Oh HEY! So now that we are past the pumpkin craze, I figured it would be a good time to come out of hiding and start some more regular blog upkeep. There have been a lot of new beginnings over the past few months and I am incredibly grateful that 2012 is finishing off on such a high note ;)
My favorite news for you all is that I just so happened to recently snag myself a runner almost as crazy as myself. I didn’t think a man like this actually existed. But he does! He’s that really good looking dude named Michael sitting next to me at The Biltmore in Newton. We had dinner with Sam and Nick a few weeks ago so they could scope him out. He passed the test! Confirmed a like-minded crazy runner. He also has excellent taste in clothes… so that helped ;) We are incredibly similar (scary?) and I’m ridiculously excited to be able to share so much with someone so awesome. Another sweet little factoid… he is also an amazing Father to quite possibly the cutest little 6 year old boy I have ever seen. You’ll be seeing more of Michael ;)
Oh and Thanksgiving already happened, didn’t it? Where did this year GO?
Per usual, we had dinner around Noon at my Grandparent’s place in Middleboro. Typcal spread. Amazing turkey. I made boozey Grand Marnier Cranberry sauce…. and a huge salad of course. Because no meal is complete without a salad, duh.
My plate was a heaping mess of mostly salad, some turkey, turnip, squash, peas, a bit of cranberry sauce and this really great veggie bread? (at least that’s what the title of the recipe was) that my sister had made at my place the night before. Honestly it was amazing but was really more like a vegetarian stuffing. SO good. I had one plate and didn’t finish it all. I don’t understand overeating on holidays. I just treat holiday meals like I would any other. I would rather feel satisfied than miserable and overstuffed! Plus, that way I still have room for leftovers later :P
Dessert = Espresso. My Grandfather makes it on the stove. Old school style. We love it :D
$13 slinky red dress from Forever 21. Yep.
Also per usual, we headed over to my Aunt Carol’s after dinner (which was actually lunch in my mind but my Grandmother refuses to call any meal served on a holiday at noon, ‘lunch’. I can see why… calling a special meal ‘lunch’ sort of takes the specialness away from it, no?)
Carol is also my Godmother and she is really the best ever <3
Michael and I headed to the Cape that weekend after Thanksgiving to run a 5k in Dennis, the town I grew up in. We ran the Andrea Holden Thanksgiving Race. I actually had a PR! I came in 64th out of 687 :D 22:55 7:22 pace. Maybe if I didn’t drink the night before I would have run an even better race. Maybe? haha Michael placed 24th… because, well, he’s awesome like that. You can verify my claims here.
We had dinner with my friends Alec, Sam, and her husband Ricky. This is Sam with her adorable little girl, Zoey. Of course after dinner we just had to stop off at the grocery store for an ice cream fix ;) We stayed at my Dad’s new house in Yarmouth which is just breathtaking.
And don’t you worry, I’m still enjoying lovely wine o’clocks.
Louis, the Fromger at L’Espalier drew me this very useful clock after a Back Bay City Wine Tour a few weeks ago just to confirm that any hour is a good hour to have a wine o’clock. Thanks Louis! You made me feel much better :D
After this particular tour Christian, a co-founder of City Wine Tours wanted to treat his good friend Matt Bednarsky to a going away treat at L’Espalier! Matt moved to Nashville to pursue a country music career! Check out his site. Ladies, I think he is single?? I hope you’re having so much fun and success out there Matt!
Why such a discerning stare from me? That was really good Champagne!
Mike and Matt :D
Oh boy. Get a little bubbly in me and I go wild. Especially when good cheese is involved.
<3 City Wine Tours. This was an especially fun tour in the North End on 11/3. We just finshed up at Davide and were headed over to The Wine Bottega. The Wine Bottega btw is hands down my favorite wine shop in the city. I’ve probably mentioned this about 827261 times. But really it is the shizzle. Yep. Shizzle. All-natural, small production wines sold by really good, knowledgeable people.
I also need to reiterate how awesome running with Michael has been. He really motivates me and pushes me harder than I would push myself. I’ve seen some serious improvements when I thought I was at a plateau! I <3 our run dates with all my heart ;)
These days I’m running in Brooks Ravenna 3. Not too pretty but they are MUCH lighter than my Kayannos. I feel like I am cheating on Asics but I am seriously loving the bouncy, lighter ride I’ve been getting out of my Brooks. Sorry Asics :/ But not really that sorry ;)
Sam and Nick finally got their engagemnt pictures! Gorgeous, right!? They are getting married at The Barn at Gibbet Hill in Groton next September <3
I am loving my new apartment in Newton. It is just so cute! This picture does not do the tree justice. It’s decorated in all gold and smells incredible.
Oh just a random wine o’clock at Strega in the North End ;)
I know, I know. I was going all crazy about how ridiculous pumpkin obsessions are. But serioulsy, it’s not September anymore, so it’s okay ;) This pumpkin frozen yogurt from Sweet Scoops in NH is amazeballs. Buy it. Seriously, buy it if you can find it. You might end up hating me for catalyzing an addiction. It’s that good!
I have had the occasional urge to whip out some old music and have been serenading my roommates and neighbors…. this is what I call ‘practicing’ heh
And seriously? Seriously.
No deep thoughts for today. That is all until next time! And by next time I swear it will be sooner than next year ;)
#1. Pumpkin obsessions. First off, I am by no means a pumpkin hater. I just do not understand the sudden obsession with pumpkin that seems to occur every year exactly on September 1st. OMGPUMPKIN!!! What is it about pumpkin that makes people want everything they eat and drink to be pumpkin flavored starting on exactly 9/1? Oh and let’s not forget about pumpkin bath products, pumpkin candles, pumpkin chapstick, pumpkin booze, and is there such a thing as pumpkin perfume? Sure there is.
Ladies, did you know the scent of pumpkin pie is supposed to turn guys on? Seriously, here you go. So get your bake on girls. Have a date? Buy a six pack of pumpkin beer, bake a pumpkin pie, light some pumpkin candles and invite him over. Actually, instead of pie, you should make these paleo pumpkin brownies.
I made them last week and totally devoured them. Really simple too… just raw almond butter, raw honey, pumpkin (I bet they would be out of control with kabocha squash), an egg, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, sea salt, and you must add chocolate chips. You can also make these into regular paleo/primal brownies by subtracting the pumpkin and adding cocoa powder. Amazing. The amazingness of the pumpkin brownies has nothing to do with the ‘flavor’ of the pumpkin. The pumpkin makes makes them moist. Add cream cheese frosting and you’ve got yourself a super moist delicious autumn spice cake.
Do people even know what plain old pumpkin even tastes like?? Does it even actually have some irresistible aroma or flavor on its own? ‘Pumpkin’ is ubiquitous with fall and I think what people really want is the ‘taste of fall’ not necessarily pumpkin itself. Could you imagine just eating straight up pumpkin from a can? Regardless, anything with the word ‘pumpkin’ is sure to fly off shelves, even if there isn’t really any pumpkin in the ingredient list.
It drives me nuts because if it’s so damn good then why not eat it all year long? Sure it is seasonal, but you can buy canned pumpkin anytime. You would think that gauging from the sheer craziness of the pumpkin obsessions that occur 9/1 that pumpkin would be flying off shelves ALL year, right? I get that because it’s in season now it seems just right and more fun to eat. But how many of you are actually taking the time to roast pumpkins all fall to make into the same stuff you can buy canned (the difference is SO negligible.) Plus guys, come on… it cannot hold a candle to the sheer deliciousness of kabocha squash. So there.
#2: Ordering a meal solely based on the amount of food you get for the price regardless of quality. What the what? I do not understand this. Wouldn’t you rather be good to yourself and enjoy better food instead of gorging yourself on crap which can potentially have negative effects on your body? We only have one body people. Can’t you enjoy just one, high quality burger? Do you really need more than that!?
#3 When someone calls you tell you something and after they have told you what you need to know, they proceed to tell you the same thing again and again in slightly different ways because I definitely didn’t get it the first time.
#4 When someone calls and immediately jumps into a conversation/complaint without an introduction so that 30 seconds into the ‘conversation’ I still have no idea who they are. Wait, can you please tell me who you are? Let’s start there. Actually let’s start with a ‘hello’?
That’s all I don’t understand. For now.
Family hike in the Berkshires for MS with the MIT Lincoln Lab team!
4AM wake-up call. Ehhh
Oh Dad haha
Sam after the Harwich Cranberry Harvest Half Marathon! She PR’d! 1:58! We were all so proud of her :D
Post-run Bacon cheeseburger.
Post-spectating wine for me. post-spectating club soda for Dyan.
Birthday and new job dinner for Dad at Margaritas. Yay fajitas!
More normal stuff:
I’m still running every day, duh. B.A.A Half Marathon this Sunday!
I’m treating myself to these today for the race!
New Balance 870V2
SO EXCITED!!! I have been dying to get into a lighter weight stability shoe. This is going to make my whole weekend. It’s the little things in life, right?
Just hanging out with some wine, shamelessly displaying my Falmouth Road Race medal on probably the most random possible spot in the kitchen. NO shame.
Guilty pleasure confession: I have bit of an obsession with stretchy skirts from Forever 21 and H&M. I just love them. By now, I have about 83732 pairs in every color and length imaginable. They look professional for work with a belt, you can dress them up for a night out, or wear them casually around the house or to the beach! They range from $5-$14 depending on the style, material and pattern. I’m a skirt girl. I live in them, practically sleep in them. So, I can justify owning an entire closet full ;)
I just don’t do those running skirts. Just no.
SO. This was a semi-failed attempt at making homemade Good Humor Ice Cream Sundae Cones. I found these 12 calorie (how completely random is that?) gluten-free cones at Whole Foods a couple of months ago and have needed an excuse to use them as they have been collecting dust in my pantry (Impulse shopping much?)
I made the ‘ice cream’ by mixing about 1/2 cup 0% Greek yogurt, a frozen banana broken up into chunks, a few packets of Truvia, and a splash of vanilla all in the food processor. I froze it for about 45 minutes and blended it again right before I
scooped poured it in the cones. For the chocolate, I just melted down some Simply Lite Dark Chocolate (Trader Joe’s sells this and it is DIVINE) in a glass bowl set on top a pot of boiling water (I ran out of coconut oil which if added to the chocolate would have made a better ‘shell’). I poured some into the cones before the ice cream, drizzled more chocolate on top, and topped with crushed roasted peanuts (obviously you needed that play-by-play)
Some incredibly predictable daily eats: (You must be SO excited!)
As always, breakfasts consist of some sort of combination of Greek yogurt, Green Vibrance powder or coconut flour, puffed corn, millet or brown rice, soy lecithin granules (brain food), Freeze-dried or frozen berries and bananas (obsessed with the crunch), and almond/sunflower/peanut butter in either an almost empty nut butter jar, or my favorite pink cappuccino bowl. Sounds just spectacular doesn’t it? ha
Looks gross. Great nutrition, I think. Tastes just fine with Vanilla, cinnamon, Truvia, and sea salt. Yes, I salt my breakfast. Brings out the flavor! ;)
You see, once I get hooked on a food, it takes weeks, sometimes months for me to want to change it up. Lately, I’ve been on a kombucha, Promax bar, and seaweed snack kick for lunch. I just can’t stop. I tell myself everyday I should probably be a little more frugal, and that I should probably eat something more ‘lunch like’, and something less packaged. Though I fail every time and give in to my undying love
addiction for Kombucha. And bars. And seaweed now apparently. This is how I justify it: It makes me happy!
Ohhhh Sarah. Will I ever learn to not dredge my dinners in condiments and spices? Probably not. This is a typical overflowing Sarah plate of salad, turkey, sauteed greens with olive oil and gahlic, some more seaweed snacks, and snapea crisps! Oh and wine, duh.
For dessert, the chocolate ice cream hidden under a mound of whipped cream, and another semi-failed attempt, at chocolate sauce this time, made with Truvia that kind of came out like pudding (used way way way too much corn starch). It’s all topped with cinnamon, Truvia, and haaahaaa, yes, sea salt sprinkled on top. I have a love affair going on with sweet and salty combinations.
Things I am
obsessed with loving right now:
BLUE. I have been so attracted to the color blue lately. It was never a color I really was drawn to in the past. I have always been that weirdo that preferred orange and yellow. In fact, years ago, right around my senior year of college I bough a brand new black VW Passat, got in a major accident a day later, and ended up with a neon, Smurf-blue Jetta. I literally cried about the color (How mature is that?) When I should have just sucked it and have been grateful I was alive. Someday I’ll have to show you guys pictures of that car from the accident. I really loved that Smurfmobile after the years went by.
Guilty pleasure wine: This new organic Red Zinfandel from Trader Joe’s! It’s just $6.99! Not the best Zin in the world, and it’s definitely no Fuso, it will certainly cure a weeknight craving for a jammy California Red Zin.
Alice Waters. I feel like we are kindred spirits. I bought her biography, Alice Waters and Chez Panisse years ago and I am just now diving in.
She is Extravagant, nonsensical and impractical in some ways, a romantic, a BIG dreamer, determined, lover of amazing food and wine and dedicated to preserving the environment through sourcing fresh, local, organic foods. I <3 her.
"Alice Louise Waters (born April 28, 1944, Chatham, New Jersey) is a US chef, restaurateur, activist, and author. She is the owner of Chez Panisse, a Berkeley, California restaurant famous for its organic, locally-grown ingredients and for pioneering California cuisine. Waters opened the restaurant in 1971. It has consistently ranked among the World's 50 Best Restaurants. Waters has been cited as one of the most influential figures in food in the past 50 years, and has been called the mother of American food. She is currently one of the most visible supporters of the organic food movement, and has been a proponent of organics for over 40 years. Waters believes that eating organic foods, free from herbicides and pesticides, is essential for both taste and the health of the environment and local communities."
My Sister and I often meet at Bokx109 in Newton for drinks after work. I just love this tree hanging they have in a little foyer area and I want a tree like this of my own!
Speaking of my Sister. I am super grateful for her and and I am thrilled and slightly obsessed about helping her plan her wedding which will be next Fall. SO much fun!
Don’t you just think that the universe truly does give you what you need? I do. And it is our own responsibility to be present and aware so that we can see what the world has to offer each of us so that we can learn, grow and become the best version of ourselves :)
Cheers until next time!
HI!!! Life has been extremely busy over here. Leading up to this past Sunday, my focus had been on gearing up for The Falmouth Road Race which took place Sunday, August 12th.
The Falmouth Road Race is a very prestigious, extremely exciting, 7-mile road race with absolutely breathtaking ocean views! It is Cape Cod’s largest sporting event, and it is the epitome of what one would imagine a ‘Cape Cod Race’ to be. The crowds were just spectacular. The streets were lined with locals cheering on runners for the entire 7 miles. Lot’s of homes had there hoses out to spray down the runners, others had music playing. The spectators really make this race special. From the site: “The New Balance Falmouth Road Race celebrates its 40h running this year and the spirit which made the first Falmouth so special is still present today. More than 11,000 runners will gather in Woods Hole for the 2012 renewal, including many of the world’s elite, though the essence of the event remains a fun run. Back-of-the-pack joggers share the road with the best, forming a tapestry of colors from the start on Water Street to the finish at the beach in Falmouth Heights.”
After a glorious night of drinking and amazing food at the Naked Oyster on Main Street in Hyannis, here are my splits:
I love numbers and statistics when it comes to my running. Yes, I am that kind of runner haha But I only compete against myself. I’ve really enjoyed tracking my improvement over the past year and a half. Running to me, is a solitary sport and on race day, when we are all brought together, I think it makes us all feel a part of something greater.
Mile 1: 7:55
Mile 2: 7:52
Mile 3: 7:38
Mile 4: 7:22
Mile 5: 7:36
Mile 6: 7:25
Mile 7: 7:28
Average pace: 7:41
Overall place: 948 out of 10951
Gender place: 230 out of 5418
Age group place: 174 out of 2886
This seriously amazed me. I run every day and drink wine every night. So I mean come on, I’m certainly not training ‘seriously’. Though, one could argue that what works for one person may not work for another. I have only seen improvements in my running so I see no need to change my habits. Yes, of course I want to become a better runner (maybe semi- competitive one day, like placing in the top-10 for females at a local race). I know that if I want to see truly significant improvements from where I am at now… I’ll have to make some changes. Until then, I am very happy with where I am at! My only real goal for this race (besides finishing!) was to finish in under an hour. I secretly wished for 55:00 but I didn’t think it would be at all possible considering I pretty much over OVER trained, had a late night, enjoyed a few (or more… oops!) glasses of wine, and was in a miserable mood the morning of the race because of the pouring rain I figured I would be trudging though. But I was committed to this race through and through and enjoyed every last minute of it!
This is a really well-written article from Running Times written by a high school runner. It’s short and sweet and hits the nail on the head. What she writes really resonated with me. I even have it plastered on my fridge at home!
So. I’ve been really antsy lately. Antsy to move my life forward and get things started! Naturally, attempting to accomplish 1088372 things, and put all of my energy into each and every single one of these projects, has burned me out. To a crisp. And unfortunately, by striving to give 100% to so many demanding projects, they all suffer. It’s just not realistic to think that I can give everything I’ve got to so many different things all at once. I tend to spread myself very thin which leaves little time for relaxing and recharging. I have very little steam left in this engine. But still, I find myself piling up my plate with new projects, willingly, only to get disappointed in myself that I haven’t been able to follow through, or that the end results weren’t what I had imagined. It’s unnecessary, self inflicted stress. So, I’m trying to take it one step at a time right now. This certainly isn’t easy for me as I’m definitely a gogogo kind of person and really love multi-tasking, having plenty of goals and things to work on and things to look forward to. But I’m sick of the things I want to accomplish not manifesting fully into reality because I’ve tried to do too much. This always results in being completely unproductive, with half finished projects scattered all over the proverbial floor.
Heh, rant over!
Fast forward to:
The night before the race! Andrew and I bar hopped, perused Main Street in Hyannis, and enjoyed a really fabulous late night dinner. Exactly what you’re supposed to do the night before a race that is really important to you.
I’m pretty obsessed with Caesar salads, especially at nice restaurants that prepare crisp romaine with real homemade Caesar dressing. Pile on the anchovies please!
Evil grin? Bashful? I’m going with evil. In either case, Andrew said this was one of the best clam chowders he has ever eaten.
For dinner I got the Marlin special. I wish I had taken a picture! I adore Marlin. It is very similar to Swordfish but lacks that dark meat. Andrew enjoyed sauteed Thai jumbo wild shrimp bok choy, snow peas, roasted cashews & spicy peanut sauce served over lo mein. He enjoyed every last bite. The sauce was incredible. It inspired me to make shrimp with peanut sauce one of the nights!
The next morning was rough. I was exhausted and it was pouring. In a nutshell, we left the hotel at 6:30AM, and Andrew drove me to the bus pick-up which was fairly close to the finish. The buses chauffeured rain soaked (many runners cleverly turned trash bags into homemade ponchos!) to the start of the race in Woods Hole. I got there at about 8:30 for a 10AM start. So needless to say I made some friends while waiting! Luckily, the clouds parted ways just in time for the race.
The race ended at Falmouth Heights Beach. After crossing the finish, we were all corralled towards a large field where there was plenty of food and refreshments including a seemingly endless supply of Yasso frozen Yogurt! Andrew actually saw me cross the finish line (this isn’t always an easy thing for friends and family to accomplish)! So, it took him a bit to get to the field to meet me so we could bounce. We both really wanted to avoid any sort of Cape Cod traffic that was sure to be magnified to the 10th degree with all of the race traffic combined with tourist traffic. I grew up on Cape Cod and I know just how horrific it can be. We walked about 2 miles back to his car, spotted a baby snapper, I cleaned up a bit, and we got the hell outta Dodge!
this little guy was slowly making his way into the street! Andrew safely placed little Snappy into the brush. I can’t believe that Andrew spotted the little guy! He looked like a rock!
We left the Cape almost entirely traffic free. I call that a miracle. We were both extremely hungry so we grabbed lunch right outside Boston at Joe’s American Bar and Grill… where I had wine, and waaaaait for it, a shrimp Caesar salad! I’m so not predictable. Oh, and just and FYI, they have a TON of gluten free options including gluten free breads and rolls, pasta, and even gluten free pizza! the rolls were very, very delicious. A bit cake-like and less chewy than wheat bread but rich in flavor and awesome warm with butter.
Once home, I showered, unpacked, started on some laundry, did a little food shopping, and then planted my butt outside with some Barbera and The Corrections. I have tried getting into this book over the past few months and I just cannot. I don’t think Jonathan Franzen’s style is for me. He just seems to go on and on and on with so much filler that doesn’t really seem to add to the actually story telling. I find myself having to re-read paragraphs constantly. Anyone else feel this way? I feel like I should be taking notes in the margin. I just can’t get lost in this book.
Over the past month, I’ve been having a lot of fun in the kitchen but I have neglected taking many pictures. One of my very favorite tings to do is to cook for my family and friends.
A few weeks ago I made Chicken Tikka Masala for Andrew and Ben. I can take or leave Indian food. It’s not that I don’t like it, it’s just that I never crave it and usually just prefer other flavors. Andrew on the other hand, loves Indian food. I made the Cook’s Illustrated version of Chicken Tikka Masala which ended up being a big hit! I found the recipe here. Though I don’t absolutely love Indian food, I really, really enjoy cooking it! The kitchen smelled amazing and it was really fun working with all the spices. I like the methodical approach you need to take with many Indian dishes. I also made Basmati rice with Tumeric, butter, and peas as well as The Food in My Beard’s homemade Naan. SUCH a great recipe! If you want to make Naan at home I HIGHLY recommend using Dan’s recipe.
I wanted to bring a dessert but ended up with a huge fail the night before so I ended up making this right before we headed over to their place. haha I don’t even know what to call it. I made gluten free vanilla coconut flour cupcakes with buttery gluten free graham cracker crusts, and filled them with mini marshmallows. Though delicious, they were just so ugly I decided to make a dessert plate of sorts out of them. I can’t decide if it made the dessert look better or worse. I plated the cupcakes and garnished the plate with melted Simply Lite chocolate, natural mini marshmallows, and gluten free graham crackers. Not my best presentation but it tasted pretty darn good.
After moving to Watertown in June, we have been slowly exploring our new town’s culinary ‘scene’. Only to discover, there really isn’t a scene. But, there are a handful of good restaurants scattered about and a few local bars that are very, local. In the best possible way of course ;) My Sister used to live in Watertown and recommended La Casa De Pedro for it’s fun atmosphere, fabulous drinks (If it’s not wine, it’ a margarita for me!) and outdoor seating. We met our friends Kristy and Gary out on a dreary Wednesday night but had a great time! We sat at the bar with two rounds of margarita’s (AMAZING BTW), and enjoyed a delicious late night dinner. I got a lovely salad topped with avocado and a haddock dish which included plantains. I <3 plantains! They were definitely the highlight of the dish. The fish may have been slightly overcooked but not so much that it deterred from the meal. I cannot wait to go back on nice night so we can sit outside! It has a really fun, tropical/latin vibe, fresh, flavorful food, it's affordable, and they make excellent margaritas. What more can you ask for?
Nubar has been a new favorite drink spot in Harvard Square. Andrew and I actually ate there for Valentine’s Day. They have $5 wine specials on Tuesdays and Thursdays, roasted chickpea bar snacks, and a beautiful gas fireplace (awesome for the cooler months). It is in the Sheraton and tucked away just enough so that it’s never overly crowded. It always feels like that ‘special spot’.
Me with the lovely Laurie Catigan!
Despite the $5 wine specials, I of course had to order a cocktail.
Andrew require this meal for brunch at Russell House Tavern the day after….
Oh, is that a shrimp Caesar salad? More perfection. Look how plump those shrimp are! They were perfectly chilled too. Plus, LOCAL wine from Westport Vineyards on tap.
My family rented a house on the water in Gloucester for a couple weeks that had breathtaking views! Sam and Andrew and I were able to head up twice.
Rockport is right next to Gloucester and we basically spent most of our visits there. I instantly fell in love with Rockport. Downtown Rockport is lined with art galleries, fun boutiques, ice cream shops, and restaurants. This seaside town really reminded me of living back home on Cape Cod.
I have so much <3 for vanilla. I find vanilla to be a far cry from 'plain'! Vanilla is a such a strong flavor and vanilla ice cream/soft serve/frozen yogurt is the perfect match for chocolate sprinkles…. EXTRA chocolate sprinkles.
Enjoyed meandering around Rockport. Of course my Sister and I stopped into every single shop… we just had to. Andrew was a good sport ;) Oh, and BTW, that red mark on my hand is a kayaking battle wound haha
We have the BEST Padre!
As of late:
My breakfasts are pretty much always the same. Greek yogurt (or sometimes whipped cottage cheese with Green Vibrance, puffed rice, freeze dried bananas (LOVE the crunch!), fresh berries, and a big spoonful of a nut butter. A few times a month I’ll do overnight oats in a jar.
Lunch usually comes in two parts. A cottage cheese bowl with carrots and kiwi, and a kombucha and a protein bar.
The Think Thin Chocolate Espresso bar is an old standby. Seriously tastes like a mocha brownie… but with 20 grams of protein!
I am really loving the new lower sugar Promax Bars. They are all natural, stevia sweetened, and have 14 grams of fiber, 18 grams of protein, and are full of vitamins and minerals. Notably, they are loaded with iron. Most importantly, they taste AWESOME.
I’m also loving the new Nugo bars. Not quite as delicious as the Think Thin or Promax bars… but the stats are pretty good and they are in the same camp as the other bars as far as functionality. Does that even make sense?
And lastly: I have been reading a ton. I plowed through these three books over the last couple of weeks. Each book had characters that I completely fell in love with and could relate to. I didn’t want the stories to end! I will write a post about these books soon!
Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan
Commencement also by J. Courtney Sullivan
Back When We Were Grownups by Anne Tyler
The Cummings Sister’s new favorite hang out: Bokx109 in the Indigo Hotel in Newton.
Cheers until next time!
While Andrew is in Italia, this is what I have been up to (I highly recommend clicking that link. If you want a good laugh):
FREEDOM!!!!! (Actually, I really miss my A.Bello)
Grilling and baking with the fresh herbs I have been growing. These are some beautiful local sea scallops that I roasted with chopped dill, rosemary, thyme, basil, garlic, black pepper, sea salt and olive oil. Then of course I was petrified of under-cooking them so they’re unfortunately all knifed up. On the plus side, they were absolutely divine. I find there tends to be a fine line between just right and overcooked for scallops. I have yet to comfortably cook them without mutilating them to check their ‘doneness’.
Since Bello is away, I thought I would cheer myself up and treat myself to a small steak :D This is a 4oz portion of filet from a farm in Maine that I bought at Whole Foods Market. I worked for WF for many years and I really cannot bring myself to buy meat or fish anywhere else unless it is at a farmer’s market. LOVE knowing where my meat comes from. I think it is really important to know nowadays…
I marinated the steak for just about ten minutes in a vegan (haha) creamy Caesar dressing, the ‘Everyday Seasoning’ from trader Joe’s and some fresh thyme and rosemary. It was lovely. I wish I had taken it off the grill one minute earlier but it was still medium rare would you say? I like filet on the very rare side because it is such a tender cut of meat. I’m working on my red meat grilling skills :D
While I generally love to create my own baked goods… Sunday was a super lazy day after a crazy Saturday, so I picked up this mix. This gluten free Simply Organic Banana Bread mix uses brown rice flour and doesn’t call for any added oil. Just add eggs, water, mashed banana, and your add-ins of choice!
I added chopped walnuts and topped my muffins with Lily’s Stevia sweetened dark chcocolate (obsessed).
Saturday I gave back-to-back wine tours. One in the North End and then a bachelorette party that night in the South End! Fun times! I absolutely love leading the bachelorette parties. The first stop on the South End Tour was at Gaslight so between tours I got there early and had dinner around 8pm. This was the arugula and goat cheese salad topped with blue crab. This isn’t on the menu together but the bartender was super sweet and offered to have it plated this way for me. I also had some sauteed spinach (SO much delicious garlic and olive oil <3 ) And yup, a cocktail. I enjoyed the Alexandropolitan: Berkshire Mountain Ethereal Gin, ginger liqueur, grapefruit and lime. Yay for local spirits!
Of course my extremely appetizing looking breakfasts haven’t changed ;) I’m still loving puffed cereals cereals from Arrowhead Mills such as their puffed millet and puffed brown rice. It really bulks up my breakfast bowls without adding a ton of calories. I love adding a crunch factor to my yogurt bowls but so many cereals are packed with loads of sugar. Green Vibrance is also on the menu pretty much every morning… along with sunflower seed butter, freeze dried bananas, and lately, fresh raspberries!
Lunches haven’t changed much either. (Wow I’m boring haha) Rice cakes or corn thins topped with hummus, whipped cottage cheese, and some veggies. Un-pictured are my lunchtime Kombucha and protein bar bites. Oh, and I am 1000% addicted to those seaweed snacks!!! You can find them at Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods. There are like 82272 brands of them available. I was thinking they would be great crumbled over some shrimp or scallops for dinner. Especially the wasabi flavored version. Next time!
Upcoming: The 2012 New Balance Falmouth Road Race!!!! On August 11th I’ll be running this famous race on the Cape! I still cannot believe I got in the lottery. I am beyond thrilled to be able to experience this race this year.
It is a 7-mile race and my original goal was to run it under an hour. Though my 7-mile run on Saturday morning clocked in at 57:38 (8:14 pace) Yay! So I think I can safely assume I’ll be able to pull off 55:00. I hope! There is so much positive energy on race days so I am hoping that boost of adrenaline will help my legs out a little bit!
Any suggestions for fun things to do during my week of singledom?? What would YOU do with a house all to yourself!?