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Posts Tagged ‘quinoa’

I’ve had to combine 2 days into one post due to some technically difficulties. Note to self: Do not attempt to upload pictures at 5:00am before having coffee. It’s bad news and doesn’t work out so well.

Wednesday lunch was eaten not only by myself, but by my camera. It wasn’t part of my Clean Out the Pantry week because I dined out with BFF, my mom and another friend.

Wednesday dinner was a bit of a cheat. It didn’t require me to purchase any veggies. When I told my dad that my husband was staying out of town for the evening, he offered to send me home with one of the extra stuffed peppers my mom had prepared. It’s one of her specialties so I just couldn’t resist.

On the side, I had a little buttercrunch lettuce from our garden drizzled with EVOO and balsamic vinegar.

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After dinner, I headed out to visit my husband’s cousin and his wife who are scheduled to have their second child tomorrow morning at 8:00AM. They seem to be prepared mentally and the house is ready. *healthy surgery vibes* to H! My husband and I can’t wait to meet their new little one.

You guys are really going to think I’m slacking when you see my Thursday lunch. My mom and her friends get together every Wednesday for dinner at a fantastic restaurant. Since the portions are large, she tries to order something she knows I’ll like and then just takes her leftovers home for me to try.

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Today it was quinoa-stuffed zucchini with spinach, red onions and marinara sauce.

Delicious and extremely filling.

Lunch was followed by time with the girls.

Millie (my parents’ miniature dachshund) was quite the princess, just lounging on her throne bed.

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Macy (my pooch) and I fetched:

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and fetched:

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I’m very lucky that my parents live so close to my office and have a fenced yard. Macy makes the hour and a half commute with me every morning, stays at “doggy daycare” with my parents during the day while I’m at work, and then travels home with me every evening. Otherwise, she’d be at home alone or in an outdoor pen every weekday for 12 hours since my husband and I both work too far from home to go there at lunch. We never would have adopted her if we didn’t have this option. Fortunately, she likes car rides and is the perfect traveling companion. Well, except for the snoring in the backseat.

My husband is making this whole Clean Out the Pantry thing really easy. His request for dinner was leftover baked spaghetti. Easy enough. The quick & easy dinner meant more time for some housework and this stability ball workout from FitPregnancy.com.

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Black & Blue

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Don’t adjust your computer screen. You are seeing those colors correctly. This morning I was trying to get socks out of the dresser without turning on the light because my husband was still sleeping. Obviously that was a bad idea. I ended up with BLUE trouser socks to go with my BLACK shoes. I didn’t notice until I had been at work for probably two hours. So embarrassing. Oh well. What can you do?

Not sure what it is in the office today, but everyone is wearing their crankypants. I’ve just been keeping to myself. Thank goodness it’s Friday and everyone has to weekend to get over. Oats with banana and coconut first thing in the morning make everything seem not so bad. Tazo Awake tea helps, too. 🙂
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Lunch was my last portion of the taco soup with ground turkey & quinoa. I’m kind of sad to see it go. It’s definitely one I’ll be making again soon. Perfect for cooking ahead and then packing all week for lunch.

Now I’m on my lunch hour and just hanging out at the coffee shop. It’s the perfect time for two of my favorite things: coffee & blog reading! I’ll be back tonight with my afternoon & evening eats. Hope you’re all enjoying your Friday!
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It was a pretty ‘meh’ day. Nothing bad happened. Nothing exciting either. Well, that is until I got home from work. More about that later. More oats for breakfast today! I topped them with blueberries & unsweetened coconut just like yesterday, but I actually had my camera today. That calls for two pictures! My tea of the morning was Tazo Awake. Typical.
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That was followed by a productive morning of work. I’m halfway through a tedious special project. Won’t be sad when this one is finished. No picture of lunch because it’s identical to yesterday. Still eating the Easy Turkey Taco Quinoa Stew. Still not tired of it. It’s made me super excited to try new recipes from GreenLiteBites.

Around 4 I indulged in one of my new obsessions discovered thanks to you bloggies, Fage. I stirred in some peanut butter almond granola and man was it good! No salmonella worries for me. This granola is homemade at the Amish store using peanut butter they also make in-house. It added just the right amount of crunch and sweet to my yogurt. I think the tea is Tazo China Green Tips though I’m not completely sure. I’d probably had about 6 cups throughout the afternoon (all different) in an attempt to combat the freezing office temperature.
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That held me through the rest of the afternoon and my commute. When I got home there was a box waiting for me on the front porch. I love, love, love getting mail and packages are like the granddaddy of all mail. I brought it inside and tore into it like a kid on Christmas morning.

Back in November I won a contest from one of my favorite sites, BellaSugar. My husband and I were flown to San Francisco and put up in the amazingly glorious W hotel for 3 days & 2 nights. As if that weren’t enough, I was treated to a relaxing trip to Bliss spa, lunch in The Rotunda at Neiman Marcus restaurant with the editors of the site and a hair consultation, cut & color at The Red Chair Salon. The highlight of the day for me was a Bare Escentuals makeover done by one of their National Makeup Artists. I started wearing Bare Escentuals about 3 years ago and have been faithful to the brand since then. It’s the only thing I can use that doesn’t make my face erupt into a minefield. They have so many great products and the quality is phenomenal.

As if the whole trip and day of pampering weren’t enough, Bare Escentuals sent me every product that they used during my makeup and a few extras. Remember by lipgloss mishap? I got two new tubes! They’re not the same color as the one I lost, but these are soon-to-be released colors and equally as fabulous. Guess what I’ll be playing with all weekend? Here’s a picture of the goods:
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After all that excitement it was off to the gym with my husband and sister-in-law. She and I decided to try Tina’s 45-minute treadmill workout. I was still a bit tender from lower body work on Wednesday and sister-in-law was feeling the P90X workout she’d done earlier in the day so we decided to try the walking version. Well, 4.5 MPH for this girl is a jog so I did some running in there, too. Sister-in-law is 5’8″ so she was able to stay at a walk the whole time. It was great! We were both working hard and very sweaty by the end. I burned 447 calories.

My husband wasn’t hungry when we got home so I just threw together a quick dinner for myself. It consisted of a chopped-up Gardenburger Portabella veggie burger, freshly shredded mozzarella cheese, a few croutons, and a tomato cut into four wedges. All this was served over a bed of romaine and green leaf lettuce tossed with a little Annie’s Goddess dressing.
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It was the perfect post-gym late dinner. I was so tired that I could barely keep my eyes open through the last bite so as soon as I was finished eating it was off to bed.

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I apologize for my lack of posting last night. It was for a good cause. My roommate from college (whom I love and adore) delivered her 2nd baby yesterday evening and I had to fulfill my promised portion of the phone tree. Welcome to the world baby girl! The name they chose is very, um, unique. Makes me want to watch reruns of the once popular Boy Meets World. There was only one female main character in that show, right? Catch my drift? Yes, I’m serious.

Anywho, on to yesterday’s eats. I slept in a little to make up for my late bedtime Tuesday night. Darn you Biggest Loser! I was in a hurry this morning so I plopped two fried egg whites and a slice of 2% American cheese on a whole wheat english muffin and ate it in the car. I did try to snap a picture while I was rushing around like a mad woman, but I got the ever dreaded “Change Battery Pack Now” message on my camera screen. It really wasn’t that pretty anyway.

Wednesday = Coffee Day(!!!) so I arrived at work to find a crimson cup waiting on my desk. It was filled with my standard venti skim gingerbread latte. I opted for the hot version over the frozen this time in honor of it being 2 degrees outside. The battery pack was on charge so no live picture, but this is as close at it gets.
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That kept me full until noon when I heated up my Turkey Taco Quinoa Stew. So. Freaking. AWESOME! I’ve had the same thing for lunch every day this week and I’m nowhere near tired of it. Today’s lunch tea was Celestial Seasonings Antioxidant Plum white tea.
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After lunch I sat through the most painful training/brainstorming session ever! I love organization. I crave structure. This 1.5 hour train wreck had neither. I left feeling more confused than I was beforehand and I was very anxious. That called for a cup of Tazo Calm tea. Along with the tea I did some breathing exercises at my desk to help me get back to my happy place. Thankfully the rest of the afternoon went by quickly.
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I listen to audiobooks a lot during my commute to and from work. I love to read so it’s a great way for me to make the most of my 3 hours spent in the car each day. During my trip to the library earlier this week I picked up Raising the Bar: Integrity and Passion in Life and Business by Gary Erikson, the founder of Clif Bar & Company. I love books. I love Clif Bars. Coincidence? I think not! I started it Tuesday and so far I’m really enjoying it. I’ll post a better review when I’m finished listening.

Early on in the book they outline how Luna bars came to be. I’m ashamed to admit it, but until then I wasn’t aware that Luna bars were made by Clif Bar & Company. You learn something new everyday! In the spirit of the book, I packed this for my drive home snack. I swear this flavor is becoming like crack to me.
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It was a quick change into workout gear when I got home so that my husband and I could hit the gym before dinner. Turned out to be a great workout. I warmed up with 10 minutes on the elliptical then did the Week 11, Day 2 workout from Buff Brides by Sue Fleming with bursts of cardio between the sets of upper & lower body exercises. I finished with crunches. I burned 426 calories in 48:13.

Afterwards we headed home and had breakfast for dinner! My husband and I are both big fans of breakfast food so at least one night every other week is devoted to our love of traditional morning fare. Last night it was pancakes and sausage. I had one of each. My pancake was topped with Parkay spray and a little bit of maple syrup.
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Not to toot my own horn, but my pancake skills last night were off the hook. My husband deemed them perfect!

I got the baby news just as we finished dinner so I called everyone on my list while I cleaned up the kitchen. My adrenaline was still pumping from my workout so I took a hot bath to unwind and then headed to bed.

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The title of this post sums up my feelings on today’s inauguration. President Barack Obama. It has a nice ring, doesn’t it?

I wasn’t able to watch on TV, but I did manage to get my radio tuned in to the coverage. I was deeply moved and filled with an amazing sense of hope. There were many quotes that immediately hit home with me. Here’s my favorite:

“The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works.”

Okay. Back to food. 🙂

I totally restructured my routine today. I am hypoglycemic and have a lot of trouble keeping my blood sugar stable throughout the day. I get weak, shaky, nauseous and have passed out on more than one occasion.

The best fix I’ve found to remedy the problem is to eat a “mini-meal” about every 2 hours while I’m at work. Since I eat so often, I tend to stick with low-cal options and/or very small portions. I never really feel satisfied which leads to getting hungry in between “mini meals.” These are the times when I find myself gravitating toward the unhealthy snacks in the work kitchen like cookies, chips & candy.

Today I decided to try eating less often, but eating foods that pack more of a punch. I’m very happy to report that the experiment was a huge success!

I’m backtracking a bit to my last post, but this is what I ate today at work:

  • 8:00AM: 1/2 cup steel cut oats w/ 2 Tablespoons unsweetened coconut, 1/2 cup blueberries & 1 stick organic agave nectar
  • 12:30PM: 1 serving of Quick Quinoa Turkey Taco Stew from GreenLiteBites.
  • 3:30PM: 1 container Fage greek yogurt with 1 stick organic agave nectar & 1/4 cup Amish peanut butter almond granola

The only things I had between those times were plain water and unsweetened hot tea. Overall I took in less calories than an average day because I never felt hungry and didn’t graze between meals. Normally I’m starving after my hour commute and have to have a snack as soon as I walk in the door. Not today. It was almost 8:00PM when we sat down to eat dinner and I was just starting to get a little hungry.

For dinner I made Creamy Pasta Primavera from KraftFoods. I tweaked the recipe quite a bit. I used broccoli instead of asparagus because it was on sale. I added red pepper flakes to the chicken & veggies because we like a little heat. I also used whole wheat pasta and light cream cheese. I didn’t think it was an A+ recipe, but my husband loved it.
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Several of my food and product choices today were made based on things I’ve seen and read since discovering the food blog community. You’re all so amazing, inspiring, fun, kind and extremely welcoming. THANK YOU ALL! (((((virtual hugs)))))

Speaking of great bloggies, Angela over at Oh She Glows is having a fabulous giveaway. Up for grabs are some yummy-looking products from Neal Brothers (for Canadian readers) or Honest Foods Country Squares (for US readers). Check it out!

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It seems like my days off are super short. I feel like I just woke up and now it’s almost time for bed. I did have a productive day which makes me feel good.

One of the productive things I did was make this Quick Quiona & Turkey Stew from GreenLiteBites. Holy yumminess! It was really easy to make and tastes amazing. The only modifications I made were that I left out the onion (because I hate it) and used chickpeas instead of pinto beans because it’s what I had. After a couple of bites I divided the whole batch out into individual servings and popped them in the fridge. Ta-da! Lunches for the week are now taken care of.

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After that I worked around the house (laundry, dishes, prep for the work week) and watched an episode of Jon & Kate + 8. Love that show! Those kids are just so stinkin’ cute. I know a lot of people say Kate is out of control and I agree that she has her over-the-top moments. All in all though I really admire her because of her planning and scheduling skills.

I wasn’t hungry right after my workout. It just hit me all of a sudden that I was starving! My late afternoon snack was a small glass of organic skim milk and a chocolate VitaTop. My grocery FINALLY started carrying these and I’m ridiculously excited.

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My husband called as he was leaving work and I popped the pork chops and baked potatoes in the oven. The timer went off at almost the exact moment he walked in the door. How’s THAT for timing? 🙂

I wasn’t really in a meat and potatoes mood so I fixed myself an alternative. I had a salad of romaine lettuce, black olives, whole wheat croutons and a little drizzle of Annie’s Goddess dressing.

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I also sliced up a tomato and topped it with cottage cheese and freshly ground black pepper.

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After dinner I just relaxed and read my book for a while, dreading going back to work tomorrow. Oh well. Just gotta do it. I am excited to try new oat concoctions starting tomorrow. Stay tuned for the results!

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