What I Ate… at Trader Joe’s {WIAW}

Oh Joe the Trader, those four years in Boone were tortuous without you. I’m so very happy you’re back in my life. You warm my cheap, healthy-food-loving heart like no other grocery chain.

To honor my recent reunion with my beloved Trader Joe’s, I thought I’d use this What I Ate Wednesday highlight some of my favorite Trader Joe’s products, because my eats have been pretty boring lately. Watch out, there’s a few!

(Thanks Jenn!)

  1. Salted Crunchy Peanut Butterwiaw1-5

    Just pure peanuts and salt, the way peanut butter should be, and all under $3, just one more way to fuel my nut butter addiction.

  2. Three Buck Chuck

    I know it’s Two Buck Chuck in other luckier states that don’t tax alcohol as hard as they do hear in the Bible Belt. But three dollars for a decent bottle of wine? I’m not even sure what kind of vino magic this is, but it’s a beautiful thing.

  3. Tempeh
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    Even though it’s not gluten-free it doesn’t seem to bother my stomach too much and it’s so much cheaper than any other brand. I actually used to load up on it when I was home on weekends because it was that much cheaper.
  4. Unsulfured Turkish Apricots
    I actually tried these for the first time this week but I finished the bag in less than three days. I’m not usually a fan of dried apricots, I think they’re too dry and chewy, but these are sweet, soft and incredible tasty.
  5. Gluten-Free Cheese Pizza

    Finally a gluten-free pizza for less than $8.
  6. Sea Salt & Turbinado Sugar Dark Chocolate Almonds

    These are scary good. I could seriously down the entire container in one sitting if you let me.

  7. The Coffee Selection

    Trader Joe’s makes some dance tasty coffee. Their Peaberry beans are especially delicious.
  8. Wheat-Free Toaster Waffles

    They’re extra good covered in their crunchy peanut butter =)

Do you live near Trader Joe’s? I can sympathize with those of you that don’t, it stinks!

What are some of your favorite Trader Joe’s products?

What’s your favorite grocery chain? I wish I lived near a Publix, those are pretty awesome.

Last Week in Boone: The Food {WIAW}

Hey guys! It’s been a little while since I’ve been able to visit this little corner of the internet but I am happy to be back! This past week has been pure craziness: final exams, family visits, graduation, moving home, and on top of that today was the first day of my internship! Whew. No rest for the weary right? That’s okay, they’re all pretty wonderful things so I have no room to complain.

During my last week in Boone, I made it a point to get to all my favorite restaurants for one last meal before moving back to Raleigh. Boone has the BEST restaurants and Raleigh, despite having some decent restaurants, is mostly full of chains, blech. So I had some pretty spectacular meals this past week.

(Thanks Jenn!)

Tuesday

I made a roommate breakfast date at Melanie’s, an adorable little breakfast/lunch place in downtown Boone for Tuesday morning. We all had the morning off for exams and everyone knows a delicious, hearty breakfast is the best final-exam-taking fuel. I started with a very necessary cup of coffee. It’s a little blurry, but that’s what happens when I don’t have caffeine in me. It’s not a good time.

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To eat I ordered Melanie’s Big Breakfast

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Which came with two eggs (over easy), stewed apples (un-pictured on the side), a biscuit (which I gave away to my roommates) and homefries. I have a new found homefry obsession and have been ordering every where. Maybe not the healthiest obsession but dang delicious. This meal kept me full for 6 whole hours which is a pretty big feat for me.

Thursday

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Thursday afternoon I grabbed an iced coffee pre-exam and a farmer’s market apple. This is the first time I’ve put milk in my coffee in FOREVER. Iced coffee is a little rough on my stomach, probably because I drink it 10x faster than hot coffee, but a little bit of milk seems to help.

Friday

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Beer, coffee, and a kitty in my lap. Could life be better? I got one last visit in with the kittens before they left for Michigan, it’s amazing how much they’ve grown in 2 weeks!

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Dinner was good old Black Cat. I built my own burrito with black beans, rice, broccoli, mushrooms and tomatillo salsa, minus the tortilla. Oh Black Cat, I’m going to miss you so much.

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After dinner one of my roommates and I headed to Low Wine Bar. It’s located on top of Espresso News, the best coffee shop in Boone. This was my first time going and I’m not sure why I waited so long because it was awesome. Whoever decided to put a coffee shop and wine bar in the same building is a GENIUS.

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I had the Marc Roman Malbec, mostly because it was the cheapest red on the menu, but it also happened to be really tasty. Really easy to drink without being too sweet.

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Post-wine my roommate and I spilt a 7 Layer Bar from the coffee shop downstairs (genius, I’m telling you). It was not even close to gluten-free but so tasty it was completely worth it. 7 layer bars are the best.

Saturday

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Saturday afternoon my parents and boyfriends drove up to Boone for graduation festivities. They didn’t get into town until around 1:30 and I was starting to get borderline hangry. It happens. Luckily I had this amazing and filling meal from Coyote Kitchen to tame the hunger beast. I had the Sedona Boat: Coconut rice, black beans, blackened tempeh, roasted sweet potatoes, corn, caramelized onions, roasted red peppers, and spinach, topped with sweet red vegan mayo and scallions. I was full beyond belief after finishing this bad boy but it was soooo worth it.

Sunday

AKA Graduation day! My college’s graduation wasn’t until 3:30pm so my family had plenty of time to kill before then. We grabbed an early lunch with my uncle at Hob Knob Farm Cafe. Hob Knob is one of my favorite restaurants in Boone, but it’s a little out of my (very small) budget so I save it for when my parents are in town =) . Hob Knob is awesome because they have lots of gluten-free, vegetarian and organic options, they source most of their ingredients locally and they have really adorable decor:

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It took me way too long to decide what I was going to order, I’m not used to having so many options – it’s hard to decide! But I finally decided on the Tamale De Bayamo: House made tamale filled w/ spinach, squash, yams, garlic, corn & peppers. Served w/ tamale sauce, black beans, plantains, chipotle queso salsa, green olives, romas & spring mix.

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Dominated.

Post-graduation we hit up somewhere low-key for dinner. We didn’t want to deal with the post-graduation dinner rush, especially with 7 people. Black Cat again! Twice in one week? I’m not upset about it.

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I had the (blurry) Satay it to Me Softly (how cool are the burrito names?): rice, tofu, carrots, broccoli, caramelized onions, and a spicy peanut sauce. Delicious as always.

And my last full day in Boone wouldn’t be complete without…

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Fro yo! Chocolate and Reese’s peanut butter yogurt topped with more Reese’s, chocolate shavings and Oreo’s (they are my gluten nemesis!). This was the most perfect fro yo cup I could have asked for and I enjoyed every last bite!

Monday

I have no pictures from Monday (sowwy!) but I have to mention the delicious meal I had at Boone Bagelry. The meal itself was pretty basic but really delicious. I had two eggs (over medium, is it sad I didn’t even realize this was an option until this week?), homefriends (I’m telling you, I’m obsessed!) and a gluten-free whole grain bagel. Yup, a gluten-free bagel! I should have taken more advantage of it this year! I’m kicking myself now.

Then I loaded up on old school candy at the Mast General Store. The sugar was more than necessary for the 3+ hour ride home. Why have I not eaten more MalloCups in my life? They’re delicious!

Today

Today was my first day at my internship! Everything went really well and it looks like it is going to be a busy, but very fun time! I also found out there is a Whole Foods less than a block away from my internship. This is going to be very dangerous for my wallet.

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Salad with spinach, garlicky kale, cherry tomatoes, mushrooms and roasted chickpeas, roasted zucchini and eggplant (which was served cold, I wasn’t a fan) and some kind of quinoa dish with sweet potatoes, black beans and pepitas. I also had an un-pictured Clif Builder Bar on the side.

After writing this I’m hungry all over again.

Does your town have an delicious/unique restaurants?

What did you eat this week?

What’s your favorite hat/salad bar meal?

May Goal & A Day in the Life {WIAW}

Happy May!

May is going to be one crazy month, with graduation, a big girl job interview (eep!) and the start of my internship, but I am more than excited for what May will bring!

A new month means a goal time!

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Back in April I set a goal to get more sleep, ideally aiming for anything more than 7 hours because I really stink at getting to bed on time. Well, even though it wasn’t a complete success, there were a couple miserable 5 hour nights sprinkled in there, I definitely got a lot more sleep than I have been the past few months. I even got 8+ hours on more than one occasion which is pretty unheard of for me.

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Sleepy puppy.

Getting a full night’s sleep is something I’m still working on, but I’m doing much better, which is a major improvement!

This month I’m going to focus on…

Hydrating!

I really stink at drinking water. So much so that I usually resort to toting a huge water bottle around with me, because you look pretty silly carrying a huge water bottle if you don’t actually drink any of it. Dehydration really takes a toll on my workouts, and makes my legs cramp like crazy when I walk up hills and since the entire town of Boone is on a hill (literally I walk up hill to class… both ways… in the snow. Okay, grandpa rant over)  that’s not such a good thing.

So my goal for the month is to get at least 60 oz of water everyday, ideally 64+ oz, but I have my trusty Eddie Bauer 30 oz water bottle, so I aiming to drink at least two of those everyday, and even more on days like this:

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Sometimes 4 cups of coffee is necessary, but so is lots of water.

And because it’s Wednesday…

WIAW time! Thanks to Jenn for hosting!

It’s been a while since I’ve done a day in the life sort of post so I thought it’d be pretty fun to bring one back. There’s some recycled photos are happening here, but I’m a huge creature of habit, so they’re all pretty accurate.

8:00 AM

Breakfast time:

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Plus one more egg. I used to be a diehard sweet breakfast eater but lately I’ve been craving eggs in the morning, gotta get that protein in early!

9:30 AM

Caught the bus to campus for my Dance History class. Today’s lecture was on hip hop and I have to say, it’s pretty entertaining to listen to your tiny, white, yoga-loving professor discuss hip hop.

11:15 AM

Lunch-ish? I have a 4 hour gap between classes, but I try to stay on campus to be productive. If I go back to my apartment I get pulled into all things Food Network, it doesn’t help that Paula Deen comes on at noon. Yes, I know Paula’s TV schedule, I don’t play with my Paula’s Best Dishes. So I hung out in the campus coffee shop instead to get some work done. I think I spent more time reading blogs than doing actual work. Whoopsies.

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Sweet potatoes, Earth Balance Coconut Peanut Butter (which is absolutely delicious by the way), lots of cinnamon and a sprinkle of salt. My new favorite snack!

Check out those painted nails! I finally made it happen!

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And my staple banana. I’m pretty sure I’ve eaten one almost everyday this year.

12:30 PM

Lunch part 2:

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Spinach salad with raw tempeh, grape tomatoes, apple cider vinegar and nutritional yeast.

1:30 PM

I headed to the campus gym for today’s Best Body Bootcamp workout! My arms feel like jello! Today’s workout featured a few exercise on the incline bench, which makes me feel a little badass when I use it. It’s one of those pieces of gym equipment you rarely see girls use so I always feel a little awesome using it. Maybe that’s silly but I’m okay with that.

I also got in a little cardio on the bike. Still trying to take it easy on the running because my foot is still sore but I’m getting antsy! I just want to run again! Injuries are dumb.

2:45 PM

I had a quick  hard-boiled egg before heading to my 3:30 Finance class, the last one of the semester. I’m pretty glad, I learned a lot of really useful things in that class, but I’d much rather be designing something pretty than working out stock prices.

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5:00 PM

Caught the bus back to my apartment, and ate a banana as soon as I walked in the door, my stomach was growling up a storm!

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Just ignore the fact I already used this picture in this post, that’s not important.

6:30PM

I cooked up some zucchini ribbons with grape tomatoes, onions, and a little nutritional yeast.

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Kind of like this, but minus the kale. Our fridge is crazy and my zucchini was completely frozen, so the “noodles” did not look so appetizing after they were cooked, but luckily they tasted just as good.

7:30PM

A post-dinner greek yogurt snack.

yogurt

followed by an unpictured orange and some raw tempeh, because I’m too lazy to cook it and I don’t mind the taste of raw. Maybe that means I’ve been a vegetarian for too long, I feel like raw tempeh should not be an enjoyable taste.

I spent the night trying to be productive and not get sucked in by cat videos on YouTube, it was difficult, but I like to think I succeeded, at least a little.

11:30 PM

About to hit publish and go to bed!

How much water do you try to drink everyday?

What’s something delicious you’ve eaten this week?

What’s your go to meal for busy weeks? 

Birthday Edition {WIAW}

Hey guys, I had a wonderful 22nd birthday yesterday! I woke up this morning with a serious sugar hangover, so you know it was a good one 🙂

But before we get to the food, let’s see how I did on my 21 before 22 list.

01 // Paint my fingernails. Half check. I started painting my fingernails one day and got through one hand before I decided I didn’t like the color. I was planning on repainting both hands a better color later on, but… that didn’t happen. I’m a terrible girly girl. I’m hoping to actually paint them soon, because this one-hand chipped nail polish look is not so cute.

02 // Run a 5K. Nope. I’ve run 5Ks on the treadmill so I can pretend that counts but I didn’t actually run in the race. BUT Appalachian is host a color run on the 27th that I’m planning to participate in for some race redemption.

03 // Make a REAL dinner.  CHECK. Double check. I made lots of homemade dinners over the past two weeks, even if I’m short on time, I’ve found making a real dinner at the end of the day is a great way to unwind, if I can hold off my hunger for that long.

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04 // Studio yoga. Fail. I didn’t even make it to a class on campus. Sorry muscles for leaving you all tight and knotted up.

05// Start a new book. CHECKish. I just bought a new e-book today Effortless. It’s a moderately trashy romance novel, but that’s okay. I started reading Thoughtless, the first book in the series when it was just a story on Fiction Press so it’s kinda cool to see it in real life book form.

06 // Bake something.  CHECK. Hello birthday cake.

cake4

07 // Drink a shot of espresso. Didn’t happen, one day it will though.

08 // Spontaneous mid day coffee.  CHECK. I waited until my birthday to get it, but that’s okay, birthday coffees are extra tasty.

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09 // Design something for the blog. Nope. I started something but I haven’t had the inspiration to finish. I’m going to keep working on it though.

10 // Buy a new vegetable. Kinda? I didn’t buy a new vegetable, but I bought some eggplant after not eating any in a long time and I’ve incorporated it into lots of meals, that kinda counts right?

roasted eggplant and sweet potato

11 // Juice it up. I didn’t break out my own juicer, but I did buy one from Earth Fare the other day. It was very beet-ilicious and now my pee is hot pink? TMI? Maybe, but oh so true.

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12 // Break out the DSLR. CHECK. Thanks to a few hikes!

glen burney trail waterfall blowing rock nc

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13 // Grandfather Mountain dollar days. Not yet, but I’ve got plans to go with some friends in two weekends!

14 // Clean my room.  Bam. Now to work on keeping it clean…

15 // Best Body Bootcamp.  CHECK. And loving every single workout.

16 // Kick this tendonitis.  CHECKish. I still have a little soreness, but I finished a 6 mile run today with almost no pain so I’m thinking it’s almost gone!

17 // Random act of kindness for a stranger.  CHECK. I left $5 for a stranger on a table in the campus coffee shop. Hopefully someone found it and enjoyed a much needed coffee or snack.

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18 // Watch a Disney movie. an unintentional CHECK. I was hoping to watch something along the lines of the Lion King, but that didn’t happen because I couldn’t manage to sit still long enough. But I did watch the better part of the Hanna Montana Movie one afternoon on TV. Don’t you judge.

19 // Buy a new candle. CHECK. Now I just need a holder for it… didn’t think about that one.

20 // Get organized. My homework to do list could use a little attention but I spent one weekend deep cleaning my apartment kitchen, straightening up the living room and organizing my room. See mom and dad, I do know how to clean 🙂

21 // Have Fun.  One big fat CHECK.

14 out of 21, I’ll take it.

Now for the food!

 

(Thanks Jenn!)

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Birthday fro-yo! Peanut butter, cake batter and brownie batter yogurt with cheesecake bits, cookie dough chunks, sprinkles, dark chocolate, oreos, Reeses, peanut butter sauce and sprinkles. Don’t be fooled though, this bowl was pretty gross. The brownie batter flavor was gross (I know how is that possible? So disappointing!), the peanut butter flavor wasn’t frozen (I don’t even know how that works) and the cake batter flavor wasn’t bad, just a little too sweet for my taste buds. Luckily I had some un-pictured fro yo redemption in the form of tart yogurt with strawberries and blueberries. That’s what I get for trying to be fancy, I should just stick to the basics, at least I know they’re delicious.

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Just kidding! I didn’t eat this cake, but how creepy does it look? It’s supposed to be a puppy but it just scares me.

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TACO TUESDAY. Boone Saloon does $1.25 tacos every Tuesday, this was my first time going to taco Tuesday but I will be back! I had three delicious veggie tacos and a pint of beer for $7, can’t beat that!

My roommate and I split a hard apple cider while watching the most recent Twilight movie (stop judging me). It was a delicious choice, I was looking for something a little lighter than beer and this hit the spot.

And some where in there I polished off a bag of gluten-free ginger snap cookies my friend bought me for my birthday. I have zero control around those things. ZERO.

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This isn’t from yesterday, but I had this delicious meal Saturday at Mellow Mushroom and I couldn’t not mention it. Stuffed portobello mushrooms with feta and mozzarella cheese, artichoke hearts, sun-dried tomatoes, served over spring mix and drizzled with balsamic. So. Good.

What’s your favorite birthday treat? I think frozen yogurt/ice cream is a birthday necessity

What’s the last delicious thing you ate?

Soft or hard shell tacos?

Healthy Homemade Dinners {WIAW}

Happy Wednesday!

I have to let my inner dance geek out for a second because this morning in my Dance History class we got to watch Alvin Ailey’s Revelations. Alvin Ailey is an AMAZING modern dance choreographer and Revelations gives me chills every time I watch it.

Beautiful.

A much better way to start the morning than Bizarre Foods. By a million.

I also had a nice 4 mile run after my Best Body Bootcamp workshop. My tendon is still hating me a little, but things are slowlyyyy getting better. I think I’ll be spending lots of time getting EMS therapy at the injury clinic this week. Gotta soak up all that free-ness while I still can.

I can already tell my muscles are going to be SORE in the morning. I secretly love that.

And because it’s Wednesday…

(Thanks Jenn!)

Remember one of the goals on my 21 before 22 list was to make a real dinner because I’ve been relying on eggs and frozen veggies way too much lately. Well apparently that goal set me on a dinner making roll. My meals are by no means elaborate, but I’ve taken time to cook dinner everyday this week, which is a major accomplishment.

This Wednesday I thought I’d share some of those dinners with you (even though you got a glimpse of them the other day!). Just a warning, I’m on a big eggplant kick lately.

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Roasted sweet potatoes, spinach, onions and tomato, with a side of eggplant.

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Kale, mushrooms, roasted sweet potatoes and eggplants.

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Kale, sweet potatoes and lots of curry powder!

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Roasted eggplant and sweet potato

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Sauteed spinach, sweet potatoes, broccoli (okay the broccoli was frozen, but so cheap!) and tempeh.

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And tonight’s dinner! Sauteed eggplant (I told you I’m on a kick!), mushrooms, onions, garlic and roma tomatoes over a bed of kale. Yummy.

My dinners seem a little light and lacking in the protein department, but I snack a lot through out the afternoon to power through class so I’m all about light meals when dinner time rolls around.

And time for a few snacks!

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Air-popped popcorn with coconut oil and cinnamon. That was a mixing bowl full of popcorn and I ate every last kernel. So. Good.

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Microwave protein cake. 1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder, 3 tbsp egg whites and a little (actually a lot) of cinnamon. Came out a little dry and chewy but noting a little peanut butter can’t fix 🙂

Do you usually cook dinner from scratch? Or do you rely on convenience foods? Or both?

What’s you’re go-to dinner on busy nights?

Do you like eggplant? What’s your favorite way to cook it?

Spring Break Edition {WIAW}

Guys, I’ve been a pretty terrible blogger lately. This poor little guy has been more than a little neglected and I feel kinda bad. But between spring and the inevitable school work catch-up after spring break (what professor assigns projects over spring break? Seriously), life’s been a little crazy. And mostly I’ve been a little lazy because I’m wishing spring break would come back.

Responsibilities are silly, I’d like to go back to the beach pretty please.

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Mother Nature is also trying to play a mean joke on me with this forecast:

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That’s funny, I thought spring was supposed to be warm. Thank you weather.

Sorry for all the complaining, cold weather makes me cranky. Whining over. You know what I can’t complain about?

(Thanks Jenn!)

This week my food is coming at you spring break style. I’ll admit that I didn’t eat too many vegetables over break (but I did eat lots and lots of chocolate) and you know what, I don’t feel bad about it. Sometimes you just need to stuff your face with junk food.

avocado broccoli slaw salad

But let’s kick things off with something healthy shall we? This combination is one of my new favorites and I ate it everyday for lunch during Pilates training. It’s broccoli slaw, mixed with avocado, topped with sunflower seeds and a little salt and pepper. Light but filling and you can do the Pilates ab series afterwards without wanting to puke.

I was going to recreate this for lunch today but Harris Teeter was out of avocados. TRAVESTY. Bigger travesty is that they were out of bananas too. Get it to-freaking-gether Harris Teeter, this girl needs her produce.

goodberry's frozen vanilla custard with chocolate chips

Vanilla frozen custard with chocolate chips mixed in. Pure heaven. I’m a hard core fro yo lover, but even I need some heavy duty frozen custard every once in a while. So good.

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I don’t know what my deal is but I’ve been craving chocolate like nobody’s business lately. It’s all I want to eat and I can’t seem to get enough of this. But this Trader Joe’s chocolate bar definitely helps. Is it bad that I think 85% tastes super sweet after eating so much Baker’s chocolate?

And onto the Outer Banks! I have a full recap coming soon (I owe you guys so many recaps it’s ridiculous, I need to get back on top of things) but for now I’ve got food. I didn’t lug my camera to any of the restaurants because it’s huge, so the pictures aren’t the best, sowwy.

Wednesday

Dinner

We had a Restaurant.com deal for Sanya Asian Bistro so we stopped there for dinner after getting into town Friday night. It was perfect because we could all eat there (I tend to make things difficult when it comes to eating out, whoopsies) and we saved $50 off our bill. Awesome.

I accidentally filled up on trail mix before heading to dinner (I seriously cannot control myself around the stuff, it’s too good) so I was in the mood for something lighter. So I ordered an Avocado and Cucumber roll.

vegetable sushi

It was really good, but I don’t think I’ve had bad vegetarian sushi, it’s kinda hard to mess up. You should know that I ate all of my ginger, then my friend’s ginger (ironic because she is ginger!) and then my boyfriend’s ginger. I guess you could say I like ginger a little.

Drinks

Later that night we headed to Lucky 12 Tavern for drinks. It ended up be perfect because it was walking distance from our hotel, they had a great beer selections and there was a $5 martini special. Um, awesome.

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I had a Flying Dog K-9 Winter Ale per recommendation from my boyfriend. He’s a serious beer connoisseur, and it ended up being a delicious choice.

And because we had to take advantage of the $5 martinis, me boyfriend and I split a dirty martini. Pretty much the only martini this old man could handle. I can’t do sugary frou-frou drinks and this fit the bill.

dirty martini

Please ignore the awkwardly placed olives and straw.

Thursday

Our hotel room had a small kitchen, so to save money we at breakfast and lunch there, which was a very boring combo of eggs and frozen veggies, we don’t need pictures of that.

Dinner

We had dinner at Tortuga’s Lie (which has been feature on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives!). But I was a bad blogger because I left my phone in the car and didn’t get a picture of my meal. That’s okay because I had beans and rice and I’m pretty sure we all know that that looks like. It was extra delicious after a long day of sight seeing, but if you mess up beans and rice that’s pretty sad.

I’m sure any seafood lovers out there are very sad that I passed up the opportunity for fresh caught local seafood. Yeahhhh vegetarians.

Dessert

Despite trying incredibly hard to find a local ice cream shop that was open, we had no such luck. It’s still considered the off season so lots of places are closed until April. Luckily, Sweet Frog was there to save the day. Not as good as local ice cream, but it hits the sweet-craving, chocolate-loving spot.

sweet frog frozen yogurt

 

Chocolate fro yo with peanut butter chips, Reeses pieces, chunks of Reeses cups and a drizzle of hot fudge. Can you tell I hate chocolate and peanut butter? I’m not even going to lie, I could totally have eat another cup’s worth. No shame.

Friday

Dinner was some pizza place and I ordered a Greek salad. Boring. The one place in town with gluten-free pizza was no longer in business (whhhhyyyyyy?????). So salad it was.

Dessert

Don’t worry I balanced that salad out with some serious ice cream.

ben & jerry's everything but the…

 

ben & jerry's everything but the...

 

Oh. My. Goodness. Can I just wax poetic about how AMAZING this ice cream is? Ben and Jerry, you are pure ice cream geniuses. I don’t even care that it was store bought, I wish I could jump into this pint and live there. No I don’t, that would be a little sticky, but still. Holy cow. Vanilla and chocolate ice cream with peanut butter cups, heath bar pieces, white chocolate chips and fudge covered almonds. I’m drooling a little bit right now.

Drinks

Friday night we headed to the Outer Banks Brewing Station for drinks and late night snacks (which was also featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives!). It ended up being a really cool place. The food was delicious, we ended up demolishing a plate of black bean dip and chips. The beer was equally amazing, they brew it at the restaurant and the process is powered by a wind turbine, I love that they’re environmentally friendly!

One of my friends was sweet enough to buy a bottle of champagne for all of us to celebrate my roommate’s engagement!

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I don’t remember exactly what kind it was, but it tasted like bubbly grape juice. Cheers.

And because I drink like an old man I switched to beer. I love me some heavy duty (none of that light stuff) and dry red wine, old man status over here.

I failed on taking a picture of my beer but it was sooo good. I ordered their Full Circle Robust Porter (a fat and sassy robust porter with complex nuts and dried fruit-like aromas over a big, round, and slightly toasty palate) I love that they describe it as fat and sassy. I think I’m only going to drink fat and sassy beers from now on, that sounds like a good policy to me. Basically the beer was smooth, heavy and darn tasty.

And now I’m skipping to Sunday because lunch was delicious.

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Yet another trip to the Mediterranean Deli in Chapel Hill. I have the hardest time ordering at this restaurant because there are too many tasty looking vegetarian and gluten-free options. I’m not used to having so many choices. I like it, even if it takes me 15 minutes to order.

I had a vegetarian plate with sauteed cauliflower, roasted vegetables, sauteed eggplant, avocado and feta salad and gluten-free(!) pita points. Delicious. I also had too many dates for dessert. I have not control when it comes to those dried out little pieces of nature’s candy. Those dates fueled my 3 hour drive back to school (ugh, one thing I won’t miss when I graduate).

Upon arriving back at my apartment, I was welcomed by this site

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I donated to a living playground initiative at an elementary school, and got a free candy bar and jar of peanut butter from Justin’s in return for my donation. Pretty sweet reward if you ask me. Pun intended.

Now I just want to go back to spring break. Anyway, I’ve got an 8am class in the morning (yippee) so it’s time for this girl to get to bed.

What’s your favorite vacation food? ICE CREAM!

What’s your favorite drink (alcoholic or not)? Water, black coffee, red wine and beer. I told you, old man over here.

Who’s ready for spring? 

What I Would Eat Wednesday {WIAW}

Happy humpday!

I don’t know about you guys, but I’m super ready for Friday. Well, I’m always ready for Friday so that is nothing new. But I would really like it to hurry up and get here.

In other news, the weather is trying to spite me.

boone nc forecast

A few days ago I said something along the lines of “I’m sick of the cold, I’m going to be PISSED if it snows in March”.

Haha Mother Nature, you showed me. What I wouldn’t give for a nice weekend so I could actually get an outdoor run in. The treadmill is slowly beginning kill me, but it looks like we’re going to be friends for a little longer.

I guess it works out because genius me decided to go running today even though my upper calf/knee is still acting funky from this weekend’s long run, and now I’m living it up with an ice pack and tennis ball on my living room floor because the pain came back full force. This probably means I should take a break but I’m antsy and I want to give up and MOVE. I guess I’ll stick to low-impact cardio until things start getting better.

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Don’t mind my argyle old man socks.

Now for the food.

On Monday I thought to myself “I’m actually going to take pictures of everything I eat tomorrow so I can do a real What I Ate Wednesday”. Guess how many pictures I took, zero. Whoopsies. That’s okay, my eats were not exciting at all (seriously I ate 3 apples and 2 bananas yesterday, creative cuisine is obviously my forte). So instead I thought I’d show you my dream day of food, because that’s way more interesting that what I would eat anyway.

Breakfast

wiaw1_13_05

Okay, this is what I eat for breakfast everyday anyway, yes that’s lame but it is my absolute favorite breakfast and I look forward to eating it every morning. But since I can have anything I want I would add this in too:

Mmmm… almond butter 🙂

Morning Snack

Snacks are always necessary.

green smoothie

Green smoothie! I love smoothies but I rarely make them because I’m usually too lazy to get out/clean the blender. I should change that.

And because I’m ALWAYS cold and a huge temperature wimp…

I’d follow that smoothie up with my favorite coffee, Larry’s Beans St. Valentino’s blend. Black, please, because I drink coffee like an old man. Your creamer and sugar has no place here.

By the way, if they sell Larry’s Beans anywhere near you go out and buy some NOW. Seriously, get up from your computer, get to the store and get some. It is the best coffee I have EVER tasted. Seriously, I don’t play when it comes to good coffee.

Lunch

coyote kitchen moab boat

I’d go to Coyote Kitchen and get the Moab boat (Coconut rice, black beans, sweet potatoes, blackened tempeh, fried plantains, roasted corn, and scallions, served with sweet red vegan mayo and cranberry salsa). So dang good. I think I will cry on graduation because it means I will no longer be in the same city as Coyote Kitchen, if you’ve ever eaten there then you know I’m not being dramatic. Okay maybe a little.

Afternoon Snack

froyo

FROOOO YOOOOO. Of course 🙂 Preferably peanut butter and coffee yogurts topped with lots of Reese’s, chocolate covered espresso beans, more peanut butter and dark chocolate. I think I just drooled a little.

Dinner

Whole Foods hot bar! Because I’m indecisive and would like as many veggie options as possible. Bring on the salad!

Dessert

Last, but certainly not least

Chocolate cake with coffee buttercream, um, how AMAZING does that look? You can thank Pinterest for this delicious food porn. We’re just going to pretend it’s gluten-free. Get. In. My. Belly.

So in summary, chocolate, coffee, peanut butter, veggies and more chocolate and coffee. Yup, sounds pretty accurate 🙂

What’s your dream day of food like?

Are you a fan of snow? 

What I Ate… at Fit Expo {WIAW}

First off, I’d like to wish a very happy birthday to the best mom in the world.

nerf

fam

I think she’s still younger at heart than I am. Love you mom!

——-

This week has been CRAZY. I feel like I say that every week, but this week has really been extra crazy.

I went to the 2013 Southeast Collegiate Fitness Expo which was AMAZING and such a wonderful experience that it deserves it’s own recap, but I’ve been doing some major catch-up since I got back. 100% worth it but still no less crazy.

One of the best things about being on a trip with 9 group fitness instructors is that 2/3 of them are pescetarians, they all get the same crazy salad cravings, and no one bats an eyelash when I bust out a tupperware full of kale chips. Finally some people who share my intense love of vegetables!

The Fit Expo was in Norfolk and you’ll be happy to know that we took advantage of being in a big city and ate at Chipotle and Starbucks no less than two times. Boone, can you get it together and get a Chipotle? Please and thank you. Maybe it’s a good thing we don’t have one because I’m pretty sure 90% of my weekly budget (I have to buy coffee too you know) on Chipotle.

We left Boone Friday around 2, making a pit stop in Greensboro for Starbucks, NECESSARY when you’ve got a 6 hour car ride ahead of you.

It didn’t quite make it into a picture, but long car rides and limited sleep makes coffee extra delicious because it was gone in no time.

Lots of car snacks happened, lots and lots.

We finally got into Norfolk around 9:00pm and we were going to check out a local restaurant The Ten Top but they were closing, luckily there was a Chipotle across the street. Hey, I can’t complain about that!

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Look at all that beautiful guacamole 🙂

Saturday began Clif bar extravaganza. Appstate recreation is sponsored by Clif bar so we brought along a HUGE box of mini-chocolate chip Clif bars. I don’t even want to talk about how many I ate.

Good thing they’re so tasty, because I’m pretty sure I ate at least 10. Eight hours of group fitness classes works up one SERIOUS appetite.

Lunch was provided for us but I didn’t even bother taking a picture because it sucked. Sorry, Old Dominion University. I had the vegetarian wrap (basically a tortilla with a few grilled veggies inside) an apple, and chocolate chip cookies. Actually it probably would have been a tasty lunch if I was a normal eater, but I was left the with just the wrap innards because my apple had a big crack in it. Vegetarians don’t need protein, not at all!

I sound a little bitter, whoops, sorry guys, I get a little hangry sometimes. I had a very tasty Peanut butter chocolate chip Larabar to make up for it. Peanut butter and chocolate fixes everything.

Good thing dinner made up for lunch. My boss grew up in Norfolk so she knew all the tasty local restaurants. At the end of day one we dragged our tired and very sore butts (literally, SO MANY SQUATS) to Pasha, a very delicious Turkish restaurant.

My boss wasn’t lying when she said this place was good. So many tasty options, and the menu labelled all the gluten-free, vegan, and vegetarian restaurant. Basically I was in mediterranean restaurant heaven.

pasha vegetarian gluten-free kale hummus black bean wrap

I ended up ordering the Hummus, Kale and Black Bean Wrap – hummus, fresh, local kale, black bean & corn salad, vegan with organic ingredients

Ordered with a millet and flax gluten free wrap with a side of amazing lentil soup.

This meal was amazing, the lentil soup was hearty, well seasoned and DELICIOUS and the wrap was equally amazing. My only complaint was that because I ordered the gluten free wrap, my wrap was tiny (another girl ordered the same wrap with a regular tortilla and the wrap was significantly bigger) which was frustrating because one, I was hungry and hoping for something bigger and two, I had to pay extra for the wrap so it stinks that it was so much smaller.

There’s my hangry-ness popping up again.

Sunday consisted of more Clif bars (even more this time, I’m a mini-Clif bar eating machine!). The expo finished around 1 pm so we all grabbed some lunch at Tropical Smoothie Cafe before leaving Norfolk.

tropical smoothie cafe southwest salad no chicken

I had the Southwest salad minus the chicken and chipotle ranch, because we all know I can’t order anything as it is. The salad was pretty good and filled my veggie craving. I love Clif bars but sometimes you just need some veggies.

We also made a mandatory Starbucks stop before leaving town, of course.

The original plan was to power through the drive home, but we all got a little hungry and stopped for dinner in Winston-Salem. Time for Chipotle round two.

chipotle vegetarian salad

Okay, that’s the same picture again but just imagine it with pico de gallo this time because I ordered the same thing. Creature of habit right here.

The weekend was a delicious one but it feels good to get back to my normal eating. My mouth may love the taste of Clif bars, but my stomach doesn’t appreciate all the extra sugar and grains. Give this girl some veggies.

What did you do this weekend?

How do you fuel for a long day of working out?

What’s your favorite kind of bar? I love them all, but Larabars have to be one of my favorites!

PS. Don’t forget to enter my Blogiversary giveaway! You have until next Friday!

What I Ate Wednesday… According to MyPlate {WIAW}

Hey guys, happy hump day!

This week has been more than a little crazy and I’m so excited for the weekend. Why? Because I’ll be here:

2013 southeastern collegiate fitness expo

The Southeastern Collegiate Fitness Expo! Eep! I’m so excited to go and learn tons of fitness-y things and take a million group fitness classes. Friday can’t come soon enough!

Back to the present…

(Thanks for hosting Jenn!)

This week’s What I Ate Wednesday is inspired by a recent article in the Huffington Post. The author Joe Satran, looking to clean up  his eating habits a bit, decided to tackle a week eating according to the MyPlate model promoted by the USDA.

myplate model

I personally am not a fan of the MyPlate model. I think the grain and dairy recommendations are too high and the fat allowances are relatively low. But all my nutritional knowledge comes from blogs and Google searches so I’m not really an authority on nutrition.

Since I eat pretty differently from a majority of the country (gluten-free vegetarians are a hard breed to find, maybe because we’re so difficult to feed), I wanted to see how a typical day for me compared to the MyPlate recommendations.

I created a profile, entering age, gender, height, weight and activity level to generate my daily recommendations. Then entered today’s food into their food tracker.

My Results

MyPlate food tracker results

MyPlate food tracker results

I think I failed on all fronts except for protein. Whoopsies. The saturated fat is much higher than normal because the day was a little heavy on coconut and eggs. Tasty, tasty.

The food tracker also includes a calorie count, but I didn’t want to post that because I feel like calorie talk can be triggering/controversial and I generally want to avoid that.

My Thoughts

On Dairy

I think if you’re really struggling with basic healthy eating, this could be a really helpful tool, but for myself I’m not a fan. One the recommended dairy level is a little crazy. 3 cups of dairy? I know my stomach can’t handle that much dairy, and those vegans and lactose intolerant folks seem to be getting along just fine. I realize that much of America is lacking in the calcium area, but there are plenty of other sources of calcium outside of dairy. I also think the model needs a greater emphasis on water consumption. There’s no hydration recommendation or encouragement to drink water, and water is a wee bit important.

Gimme some of dat H20.

On Fruits & Veggies

I don’t have too much to complain about here, other than I don’t like that you can go “over” on veggie consumption. In my opinion, the more veggies the merrier!

salad bar

More veggies please? Side note: getting behind me in the salad bar line is a horrible idea, you will wait for ever.

On Protein

I liked that MyPlate doesn’t have crazy protein recommendations like a lot of programs sometimes do. My protein consumption came out to about 48g today which was right on target with their recommendation. I also like that they have recommendations for plant-based protein sources as well as animal. As a vegetarian I get the protein question a lot so I’m glad they covered non-meat protein forms.

college tofu press

Oh you know, just pressing some tofu in my dorm room. Thank goodness I have a kitchen this year.

On Grains

My biggest issue with the MyPlate model was probably with grains. I know things like the Paleo diet have brought up the whole “grains are the devil” mentality. I have no qualms with healthy grains but personally I’ve noticed it’s more difficult for my body to digest. I’ve cut down on my grain consumption by a lot over the past couple weeks and I feel so much better, I have more energy than I have in a long time. But this is just me and my body, which brings me to a bigger point…

Overall

I think MyPlate is a really good guide if you’re starting from scratch. It gives you good guidelines and feedback to follow. But, I think if you’re already in a relatively healthy place with your diet, it’s better to listen to what your body wants. If eating dairy upsets your stomach, you shouldn’t eat 3 cups of it everyday. You are the best authority on your body, eat the things that make it feel good and limit the ones that don’t (unless you think diet coke and doritos make you body feel good, then maybe you should re-evaluate). And please drink some water.

almond butter love

My body loves chocolate almond butter, or at least my tongue does.

What do you think of the MyPlate?

What are your weekend plans?

Veggie Lovin’ {WIAW}

Happy Hump Day!

Whew, it’s been a long day, I’ve been slacking on sleep and it’s starting to catch up with me. Pretty much sums up my feelings:

coffeeandgreens tweet

But I still kicked out 5 miles on the treadmill! I’m 97% sure the treadmill I was on was a liar because it said I finished in 47 minutes which I do not believe for a second, but I’ll pretend that I do because it’s good for my ego 🙂 . Sometimes post-workout endorphins > naps.

Goal tonight: 7+ hours. Mostly because I’m out of coffee (the HORROR) and have nothing to fall back on. I need to get some coffee back in my life ASAP.

Maybe I have a problem, but I’m 100% okay with that.

Anywho, happy What I Ate Wednesday!

(Thanks Jenn!)I’m excited for this month’s theme because if I’m a big fan of veggies, if you couldn’t tell by pounds of them I eat everyday.

Here are some ways I’ve been enjoying my veggies lately:

cooked broccoli, onion and mushroom

My go-to lunch lately, broccoli, onions and mushrooms with a little Bragg’s. I use frozen broccoli because it’s much more convenient, not to mention cheaper. I’ve found sautéing frozen broccoli in a pan helps prevent the broccoli from getting mushy like it does when you steam it.

roasted carrots and brussel sprouts

Roasted brussel sprouts and carrots. Roasted veggies are the bestttt. I wish they didn’t take so long to roast but it’s worth it. I add a little Bragg’s to the brussel sprouts (because I’m addicted) and the carrots are really good with a little cinnamon and salt.

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Sweet potatoessss. Which are good anyway you slice them. Pun intended thank you very much.

purple japanese sweet potatoes

PURPLE SWEET POTATOES. I found these beauties at Earth Fare over the weekend and I got suckered into buying them because they were purple and I’m a big fan of all things purple. They’re apparently from Japan, and the flesh white like white potatoes (thank you captain obvious). They taste sweeter than a regular potato but they aren’t quite as sweet as regular sweet potatoes. Very tasty with a little coconut oil, cinnamon (okay a lot of cinnamon) and a pinch of salt.

And this one isn’t a vegetable but still delicious:

fried plantains

Fried plantains! I’m a plantain lover and will automatically order anything at a restaurant that is served with plantains. No joke. I picked one up on a whim at Earth Fare (hmm… I’m seeing a trend) and fried it up in a little coconut oil. So simple and so good. I should definitely cook these guys up more often.

What are your favorite vegetables? I can’t pick!

How much sleep do you need/how much to do typically get? I can function pretty well on 6, which is what I usually get but I feel much better with 7 or a little more. It’s always interesting to me because I know people who sleep 10+ hours a night and other people who only get 5, I wonder how that works?