… shaking it off… and heading out in search of balance…

last night we had a little oscar “party” (interpretation: anne has the flu so nikki braved the sick house to watch the oscars with us)… i whipped up a few bites of food (Disclaimer: i used the flash, i know i know, unacceptable… but the lighting was bad)

of course we started with mocktails…


then food…

flat out/turkey/avocado/homemade sundried tomato spread/spinach… rollll ups

nikki’s flatbread


veggies, chipotle hummus, tj’s whole grain pita chips

everything was pretty yum-o and kept us busy sipping and nibbling throughout the festivities

SO… how did everyone feel about the oscar results?? i was torn… i’m just gonna say it, i don’t think “the hurt locker” was the best picture. i didn’t think it was a bad film, but best picture??? nah…

HOWEVER, what i did love about the oscars last night was that it was definitely a night for the ladies!

and appropriately so, given that March is Women’s History Month and today is INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton posted a brief but great statement on the importance of “investing in the potential of the world’s women and girls…”

i loved seeing so many strong, classy, intelligent, beautiful women at the oscars last night…

gabourey sidibe is so sweet and full of life… i bet she would be a hilarious friend!

mo nique showed us that we can’t let people who doubt us or tell us we “can’t” run our lives

meryl streep is so classy and fun… i actually love that she’s uncomfortable on the red carpet

kathryn bigelow… first female to win best director is fantastic!

but i know i’m not alone in saying, for me, the night belonged to sandra bullock!

she was so beautiful last night, but it wasn’t even her “look” that i think was so beautiful. her acceptance speech was one of my favorites ever, and i was so touched by her words, in particular where she kind of dedicated it to “the moms that take care of the babies and the children no matter where they came from

she said those mothers and parents don’t get the credit they should, and i couldn’t agree with her more. i come from a family close to adoption, and as is the case with many subjects, the media only reports the negative side. and that’s so sad b/c there are so many tremendous adoption stories of lives saved, families made whole, love, and happiness…

our family would not be complete without it…

brothers wouldn’t have each other…

important moments would be missed…

the world’s problems may not be solved…

who would cousins be proud of?

shenanigans would be lacking…

we would all be missing out on one of the best senses of humor…

i love you chrissy… i couldn’t imagine my life without you!

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pond scum

it’s that time of year!

it’s been beautiful in portland the last few days

(i’m sure even just mentioning this will cause the skies to darken, the clouds to roll in, and the rain to pour, but i digress)… so yesterday, after breakfast…

a fitnessista inspired egg puff on dave’s killer bread dressed by frank

we decided to uncover the scummy pond that’s been stagnate since winter and crank it up…

we discovered the koi are in fact still alive (minus ralphie, who i believe we lost to a predator of some sort before winter)… after a trip to the pond store, too much money spent on replacement parts, and lots of “help” by porter (interpretation: standing right next to us, chewing on pond parts, and splashing in water), we hooked it all back up…

we still have a lot of yard work to do (i have no idea why the previous owners kept a dirt outer ring of the yard), but i’m already excited with how it’s looking so early in the year!

the backyard is one of the big reasons i bought this house, and i can’t wait to be able to sit on the upper deck and have dinner overlooking the yard.

between our own yard work, swapping out guest room beds, helping nikki cut down five large bushes in front of her yard and digging out the remaining stumps *insert flexing of muscles and girl power here*… we were TIRED, and i needed a green monster

enjoyed on the upper deck with my best friend

(sporting the one ear back look… i wonder if this will become a trend like the one strap of the overalls unhooked???)

in the green monster:
1/2 c. almond milk
couple dollops 0% plain greek yogurt
2 c. organic baby spinach
frozen pineapple
frozen mango

i liked the hint of tangy that the greek yogurt gave the smoothie…

i won’t get sick of these any time soon

speaking of sick, anne is nursing a nasty cold (clearly she needs more green monsters), so i thought i’d make a veggified dinner for all of us.

i started with vegan stuffed mushrooms:

1 lb. large mushrooms
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 7oz. package firm tofu
8 sun-dried tomatoes
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
salt/pepper
2 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
2 tbsp. dried breadcrumbs

remove stems from mushrooms and put the caps in a baking dish

preheat oven to 375

toss everything, including the mushroom stems, except the olive oil, parsley, breadcrumbs into food processor and chop/mix it all up


heat oil in skillet, and toss in the mixture for about 5 minutes or until tender, obviously making a big mess on your stove top… then mix in the parsley and breadcrumbs

stuff mushroom caps with mixture and shove into the oven for about 20 minutes or until browned on top

i’ve never made stuffed mushrooms without drenching them in cheese, but these were really good, and the tofu provided smoothness to the mixture. i would definitely make these again, and experiment with other ingredients like italian seasoning, or giving them an asian flare…

speaking of asian flare

no, not that kind

i also made a pretty good stir fry to round out the evening


today i’m hoping to tackle the yard a little more, hit the gym for an overdue elipticizer interval workout, maybe some weights if i’m feelin dangerous, and then get ready for the oscars.

what’s your favorite thing about your house/condo/apartment??
what’s the one thing you would love to have in your dream home??

my favorite parts of my house are the backyard, and the huge window in my living room that takes up one whole wall and looks out onto the upper deck and over the backyard. i always feel like i’m part of the outside.

i’ve always wanted a big home theater. i LOVE movies, and would love a big screen and big comfy couches or chairs to watch lots of movies in…

baby i’m about to have me some fun

ok, that’s basically a lie… there’s not much going on around here tonight.

BUT this morning… someone came up with a new game!



if there’s any question about whether we’ve got a water dog in our house… porter’s new morning game is to stick his whole head into the shower and get it all wet.

silly furry child!

and for those who are wondering… 85 lbs!

i’m feeling lazy, so in the style of one of the hippest chicas around… this is going to be quick and dirty!

i am getting into the habit of coming home from the gym in the morning and packing my food for the day. i know, it’s not that exciting nor is it a novel idea, but hey, i’m celebrating the baby steps!!

i packed a supa tasty salad…

naked… but of course i didn’t leave it at that…

morning star buffalo fake chicken nugs

light ranch / frank’s swirl.

all mixed together for lunch, this was a WINNER WINNER UN-CHICKEN… ummm… lunch??

i had breakfast at work…

some green monster action

1c almond milk
2c spinach
1 banana
ice

i know the green monster is not new to a lot of people, but on the off chance it’s new to anyone reading this… trust me when i say TRY THIS SMOOTHIE! try adding spinach to any smoothie… i swear on my doxie’s life you cannot taste the spinach! and adding spinach to your diet can work wonders! energy, skin glow, etc.

just do it! and then come back and thank me!

work was a freak show… so dinner was my go to i’m exhausted and do NOT want to cook spot…

laughing planet!

i love having a place so close to my house where i can snag something quick, but not horrible for me!

plus, it’s such a fun place…


i had the green chile burrito with tofu on a whole wheat tortilla

never fails to be delightful!

we actually don’t have much planned for the weekend.

until sunday anyway…

i LOVE the oscars… and i hope i’m right when i say i think steve martin and alec baldwin are going to be hilarious!!

did you see “it’s complicated”????

are you an oscar fan? who do you think will take the top prizes??
according to roger ebert, this year is too predictable:
best actress – sandra bullock
best actor – jeff bridges
movie – hurt locker

do you agree???

i’m torn about best actress… sandra bullock has put the years in, but something about me is pulling for gabourey sidibe…??? did you read “push”… or see “precious”?? there aren’t words…

for a complete list of nominations, go HERE

we be rollin…

in veggies that is!

i’m excited because today i officially signed up for a CSA (community supported agriculture).

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is a way to create a direct connection between people who like to eat fresh, local produce and the farm that grows it. The CSA model is an economically viable way for small scale farmers to produce a wide variety of high quality vegetables in an earth-friendly way. CSA fosters responsible relationships between the grower, the consumer, the food, and the land on which the food is grown.

(source)

you pay the farm up front for your share, then each week the farm fills a box with fruits and veggies of their choosing, and we pick up our box at a location in portland.

our family is going to share a “harvest share” with my friend at work and her family. there are so many farms to choose from in the portland area!! we decided on one whose program goes for 26 weeks, and offers vegetables and fruit.

go here and scroll down for a sample of what a season looks like.

we love the farmers market, but i’m even more excited about having a “share” of a farm b/c we will get a variety of fruits and vegetables each week. i know this means we will constantly be trying new things, eating organic, and supporting a local farm. of course we will still go to the farmers market for extra fruits/veggies, meat, and eggs.

although the veggies won’t start rolling in until june, NOW is the time to sign up for your share, as many places sell out quick… so if you’re interested, i would highly recommend looking into the CSA offerings in your neck of the woods!

all this food TALK… how bout some photos!?!?

i finally restocked on spinach, and all the green monster talk at caitlin’s “house” left me with a serious craving!! so as soon as i got home from the gym this morning, i went to work!

secret green monster on the left (with cocoa powder so the teen doesn’t know he’s getting spinach)
green monster w/ chocolate protein powder for anne in the middle
and my “sludge” on the right (1 c. unsweetened almond milk, 2 c. spinach, lots of frozen cherries, ice) YUM

while i was swirling around the kitchen, i also managed to pack my lunch, which was actually last night’s leftovers:

salad = more spinach, roasted red pepper, baby carrots, mushrooms, feta, and deliciousness

entree = brown rice cooked in light coconut milk and extra firm tofu “planks” that had been marinated in tj’s “island soyaki” and thrown into a saute situation

i wasn’t full, so a couple hours later i inhaled (thus, there is no photo) a fuji apple and small dollop of PB

while i nursed a headache this evening, anne was kind enough to make a pretty scrumptious dinner and even played photographer!!

tj’s cucumber potsticker things anne wanted to try…. FAIL! they were just… weird!
roasted brussells and asparagus that were so good (we are fans of the skinny asparagus up in here)
boca burger with mozz, roasted red pepper, spinach, and avocado on a sandwich thin.

and that’s that…

but before you go…

i spy…

doxie bootayyyyy!!

hahahaha

given that my foggy/achey head is not getting any better… i think i’ll take a page from this dude’s book…

and pass out!

i’m just so excited about owning a “share” of a local farm… is this something you have done? or would do?
i’m a little nervous about getting veggies that i don’t know what to do with, but i’m guessing in the internet age, i’ll be able to find plenty of recipes for everything they throw at me…???

spanish nights

heyyyyyyyyy!!

i love the “i’m so not impressed” look…

a couple weeks ago our friend JR was hiding out at our place while his wife studied for the bar exam (ughhhh those words still make me cringe!! BAR EXAM = HORRIBLE) anywayyyy… we all got caught up in watching a Throwdown, where Bobby took on the “Paella King of Northern California”

ever since… we have all been talking about getting together to make paella… so last night… we did it up spanish style!

Nikki and JR had been remodeling their kitchen, so i was excited to test it out now that the remodel is complete!

it’s such an amazing transformation, and it’s so THEM (interpretation: JR got a “pot filler” above the stove and nikki got completely organized shelves)

who wouldn’t want to cook in this kitchen!?!?

as soon as we walked in, JR got the sangria flowin…

we wanted to really do the paella fresh and from scratch.

while anne and JR got right to work…

nikki and i ran some errands in preparation for anne’s birthday party in less than TWO weeks! we have some big fun planned… but are keeping the details a secret. trust me though… it’s going to make for a killer post!

by the time we got back to the house, it was clear that anne and JR had been enjoying themselves…

but despite the sangria induced shenanigans… the spanish masterpiece was coming right along!

as they put on the finishing touches…

i tossed together a salad…

the paella was SO flavorful, and while i probably would have taken a shortcut, nikki and JR were so smart to get the fresh seafood!! it was hard work, but fun, yummy, and actually… such a pretty dish!!

it was a successful spanish night!!

do you try to buy fresh seafood or are you ok rolling with the frozen stuff?

and as for some trashy tv… bachelor thoughts? new bachelorette thoughts??

i figured, more for myself than anything else, it was time to document a complete day of eats. but before i dive into that, a little randomness:

i hope no one missed the “double mctwist 1260” wednesday night!?!?!

shaun white kicked some serious olympic bootay in the halfpipe… he is unbelievable!!

JUST SAYIN

ok that’s all… let’s get to the grub!

well i started with a cup o’ sludge in the awesomely tacky square dancing mug!

the other day when my friend nakia and i went on our whole foods lunch adventure, i picked up a few little things, one of them being chobani. i see it all over el mundo de blogs, but i had never tried it before (i usually eat stonyfield oikos or TJ’s greek yogurt), but since i was at whole foods i figured i’d give the chobani a whirl.

0% pomegranate chobani, 1 serving bare naked fit vanilla almond granola, and a few frozen organic cherries (also from whole foods)… overall a good combo, but i think i would have preferred it with regular yogurt instead of flavored.

i know i’ve said this before, but the bear naked fit almond vanilla granola is so good… check out the whole almonds in it!

nakia and i went for a walk during lunch today. look what greeted us!!!

the sun found portland!!

you know you’re from portland when……. you encounter the sun shining in february and say, “whoa, where did that come from??”

the 45 minute walk or so made for a great lunch adventure. adding that to the interval elipticizer workout i did at the gym this morning, i’m going to go ahead and admit that i feel good about my activity level today!!

i hadn’t packed lunch, so after our walk i stopped at Spoons and got their veggie wrap, which they say is served on lavash, but once i got it back into work and opened it up it was actually just a wheat tortilla… LAME!

despite getting screwed with the tortilla, this wrap was really good. they put a light curry sauce on it… i ate the first half with the tortilla, but the second half i opened up and just ate the guts.

about 3 p.m. i started to encounter a gentle but increasingly annoying growl in the tum, so i silenced the lil buggar with the other half of my pb&j larabar

yes, i had it closed up with a binder clip… i am so totally opposed to stale food… i don’t even like to risk it. SEAL IT UP!

when i got home i was hungry, but not quite as hungry as porter…

(no charge for the shot of my super cool retro kitchen floor)

he cracks me up when he eats!
totally sprawled out, face straight in the bowl…

the boy has no shame!!

anyhooo… i didn’t want to eat dinner at 5:30 b/c there’s no way i would last the rest of the night without getting into snack after snack after …. you get the idea.

so instead i had a snack

baby carrots with mango/peach salsa.

it was good, but random, and awkward to eat. baby carrots don’t scoop salsa very well…

i also had an un-pictured Tj’s light string cheese.

i knocked the last real world off the dvr, did some other stuff, ummm i guess i can’t really remember. clearly all i was thinking about was dinner, which as it turns out… was part deliciousness, part random.

random:

we love these little chippers! i suppose we should run it by the undisputed chip queen at GDW, but my guess is she would give them a thumbs up…

and for chips, i don’t think they have bad stats

and the deliciousness!!

dave’s killer bread, organic dijon, TJ’s artichoke hearts, TJ’s fire roasted red pepper, and feta mixed with a tiny bit of light sour cream (helps the feta become more like a spread, rather than crumbling and falling all over the place)

this sammy was really good! i had seen caitlin say a couple times that artichokes had a meatyness (obviously i’m not quoting her given that “meatyness” is definitely not a real word) that made them super satisfying. she’s right! plus they just taste so rich, even though they are so low in calories!

YUM!

i polished off the evening with a mock POMtini… sometimes you need a real POMtini… but tonight, just a little soda water, POM and splash of lime did the trick!

so there you have it… a day of every single thing that made its way into my belly.

how’d i do??

sup suckas!?!

so last night, the teen was monopolizing my right arm (aka macbook) so that he could get his homework on… i had a brilliant idea to just post a little blog entry from my iPhone. OMG i’m a genius!! i’ve got mad skillz!!

ummm i either couldn’t or was too dumb to figure out how to post photos from my iPhone… a blog post with no photos? PASS

so here i am this morning to do a quick recap of yesterday’s happs… my hair is wet and i’m supposed to leave the house in about 20 minutes, so this is going to be snappy and most likely, kinda lame.

don’t say i didn’t warn you!

breakfast…

desk drawer oats, splash of ff hazelnut creamer, dollop peanut butter… i stirred in the PB before i thought to take a photo

lunch

i took my friend nakia on her first tour de whole foods during lunch, and we partook of the HOT BAR. chile verde chicken over lettuce with cheese and cilantro/onion…
O
M
G
if there’s chile verde chicken perfection, whole foods found it!

i have a feeling nakia and i will be making the trek to the hot bar more often, as she was pretty much overtaken with joy upon entering the healthy living mothership!

later i enjoyed half of my first ever larabar

after work i hopped the train and headed up to Portland State so my ol pal JR could give me a ride home since anne had a meeting, and i was therefore, stranded downtown.


i used to ride the train everyday when i lived in the ‘burbs… yesterday reminded me of how good the people watching and listening others’ conversations is on the train!! haha

walking to JR’s office i was also reminded…

i love these bikeracks that appear all over the city…

a lil bit of trivia for you…

did you know 30% of portland commuters do so via bicycle??

and while it has caused some “share the road” issues, i think it’s fabulous and i don’t mind sharing…

it was pretty much farley and i at home last night, so i made some dinner

tj’s whole grain bun, boca shroom/mozz veggie burger, pickle, spinach, feta

i added some carrots with a drizzle of low fat ranch

photo after my first bite… oopsie!

and a ginormous orange…

i watched the olympics (i’ve become a fan of snowboard cross) and farley…

well, farley was really busy…

the olympics… what’s your take? summer or winter? favorite events??

i used to love figure skating, but this time around i’m finding i am enjoying the skiing (with the exception of the event where they ski with the rifles strapped to their backs)… and i’m really excited for the half pipe!!