Dinner’s ready! #WIAW

I’m not really sure how we are at the end of November already. I’m also not sure how Genevieve is already eight and a half weeks old. My maternity leave is half over. Waaaaah šŸ˜¦

I’ve been really focused on eating well over the last 8 weeks, more so than I was when I was pregnant, (and I was pretty healthy then too). I just want to make sure Genevieve gets the best nutrition she can, and it is helping me make better choices. It will hopefully help me fit into my pre-preg wardrobe soon too šŸ™‚

pre-B

kids cliff bar when G nursed around 6 this morning.

B

Pumpkin Pie Green Monster: 1/3 cup oatmeal (ground up into powder before adding remaining ingredients), 2 large handfuls spinach, 1 scoop vanilla protein powder, 1 TBS chia seeds, 1/4 cup pumpkin, sprinkling of cinnamon, stevia & pumpkin pie spice.

I’ve been drinking a lot of smoothies for breakfast lately. They are just so easy, and a great way to ensure I get veggies first thing in the morning mid-morning.

L

Portability was key to help me run errands: leftover farro + black beans with cheddar, salsa, & avocado.

S

Peppermint White Mocha and an apple while decorating the tree.

D

Freezer meal! This is another one of my freezer meals I made pre-baby. Tonight we’re having cream cheese chicken over farro. We’ll probably have it in tortillas for dinner tomorrow.

Some chocolate may be consumed later too šŸ™‚

What is your favorite crock pot or freezer meal?

Fauxbux Bacon Gouda Breakfast Sandwich

I have a Friday ritual of treating myself to a grande decaf 2-pump vanilla latte and a bacon gouda artisan sandwich. Then my ritual started sliding back to Thursday, so I could make it through my weekly meeting. And then it found itself wedging into my Wednesday. This was creating a dent in my fun money that I’d rather save for pedicures.

via

So this weekend I purchased some bagel thins and gouda cheese and got to work. It isn’t exactly the same, but it hits the spot and is quite quick and easy to whip up on a work morning.

Fauxbux Bacon Gouda Breakfast Sandwich

Nutritionals: Cal 356, Carb 25g, Fat 22g, Pro 19g, Fiber 5g, Sugar 4g

Ingredients

1 Thomas Everything Bagel Thin

1 large egg

1 oz gouda cheese

1 slice bacon

1/2 TBS butter

salt & pepper to taste (or Jane’s Krazy Salt)

Directions

Bake up a batch of bacon any night of the week: line a jelly roll pan with foil, lay bacon on pan, put in cold oven and bring to 400, bake for 13 minutes and flip, bake an additional 5-10 minutes, removing when desired brownness is reached. De-grease on paper towels and store in the fridge for future use.

On the morning you’d like to enjoy your sammie, heat a small pan to medium and spray with cooking spray or olive oil. Crack egg into pan and stir up the yolk a tad. Flip as soon as possible, and layer a slice of gouda on top. Break one slice of bacon into two pieces and add to the pan. Cover pan and cook approximately one minute, or until the bottom of the egg is cooked through. Cook longer to increase the cheese melt factor.

Meanwhile, toast and butter your bagel thin. Top with egg/gouda and bacon. Wrap in foil to keep warm for your morning commute.

Now I just need to purchase a Nespresso and my fauxbux fix will be complete.

What is your favorite Starbucks menu item?

MPM, maybe

This weekend I cuddled up with my DVR, a cup of burnt coffee sans milk (because it was sour, gross), and my computer. I pinned for quite a while, and came up with an assortment of meals I couldn’t wait to try. I built my meal plan, made a Costco list for the hubs, and went on my merry grading way.

However, after creating my meal plan for the upcoming work week, I stumbled upon the Airfield Estates 5k Vinyard run.

(source)

I quickly texted my mom, to see if she would be interested in being my companion, and decided a trip to Yakima was in order. I haven’t run, at all, since completing the Spokane Indians Pennant 8k in July. My poor IT band is still giving me issues, so I am being really nice to it. Telling it how pretty it is, massaging it with a foam roller, and soaking it in the tub. It hasn’t thanked me for my efforts yet. So I’ll be walking this 5k, but it is better than nothing!

(source)

The hubs is staying in town, and maybe, just maybe, he will decide to give my meal plan a go (freezing any extras, hint hint!), instead of making burgers andĀ  grilling steak.

Meal Plan Monday

Monday, October 3

Zucchini & white bean soup, crusty bread and salad

Tuesday, October 4

Grilled Ahi, rice with veggies, salad

Wednesday, October 5

Warm quinoa, spinach, and chicken & shiitake salad, crusty bread

Thursday, October 6

Buffalo Grilled Cheese Sammies w/tomato soup

Friday, October 7

Mac and Cheese muffinsĀ 

Saturday, October 8

Buffalo chicken enchiladasĀ 

Sunday, October 9

Homemade pizza, using this dough, salad

If he doesn’t stick to my meal plan, I’ll forgive him. He picked up a very special treat at Costco this weekend, and I’ll be enjoying non-burnt coffee from here on out.

Have you ever had coffee brewed from a Keurig?

When I visited my friend V last May, I experienced my first Keurig cuppa joe and was hooked! I’ve been not so subtly hinting that I wanted one ever since. Props to the hubs for using the awesome coupon in our Costco booklet!

Starbucks Faux-ccino

I love coffee. Iced, hot, blended, it doesn’t matter. I prefer local shops to big chains, but sometimes the green Siren calls to me. It might have something to do with the $2 treat receipts, or the fact that I know exactly what I am getting, no matter where I am.

On a hot afternoon I am often drawn to a Frappuccino.

(source)

But I don’t like the $4.50 price point. And even if I am using my $2 treat receipt, I still have to spend about $4 before two p.m. just to get this frozen goodie. While I don’t mind spending a few bucks at the bux when I have a gift card, I do mind when its my own money.

A week from tomorrow is my first day of school (!!), and Thursday is my first official day back, (staff mtgs/Open House). I used to pass a few coffee shops, and two Bux’s, on my way to work, providing multiple opportunities to waste money. But my new route only takes me 5 minutes by foot, where I only pass a church and a hardware store.

So I got creative.

I’ve been making coffee ice cube for years. They are very simple to make: brew a pot of strong coffee, fill ice cube trays, freeze, pop out and store in a gallon sized freezer bag.

Easy, eh?

They are perfect for iced coffee and coffee protein shakes, aka Faux-ccino’s.

Faux-bux Vanilla Faux-ccino

Serves 1

Nutritionals: Cal: 129, Carb: 11g, Pro: 11g, Fat: 4g, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 9g

Ingredients

1 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk (or regular, or soy milk)

1 TBS instant coffee (I used Foldgers)

1/2 scoop GNC vanilla whey protein powder (or protein powder of your choosing)

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

10 coffee ice cubes

1.5 tsp granulated sugar

Directions

Throw all ingredients in blender. Blend.

Enjoy, preferably with a siphoned straw from the bux.

(See book club girls, there IS a reason to have a straw in your purse at all times!)

Fashion Friday: TFIG!

I’ve never been more TG’d for an IF than I have this week! It was a rough one, and I thought Friday would never come. But it’s here, and I am thrilled!

This morning also started out rough, and I hit snooze a good five times before I finally accepted my fate and arose from my slumber. I contemplated skipping my elliptical date with Erica, but since I skipped Wednesday and Thursday (and felt crappy both days as a result), I decided I should just get up and go. Even though I had to shave 15 minutes off my workout, I’m glad I went. I felt refreshed and energized afterward, which set me off for a better day than had I not gone.

Although I almost died. Well, not literally, but a gal’s CHI straightening iron caught on fire at the Y this morning! While in a state of undress I noticed sparks flying all over the place, and heard a few gasps mixed with shocked screams. She wasn’t hurt too badly, but jeebus, it was nerve wracking! I was a little afraid to blow dry my hair and use my CHI afterward!

Upon arriving to work I dipped into my emergency stash of Oatfit. I completely neglected packing my breakfast and lunch last night, so I had to spend the day eating whatever I could create from my desk drawer and mini-fridge.

Not amazing, or anything even close, but it did the trick. I used to really enjoy this cheap-o, easily portable breakfast. But now that I’ve cut splenda/aspertame from my diet I really notice when it is used in products. After I finish my ridiculously large collection of Oatfit boxes I am going to only purchase non-artificial sweetener packets for my emergency stash.

Lunch was slightly more satisfying, (and I finished my pre-Lent purchased deli meat).

Pacific Organics Butternut Squash soup, turkey sammie on Thomas multi-grain English muffin (with laughing cow wedge and dijon), plus the largest apple I’ve ever seen.

Oh, and some Pellegrino. Which did add some sparkle to my afternoon, (the only festivity I had planned).

After reading a snipit in The Inlander about Agave‘s wonderful happy hour, I decided we needed to partake. I guess I did have some fun festivities up my sleeve today.

It is the happiest hour.

Agave has a 4321 menu, which includes 12 food items, 3 at each price point, ($4, $3, $2, & $1). Their drinks are also at the same price points.

The hubs was very sad he could not partake in the ancho chicken or pork belly eats, as we’ve given up meat for Lent. But I don’t think he needs to worry, we’ll definitely be back in 38 days or so.

After our friends Erica and Nate arrived, we ordered a fun assortment of appetizers…

Sweet potato fries, which originally drew me in at their $1 price!

A cheese quesadilla, which wasn’t amazing, but the tortilla’s come from DeLeon’s, which is the closest you’ll get to authentic Mexican food in Spokane.

A prickly-pear salad (with blue cheese, pears, pepitas, jicama, tomatoes, and spring greens). I will definitely be recreating this at home.

And jalapeƱo*-tequila edemame, which was oh so tasty.

*which was spelled jolopeno and jalopeno in a few different spots on our first menu. Our waitress swapped our menu’s out with an “updated” menu. Upon inspecting the new menu we didn’t see any foodie differences, but after I uploaded my pictures I noticed the spelling mistakes must have been the issue.

While it looks like quite a bit of food, the portions were pretty small. Not that I am complaining, you can’t expect much from the $1-4 price range. I may be whipping up some butternut squash burritos in a while….

And without further ado, here is this weeks Fashion Friday:

Monday: totally forgot to take off my badge and I still need to shine my boots.

Tuesday: I really need a new (smaller) black belt.

Wednesday’s outfit was cuter in theory than in reality.

Thursday: rockin’ those red pumps!


Friday: school spirit polka dots!

We’re about to watch Toy Story 3 šŸ™‚

What is your favorite animated film?

For me, as a kid at least, it was The Little Mermaid.

Early to bed, early to rise.

In theory at least. Last night I was exhausto-balls. Lately I’ve been neglecting my inhaler* and my workouts have really been kicking my arse. Between the wheezing, and forgetting to make coffee yesterday morning, I knew the only cure would be sleep.

*I have exercise-induced asthma. It generally only flairs up when I run or use the stair-stepper, but lately the elliptical has been added to the list.

Unfortunately 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep did not make magic happen. Thursdays are just difficult. Between earlier than normal meetings, and back-to-back classes until 1:09, (when I get lunch), I am thrown way off my mark. I’m such a creature of habit, and even though this happens every.single.week. on Thursday, my body still can’t find balance.

Coffee didn’t help.

Pumpkin oats didn’t help.

Nanner + pb didn’t help.

And neither did my chicken, laughing cow & stone ground ‘tard sammie + apple.

I did, however, attend a pink and frilly baby shower this afternoon for a co-worker. And y’all know how much I love babies.

My Thursday threw me off, but I did manage to get a gift.

Ok, so technically my gift will come in the future, but I wasn’t sure if there were any food allergies/aversions. I wanted to make sure my co-worker got something she would actually eat.

There are only three things to cure my Thursday blues:

Deschuttes tasting at The Flying Goat with friends Erica + Nate,

The Office,

and Parks and Rec.

Here’s to a better tomorrow.

What is your cure to ease the pain of a rough day? Are you thrown off by a change to your routine?

Coo Coo for Cupcakes.

Today was a very exciting day, but it all started with yesterday’s cupcake trivia. Every Friday Celebrations Sweet Boutique throws a trivia question up on the ‘ol fb. Yesterday the owner was stumped for a question, so the first 50 people who responded with their favorite cupcake flavor won happy hour prices all day long ($1 per cupcake – no limit!). I was number 46 -score!

We purchased a few (ahem, 9) and will be storing nearly all of them in the freezer for some tasty treats later on. But later tonight I will probably give into temptation and dive into this little banana/chocolate/bacon number.

Prior to cupcake purchasing I attempted to re-create my 3-day oats by assembling my oatmeal and allowing it to sit for an hour and a half before I cooked it. The oats turned out quite well if I must say, (and no explosion in my microwave!).

Don’t oats look so much prettier prior to adding liquid?

Today’s mix included oats, almond milk/water, cherry craisins and chia seeds. Nothing crazy, but I am loving these cherry craisins. I really should have titled this post coo coo for craisins.

I ate ‘em while I watched a little Jersey Shore. I’d never seen Jersey Shore and decided it would be like an indulgent Saturday morning cartoon for adults. Which, by the way, cartoon characters are really sending the wrong message to kids these days.

Umm Garfield’s dad, what the fudge have you been doing?

Lunch was spread throughout the day and included a Kashi Crunchy! bar and a few Costco samples, (umm yes, we go to Costco A LOT). While at Costco we picked up this beauty.

So excited to play with it!

This afternoon I had a little girl date with my buddy Crissy. We stopped by Fringe & Frey to check out their one-year anniversary sale.

I didn’t find anything, as I was in just one week ago, but I did enter into their drawing. Crissy scored some cute 7 jeans and some fun tops.

But they did have cupcakes! Double the cupcakes, double the fun.

While waiting for her to pay I snuck over to The Rocket for a little afternoon pick me up.

I love that their fixin’s bar is an old dresser, so homey. I used to live in a super cute apartment across the street and would spend hours sipping away and utilizing their free wireless internet.

Then on over to Vintage Carousel, where Crissy again scored and I walked away with nothing.

Sigh. I did see some very cute Betty Drapperesque dresses, however, and I may be picking one come wedding season this summer. Oh wait, I don’t know anyone getting married. Ok, maybe I will just get one to wear around the house to cook’n’mix cocktails in.

I was totally in love with this (not my size) dress.

And I tried on another in the ever so cute dressing room.

Then I had to meet my mentor Marla because we switched debit cards last night! We have the same credit union and didn’t think twice when our waitress brought our tabs at Left Bank last night. She discovered this accidental swap when she tried to pay for something this morning and her card was declined. Woops!

Since I was already out and about I decided to swing over to Sun People Dry Goods, a new organic store in a less-than-savory area of downtown. Spokane has really been trying to transform its downtown over the past few years. When I moved here nine (wow, nine!) years ago I hated Spokane. I was here for one reason only: school. But over the years I have come to love Spokane and am thrilled people are supporting all of these new local businesses that seem to be springing up every day.

I am also a sucker for free parking.

And for bike racks made from recycled bike frames.

Inside I found some fun (but overpriced) items.

I know these prints are for a kids room..but I really want them in mine.

Free coffee while I shop? Yes, please.

I also accidentally stumbled into a staging area for next week’s First Friday, and was allowed a sneak peek at the art. I’m really loving this Oh, I have a blog response when people ask me why I am photographing random things.

After arriving home I assembled this kick-arse salad of mixed greens/spinach, goat cheese, avocado, tomato and cherry craisins. YUM!

I only recently discovered that goat cheese is lactose-free. I’ve been missing out for years!

Tonight the hubs and I have some fun plans with our friends John and Kim. We’re having a late sushi date at sushi.com, which ironically does not have its own website. After some cheap (but definitely delicious) sushi we’re heading over to Nectar for Last Sip. I had so much fun last weekend I wanted to go back as soon as possible. Sadly we will miss their Coeur d’Alene Olive Oil tasting (it ends at 6), but I’m sure our taste buds will still be tempted with other treats.