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the incredible, edible

If you’ve been around my blog for very long, then you know that not too long ago I was eating a mostly vegan diet.  Once I became pregnant, though, it didn’t take me long to start including dairy and eggs again.  For one thing, I was so sick for the first 16 weeks or so that it was really hard to eat much of anything.  Since my options were already limited by sickness, I didn’t feel like I could limit them even more by not including such a wide food group.  You may be wondering why I didn’t also start including meat based on that philosophy, and the simple answer is that I just couldn’t.  My feelings about actually eating animal flesh just run too deep, and after 4 years of being a vegetarian I just can’t stomach the thought of biting into a piece of meat.

Another reason dairy and eggs showed back up is because I was really feeling a need for more protein options.  It took me a little while to concede, primarily out of stubbornness.  I really wanted to prove that a healthy vegan diet is possible during pregnancy.  And I still do believe it can be done, but for me personally, it just wasn’t worth the stress of making it work.

So, since I started eating eggs again, I’ve really been enjoying them!  I do make sure to buy both organic and free range, although I know some of that labeling can be a gimmick.  But until I find a local farm to buy from, I’ll do all I can do.

Some of my current favorite egg concoctions:

cooked in the microwave in a small bowl for 2 minutes, then sandwiched on a whole wheat english muffin with a bit of cheese and hot sauce

spinach, mushroom and onion fritatta made by the husband.  this was hands down my favorite.  absolutely delicious!  you must make this super easy recipe.

egg salad sandwich - I didn’t really measure amounts, but just threw together a couple of mashed, hard boiled eggs, chopped spinach, chopped onion, chopped pickles, salt and pepper, and a tiny bit of Earth Balance olive oil mayo. Don’t forget to toast your bread and add some avocado slices to really take it up a notch:)

While scrambled used to be my favorite, I’m also really enjoying fried lately.

I just spray a pan with olive oil cooking spray and drop two eggs onto it.  While they cook I usually spread some hummus and hot sauce on a pita or tortilla, and then lay the eggs on top, fold it over, and done!  In less than 5 minutes I have a delicious and protein filled breakfast.  The combo of hummus, egg and hot sauce really can’t be beat.

And of course they’re awesome plain too.

All I can say is I really hope these babies like eggs because they’re getting a lot of them!

Are you a fan of eggs?  What’s your favorite way to eat them?  I’m always looking for more ideas:)

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great books and other stuff

Despite the fact that it’s Friday and the weather has made vast improvements, I am dragging today!  The culprit?

This book.

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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pink lady

Yesterday I was really feeling the fruits and veggies all day.  Maybe it’s the onset of spring and all the flowery, warm goodness it brings that brought the longing for fresh produce.

It started off in the morning when I woke up craving a strawberry smoothie.  I have no idea where it came from…I haven’t even had a strawberry smoothie in months.  But I could just envision the creamy pink coldness coating my throat as it went down.  I had to have it.

While I normally like to keep things simple, I decided to doctor this lady up a bit by adding a little homemade coconut butter and a half a banana.  I was feeling a little tropical I suppose.

1/2 banana, 1 cup almond milk, 1 handful frozen strawberries, chia seeds and ice

All day long I worked on a cover letter and resume for a job I found the other day.  I’ve been applying for a lot of jobs as of late, all of them jobs I’d be satisfied doing.  But this job is one that I would LOVE to do.  It fits in line with things I really care about, and I know I could be really successful at it.  Needless to say I have a lot invested.  A degree in nutrition is not required, but it is preferred, so I’m trying not to get my hopes up.  But it’s kind of hard to keep them down.  I’ve done all that I can do, so now I’ll just wait.  And keep applying for jobs of course.  The plus to all of it is that I’m getting pretty good at the art of writing cover letters, a task I used to absolutely despise.

Continuing to feed my craving at lunchtime, I pulled out leftovers of a meal I made the other night.  You guys know I love a good stir-fry, and I found this awesome sauce at our local food store the other day.  I always find it really difficult to find a pre-made stir-fry sauce that doesn’t have added sugar, so I nearly jumped up and down in the aisle when I discovered it!

Love teriyaki.  Love pineapple.  That’s all.

At least I thought.  Unfortunately later in the evening, the husband was checking out the ingredients and informed me that it has fish sauce.  FAIL.  I have to be honest – I’ll still continue to eat it until the jar is gone (hello $4), but obviously won’t buy it again.  The search continues.

The sauce really was just as perfect as I thought it would be for my stir-fry, though.  I chopped up a green bell pepper, three carrots, an onion, frozen broccoli and some asparagus, stir-frying it in a bit of olive oil until the veggies were tender.  Then I added about a cup of edamame (protein!) and some raw cashews just for kicks. All served over brown rice.

hi!

One of my absolute favorite meals.  And the husband’s too.  Darn that fish sauce.

————————–

In other news, for those of you who read my post last Friday, you know that I am having a bit of a problem with my blogging workflow right now, and I’m in the market for a new plan.  Yesterday I clicked over to my old blog for a second and happened to notice a post title of a blogger on my old blogroll.  I don’t read Kath’s blog normally, but the title “House Neat Home: Blogging Behind the Scenes” caught my eye, so I clicked on over.

And discovered the coolest little gadget that I didn’t even know existed.

Yes, that would be a wireless SD card.  Aka my dream card.  Am I the only one who thinks it is a huge hassle to constantly be unplugging and plugging in my card? (rhetorical question)  And as you all know, my adapter broke last week, which meant that I couldn’t plug it in at all.  I am so excited about this.

Basically with the wifi card you can take pictures, and if you’re within range of your wireless network (you can program in multiple networks), then the photos will automatically upload to your computer in a folder that you designate.  If you’re outside your network when you take the photos, then it will wirelessly upload them the next time you turn your camera on in your network range.

The only thing I’m still trying to figure out is if it uploads raw images, or just JPEGs.  I need raw, so that could be a deal breaker.  I’ll update as soon as I find out…fingers crossed.

Have any of your heard of this before?  I was so surprised when I found out about it, and I just thought I’d pass it on!

Anyway, this afternoon the husband and I have an appointment with a small business consultation company to talk about some Outbox logistics, so I’m picking him up from work in about a half hour.  There may be a cupcake stop involved later.  Just maybe.

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weekend photo overload

Another successful weekend in the great OKC.  The husband and I ate and explored until our hearts were content…and we did most of it with the little baby in tow, which made it all the bettter.

We started off Saturday afternoon at Panda Express because it was the only veggie friendly restaurant that had a nice outdoor patio just begging for us to relax on it.

One of my not so healthy loves is lo mein noodles and spring rolls.  mmmm….Asian food.

After lunch we headed down to the Plaza District, a quaint little area in the heart of OKC dotted with vintage shops.  One of our friends from college opened up her own handmade boutique a few years ago, and I’ve been itching to stop by and check it out.  It was just as cute as I’d imagined.

One of the best parts about this little shop is that it’s pet friendly.  We carried O around for awhile, but eventually let her down to make friends with the shop dog.  She wasn’t toooo excited.

And she was a good little baby while her mama tried on some clothes.

After shopping for a bit, we decided to hit up the much talked about little cupcake shop just a couple of miles way.

Cutest little cupcake shop ever!  Even counting the ones in Old Town Alexandria that I fell in love with last fall.  Very quickly I’m finding out that OKC has more than a few things going for it.

I ordered the highly recommended iced coconut latte with soy.  yum!  And the husband and I split this little gem – chocolate cupcake with a mocha chocolate icing.

We liked.

After letting our little snack settle, we were off to our next destination – the Paseo District – for a little walking and sightseeing.

She still loves me:)

And then the long drive back home.  She was tuckered out.

After we picked up Olive at my grandma’s, we were cruising along toward the city when we suddenly looked at each other and we knew exactly what each other was thinking.  Our little family was finally together again, and it felt like everything was right in the world.  I still have moments of weakness when I think to myself “why did we decide to give her up?”  “What were we thinking?”

We’re now 3 weeks down and 13 to go.  Just trying to keep whittling it down.

I spent most of yesterday on the search for a job.  I’m having a bit of a hard time with it.  Sometimes I think I just analyze things too much…and it gets me all stressed out.  I’m hoping to be able to find something this week, but so far I’ve kind of struck out.  Hopefully I’ll have better luck today!

Is there something in your life that you’re having to make an effort to stay positive about?  What do you do to help yourself stay focused on the bright side?


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hello, spring

Hey!

What a beautiful week it has been so far – I am loving this weather.  Do you have great weather where you are?  Sorry to rub it in if not.

Yesterday it was so nice that I got a sunburn!  Hello, spring.  I had a break between tutoring appointments, so I decided to sit out on the lawn of our campus library to eat lunch.  Forty-five minutes later my chest was red – glad I had on long sleeves. I’m not sure why campus looks deserted in these pictures, there were people all around me.

greens topped with leftover stir-fry veggies/chickpeas + quinoa + lightly steamed brussel sprouts + tahini dressing

I got to feeling a bit nostalgic sitting there – I’ve spent many days on library lawn from walking to classes in college to long walks with the husband and Olive.  So many good memories. I even buried a baby chicken on that lawn during my freshman year of college.  Don’t ask.

I also got up this morning and went for a 3 mile run outside.  In a tank top and shorts!  I was planning on wearing a jacket, but when I stepped outside I realized it was way too warm for a jacket, so off I went.  It definitely felt like spring and almost like summer.  There was also a nice strong wind, which made for a tough run.  But I made it through with the addition of a few walk breaks.  It was so much more refreshing than the treadmill – my vitamin D levels must be sky high after yesterday and today!

I’m going to have to keep this post short, but I’ll be back soon with a couple of tasty raw meals I’ve been enjoying the last couple of days.  I made them for dinner a couple of nights ago, and even the husband was a huge fan.  Score.  Also coming up soon is another product review!  I love trying out new cooking (or not! – hint) tools, so I’m excited to work with CSN again.  Remember when I reviewed the spiralizer last fall? This time will be similar, but with a new and just as fun product.  If you haven’t checked out CSN sites yet, head over there if you get the chance.  They really do have every item you can imagine…everything from swing sets to…well, spiralizers.  You can’t get much more widespread than that!

With that I’m off to a tutoring appointment – I’ll see you later!

Hope your having a lovely Thursday…only one more day ’till the weekend!

What’s your favorite nice weather activity?
I think mine is just sitting in the sun, feeling the breeze and soaking it all up!

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