Tag Archives: quinoa

Ash Wednesday

Hey friends!

It’s Ash Wednesday! Which means I’m rockin’ some sweet forehead smudges
They’re totally in this season.

I used to go to 6:30 am mass on Ash Wednesday growing up. While it was great in some ways it meant I inevitably had someone tell me “there’s something on your forehead!”

I’m not sure how I’d manage to get a big old black cross smudged across my forehead without noticing, but thanks everyone, thanks.

I go to evening mass now, which saves that fun.

Ash Wednesday also means no meat, and fasting.

Catholics have a very lose definition of fasting-it’s more or less “don’t eat quite as much as normal”. Here were my Ash Wednesday eats:

Breakfast was oat bran with a tablespoon of peanut butter thrown on so that I wouldn’t chew my arm off. Jesus wants you to keep both arms

Lunch was curry quinoa, spinach, and lentils
Because Jesus and I both love lentils

And dinner was the old Catholic staple (right behind fish sticks and Papa Murphy’s veggie pizza) of grilled cheese and tomato soup

Ash Wednesday also means that I, yet again, forgot to take last year’s palms to be burned
(They go back the Sunday before to be burned for the year’s ashes. I ALWAYS forget)

I’ve already been asked a few times… I don’t give up anything for Lent. I could give you a whole CCD lesson on why, but basically I work on adding things to my life, rather than subtracting . Going to Mass more, following the Church’s commands for abstaining from meat on Fridays, read a religious book or two (like my catechism I had out in the picture above!), things like that. Cause really, personally I’ve found that giving up candy doesn’t bring me closer to God. Which is, you know, kinda the whole point of lent….

You doing anything for lent?


Cheap and Easy

For everyone who asked about jeggings, mine are from Forever 21.  $15.80.  I’m a champ at cheap shopping. When I did Miss Spokane I had a friend tell me if I could bargain shop as my talent I’d win.

(I’m also that girl who when you say “I like your dress” will respond with “$5 clearance at Target!”   No shame in being cheap. )

I like cheap.   I also like easy.  No shame in that either.  So when I meal plan, I try to make things I can use more than once.   Roasted chicken becomes enchiladas, and then soup.  That sort of thing.  I multi-task on the starchy parts of meals too.

Last week, I cooked up some quinoa
(Costco baby.  Cheaper than even the bulk bins at WinCo)
I divided it in half, and with one half I sauteed onions in chicken stock
Diced a few little tomatoes

And then added the quinoa with some cumin, chili powder, and garlic.


(the weird garlic?  That for some reason says “California” on it?  I got it for free.  So I’ll use it.  Free is my favorite sort of cheap)

Plus black beans and corn

I served it up with beef quesadillas (made from a leftover roast.  Like I said, multi tasking)
Then, a few days later, I took the other half and added in black pepper and a Trader Joe’s spice mix

(see the bag of peas in the background?  They’re the cheap store brand.  Fred Meyer for some reason has an extra cheap store brand, and a normal one.  Guess which one I buy)

Plus peas and parm
You know that giant shaker of parm is from Costco.  It’s cheap and easy.  No shame in being too lazy to grate cheese all the time.

I also added a splash of this
because once the wine is out, you really have to have a glass.  Means to an end friends, means to an end.

And served it with salmon, carrots, broccoli and cauliflower.
Easy Peasy.

Do you do multi-tasking meals?  Or is this one of those weird things that only I do?

Me: 2 Mother Nature: 0

I’ve been doing yard work like crazy lately*.   I love it-getting a killer workout + making our poor yard nicer?  Oh yeah.

The only problem with all this yard work?

I’m totally allergic to outside.

Like, all of outside.

So I’ve had some mornings where this is all I wanna do
But, I finally stopped being stupid and realized I have allergy meds for a reason.  (yes, I have a masters degree.  and yes it still took me several days to realize “allergy meds help my allergies”)

Now I’m kicking my yard’s butt.  It’s too dark to take pictures right now, but seriously, I showed Mother Nature who is boss.  You’ll see.

I’ve been doing some eating too

We had a taco-y soup for dinner on Monday
(leftover pot roast + black beans + peppers + onions + corn + brown rice = yum!)

I topped mine with my favorite source of probiotics
Sour cream is my lovahhh.

We had an amazing dessert too
Yeah, that’s toast with jam.  It was dessert.  And it was sooo good!  (Homemade whole grain bread!)
I’ve also been all about the cheesy rice.  So freakin’ good.Photobucket
And last night we did roast chicken, green beans, and quinoa
Plus a salad, but it was just spinach, do I figured you don’t need a picture.

Last night, we did something new!


I wanted to go to the gym.  The fiance?  Not so much.  But he said he’d do yoga with me on the tv (exercise tv on demand!).  He’d never done yoga-ever-and was amazed at how much of a workout it was.  He liked it I think-he said we can do it again.  I’m proud of him for giving it a try.

Do you work out with someone else?

*allergy meds give me a nice little disconnect from reality.  So um, sorry if this seems like I’m a lil manic.  I am.

Off to see my Friends!

I’m teaching kindergarten the next three days thanks to my secretary friend!

Yesterday I made good use of my day off and got a ton done.  We bought a new bed that was delivered, had a contractor come see about fixing some drainage issues we have in the yard ($1600.  Lame.  Being an adult is expensive!), cleaned, and made brownies and hamburger buns.

I ate in there too of course.

Breakfast was green oats because I wanted warmth and spinach.

What?  That’s not what you crave in the morning?

Lunch was quinoa mixed with some French lentils, corn, and (shocking) spinach.  With sour cream, salsa, and avocado on top.

I tend to either cook or open a can of beans most week to add to salads and things-the french lentils are me mixing it up.

You know you’re old when cooking lentils is your idea of “mixing it up”

For dinner I finally used the grill that is on our stove!

It works!

Homemade WW bun for the burger, plus sweet potato fries I made in the oven


Oh and the brownies I made?

Whole wheat.  Less fat.  And amazinnnnng.

Whole wheat means they’re good for me, right?

I missed my friends

So, today I subbed in the class where I student taught (the looped, so it’s mostly the same kids.)

The whole Vegan Day thang sounded fun and all, but when teaching in the projects one needs coffee.  And this was the only cream-like substance in the house

Although I think it’s mostly water and chemicals. So you know, vegan-ish

I grabbed a breakfast

Clearly, not vegan.  Also, turns out that yogurt has like 60% of your daily value of saturated fat.  Awesome.  I still ate most of it.  Let’s not kid ourselves.

and went off to see my class.

This was a class with a lot of friends. And a lot of great kids to.  But still, a high amount of friends

I packed a lunch that I ate after shooing the children to lunch (The schools here serve the most disgusting pizza, that the kids LOVE on Thusdays.   I generally avoid the school lunches)

Leftover quinoa, plus oranges.  And water.

And I am TIRED.

But considering today the fiance had to present stuff to the legislature and his fiance’s boss declared the recession is over today I’m guessing my day was at least a little lower key than his.

I’d much rather teach in the projects than deal with that.

And lest you think my day was all “friends” and no fun, I planted flowers!

And while unpacking (cause lord knows we’re not done) I found$31 of winning scratch tickets!

And chocolate!

It’s all in the little things.

What was good in your day?

Lunch with Dave

I’ve amazingly been able to keep my hands off the pumpkin bread today!

The same cannot be said for the lollipops….

I had a little bit of the qunioa from last night for a snack

And then went and bought far too many of these

Unpainted wooden ornaments.  I actually went to the store to get things to make an advent wreath.  But couldn’t find purple candles.

I have full intentions of painting them.  In a month when that’s not done and my Christmas tree is still bare, let’s not bring it up, ok?

Before I can paint them I have to do some real painting!  We are making some shelves downstairs, and I want to get a coat on them.  Work before play.  Lame. It’ll be nice to get that project done though.  There those metal things you put brackets in attached to the wall down there.  But we couldn’t find brackets to fit.  So the fiance tore them off, bought new ones, and lumber to make shelves.  And when he ripped them off he ripped off some paint, so we had to repaint that.  Lots of work we were not planning on.  Super useful when we’re done, but I’m not digging on having a project to do right now.

To prepare me for my painting my buddy Dave helped me make lunch

Grilled cheese is kinda amazing, and it’s even better with killer bread-you get some texture in there, which makes it way better than the normal stuff.

Do you do anything crafty for the holidays?  I like baking.  And then eating what I baked.  And I like the idea of doing other stuff… but I usually don’t get to it.


Saddest news EVER

The sad news I’ll get to in a minute… Trust me, it’s really sad.

Dinner last night was yummy

Chicken with lemon pepper that I put some salsa, sour cream, and cilantro on top off

The fiance said he hadn’t ever had chicken with just lemon pepper?  I’m fairly sure chicken with lemon pepper on a salad was a food group for me for years.

(Other former food groups include diet coke, americanos with an extra shot, microwave popcorn, and popsicles.)

Plus quinoa that had cilantro, garlic, corn, and black beans.  Quinoa + cilantro is an amazing match.

Well, pretty much everything is amazing with cilantro.  Let’s not kid ourselves

And a salad

We haven’t been eating salad lately.  And I think it correlates pretty well to eating a lot more dessert.  Need to be better on that.

I’m pretty sure that we have a ghost who eats pumpkin bread, as I keep finding these plates with crumbs

And I mean, that can’t be from me, right?

Breakfast involved double fisting

Coffee + smoothie.

Yeah, a smoothie in November.  My thermostat is set at 64 degrees.  I’m in a tank top.  I’m becoming one with the cold.

(spinach, yogurt, banana, sadddd freezer burned blueberries with create a nice cement like color)

And now the sad news.

Sarah Palin is having Thanksgiving in my home town


My brothers are going to find her at Fred Meyer on black friday and buy her half priced socks and be besties AND I WILL BE IN KANSAS.

Seriously, I am sad. Not like “oh man, the store is out of crack oranges” sad

No, this is “I had a box of girl scout cookies in the fridge for a month waiting to be opened because I’d given up junk food for lent and my sister in law got PMS-y and ate the whole box and now I get no Carmel Delights for an entire year” sad

When I found out I screamed at the fiance.  He thought I was really mad.  And when he heard what the problem was he laughed.


If my brothers see Sarah Palin without me he’s going to have to buy me a ticket to Alaska.