Booze and Birds

May 11, 2009

Gosh I love Spring!  It was a beyond fabulous day, but it is after midnight so I’m going to try to make this quick.  A and I got up around 9:30 this morning and weren’t really sure what to do with ourselves – it was way too pretty for schoolwork yet!  We ended up deciding to head down to 5th Avenue for brunch.

I was naughty and drank my new favorite beer – Abita Strawberry – on the walk down.


 So perfect on a spring day.

For brunch we decided on Apertivo, a small Italian spot.  We went in on a whim and we are so glad, it was great!  They brought Panatone to the table as soon as we sat down.


I had a piece with apple jelly,


and a piece with butter.


For less than $13 a plate, brunch included booze and caffeine!  Coffee –


I added 1sugar and a splash of cream to mine but ended up only drinking a few sips because it was too rich.

I also had a Bloody Mary.


This was so tasty, it was spicy spicy spicy!  I had never tasted a Bloody Mary before my trip to Boston this year but I think I am going to be hooked 🙂  I only let myself drink half because I knew I had work to do.

For food I ordered the Eggs Florentina- Two poached eggs with Hollandaisesauce on top of steamed spinach and an English muffin.  All the meals came with a potato latke.


Yum!  I only ate half of the latke but I practically licked the rest of the plate clean!  There was a great citrusytang that made this just perfect.  I will say, though, I think I prefer plain sunny side up eggs or poached egg with bread, you just do not need the rich sauce.

The food was so great we knew we wanted to try dessert so A and I split the Chocolate Pyramid.


This was chocolate mousse with a caramel mousse center- tasty!

After brunch we took a long walk around our neighborhood, I say this every time but I love Park Slope!  When we got home I randomly took an intense 2hour nap.  I was o-u-t, if I I didn’t have a deadline to get to Staples I wouldn’t have gotten up.  I lured myself to my desk with candy.


Smarties are basically prettier, yummier M&M’s.  I love the way European candies bubble the calorie count in on the front of the package.  And instead of pretending people will eat small servings they just list the nutrition stats for the whole package, these had 174calories.

As I worked I also snacked on some Danielle Pumpkin Chips.


I had 1serving.


We had to hurry-scurry out the door to make it to Staples in time to do my copies.  We are doing a month on fairy tales and since I’m not allowed to use the text-book I have a ton of copies to make.  On the way home A bought a slice of pizza and he dropped his crust outside our house.  We ended up spending a ridiculously long time sitting on our stoop watching the birds have a feast!  I even went down and broke it up into little pieces to discourage the fights that were breaking out.


Once our bird-watching was over we came back in and got back to work.  Much later, it was time to start dinner.  The recipe was inspired by three things – 1. I am super busy this week and this meal needs to last us through Weds, 2. I finally made my prize-won wheatberries,


3. I need to use this adorable can of tomatos I bought at Whole Foods.


I ended up making Berry Better Than Spaghetti.  Recipe, serves 5

  • 2.5C cooked wheatberries
  • 1T evoo
  • 3/4C chopped onion
  • 20 oz extra-lean ground turkey
  • salt and pepper
  • 1C frozen kale
  • 3C canned diced tomatoes, rinsed
  1. Pre-make the wheatberries; we did this yesterday since they take an hour to cook.
  2. Heat evoo in a saucepan.
  3. Add in onions and turkey, season with s&p, cover and cook through.
  4. Meanwhile, heat kale in a medium pot.
  5. When kale is ready, stir in wheatberries and tomatoes.
  6. When meat is cooked, stir into pot with the rest of the ingredients.
  7. Cover pot and heat over very low heat for 5minutes.

You could obviously use fresh kale or sub in another type of green, use tomato sauce, use pasta, etc.  We thought the combo was pretty great.  Here is my serving –


Look at those chewy wheatberries.


After dinner I had tons more to do, hence my much too late post/bed time.  A delivered a doomed Peeps couple my way.


I am pretty thrilled to say that my plans, materials, copies, computer presentations, and posters are all done for this week!  I hope you were in bed before me!


March 27, 2009

Success all around!  My to do list is mostly checked of and it’s been a fabulous Friday evening.

Immediately following my last post I got dressed and headed to the gym.  I did 35minutes on the treadmill of 2minute run/1minute walk intervals.  All total I did 35minutes and about 3.5miles.  I usually try to add some sprints into the jogging portion, but my foot is hurting so I didn’t tonight.  I was feeling guilty about it until I realized that my mileage was the same and my calorie-burn (or rather my “calorie burn,” I use the machine and not a hr monitor) was the same as my last session.  Plus, I felt much happier and energized, I guess I will save the sprints until I’ve been back into running a little longer.

After the gym I went to the grocery store.  A wasn’t there, so I could browse to my heart’s content and ending up picking up a few fun items you’ll see throughout the next week.  One of which was –


holy crap, Jelly Belly pudding?!  For some reason this was very exciting for me.  How well do you know me – what flavor of Jelly Belly pudding did I buy???

While I was out gyming it, A was being a sweetheart and cooking dinner at home.  He made a box of au gratin potatos and some Martha Stewart (a recipe from Real Simple) meatloaf.

Martha Meatloaf (a.k.a. turkey and roasted red pepper meatloaf)

  • 1.5lbs ground turkey
  • 1small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/2C bread crumbs
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1C grated Parmesan
  • 2T dijon mustard
  • 1C flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1 7oz jar roasted red peppers, cut into 1/2inch pieces

Heat oven to 400*.  Combine ingredients in a large bowl.  Shape the meat into an 8inch loaf and place into a baking dish.  Bake 45minutes.  Rest before cutting for 15minutes.

And when I came home I added a green veggie to the meal, Mustardy Mustard Greens.


I heated the can of mustard greens in a sautee pan over low heat then added in 1.5T of Stonewall Kitchen Blue Cheese Mustard and a small handful of pine nuts.

The greens were go-oo-ood!

hpim22321 And even though I would not tolerate any sort of boxed potatos as a kid (my parents would never have cooked boxed potatos so it didn’t come up often) I enjoyed a small serving tonight.


And A did a good job on the meatloaf.


All together.


Now I’ve got to shower so I can hop into my pjs and grab a magazine.  I’m also going to pop one of these guys.


It was a great Friday.  I am so proud of myself that I made it to the gym and I’ve even got some time to relax.  Tomorrow I’m waking up early to get some work done and then heading to a bar in Williamsburg to hang out with one of best friends from high school!

What flavor of pudding do you think I bought?  What flavor would you want to buy?

P.S. Seriously?  How funny is this commercial?

Snow Day

March 2, 2009

What a day, what a day!  Having grown up in the Virgin Islands this was my first snow day ever, and man did I enjoy it.  I had slept in, had fun, and did some much needed school work.

After getting our relax on, A and I headed out in search of lunch.  We had 8+ inches of snow and blustery weather so I bundled up x3, and wore my purple rainboots.


Look at our front steps!


I had to run some quick errands (although more like crawl, because A can barely walk) and then we ended up at Corner Burger on 5th Ave.


We’ve never been but were interested because you have the option of meaty, turkey, or veggie burgers.  Plus the decor is cute.


I started with the shake of the month; Peanut Butter Banana.


Yumlicious!  A helped a bit, but I easily could have polished it off alone.

For lunch I got the Texas Burger, turkey style.  It was topped with a fried egg and pepperjack cheese.


I ate everything but the bun.  I liked it, but only ok, the only way we will be trying this spot again is if we end up with some sort of coupon.

After lunch A headed home and I stopped at Ozzies to work on grading.  <Actually, I walked to 4 different coffee shops before I found a spot that wasn’t packed, and was practically in tears because my feet were so cold>  I drank a latte machiato, steamed skim with a shot of espresso, to warm up.


From there I walked straight to Crunch for a 30minutes abs and stretching class.  I love these types of classes!  However, my arms hurt so badly I could barely keep up – you’ll be hearing more about this later.  I knew as soon as I was bundling back up that I wasn’t going to be hungry for dinner so I stopped into the grocery store to replenish my electrolytes with one of these.


This juice/tea is vegan (duh!) and raw and totes several health benefits.  I’m not sure how I felt about the taste.

When I got home I finished my grading and also took the time to reformat my week – missing Monday means everything has to be pushed back, not that I’m complaining!  I drank a mug of Candy Cane Lane while I worked.


Now I’m heading to the shower and keeping my fingers crossed that I have time to read some magazines before I go to bed.  What a day!  Tomorrow I have a doctor’s appointment in the city so I won’t be posting until late evening.  Have a great 24hours everyone!

Before I go, however, I will let you in on some of the General Excitement:

  1. Due in part to my arms hurting during an abs class (!!!), I’ve decided to make my fitness goal for March upper body strength.  My plan is to do 30reps of arm exercises everyday.  If I do not mention my reps by my dinner post, Please remind me!
  2. On March 14th I am attending a NYC blogger dinner,
  3. and on March 22nd I am attending an NYC blogger brunch.  Thank you so much to Melissa for organizing it all!
  4. I am officially a Feature Publisher at Foodbuzz!
  5. from March 8th – March 21st A and I will be doing a 2week run of veganism

Crossed Off

February 23, 2009

Busy, busy, busy, busy!  Today has been packed!  I realize it would have been better to have spread my work out throughout the week, but honestly, I really enjoyed the free time!  I felt so relaxed that I didn’t even mind how hectic today was.  By the end of the day, here was my to do list:




I made the executive decision to move a few things to later this week (and A added some of his own items!) but every single thing is crossed off!


When I woke up (late!) I made a similar “breakfast stoup” to yesterday’s.




3/4C Kashi Go Lean, 3 chopped strawberries, 1.5T butterscotch chips, and some plain, nonfat Kefir.




So good!


I worked on planning all morning and for lunch I made myself a batch of turkey cheese crisps.




I topped 5 slices of turkey with a sprinkle of part skim mozzarella and a bit of paprika.  Then I put them on an oiled baking sheet in a 450* oven for 7minutes.  With some baby carrots,




All together.




And later, while I was still working, I ate a package of tropical fruit chews.




We headed to Staples around 5:30 for $63!!worth of photo-copying.  On the way home I stopped in at Starbucks to finish all of my grading.  I got “dinner” using a gift card while I was there.  I am always happy with the nutritional stats on their grab and go meals.




I had pesto chicken pasta and a black tea skim latte.




I forgot to tell the barista not to add sweetener (I think that’s silly, you should have to tell them to add the sweetener, not leave it out) to my drink so it wasn’t all that enjoyable, but I still finished it.


Once home I finished all of my materials for the week.  Yays!


And now I am more than ready for bed.  Sweet dreams!


When you are at Starbucks do you – a) get your drinks sweetened;  b) get your drinks sweetened and then add your own sweetener;  c) ask for no sweetening and add your own sweetener;  or d) ask for no sweetening and leave the drink au natural?   I do (d) but A does (b)!

Ups and Downs

December 18, 2008

An update!  an update!  Per usual this week has been crazy; I’m going to do a quick recap of some of the high/low points instead of a full-on retelling.

1. The other night I had big plans for the gym, but being a good wife, I waited for A to get home.  We set out with not much time to spare, pretty close to closing.  5 steps down the block A realized he had a splinter in his toe and we had to stop and do minor roadside surgery, so no gym 😦  We did at least head to the grocery store where I got to buy more Soy Silk Eggnog!

2. My principal (wigged the f out) and decided there can be no more teacher microwaves in classrooms.  We can only use microwaves in the lounge.  We had to sign a memo Weds. morning.  a) there are no microwaves in the lounge, b) a good 70% of the staff is thinking about quitting because the kids are pretty much running the school and you’re sending out memos about microwaves?!?  I don’t even use the microwaves (as you, occasionally, see I usually bring yogurt and fruit for lunch), but it’s the principle of the thing.

3. We cooked A’s birthday dessert finally – Smores Pie!  No pictures but I’ll post the super simple delish recipe if anyone wants it; it’s basically a giganto smore!

4.  A student had a major freak out in class yesterday and slammed me into a wall.  That’s all I’m saying about this one.

5. When I got home yesterday, from a particularly soul-crushing day, I had two holiday packages!  Look at how pretty my aunt’s wrapping was:


She sent A and I each an Under Armour sweatshirt for winter runs!


The jewelry on the side was the package from my mommy.  My mom is a children’s librarian, but she’s also a fantastic jewelry maker, almost all of my earrings and necklaces are from her!  These were my favorite.


This morning for breakfast stuck with tradition and was running late, so I ate a Lemon Lara Bar on the train.


Um, yum!  Laras aren’t my absolute favorite but this flavor was great!  I need to keep trying new flavors.

For lunch I mixed things up and packed a salad.


I used a European blend of lettuce as a base topped with peppitas, blackberries, and 1/2 a raw yellow squash.  On the side was lowfat poppy seed dressing.


I also packed some Kashi cheddar crackers and 3 candy cane taffies.


I didn’t eat the crackers or candy until after school though, I stayed until 5:30 to catch up on workbook grading.  I still have a ton to do, I really need to haul my ass out of bed tomorrow morning!  I had a really great day today though – My all girls class was perfect – so hopefully I’ll be feeling 5am-motivated!

When I got home I had some snacks while I made dinner; a slice of extra-sharp cheddar,


and the last of the nonfat cottage cheese (1/2C) topped with the last of the blackberries and a dollop of homemade strawberry jam.


For dinner I made Semi-Homemade Spagetti (not Sandra Lee s.h. though, I hate that freakin’ show – butter is practically an orgasmic experience over there!).  I made most of the components myself, but used this sauce.



  • cook 1lb whole wheat angel hair according to the directions on the box, and drain
  • roast 1pint cherry tomatos, 25minutes in the oven on a foiled sheet at 450*
  • saute a smallish onion in 1.5T evoo and then brown .5lbs extra-lean ground turkey in the same pan
  • pour tomatos, turkey, and sauce into the pasta pot and stir to combine
  • consume!


This should be 2.5-3 nights of meals for A and I.  I had my serving alongside roasted veggies; the other half of the yellow squash and half a zuccini.  Look at the tomato-y goodness.


My eyes were a bit bigger than my stomach, this is what A ended up eating off my plate:


I did have room for dessert though, Smores Pie is so frickin’ good!


We are watching (the original) “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” so I’ve got to get back to the couch!  What is your favorite holiday movie?  You’ll see mine later this weekend.

End of the Weekend

December 1, 2008

It’s later than I’d like, so I’ve got to hurry, but I’m done!  It was a satisfying Sunday and I’ll be ready to get back to the grind tomorrow.

We slept in a bit, I’m feeling better today but still not 100%, and then got up to a yummy breakfast.  I made my best bowl of oats yet!


A 1/3C of oats cooked with a medium banana.  Raisins stirred in, topped with shredded coconut, a splash of skim milk, and a spoon of sunflower butter.  One of my best friends called right as I put this down so it sat for 30minutes before the first bite and was still delicious!

My friend who called was actually my maid of honor in my wedding, it was great to hear from her.  She lives in Boston but we are both too busy to make visits so we miss each other a ton.  A and I took a trip to Boston over our spring break last year so we are keeping our fingers crossed for this year.  How are you coping with being apart from high school/college friends?

I did some school work and then made a tasty sandwich out of these ingredients:


I toasted an everything bagel, spread it with french onion lite Laughing Cow, and topped it with 2 slices of turkey and a dollop of the artichoke caper spread.  Open faced.


I ate my sandwich alongside some organic baby carrots and two slices of Brauburn apple (they wouldn’t fit in my lunch I packed for tomorrow).


We did more, more, more school work before we headed out to do some laundry.  I will be so excited when I live in a house with a washer and dryer, the laundromat trips are not fun!  I did some work while I washed and snacked on half a gingersnap from the muffin place across the street.


When we got home, after more work, we made a tasty meal from Rachael Ray Magazine.  This was the “Salsa Verde Bake.”


I modified the recipe a bit, so I’m posting what I did.

  • 4 medium chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
  • 16oz jar salsa verde (we used medium but I’d suggest mild)
  • 20oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1C fat free sour cream (I would recommend using plain yogurt, but A doesn’t eat it)
  • 3C crushed whole wheat tortilla chips
  • 8oz lite Mexican style cheese
  1. Preheat the oven to 375*.  Spray a baking pan with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Put shredded chicken into a large bowl (I stewed and shredded the chicken earlier in the day) along with onion, kidney beans, salsa, and sour cream.  Mix together.
  3. Lay 1C of chips in the baking pan.  Top with chicken mixture.  Top chicken with 1C of chips and a layer of cheese.  Add another layer of chicken, another layer of chips, and a final layer of cheese. 
  4. Bake until the cheese is bubbly, about 20minutes.

Look how yummy!


My plate, alongside a Heineken Light!


Later on I had a cup of tea while I finished making my materials for the week.


This was my first cup of “Candy Cane Lane” decaf green tea.  It tastes good, but the smell is out of this world amazing!


And finally, I ate a 1/2C of Kashi (mostly Crunch with a little bit of Go Lean) with some skim milk and a splash of eggnog.


I topped it with cinnamon and it was the perfect dessert.

This week will be my first full, five day week in a while and I’m a little scared!  The next three weeks are all full weeks.  Poor timing, because this is officially the time when I have to get back to the gym!  Wish me luck, balancing my crazy life.  What will make your holiday season crazy this year?

Errands, Ups and Downs

November 29, 2008

It’s been an interesting day, but in spite of the illness I’ve gotten in some exercise with all the walking and carrying.  We decided to go ahead and walk the 1.5miles to our first stop, Target.  We did lots of X-mas figuring though, and were ready for the subway on the trip home.  I bought this peanutbutter pretzel Mojo Cliff Bar to eat on the train.


Yum; this is my favorite type of bar ever!  2nd only to KIND bars, which are difficult to find.  We went to a X-mas gift place, and Barnes and Nobel on the way home.  I bought this apple juice to take a painkiller with, but more about that later.


We finally got to go to Trader Joes!  I have been excited about this for months, but by the time we got there I was so sick I could barely stand up.  I didn’t even know what we had bought until after I got home and looked!  Probably had something to do with the fact that I stopped andthrew up on a car on the way home!!!  Yep, I’m that classy.  It did make me feel better though 🙂  As did the package I found from my parents when I got home.  I got magazines and these.


These are homemade peppermint candies my parents bought me at the Agricultural Fair back home last week; they are one of my fondest childhood memories.

After a short rest (and some teeth-brushing!) we headed back out.  We had to go back to the gift place to pick something up, down to Staples to buy packing materials, and to our neighborhood grocery store to actually finish stocking up.  We have a small freshdirect order coming tomorrow morning, and then we will be fully restocked!  All total it cost less than $200 so I’m feeling good about our challenge savings.

When I got home I snacked on five Mission Figlets,


and licked the spoon after I stirred my new natural peanut butter.  I mapped it, and found out that we walked (just to and from, not including in stores) a minimum of five miles today!  As a New Yorker and a walk lover this isn’t much, but for how I’m feeling I’m pretty impressed.


 For dinner, we did Thanksgiving a day late!

We made purple mashed potatoes and mushroom gravy, and had a little help with the stuffing and turkey.  For the potatoes I boiled a little less than 2lbs of a mixed bag (purple, yellow, red) in water for 15minutes.  Next I drained the potatoes and mashed with a 1/2C of skim milk and 2T Smart Balance.  Delish and healthy, we always leave our skins on, why go to extra trouble to make something less healthy?  The gravy was a recipe from Women’s Health.  I made a half batch, but here is the original recipe:

  1. Finely chop 6oz of baby portabello mushrooms (1 1/4C) and one small onion.
  2. Pour 1T oil in a saucepan that’s on medium-high heat.  Allow the oil to heat through and add the onion, stirring for 3minutes.
  3. Add in the mushrooms and cook covered for 4minutes or until the liquid is sweated out, stirring occasionally.
  4. Stir in 6T of all purpose flour, mixing completely.
  5. Slowly add in 4C chicken broth, stirring until mixed, and then simmer on low for 5minutes.

Here’s my plate – white meat without skin, potatoes, and stuffing, topped with bella gravy.


Fantastic!  We have leftovers for tomorrow that A and I are both looking forward to.  I will certainly be making the gravy again!  The biggest surprise, however, was the boxed stuffing – why would anyone ever bother to make this from scratch?  I thought I didn’t like stuffing but this stuff was great.  As much as I enjoyed dinner, I realized halfway through that I had bought popcorn at the grocery store.  I slowed down, and this was my plate when I pushed it to A.


So glad I stopped, I was able to enjoy my popcorn without feeling stuffed. 


I did eat a small pack of My Little Ponies fruit gummies later on, while we watched Now and Then on DVD.  Does anyone else remember this movie?  A little girlier than I had thought, but good.


I’m sipping a cup of eggnog’n tea with a splash of skim milk while I type, and life seems good!


I’m feeling a lot better now, and keeping my fingers crossed that this is how I feel tomorrow morning!