Dinner


Total score at the grocery store this afternoon. I had to run to work to drop off some papers to upgrade my certification, and while I was there, I decided to run by the Kroger to pick up some Quorn products. Unfortunately, all of the Krogers closer to home have closed down, so the closest one is about 40 minutes away, close to work. It works out fine during the schoolyear, but over the summer, it’s pretty inconvenient. Anyway, as I was walking through the bakery, I found this:

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The picture doesn’t do it justice, and I didn’t think to take a picture earlier. The bread is incredible. I don’t remember off the top of my head everything that’s in it, but my personal favorites were the flax seeds and the sunflower seeds. I used this bread to make an egg and tomato sandwich for dinner tonight. It was AMAZING!!! I got the idea from Leah’s post here. I just couldn’t bring myself to do strawberries with eggs, but I think that I’m going to have some strawberries tonight. I’ve got a container of them in the fridge that I need to use up, and I am definitely going to need an evening snack tonight.

I think I might have overdone it a bit today, but I feel good. I’ll be hungry in a little while, but I feel good right now. I decided I was going to up my workouts just a bit. Nate got all of the stuff for the EA Active for the wii. I was a skeptic, but he and I tried it together a few weeks ago, and I felt like I got much more of a workout than I expected. I decided tonight to find out exactly how much. There is a 30 day challenge on there, so I decided to start the “challenge” and see how much progress I get over the next month. Of course, I won’t be doing that alone- I can’t give up my running! But it would be a possible addition to the runs. So a little while after my run (200 calories- I cut it short today, knowing that I was going to do the Wii) I started the heart rate monitor up again to see exactly how many calories the wii torched. In just over 30 minutes, I burnt a whopping 336 calories, making my total burn for the day 536!! Woah! Since I’m somewhere around 1300 calories for the day, I know I’m going to need to eat something in a little while. I’m thinking an apple and some soy yogurt sounds pretty yummy. I’m in trouble… haha. Strawberries sound good… apple and soy yogurt sounds good… Pretty much everything sounds good right now, I guess.

Right now, I just feel pretty nasty. I need a shower!

I have been craving some veggies all day long. I’m also missing my hubby, but I’m kinda finding a replacement. I’m cheating on him with…………………….. the kitchen.

My husband is a restaurant manager, and he has to close a lot. He actually has the most random schedule of anyone I know. One day he opens… the next he closes. This week, he closes 4 nights in a row, so I have had to find a replacement for our time together. I have decided that this week, I am going to try out some new recipes. I can’t cook, period. I’m terrible. But I sincerely want to get better, and I’m trying to.

Tonight’s experiment: vegetable soup

In the pot

In the pot

In the bowl

In the bowl

I’m so proud. It was incredible. I was on the phone with a friend when I started the soup, and ended up inviting her over for dinner. We both loved it, and between the two of us, we ate all but one bowl of it. The last bowl will be my lunch tomorrow. Yummmmmm!

I used squash, tomatoes, a big bag of frozen veggies, tomato sauce, garbanzo beans, and vegetable broth. I will definitely be making this sometime very soon. I hope all of my kitchen experiments turn out this good!

I fixed a whole pot of spaghetti tonight, just for me. Not all for tonight, but I know I’m the only one in the house who will eat it. When I saw this spaghetti on Simply Fabulous, I knew what I wanted for dinner tonight. Luckily, I always keep several bags of frozen veggies on hand. Unfortunately, my husband doesn’t believe in eating veggies, so I will be keeping the entire pot all for myself. Oh well, lunch tomorrow, I guess!

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In the mix:

  • whole wheat spaghetti
  • super chunky mushroom sauce
  • broccoli
  • carrots
  • baby corn
  • snap peas

Obviously, on the side, I had some of those peas I’ve been craving today. In all, it was a pretty good day. Good workout. Good meal. And absolutely nothing accomplished for work. Sounds like a good day to me. The only thing that could make it better is if my wonderful hubby had been here to spend the day with me.

While I’m thinking abou that, I have spotted a set of cookbooks that I may invest in. They’re the Sneaky Chef books. I’m thinking that since Nate won’t eat veggies, maybe I could sneak them in on him? I read some people arguing over how dishonest it is to trick someone into eating healthy foods, but I honestly think it’s more wrong to just let them continue abusing their body. I know that I certainly wouldn’t be mad at him for anything he did that was truly in my best interest.

I am scared to death about tonight’s dinner. More on that in just a second.

As the title says, I have been spending the morning in the kitchen. I got up pretty early this morning, of my own accord, but that was probably because I was in bed by 8:30 last night. Nate had to be at work at 4:00 this morning, so we when he went to bed, I just went with him. I was pretty exhausted myself, apparently, because I didn’t wake up until 6:15 this morning! Holy cow!

Upon getting up, I promptly started on a green smoothie for breakfast, but this morning’s smoothie looks almost brown. Usually I stick to my familiar peanut butter/banana smoothie because I know 2 things about it: 1) it tastes good, and 2) it keeps me full until lunch time. Since it’s a Saturday, though, I figured that if I didn’t stay full, no biggie, I’ll just have a bowl of cereal for a snack. Usually, being a teacher, I don’t have the luxury of a mid morning snack. So staying full is usually a big deal.

I also knew that I have been looking at a bag of frozen organic strawberries in the freezer for a couple of weeks now, debating with myself over what to use them for. At first, I was wanting to make a vegetarian version of a strawberry pie, which Nate loves. This morning, though, it sounded great in a smoothie. Sorry Nate.

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I love the fun glass. This ended up to be a strawberry banana spinach smoothie for 310 calories. It also happens to be quite delicious.

  • 2 handfuls of spinach
  • 10 frozen strawberries
  • 1 tbsp flax seeds
  • 1 banana
  • vanilla almond breeze

I also got a head start on tonight’s dinner. It is inspired by a soup that was served at my school a couple of years ago. Our cafeteria had a different manager then, and we actually had real food back then most days. Our current lunches are mostly pre-packaged, and all fat laden. At any rate, back then, they served once or twice a month the most amazing chicken tortilla soup. At the time, I ate some chicken, so I tried it a couple of times, and I have really been having a craving for it lately. Since I don’t have their recipe, I have done some digging around to try to figure out what to put in. This is a first try, but I think I’ll probably be able to do better after a few more tries.

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What I have tried today is incredibly simple. All that is in there is the following:

  • morningstar chik’n strips
  • black beans
  • corn
  • diced tomatoes (canned)
  • vegetable broth (I used 2 cans)
  • taco seasoning

Right now, I have used some packaged taco seasoning because I don’t really know what to use to get the flavor otherwise. I’m sure I could find it somewhere if I looked, but I really don’t know what I’m doing, so I thought I should start easy, and work my way up. I really don’t know how to cook, and I have rarely cooked for Nate, so I’m a nervous wreck about screwing this up. On top of that, I’m kinda adapting a recipe I found online because I don’t like the looks of it. We have the kind of relationship where he will be completely honest about what he thinks, which is good, because it means that usually we both know what mistakes we’re making so that we can fix them, but in this case, it makes me a nervous wreck because if he doesn’t like it, I think I’d rather not know. I already know I don’t know how to cook- I don’t need it confirmed!

Anyway, I’ve been telling him all week long that I wanted to make this soup, and he’s asked me about it every night, so now seems like the time to do it. I was thinking that if I started this morning, and it’s a disaster, I have time to fix my mistakes. And if it turns out ok, then I can reheat it tonight, because soup reheats well anyway.

The more I’m thinking about this, the more I’m worrying. Not good.

I have thoroughly enjoyed this weekend. Yesterday was great- I got to spend the whole day with my hubby, stay up sort of late, and then sleep in with him this morning. I even got to spend about half of the day with him, which was awesome! Although, there was one not so happy part of the weekend. My wonderful hubby, in an attempt to do something good and keep all of the laundry caught up, made one small mistake that ruined a whole load of my clothes. He washed a load of my clothes with one shirt of his, and apparently had a black ink pen in the pocket. Needless to say, all of my clothes came out with polka dots, which are so not the style.

So this afternoon, after he was gone to work, guess who did a bit of clothes shopping! I got a whole bunch of new shirts, which I’ll post pictures of this week. I also made a run to the school to do some lesson planning and get my room in order for the coming week. I still have some planning left for reading groups, but that shouldn’t take too long.

This morning’s breakfast was kinda blah. I guess I’m not too much of a fan of cereal, even thought I always keep tons of it on hand. I love how easy it is, and when nothing sounds good, sometimes I’ll go for a bowl. This morning, I mixed some Nature’s Path Optimum with some Kashi Heart to Heart, sprinkled on a few chopped pecans just to break it up, and topped it off with some Almond Breeze.

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Around my normal lunch time, I got hungry, but I wanted to wait and eat lunch with Nate, who was in the shower, so I had a snack of 1 Ryvita and some almond butter to hold me until he was ready to eat. We went to Souper Salad for lunch. And I was bad. I had my salad, which was very healthy (and vegan) and some soup, which was not too bad, I’m sure, but then I got a major craving for some of their blueberry bread. Oh. My. Gosh. I hadn’t had it in ages, and it was amazing. When we left, I was so stuffed that I was sure I wouldn’t get hungry again for the rest of the day.

Needless to say, I was wrong. Tonight’s dinner, though, was pretty quick, easy, and fairly light. I split a banana with Mango, my eclectus, and then got busy sauteeing some spinach. I ended up with this:

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Somewhere in there are all of the following:

  • 1 slice of sesame Ezekiel bread
  • hummus
  • sauteed spinach
  • Morningstar veggie patty
  • tomato slices
  • just a touch of fresh ground pepper

I still have to get in a workout tonight, but since I’m home alone tonight, it’ll probably be something here. I have a ton of workout DVD’s that I could/should do, not to mention DDR, which Nate got me for the Wii. I think tonight’s workout will be a combination of the two, and then hitting the bed a little early. I’ve got morning duty tomorrow, so I have to be up an hour early. Thank God it’s only a 4 day week!

I was working on a research paper until really late last night, and by the time I finished, I didn’t really want to take the time to update on here. So, here’s yesterday’s lunch:

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  • toasted pine nut couscous
  • sauteed spinach
  • morningstar veggie patty
  • tomato slices

I was absolutely starving all day yeserday, so I actually ate the rest of the box of couscous at some point during the day, plus a bunch of other stuff. All fruits and veggies (and a larabar), so nothing was terrible. Probably too much of it, though, to be truthful. Last night, we ordered takeout from my absolute favorite chinese place in the world. It’s a local restaurant called Imperial Garden. The reason I love this place so much is that it is the only place I’ve ever seen where they have a whole page of vegetarian options on the menu, and rather than being just veggies, I can actually order some of my favorites from the old days when I ate meat. They use tofu in place of the chicken. Last night, I ordered moo goo gai pan with tofu, and it was absolutely delicious. I ate the whole thing before I even thought to take a picture, it was so good!

I also broke the news to Nate last night that I’m thinking I’ll just totally give up milk and cheese. I’m working on eggs, but they’re sneaky little bastiches. They’re in all kinds of things that I wouldn’t think of, so I’m going to have to do some research on that one. I’ve been a vegetarian for years, but this is the first time I’ve seriously entertained the notion of becoming a vegan. I’ve just been reading so much lately that makes me think that to give up eating meat, but still use animal products is kinda defeating the purpose, both for the sake of the animals and for my own health.

Today, I’m determined that I’m going to eat more filling foods so that hopefully I can reign in my hunger beast. This morning was oatmeal with a spoonful of peanut butter. I usually find that the peanut butter gives the oatmeal a little more staying power. So far, so good. I normally eat lunch around 11:45, so I’m hoping that I can eat a light lunch around that time, and then hit the gym around 1:00 when they open. That way, when I get back, I can have a light snack, and hopefully that will hold me over until dinner time.

rimmelI also wanted to update about the mascara, mentioned here, which I have been wearing to work the last half of the week. Never before have I gotten compliments on my eyes. I’ve worn mascara in the past, but either nobody noticed or they didn’t say anything. This mascara was not at all clumpy, made my lashes look much fuller and longer, and got me a few compliments. Some of them were on my makeup, but they couldn’t put their fingers on what, exactly, and some were on my eyes. Either way, awesome mascara, apparently.

I’m feeling good from my hat to my shoe,
know where I am going and I know what to do,
I’ve tidied up my point of view,
I’ve got a new attitude.

Today was a bust. Totally and completely.

Breakfast:

  • a banana
  • almond milk

Lunch:

  • lentil soup

Snack:

  • banana bread larabar

Dinner:

  • a handful of chips with salsa
  • mushroom quesadilla
  • a slice of cake
  • a margarita (my first alcohol in months, which is a huge accomplishment if you know me.)

That’s right. I am the epitome of healthy eating. Sigh. Oh well… C’est la vie. No use crying over what’s already done.

I think that’s a huge shift for me, that I’m actually quite proud of. For years, I would have beaten myself up after a slip up, and had a “well, screw it” attitude for the rest of the day… All or none… I blew it, might as well give up. That is gone now. There’s no reason to let a slip up screw up the rest of a day/week/month. Now, I realize that the big slip-up was at the end of the day, but still, my attitude in the past would have been “well, might as well have whatever else I want tonight so that I can start brand new tomorrow” or beat myself up for the next several hours until bedtime, and then determine that I should starve myself tomorrow. Obviously, I am doing neither. It was one bad meal on an overall not horrible day. There’s room for improvement, but it’s not the end of the world. Also, I have something to really look forward to.

Tomorrow, I will start back to working out! I’m really excited! I had planned for that to be my focus for myself during April, so that by the end of April, I would have my eating under control and be consistently working out. Well, we’re so close, I might as well go ahead and start tomorrow. Besides, that’ll give me a running start into next week, so that hopefully I can spread my workouts out more and hopefully not have to be too sore while I’m at work.

The goal is to start off tomorrow’s workout with about 30 minutes on the elliptical. Nothing too strenuous. Eventually, I’d like to build up to an hour, and at that point, I will return to karate, since those classes are roughly an hour long. I think that some kind of cardio at the gym would be a good first step toward getting back in karate. Soooo… tomorrow, 9:00 AM, me, the heart rate monitor, and my walkman are going to be hitting the gym for a little while.

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