Gourmet food on a plastic plate is still gourmet

Ahh, it’s nice to be home, winding down for the night. I was in joint business meeting today, which I was thrilled to be a part of. I was also thrilled that it ended at 1:30 PM instead of 4:30 PM – Yeah! Thankfully, during these long business meetings my company also springs for lunch and today it was semi-gourmet….

8.12 lunch2

Wow – get a load of this fancy food! There were so many choices from our lunch buffet that it was hard to decide. I went with bunless broasted chicken sandwich with tomatoes and a small slice of cheddar. Then I added about 2/3 of a plate of roasted veggies – mushrooms, carrots, asparagus, squash, and jicama, with a little roasted red pepper dip on the side.

8.12 lunch1

It was unbelievable, especially for a working lunch served on a plastic plate. But hey, it’s still gourmet. I didn’t stuff myself at all, but I was pleasingly full after lunch. However, since it was served at 11:15 AM – when I don’t usually eat until around 1 PM – I was a little hungry around 4 PM. Luckily, I snagged a snack from our “business” treats basket…

true delights1

A Quaker True Delights granola bar. It’s made with honey roasted cashews and mixed cherries and cranberries. It’s NOT as all-natural as I thought – the packaging is kind of deceiving. But, it was still a nice pick-me-up in the later afternoon.

true delights2

On my way home, I did a little summer clothes shopping. I must have been about 2 weeks too late because all of the sale summer clothes were picked over. Bummer, guess I’ll just have to wait until March for the new summer line – he he!

By the time I arrived home, my husband had dinner almost ready. I just love a man who can cook!

8.12 dinner1

He made mesquite chicken on the grill, homemade parmesan risotto, and green beans. It was ALL so yummy, especially the risotto – it had an awesome flavor. I really wanted to eat more, but I opted to save the leftovers for lunch on Friday (tomorrow I’m headed out for lunch!).

After dinner and cleaning up, we headed out to do a little more shopping. My husband was VERY tempted to stop and get a custard at Culver’s but I talked him out of it. Instead, he made a homemade strawberry shake and I had…

8.12 dessert

A watermelon and vanilla ice cream parfait! I used about 2/3 cup of Breyer’s all-natural vanilla bean ice cream, about a 1/2 cup of watermelon chunks, and 1 tpsp of semi-sweet chocolate chips. Outstanding, once again!

Tomorrow’s a running day so I need to hit the sack. I’m still debating on whether or not to leave work early to take in the new Julie & Julia movie. Any thoughts – is it worth taking a 1/2 vacation day to see it?

Take care everyone and have a great night.

Sweet Endings…

Hello everyone. I am soo tired right now, but I still wanted to write a quick post before going to bed.

As I mentioned earlier, the house was pretty bare in the grocery department this morning, so for lunch, I made a run to the local Italian eatery for a cup of minestrone soup.

8.10 lunch

Don’t let the picture fool you – It was really just a cup! But, with a ton of parmesan cheese..hmmm. Not only does minestrone soup taste good, but it is a surefire way to get in at least a serving of vegetables in each cup. 

The afternoon flew by once more. Before I knew it, I was headed out the door, laptop in hand. Luckily, my husband had a huge Mexican fiesta prepared at our house. He even made his own super secret salsa…

8.10 salsa

So thick it stays on the chip! 

8.10 salsa chip

I think what makes this salsa so great is that he uses all fresh ingredients, which are mainly vegetables. It’s also very low in calories, which is a huge bonus. He sometimes makes his salsa too spicy, but this time if was very mild – and soo good. He also made one of his signature dishes – chicken fajitas.

8.10 fajitas

I loaded my whole-wheat tortilla with fajita meat, grilled peppers, lettuce, mushrooms, monterrey jack cheese, and guac. It pretty much goes without saying that I overloaded my tortilla – so much that I was eating the contents of my fajita with a fork after two bites. Fajitas are still awesome no matter how you eat them!

I waited a while after dinner to decide if I wanted dessert. I was craving something cold and sweet. My husband opted for a huge root beer float, but I chose to have this…

8.10 ice cream

Breyers All-Natural Vanilla Bean ice cream (1/2 cup) with a tablespoon of semi-sweet chocolate chips, and a bunch of watermelon. Oh, it was so what I needed! If you’ve never had watermelon with vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt, I highly recommend it.

I’m off to bed. Chat with you all in the morning.

Tired of Dining Out

Well, if you all didn’t realize it before, my husband and I were out of town all weekend for a big family food and fun fest. We stayed at a Ritz Carlton which was fantastic. Now, after driving nearly 8 hours home, we are totally exhausted. Although the RC is a very comfortable option when you’re on the road, there’s nothing like your own bed!

During our drive home, we contemplated dinner. Neither of us wanted anything major to eat and we wanted to get home as quickly as possible. We opted for dinner at Panera right off the highway. Panera is usually a great option for a quick and healthy meal. They’ve got all of the healthy staples, like salads, sandwiches, and soups. So, what did I get?

8.9 dinner

I ordered the NEW Chicken Cobb Salad with peppered chicken, bacon, and feta (in place of gorgonzola). I was really looking forward to a nice crisp salad but was quickly disappointed with this one. Not only was there WAY too much dressing, but the chicken tasted “funny” – as in on the verge of going bad. I’ve had two bad experiences with chicken, one at home and one at a restaurant. Now I’m very particular about my chicken, if it even tastes slightly weird I will not eat it. It also has to be cooked to the point where it’s nearly over done. Well, when I took the first bite of chicken, something just didn’t seem right and my chicken senses kicked in. I ended up not eating any more of the chicken and just eating a few bites more of the salad/veggies. Blah..

I was so hungry by the time I returned home I ate a huge bowl of Cheerios! We haven’t been grocery shopping in about 10 days so it was all we had in the house. I was really ok with it though, because I am so tired of going out to eat. 

Now I’m headed to bed. I need to start the week off right because I have 2 very important meetings this week. Wish me luck!

Night all!

BBQ Birthday Bash

Hello All. Hope you had a great day. My afternoon went very well. Although it rained for most of the day, the clouds broke and the sun came out around 4 PM. What started as a chilly day turned out to be rather warm and muggy. But, no worries, we all had a great time celebrating my 2-year old nephew’s birthday.

The party was a BBQ style dinner with all of the fixins’, like hot dogs/hamburgers, relishes, fruit, and pasta salad. Oh, and there was a random feta and kalamata olive salad too.

8.8 dinner1

I had an all beef hot dog with a little mustard and relish with some chopped watermelon, cantelope, and pineapple on the side.

8.8 dinner2

I also munched on a few very plump baby carrots (more like toddler carrots!) with some low-cal veggie dip. And, I just had to throw in a few chips and salsa, because who doesn’t love this low-calorie appetizer?

8.8 dinner3

I didn’t finish my hot dog, or the chips and salsa, so overall, it was a pretty light dinner for me. But, that’s what I like to do on days where I’ve overindulged the day prior. 

I did, however, have some fabulous birthday cake. Well, it wasn’t really a full cake, it was an Elmo cake face, made up of all cupcakes. I had a chocolate cupcake with yellow frosting with some Heath bar ice cream (sorry, no pictures). It was awesome! It’s been so long since I’ve had a cupcake that I’ve forgotten how much I love them. That’s why I don’t keep them in the house – ha!

After the party, we headed back to my parents for a little night cap, which was mainly bottled water sipped while sitting on their huge porch. 

Tomorrow, the whole family (including cousins, aunts/uncles) are having a picnic/bbq for lunch. It’s been such a long time since we’ve had everyone together. It’s supposed to be 92 degrees tomorrow. Yikes! That’s the hottest it’s been in a long time…hope we all survive the heat!

Alright, off to bed for me. I’m going to try to get up early to run a 5-miler before we head out for the picnic. Have a great night and see you in the AM.

A Good Start, But Then…

I had a good start to the day with a brisk 4-mile run, followed by a hearty and healthy breakfast. But it was all downhill from there!

After my run, my awesome husband made me a yummy omelette for breakfast:

8.7 breakfast

The omelette was made with 1 egg and 1 egg white, with a little cheddar cheese, mushrooms, broccoli, and pieces of all-natural (nitrate-free) bacon. It was so tasty and such a change from what I usually eat in the morning.

He also made me my favorite morning tea…

8.7 tea

Tazo Awake tea! He’s so thoughtful.

The rest of our day was spent running errands, visiting family, and getting ready for the big day tomorrow. There will actually be three events taking place tomorrow – a huge family portrait at a studio, a lunch with the family, and a birthday party for my nephew/anniversary party for my parents. Whew, that’s a lot to do in one day!

I actually started feeling a little sick in the car, so I munched on an emergency snack:

8.7 crackers

That’s right, goldfish crackers. I seriously do NOT eat these crackers on a regular basis – maybe twice a year. But today, I am so glad they were in the car.

Our errands took us all over the place so we weren’t near our house around lunchtime. So, we headed to Chili’s:

8.7 lunch

I had a bowl of potato soup and it was very tasty. I do prefer Corner Bakery’s baked potato soup over all others, but Chili’s has a nice recipe as well.

After more running around, we dropped into Panera very quickly to pick up an ice tea (for my hubby) and 2 giant cookies -1 double chocolate and a new kind – toffee. 8.7 snack

Here’s what’s left of my cookie after about 2 minutes! I told you it was going downhill…

We headed over to my sister’s house late in the day to discuss plans for tomorrow. She was nice enough to order pizza and salad for us, knowing how tired we were from running around all day.


I had one piece of pepperoni pizza, a little antipasto salad, a roll, and a piece of cheesy bread (not pictured). I was pretty full after that, but couldn’t resist a little moose-tracks ice cream, because I very rarely eat that flavor.

8.7 dessert

I honestly only had one small scoop, and that was enough for me.

So, as you can see, today was a complete eating fest for me. Although I try to make healthy choices when I’m out and about, sometimes my hunger and my stomach take over and get the better of me.

I plan to eat lighter tomorrow, without a doubt. Now, I’m off to bed to, hopefully, get a good night’s sleep before the big day!

Night all!

Gearing up for the weekend…

Finally! And what I mean by that is finally I get to sit down and write my post. My afternoon was just as busy as the morning and it flew by. Luckily, I’m off tomorrow so it will be nice to relax a little – if I can!

For dinner, my husband made the basil chicken stir-fry that we were supposed to have last night.

8.6 dinner2

He made the dish around lunch time, before heading for work, and then left my portion in the fridge to warm up. I usually love this dish but tonight, it was just ok, probably because it wasn’t fresh off the stove. I don’t have time to write a full recipe right now, but the stir-fry included:

Basil Chicken Stir Fry

  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 5 green onions
  • 1 jalapeno pepper
  • 1-2 chicken breasts cut into short strips
  • brown rice
  • soy sauce
  • brown sugar
  • Chicken stock

8.6 dinner1PG

This weekend my whole family is taking one huge family portrait at a studio. We haven’t done that since my sister got married so I’m so excited. The picture will include my parents, brothers/sisters, spouses, and children – 17 people in all. The studio only booked us for a 20 minute photo shoot – I hope that’s enough to corral all of us!

Have a great night everyone!

Stepping out to the Corner B

Hey all. This is going to be a quick post because I’m exhausted and want to get to bed early.

I had an afternoon full of meetings and phone calls. Being busy sure does make the time go by faster.

My husband and I had planned on having basil chicken stir-fry for dinner but at about 4:30 PM, we decided that neither of us wanted to cook. So instead, we headed to one of my favorite healthy quick-service restaurants, Corner Bakery Cafe.

8.5 dinner

Dinner was a cup of baked potato soup and a 1/2 a Bavarian sandwich, with smoked turkey and Havarti cheese on pretzel bread. It’s funny that even when I go out to eat, I choose a sandwich for my entree! I guess I really am a sandwich kind of a gal.

The soup was awesome! It is probably the best potato soup I’ve eaten at a restaurant yet.

8.5 dinner1

I’m sure it’s really low in calories too (yeah, right!). I try to only eat it once in a while. The sandwich was pretty good as well but I decided not to finish it to have more room for soup.

8.5 dinner2

Now I’m fairly content, but still plan on having a couple homemade chocolate chip cookies tonight before bed.

I forgot to mention that before heading home after work, I stopped at our local Gala Tea store to buy my mom her birthday present. I bought her the cutest light blue tea pot from Amsterdam and a matching cup and saucer. I hope she likes it. And, if she doesn’t, I will gladly take it off of her hands – wink, wink! It’s already wrapped so I’ll post pictures of it next week after she opens it.

Now it’s off to bed for me. Good night all!

A Sandwich for My Solo Dinner

Hola Everyone. Hope you had an awesome day. I was off to a slow start this morning, but then I made a steaming cup of Tazo Awake tea, and I was good to go…at least for a little while.

I ended up having a pretty good day. I had a very long meeting on a project I’m heading and it went fantastic. Now I have even more work to do, but I’m so psyched about it.

For lunch, I had a very healthy salad with a bunch of goodies added in…

8.4 spinach salad


Chopped Chicken and Baby Spinach Salad

  • 3 cups fresh baby spinach
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 oz chopped rotisserie chicken
  • 1 1/2 oz mixed cheese (I used cheddar and feta)


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

The salad was fantastic and very refreshing on a hot summer afternoon. Although the salad was pretty filling at the time, I did end up having 2 Dr. Kracker flatbreads later in the afternoon.

I was really hoping to take a walk after lunch but my husband’s car battery died and I had to be on stand by to help him. Luckily, a few nice people stopped to give him a jump. We now have a shiny new battery, but the radio doesn’t work. It needs to be “reset” – it’s a built-in security thing. I ended up taking a walk after dinner instead.

Dinner was on my own tonight (hubby working late) so I didn’t feel like making anything elaborate:

8.4 sandwich

I made a 1/2 peppered turkey and low-fat salami sandwich with cheddar cheese on multi-grain bread from the bakery. Caution, this sandwich looks much bigger in the picture than it really was! I also had a few sour cream and onion chips and a few slices of a granny smith apple on the side.

8.4 dinner

Some people need a huge dinner or at least a hot dinner to be satisfied. I literally grew up on sandwiches – they were a necessity in my house with 5 kids all active in team sports. So now, I actually find sandwiches comforting. You can also create so many different and healthy masterpieces with a sandwich. I love experimenting with them, seeing how I can make a better, tastier, and more healthy sandwich. 

And, another great thing about eating a light sandwich dinner – aside from no clean up – is that you have room for dessert!

8.4 chocolate pb

Just like the sandwich, the ice cream looks bigger in the photo because I served it in a very small “dipping bowl” dish. It was actually equivalent to about 1/2 cup.

I have an early morning tomorrow. I’m waking up at 5:45 Am tomorrow to run because I didn’t run today. Night everyone!

Tazo Tea Keeps Me Awake!

Hey everyone! Can you believe it, after only eating a pear for breakfast, I wasn’t hungry for lunch until 1 PM. I’m so glad I brought my split-pea soup that I had leftover from Saturday. I was hoping the soup would give me extra energy to tackle my afternoon projects.

Pea Soup

Well, the pea soup must have worked because I had a super productive afternoon reviewing video footage and doing other work-related projects. 

I arrived home from work about 6 PM to an awesome dinner prepared by my awesome husband!

8.3.09 dinner

He grilled mesquite-flavored chicken breasts and a huge sweet potato that we shared. It was so yummy that I was sad we didn’t have more – hello appetite!

8.3.09 sweet potato

We also had some fresh cut greens beans and chunks of watermelon (not pictured). After dinner, I had a little piece (1/3 a slice) of the raspberry cream cake from last night.

8.3.09 Raspberry cake

It was just as sweet and delicious as it was last night. During dinner, I found out that my husband bought one of my favorite teas on his quick trip to Super Target….

Tazo Awake Tea

Tazo Awake tea! i just love this stuff! Apparently, hubby was reading my post from the other day and found out that I was out of Awake tea and decided to surprise me with more. How thoughtful…and I thought he didn’t read my blog! Just kidding – I know you do honey.

I can drink tea almost any time during the day, even when it’s hot outside. But I especially love it on a Saturday or Sunday morning. Awake tea just gives me that natural jolt of energy that I sometimes need in the morning. I am sooo looking forward to having a cup tomorrow after my run.

Because I only had a very small piece of cake, I’m thinking of having a cookie or two before bed. Hmm…we’ll see…

Well, time for me to sign off for tonight. Sweet dreams everyone!

A Blue Danube Dinner

We had such a great evening listening to live classical music outside in a picnic-like setting. The orchestra was playing famous waltzes, including the Blue Danube. I don’t know how to waltz but when they played the Blue Danube, I really wished I knew!

Before the performance, we walked around the concert park to browse some of the vendor tables. They had a children’s instrument petting zoo, where kids could actually play a variety of instruments from strings to brass. Whole Foods also was exhibiting. The store was giving away granny smith apples (Yes, I took one for tomorrow’s lunch!) and samples of a bunch of all-natural hair/skin care products. Check out my loot…

Jason Conditioner

This is Jason’s Lavender and Rosemary curl defining conditioner. I’m looking forward to using this because I have naturally curly hair and need everything I can get to tame it!

Avalon Peppermint cream

And this is Avalon Organics Peppermint Hand and Body lotion. I plan to put this on my heels and feet before I go to bed. I’m hoping it makes my rough runner’s feet a little smoother.

The concert started at 5 PM sharp and our classical music entertainment was complemented by an awesome picnic dinner:

Picnic dinner

We brought rotisserie-like chicken, white cheddar cheese, French garlic rounds, and…..


Three-layer hummus from Trader Joe’s! I bought this a week or so ago and have been waiting for the right occasion to try it. The hummus included the flavors of red pepper, regular, and cilantro. My husband raved about the cilantro flavor and I loved them all.


We also had some super juicy watermelon chunks.

Picnic watermelon2

We brought cut-up veggies as well, but I’m still a little veggied out from my huge, but disappointing, salad at lunch. So no dinner veggies for me.

The performance only lasted until 6:30 PM, so we waited until we returned home to eat our dessert…

Raspberry cake1

A raspberry white chocolate swirl cake. It was so light and fluffy and just the right amount of sweetness. I’m not usually a white chocolate fan, but I loved this cake!

Now, it’s off to bed for me because I have a really busy week and it all starts tomorrow. Have a great night everyone!