Thinking Out Loud #1

I haven’t been into linkup style posts in awhile. I used to do the WIAW thing almost weekly, and it just got old. I share my food here anyway, but I’d rather do it when I want to and not feel forced to do it just because it’s the ‘cool’ thing.

But I’ve got a bunch of random ramblings going on in my head right now, so what better way to share them than with the Thinking Out Loud Thursday linkup?

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  • I bought baby food AND dog food at Sprouts. And I don’t have a dog or a baby…
Some of my other Sprouts buys.

Some of my other Sprouts buys.

On one of my days off, I decided to make the trek to Sprouts for a midweek produce restock…and of course, I bought a lot more than I intended to. I don’t go to Sprouts more than maybe once a month anymore because it’s just not as convenient to work or home as Whole Foods is, but they do have some pretty cheap produce. But then I happened to stroll down the baby food aisle and I decided to get a couple pouches. They’ll be good to take to work when I don’t feel like packing veggies! And then I saw the Brad’s Raw dog treats were on sale, and even though they’re meant for dogs (but people-friendly too), the ingredients are spot on and they sounded good. Well, that was a waste of $5, because they taste nasty. I don’t even know why, because they’re just made of kale, sweet potatoes, spices and buckwheat groats. Maybe I’ll find an actual dog to feed them to…

  • I legitimately don’t understand how 20-somethings can vacation so much

Chalk it up to bitter jealousy, but I just don’t get it. ‘Tis the season for vacations, and it seems like every blog I read has some vacation recap and/or talking about an upcoming trip. I’m certainly not opposed to travel, it’s just that I grew up in a family where we vacationed once, maybe twice, per year. And usually one of those trips was an in-state road trip to the mountains. We weren’t poor, it’s just that my parents chose to spend money on other things. Now that I have a job and money of my own, I realize just how $$$ traveling is. And that’s why I don’t get how recent college grads like myself can take trips (especially by plane) so often. I’m talking multiple times in the summer alone! A car trip just to go back home is a good 10 hour + trip one way (I’m not making that drive, it sucks) and a 2-3 hour flight is at least $150 each way. And that would be going home, not even having to pay for a hotel or food. I want to fly home at least once this year, and I’d like to visit my good friend when she moves to Salt Lake City, but traveling that much is just not in the cards, wallet-wise 😦

  • I basically eat the same breakfast every day, and it does NOT get old
The protein bowl, aka my breakfast special.

The protein bowl, aka my breakfast special.

I got into the habit of making a protein chia pudding (Sunwarrior or Garden of Life raw protein+chia seeds+almond milk) for breakfast and then topping it with all sorts of stuff, usually raisins, stevia chocolate chips, raw granola and raw salted nuts. I’m basically obsessed with the sweet+salty combo. And now I’ve eaten this every single day for probably a month. I even eat it when I have breakfast at work — I just put the chia pudding in one mini tupperware and the toppings in another and combine at my desk. Sometimes I add fresh fruit (like the figs in the above picture), or half a Larabar, but it’s way too good. And sometimes, I even have it for dessert.

  • I’m obsessed with the pink+grey combination
I also love dresses with scarves.

I also love dresses with scarves.

Who says scarves are for fall and winter? I love them year-round, especially paired with dresses. And a plain (but really cute) dress like this just screams to be put with a patterned scarf. I also love how pink and dark grey pop against each other. It’s a good way to make pink less girly for those of you who dislike the color (obviously not me).

How often do you travel? Have you ever bought baby food to eat yourself? 

Dreamin’

Thank you for all the heartfelt responses on my last post! I’m glad I’m not alone 🙂

But let’s focus on something a little more positive today. Like dreams. We all have them…here are some of mine that always manage to lift my mood and inspire me to work a little harder!

Move to California

Save me, San Francisco.

Save me, San Francisco.

Get my meteorology certificate and become a weather anchor on TV

Open a raw vegan cafe

Live near the beach

Buy a Prius (preferably in habanero!)

Eco-friendly AND cute.

Eco-friendly AND cute.

Adopt a cat or dog from a shelter

Visit every state in the U.S.

Go to Coachella

See Saturday Night Live in person

Try paddleboard yoga

I might fall into the water trying this...

I might fall into the water trying this…

What are some of your dreams? 

 

From Texas to Tulsa

Thursday is the big day. AKA I pack up my life in Colorado and move 600+ miles away to Tulsa, OK. I also start my first real girl job in less than a week, so all that adds up to one stressed chica. I’m just trying to take things one day and one box at a time and enjoy the time I have left as an unemployed Colorado girl 😉

But enough moving and life change talk, let’s talk about spring break instead. Specifically my spring break. I spent most of it in Houston, TX at my aunt and uncle’s house and then a couple days at their lake house a few hours away (along with a side trip to Tulsa the weekend before to find me an apartment and furniture). This was possibly my last family vacation ever and even though it wasn’t always perfect, I tried to soak up every minute (even our way-too-long 18 hour drive home on Saturday) of the trip.

car snacks

Prepping road trip snacks.

Lunch at Whole Foods after a morning of apartment hunting in Tulsa. This WFM was huge, had a great salad bar selection and is a 7 minute drive from my new place!

Lunch at Whole Foods after a morning of apartment hunting in Tulsa. This WFM was huge, had a great salad bar selection and is a 7 minute drive from my new place!

lizard

A cute li’l lizard I found (you can barely see it, but it’s in the middle, on the fence) when I was laying out by the pool.

I could get used to this #poollyfe

I could get used to this #poollyfe

Galveston day trip.

Galveston day trip.

I love my sissy!

I love my sissy!

They had the most colorful parrots at the Moody Gardens rainforest.

They had the most colorful parrots at the Moody Gardens rainforest.

I dressed up for a day that was mostly spent driving to the lake house.

I dressed up for a day that was mostly spent driving to the lake house.

Rain on the window.

Rain on the window.

Doesn't this look so real? It was actual a fake turtle in an exhibit at a national park visitor center.

Doesn’t this look so real? It was actually a fake turtle in an exhibit at a national park visitor center.

Easy and healthy road trip snacks in the car on the way back home. Grapes, carrots and one-ingredient PB.

Easy and healthy road trip snacks in the car on the way back home. Grapes, carrots and one-ingredient PB.

I didn't know the TX panhandle had so many mesas! I absolutely love desert-like terrain.

I didn’t know the TX panhandle had so many mesas! I absolutely love desert-like terrain.

I love vacations, but it feels great to be back in my own bed!

I love vacations, but it feels great to be back in my own bed!

This vacation really challenged me A LOT! I had to deal with 4 really long drives (CO to Tulsa, Tulsa to Houston, Houston to the lake house, the lake house to home) where I was eating on the road (either Chipotle salads or healthy road trip snacks like Larabars and kale chips and carrots) and not getting much movement (I HATE sitting for long periods of time), as well as eating meals at weird times (my aunt and uncle love eating dinner late, so every night we ate after 8:30 pm!) and sometimes skipping meals because I wasn’t hungry, and also not getting any real exercise other than some walking. There were times on the trip I was miserable, because the humidity was messing with my hair and skin and I felt downright ugly and fat. But honestly, it was a nice trip, even though it wasn’t necessarily very relaxing. And when I got home, I was surprised to notice that my body didn’t really change at all during a week of no formal exercise and mostly eating snacks and not a ton of veggies. Of course, it felt great to get back into my daily workout routine and eating normal meals/snacks at regular times but this vacation taught me that it doesn’t have to be all or nothing. Flexibility is an important part of a healthy lifestyle, a part I’ve been mostly neglecting. Yes, regular exercise and balanced eating are incredibly good for you, but eating at Chipotle twice in one week or taking a break from working out on vacation is normal sometimes, and there’s no reason to beat ourselves up about it. This is hopefully something I can carry into my new life, because there may not always be time for 2 workouts a day or homemade salads for lunch, but I can still be healthy, and that’s what matters.

Do you prefer road trips or flying? How do you fit flexibility into a healthy lifestyle? 

Life Lately+Big Decisions

Hey guys! I’m back a little sooner than I expected…mostly because I just found out the other day that school actually starts a week later than I thought it did. Best surprise ever, right? Apparently I had a bit of a blonde moment thinking school started this coming Monday but luckily I checked my university’s website and confirmed that I actually start on the 26th. Yay to having an extra week of summer break though!

Anyways, my vacation went well and I want to share a few recap photos but I mostly want to talk about some big decisions I’ve been making lately–some about the blog.

So I’m starting my senior year–make that senior semester–on the 26th and I’m taking 17 credits, which is more than I’ve taken in my entire time in college. I’m basically taking on a full course load, along with returning to my position as weather anchor at the campus TV station. Add to that some job hunting and you’ve got one stressed chica. Don’t get me wrong, I’m super excited for this upcoming semester and even more so for graduation and getting my first job out of college, but I also have a lot on my plate. I need to buckle down and really focus on making my last semester the best ever, which also includes being more social/spontaneous, so blogging will definitely be taking a backseat.

Not only that, but I feel like I need to move on from this blog. I’ve been keeping it up for 2+ years and while it’s been great, I want to take a different focus for my blog. That being said, I’ve started blogging over at a new blog, Real.Food.Girl. and while I’ll generally be talking about similar topics, I’d like to focus more on healthy recipes, and the quirky parts of my life as a twenty-something starting my adult life on my own. I want this new blog to be more fun, more honest but less about the hangups I still have about food, fitness and my body. I’m moving further and further away from my struggles with those things so I think starting a new blog will be kind of a clean slate for me in that aspect. I hope you continue to follow me over at my new blog and I will definitely be keeping up with reading all of your posts because I love that part of blogging! I may not post as often (I’ll be trying for once or twice per week) but I hope the posts will be more meaningful.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s get to the fun part–the vacation recap. I don’t want to bore y’all with the details of the 8 day trip but I do want to share some photos with you guys. This vacation was unexpectedly amazing, yet sad at the same time. I visited extended family out in Wisconsin, and though in some ways it was similar to previous visits, it was quite different as well. For one thing, it was the first time we went back in 4 years, and a lot has changed since then. Mostly that my grandpa on my dad’s side is not doing well at all, and had just moved into assisted living before we got there. It was really hard to see him so frail and unable to walk on his own. Even though staying at his cottage wasn’t the same without him there, he really enjoyed our daily visits and hopefully they improved his spirits. Other than that, the trip was fun and it was great to catch up with extended family we hadn’t seen in a few years. We spent half the time with one set of grandparents at their house and camper and the other half at my grandpa’s lake cottage in the Northwoods. I’ve always enjoyed the time I’ve spent on the lake and I hope I can return again next summer because I really missed it.

Gotta love Sky Mall's silly products.

Gotta love Sky Mall’s silly products.

On the 'ducks' on the Wisconsin River.

On the ‘ducks’ on the Wisconsin River.

The fun lake at the campground.

The fun lake at the campground.

Qdoba salad on the road.

Qdoba salad on the road.

Heading up north!

Heading up north!

Snacks in the car.

Snacks in the car.

Lake Pokegama at sunset.

Lake Pokegama at sunset.

The pontoon boat.

The pontoon boat.

Lake view. Gorgeous.

Lake view.

Sissy on the pier.

Sissy on the pier.

Looking off the pier.

Looking off the pier.

I love the lake!

I love the lake!

Stairs of doom...just kidding! Super steep though.

Stairs of doom…just kidding! Super steep though.

Me on the paddle boat. My workout of choice while at the lake.

Me on the paddle boat. My workout of choice while at the lake.

Me and my sissy.

Me and my sissy.

Flying back home on Southwest Airlines.

Flying back home on Southwest Airlines.

I came back with TONS of pictures (80+!), more mosquito bites than I’d like and lots of memories. I really miss being there, but I’m glad to be back so I could get back into my normal routine–I didn’t get in any formal workouts while in WI other than paddleboating and walking around, my acne really flared up in the humidity and I missed having a Whole Foods 10 minutes away (though my parents were great and stopped at the WF in Milwaukee after landing to stock up on groceries for the week). I don’t always love where I live, but this trip made me thankful for some things I take for granted being here, and it made it a little easier to get back to my normal life. But nothing beats vacation time! I especially liked that we flew out instead of driving–I love airports and flying, and I haven’t flown in 3 years so I really missed it. Call me weird, but I just love to fly.

What was your most recent vacation destination? Do you like to fly?

Currently: August

Thanks for all the birthday wishes! You really know how to make a girl feel special 😀

I’m not sure when (or if) I’ll get back to a regular posting schedule with a vacation coming up and settling back in at scchool but for now, enjoy this little survey I always enjoy doing.

Current Book: I’m loving my new “Going Raw” cookbook. I like that it’s not just recipes (and delicious-looking ones at that) but it also came with a tutorial DVD and has tips for implementing raw foods into your lifestyle. I basically want to make everything in the book!

That burger on the cover looks unreal.

That burger on the cover looks unreal.

Current Music: I’m loving the new Grouplove song “Ways To Go” and “Hurricane” by MS MR. Alt Nation on Sirius XM is my all-time favorite radio station.

 

Current Guilty Pleasure: Phoney Baloney’s coconut bacon. Gah, I need to stop devouring this stuff–I only bought a small bag of it and the stores around me don’t sell it yet! Sooooo addicting, and awesome ingredients list.

Current Nail Color: Mint Sprint by Sally Hansen.

This goes with almost everything.

This goes with almost everything.

Current Drink: Water all day errryday in my VS PINK giant water bottle. It makes drinking water that much easier. Also, coconut water iced coffees.

Current Food: Salads at least 1X per day, protein banana softserve (though not as much anymore), protein fruit ‘cereal’ (Sunwarrior+almond milk+fruit+other toppings in a bowl), Larabars, ice cold watermelon.

These veggies aren't for eating but they sure are cute! An adorable recent IKEA find.

These veggies aren’t for eating but they sure are cute! An adorable recent IKEA find.

Current TV Show: I’m not watching much right now, but I like that new Hollywood Game Night show on NBC. I like seeing celebs in real life!

Current Wishlist: Some clothes I can transition into fall (particularly a hi-lo dress), more cute oxfords (spotted the cutest pair at a little boutique the other day!), a new planner for the school year…and motivation to get through this last semester. Senioritis is hitting me hard!

How cute is this one!

How cute is this one!

Current Needs: The need to pack! Seriously, I actually like packing but I always procrastinate. I can’t even think about packing up stuff again for school in 2 weeks…I just need to pack for vacation first!

Current Triumphs: Finishing up my weather internship with a bang. Last summer’s internship was a bit of a letdown but this summer’s was an amazing learning experience and I got to work in a great environment with awesome people. I’m going to miss that place a lot, but I’m thankful for the experience I got there. Annnnnnd, I may end up posting some of my work from there at some point on here, who knows!

Current Bane of Existence: School coming up. I’m sorta looking forward to it, but after 16 years of school, I am beyond ready to just get my diploma and move on to the real world. I loved college but at this point, I’m so done.

Current Indulgence: The vegan carrot cake ice cream I enjoyed the other day. Totally fine with having ice cream right after a delicious salad, and it was really good ice cream. It was like two of my favorite desserts (carrot cake+vegan ice cream) in one.

Ugh so good.

Ugh so good.

Current Blessing: Being able to see my extended family again. We haven’t been back to see most of the fam in 4 years and it’s good timing now because one of my grandpas is not doing so well. Hopefully our visit can lift his spirits and help him feel better. Not to mention, it’ll be great to get away for a week and enjoy a different state!

Current Outfit: Strapless blue-checked corset-style top from Abercrombie & Fitch, navy blue twill shorts from Hollister, jewelry from American Eagle.

It's getting hot again (wooo!)

It’s getting hot again (wooo!)

Current Excitement: Vacation…and college graduation in T-minus 5 months!

Answer any of the above! 

Popping In

Hey guys! Just stopping by to say a big thank you for all the comments on my last post. I’ll admit, a lot of them were hard to read just because the issue still hits so close to home for me, but they made me realize that I am still struggling, which is okay if I take some action and actually do something about it. So thanks again for taking the time to comment, it means so much to me!

Anyways, I’m taking a bit of a blog break. I’ll be back around my birthday (this coming Saturday–woo!) to recap that and then possibly a post or two before my vacation in a couple of weeks. I have a couple important topics I want to touch on, so look for those! In the meantime, I’ll just be enjoying life…well, as much as I can with a sore throat and upcoming dental appointments 😦 Hope you are all doing well!

ABCs of Raw

Checking in from my vacation with a raw foods survey!

A…preferred way to eat Avocados:  Definitely homemade guac, made with fresh jalapeno, cilantro, a squeeze of lime and sea salt.

B…daily Banana intake:  I’m definitely no 30 bananas a day person. I maybe eat one in a day, but not every day, and usually in frozen or banana softserve form.

C…Cacao or carob:  Cacao! I’ve actually never had carob, and while I know cacao can be controversial in the raw foodist world for its caffeine content, I love the taste and health benefits of cacao too much to care.

D…Durian?:  Never tried it, and I’ve heard it’s quite awful from a guy my dad said tried it.

E…Essential start to the day:  Water, multivitamin (I get the Alive! brand, which has a pretty clean ingredient list and a decent amount of calcium, plus greens) and breakfast. Lately I’ve been eating raw flax pancakes for b-fast (recipe coming soon!) and loving how easy it is to whip together.

raw flax pancakes

F…favorite Fruit:  Gosh, so hard. Right now, I’m loving cold watermelon, and champagne mangoes. Berries are finally tasting amazing again too!

G…Guru you like:  I don’t really know any raw food gurus, but I love Brendan Brazier and his Thrive Forward program. My one wish for Vega products is that they could have a raw protein powder product!

H…Healthy meal: Kelp noodles massaged in raw cashew cilantro dressing, topped with fresh greens, homemade guac and hemp seeds…aka super green kelp bowl!

Mmmm, green!

Mmmm, green!

I…Ice cream base:  Banana, but I really want to try Organic Nectars’ raw cashew gelato!

J…Juice or smoothies: Smoothies for sure, especially green monster ones made with chocolate Sunwarrior and frozen banana.

K…favorite way to eat Kale:  Dehydrated kale chips, homemade or store-bought.

L…# of Lemons in your house now:  1 I think…

M…Muscle testing–hoax or real?:  Never heard of it, but it seems like an interesting (if not totally accurate) way of determining imbalances in the body and food sensitivities.

N…Nut butter–favorite kind:  Cashew or almond, preferably raw.

O…Organic or conventional:  I try to buy organic when I can, especially the dirty dozen, but I usually pass if it’s too expensive and is in the clean fifteen.

P…Pickled veggies–ever made them?:  No, but I want to! The WF salad bar has these awesome clean bread and butter pickles and I want to recreate those.

Q…Questions you get asked about your diet:  Mostly, “What is that?” when someone sees what I’m eating. Plants, people. It’s not that foreign.

R…Recipe you love:  Raw maple cinnamon French toast, where I got the inspiration for my raw French toast!

raw french toast+ raw coconut bacon+raw honey, Sunwarrior chocolate coconut mousse+raspbs

S…Skin brushing?:  Nope, but I’ve heard it has benefits for poor circulation, so I want to try it on my feet.

T…Type of water you drink:  Nothing fancy, from the tap usually. We have really good water in Colorado, so I’m not too concerned that it isn’t filtered or whatever.

U…Unbelievable thing that’s related to eating raw:  I love feeling so light and energized after eating a raw meal!

V…Vegetable you love:  Spinach is my number one love at the moment. I also love carrots (the ‘real’ ones are so much better than baby carrots) and raw purple cauliflower.

W…Why did you start eating raw?:  I wanted to try something new, and I’ve always loved fresh produce.

X…X-rated fruit or vegetable:  Haha, this is super funny and awkward. People always think bananas are sexual, but carrots can be kinda…awkward.

Uh...yeah...

Uh…yeah…

Y…Yummy food you make:  Um, everything? But really, probably most of my raw dessert recipes, especially the classic raw brownie.

Z…favorite use of Zucchinis:  Zucchini noodles…I need a spiralizer, NOW!

Answer any of the above!