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

Posts tagged ‘balance’

eleven in twenty eleven

well, here it is… a new year, a new outlook, a fresh start, a string of ridiculous cliches…

i have thought on and off for months about reviving my old friend THE BLOG, but struggled with a good angle? how often to post? a food blog? a photo blog? a what’s happenin in our crazy life blog? and clearly nothing happened…

when i read my favorite crazy dog lady and all around awesome chica’s blog about the new year, it struck a nerve. so here i am!

let’s be henry frank, 2010 sucked!!!

but 2011, i honestly think it’s going to be another story! i guess there’s no crystal ball telling me as much, but i have a feeling, and really, i don’t see that it can be much worse… onward and upward, there’s nowhere to go but up, it’s always darkest before the dawn, cliches are awesome!

plus, i ❤ numero 11… always have, always will

SO i've made a list… i'm sharing it with you… and the plan for my little slice of the blog world in 2011, is to dazzle you with babble about whatever comes as a result of the list…

eleven in twenty eleven:

1. TV Rots Your Brain
2. Hit The Pavement
3. Drop The Extra Baggage
4. Let’s Go To The Movies
5. Bring Home The Bacon
6. Learn the Ropes
7. Supper Club
8. Blog It Out
9. Say Cheese
10. Enjoy The Arts
11. Sew… a needle pulling thread…

viola!! more to come

Happy New Year!!

a day in eats…

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!!


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.


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!


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??

ch ch changes…

look who is home!!!!!!

(sleeping with monkey, in the chair, next to me… just like things should be!)

SO in the new year, i resolved to become the healthy person i’m dying to be

i figured it was time i checked in with myself on that front.

well, for the most part, things have been going pretty well. i have recommitted to going to the gym, and to seeing jillian again (although admittedly not as often as i should be)…

given the rollercoaster of extreme diets, weight loss, weight gain, self loathing, success and failure i’ve been on, my initial approach to this pursuit of finding a balanced healthy way of… well, getting healthy… was to resist COUNTING CALORIES.

i thought this was a good idea b/c i know how to be healthy, i just don’t always do it, and i didn’t want to count calories b/c i didn’t want to be obsessed.

however, while i have definitely improved with my eats, i know i can be better!

SO… ok ok OK… i’m going to count calories! i believe this will help me stay more accountable, AND it will keep me from excusing a snack here or there that i know creep up in calories, but when i don’t count, i can act like it’s not as big of a deal.

second, i am going to focus on eating 5 or so small meals per day, rather than 3 larger meals. for an interesting discussion on this topic surf on over to my new pal holly’s abode (love her!!), the reason for this is it will keep me from getting TOO HUNGRY b/c when that happens…

a) i’m less likely to go to the gym after work b/c all i can think about is how hungry i am

2) i’m more likely to overeat, which is what happens when i let myself get too hungry between meals, and

d) i’m more likely to be sluggish after a meal b/c i’ve eaten too much b/c i’ve let myself get too hungry

wow, is that a vicious cycle or what!?!?

i figure part of this journey is figuring out what works and what doesn’t!

that being said, here are some of today’s eats… not all of them, and not quality photos b/c all i had was my phone (i was a little off today with the anticipation of going to get my son!!)

breakfast and snack…

odwalla, un-pictured banana, apple, pb, and the KING of string cheese (TJ’s light)

i was SO proud of my lunch when i left the house this morning, but then…

ummm makeshift veggie pizza? basically?

i had these great pitas and figured i’d stuff half of one with TJ’s jalapeno/cilantro hummus, spinach, carrots, and sunshine veggie burger of the breakfast variety, with sliced pickle on the side. but at work i discovered the pita didn’t open… so instead i piled it all on top and wrestled with it for a while until i got it all down.

it tasted good, but the unanticipated wrestling match sort of ruined it for me!

i figured i could read “esquire” while i enjoyed my lunch, but after 10 minutes of the guys in the room drooling and howling like puppy dogs at blake lively on the front, i scooted it across the table and bugged out!

i left work early to pick up my doxie boy!! the dr. showed me his xrays (where the disc matter in his back was actually invading and pushing on nerves and his spinal cord)… and said he just adored farley and was really impressed with how quickly he’s recovering! i then signed in blood from the tip of my finger to give the surgeon my first born to satisfy the surgery debt, and we headed home!

anne made dinner b/c i wasn’t going to do anything except chill in the chair with farley…

it was GDW inspired… Alli, don’t be disappointed in me… it doesn’t do your example justice, but we worked with what we had, and it actually tasted pretty good!

brown rice, edamame, egg, and spicy jalapeno chicken sausage from TJ’s (which are awesome, in case anyone was wondering)

it’s SO good to have our farley boy home… he’s pretty wobbly in his back right leg b/c that’s the side of the spine the dr. had to remove the most yucky stuff from… (enjoy our retro kitchen floor)

but it should get better and better as he gains more strength…

for the next couple weeks he’ll be doing lots of this

(hobbling, but tail wagging!!)

and after two weeks he can start going on short walks
then in two months… he should be as good as new… which is a good thing b/c i have a feeling those squirrels in our backyard are going to be getting pretty cocky by that time!! 😉


going off the deep end

so is it weird that i wanted to watch a show tonight just b/c the previews include the brandi carlile song, “dreams“??

the new show is “the deep end” and i guess it’s supposed to be about first year attorneys in a big firm in LA. so far i’m not very impressed.. but i suppose i’ll give it another shot next week. i just don’t understand why these shows about firms/attorneys are so far from reality… no one in the firm is nice to the new people? all the attorneys are rude to the staff? every person is a slut???

tangent right out of the shoot?!?!? NICE!

anyhoooo… i dont have that many comida photos b/c i posted breakfast this morning

and the lunch i was supposed to eat yesterday, was also already posted.

wow, cool blog post tonight, huh???

have no fear! being short on words is seldom a problem of mine. so of course, i have a few other things to say!

first off, i realized last night that my chip drawer is so full it’s embarassing! and then i thought, heyyyy i know someone who will be impressed.. ALLI!!

apparently we’ve been into buying healthy-ish chips lately…

another thing i’ve been into buying… is nut butter! and here’s where i go off the deep end again… for some reason when i attempt to eat healthy and get things in order i have a huge fear of fat!! now obviously i don’t always have this fear… b/c if i did, i’d probably be too thin, which is clearly not the case.

but when i attempt to make better choices and go on, say… a healthy binge!??! fat freaks me out!!
so after reading some healthy living blogs and starting my own journey, i was intrigued by how many people love nut butters… i thought i’d give them a try, and as it turns out… i too love them!

but then suddenly… TOTAL PANIC!! nut butters have quite a bit of fat!! i can’t eat those AND lose weight! i know people say the nut butters are healthy, and that they actually lost weight when they started eating them… and i know this all takes eating anything in moderation into account… but i just can’t stop fretting and worrying about a single bite of nut butter going down my pipes and immediately latching onto my ass!!!!!

to conquer fear, i did this last night:

(there were also pretzels involved)

and how do i feel you might ask???

TERRIFIED!! i spent the whole day today wanting to eat peanut butter but being too scared…

like i said… off the deep end!

so after freaking out all day about fatty nut butter i jetted home after work, knowing i promised to make my friend JR breakfast pizza for dinner, spiralized some potatoes and then hit the gym for a quick/intense workout before he showed up!

you can’t see me, but trust me… i have my proud face on! normally i would have said, well, i have company coming over, there’s simply NO time for a workout. good grief, what has 2010 done to me!??!

breakfast pizza got the thumbs up!

for the masses:
– an italian herb flat out
– TJ’s pizza sauce
– spiralized yukon gold potato pre-baked (they stuck to the pan, so this needs a remedy)
– pancetta
– scrambled egg
– sprinkle of shredded cheese on top

then some franks to top it off… b/c everything is better with FRANK

for me:
– flat out
– TJ’s pizza sauce
– scrambled egg
– spinach
– artichoke hearts
– sprinkle of shredded cheese
and… FRANK

served with a basic salad (mary’s crack makes great added “crunch” to a salad!!)

and to tie it all together… a bogle chardonnay in the good ol’ WUPILP (willamette university public interest law project) auction glasses. back from my days of saving the world one unpaid legal internship at a time!

i even packed up a dinner to send with JR for his wife Nikki b/c she was taking a class and couldn’t join us for dinner..

i’m being healthy AND nice?? someone check my temperature!!

after dinner we lounged…

some of us with our tongues out…

some of us without…

and some of us still on bed rest due to back injury…

poor little dude!

SO… not that it’s worth going off the deep end for, no matter what the answer is, but… my fear of fat… mainly nut butter fat… is it rational? are nut butters reserved for people who are already at a healthy weight?? or can i eat nut butter and still lose weight??

rekindling an old flame…

i didn’t exercise today… i didn’t get out of bed this morning to get myself moving.. but my eats were healthy (and cost free b/c i took them all from home… HEY, the little things count too)!!

breakfast was pumpkin yogurt (WARNING: the following photo wins worst breakfast photo of the year)

but it did the trick, and tasted good… combo’d it with a cup o’ coffee

followed shortly by a cute lil clementine

i decided to snag my lunch and eat it at my desk today to continue emailing with my cousin, who happens to be like totally one of my favoritest people in the world (random old photo… clearly ’93 was a HOT year for us!!)

today’s lunch was a good reminder for me… that sometimes, the simplest healthy lunch can taste SO good! well, plus, i had abe to chat with while i munched! (i’m guessing someone is jealous of my abe lunch date)

(i didn’t really eat the pita b/c it was really white, and the other food had me feelin full enough)

this salad was SO good!! and it was just… spinach, peppercinis (i’m channeling my inner GDW), dill pickle, cucumber

all i really used for dressing was some of this bomb a** hummus i had leftover from hush hush cafe a few days ago (sidebar: if you like medit. type food.. GO TO HUSH HUSH… seriously, this guy’s food is DELISH)

then later when i was bored out of my freakin mind feelin a tad hungry, abe and i shared a snack pack of annie’s bunnies!

(yes, this is how bad my day was… i was having lunch with, talking with, and posing food with, abe lincoln!!)

between the time i got home from work and when we left for porter’s first puppy class, all i did was change clothes, do a little cleaning, and then made two rounds of dinner!

yep, another sunshine veggie burger – but tonight i had the southwestern flavor, which is actually a little spicy (YUM)… so i topped it with lettuce, salsa, and a dollop of 0% greek yogurt. and of course it must have a pickle (or two) on the side

dinner was kind of in shifts b/c i have poor food preparation timing… so the veggies came after the veggie burgers had been consumed. basic roasted brussel sprouts (just a little pam, salt, and pepper)…

we went to the first puppy class, which was, boringly enough, sans puppies… lame! i’m guessing next week will provide for a story or two… 3 of porter’s siblings will be in the class with us… i actually think the trainer is a little scared about what she may be about to encounter with four newf puppies in the same class… hahahahhhaha

so like i said… i didn’t exercise today… and while i admittedly often times like to spend my evenings like this…

let’s be honest… that’s lame and, well, not acceptable!

so i’ve made the decision to rekindle an old love affair “relationship”… i was seeing jillian every morning for a while…

STOP LOOKING AT ME LIKE THAT JILLIAN… i swear to god!!!!!!!!!

but after a short time… we broke up. mainly b/c i wasn’t really giving the relationship the attention it needed, and i was letting little things (like her calling me buddy) get to me, when i shouldn’t have!

but since that time, i’ve still kept some remnants of our relationship…

(yes, the weights and jillian have been sitting in that position for a few weeks)

i have decided to take jillian back… starting tomorrow morning! and i vow to make the relationship last for at least 30 days!

now i’m going to bed… in hopes that when i wake up in the morning i will have a magically transformed body and can just tell jillian to suck it, rather than having our date!

Do You Shred? If so, what do you think it’s best to combo it with… more cardio? weights? both? none? Or you have never had the pleasure of dating Jillian??

i resolve to…

become the healthy person i’m dying to be

like most people i’ve talked to lately, i don’t really believe in new year’s resolutions (although last year we did resolve to watch all of the films that have won the oscar for best picture… i didn’t beat myself up when i didn’t make it all the way through that list!)

but when i started this blog i wanted it to be a way to help me step off the rollercoaster i’d been on for most of my life (my weight, my activity level, my emotions, my career etc)… and while i definitely made some progress, i have been more relaxed and dishonest with myself about it than i want.

SO… i’ve decided to make more of a commitment to this little outlet… be honest in posting, admit my struggles AND my achievements (which are sometimes harder for me to admit than the struggles), and make a conscious committed effort to becoming the person i’m dying to be!

i hope you’ll join me, help me push myself, support me, and i think we’ll have some fun along the way!

2010 is going to be a great year!

not b/c it’s in the cards… but b/c i’m resolving to make it happen for myself…

nona anita’s italian crack!

did you miss the tacky mug shots over the weekend!?!?!
i’m sure you did… so let’s get right to it!

in case you can’t tell what kind of dog that is..

i enjoyed a cup o sludge in this gem of a mug, along with something that will shock you…

hey! it’s my thing.. for now!

and then the gifts started rollin in…

homemade pomegranate jelly from ryan and melissa

a bucket o’ sin from Nikki

for this Nikki will pay! she knows i can’t eat sugar at work… or I crash harder than Rusty the Narcoleptic Dachshund!!

pressing on…

then sharnel, my most favoritest person in my office, brought me a gift!!!

omg sharnel is THE BEST! it’s so cute…

and a lil ornament from her son…

lunch was a necessary gossip session with the girls so we could rehash the weekend’s events… too much chatter and solving of the world’s problems to take photos, but it’s really all about the dinner tonight anyway!!

JR was off work, so he promised me weeks ago that he would make me Nona Anita’s famous lasagna… it’s widely known that i have a deep and abiding love for lasagna. i’ve been dying to try this Tarabocchia family recipe, and tonight was the big night!!

i do not have nona anita clearance for the recipe, but you probably don’t want it anyway… this is definitely a once a decade indulgence, but i loooooooooove JR for taking the time to make it for me, homemade noodles and all!!


nona anita ought to sell this italian crack on the streets of jersey!

hey, i combined it with a large amount of salad…
with every green you add, it makes the lasagna healthier, right??

and some fruit…

(i love this old photo of haley and cody with santa in the background… what cute brats! haha)

so NOT a healthy dinner, but hey, it’s all about balance right?!?!?!??

we all had dinner and watched my favorite holiday movie… (which JR had never seen and i have NOTHING to say about his serious lack of holiday movie culture!!)

and while we watched the movie, haley was going to brush porter… b/c she just knew he would be cooperative…

when she could see success slipping away… she got serious…

and we’re done!

don’t say goodbye… say khao man gai!

well, i’m starting with a confession (which seems like it could become a trend)… i was supposed to attend a networking event tonight, but after having this kind of day:


i decided, for my sanity, to skip the networking, in favor of this:

(happy hour size avocado and mango stack salad… minus the fried won tons, which i set aside)

and… one of my best friends…

(i didn’t take this photo, but it was too dark at henry’s to get a good photo of my actual best friend… so i figured this stand in would do the trick)

anyway, since i started this bloggy chapter of my life, i’ve been thinking a lot about BALANCE, what it really means for me, and how best to achieve it in different parts of life.

so the other day i was thinking about portland. i looooove this city! i love the people. i love the culture. i caught myself starting to think that i was going to “miss out” on so much b/c i need to be on a diet, and i need to be strict, and i need to do this and that.

wait wait wait… is that really BALANCE??

so i challenged myself… find a way to take an aspect of portland culture and BALANCE it for myself.

one thing that came to mind is the food cart scene. it’s HUGE in portland. carts line various streets in different neighborhoods of portland, serving foods from all around the world. one strip of carts is right outside my building…


now i’m not going to pretend like i have not given my share of money to this portland foodie paradise, and maybe it would be best for me to give up the scene altogether… just say peace out! but, actually, i don’t think that’s the best way to achieve balance.

now, some things about the carts, i think everyone could live without:

CAUTION, extremely unhealthy food photo approaching…


ok seriously… a huge burger with grilled cheese sandwiches for buns???

or this place:


“side cart” was born, i believe, as a companion to its neighbor “brunch box” (which serves the burger above) b/c brunch box was churning out grease a plenty, but did not have a FRYER. the nerve of them! so side cart’s menu consists of all the fryer required side item like mac n cheese bites, tots, fried okra etc…

ok you get the point.

so i got to thinking about it, and i decided that my interest in the portland food cart scene was likely more about wanting to give myself the freedom to experience an aspect of portland culture, and less about wanting to eat something that isn’t good for me. i came to the conclusion that if my ultimate goal is a life of balance, then rather than just saying, “food carts are bad and must be punished,” i should turn my interest in the culture toward finding healthy options, and carts practicing sustainability etc.

once my mind was made up, i decided to do some research… within minutes i had a hit and a destination!

so, finally (you probably thought i’d never get to the point),

here’s the skinny on my newest portland food cart find, perfect for living a life in balance!!


this woman rocks! she basically serves ONE dish, based on the common street food of bangkok, “khao man gai”

it’s chicken and rice with her special sauce, and a side of a very light broth/soup. her little handwritten menu even tells you all the ingredients she has used to cook up her little bundle of heaven (in short, the worst thing is that she uses some sugar when she boils her chicken)

i say “bundle” b/c, this is how you receive your khao man gai…


isn’t it just adorable???

once you unwrap the little bundle…


you see that little cup of sauce? oh, you can’t really get a good shot? let me help you…


the sauce, oh nong how i love your sauce… sweet chili, garlic, ginger (lots of ginger)… word on the street is that she could retire if she would bottle this sauce. i must say, SO TRUE!

so after sampling the sauce, i knew there was only one thing left to do…


dump the sauce and chow!

there’s one thing you could argue is lacking from this dish but it’s NOT taste! nong is a genius of simplicity. the chicken and rice with the sauce and cilantro is simple, but so full of flavor and scrumptiousness!! for a balanced meal it could use more veggies, but hey, i wouldn’t kick khao man gai out of bed for eating crackers being light on ruffage!

so while at first i thought i had to say goodbye… instead i say, KHAO MAN GAI