Saturday, February 26, 2011

Friday I Went Back into the Kitchen

Guess who was back at the gym early Friday morning? Surprisingly it was us, LOL. Since we were out later than we normally would be given a 5am wake up I wasn’t sure we would make it but we did. We had a cold rain overnight that was still coming down pretty good when we left the house. Isn’t this picture creepy of the trees in the morning through the rain?

This is what it looked like when we left the gym with the sun trying to come up. However the clouds were thick and the rain was still falling so it just looked grey outside.

When we got home I was craving savory oatmeal and this time made it with nutritional yeast. Dan had fruit and nut oatmeal and a green tea to wash it down before he left for work.

My lunch was the end of the soup I made on Monday with white beans and artichokes and Sicilian spices.  I topped it with two slices olives because I was craving a little saly. Dan had a training mid-day where they where they were having Chinese brought in. He had steamed mixed veggies with a spicy brown sauce that he topped with cashews. Chinese restaurants are almost always a great source of healthy vegan food since they have a lot of veggies and will steam them for you and then if you get the sauce on the side you can keep your sodium consumption down. We also love that most (although not all) Chinese places offer brown rice now in addition to white.

After lunch I headed into the kitchen to make items to have on hand for the next few days. The items I made included: red sauce, pinto beans, walnut parmesan, quinoa and green split pea soup. I used the pressure cooker for the pinto beans and made the red sauce and split pea in large enameled cast iron pans since they are great for long slow cooking.

Our dinner was a quick meal of quinoa topped with veggies from the freezer (broccoli, green beans, corn, carrots, and peas), red sauce and finished with walnuts (Dan doesn’t love nutritional yeast). I love having intentional leftovers in the refrigerator since it allows me to pull dinner together quickly because it leaves me more time to spend with Dan.

After dinner we watched two episodes of Criminal Minds and went to bed later than we should have. Since we have started to get up at 5am by 10:30 last night I was falling asleep sitting up.  Darn it is tough getting old. LOL

Blogger ABCs:

I saw this over at LJ’s blog and since I enjoyed reading her answers I thought I would join in.

A. Age: 47 until May

B. Bed size: Queen

C. Chore you hate: This is tough because I dislike most chores but laundry is my least favorite.  ;-)

D. Dogs: I grew up with a wire-haired terrier, red cocker spaniel, calico cat, white rabbit and turtles. The wire-haired terrier had a wonderful personality. We have 3 much loved Turkish Angora cats now or I would have another terrier becasue he was a wonderful dog.

E. Essential start to your day: Exercise and green tea. Then I need to have either oatmeal (preferably savory) or a green smoothie.

F. Favorite color: Royal purple or blue it depends on the day

G. Gold or silver: White gold or silver. I prefer white metal now.

H. Height: 5'3” if I stand up really tall, okay more like 5’2 ½” but I can dream.

I. Instruments you play: Not a single one. I have no musical talent though I wish that I did.

J. Job title: Retired, woo hoo! I was a hospital controller for many years before I bailed out of the working world.

K. Kids: Dan and I don’t have any children together. He has adult children from his first marriage.

L. Live: Baltimore, Maryland

M. Mom’s name: Ina LaRue though she goes my LaRue. All the women in my family have uncommon names and I have no idea where that came from.

N. Nicknames: Ali, Li, Lish, and the list goes on but you get the idea. Since my given name is Alicia you would think that would be short enough for most people but it gets shortened often. I basically answer to anything remotely close but Ali is the nickname that gets used the most.

O. Overnight hospital stays: When I was working too many hours in the hospital this happened more than it should have so I have no idea. ;-)

P. Pet peeve: Selfish people that will do anything to “better themselves” stepping on others trying to get ahead. I don’t understand why people need to inflict pain on others but it irritates the "you know what" out of me.

Q. Quote from a movie: "I’ll have what she is having" from When Harry Met Sally. That is my favorite movie of all time. I have seen it so many times I know most of the dialog by heart.

R. Right or left handed: Right.

S. Siblings: None, just me.  The world wasn't ready for more than one is what my father used to say when I was little.  He may have been on to something.  ;-)

T. Time you wake up: Approximately 5am when we are going to the gym or farmers’ market. On Saturday we turn the alarm back to 10am and get up whenever we have had enough rest.

U. Underwear: Yes doesn’t everyone wear them? LOL! My only requirement is that they don’t leave lines.

V. Vegetables you dislike: Okra is not my favorite I don’t like the gelatinous nature of it. However in stews or gumbo even okra is fine. Other than that I like all veggies which is amazing since I was a veggie avoider more of my life than I care to admit.

W. What makes you run late: Only my husband otherwise I am always early because I hate being late.

X. X-Rays you’ve had: Teeth, full body bone scan, mammogram, head, and chest x-ray. 

Y. Yummy food you make: That is a tough question since I make many things I consider yummy.  ;-)

Z. Zoo- favorite animal: I haven’t been to a zoo in well over a decade, but I like the big cats like lions and tigers.

If you liked reading this please share your answers on your blog or tell me a couple of things about you in the comment section.

Happy thoughts:

Lately I have had so many happy thoughts that it has been tough to keep this section manageable. I am fairly certain that focusing on the good things in my day has had caused me to be even more upbeat which I think is wonderful. If you haven’t tried it you should I think you will get a lot out of it. Here are a few of my happy thoughts today:

• I love Saturday since it is my chance to hang out with Dan and relax. Today we slept in and got a slow start to the morning. What a perfect way to start the weekend!  *happy dance*

• As I was writing this post I took time to stop and what Jose Andres on PBS. I adore his passion for food and love to hear him talk about it. If you haven’t been to any of his restaurants I highly recommend them. When Jose was on 60 Minutes and called vegetables "sexy" I knew I was in love. ;-) I have a total chef crush on Jose. Are there any chefs that you adore?

• It is wonderful that the weather is starting to warm up again. Saturday it was 45 and Sunday it is supposed to reach 60. *happy dance* I am also thankful for the rain we had on Friday that washed away the majority of the snow we had on the ground. Spring time is coming soon. The farmers’ market will be open again on April 1. Life is good!

• The two courses that I ordered from “The Great Courses “ have arrived. I am excited to start watching them and hopefully learn more about health and nutrition. :-) Who knows maybe I will be able to get Dan to watch the DVDs with me. That is my plan but we will see if Dan has other ideas.

• As I am typing this there is a beautiful red/orange sunset happening. I love looking at the beauty of nature especially when she is putting on a show.

Signing out:

Today has been extremely relaxing and rejuvenating. I love having time to recuperate each weekend. Tomorrow our plans are still up in the air. We are thinking of heading to the library, Whole Foods and the Asian market is we get moving early enough. Other than that we are going to play things by ear. I hope you are having a wonderful weekend. Talk to you again tomorrow.


  1. Nice to read a little bit more about you, Ali :)
    I like the soup with the olives on top - I always want to eat more olives!

  2. YAY, I didn't get a vitamix, but I got a Health Master--it's a Montel Williams endorsed infomercial deal. I couldn't afford the vitamix and I was able to get the healthmaster on credit. I can't wait to make so many more of your recipies for nut milks and nut butters and strawberry banana soft serve. I've been making a green smoothie but the blender I had doesn't blend it all the way smooth. This one will and it will be 100% better I know it. I made up a smoothie: banana nut muffin smoothie: bananas, walnuts, cinnamon, splash of almond milk, ice. thought I'd share.


  3. It sounds like you had a great Friday and Saturday :-)


  4. i love reading your happy thoughts. what a great way to focus on the positive every day. so i'm glad they are getting out of hand! what can be better than an excess of happiness? :)

  5. Great ABC's, Ali! That was fun to read. I also noticed that you enjoy Criminal Minds--it's also one of my favorites--the guy who sometimes plays Penelope Garcia's boyfriend is the guy from Buffy who I met yesterday! Also, I love that you love When Harry Met Sally--that's Bobby's favorite movie too. :)


  6. You oranges always look so much brighter than my oranges. And by the way your green tea commentaries always give me a little nudge to switch out a cup of coffee for green tea. You rock!


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