I Haven’t Told You Lately

First let’s look at today’s eating habits.

DSC00821

Half Bagel with Peanut Butter, Banana, and some specs of coconut butter from a sample pack.

DSC00827

Lunch was a leftover salad from Whole Foods with additional spring mix and Gorgonzola and an apple.  The salad had a couple different bean salads underneath the lettuce and veggie mixture.

I had a Cashew Cookie Larabar for my after-school tutoring snack, but no picture was taken.

For dinner, I attempted to defrost red beans from the freezer, but upon opening the container I realized, well Chris realized it was gumbo.  I was in the mood for some traditional Monday Red Beans so I ordered take-out from Come Back Inn instead.

DSC00831

I gave Chris one of the sausage links and ate most of the beans and rice plus one piece of bread and a small serving of potato salad.  These hit the spot after a liberal dash or two or three of Crystal hot sauce was added.

Lately, I’ve been uninspired. I am uninspired to do my day job—teach with just one nine weeks left, but I’m doing it. I am uninspired to cook—lots more eating out has been happening with SOME cooking. I am uninspired to work out—I gained a few pounds and have been working out only 3 days a week. I am uninspired with blog writing—posts have been few and far between.

I am not quite sure where this lull has come from, but I am trying to get back on track. So, I figured I’d start by sharing a few things I haven’t told you lately.

1. Remember when I stopped biting my nails back in September, well I started biting them again. 

DSC00799 

I am trying to cut the habit again and may need to go get that gel polish put back on since it lasted for about three weeks.  Please pardon the dry skin shown above. 😉

2. I eat my apples like my dad eats his rib bones.  Oh wait, I eat my ribs like that too when I eat ‘em!

DSC00796

I really gnaw on it ‘til all the flesh is gone. Now I don’t do that at work, but in the privacy of my own home that’s how I roll.

3. I have a serious addiction to chips (pita or tortilla) and hummus.DSC00797

This container is just after two days.  Whoops!  Maybe the husband helped a tad, but not by much.  I have always had a much larger love affair with salty foods than the sweet stuff.  Give me fries; give me chips.  Well, you can have the fries just don’t eat my chips!  Seriously, I need to work on self control with the chips and dips. 

4. I bought this book back in January and began to read it.  But…

DSC00812

I have yet to get past Chapter 1.  I have picked it up about 5 times and just can’t get into it.  It references many German words and places and it just doesn’t capture my attention—so far.  I may still try to read it, but I picked up Water for Elephants at Target on Sunday and it looks a little more my speed.

5. The past several Fridays I have attempted to eat “Meat-Free on Friday.”  I do well with breakfast and lunch, but then dinner time comes and I eat meat.  Since I am Catholic and the Lenten season has arrived, I will be sure to make that sacrifice on Fridays up until Easter Sunday.  So, here is my eats of the first “Meat-Free Friday” in Lent.

DSC00785 DSC00790 DSC00808

That’s a Morningstar Farms Black Bean Burger in case you were questioning my Meat-Free Friday.

DSC00809

Gotta get going now because The Bachelor Finale is on.  My guess is for Chantell, but ya never know.

Advertisements

Late Night Planning

Although I am exhausted as it nears 9:00 p.m. each night, my morning goes so much smoother when I plan ahead.  Last night I took some time to prepare for today.

Overnight oats were prepared…breakfast check.

DSC00739 DSC00736

Of what remains of an empty peanut butter jar, I made my Overnight Oats in a Jar.  The mixture included:

~1/3 c plain 0% greek yogurt

~1/3 c old fashioned oats

~1/3 c lowfat milk

~cinnamon

~1 ripe banana

~less than a tsp of honey

~less than tsp of peanut butter remnants (it looks like more, but it really isn’t much)

~small handful of granola added in the a.m.

All ingredients were mixed up in the jar and set in the fridge til morning.  This may very well be my favorite breakfast.  I had some hot  chai on the side.

DSC00741                                DSC00745 DSC00747 Salad was made…lunch check.

DSC00750

Spring mix, grape tomatoes, celery, strawberries, reduced fat feta cheese with…

DSC00752

Workout gear was packed…exercise check.

On my way home from work, I stopped at the gym for some cardio.  I started with 18 minutes on the bicycle until one of the ellipticals were available.  I then did 30 minutes on the elliptical machine.  To end today’s session, I did ten minutes of stretching and abdominal floor work including basic crunches, planks, leg lifts, and torso twists using the medicine ball.

Red beans simmered on the stovetop for three hours…dinner check.

DSC00754

Thanks to hubby, the beans were reheated and the brown rice was cooked when I got home from the gym.  I measured out 2/3 cup of brown rice and topped it with a cup of the beans. 

DSC00757

I did end up going back for a couple more spoonfuls of beans and rice.  They were delish!!

I’m in the mood for some sweetness so hot chocolate is in the making and a perfect accompaniment to this frigid winter night.  Good night!

N’awlins Tradition

Back to basic eating habits and back to work I went.  Today’s breakfast was light yet did the trick.  I fixed a yogurt bowl made of a sliced banana, 1/2 cup plain 0% greek yogurt, and less than 1/2 cup granola all drizzled with honey. 

DSC00694DSC00696 DSC00697

Hot, plain chai tea was sipped alongside my yogurt bowl as I leisurely read emails and blogs.  In the morning, I like to take some time to breathe before the start of the busy on-the-go day. 

Lunch was made this morning pretty hastily because I knew I would need any extra minutes to get to work this A.M. due to the rain causing traffic.

DSC00701  

Deli Turkey Breast, Laughing Cow Light Mozzerella and Sundried Tomato and Basil Cheese Wedge (I am trying to use this flavor up because I don’t particularly like the strong herbed flavored cheese), shredded lettuce, celery sticks for crunch and an apple for some sweetness.

Funny question came about during lounge talk; another teacher asked me what a good detox was since feasting on so many Thanksgiving treats and eats.  I recommended fruit and vegetables for their natural fibers and cleansing powers because that is all I “use” so to speak.  Do any of you reading recommend any detox methods to cleanse the system?

I had my mind set on making the traditional Monday food fare for dinner tonight—N’awlins style red beans.  So before leaving this morning I took out the frozen creole vegetable seasoning, pickled meat, and smoked sausage.  However, once I arrived home I realized I was missing one ingredient, the main ingredient—the Red Beans.  Hello!?! Can’t make red beans without the beans.  Luckily the husband worked a little late and called me on his way home, so he picked up a pound of dry red beans. 

DSC00729

Now they are simmering on the stove top and I may have to have them tomorrow since I got a late start.  For the recipe I use check out the tradition behind red beans on Mondays in New Orleans on my recipe page or by clicking here.

While waiting for MY BEANS (I always think of the Blue Runner Beans Commercial whenever I say “my beans”) I had some snackage to hold me over.  Almonds, strawberries, and bread and butter.

DSC00709 DSC00718 DSC00728

And for giggles, the bean commercial…

 

I now want to share one of our traditional Thanksgiving recipes that I made this year; mom has been making these for a while now.  When you are in the mood for cheesy, fattening, rich crawfish pie or dip that tastes delicious this recipe is for you.  Otherwise, stand back.

This recipe can be used as a dip on its own or filled into miniature pie shells that have been cooked according to package directions.  For Thanksgiving I doubled the recipe, but certainly did not need to for the 16 mini pies that I made.  I had a ton of the crawfish filling leftover and brought it over to a friend’s house for the depressing LSU game on Saturday.  There, it was eaten as a dip with tortilla chips.  Delish either way!

DSC00653 DSC00659 DSC00684

Mom’s Cheesy Crawfish Dip/Pie Filling

1 stick butter, salted

1 chopped onion

1 rib celery, chopped

1/4 c green bell pepper, chopped

1- 10 ounce can diced Rotel Tomatoes with Green Chiles

1 can reduced sodium cream of mushroom soup

1- 8 ounce block of Velveeta cheese, cubed

1 pound crawfish tails, cooked and peeled (I used defrosted from frozen)

1/4 c scallions/green onions, chopped (shallots as mom calls ‘em, but scallions are needed)

miniature pie shells*

Melt butter over medium heat.  Saute’ onion, celery, and green peppers in butter until wilted.  Stir in canned tomatoes, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook 30 minutes.  Next, add cream of mushroom soup, cheese, crawfish, and scallions.  Cook 20 minutes. 

*At this point you can enjoy as a dip with chips. If making pies, fill prebaked shells with filling.  Once pie shells are filled, bake in 350* oven until tops are set and golden about 25 minutes.

Enjoy!

Stand Up and Get Crunk

Football season is back.  It’s time to stand up and get crunk with the New Orleans Saints!!  After scoring a touchdown inside the Superdome, the 70,000 + people all stand up and go nuts to the song “Stand Up and Get Crunk” by the Ying Yang Twins.  It gets crazy in that place, so if you are not into loud noise and screaming fans yelling “Who Dat? Who Dat?  Who Dat Say They Gonna Beat Dem Saints?” then stay away, far far away!

You don’t have to be in downtown New Orleans to hear someone shout “Who Dat”  with echoes of other “Who Dats” in the background.  It happens all throughout the surrounding metropolitan area.  If someone is in Saint’s attire (which most locals wear on game day or days before for that matter) you are bound to hear a call of the Who Dat Nation.  I had my Saint’s shirt and silver fleur de lis earrings and necklace on today.

Watching the game!

#####################################################################################

Breakfast–Egg Over Medium + Whole Wheat Toast with Brummel & Brown

Maybe Medium Well–Don’t Want Salmonella
Chai + Eats

Lunch–Turkey Sammie with Spring Mix and Dijon Mustard + Half Sliced Cucumber + Dark Chocolate Square

Snack While Baking Somethin’ Sweet–Carrot Sticks + Wholly Guacamole

I was in the mood to bake some oatmeal cookies.  Rather than go by a recipe (which I did look at a couple) I decided to wing it and make it up a long the way.  I knew I wanted them to include these ingredients.

Into the Cookie Mixture

Dark Chocolate Cherry Muffin Cookies

I am calling them muffin cookies because they have more of a muffin texture, similar to that of a VitaTop.

1 c flour

1 c rolled oats

1/2 c Brummel & Brown Yogurt Spread (softened)

1/3 c packed light brown sugar (you may want more if you prefer more sweetness)

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 egg

1/3 c water

2/3 c chopped pitted cherries (used fresh, but may prefer dried)

1/4 c dark chocolate chips (used 3 dark chocolate squares crumbled; you may want more than this if you are a chocoholic)

Directions:  Preheat oven to 350*.  Put all ingredients in mixing bowl except cherries and chocolate.  Mix with spoon/spatula.  Fold in cherries then chocolate.  Use ice cream scoop to evenly distribute mixture onto baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Bake for approx. 15 minutes. (A circuit breaker went out while these were baking so I am not exactly sure of the baking time, but I think it was around 15 minutes give or take a few.)

Oatmeal Cookie Mixture
I made 9, but you can get 10-12 cookies for sure.
Done–My Cookie Gobbled Up While Still Warm

Nutritional Information based on 10 servings using 411fit.com

Calories 160.48

Carbs 24.09 g

Fat 6.24g

Protein 3.02 g

Sodium 434.34 mg

Dinner–Dad’s Red Beans, No Rice

Red Beans with Louisiana Hot Sauce and More Bread/Brummel & Brown

Geez, I ate ALOT of bread today.  Oh well.

Off to finish watching the game!  Have a great weekend! 🙂

Question of the Night:  Are you a football fan?  What is your favorite team?

It’s My Party and I’ll Cry If I Want To

Today is the day I was born back in 1982.  Gosh, I feel like I’m so old being so close to thirty, but when I see kids in high school and college I don’t feel that there is that much of a difference.  Woke up for work and had some b-fast before heading out–greek honey yogurt, handful of blackberries, handful of blueberries, and a handful of peanut butter granola.  Cold and refreshing!

Berries + Yogurt + Granola = :0)

Before the start of our faculty meeting, the entire faculty sang Happy Birthday to me.  As a kid that is the best thing ever, but as an adult a little bit embarrassing.  But it definitely brightened up my day!

After of a mornings of meetings (Umm, have I been drinking? No! Just got done exercising; I should be more clear-headed!), it was time for lunch.  I enjoyed turkey, laughing cow light swiss, and dijonaisse on a bagel thin.  On side I ate some celery and carrot sticks dipped in jalapeno hummus and a dark chocolate square.

Bagel Sammie Made by the Hubby--Thanks Chris!

Picture Snapped Before Anyone Else Entered Lounge

Since it was my birthday, another teacher bought me a cake, which I didn’t think to snap a picture; and that is something I should be snapping without being all secretive about it.  It was a marbled cake with fluffy white and purple icing.  I did bring a couple pieces (smashed) home, so took a picture of them so you could get a sneak peek.

Sorry Cake, I didn't mean to treat you so poorly!

I probably ate a piece about the size of the smaller one.  But might have more in a few.

Sweet Marbled Goodness

Ate a handful of these chips with salsa while I heated up dinner.

10 or so Chips with Don Pablo's Hot Salsa

After Dad visited for a while, I heated up some red beans I had in the freezer to enjoy over brown rice.  (The hubby is working late so we will celebrate with the family another day.)  I had a cup of the beans over a cup of rice with bits of pickled meat and one piece of smoked sausage.

Always Fresh...Never Frozen...Not!

Next, I decided to hit up the gym for some cardio.  I did 30/5/20 on the elliptical, stairmaster, and bike.  Then decided it was 10 minutes to 9 and I needed to get home.

So that’s how I rolled on this fine day of the year!  Not exactly a party, but I don’t really see a need to cry about anything.  I did get some fab things out of the deal:

1. A Happy Birthday Song

2. A Delish Cake

3. People Being Extra Nice

4. Over 30 Messages on My Facebook Page

5. A Check From Dad (and visit from Dad)

6. A Call From MawMaw Stating She Had My Bond

7. Several Texts From Hubby

8. Coupon For a Free Smoothie When I Checked In At the Gym

9. A Bunch of “Thank You’s” For Sharing the Cake

10. A Comment on Yesterday’s Blog Post

11. Goodies For My Classroom from the Account Clerk

12. A Sony Cybershot Camera from Hubby (got it Saturday though; he can’t ever wait for the actual day)

13. A Shopping Trip and Lunch with Mom (took place Sunday)

14. A Call From Sister (we’ll be meeting up tomorrow evening and Sunday)

15. Several Compliments throughout the Day

Thank you to everyone for making my day special!  I would say it’s been a good day! 🙂 And in the words of Martha Stewart, “it’s a good thing.”

Question of the Day:  What is one thing that brightened up your day today?