got up this morning, nothing felt like a labor of love; everything just felt like labor. I couldn’t diagnose if I was hungry, or tired, or mad the sun got its butt out of bed before me, or what. I had a shorter run planned anyway, so I decided to just go ahead with it. When I got to the gym, all the TV’s were set so I had the Today sho to watch. Normally I love it but today just seemed like a bunch of yacity-yack. They debated whether the claim “Helps Boost Your Immunity” should be on sugary kids cereal fortified with vitamin A, C, and E. My take? Of course not, because we all know they’d be better off with oatmeal. In actuality though, they definitely have the “right” to put that claim there because those vitamins do help with immunity. It’s just that having 10% more in your bowl of sugar isn’t going to make a difference overall. Well I put up with that crap for 8 miles in 65:03. When I got back I was really apathetic towards food and decided I wanted a meal that would make me feel full.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Honey Maple Peanut Butter And Ginger Walnut Goji Gourmet Cookies

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Honey Maple Peanut Butter And Ginger Walnut Goji Gourmet Cookies

Plain Oikos With Vanilla Sugar And Chocolate Brownie Z-Bar

Plain Oikos With Vanilla Sugar And Chocolate Brownie Z-Bar

Don’t you just love bars? The yogurt became a mess after picture taking, per usual. I decided pumpkin oats are always nice and filling; this bowl had slightly less oatmeal to compensate for the cookie and bar carbage that was also to take place. I wasn’t expecting to love this Goji Gourmet cookie because of my general dislike of walnuts; I hate love it when products prove me wrong. It wasn’t my favorite of the 3 I’ve tried so far, but it was delicious. I just loved biting into whole chunks of ginger 🙂 Which reminds me I haven’t had a ginger smoothie from the bookstore in too long, but that’s another story. I think the walnuts might have been a little light in these, but I wasn’t complaining.

Today already feels stress free, with no more emails to answer, a short google reading list, and 1 class. Maybe a trip to Whole Foods is in order? I can most definitely study and walk at the same time(unless a tree gets in my way). Stay well!


Nature’s Valley Granola Clusters Giveaway

A delicious chocolate giveaway and a funky monkey giveaway both at One2Try

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Roaming With The Roomie

Posted on September 4, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Hey y’all. Lemme give you a low down on the weekend. I’m probably not going to have time to post my regular hilariousness(oh he thinks highly of himself). Well turn those frowns upside down, because I do have several product reviews ready to be posted that I’ll put up in place of my dailies, and hopefully be back and blogging by Monday. Get it? Got it. Good.

Yesterday was basically all a-go-go so I’m glad I fueled well, starting with this guy:

Homemade Lemon Cashew Nectar Bar

Homemade Lemon Cashew Nectar Bar

I had the other half of the bar from yesterday. Cleaning out your freezer definitely has its perks, like discovering tasty little goodies you forgot about. I grabbed this and felt like stretching my arch which gave me some trouble on the run by taking a walk. On the route I came across this lil’ bugger:



Was he not a little weird? His head and behind were bright green, and his mid section silver. I seriously thought he got a heavy dose of spray paint but it seemed au natural. The second I got home I needed to whip up a lunch to eat in the car.

Vegan Veggie Burger With Avocado, Habanero FSTG Chips

Vegan Veggie Burger With Avocado, Jalapeno FSTG Chips

How can you ever go wrong with a nuked soy burger topped with avodaohmythat’sgood? I also gave the jalapeno Food Should Taste Good nachos a try because I wanted something spicy on my plate. My oh my did these deliver. At first I didn’t find them particularly flavorful and then I hit a pepper and got my wish and more. These might have been a little too intense to eat plain. I’d love to try them with a wet and chunky salsa. Mild will do–these definitely bring their own kick!

Well I ate in the car because we were on the way to my old stomping grounds.

Boston University

Boston University

Honestly, I don’t think I gave myself enough time away from this place. It was nice seeing some of the old faculty but it had only been 3 months. I had much higher expectations of seeing all the same people even walking down the street whom I would pass daily last year. But the times have changed and a new bunch of froshes arrived and it just felt weird.

Well we only stayed at my school for 20 minutes before going to Boylston to meet up with my new roommate! I must admit: I was very nervous going into this and felt kind of awkward. Then I thought “You’re feeling awkward about meeting someone you’re going to live with for the next year?” Yeah, that definitely got me over it and I walked in with a positive mind. After a bit of searching, my mom and I found him and his mom and said our hellos. Right away they were starving so we brought them to Ufood Grill right around the corner to sit and chat. Turns out I’m basically living with myself! He’s very chill, a lover of good food, messy but not dirty, and did I mention chill? He’s actually 20 and spent the past 2 years at a school in Hong Kong. How cool’s that?! While we were learning about each other I grabbed a snack:

Tart & Raspberry FroYo Swirl

Tart & Raspberry FroYo Swirl

I never got these at Ufood because we always went for lunch and I would be full after my meal but I figured I’d get some today. It was deliciously tart, like a plain low-fat yogurt. We talked a bit more and found just how alike we are: Last month I showed my parents this restaurant and said I would be interested in eating there. Raw and vegan obviously didn’t appeal to my family enough for them to take me, but it turns out they went to that restaurant just last night after wandering around the city and coming upon it by chance–how random!

After that we walked around a bit and talked some more. They really wanted to see something famous so we took them to Mike’s Pastry:

Mike's Pastry

Mike's Pastry

Where I had this:

Coffee And Bina's Peanut Butter Cup

Coffee And Bina's Peanut Butter Cup

Confession: The peanut butter cup was not from Mike’s; it was actually from Bina’s alimentari where we stopped at a bit earlier. Mike’s is authentic Italian-American treats, but Bina’s is the real Italian deal. Things there are made in such smaller batches and it’s so less commercial that it really comes out in the quality. Case in point: My roomate and his mom split a cannoli, but we forgot to tell them to ask for ricotta so they got the commercial cream filled ones, which just aren’t as good. Oh well, now they have something to go back for.

After that we walked around some more. These people really like to walk apparently. Don’t they run 6 miles in the morning? Haha I guess that’s just me. We ended up saying goodbye to them at their hotel and heading home rather late. We didn’t get home until 7:30 which none of us were expecting. I kind of threw this dinner up on the fly:

Bison Burger With Basil And Steak Sauce, Refried Pinto Beans, Yellow Corn FSTG Nachos

Bison Burger With Basil And Steak Sauce, Refried Pinto Beans, Yellow Corn FSTG Nachos

Let me tell you, this did NOT taste like a thrown-together-on-the-fly dinner. That was the last of the bison burgers I made a while back. So sad to see them go; what’s tastier than a patty you make with your own hands? And for nachos from a bag, those Food Should Taste Good chips tasted better than the stuff they make in house at most Mexican restaurants. It was crisp and not greasy, with that perfect corny taste. The flavor was good enough for it to be eaten on its own and subtle enough to enjoy refried beans with. Another Food Should Taste Good Winner!

Getting back so late, I had A LOT to catch up with on the web and what not. needless to say I needed a pick me up and turned to a pint.

Carrot Cake Ice Cream

Carrot Cake Ice Cream

What kind of pint did you think I’d be talking about? Of course I finished off the Rice Divine Carrot Cake ice Cream. I loved the bits of hermit cookie dough in this one and definitely want to try one of the company’s other fun flavors. Like I mentioned, my google reader was all in bold, but I worked my way through it. Afterwards I had soe good ol’ breads and spreads.

Toast With Almond Butter And Raspberry Jam, Deep Chocolate Vitatop

Toast With Almond Butter And Raspberry Jam, Deep Chocolate Vitatop

I nuked the vitatop for about 10 seconds more than normal and it came out amazingly soft and pillowy. Winner, winner, chicken dinner, as Guy Fieri would say. Salted almond butter and raspberry in my opinion is one of the best combinations out there; you get the saltiness and the tartness. It’s even better on Trader Joe’s 10 grain bread with sunflower seeds. If you have a Trader Joe’s near you, that’s one loaf I definitely recommend trying out. i can’t believe there’s no Trader Joe’s in Providence! Argh, we’ll have to fix that.

This morning I told myself I’d be fine with 6.7 miles. But something inside me really wanted to go for it and capture that special moment last Friday when I broke double digits. After 6 laps I still felt really good so I went for it and ran 10.04 miles in 1:22:18. I’m having such a great runner’s high right now and I feel as though I can leave having conquered the neighborhood. Now I’m blogging with an incredibly healthy breakfast:

Stonyfield Creme Caramel Frozen Yogurt

Stonyfield Creme Caramel Frozen Yogurt

JK. Not about the frozen yogurt, about the healthy breakfast thing. After 10 miles, I just want some quick sugar and probiotics. Don’t worry, I’ll fix myself a real breakfast filled with peanut buttery goodness once I’ve licked this cup clean.

P.S. Zevia giveaway!

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Cookie Identity Crisis

Posted on August 16, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

Howdy, ya’ll. Damn I miss Georgia and all their accents 😦 Can’t get away speaking like that up here. People always say “when you go to college, you can be anybody you want,” so does that mean I can go and put on a Southern accent for the next  years? Intriguing…

If you thought I was lying about my oven heating when I was blogging yesterday, well pop goes your bubble, lol. I put down the laptop, picked up the pans, and got to work. Like the title suggests, these cookies have a myriad of possible names. The original recipe was Maple Quinoa Cookies With Pecans. Well, these don’t have quinoa or pecans, so I’ll pass on that. If I was trying to be descriptive, I’d call them 4-Grain Maple Apple Vegan Cookies, but I can only fit so much in one breath. I think for now I’ll keep it simple at Maple Morning Cookies(alliteration, who doesn’t love that?).


1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce

3/4 cup maple syrup

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 cup rolled oats

1/2 cup flaxmeal

1/2 cup wheat germ, toasted

40oz dried apple slices, diced

The Dough

The Dough

Preheat your oven to 325. In a small bowl, whisk together the vegetable oil, applesauce, maple syrup, vanilla, and cinnamon. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, salt, and baking soda. Add in the oats, flaxmeal, and wheat germ and mix. Pour the maple syrup mixture into the dry ingredients and mix well. Throw in the apples and mix until evenly distributed. Drop onto lined cookie sheets and bake until firm to the touch, about 18 minutes. The recipe makes about 2 dozen cookies.

Maple Morning Cookies

Maple Morning Cookies

Let’s get rid of the elephant in the room and point out the dynamite nutrition these cookies bring to the table; eat one of these and you’re doing good on your recommended daily values of whole grains, Omega-3’s, folic acid, and so much more. That aside, I really liked the flavor these had. They were subtly sweet, with a bit of a nuttiness, and the texture is surprisingly puffy and soft. The apples add a nice tough and sweet contrast to the base. If you’re really looking for something sweet I’d up the maple syrup or add brown sugar. But I think these are perfect breakfast cookies, like the name implies. The Summer can be a not-so-oatmeal-friendly time, so I welcome any new ways to get whole grains in the morning. 1 or 2 of these with some yogurt, fruits, and nuts would make a great and tasty way to start the day.

I feel like I should mention the Newman’s Own Organic product I used:

Newman's Own Organic Dried Apples

Newman's Own Organic Dried Apples

I don’t like eating dried fruit alone as a snack; I’d much rather have the real, hydrated thing. That being said, I love baking with dried fruits because of their concentrated flavor and obvious health benefits. And, while it’s not always the easiest on the wallet, I think it’s great to incorporate ingredients into baked goods whenever possible. Homemade has lost almost all its meaning in recent times; people are tricked into using prepackaged mixes and ingredients that are loaded with artifical flavors, preservatives, and colors, that they don’t even know are there. I don’t keep high fructose corn syrup or artificial cherry flavoring in my cupboards, so I don’t want to bake products with them, but that’s sometimes what ends up happening. That makes using organic products all the better because I could give these cookies to the neighbors really knowing what was in them.

All baked out, I sat down to lunch:

Bluefish And Spinach Wrap, 1/2 Sweet Potato, Maple Morning Cookie

Bluefish And Spinach Wrap, 1/2 Sweet Potato, Maple Morning Cookie

I’m getting a lot better about eating leftovers even though I hate having them. It annoys me so much that my mom buys more fish or meat than a family of 3 could/should eat, cooks it all, and then makes it a point to save the leftovers even though we all know she won’t be the one to eat them. Well I guess i can’t complain too much because I got a decent lunch thanks to the leftover fish. Then I said goodbye to a dear friend during dessert:

Stonyfield White Chocolate Raspberry Frozen Yogurt

Stonyfield White Chocolate Raspberry Frozen Yogurt

*sniffle* *sniffle* Ok, I’m done, this just gave me an excuse to buy it’s replacement later on(White chocolate raspberry, if you’re out there somewhere reading this, know I could never replace you). Then we brought 6 of the cookies over to the neighbor, who invited us in for a quick tour. She’s a neat freak with her house, which I relate to. She has a magnet that says 26.2(+1), a Runner’s World magazine(+2) and is running 1/2 the San Fransisco marathon(+1000). I’m glad I baked some good fuel for her for training with those cookies 🙂

After that excitement we stepped out to do college and grocery shopping. I got a microwave and a microwavable bowl, so oats at college are officially a go. I also got this awesome shirt from Target that was only 5 dollars and is made with 100% organic cotton

Organic Shirt

Organic Shirt

Funky, huh? I never pictured myself as someone who goes for organic clothes, but I KNOW I’m someone who goes for 5 dollar shirts. I needed some fuel for shopping:

Cherry Pie Larabar

Cherry Pie Larabar

This is the signature Larabr, so I figured it must be amazing, right? Fail. Sorry, but I really didn’t like this. It needed something sweet and something salty. Would it have been too may ingredients to add honey and salt? I almost always finish every thing I put in front of me just because it’s easier to add up the calories but this was so not for me that I actually took it home, measured the amount I didn’t eat, and gave it away. That was ok, because I also picked up this:

So Delicious Mocha Almond Fudge Coconut Milk Ice Cream

So Delicious Mocha Almond Fudge Coconut Milk Ice Cream

Well this was a no brainer; the name pretty much had me. Plus it was on sale and I’ve spotted this on Jenna’s blog over at Eat, Live, Run, so I didn’t hesitate grabbing it. At the risk of sounding corny, this was So Delicious(had to say it…). But seriously, I think I’m in love with an (coconut milk) ice cream. I’m not a toppings fan, but I love mix-ins, fudge and toasted almonds being some of the best. Combine that with a java base and it’s an instant winner. The almonds were deliciously salty which I loved with the sweet fudge, and the base was like a light-roast cup of joe. Anyone hearing angels singing besides me? I don’t even want to try other So Delicious flavors, I just want an unlimited supply of this one.

Dinner was, surprisingly, not the rest of the pint of So Delicious(though it very well could’ve been). My mom was having an “I don’t feel like cooking” night, so I just had her pick up some salmon and planked it on the grill with pineapples while basmatti rice cooked in the microwave. Topped off with a little TJ Island Soyaki and I was good to go.



Now for something hysterical: my parents went out to see a band play while I opted stayed home on a Saturday night. Haha, I really don’t think I was missig much. The band was a bunch of 50 year old men, one of whom lives in our neighborhood, playing jazz or rock or something. Yeah, really regretting skipping that*eye roll*… Anyways, I got in a cinnamony mood and had a cinnamon raisin english muffin with cinnamon raisin PB and melted banana spread with added cinnamon. As if that wasn’t enough cinnamon, I found these in the box-o-goodies from Newman’s:

Newman's Own Organic Alphabet Cinnamon Grahams

Newman's Own Organic Alphabet Cinnamon Grahams

Hold on, hold on, time out. That’s not fair. This product is too adorable; you’d have to be Cruella DeVille to hate mini alphabet crackers. Obviously these should have been a blind taste test. After trying them, I wasn’t in love with them, but I definitely liked them. The flavor was not too sweet like supermarket graham crackers. They were a bit tough but I really liked them dipped in coffee. I’m way too young to have kids(and even once I “have” kids I won’t be doing more than yelling “Push, honey, push!” and getting blamed for all the evils in the world), but this is one snack I’d feel great giving to my kids. They’re healthy, cutesy, tasty, and only 120 calories for 10 cookies. I know from my cousins that kids love to nibble and don’t really care if it’s a tiny graham cracker or an over-sugared brownie so I’d feel great giving them these lil’ buggers to spell with and eat.

I was also seeducted by another food for dessert:

Whole Foods Seeduction Bread

Whole Foods Seeduction Bread

In my quest to find something like the AMAZING sunflower bread from Dekalb farmer’s market I found this at none other than Whole Foods. It has poppy seeds, pumpkin seeds, and a bunch more. I really liked it lightly toasted; it wasn’t quite sunflower seed level, but it was really good. I liked biting into whole pumpkin seeds in the bread for some texture and flavor.

This morning I wasn’t particularly “feeling” any route so I tried a new one. It was a bit hillier than I thought it’d be but not bad. I also discovered where all the mansions around here are located. Nothing makes you feel better than running down a rich street, haha. today I think we’re seeing Julie & Julia. Hopefully it’ll be good and I’ll write a review for it for tomorrow(though it seems like I’m the last on the blog world to see it).

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