Sunday, February 28, 2010

Winner Winner Chia Seed Dinner!

Happy Sunday!  I've had a fabulous weekend and now that the USA vs. Canada hockey game is babysitting my husband for a bit, I'll do a little recap of the weekend.  I'm also here to announce the chia giveaway winner!

Weekend Highlights
Let's get started!  On Friday night I went out with some friends after school to get some drinkies.  I wasn't in a drink mood but it was lots of fun to see all my friends!
Gosh my friends are beauteous!  And my do I need to get my roots done!
Anyhoo, I also baked some mini cupcakes to have as appetizers because appetizers=sugar in my book!
We continued the celebration with extra foamy lattes and pancakes. 
We then immediately went to the movies to see Shutter Island (loved it!) and I got my ice cream cone!  We also stopped by my parents' house to chill with them and have some tea and dessert.  I also got a burger on Saturday night:
Veggie and Vegan friends cover your eyes and ears!  This is an ostrich burger with tomatoes, lettuce, salsa, cholula, and pickles on a toasted no butter bun.  Ostrich meat is a really good source of B12, lean protein, and low cholesterol as compared to beef and chicken.  My hot date had a buffalo burger :)  Fuddrucker's has some unique choices so we went with them!

Other weekend highlights included roses from my loving hubby and countless Facebook and email birthday wishes!
Please tell me you've seen a cuter birthday card!  It made my heart swell 1,000 times.  I LOVE this kid!

I'm so lucky to have such amazing friends and family and 26 is looking pretty good already!  I will have to practice my new age when I enter it into the treadmill soon!

Giveaway Winner: 
Please email me with your info- including address so I can get you your chia seeds!

I'm going to end this post with a few highlights from my Chia Seeds Giveaway Request.  I asked you for some favorite 90s songs to count as an entry and ya'll did NOT disappoint.  Each one made me giggle and I have added them to my awesomely bad list of music!  I think this could make one heck of a dysfunctional workout playlist.  Anyone with me?

  • Spice Girls- apparently anything goes
  • Tearin' Up My Heart and more *NSync
  • EMF Unbelievable
  • Ace of Base- my hubby agrees
  • Bone Thugs- Crossroads
  • Smells Like Teen Spirit
  • Black Hole Sun
  • Depeche Mode
  • TLC- they are right up there with Spice Girls
  • New Kids On The Block
  • You Say- Lisa Loeb
  • Genie In a Bottle
  • "Baby Got Back"- it was on my 'must play list' at our wedding
  • Mmmbop
  • Backstreet Boys
  • Faith Hill
Thank you all for playing along with me and for all the blog love!  I'm a very lucky girl and your comments and support adds to that even more!
Have a great day!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Snackfest 2010!

Hi Guys!  Happy Friday!  I think I posted in my last post that if you lose track of me I would be passed out in my kitchen from cookie and trailmix overdose.  That hasn't happened (yet) but I've been making a dent in my stash:

First I tried this bar:

'Twas fabulous.  Thanks again Katie!  In addition to this, I spent a very leisurely 11 hour day at work yesterday meeting a deadline.  I needed an extra snack and broke into my work's trailmix and made myself an iced coffee:
Between having a long day and delaying dinner, I had a bit of a snackapalooza.  Stuff happens and there's nothing we can do right?  I ended up going to the gym to meet my hubby for a date at 9:15 and spent an hour on the treadmill doing jog-incline walk intervals.  It was great and stress-busting!

This morning I started out with a fabulous breakfast pancake:

-1/2 cup oats, 1 scoop vanilla protein powder, 1 eggwhite, baking powder, Chia seeds, cacao powder, and a banand.  My frosting is vanilla Greek yogurt and 1 Tbsp almond butter.  It was amazing! 

I've been up and working from home since 6:30 so I'm heading out for a lunchtime gym session!  See ya'll later- maybe even today :)  I've got some working, baking, and cleaning to do before our friends come over!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Food Fairy Visited Me!

Hey Amigas!  I loved reading all your 'you know you're a blogger when' stories!  I'm hoping your day was great and if not, it's less than 2 days till the weekend begins, so let's fake it till we make it!

My day?  Meh.  My night?!  Amazing! Let's rewind.  I ate lunch in 5 minutes flat between conference calls.  After I ate all my veggies, I created this treat from the food at work to get some protein and more energy in:
  • Whole grain waffle, strawberry yogurt, sprinkle of granola and almonds.  So good. soooo good!
After work I went to the gym and made a deal with myself that if I didn't want to stay longer than 20 minutes, I could leave.  I didn't and stayed for an hour.  I even got back into what is hopefully my new consistent lifting schedule.
I came home and had this for dinner:
  • My favorite thins with a laughing cow wedge and wild smoked salmon, sugar snap peas, and tomato and basil hummus dip
I also had an apple pie (pie warmed in the micro for 90 seconds with a dollop of Greek yogurt and cinnamon scooped up with a little almond butter):
And this slipped in too:
  • Treat of the day- 2 mini brownie sandwich with almond butter.  I almost died of happiness.
It was the best thing that happened today, until I opened my mail!  I got two packages.  First, the Chia Fairy visited me from
Thank you Don!  If you haven't entered my giveaway yet, do it now!

Next, this girl who just posted about how she sometimes dresses like a Fairy sent me this adorable birthday gift.  I was floored by the kind gesture.  Thank you sooooooo much Katie!  I love it all!
First, it was in this cute bag:
Then it had so much amazing goodness in it:
  • Strawberry banana gum, cacao powder to sample, mini robin eggs, Archer Farms Chocolate Peanut Banana mix, a yummy Luna bar, a fabulous Mojo bar, and a cookie book!  
I opened the card first (I have some manners, ya know!) and it is the cutest thing ever:

If I don't post in a while, it's because I'm passed out in my kitchen from eating all the trailmix, bars, eggs, and baking cookies! Thank again luv!

P.S. Rose from On A Lobster Placemat was kind enough to humor me and post my interview on her adorable and artsy blog.  Check it out!

Mari is having a Pop Chips giveaway!

I hope you have a great day/night!  I'm in such a great mood despite having so much homework and work work.  A little positivity goes a long way, so try to find some in your life!

What made you happy today? My blog and my blog amigas made me happy!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Veggie Fail and an Award

Hey Kids!  Look, it's Tuesday already!  I'm just home from the gym and wrapping up my evening.  Today was filled with lots of fruits, veggies and a little less chocolate than yesterday!  Today was one of the days that I realized I'm a little quirkier than the normal girl and I had a lot of food blogger realizations!

You know you're a health blogger when people bring you stolen fruit:
I started with a plate of fruit that my work buddy brought me.  She had such a proud look when she told me she snagged it from a meeting she was in.  I ate the stolen fruit and really enjoyed it!

You know you're a blogger when you fill your plate with the equivalent of most people's weekly veggie intake for lunch:

You know you're a blogger when you feel like a failure for leaving this behind:

You know you're a blogger when you get to the gym, work out for 90 minutes, and are disappointed because you can't recall a single amount of time or rep you did to report on your blog!

You know you're a blogger when you attempt to redeem yourself with a veggie scramble for dinner:
Organic cherry tomatoes, Trader Joe's Organic Foursome, Spinach, 2 whole eggs, and Nooch

You know you're a blogger when you are sad that your camera is holding your snack of the day hostage!
(I had a mini brownie crumbled over vanilla Greek Yogurt with 1/4 serving of hemp protein added)

You know you're a blogger when you get an award for no reason but doing what you love to do!  
Katie of Fit to Wed gave me this sweet award and it totally made my day!  Katie is a bad ass runner and is getting married to her love really soon!  Thanks Katie!

I am supposed to pass the award on to 11 blog friends and let them know via a comment on their page. I tag:

Mari of Namaste Mari because I've known her for years and she's my Dominican East Coast twin!  She rocks crazy workouts, is an awesome motivator, and one of the most supportive girls ever!
Katie of Healthy Diva Eats because this is one of the sweetest blog girls you'll ever meet.  Her comments are the kindest and she is an awesome example of a hot mama!  If you like Hello Kitty and great eats, check her out!
Jolene of Everyday Foodie because here everyday eats are seriously amazing!  She's such a sweet girl and loves her Green Monsters!
Anna of Newlywed, Newly Veg because she is genuinely nice and rocks crazy challenges like Vegan Month and is in the middle of a sugar challenge!  I am so impressed by her writing and her self control!
Gina of Candid RD because she is my favorite RD and gives great advice through her informative posts.  She gently reminds me that dark chocolate will not save my life, but leaves the best comments!
Dawn of Dawn Dishes it Out because she has the best wholesome recipes and despite being a busy mom and professional makes it a priority to live a healthy lifestyle and educate strangers too!
Jessica of How Sweet It Is because she is an amazing baking diva and although I don't regularly eat any of them, I leave her blog thinking about butter, cheese, and even a little bacon!
Beth of Dining and Dishing because this DC foodie is so sweet and bubbly!  She also has time to keep up with blogs while in culinary school and working a day job!
Anne Marie of New Weigh of Life because she makes the most awesome pasta bakes, leaves the sweetest comments, and has an inspirational weightloss story!
Kalin of Eating Machine because she is an awesome teacher who cracks me up as she avoids cooking foods that will kill her future hubby!  Baby brother also kinda has me coming back to her blog for more too!
Naomi of One Fit Foodie because she is an awesome trainer who not only shares her workouts and knowledge, but shares her awesome eats too!

If you haven't entered my CHIA giveaway, please do it HERE!

What are some of the ways you know you're a blogger?

Monday, February 22, 2010

The Good, The Strange, and the Chocolate

Well here I am back at you at only 10:30 PM.  I've been going, going, and going all day long and it's almost time to have a date with my hubby since we haven't seen each other since 7:00 AM this morning!  Let's rewind to some of my eats:

The Good:
The return of the snack platter!  Pink Lady apple, organic red bell pepper, organic sliced carrots, and natural PB.
Different sources of protein- Trader Joe's organic cottage cheese with cinnamon and almonds (love, love, love and had seconds!)

The Strange:

Trader Joe's Natural Jalapeno Chicken Sausage on Sprouted Wheat bread and sugar snap pea fries.  No idea why I ate this, but it was strangely good. 

The Chocolate
Easily filling in for the snack of the day, I had chocolate- um, twice.  First I had these two bite size pieces with a side of calculator:

Then I had another couple of pieces at home with a side of swiffer sweeper in my kitchen:
I can't help it, I'm female and chocolate rules my life sometimes.  I needed the fuel to cook up some meals for the week:
Roasted sweet potatoes with orange chicken stirfry
Roasted Asparagus
My beloved Brussels and more sweet potatoes

Don't forget to enter my contest HERE !

Got a question?  Ask me anything here!

Finally, Starbucks will be sampling free Peeled Snacks this Friday, February 26th.  I'm gonna hit up the 'bucks in my building at work for some!

See you kids soon!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Black Bears

Hi Guys!  I've had a quick, busy and fun weekend!  I'm gonna hit you with another quick one, highlighting the eats as per usual!

On Saturday my hubby and I went to the cutest diner for lunch called Black Bear Diner.  I am such a sucker for cute sayings and there were a ton of 'beary good eats' and the owners signed the menu with Sugar Bear and Papa Bear as their names.  I had to say 'bears eat beats' and other corny sayings as we were browsing the menu and I was positive everyone around us was aware of my excitement.  Their menu was a newspaper with local news and history trivia:
As this establishment is targeted towards the diner crowd, they didn't emphasize health food and I was fine with it.  I went with one of their 'A Little Less Lunch' items and had a bowl of chicken tortilla soup and a fruit cup while hubby enjoyed a reuben and a side salad!  Go healthy hubby, go!

The soup was nice and spicy and the fruit was just aight but I still really enjoyed it and the company since my hubby and I were parting ways so I could go to a bachelorette party
It was a lot of fun and I'll share two things with you.  I've got a strict policy to not post pictures of people unless I get their permission and I also like to keep things PG on my web scene!

The menu was awesome:

Clearly it's not legible, but it was fantastic- ahi tuna tacos, delicious shrimp, gruyere fondue, mini sliders- everything was fantastic!  If you are ever in the Mission District of San Francisco, go to Andalu and you will not be disappointed!

The second thing I can share is the outfit I wore that night:

I was actually home by midnight and only had one drink, so I was a good girl! 

Just because I know ya'll care, here are this weekend's snacks:
Weekend Snacks: 2 mini homemade brownies post evening out on Saturday, fro yo and 2 mini brownies on Sunday

Worth It Factor: 5- I clearly bent my rules on both days but this is not a form of restriction, just a way to be more aware of my sweet treats.  Monday will fix everything!

Don't forget to enter Diva Katie's Giveaway!

If you want some chia in your life, enter my giveaway here!

Got some burning questions for me?  Ask me anything here!

I'll be back with regular nonsense on Monday :)

Friday, February 19, 2010

Give it Away Give it Away Give it Away Now!

(Sing to the tune of Red Hot Chili Peppers and perhaps start a mosh pit in your living room)

Before I get to the contest, I want to share my treat of the day.  Before I do, I have to clarify that it's one sweet treat since I'm trying to reel in my sugar monster- savory treats (bleh!) and fruit don't count- only dessert!

Today's Snack: 1/2 cup frozen blueberries topped with plain yogurt icing and a homemade brownie on top; my own sundae!
Worth It Factor: 10!  This was a perfect portion and I knew exactly what was in it because I made it!

Giveaway Time!!
When I tried chia seeds for the first time earlier this week, I instantly fell in love.  I was excited when Don from offered to give one of my fabulous readers a 2 pound bag of chia seeds!  You guys are the best and I appreciate your comments and every time you stop by.  Also, I wanted to give you a present to celebrate my birfday!

If you haven't been to the website you can see that they offer very low prices, free shipping on all US orders, and all orders are shipped within 24 hours via USPS Priority Mail.

Also, chia seeds have a great nutritional profile according to the information posted on the Chia Seeds Direct site:

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 1 ounce (28g)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 138    Calories from Fat 73
Total Fat    9g
Saturated Fat    1g
Trans Fat    0g
Cholesterol    0mg
Sodium    5mg
Total Carbohydrate    12g
Dietary Fiber    11g
Protein    4g
Vitamin A    0% DV
Vitamin C    0% DV
Calcium    18% DV
Iron    28% DV

So are you ready to enter?  Each item below is one entry.  Please leave me a comment by 9:00 PM Eastern Time on February 27 so that I can add to your chia chances!

Here's what you do:
1. Leave me a comment telling me your favorite early 1990s song!
2. Add me to your blogroll and leave me a comment telling me you did so
3. Tweet this giveaway and tell me you did so
4. Link my giveaway on your blog and send me the link

Good luck!  The winner will be announced on February 28th :)!!!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Snacks, Worth It Factor

Hey hey hey!  I hope everyone is winding down for a week and getting ready for one last push on Friday before the weekend!  This post will be light on pictures, so you'll have to read!

Evening Snack
I'm enjoying my evening snack as I type and attempting to get to some homework- let's see how that goes!
I got so excited when I made this and thought the blueberries were so cute:
  • Brown Cow Blueberry Greek Yogurt
  • Trader Joe's wild frozen blueberries
I loved this combo.  It tasted like ice cream, but obviously isn't!  I also paired it with the almonds I roasted  last night.

Mission: One Snack Per Day
I've decided to share my daily treat or snack with you to keep me accountable and to share the deliciousness I find!  I'll also rate  the taste and the 'worth it' factor on a scale of 1 to 10.  Here we go!
Today's Snack: I shared a small sesame ball with a coworker and had a bite of a mini tart.  I still counted it as one since I didn't finish either of them (sorry, no picture)
Worth it Factor: -10.  Both were gross and not worth it at all!

Eating in Groups
Today was a really interesting experience in group dynamics when my office went to lunch at a dim sum restaurant.  It's really interesting to see how people discuss foods and their eating habits when they are together.  One of my coworkers happened to be a vegetarian and each person eating meat or fish made sure to go out of his or her way to ask if there was enough food, if the vegetarian gentleman was hungry, and what he eats on a normal basis.  I found it really interesting because this man seemed to be enjoying himself and eating lots of vegetables, some kind of sticky buns, tofu, and even dessert, yet the people around us could not fathom how he was enjoying a meal without meat. 
I narrowly escaped the scrutiny because I ate the items with shrimp in them while avoiding the pork and other mystery meats, but there were still comments made about my portions and choices because they know I am 'healthy'.  I know a lot of eating judgment comes from people's curiosity or perhaps discomfort in their own diets.  I don't really take it personally and I'm glad to share my philosophy if they ask, but I did find it interesting that one's food choices took over the conversation and he had to justify his lifestyle.

What do you think?  Do you have to justify how you eat? I am not scrutinized too badly, but I do have to explain to people that I like healthy food and don't force myself to eat it when they ask! 

Ask Me Anything
I've jumped on the Awesome Wagon and got an account.  You can ask me anything HERE.  I'm open to answer anything within reason!!! I can't wait to get some questions to answer!

Giveaway Alert
I was contacted by a fabulous company that's been all over the blogosphere to do a giveaway soon!  I'm going to post the contest tomorrow and give ya'll a little health for coming here and supporting me.  I'm soooo excited and the winner will be announced on MY birthday!  Stay tuned.  It's a good one!

Have a great Friday!!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Mid-Week Roasting

Hi Beautiful Bloggie Amigas!

I'm about to hit you with another quickie!  It's been another long day, including some mid-week food prep and kitchen scrubbing.  As I mentioned before, I like to cook on Sundays and then do very minimal work throughout the week because of school and work for both of us.  Since we've been extra hungry, all of the food somehow disappeared by Wednesday.  It was time for reinforcements:

First, these smelly treats:
I also tried the fabulous recipe of kale chips with nooch!!! I think lots of my favorite bloggers have made them and I know why!
They were amazing.  Like Doritos, but better!
I also roasted up some almonds from my giant 3 pound bag of raw almonds:
I love throwing almonds into snacks or eating them plain as I wander aimlessly through the kitchen.  My husband has been adding them to his breakfast of yogurt and brownies :)

I used my new ingredients to make a giant salad for my lunch tomorrow:

  • Spinach, kale chips, red bell pepper slices, peanut sauce dressing
I know it's a bizarre combo, but it sounded good at the time and I'm sure I'll gobble it up.

One thing I gobbled up today was my lunch- at 10:30 AM.  I tried to wait, but 10:31 was the latest I could wait and I was truly hungry:
I had the Starbucks Tarragon Chicken sandwich with a serving of Sun Chips.  It was good, until I was ready for dinner at 3:30.  You win some, you lose some, right?  Sometimes there are dumb rules like eating appropriate foods at appropriate times.  I've tried to follow them, but sometimes I want cake for dinner and a sandwich for breakfast.

I am trying to honor my hunger cues, but think it's wise to quiet down my sugar monster cues.  I'm not a fan of deprivation because it makes something in my brain go nuts, but I would like to set a goal of only one treat per day.  Fruit doesn't count, but chocolate does!  I'll let ya'll know how I do!

Some questions for you:
Do you categorize certain foods for certain meals only?  
Do you eat by a clock, by your growling stomach, or by the crazy voices in your head? 
Do you have a sweet tooth?

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Make It Snappy

Hi Guys!  Hope you survived your Tuesday!  Only 3 more days this week!  I am going to make this snappy since it's 10:30 and I just ate dinner.  I had my rockstar lifestyle today with grad school after work and I'm one tired girl!

One thing I'm not tired about was the February Birthday Cake celebration at my work:
Isn't this cake beautiful?  I was pretty upset that 3 more people were sharing with me, but I was OK with it in the end.  My name is decorated the prettiest anyways, and the biggest one on the bottom left.  It's Yelena (pronounced ye-lain-ah)!  This Opera Cake was delicious and I fully enjoyed a piece!

My second afternoon snack was this Brown Cow Strawberry Greek Yogurt and some Zen tea:
I added some Kashi Go Lean Crunch and boogied on to my 7-10 class where I learned a lot of stuff!  I came home and it was time to feed the monster again.

I was craving eggs and spinach so I made this monster:
I also used half a can of spicy stewed tomatoes, 2 eggs, and probably 3 cups of spinach and sprinkled the top with Nutritional Yeast.  It was De-licious!  I think I will eat this every day for the rest of my life.  As far as I'm concerned, it can do no wrong!

What's your favorite breakfast food?  Mine is anything- breakfast is my favorite, minus the breakfast meats.  I just don't understand them!

Have a great Wednesday!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Vitamin D

I'm usually glad when Mondays are over, but I've got a few tears about today being over!  It's been such a great day.  East Coast Divas, please cover your eyes- it was 72 degrees here today.  I think all the Vitamin D made me happy!

Family Food Bloggers
I started off by meeting with my mom and shopping my little heart out.  I hit up Macy's and Forever 21.  I'm no longer 21, but I refuse to shop in the adult stores.  Not yet...besides, since my birthday is coming up, I'm trying to embrace my youth!  We also hit up Sam's Club and Trader Joe's.  My mom is turning into a blogger in training- we got her some almond butter and I shared my goji berries and chia seeds with her.  If I catch her taking pictures of her food, I'm in trouble.  On my other side of the family, I'm already getting emails about what kinds of fish to eat and have fully converted them into my almond butter cult :)

My dad, however has always been a blogger, minus the photography.  My dad has been drinking Noni juice for the last 5 years or so.  He's also a machine and runs 3 miles almost daily, lifts weights, and swims...all on top of his physically demanding job.  I sampled some of his superfood juice today:
The juice was on the right- I poured it in the shot glass so I could get a good measurement.  Plus, it was the middle of the day, and I have standards people!

I came home to unload my loot:
  • Organic apples, organic spinach, cage free organic eggs, raw almonds, laughing cow cheese, brown cow greek yogurt, and bananas
Sam's Club has come a long way.  I think that as long as the company is making organic, healthy foods available for a good price to the public, it's enough for me to put my occasional cash money there.

I cooked up a good meal for my working hubby and after that I went to the gym to do apparently nothing:
I guess I did about 2 miles in 23 minutes- a quick, easy run to get my legs loose after yesterday!

When I came home it was still sunny and beautiful (I'll stop bragging soon) so we took dinner outside.

We had roasted veggies:
Some organic chicken and broccoli for the Mister:
The star of the show was the Peanut Sauce- heavily adapted from Miss Avery:
1/4 cup PB
Juice of 1/2 lime
3 Tbsp Maple/Agave Blend Syrup (from TJ's)
Glug of soy sauce
Tabasco, black pepper, chili powder
1 Tbsp water to thin it out
~1 clove crushed garlic

Thank you Avery- you are a genius!

My husband, who loves veggies as it is, was finding excuses to dip stuff in the peanut sauce and cleaned out the rest of it- definite success! I made more right after dinner too!

My plate:
  • Roasted veggies, GIANT beans from TJ's, brown rice, and broccoli wth peanut sauce
We didn't forget about dessert.  My compulsive baking forced me to make Espresso Brownies:
Here is my super easy recipe:
Hubby's Espresso Brownies:
  • 1/2 package of brownie mix of choice (I used Ghirardelli because they are from San Francisco and AWESOME)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup strongly brewed coffee or 2-3 shots of espresso
  • Top with almonds or pecans
  • Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes (or while eating peanut sauce with a spoon)
I like to serve my chocolate with more chocolate:
Here is my date digging into his stash:
And this is what I do when people try to take my picture:
No idea either, but it adds to my character and it's good to put embarassing pictures of myself on the internets.

Something to do...
I'm so glad, excited, overwhelmed, and pleased that now more than my hubby and mom read my blog!  I am, however, trying to update my blogroll and want to capture all of your blog updates.  Can you please leave your url for me so that I can add you all and properly stalk you?  Thanks in advance!

How are you doing in introducing people to your food and fitness lifestyle?