What a day

My morning started out as usual.  I might have been a little bit more tired waking up at 0430 due to the fact that I skipped my usual early bed time to stay up and watch My Secret Addiction on TLC.  Did anyone else watch that show?  The first episode was about a woman who slept with her blow dryer on her.  Now she was talking about the burns she received from it, but all I could think about was fire.  Then there was the lady that ate toilet paper.. like half a roll a day, the girl who sucked her thumb at age 24 and finally the woman body builder that worked at 6 hours a day.  All I have to say is wow.  It’s like watching a train wreck.  You don’t want to watch, but you just have to.

For breakfast I had a blueberry pomegranate smoothie from Yoplait, and a muffin that tastes like a donut.  I have to say that I froze most of those muffins, and they freeze really well.

The muffin looks a bit lonely

I headed to work expecting to have a nice leisurely day, but ended up getting swamped with work.  I haven’t been that busy in a long time.  During all the madness, my boss called me to let me know the person that was supposed to relieve me had called out, which added another 4 hours to my shift.  The bad thing about my work is that the station has to be manned 24 hours a day, so if someone calls out, someone has to stay.  I had only brought some soup for lunch, which I knew I would have to save for dinner so my coworker and I decided to order pizza.  Not the best decision, but after being super stressed, tired, and learning I have to work a 12 hour shift… the bad decision didn’t matter.  We got Papa John’s Chicken Bacon Barbecue pizza.  I had 2 slices and 2 cinnasticks.

This is a picture of the leftover pizza since I didn't have my camera at work

 

The only other thing I had a chance to eat at work was some plain greek yogurt, banana, and glazed pecans.  I ❤ glazed pecans.  That is an item I always have at my home.  They go so well with everything.

The PERFECT combination

Being stuck at work that long did give me a little bit of a chance to catch up on my blog reading once things slowed down.

I finally got home at 8:00 pm…. what a long day.  Thinking about leaving my house at 530 am.  I was at work from sun up to sun down.  I came home and heated up some leftovers since the pizza kept me full most of the day.  I was starving by the time I got home and scarfed down some leftover Mexican before I could even get a picture!

Is it dorky that I got excited when I saw Fage yogurt as one of my Twitter followers before I was even following them. Hahaha I guess it is dorky, but I was still excited.  🙂

My work pants fit!

First thank you all for the birthday wishes.  I wasn’t feeling too great that day, but I made the best of it.  I don’t think I will ever get too old to feel special on my birthday…

I’m happy to say my work pants fit!  With all the eating… and eating… and eating I have been doing these past few weeks I have been living out of my stretchable pants.  I was scared to put some real pants on.  I wish I could say that I’ve made good food choices, that I didn’t let the season get the best of me, that I kept with how I had been eating, but I didn’t and I’m owning it.  I hope that in a year I’ll be able to say that I didn’t blow it on the holidays.  I hope in a year I’ll be in a better place with food, and I won’t make bad choices just because I can.  I hope.

This morning I kept my breakfast light.

Muffin that tastes like a donut and apple juice

I borrowed my daughter’s mug!  I hope she doesn’t mind! 🙂

I wish I could say that I was eating light to get myself back on track, but no I was eating light because I knew that my coworkers  were bringing in some cinnamon crunch bagels from Panera to welcome me back to work.  It’s nice being missed 🙂  The bagel was good… so good.

For lunch I had some soup that I made the other day when it was snowing.  Chicken and Gnocchi soup.  I fell in love with gnocchi when I had some soup at the Olive Garden.  I loved the pasta and mashed potato combination.  When I saw them at Wegmans I bought a few packages not knowing what I was really going to make with it.  I really wanted to make gnocchi with some kind of soup and so I did.

Homemade bread to go with some homemade soup

I have a bread maker that I love using, I just don’t make bread too often.  I would rather eat sandwich thins for 100 calories, then eat bread with a little more calories that I made.  Sad I know, but it’s the truth.  Not pictured was the macaroni salad that a coworker brought in.  Sooooo good.  I was in carb heaven.  Also not pictured was the smores popcorn that I munched on until I started feeling a little sick. 

After work I went to Ledo’s for dinner.  Justine and I met a friend there, so it was nice being able to catch up.  It was nice that I chose to order the Portobello mushroom salad.  It came with red grilled onions, blue cheese, candied pecans, and apples on a bed of romaine and spinach.  It came with warm bacon dressing.  The salad was huge.  The garnishes were just enough.  I ate every single bite.  It was not nice that I ordered toasted ravioli for an appetizer.  I also ordered a slice of Reese’s peanut butter pie… also not nice.  I left feeling full and worried that if I don’t get my eating back on track soon…  I’m going to start feeling really bad about myself.

I wanted to share with you my only kitchen appliance I got this year for Christmas, and I am so excited to use it.

Panini Maker and Grill!

I can’t wait to use this!

I’m slowly starting to get back into my routine.  I think going back to work helps.

It’s My Birthday!!!

Today is my actual birthday… I am out of my 20’s and welcoming in my 30’s.  Everyone makes me feel like I should feel old, but I don’t.  I feel like 30’s is the new 20’s.  Hahaha… I think everyone might say that when they actually hit that number.

So during my holiday hiatus I learned that I am the worst picture taker.  I don’t have any pictures of all the great food I ate.  No pictures of me on Christmas.  No pictures of presents.  I pretty much suck 😦  So sorry guys.  I’m going to do so much better with the picture-taking, and not just my food.  I’m going to be better at taking pictures of my life.  This will be the year of pictures.  I’m going to add that onto my list of new year resolutions.

6) Be a better picture taker. Capture everything, not just food.

So let me tell you…

It’s been snowing here in Virginia, but the snow was a tease.   After a full day of snowing we might have two inches of snow.

My vacation is almost over.  *sigh*  I’m back to work on Wednesday.  I can’t believe how fast the days go by when your off from work.

Christmas was great.  I’m glad that I got to spend it with my family.  I’ve been back and forth between my house and my parent’s house so life has been hectic and I’ve been living out of my suitcase a lot.  I’m ready for life and my house to get back to normal.  I love Christmas decorations… but I also love having my house a little less cluttered.

I also love this time of year… I get into a cleaning frenzy making room for new things… getting rid of old, and really just organizing my house a little more.  It’s kind of like spring cleaning, but in the winter 🙂

Today was spent saying goodbye to my sister and her family who are now on their way back to Hawaii.

Justine and I had lunch at Pancho Villas which was delicious.  I need to get to the grocery store.  I think I only went about once in December so fruits and vegetables are much-needed around my house.

Tonight I’m spending the evening with my friends Kris and Erin and their family.  We’re doing our Christmas together then.  It’s nice to have Christmas a little spread out with everyone.

My blog will be getting back to normal soon.  I hope everyone is enjoying the rest of the holidays!!

P.S.I wrote this yesterday and published it… or so I thought.

Christmas Eve and A Surprise

I can’t believe it’s Christmas Eve….

I love Christmas Eve… I love Christmas.  I think I get as excited if not more, than Justine does.  I couldn’t sleep last night.  I’m not sure if it was the anticipation of the days to come, or just the face that tomorrow would be Christmas Eve.  I woke up bright and early this morning and am now waiting for Justine to get up so we can head over to the parent’s house.

I don’t really share much about my personal (relationship) life.  Mostly because it’s nonexistent, and for the most part I’m okay with that.  I have issues my friends.  When I look back I see only bad relationships… it’s sad 😦  So when I think about putting the time and effort into another relationship… it just seems too daunting. My life is so full with all the other things that I do, that it makes me feel like I’m putting another thing on my to do list to stress me out.

Okay, enough of the rambling… I just wanted to share with you a little surprise I got last night.  I was in my room watching a little tv with Justine when I get a text message that says to check my front door.  I ran downstairs opened the door and found these.

The roses, not the vase

So sweet.  I don’t know where this may go, if anywhere, but it is always nice to know that you are on someone’s mind.

Have a Merry Christmas!!!

The New Year

I’ve spent a lot of time lately thinking about the new year… 2011.  For the first time in a really long time I am excited for Jan 1st to get here.  I have this feeling that I’m going to wake up New Year’s day and feel refreshed… excited… ready to make this year count.  Whenever I think about the year that just passed it seems to be a blur.  There are many things that I wanted to do, and didn’t.  There are many things I wish I could take back, and can’t.   There are memories that get jumbled in with the rest and I can’t even remember what year it happened. 

Here are my goals for 2011:

1) Try a new recipe at least once a week.  I have a stock pile of recipes waiting to be tried, and it’s time I try them.  I can throw out the ones I didn’t really care for, keep the ones that I do, and maybe get rid of a binder or two that is cluttering up my pantry.

2) Exercise at least 4 times a week.  I would really like to say five, but I don’t want to start off strong and then fail to meet my goal once and give up.  If I start out a little small, and decide to do five days a week, well than that’s just great.

3) Record.  I’m a list maker.  A calendar keeper, and I want to record my progress.  I want to be able to look at a calendar and see the goals that I have met, and if there is something I need to work on… well, I’ll be able to see it

4) Work on me… mentally and physically.  I’ve shared on my blog that I suffer from depression and anxiety.  I usually have it under control, but there are those times where I fall… and I fall far.  I want to work on me, and what makes me happy.  Sometimes I need to step back and figure out what makes ME happy.  I need to focus on me and Justine.  If that means not going out for a while, than that’s what I need to do.  I want to be the happiest, healthiest person I can be, and to do that sometimes I just need to focus on what’s important and leave all the little things behind.

5) Don’t get discouraged if I slip and fall at times.  I’m not perfect.  I can’t do it all.  I know what I want, but that doesn’t mean I’ll always do what I have to do to get there.

Those are my top five goals for the year.  I really want to focus on me this year.  This will be my first year in my 30’s, so I have to make it count, right?  I’m going to love blogging, keeping track of my goals, getting the support when I’m down, reading other’s blogs for inspiration.

This will be my year.  I just know it!

‘Tis the Season

I can’t believe that there are only 3 days left until Christmas.  I think I’ve finally gotten into the Christmas spirit.

3 days to Christmas

So here is my ‘Tis the Season to….

Have a snowman toilet 🙂

To enjoy sitting on the couch in the dark and having the Christmas tree be my light.

I started a tradition where I always get an ornament where ever we go on vacation.  I love seeing the ornaments of our adventures and seeing all the places we have gone.

To be nice and eat naughty.

So true

I’m definitely living that one up.  I’ve been eating so naughty lately, but I have been nice.  Maybe that will counter the effects of all that eating 🙂

To leave all my presents (birthday and Christmas) out and not put them away until after Christmas.  Does anyone else do that?  I guess it started when I was younger and my mom would tell us to leave our presents out so she could see what we got incase she missed anything.  That tradition has stuck with me, and I always leave my presents out so I can put them away at once.

To spend time with friends and family

My sisters and I

To think about the new year.  I’ve been thinking about the new year a lot and I have a lot of goals in mind (I’m going to save that for a post itself).

To enjoy the holidays and leave the stress behind.  I’m working on that one 🙂

It’s time for a little cooking

Did I tell you that I took two weeks off to enjoy the holidays?  My vacation started on the 17th of December so I could get ready for my birthday party on the 18th.  I don’t have to return to work until Dec 29th.  I’m loving not having to go to work, getting to spend some time at home, and getting to spend time with my family… some of which are visiting from out-of-town.

First I wanted to share with you this awesome present I received in the mail the other day. I participated in Tina’s from Faith, Fitness, Fun blogger gift exchange.  I got a great gift from a blog reader named Kristi.  It was a box full of goodies from the Made in Washington Store.

Waffle and Pancake mix, Honey Hazlenut crackers, orange tea, Peanut butter dark chocolate truffle bar, Blackberry Honey Creme, Applw Raisin Walnut Butter...let me just say YUM!

There was also some Sweet Onion Mustard that wasn’t pictured.  I got my present the Friday before my party, and ended up taking the mustard with me to go with all the cheese and crackers.  It was a hit!!

Justine is still in school part of this week, so my mornings are starting out as usual.  I got up this morning and had a blueberry muffin I snagged from my parent’s house last night.

I don't have muffins very often, so this was a nice treat

I went to Justine’s school this morning for a play that her class was performing.  I was so nervous for Justine, but she did great, and didn’t forget any of her lines.  Yay 🙂

Once I got home I went to work on my to do list for the day.  While I was cleaning off my desk I came across a Wegman’s recipe magazine.  I was flipping through it and found an Apple Almond Yam Cakes recipe.  I had two yams and an apple that I needed to use so I thought that his recipe would be perfect. 

Two yams and an apple

I have never used my food processor as a grater, but when I thought about grating the apples and yams by hand I was exhausted by the thought.  Then it hit me…. my food processor!  It made this process so easy.

1/2 cup chopped onions

I transferred the yam apple mixture into a bowl and threw in the onion.  I then added the 4 eggs.  I used 2 regular eggs, and 1/2 cup egg beaters.  I also substituted the sour cream for plain Chobani yogurt.

Add some salt and pepper to taste

Next up was 1 1/4 cup flour, and once mixed until combined, I added the last ingredient… 1/2 cup almonds.

Once everything was mixed well together I shaped a 1/2 cup of the mixture into patties.

This recipe makes 12 patties

Heat a 1/2 cup vegetable oil and cook those patties.  7-8 minutes on one side and then 5-6 minutes the other side.

Drain on a paper towel

Viola!  They are done.  They aren’t the best for you, but getting to use up a few things I had lying around seemed like a great accomplishment for the day.

Apple Almond Yam Cakes

1 1/4 lb yams, peeled, coarsely grated

1 medium granny smith apple, peeled, cored, coarsely grated

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 1/2 tbs sour cream

4 large eggs

salt and pepper to taste

1 1/4 cup flour

1/2 cup sliced almonds

1/2 cup vegetable oil

Combine yam, apple, and onion in a large mixing bowl.  Add sour cream and eggs; season to taste with salt and pepper.  Stir to combine.  Slowly fold in flour.  Stir in almonds.  Mix well.  Form yam mixture into patties bu scooping portions with ice cream scoop (about 1/2 cup) and pressing firmly into patties. Set aside.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Reduce heat to medium.

Add yam patties to pan.  Cook, 7-8 minutes until edges begin to brown.  Gently turn patties over.  Cook 5-6 minutes until browned and tender.  Drain on double thickness of paper towel.

Can be made ahead and reheated in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes.

1 pattie equals 240 calories, 6 grams protein, 12 grams fat, and 3 grams fiber

Of course I did have to taste one once they were done cooking.  They were pretty good.  I had a little light Ranch on the side.  I always need some kind of sauce for a little dippage.  I’m going to freeze most of them.  I think they’ll freeze fine, but we’ll see.

Lunch was the same as yesterday.  Chicken tenders and mac n cheese.  I finished up the mac n cheese today.  My fridge is looking a little bare besides all the bottles of wine leftover from my party 🙂