Monthly Archives: October 2010

Its All About Fall

My entire life I’ve loved the fall, its the absolute best season in my opinion. From the football, warm sweaters, beautiful colors, leaves falling to the crisp cool morning and comfort foods … its all about fall. Fall is when I come alive. When I come out of my shell and feel like my true self.

We are getting there … The weather could be a little crisper, but we are heading in the right direction. Fake it until you make it, I always say.

One of the absolute best things about fall is Pumpkin. Pumpkin everything!

When you start seeing these cans show up in the stores, its officially fall. They hold so much promise and possibility. I found a new friend this year …


I’m not the biggest of coffee drinkers, but I’m getting there and Pumpkin Spice definitely doesn’t hurt the process.

Another fall favorite is Chili. I would put my vegetarian chili up against your best meat-chili in a contest … its that good.

These are some of the things that made me smile today. In additon was also my new food processor which I’m currently experimenting with.


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So far the winners seem to be the apple chips. In fact I just started a second batch to dehydrate over night. Yay for healthy snacks!

Once I get this Disney Trip out of the way next week, its going to be all fall all the time. Cooking, decorating, dressing, acitivities … fall has its own culture. I can’t wait to induldge, but first these 80 degree afternoons have to go!


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So Much To Do!

Aaaah! We are going to Disney World in less than one week. I’m finally starting to get excited. I’ve been too busy lately to even really put any thought into it until now.


But first an update on the knee …

Its been 4 days now since I’ve run which is pretty  much unheard of for me. I don’t think I’ve gone 4 days without running in about a year and a half now.

I have been doing the elliptical in place of running. I have virtually no pain while I’m doing the elliptical. I have still been experiencing some dull pain and aching in general though. It isn’t the same sharp, “I can barely walk because my knee keeps locking up” pain that I felt before, so I guess that’s good. I was really hoping by now the pain would have gone away completely though.

I want to run again. Nothing is the same. But I will give it atleast a full week (which will be Tuesday) and more time if needed. It might be time to see a doctor soon.

Back to the fun stuff …

In preparation for our Disney trip I bought this:

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I’ve been wanting one anyway, so this seemed like the perfect time. I can make healthy snacks to have on our long car trip. It should be delivered today.

I’m hoping to make:

  • banana chips
  • dried strawberries
  • sweet potato chips
  • apple chips

I have so much to do before this trip. I really need to start a list so I don’t forget something important.


What is your take on these type of devices …


Tim and I have both always agreed that we would never use a “leash” on our child. Tim is adamantly opposed to it, but I am now considering it for Disney World. I want my child to be able to walk around without me being scared that I’m going to lose him in a crowd.



Filed under Food, Parenting/Mommy Blogging, pictures, products, travel, vacation

Time Out

I haven’t mentioned this on the blog yet, but for the past couple of weeks I’ve been experiencing some pretty severe knee pain during and after running. I noticed it shortly after the half marathon on October 2nd.

Most of my aches and pains up until this point have worked themselves out over time without any real need to take any extended amount of time off. This pain is severe enough that I’m starting to get worried.

I’m putting myself on a 1 week running restriction starting immediately. I will attempt to crosstrain on the elliptical and bike but if that seems to aggravate the knee I will cut that out also. If after a week the pain isn’t gone or remarkably better I will make an appointment to see a Orthopedic Specialist.

I’m so stubborn that its hard for me to admit that I need a break. My body deserves it, it has served me well so far and I don’t want to risk the chance of permanent or severe injury. I’m depressed 😦


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A Great Fall Day

Today Tim and I decided to take Rocketboy to the Pumpkin Patch for the first time. But first breakfast …


The boys were craving pancakes, but I wasn’t feeling it.


Hash browns topped with a fried egg for me, salsa and ketchup for dipping.

Before heading out we paused in the driveway for some auto-timer family pictures.


The Pumpkin Patch was awesome! I’m glad we decided to go this year since I discovered that children under 3 were free. Next year it will cost $16 for Lincoln to get in!


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The [evil] cow train …

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That thing was hell on my entire body. My butt, my back, my head … it all hurt.

The highlight of the day for Lincoln was the hayride to the actual Pumpkin Patch area. Especially when he got to pretend to drive the tractor.


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Today is my mother-in-law’s birthday and she decided she wanted to have lunch at Red Robin. I ordered the Bleu Ribbon Veggie Burger …

But it couldn’t compare to Tim’s Mt Olympus Veggie Burger …

I ate half of his and virtually none of mine.
Spinach Artichoke dip > Bleu Cheese.

To just solidify the greatness of the day, I’ll say WAR EAGLE!

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The Meal I’ve Been Craving …

I’ve been thinking about this meal for about a week. I found this little packet of seasonings way back in my cupboard and it got me all excited.


Spicy Peanut Bake!

Tim and I used to LOOOVE this stuff on boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Its like Thai “Shake n Bake”, but way awesomer!

When I first found the packet I thought, “too bad we’ll never eat this again”. I started to throw it out, and then I realized I could try it on tofu.

Another thing I have been craving is okra and tomatoes. Although I’ve never really eaten okra and tomatoes in  my life, and probably wouldn’t have unless I was forced … I tasted some at work a couple weeks ago and I haven’t been able to get it out of my head.


I decided to combine my cravings into one meal, along with some yellow squash that I’ve been needing to use up.

With the squash I normally sauté it in olive oil with onions and season it with lemon pepper, but today I wanted to do something different but still simple. I used this recipe.

The results:


Kind of a mushy looking lunch. But I swear it was good!

The star of the show was actually the okra and tomatoes. The tofu was good, but the seasonings were sweeter and not as spicy as I remember it being (maybe because its been in my cabinet for over a year?).

I’m taking the leftovers to work for dinner. 🙂

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Facing Fear

Remember this? …


That’s the bike that I got for Mother’s Day this year.

If you don’t remember, the day I got the bike I fell off of it and almost broke my wrist. Here’s the post. I’ve only biked once since the fall, and it was actually the next day.

I took the bike to the shop and had the clipless pedals removed and cages put on, because I knew I wasn’t ready for them yet. But yet … I still never biked.

I finally decided yesterday was the day for me to overcome my fear and get back on the bike.

I drove myself to a flat, low traffic area, that I knew well. I still didn’t use the cages, but I did bike!

I rode 11 miles in 49 minutes! Not impressive by any means, but its a start. I was proud.

Now I just need to stick to it and ride atleast twice a week or help myself become more comfortable on the bike.

Once I got going I actually had a great time! Its just the starting, stopping and turning that freaks me out 😛

Back to work tonight, so the blogging will be minimal for several days.

I’m working on a lunch right now that I have been craving for days! I hope I have time to share the results of that later. Be on the lookout!


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Spinach Enchiladas

One of the recipes that I found this week and decided to try out was Spinach Enchiladas. Earlier in the week I talked about how I have felt like I was stuck in a rut lately with my vegetarian recipes and I needed something new and exciting to spice things up.

If you missed it the first time, this is the list that I came up with for my weekly menu.


As with all of my creations, I started with a basic recipe and then transformed it into something specific for my preferences and taste.

I substituted and added several of my own ingredients to make the original version healthier and (in my opinion) tastier.

Ingredients I used include:

  • Red onion
  • Minced garlic
  • Mushrooms
  • Frozen Chopped Spinach
  • 1% Cottage Cheese
  • Green Chile Enchilada Sauce
  • Herbs and Spices

I started off by sautéing red onions and garlic in EVOO (instead of butter).


To that I added chopped mushrooms (to add substance and a “meatiness”.)


Next I added the defrosted, drained (very important step) frozen spinach plus a blend of spices (salt, black pepper, red pepper flakes and fresh cilantro).


I decided to use 1% cottage cheese in the recipe instead of ricotta cheese to cut down on the fat. I’ve never been a fan of cottage cheese, but I figured with all the herbs and spices it wouldn’t be a noticeable substitution. I was right! It definitely worked.

I wasn’t sure how much I would need so I started by adding and mixing in 1 cup of cottage cheese at a time.


I ended up using 3 cups to get the consistency that I was going for.


I used flour tortillas instead of corn (personal preference). I added about 3/4 cup of the mixture to each one, rolled and placed in a baking dish.

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I poured green enchilada sauce on top and topped with a little shredded cheese. Green enchilada sauce > Red sauce.

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The recipe made 8 large enchiladas!

I baked them in a preheated oven at 375 degrees for 20 minutes, topped with sour cream, green onions and a dash of hot sauce.


Holy moly! These were AH-MAAAA-ZING!

These are definitely going in a regular rotation. Give them a try, you won’t be disappointed. I definitely recommend the cottage cheese substitution, you won’t notice a difference. I promise!

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