Monthly Archives: June 2012

Great Girls Beats Stupid Sunburn


The past few days have been pretty cool on the food front.  I’ve eaten leftover tempeh in salads, butternut squash soup, Indian feast, kale and beet salad, carrot soup, lentil soup, and gluten-free waffles topped with blueberry-chia jam.

I did my best to take decent pictures of it!

Van’s gluten-free toaster waffles with the homemade blueberry jam

Cheater lunch. Healthy, filling…and most importantly, FAST!

Homemade Indian feast. Chana dal, basmati rice with cumin seeds, and a roasted potato and cauliflower dish.

Carrot soup! Consistency is more like pudding/baby food, but it was still really good.


So sunburned that wearing clothes hurt.  Sorry…nothing to update here other than I wanted too, but couldn’t.  Kept the eating clean to try to at least make up for it a bit.  Tomorrow.  I’m hopeful for tomorrow…..


So I mentioned the sunburn right?  Ugh.  Despite my ever-growing unifreckle and tendency (despite my delicate pale white skin) to tan, I forget that I burn like crazy too when I’m not careful.  Usually an 8 SPF is all I need to keep the red away….but none = southern fried skin.  I have that in various locations now, and it sucks.  Sucks to the point where I felt feverish and sick yesterday, and my family has to be careful about hugging me.  Dumb, dumb girl I am….

Yesterday, a T-shirt arrived that my husband bought me.  It took me a few seconds of looking at it to actually “get it”.  I’m a vegetable serial killer….

they look so horrified….

I also decided to take pictures of my dog’s obnoxiousness.  Sammie purposely blocks every single entrance to a room by lying right across it.  And when you step over her, she rolls just a little onto her back to get her belly rub.  She totally does this on purpose…

Today was the first CSA day!!!!  I’m so excited.  My bounty?  1 cucumber, 2 red onions, 4 nectarines, 1 cantaloupe, 1 eggplant, 1 package of cherry tomatoes, and 1 package of blueberries.  SCORE.

CSA pick up

box ‘O cantaloupe

The evening was nicely wrapped up with two of my girlfriends celebrating the new job of one of them.  We spent about 4 hours hanging out and having a great time.  Can’t beat girl time!

K and L!



Yoga + Wine = Awesome!


This morning I had overnight oats! I based my recipes off of Gena’s, using brown rice protein powder instead of hemp, So Delicious Coconut Milk instead of a nut milk, and as my fruit add in, a handful of dried cranberries. It was fantastic!!!

Lunch was a spinach and strawberry salad, and dinner was a green smoothie before yoga. Wine after. 😏


Today was hot yoga Wednesday with AC. The class wasn’t actually not…more like slightly above room temp. Great stretches, but didn’t work up my typical sweat either though. I still love this trend we’re on to at least make time for yoga once a week. Always followed by girl and wine time of course!


It was a great, but busy day. You will notice my absence of pictures! Fear not…it’s because A used it. She took some great beach pics with it today, so enjoy! I love how M is never far from his baby sister, to be sure she’s always safe.

Short and sweet today. It’s 1130 pm, and this little girl will turn back into a pumpkin soon!






When You Notice the Reception In Your Bathroom Sucks….


Yesterday was an epic food folly.  I fell off the bandwagon, and holy poo, did I pay for it.  I’ve taken for granted how good my body has felt since giving up gluten, but yesterday I was put to the test.  And failed.  Never again will I suffer from lack of planning.

D and I did our anniversary trip to Busch Gardens.  I had a good breakfast (Vega One and a banana), but didn’t really prepare for eating up there.  At a theme park.  Stupid me….

I did have a salad at first, which was OK but not remotely filling enough.  After not finding anything and getting hungrier by the minute, I ended up with a grilled veggie panini.  A few hours later (safely at home), I was in belly hell.  This reminds me of first being veggie and needing to plan in advance when I traveled or ate out.  This is no different, and I need to be more diligent about both researching options for where I’m going and bringing food with me until I’m comfortable ordering out again.

On the plus side, today rocked.  Breakfast was a BAS with romaine, marinated Italian tofu, red onion, and topped with some homemade Italian dressing and the mediterranean brown rice salad I made the other day.  Yum!

a really light, but hearty breakfast salad. Really got me going this morning – and felt cleansing at the same time after yesterday.

For lunch, I made a tofu “eggless” salad.  I often add turmeric just to color it, but seriously didn’t even care today.  I made a tostada (in honor of Taco Tuesday….and my love of all things on tortillas), layering some romaine lettuce, eggless salad, and sprouts.  It was absolutely yummy.  I ate two 😉

this is the tofu I use for this dish. It’s totally different from what I normally get, but it works perfect for eggless salad.

it has a very “hard-boiled egg” like consistency. I cube it up, and put it through the egg slicer.

here’s what it looks like before the mix-ins

I add some veganiase, dijon mustard, agave nectar, pickle relish, red onion, and salt and pepper. I’ve made it before with dill or curry as well, for a slightly different flair. It’s really versatile, low-fat, and filling.

I made a batch of blueberry-chia jam!  Very fortuitously, I read Oh She Glow’s post today about making a jam with blueberries and chia seeds.  I was running out of time to use the tons I had, and this was perfect.  It came out awesome too.  My oldest told me she made a mid-day snack  of a toasted bagel and smothered it in this.  I’m thinking it’d make great pie filling too.

For dinner, it was a blended meal of things I made, and things D made.  I made some tempeh tacos, served on a lettuce cup.  A simple dish – I boiled the tempeh cubes for 15 minutes or so (allegedly helps in the digestion), and then did a quick marinade in fresh OJ, cumin, oregano, salt, pepper, ancho chili powder, and adobo seasoning.  Stir fry it up, and eat!  Simply topped with some red onion, they were simple and filling.  D grilled up some corn and veggies (red potatoes and broccoli), and that rounded out my dinner.

my Taco Tuesday Fusion supper 🙂


Yesterday I hit up a 6am crossfit class.  I knew that I wouldn’t work out if I left it later to the day, so I got up at 5 (I was actually already up), had some coffee and a banana, and headed out.

The 6am class is much bigger than the evening ones….and much more subdued.  They were a great group though, and we pushed through a run, warm ups, weighted push ups (hello….who ever came up with doing push ups while having weights stacked on your backs….either should be shot or given a medal), and then the WOD of wall balls and kettle bell swings (10-20-30-20-10 reps).  It was tough, but felt great to get done.


Yesterday was D and my anniversary.  We always say that we don’t need a date to commemorate how we feel every day.  We’re fortunate to be happy together pretty much all of the time, and aren’t one of those couples that requires frequent “date nights” in order to be stupidly happy (though we do go out once in a while).

We did, however, celebrate anyway.  We did our annual trip to Busch Gardens to drink beer and ride roller coaster (and yes…Budweiser products are considered gluten-free….so I was good with the Michelob Ultra for the day.  Sorry Dad….).

We had an absolute blast!  We only rode 2 coasters, but spent the day walking around, talking, holding hands, and having a really, really great day.

D while waiting in line to ride in the front row of the Griffon

I’m glad I didn’t start feeling icky until that night.  That’s when I discovered the wi-fi and cell reception in my upstairs master bathroom leaves much to be desired.  I won’t get into gory details about WHY I was there long enough to notice…but let’s just say it’s frustrating when stuck there and my iPad just didn’t connect to anything….

Today was work.  Not a heavy meeting day, so that was good.  I got a lot done to prep heading into budget season.

Today was also a mid-year Christmas!  All D and my Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and Anniversary gifts came through the miracle of FedEx and UPS (except his anniversary gift to me, which is a couples spa day this coming weekend)!  First of all, D’s new phone got here.  He’s been wanting one for a long time, and we made a deal when he got the new iPhone earlier this year that once his coveted phone came out, he could get it, and then he’d give me his new iPhone.  So really we both got something today.  He got the Samsung Galaxy S3, and he gave me his 5-6 month old iPhone 4.  And I have a Chelsea FC case for it, so it’s even doubly awesome 🙂

D’s new golf clubs came today too!  They are left-handed, and for a tall guy.  He totally killed some weeds in the back yard with his 5 wood….


And most importantly.  My new camera arrived!  It’s a bit overwhelming, but I really can’t wait to start taking beautiful pictures with it.  Between the botanical gardens, the beach, Disney next month, my kids, my Godson, and my food, I’m going to be a picture-taking fool!  I have two instructional DVD’s and two books, and am looking at local camera clubs.  I’ll try to not post a billion here, but plan a LOT of Flickr albums I’ll link to.

Yay! I finally have a big girl camera!!


So yay!  Not-Quite-Christmas-In-July at my house 🙂

I leave you with random pictures….

R hiding in the golf club box…..(this was taken with my old Samsung point and shoot).


playing with the sport mode on my camera, and catching R kicking the ball to M

R petting Sammie

my honey, getting his portion of dinner ready

cooking up the veggies!

last one, I promise….



So I Don’t Have a Black Thumb in ALL Things I Try to Grow!


This morning was some leftover Chinese tofu and rice.  Nothing fancy, but wanted to get something in my belly before running.  I’m not one of those people who can run after not eating all night.

Lunch was Thai when I was out running errands.  At this point, I’m only going to mention if I get something different.  I didn’t.  Why mess with a good thing?

Dinner was definitely inspired by my trip to the Veg Fest yesterday.  I picked up some marinated tofu, and made my own caprese salad!  I made mine a bit more hearty though, by putting tofu, tomato, and red onion slices on a bed of chopped romaine lettuce, then drizzling with Italian herbed olive oil and an aged balsamic vinegar.  I also made this brown rice Mediterranean salad.  I changed it up slightly based on what I had and what I like.  No olives (don’t have), no parsley (don’t like), and I used jarred fire roasted red peppers because I have them and I’m too lazy to roast my own today.

I really should use more of these pre-packaged tofu thingies. Yummy and a nice variation on how I usually use tofu.


my light and refreshing dinner!


Today was another hot day, so I didn’t want to wait too terribly long to go for a run.  Of course for me, that meant 1030 am.  An early bird, I am not.

Tomorrow I am off, and am thinking about going to a 6am CF class.  Note…thinking about.  Good intentions don’t always survive my alarm clock.  If not, it’ll be a rest day, as I’ll be at Busch Garden’s with D drinking beer and riding roller coasters (sans children…we’ve done that every year for our anniversary since moving to VA 8 yrs ago)!


I am finding myself slipping back into my old bad habits when it comes to sleep.  I’ve lost a bit of the fortitude I need to get through this stupid insomnia thing.  I’m going back to the whole sleep restriction thing next weekend for round two.  Ugh.

On a fun note, my sprouts were finished today!  I started them 4 days ago.  Since it was so beautiful, I put them in the sun this morning to get that chlorophyll boost (I usually just put them in a sunny window).  It’s amazing how 3 small tablespoons of seeds can produce so many sprouts!  I like this blend, as it has quite a horseradish-like bite to them.  I’m looking forward to wraps and salads all week with my fresh sprouts.


While I was out there, I took some pics of the new deck too.

After my workout and my shower, I went to run some errands.  I have a couple of packages to ship (but who knew UPS stores were closed on Sunday’s!), so they’re in the car waiting for the morning.  Then it was a stop to drop off items at Goodwill, a visit to the mall to hit up a some sales, and then Fresh Market to get a few groceries.

I picked up two photography books and a magazine while at the mall in anticipation of my new camera arriving on Tuesday!  I am VERY excited about it.  Also, the new golf clubs for D should be here on Tuesday also, and once they are, we’ll be scheduling our lessons.

On a funny note….A picked up a friend of hers to go to the Y to hang by the outdoor pool and do a Zumba class.  They got the lady I had the other day…..oops.

So all told, a very great Sunday.  That I’m going to go finish enjoying with my family!

You…Shall Not…PEZ….

If you do not know who Gandalf is and haven’t seen him yell “YOU SHALL NOT PASS” to a demon in Lord of the Rings, then I apologize that my title makes absolutely no sense to you.  But shame on you for not seeing the movie….


Friday morning I had a banana on the way to work, and Mexican for lunch with D.  Dinner was a Chinese tofu veggie stir fry.  I know..description for yesterday’s meals are short and sweet.  And that’s because the fun food came today!

Today was the Richmond Vegetarian Festival!  I left home around 9am, and noshed on a banana on the way (pit stop at the outlet mall in Williamsburg before Richmond).  I wanted to be really hungry before I got there!

The festival started at noon, and I was there right around 1230.  My food samplings included a tofu caprese salad, a kombucha juice, and then some Indian food (channa masala).  I wish I had a large appetite and could have eaten more because all the food trucks looked awesome, but I am so used to eating small meals, that I was stuffed.  The caprese salad was amazing!  The channa masala was OK….mine is better 🙂

marinated tofu, sliced farm fresh tomatoes, basil, and olive oil. So very tasty!

I wasn’t hungry anymore, but loved the cupcake and taco food truck!

my favorite drink (other than water).

I stopped for dinner (between shopping trips) and had a salad and some wine.  I was at a wine bar called Barrel Thief, and when I asked for a good summer wine recommendation, I was given a sampling of different wines.  I opted for a lovely Spanish white, and even bought a bottle to bring home.  YUM.


Yesterday I took that rest day I’ve been meaning to.  I had it in my head that I wanted to do CF, but when the temps exceeded 100, M really didn’t want to go.  It stormed really heavily, so a run was out.  I guess that was providence telling me to relax.

Today was spent hiking around Bryan park in Richmond.  I parked over a mile away from the festival, so aside from walking to and from my vehicle, I also wandered the park and the festival for quite a while.  It was nice.


Yesterday afternoon was very trying.  It took me an hour and a half to get home from work (normally a 15 min drive).  There was a gas leak in the middle of my city, and half of it was shut down.  I got home just in time for the skies to open up and pour like crazy.  There were several areas of flash flooding, and after only an hour of storming, we had several inches of standing water in the back yard.  Definitely a good night to stay in.  Except we didn’t!  As a surprise, D took me out (I was in my jammies) to Skinny Dip – a frozen yogurt chain here – and I had a vegan chocolate covered cherry soy frozen yogurt!  It was SO good.  We had to snuggle under the umbrella, but it was fun.

Today was definitely a solo adventure day.  I left in the morning and headed first to Williamsburg.  I needed to pick up a few outfits for vacation next month for all of us.  After doing that, I drove the rest of the way to Richmond for the veg fest.

I have to say, it has grown SO much in just the past 2 years.  The first time I went it was nice, but small.  I could walk through the whole thing – stopping at most of the tents – and be done in a half hour.  Wow, was it different today.  It was busy, there were three rows of food trucks/tents, two rows of “other” tents – things like local activism groups, animal rescue, yoga, home-made arts and crafts, etc.  Everything veg of course.  There was also live music, and fun areas for kids, like hoola hooping, face painting, and arts and crafts.  All told, a nice grass-roots festival that’s growing each year.

all about farming. It was pretty cool.

a small portion of the fest

After that, I went to the 17th St Farmer’s Market.  We were there last July for a haunted tour, and I’ve been meaning to come back during the day (in the summer) to check out the food stands.  The space is very large – but it was a major disappointment.  There were almost no vendors at all, and the selection wasn’t great.  I decided to leave and go relax somewhere.

I went to one of the malls and walked around (didn’t get anything), and then headed to REI and Whole Foods before coming home.

Half way home I stopped at World Market in Newport News.  I’ve been looking for a shelving unit for the bathroom – nothing big – just thinking a smaller bamboo or wicker thing, and haven’t been having any luck finding what I want.  They had some that came close, but didn’t quite meet my desires.  What they DID have was an entire PEZ collection of Lord of the Ring’s characters!  They even made the hobbits and the dwarf smaller.  LOVE IT.

Despite it being a really hot day, it felt great being out an about.  I blasted loud music on my drive home and was just happy I had such a nice day.

Shake It, Even If You Don’t Know How


Last night I took a batch of smoked split pea soup out of the freezer that I actually made awhile ago.  I thought it’d made a good meal today since we had temps that hit 108 with the heat index, I sure as heck wasn’t cooking!

I ended up mixing some with leftover basmati rice as my breakfast this morning.  It was yummy and filling, and I certainly can’t complain.

Lunch was a baked sweet potato and a BAS.  No pic, sorry.  It was romaine, peas, corn, pickles (yes…pickles on my salad), onion, cucumber, tomato, and dried cherries.

Dinner is going in the pressure cooker now.  It’s a sweet and spicy cabbage dish, and I have no clue how it’ll turn out.  I’ll let you know tomorrow 😉


Today was a planned rest day.  But I was restless and wanted to work out.  I admit to avoiding crossfit today – only because the WOD included 124 burpees.  And I currently HATE burpees.  I want to throw up at around 15, and in this heat, really did think I could end up in the hospital!

Instead, I vowed to start doing 10 per day at home (starting tomorrow of course), and hit up a lunch time Zumba class.

I haven’t done Zumba in a while, and it seemed like a good idea.  I am still a little sore through the shoulders, so I didn’t want to do anything weight related.  I didn’t want to run in this crap, so that meant searching out something indoors.  I texted a friend of mine who used to like to do Zumba, but she wasn’t up for it this evening, so when I saw a class I could make, I hit it.

I will say…it was awkward.  Not just because I don’t REALLY know how to salsa (or any of the normally fun Latin dances Zumba does)….but because the class instructor didn’t either.  Heck…the first 10 minutes were Disco, which was just strange.  She had very little rhythm and couldn’t keep up with many of the moves she was instructing us to do.  Her basic instruction wasn’t good, and in the end…even though I sweated buckets and knew I got a good workout in…what she was doing was “low impact”, and awkward, and I left knowing I’d never voluntarily hit up one of her classes again.

D found the Zumba Xbox game for me, and maybe I’ll do that when the urge hits!


Last night was some fun wine time with AC after yoga, and we once again were the last patrons to leave an establishment.  Not our fault everything around here closes at 10 on weeknights!

I got home, took a quick shower, and went to bed.  I didn’t sleep well at all, but was up at the usual time this morning.

Work was great, and I got a lot done.  I was actually supposed to go to a baseball game, but something came up and I couldn’t.  It ended up being OK though (not just because I don’t like baseball).  I ended up getting a bunch more done, and that’s always a good thing.

Good news on the golf club front!  I was able to exchange the ones I got D, and the new ones are on the way, and should be here early next week!  We’ll be able to start our lessons very, very soon!  I even ordered a few “golf outfits” for D and I 🙂

R has started reading the Harry Potter books!  I’m so excited that she’s getting old enough to read and enjoy them.  She started the first one last night, and is about 1/3 of the way through it already.  I went to wake her up this morning, and found her lying in bed reading.  Reminds me of when I was a kid and would sneak my book under my covers with my flashlight after going to bed!  We’re going to Harry Potter World at Universal Studios in a few weeks, and this is good prep for her!  I’m sure she’ll watch all the movies on the drive down to FL too.

Feelin Hot Hot Hot

title isn’t as cute if you don’t know the song. Reaquaint yourself here….


Dinner last night was considered a mixed bag. D and I liked it, kids didn’t. They must have seriously under developed taste buds. I’ll have to work on that!

I made a French stew in the pressure cooker of red beans and veggies. Lots of mushrooms, celery, carrots, and cauliflower. 9 minutes to make, can’t beat it. My favorite thing was actually a Facebook conversation related to my dinner….

I made a comment about D liking dinner, and my kids not liking it….

S – And u made?

Me – A French red bean and veggie stew

S – What’s a French red bean?

Me – it’s a happy go lucky bean that enjoys beautiful art and fine wines…

Yep. Love my friends and the converstaions we have!

In fact, I liked my dinner so much, that I had it for breakfast today too! Okay, and I’m lazy, but that’s beside the point. Lunch was some BBQ tofu, and dinner was a quick salad and wine with AC after yoga.


Can I just tell you (because I’m glowing), that in the few short weeks I’ve been doing Crossfit, I’ve lost 6 inches. SIX.

With results like that, it was so hard not going today. However, last Wednesday I ran, did CF, and hot yoga, and was sore as hell the next two days. I stuck with my original plan, which was a run in the morning, and hot yoga in the evening.

Speaking of hot things (like that seguway???), it’s hot out. I was spoiled last week with unseasonably cool 70 degree weather. Delusioned, if you will, that I’m actually going to experience a mild VA summer. HA! My run this morning was 91 degrees (not counting the heat index), and I got to breathe in the lovely smoke from the NC wildfires at Croatan National Forest (currently 21,000 acres ablaze…funny how the news never mentions the ones out here….). Anyway, I digress… was a smack in the face back to reality with today’s run. Thankfully it was more successful than last night’s, where I was so beat, I did more brisk walking than I did running!

This morning I think I was slightly delerious, and the Buster Poindexter song popped in my head. I knew it was destined to be a blog title….

This evening was Yoga-Wine Wednesday. Another hot class, and this weeks felt harder than last weeks! Didn’t help that my shoulders are sore from CF and we held some pretty extensive down dog poses.


The only really fun news is that I finally ordered my camera! It should be here next week. I’m SO excited…so buckle up for way too many pictures of random things in the coming weeks.

Tomorrow is a work event at a baseball game. It’s going to be >100 degrees, so let’s just say I’m grateful for an air conditioned box, beer, and a rest day…

A Sense of Smell Isn’t Always a GOOD Thing…


I actually ate cereal yesterday.  It’s sort of a quarterly event when I get so desperate for something, that I eat cereal.  Don’t get me wrong…I used to LOVE cereal, but since I got the foodie bug, I’ve sort of shunned it for things I thought were more fun.  Alas…I was in a bit of a rush to get to the office, so Rice Chex with some So Delicious Vanilla Coconut milk and half of a sliced banana it was.  And it was good 🙂

For lunch, I actually packed some vegan chana dal chili and grapes (yes, a new food allergy sufferer living on the edge with a raw fruit).  On the way to work, I get a text from AC that her afternoon shuffled a bit, so we ended up having lunch.  Thai food.  Tofu green curry.  Don’t judge.

I couldn’t let that packed lunch go to waste, so I heated it up for dinner, and made chili-tacos.  My own Mexican Monday.  Easy and lazy, but it worked.

let’s just call it Indian Tex-Mex night!

This morning I put a bit more effort into breakfast.  It helped that I was up stupid-early (dumb insomnia), but I made a cheezy tofu scramble.  Onions, tomatoes, red bell peppers, and tofu, scrambled for a bit, then topped with a bit of Daiya cheese until melted.  Seriously…270 calories for a massively filling bowl full of scrambled fun.

Lunch was more a series of snacks to accommodate a mid-day workout.  I had some gluten-free Ener-G toast with sunflower butter before hand, and a blender-ball full of Vega berry protein powder after.  Between the two it was 350 calories, so it was more or less a lunch.

I’m making dinner now (slow cooker red kidney bean French style stew and rice).


Back in the box!  As I’m learning the vernacular, it’s sort of fun.  A Crossfit gym is refered to as a box.  It’s a nice way of saying big a$$ warehouse.

Yesterday was just a Crossfit day, but it was sort of a milestone one.  I established my very first ever One Rep Max (1RM) of my first exercise ever.  The WOD called for different sets of percentages of the 1RM, but because I didn’t have one, I spent the first 20 minutes establishing that.  Basically, I take the barbell (which by itself is 33 lbs), and keep adding weight until I can’t lift anything.  I establish doing 1 rep with good form at my max weight.  So, as of yesterday, my 1RM for a dead lift is 124 lbs.  All told, it took me about 15 reps to find that max.  Can’t wait until I re-benchmark in a few months.

After that, the WOD was As Many Reps As Possible (AMRAP) of:

4 min – Knee-to-Elbows (a horrible thing on a pull up bar…I did 8)

3 min – Ground-To-Shoulder Atlas Stones (I did 11 with a 40 lb stone)

2 min – double unders (I did 19, and about 100 singles between them….and whipped marks into my bum with the jump rope in the process!)

1 min – sumo dead lift high pulls (I did 11 with 42 lbs)

Today’s WOD was actually harder.  After warm-up and skill work (mostly mobility/stretching, pull ups, and push ups), we got busy.  There were only 5 of us during lunch, so we had LOTS of individual coaching, which was cool.

4 Rounds of:

10 hand release push-ups

400 m run

10 pull-ups

10 dips

That took me 20:15.  The workouts are short, but freakishly intense.

After work I went on a 3 mile run.  It was stupid hot and tough, but got it done.


Some smells are good.  Like baking a yummy dessert or smelling flowers.  Some smells are bad.  Working out in a warehouse for an hour, and one ends up smelling bad.  Running in the hot VA evening, and guess what.  Smelly (for the second time in a day).  After my run, I decided to actually take time to cool down before a shower (hot showers when already hot aren’t fun).  While that was happening, all I could do was notice how awful I smelled.  I actually used really girly soap in the shower (which is rare because I’m too lazy), and now I smell like flowers.  A good smell.  Just be glad you weren’t near me when I was in stinky-mode.

Good news on the golf clubs.  I can return them (getting charged $30 for a restocking fee, but it’s my own dumb fault…at least they’re taking them back!), AND….they’re giving me lefty ones that match his height requirements.  Yay.  If I can get them by next Monday, I won’t screw up that this gift was partially an anniversary one too.

Okay, time to check the pressure cooker.  I’m feeding my family SO much later than normal….

Weekend Fun, Bday Parties, Father’s Day, and Self-Gifting!


I will say I varied more from green curry the past few days.  But reluctantly so 🙂

Friday night was a build-your-own taco/nacho bar for M and his friends.  I grossly underestimated how much teenagers eat.  6 lbs of tacos was barely enough!  Thankfully, we had enough food!

spread out over the counter…easier to feed the masses buffet style

My tacos! One corn tostada shell, one soft corn shell, both with beans, rice, and yummy toppings.

We did the bday cake last Friday, so this time it was bday cupcakes.  Simple…and meant far less dirty dishes for me.

chocolate and vanilla bday cupcakes

Saturday morning I made a spicy tofu soup.  My basic recipe, but this time I spiralized some zucchini for my “noodles”.

This morning for breakfast I made a spicy TVP and Chana Dal chili.  It was SO yummy – and really very simple too.  Stir fried some onions and garlic, added hot chili powder, half a can of fire roasted tomatoes, 2 tbsp chana dahl, and 1/4 cup of water.  Bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 (covered), then added 1/2 cup of TVP.  Yum yum!

Dinner tonight consisted of probably the best vegan mac and cheese I’ve ever made.  I wish I could say it was some uber-inspired dish.  Really, I made a package of gluten-free elbow noodles (Ancient Grains Quinoa brand), and then mimicked the white sauce in the Betty Crocker book, but used Earth Balance and Chickpea flour, a can of lite coconut milk, and a 10 oz package of vegan cheddar cheese.  Add some sea salt and fresh ground pepper – then bake for 20 and done.  Miracle vegan comfort food.


Today was most definitely a run day.  We’ve been fortunate to have unseasonably cool weather for VA this time of year.  We’re normally in the high 80’s to low 90’s by now (with high humidity), but have been in the lower 70’s for days.

I was planning on going for a run from home today, when I had this great conversation with D:

Me – I’m going to go for a run

D – where?

Me – um.  I don’t know.

D – you should run at the gardens!

Me – but it’s fathers day.  I should be here.

D – I am going to spend time with my kids, and it makes me happy when I know you’re running someplace that makes you happy!  Go run.

So I did!  I don’t know if it’s him being magnanimous, or if I’m just difficult to live with if I don’t run regularly.  Either way, I went out to the Botanical Gardens for a nice run in a beautiful setting.  I took a different route and didn’t care that I totally got lost.  In just a week, I’m amazed at the difference between what was there last weekend and what was there this weekend.  The butterfly house opened, and they built a pirate ship!  I also ran by this…which is apparently there all the time for whomever wants to play….

rustic checkers, anyone?


It’s been another nice weekend.  M’s party Friday night was a hit (and I have to say…SO much easier than little kids….teenagers just want to “hang out”…no need to have planned activities and games!).  At the end of the evening, we did our outdoor movie night and projected John Carter in the yard while everyone watched.

Saturday D went on his first big hike of the year.  He’s prepping for an overnight backpacking/camping trip.  While he did that, A spent the day with her boyfriend and his family, building a go-kart and having dinner.  M was recovering, and I took R to Busch Gardens where we had a great Mommy and Me time.

and…winning more stuffed animals at the midway…

Today was the farmer’s market, a run, and chilling at home.  For Father’s Day, I bought D (and me really) couples golf lessons and some clubs.  We’ve been talking about playing for a LONG time, but since he’s really tall and left-handed, it’s not like it’s easy to pick up a good set of used clubs.  I have the ones that were my Mom’s when I was a kid, so I’m set.  After much research and discussions, I ordered D a set!  I was so excited…a good beginners set, and designed for his height.  But I’m an idiot because I forgot the whole left-handed thing, so I have to try to return them for a lefty set.  Ugh.  Good thing it’s a combined gift for our anniversary next Monday, so I have time to get the right clubs in!

I’m also finally investing in a really nice camera.  I’ve been interested in photography since I was in high school, and at one point had an amazing camera that my parents gave me (that got stolen when I was in the Navy).  My Aunt even took me on outings with her camera club (she’s an amateur photographer for many, many years), and I actually wanted to be a photo-journalist at one point.  Anyway, I’ve been thinking about it for a while, and after I realized my iPad takes much better pictures than my little Samsung point-and-shoot, I’ve decided it’s time to bite the bullet and do it.  And since I didn’t get a Mother’s Day gift, it’s my little present to myself!  Today seemed like an appropriate day for it!

My Dog Is Socially Inept


Three days of Thai food.  I really don’t need to say more than that.  And yes…all 3 times were tofu green curry.  Don’t judge.


I was SO sore yesterday!  And frankly, I’m still pretty sore today.

As planned, I just did a nice long walk with Sammie (my pups) yesterday.  After R’s swim lessons, Sam and I met up with S and her pup Jack (Sammie’s boyfriend), and we hiked it at a nice clip…but not TOO hard…around the lake.

My dog is a challenge to take out in public.  It’s not because she isn’t super friendly, because she is (in fact, the worst damage she’d do to a robber is to lick him to death), but she likes to play and scares people.  Whenever we see another dog, she crouches down as close to the ground as she can – and she looks like a big beast about to attack.  What she’s actually doing is playing hide and seek.  She thinks no one can see her, and when you get within sniffing distance with your pups, she pops us and tries to simultaneously sniff and play.  And since she starts her crouch well in advance of an oncoming dog and owner, I usually have plenty of time to explain this to the person walking towards me scared to death that my 80 lb yellow lab plans to eat them.   She clearly needs more socialization.


hard to believe she’s going to be 10 next month! She’s an absolute love-muffin.



Again, life has been a lot of fun lately.  I smile a lot, and I have plenty of reason to.  My kids are healthy and happy, and D and I are always having fun (though to be honest, the both of us could find ways to have fun in a paper bag), and work (while challenging) is going great.  I love my life, and I really hope and pray that everyone I know gets to feel the same thing.

Tonight, I am hosting a gaggle of teenagers coming over to celebrate M’s birthday (he turned 15 last Friday).  We’re doing a build-your-own taco/nacho bar and outdoor movie (John Carter).  I have plenty of wine.  It’s gluten-free, so I’m good 🙂