Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Playing Catch-Up

Hello all! How's your Humpday treating you??
Tomorrow marks the first day of October.. can you believe it?! Where does the time go!?
I'm infatuated with how amazing Fall is around here... the leaves are already changing and falling so fast I feel like I'm going to blink and it'll be Winter.

What's your favorite season???

Anyway... I've been a busy busy bee lately (not to mention a stressed out one) ugh... and that's pretty much my only defense for being MIA yesterday and most of today. And I'm exhaaaausted right now after an hour on the treadmill (p.s. RUNNERS BEWARE - certain exercise equipment may shut off on you after 1 hour of use... leaving you angry & unaware of your stats from that past hour!!!!!!!!!) so it's gonna be a somewhat quick post... The last glance I got at the stats I was around 5.2 miles and 620(?) calories or so... still, I'm beyond tired!

I had lots of yummy eats along the way though. And I would adore going into depth about why my life has been a stressful wreck & a half for the past day or two but I'll spare you all that biz-naaaas! PLUS... I'm taking Angela's words about de-stressing and putting them to good use to solve the problem and so far, it's worked wonders! :)

To compound everything into a more simple explanation....

-- I have a business degree that I worked very very hard to get & there are NO jobs for me - don't get me wrong, I love my job!! But at some point it's time to progress past the waitressing profession... and after endless resume sending, interviewing, & getting nothing it's a little frustrating

-- Finances...these probably go hand-in-hand with the above. I'm making good money at my job, but student loans are set to come in, plus car insurance, cell phone bills, PLUS buying a new car.... *cough* updating my Fall wardrobe *cough* are all things I need to keep constantly in my mind and make sure my incoming cash meets my outgoing cash. Ew. I hate moolah & love it at the same time.

-- I hate to get all mushy....but I miss good ol' Anthony :( He's now an hour and a half away from me and I can't see him as often as I was used to during the summer. And especially when I'm stressed out like I have been, I hate the distance! ...Phone calls are great but the other day I even made a very last minute trip up to Huskytown because I was on the verge of an anxiety attack whilest on the phone with BF and we both decided it would probably make me feel better. P.S. It did :) :)

Anyways... now that I've bombarded you with more than you probably wanted to hear, I'll move on toward bombarding you with FOODIE PICS from the last few days ! :) You're welcome in advance haha....

My pre-gym fuel on Tuesday looked a little something like this:
2 slices 12-grain toast...
Both with Teddie smooth PB
1 with sliced bananas
1 with All-Fruit raspberry spread

And coffee of course...
In my winter style mug :) Yayyy for snow in a few months!! haha

POST Gym fuel was just as yummy...
Oatmeal Raisin Luna Bars
Taste just like an oatmeal raisin cookie.. gahhh I could have saved this for dessert and had a veryyy happy sweet tooth!

Made myself an incredible salad for lunch:
First layer.... baby spinach & chopped mushrooms

Second layer... baby carrots

Gimme some ALMONDS & celery

Topped with leftover BBQ pulled pork - holyyyy yum!

And some sweet corn on top

All mixed up in my new favorite salad bowl with Annie's Honey Mustard...
soooooo so good!!!

Got a new cereal because I'm a fiend ;)

Brandi got it right when she said it's kind of like Honey Smacks - that frog's got the golden recipe... these were delishhh :)

Very filling too! One small bowl as a snack held me over for much longer than I expected.. convo where I complained & whined & acted like a brat due to stress, I packed up some snackies for my journey up to visit boyfriend:
-- Kashi HO-ney Sunshine
-- Kashi Honey Almond Flax
-- Pear
-- Banana
-- PB Pretzel Mojo Bar
** You guys were SO right about these!! They're awesome! I added a tiny spread of PB on top bc the PB chips were a little scarce and it was a nice touch... love the giant bites of pretzel in these!**
-- Chocolate Coconut Larabar
-- also brought a Peach Chobani to mix w. the Honey Sunshine for breaky & my Teddie PB because we're like, lovers. ;)

Boyfriend and I made a fabulous (& surprisingly easy!) dinner once I made it there...
-- Preseasoned Lemon Pepper Catfish fillets from the seafood counter at Big-Y
-- Roasted veggies!!!! MY FAV:
Red & Orange bell peps

I'm not too experienced with cooking or eating catfish but this came out nice... flaky & the seasoning was a TINY bit spicy which I liked (and bf LOOOOVED... I swear he could down a bottle of hot sauce and not flinch - ick)

I'm usually more likely to cook with tilapia, cod, or salmon... I've never had a recipe with these that went wrong.

Any seafood lovahs out there???
What's your preference?

Showing his LAHV of our din-din...

I know I've said it before but I'll say it again...
What's white fish without white wine??? ;)

Breakfast this morning...
Peach Chobani w. Honey Sunshine cereal mixed in

Grabbed coffee with my friend Shannon before leaving UConn to have a quick catch-up session in between her classes and crazy hectic schedule... which gave me a little bit of comfort knowing someone else's life was just as unorganized & stressful at the moment.

I hate that my college girls are all so far now :( I used to be able to do coffee with Shan every morning to cure our hangovers, revisit the happenings from the night before, laugh at the pictures we took, try to remember what happened to all of our money/morals, etc. HA jokingggg.... kinda ;)

Upon arrival back in way-fun hometown I went & grabbed lunch with my dahling Lindsey...
we were absolute cah-raaaaaving sushi so that's what we got...
Obvi loving it... GET IT GIRL!

Shrimp Avocado Roll & Yellowtail Scallion Roll know how I do ;)
...add miso soup, one of Linds's steamed veggie dumplings, & a side salad to this and I was ready to name my food child...

After lunch... our caffeine levels were apparently too low and we were "FORCED" to get coffee.
Hey..gotta survive right?
Pumpkin Spice Latte - get in my belly!

So after eating my weight in shu-shee lanch! (aka: sushi lunch, for those of you who don't follow my odd terminology) I got ready for the gym...

It is FRIGID in my house these days!!!!

I was all ready to go and just could not muster up the strength to remove my warm toe-sies from my Uggs and get them into my sneaks for about half an hour...
Oh. Hey... 45 degree weather..GOOD TO SEE YOU.

You know what... I take that sarcasm back, you're glorious :)

Leaves already falling... its' nuts!

I was still an icicle when I got home so I wanted warmth in the form of foodage:

-- Grilled Tomato, Avocado, & Lite Laughing Cow sandwich on 12-grain bread
-- Sauteed yellow squash, corn, & garlic

Random dinner to throw together but it was yummy and warmed me right up!

Have you ever tried this combo before on a sammie!? GENIOUS!

Dessert was a dilemma:

How do I possibly choose between the two???


I don't. :)

Well it's bedtime for me!
This little lady's got a double to work tomorrow with very sore legs.
Should be interesting !
Have a fabulous night lovahs!!!!


Monday, September 28, 2009

Tilapia Salad & New Product Taste Test

Good Evening Darlings!
Hope none of you had a case of the Mondays today and had a good start to the new week... I can't believe today was the last Monday in September! October came so fast... I'm hoping Fall sticks around longer than summer seemed to.

I always try to designate Mondays for errands & other productive activities.

So I went to the bank, the grocery store, did some laundry, paid some bills, caught up on what all of you out there have been doing with yo damn-selves ;), and spent a good 2 hours at the gym.

40 mins. on the treadmill + a 5 min. cooldown
430 calories burned / 3.6 miles

20 mins. on the elliptical (Cardio setting) + a 5 min. cooldown
approx. 200 calories burned

I pushed myself (especially my legs) today in the weight room and feel GREAT even now! :)

Made sure to stretch really well today since I've been slacking in that area *slap on the wrist* To be honest, I'm usually a stickler for excessive stretching out before & after even minor workouts.. but it slips my mind when I drive 15 mins. to the gym and then run errands for about an hour afterward. Once I finally get back home I'm SO ready for a shower that I've just gone about my day without realizing it.

Moving On.....

Munched on a juicy pear after leaving the gym:
It helped keep me from gnawing my own arm off from hunger until I finished my food shopping (where I picked up these two snack-a-roos seen below) and got home...
I haven't tried the Mojo bars yet !
Is this a thumbs up or thumbs down flavor??

Lunch was heaven sent as I was ready to fall over, no lie...
BBQ Pulled "Pork" sandwich on Arnolds sammy-thin

AND made a batch of Sweet Potato fries to go alongside it....
Annie's Lite Honey Mustard dressing for dipping..

450 degrees for 1/2 an hour with a little paprika, salt, EVOO, and loooooove and these babies came out muy perfecto!

So I finally got to try this out. I'd been meaning to for a while but just wasn't craving it until today... on the way home from my errands I could see a picture of it dancing in my head practically.
MY Review:
Very good!!!
-- I honestly couldn't tell the difference between this meat-free version and the real thing...
-- It wasn't lacking in flavor what-so-ever which made me happy because that's what originally made me nervous when purchasing it....
-- There's about 2 servings in one box so I had enough to save another sandwich-worth portion for leftovers! (Be prepared to see those tomorrow :) Holy yum!)
-- Didn't even need any extra toppings!!
I definitely recommend it to all - meat-free eaters & meat-lovers alike!

Snacktime! #1
Nature's Promise version of Triscuits with a Lite French Onion Laughing Cow cheese

Dinner was just kinda thrown together but ended up being a success... I had bought a tilapia filet on sale and still hadn't been able to find a good, simple recipe to use.

SO...using my instincts... I threw together a bunch of veggies (can't go wrong here) and sauteed them with a little EVOO
Black olives
Sweet corn
Chopped Mushrooms

Sprinkled the tilapia with salt & pepper and then added it to the skillet... topped with the veggies and served it on a bed of baby spinach with a sprinkle of almonds, parmesan cheese, & shredded basil
With a drizzle of lemon juice on top it was a QUICK & delish dinner fix.

What's white fish without white wine? ;)
Andddd ONE more time.... for your viewing pleasure

I swear there's fish under all that mess!

Skip ahead an hour later and my trusty sweet tooth kicked in, per usual...

So I headed to the kitchen to find something and found this perched on the counter:
Billie giving me that "Are you REALLY going for dessert right now?" look.... ahhh, maybe she's right...

OH WELL!!!! ;) haha
Sorry to disappoint Billie-kins!
Snack #2 (a bangin one at that!)
Naner stuffed with Dark Chocolate Dreams? Yes, please!

And now here I am... becoming more and more convinced everyday that I am indeed, an old lady on the inside.... My proof? Exhibit A:
Family Circle??? Really? REALLY?

I can't lie... it's a good read.. especially with a bowl of Honey Sunshine.. can you say SNACK FIEND???? That's numba 3 people...

Question for you lovahs:
What do you tend to grab when your craving for a late night snack kicks in??

I wanna mix it up a bit - I'm a cereal or fruit kinda gal but it can actually get kinda boring after a while!! Any good ideas for healthy, quick fixes?

Coffee x 10 and an EXCITING E-mail!! :)

Good morning!!

Hope you all had a fab weekend!!

Mine consisted of some very good eats, great wine, work, and yes, football - along with EVERY other blogging friend out there it seems... that's what I like to see! :)

Although baseball season is still in full-swing in my opinion. Therefore, I got to watch my team get sweeped in a 3-game series against one of my least favorite of teams. *Thumbs DOWN*

Overall, it was a nice relaxing weekend & I ended it with a dinner shift at work last night -- Ran around like a crazy person, tried a bite (or three) of our new Graham Cracker all-natural ice cream... Holy, it was stupid good!!!! and had a table of four 20-year olds ask for my number (no thank you, children) Ya know, the usual fun packed night.

5-1/2 hours later, $175 richer: CHA-Ching!!$$$$ and a sprint 1/2 way across the parking lot in pouring rain (& I mean monsoon style with my Uggs, non-waterproof mascara, and leather purse -- all wise choices for the weather of course) and I made it home finally!

Can I just tell you... how amazing it felt to come home to my favorite sweatpants from college field hockey?? Ugh... oversized and perfect.

Which brings me to my exciting e-mail!!!!!!

A former teammate of mine from college sent out an e-mail to all FH alumni letting us know that our coach was putting together an Alumni game! And wanted to know if any of us would be interested in playing.

Ummmmmmm.... YES YES YES YES YES!!

Soooo soo so excited!!!! :)

Details on that will follow & I'm way beyond ecstatic that I will get to play again... I've done endless searching for adult leagues all over CT and have come up with nothing so this was a nice little treat ! :)

Better bust out my gear and start practicing my stickwork (TWSS...Ha!)

Anywayyyys.... onto what you're probably actually here for: some GOOD EATS...

Speaking of which.... Alton's gotta put some good old pancakes on his next episode.. so he can show me the trick to making a good first batch of these bebes...

What is your secret Mistah Brown???

Whipped up some whole-wheat pancakes for breaky yesterday morning...

I mean... whats Sunday without pancakes right??

I used an easy-as-pie recipe with WW flour, 1 egg, baking powder & soda, dash of salt, pumpkin pie spice & skim milk...
Then added sliced bananas to each pancake, plus more on top and a smear of pumpkin buttah... yummmmm :)

Followed by a delayed cup of morning coffee... (the first one)
Lazed around... read blogs, checked & sent e-mails, watched some Will & Grace and then finally had lunch...

I came up with the sheer genious idea of toasting my wrap so the cheese would melt a bit...

All wrapped up:
1/2 can white albacore tuna
chopped celery
shredded carrots
baby spinach
drizzle of Annie's HM Dressing
1 slice Reduced-Fat American cheese
--side of carrots w/ hummus & red grapes

Lazed around more because I didn't want to face the fact that I had work in an hour or so, watched the beginning of the Red Sox game & got super-cute for work (sarcasm at its' best people)& headed off to worky... NOT before investing in the second coffee... a Grande sugar-free vanilla coffee @ Starbucks. Gotta keep that caffeine pumping on rainy days or I'm just useless..

I snacked on this a few hours into work:
Absolutely, without a doubt my FAVORITE Clif flavor so far!!! Loved the giant roasted almond pieces and the blueberry flavor was out of this world. I'm definitely getting this one again.

I also had a salad chock-full of veggies while there.. just a few goodies: sundried tomatoes, roasted red peppers, kalamata olives, mushrooms, red onions, & goat cheese. Gahhh, sooo good!!!!

After trudging through the rainforest weather I was beyond happy to have this when I got home:

Comfort food at it's finest....
My brother the Chef recreated the cheddar bay biscuits from Red Lobster. His were alot less cheesy, salty, & greasy which I liked alot. Served with Basmati rice & calamari. YUM! Made me one warm & comforted girl.

What are your favorite comfort foods on cold, rainy days??

Hot Chocolate or heart soups are usually my cold day "pick me up" remedies. Both work like a charm.

I tossed and turned alot last night which was really frustrating because my body was so exhausted and my eyes felt so heavy but I just couldn't keep my mind from wandering... I woke up once at 3:30am to my kitten scratching at the door because she ALWAYS needs to sleep with her madre at night... then again at 4:15ish for no reason what so ever... then again at 7:30ish which seemed early enough to get up but I was still so physically tired that I tried to nod back off, and did, for about 45 mins...

So the coffee kick continues....
In the most ferocious mug I own *RAWR babyy*

It was too early for my mind to function + a lack of sleep in the first place.. so I waited until my stomach decided what sounded good for breakfast...

Surprise, surprise... a yogurt mess. Who woulda guessed it!?
With a side of juicy fruit.... just the way I likeeee ittt

1/2 cup plain Stonyfield yogy-o
3/4 cup Kashi Honey Sunshine (I have to get more of this.. I've raced through almost a whole box in less than a week and a half!)
1/4 cup Special K
Tbsp smooth Teddie PB
Sprinkle of cinnamon
Splash of skim milk... the mess was a little dry today

Breakfast on the floor is MUCH more exciting....
Now blogging away, going for another cup of java, and then off to the GYM!!!
After taking yesterday off I can't wait to get a good sweat session going :)

And the rest of the day consists of:

1. fun errands -- finding a dress for my brother's birthday extravaganza in a few weeks & a little grocery shopping (foodage ALWAYS brings a smile to this chica's face)
2. not so fun errands -- bank trip (and the closest BOA is NOT close what-so-ever) & laundry! woohoooo !!
3. inhaling more coffee by the minute -- I just can't seem to function normally today

What do you all have planned for your last Monday of September???

Alright... time to get moooovin!!!
Check ya lataaa :)