My Very First Giveaway Contest!!

Ouch. Yesterday, I woke up very sore from all of the exercise I did on Sunday and I knew that practicing more yoga or running wouldn’t be a good idea for my hamstrings. Instead, I made some coffee, got ready and made my way into work. Once I arrived, I had a bowl of greek yogurt topped with mixed berries and Trader Joe’s High Fiber cereal. It was good, but I think I prefer more granola type cereal with yogurt. I’ll keep playing around with this mix as I plan to start eating more yogurt at breakfast time.

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The Pro was in charge of picking up lunch so I had an orange to curb my hunger until he arrived.

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When he did return, he had picked up Panera. This week’s selection was the Mediterranean veggie sandwich. I wasn’t feeling soup or salad so I just got the sandwich instead of the usual pick two. I also got a fruit cup on the side but the sandwich was plenty so I put it in the fridge for later.

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Work went by quickly and before I knew it, it was time to go home. I was feeling a little hungry when I got there so I had a bowl of grapes to tide me over until dinner.

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I was so excited to make dinner because I was going to use Country Bob’s All Purpose Sauce. Al, was kind enough to send me some and after a little taste of it, I knew exactly what I wanted to make. BBQ Tofu Pizza! For the pizza, I used a premade whole wheat crust, topped it with a nice layer of Country Bob’s All Purpose Sauce. Then, I added cheese, caramelized onions and crispy baked tofu.

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The sauce was delicious and since it’s ingredients are all natural (no HFCS), I will used this sauce instead of my beloved Sweet Baby Ray’s. The sauce is a little spicy and midly sweet. The dear husband said “mmmmm….the sauce is good” and you all know the dear husband by now, he isn’t into food and rarely comments about the taste of anything.

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Here is what the Country Bob’s Website has to say:

Country Bob’s All Purpose Sauce is in a class by itself. It is more than a steak sauce, because of its unique flavor and the variety of uses. You can grill, cook, and marinate with it, or put it in your soups, stews, baked beans, and your other favorite dishes. Experience the Taste!

 

So now for the contest!! I am giving away one bottle of this fabulous sauce. All you have to do is leave a comment and link back to *this post*, be sure to email me when you have posted the link.  If you don’t have a blog, leave a comment on *this post* and email me to let me know that you do not have a blog. I will send the winner this bottle of sauce *plus* a little surprise that you will have to wait to see!! The contest ends next Tuesday (2/17) at midnight!!

After our fabulous pizza, I had a few chocolate covered almonds to cure my sweet tooth.

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By that time, it was bedtime and I hit the hay. I had a little trouble getting to sleep, I think I was so excited about winning a goodie from Meghann’s Bake Sale!

Also, be sure to check out my newest pages. I have done a little blog housekeeping and have added a couple more pages for your reading pleasure: Writing, and Beading, Yoga and an updated blogroll.

Encouraging Words

Thank you all for your kind words yesterday. Some days, I feel so strong and confident and others, not so much. When I woke up yesterday, I didn’t realize I was so emotional about the day before until I started writing. Once I started to write, it all just came tumbling out. It was so good for me to release it and it felt even better to read your comments. Some of you brought me to tears with your compassion and understanding. I always feel so misunderstood and it is so comforting to know that there are people in the world that get it.

My writing put me in a big rush to get to yoga on time. Instead of eating an early breakfast, I ate a quick banana and an almond coconut KIND bar. I was in such a hurry that I didn’t take a picture. Luckily, I still got to yoga in time to set up my mat and visit the ladies room 🙂 When I got there, I was very happy to see Linda, probably my favorite yoga teacher thus far. Linda teaches vinyasa and she really knows how to build internal heat and get out all of the kinks. Linda’s class is the kind of class where you just hate her for it but once it is all over, the love starts pouring out.  When the class ended, she told us that she will not be teaching the Saturday AM class again until January and for this, I am very upset. We talked to her about the sub from last week and she thinks that we should tell her that we prefer the vinyasa style so hopefully it will all work out.

I came home after yoga and made the dear husband and I a nice breakfast. For some reason, I was really in the mood to cook. So, instead of worrying about the things we wanted to get done, I cooked. I made spinach polenta topped with egg, salsa and goat cheese. First I sauteed onions and garlic in a little ghee (clarified butter) and then added in diced ham. Once the ham was nicely browned, I added milk and then the corn meal. Once the polenta was thick and creamy, I added in frozen chopped spinach and a dash of nutmeg. This breakfast was rich, hearty and satisfying!

After our late breakfast, we headed out for a day of shopping. The cold snuck up on us here in VA and my sweater and long sleeve inventory was really lacking. While we were out, I grabbed a chai green tea latte from Starbucks. With a Starbucks in tow, we hit up the Halloween section at Target and then headed out for a bite to eat. We went to Noodles & Company which I am guessing is a chain but the one we went to is the only one in the Metro Richmond area. It was our first time there and we both really liked it. It seemed to be the perfect place for when you want to go out but everyone isn’t in the mood for the same things. I got pad thai with tofu and added a little rooster sauce to it. I ate about 1/3 of the noodles and didn’t eat the tofu, it was soft and mushy, not my kind of tofu.

After eating, we headed to the grocery store to stock up for the week and then headed home. Once home, I made us a big pot of popcorn because we were both mildly hungry.

About halfway through, I realized that I was really hungry and went for a piece of fried chicken we had picked up from the grocery store. I didn’t eat the skin but the chicken was still good. Just the piece of chicken did the trick so I didn’t eat anything with it.

We watched a couple episodes of the Suze Orman show and then hit the hay. I was really looking forward to the extra hour of sleep!

Thought Provoker: Is there a form of exercise that you have a love hate relationship with?

Funky Sunday

I woke up yesterday and started with a snack. I knew the dear husband wanted to sleep in and I didn’t want to wait that long for breakfast. I had a pear and a heaping spoon of cashew macadamia nut butter. This was my first time with this nut butter and I must say, I liked it. The cashew flavor outweighed the macadamia but it was still delicious. Once the dear husband was awake, I made pancakes and eggs. I topped my portion of pancakes with apple butter instead of syrup and I must say, I really enjoyed them that way!

Hours and hours passed before I got hungry again and I can’t even really call it hungry. It was more like munchy, I was in a real funk for some reason and couldn’t get myself out of it. I made some popcorn for the dear husband and I to share and then some baked tofu. I used Gliding Calm’s rub and let it marinade for what I guess was too long. The tofu did not get crispy at all, it was really soft and fluffy. I think the key to the rub must be just brushing it on rather than letting it marinade. None the less, the taste was fabulous and I will use this recipe as a go to in the future.

By the time dinner rolled around, I still wasn’t feeling hungry, just munchy and I didn’t feel like cooking. I asked the dear husband if he preferred frozen pizza or grilled cheese and he chose grilled cheese. So, I made us both a couple of sandwiches and called it dinner. I ended up giving him most of my second one as it still wasn’t doing it for me.

After dinner, I thought some ice cream would make me feel better so I had a small bowl. It still didn’t do anything for me, so I just went to bed. Boo Hiss on funk days.

Thought Provoker: All day yesterday and a little this morning, I have been letting the diet mentality really creep back into my mind. I keep telling myself that starving myself and depriving myself is not the answer to cure my funk. How do you keep the diet mentality at bay?

A Monday Off Work

We had to get up super early yesterday because we had to take my car in to the dealership for some work. Once the car was where it needed to be, we went out for breakfast, something we rarely do. We ended up at IHOP for pancakes. I ordered a spinach, mushroom and ham omelet

with harvest nut and grain pancakes. I put a little dab of syrup on the pancakes but discovered that I actually like them better without!

It was awesome breakfast! Of course, it was enough food to feed an army so I barely even finished a quarter of it. After breakfast, we ran some errands and then headed back home. We spent most of the day doing house and yard work. It was early afternoon before I was even remotely hungry, probably due to my well balanced breakfast 😉 For lunch, I made a repeat of Saturdays lunch. A hummus, havarty cheese, ham, lettuce and tomato sandwich of local 9 grain bread. It was just as good as the first time.

Just before it was time to pick up my car, I had a small bowl of greek yogurt with walnuts and agave. It was pretty good and held me over until dinner time.

For dinner, I made baked tofu. First, I drained it all day in the fridge and then cut it into large cubes. I tossed it with olive oil, agave and Penzy’s BBQ 3000 seasoning. Then,  I baked it at 400* for 40 minutes until nice and brown. Along side, we had a baked sweet potato with smart balance and sauteed kale. The kale was sauteed in olive oil and seasoned with salt, pepper, garlic, onion, crushed red pepper and a dash of nutmeg. This was a delicious dinner!

After dinner, we both read a little and watched some tv. For dessert, I had a vitamuffin.

This was a great birthday weekend, too bad it isn’t just a few days longer!

QOTD: What sort of meals seem to hold you over for hours at a time?

Hello, Strangers!

They say you don’t miss something until it is gone for a reason. Four days without the internet really sucks! I don’t think I realized how much I actually rely on it for my day to day life. I needed to balance my checkbook, no go. I needed a recipe, no go. I needed to get escape sheer boredom, no go. Needless to say, I am thankful that my internet is working again. Despite the fact that the new modem is not compatible with our internet phone so now we are without a telephone. But I have a cell phone and I CAN surf the web.

The last few days were odd for me. I’m not sure what I was going through but I had some major cravings for cheese, ice cream and yogurt. Parts of me wonder if I need the calcium or if I am suffering a bit of deprivation from not eating dairy. I also came to realize how dependent I have become on blogging as it relates to my relationship with food. I kept having the devil on my shoulder reminding me that no one was watching and that I could eat whatever I wanted. It made me wonder if this blog has become my new diet. I don’t want it to be, I want it to be a place where I can be open and honest about food and all of the struggles I have with it. So, in honor of that, I must tell you that I ate a burger and fries followed by ice cream for dinner only after indulging at PF Changs for lunch. Phew. Glad that is out.

OK, no onto yesterday. I woke up and got ready for work and made a quick breakfast as I have been trying to get to work earlier to compensate for how busy we are. I had a bowl of Live Active cereal topped with a sliced banana, some almonds and vanilla almond milk. Once again, I enjoyed the pleasures of having a non dairy milk. I am so glad my eyes have been opened to the many options available!

I got to work and things were nuts, of course. The beginning of the month is always the worst because we are under multiple deadlines. We have to get the statements out, close sales for the previous month, reconcile accounts and get the inventory settled. Generally, it is about 5 days worked crammed into a day and a half. Fun stuff. I was so focused on work that I almost missed staff lunch. Luckily, I realized it just in time and made my way downstairs. We have a new chef and he is really trying to get things sorted out so the staff lunch was a hodge podge of things. I finally settled on a grilled chicken sandwich and fruit salad. My only bread option was a kaiser roll so I asked for a couple of slices of wheat bread to make mine. I topped it with lettuce, tomato and mustard. It was kind of bland but since it was free, I’m not complaining.

A few hours later, my stomach started to churn and I decided it was the perfect time to eat my ever anticipated PEANUT BUTTER COOKIE LARABAR!!! The lovely Caitlin at See Bride Run was so sweet to mail me one after I mentioned on her blog that I couldn’t find them. So, I must thank her as I thought this was a really sweet gesture, so Thank You, Caitlin! Now, onto what I thought of the bar. It was really good, it had a awesome flavor and was very reminiscent of a peanut butter cookie. It moved its way into my second favorite LARABAR spot, the first being the pecan pie one which I discovered while I was on hiatus.

After my snack, I stayed very busy throughout the afternoon and even had to work late. By the time I made it home, I was really hungry. I had taken some tofu parm out of the freezer to reheat. I baked it in the toaster over for about 45 minutes and then topped it with marinara sauce and soy cheese over whole wheat couscous. On the side we had a small salad with oil and vinegar.

For dessert, I had a slice of almond poppy seed bread that I made from this recipe. I used white whole wheat flour and it turned out great. I toasted my slice and topped it with a little light smart balance. I will be making this bread again and again, just like mom used to.

After dinner and dessert, I did my 15 minute cleanup and then settled in to watch some tv. It had been a really long day and the only thing on my mind was relaxing.

QOTD: How do you view your food blog with respect to your relationship with food?

Back to Work

Getting out of bed to go back to work really sucks 🙂 I ended up sleeping late and was running behind, as per usual for a work day. For breakfast, I had a bowl of clifford crunch cereal mixed with cinnamon start cereal topped a banana, some almonds and vanilla hemp milk. I am really starting to like the hemp milk, I still like the hazelnut milk better but since the hemp is more readily available, I think it will be my new go to milk.

fast breakfast

fast breakfast

I arrived at work to find an overflowing inbox, both email and desktop, and a blinking voicemail light. And to my dismay, within a half hour of driving through the gate into the land of grass, my head was blaring. I called my doc and told him everything I had done both holistically and medically and he wants me to take zyrtec d which I will start tomorrow. I had hoped that I could cure myself without medication but at this point it seems like it is meds or my job. What is a girl to do?

Around 11, I decided to have a snack because I had no idea when lunch would be. I ate a hand full of baked tofu triangles and a small bowl of watermelon. I must thank the lovely Gliding Calm because I always see here eating baked tofu as a snack which I had never thought of. After today, I am sure this will be a go to snack from here on out. I just baked it with a little sea salt but plan to experiment with different glazes and marinades.

snack

snack

Around 12:30, The Pro arrived with lunch. Since the club was still closed, he went to Red Robin and picked up salads. I got a cobb salad with honey poppyseed dressing; it was pretty tasty and very filling. And on a side note, I did eat the blue cheese because at this point, I think I have decided that cutting dairy isn’t the solution I was hoping for.

cobb salad

cobb salad

The afternoon buzzed by with lots to do and I was able to leave on time. Once I made it home, I made one of our old favorites for dinner, BBQ Tofu Pizza which is an idea I got from Monica many many moons ago. For the crust I used whole wheat pita and then topped it with BBQ sauce, onions sauteed in earth balance and balsamic vinegar, baked tofu triangles and vegan “cheese”. I was a little nervous about the “cheese” but it turned out great. On the side, the dear husband made salads with lettuce, tomato, cukes, oil and vinegar. It was a nice dinner and I am looking forward to making it again soon.

bbq tofu pizza

bbq tofu pizza

After dinner, I did my 15 minute clean up and then relaxed with my book. Though I prefer to be on vacation, it was nice to be back to normal again.

QOTD: What are you favorite pizza toppings? My all time favorite is pepperoni and cheese but I also like goat cheese with tomatoes and basil and the pizza we made last night.

I just love Sundays

Sundays are by far my favorite day of the week. Especially when they are slow and easy with nothing but relaxing to do. I started the day with a big glass of chocolate milk to tide me over while making breakfast. My camera batteries died so I don’t have a picture of the milk but it really just looked the same as the milk from Saturday 🙂 For breakfast, I made some blueberry oat muffins. I used whole wheat flour, oat flour and rolled oats. I was a little nervous about mixing up the flours but they turned out great. I had two of them with a little light smart balance. It was my first time using smart balance and I have to say that I liked it. It was smooth and buttery tasting without all the saturated fat of regular butter and without the trans fats of margarine. A nice compromise, I think.

blueberry oat muffins

blueberry oat muffins

After the muffins, we packed up a backpack and headed for a short hike. We went to Point of Rocks park which is about 10 miles from home. It has a nice marsh walk and a few miles of trails. The morning was cool so it made for great hiking weather. I’m not exactly sure how far we went because the gps kept losing it’s signal but we were out there for about an hour. If I had to guess, I would say it must have been about 2.5 miles. Here are some nice pictures we took along the way.

the marsh walk

the marsh walk

pretty

pretty

what a view

what a view

After hiking, we headed home for some lunch. I made buffalo sliders; they were tasty! I made two little mini burgers on 100% whole wheat Hawaiian rolls. I topped each with a little lettuce, local tomatoes, pickles, ketchup and mustard. On the side we had some green grapes. It was a satisfying lunch after being in the wilderness 🙂

buffalo soldier...i mean slider

buffalo soldier...i mean slider

grapes

grapes

The afternoon was lovely, we read, watched tv, did some laundry and of course took a nap. When I woke up from my nap, I felt ravenous. I made a small bowl of fage with raspberries and honey. For some reason, the yogurt was very tart so I ended up only eating the berries and the honey. The same thing happened last week and I thought it was the blueberries but now I am thinking something was wrong with that batch of yogurt. Oh well, I have new containers waiting for me in the week ahead.

greek yogurt with raspberries

greek yogurt with raspberries

For dinner, I made tofu parmesan. I drained some of the local tofu I bought on Saturday, sliced it into four slices and then coated it in panko mixed with parmesan, then egg wash and then panko again. I baked the tofu for about 45 minutes so that it was nice and crispy on the outside. I served the tofu over whole wheat angel hair pasta and then topped it with mozzarella cheese and marinara sauce. Alond side the pasta, we had a green salad with oil and vinegar. I think it was the best dinner I had eaten in a long time. It was also the best “oven fried” results I had ever achieved.

tofu parmesan

tofu parmesan

A couple of hours after dinner, I had a raging sweet tooth. I finally decided to have a small bowl of cocoa bumpers to wipe it out. After my dessert, I was off to dreamland. It had been a perfect Sunday.

cocoa bumpers

cocoa bumpers

QOTD: Do you have a sweet tooth? What do you do when you aren’t hungry but are really craving something sweet?