I have exciting news! After a year of being underemployed and searching for a fulltime job in education….I GOT ONE!!!! I will be an instructor at a school for children with disabilities starting next Wednesday. It’s a year round school (hence starting next Wednesday), but I do get 1 week off every month or two, plus long vacation time around holidays. Hurray for employment!
I worked out before breakfast and then enjoyed my last piece of Rudi’s Bakery-Nut and Oat bread. Topped it with my homemade jelly and peanut butter. Half a banana on the side. After breakfast, I did some laundry and cleaning. Since I’m planning on moving closer to my new job (an hour commute=ew), I made lots of phone calls. At least I have two months to decide on a new place 🙂
I was starving by the time lunch came around. I ate a leftover slice of pizza with a huge Argula and Spinach salad topped with cashews and cucumber dressing. I finished off some more laundry and caught up on ods and ends in-between. It was getting pretty hot around this point, so my water bottle was quickly getting nixed.
For a snack I had a vegan brownie with a spoonful of coconut milk ice cream and fresh strawberries. After my snack I ran some errands and indulged in more crafts. I am a crafting addict and it takes a lot to pull me away from doing them!
I rewarded myself for getting my teaching job with sushi. I got a green island roll and a salmon sandwich roll. I didn’t eat it all, so now I have more sushi for tomorrow 🙂 I did crafts beforehand and I’ll post some photos of what I’ve been doing later. I’ll give you a hint though, it’s awesome and nerdy 😉
My evening snack was a much needed bowl of granola. Its been so hot lately that I seem to crave a bowl of granola with diced fruit every night. After snack time I tackled some more crafts and watched Ghostbusters. Favorite movie ever.
There are tons of recipes on the internet for 1-minute brownies or cakes and some work, others just turn out terribly. I don’t eat eggs and since most of the recipes call for them, it limits me to what recipe will work. I began experimenting on my own to find a recipe that worked perfectly for individuals with food allergies or vegan diets and came up with a healthy version that can come out to around 100 calories (depending on extras add-ins). I love having one of these after a stressful day or when I have a chocolate. This easily doubles as well!
4 TBSP flour (I use whole wheat, but spelt and almond are good too!)
2 TBSP unsweetened cocoa powder
1-2 TBSP sugar (or a pinch, depends on your sweet tooth)
Pinch of salt
2 TBSP applesauce
2-3 TBSP almond, soy or cows milk (3 is usually the best guess)
Optional: peanut butter chips, chocolate chips
1-Mix dry, then wet and put it in a coffee mug.
2-Place in microwave for 1-1 minute 30 seconds and allow to cool before eating
3-Top with peanut butter or ice cream for extra sweetness if desired.
On a side note, I completed my third game this year. I beat Endless Ocean last night. I still have treasures, the pirates ship and more fish to find, but for now I’m putting it back on the shelf. It’s a really great game and the perfect pick up and play for a few minutes game.
Every week I try to do one of these. All but one week in the last 3 months I’ve failed. I got my act together today and managed to get a snapshot of everthing I ate for WIAW. Without further ado, my life today in foods and other quirks;
I’ve been out of coffee grounds for the last month, but I’ve had coffee every morning. Why? Because the Sheetz down the road from me is giving away free coffee, soda and slurpees. I go there once a day for a large coffee that will last me all day. I went out this morning, filled my tank and grabbed a large coffee. I came back and had a banana with almond butter (Justins!) with my last blueberry bliss bar. During breakfast I got an interview call.
Homemade Vegetarian chili with stoneground crackers and half an apple. I’m going to be sad when I’m out of chili, but its lasted a week with daily consumption.
Unpictured chocolate covered espresso beans for an afternoon boost! I ended up getting a second job interview too. Wow, four in the last week! Too bad only one was a school related job I applied for.
Salmon and spinach crackers. For dessert I had my last frozen cinnamon roll. I also had tons of coffee and worked on a new craft. I’ll show pictures when you can actually tell what it’s going to be 🙂
I had a nightmare. A nightmare that involved…eating school lunches. Oh the horror;
Having read books like Fed Up With School Lunches, I have become more assured that I would rather go all day without eating that touch the pink slime, multiple ingredient, what is this garbage they feed to kids and paying adults. I still recoil in remembrance of one particular meal in which the kids got what I thought was watermelon from the squishy pink color. It was baked apple.
That being said, throughout student teaching and my career now as a substitute teacher, I have always packed a lunch to eat. Since I only eat fish and don’t do dairy, eggs or honey, lunches can sometimes be an interesting predicament when I’m planning meals. Here’s a couple of lunch ideas that are healthy and will keep you going from lunch time and beyond.
Main Course/Whole Meal
Peanut Butter and Jelly on Whole Wheat or Multigrain bread
Tofu Salsa Scramble (Add mushrooms!)
Burritos and Falafel wraps
Tuna or salmon fish sandwich with spinach
Hummus, sprouts and veggie sandwiches
Carrots with Hummus, ranch dressing
Crackers (Back to Nature)
Apples, oranges, bananas, strawberries (any fruit)
Brown Rice chips (love riceworks!)
Steamed Veggies (I LOVE birdseye)
Pistachios or other nuts
Yogurt (Stoneyfield is my favorite!)
Keep in mind you want to eat the right amount to keep you going during the afternoon crash before you have a snack! Processed foods and sweets will make you crash and sluggish, so keep in mind that you want to fuel your body 🙂 A balanced meal includes;
- Protein! (Nut butter, tofu, nuts or seeds, tempeh, hummus, beans)
- 1-2+ servings of veggies and/or fruit
- Balance of fat, protein and carbs
- Avoid sugar, processed foods and too much soda
A typical week in lunches at school for me might look like;
Monday: Veggie burger on spinach, rice chips (salsa or garden)
Tuesday: Bean burrito filled with your hearts desire insides. (Food for Life wraps!)
Wednesday: Tofu scramble with toast topped with peanut/almond butter and banana
Thursday: Veggie Sandwich with chips on the side or an apple
Friday: Salmon or Tuna Sandiwch with spinach. Steamed veggies on the side.
And of course, leftovers from dinner are always great 🙂
Do you pack your own lunch?
I really thought today was Thursday when I woke up. Luckily it wasn’t! I didn’t get any sub calls for today (two for full days Friday and next week though!) It was good timing since it meant I could get caught up on things that I was behind on, though tomorrow I’ll need to head to the DMV and renew my license. The weather has been incredible here and last I checked it was 81 degrees! This is my kind of weather to be sure 😉
After seeing Angela’s recipe last week for Blueberry Buckwheat pancakes, I knew on my next day off I needed to make them! They tasted wonderful and I had a little fun with the extra bananas. I had almond butter on the side for added protein. Of course the essential coffee was included.
Rudi’s english muffin (I’m never switching brands, they’re amazing!) with one of my homemade black bean burgers. Inside was sliced onion, tons of spinach, pasta sauce and naoyneise. I had several dehyrdated veggies on the side. Hey, they’re veggies right? I hope so because I ate like a 1/3 of the bag.
Lunch held me over until around 7 after my brownies had finished. I did a small stir fry (broccoli, cashews, pepper, onion, mushroom and rice noodles) and a soy yogurt on the side. It was super yummy and hit the spot.
Giving into my chocolate craving, I made ‘healthy-ish brownies). I subbed whole wheat flour in for all purpose, 1/4th the sugar content, added brewed coffee instead of water and made some pretty decent vegan brownies. They weren’t super sweet, which was perfect 🙂 And yes, that is a PB chip in case you were wondering 😉
The warm weather has certainly been amazing lately and I enjoyed it some today. I mainly took today to catch up on things and look forward to finishing them up tomorrow! Tomorrow will definately be another day for shorts! Good thing I already started doing my spring cleaning on that note…and tomorrow I can work on it some more.
What was the best thing you ate today?
If there were another word for an extreme shift in things other than bipolar, that would describe Virginia’s current state of mind. Yesterday it was freezing, the skies were gray and snow began to fall for a solid 3-4 hours. Enough to let out schools and then…it stopped, melted and turned to rain. Waking up this morning we saw clear, beautiful blue skies without a single white fluffy cloud. Oh, and its 50-something degrees. I would LIKE strawberries this year…but they never died from this winter.
Lack of cold weather aside, I was craving chili. I’ve never been a soup or chili kind of girl until this winter when I fell in love with chili. I always found it too plain (like salads most of the time) and growing up chili was equated with hotdogs in my family, something I tended to not enjoy eating. A while back I stumbled across a sweet potato chili recipe. I love sweet potatoes and something spicy with plenty of veggies seemed just right! So, into the pot went veggies and spices;
Sweet Potato Chili
-2 sweet potatoes (small or medium)
-1/2 large onion or 1 medium onion
-1/3 cup chopped mushrooms
-1 large carrot
-2 Cans of beans (Black bean and kidney or pinto)
-1 Can diced tomato
-1.5 TSP each of Cumin
-1.5 TSP Chili powder
1/4 tsp tumeric (added kick)
-1 TSP salt
-1 Cup of water or broth
1) Chop all veggies (sweet potatoes, mushrooms, carrots and onions). Start by pouring 1 TBSP of olive oil in the bottom of a large sauce pan. Set heat to medium-high and add onions, mushrooms and carrots. Allow to sizzle 3 minutes
2) Add sweet potatoes and diced tomatoes (pour in juice as well!) If you have tomato paste, it can be added for extra thickness. Next, combine beans and add Cup of water. Depending on desired thickness, you may want to add an extra half cup.
3) Add spices and bring to a boil. Once it boils, lower the heat and allow it to cook for 15-20 minutes or until potatoes are soft and tender.
4) Feast! This chili is perfect with crackers 🙂
I’m off to read to my adopted niece later. We’re reading either “The Rose Horse” or “The Three Orphaned Kittens”. In the meantime, I have an outline to write on The Importance of Childrens Literature written before 1950. I also need to tackle some human geography homework at some point!
Do you like chili or soup?
As it happens around this time of day (either right after teaching or after the afternoon crash) my stomach growled and my blood sugar was crashing. After I popped onto the Global Pokemon Link and got Arceus and a koffing, I went to the kitchen to get exactly what I was craving..
Roasted red pepper hummus with corn chips of course 😉
I’ve never been one to eat three meals a day. I have to have an afternoon snack and sometimes even a late night snack. As I was eating my hummus snack, I have to wonder what other people go for during their snack attacks. I tend to cycle through the following eight and while the occasional baked good/sugary treat can work, I’ve learned it doesn’t really help (UNLESS coffee is involved) keep me full or perk me up. Hm.
#1 Seaweed Snacks
I’ll be honest, this one has gotten me more than a few strange looks. I was munching away during lunch last week in the office at the school, When the nurse stopped and asked “What ARE you eating?”
“Seaweed, wanna try some?”
*raises eyebrow* Sure. (sadly she didn’t like it)
I like the saltiness and you get a veggie serving from eating them. They’re NOT for everyone, but if you can get into them, they make a great snack.
I have a special love for these bars. They’re full of vitamins and essentials and pack enough punch to get you over the afternoon lurch. They are geared towards women, but I’m sure they’d still good if you’re a guy. My favorite flavors are;
- Blueberry (!!!!!!!!!!)
- Vanilla Almond (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
- Nutz over chocolate (!!!!!)
- Toasted Nuts ‘n Cranberry
They recently released a new flavor called Peanut butter honey pretzel. Its not bad at all! Not something I’ll be bolting to the store for, but very good nevertheless.
Yogurt is filling, customizable and pretty good for you as long as you stick to natural brands. I stick with the Whole Soy and Co and Soy Delicious brands, but I also recommend Stoneyfield, Chobani and wallaby. I love adding chia seeds, granola or fresh strawberries in mine.
#4 Fresh Fruit
Its hard to go wrong with fresh fruit such as strawberries, bananas, apples, grapes and oranges. They’re easy to carry around and are loaded with vitamins that can perk you up and keep your energy levels up thanks to natural sugars (meaning they stay unlike processed sugars)
#5. Nuts (or make your own trailmix!)
They’re easy to carry around, full of healthy fats, omega3-s, fiber, protein…and with the exception of the high calorie count, they’re suberb! My favorite nuts tend to be cashews, pistachios, and toasted almonds.
Growing up, I could have eaten cereal 2/3 meals and been a happy camper. As an adult, a bowl of cereal just doesn’t cut it for a meal unless I’m eating light. As a snack its a great pre-workout snack or late night snack. My favorites are Peanut butter and chocolate puffins, Triple Berry Granola (Arhcer farms), Spelt flakes, Kashi Go Lean and Cinnamon Harvest (Kashi).
#7-Toast (Nut butter and banana)
Not your typical toast, but Nut butter and Banana toast. This is one of my favorite pre-workout and afternoon snacks and it never seems to get old. I use almond butter (prefer the taste and its better for you) and slice up about 1/3-1/2 a banana and munch away.
#8 (tie) Hummus and crackers or Spinach and crackers
No contest, hummus and crackers (or pita chips!) is always a win in my book. Its comforting, gives you a serving a veggies and fills you up. I did have to add spinach and crackers because despite its oddity, its what I lived off snack wise during student teaching last year. You simply wrap a cracker in spinach and munch away 🙂
What are your favorite snacks?