Avocados, Feminisim, and NYC!

FOOD

Alert the press.  I’m out of bananas!

This is how I felt yesterday morning when I went to make my morning green smoothie.  The banana adds creaminess, nutrients, and the ability to have a single smoothie hold me over for a good 3-4 hours.  I can’t believe I was out!

I ended up making an avocado based smoothie – thinking avocados are creamy and filling.  So into the Vitamix went an avocado, a cup of water, a cup of frozen strawberries, and a big handful of spinach.  I will say this – it was creamy!  I should have added some agave or dates since it was missing the banana’s sweetness.  It wasn’t my favorite smoothie, but it was ok.  It didn’t hold me over as long either, which surprised me considering the natural fat content of avocados.  Oh well….

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Lunch was some brown rice pasta, peas, and spicy marinara sauce.  Dinner was an awesome pressure cooker curried cauliflower soup.  With peas (can you tell what sole frozen veggie I have on hand??).

little vegan parm on top
little vegan parm on top

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Who knows what today holds, but know this.  I bought bananas the first chance I had yesterday.

FITNESS

Well, I slept through the scheduled group run on Saturday.  I tried feeling guilty about it – but didn’t.  Sometime around 2pm I went out to the park where the group ran at 8am and did the same run, and tacked on a mile for penance.  I am now absolved by the Running Gods for my discretion (or so I’d like to think).

Today is going to be really warm (70)…and really wet.  I’m thinking hot yoga is the perfect solution to that!  We’ll see….not too many exercise classes on Sunday’s.

LIFE

Well, it’s been a really good weekend.  Friday evening D and I rented Dredd on cable pay-per-view.  It was pretty good actually.  A friend of mine who does a movie review page on Facebook said it well – It had the darkness of Batman, the feel of Robocop and the noir of Blade Runner.

Saturday morning I took R to her swim team practice (hour and a half) and then was spent running errands (mailing the rest of my daughter’s college application portfolio to the university she visited in New England last November, Whole Foods, local grocery, Barnes and Noble, looking at paint for the bathroom, etc.).  I even took a long hot bath after I got home from running.  After dinner we watched about half of the Hunger Games before we all decided it was bed time.

One thing that became apparent early in the morning was a severe oversight in the parenting of our youngest child.  She, D, and I were lying in bed reading and R didn’t catch a Death Star reference D and I made.  Holy cow.  She’s 9 and has never seen the 3 good Star Wars movies.  Thankfully it’s not too late, and I don’t think she’ll be scared for life once we rectify the situation.

Okay, so it’s time to share a pet peeve of mine.  I hate it when women define themselves in terms of their significant other’s accomplishments.  I read a bunch of blogs, and it annoys me to know end when I see them say they’re the wife of (insert job title/accomplishment here), or mother of (enter kid name/age/etc.) here. In their blog description no less! Now don’t get me wrong – women wear many hats.  I am a wife, a mother, and employee, etc.  But first and foremost I am me.  I am smart, funny, athletic (ish), a good friend, cook, etc.  My husband and kids are many of those things too, but I don’t introduce myself as Crissie, the wife of an IT analyst who’s funny and sweet and romantic.  I am Crissie, married to D, who is all those things, but they aren’t adjectives that describe ME.  They describe him.  So let me tell you about myself first…and then we can talk about the people in our lives.  Okay that was rambling and I hope it made sense.  Essentially – be proud of yourself and don’t define yourselves in terms of the accomplishments of others.

D and I have a massage scheduled for late this afternoon, which is really the highlight of the weekend!  I’m also sitting here planning a whirlwind trip that A and I are taking at the end of the month to DC and Baltimore.  We’ve decided to throw in a weekend in NYC, to which I’m exceedingly excited.  I’ve only been there once, so I’m asking people for advice on what to see/do/eat.  Thinking of hitting up a Broadway show Saturday night.  I just have to wrap myself around the fact that it’s going to be cold….

I hope you have a lovely Sunday, and will post soon!

Yes, There Is Such a Thing as “Stupid Juice”

FOOD

So it’s been four days, and I’m sure you don’t want to know in detail absolutely everything I’ve eaten, so here are a few highlights….

Smoothies and/or juices every morning.  Tortilla soup, tofu stir fry, lots of BAS’s, and a raw collard wrap were the highlights.  Very clean, at least half raw, nothing processed, gluten-free.  I’ve had a really demanding week, and good and healthy fuel certainly powers me through it.

pineapple, kale, and ginger in my to-go blender cup (pre blending of course!)
pineapple, kale, and ginger in my to-go blender cup (pre blending of course!)
green smoothie to go!
green smoothie to go!
1 lb of carrots en route to the juicer.  I used the pulp for a different dish, and saved the carrot juice to use as a soup base tomorrow.
1 lb of carrots en route to the juicer. I used the pulp for a different dish, and saved the carrot juice to use as a soup base tomorrow.
sunflower seeds, lemon juice, garlic, and sea salt in the food processor.
sunflower seeds, lemon juice, garlic, and sea salt in the food processor.
carrot pulp, sunflower seed paste, parsley, and chopped onion.  Mix together to put in sammich wraps.
carrot pulp, sunflower seed paste, parsley, and chopped onion. Mix together to put in sammich wraps.
collard leaf, shredded lettuce, and tomatoes into the sammich wrap
collard leaf, shredded lettuce, and tomatoes into the sammich wrap
lunch!  Light, filling, and perfect.  Full recipe in Ani's Raw Food Kitchen.
lunch! Light, filling, and perfect. Full recipe in Ani’s Raw Food Kitchen.
tofu, garlic, onion, and asparagus getting an oil-free stir fry
tofu, garlic, onion, and asparagus getting an oil-free stir fry
add in some brown rice and gluten-free soy sauce (tamari)
add in some brown rice and gluten-free soy sauce (tamari)
baked taquitos (sounds fancy...just refried beans in a corn tortilla and baked in convection for 10 minutes!  Serve on a bed of lettuce, salsa, and guac.
baked taquitos (sounds fancy…just refried beans in a corn tortilla and baked in convection for 10 minutes! Serve on a bed of lettuce, salsa, and guac.
it's apparently National Hot Chocolate Day today.  Sounds good to me...used the rest of my homemade soymilk, frothed it up, mixed with vegan chocolate and a little agave.
it’s apparently National Hot Chocolate Day today. Sounds good to me…used the rest of my homemade soymilk, frothed it up, mixed with vegan chocolate and a little agave.

FITNESS

All of my workouts this week have been at home.  Every day has been at least 10 hr days – some more – so no fitting in gym time unfortunately.

Zumba on the Xbox and runs.  I have a Nike Kinect game coming (renting it via my husband and son’s video game rental ala Netflix – called GameFly – to see if I like it).  It’s gotten high ratings and is very “functional fitness” based – so body weight strength training exercises.  With the project work I have on my plate right now, these 10+ hr days seem to be in the cards for a long time, so any ability to shift workouts at home will be very helpful!

LIFE

Yeah, busy week.  Fantastic week – but busy.  It’s weird, I had one of those weeks where waking up every morning (even the two I had to be up at 5am to make ridiculously early morning meetings) was easy.  Here’s hoping I don’t jinx myself, but this past week has been hectic, productive, and really really rewarding.

There was only one blight on my week, and that was Tuesday evening.  I think all three of my children woke up and drank the stupid juice – because by the end of the day, all three were grounded.  Very long story, but in a nutshell – two lazy students and one who “accidentally” smacked a kid in the privates with her instrument at school and got lunchtime detention for a week.  And stuck her sisters tweezers in a light socket.

I’m used to one kid at a time completely losing their minds, but all three that come to a head on the same day?  Ugh.  Anyway, I know have 3 cells phones, 3 iPads, and 3 children managing to get along with each other because they have no other outlets.  Kind of fun, actually.

So other than kids being idiotic, it’s been a stellar week!  Thankfully D and I have massages scheduled for Sunday afternoon.  We need it!

My To Do List Doesn’t Make Me Special. I Do That ALL On my Own!

FOOD

Yesterday started out with another juice.  This one was tomato, cucumber, lemon, and parsley.  I was nervous because I hate parsley, but I know it has some amazing nutritional benefits (most things we think of garnish does), so I’m on a mission to find a way to stomach it.  Turns out, that works best for me by juicing I think.  It was surprisingly tasty.  I think the highly juicy tomatoes and cucumber masked the parsley taste, which is just fine with me.

photographic evidence of my intent to shove parsley in my juicer
photographic evidence of my intent to shove parsley in my juicer
more proof, since only that would have turned my juice green!  (cucumber by itself is mostly clear)
JUICE GOBLET

Lunch was a Mexican BAS before heading to the movies.

romaine, red onion, guacamole, and salsa.
romaine, red onion, guacamole, and salsa.

Of course one cannot go to the movies without popcorn.  At least not this one.  I had about half of a small bag of plain popped corn.

Dinner ended up being a green smoothie.  I wasn’t feeling a big meal, so that worked out well.  Then I got cold and crawled into bed with a heating pad wrapped around my feet.  Long story.

This morning I made a double batch of smoothie.  I drank half when I got to work and packed the other half in a thermos and stuck in the fridge at work, just in case.

2 cups water, 2 bananas, 1 cup of frozen mixed berries, and spinach until no more fit.
2 cups water, 2 bananas, 1 cup of frozen mixed berries, and spinach until no more fit.

Lunch was a 3-tiered bento of awesome.  Tier 1 – veggie snacks.  Tier 2 – tofu stir fry.  Tier 3 – cabbage and kale slaw salad thingy with the lemon/hemp dressing I made before.

tofu was a dry stir fry with red onion, orange bell pepper, asparagus, and broccoli.  Add some Bragg's Liquid Aminos (or soy sauce) and done!  Add 1/2 cup of cooked brown rice, and you're full for hours.  Promise.
tofu was a dry stir fry with red onion, orange bell pepper, asparagus, and broccoli. Add some Bragg’s Liquid Aminos (or soy sauce) and done! Add 1/2 cup of cooked brown rice, and you’re full for hours. Promise.

Side note.  S gave me hell on Facebook for having a plastic fork.  I AM SORRY.  I forgot to pack either my fork or chopsticks, so it was either use a plastic fork from work or eat with my hands.

Dinner ended up being wicked late at the office, so it’s a good thing I had a cold smoothie just waiting for me.  That was dinner.

Two points for me actually being prepared today!

FITNESS

I did a workout DVD yesterday.  I didn’t make it to the group run at the ocean front.  I just couldn’t make myself set an alarm on another weekend day – especially since I know I’m in for a heck of a rough week this week.  I decided that if I woke up on my own in plenty of time, I’d go.  If not – I’d do something else.  It was a something else kind of day.

LIFE

Yesterday D and I went to the movies!  If you know me, we’re a big movie loving family.  We quote them constantly, and I have a memory about actors that rivals IMDB.  So yesterday was a happy day.

We saw Django Unchained, which was just awesome.  People are either Quentin Tarantino fans or they’re not.  Thankfully, both D and I are.  I won’t go into any big movie review, but if you like Quentin Tarantino flicks (Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill, Reservoir Dogs, etc.), you’ll enjoy this.  If not…well….then skip it I suppose.

Today was back to work.  It’s funny though, I woke up this morning quite excited about it being Monday and going to the office.  Not that I ever don’t like what I do, but thought it was a weird feeling for an early Monday morning.  Oh well, I’m going to roll with it.

It was a 10 hour day and I have a billion things to do (though we all do, so it’s not like I’m special or anything…well…I am, but not because of my to do list).  I didn’t get everything on my list done by a long shot, but I did get everything on my “can’t go home until it’s done Monday” things done.  Which is probably why I was there until 630.

I swung by the pool to see D and to watch R swim for a bit, and then came home to make them dinner.

Now…I plan to be asleep in an hour, so Happy Monday!  Hope you had a good one 🙂

Who Needs Toes?

FOOD

I hate making coffee. Not sure I’ve ever mentioned that before, but there are very few things I dislike around the house more than making coffee. I have absolutely no rational basis for this – I have a coffee maker and it’s pretty brain-dead easy. For some reason, though, it gets on my nerves. So when I’m up way earlier than I know anyone else is going to be, I make one of my fancy espresso’s (I have a Nespresso that’s absolutely divine) with some frothed up vanilla coconut milk, and get my java fix that way.

Since I was up at 6am on a Saturday, that’s exactly what I did! Then it was a banana before running out the door.

When I got home, I had a green smoothie with a chocolate twist for my actual breakfast. I wasn’t hungry enough for a full lunch, so I made a snack of rice crackers, guacamole, and cucumber slices. It was surprisingly fun tasting – and I think the cool crisp cuc brought it all together.

1 cup homemade soymilk, 2 dates, 1 banana, 1 cup frozen strawberries, 1 large handful spinach, and 2 tbsp. raw cocoa nibs.
1 cup homemade soymilk, 2 dates, 1 banana, 1 cup frozen strawberries, 1 large handful spinach, and 2 tbsp. raw cocoa nibs.
snack time fun!
snack time fun!

For dinner, I packed a to go bag. I went to a party at AC’s house, and when I go out to parties, I always bring my own food so no one has to worry about “what the hell Crissie is going to eat”.

I started by making a raw carrot/miso/ginger dressing by Choosing Raw, and topped a BAS (new readers…that means Big Ass Salad) with it. I chose kale as my main green since it can stand soaking in dressing for hours, unlike most lettuces.

this was surprisingly tasty to me - I'm not a fan of raw carrots (unless juiced), but this has great flavor
this was surprisingly tasty to me – I’m not a fan of raw carrots (unless juiced), but this has great flavor
my to-go BAS
my to-go BAS

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I also made some brown rice and topped it with barely steamed asparagus, broccoli, chickpeas, black sesame seeds, and Bragg’s Liquid Aminos (soy sauce or tamari is a great substitute – use the tamari if you want to keep to gluten-free).

have food, will survive any party
have food, will survive any party

At the party I did munch on some veggies and had a glass of red wine. All in all, another great food day (because life is too short to eat crap food).

FITNESS

My alarm went off at 6am. On a Saturday. It sucked a lot. BUT….I got up anyway (I had slept like crap most of the night, so there was no real reason to stay in bed).

After my awesome coffee drink, I got into my cold weather running gear, grabbed a banana, and headed out the door for a group run.

I met up with about 15 other runners at a local park and ran 4 miles. It was cold, but thankfully not windy. Once again, I botched the clothing and over dressed. After mile 1, I was a little too hot. Except for my toes – my toes stayed numb. But really…who needs toes?

After my run I went home and took a shower and sat in bed with my iPad and cat in my bathrobe
for a half hour feeling very accomplished for a Saturday morning.

LIFE

I went to bed fairly early last night, thinking it would make me well rested for my run today. It didn’t – it just meant more hours spent in bed lying awake. I hate the bouts of insomnia. I swear, I’m due for a solid night soon.

AC and her husband had their annual post-Christmas party today, and I went over early to help set up. D came out about 2 1/2 hrs later and joined the festivities, which were in full swing. We had a really nice time, stayed for a few hours, and were still home at a reasonable hour.

the rare picture of Crissie, as seen in the wild (or aka - on the other end of a camera)
the rare picture of Crissie, as seen in the wild (or aka – on the other end of a camera)

So now – I’m attempting to make homemade soy yogurt (again…) and hoping to head to bed soon! Wild and crazy, I know.

No Fries on My Butt, Please

FOOD

Yesterday morning I woke up to the best smell.  And no, I don’t mean coffee (though I totally love that too).  I had set the bread machine on Wednesday night to have a fresh loaf done at 615 am.  Waking up to major food smells really makes playing snooze tag difficult, which may be a brilliant trick to just getting up when the alarm goes off in the morning!

Anyway, I noticed Wednesday night that we were out of bread, and since my husband and kids live on sammiches for lunch and I didn’t feel like running to the store, I figured it would be easier to make some.  What’s interesting is my kids loved having homemade bread – but my husband prefers the store-bought, perfectly uniform, and predictable tasting stuff.  Wuss.

After a cup of coffee, I made a fresh juice of carrot, cucumber, and lime.  Served in a wine goblet – which I am now calling a juice goblet!  Anyway, my uncle said something ugly about my juice pic on Facebook – something about drinking that landing him in the potty for a week.  I quipped back with some derogatory remark about his less-than-classy tastes.  We have a goofy back-and-forth like that about my food, it’s kind of funny.

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Lunch was out with D for Mexican, and I had fajita veggies, corn tortillas, and a bit of pinto beans.  Dinner was something I dug out of the freezer – wasn’t sure what it was – but ended up being a spicy rice and bean dish I probably made a few months ago and didn’t label.  It was yummy though, so that’s probably why I kept it!

Today started out with another fresh juice goblet.  This time it was tomato, carrot, and radish, and then after juicing, squeezed a slice of fresh lemon.  Wow, this one was neat.  Totally different from what I normally make, and the radish gave it a serious bite.  The lemon helped cut that peppery taste, and I just may have a new favorite.  We’ll see 🙂

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Lunch was from Whole Foods – a BAS with quinoa, chickpeas, tons of veggies, and a tahini dressing.

lunch

For dinner I wanted something really basic and almost bland (like eating plain oatmeal), so I made a dish of just millet, tofu, and butternut squash from Cooking the Whole Foods Way.  It’s hearty, but manages not to be boring.  Anyway, it was warm and simple which is just what I was craving.

I know it isn't pretty - but it's really what my body wanted
I know it isn’t pretty – but it’s really what my body wanted

FITNESS

Yesterday was a run day, and while it was cold, it was still nice.  I did feel rushed though to get it in before my daughter’s long swim night (Thursday’s are 2 hrs!).

Today I did yoga at home, but that’s it.  I actually tried to meditate, which was a totally hilarious attempt.  I can’t shut my brain off for 5 seconds, much less 5 minutes.  I’ve read that’s totally normal and to keep trying, but we’ll see….

LIFE

For this being a short work week, it sure has been hectic!  Not so much at work – mostly everyone is catching up on emails and meetings were relatively light – but with the whole work-life balance thing.  The past 2 weeks I only had to worry about life!

After work yesterday was a trip to Sam’s Club, a run, and then swimming practice with my daughter.  It was also my mom’s bday, but I won’t give her age away because women aren’t supposed to do that (it’s some code or something).

Today was work and then Whole Foods.  My favorite kombucha was on sale for buy one bottle, get one.  So I bought a case!  It’s making me try new flavors, which is cool.  It’s currently sitting on my back deck because I have no fridge room and it’s actually cold enough here to keep them chilled.

my trunk after Whole Foods!
my trunk after Whole Foods!

Then I picked R up from her after-school program and got busy in the kitchen.  I have prepped all the veggies I bought.  Collard leaves (to make wraps with), red kale, cauliflower, spinach, cabbage (shredded a whole head in the food processor), and cucumbers (sliced some for sammiches and salads and left the rest for juicing).  I feel so accomplished, it’s ridiculous.

my fridge, jam packed (mostly) with my food.  Since I do the cooking, I get to claim the majority of the space!
my fridge, jam-packed (mostly) with my food. Since I do the cooking, I get to claim the majority of the space!

So now I’m going to read, get my running gear together to get ready for a really cold morning group run, and then go to bed early!  Exciting Friday night, right??

I leave you with this picture that made me giggle…

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Green Juice and Mean Mittens

FOOD

I soaked a batch of soybeans before bed so I could make some fresh homemade soymilk this morning.  It’s been a long time since I’ve made any.  I have a second double batch soaking now so I can attempt to make some homemade yogurt this week!  Seriously….I couldn’t get this urge when I had the time off from work to play around.  No…not me.  I have to wait until life gets busy again.

Today started with a surprisingly refreshing green juice.  One head of romaine lettuce, half of a fresh pineapple, and half a bulb of fennel made for a light and slightly sweet juice.  Still amazes me the number of servings of fresh fruits and veggies you can get so quickly via juicing and smoothies.  Anyway, it’s a keeper.

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Lunch was a BAS of lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and red bell peppers with a dressing made from spicy tomato juice, Italian seasoning, silken tofu, and garlic.  Not the best dressing I’ve ever made, but not bad.  I also had a serving of brown rice pasta with some spicy arrabbiata sauce and a little vegan mozz on top.

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Dinner, though.  That was fun.  I am in serious need of grocery shopping (all I’ve bought recently are things for juices!).  So, digging in the cupboards I ended up making a mashed potato enchilada!  I made a batch of mashed potatoes (using Earth Balance and some homemade soymilk from this morning) and then mixed in some roasted veggies (mushrooms, carrots, onion, and broccoli).  That’s it.  Wrapped inside corn tortillas, topped with a can of enchilada sauce, and bake for 30 minutes.  I served them with a side salad and quesadillas, and everyone was happy!

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FITNESS

Today was a run day.  It was cold, but I think I more or less managed to dress OK.  I had a long sleeve technical mock turtleneck, a t-shirt over it, and long running pants.  I’m glad I wore my hat and gloves, though my hands got almost too warm on the last mile.  I left them on because I had no pockets and really didn’t want to carry them, but it was starting to get uncomfortable.

If you grew up in cold weather as a kid, they had these fun things that allowed you to attach your gloves to your jacket.  Sometimes they were clips, other times the gloves were actually attached by a long string that went through your sleeves.  It helped so kids didn’t lose their mittens. I think I need those.

sadly, if you were only wearing one mitten and a mean kid came up and pulled on the dangling one...you'd end up smacking yourself in the face.  Probably why they don't make these for adults...
sadly, if you were only wearing one mitten and a mean kid came up and pulled on the dangling one…you’d end up smacking yourself in the face. Probably why they don’t make these for adults…

LIFE

Today was totally back to normal.  Getting up early, making lunches, shuffling everyone out the door, working, working out, cooking, and R’s swim team practice.  It’s nice that back to work after a long break is mid-week.  It’ll feel less stressful by the time the weekend rolls around!

I leave you with a picture a friend posted on Facebook today.  I absolutely love it!  A good reminder the next time a swing through a fast food joint seems like a good idea….

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