What I Ate in 10 Days

Taking control of eating and spending habits requires resiliency. Here is an account of me saying no to doughnuts because they look better than they taste, but sometimes saying yes to cake for the opposite reason.

Saturday
5:48: I don’t know why I am awake, showered, and dressed at 5:48 on a Saturday morning. I am sipping lukewarm coffee and working on the blog. ☕️

7:30: My classic green goddess smoothie. I have this almost every day, so photos and recipe cwill be found below.

8:45 I’m glad this week isn’t the money diary because I just dropped my car off for repairs. 😱 Anyway, we are downtown getting a lavender latte because Pickwick (Now Hero coffee?) is literally the cutest coffee shop in the whole world.

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I ended up eating 1/3 of my boyfriend’s Manhattan Bagel. 10/10 would have again.

1:30 We tried to go to a football game. That turned into a fruitless 45 minute bike ride followed by a frustrating moving of the car from one shop to another, and finally, a desperate stop at Potbelly. I ate the whole classic smoked ham and swiss sandwich (with tomato and lettuce, please!) along with some tangy salt and vinegar chips and an S. Pellegrino that I sourced from my refrigerator. Then I had a Justin’s dark chocolate peanut butter cup. 🚴

6:00 A post rock climbing feast at Green Street Smoked Meats. While I really only needed half of either, I ate all of a serving of pulled pork and loaded baked beans. No regrets.

9:00 A mini Trader’s Joe peanut butter cup while I soberly sipped water with my friends. Later: 1 (maybe 2?) baby pigs in a blanket and many, many tortilla chips.

Sunday

11:00 I had a lazy morning of sipping coffee until suddenly the coffee hit and I was STARVING. I hangrily rampaged the kitchen and whipped together a winning brunch of one pot bacon, green beans, and potato.

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12:00 A handful of pretzels I think, a chocolate covered banana, chunky monkey ice cream… skipping breakfast was not a great strategy.

4:00 Woops, I took a long nap. 2 dark chocolate peanut butter cups and a bowl of popcorn, because I haven’t been grocery shopping yet. I washed and prepped kale, which is almost like eating it.

7:30 Kale and butterbeans! 🍲

9:30 One more peanut butter cup and like 10 more pretzels (oops)

Monday

8:00 Another hangry day, because I have fasting bloodwork sometime between 9 and 12. This appointment and its many requirements means that I have the day off work.

8:54 I am so hungry.

9:26 I’m not getting less hungry.

9:54 Like, coffee would be nice. I wouldn’t mind not eating if I could have a hot drink.

10:12 Seriously, how long can this appointment last?

10:35 The nurse just guessed that I am run by looking at my legs. HIGH PRAISE.

11:35 Okay, I went a little crazy.
I just consumed:
-a egg and cheddar biscuit with butter and jam
-a chocolate almond croscent
-leftover kale and butter beans
-two cups of coffee
-a handful of pretzels

All at once. I really didn’t spread it out. This is a case for eating small meals throughout the day, also a valid argument for not skipping breakfast.

5:30 Taco night! I had mine on kale to compensate for my wild and crazy brunch.

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10:30 Sneaking snacks of pita chips and hummus before bed.

Tuesday

7:30 My school week breakfast and lunch routine is pretty consistent. The night before I make a green goddess smoothie.🍐🍌🍐🍌🍐Having that with coffee!

11:00 I have a snack of carrots and celery in garlic hummus. I clean my teeth and garlic breath with a giant honeycrisp apple.

1:00 Lunch is always last night’s leftovers on a bed of kale and spring mix lettuce. Tacos were made up of sweet potato, black bean, corn, onion, and red pepper. Add a lime wedge and enjoy! And then an orange. Everyone loves the smell of fresh citrus. It’s a pleasant aroma that lingers.

6:00 Our meal that was so good I forgot to take pictures followed by a chocolate cake with too many shortcuts and a decedent icing.

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8:46 Too many tastings of the icing. My stomach hurts, bad.

9:48 Still feeling bad. Maybe it was taking medicine with the cake? Dad swears by coconut water to cure acid reflux. I had some. It seems to help.

Wednesday

7:30 I wasn’t kidding about the consistency. Green goddess smoothie and coffee. I owe you some photos and recipes!

11:00 My afternoon carrots and celery in garlic hummus with a side of giant honeycrisp apple.🍎

1:00 More taco on kale followed by an orange. 🍊

5:00 Sneaking in a baked potato with olive oil, salt and pepper before my climbing class. I meant to pack tomorrow’s lunch before I left, but…

5:20 Popcorn with olive oil and BOTH Justin’s dark chocolate peanut butter cups. Sorry not sorry. Those were followed by two hours of working out. 💪🏾✌🏾

9:45 Pita chips and hummus.

Thursday

7:30 Green goddess smoothie and fresh coffee! Here’s the smoothie recipe. Instead of almond butter, I use almond flour.

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11:00 Carrots and celery in garlic hummus with a side of giant honeycrisp apple.

1:00 More taco on kale followed by an orange. I brought my canteen of coffee today, and that is a much needed pick-me-up this afternoon. ☕️

6:00 Leftover Indian food from earlier in the week!

8:30 Instead of popcorn and chocolate, I had a few pistachios and then I blended banana and cocoa powder together. It tasted like dark chocolate pudding but it was essentially the nutritional value of a banana. Brilliant.

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Friday

7:30 Basically the same food day as yesterday. A green goddess smoothie and fresh coffee for breakfast.

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11:00 Snack time: carrots and celery in garlic hummus with a side of giant honeycrisp apple.

1:00 More taco on kale followed by an orange. I sipped from my canteen of coffee while I had a surprisingly DELICIOUS birthday cake from the teacher’s lounge. A great way to celebrate Friday (and my principal’s birthday). ☕️🎈 🎂🎉

6:00 Leftover Indian food from earlier in the week, and a big bowl of popcorn.

Saturday

7:30 First breakfast: banana bread loaded (unnecessarily) with butter. Much coffee.

10:00 Second breakfast: a brat burger grilled fresh at the farmer’s market.

1:30 An extraordinarily late delivery of our order from a great little place called Two Cats Cafe. I had a curried omelette, the Morning in Mumbai, unsweetened turkish coffee, and a nutella strawberry banana smoothie.

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5:30 Mom’s potato soup, which tastes like cozy nights in the warm kitchen during cold weather months. Followed by Mom’s pistachio salad. There was a bite of a “cookie” from my brother in there- that cookie turned out to be a spicy cracker. I was so surprised that I I just spit it out.

8:00 A huge cuppa coffee as I hit the road. 🚘

11:30 A much needed slice of late night pizza as I returned home. 🍕

Sunday

8:30 You know how you microwave a frozen burrito and it is frozen on the outside so you end up putting it in for 4 minutes like three different times and then it is lava hot on the inside? Yeah. Bonus points for this burrito being homemade, and for my boyfriend and I have the foresight to freeze it for later. 10 points to Gryffindor!

11:04 Hmm. I’m still hungry.

12:00 Okay, I went to the grocery store and picked up some fruit so I could make a peanut-butter strawberry banana smoothie. Very good. Very filling.

5:30 Gardetto’s. A desperate snack on the road.

7:30 Potato soup (Thanks mom!), grilled cheese and apple cider.

Monday

8:45 I spent like an hour this morning making all of my meals for today and half of tomorrow, and then left without my breakfast smoothie! Luckily, my very thoughtful boyfriend was willing to meet me halfway to work and drop it off. Love the green goddess smoothie and getting all the good stuff in first thing in the morning. Don’t worry, I didn’t forget my coffee.

11:00 You know the drill. Hummus and carrots and celery! Then my honeycrisp apple.

1:00 Veggies on a bed of kale, an orange. An S. Pellegrino because I need a little crisp fizzy pick me up.

6:00 Leftover pizza and a cup of strawberries during my climbing break, and some coconut water to replenish those electrolytes!

 

Thanks for reading my food diary! You learn a lot about yourself and your habits when you track your lifestyle in this way. Next up: money diary. Any suggestions for habit diaries?

 

Three Things that are Highly Relevant this Summer

 

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Man Repeller posted this review of hangover cures on the day that I needed a hangover cure. Before I read this review, my best friend (also suffering) showed up with two cartons of coconut water. Brilliant.

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Similarly, I was already recovering from no sleep when I started to read this article on how to recover from bad sleep. Take-away: load up on good stuff so you don’t have bad stuff. Coffee=great.

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If you are doing summer right, it feels like 3 months of “Dirty Dancing.” Or at least a week excitement and scandal. At the very least, rewatch the thing! If you are trying to channel your inner Baby, follow these rules.

Evening at the Market

I love southern Indiana in the summer. This love has developed as I return home each year to take part in the New Harmony Music Festival and I get to see the town I grew up in and around through the eyes of people from around the world. The lush greenery and tall corn fields are beloved by all. Political differences are gently set aside as urban dwellers and country folk bond over a general appreciation for roots music and good company.

The night I arrived, my sister insisted we go to a nearby farm stand and get kale. The stand is open as long as the sun is out, and payments are made according to the honor system. Prices hang over the vegetables, a scale and quart containers are laid out for honest measurements, and a locked wooden box sits out for cash payments for the produce. This was our first time getting kale from this farm stand… turns out, you pick it yourself, fresh from the field! We went out and picked kale, weighed it ($2 for a FULL grocery bag!) and then went to pick flowers. Anything that is not a sunflower is free! We left with a quart of blackberries, apples, the freshest kale, and free bouquets picked at sunset. It was a short and inexpensive trip, but our evening at the farm stand felt like a true homecoming.

All photos taken by my sister, Kendra.

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3 Things

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A poem by Nayyirah Waheed

 

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The weirdest thingI tried this week.

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very silly quizabout wizards and their coffee. I am Snape… all because my taste for bitterness is balanced by a weakness for cinnamon pastry.

 

Related: Four Things

Unrelated: Summer Music

 

 

Reflections and Intentions (a Monday series)

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Reflections (weekend):

-explored Chicago’s hidden coffee shops

-wandered through parks and gardens downtown

-found tamales… at Whole Foods, of all places!

 

Intentions:

-clean the counters, clean my clothes

-rock climb inside and outside

-run every day

-go to the beach

-schedule all necessary health appointments

Salad Inspiration

I ordered a simple shrimp salad and was struck by two things:

  1. This is so simple and delicious!
  2. I could make it better.

The restaurant I was dining at did not use the freshest veggies. I prefer fresh or frozen corn in a salad over canned corn. When I use corn and black beans, I like to season them with lime and red pepper. I would love to make a spicier, zestier version.

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Wonderful Ways to Eat Your Greens!

I am on the Kale in the smoothie train, and even though I can’t taste the greens I swear it is making me crave more… well, greens.

I can’t wait to make these Pan-Fried Butter Beans and Greens

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And this Summer Salad is my faaaaaavorite. (Have you tried toasted Halloumi??)

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I make this for every potluck and family party, and even salad-haters are converted by the end of the meal.

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Gado-Gado Peanut Butter Stir Fry!

Gado-Gado is an Indonesian salad with a peanut sauce. This recipe is my sister’s crazy good stir-fry interpretation.

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Gado-Gado Stir Fry

Stir-Fry Veggies
Broccoli
Bell Peppers
Snap Peas
Carrots

Drizzle a little extra virgin olive oil in the pan and sauté the vegetables until cooked to your satisfaction.

RiceMake rice according to the directions on the package!

Peanut Sauce
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Garlic
Brown Sugar
Soy Sauce
Peanut Butter

Saute garlic in the olive oil. Stir in 1-2 tblsp brown sugar and soy sauce. At 2 tblsp peanut butter.

To plate, start with a layer of rice, add vegetables, and smother in peanut sauce. Top with chopped peanuts!

Formula for the Healthiest Start to Your Day

I recently posted about my indulgent overnight oats formula, but now that it is warm and now that I own a blender, I am moving on to smoothies. I have a weekday rule (Monday-Thursday, anyway) of no added sugar in the morning. That means I have been enjoying my oats without honey or brown sugar, and my smoothies are the same. Fruit is the only sweetener I am adding.

Flavorful fruits: I slice and freeze some fresh peaches, cherries, strawberries, oranges, bananas, kiwis, and raspberries on the weekend, and dump them in my smoothie the morning of. I may add a handful of fresh fruit, too, especially if I want to modify the flavor of my smoothie.

SUPER NUTRIENTS: I have been aware of the magic of kale for some time, but don’t love eating it. The smoothie is the best way to load up on that low-calorie high-content power produce, easily and tastily. Yes, it makes your smoothie green, an YES, it makes you feel fit and full.

Protein: Through in a spoonful of nut-butter or a handful of healthy nuts, like almonds, walnuts, or pistachios! Any variety of seeds and grains are also good, and a dollop of yogurt will add protein and good-gut bacteria!

Fat: Avocado and yogurt add important fats that your brain wants and needs, as does flax seed, chia seed, and coconut oil. Bonus: these things all greatly improve the texture of the smoothie. Avocado turns any pureed snack into a fluffy pudding-like dream!

Extra goodness: Add cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cacao or other spices with health properties. Many of these are inflammatory or promote healthy blood circulation and joint health.

This has been my favorite smoothie source for years, and has some great baseline recipes. Do you have any favorite smoothie recipes or morning routine habits that promote a good and healthy day?

Sweet Spring

Do you participate in community supported agriculture? I’d like to try it out, but I am worried we will be swimming in kale. I would love fresh tomatoes and rhubarb though… oh, sorry, my Midwestern-ness is showing!

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Photo from Wobbly Cart Farm

 

Eyeing this tulip festival in Holland, MI for next weekend!

 

Mascarpone is a new delight in my life. I am dreaming of this tart. How AMAZING would this be with peaches or rhubarb?

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Photo from Food52