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Mexican Fiesta Pasta

Hi!

Whew!  Today has been kind of crazy.  Do you ever have those days where it seems that everything seems to go wrong?  Well, that was today all the way up until 5pm when I arrived home from work.  Enough about it, though, no need to carry it on!

I just have to say, first of all, thanks so much to all of you who have been stopping by and checking out CSM.  Next to seeing my sweet husband, blogging is one of the highlights of my day.  So, when I see that people are swinging by it thrills me to no end!  I would love to hear from each of you in the comments, so that I can know who all is out there!  Please drop me a line if you get a chance!  Don’t be shy:)

And thanks so much to those of you who have been dropping me a line – you totally make my day!

Sorry guys, but lunch today was kind of a repeat.  I love taking leftover for lunch, so when I have a large batch of something, such as Veggie-tel, I kill it!  I did swap out the apple for a pear – just to add a little excitement.  Oh, and threw in some chopped avocado as well.  Somehow I forgot it yesterday.  Doh!

I snacked on some baby carrots and sliced cucumber right after school today.  I had to hold one little hoodlum after in detention.  I threatened him with his life had a good little chat with him, so I’m hoping tomorrow is the last day we’ll spend time together after school.  Somebody’s gotta keep these kids in line! These veggies held me over until my real snack on the commute home – a banana and a brown rice cake slathered with cashew butter.  My cashew butter is almost out, which is not good considering the new budget implementations.  Good ole’ PB will have to come to my rescue.  It’s never a bad thing to get back to the basics I suppose.

Speaking of budget implementations, yesterday I promised a budget friendly delicious meal, and I definitely can’t go back on a promise.  So, without further ado…

Mexican Fiesta Pasta

Ingredients

  • 2 cans rotel (generic works great!)
  • 1/2 chopped onion
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed
  • 1 can chili beans, rinsed
  • 1 can kidney beans, rinsed
  • 1 can of corn, no salt added
  • 1 12 oz. pkg whole wheat pasta
  • 2 tbsp ground red pepper (or to taste)  – I douse it!
  • 1 tbsp cumin

Directions

  • Cook pasta
  • While pasta is cooking, dump everything else in a large pot (yes, everything else!)
  • Let mixture cook through while pasta is boiling
  • Drain pasta and add to mixture

That’s it!  That’s one of the many joys of this meal.  It takes all of about 15 minutes to make.  It’s clean.  It’s delicious.  It’s cheap.  Doesn’t get much better.

One thing I’d like to mention, considering this recipe has a lot of canned goods that go into it, is to be very careful when picking out your canned items.  When I first started eating clean, I realized how many random things like sugar, salt, high fructose corn syrup etc. can come in things as simple as a can of corn or beans.  There are definitely versions that are clean, you just have to look for them. I often buy Great Value because most of their canned beans, such as black, are pure and simple…they way we like it!

Well, that’s all for tonight!  I’m off to respond to a couple of emails and then hit the sack!  Hope you all had a fantastic day:)

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a birthday week

picking myself up and dusting myself off…

So, basically a lot of life happened this week, which detered me from regularly posting or updating on the challenge. I knew this was going to be a crazy busy week, but I didn’t realize just how crazy.  Jonathan has been working on a project at work for about a year now.  The university he works for (and our alma mater) has launching the largest fundraising campaign ever in the history of the school.  He is the assistant director of marketing, so his role has been huge throughout the entire process.  Anyway, the campaign went public for the first time on Friday at a big event on campus.  Then, on Saturday, at halftime of the basketball game, there was another big announcement about it, and we spent the day passing out t shirts to students.  So basically, every night this week was filled with working and getting ready for the big day.  Plus, Friday was Jon’s birthday, so any free time I had this week was spent shopping, wrapping and baking.  It’s been a whirlwind.

It’s also been the longest I’ve ever gone without posting.  I missed it so much!  I feel like the spring was missing from my step all week.  I have to be honest and say that between work madness and birthday festivities, some not so good food choices resulted as well. I did do some good things too though.  For instance, I exfoliated my face every three days, drank more water this week and didn’t eat one spoonful of Kashi cereal (yay!).  I have to admit that the other parts of the challenge were hit or miss.  I actually wasn’t as committed this week as I was before I started the challenge.  Boo.  I participated in what some would call “emotional eating,” which I’m not proud of.  It’s something that I struggle with often, but the emotional eating monster struck extra hard this week.  Stress, stress, stress.

BUT, one part of the challenge that I am really being tested on right now is not beating myself up when I don’t do so hot.  I’ve actually had a lot of practice with that one lately.  And truly, I think it is one of the most important skills to practice.  Loving my husband and being there for him in every way possible, and still staying on top of my own job took precedence over blogging and sticking 100% to my challenge this week.  And I’m okay with that.  In fact, that’s the way it should be.

So, it’s a new week, and I’m still shooting for the same goals.  Life and all of the routines that come with it should be back to normal starting tomorrow.  I feel a bit silly that I’ve lost an entire week of only a three week challenge, but there is nothing I can do about that now.  That is, nothing aside from jumping right back in and doing the best I can this week.

Off I go to do some more prep for school tomorrow.  Because the first part of the weekend was so busy, I spent most of today working on grading research papers and planning for this week.  And I’m still not done.  I did manage to squeeze in time to make a soup for lunches this week, which I’ll post later, as well as one episode of Amazing Race.  Love that show!

I hope everyone has a great start to the week.  Thanks to those of you who’ve stuck around through my hiatus.  It’s good to be back:)

I’ll leave you with a few pics from the last few days.

Friday’s eats – cashew cookie Lara, banana (to be wrapped inside almond butter filled wrap) and spaghetti squash concoction which included spaghetti squash, brussels, corn, green beans, chick peas, sliced almonds and humnut sauce.

Gotta love the hubs.  This is his breakfast specialty (except for green monsters of course:).  It’s all about presentation of course.  Ezekiel cinnamon raisin english muffin with cashew butter and sliced banana.  And two almonds to top it off.

Happy birthday to my hero, my best friend, my love.

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LOVEly day

I love Valentine’s Day.  It’s not that I so much enjoy the commercial side of it all, because I don’t.  But I love that it is one entire day that is set aside for Jon and I to just focus on each other and do fun, special things, such as….

take a day trip to Tulsa to go to Whole Foods

Like a lot of you, I’m sure, one of my favorite places to go is Whole Foods.  The closest one to us is about an hour away, though, so we don’t get to go very often.  This was my plate at lunch!  Embarrassingly overflowing?  Yes.  Out of this world delicious and worth every bite?  Yes!

Most of my plate was filled with romaine topped with everything from artichoke hearts steamed kale, shredded beets, chick peas and black beans to green and yellow bell peppers, sliced almonds, onions and oil-free orange ginger dressing.  On the side I had a couple of different “salads” and one lonely falafel ball:)  One salad had wild rice, pearl onions and several other tasty items that I cannot, for the life of me, remember.  The other was wheatberries with kidney beans, dried fruit etc.  I also added on some sliced carrots, sauteed in lemon juice.  I can’t even begin to express to you how great this meal was.  I die.

As pictured, I also had my first ever Kombucha.  Aside from it spewing all over me when I opened it (apparently this is common), it was great.  I took one for the road as well, but have yet to break it open yet.

While the food was some of the best I’ve had in awhile, the company was even better.

Disclaimer:  we both hate this photo and agree that it doesn’t look much like either one of us, but it’s the only one I got all day:(

I seriously had the hottest date.  I love my husband for so many reasons beyond what I can even express here on the ole’ blog, and not just because he is charming, selfless, makes my breakfast at 5:45 am every morning and always supports me in everything I do.  Also, because he is the most fun person I know, he makes me laugh like crazy, and he is my soulmate.  Sometimes I feel like I just don’t know how to express how much I love him.

After eating lunch we headed to the mall and did a bit of casual shopping together.  Then, we headed back to Whole Foods (ha!) to fulfill our plan of buying some loot, including ingredients to make dinner together once we got back home.  Unfortunately, the dinner never happened because we snacked a little too much on our goods plus  Starbucks soy lattes, but here’s what we made it home with:

honeycrisp apples!!!, cashew butter (my first:), coconut milk yogurt, flax tempeh, vegan sour cream (one of the ingredients for the planned meal that fell through), roasted garlic humms, Almond Breeze, whole wheat penne, raw cashews (on sale!), couple cans of Amy’s soup, organic dates, artichoke hearts, kombucha, low sodium vegetable buillon, and Clif Builders bars for the hubs.

So, that pretty much wraps up our V-day.  We had intended to keep it low key all along because we’re taking a little mini vaca to Dallas on Spring Break.  This was just the perfect day, though. On Monday, my students kept asking me what I did for Valentine’s Day, and I’m pretty sure they’ve lost all faith that I’m even halfway cool now that I told them I went to Whole Foods.  Some girls want flowers, I want clean foods.  So sue me:)

I hope everyone else had a great day as well!  Do you celebrate Valentine’s Day?  Do you love it or hate it?  I love hearing other people’s opinions on this holiday.

I’m off to do some work for school.  Bye!

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