Pretty in Pink

Hi All! Well my sister and I had fun-filled day of shopping! We found ourselves all over the place, including…

  • Crate and Barrel
  • Bath and Body Works
  • Gap
  • Ann Taylor Loft
  • Lucy¬†

Whew! Now were so exhausted, but not too tired to have a little late night dessert…

12.18 raspberry swirl cake

Raspberry and white chocolate swirl cake with a side of Edy’s peppermint ice cream – so yum! And I love the pink colors – how girly, don’t ya think?

Now, we’re getting ready for a little gift wrapping party – fun, fun, fun! Tomorrow, we’re headed to a Nutcracker-themed afternoon tea. I love the practice of taking tea in the afternoon – it’s so old-school British! We’re also hoping to go for a morning walk/run – although it might be too cold (30 degrees – brrrrr…)

Signing off for now, but stay tuned for pics of my cool loot from Lucy!

Breakfast in the Cube

And now a line from one of my favorite Christmas movies in honor of its 20th anniversary…

Clark: Can I refill your egg nog for you? Get you something to eat? Drive you out to the middle of nowhere and leave you for dead?

Eddie: No, I’m doin’ just fine, Clark.

If you’re not sure what movie this is from, keep reading to find out ūüėČ

******************************************************************************************************

Hello There! It never fails, the Monday after a long weekend seems to go by sooo SLOW! And, although it was the so-called Cyber Monday, I had absolutely no desire to shop online. With 80 percent of my holiday shopping complete, I am just about shopped out! I can’t believe I just wrote that.

My morning began with a fast and super sweaty treadmill run. I probably could have toughed out the cold 30 degrees but it was still too dark at 6:15 AM for me to run outside. 

I had a cubicle breakfast today – complete with a cup of creamy Trader Joe’s vanilla Greek yogurt with walnuts…

11.30 Trader Joe Greek  yogurt

Funny thing about walnuts – I used to hate them when I was a kid and pecans too. But as an adult, I just can’t get enough of them. Good thing they are full of MUFA and are super good for you! Along with my yogurt, I had some hot and steamy Tazo Awake tea…

11.30 Tazo Awake Tea

I’m not a big fan of eating breakfast at my desk, but sometimes it just needs to be done. I don’t mind eating lunch at my desk, although I do prefer eating out of the office. I’m usually playing catch up at lunchtime so it’s just more convenient to eat in the cube – just like today…

11.30 split pea soup 

I had some very thick and tasty split pea soup leftover from Saturday night. It was perfect for a chilly afternoon. Later in the day, I desperately needed a chocolate fix and I just so happened to have a few homemade chocolate-log cookies courtesy of my father-in-law..

11.30 chocolate log cookies

Unfortunately, I do not have the recipe for these festive babies, but I know that they are supposed to resemble logs with moss growing on them – hence the name chocolate-log cookies. My F-I-L makes them every year around Thanksgiving and Christmas and then distributes them among the family. How wonderful is that – a husband who cooks and a father-in-law who bakes!

I arrived home pretty late from work so I was in a rush to make dinner. I am so glad that I remembered to take chicken out of the freezer – it makes it so much easier to decide what to have for dinner when your chicken is ready to go. I drizzled some olive oil over the chicken then doused it with a mesquite rub and grilled it on the indoor grill. I’m tellin’ ya, having an indoor grill is pretty sweet in the winter!

11.30 mesquite chicken

I also made some awesome mashed sweet potatoes by steaming the potatoes, mashing them, and adding a bit of warmed milk, brown sugar, and butter. So easy and incredible!

11.30 mashed sweet potatoes

The rest of the night will be spent studying for my personal training certification. I have a feeling that this certification process is going to be consuming quite a bit of my free time in the next few months.

By the way, if anyone is interested in trying an super awesome Dutch cheese, try Beemster Classic cheese – the taste is a mix of parmesan, asiago, and cheddar – so yum! To learn more, read my review!

By the way, the movie mentioned above is National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation – I can’t believe it’s been around for 20 years!

Have a great night!

Trimming the Tree

Hi Everyone! Hope you all had a lovely Sunday! Today was a day of all things holiday for us, including trimming the Christmas tree.

My day started with a 5 mile run on the treadmill. I was actually all dressed and ready to go outside when it started to downpour. I was really disappointed because today was supposed to be the warmest day of the week at 50 degrees. The rest of the week, the Chicago Tribune is reporting SNOW!! I shouldn’t be so surprised, after all, Tuesday is December 1!

Breakfast was a warm and sweet bowl of homemade oats – plain oatmeal topped with brown sugar and crunchy walnuts…

11.29 Oatmeal 1

11.29 Oatmeal 2

As you can see, I was playing with the macro setting and focus on my camera. Both of these photos turned out well, each with a slightly different look.

Seeing as today was the first day of Advent, Scott and I headed to 9:30 mass after breakfast. The service was very nice although the church wasn’t as decorated as I thought it would. I’m sure they’ll add more decorations later.

For lunch, we made our typical Sunday fare of sandwiches, but this time we made them with Boar’s Head salami, turkey, and ham – this was one classy and expensive sandwich!

11.29 Boarshead sandwich 2

11.29 Boarshead sandwich 1

Although we put up our tree last weekend, the rest of the day was spent decorating the outside of the house as well as decorating the tree. Last night, we bought a bunch of plain green wreaths from Hobby Lobby and some wide red ribbon. I stayed up until around midnight making bows and then attaching them to the wreaths…

11.29 Christmas Wreath

Not too bad for a first time! Next year, I think I’ll buy wider ribbon to make it stand out a little more when you’re looking at the house from the street.

Dinner was Scott’s homemade chicken soup with dumplings…

11.29 Chicken dumpling soup 2

Although he and I have made this soup MANY times, the dumplings are very tricky. You have to cook them just right or else they turn out very firm instead of soft and fluffy like they did today – nice job Scott!

11.29 Chicken dumpling soup

After dinner, we pulled out the rest of the Christmas decorations and tree ornaments and went to town! Since Scott and I have been married, we have been doing a sort of Victorian theme for our Christmas tree with lots of burgundy, gold, and pink ornaments. I have this dream that I will one day have a truly authentic Victorian (or Dickens-style) Christmas – complete with roast pig by the fireplace, cranberries strung on the tree, and hot mulled wassail brewing on the stove, all while listening to carolers at my door. I know, it’s a little over the top, but that’s why it’s a dream.

I must admit, I am partial to plain jane ornaments, like snowflakes and bulbs, yet two of my favorite ornaments are anything but plain…

11.29 Ornaments

Because I absolutely LOVE hot tea – and actually collect tea cups and teapots – ¬†I couldn’t pass up these two little cuties! I bought them a few years back on a quick trip to Bronner’s Christmas store in Frankenmuth, MI. Seriously, if you think you can go into Bronner’s and NOT come out with something, you’re crazy! They have sooo much to choose from and you can find just about any themed ornaments or decorations there – although I would have loved to find a little Harney and Sons tea tin ornament to put on my tree ūüėČ

OK bloggies – I’m off to study. I finally received my personal training prep books and I need to do some major reading in advance before my class starts in two weeks!

Catch ya all tomorrow!

Who Has the Biggest Bowl?

Hello everyone! I am super tired right now because I stayed up until 12:30 AM to wrap Christmas presents (exchanged on Thanksgiving) and then woke up at 6 AM! Somehow before we went to bed, our alarm clock radio was turned up full blast. So when the radio alarm went off this morning I woke up to a blaring opera! I don’t think I’ve ever jumped out of bed so fast – it was pretty funny, now that I think about it. But it definitely was not amusing at the time.

I think the shock of the music may have given my body a jolt as well because I had a fantastic run this morning! Despite being a bit chilly outside at 6:30 AM (40 degrees), my body seemed to be in supercharge mode. I ran nearly 5 miles in 40 minutes and felt like I could run even more! ¬†Typically, I do not run more than 4 miles on weekdays just because I don’t have the time.

I ended up eating my breakfast at work, which worked out just fine…

11.23 Greek Yogurt with walnuts

My Trader Joe’s Greek vanilla yogurt with walnuts kept me full until lunch. I also had a humungo cup of Tazo Awake tea love goin’ on today…

11.23 Tazo Awake Tea

My boss returned to the office today after being gone for nearly 10 days in Seoul, Korea on business. He was thoughtful enough to bring a little something back for everyone on our team (5 women). He gave me a very cute little orange purse..

11.23 Korea purse

I love the color and the soft, shiny texture. Because it is on the small and dainty side, I think I will end up using it as a jewelry carrier when I travel, rather than for a purse.

I didn’t end up eating lunch until 2 PM due to an unplanned meeting. I was sooo hungry by the time I ate my cream of chicken and wild rice soup…

11.23 Cream of Chicken with wild rice soup

It was Scott’s turn to make dinner tonight but he pulled one of my tricks and decided we should just go out to eat instead. We ended up at our favorite Asian bistro Big Bowl. We ordered our traditional crispy chicken egg rolls, which I promptly ate so fast I nearly forgot to take a picture. I was reminded by Scott only after I had already taken a bite – he he!

11.23 Big Bowl Chicken Egg Roll 

Next up, we split the make-your-own stir fry bar where we chose crispy chicken in a kung pao sauce over brown rice. We also added a bunch of fresh veggies from the stir-fry bar…

11.23 Big Bowl Stir Fry 1

Scott and I have this unspoken competition about who can fit the most veggies in the bowl. It’s all about how BIG the bowl (or the veggies in it) can get. To give him proper credit, Scott is a very good stacker and somehow manages to get twice the amount of veggies stuffed in the bowl than I think most people can. However, when he chooses the veggies, he usually choose the ones HE wants even though they are for us to share. He nearly always leaves out my favorites – mini corns, water chestnuts, and bamboo shoots. So today, I took over the “big bowl”, and grabbed all of my favorites and stuffed them in. I didn’t do too bad of a job as you can see above! Aside from my three favorites, I also added:

  • Mushrooms
  • Spinach
  • Zucchini¬†
  • Red and Green Peppers
  • Shredded Carrots
  • Pea Pods
  • Broccoli¬†

Tomorrow is my last day in the office until Monday – woo hoo! Plus, I’m thinking of only working a 1/2 day so that I can run a few more errands related to my Thanksgiving family dinner.

By the way, any of you who still want to vote for your favorite foodie magazine, you have until tomorrow at 9 PM Eastern. Right now, Cooking Light is in the lead!

Have a great night everyone!

So, I was called into the Principal's Office….

**Don’t forget about the first ever Running With Cake giveaway! You may just snag yourself a huge bounty of goodies!**

It’s funny how your day can start off normal, with everything going along smoothly, then WHAM! A huge pile of bricks is dropped right on your head. Well, not actually, but that’s kind of how I felt today.

I had a perfectly lovely run this morning, bouncing along to my Christmas music and wondering what I was going to have for breakfast.

11.16 Greek Yogurt with walnuts

Ahh, Trader Joe’s Greek yogurt with walnuts – a super energizing breakfast. Followed by a steaming cup of Tazo Awake tea..

11.16 Tazo Awake Tea

Everything was still normal at this point. Little did I know, I would need this mighty breakfast to get me through a pretty stressful afternoon.

Next up, lunch – another incredibly yummy salad…

11.16 Chicken Salad

All was still well as I crunched along to a sound of my fresh veggies and chicken.

Then – the bomb was dropped right on my desk…

Stress reduction: www.flickr.com/photos/56661936@N00/1483037699

I was called into the “principal’s” office, aka our new CEO, for a little chat. That chat turned into a 45 minute conversation about changes that were soon to come in our office. My role in all of this is to help craft tactful messages about these changes so that he can then relay these changes to the staff. The pressure’s ON! Stay calm!

Focus: www.flickr.com/photos/56387066@N00/1810357551

Well, I guess it really did not go down in that dramatic of fashion, but still the messages will be very challenging to draft and convey. And, I can guarantee that some in the office are NOT going to like these messages. One change will really hit home with me – I can’t say now, but I’ll share details later.

Still, even with the challenge ahead, I am absolutely thrilled that he approached me to help him. I’m hoping that speaks quite a bit about my ability to do my job and do it well.¬†

After my exciting afternoon, I arrived home around 6:30 PM to a full made zesty turkey taco dinner. We started with a bit of guacamole of course…

11.16 Guacamole

11.16 Turkey tacos 2

Turkey tacos or even beef tacos are so easy to make and you don’t even need a boxed mix (sorry Mom, not everything needs to come from a box). You can just buy the taco seasoning spice, follow the directions on the bottle, add a few veggies while browning the meat, and presto – semi-instant turkey tacos!

11.16 Turkey tacos 1

Not bad for a Monday night! But wait, that’s not all…

As you all know, I’ve been on a red velvet cupcake kick for the last few weeks. So, Scott so graciously volunteered to run out to Barnes and Noble to pick up a cupcake for me.

11.16 Red velvet cupcake 2

Not only did he come back with the awesome cupcake, but he also came back with a JCrew bag – full of goodies for him though. Hmm, come to think of it, I could use a little retail therapy right now!

11.16 Red Velvet Cupcake 3

Alright my fellow bloggies, I have a big day ahead of me tomorrow, so I’m off to bed.

Peace, love, and red velvet cupcakes to all!

Explorer's Bounty Tea and First Giveaway

This afternoon, I was in deep thought looking out our back window when I noticed this scene…

11.13 spider web trees

A spiderweb of trees in our backyard! It was amazing and kind of creepy all at the same time.

Earlier in the day, I went for a cold run for which I had to bundle up in layer after layer. After the run, I thought I’d give Greek yogurt another try after my spoil-sport yogurt yesterday…

11.13 Greek Yogurt with peanut butter 2

I mixed Trader Joe’s vanilla Greek yogurt with a handful of walnuts and a dollop of all-natural peanut butter..11.13 Greek Yogurt with peanut butter 1

When you mix it all together it’s like peanut butter fluff with a whole lot of crunch! I also enjoyed some super yummy tea..

11.13 Explorers Bounty Tea

About a month ago, the nice folks at Explorer’s Bounty sent me a big package with a bunch of all-natural organic goodies, like chocolate covered nuts and puffed fruit. I did end up tasting several of the products and was not a huge fan of the food. Don’t get me wrong, the products were not horrible, I’m just not a puffed fruit eater and am not a lover of organic chocolate. But, if you are, you’re in luck.

Running With Cake is hosting its FIRST EVER GIVEAWAY!! I have several unopened packages of Explorer’s Bounty products, including puffed fruit, crackers, and chocolate-covered macadamia nuts. To enter my giveaway, please do the following:

  • Visit the Explorer’s Bounty site to check out their story and products, AND
  • If you have a blog, mention the Running With Cake giveaway on your blog, AND
  • Leave a comment on this RWC post letting me know your favorite organic chocolate brand (any brand) and what you like about it (I’m hoping to find one that I actually like!)

Please have all entries to me by 9 PM Eastern on Tuesday, November 17. Then I will pick a winner randomly and announce the winner to all. OK, ready, set GO!

Although I didn’t care for Explorer’s Bounty organic food, I LOVE their tea!!

11.13 Explorers Bounty Tea 2

They sent several types of herbal tea for me to try and today I gave the Green Tea a whirl. Let me tell ya, I am not a big green tea drinker (although Scott loves green tea) but this tea was great! I liked it so much I almost made another cup. I even gave Scott a taste and he said – “yeah, it’s good” – that says a lot for him since he’s super particular about his teas. What I really liked about it was the light flavor – even after steeping it for over 5 minutes. I think that’s why I haven’t liked most green teas in the past because they are too strong tasting to me. I am definitely looking forward to trying the of my tea samples – yum yum!

11.13 Explorers Bounty Tea 3

After breakfast, instead of doing the early Christmas shopping that I intended to do this morning, I ended up not leaving the house until 11:30 AM to run to Costco and the grocery store.

Scott was working at home today, so when I arrived home from shopping we made some sandwiches for lunch…

11.13 Sandwich with tricolor peppers

I love little bell peppers! They are a) convenient because you don’t have to cut them up to take them to work, b) they are sweet, and c) they are so darn colorful and cute!.

11.13 Tricolor peppers

All three reasons were enough for me to buy a jumbo size bag at Costco. I just hope I can eat them all before they go bad! By the way, Costco was rockin’ the samples today – from sausage, to cake, to mozzarella cheese, I could have made a meal out of everything they were having. I wasn’t really in the mood for snacks luckily because I probably saved at few hundred calories.

It was my turn to make dinner tonight. Scott often says that whenever it is my turn to make dinner I always decide that we should go out to eat. Well, I really attempted to make dinner tonight. I even went to defrost chicken and realized that we were on our last 2 chicken breasts. I was really weighing the option of defrosting chicken and not having any for the rest of the week or going out to eat. You all know where this is headed…

11.13 TGIF spinach dip

Yes, we ended up at Friday’s, where we had the obligatory spinach and artichoke dip. I used to love Friday’s but now have a more luke warm feeling towards the restaurant. As for my entree…

11.13 TGIF Mediterranean Salad

I’m just not having luck with foods these days, especially Mediterranean/Greek salads from restaurants. Tonight, although my salad looked good, after a few bites I realized that it was completely loaded with dressing, so much that it was soggy. Yuck! I really dislike eating my salad when all I can taste is dressing – no matter how good the dressing is. I ended up eating about 1/4 the salad then pushing it aside. I left Friday’s a little perturbed and hungry. I’m having serious thoughts of eating a big bowl of Kashi right now.

Remember to enter the Explorer’s Bounty giveaway by 9 PM Eastern Tuesday!

Have a great night everyone!

Bad, Bad, Yogurt

Evening Chicas!

I had an awesome run this morning, although it was cold, cold, COLD! I went from running in 55 degree weather to 35 degree weather this morning! I’m trying to run outside as long as my body (and mind) will let me, because I’m dreading going back on the treadmill for the season. Does anyone else feel this way?

I was running late as usual, so I decided to eat breakfast at work. I remembered I had a Trader Joe’s vanilla Greek yogurt at work, so I took a few walnuts from home to stir in. When I actually looked at the date on the yogurt it said November 5. Hmm…I know you can usually eat yogurt a few days past the expiration, but I thought I’d get a second opinion from a coworker. She replied, “it’s yogurt, it’s already cultured so it won’t be bad.”

11.12 Greek yogurt walnuts

After smelling it, I added my walnuts and took a few bites. I realized that it was not a smart move. It was indeed cultured yogurt – a little too cultured for me – and I consider myself a very cultured person – he he! Bad, Bad, yogurt.

I threw it out – walnuts and all (goodbye $2.50) and starting trolling the halls looking for a second breakfast. My choices were very limited, either leftover Halloween candy or a questionable bag of crackers. But then, I saw this…

11.12 Nonnis biscotti

And Nonni’s Biscotti it was! I very rarely eat biscotti which is kind of strange since I’m a big fan of the big CRUNCH. This lovely came from a brand new container a vendor sent to our office – just in time too!

11.12 Nonnis biscotti2

Seeing as it was biscotti, I figured I should have something warm to go with it – enter Tazo Awake Tea…

11.12 Tazo Awake Tea

I just so happened to have one stashed in my desk. I proceeded to drink a HUGE mug of tea and crunch away on my breakfast…

11.12 Tazo Awake Tea 3

Work is picking up a bit, but not so much that I couldn’t meet my favorite guy out for lunch today. We made a last-minute date at Go Roma. I had a lovely pairing – soup and sammie…

11.12 Butternut squash - veggie panini

I haven’t had butternut squash soup in forever and today was the first time I had it at this restaurant. Fantastic! Very rich and creamy with a smooth texture.

11.12 Butternut Squash Soup

My 1/2 veggie panini with spinach, red peppers, and goat cheese also was well-worth the money. Yes, I ate the French fries. All of them.

11.12 veggie pannini

With such a big lunch, it was no snacking for me this afternoon. I wasn’t even interested. When dinner rolled around at 6:30 PM, I had regained my appetite but really didn’t feel like cooking anything challenging. So, it was warmed up pasta sauce with homemade turkey meat balls….

11.12 Pasta and Meat Sauce

11.12 turkey meatball

This is such a comforting dish, I was ready to curl up on the couch and take a nap after I ate.

I am getting very, very sleep, so I checking out for tonight. I have the day off tomorrow so I’m planning to do a little pre-Thanksgiving Christmas shopping – ho ho! If anyone knows of any good deals, please send the info my way.

Have a great night!

A Bowl of Clouds

Hi There. 

Well, so much for trying my new Yogi Bedtime tea. I ended up not being able to fall asleep until after midnight last night and then woke up at 5 AM and couldn’t fall back to sleep! I swear that tea bag had a shot of caffeine in it!

After laying in bed for an hour trying to fall asleep, I debated on whether I should just get up and go for a run, although it  was technically my rest day. I opted to not run thinking that my body my stage a revolt. 

For breakfast, I made a bowl of fluffy clouds – aka Trader Joe’s organic nonfat Greek yogurt in vanilla flavor, topped with Kashi Go Lean cereal and…

9.30 breakfast1

A spoonful of MaraNatha all-natural creamy peanut butter. When you mix it all up, it looks like a bowl of fluffy, peanut buttery clouds…

9.30 breakfast2

After a fun-filled morning at work, I grabbed a quick lunch at my desk…

9.30 lunch

A cup of chicken and dumpling soup with extra pepper. This soup really hit the spot today because it was really chilly outside and even colder by my desk! I’m not kidding either, I have to have my little space heater on in JULY because it’s so cold in my area.¬†

I jetted out of work around 5:20 PM and, after a long 50-minute commute with a headache the entire way, I finally made it home. Scott had a very simple and healthy dinner ready for us when I arrived. However, because of my headache, I took some Tylenol and laid down for about 30 minutes. Then, after feeling a little better, it was time for some dinner…

9.30 dinner

We had grilled chicken – which I proceeded to drench in Famous Dave’s BBQ sauce! – mashed potatoes, and steamed broccoli. Ah, I love home-cooked meals, especially when I don’t have to do the cooking!

Now I’m relaxing, listening to some Bach on Scott’s iphone. I’m also enjoying a little treat that my husband so nicely drove out to get especially for me…

9.30 dessert

A huge chocolate chunk cookie from Barnes and Noble – sooo good! We split the cookie tonight because there was no way I was going to eat all of it myself. We used to consume these cookies like they were going out of style a few years back. I think we single-handedly kept that B&N cafe in business with how much we bought there.

I’m headed to bed in a few minutes to see if I can’t shake this headache for good. Tomorrow’s my running day, so I hope I sleep better.

Have a great night everyone!

Taking Food Pictures In Odd Company

Hola Chicas! Sorry I’ve been out of pocket all day. I’ve been bogged down at work and couldn’t break away to post.¬†

Because it’s staying dark later in the morning, I am faced with the problem of needing to run at the same time – around 6:15 AM – but having it be pretty dark when I run. Obviously, this happens every year in the Fall/Winter. So, to accommodate this seasonal change, I run on the treadmill for 10-15 minutes. Then, when it’s just light enough for me to see, I jump off, put on my windbreaker and go outside for the rest of my run. This also helps me ease into treadmill season – late November until the end of February – which I dread every year.

So after my 4-mile indoor/outdoor run this morning, I quickly got ready and grabbed a small bowl of cereal for refueling…

9.29 breakfast

The bowl was a mix of Multigrain Cheerios (3/4 cup) and 1/4 cup of Cascadian Farm dark chocolate almond granola. It was filling, but I wish we would have had a little fruit for me to add. I also had day 29 of my Daily Wellness Shot from Zola. I can’t believe that tomorrow is the last day of the challenge – that went by fast!

9.29 Zola

Immediately when I arrived at work, I became so engrossed in my projects that I didn’t eat anything until lunch. I ended up going to lunch with a coworker and my boss. We all walked up to a nearby Italian cafe because it was beautiful outside. I did NOT take pictures of what I ate – how weird would that look if I took pictures of my food with my boss sitting right there! I wonder what excuse I could give in this situation – here are a few good ones..

Top 5 excuses that I can give to my boss for constantly taking pictures of what I eat…

  1. I am taking a photography class that requires me to take artsy photos of my food
  2. I’m coming down with amnesia and want to remember what I ate
  3. If I end up getting food poisoning, I need documentation
  4. My parents like to see what I eat every day
  5. I’ve entered a local “biggest loser” contest and must show proof of what I ate

Question – Have any of you ever run into this situation where you hesitate to take photos of what you eat because of who you are with? What do you do in these situations?

I did have a lovely bowl of tomato basil soup with a dollop of basil pesto on top. It was really rich and creamy Рjust delicious! 

The rest of the afternoon was spent in meetings and doing more writing. I think I’m getting carpel tunnel from all of the typing.¬†

Scott is at class, so I made a very easy, no cook dinner..

9.29 dinner1

…a 1/2 salami, ham, and Swiss cheese sandwich topped with Mezzetta hot and sweet peppers, all on double-fiber Brownberry bread. I was surprisingly full after I ate this – partially due to the huge amount of ice cold water I chugged while eating.

Now, I’m enjoying some of my new Yogi tea!!

9.29 yogi1

This tea is awesome!! It has such a yummy and slightly citrusy taste. Since this is my first time drinking it, I’m not sure if it actually “promotes restful sleep”, but I sure hope it does!

9.29 yogi2

I love that this tea has all sorts of organic ingredients, like chamomile, spearmint, and English Lavender (ooh, how European!).

9.29 yogi3

I am enjoying my tea with a bit of homemade blueberry cake Рcourtesy of my baker-in-law father-in-law.

9.29 dessert1

He really does make some great baked goods, especially around the holidays. And, this blueberry cake was fantastic. Pretty dense and very moist, with just the right amount of blueberries.

9.29 dessert2

I have to finish up a few things for work before I head to bed. So, have a great night everyone!

Why Don't I Eat Belgian Chocolate More Often?

Evening everyone!

My cough/cold is in full swing. I sound like I have a smoker’s cough and I haven’t smoked a day in my life! I would take something, but research shows cough meds don’t work. Guess it’s just tea with lemon and honey for me tonight.

This afternoon went by really fast again. I looked up at the clock and it said 1:15 PM and I still hadn’t eaten lunch. So, I heated up my leftover veggie pizza in the office toaster oven. I was hoping the pizza would be – well…toasty, but it turned out soggy. I hate soggy pizza! I thought only microwaves turned leftover pizza soggy.

9.15 lunch

Because that was the only thing I brought for lunch, I threw some parmesan cheese on it, hoping to make it less soggy, and ate it. It wasn’t as bad as I thought.

The afternoon flew by and around 4 PM I broke for a quick yogurt snack..

9.15 snack1

I had a small cup of Trader Joe’s nonfat pomegranate Greek yogurt. I added a few chopped nuts on top for extra MUFA and extra crunch.

My commute was longer than usual. So, it was nearly 55 minutes of me sitting in the car ¬†– alone with the little treats that my friend brought me from Europe. I didn’t have ANY in the car. But immediately when I came home, I tried one of the Belgian chocolates…

9.15 snack2

See the building on the chocolate? That is the belfry from the most notable building in Bruges, a little medieval city in Belgium. It was so cute, I almost didn’t want to eat it. But, of course, I DID. And, it tasted so good! I thought it would be just a solid piece of chocolate but it had truffle filling with a few nuts. Amazing! Then I started thinking…why don’t I eat Belgian chocolates more often? It’s supposed to be one of the best chocolates in the world and who am I to argue with that legacy?

Scott is at class tonight so I made a 1/2 PB&J sandwich on 12-grain Brownberry bread. I was honestly thinking about peanut butter and jelly the whole way home. I had a choice of several other things for dinner, but I stuck with my craving.

9.15 dinner1

I also had a few watermelon chunks and low-fat Cape Cod potato chips. Not too big, not too small – just right.

Since I already had my chocolate, truffled-filled dessert, I’m set for the night.

It’s my day off for running tomorrow – woo hoo! That means I get to sleep in a little. I’m glad too because I actually have to do more work tonight!

Signing off now – good night Gracie!