Tag Archives: tempeh

LVP Takes On The Deli Sandwich!

Hey hey-yo! How are you? How was your Wednesday? I can’t believe that one week from tomorrow is Thanksgiving!  I usually try to wake up early enough to catch some of the parade, then my mom and I make our famous sticky bunsDo you have traditions you keep up every year?

I seem to have unleashed the oatmeal beast within me yesterday, because that was just what I wanted this morning.

In the bowl:

  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin
  • frozen berries
  • frozen pineapple
  • flaxy peanut butter
  • cinnamon
  • agave

The rest of the morning was spent preparing for an interview.  I went into the city an hour and a half early so, subway problems or not, there’d be no chance of being late.  I had so much spare time that I went into a deli to go over my notes and read some Canadian snail mail.  To secure a seat, I bought some fruit salad.

The interview went well, I think; I was given an assignment to complete for Friday, so I went straight home to get started.  I needed some brain fuel, so I made a quick salad:

Our house guest came into the kitchen while I was assembling it, took one look at the bowl, and said, “Are you really going to eat all of that salad?! You must have a really fast metabolism!”  It was a salad of great girth, I’ll give him that. But of course I ate every scrap 😉

In the mix:

  • spinach
  • grape tomatoes
  • 1 grapefruit
  • 1/2 avocado
  • leftover salmon
  • dressing made with rice vinegar, sesame oil, sesame seeds & chili flakes

The Lindt store on 5th  was handing out holiday truffles on the street today, so I snatched one up and had it for dessert.

My body must have needed sleep because I nodded right off after lunch! Today is the fourth consecutive day I’ve gotten up significantly earlier than I’m used to, and the rest of the week will be no different.  Hopefully in the next few weeks there will be more early mornings and regular hours, if you catch my drift! When I woke up, I made some coffee and snacked on these Jalepeño Honey Mustard Pretzel Sticks from Kay’s Naturals.

These are my favorite of the Kay’s products I’ve tried; they’re satisfying, and didn’t leave me with horrible garlic breath the way the protein chips did.

The rest of the afternoon and evening was spent working.  When it was getting close to dinner time, I simmered and marinated some tempeh using the recipe for Hot Sauce-Glazed Tempeh from Veganomicon.

After about an hour, I plopped the tempeh onto the George Foreman, the apartment-dweller’s best friend.  Aren’t grill marks satisfying?

I proceded to make one of the best sandwiches on earth: The LVP Reuben.

A reuben sandwich is traditionally made with corned beef, Swiss cheese, saurkraut, and creamy salad dressing.  I don’t remember eating one even when I did eat meat, but my version is much more appealing to me.  It’s based on one of my all-time favorite sandwiches: grilled cheddar with Granny Smith apple slices on Peppridge Farm Cinnamon Raisin Swirl bread.  Tonight, I went a step further…

Grilled cheddar with Hot Sauce-Glazed Tempeh, Gala apple slices and baby spinach on Cinnamon Raisin Ezekiel bread.  My tum is grumbling at the memory.  I also had a bowl of Sweet and Spicy Sweet Potato Leek Soup, garnished with cinnamon, nutmeg, shredded coconut and parsley.

Dinner for 1, at home, does not have to be boring.

Luckily I had the foresight to plan my dessert early in the day; I had two bananas sitting in the freezer and  waiting  to be processed into Chocolate Banana Soft Serve.  Three words: Move over, Stögo! I topped mine with roasted almonds and walnuts.

It was rich, creamy, and far better than anything packaged I’ve bought recently.  You better believe I licked up every last trace of “batter.”

I can’t wait to play around with this! There are so many options based on what’s in the pantry alone.

After dinner I finished my reading, and just as I was about to e-mail my notes to myself (I type everything out on my Blackberry… it’s an odd habit), the memo deleted itself.  I searched IT message boards, asked people I knew with Blackberries if there was any way to retrieve data that wasn’t backed up on a computer… nothing.  Seven hours of work has been LOST.   So… tomorrow will be another early morning.  It’s not the end of the world.

Bonne nuit 🙂

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A Wedding In Connecticut

Good evening and happy Sunday!  How was your weekend?  I just got back from Westbrook, Connecticut, where The Upwelling’s former tour manager got married.  The boys were part of the wedding party so they came back from tour and we all went together.

While this is going to be more of a “greatest hits” post, I want to share a new dressing with you: coconut mint.

Coconut Mint Dressing

Coconut Mint Dressing

  • 1/2 tsp shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 1 small handful fresh mint, chopped
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

“Muddle” the mint, coconut and lemon together before adding the rest of the juices.  This releases the flavors and lets them really pop!  I drizzled the dressing over a tempeh/sweet potato/apple/feta salad

Coconut Mint Salad

… but it would make a great marinade for fish, shrimp, or tofu as well.   I’m getting so much mileage out of this bunch of mint!

In the car, I had the healthiest and most delicious “candy bar” imaginable: dried fruit stuffed with roasted almonds and bittersweet chocolate chips. These are so good.

Healthy Candy Bar

Ari bought me a slightly more processed version, but still a favorite nonetheless.  There’s no wrong way to eat a Reese’s.

Reese's 1 Reese's 2

When we got to the hotel, I took advantage of the time the groomsmen spent rehearsing to go to the gym.  I ran 3.1 miles (5K), walked another .4, and stretched.  As the Gina always says, no one wants to miss out on the fun, so I try to plan timely activities (like workouts and… ahem… the time I spend getting ready to go out) while everyone else is either sleeping or doing something else.

The bride and groom are both Jewish, and because the rehearsal dinner fell on Friday, we had a traditional Shabbat dinner.  The challah abounded!  Somehow I ended up with three pieces of bread on my plate, but Josh and Ari picked at most of it.

Bread Plate

The entrée choices were Vegetable Risotto with Arugula Pesto or Cappelini Rustica; I wasn’t sure which (if any) option was vegetarian, but figured the risotto was a safer bet.  They both turned out to be meat free, and I loved the risotto! It was very rich, though, so I only ate about half of it.  And the flower.  Which I’m pretty sure wasn’t of the edible variety.  Whoops!

Vegetable Risotto with Arugula Pesto

Strawberry sorbet for dessert…

Strawberry Sorbet

… and a fun-size Cookies ‘n Cream Hershey’s bar.   This is one of those weird LVP-isms; I really don’t like white chocolate, but a couple times a year I get cravings that can only be quenched by this particular bar.  The bride and groom must have known this when they stuffed it in our goodie bag!

White Chocolate

Also in the bag were these personalized M&Ms; they had the wedding date, photo, names and words printed on them.  Very creative!

Wedding M&Ms

We may or may not have gone to a casino late that night (this girl’s first time) to further my blackjack education and lose $5 on the slots.  It was a strange, strange place, I tell ya!  It was HUGE, and the lights are pretty dim and there aren’t any windows so there’s really no way to tell if it’s 4PM or 4AM.  Drinks are free, and you can walk everywhere with them!  People also smoked inside; it’s strange that a few years ago that was the norm everywhere.  The stores were opened past midnight, so Ari and I split a Godiva pumpkin truffle.

Godiva Royale

We got to the hotel really late, and with the exception of Stew, all slept in past noon.  We woke up famished, so we set out in search of brunch.  Where did our journey take us, you ask?  To the Grand Slam at Denny’s. Yes, you read that correctly.

Denny's Grand Slam

The Grand Slam is a magical deal that lets you pick four breakfast items for only $5.99.  For an extra $.49 per item, you can choose from three “premium selections” like yogurt, granola or fruit.   We were all very excited.

Denny's Grand Slam 2

We placed our orders, then  set to work.  When was the last time you colored at an eatery?

Grand Slam Coloring

Ari ordered a festive pot of peppermint tea (which came with an unsolicited squirt of peppermint syrup):

Denny's Peppermint Tea

I drank my coffee black.

Grand Slam Coffee

The food arrived: I ordered (dry) whole wheat pancakes, egg whites, oatmeal and a cup of fruit.

Grand Slam Breakfast: Before

I ate all the fruit and eggs (which were buttery but delicious), half of the pancakes and left all of the oatmeal.  Even had I not been an oatmeal snob, I don’t think anything else would have fit in my stomach.

Grand Slam Breakfast: After

Brunch understandably held me right up through the wedding, and left me with more than enough time to shower, dress (Hollywood Tape did not come through for me as I’d hoped)…

pre-wedding

… and watch three hours worth of Married With Children episodes.

pre-wedding

The ceremony was beautiful, and while it was traditional in some respects, there were some nice personal touches: the groomsmen walked down the aisle to Semi-Charmed Life, the bridesmaids to Bittersweet Symphony, the bride to Do You Realize?, all performed by a string quartet. There may have been some tears in my corner.

At the dinner reception, the guest seated to my right taught me a helpful trick to remembering where your bread and drinks go in relation to your place setting.

Table Setting Trick

Make the “OK” signal with both of your hands.  Your left forms a lower-case “B” (for bread), and the right forms a “D” (for drink).  How handy!

Speaking of bread, this roll was particularly tasty…

Bread

… and where drinks are concerned, I stuck to vodka- sodas.

Vodka Soda

While we were eating our smoked mozzarella and pesto ravioli appetizer, Josh and Ari played an acoustic version of A-Ha’s “Take On Me” for the bride and groom’s first dance. This was really good, but I let it get cold and only had a few bites.

Smoked Mozzarella Ravioli

I didn’t leave a scrap of arugula salad with toasted walnuts, shaved parmesan, and mandarin oranges, however.  The couple next to me thought it was too big, but I would have gladly alleviated them of their portion!  This was my favorite part of the meal.

Arugula Salad

The entree was grilled salmon with mashed potatoes, green beans and carrots. It was good, but I was pretty full by the time this came around and only ate about half of the fish (but all of the veggies!) and gave my taters to Ari.

Wedding Salmon

We danced around on the floor for a bit, but really just enjoyed being with friends and each other.  The band is booked through February with a short break in December, so it was nice to be able to spend the weekend together.

The cake was sliced and brought around: chocolate with strawberry and vanilla buttercream.  I ate about half, then went back out to tear up the rug.

Wedding Cake

Our eyelids started drooping around midnight, and we were asleep by 1.  We had to hustle in the morning to get back to the city, but we had enough time to have a nice brunch with the wedding party.  I had half of a sesame bagel with cream cheese, eggs, fruit (plus some unpictured grapes), and half a slice of French toast. Coffee abounded, as usual.

Wedding Brunch

It was such a nice weekend.  I really cannot express how grateful I am to have been able to spend a weekend- more like a mini-vacation, actually- with people I love.  The next few days will be pretty busy… The Upwelling goes back on tour tomorrow, and I have a couple interviews for potential jobs.   My healthy habits have been slacking a bit, but one month from this morning (Sunday, December 13) is my 15K race.  I’ve updated my training plan, and will stick to it… I went on a 4.5 mile run late this afternoon.

15K training

Regular posting will resume tomorrow.  I hope you had a fabulous weekend, and congratulations to the newlyweds!

Pumpkin Salads & Ice Cream In Bed

Bonne samedi, mes amis! How are you all? Is your weekend off to a nice start? I know I make it a terrible habit of disappearing on the first day Ari’s back, but I’m here now.

Hmm, so… Thursday’s breakfast was based around YouBar‘s The Best Trail Mix.

YouBar Trail Mix

I plopped half the bag on top of a big mound of pumpkin and an even bigger mound of steel-cut oats, and covered it all with cinnamon and agave nectar.

Steel Cut Oatmeal w/ Pumpkin, Trail Mix & Agave

It felt quite festive.

Steel Cut Oatmeal w/ Pumpkin, Trail Mix & Agave 2

This was the morning that I had my bone density test (the results of which were called in to my orthopedist… who did not return my call and share the findings with me before the weekend but that’s okay).  I had an apple when I got out of the hospital…

Apple

… came home, read InStyle took care of some chores, and went back to sleep for a few hours.  When I woke up, so did a hungry beast. I was inspired by the previous day’s salad dressing adventures, so I played around in the kitchen a little bit.

Pumpkin Vinaigrette

Behold: Pumpkin- Miso Vinaigrette!

Pumpkin Miso Vinaigrette

Pumpkin- Miso Vinaigrette

Serves 1

  • 2 tablespoons pumpkin purée
  • 1 teaspoon white miso paste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar
  • sprinkle of cinnamon
  • sprinkle of nutmeg
  • squirt of fresh lemon juice

This was delicious. I vow to never have a boring salad again!

Pumpkin Miso Salad

Into the salad itself went:

  • 1/3 block tempeh
  • 1 apple
  • red onion
  • carrots
  • red chard
  • pumpkin-miso dressing

I followed it up with a cup of Trader Joe’s Organic Greek Nonfat Vanilla Yogurt.

Lunch

After a few hours of job searching, I snacked on a piece of Pumpkin-Banana-Date Tea Loaf with peanut butter and raspberry jam.

Pumpkin-Banana-Date Tea Loaf

Other than walking and cleaning, I have done almost nothing physical in almost two weeks.  It’s slowly driving me crazy.  Emily alerted me to these workout videos you can watch instantly on Netflix (if you have an account), which is great. Unfortunately, my will power is not.  I did about 10 minutes of this yoga class, then made dinner and went to the airport to pick Ari up.  Blegh.

I’m going to wager that my dinner is not going to ignite any food jealousy.   I had no idea what I wanted for dinner except that I had to have an Ezekiel English muffinOn one half I had a TJ’s Masala Burger with mustard, on the other egg whites with salt, pepper & ketchup. Boring, but got the job done.

English Muffin Sandwiches

We found the band at the airport, piled all the gear in the car and squeezed in like sardines.  Everyone was a little jet-lagged, so we just watched a short movie and In Treatment.  While doing so, I had another piece of Pumpkin-Banana-Date Tea Loaf with almond butter and jam and a small glass of Merlot.

Pumpkin-Banana-Date Tea Loaf

We slept in a bit yesterday, although I woke up a good hour before the boy.  This is usually the case even when he hasn’t just come back from a tour in Europe.  No matter! I made myself a bowl of brown oatmeal: steel-cut oats with 1/2 banana, cinnamon, brown sugar and peanut butter.

Brown Oats

By the time Ari woke up and decided he wanted chicken parm for breakfast, I was ready for lunch.  I made a salad that was almost a repeat of the day before’s, but why mess with a good thing?

Pumpkin-Miso Avocado Salad

In the mix:

  • red chard
  • carrots
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1/3 brick tempeh
  • 1 pear
  • red onions
  • pumpkin-miso dressing

I also had a cup of Trader Joe’s Organic Nonfat Honey Greek Yogurt.

TJ's Organic Nonfat Honey Greek Yogurt

We went into the city and took care of a bunch of errands, including chopping what Erin refers to as Ari’s “alterna-hair.” We stopped by my old restaurant for a glass of wine before going to dinner at Friend House, one of Ari’s favorite sushi restaurants.  Something happened to my camera and it would only take really blurry (and incredibly frustrating) photos.

I ordered the sashimi entrée… I promise that’s what’s in the picture!

Friend House Sashimi

It came with miso soup.

Miso Soup

We went down to the Lower East Side for some Upwelling work, got caught in the rain, and practically ran all the way home.  After showering away the acid rain, we settled in for the night with our cartons of Ben & Jerry.

Ice Cream In Bed

I went for Light Phish Food (but demanded asked nicely for the peanut butter cups in Ari’s Everything But The…), and did my best to put it down after I plowed through 1/4 of the carton.  I guess I have a little bit of will-power.

What are your plans for the weekend?

Curly Girls

Good afternoon, ladies and gents! How is your Thursday treating you? Mine has been just fine, although my body clock is a little out of whack.  I had a bone density test at 8:30 this morning (won’t find out the results until late today or tomorrow), and although I’d brought my gym bag with me, was so exhausted that I ended up just going home to sleep until 12:30!  If I had a dollar for every time I’ve done this….

Yesterday I woke up and stumbled to the kitchen to make breakfast, only to discover that I’d completely decimated my supply of rolled oats! Good gracious, what’s a girl to do?  Make a big batch of steel-cut oatmeal instead!

Steel Cut Oats

I used four cups of water, 1 cup of steel cut oats, 1 sliced banana and 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract. While the oats cooked, I drank some coffee and mailed my Netflix to distract my grumbling tum.  When the oats were ready, I portioned out a serving for myself and put the remaining three servings in the fridge.  Three breakfasts I won’t have to worry about later!

Oats for the Week

In college, usually on a Sunday, I’d make big batches of things like oatmeal and rice to enjoy later in the week. Sure, it takes a little longer than microwaving your breakfast one morning, but saves time in the long run and tastes a lot better.

For my bowl, I diced up a not-quite-ripe pear and microwaved it for 90 seconds.  This softened the pear right up, and released some of its natural fruit syrups.  Sometimes fruit is enough of a sweetener on its own, but yesterday I needed a bit more.  I added a little brown sugar, cinnamon, and walnuts to make my breakfast a little more interesting.

Pear Walnut Oatmeal

The rest of the morning was spent applying for jobs.  Unfortunately the entire city seems desperate for an “assistant” position, but I must press on! I think I need a really tall, straight-back chair.  It’s so easy to just hunch over the desk, and sometimes I catch myself and notice my posture and I am literally almost lying on the table. Terrible! Erin helped me with this about six months ago, but I really need to be better about it.

Finally I broke for lunch to bring the feeling back to my legs and back.  I’d read Diana’s (then) most recent post, which looked fabulous, and decided to give Gena’s Maple Cinnamon Vinaigrette a try.

Agave Cinnamon Vinaigrette

I quartered the recipe to make just enough for my lunch.  I didn’t have any maple syrup, so I substituted raw agave nectar instead.  I added a little fresh lemon juice as well.

Agave Cinnamon Vinaigrette 2

Each recipe of Gena‘s that I’ve tried has been mighty fine, and this was no different.  It was really good, and turned what would have been an ordinary salad into something unique and special.  The salad itself was almost worthy of Raw Wednesday… while tempeh was traditionally prepared raw, I’m not sure that’s still the case in all commercially prepared varieties.

Salad Ingredients

In the mix:

  • collard greens (local)
  • red chard (local)
  • 1/3 block TJ’s 3 Grain Tempeh
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1 kiwi— a reader asked if I eat the skin of kiwis.  I do! I didn’t used to, but tried on a whim this summer.  The skin is thin, and really doesn’t change the taste of the fruit.  However, when possible I buy organic kiwis. I try to go organic whenever I’m going to eat the outside of a fruit or vegetable.  Obviously, this isn’t always possible for financial reasons.
  • 2 carrots
  • Agave Cinnamon Dressing

I decided to make my carrots a little less “rebellious”, and peeled them with the asparagus (or spargel) peeler I received free in Berlin at the Spargelfest Spargelfest!

Spargel Carrot

This salad was perfect.  Good ingredients and quality dressing really do make all the difference.

Agave Cinnamon Salad

I had a glass of red with lunch.

POM Pomegranate Kiwi

Juuuuust kidding… although I wouldn’t be opposed! No, this was POM‘s new Pomegranate Kiwi juice, that the company sent me a few weeks ago to try out.

POM Pomegranate Kiwi 2

This was a lot sweeter than the straight pomegranate variety.  It tastes a bit like fruit cocktail, but I really liked it! This is also 100% juice, which I like.  Don’t you hate when you buy “juice” only to get home and see that there’s actually very little fruit in there at all?

After finishing up my job search for the day, I laced up my sneaks and headed to the gym.  These are the new shoes I got… they’re the same model as my old pair (Asics Gel Kayanos), but I asked for pink instead of read this time. I’m not really a “pink” girl, but I don’t even remember the last time I wore pink sneakers!  Probably my pair of butterfly light-up L.A. Gears. Remember those?

Asics Gel Kayanos

I biked for 30 minutes at the gym while reading my book.  The stationary bike is not the most exciting thing, but I just need to get myself through 30 minutes.  I didn’t like the treadmill, either! There’s nothing wrong with making the most of things, from time to time.

After showering, I headed over to Curly’s Vegetarian to meet Lauryn for an early dinner.   I can’t believe I’d never been here before! It’s right near where I used to work, and has so many options.  Lauryn and I sat and stared at the menu for a good long while before finally deciding on what we wanted… everything looked delicious, from their Mexican fare to their “Public School Lunch” (mac & cheese with panko).  We both ordered the Dragon Bowl Q, a special salad with mixed greens, quinoa, fake chicken, black beans, mango, tomatoes, avocado, jalepeño, corn chips, vegan parmesan… with each dive of our forks, we discovered a new ingredient.  I asked for the carrot ginger and mango poppy dressings on the side, but it was such a loaded salad that I really didn’t need any extra.

Curly's Dragon Q

It was massive.  I didn’t really eat the corn chips because I got so full!   While we ate, we made art.  Lauryn’s clearly the more talented one (on the left)… see how coy her chick looks?

Chicken Art

All of their drinks and desserts sounded amazing (Mexican hot chocolate, peanut butter bomb), but we decided to save our money and have a treat at home.  We did, however, go to Trader Joe’s to get some essentials.  I left the store having spent the lowest amount I’ve ever spent there ($19.79!), and won’t be needing any yogurt or pumpkin anytime soon!  I need to go shopping with this girl all the time.

TJ's haul

When I got home, I caught up on Gossip Girl while munching on a slice of banana-pumpkin-date tea loaf with almond butter and dark chocolate.

Pumpkin/Banana/Date Loaf w/ almond butter & chocolate

Well, back to the grind.  I’ve got to send a few more applications out, then clean up a little because Ari is coming home tonight!

See ya later, alligators.

Whole Foods Heaven

Good morning! I hope your weekend is off to a GREAT start.  I’m going to make this as quick as possible, because Ari and I are off to Woodstock for the day! We’ll be spending the night, and coming back tomorrow.  I’m so excited!  My family and I used to go to Woodstock every fall, but I haven’t been able to go since I started college.  It brings back such happy memories, and I’m really looking forward to showing Ari all of my favorite spots! We’re so lucky to be able to make such a wonderful, last-minute trip.

Yesterday I had my new favorite breakfast: fruit (1/2 mango and 1 peach) with raw almond milk and cereal (Puffins).

Fruit bowl with raw almond milk and Puffins

I’d been planning on going to a 12:00 Vinyasa Flow class, but I overslept a wee bit.  By the time I got there (5 minutes before class began) the room was packed! I should have known that all of the East Village would be trying to cram in one last yoga practice before Labor Day weekend.  I didn’t let that ruin my day, though, so I did 20 easy minutes on the bike while I read my book, abs, and some strength training.

I ate lunch in the park: an apple and my new favorite sandwich.

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Hummus, mustard, sprouts, arugula, and a TJ’s Marsala burger on Ezekiel. Mmm!

Hummus, sprout, veggie burger & arugula sandwich

There was mail that needed to be picked up at my parents’ house, so I headed up there.  This was, to be honest, just an excuse to check out the new Whole Foods store!

Whole Foods Sign

The escalators have a special lane for carts, just like at Costco!

WF escalator cart

I ground my own organic peanut butter

WF DIY PB

Admired the raw goodies

WF Raw Goodies

Visited the sample station…

Rao's Pasta sauces

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I had a slice of whole wheat bread with Rao’s marinara sauce. Mmm!

Rao's marinara sample

I got dinner for later at the salad bar:

WF Salad & Hot Bar

  • spinach
  • corn
  • baked tofu
  • raw squash
  • grape leaves
  • lemon-scented tempeh
  • mac & cheese
  • saag paneer
  • farro

I picked up some bee pollen

Bee Pollen

… so I could channel my beautiful raw girl. Frozen blubes &  pollen rock!

Bee Pollen & Frozen Blueberries

I got my hands dirty in the kitchen…

Betty Crocker

Chopped a lot of dark chocolate

Chopping Chocolate

Channeled Elana

Biscotti Logs

… and made gluten-free, vegan double chocolate mocha biscotti. I tweaked the recipe a little bit and added hazelnuts!

Double Chocolate Mocha Biscotti (Vegan & Gluten-Free)

I bagged them up and got them ready for mailing.

Giveaway baggies

But a girl’s gotta have her own dessert, too! I had a small biscotti butt with raspberries and blueberries.

Berry & Biscotti Dessert

A day well spent, if I do say so myself.  Have a fantastic weekend! I’m leaving my computer at home so I can stay in the moment.  See ya later!

Look, Ma, I Can RUN!

Good morning and happy humpday! I’m so sorry: I forgot to wish you a HAPPY SEPTEMBER! It’s really starting to feel like Fall around here… a couple days ago I had to wear two sweaters to yoga! Luckily it’s not quite as brisk as it is in Michigan… lady, you keep that weather to yourself!

Yesterday, in honor of said Midwesterner, I had a PB2/VitaTop parfait, using a Fudgy Peanut Butter Chip VitaMuffin.

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I made chocolate honey peanut butter mousse with TJ’s Organic Nonfat Honey Greek yogurt,  then fancied it up with layers of peach and crumbled muffin.

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By the time I’d finished catching up on my morning things- what is your routine like in the morning between when you wake up, breakfast and lunch? –  I didn’t have enough time to go to the gym as originally planned.  I’d wanted to run on the treadmill so I could build some mileage, but decided to try it outside instead.  You may recall a certain killer run I went on with Ari’s brother (a four-time marathoner) a couple weeks ago… well, that was the run I set out on.  I laced up my shoes, bought some new headphones at the dollar store (my Clean & Clear ones were long dead), pressed play, and took off.

Since I was planning on a longer run than I’ve been doing,  I kept my pace slow, concentrating on breathing easily, listening to the music, and watching the scenery.  I made the trip to the park- which, in itself, is almost the 2-mile distance I’m used to running in our neighborhood- ran the length of the park, and ran home.  I didn’t rush, but I got a rush (hehe 🙂 ) because of how pleasant the run was.  Before I knew it, I was back home.  The funny thing is that for this distance- about 4 miles– the length of Ari’s CD is perfect! I started running during “American Girls”, and stretched during “New Streets”.  I have to remember to keep my playlists fresh; having music really makes such a difference to me in terms of the length and quality of my workout.  Luckily, I have these ladies to keep me on my toes!  I really want to start running longer distances.  The 5K is on September 13, and we’ll see where it goes from there.  It’s really important for me not to get too cocky about training, however, because I don’t want to end up with another injury. I’m going to try to keep going to yoga in between long runs, and make sure to cross-train and strength train throughout the week.  But, I have to say, I’m excited! I never thought I really had it in me to be a runner.

Total distance: 4(ish) miles

Total time: 44:40 minutes

Maximum heart rate: 192 (96%)

Average heart rate: 178 (89%)

Calories burned: 540

The distance is only an approximation… I really need a Garmin.

After a quick shower, I downed some carrot juice, my new recovery drink of choice.  For those of you who asked: I do not make this myself.  I wish I had a juicer, but I do not wish I was cleaning it every day!  I got a 32-oz jug of Organic Carrot Juice at Trader Joe’s for $3.99 (non-Organic is $2.99).

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Then I hustled into the city to meet my long-lost love and blogger, Miss Sarah, at the Candle Cafe.

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There were so many things that I wanted to try, so I gently forced the waitress to choose for me.  At restaurants, I usually try to stray from having things I can (and would) make at home, but going against my rule, I ended up ordering one of the daily specials, soba salad.

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It was very good! The dressing reminded me a lot of Woodstock Dressing, which I haven’t had in a while.

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Sarah ordered the Aztec salad: bi-colored quinoa, black beans, red onion and corn topped with spicy pumpkin seeds and barbeque grilled tempeh. Served over mixed field greens with a toasted cumin vinaigrette.

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I think she won that round… but it’s okay! I’ll just have to go back 😀  I will also have to go finish this girl in Russia… she’s leaving for Moscow in five days! What a life.

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We needed to end things on a sweet note, so we split the chocolate mousse pie.  Pure, chocolatey heaven at 2 PM.  Again, what a life 😀

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After Sarah and I figured out how to get her to the airport, we parted ways and I went home to run some errands (stencil-shopping at Home Depot!) with Ari.  On the way back, we stopped at Starbucks for a Pumpkin Spiced LatteJenna really talked this up this year!

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The last time I remembered ordering one was when I was college visiting, at Wellesley. I’d been out late at a Beastie Boys concert the night before, and thought the caffeine/pumpkin mix was just so very collegiate.  Yeah, big dork, I know.

I spent part of the evening doing work, then broke to make dinner.

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I used the George Foreman (which I should really be utilizing more, it’s fabulous) to grill us up two swordfish steaks.  I tossed each steak in a quick salmoriglio sauce that I whipped up; there are many variations of this, but the basic mixture is equal parts lemon juice (I used lime) and olive oil.  Then add herbs of your choosing (oregano), salt and pepper. It goes on just about anything, and can help quell that strong “fishy” flavor that’s prevalent in a lot of seafood.

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On the side, I braised some spinach and dried mushrooms (Ari’s choice) in vegetable stock, reduced the broth down, and drizzled the mixture with a little sesame oil.

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We also split a sweet potato with butter and agave.

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I got the swordfish steaks in the frozen section of Trader Joe’s; they were perfectly portioned out! One baby steak and one man steak 🙂 I added more salmoriglio sauce to the fish once it was plated, and drizzled a little on the spinach and mushrooms as well.  I wish I’d made more, because it’s such a versatile sauce.  Thanks for teaching me, Mom and Dad!

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I had some vino and a nectarine for dessert, and we settled back for a mini staycation with For Your Consideration (genius!) and In Treatment.  It was a lovely night.

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Well, off to pack my lunch, get my yoga on and go to work.

Before I go: if you’d like to sponsor me in the race 5K Race For the Cure, you can do so here. I appreciate the support!

Also, the lovely Lauryn, formerly of Making Moves, has started a new blog, Mastering Manhattan, about her tradition to NYC living. Woohoo! That’s right, she’ll now be a New Yorker, so expect some awesome collaborations 🙂

Have a great day!

When I feel heavy metal!

That is one B-I-G WOOHOO!!! I’ve still got some edits to make on a poetry review for my independent study, but that will most likely continue into the summer, so… I can pretty much say I AM DONE with the academic part of my senior year!  Honestly, I didn’t think I’d make it.  I thought of transferring so many times, even of dropping out, but… I made it.  Whew! Anyway, I have a lot of pictures to share since yesterday (and a weird problem with WordPress, so I’m not sure I’ll be able to upload all of them), so here we go:

Last night I went out to dinner with my friends Megan and Max.

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We went to a Vietnamese place called Mai Village. There is a lot of inexpensive Vietnamese, Cambodian, and Thai in the Twin Cities, which I definitely didn’t take advantage of!

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I ordered a noodle salad with grilled shrimp.  Underneath the massive tangle of noodles was a lot of lettuce; the top was garnished with carrots, mint, and peanuts. It was so good, and even though it was an enormous portion, I ate almost all of it!

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After dinner, Megan and I went to Izzy’s for one last (well… probably not the “last,” let’s be honest) hurrah. I got the Dizzy Izzy in a Cup: 5 mini scoops of ice cream (Oreo, salted caramel, strawberry cheesecake, chocolate, and chai) with hot fudge. Mm-mm GOOD!

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Well, I didn’t end up staying up all night to write my paper yesterday… I went to bed at 10! At least I can say that I haven’t pulled an “all-nighter” (to do work, in any case) since sophmore year.

This morning I popped right up at 6 and decided to go on a run.  I had half of a brownie Z bar before I left:

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My heart rate monitor was being all kinds of crazy, so other than the time I don’t have accurate stats.

Total time: 30:31 minutes

Distance: 2.82 miles

Calories burned: 250-300?

Hopefully this problem will resolve itself soon…

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Eggwhites with ketchup and Tobasco:

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Honey Wheat English muffin, 3/4 with vegan marjarine, 1/4 with sunflower butter and 1/4 with cinnamon and sugar for old times (I used to eat this EVERY day).

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With coffee and the paper.  It’ll be so nice to have time to enjoy a luxurious breakfast again!

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Around 10 I snacked on an I-can’t-believe-I’m-the-only-one-in-the-library pear.

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I broke for lunch around 12:30 to eat in the cafeteria with some friends.  I got stewed tempeh and chickpeas (to which I added raisins and coconut):

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I also had a salad with spinach, peppers, carrots, peas, and lemon juice

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Ants on a fiery log:

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And my last (I hope) magic bar. 

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At 1:30, there was a special Champagne Toast and Sendoff Lecture for the seniors.  A glass of champagne was enjoyed, briefly… then back to the library it was! 

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I shared an orange with my friends Luke and Megan in the library… we probably made up 50% of the library’s business. 

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I celebrated finishing school with a trip to Whole Foods for fruit, yogurt, and apples.  I still had some Oikos coupons, so I only ended up spending $5! That has to be some kind of Whole Foods record. 

There were lots of delicious samples.  I had my first Dr. Kracker today! This was the sunflower cheddar flavor… it was really good.  It’s a hearty cracker, sort of like a Wasa or Ryvita. 

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A sample of Food Should Taste Good (more like a tortilla chip): 

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Cod filet: 

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“Robust” gouda:

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There’s a senior event at Stella’s Fish Café tonight.  There will be “light appetizers” and a cash bar, which could mean anything, so I just wanted a light snack. 

I steamed up some rebel carrots:

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I did something blasphemous: I didn’t drink the carrot water (or the Kool-Aid 😉 )! I figure I’m going to be consuming a fair amount of liquid tonight, and I don’t want to be bloated before I even get there! Lilveggiepatch will be back to her old self soon, I promise.

 

Have a lovely night!