If You Looked In My…

Posted on April 22, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

So Delicious Snickerdoodle Soy Milk Ice Cream

So Delicious Snickerdoodle Soy Milk Ice Cream

If you looked in my freezer, you’d find 8 almost empty pints of ice cream/frozen yogurt/dairy-free desserts and 1/2 a quart of coffee frozen yogurt. A problem? I think so. So really, by eating this So Delicious Snickerdoodle ice cream, I was just doing my part.

Oatmeal With Chocolate Hazelnut Butter

Oatmeal With Chocolate Hazelnut Butter

If you looked in my computer, among other things you’d find a folder of photos from a trip to France I took last March. The smell of hazelnuts always reminds me of France. Justin’s chocolate hazelnut butter might not be my favorite of his line but I’m out of the other 2 chocolate flavors and it’s all I have 😦 I’m a pig for them. Oink, Oink.

Divine's Milk Chocolate

Divine's Milk Chocolate

If you looked in my closet, you’d find a small fortune of chocolate. I could (poorly) feed a third world country with it. Divine’s milk chocolate wasn’t the best I’ve ever had, but it was pretty damn good–nice and creamy with a sweet finish. It’s also got a spick and span fair trade ingredient list, which I loved.

If you looked in my room at 10pm, you would have found me out cold. I was exhausted last night and determined to get my 8 hours of sleep in.

Apricot Goji PranaBar

Apricot Goji PranaBar

If you looked in my Apricot Goji Pranabar I devoured this morning before hitting the gym, you’d find no actual goji berries, just goji powder. That much I did not like, but the rest of the bar was really good. I loved the sweet and nuttiness of it, and that it was 75% raw for optimal nutrition. It would be much better named Apricot Cashew, though.

10 Miles In 89:18

10 Miles In 89:18

If you looked in my gym this morning, you’d find no one their but me for the most part. Glorious alone time? Heck yes.

Oatmeal With An Egg And Peanut Butter, Honey Vanilla Bean Voskos With Cashew Butter

Oatmeal With An Egg And Peanut Butter, Honey Vanilla Bean Voskos With Cashew Butter

Honey Vanilla Bean Voskos With Cashew Butter

Honey Vanilla Bean Voskos With Cashew Butter

If you looked in my Honey Vanilla Bean Voskos yogurt this morning, you’d find raw cashew butter mixed in. Why? I am just becoming less and less a fan of fat free greek yogurt. I love it, but it’s not satisfying without a little fat in every bite for me. So I thought I’d add a little in!  Unfortunately, it also tasted like too much like cashes :-/ This is my plea for Greek yogurt companies to make more 2%/full-fat flavors!

If you looked in my trash, you’d find a tub of cream cheese taken from the back of the fridge that smelled like old gym socks. That was why I added cashew butter and not dairy fat to the yogurt.

If you looked at my checkings account right now, you’d find one mysterious withdrawal that I need to make a call about because I did not make it >:-(

Where would I have to look to find your dirty secrets? By the way, I did not watch Food Inc. last night because it wasn’t on like they said it would be! Bummer! Apparently, we Tivoed it at home, so I’ll be able to watch it at my own leisure over the weekend.

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Eating Picnic Foods

Posted on March 19, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Well if you live in the Northeast, I hope you got outside for this amazing weather. If you don’t, I hope the sun was shining where you are, too! March is the best month: In like a lion, out with my birthday like a lamb.

Endangered Species 70% Organic Dark Chocolate

I’m lucky to love the treadmill and running out doors. They’re very different things, and both have their good points. When I get bored of one, the other can be there to pick me up. Today, that was the case where I didn’t feel like running on the treadmill first thing but was ready for an outdoor run around 11. I had 2 tiny squares of my favorite organic dark chocolate from Endangered Species and hit the road.

11.25 Miles In 1:35:10

This was a long run. In fact, it turned out to be my longest outdoor run ever! by .7 of a mile. I went up and down the Providence Path 3 times. There was even some running team(maybe collegiate?) holding time trials so I had good company and motivation. At the 3rd turn, I went down Hope street and ended my run at Whole Foods to do some refueling and grocery shopping.

Odwalla Carrot Juice

For some reason, I had it in my mind that this Whole Foods made fresh pressed carrot juice. I guess not :-/ But I was happy to refuel with this brand. Not only do I find carrot juice incredibly sweet and delicious, but it’s one of the best recovery drinks around.

Carrot Juice Nutrition

What makes a good recovery drink? Well, we could really debate this for hours. Chocolate milk gets a lot of attention for its 4:1 carb:protein content. Coconut water seems to be the new fad, but I have yet to try this and can’t speak for it. What I love about carrot juice is the potassium content: Look at it! That’s more than a banana, and for 1/2 the bottle. And potassium is something necessary for recovery. Another reason to love carrot juice is it’s 1 natural ingredient: carrots.

Groceries

I’m sure you’d believe me if I told you the first thing I grabbed at the store–even before the juice–was the milk chocolate sunspire peanuts. Could I live on without them? Beyond that, I just grabbed a sweet potato(albeit, a huge one), some canned fish for dinner and yogurt on sale. I was pushing my timing and had to get back to shower and make a full recovery lunch fast.

Chili Lime Yumnuts

In my rush, I remembered I wanted to try these seasoned cashews sent to me by Yumnuts. I’m not much of a spicy or savory snacker but for my meals they sounded wonderful and picnic-y. I threw everything in one big container and met my friend, Adam, on the campus green to enjoy the sun!

Tuna Salad, Chickpeas, And Chili Lime Cashews Over Dressed Greens

I started by tossing bitter greens with my favorite dressing from Foods Alive. I tossed on top the remaining 1/2 a can of chickpeas, a can of tuna mixed with 2oz Voskos plain non fat for a healthy tuna salad, and a small handful chili lime Yumnuts. Could you imagine something better for picnicing? Because I couldn’t. This was all perfect! I forgot how much I loved tuna salads with a little salt. I guess the “trick” is to reserve just a little liquid from the can so that it’s not dry when you mix it with the thick-and-creamy binder. And the Yumnuts were–well–yum! They really were quite spicy, which I appreciated. Maybe a bit of sweetness for contrast wouldn’t have hurt? Still, they were quite good, and even flavored the tuna a bit.

Tazo 0 Cal Zen Green Tea With Lemongrass And Spearmint

To wash this all down, I sipped on this new tea from Tazo. It’s sweetened naturally with erythritol and stevia which is a great renovation to the sweet tea line if you ask me. It was definitely enjoyable, and probably sweet enough for most tastes. I did think the lemon part of it was lacking a bit, but still I’d happily grab this over any sugared-up competition. Overall, I hope it’s bright and sunny again soon because I want to eat this whole meal again!

Chocolate So Delicious Coconut Milk Ice Cream

After getting a little work done and cleaning up after the hurricane that hit my dorm, I was craving something chocolate. Can you imagine that? I finished off the pint of chocolate So Delicious coconut milk ice cream I’d been working on. Is there anything sadder than finishing a pint of ice cream with no ability to immediately replace it? I think not.

Vanilla So Delicious Coconut Milk Yogurt With Organic 70% Dark Chocolate Shavings

And, since that wasn’t enough So Delicious, coconut milk, and chocolate, I gave their yogurt a try with the final two squares of the same chocolate bar I ate earlier. A pint and a chocolate bar? Man, I was knocking them out today. Concerning the coconut milk yogurt: holy yum! This was amazing. Like I really needed another food to be obsessed over? At least I’m hooked while it’s on sale; you know there’ll be more of these over the weekend.

Dr. Kracker's Seeded Spelt

Another perfect picnic food, of course, are crackers. What’s not to love? I decided I’d try these Dr. Krackers because I loved the idea of sunflower seeds baked right in for a little crunch. I also read from Whole Foods that spelt flour–while wheat and so gluten-forming–has a higher tolerance level among gluten intolerant people than regular wheat. I’m not above conducting mini-science experiments on myself.

Spaghetti Squash, Broccoli, Wild Alaskan Salmon, Seeded Spelt Crackers

I didn’t plan to have so much but when I read that spaghetti squash was at the cafeteria, well you know I had to make adjustments 😉 Overall, the whole meal was good, but not really “put together”. The crackers were nice, but they missed the crispness I was expecting; I really enjoyed the sunflower seeds with this sunny weather, though! The salmon in a can was–in a word–disgusting; I wasn’t expecting it to be not even deskinned or deboned. I only took 2 servings and threw the other 1.5 out. It tasted fine, but I think I would rather go without omega-3’s during my time at college than eat that more often. At least it was in the spirit of cheap fish during Lent? I’ll be happy when that’s over.

Annnd as much as I talked about the sun, it’s now dark out. Good thing because I should work work work on these midterms. I also want to keep up the “sundae on Fridays” tradition, but need to find some good ice cream to suit my palate. Enjoy the night!

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Starting Off On The Right Foot

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

Good morning and happy Wednesday! It’s Wednesday, March 17th, so you know what that means–new Whole Foods sales St. Patricks day! Did you remember to wear green to work? I have on a green shirt right now, and it even says Ireland Rugby League! For the record, I’m a big, fat 0% Irish and haven’t played rugby in my life 😉

Jokerz Candy Bar

There are 3 kinds of bars that come to my mind. There’s the kind too many people will be spending too much time in celebrating tonight, if you know what I mean. There’s the blogger’s “bar” as in health food, often granola or date based bars that we all pack 5 or 6 of at any given time just so we’ll have something to suit our flavor cravings. And then there’s the biggest flirt of them all–the candy bar.

Jokerz Candy Bar

Don’t these Jokerz look just like a Snickers? I can’t get over them! Sure, they’re not at all “healthy” and completely ironic to eat while watching The Biggest Loser. But if my biggest vice is 1 of these a week, I think I’ll manage quite well 😉 This was the perfect way to start off my short-lived night(reaaally not a night person as if you haven’t noticed). Go Max Go Foods makes 4 different all-natural candy bars; I’d be curious to try the other 3. It’s great to have 1 company that suits this sort of diet but a little competition wouldn’t hurt.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Raw Cashew Butter And Sweetened Coconut

As quick as the night had started, I did some work and called it good enough. Wouldn’t want to overexert now would we? I made a bowl of pumpkin oatmeal topped with my new obsession–Love Raw FoodsRaw Cashew Butter. How sad that it’s almost gone, too 😦 I’ll have to whip out the food processor and try something raw myself. For some added richness, I mixed shredded coconut with agave nectar and added it on top; this is nice and sweet, but without any weird preservatives like in Baker’s coconut; it’s a small detail but if you’re a coconut it’s something to look in to doing.

Jolly Beans

This morning, I started my day off on the right foot by grabbing a handful of jelly beans for some prerun energy. What am I going to do when these aren’t on the bulk bins anymore? I’ve actually managed to track down the company and product page here! Now I just need to locate them in person out of season.

10 Miles in 89:05

I did have skepticism about hitting the gym today when it’s supposed to be 60 degrees at some point, but I think this was the right choice in the end. I managed to knock out 10 miles; I honestly wanted to be able to do more but the same GI issues that made me think the gym would be a better bet cut me short and led me straight to the restroom. If it’s worth anything, I think I’ve finally gotten over the troublesome gluten from that great cookie I grabbed at Garden Grille; if so, now that would be starting the day off on the right foot. And I can’t really complain about 10 miles, either.

Mashed Avocado

Of course, since it’s St. Patricks Day I needed to start my day off with something green. Chocolate avocado pudding anyone? Well, not quite. I made it the fully raw way with just avocado, raw cacao, and raw xagave as termed by Averie a “mousse“. It’s a little thicker and a lot of sweeter 😀

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple

Raw Chocolate Avocado Mousse And Vanilla Bean Greek Yogurt

Celebrate good times, c’mon! This felt a little bit like a feast; it’s a holiday at least? I made some pumpkin oatmeal and topped it with Mighty Maple to satisfy that mighty craving. And since you all seem to love your oatgurt(of which I am not a fan), I thought I’d try out avocadgurt! Doesn’t that sound delightful 😉 1/2 of the bowl was chocolate avocado pudding mousse and the other half Voskos honey vanilla bean greek yogurt. Oh my stars–this was amazing. It was so sweet, and the combo of raw cacao with real vanilla beans was like magic. I’m still not even 1/3 the way through and very happy I have that much more to savour.

Fun Fact: My Confirmation name is Patrick! I chose this name for several reasons at the time. Always on my mind was Patrick Star; how could he not be? St. Patrick is also the saint who drove all the snakes out of Ireland and consequently became known as the protector of snakes. Snakes are my number 1 phobia, so he seemed perfect for me. Obviously, I feel very obligated to celebrate it up today with green foods! What about you? How will you be celebrating today? Now, if you’ll excuse me, because I have so very many important things to do, I’m about to spend the rest of my morning figuring out what the flavors of each Jolly Bean are even if it kills me.

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Voskos Greek Yogurt Review

Posted on November 20, 2009. Filed under: Product Review | Tags: , , , |

Last month Voskos sent me some of their greek yogurt to sample and review. Between all of the flavors, I didn’t know where to start. Voskos’ yogurt is all-natural and they even have a few organic flavors. They incorporate 5 strands of healthy probiotic bacteria into each batch. Between all the different flavors and varieties offered, I’m sure you’ll find one or two that suit your taste. I know I found a bunch of new yogurts that I love. To read more on Voskos, or find a retailer near you(They sell them at Whole Foods!), visit the Voskos website.

Blended Greek Honey

9/10: This was about as good as preflavored yogurts get, in my opinion. I like that the company pledges all natural ingredients and to use hormone free cows. Equally impressive was the simplicity of ingredients in this yogurt. It was delightfully thick and creamy despite not having fat or pectin. Flavor-wise, this yogurt was a big success. The honey did not taste like simple honey; rather, it tasted special and truly blended with the yogurt to highlight the natural sweetness in milk. This yogurt tasted much more like a dessert than anything else while still having more protein and less sugar than your average store brand yogurt. What the container doesn’t reveal oddly is that you’re getting 5 different strands of bacteria, which is an impressive mix.

Honey Vanilla Bean

8.5/10: This yogurt was promising from the start, with genuine vanilla beans freckling throughout. It was a little thin on top and thick on the bottom which had me worried, but it thickened up with stirring. Flavor-wise, this was an absolute delight; the honey added a recognizable sweetness without masking the beauty of pure vanilla. I honestly could eat this for dessert every night and be happy. The ingredient list, while good in comparison to most other brands of yogurt, threw me off a bit for Voskos; I wasn’t expecting cornstarch(a thickener) or evaporated can juice(sweetener) to be on their at all let alone above honey. While that certainly bore on my mind, I’d still gladly buy this particular flavor again.

Organic Greek Honey

7/10: Honey and greek yogurt have always been put together since Ancient times. No doubt it was organic then, and now it’s organic once more. This yogurt had a nice, smooth, thick texture. Opening it I could just smell the honey in the air. Unfortunately, I think Voskos used a little too much because this was a little too sweet. The honey flavor was overpowering; it wasn’t quite at the same level as the blended greek honeywhere it perfectly accentuated the milk. This was more like when you squeeze the honey bottle too much and think “Oops!”. It was a good product but not one I’d buy over their other flavors.

Organic Plain Non Fat

9/10: Plain yogurt is, unfortunately, one of those things which earn you little praise when you do it right and a lot of guff when you do it wrong. Nonetheless, it’s important for me and you to have a good, solid product we can rely on, and that’s exactly what Voskos provides with this. It was incredibly thick for a yogurt with no milk fat; and the tartness which I think can be a bit too strong in other yogurts wasn’t very prevalent here. Each 5.3oz serving has 15g protein and 5g lactose which puts it just equivalent with other brands. And I appreciate the fact that they took the effort to make a certified organic product. I’d really rather opt for one of their delicious flavored yogurts, but it’s good to know another fall back for the ever-necessary plain.

Organic Vanilla Bean

9/10: When you open up a product and see freckles of vanilla bean everywhere, you have a good chance it’ll be great. Thankfully, that was the case here. This greek yogurt tasted exactly like frosting and I couldn’t believe it! Amazingly, the sugar content isn’t that bad in comparison to other flavored greek yogurts, and certainly not bad overall. This actually felt like a bit of a “treat” even though it was so darn healthy. I think the honey in the honey vanilla bean flavor really adds a nice depth of flavor that this one lacks, but I appreciate that this was made will all organic ingredients. Either way, you’re in for a win-win.

Plain Low Fat

9/10: Greek yogurt is all to often a conundrum. For a while now, companies have offered healthy and “suitable” non fat styles and luscious but untouchable full fat varieties. Thankfully, there’s been a recent push lately for a happy medium and Voskos has joined that bandwagon. This yogurt was thick and creamy I could only have hoped for. The tartness was much subtler than other brands, while the touch of cream added a richness and depth of flavor. Needless to say, I really enjoyed this one. It needed no sweetening as its “plain” flavor was absolutely perfect. Kudos to Voskos for making a sensible treat that can be enjoyed at any time.

Plain Non Fat

7.5/10: All I can say about this yogurt was that it was plain, but not in a good way. I liked the 8oz serving size and the 24g of protein. The flavor wasn’t really anything that could stand on its own; it wasn’t even tart enough to really entertain the palate as Greek yogurt. It was a great base for adding my own flavor, though I don’t think I’d ever eat it straight out of the container.

Plain Original

9/10: In this product, Voskos provides pure, unadulterated greek style yogurt in its creamiest form. I was impressed by how thick and non-separating this is. The taste is absolutely decadent; each spoonful is a taste. And while full fat greek yogurt on its own is a bit much, I’ve found great uses for this. I love putting a dollop on top of beans or mexican dishes instead of cheese. I also enjoy mixing this with nonfat style greek yogurt in a 3:1 ratio to make a reasonably nutritious yet delicious bowl you can feel good about enjoying any time.

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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.

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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.

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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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Stop Being So Chicken

Posted on October 31, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Yesterday started off normal enough. I ran, ate carbs and oatmeal, got dressed, and walked out the door like this:

October 30th 002

Me In A Chicken Suit

Yes, that is my costume. It’s actually the same from 2 years ago, but I figure I’m at such a different point in my life it’s OK to rewear this one(plus it was like $50 dollars so I need to get my money’s worth of it). I thought Brown was a fun campus? No one else was in costume; what was up with that? My first reaction was “This is kind of embarrassing. Maybe I should take it off.” But then I realized, if I can make just 1 persons day by doing this and having a good time doing it, then it would all be completely worth it. I marched right in to Latin class and definitely caused a few smiles.

I had an hour between class for lunch and last minute studying until my midterm. I rushed to my dorm, logged on my computer to make sure I wasn’t missing anything important(apparently, your blog posts count as important items in my book :-)), and threw together something quite gourmet.

Thanksgiving Sandwich On Whole Wheat English Muffin, 1/2 Acorn Squash With Pumpkin Seeds, Cinnamon, And Sea Salt

It’s not so bad–I could have been eating deli sliced chicken. If the english muffin looks burnt, it’s because it was; I forgot about it while I was fighting with my costume to let me go to the bathroom(full body suits are not for those of us with small bladders, fyi). The acorn squash was a genius idea; seriously, I’m making sure that hits the Thanksgiving table. I think anything squash and salt is good, but the pumpkin seeds really added texture.

I got outside of where I had class 25 minutes early to get some extra studying in. Honestly? I think I rocked it. I couldn’t have felt more prepared going in, and when I saw the terms I had to demonstrate a knowledge of I really put it all on the table. We had to write two “stories” that showed we knew how 12 Ancient Greek terms, people, events, and places related to one another. I definitely took some “artistic license” in my stories, but I think he’ll appreciate it. For epic poetry class, I got hungry. It was an odd time of day for that to happen but I obliged.

Peanut Butter Pretzel Clif Mojo Bar

Peanut Butter Pretzel Clif Mojo Bar

So glad I had this in my bag. Yum! It was great. This was the last of the Mojo’s I had to try and I think it was my favorite. Is anyone else not surprised the peanut butter one was my fave? You can read my full review here, but now that I’ve had them all I’ll be ready to post a recap review soon. On the way back to my dorm another something exciting happened: Emma Watson noticed me! You know how I know she noticed me? Well, she passed me about 1 foot to the right, and it’d be pretty hard not to notice someone in a giant chicken costume. If she had said “Nice costume” or something, I probably would have had a heart attack on the spot.

Well my day was fun and all but at 3 I was ready to get into civilian ware. I also decided I wasn’t as done with this place as I thought I was…

October 30th 010

University Plaza Whole Foods

My original plan for Cookie Friday was a pumpkin maple whoopie pie like I had 3 or 4 weeks ago. Unfortunately, they didn’t have any when I got there. Wtf. Don’t ever walk 1.2 miles somewhere to an uncertain future or you’re likely to have your heart broken 😦 I did get some salmon and Oikos, however, and stopped at Blue State Coffee on the way back for what would be my treat.

When I got back to my dorm I was starrrrving. It was that hunger where you want everything and nothing, and have no clue what to make. Doesn’t that suck? I felt like I was standing in front of my microwave for 10 minutes just thinking and getting no where. Finally I went with the one thing I know never disappoints.

Fluffernutter Oats With Cashew Butter, Fluff, And Banana Pineapple Rum

Fluffernutter oats–how I love thee. The extra 2oz of banana made this super thick and creamy. But since I hardly ever eat my cashew butter, the plop that i had was really lumpy, and I ended up chewing whole dry nut butter. Honestly, at that point, nothing mattered but that I got food. Speaking of food…

Food Bag For Home

Food Bag For Home

This is how much of it I feel that I need to bring home, where there should in theory already be a ton of food. I called my dad earlier and proposed that he pick me up last night instead of this morning and he obliged. That put me in a bit of a mad rush to pack everything, and I remembered what an awful packing problem I have. Oh well, if we were to have gotten stuck in a blizzard on the way back and needed to survive for 5 days, we would have been set. There was still the matter of my own dinner.

Simple Salmon Salad And Broccoli

Simple Salmon Salad And Broccoli

Summer Squash And Zuchinni With Maple Syrup, Sweet Potato

Summer Squash And Zuchinni With Maple Syrup, Sweet Potato

Thankfully, college has made me the king of quick cooking. I grabbed the squash and broccoli from the dining hall, nuked a sweet potato under my bed(well, from under my bed) and heated the salmon from Whole Foods. Something didn’t quite smell right here, but I couldn’t figure out what it was so I ate it all… Don’t even play like you haven’t done that. I got home by 8 and had a pot of fresh ground decaf coffee going by 8:15; it’s good to be back. I just as quick busted this out:

The Elvis

The Elvis

Remember how I mentioned stopping at Blue State for Cookie Friday? This was the spoil. The Elvis is a red velvet cupcake cake with cream cheese frosting with sequin sugar. This is why I say I eat 99.9% all-natural in my How I Fuel section; sure, the food coloring in this probably wasn’t all natural, but once a week in something that’s already a “treat” is fine by me. Plus, this was homemade by a small, local retailer, so overall it’s a quality product. It was just as good as I thought it’d be: moist, rich, and sweet. It’s definitely good I removed myself about 50 miles from the source before eating it or I might have needed to get another. When I realized I’d only had 1 probiotic source for the day, I felt a little disappointed in myself… until this entered my mind:

Organic Peanut Butter Cookies And Cream Yogurt

Organic Peanut Butter Cookies And Cream Yogurt

Yes. You heard right. Peanut butter cookies and cream yogurt. How? I used peanut flour and vanilla stevia to flavor the yogurt, and crumbled in 2 Newman’s Own Organic Peanut Butter Newman-O’s. This was so delicious, but it also made me glad Cookie Friday comes but once a week. All this sugar made me hyper, and when I get hyper I often go to cranky. Some people are mean drunks; I’m a mean sweets-head. One last celebration of cookieness:

Toast With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter

Toast With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter

It wouldn’t have been Friday otherwise. Food Network wasn’t working in my room; what’s up with that? Instead I watched my standby, Leno, and got a great night of sleep.

Thankfully it was a great day for an outdoor run this morning. I slept in all the way until 8, strapped on some old clothes I had lying around that didn’t go off to college with me, and ran around the block a few(read: 7) times. I ended up running 7.08 miles right at 8:00/mi pace. It felt great to be reaffirmed that running on a treadmill at 8:30/mi pace doesn’t affect my outdoor stride. When I got back, I made a very ‘”homey” breakfast:

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter And A Vegan Molasses Cookie, Voskos Honey Greek Yogurt

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter And A Vegan Molasses Cookie, Voskos Honey Greek Yogurt

Normally, I’m all about the salt. But this breakfast was sweet and sweeter. I love the cookie texture on top of some thick oats; I might need to make another batch of these while I home. And that’s one of the few last yogurts I have to try and review for Voskos! Honestly, this might have been a bit too sweet. But for those of you who that’s not possible for, you’d be in love with a yogurt. The benefit of coming home early was that this breakfast wasn’t eaten in a rush in the car and I can now sit and plan my day.

Zesty Cook is having a really unique giveaway. This is the kind of makeover I’d gladly sign up for.

Lucky Taste Buds is having a delicious sounding giveaway, too!

Who doesn’t love a high quality chocolate giveaway?

Holey Decisions

One of the other great joys of coming home was finding in my freezer 4 boxes of Holey Donuts’ delicious products. Needless to say, this hungry college student was overjoyed to have such great products to sample and review. All you need to do is look at the nutrition to realize what a better option this is than the competition.

Unfortunately, while their products are great in that they’re low calorie/fat, have no trans fat, and no artificial sweeteners, they do contain artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives. As a naturaltarian, this was a bump in the road. Should I ignore that temporarily and parade these on the blog like I wanted to? Or do I stick with this boundary I’ve set for myself. I really wanted to just do the former and pretend like no one would notice. But the record number of views this week(my 3 most visited days being Thursday, yesterday, and Monday respectively) are keeping me honest. I realize these are a great option for a certain lifestyle, but that’s just not mine. Instead, I’ll be having my parents sample and review these, and publish them in special posts called “Parents’ Korner” or something really corny like that. They’ve eaten about 10 times more donuts in their life than me, so I feel like they’ll be excellent reviewers.

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Messy Monday

Posted on October 26, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Sometimes, Fall in New England can be kind of nice.

On Campus

But first, some loose ends…

Thank you to all my readers; yesterday finally broke the record set by the day my refrigerator was featured on Carrots N’ Cake as the most trafficked day yet. You guys all rock(and clearly have nothing better to do on a Monday than read blogs :-D)

Banana Goodness Bread has been updated to reflect the change I tried this weekend whereby I used a container of Vanilla Oikos for the yogurt.

In regards to some questions, all the products featured on this blog are all-natural unless I make a point otherwise. “All-natural” means no artificial preservatives, flavors, colors, or ingredients. I think the last thing I ate that didn’t fit this was the frosting on the vegan cupcake from vegan friday, though I didn’t turn purple so I think all is well 😉

I have, under my bed,

23 peanut butter jars(currently including 2 mighty maples and 2 smart balances)

7 almond butter jars plus 2 barney butter packets

1 pepita butter

3 sunflower butters

1 cashew butter

1 chocolate hazelnut butter

and 1 jar of vegan fluff

And I’m always looking for more in my collections so if you have something all-natural you want me to review send it my way 🙂

Okay, back to yesterday morning, I felt like a drain; I could not get enough water in me. After I got tired of water, I took a walk to the mail room, which happens to sell organic decaf coffee. They also happened to have this for me:

Goji Gourmet Cookies

Goji Gourmet Cookies

The amazing bakers over at Goji Gourmet sent me these cookies to try(the fact that I said amazing bakers should probably clue you in these didn’t stay unopened for long). Their cookies are infused with superfoods like the goji berry, packing an antioxidant punch with some fun flavors like almond oat, ginger walnut, cherry cacao, and orange mintchip. They’re all natural, mostly organic, and without refined ingredients. A more perfect food for me? I think not. I kept these in my bag through Latin class, then went to the Ratty to pick up broccoli and back to my dorm to make lunch:

Black Lentils And Beets In Snobby Sauce, Broccoli Spears, Clifi Fruit And Nut Mojo Dipped

Black Beluga Lentils And Beets In Snobby Sauce, Broccoli Spears, Clif Fruit And Nut Mojo Dipped

More good news: The “flame grilled veggie burgers” my cafeteria serves some days are Gardenburger variety, aka my favorite frozen veggie burger and the ones I’ve thus far been paying for. Well, that was awesome to know, but I wanted to use up my Trader Joe’s lentils before they went bad(do lentils even go bad?) so I stuck with them. I think any dish that is 1/4th composed of sauce is an automatic winner. I also love when the dining hall serves broccoli rather than me making it from the salad bar because the spears are huge.

That Clif bar had my name all over it, so I didn’t hesitate giving it a go. The flavor was right, but the bar threw me for a loop. You wouldn’t have guessed there were many fruit or nuts from the looks of it. The vanilla coating really saved it though; I’ll go for anything vanilla. I ate this mid-history class and I have to say that the more he talks about the midterm the more I feel prepared for it. That’s a good sign, right?

When I got back to my dorm I had hopes of plopping on the bed and shamelessly lounging around. Unfortunately, my roommate was taking an afternoon nap(who does this?) and I’m too prideful to be lazy in the company of others. Instead, I think I woke him up by making oats that I was dreaming about during epic poetry:

Oatmeal With Chocolate Sunflower Butter, Cherry Butter, And Goji Gourmet Cherry Cacao Cookies

Oatmeal With Chocolate Sunflower Butter, Cherry Butter, And Goji Gourmet Cherry Cacao Cookies

Chocolate cherry is one of my favorite flavor combo’s, so I knew this would be the bag with the first broken seal. But I’d be lying to you if I said I ate it like that.

Chocolate Cherry Oatmeal Mess

Chocolate Cherry Oatmeal Mess

Much better. And then, to eat. Holy chocolate cherry cow was this good! First of all, the cookies were amazing. Take note, ye who are blood obligated to get me a Christmas present: I want these in my stocking. The cherry essence was infused in the chocolate, and the cacao nibs were wowza! Besides that, the chocolate sunflower butter and cherry butter really complimented each other, though I might have to spring for the tried and true dried cherries next time I’m at Whole Foods. I didn’t think this bowl would tame this ravenous beast for the afternoon, but surprisingly I was set until dinner. I had wanted to go to the farmers’ market to get acorn squash but my legs and wallet decided homework would be a better way to spend the afternoon, and I obliged. By dinner time, I was ready to load my plate:

Salmon, Sweet Potato, Green Beans, Steamed Vegetables, Vegan Chili

Salmon, Sweet Potato Green Beans, Steamed Vegetables, Vegan Chili

That was the last of the leftover salmon from Sunday’s lunch :,-( Getting 3 meals out of 1 is never bad, though. There was also an all-star line up of veggies being offered, so I went at those. The vegan chili they serve is very good here. But i really had “corn niblets” so I tried to just eat the beans around them–if it ain’t on a cob, it ain’t good corn. This had me feeling nice and bloated stuffed, which is good concentrating for homework blog reading.

Did anybody else find Heroes a bit… hmm, what’s the word… horny for Monday night television? I do not know what was with that opening scene. I don’t particularly think of that kind of stuff when I go to watch Heroes. Blood and explosions is more what I’m looking for. After that I made a pretty racy snack:

Oatmeal With Smart Balance Peanut Butter, White Chocolate Chips And Grain Sweetened Baking Chips

Oatmeal With Smart Balance Peanut Butter, White Chocolate Chips And Grain Sweetened Baking Chips

I don’t know why my bowl decided to be so segregated; it’s a bit depressing looking back. When I made it into a mess(unpictured), at least the peanut butter seemed to be accepted by both sides :-/ My Smart Balance is running so low. I’m going to have not one but two oats in a jar in my future 🙂 I made word documents for the 3 history essays I have; I don’t know why, but making documents always feels like a huge step even if… it’s not.

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin Yeast Roll With Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin Yeast Roll With Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting

Have I made you salivate with these yet? That’s really cruel of me, considering I don’t think it’s possible to get outside of CA or MA. These whole wheat cinnamon raisin rolls from the bakery are to die for; if you find anything like it in your neck of the woods, go for it! For the “frosting” I did probably 2 parts cream cheese to 1 part greek yogurt. This made it creamy but also smooth and spreadable like real frosting. I also used 4 drops vanilla stevia to sweeten it just the right amount.

I fell asleep to Man Vs. Wild last night, so that was clearly a good sign I’d be beastly for the morning, right? I slept in until 7:10. a) When did that become sleeping in and b) God that felt good. I decided to pump up the pace today and ran 8 miles at 7.5 pace in 64:22. I find when you’re running fast just don’t look at the treadmill distance and go go go. I caught up with my gym friend for the last few miles; she was in Florida 2 weeks ago and it was 93 degrees! Boy was I jealous to hear that.

Vanilla Bean Voskos Organic Yogurt, Nature's Path Organic Hot Oatmeal, Sunland All Natural Valencia Peanut Butter

Vanilla Bean Voskos Organic Yogurt, Nature's Path Organic Hot Oatmeal, Sunland All Natural Valencia Peanut Butter

Breakfast today is literally all products for reviewing. I won’t say much about it now, because I like to give it a bit more time and thought than my hectic mind has right now(Greek class in 30 minutes!). I will say that the oatmeal smells appley, the peanut butter peanuty, and the yogurt doesn’t smell at all, so that’s all good signs! I hope today stays nice because I get out at 12 and hope to make a great Whole Foods trip! At the very least, I need some bulk bin oats; I have a new bag of Trader Joe oat bran but my organic steel cuts are on their last leg. More tempehtations and dried cherries might also be in my future.

Eating Bird Food is hosting a eggcellent giveaway from Cookware.com for Rachael Ray Cookware! Giveaway ends 10/30!

Enter the contest at  this blog to win some awesome Clif Kid prizes(because we’re all kids at heart!)

There’s some great Oikos action going on on Facebook!

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Ice Cream For An Upset Stomach

Posted on October 25, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

As magical as the title sounds, yesterday morning was not fun. Almost as soon as I posted, my stomach started hurting. It felt like one giant cramp that wouldn’t go away and only slightly lessened if I crouched like an old man. Instinct told me to drink water but I looked so bloated and the fact that tightening my belt made it worse made me think twice. Unfortunately, I also had to get all my stuff into my dad’s car when he came. I definitely go a bit snappy when he was questioning me on my stomach, but that’s because I really felt like I needed to go somewhere and lie down. Instead of doing that, I kind of sucked it up and went to Market Basket and Whole Foods. You don’t look too ridiculous hunching over when it’s on a shopping cart. We picked up kind of a lot:

Groceries

Groceries

I like Kashi products; who doesn’t? On a normal day, I probably would have grabbed something at the Whole Foods salad bar, or I at least have made myself something now, but my stomach wasn’t feeling food so rather than fight it I got myself situated at home. By 2 I finally felt a little better and convinced myself to eat something:

Sweet Scoops Coffee Cookies N' Cream Frozen Yogurt

Sweet Scoops Coffee Cookies N' Cream Frozen Yogurt

Should I try and pretend like this was a good lunch option? I mean, it did have calcium, and probiotics, and was from hormone free cows. Oh, and there were grains in there, too(you know, the processed kind in the cookies n’ cream part). Or maybe I should not try and pretend and just say that when you aren’t “feeling” food but it’s still important to get energy in your system, go for whatever the hell you want. I was actually a bit let down by this flavor because the cookies n’ cream part felt a little lacking; Stonyfield makes a great Cookies N’ Dream flavor I’m going to have to pick up next time it’s on sale.

Even though I might not have felt like eating food, I was completely up for making it. I whipped together one of my favorite recipes.

The Dry

The Dry

Hmm, what has whole wheat flour, oat bran, flaxmeal, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, chocolate chips…

The Wet

The Wet

… canola oil, eggs, sugar, yogurt, vanilla extract, banana…

The Raw

The Raw

…and is sprinkled with vanilla bean sugar on top? Well while your pondering that, you can look at my snack:

Kashi Vanilla Creamy Oatmeal With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter

Kashi Vanilla Creamy Oatmeal With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter

I don’t do premade oatmeals much. But I do really enjoy this Kashi vanilla and some of the Nature’s Path Organic ones they sent me to review. It’s a lot simpler than bringing my steel cut oats and oatbran home, too. Naturally, the Cookie Dough Peanut Butter with a little salt rounded out the dish. And while I ate this I caught up to Flipping Out; I don’t understand why I find that show appealing but damn if I don’t. Oh right, back to the bread 😉

Banana Goodness Bread

Banana Goodness Bread

It was banana goodness bread, of course! This time I used NuNaturals baking blend in place of the sugar and a vanilla Oikos instead of plain yogurt to see if it’d come out more-or-less the same. I love how the vanilla sugar on top crystalized to form a crust. Definitely a must for any bread recipe!  I was lucky enough that both of the Top Chef episodes I had yet to see were on right after Flipping Out, so I got fully caught up on that while translating Greek and Latin. Since my eats were definitely slacking for the day by 5:30(just breakfast, frozen yogurt, and oatmeal :-(), I decided to try out one of the healthiest bars I brought:

Kardea Chai Spice

Kardea Chai Spice

Each Kardea bar has 1g plant sterols, 7g fiber, 7g protein, an all-natural ingredient list, and plenty of nutrients, so I knew at least my nutrition for the day would get a boost after this. It was definitely unique and I didn’t mind eating it, but it didn’t have me rushing out to buy another. You can read my full review here. We didn’t actually have anything for dinner, so my parents went to the store. I told them to “get me something I’ll eat or even just burger buns”. I’m real specific, aren’t I? When they came back, they had a big fatty piece of steak and burger buns with partially hydrogenated oil in it. Ugh. I was not a happy camper. But I tried eating something other than ice cream for a meal:

Trader Joe Whole Wheat Mac N' Cheese, Bison Medallion

Trader Joe Whole Wheat Mac N' Cheese, Bison Medallion

Well that’s a far cry from eating vegan. I really could have gone for something like tofu or tempeh, but I would have died if I found those in our refrigerator. I still had a bison medallion in the freezer from a few weeks ago, so I threw that on the grill and made some instant mac n’ cheese. The bison was really undercooked but I was too lazy to turn the grill back on; honestly, it’s a wonder I don’t get horrible stomach issues more often. I tried explaining over dinner that what I really mean by “something that I’ll eat” is “wild meat or fish, tofu, and tempeh”, though I’m not a good communicator so I’m not sure how well the meaning of “wild” was portrayed.

I really had not had enough coffee yesterday so I freshly ground some of the swag that I got from Wednesday night.

Green Mountain House Blend Decaf Organic

Green Mountain House Blend Decaf Organic

Times like us all hovering over the coffee grinder to smell the grounds remind me of why we’re a family. For a quick dessert I had some yogurt with granola:

Soy Plain Yogurt With Vanilla Sugar, Chocolate Chips, And White Chocolate

Soy Plain Yogurt With Vanilla Sugar, Chocolate Chips, And White Chocolate

I’m eliminating the rule that granola needs to have whole grains. Most are just sugar, anyway; this is just getting rid of the bulk I didn’t want. I had to buy this yogurt again because I loved it despite the fact that it tastes like tofu. Wait. Let me change that. I had to buy this yogurt again because I loved it because it tastes like tofu. My mom refuses to eat soy. She thinks it will give her cancer or make her not be able to have more children(hah!) or something. Whenever you see soy on this blog, you can be sure of where it didn’t come from. More bread:

Toast With White Chocolate Wonderful, Banana Goodness Bread

Toast With White Chocolate Wonderful, Banana Goodness Bread

For some reason, I was down right opposed to the peanut butter being on the banana bread, so I went and added another slice of TJ 10 grain. Yum! I always forget how great of a melting peanut butter white chocolate wonderful is. And the banana bread was nice and moist, got a little crispy in the toaster, and the hard sugar coating just made it perfect. I also finished all my Greek homework for those who care 🙂 My professor assigned wayyy too much, and told us to “stop after you’ve worked long enough”. I hate those instructions because I never follow them. I feel lazy if I don’t do it all. I guess that’s just me being silly but it gets annoying.

No running for me this morning… yet. I intended for today to be a rest day after such high mileage. And I’ll admit my feet wouldn’t mind the break either. Although it’s an awesome morning in New England and I am on my home streets so it’s hard to say how long I can fight of the running bug. Right now, Tivoed Unwrapped is doing a good job helping.

Pumpkin Pie Yogurt With Tempeh Bacon, Mystery Muffin With Mighty Maple

Pumpkin Pie Yogurt With Tempeh Bacon, Mystery Muffin With Mighty Maple

Breakfast has me playing the “It can’t be wrong if it tastes this right” card. I hade a huge tempeh bacon craving, but felt compelled to put it over something instead of eat it straight. I made homemade pumpkin pie yogurt with canned pumpkin, Voskos plain non fat(which reminds me about this review to post), vanilla stevia, and pumpkin pie spice, and topped with the tempeh bacon and maple syrup. All I can say is salty/sweet is real and here to say. I also had a mystery muffin with Mighty Maple that I asked my mom to buy for me 🙂 It’s not a mystery muffin to me; that’d be weird. It’s just a mystery to you for now.

The weather’s so nice, I would be a fool not to at least go for a walk later. Hope your weekends are all going swell, as well.

Applesauce giveaway! Because I love things that look like baby food and toddlers can eat

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Vegan Friday

Posted on October 24, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Like I mentioned yesterday morning, Friday I decided I was going to eat completely vegan, both to try out the product I bought with one of my Lightlife coupons, but also as a way to challenge myself overall. Veganism is not something I ever had or will consider living permanently, but it was “fun”(and I realize my sense of this term is completely whack) to give a try. I’m also not going to pretend it was easy; let’s revisit breakfast, shall we?

Banana Oats With Banana Peanut Butter And Smart Balance Peanut Butter, Strawberry Coconut Milk Kefir

Banana Oats With Banana Peanut Butter And Smart Balance Peanut Butter, Strawberry Coconut Milk Kefir

Good, very good. This was a great vegan way to start the day. Originally I had planned to have my last blueberry raspberry oat bran muffin instead of the oats; but I couldn’t bear the thought of having that muffin without cream cheese. Cream cheese, as yesterday taught me, is my crack and I was going through withdrawal.

After that I had my midterm. Thanks for all the well-wishes! I think I did pretty good. It was a Latin midterm and I think I really could have aced it had I known all I needed to do was memorize the poems we did, but that’s not really translating so much as copying. So I feel good with how I did study and how I did do and I’m sure that’ll be reflected in the grade. On the way back I picked up some mail and was psyched to find this:

Vega Products

Vega Products

The people at Sequel Naturals sent me some of their Vega products to try. I haven’t experimented much with protein powders before but I’m glad my first tasting will be with some of the best. These were optimally designed for athletes and sport nutrition so I’m sure they’re some super post-workout eats. I’m up for any tips you guys have on how to have these. I also made myself a very vegan lunch:

Snobby Joe, Broccoli, Sweet Potato

Snobby Joe, Broccoli, Sweet Potato

How lucky am I that my favorite recipe from the Summer happens to be a staple in any vegan cookbook? Trader Joe now sells lentils you can make in your microwave, so I could that up and mixed it with steak sauce, ketchup, and mustard to make a nice sloppy sauce. That with my two favorite sides made for one hell of a lunch. Best yet, I only used about 1/3 the bag so there’s a ton of lentils leftover–yum!

In History we got our assignment f.or our 2 part midterm. The first section is in class next Friday. He’s made a list of 4 pages worth of terms we should know inside and out; then he’s going to give us 10 or so of these terms to connect in a story of, and we do that twice. Basically, we’re going to be making fictional, random stories with unrelated events to amuse him. My plan: to insert as many dirty jokes as I can. He’s the kind of teacher who that would definitely work on. The other part is 3 4-5 page essays. That one scared me, until he basically said we have no deadline so long as we get them done well(and he didn’t even really say that last part). Basically, all of this has made me feel a lot better of never doing the homework for that class, but I’m still going to study my butt off for the best grade I can grub.

When I got out of my 3 o’clock class, I was actually pretty famished; I had almond butter on the brain all through class so of course I made some oats:

Pumpkin Steel Cut Oats With Maple Almond Butter

Pumpkin Steel Cut Oats With Maple Almond Butter

These totally hit the spot. But they were also a reminder of how you have to think a bit more when you’re eating vegan. I was going to top this with some butter toffee sliced almonds, until I thought about the name: butter toffee. Yikes–that was a close call. Since the almonds were out, I took that as liberty to salt these… a lot. Thank God salt’s vegan! I caught up on The Office and 30 Rock to this bowl. I was actually a bit downed by The Office; I just think it was because the wedding was so amazing there’s no comparison to other episodes anymore. 30 Rock, on the other hand, was great.

My foot was kind of killing me, but I knew I needed to go to Eastside Market. Today is going to rain, rain, rain, and there was at least 1 thing I needed to pick up. The walk actually stretched my muscles and I think helped. All in all, I hit up Eastside, Whole Foods, the dining hall, and Blue State coffee. My fingers were numb from the cold after all that, but I got what I went out for:

Smart Balance Creamy

Smart Balance Creamy

Yep. My old jar is almost out and I couldn’t let that happen. I picked this up with a dollar off coupon, but it was still a bit pricey. Insert my tale of Smart Balance here: My first experience with the SB PB was when I went to Georgia in August. The family I was with actually didn’t have any peanut butter that I could find. They were nice enough to buy me groceries and I picked out this jar to give it a shot. At first, the flaxy flavor was… alarming; after the first day it grew on me. I was crushed when the security at the airport took my jar from me, so much so that the day after I got home I went out and bought another jar. That time it was with agave. I don’t quite think I noticed a difference between the two flavors, but if I did it was in preference of the molasses sweetened one, and when we’re talking less than 1g of sugar per serving GI influence doesn’t really matter.

Well, now that I’ve bored you with that tale, maybe my snack will perk you up:

So Delicious Plain Soy Yogurt With Vanilla Stevia, Vanilla, Sugar, And Chocolate Chips

So Delicious Plain Soy Yogurt With Vanilla Stevia, Vanilla, Sugar, And Chocolate Chips

I bought this soy yogurt Tuesday when I decided to do a vegan day; I wasn’t sure I could go a day without yogurt and, while I think I could’ve, I’m glad I didn’t have to. I admit: I was a little weirded out when I had the thought “I’ve tasted this before. It tastes like… tofu”. By the end of the cup, it actually grew on me like that. I’m way too impressable. The real star here were the chocolate chips, which I was craving. I’m sure you can imagine my jumping for joy when I found out one of the chocolate chips I have(and, yes, I keep multiple types on stock) was vegan. I also liked that soy yogurt had 6g of fiber in a 110 calorie serving. I might have to buy that more often.

After letting my tofu-yogurt digest, it was time for the motivation behind the whole day:

Ginger Teriyaki Tempeh, Sugar Snap Peas, Vegetable Medley

Ginger Teriyaki Tempeh, Sugar Snap Peas, Vegetable Medley

Finally–an excuse to use the chopsticks I brought to my dorm! This was, in short, a sensible and delicious meal that I would gladly have again another night. I was thrilled at how easy it was for me to prepare in my dorm; not too many protein sources are like that when all you have to work with is a microwave. The tempeh wasn’t quite as sweet as I expected from my experience with ginger teriyaki dishes from Chinese take-out. However, as I gave that some thought and looked at the nutrition/ingredients on this product, I surmised how unhealthily sugar-laden Chinese take-out often is, and how reasonable and healthy of an entree this was. While the flavor wasn’t loud, it was certainly present in ever bite. And the 320 calorie portion had an excellent 22g protein and 10g fiber, making it a filling dish as well. If you’re looking for a healthy alternative to over done take-out or just something fun and funky for a change, I’d recommend this tempehtation and I can’t wait to try others.

After that delicious dinner, it was time for dessert:

Vegan Chocolate Cupcake With Vegan Buttercream Frostin

Vegan Chocolate Cupcake With Vegan Buttercream Frostin

Just because it was Vegan Friday didn’t mean it wasn’t also Cookie Friday. I was a bit thrown off when I came to this realization, but then I remembered vegans have great desserts, too! I immediately knew what I wanted and picked this up at Blue State. Even though I might have dropped this once twice, it survived and I was able to pretty it back up. It really didn’t matter what it looked like because it tasted like heaven.

For the night I watched Ghost Whisperer, which was good as always, and Medium because nothing else was on. What a great example of how a show, even though it might have a decent concept, can be really bad. I felt like every character was whining the entire time. And it didn’t help that the episode was about a crying baby. I should have just watched Dateline or something.

English Muffin With SB PB And Chocolate Chips And Pepita Sun Butter

English Muffin With SB PB And Chocolate Chips And Pepita Sun Butter

This day was a fun experience, and I’m glad I challenged myself to do it. As you can see, it wasn’t like I ate much different than my normal ways; I just had to plan out a day of some of my favorite meals and watch out for “pitfalls” along the way. Overall, I think I relearned what I already knew: veganism isn’t a health craze or a diet. It’s a philosophy, mindset, and way of life. I don’t personally share the same beliefs as this; I think eating animals respectfully, and certainly byproducts of animals as well, is fine. But I fully support and have new respect for the people who do live like this 24/7.

I actually didn’t have plans to run this morning. But after a full 9, as in nine, as in the square root of 81, hours of sleep last night, I was surprisingly energized. I got to the gym and ran for an hour(or 59:20 to be exact) and did 7 miles. This made my total for the week a whopping 62.6 miles. Considering I’ve never ran more than 50 before, that was a shock. I actually started having an upset stomach when I got back, but I went ahead and made myself a very not-vegan breakfast:

Blueberry Raspberry Oat Bran Muffin With Cream Cheese, Voskos 2% With Banana Pineapple Rum Jam

Blueberry Raspberry Oat Bran Muffin With Cream Cheese, Voskos 2% With Banana Pineapple Rum Jam

2 very big reasons why I couldn’t go vegan were present. I set aside some of the Voskos yogurt for a taste testing because it’s one of the flavors they sent me, and added jam to the other part to make a sort of pineapple… you know the brand I’m thinking of. Obviously, the muffin was begging to be slathered in all its berry goodness. And now I’m just waiting(read: frantically packing) for my dad to get here to take me home, as the sky has just opened up and began pooring.

Chobani Giveaway! Can you have enough greek yogurt? I think we all know the answer to that…

And now that it’s getting cold out you’ll need soup, too!

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(Half-)Marathon Monday

Posted on October 19, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Yesterday when I got home, the gang was there to welcome me:

Montana

Montana

I can’t decide whether he looks annoyed or apathetic. My grandmother was also there to slip me a little money for the food(thanks, grams!). I was a little worried, because the only thing I smelled upon entering the house was chicken. I’ve decided that chicken and turkey that’s not wild or grass fed I am more than happy to give up for good. Thankfully, though, there was a slab of salmon hiding in oven as well. My mom apparently felt that for the 4 of us we needed broccoli, brussel sprouts, sweet potatoes, carrots, a chicken, and salmon. My plate simply looked like this:

Sweet Potato, Salmon, Brussel Sprouts

Sweet Potato, Salmon, Brussel Sprouts

Salmon, sweet potato, and brussel sprouts. Isn’t this my every meal? Of course it was all delicious. The only problem was that this occured about 20 minutes after shoveling in my muffin and cream cheese so afterwards I felt the bloat–majorly. I parked my butt in front of the TV and caught up with my beloved Food Network. Tivo records Unwrapped so I caught up on all the inside scoop with marshmallow foods, and then it was time for Paula’s Party. They cut open a coconut; I now have much more respect for anything I eat that has a decent amount of coconut milk because that is not easy stuff to harvest. It began snowing quarter-sized flakes at 2pm:

Snow In The Backyard

Snow In The Backyard

What month is it? This is not ok with me at the moment. By 3 we decided to hit the road, not before raiding the freezer of course:

Snickerdoodle Ice Cream

Snickerdoodle Ice Cream

Just because it’s snowing and I’m bloated does not mean I’m not in the mood for ice cream. Let’s not make that mistake. I seriously love this Snickerdoodle, which I reformatted the product review specially for this post, so if you want to hear all about it click on the link. Or, ya know, just buy it and take my word on that. We swung by Hannafords because I remembered they sold a certain new favorite product of mine:

Coffee Bean And Raspberry Dark Chocolate Attune

Coffee Bean And Raspberry Dark Chocolate Attune

Attune bars! I only had 1 coupon left but both of these flavors sounded so promising I didn’t mind paying for the other. These really do come in plenty of fun flavors and I hope they taste as good as they sound. It was snowing ridiculously, but for some reason I feel so much calmer riding in the snow; I guess it’s fun to think of the whole “carriage ride in the snow” thing even if you’re just in the car. I managed to spill coffee all over my freshly washed jeans–way to go, Evan. When we got back, I didn’t have much to put away other than a ton of clothes. I was feeling like something wheaty but a big bowl of oats right before dinner wasn’t appealing. Instead I had toast!

Toast With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter

Toast With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter

My jar of Cookie Dough Peanut Butter is almost gone, which on the one hand means oats in a jar! But on the other means I’m going to need to swing by the 1 store near home I know that sells it soon. I might have accidentally ditched my friend for dinner, not thinking we were meeting up tonight. Oops. Well he ditched me last night when his parents came and he got a real meal so I’m going to play the even stevens card. Instead, I put together this in my room:

Flamegrilled Gardenburger With Ketchup, Broccoli, Sweet Potato, Carrot And Zuchinni Medley

Flamegrilled Gardenburger With Ketchup, Broccoli, Sweet Potato, Carrot And Zuchinni Medley

The first thing I loved about this meal was that it was entirely vegan! I could never go vegan or really any restricting diet for a prolong period, but I love eating different ways at different meals. Look at the size of those broccoli spears; I love it when my cafeteria has those available. And sweet potato? How luck could I get. I was really craving the flamegrilled gardenburger(my last one :-() doused with ketchup. Trader Joe’s ketchup is much more vinegary than most and definitely a unique twist.

The Patriots completely owned Tennessee last night, but apparently this wouldn’t prevent them from showing the game and screwing up the primetime line-up. Instead I caught up on some Simpsons and their treehouse of horror; it’s such a weird thought that that’s gone on for 20 years and the show is older than me! I knew precisely what I wanted for probiotic source #2 for the day:

Raspberry Dark Chocolate Attune And French Vanilla Coffee

Raspberry Dark Chocolate Attune And French Vanilla Coffee

This bar was definitely unique and delivered on the promised flavor. You can catch my full review here. I really love anything dark chocolate and berry or berry and peanut butter; they definitely don’t make enough foods with those flavor combos. Do you think we should petition for a chocolate raspberry vitatop? I do. I also needed–yes, needed–to have this bowl of oats:

Pumpkin Maple Oats With Pepita Sun Butter

Pumpkin Maple Oats With Pepita Sun Butter

I forgot how amazing pumpkin oats with the real deal maple syrup could be. Don’t get me wrong; I still love my salty pumpkin messes. But this sweet variety is also quite nice. The single(and I do mean 1 and only) thing I don’t like about this and other Naturally Nutty peanut butters is that they don’t melt so purdy on oats. I’m actually more of a fan of runny, need-to-stir peanut butters and Naturally Nutty makes a point of their no stir formula. Oh well, at least the flavor is spectacular.

Finally The Amazing Race came on but it coincided with Brothers And Sisters; since I really hate falling behind on my dramas, it was a pretty clear choice which one I’d go with. I’m loving the progression of this season with all its twists and turns; it’s a wonder why this show doesn’t get the hype of others. I had one last bedtime snack:

Deep Chocolate Vitatop

Deep Chocolate Vitamuffin

For some reason, I’m just not a big fan of the muffins. It should be the same as the vitatops or brownies in theory, but it doesn’t feel that way. At least it was better digested than last time’s english muffin. By the way, I have a great roommate who vacates the room at 10:30 because he knows grandpa here wants to get to sleep.

This morning my alarm went off at 6:30… and then again at 6:40. I felt I needed a little pre-run fuel even though I didn’t have much of a plan:

Decaf French Vanilla, Whole Wheat Bread With Mighty Maple

Decaf French Vanilla, Whole Wheat Bread With Mighty Maple

Love that mighty maple. By the way, it’s pitch black here until 7. When did that happen? Bread’s not easy to spread in the dark. I got to the gym and started on the treadmill at a really easy pace of 7.1mph. After a while I knew how far I wanted to go if I continued to feel this good and that it could be my 2nd half marathon. Around mile 9, I had to do a quick bathroom break, and the last mile was definitely a push, but that’s no time to call uncle. I ran 13.1 miles in 1:50:56 and it felt great. Wouldn’t it be awesome to do that every day? I think I just heard my legs laugh. Anyway, that really put me behind for my morning and breakfast was a quickie to help me catch-up:

Jumbo Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin Roll With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter, Voskos Vanilla Bean Yogurt

Jumbo Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin Roll With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter, Voskos Vanilla Bean Yogurt

The cinnamon raisin rolls by Zen Bakery are amazing; even after time in the freezer and the microwave it’s still delightfully yeasty(giggle, giggle), light, and airy. The butter toffee peanut butter made a good frosting, too. I’ll write up a review for this Voskos yogurt, which was a sample from the company. I haven’t ate it yet but I see real vanilla beans(!!) so this is muy promising.

And have you ever wondered how any of the Peanut Butter & Company peanut butters are? Well, this weekend I set out to reformat my entire nut butter review section if you remember. That was far too large an undertaking, but what I did accomplish was the PB&Co. section so check out those if you’ve ever had any questions. One of the flavors even gets a perfect 10/10! Which could it be…

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