Currently Browsing: eating on the go
Apr 1, 2011
Despite the fact that it’s Friday and the weather has made vast improvements, I am dragging today! The culprit?
Yesterday I was killing a little bit of time before picking the husband up from work, so I ran across the street to Border’s because they’re having a huge closing sale. After wondering around for awhile, my eyes landed on the cover of Euna Lee’s memoire. I am a big fan of memoirs; I just recently finished two different ones, Thin is the New Happy by Valerie Frankel and The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls – two books that could not be more different, but were equally engaging and wonderful. I highly recommend both, but to give you fair warning, The Glass Castle is very harsh and somewhat disturbing at times…like when you see something so devastating that you want to look away, but you just can’t. But in the end it shoots straight to your heart as it speaks of redemption and the ability to rise above any situation, and I walked away feeling inspired and more aware of the world.
But back to the book of last night. I read a few pages right after I bought it and knew right away that it would be hard to put down. After running a couple of errands and making the trek back home, I picked it back up; three hours and 275 pages later I stumbled into bed. Lee’s account of her time in captivity in North Korea took me on a journey that ended in a renewed thankfulness for the most important things in life and a new perspective of how God leads us through the toughest of times. Thought provoking and emotional, at times I felt I was right there with her as she agonized over missing her baby and having no certainty over her future – and upon her arrival back home where she embraced gratefulness, safety and those she loved most. I loved it.
This morning I had plans to get some work done at Starbucks, but I just had to finish the last 15 pages or so. This is my problem with books – if they’re riveting enough to keep me flipping the page, then I simply cannot walk away from them. Gets me every time. Having rushed out of the house in a blur of bags, laptops and keys this morning, I didn’t have time to eat breakfast, but Starbucks perfect oatmeal to the rescue once again! The best option for breakfasts on the run.
topped with dried fruit and nuts
I also wanted to toss in one my favorite easy lunches that I had yesterday. I’ve made a version of this before with just black beans, but the spices in this one had me over the moon.
Baked sweet potato with leftover Amy’s Chili poured over top. And a side of kale chips.
This could even be a portable snack to take to the office (which I’ll be needing soon!) if you have a microwave. Maybe subbing out the kale chips for a bag of steamable broccoli? I just love little meals that are warm and homemade tasting, but take minutes to prepare.
I’m so happy it’s Friday (duh), and I’m so excited because the husband and I are going to the OKC home show this weekend. We’ve got some serious house decisions to make in the next week, so hopefully we’ll come away with some direction and inspiration.
Have a lovely weekend!
What is your favorite book you’ve ever read?
If I had to choose one, I’d probably say Barbara Kingsolver’s Poisonwood Bible – read it while we lived in Thailand, and could read it a thousand more times. Side note – the other day I was re-listening to My Sister’s Keeper in the car, and I had this sudden realization that books can take on a whole new meaning and impact with each time you read them. There are different things going on in my life right now that cause me to read it in a completely different way than last time. Love that about books.
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Oct 20, 2010
No one told me how cold it was going to be here in DC!
Something you may not know about me – I have a small obsession with watching the weather. Outside real time and through my Weather Channel iPhone app. I love looking at the hour by hour forecast. Oh, and the 7 day is almost more than my little heart can handle! I get so excited.
So, needless to say I was watching DC weather like a Natzi over the last week or so. According to my calculations, it was supposed to be in the low 70′s this week.
Well, apparently those calculations were wro-ong!
It is downright cold here…so cold that most of the locals are in coats, hats, boots…you name it. If it’s a cold weather accessory, it’s walkin’ the streets of the District (I can totally call it that now that I’ve actually been here, right?!).
Unfortunately, this unsuspecting tourist did not pack for frigid temps. Luckily I did bring a couple pairs of jeans and threw in my light trench coat, but I am kicking myself for not bringing my boots and some long sleeve shirts. Oh, and I almost bought some gloves at Urban Outfitters today. I’m kicking myself for leaving those behind too.
Despite the cold, I am loving DC! Something else you may not know about me is that I am so in love with the east coast I could marry it. Seriously. Jon and I drove up the east coast on our honeymoon, and I’ve pined away for it ever since. I knew I would love it here (in DC) too…and I couldn’t have been more right.
Now, here’s my list so far of things that have surprised me about DC:
One. how cold it is.
Two. how friendly the people are. there are some seriously friendly people here – and so helpful!
Three. the number of runners out and about throughout the day.
Four. how much the area around Capitol Hill reminds us of Paris. Anybody else?
Okay, so now that my lovefest has commenced, let’s go forth with the story of our trip here yesterday.
Jon and I left our house around 7:45am (right on time, thankyouverymuch) and hit up Starbucks on our way out of town for some coffee and a bite to eat. I gotta say, Starbuck’s Oatmeal is the way to go if you’re out and about in the early morning hours.
Okay, I am aware that this picture does not look that appetizing. But I promise you, they don’t call it “perfect” for nothing. Have I ever lied to you before?
After an hour and a half of driving in torrential rains, getting lost and making a circle around the entire perimeter of the airport, we finally got parked. This is not the first time that using directions from our iPhone has failed us. It literally led us on a wild goose chase down all kinds of windy back roads and plopped us down right at the entrance people use to fly private jets. Riiiiiight.
So, after nearly having a nervous breakdown and then a panic attack, we made it into the airport looking like a couple of wet dogs as we raced to check in. At that point I split off from the husband because unfortunately we were booked on different flights (his was booked through his work).
Luckily we both made it to our gates in time. After the hour-ish flight, I landed at O’Hare in Chicago for an hour and a half layover. First things first. Find some healthy food, stat!
I have to say – in my humble opinion, airports have really improved in the way of healthy eats. At least larger airports. Unfortunately it does cost half your life savings to obtain said eats, but they’re there. Per the usual, I had planned ahead and packed rice cakes, larabars, dried apricots, apples and bananas in my bag for this trip. But I always end up eating my packed stuff for breakfast and snacks when I go on vacation…and by day 2 or 3 I’m usually getting serious fresh veggie withdrawals. So, I had decided that if there were any good veggies to be had at the airport, I was going to splurge on invest in them. Enter – the best airport lunch ever:
Mixed greens salad with grilled veggies and pita wedges on top. With a balsamic vinegar dressing.
and a green juice
I used to think these Naked juices had added sugar – not sure why I thought that. This was 100% juice – including several fruits and broccoli, spirulina etc. It was delicious! And I felt on top of the world when I finished this lunch. Full of veggies:)
After I landed in DC a few hours later, I snacked on some spelt pretzels while I waited for Jon and his coworkers to land. Then it was off to the hotel to drop our bags and on to dinner!
Jon and I were desperate to get into the heart of the action and see the sights, but being in a new city we weren’t quite sure where to get some food first. So, we walked around the area where we’re staying for a little while and spotted this cute little Thai restaurant. It had us at Sawat-dee (hello in Thai).
If the traditional Thai greeting when we walked in the door didn’t charm us, then the egg rolls, cashew tofu, and sweet little Thai waitresses picked up the slack. We were enamored.
Highlight of the night: Jon and I ordered the same dish, but I substituted tofu for chicken. In the end we realized that Jon had been served tofu as well, and he didn’t even realize it until 75% of his food was gone! We couldn’t tell my looking at it because it was fried, and apparently he couldn’t taste the difference. ha!
After dinner, we took the bus and metro down to Capitol Hill. We strolled around, taking in the beauty of everything all lit up and taking pictures like we actually thought they would be good without at tripod.
freezing my tail off while waiting for the train
a fuzzy Washington Monument
hello there Abe
hello there Mister Obama
We were exhausted by the time we were ready to head back to the hotel, so we decided to hitch a ride in a cab. We had a crazy funny cab driver from India with an awesome accent who we found to be rather entertaining. That is until he drove off without giving us correct change, leaving us $10 short! What was that I was saying about friendly people…
I kid, I kid.
Anyway, that’s the long and short of day 1 in DC! Day 2 was a bit more eventful and definitely better for photo opps. I’ll be back tomorrow with the details:)
Jon will be in meetings all day tomorrow, so I’m thinking I’ll head over to Alexandria (Old Town) to explore a little bit. I was quite taken with it’s quaintness when we passed through on our way from the airport. Actually, it might be better if I didn’t go there – I don’t think I’m ever gonna want to leave!
See ya tomorrow!
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Aug 31, 2010
Thanks for all the sweet and encouraging comments on yesterday’s posts. Every single comment on this blog truly means so much to me!
Today has been pretty uneventful really…I’ve spent the morning working away on the blog and Outbox stuff, breaking just long enough for breakfast and lunch. I do, however, have a new “eats” page at the top to show for it – so go check it out if you get the chance!
Jon and I did go out for a run this morning, which unfortunately turned into a half run half walk. We intended to crank out 3 quick miles, but the return of the heat and humidity plus Jon running late for work got the best of us. I think we may start hitting up the treadmill for our short runs until this heat lets up a little bit. I am not a big fan of the treadmill, but I’m even less of a fan of sweltering heat.
Breakfast this morning was one of my all-time favorites
Cinnamon raisin Ezekiel muffin with 1 tbsp of natural peanut butter and half a sliced banana
And lunch was one of my favorites from last year. When I was a teacher, I would make my lunch before I went to bed every night. A version of this salad was one of quickest, easiest, healthiest and most popular meals I ever took! Popular because several of my coworkers would always ooh and ahh over it’s color and beauty. Now that I am at home for many lunches, I don’t make it as much, seeing as how I don’t have to worry about being on-the-go…but today it was resurrected!
So, in honor of our last few weeks of summer, here is a quick little tutorial on how to create an awesome salad. Salads don’t have to be just lettuce. I’ll be the first one to say “I don’t like salads” if we’re talkin’ lettuce and a few tomatoes thrown on top. I know some people really dig that, but for me – they’ve got to be loaded with different flavors, textures and colors to be enjoyable and to keep me going throughout the afternoon. So, here we go.
Pick your base
- spring mix
*Next, chop your greens and put them in a large bowl. This salad could get big, so leave plenty of room:) I always chop mine up because I want every bite of salad to have a bit of everything. Plus, I try to avoid shoving giant lettuce leaves in my mouth in front of my lunch buddies (which granted, now mainly include Olive).
Choose and chop your veggies. I like my salads to be bulky. Lettuce really ends up being a smallish part of the overall masterpiece. But you definitely want to create volume by tossing in lots of different veggies. I usually use anywhere between 3 and 5 of the options below.
- artichoke hearts (a must in my opinion!)
- bell pepper
- snow peas
- cold peas
- beets, shredded
- green onions
Choose your protein. Every good salad has to have protein. I’m going to stick to vegetarian suggestions. For beans, I usually add in about 1/3 – 1/2 of a cup. Sometimes I’ll go with 2 different types of beans and add 1/4 cup of each.
- beans (kidney, black, chick peas, navy etc)
- chopped egg
- nuts (sliced almonds, walnuts etc)
Choose your healthy fat.
- olive oil
Choose your dressing. Now we all know that a bad dressing can ruin the most healthy and delicious salad. The great thing is that with all the flavorful elements you’re adding to this salad, you don’t need much of a dressing! Here are a few of my personal favorites – just to add a bit of moisture.
- balsamic vinegar, straight up. I poor on about 1-2 tbsp of balsamic vinegar and call it a day. It adds the perfect amount of flavor, in my opinion.
- olive oil
- lime or lemon juice
And now for what I consider to be the best and final add ins. These are things that really add a huge punch of flavor or texture.
- dried fruit without added sugar (cranberries are my favorite)
- chia seeds
- fresh fruit (apples, mandarin oranges, strawberries, blueberries, pears, grapes)
- seasonings – sometimes just a sprinkle of ground red pepper or oregano can add the perfect touch
Now that all of your ingredients are in a huge bowl, it’s time to mix it up!
This is one of the most important steps because if you just add everything onto a plate, layer by layer, then you won’t get a little bit of every ingredient in most bites. And we definitely cannot deal with that. So mix it up really, really well!
Lastly, dump it all out either onto a plate or in a to-go container. Now off you go with a super healthy, filling and tasty lunch that will make you the envy of everyone you know! ha.
Note: obviously some of these suggested ingredients can serve for more than one category. For instance, olive oil could serve as your healthy fat and your dressing. Or chia seeds could serve as a fun, crunchy add on or as a source of healthy fat or protein. You get the picture.
If you’re someone who is always in a hurry when making lunch like I was was, I suggest using some time on the weekend to pre-chop your veggies that need it (rocket science, right?). Then reserve a small space on one shelf of your fridge for “salad fixins.” That way, when you get ready to create your salad, everything is ready to go – you can just snatch it out of the fridge, toss in a little of this and a little of that, throw a lid on it and go!
Along with creating this salad for lunch today, I also made a new and improved batch of hummus.
Spicy Garlic Hummus
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 3 tbsp tahini
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 3 tsp minced garlic
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp vinegar
- 1/3 cup + 1 tbsp water
- 1/4 tsp ground red pepper
- toss everything into a food processor minus 1 tsp minced garlic and process until smooth
- transfer hummus to a small bowl and add remaining tsp of garlic to the very center
- garnish with a sprinkle of ground red pepper
Well, I’m off to have a (hopefully) productive afternoon! See you all later;)
What is your favorite salad topping?
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Jul 28, 2010
Well, in t-minus 8 hours I’ll be setting off on my way to our lake cabin to spend a couple of days with my mom and sister.
I’m quite excited about this little excursion as it’s the only girl trip we’ve taken since before Jon and I were married off. There will be eating, skiing, swimming, eating, PiYo-ing, reminscing, puppy kissing, eating, boat riding, sunbathing, and much much more. Oh, did I mentioned eating?
As a food blogger through and through, I must first post my eats from the rest of today! Which are actually rather anticlimactic seeing as how I spent another 3/4 of a day in the car and at the orthodontist. Yay.
I was forced to take lunch on the go so it was back to plastics! Amy’s Lentil Vegetable soup, 1/2 a whole wheat lavash wrap rolled up around hummus
and later – an apple pie larabar and an iced coffee
I am exhausted today and totally reminded of why I left my job. The commute between here and the city is so draining. It sucks the life right outta me!
And now, because my eyes feel like they have weights hanging from the, I’ll leave you with some confessions I need to get off my chest before going to sleep. Any chance you want to confess something to make me feel less bad??
1. I didn’t post dinner tonight because I was a ravenous monster that forgot it’s camera on the way out the door to eat (non vegan) pizza
2. I actually ate two whole wheat lavash/hummus roll ups – one in the car and one that I shoved in my mouth while heating up my soup for lunch
3. I got bored on my drive today and read a blog post while driving…through construction. I know, I know.
4. When I commuted an hour each way last year, I would read blogs while driving on the interstate everyday on my way home. Again, I know. I really do know, and it won’t happen again. Promise!
5. I’m highly considering getting my nose pierced again. Mom, pretend you didn’t read that.
6. I never floss my teeth.
7. Sometimes I forget to set my alarm on purpose because I don’t want to get up early
8. I chew on my lip all the time and it drives the husband cuh-razy.
9. I don’t always wash my blender after making a green monster – often I just rinse it out
10. Right now my laundry room looks like a tornado hit it – some of the clothes are clean, some are dirty. There’s really no way to tell.
11. I sometimes screen phone calls because I hate talking on the phone.
As mentioned earlier, I’ll be leaving civilation as we know it at 8am tomorrow morning, so I’ll have no access to blogging until Friday morning. I’ll miss you all, and I can’t wait to get back and catch up on all your posts! I’ll have a scheduled post popping up tomorrow as well as a special surprise poster on Thursday!
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Jul 12, 2010
Jon and I had great intention of running a 5k this morning, but we have a bad habit of chattin’ it up so much that our running suffers. We ended up running/walking 2.54 miles in about 35 minutes . Obvs. there was a lot of walking involved. o’well…at least we were up and moving!
By the time we got back, I had to rush around to get out the door on time!
green monster to-go please!!
2 handfuls spinach, 1.25 cups soy milk, 1/2 frozen banana, 1 scoop Amazing Grass, 1 tbsp natural peanut butter, chia seeds, ice
Need. Bigger. Cup. (I’m hardcore like that;)
After my orthodontist appointment (hi, I’m Candice and I’m 13 years old) I ran through S-bucks for a decaf soy latte. I have cut down on my Starbucks runs exponentially; it’s funny how much better it tastes when it’s a rare treat. Totally worth every last cent today.
After a quick stop at the mall to do an exchange, I headed home for lunch. Sweet Jon had it all prepared for me
Sunflower sprouts make their debut! hooray!
whole wheat pita with hummus, Morningstar black bean burger, broccoli slaw and sunflower sprouts
with a side of juicy watermelon that I picked up last night
one of my thousand new obsessions.
And several hours of work later I dug into this new container of Sabra hummus with baby carrots. Does anybody know how baby carrots came to be? Do they grow them that way? Curious minds want to know!
love me some carrots and hummus
Tonight I was in the mood for some comfort food because I received some bad news. The ESL teaching job I told you guys I landed last week fell through. She called today and said that there had been some kind of hiring freeze and that they weren’t going to be able to hire me after all. Sad:( It hit me pretty hard because I was counting on that being a sure thing when I resigned from my job.
I’m trying to stay positive regardless of what happens. I know that God will provide, and I know everything will work out for the best…I just have to have faith.
Someone quoted the following on twitter last week. Please tell me if you know who it was because I can’t find where I wrote it down!
“This week shall rock! I’m going to hold steady and strong at not digging up in doubt what I planted in full on faith.”
This has been my mantra since I read it last week…I keep repeating it to myself every time I start to sink into doubt. I can’t lose hope the second things don’t go as expected.
Onwards and Upwards!
So, back to the comfort food. I’ll give you 1 guess as to what comfort food was calling out to me.
You got it
Our specialty: homemade enchiladas.
- Whole wheat tortilla
- black beans
- rotel tomatoes
- soy cheese
- Roll tortillas up and place in a baking dish
- Pour canned green enchilada sauce over entire dish
- Bake to perfection at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes
**We make six at a time because they are great for leftovers!
All jokes aside about our obsession with Mexican food...if you like enchiladas, you MUST make these. They are like biting into a little piece of heaven. No kidding. You can make any variation – spinach, beans, cheese and onion or a mix of all three! Let me know if you try them out, and I’ll post ‘em on the blog!
In an effort to save money this month, I decided to make a big batch of homemade salsa since we eat it like it’s goin’ out of style. Below is the recipe I came up with tonight, but I think it still has room for improvement. Let me know if you have any ideas for alterations!
Place the following ingredients in a food processor:
- 1/2 onion, chopped
- 2 tomatoes, cut into wedges
- 4 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
- 3/4 jalapeno pepper, seeds and all!
- ~ 2 tbsp lime juice
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- small handful basil leaves, chopped
- small handful cilantro, chopped
Process until it reaches the consistency you prefer. Eat up!
There are millions of different ways to make salsas – peach salsa, chipotle salsa, black bean and corn salsa, the list goes on and on…
Jon and I prefer just basic, spicy salsa – we’re not crazy about all the add ins. I’m excited to experiment with this a bit more.
Okay, okay, now for what you’ve all been waiting for. I selected the winners using True Random Number Generator from random. org.
The winners of the chia seeds so graciously donated by Monterey Bay Spice Company are….
Rhea from Happy Greek Feaster
Amber from SAHM’s Musings
Congrats Rhea and Amber. Email me your information, and we’ll get your chias shipped asap!
Thanks to everyone who entered. And a very special thanks to Monterey Bay Spice Company for being our lovely sponsor. Hop over and check out their website when you get a chance. Chia seeds are only the beginning of their amazing products!
That’s all for tonight, friends. Hope you all had a fantastic Monday!
What kind of salsa is your favorite? Any tips to improve my recipe? I’m all ears!!
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