Morning Run in the Rain and Family Time

Kimbo and I ran this morning in the rain, it was actually quite nice. I didn’t leash Kimbo since we once again had the entire levee to ourselves. She stayed right with me, only lagging a bit toward the end with her whole youngest hanging outta her mouth. She’s been such a nice running partner. 

The girls’ school had a jumping fundraiser for the American Heart Association today at school, Bill and I went as volunteers. It was fun to watch all the kids. Graci went threw our station too, and she did great. 🙂 

Tonight is swimming lessons for the kiddos and dinner out with the fam.  

Kind of in a weird slump right now. I don’t know if it’s the drama at work, feeling bored with my running/workout routine, or what… Trying to identify what my issue is. I think part of it is that my social life has changed a lot, I used to spend a lot of time with friends at the gym and CrossFit, people that I could talk to about my running, my workouts, meet up with when I needed motivation, I think not having that has been more difficult than I expected. Do I join a running group? Do I try to find forums online that I can discuss running with? Is that what my blog is? A place for me to talk about the things that I love and the things that interest me? Or could it be the monotony of my workouts? Should I look at other places to run? Other races? Biking? Anyways, doing a little soul searching right now. 

Homemade Vanilla Almond Milk

I know this is crazy, but I MADE VANILLA ALMOND MILK!!!
1c blanched almonds (I bought sincerely almonds on Amazon)
Pure vanilla extract, to taste (my MIL brought this particular kind back from Mexico, and it’s amazing)
4c water
(FYI, You will need a mesh nut bag, I also bought this on amazon)
Bring almonds to boil in small pot of water for 4-5 minutes. Drain off water. To a blender or food processor add almonds, water and vanilla, blend til smooth. Set up mesh bag over pitcher and pour mixture into bag. Hold bag closed with one hand and squeeze out liquid with other hand. Store in sealed jar for up to 4-5 days. 
And, Graci and I started our own sprouts today! More in a few days about that! Graci and I also made the fam Swedish meatballs. They loved it! 

And I had Kale Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta and the sauce was made with Greek yogurt and Miracle Noodles!!!

Apple Cinnamon Streusel Muffins & My Furry Running Partner

Had a terrific morning strength training workout followed by a chilly, raining run with my furry pup! Took her off the leash today since the path was empty, and to my surprise she didn’t get more than 5 feet from me. She’s a terrific running partner and finally gaining a little speed. 

Tonight, since I just heated up a pre-made freezer meal that I prepped last week, I had time to make some delicious and super healthy Apple Cinnamon Streusel Muffins for my fam!!!

Apple Cinnamon Streusel Muffins

2c plus 3T whole wheat flour
2/3c plus 3T pure maple syrup
1/4c unsalted pecans, finely chopped
2t ground cinnamon 
1/2t plus 1/8t sea salt
1/4t plus 1/8t nutmeg
2T organic unsalted butter, melted
2t baking powder
1/2t baking soda
1 apple (I used an organic honey crisp apple), peeled, cored & chopped
1 large egg
1c reduced-fat buttermilk
1c unsweetened applesauce
3T safflower oil
Preheat oven to 375 degrees, line 12 count muffin pan with paper liners. Prepare topping, in small bowl, combine 3T flour, 3T pure maple syrup, pecans, 1/2t cinnamon, 1/8t salt and 1/8t nutmeg. Drizzle with butter and stir with fork until moistened. In large bowl, whisk together remaining ingredients. Divide batter into muffin cups. Crumble topping over muffin batter evenly. Bake until toothpick comes out clean, 20-25 minutes. 

Even Bill, who doesn’t dig healthy food, loved these! Sweet success!

Foodie Sunday!

Sundays I reserve for making a menu for the fam and a menu for myself, looking up recipes we would like that I want to try and make, making the grocery list because I don’t like a bunch of un-needed junk in my pantry, and grocery shopping.

Started the morning with Overnight Oats (check out the earlier blog, they are soooo good) and they just give me tons of energy, and a pile of Strawberries. Yum. 

For lunch, I made Chili Chicken Pasta, which was delicious, and because I used Miracle Noodles, was way low in calories. Yum!

1 large boneless, skinless chicken thigh (I prep mine on the George Forman, as thighs are fattier, but it prefer them, so I try to get the fat off first)
Onion (I had some medallion ones hanging around the fridge, so I used those up, but any onion would work)
Peppers (bountiful basket had a bag full of the little ones, so I used four of those)
Miracle Noodles (whole package)
4T Chili Sauce 
Sautéed the onions & peppers in the chili sauce til soft, then after cooking the chicken thigh on the foreman tossed it diced up in the pan. Added the miracle noodles til they were warm. Yum. 
Got a great 8 mile run in, it was snowing, so I was on the treadmill but I watched What Not to Wear of TLC, I love that show! Great run, legs felt great, and lungs felt like I could’ve ran much longer. Haili followed me on the treadmill for a run of her own. 
For dinner, I made Bill and the girls Pork Tenderloin Meddalions & Loaded Red Potatoes, the potatoes had bacon in them, I don’t eat pork, so I ate a delicious Quinoa Black Bean Corn Salad in a spinach wrap. 

1# small red potatoes

Water
Oil
Salt & Pepper
1T butter
1/4c fat free sour cream
6 strips of over-cooked bacon, crumbled
2 green onions, chopped
1c cheddar cheese
Preheat over to 400 degrees, line baking sheet with aluminum. Cut potatoes in half and scoop out flesh into small saucepan, add enough water to cover potatoes, cook over medium heat until soft. Put the potato skins, face up on baking sheet, brush with oil, and season with salt & pepper. Place the skins in the oven for 15-20 minutes. Drain potatoes, combine potatoes, butter & sour cream, mash til smooth, then add bacon & green onions, mix until combined. Pull skins from oven and fill with mixture, top with cheese. Bake additional 5 minutes. 

1t oil (I prefer extra virgin)

1 diced onion
3T garlic
3/4c uncooked quinoa
1 1/2c vegetable broth
1t cumin
1/4c cayenne pepper (optional, but yummy)
Salt & Pepper
1 can corn
2 can black beans 
1/2c chopped cilantro
Heat oil, stir in onion & garlic, mix in quinoa, cover with broth, season with cumin, cayenne pepper, salt & pepper. Bring mixture to boil, cover, reduce heat & simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in corn & black beans til warm. Add cilantro and ENJOY! So good!!! (Leftovers are good heated up or cold). I topped mine with some hot sauce and had it in a spinach wrap. Seriously, so good. 

Running w/ my Girl & Bountiful Basket

Went to the track this morning with Haili. 

Could she be any cooler?

While we were running she said, “we should get BFF Runner necklaces”, then yelled “BFR’s!!! Best Friend Runners!”, I just wanted to kiss her whole face at that moment!

Also, I haven’t talked about Bountiful Basket before but let me tell you, it is great. It’s a co-op for produce. On Monday at noon, you go online to bountifulbaskets.org. You select your basket for $15 then any add-ons. Then the following Saturday you meet and pick up your basket. It’s awesome! 


This weeks load, again only $15, and this week mostly organic:

Then I added on a case of strawberries for $14!!! Miss Graci and I have already eaten a full clamshell and have plans for smoothies!!

And Bill & Graci love their Organic Multigrain Bread, 5 loaves for $12. 

And Finally it’s Friday

All week this week I have thought, “Just make it to Friday”. Work has been exceptionally challenging this week. I love my job, please understand that, but working in Skilled Nursing Facilities has its challenges. Skilled Nursing has an annual survey every year, no matter what state you live in, this is a federal regulation. They have these regulations in place to protect vulnerable elderly adults, I appreciate what they mean, I understand their importance, but I struggle with having a “mock survey” by our “peers”… So yes, a lot more than I usually share about my professional life, but it was a very long, very frustrating week at work. And when you work in a workplace that is 99% women, it can get quite dramatic at times, so my Friday afternoon, after the “survey team” left, there was just more drama and fireworks at work. So with utmost agreement with the term, “Thank God Its Friday”.

No run + shitty day = grumpy lady

Thursdays are my scheduled rest days for this portion of my training. Having a rough few days at work added to not running makes a a giant, grumpy jerk. 

The girls had swimming lessons. Then Bill took me out to dinner. He’s so thoughtful sometimes.