Monday, December 27, 2010

Merry Christmas!

I had a fantastic Christmas. I hope yours was great too. I am so sorry I haven't blogged in so long. Besides Christmas day I haven't had a day off in since last time I blogged. I will try to get back on track. Work has been crazy! I started at Serious Pie too. Crazy busy. I have to get ready for work now, but I will post laster!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Relax, just do it.

Well yesterday was my day off. It came and went so quickly. I did some Christmas shopping and finished up for my family. I had about a minute to relax but then got to the shopping. So much to do, so little time to do it, no time to relax!

For Lunch: Salmon Nicoise Salad from Nordstrom Cafe. It's so so good. I met Cassi there for lunch.

I called Josh later and asked him to come to this party with me. Linette and Matt, friends from work have that new game thing: Kinect. They had some people over to play! It was so cool. It uses no controllers just senses your body. What a workout.

For Dinner: Josh and I walked up to Pazzo's Pizza to have some dinner before we went to Linette's. I had a Caesar salad with no cheese and I watched Josh devour a Calzone.

I had one beer while I was at Linette's.

Today I woke up and got ready for another double at work. It was decent, not super busy not slow either. I wore my fit bit today for the first time in a long time, I had misplaced it. It tells me how many steps I took during the day, how many calories I have burned, the distance I have gone. Pretty amazing.

Today just being at work I walked:
25085 steps
10.33 miles
and burned 3112 calories. Pretty crazy huh?

I had a large meal in between my shifts but didn't get to eat much during the day.

For Lunch/Dinner: Grilled salmon with sauteed spinach and steamed broccoli. Yummy.

Now I am home and absolutely beat! Goodnight.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Shop Before I Drop.

Well I finished me string of 5 doubles today and I am now at home relaxing. I had a couple of hours off today in-between my lunch shift and my dinner shift. It was one of the first times I have been able to think about what I am going to get everybody. I have been so tired from working I literally felt like I had to shop before I was going to collapse. Speaking of collapsing, I will tell you now that my knee is doing great and I think all this work is just making my leg stronger.

I wanted to share some pictures of the last week that I haven't had time to post.

First, the pictures of Cassi and I with out Tree:

Loaded up on our car, big tree!


 What a beauty!
Every year we get these singing christmas animals from Aunt Lisa. It may sound silly but we LOVE them and we look forward to them every year!!!!

I love our tree this year!

I also took a couple pictures when Cassi found out she got into UW School of Nursing!

So Excited!!!!

Well I guess I'll wrap it up and report of food for the day . . .

For Breakfast: Well I got to work and Ziro made this awesome salad with mixed greens a balsamic vinaigrette with all kinds of berries and fruits.

I worked then did some shopping and then ate lunch with Cassi before we headed back to work.

For Lunch: Chicken Chop Chop Salad with romaine, chicken, garbanzo beans, onion, basil, cucumber with a vinaigrette. 

So glad to be home and done with work!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Sunday, Sunday Sunday!

Cassi and I slept out in our living room last night because we wanted to be by out fantastic christmas tree. We got and on Wednesday and I haven't had a chance to write anything because I have been working non-stop. I am about to go in for another double today but I had to post real quick. As I said I have been working like a crazy person, so I am tired but the money has been pretty good, definitely paying some bills.

Last night Cassi and I got home and got the mail. Big, BIG news folks. Cassi got her acceptance letter to the School of Nursing at University of Washington!!!!! We literally jumped around our apartment! We are so excited and I am so proud of her!

We had a celebratory drink and I heated up some leftover roasted veggies for dinner. What a night!

I will write more later, gotta get to work!

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

What a day!

Today was action packed and good stuff all around. I got up and got ready for my 2nd Interview for the new Tom Douglas restaurant. I can't remember if I told you how well the 1st one went, well it went well and I got a call back for another interview!

So I went in for the next one today and was greeted by Barb, the lady who interviewed me last week. Before we even sat down she told me that she would love to have me and congrats on getting the job. Here I thought I was going to be interviewed by someone else and instead she just sat me down introduced me to the lead chef at the restaurant and gave me the "New Hire" paperwork. When Tony, the chef sat down Barb asked if I had a copy of my book, Life.Love.Food. because she was so impressed by it! Of course I had a copy, I whipped it out and scanned through it and asked if I had any cooking experience and I told him I was self taught but my goal was to go to Culinary school soon. He said if I ever wanted to work in the kitchen to just let him know! It was a great meetng and the timing works out perfectly, so when Il Fornaio dies down I can cut back on my shifts there and start full time at Serious Pie.

The other amazing thing that happened today is Nana ordered my sewing machine. After even more research I found the perfect machine! It is so great and very Heavy Duty! I think it looks pretty retro too, which I love. Just one more step closer to becoming the new Martha Stewart, my ultimate dream! (I truly wish I was kidding, but I don't think I am)

What a beauty, and a beast!


For Breakfast: Coffee and a few raw almonds.

For Lunch: Cassi and I went to grab some Pho, We both like the vegetarian kind because it comes with all sorts of veggies.

Later we went to see the new Harry Potter movie, awesome.

For Dinner: Chicken breast with a piccata sauce and sauteed spinach with garlic.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Sew Excited

I woke up yesterday nice and early, so I could make coffee and get ready work with enough time to not feel like I was running out the door. Work was good, not to busy and quite easy. I worked with Kay and Andy and Lisa, some of my favorites, I've got to tell ya. I got out of there around three and was so excited to go home and have more soup that I made last night.

For Lunch: 17 bean Soup. So, So good.

I literally spent the next three hours researching sewing machines. Nana is going to get me a sewing machine for christmas and I am truly trying to find the best one for me, but there are so many I get confused. It's a long process and I think I need help. I am so excited!

Kay came over and we hng out and played music. We love to improve songs and record them it's kind of our thing, we are both singers and both guitar players and so it's really fun to play and sing together.

For Dinner: I have another bowl of soup and later a scoop of non-fat plain frozen yogurt with dark chocolate chips.

It was a pretty early night, Kay left and Cassi and I went to bed.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Bow Down to Washington- Go Dawgs!!!

Cassi and I got backfrom the Apple Cup in Pullman last night, what a game!! Cassi and I both worked doubles on friday, here's the down low on what happened since then-

Friday lunch was pretty busy, not too bad, Cassi and I had just enough time to catch the bus, put our bags in the car, grab a quick bite and drive back into downtown.

For Lunch: We had leftover roasted vegatables, the butternut, onion, potato, and garlic. So, So good!

Dinner shift was crazy. I sold 1300 dollars worth of food in a couple hours and was running around like a chicken with my head cut off. We finally got done, ordered some food and hit the road to head over the pass at 10:30pm.

For Dinner: I had the dorato risotto: I order mine vegan, no butter no cheese, makes it a lot healthier. Rice simmered in a saffron stock with tomatoes mushrooms, garlic, asparagus, zucchini, butternut squash. Yum.

We stopped and stayed with Josh so we didn't have to do the whole 5 1/2 hour drive to Pullman. Josh was a fantastic host! We got up early the next morning and got on our way. We of course grabbed a latte on the way out of town.

Crimson and Purple on our way.


From just about 45 minutes out of Seattle all the way east to Idaho the entire state is blanketed in snow, it was beautiful, and a definite sign of how freezing the game was going to be. We got to Shay's parents house around 11am and they had prepared an awesome hot lunch for us before we took off for the game.

For Lunch: Fresh local ham, and home grown corn and potatoes from the Colson's garden. Really good!

We headed to the game in our car with Ally and Shay, and we got some more coffee on the way. Well it was freezing at the game and that's an understatement. We had great seats in the huskies section and got to see a lot of the action up close.




Final: UW 35- WSU 28, way closer than we thought, but a victory for the dawgs! Sorry Cass.

After the game we hobbled back to our car and went back to the Colson's to change. And headed to dinner.

For Dinner: We went to a mexican restaurant, it was great. I had shrimp tacos with mushrooms and a cabbage slaw with rice and whole beans. I also had my one celebratory drink, a Dos Equis beer, For the rest of the night I was a designated driver.

We went to The Coug, one of Cassi's favorite spots from college and then made it a pretty early night. We woke up in the morning to Coffee and homemade sourdough pancakes with fresh fruit. they were awesome!

Then we went to lunch at a place that Cassi worked all through college. Sella's Pizza and Calzone. It was very good.

For Lunch: A salad and a calzone combo. I removed the cheese from my calzone, I couldn't handle it but I really wanted to get one because Cassi said they were amazing. The calzone was actually fantastic, it's my fault I couldnt handle the cheese.

After lunch we drove Ally and Shay to the airport in Spokane and then headed back across the state. it was a could 5 hour drive.

It was amazing scenery.

We got back to Seattle and went to Trader Joe's. Then we came home, did laundry and I made soup.

For Dinner: Vegan 17 bean soup: 
16oz dry bean medley
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 medium white onion, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
3 celery stalks, chopped
1 16oz can of diced tomatoes, with juice
32 oz hearty vegetable broth
Dried bay leaf
Thyme
Parsley
Salt
Pepper
I used the Gullah Seasoning to season the soup and it turned out amazing.

Sauté the onions, celery, carrots and garlic with a dash of olive oil in a large pot. I soaked the beans until soft and added them to the pot, along with the tomatoes, 24 oz of water and vegetable broth. I cooked it for a bit but got so hungry I ate it after an hour or so. I can't wait to try it the next day. I made a lot so we can have it through the week!

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Family Community Kitchen: More Cookie Pictures

Kala just emailed me some more pictures, there are some real good ones!




Vegan/Gluten Free Cookies!

Gluten Free/ Vegan Sugar Cookies

3/4 c Earth Balance. (make sure it’s room temperature)
1 c Sugar
1/4 c Applesauce
1 flaxseed egg substitute. (mix 1 tbsp of finely ground flaxseeds with 3 tbsp of warm water)
1 t Vanilla extract
1 1/2 c White rice flour
1/2 c Coconut flour
1/2 c Potato starch
1/2 c Tapioca flour
2 1/2 t  Xanthan gum
1 t Salt
1 T Baking powder
Powdered sugar for rolling

In a standing mixer cream together sugar and earth balance. Mix for a few minutes until fluffy. Add apple sauce, vanilla extract, and flaxseed egg. Mix until fully incorporated. In a separate bowl mix together all of the dry ingredients and then bit by bit add the dry mixture to the mix ingredients in the mixer. Should be  a nice firm , wrap it up and chill it for about an hour.

Sprinkle some powdered sugar down on a flat surface and roll out dough to about ¼ inch or a little less. Use cookie cutters.

Preheat oven to 325. Use parchment paper to bake the cookies on a cookie sheet, if not the cookies will burn. The cookies cook in about 8 minutes.

That’s it!

The Vegan Icing:

Earth Balance
Powdered sugar
Rice milk/ soy milk/ or water
Vanilla extract, or other flavoring
Food coloring if needed.

So important to make sure the earth balance is room temp. The ratio is 2 ½ to 1.

“butter”
sugar
1 Cup
2 ½ Cups
2 Cups
5 Cups
3
7 ½ Cups
And so on . . . .

Cream butter and sugar in mixer, beat well!  Add some liquid if needed. I used rice milk because that’s what I had, but really only a tsp or so. Add  Vanilla extract while mixing and food coloring if needed. Enjoy!

How Awesome Are These?!

This is Oxani, about to take his first bite.

Some serious artists in this bunch!

Yeah for a day off!

I haven't written since Monday . . . let's see what I have missed.

Tuesday I worked a double and didn't eat until I got to work.

For Breakfast/ Lunch: I had some rice and vegetables, family food. Coffee.

I worked straight through and Cassi came in to work with me during the evening shift. I feel like they are firing people left and right at Il Fornaio. Does no one consider that if you get rid of half of the employees the remaining half will suffer?

For Dinner: Spinach salad with onion, mushrooms, bacon, balsamic vinaigrette.

I didn't get home until after ten and we went straight to bed.

Wednesday I woke up early and went in to an interview for a new Tom Douglas restaurant. I think it went pretty well, but we will see.

For Lunch: rice with mushrooms, porcini mushrooms and shrimp with a saffron rice.

I came home and quickly made the icing because last night I had my volunteering at community kitchens. Monday I made the cookies and I needed to make the icing and put them into the piping bags I made out of parchment paper. The cookies are vegan and gluten free and the icing is too. I think I may have told you that but some of the kids I work with at the family kitchen have food allergies so the recipes I make have to be suitable so everyone can participate.

I will post the recipes next.

The kids went crazy for decorating the cookies, it turned out perfect and the parents were so thankful that my cookies kept the kids engaged and were safe for everyone.

It was an incredible night. Being in charge of the kids activities is a perfect job for me, and seeing how excited they got to help make the cookies, I just wish I had funding and could do it full time. :)

I slept in this morning, (Thursday) we finally got rolling and went to get some food, because I haven't been grocery shopping in forever!

For Breakfast: Two poached eggs atop an english muffin, spinach, roasted bell peppers and pesto, with a side of fruit and potatoes.

I just finished eating dinner, We stayed home and cooked. It was so nice to just chill, and we decorated for Christmas today, our apartment looks awesome!

For Dinner: Chicken breast sauteed in an awesome homemade piccata sauce. (Artichokes, capers, lemon, white wine, garlic, butter) roasted vegetables (Red potatoes, butternut squash, onion and garlic) So good, and so full.


Monday, November 29, 2010

Sleep walking

I am so tired today. At work for my lunch shift I literally felt like I was sleep walking. My feet felt heavy. I have been putting in a lot of hours at work and it has paid off but I sure could use a nap. Lunch was slow today and I just took the bus home. I have plenty of errands to run, but I am having and hard time finding the motivation to pick myself off the couch. I have to go to target, we are out of toilet paper again and I'm getting tired of using napkins. Ya know what I mean . . . right?

Today when I got to work I ate some family food.

For Lunch: Some chicken and veggie soup the cooks made, it had some rice, lots of different vegetables and chicken breast, it was good and spicy too. I love spicy!

Jenna told me yesterday that she isn't going to be able to help out with the community kitchens this week. It's fine but I think I am going to hold off on our plan to do vegan/gluten free sugar cookies to decorate with the kids. Instead I believe I will do some kind of wintery/ holiday craft or maybe some other kind of cookie, who knows. I need to brainstorm ideas, after all the kitchen is two days away . . . I am the champion of procrastination!

Sunday, Sunday.

Well I was supposed to work a double yesterday, but when I got there it wasn't busy enough for them to use me, so I offered to come in and close instead of making one of the other servers who had been there all day stay and close up too. So that's what I did, I walked around with Cassi downtown for a bit and then worked.

For Lunch: Grilled salmon with a lemon and artichoke piccata sauce with sauteed broccolini and carrots. It was amazing. When I got to work and they didn't need me I decided to eat. They owed me a meal, so I splurged and got the salmon.

I didn't eat again until after work at around 10, I went to the condo to pick up Cassi who was there hanging out with my family. Mom had brought down lots of pie from thanksgiving.

For Dessert: I had a piece of Pecan pie that Ally had made. It was delish.

Cassi and I came home and went to bed pretty quick.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Work it.

Wow! It was busy yesterday. I worked another 11 1/2 hour day and literally was on my feet the entire day. I didn't sit or eat all day because I honestly just didn't have time to. I made great money and grabbed some food after my shift (finally)

First of all, when I got to work at 10 am I starting set up for the day and ate some family food.

For Breakfast/Lunch: I had a salad, mixed greens, carrots, onions, toasted walnuts, house vinaigrette.

For Dinner: At around 11pm  Cassi and I met Ainslie and Derrick at Pazzo's on Eastlake. It's right by our house. I had a small caesar salad with no cheese and a grilled chicken sandwich with pesto, onion and roma tomato. I stayed healthy as Cassi sat and devoured a calzone that looked like a little pillow of heaven.

So tired, got home and went right to bed. I woke up this morning and I felt so good because I got to sleep in a bit. Only because I start at 12 today instead of 10. I am about to head out the door for another double, with all my favorite people there to work by my side. One thing I will say is that I love the people I work with! :)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Hittin' the Hay

Cassi and I woke up early to head back to Seattle for work. Black Friday is always said to be one of the busiest days of the year. We both worked over 11 hours today and made decent money. Honestly, it wasn't as mad-house busy as I hoped it would be.

For Breakfast: I snagged a bit of Apple crisp on my way out the door in Arlington.

For Lunch: Ziro, one of the cooks at work, made an amazing salad for the staff meal. Mixed greens, with pear, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, toasted walnuts with a balsamic vinaigrette, it was refreshing and delish.

For Dinner: I had the Dorato risotto made completely vegan just for me. Simmered in a saffron stock with butternut squash, zucchini, asparagus, mushrooms, tomatoes, and artichokes. Love it and it gave me the energy I needed to start my dinner shift.

Cassi and I got home and she is already in bed, I am staying up only to write on the blog and as soon as I am done I am hittin' the hay, we both work doubles again tomorrow! Can't wait!

Night, Night!

Thankful for the Rhythm

Oh my goodness! We had the best Thanksgiving. We finally got up to Arlington and it was truly a wintery wonderland up there and Dad had the place already decorated for the holidays. we crashed pretty quick so we could wake up early and start cooking!

For Breakfast: We had some of Mom's homemade bread, some scrambled eggs and some thinly sliced and sauteed ham, made by Ally, and coffee, lot's of coffee!

We truly did cook all day. I chopped, sauteed, mixed, tossed, baked, seasoned, and sliced all darn day, and we had a great time doing it.

This Year's Thanksgiving Day Menu:

First a relish tray that Cassi and I contributed: Assorted olives, dolmas, pickled asparagus, local, organic pickled jalapeños, spicy dill pickles, sweet gherkins, pickled veggie medley, etc.

Annie, Josh's girlfriend brought artichoke dip, and we munched on that as we made our main dinner.

We roasted a whole turkey, first by injecting it with melted herb butter, and it turned out amazing.

We did a turkey breast roulade that really stole the show. We pounded the turkey breasts out flat then did a layer of raw spinach, brown rice with cranberries, almonds, seasoning, and celery, parsley, and onion, that had been sauteed.  We rolled it tight and tied with kitchen string and into the oven.

Jenna brought a field roast that was fantastic, I don't really know how to explain it but it was amazing, and you shouldn't shy away from awesome vegan delicacies like this.

Homemade mashed potatoes, need I say more?

Peas, Corn, 

Three different kinds of homemade bread,

Amazing cranberry sauce made by mom

Roasted veggies: butternut squash, sweet potatoes and yams, onion, carrots, and zucchini.

Amazing stuffing with cranberries, almonds, onion, parsley, celery, pork sausage with sage, and chestnuts, hand peeled by mom the day before!

Roasted Brussel sprouts with pecans, a favorite from last year.

I think that's it. . . .

Dessert consisted of . . .
Vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies,
Coconut chocolate gooey morsels that Annie made (awesome)
4 Funny Cakes
2 Pecan pies
1 Pumpkin pie tart
1 Chocolate fudge pie
1 Large Apple Crisp.

Wow woo wee woo!

We ate dinner at around 4 and then had a serious spur of the moment dance party and really took the night to a new level. Later on after dessert I ended up playing my guitar and we sang for a long time. We went to bed fairly early and extremely exhausted!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Gotta Get Get

All I want is get home to Arlington. I got called in tonight to work, which ruined my plans to go up early and help Mom and Ally with the baking, only to have three tables and get phased at 7:30. Genius. Totally a ridiculous decision on behalf of the management. Now I am home and waiting for Tim to get off so we can pick him up, snag Jenna and get on our way up home.

The beginning part of my day was better, I slept in a bit and woke up and packed for Arlington. Then went to the grocery store to get some things for the relish tray.

For Breakfast: Coffee, and two eggs and one piece of multi-grain toast.

For Lunch: Sauteed tofu and couscous. Honestly it's the only thing we have in our apartment, but it was okay, I guess.

I haven't eaten dinner yet and this late in the evening, it's hard to say whether or not dinner is going to happen. I wasn't tempted by anything at work, but I did steal a green olive from the bar. No bread, no pasta, no pizza.

It has been so so so long since Cassi and I have been up to Arlington, and I just gotta get home.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

(Re)Dedication

I am starting over. Today is November 23rd and I am so sick of not being on top of things. Last week I was awesome, and I remember being so excited about my awesomeness. But I have been terribly inconsistent. I totally need to rededicate myself to this blog. I have been really busy at work and haven't been to the gym in a week or so and it has been so cold out that I haven't been riding my bike. I don't know if you live here or not but Seattle just got hit with this wacky bought of cold weather and we basically had a blizzard last night, seriously. It's 15 degrees outside and that is crazy, especially for this early in the season. I need to get back on track and today is the day I quit the bullshit and just do it. It's late at night and I just got home from work. I had a conversation with a guy who works in the kitchen at Il Fornaio and I told him all about my blog.  What I did and the book that came about from it and how I cooked and worked my way to phyiscal and all-around health. I even showed him the before and after pictures, the same pictures that are on my book.

And then it happened, there in a split second I got the push I needed to rededicate myself. It's why I am here frantically typing and bearing my soul once again here on this blog. Ernesto, the cook, looked at my pictures and was astounded by how awesome the pictures were and there in a moment of complete honesty and a true moment of innocence, he said, as he looked at me, "So what happened?"

He quickly tried to correct himself, rewind his words to seem less blunt. But I knew what he meant. The ten pounds that I have gained back are obvious and my "I can conquer the world" attitude is a bit faded since last May. It has been hard, but I haven't been trying. I need to go back to what worked for me. The blog, the format, the honesty, the accountability that helped me the first time, as I (re)habbed, (re)shaped, (re)built my life.

So......

For Breakfast: I didn't eat anything until I got into work, simply because I woke up too late to make myself something at home and we are low on groceries. When I got to work "family food" was ready: Chicken soup with vegetables and rice in a tomato chicken broth, I also had some avocado, and a slice of ciabatta. These are the kinds of meals I have been eating and not thinking about, exactly how I gained weight the first time around.

For Lunch: Cassi and I went up to NORDSTROM'S and ate at the cafe. I had the Salmon Nicoise Salad. It has mixed greens, herb roasted salmon, green beans, potatoes, egg, capers, olives, and onion in a balsamic vinaigrette.

For Dinner: I was on a double so family food came around the second time. I had a portion of capellini pasta with marinara and tomatoes and basil and a small caesar salad. The me a year ago never would have made these foul decisions. And the me for the last couple months has made these decisions and not put them on the blog. Not okay.

May I remind you, but mostly myself:

I HAVE CREATED THIS BLOG TO HOLD MYSELF ACCOUNTABLE. IT IS TIME FOR ME TO GET BACK IN SHAPE, AND FEEL GOOD ABOUT MY BODY AGAIN. MY OBJECTIVE IS TO COOK MYSELF HEALTHY MEALS AND NOT SACRIFICE FLAVOR OR CREATIVITY. BY COOKING MY OWN MEALS EVERYDAY, I CAN CONTROL EXACTLY WHAT GOES INTO MY BODY.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Tour de Biker Butt

The last few days have been amazing. Tuesday I went to the gym twice again. We got up early before work and worked out then I went back to the gym after my lunch shift was over. I went home and ate lunch. I made myself an egg sandwich:two scrambled eggs with pesto and and roasted garlic on one of those skinny wheat bagels. I picked up a dinner shift and went back to work and closed. I ate some capellini pasta with tomato sauce while I was there. All in all a long day of working and working out.

Yesterday (wednesday) was amazing!  We woke up and Cassi made coffee while I got ready for Physical Therapy. Ever since I have been working out and really trying to rebuild strength in my knee it has been feeling better. I rode my bike to physical therapy. Mark took me out to the field again and we ran and did some side shuffling and it felt much better than the last time I tried to do that.

Ainslie and Cassi rode down and met me after my session. Cassi brought me a bran muffin. Yum. From UW we set out on the Burke Gilman trail and had plans to ride all the way to Woodinville to the wineries and breweries. It took us about 1 1/2 hours. It was  25 mile ride . . . each way! When we got there we went to the Redhook brewery and ate lunch we were starving!

For Lunch: Wild Salmon sandwich with lettuce and tomato on grilled focaccia bread, with a side salad. It was good.

The girls both had beers but I stuck with water. After out meal with decided to go on the brewery tour, which was great.  did have the beer samples that came along with the tour, I figured, why not? The ride home was more difficult than the ride there. We were tired and the bike butt at that point was substantial. I was definitely feelin' the burn!

I can't believe I did 50 miles on my bike today!!! So proud, so awesome! After we got home we put our suits on and went straight to 24 hour fitness and got in the hot tub, after a ride like that I needed my muscles to turn to mush in the warmth of the sauna, and then the steam room, and the hot tub, after that I literally felt like gumby.

We came home and Cassi helped me make dinner.

For Dinner: Roasted chicken seasoned with the special Gullah seasoning from the low country. We chopped up a huge amount of veggies for roasting, so many the only way I could toss them all in my olive oil and spices was to throw them into a trash bag, my own version of shake 'n' bake! Butternut squash, yukon gold potatoes, sweet potatoes, roasted garlic cloves, sweet onion, I tossed with salt, pepper, dried oregano, mustard seed, and another splash of the Gullah seasoning. I put most of the veggies into ziplocs and into the fridge, and spread some onto the pan and into the oven to roast.  I tried something different with the chicken because part of me can't stand the awkwardness of a whole chicken so I split it right down the middle before I cooked it. I removed the back bone and from there took my sharp knife and split the bird right in-between the breasts. Then laid the chicken down flat on the pan so all the skin was exposed and facing up ready to be browned and crisped. I have never done this before I think I will do this from now on. The chicken was perfectly cooked and delicious, and the dark meat got as much attention as the breast which usually hogs the spotlight and the browned, crisped skin. It was fantastic!!!

We faded pretty quickly after that. Such a wonderful fall day. And man to I feel good about myself again!

Monday, November 08, 2010

It Was A Good Day.

Today is the first day in a long time that I woke up and felt like I was going to be awesome. Back when I was on my blog all the time, I thought I was awesome all the time. The past couple weeks have been pretty dim. But today I woke up and we went to the gym before work, we rode our bikes there. I am liking 24 hour fitness more and more and I am feeling good about working out. We showered and rode to work and put in a couple of hours.  After work I went back to the gym for a couple more hours. I feel amazing after working out for so long today. I did stairs, weights, the elliptical, swam, and not to mention biking to and from all day.

Food: When I got to work I had a bowl of out white bean soup, it was fantastic, I also had a large coffee. After my second time at the gym I had to go fetch the keys from Cassi and I ended up having a salad: Organic spinach onion, walnuts, bacon, mushrooms, avocado, balsamic vinaigrette. Awesome.

Now I am home and just got off the phone with Aunt Lisa. She reminded me that I haven't posted pictures of our halloween costumes. Cassi and I went as Cream and Sugar!



Hand Painted! Notice our favorite brands!! We drank out of coffee cups all night too, get it?

From our pumpkin party.
Jenna's bat pumpkin. Mine is the tree in the middle, Cassi's is the ghost thingy.

Aren't our costumes awesome! They were a big hit. I also made Tim's costume. I hand stitched him a Peter Pan outfit! It was a lot of work but it turned out incredible, unfortunately I don't have a picture.

So glad to be back on the blog.


Friday, October 22, 2010

Running Wild

Well I have been completely absent on my blog, I am so sorry. I feel like I have been focusing on working, and have been preoccupied with my knee. I was so discouraged about the nerve pain and am excited to report that I no longer have those pains. I went to physical therapy yesterday and Mark took me out to the husky field and let me get a feel for running. It felt good but I think I over did it, I am in a lot of pain today. I know id didn't do anything to my knee but I think maybe I tweaked my hamstring or something. right underneath my incision line there is a lot of pain. I'm okay, I was just anxious and you know me, I like to go really hard and really fast. A gift and a curse.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

1y + 23d La Isla= La Awesome.

My knee is feeling a little better today. We have nothing in our apartment in terms of food, which is really frustrating because I like to go to the grocery store a do a big order but i don't have the cash to get a big order so I end up eating out and snagging food from work, ugh.

For Breakfast: We don't even have any coffee so we went to Louisa's and got some. Also Cassi had a cinnamon roll the size of my head and I had a small cup of fruit. I thought, wow, this meal perfectly represents our different metabolisms. 

We went to her soccer game and she played awesome, she had two goals and we won, 2-0. MVP? After soccer we went top go pick up Parker, Cassi's cousin. We grabbed some lunch with him.

For Lunch: We went to a mexican place, I had a chicken chalupa, basically a tostada with a fold in it.

Then we went and did something awesome! We went and painted pottery at one of those pottery studios. We picked out our pieces and got painting. I made an oval serving dish, Parker got a large square plate and Cassi painted a mug. We had a lot of fun! Afterwards I took them both to get cupcakes, I opted out.

We dropped Parker off and went to meet up wt my parents . . . such a social day. Mom, Dad, Cassi, and I had a great dinner at La Isla, Tim, my brother said its the best meal he's ever paid for, and with a recommendation like that we had to go try it.

For Dinner: Blackened salmon a top a beautiful salad with mixed greens roasted red peppers and a mango, pineapple salsa. It was so good!

Shortly afterwards Cassi and I took off and went home and to bed.


Saturday, October 09, 2010

1y + 22d

For Breakfast: Leftover butternut squash. Coffee.

My knee is feeling okay so far. I think it's a little better in the morning, but who knows. The weather is really turned for the fall and it's been raining here and gets down right chilly at night. My tomato plants are finally saying their last goodbyes and I think I need to let them go. :(

I absolutely have to go to work tonight, my plan is to take Ibuproen and just go for it.

1y + 21d Feeling a Little Nerve-ish

Well, I spent the day at home, half of it in bed. I can't help but feel totally bummed about my knee pain. I guess I need to call Dr. Larson. I still feel stuffy and sick too. Last night I gave my shift away because my knee hurt so bad. I totally hate this and I need to pull myself out of denial and get to the doctor so he can tell me I am okay, I need to make sure.

For Dinner: I roasted butternut squash and also brussel sprouts with pecans and it was awesome.

I drank tea all night and did my knee exercises. I couldn't sleep because the pain was so bad, very very nervous at this point.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

1y + 20d It's been a long week.

Oh man, I haven't been on here in a long time. It has been a crazy week. First of all Sunday, I started to get sick and have been viciously battling this awful cold, which unfortunately includes vomiting, stuffy nose, tremendous coughing bouts and body aches. It's bananas. Tuesday I stayed home from work and am already struggling to pay the bills, being sick really makes things inconvenient. it really got a hold of me and I feel really under the weather.

On Monday I decided to go see Mark, my physical therapist about the shooting pain I have been feeling in my leg. He really took a good look at everything and he is just about positive that the pain is being caused by my nerve re-generation. The nerve damage I have from having two surgeries and the scar tissue I have built up apparently is the reason for the pain. As my nerves re-grow I am having this shooting pain up and down my leg. Not cool. However I am relieved that there is nothing actually wrong with my leg. I hope this pain goes away soon because it's really hard for me to work and sometimes I literally can't walk it's so bad. Not to mention it has been impossible to work out and I  really need to workout to lose weight and re-hab my knee. Ugh.

Wednesday was the the Community Kitchen and I was in charge of planning the kids' activity. I got Il Fornaio to donate a bunch of bags and Jenna and I made a bunch of felt ghosts, pumpkins and bats and we went crazy! The kids loved the activity and we kept them engaged for hours, remarkable. After the Kitchen we went to the fashion show that Cassi was in, a benefit night for a non-profit called Art with Heart. It's Art therapy for children with disabilities. She did amazing. Here are a few pictures.


Beautiful.

Today I made stuffed peppers with onion, mushrooms, eggplant, garlic, zucchini and chicken with whole wheat cous cous and bell peppers from the market. awesome.


Saturday, October 02, 2010

1y + 15d

We went to the market this morning and bought some crucial things. Squash and apples are in there prime!

For Breakfast: Cassi made me oatmeal with fresh slices of apple and some coffee.

We laid low and hung out at home the rest of the day before I had to go to work. I am having a little problem with my knee. For the past couple days I have had really bad pain on the outside of my quad. I am relieved that the pain isn't right in the knee joint but the pain is substantial and even makes it hard to walk. Before I schedule something with my surgeon I am going to talk to my physical therapist, because if its something common that happens I don't want to freak out. I have been icing and have even had Cassi help me try to massage it, assuming it might be a bad muscle cramp.

I had some popcorn before I went to work.

Work was slow but one table kept me there until 10:30, they were in an extremely long conversation. I ordered some food from work so I wouldn't be hungry later, the plan was to pick up Jenna and then go to a party that Cassi went to. So that is what we did.

For Dinner: I ordered the dorato risotto, vegan, no butter, no cheese, just veggie stock, rice, artichokes, mushrooms, tomatoes, zucchini, butternut squash, asparagus and a saffron. lovely and overwhelmingly filling. ugh.

We went to the party but we left after just a bit and came home and went to bed.

Friday, October 01, 2010

1y + 14d Walk that lake!

I woke up and grabbed some coffee and went to pick up Jenna. We drove over to Genessee Park. That was were the Triathlon was held and we were fixin' to take a nice long walk, so I figured we should go and walk near lake Washington and do it right.

We walked from Genessee park all the way to Seward parl and then around the loop and back to our car at Genessee.

I found a picture of where we walked: Looks like we did 6 miles!


We came home after that and ate something, we were tired!

For Lunch: I just sauteed some peppers, onions, mushrooms, and black beans with garlic and jalapeno and heated some corn tortillas. It was good!

I got ready for work and went in, but it was so slow both Cassi and I got home nice and early. One of Cassi's good friends is in town and we are going to go meet up with her!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

1y + 13d

I woke this morning and got ready to hang out with my good friend Kay. She came over around lunch time and we chatted.

For Breakfast: Just Coffee. :/

After Cassi got home from volunteering at Haborview, Jenna came over and the four of us decided to grab some lunch. I totally broke my rule again, no eating out, which is hard to do when you are trying to have a social life, social activity is so often grouped with eating.

For Lunch: from portage a portobello mushroom sandwich with grilled eggplant and red pepper pesto with a side salad.

After lunch Cassi had to get ready to go to work and Jenna and Kay and I took a walk down to the new South Lake Union park. It is so great and such a close walk from our apartment!

At the very end of the day Kay and I went in to visit Cassi at work and grabbed more food! Can you believe it, I can't believe I ate out twice today, what a slacker!

For Dinner: Spinach salad with mushrooms, onions and crispy bacon pieces with a balsamic vinaigrette. I also had a piece of grille chicken on the side to get some protein.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

1y + 12d Biking With Mom

For Breakfast: Coffee.

Got up and went to work this morning. When I got there I had a bit of the "Family Food" they put out for the workers.  Just a piece of chicken and a cup of vegan butternut squash soup.

Work wasn't too bad, I got a little busy during the rush but was done early enough to help Cassi go bike shopping before she had to go in for work. We went to Gregg's near greenlake and got some pretty good ideas. the biggest idea we got is how darn expensive bikes are!

For Lunch: When I got home from bike shopping with Cassi I quick ate something before biking with my mom. I sauteed some tofu and eggplant and made a sauce using plum sauce, sriracha, lime juice, and peanut butter, sounds crazy but it was really good!

Mom and I took an awesome bike ride, I think we probably did about 18 miles. My knee feels fantastic and so does my body now that I am working out again. I want to keep riding as much as possible until the weather turns nasty. It's been pretty good lately.

After the ride I decided to bend the rule and go out with Mom and Cassi to Jhan-Jay our favorite Thai restaurant. I know I am not supposed to eat out but we did and I chose my meal very carefully.

For Dinner: Hot and sour Thai-style clear soup simmered with mushrooms, lemon grass, kaffir lime leaves, chili paste, cilantro, and your choice of steamed tofu. We also had the fresh vegetarian rolls and hot ginger tea.




Tuesday, September 28, 2010

1y + 11d

For Breakfast: Scramble with zucchini, mushrooms, and black beans.

Cassi and I went for a bike ride, we rode all the way out to Golden gardens and back, I think we probably did about 12 miles. Feeling so good about bike riding!

For Lunch: I sauteed some tofu with mushrooms and zucchini.

I got ready for work and went in, it was so slow. Came home after a few hours, just when Cassi got there, and  we invited Jenna over to watch a movie. 10 Things I hate About You. So good!

For Dinner: I baked an acorn squash and for dessert I chopped up some apples and baked them with a touch of cinnamon. Yum.

Monday, September 27, 2010

1y +10d Thirteen Miles Down!

Woke up this morning and started to get ready to head off to work.

For Breakfast: Coffee and a pear.

Work was nothing amazing. It was slow.

For Lunch: Two eggs with mushrooms, bell peppers, and zucchini.

I went for an awesome bike ride! The first time since before the injury . . . or should I say re-injury. It was amazing and when I got home I calculated the distance and I was impressed that I think I did about 13 miles!

When I got home I made some sweet potato gnocchi. I wanted to see what the difference was between making them vegan and not vegan. So I literally just added an egg. They were a bit more firm but other than that not a big difference.

Goodnight people. So excited to be biking again.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

1y + 9d

After the soccer game Cassi and I drove straight up to Arlington for Dad's birthday. We got there and chateed with the gang.

For Dinner: BBQ chiken and grilled veggies. (Broccoli onions and bell peppers)

We ended up heading over yo Jodi and Greg's and hung out for a bit. Afterwards we walked home and chatted for a bit and then Cassi and I took off back to Seattle.

1y + 9d Happy Birthday Dad!

Happy Birthday Dad!

Cassi and I are getting ready to go to her soccer game and then we are headed up to Arlington to do something with the parents for my Dad's birthday! Big 54!

For Breakfast: So far just coffee, but I have my eye on a pear . . .

Saturday, September 25, 2010

1y + 8d Some Kinda Wonderful

For Breakfast: Two egg scrambled with bell pepper, zucchini and mushrooms topped with avocado. Coffee. Cassi made it for me.

Today Cassi and I went and ran a bunch of errands together, got the oil changed, went to the pharmacy to pick up a few things, we even went to Recycled Cycles and had them look at Cassi's bike.

For Lunch: Romaine with black beans, radishes, onion, scallion, avocado, cilantro, salsa, and lime.

 Cassi made me breakfast and lunch today, she's some kinda wonderful, isn't she? Got ready for work after a bit. I went in and it really wasn't very busy, until I already got phased. Oh well. I came home and made myself dinner.

For Dinner: Garlic, fresh oregano, bell pepper, mushrooms, eggplant, and shrimp simmered in white wine and reduced then I added marinara and finally the zucchini spaghetti strands. It was very good!

Friday, September 24, 2010

1y + 7d Sad News.

Woke up this morning and made breakfast for Cassi and Jenna and myself. We were so exhausted after our kitchen aid adventure, Jenna decided to crash on our couch.

For Breakfast: Sweet potato hash with grilled veggies (zucchini, eggplant, onion, mushrooms, and bell peppers. Coffee.

It took me almost two hours to do all the dishes from last night, what a lovely treat. Cassi had to work so I stayed home and worked on some stuff and she was home before you know it.

For Lunch: Romaine lettuce with radishes, red onion, scallion, cilantro, black beans, avocado and salsa and lime.

As Cassi and I were getting ready for work a got a really bad call from my mom. She told me that  Josh was on his way home from college because one of Josh's friends in Arlington commit suicide. :( This was a guy that we all knew. He played football with Josh and he and josh were good buddies. All night at work I felt terrible and was on the verge of tears, I can't imagine how is family if feeling and I can't help but feel so sad. I talked to Josh before I got to work and he seemed very upset, he was on his way to meet up with some of the guys so they could all be there for eachother.

I came home tonight and basically went to bed. I just couldn't stop thinking about what happened. My thoughts are with his family.

1y + 6d Debut of the Kitchen Aid.

It's beautiful. I re-organized my kitchen shelves just so I could have a spot worthy of such a magnificent machine. KA stands for Katy Acker, but even more importantly it stands for Kitchen Aid! Today after I spent the morning working on the computer for Christina I invited my dear cousin over and set out on a mission to break in my newest kitchen toy. But this is no toy folks, this stretches far beyond the mango pitter, the mandolin slicer, the immersion blender even . . . this is a machine!

(And The Crowd Goes Wild!)


Since I was young I remember my mom's cobalt blue kitchen aid standing mixer. Not easy to get out or put away this machine was used only in serious situations; mashed potatoes, Ally's oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, batter for funny cake . . . these are all things I remember licking off the beater as soon as I was given the go. For some reason I always had it in my head that I would wait to get one until I got married as part of a wedding gift. I don't know . . .  so as you know, Mom and Dad bought this marvelous masterpiece for me for my birthday! It has been waiting for me to return from my trip and today was the day.

We made Pumpkin Spice cupcakes with a cinnamon icing and everything was vegan. While we were skipping through the Bon Appetite magazine we came across a butternut squash gnocchi recipe and Jenna and I figured, Hey, not?

The tricky part about the whole day was that we made a decision to make everything vegan. For Jenna, the vegan cousin, yes, but for me too. For eggs we used a ground flaxseed and water mix, for oil we used applesauce, we substituted some of the sugar for pure maple syrup. We had so much fun and everything turned out great. The cupcakes were good, but they stuck to the cupcake liners pretty bad. The gnocchi were a little scary at first, we finally got the right and they were awesome. We ate them with fresh sage, pecans and a browned butter sauce, vegan butter . . . .yep.

As far of the rest of my day . . .

For Breakfast: Sweet potato hash with grilled veggies (eggplant, zucchini, onion, bell pepper and mushrooms)

I didn't really eat much during the middle of the day.  And Jenna and I started cooking and we munched on some butternut squash.

These are some pictures of our kitchen extravaganza . . .
The first time turning on my mixer.
Vegan Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Cinnamon Frosting
Gnocchi dough.
Forming the Gnocchis
Pre- Cooked but ready to go.
Each one scored with a fork by Jenna.
Really impressed with how they turned out. Simple, Vegan, Fun, Delicious.


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

1y + 5d Takin' it to the Burke

I woke up early again this morning and made Cassi and myself breakfast. I was scheduled to work this morning but I had a doctors appointment AND a physical therapy appointment this morning, so Cassi worked for me. What would I do without her?

For Breakfast: I made an omelet with one and egg and one egg white with mushrooms, bell peppers, jalapeño, black beans, cilantro, and scallion; topped with fresh avocado slices and salsa fresca. Coffee.

I went to the doctors office today and took X-rays and Dr. Larson examined my knee, he said that everything looks fantastic and now there are only three things I am still not aloud to do.

1.) No running on hard surfaces, however I am aloud to start doing light jogging on grass or a treadmill. In six to eight weeks I should be able to go for a light jog.

2.) No uncontrolled weight exercises in the gym, basically I am not aloud to do quad sets, because it puts so much pressure on the joint.

3.) No jumping or pivoting movements, so anything sports related is still a no.

All of this means a couple of really great things, I am aloud to go swimming any stroke for as long as I want . . . and I can go biking outside!!! I am so excited to ride my bike, it's been too long! Burke Gilman trail here I come!

For Lunch: I had grilled veggies (Eggplant, zucchini, onion, red bell peppers, and mushrooms) drizzled with a balsamic reduction. Yum.

Jenna came over and we hung out and I got to tell her about our trip, and she got to tell me how she's adjusting to Seattle, apparently the weather was pretty nasty while we were gone. I love Seattle and the weather is so not as bad as people say it is, so I hope Jenna doesn't think rain is all Seattle has to offer because we have so much more!

For Dinner: Grilled tofu and Broccoli sauteed with sliced crimini mushrooms and slivered almonds. Very good.

We watched a movie tonight and ate popcorn. The kind with just a little olive oil and salt. vegan for the cuz, healthy for me!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

1y + 4d Back to Basics

Well today was my first full day back to my regular life. Cassi and I woke up super early because we are on east coast time, but we got a lot done! We unpacked and did laundry and then went and did some grocery shopping.

For Breakfast: Just coffee.

I drank water all day long and I already feel better.

For Lunch: I just had a small pink lady apple and a small handful of raw walnuts. I really like walnuts.

I went to work and we got pretty busy. Mom and Dad came in and surprised us, it was so good to see them! I feel like it's been forever even though it's only been two weeks; Cassi and I see Mom and Dad usually a couple times a week.

Now we are home from work and feel good because we were very productive today and we made money at work. Also I feel better because I didn't eat a truck load of food. I am munching on an apple and then I am going to wash up and go to bed because I am exhausted. Tomorrow I have my 12 week knee appointment. I am not sure if I get cleared to do anything different but I certain;y hope so. After I get things in order I really need to start looking for a new gym to go to. I need to get off my butt and work out.

For these next few weeks I am really going to focus on getting myself back on a strict eating regimen. No eating out, no alcohol, and for the time being, little to no carbs. Gotta shed these pounds.

Monday, September 20, 2010

One Year/ 3 Days (Day 13 of Trip)

Both Cassi and I woke up this morning and sighed with relief that the next time we laid our heads down it would be on our own pillows.

For Breakfast: Wheat bagel with amazing locally made jam and some kind of peanut butter that absolutely blew my mind. We went to this Coffee shop by Katharine's place, it was great and reminded us of Seattle.

Cassi and I went into the city and did some more sight seeing.



Ben Franklin, sittin' pretty.
The Art Museum, what an incredible building.

The murals in the city are amazing.

By the river on the way over to visit the U Penn campus.

For Lunch: BBQ pork sandwich served with fries.

Now  we are on the plain home and I am excited to not eat for a week because I feel like a blimp.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

One Year/ 2 Days (Day 12 of Trip)


For Breakfast: Coffee and a couple of special cookies we brought Nana from NYC.

We finished packing up and went to the train station. Cassi was excited for the last leg of our vacation!


It was a quick ride into Philly and Katharine our friend met us there at the station. Katharine and her boyfriend Cam have an awesome dog named Sophie, even I fell in love with this dog.

For Lunch: Campos Cheese steaks and yuenglings. I had mine with steak, marinara, and sweet peppers, Cassi had a classic with steak provolone and onions.





After lunch we walked all around the city and saw the sights. This next picture is us in front of the Betsy Ross house.


City Hall
Yep.

For Dinner: Mixed greens with peppers, mushrooms, and olives and tomatoes. Sweet Italian sausage with peppers and mushrooms with fettuccine pasta with a tomato sauce.

We said we didn’t need dessert but our server brought some fresh cannolis for us anyways and they happened to be the best I have ever had. It was just the 3 of us and it was so good!
The three of us stuffed from an amazing dinner.