Day One

Today was the first day of reading period. I have a love hate relationship with the first day of finals. Last year Izzy almost choked to death on her food. Last Spring I was worried about getting all my work done on time. I am happy to report that today was nothing but productive! This is the first time I’ve had a car during finals and I have to say, it feels really good to get out of Westwood when studying.

First I went to Panera for a bagel breakfast. Note, the reading you see is maybe half of my Critical Race Theory reading. No kidding.

Oy. Discovery of the day: Panera started listing calories! I felt good about this everything bagel at 300 calories (I also ate an apple). I was horrified by the counts though. I used to, well, binge at Panera. Is binge the right word for consuming 1500 calories? I think so.

Oh well, that’s over now. Moving on.

I was super productive at Panera. I worked diligently and didn’t even listen to music. I took minimal facebook, email, twitter breaks and didn’t watch any Youtube videos. Who am I?! I worked from 9:30 until noon.

Around noon I realized that I needed a break. I drove and parked at the Santa Monica Library and walked to Real Food Daily. The last time I went to RFD was for a blogger meet up and I knew I wanted to go back. Today was the perfect chance! I got a small plate because I had other snacks packed (like a Z Bar). I choose the BLT Tartine.

Look at that avocado! Love!

The sandwich has vegannaise which is totally better than mayonnaise, at least in my opinion. This was an excellent lunch pick me up. Next time I go to RFD I’ll make sure to say hey to Katie who gets to work there! Can you even imagine all the amazing food? Must be the best job ever.

After I ate I ambled back to the Santa Monica Library for more work. I was very, very productive. On the way home I picked this little guy up from Susie Cakes…

He was yummy. Then I went on a 4 mile run which was good but kind of cold. I need to work out a system for when its under 60 degrees and I go running.

Dinner was grilled salmon with salt, pepper, EVO, thyme and cumin (random I know). But it turned out pretty fantastic! I also had roasted Brussels sprouts and sweet potato fries.

Side dishes!

The sweet potatoes were left in a little too long but you know, it happens.The Salmon was DELISH and took a short amount of time to cook. I have leftovers and I cannot wait to dig into them tomorrow!

Now I am watching Glee and Biggest Loser. If Ada doesn’t make it to the final 4 I am going to go insane! Hope everyone had a productive day!

Finals: Day 1

Cookies Consumed: 1

YouTube Videos watched: 1 (thanks to vivi. It can be viewed here)

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I have a fever…

And the only cure are more salted caramel macaroons! For real. It’s love.

I had another opportunity to hit Tavern for lunch yesterday. I didn’t pack lunch and forgot my debit card so I had to go home to get it and then before I knew it I was in my car and parking in a spot directly in front of the restaurant. What can I say? It was meant to be.


I also grabbed an ice tea. Obviously its always more tasty to buy an ice tea than it is to make one.

I took the bounty home to eat while I read. The to go meals at lunch at Tavern are so cute! They come with sweet potato chips….

Notice how Izzy is licking her chops. Everyone loves Tavern!

and the sandwich of the day…

The special was ham and cheese with tomato, lettuce, mustard and butter! Yes, you heard right, BUTTER!

It was fantastic. I cannot lie. Could you imagine it being anything but?

The ham wasn’t your typical ham, it was special and expensive ham and the cheese wasn’t normal cheese but the greatest Gruyere I’ve ever had in a sandwich. And it had butter on the freshly baked bread that is made in house!

What can top this?

Hello, lover.

For real. I’m having a serious committed relationship with my salted caramel macaroons and there is nothing wrong with that. This was the best random lunch ever. Don’t you love when something happens to throw off your daily routine and you get to do something extra special? I sure do.

Also tonight I ate this…

The parsnips a super freak!

 

I sure am enjoying my short week before Thanksgiving. I am going to my friend Catie’s families house (we’re calling it “shea”nksgiving). Can’t wait for some time off!

 

Hope you all have a fun plan for Thanksgiving break!

 

A Delicious Weekend

There were no blog updates this weekend because I was too busy hanging out with my Mom, eating delicious food, and running my first half marathon (read about it here!) I didn’t even open my computer on Sunday. I didn’t blog every meal but I did capture some!

Right after my Mom arrived we went to Clementine for lunch.

Clementine has switched over to the Fall menu since the last time I went there. Sadly, the best BLT is no longer available. Pretty sad, I know. I settled on the Veg-Italian melt with olive bread, artichokes, and melted cheese. Yum!

Pretty tasty, but no Best BLT. I can’t complain though. We also had a thumbprint cookie with orange marmalade. It was pretty delish! Afterwords we visited family and then made our way to Old Pasadena for an amazing dinner. Stay tuned!

Greek Shrimp Couscous

Happy Monday! How was your day? Mine was busy. I was going all day long, which was OK because I was very motivated today. I even got a 4 mile run in. I do my best thinking while running and I got a bunch of work done when I got home. Since I had a lot to do I wanted to make a quick dinner. Luckily I planned ahead for this with a recipe from Cooking Light.

Meal planning is a great way to save time during the week. No thinking, “what should I make?” in front of an open fridge. Just purposeful cooking.

First I prepared two portions of couscous which takes about 5 mins. While it is cooking combine tomato, green onion, olives and a tablespoon of EVO in a separate bowl.

I don’t put measurements. When cooking, if it doesn’t matter, I tend to eyeball or adjust to what I like. Note: this doesn’t count for baking!

Set this aside, fluff the cous cous. Get ready for shrimp!

I got my shrimp from the counter at Whole Foods. Why, you ask? I am not a fan of Trader Joe’s shrimp because it is hard to find the de-vained variety. Trust me, no one wants to de-vain shrimp. I got a half pound of the mini shrimp at Whole Foods for $4, which isn’t bad for two servings. I had it packaged for the freezer and defrosted it today. I salted and peppered before grilling in my brand new grill pan. Thanks mom!

The shrimp cook in about 4 mins. Take off the heat and mix with the couscous. Then add the salad mix to the couscous. Serve with Greek yogurt on the side.

Tonight. Fresh and delicious. Adding the Greek yogurt was an inspired idea. The whole meal was 450 calories.

Tomorrow. I am already excited for lunch!

I took the left over Greek Yogurt and made dessert.

I used Greek yogurt, chocolate chips, cinnamon, and honey. It was a pretty delicious (and healthy) dessert!

Fall Favorites

Today was chilly in Los Angeles. It was only 65 degrees. Ha. Since that’s about as cold as its going to get until January I should enjoy it while it lasts. I shouldn’t complain, but this Chicago and Boston girl misses this….

Source

I want a cider doughnut like you wouldn’t believe! If any Angelinos can help a sister out with a cider doughnut recommendation it would be greatly appreciated.

Today I settled for butternut squash ravioli in a browned butter sauce with pine nuts. I got the ravioli from Cookbook in Echo Park. I boiled the pasta for about three mins while I melted and browned the butter. After I put the butter into the sauce pan I put pine nuts in to toast slightly. Then I combined the pasta and the butter.

The squash was so good! The only minus of this dish was that the pasta part got mushy before I started cooking it. I’m not sure why the pasta was so mushy and it broke apart the instant I put the pasta in the water but it was still good and totally satisfied one of my fall cravings.

For lunch today I had another seasonal favorite, beet salad with lentils and goat cheese.

I did not make this. I had dinner at Clementine last night, spied this in the case and simply couldn’t resist it.

Could you? I love the bright colors!

Three cheers for seasonal foods!

New Sensation

I have a new favorite lunch this week.

Confession: I’ve had it twice this week already.

Introducing: apple, brie and prosciutto flat top.

Of course all the lovely toppings are sitting on a slice of sesame Ezekiel bread. The apples are organic from the farmers market and are of the honey crisp variety. Honey crisps are by FAR my favorites. So crispy and delicious! I like to toast the bread and then let the brie melt onto the bread. Holy melted goodness!

I don’t post my lunch very often because I tend to latch onto one thing and eat it several times over a week meaning that lunch tends to be a bit boring (unless of course I hit a lunch truck!). I also tend to make double portions of dinner and save half for lunch. Obviously this flat top is the flavor of the week.

In other news: I came home from school and promptly ran a little over 5 miles. For those that are keeping track, that’s a little over 14 miles in three days. I am a running beast this week!

Also, don’t forget to vote on Project Food Blog for me! Tomorrow (9/22 is the last day to vote!)

Holy “Fig”gen’ Yum!

Yesterday while I was at the farmers market I was able to snag something delicious: figs! Did I use them for lunch today? Abso-“figgen”-lutely. Did I come up with a bunch of fig puns? Fig yeah! Ok, I promise that the fig puns end here.

I decided to make an open face sandwich inspired by crouqe monsieur. I toasted a slice of Ezekiel bread. Then I spread Dijon mustard on the slice and topped it with sliced figs, prosciutto, and Gruyere cheese. I baked it at 400 for another 4 mins and then I turned on the broiler for the last 4 mins.

Sweet and salty with slightly browned cheese. Oh my goodness do I love me some figs. Fan-figgen-tastic! OK, that’s the last one.

Post figs I went on a run. I planned to run for 8 miles but I got a little bit lost on side streets and ended up going for 8.6 miles. I managed to maintain a pretty good pace though out my run. Every time I got tired I thought about my form. Afterward I had a chocolate milk! Great recovery drink! Its going to be my go to in the future. I stretched it out and then parked it on the couch with an ice pack. So far I have kept up with all the long runs I have planned and I haven’t walked once.

Hope everyone is enjoying a great labor day! I’m clearly going to eat more figs.

Healthy Saturday

Happy Saturday!

Today has been a chill day. Mostly I have run errands and done reading for school. Soon I am going out on my long run. As some of you may have gleaned, my training runs have been a but jumbled up this past week. I realized yesterday that I have to do my long run today because Sunday is going to be busy. Because Saturday is long run day, yesterday became a rest day. Although, I must say that my arms are still sore from pole dancing class! I plan to go again. It is an amazing arm workout which is just what I need!

This morning while reading I enjoyed a cup of coffee in my new mug…

Obviously it was with a side of peanut butter toast. I’m probably going to have another before I go out on my run.

My stomach was grumbling around 1 so I made a healthy lunch at home.

Sandwich, pita chips, poulet, chocolate chips, and black iced tea.

The sandwich was farmer’s market inspired:

Ezekiel bread with hummus, radish, spinach, heirloom tomato (!), and turkey. I love an heirloom. It makes it so, so delicious and fresh.

Supplemental food:

I love a side of chocolate chips with lunch. It satisfies my chocolate craving every time.

In other news:

I recently joined the website healthylivingblogs.com. Here is a little bit about the site:

Healthy Living Blogs is a new resource for the health blogging community. Created by Lindsey of Sound Eats, HLB is a site designed to enhance the positive community of the healthy living blog world. Bloggers and readers can explore the site and find more blogs to love, bloggers in their area, and forums to deepen healthy discussion and support. If you’re interested in having your site listed on HLB, simply send the following information to healthylivingblogs@gmail.com and check the site out for yourself!

  • Email subject line: MEMBERS

  • Your name (please share if you prefer to go by first name, first and last, or however you prefer to be known on the Internet)

  • Blog Name

  • Blog URL (please start with http://, not www.)

  • Your twitter handle, if applicable

  • Your location (if you prefer not to disclose this information for privacy’s sake, that is completely understandable. We’ll simply include your blog listing in the A-Z listing, not by location, too)

  • Any specific labels (i.e. vegan, gluten-free, weight loss, running, etc.)

I love the healthy living blog community and I am so excited to be part of the community. The healthy blog community is awesome and so supportive of my running, weight loss and is a fantastic resource if you want to learn more about having a healthy lifestyle. The best part of healthylivingblogs.com is that they inventory blogs by location. I really want to connect with other LA area healthy living and food bloggers. So feel free to check out the site!

Packed to Go

In honor of the first day of school, here is the lunch I packed.

I decided to have a healthy start to the new year with a spinach salad with cucumber, radish, red onion, pine nuts, prosciutto, and goat cheese. I packed it in my new salad Tupperware! There is a separate compartment for my dressing. I choose my old standby, balsamic vinegar.

Yum. It hit the spot. I supplemented with pita chips and a z bar.

I love the first week of school because I’m not burned out yet. I ran home by way of Starbucks, immediately sat down and did reading for tomorrow and then went to dinner with Jill, post coming tomorrow because I’m tired and need to tune out.

Last Day of My Summer Vacation

Like the title says, today was my last day of summer vacation. And you know what? I did basically nothing. I prepped for class, cleaned, ran some errands and watched portions of both “Mona Lisa Smile” and “Cocktail”. I enjoyed the last day where it is appropriate for me to be lazy.

Backing up to yesterday… there is nothing to blog because I didn’t eat. I was too queasy and I had no appetite at all. I ate literally a piece of toast. Not blog worthy at all.

I did, however, run into Barack…

I knew it was him the moment I was the presidential helicopters. I saw them when I was visiting in Chicago with Steve earlier this summer. People were angry because Wilshire and basically the entire west side of LA was shut down but I just chilled out and enjoyed the view…

Change I can believe in. 🙂

Today I finally regained my appetite around lunch so I made a super healthy lunch at home. Its been a while between having visitors and being sick yesterday so I was very happy to have a wholesome lunch at home.

Lunch was pita chips, a Honey Crisp apple, TJ’s fruit flakes, and a prosciutto sandwich with spinach, goat cheese, and arugula. To drink I had Pelligrino.

Toasted Ezekiel bread with my favorite lunch meat (haha, does prosciutto count as a lunch meat?) is totally to die for. Ezekiel bread is so filling and amazing.

I also braved fruit for the first time. First Honey Crisp apples of the season! It was amazing and so miniature. I cannot wait for fall. This lunch kept me satisfied all day and powered me though my first run in 1 week. I think I needed a long run break. Obviously I wasn’t going to run yesterday because I wasn’t consuming any calories. Today’s 4.1 mile run was done at a pretty fast clip and felt amazing. So glad to be back. I forgot how running helps be deal with stress.

Speaking of fall, school starts tomorrow and after reading Caitlin’s post about time management I wanted to break down my time management a bit. I tend to be a pretty good time manager with a good life-work balance but I thought that it would be a sound idea to go over my priorities a bit.

Step 1: There is limited time in the week, 168 exactly and I need a minimum of 56 hours to sleep.

Step 2: List your priorities. These are necessary and non necessary…

  • Going to class, prepping for class, things related to school things
  • Sleeping
  • Sticking to Half Marathon Training Plan (working out, running etc)
  • Cooking, eating, blogging, reading other blogs
  • Being a good fur mama to Izzy Cat
  • Catching up with friends both over phone and/or gchat and socializing in person
  • Running errands
  • Down time to read and watch some TV
  • Personal time to stress management and take care of my mental health

Step 3: Identify priorities you can downgrade or drop completely.

In terms or what I can downgrade, I think I need to make sure that my TV relaxation time does not spiral into endless hours of TV enjoyment. I love my TV, but sometimes it can go from 30 mins of Barefoot to Barefoot + Rachel Maddow + E! News + Daily 10 and before you know it I’m watching Flipping Out and Rachel Zoe Project. I swear I’m intelligent I just love TV a lot. So I should keep an eye on that. I also want to make sure that I spend enough time blogging to be happy and maintaining the blog and cooking wholesome meals. While I would love to devote all my time to working out and blogging I need to make sure I don’t let it take over my life.

Step 4: Get organized and use a calander

Done and done. I have my Hermes planner which I write school assignments and day to day things. I also use a wall calender which has less detail and is more of a broad view. I also take care of priorities like free reading right before I go to bed for 30 mins, and I normally have set shows that I watch certain nights of the week. Also, I have all of my workouts planned- and I’ve been pretty good about being flexible so far. Plus, running and mental health stuff makes blends together for me.

I think its really important to write out my priorities and set written goals for achieving them successfully. Writing it down means actually thinking it out and, in my opinion, makes the changes more likely to stick. I will be vigilant about my TV time and make sure that I stay happy and focused this semester.

What are your priorities?