Category Archives: Foods that I Love

The Big One

You know what makes a Monday better after you’ve spilled coffee all over yourself and sat through the most boring 2.5 hour lecture?

A killer leg workout and a killer salad.

Am I the only one that craves salad?

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mmmm chickpeas, tuna, tomato, bell pepper, spring greens, and tarragon vinaigrette. 

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paired with carrot sticks, cucumber, and Trader Joes Chipotle Hummus.  Man did that baby have spice!  Whew 🙂

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Perfect lunch….wait…did you say “too many vegetables”!?!  Blasphemy!

I’m actually considering buying this shirt:

If you are weird like me, then you should click on the image and purchase one.  :)  They have special sizes for your pets as well, and a fun tote.  Christmas present ideas PEOPLE!!! Your welcome

So,  you’re probably wondering….what’s “The Big One”?

Well, since March 2009, I have raced 5 half marathons.  After a horrible fall out from training with my first marathon (helloooo MONO), I have decided to give the Full Marathon another shot.

Enter:

May 15, 2011 is the set date for my first marathon.  I have run the half marathon in Pittsburgh the past 2 years.

I PR’ed this past year: 2:00:31…that 2 hour time mark is elusive to me 😦

So, as I get ready, I’ll share my training plan…I’ll probably use a Hal Higdon plan (very doable). 

You’re probably wondering about the knee/IT Band?  Well it’s getting better!  Slowly but surely.  I did some strength training on it today, and I ran on Saturday (3 miles). 

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Oh and I ice it a lot.  Yep that’s a bag of frozen corn.  Trust me, for 99 cents, you have instant therapy.

 

Are you a runner? 

If so, what’s your favorite race?

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Recipe and a Round-Up

Sometimes, I love sweets. I mean really love them.  Lately, I’ve been craving cupcakes.  Not a likely craving for me though.  As a self-proclaimed “Cookie Monster”, cake just doesn’t do it for me.  However, after seeing a cupcake “Throwdown with Bobby Flay” and watching unlimited episodes of “Cake Boss” and “DC Cupcakes”, my sweet tooth was raging. 

Thanks to one of my favorite blogs, “Eat Live Run”, I was able to put together a delicious, and perfectly portioned way to settle my sweet tooth:

Two Bite Mini Cakes

  • 1 cup of flour
  • 3/4 cup of sugar (you could use splenda)
  • 1 cup of milk (I used vanilla soy milk and it was great!)
  • 1/3 cup of vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp vanilla

Combine: sugar, milk, oil and vanilla.  In another bowl, combine: flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda.  Add dry ingredients to wet slowly. Use the mini muffin tins!  Bake at 350 for 10 minutes. 

Super Simple Buttercream Frosting

  • 1 stick of room temp butter
  • 1/2 stick of butter flavored Crisco
  • 3 – 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1.5 tsp of vanilla
  • 2 Tbsp milk

Cream the butter, Crisco, and vanilla together.  Add sugar one cup at a time.   Add milk last.

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I don’t have a fancy schmancy cake decorator, so I used a large Ziploc bag, put the icing into it, cut the tip and went to town.  It’s a little more rustic, but its still nicer than just spreading 🙂

 

The Round UP

Here’s some Sunday afternoon reading about some recent issues, fun health info, and recipes I made or want to try:

The Twinkie Diet Helps Professor Lose 27 lbs – CNN.com

Weekend DIYs (I love the pinecone turkeys) – CasaSugar

Fruit and Nut Energy Bites – Oh She Glows

Exercises to Prevent Injury – Runners World

You Want a Toy with That? – NYT

Falling for Warmth – Yoga Journal

How to Cure a Sugar Fiend – Food Renegade (***MUST READ***)

Should You be Running Barefoot? – Runners World

Have a wonderful Sunday! 


Oats and a Visitor

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This morning started out great!  I got up early (thought I had to be in lab only to find out that lab was cancelled), and made a delicious breakfast to kick start my Saturday 🙂

No Bake Cookie Oatmeal

  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1 1/4 cup of milk
  • 2 tsp flax meal
  • 1 tsp cocoa
  • 1 Tbsp raisins
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • toppings: coconut, peanut butter and crumbled graham crackers

Cook oatmeal according to package with milk instead of water on the stovetop. I have found that oatmeal tastes better and has a much more appealing texture when cooked on the stovetop.  Once you add the oats, add flax meal, cocoa, raisins, and brown sugar.  Continue to cook.  Then add toppings.  Enjoy. 

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This only serves 1 person, so you can double, triple, quadruple as needed.  I wouldn’t recommend making more than 4 servings at once.

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A lot of you  might already know that I have a cat.  But not just any cat, THE BEST CAT EVER!

Charlie Chronicles Part II

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He waits for me to come home…and usually he will tell me everything that he did that day.  Sleep…eat….sleep….eat 

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He likes tissue paper.  For a mellow cat, he loves to play!

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His favorite spot in the apartment is the sliding glass door.  He’s got a comfy rug to lay on and watch all the squirrels in the back yard.

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His most playful time is night.  Sometimes he brings Mr. Mouse to bed.  I usually hide it under my pillow to get him to sleep. 

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He is fascinated by the tub.  It makes gurgly noises when it drains, so he will get in and just stare it….for hours.

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He’s very cuddly.  I like to say that Charlie and I are watching Greys Anatomy, but really I’m watching Greys and Charlie is snoozing.

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I call this “The Superman”.  He likes to sleep with his arms stretched out. 

Today, Charlie went crazy!  Because, we had a visitor:

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I believe its a Penn State squirrel 🙂

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Charlie didn’t budge.  He was going to make sure that this little guy knew his place, hehe.

 

Hope everyone is having a beautiful weekend!  Only one more weekend until Thanksgiving!


Good Finds

I love when I find new foods

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I started my morning off with some peanut butter toast thanks to Trader Joes Sprouted Wheat bread.  60 calories per slice, 3 g of fiber, and 5 g of protein.  It had a simple ingredient list: Sprouted wheat, wheat flour, water, honey, wheat gluten, yeast, molasses, and salt.  I believe its good to eat foods that you can not only identify all the ingredients but also pronounce them.  

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Mmmm the start of a beautiful day!

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Only this could make it better.  Thank you Green Mountain Coffee for getting my through my 8 am statistics class!  Did you know you can order K-Cups through Keurig and get 24 per box instead of 18?  Plus free shipping after $50 in coffee (yes I do drink that much coffee…)  Try it out, I’m stocked for A LOOOOOOOONNNNGGG time.  Join their Coffee Club and you get their discounts. 

Classes went fine today.  Jujin and Yumi took my picture on their iPhone today.  They have an app that matches your facial characteristics with famous Korean actresses, actors, etc…  I look like a 51 year old beautiful Korean actress according to the app.   Yumi couldn’t stop laughing!  They’re too cute.

Lunch didn’t disappoint.  It was also a great find and combo:

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V8 Golden Butternut Squash Soup + Amy’s Organic Chunky Tomato Bisque

It’s a 1:1 ratio, nuke it, top with crackers, parm, or croutons.

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I had some more Great Harvest bread on the side.  The bread may be expensive, but there is A LOT in that loaf 🙂

Charlie had to go see the vet today.  I have battle wounds from trying to get him in his “house”.  I think he was worried I was going to get rid of him.  His previous owner gave him up because the new cat didn’t like Charlie (awful person.)  It broke my heart to see him shake the whole way.  But the vet was super nice and Charlie seemed to like him.  Thank goodness, phew.

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The rest of the afternoon looked like this (intermixed with chatting with my Shawna-na-na!  Miss ya sweetie, can’t wait for the Turkey Trot).  Stat homework, reviewing Biochem notes, and Tweetdeck hehe

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Stacy’s Pita Chips and a large honeycrisp apple fueled me. 

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Can you see all the delicious cinnamon sugar on that puppy?  mmm mmm satisfies the salty and sweet cravings.  Get a bag…you won’t be disappointed.  Trust me 😉

 

Since I’ve shared, what foods have you recently discovered??? 


Not So Normal Day

Today was ok…

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I started out foam rolling, stretching, and icing.  Yep, no running for me yet.  I think Annie is right, it’s my IT Band.  When I foam roll it, I could cry :( 

I have to get better though!  I have a turkey trot to do with Daddio on Thanksgiving day.  And that is coming up fast!  I’m going to do a recipe series for healthy versions of your favorite Thanksgiving foods, so stay tuned!

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Although my foam roller really hurts….it really helps.  I almost feel like breaking into song….

“Come on baby, make it hurt so good
Sometimes love don’t feel like it should
You make it hurt so good” –John Mellencamp

No?  Ok so maybe that’s just me.

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Have you ever foam rolled???  I like this tutorial from Runners World.  The videos are linked.

The weather is perking up a bit.  We hit 65 today, which is EXTREMELY mild for November.  I know the cold is coming, I’m bracing myself for it. 

It was still chilly this morning, so I made myself a big bowl of oats!

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Topped with vanilla almond milk, brown sugar, raisins, and a dollop of peanut butter (the love of my life!)  Mr Snowman accompanied my breakfast with piping hot coffee from the Keurig.  I’m onto Caribou Coffee now.  Very delish.

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I got my coffee down, and headed out the door for classes.  It was so much easier to get up and ready this morning, as sunrise was at 715 as opposed to 815.  Yes, Purdue is on the edge of the time zone.  We should be central time, but the darn state is confused.  They just recently started going along with the whole daylight savings time!  They’re late bloomers I guess 😉

Oh the best part of my day!?  Free Starbucks coffee!  It wasn’t ready when I ordered my tall coffee this morning, so the nice guy at the register only made me pay for my coffee cake.  He even brought the coffee to me when it was ready.  Thank you Starbucks!

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After class, I headed home for lunch.  I’m on an egg kick right now, so lunch was scrambled eggs with a bit of cheese, topped with Wegmans Southwest Salsa with Blackbeans and corn mmm mmm!  Plus two slices of Virginia Savory bread.  I think I need to open my own Great Harvest somewhere…I eat a lot of their bread.

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What is that you ask???  Its a cold face mask.  What do I use it for?  Getting rid of headaches!  Yes, no pain reliever involved.  I think this crazy weather is causing some major sinus issues.  I won’t complain, I like the mild weather.

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I noticed this when I was taking the trash out!  I had no idea I lived this close to the Lafayette water tower.  The way the sunset was shining off of it with the red in the trees, I had to take a picture.  I can see the Mount Pleasant water tower from my backyard at home, so it makes me feel a teensy weensy bit less homesick.

Later on….

Dinner did not disappoint.  I got hungry a lot earlier though because of the time change. 

Dad thinks I should call this meal “Yankee Pot Roast”…so that’s what its going to be called

Yankee (Doodle) Pot Roast

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  • 2-3 lb roast
  • a bunch of baby carrots
  • 2 large stalks of celery (chopped)
  • 4 small yukon gold potatoes (diced)
  • 1 packet dry onion soup mix
  • 1 can vegetable broth (hey, that’s what I had on hand)
  • sprinkle of Montreal Steak seasoning
  • 2 tsp dried rosemary
  • salt and pepper to taste

Whisk soup mix and broth together in the slow cooker.  Place roast in first.  Top with veggies and seasonings.  Cook on low for 8 – 10 hours.  To make gravy, take out roast and veggies once cooked.  Keep drippings and broth in slow cooker.  Add Wondra/Flour (about 2 Tbsp) and whisk.  Allow to cook for 5 to 10 minutes, or until thickened.

So, you’re probably asking, why red meat?  Well why not?   Unless you are eating a burger for lunch and a steak for dinner every night, I say enjoy red meat in moderation.  Once a week will not hurt.  To make the eats a little healthier, choose a leaner cut such as sirloin.  I’m not an RD, this is just my philosophy on food and healthy eating.  I do, however, have 4 and a half years of nutrition education…

The less healthy choice I made today were these little babies:

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I thought, PERFECT, tiny cookies to keep my inner cookie monster from raging! 

MAJOR FAIL….They’re almost gone and I bought them on Saturday.  My inner cookie monster comes out even if there is a crumb on the ground from a cookie.  I should have known better.  I think there is always that one food for everyone, that if they keep it in the house, they can’t keep their hands off of it. 

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Just one more. . .

Well Charlie and me are going to go switch between DWTS and the Steelers Game!  Have a wonderful evening everyone 🙂

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Charlie says tootle-loo 😉


‘Tis the Season

‘Tis the season to be thankful 🙂

Today was All Saints Day at church.  Not all of us may be Christian, nor religious, but I believe that most of us find the importance of remembering those who have positively impacted our lives and being thankful for them.  In this way, they have acted as a “saint”.

I love that this religious celebration comes at a time when the whole country is preparing for Thanksgiving and the Holidays.  This time of year is for being with family and friends, and being thankful.  So why not be thankful for our family and friends? 

My family has supported me, cheered me on, taught me right from wrong, led me on a successful path, and loved me with every ounce of their being.  For this I am thankful, and I love them with every ounce of my being. 

I hope today you will reflect on those who have positively impacted your life (alive or passed away) and show thanks.  Gratitude opens up so many doors 🙂

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‘Tis the Season to be Merry 🙂

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I love coffee, tea, hot chocolate, you name it, if it’s cold outside and the drink is warm, its in my mug.  So ‘Tis the season to bargain shop!  I found these two winter mugs for $3.99/each!  The snowman is from Target (one of my favorite stores!) and the red and white one is from Homegoods/TJMaxx (a bargain shoppers heaven for cooking/decorating stuff).  I love to bargain hunt!  Do you?

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Sur la Table usually is not the place to bargain hunt, so I bought $1 cookie cutters to make sugar cookies for Christmas.  A snowflake, a tree, and a snowman will be so much fun to decorate!  Do you bake your own, or eat everyone else’s cookies??

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$1 ornaments!  Total steal :)  I decided to redo my decor for my Christmas tree (it’s been blue white and silver for 4 years – Penn State tree), but my living room is deep orange, so I’m going with the metallics – gold, silver, and bronze.  I think it will make a classy tree!  How do you decorate your Christmas tree?

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I found “Miracle on 34th Street” at Target today for $8.99!  I haven’t seen the original, so I figured for that price, I can watch it and rewatch it, and rewatch it.  But I have to say that “It’s a Wonderful Life” is my favorite all time Christmas movie, but the claymations (ie Rudolph and The Year Without A Santa) always make me read for Christmas.  What’s your favorite Christmas movie?

Sorry if you’re not ready for the holidays yet, but it’s coming fast and I just want to enjoy it for as along as possible….2 months isn’t too much right?  That’s still only 1/6 of the year!

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Tis the Season to Eat GOOOOODDDD Food !

Caprese Panini ala Great Harvest

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Ina Garten totally inspired my latest creation.  I had these sandwiches A LOT while I was in Italy and it reminds me of a caprese salad on a sandwich. 

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You need:

  • 1 large tomato, sliced
  • pesto
  • provolone or mozzarella cheese (I like provolone better)
  • your favorite bread
  • butter

I used Virginia Savory bread from Great Harvest and it was perfect!  Do you have a Great Harvest near you?

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Spread pesto on both sides, layer with tomatoes and cheese.  Butter the outer sides of your sandwich.

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Use your panini maker and squish and cook until the outside is golden and crusty!  (Squish is a technical Panini term that only the best Panini makers in Italy use 😉 )

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Serve with your fav veggie!  I ate broccolini for the first time with it.  Come back for that recipe later (regular broccoli can be subsituted).

 

HELP !!!

So my running lately has been on hold.  I hurt my knee last week and then ran my half marathon…and it still hurts!  It hurts on the outside and only when I run on it!  Do you know what I did to it?  Can you help me solve the puzzle??  If so leave a comment or email me (you can find my email under About >>Contact Me )


I Love . . .

I have a confession to make: 

[source]

I LOVE PEANUT BUTTER, probably more than any other food. 

If the end of the world were to come tomorrow, I would want to spend the rest of the day eating peanut butter. 

I love peanut butter on sandwiches.

I love it with fruit

I love it as a savory topping

and I love it straight out of the jar. 

I love cheap peanut butter, I love all natural peanut butter, I love flavored peanut butter…

To conclude I love Peanut Butter.  Which is why when I saw this today, I kind of freaked out

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The last jar of Wegmans creamy peanut butter peaking out of the pantry.  THE LAST JAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Wegmans Creamy Peanut Butter is by far my favorite.  What is the difference between this jar and Jif or Skippy or Peter Pan?  I think for me its just creamier and maybe a little thicker in flavor.  So thank you Wegmans, for making a cheap and delicious version of my favorite food :) 

Note:  I do not have a Wegmans near me anymore, so I send a request to my Mom to package this peanut butter, along with other Wegmans items that I LOVE.  Thanks Mom, love ya!

Snack of the Day:

Of course it has peanut butter!

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Half an Arnold’s Sandwich Thin, Wegmans Creamy Peanut Butter, Pumpkin Butter (also purchased at Wegmans), and raisins.  I think this combination of foods needs to be repeated again.  It was delicious, but gone too fast.

 

Something else the I love:

Cookbooks!

I think looking through cookbooks for recipes is more fun that surfing the net, however, it is not friendly for my student budget, as they can cost $25 a pop!  So how does one get themselves out of this?  A library of course.

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I brought these two home yesterday.  Ina Garten, you are my culinary role model!  Eat, Drink, and Be Vegan is another I picked up (great reviews on Amazon).  I thought it would strike a great balance with the chocolate peanut butter cupcakes I’ll make from the Barefoot Contessa hehe

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Roasted Pepper and Goat Cheese Sandwiches….mmmm

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Vegetables!  Yes please

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oooooo yummy…this is actually from the Eat, Drink and Be Vegan.  Ina Garten would be proud 🙂

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I cant’ wait to start!  Tomato, Mozzarella and Pesto Panini’s will be made this evening.  I bought Virginia Savory Bread from Great Harvest yesterday that is begging to be eaten. 

 

Hope everyone is gearing up for a wonderful weekend!  I’m Christmas shopping tomorrow.  Tis’ the season ya’ll!

 

Christmas Countdown:  50 more days!

 

“As we struggle with shopping lists and invitations, compounded by December’s bad weather, it is good to be reminded that there are people in our lives who are worth this aggravation, and people to whom we are worth the same.”

– Donald E. Westlake