Summon a Demon….or Meditate

FOOD

I actually don’t have a ton of food pics, oddly enough. Since my last post, it’s been a mix of eating in, eating out, and traveling.

Last of the lentil soup and vegan andouille!
Used Postmates from my fav Thai place. It was a disaster! But Luna loved the rice…

Breakfast date fun!

A vegan chocolate martini, and I was in literal heaven
Oh wait…THIS was the last of the lentil soup and andouille sausage!
Grilled tofu marinated in lime juice, chili paste, soy sauce, and water. So amazing.

Work lunch
Baby girl turned 16! Mug cake!

Carrot, orange, ginger, and beet juice

Family birthday lunch celebration
His and hers Bloody Mary’s!

Honestly love this stuff – especially while traveling. Tastes really good – which is shocking compared to most I’ve tried (and choked down)
Today’s Thai lunch date dish

FITNESS

Mostly runs and yoga. Another garage spin class too, which is always fun!

LIFE

It has been relatively quiet. The term ended, though I’m not actually using the break to chill this time. I’m done with all my coursework, and with my research topic approved, I have a ton of work to do before I can even begin research. Right now my focus is on writing my literature review – something I want to have completed in the next 6 weeks. That goal is highly aggressive, but I am confident I’ll hit it.

Most importantly, my baby girl turned 16! We had a low key evening at home on her birthday, which meant a dinner of her choosing and cake and presents. The next day we met up with my boyfriend and his youngest for lunch before the kids and I headed off to opening night of Howl-O-Scream for spooky fun! It is definitely a tradition for us, and we had a great time. Dole whip and screams for everyone! 🎃👻👹

Kids went on a ride I did not like (claustrophobic and don’t like the VR headsets), so I had a cider and read while waiting

One day my boyfriend and I spent the day together and had a great time. It involved a gallery, a new coffee shop, breakfast, and yummy cocktails, among other things. We also went out for brunch the day before I left for Boston.

Speaking of my trip to Boston – what a travel mess. Flight delays, missed connections, unsuccessful stand-by flights meant I got in many hours later than I was supposed to and missed the first day of meetings. Oh well. Second day I was met with cheers and hugs, so that was fun.

It was only an overnighter, so went home the next day – and had a flight delay! Irrelevant though since I had plenty of time to make my connection and got home the same time I would’ve anyway.

I’m home for the rest of the week before heading out of town Mon-Wed next week. So begins a very busy travel schedule for me through most of the rest of the year. Alas. All about that hustle!

For a pup who doesn’t like to swim, this is as close to the pool as she gets!

Beware Parallelogram Season

FOOD

It’s been a lazy week, to be honest. I had bulk cooked so much last weekend, that we ate a lot of leftovers.

Tuesday I made baked Mac no cheese, which is always a family fav.

Luna was a fan too

Also diced up the homemade andouille sausage and put it into lentil soup to make it even heartier.

Lunch one day MAY have been popcorn and a pina colada at the movies 🙂

And there was toast, and smoothies, and pasta, and soups, and salads.

Quinoa with fresh blueberries and cinnamon

Made a big batch of slow cooker minestrone with gluten free pasta

I used to love egg salad when I was a kid. I do love my tofu egg-less salad more tho! Especially topped on a BAS

I had one lunch date with the guy, but didn’t take a pic. We shared some edamame and I had tofu pad Thai. This was my fortune though!

FITNESS

A couple runs, weights in the garage, a spin class also in the garage, and I finally checked out the BodyPump class I’ve been meaning to try. I liked it – will let you know tomorrow how sore I may or may not be as a result!

LIFE

This has been much more low key than usual. And honestly, not sure how I feel about that.

I had the majority of last week off. I was supposed to go to DC for the DC United game with a girlfriend and a military vet related event, but life and Dorian got in the way, so I didn’t go. BUT, I kept the days off to focus on school stuff and general reading, so that was highly productive. I also went to the movies solo one day to see Angel Has Fallen. I love this series and enjoyed this most recent one too.

A gift from NS in Kenya! Adding it to my list of fun things to read

Back to school for the young one went off without a hitch. All going well so far, though it was only a 3 day week because schools were canceled in advance of Dorian on Friday.

Dorian wasn’t a major event. Some power flickers and unreliable internet, and some yard and pool clean up, but we were lucky. There was flooding and downed trees all over – just not in my neighborhood!

The weekend I stayed home and did housework and school work and grocery shopping and other fun prepping for the week.

I decided yesterday that I wanted to learn more to do with Alexa than play music, the news, and check the weather (oh, and how many days until Halloween!). So I started playing with Drop In, and my sister “called” on it! It was fun. R and I chatted with her and my niece and nephew. Totally cool. She and I also spent significant time sending each other Trump related memes this weekend. All told, good times.

Yesterday was a mini spa day for me and the wee one. She got a haircut, and I got a facial. Fun stuff.

Post haircut R!

We have a family group chat with me and my kids and my guy and BS. Silly stuff ensues. This was my recent contribution.

This week should be busy, but not horrible. It’s the last week of the term, so I have ten tons of writing to do. But can’t complain. I’m getting closer and closer to being done!

Studying outside the day before Dorian visited

Post shower snuggles

My cousin in Scotland posted. Love it.
Too early in the morning for her to get up

Sent this to the eldest last night during her ED shift. She claims she will actually say this…

Too Tired for the Complication of Oatmeal

FOOD

Been an awesome couple days, especially today with a lot of kitchen play time.

Saturday I had a strawberry-Vega vanilla smoothie for breakfast. I also made oatmeal. Alas, not paying close enough attention apparently, and I sprinkled cumin all over it instead of cinnamon. Guess I was still sleepy. Needless to say, I didn’t eat it.

I don’t recall if I had lunch (no pic, it didn’t happen, right?!).

Saturday night was a date night and we stopped at a yummy local Italian place and then for ice cream at a local spot that has coconut milk based chocolate ice cream!

Sunday brunch was a Beyond bowl (Beyond Meat sausage, potatoes, peppers, avocado, and black beans. And mimosas, of course.

I skipped the Avo (allergy) and the tortillas (unnecessary)

Sunday dinner I made a red Thai coconut curry tempeh bowl. Super simple and incredibly tasty. I’m a fan of steaming tempeh cubes for about 10 min before using in any recipe. Easier on the belly (so I read once, anyway).

This morning I tried the smoothie + oatmeal combo again. Successful this time by using Apple Pie spice….where the bottle doesn’t look anything like my cumin and cinnamon bottles!

I had leftover tempeh curry for lunch while I bulk cooked like crazy.

Tomorrow is my youngest’ s first day of school (junior in HS), so it’s back to making desserts again. Chocolate cupcakes with vanilla frosting. I also made a batch of acorn squash Alfredo (this recipe, which I mostly follow and totally adore), a huge batch of lentil soup, pasta salad, my first go at vegan Andouille sausage, and tofu/potato tacos. No one shall starve in this house.

Acorn squash alfredo with quinoa gf noodles and peas
Mashed chickpeas, vital wheat gluten, and tons of spices later = vegan andouille sausage magic!

Tofu/potato tacos

FITNESS

Runs pretty much every day. And some yoga as well. And a spin class in my garage.

I was stupid sore on Saturday and part of Sunday from the HIIT/TRX workout on Friday. In a good way though, so I can’t complain.

LIFE

Friday was a pretty low key day. Slept until 8 (bed at 130am, so it’s understandable). Went to the gym and worked and studied most of the day before meeting up with my boyfriend for a quick happy hour.

Saturday was a run and then studying until going over to my guys house where he was working on stuff and watching football and I was studying. Then we went out for a bit, came home, watched a couple episodes of The Boys and went to bed.

Sunday was brunch, then home to clean, run, and study some more.

Today I went for a run and grocery shopping. This was fun. I went to Lidl, which is still my fav place to shop. $43 for a week’s worth of groceries for a family of 4. A couple blocks away, there’s a bakery outlet. I’ve meant to stop for ages, but finally did today. OMG. So excited. It said TastyKake, which is the biggest reason why I never went, but it also said Nature’s Own, which my kids like their whole wheat bread. Figured there was no down side to checking it out. SO glad I did. They have Dave’s Killer Bread there! If you’re a clean eating hippie, you know what that is, but if not, here’s the thing – all organic, sprouted grain, non-GMO, high fiber breads with no artificial silliness, like high fructose corn syrup (which I’m nearly violently against). I vacillate between that brand and Ezekiel. I walked out with 4 loaves of bread and a thing of English muffins for $6. I’d pay more than double that at Wegman’s or Kroger. So – not going to drive past the bakery outlet just because I think it’s just junk inside!

The rest of the day was really just me, my headphones, and audiobook, and bulk cooking. Maybe a bit of studying too, but not a lot.

This coming week I’m mostly off. I work tomorrow and part of Wednesday, but off the rest of the time. Lots to do!

My sunshine puppy

Wild Child With a Bedtime

Seriously, where the heck does the time go???

FOOD

Pretty typical. At home, lots of salads, smoothies, sunbutter toast, and tofu.

I made up a batch of beets in the Instant Pot, which I really love. And there was curry, a fav salad on a lunch date with my guy at a local Vietnamese place.

Saturday night we stayed in and grilled. He did most of the cooking – I made the salad. Everything was delicious.

Sunday morning we went to brunch – hummus lettuce wraps and a fun mimosa made with a scoop of sherbet in champagne! I’m a fan.

Dinner Sunday was a full family gathering, including my son-in-law, so the 8 of us went out to a Mexican restaurant that has a full vegan menu, which is awesome.

Then I hit the road for a 4 day work trip. The IBM offices have a chef, and he made me some delightful eats. Quinoa/beet cakes, and tons of roasted veggies, whole grains, and plenty of snacks too.

I met up with a girlfriend for margaritas (mine was the picante – of course) and dinner. I had a fun vegan Cobb salad, but the bowl is made of a cucumber! Tasty and fun.

This morning was toast and lunch was a bunch of lentils mixed with BBQ on a baker. Good stuff!

FITNESS

Several runs, yoga, and some HIIT workouts – which I think I need to start doing more of!

LIFE

Time really is flying by. R heads back to school next week! She’s super excited, so I am too.

It’s been a typical week or two. School dominates a lot of my time, but in a good way. Work, kids, and as much time as my guy and I can manage too. We try to spend at least one night per week together, which is always wonderful, even if it’s just watching a movie (which was last weekend!).

I had a work trip to Cambridge, MA for the majority of this week. Very productive and I love seeing all of my colleagues on this blockchain start-up. But it was also very exhausting. Flew up Monday late, Tuesday all day meetings, met with my girlfriend Tuesday eve, meetings all day Wednesday, big group dinner that night, meetings all day Thursday, and flew home that evening. I got in late last night (about 1130) and finally fell asleep by 130.

Today was sleeping in, working out, happy hour, dinner, then school fun! Looking forward to a long weekend of cleaning, school stuff, family, and time with my baby!

R bought this for me for finishing what SHOULD be my last math-based class ever!

View when I had cocktails with S earlier this week

So I’m a wild child with a bedtime!
This is me now. I used to stay up late and sleep in. But now I’m a morning person who wants to go to bed by 830 (though I don’t actually go to sleep until 10ish)

The Not Really a Detox Review

FOOD

First, the detox story. I did 5 days of what amounted to 2 smoothies per day and one gigantic salad using the Your Super superfood mixes. All told, it went fine. I wasn’t hungry or anything. Here’s the thing though. Food should taste good, and while I certainly am a fan of super foods – not when they taste icky. And I couldn’t get past the taste of some of these, and I’m doubtful I’ll use them overly much. The package came with a few other flavors I may check out, but for now – I’ll just stick to my normal healthy eats! And honestly – for a detox, I felt no different. That is either because my normal eating is pretty clean anyway or maybe because it’s more solids than I’m used to in a detox/cleanse (usually mine have been green juice fasts). So was it a detox? In the end – not for me.

Eats post-detox included a tofu green curry lunch date with my friend MM, a simple Mac n peas, and a dinner out with my boyfriend consisting of an Impossible fajita bowl! I also did try Burger King’s Impossible Whopper! It was good, though sat heavier than I like so won’t be a regular thing, but nice to know there’s the option!

FITNESS

Runs, yoga, and kickboxing! I went for 3 runs this week, a yoga class with my young one, and kickboxing today. Feels great to not have anything injured anymore!

LIFE

As predicted, it was a pretty awesome week. Also one that was incredibly social – much more so than normal.

Monday and Tuesday were pretty typical days – work, school stuff, dinner, etc. Wednesday and Friday I took off to do school stuff. While I am not behind any official schedule, I was behind on the pace I set for myself. I don’t deal well when things like that happen, so locking myself away for 2 days to focus was exactly what I needed. And it worked – I’m feeling so much better about everything.

Wednesday I went out for drinks with a coworker, which was nice. We had talked about it for months, and finally went out. Good times.

Thursday was supposed to be checking out a new brewery with a friend, but she’s under the weather and we’ll do it another day. Good though, because I was on a roll with school stuff that night.

Friday was out with my guy, first to our fav wine bar and then to get Tex Mex and his and hers margaritas! Strawberry jalapeño for me, cherry lime for him.

Saturday was yoga with R and then out with an old friend I haven’t seen a lot of. We went to a brewery near her house I had always wanted to check out (though I don’t like to drink much beer – too heavy). We then stopped at a place she’s a local and finished catching up.

Today has been school, laundry, the gym, and pretty soon, plan to start batch cooking for the week ahead. This week will be my last normal one for a bit – travels kick back up week after next. That’s okay though, I tend to like the chaos 🙂

You know, vs the BS being spouted about them causing mass murder…

Because Size Matters

FOOD

The week started with dinner out with my boyfriend. We like to spend time on the Eastern Shore of VA, and stopped at this totally adorable restaurant called Kelly’s. It’s in an old bank building. Very quaint. I had a really delicious portobello mushroom dish with veggies and roasted potatoes.

I made a big batch of one of my fav soups too – carrot/coconut/ginger. Ate soup for days!

Then it was off for a work trip. Just an overnighted, so it was quick. Work dinner on Tuesday was at an Italian place, and I had a salad and pasta dish.

All day meetings the next day and they catered. Breakfast was fruit, roasted veggies, and bagel. I skipped lunch. Sick of pasta. Ate a Clif bar instead.

Got home really late Wednesday night/Thursday morning. Had off Thursday and Friday to focus on school stuff (though truthfully, I worked quite a bit). But after very little sleep, I was glad for leftover soup and a quick veggie burger.

Friday morning was a smoothie (of course). And dinner was at my boyfriends house. He made the rice and poured the (very delicious) wine, and I made a tofu stir fry.

This morning was java on the porch before heading grocery shopping and then home. Once home, made a gigantic smoothie. But here’s what’s fun – it’s a new-to-me superfood company that I’ve been intrigued by since learning about them. They’re called Your Super. Anyway, I’ve been intending to do a 3-5 day detox (I used to do them at the change of every season – but fell off that the past two years). So timing worked out that I’m going to review their 5 day detox plan. Since I hadn’t had breakfast yet this morning, I figured – why not start today? So…I did!

Essentially it consists of gigantic smoothies for breakfast and dinner, and a BAS (big a$$ salad for newbies) for lunch. Not a lot of guidelines other than to stick to whole food plant based foods. Um. Ok. That’s my jam anyway. You’re supposed to skip caffeine, but that’s not gonna happen. I love my early morning cupa black coffee. Typically when I do a detox, I try to do it only during weekdays – mainly because I’m so busy, I don’t think about being hungry, or tired, or cranky, or headachy, or any of the other things that can accompany a detox. Not worried about that on this one, mainly because you still have food – though it’s far less than normal, and it comes with a protein powder, so that keeps me full anyway. So, starting today – Wednesday, it’ll be following the Your Super detox plan and, lucky you, you get to read about it :). Will give final thoughts when it’s done.

FITNESS

I went for a run on Monday and Friday. Sadly, that’s it. I spent Tuesday traveling, Wednesday in meetings, Wednesday night into Thursday morning traveling, and then at the hospital for a bit on Thursday with my eldest, and then home contemplating taping my eyeballs open to keep me awake!

Was thinking of spinning later, but think I’ll run instead.

So, not me, but my youngest started yoga this week! I signed her up for an intro series (with her blessing, of course). She’s been stressed out, but also loves being athletic, so I thought this would be good for her both physically and emotionally. I was traveling so my son took her, but she absolutely loved it! I’m excited for her – besides, it’ll give me someone to do yoga with!

LIFE

Sunday late afternoon I went over to my guy’s house. We went out for a bit, but storms started rolling in and we went back to his place. Spent the night there and then work on Monday.

Yummy ciders before the rain hit!
So true, in so many ways

Tuesday I flew to Cleveland. Met two girlfriends for lunch (forgot the pic – Greek salad, no feta), checked into my hotel, worked for a bit, and then Uber’d to dinner with the crew. That was a ton of fun.

Wednesday was up early and at the Cleveland Clinic at 7am for an hour tour before heading to the IBM offices for all day meetings. I will say that this initiative we’re working on – which is literally building a blockchain ecosystem for healthcare – is utterly amazing to be a part of. Currently working with 7 other organizations, and I can say I legitimately adore everyone I’ve met and work with. It’s a ton of work to build this start-up, but incredibly fun and rewarding too. Good times!

Groovy robots CC uses to haul everything except people around!

Then it was time to head home. Flight delays due to East coast storms, but ended up home by 230am. Thursday was busy, Friday I took off to focus on school stuff, which is what I intend to focus on the rest of today and all day tomorrow.

Friday eve at my guy’s was dinner, wine, and snuggling on the sofa watching The Boys on Amazon Prime! Pretty perfect evening.

Also took 2 days off next week just to work on school stuff. I’m so close to getting research approval, but have to get my lit review done first, and that’s a HUGE effort. Excited about it though 🙂

And despite it being a busy week, it was a really great one too. Pretty confident the coming one will be as well 🙂

Silly selfie my son M took with my iPad when I wasn’t paying attention