About Me

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Hampton Roads, Virginia, United States
I am a late-30's busy career mom, attempting to find her inner athlete, be a vegan in a non-vegan household, and find a way to balance it all without going crazy! I love to cook, read, run, knit, and learn as many new things as I can - which often gets me in trouble.... I am passionate about life in general, and if I didn't write about it, I'd probably implode.

Monday, June 27, 2011

I Have a New (Web) Home!

Okay, so I am slowing migrating from my old blog to a new site – runcrissierun.com

Click HERE to be redirected to the new site.


It will likely take me a couple of weeks to get it all straightened out, but in the mean time, please enjoy your regularly scheduled reading!!! I promise it’ll stay packed full of useless tidbits about my day, the fun food I’m eating (or drinking), as well as my attempts at fitness. The goal of the blog hasn’t changed…just its location.


I apologize if you have to resubscribe to follow me, or re-add me to your Reader. Hopefully the transition will go smoothly for all of us.

THANKS!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

I Want a Farm Bus Too

FOOD

Anniversary dinner wasn't exactly awesome.  D was craving a chili cheese dog (of all things), so he wanted to go to Kelly's.  I know he picked it because they have a big burger menu - and all their burgers can be made into their veggie burger - so I always have something for me.  The kids like it too, so it "should" have been a winner all around.  We weren't looking for anything fancy (we really did our major celebration on Thursday), so a little Kelly's was in order.

Unfortunately, they no longer carry any hot dogs.  D was really upset, but settled for a bacon cheeseburger (can you tell we didn't get married because we have similar tastes??).  It was way overcooked I guess, so he didn't love it.  Mine was pretty good, and the kids seemed more or less happy.  Our waiter was a little vacant, but at least really nice.

Before bed, I put a batch of overnight oats in the fridge so I'd be ready.  I used soy milk and not almond because of R's allergy, and added a small bit of maple syrup in the morning.  It really didn't need anything else.

D set the coffee pot up since I was getting up early Sunday morning.  On my way out the door, I grabbed a Tervis of black coffee, a bottle of water, my oats, a banana, and a spoon. 

Halfway to Richmond I ate the oats.  They were SO good.  Who knew that chia seeds were so awesome??  And while I wasn't hungry, I ate the banana too since I was heading for a long workout.

Lunch was from the buffet line at Whole Foods.  I only got the cold bar, since I definitely took plenty!  There was a grilled Hawaiian tofu, some curry rice noodles, balsamic tofu, cucumber and red onion salad, tabbouleh, and bamboo green tea rice.  See what I mean...I was STUFFED after this!  I need to live near a Whole Foods.  Seriously...if they won't come to me, I'll go to it.  That's a new requirement on my "will move to" list.  Mass transit, vegan restaurants, many cultural activities, and Whole Foods!



By the time I finally got home, I wasn't up to cooking, so D went around and picked up food for everyone.  M, A, and I got sushi from Kagura, which just opened close to me.  I had a combination of avocado, veggie, and sweet potato rolls.  The kids got something fishy.  D and R had Moe's.



Looking forward to the work week where raw all day will be nice and easy!

FITNESS

Today was a heck of a day - but a good one!

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, my plan for today was to do the Tri route in Richmond for next month's race.  I'm always nervous about hills since we don't have those here.  The couple in Smithfield really got me in April, and since Richmond is hillier, I thought it would ease my mind a bit.

Last night I printed off the maps and then wrote them out on small pieces of paper to tape to my bike handles (you know...L on Knuckles, R on Ashland...etc). 

I woke up at 615am and was out the door by 645.  It's a 2 hr drive, so I wanted to be there in plenty of time to enjoy the workout before crazy heat kicked in.  I pulled into the Y's parking lot, checked in (nice thing about the Y - you join one, you belong to them all), and then took off.

As my map and instructions indicated, I turned left on Knuckles.  Well, it must have been wrong, since I went a good 5 miles and never saw Ashland.  I saw some of the other streets, so I guess I read my map wrong.  Anyway - I biked the distance I needed to, but not the actual route.  I'm not totally worried since I feel I got a sense of the terrain.  The run was easier though - just one road really.  Out and back, so that was good.

I will say the nicest thing was the people.  When I'm out running in my neighborhood, I almost never see anyone else.  I probably ran into a dozen or so people out running and biking.  I like Richmond.

After the run portion, I went into the Y, showered, changed, and then took off.

LIFE

Big news...I booked my trip to Portland, OR for the Vida Vegan Con - Vegan Bloggers Conference.  I'm going to spend a few days in Seattle visiting friends, and then to Portland for the conference!  I'm so excited!!!

Last night D and I both fell asleep while watching a movie.  It wasn't bad, just apparently not good enough to keep us awake.  We did realize today that we fell asleep around the same part though, so that'll be good for picking it back up!

Before bed, D loaded up the van with my bike, Tri bag, a cooler, and my reusable grocery bags.  Since I knew I was going to Richmond, I had to go to Whole Foods.

After my brick workout, I went to REI.  My parents got D and I a gift card for our anniversary, so it was perfect timing.  I picked up some geocaching trackables for D, a first aid kit (makes me nervous he hikes without one), storm matches, blister packs (he has new hiking boots), and for me, a tank top and a one piece Tri suit!  I totally scored.  Yet another store I wish they had by me. 

After that, I went to the Short Pump mall, perused Crate and Barrel and a few other stores, and then hit Whole Foods.  After eating, I went shopping (don't want to shop on a full stomach!).  I picked up some nice produce, many organic and vegan snacks, and even a few magazines.  One made me happy since it's specific to people with food allergies and sensitivities, and I'm always looking for ideas for R.  The other is from Vegetarian Times and is about the bounty from a Farmer's Market.  Oh, and they have a salsa bar!  How brilliant is that??  I made up a concoction of guacamole with extra red onion, tomato, and cilantro. 





Speaking of farms...there was a bus parked outside of WF from a local farm, and you could walk through and pick up fresh produce.  It was pretty neat.  I wish one came by my house.  Sort of like the Book Mobile, but the Veggie Mobile instead!



From there, I drove halfway home to Williamsburg and hit the outlet mall.  My eldest needed new athletic shoes, and I needed a pair of non-running workout shoes too.  I picked those up, a few workout shorts from Under Armour, and then headed home.

While a busy day, it was a nice day.  I got to do a few things I love and spend some quality time with me and my iPod.  Granted - there was a good 4 hrs of driving involved - but that clearly doesn't bother me.

I'm looking forward to another good week both at work and working out.  Here's hoping!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The S2B Ratio MUST be Perfect

FOOD

It's been a BUSY week!  I'll admit that most of my meals were similar.

Most days, breakfast was a cup of coffee, and then a glass of fresh green juice.  I'd munch on fruit throughout the morning, bringing containers of watermelon, cantaloupe, and blueberries to the office, as well as bananas and oranges. 

Thursday was a special day.  D and I have spent every year for our anniversary taking a solo trip to Busch Garden's without our kids (since we moved to VA 7 1/2 yrs ago).  Our anniversary is actually today (Saturday), but we did our annual trip on Thursday.  We started out going to the Broken Egg for breakfast.  They have my favorite oatmeal - a big bowl of Irish steel cut oats with bananas and raisins.  I got that and a bowl of fruit.  D got some huge meat lovers omelet, and we took R before taking her to daycare, and she got her standard smiley faced pancakes.



I'll admit that I didn't eat much at all.  I think I'm getting so used to having just fresh juice and fruit in the morning, that my stomach really didn't want anything else.  I finished off the fruit, had a few bites of the oatmeal, but that was it.

Lunch most days was packed, and I had several awesome salads each day.  I also had one dish of spiralized zucchini with a raw tomato marinara that I love too.  On Tuesday, I did hit up Quenna's Raw and Vegan for a nice lunch.  I had some time between meetings, and stopped for their amazing avocado stuffed tomatoes and a tofu pocket sandwich.  I wish I lived in a region that had more restaurants like this one.

Yesterday lunch was a falafel with a salad and a hummus appetizer.  YUM. 




Dinner on Monday and Tuesday was reheated vegan pizza from Sunday for me.  Wednesday I had dinner with S at Carrabbas, where we split a dish.  On Thursday (after our BG adventure) we met up with our friends AC and JC for dinner.  I had a yummy veggie pasta dish.



Today has been low key.  I had a banana for breakfast, and am waiting for D to get back from Moe's with my favorite salad!  I'm not sure what dinner will be - if D and I will go out, or just make something here.

FITNESS

I did a swim workout earlier in the week, and that felt good.  I love the pool!  I went on a run most days, except Thursday, when A and I met up with S for a Zumba class.

A few months ago, A and I were at the gym (she was working on a writing project by observing and documenting all activity for an hour), and she saw a zumba class going on.  She immediately wanted to try it, so when the opportunity came up, I must say I was more than a little surprised when she jumped at the chance to go.

We had to get our names on the list - which S took care of.  It's a good thing she did, because we got the last 3 spots (and there are 90!).  So we probably looked silly shaking it in the gym, but we all had a good time.  The fact that A wants to go back is very encouraging.

LIFE

This has been a busy, but productive week.  My meeting load was very light, so I got to spend a ton of time in my office getting things done.  I'm very much enjoying the more relaxed mornings now that it's summer break.  Apparently so is R, because I came upon this Monday morning...



Monday and Tuesday we had nice and quiet evenings at home.  I had pretty bad headaches in the evenings, and went to bed early both nights.  It's funny that one of the girls who's blog I follow daily, Heather from Where's the Beach? posted the other day a fun post about quirks.  We all have some, and I certainly have a couple.  One of them is the sheet to blanket ratio on the bed, or the S2B.  If it's not even, I have a hard time sleeping.  On Tuesday as I'm getting ready to go to bed early, I noticed that they were WAY off.  D is a blanket hog, so I usually have only sheet on my side by the time I get up in the morning, but if I try straightening it out too much, I end up with too much sheet on my side.  So anyway, just before bed, D pretty much stripped and remade the bed to fix the S2B so I could sleep well.  He's so cute, feeding into my silly little quirks. 

That was the plan for Wednesday too, but I had a friend who had a rough day, so we got together to "wine" about it. 

Right after work on Wednesday, I went to get a manicure.  I usually get a pedicure too, but I have two nasty blisters from some strapy black sandals right on the tops of my toes - so I didn't want to get one.  Instead, I got home, took a shower, decided to blow dry and straighten my hair....and saw my old foot soaker!  What the heck, I was apparently feeling decidedly girly, so I gave myself my own pedicure!  I didn't do a great job (no polish change), but it'll get me through for the next couple weeks.



Thursday was an absolutely perfect day.  D and I were up early, and at breakfast by 8.  We dropped off R, and were on the road just after 9.  We arrived at Busch Gardens right before the park opened at 10, parked, and went in. 


D by the entrance

We strolled around, went on a few rides, had a couple beers, and just giggled, held hands, and had a really great time.  The nice thing about getting there so early was not only the lack of crowds, but it wasn't crazy hot out yet either.  All in all -  a really amazing time.


1030am snack time!  We even bring our own beer cozys....

Bald Eagles.  I can't even express how majestic they are

The Griffon.  First ride we went on.  I never opened my eyes...

just curious where those stairs are supposed to go...

we snuck into an area where they're clearing space for a new ride!

he talked!  D and I spent about 10 minutes conversing with him.  He laughed, said hello.  Pretty cool.



We left right around 130, was home by 230, and while D took a nap, I ran out to the store and then to pick R up.  Then it was time to shower and change to meet our friends at their yacht club for dinner.  We sat around for a while before eating just talking and catching up, and then walked around the boats afterwards.  It was a very lovely evening.  We got home around 9 or so, and hung out on the back porch for awhile before going to bed.  It really was a perfect day.

Friday was work, and then taking M to get his new transition lenses put into his glasses frames.  Then more work before meeting up with a friend I haven't seen in about 6 months to have a couple beers and catch up.  We sat on the outside deck of a local place and had a lot of fun.  D came and picked me up and brought me home.

Today has been pretty quiet.  We're not sure exactly what we're going to do.  We know it's our anniversary technically, but we really celebrated on Thursday.  We also pretty much approach each day like it's an anniversary, so we don't get this crazy need to do a "date night".

Tomorrow my plan is to go to Richmond, so the bike and run course for my Tri next month, then hit up Whole Foods and REI.  I'm excited about it.

But until then, I'm going to go veg with my hubby and enjoy our day.  Happy Anniversary Honey!

Monday, June 20, 2011

No Honey, Putting My Glasses Into the Dishwasher Is NOT an Available Option

FOOD

Sunday was spent largely puttering around the kitchen.  The intention was to go out to breakfast for Father's Day, but of course none of us were up and ready to move that early, so we didn't.

I had a 1/2 cup of coffee and another rocket fuel green juice.  I munched on cantaloupe the rest of the morning off and on.


I swear that it doesn't taste like a salad in a glass.  It sort of tastes like lemonade!

For lunch, I made yet another monster salad and sat out on the back porch with my Kindle and a glass of water. 



We did go out for dinner to celebrate, but that was a total disaster!  We went back to a pizza place in Norfolk called Cogan's.  The first time we went about 3 weeks ago, we had a great experience.  Not so much this time.  We got seated right away, though it took awhile for anyone to come by.  By the time our waiter did, we were ready to order.  The kids each ordered off of the menu, and D and I each ordered pizzas (supreme for him - vegan for me).  About 40 minutes later, the kids' food arrives, but not our pizzas (and no one's gotten any refills on drinks!).  The waiter tells me it'll be another 10-15 minutes for those as "they only have one oven".  Ugh.  D's getting upset by this point.  After 10 minutes or so, the kids are done eating and ours isn't at the table.  D goes to talk to the manager, who does her best to recover the situation.  D's pizza eventually arrives, but mine doesn't.  My husband is quite a gentleman, and refuses to eat until my food comes, so his pizza is getting cold and the kids are really getting bored.  We tell them to box up my pizza when it's done along with everything left at the table, and we finally left.  We got home, and D and I ate our cold pizza.


vegan cheese, onion, tomato, and artichoke hearts

Guess what breakfast was for me this morning??  Coffee and green juice.  I see this as a life long trend... I packed up some watermelon and blueberries for snacks, a big salad for lunch, and a couple salad wraps (with marinated kale, shredded broccoli, onion, and mustard).  I thought it was cute that a friend of mine at work knew which containers in the lounge fridge were mine!



My pre-workout snack was a slice of pizza, and my post was a garden whole foods juice in the Vitamix.  All in all...a great couple of days of food.



tomato, bell pepper, onion, hot sauce, carrot, spinach, and ice

FITNESS

Today was a swim day!  Woo hoo.  It was almost a run day (the big storms rolling in have dropped the temps to a chilly 70-75 degrees and I really wanted to run).  BUT....I had packed all swim stuff and really, really needed to hit the pool.  And once I swim, I don't like to do any other workouts (can't handle being damp and then putting on workout clothes).

After work, I went home to pick up M who wanted to come to the gym with me.  I had packed mine and R's swim stuff, and D brought R to the pool just as my workout was ending.  R, M and I swam around for about 45 minutes goofing off, then dried off and went home.  It was nice.

My swim was mostly drills today.  I alternated sprints with pull buoys and kick boards.  And I'm already feeling a bit sore.

I set up the trainer in the green room for my bike.  With it forecasted to storm the next 5 days or so, I'm not sure when I'll be able to get a ride in.  May as well prepare to ride indoors.

LIFE

The whole weekend was very relaxing.  I alternated time in the kitchen yesterday with hanging out on the deck with Sammie and reading.  D was leaving me an Xbox widow all weekend with his game playing, so I did a lot of reading, laundry, kitchen work, and hanging with the munchkins.



The kids all made cards for D for Father's Day, which really made him smile.

kids squished on a bench waiting for our table at Cogan's.  A pretty much never smiles in pictures.  It's annoying.


As we crawled into bed last night, I asked D to wipe my glasses off.  He does such a better job than I do.  After he was done, he advised me to start cleaning them in the dishwasher.  I think he was serious.

This morning was a bit different than normal, but will likely be the summer routine.  I woke up earliest as usual, took a shower, woke D up, and then we woke up R.  While D showered, I made our lunches and got R ready for her day camp.  The older two were still sleeping since it's summer vacation.  D left with R, I finished getting my stuff together, and left about 15 minutes later for work.  It was weird being just the 3 of us in the morning!

Work was a really good day.  I had an entire day of office time (save for a one hour conf call).  I got quite a bit done and felt very productive.  Most of this weeks looks light as many of my colleagues start taking summer vacations, so I imagine I'll get lots done.

I'm off on Thursday for mine and D's annual Busch Garden's (sans children) anniversary trip.  We've done it every year since we moved to VA 7 1/2 years ago.  This will be the first where we're not doing it on our exact anniversary, but it's on Saturday this year and we always go on a week day.  Then that evening we've dinner planned with AC and JC, so it'll be a really nice mid-week break.

Pretty much the only thing I have to complain about is blogger.  For the last several weeks, I have found that I cannot reply to comments left on my blog.  I read the help files, did everything it told me to, and it's still not acting right.  So please forgive me if you've left a comment and I haven't replied.  I'm trying!

In an effort to not jam too much into my mornings, I'm going to go make lunches now, figure out what I'm going to wear to work, and get things for tomorrow organized.  We'll see how long this lasts ;)

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Snakes...Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?!?!

bonus to you if you caught the Indiana Jones reference

FOOD

For lunch Thursday I made a salad I loved so much, that I ate one today too.  It was simple, but filling and cleansing.  I made a huge batch of lemon/ginger dressing, so I have been putting it on just about everything.  The salad was mixed baby greens, red onion, tomato, cucumber, fresh cut corn from the cob (I'm loving raw corn....), and avocado.


why is it all fun salad ingredients sink to the bottom of the bowl, and you don't find them until the lettuce is gone?  It's sort of like finding the treasure treat at the bottom of a cereal box for me....


Thursday afternoon two new cookbooks I ordered from Amazon came, and I spent most of the day reading those, marking them with my sticky notes, and then making a few.  One was Ani's Raw Food Asia, and I made a couple of things from them.  I made two namul's which is basically a fun Korean word for seasoned vegetables.  One was made with cucumbers and one with zucchini's.  Both gifts of AT's garden!

For dinner, I made my own little bi bim bap, which is another fun Korean word for mixed veggies, rice, and hot sauce.  While I don't have the Korean hot sauce, I do have siracha and used that instead.  Yum, yum, though I went a little wacko on the siracha and lit my mouth on fire.



Friday morning was another awesome green juice.  I swear - this stuff is rocket fuel.  I had a half of a cup of coffee, and then just really wanted the juice.  It's the same as the day before; romaine lettuce, kale, cucumber, lemon, ginger, and apple.  Ridiculous really how simple and tasty, and yet a fun bright green!



Mid morning, I ate a big bowl of blueberries, and then it was off to lunch with AC for Thai.  I really, really planned to eat something other than green curry.  I fancied a nice big salad, some fresh spring rolls, or something light like that.  Yeah.  So didn't happen.  So I had the tofu green curry, and loved every bit of it. 

I wish I could say I had dinner on Friday.  Alas....I met a couple girls out for drinks, and while we munched on some fries and some guacamole, we really didn't eat.  We did, however, have beer and jaeger bombs.  Whoever decided to mix red bull with jaeger should be both kissed and possibly shot.  Just saying.  My detox was temporarily derailed, but it was a lot of fun catching up with two of my friends!




Today was spent mostly hydrating.  And napping.  I did make another of my super salads for lunch, but probably got most excited about dinner.  I marinated some kale in the lemon/ginger dressing for about 10 minutes while I shredded up some cabbage, julienned some bell peppers, sliced some red onion, sliced some avocado, and pulled out the rest of the marinated namul cucumbers.  Then I used my rice paper, soaked them to soften, and made some fresh salad wraps.  Oh wow...so tasty.  




FITNESS

Yesterday I went for a great run at the park.  My garmin has been acting strange, so I wanted to run where there were some mile post markers.  After my rocket fuel/green juice, my run felt absolutely awesome.  It was muggy, but not yet hot at that time of morning.  I did 4 miles around the lake before heading back to the van.

As I'm walking down the trail from the lake loop to the parking area, I get met by an enormous snake.  Okay, maybe it wasn't technically enormous, but it was bit enough for me to notice.  And to squeal.

I really need to get back in the pool and on the bike.  I have a tri in a month, and the past two weeks have been just running.  I was hoping to take a Saturday or Sunday and drive up to Richmond to at least ride the bike and run the course, but I don't think I'll get the chance (next weekend is my anniversary, then it's the 4th of July, then it's pretty much Tri time!).  D downloaded the race maps for me so I can look at them on google maps to get a better idea of what I'm in for.  I'm nervous because Richmond has hills - and we don't down here.  If I can see what the elevation looks like, maybe I'll be less nervous.


LIFE

The past few days have been relaxing.  The house is clean, the wash is done, the fridge and cupboards are full again, and I've gotten to catch up with several of my friends.  

As a thank you to S and N for taking such good care of my dog, cat, and turtle while I was away, I ordered and had shipped a selection of frozen custards from Kopp's, which was a childhood favorite.  There are a few things that are quite unique to WI where I grew up.  One of those is frozen custard.  While I don't eat it anymore since becoming vegan, I do remember how very tasty it is.  It's also a crime to call it "ice cream".  I wanted to bring a bit of home to my friends, especially since it's something that can't be bought here.  As I had hoped, it was a big hit with them.

I also brought home some Sprecher soda from Milwaukee for AC and JC.  It's another thing you can't buy here, and when AC and I were out a few weeks ago, she had a Sprecher Ginger Ale that she liked.  I mentioned that they made the most awesome root beer too, and she mentioned her husband JC is a fan.  So we brought back some ginger ale, root beer, cream soda, and orange dream for them as well. 

The school year is now finally over, though A has to go to summer school (to keep academic honors at her primary high school and still be able to attend her art high school, she has to take summer classes every year - she only takes 2 academic classes a day, and then is at the university for art all afternoon).  R does daycare full time, so I picked her up a new Japanese bento box for lunches.  It's a fun little ninja panda.  The least I can do is make lunch fun!




I'm declaring my container garden a pseudo success.  Things are definitely growing, and that's awesome - just not as much as I had thought.  Here are some pics of what I have.  Enough for a dish or two total, but certainly not enough to sustain my family!  R had fun picking what was ready to go.








I've been thinking a lot about the future the past couple of weeks.  I think attending a funeral will do that though.  I really need to start doing some more solid planning.  I have one daughter starting college in two years, and my son following two years after that.  And then before I know it, my little one will be heading that way as the older two are finishing.  I want to be able to retire at a good age, and even be able to work part time in the last 5-10 years or so.  I want to be prepared for any possibilities that my family may face and make sure that we have the savings and everything else in line that we need to make sure that regardless of what the future holds, that we're ready.  It's time to brush off and update legal documents, take a hard look at the investment accounts, and have those difficult - but necessary - conversations about long term healthcare, powers of attorney, end of life wishes, etc.  I want to work harder at being totally debt free too - that's certainly not something I want hanging over mine or my children's heads.  That was a new year's goal, and while I've made some minor progress, I'm no where near what I want to be.  I've spent much of my adult life thinking I was still young enough to really do detailed planning "later", but you know what?  It's later.  And it's time.  I have NO clue what that road map is going to look like yet, but I sure as heck am going to spend the next several months doing some detailed research and planning, talking to the lawyers, and financial planners.  Sorry to get so introspective.  But I think this is a good thing.  Tomorrow doesn't always just take care of itself.

SUBJECT CHANGE....

So tomorrow is Father's Day!  So far the only thing D wants to do is go out to breakfast.  He wanted to do some geocaching this weekend, but aside from it being ridiculously hot, it's also been forecasted to storm every day (though you all know my thoughts on meteorology....how can you say there's a 70% chance of major storms, it NOT drizzle at all, and still be considered correct???), so he didn't actually go.  Maybe tomorrow if the weather holds, but I somehow doubt it.  If he ever gets around to telling me what he wants for dinner, I'll make that, and probably a cake or cupcakes.  I'm guessing it'll be a nice low-key Sunday with my family.  Here's hoping!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

No Nut Touching

I apologize yet again for a long delay between blog posts.  My family and I had to travel for a funeral, and while I try to keep my posts mostly light hearted, I didn't feel light of heart most of the time we were gone - and didn't think a blog post would be fun to read or write.  Below are some highlights of the week.

FOOD

Eating on the road is tough.  The first day of the drive was fine; we had a cooler and bags of food packed for the five of us.  It was the REST of the trip that was pretty difficult.

We stopped at Timbucktoo in Fremont, IN on the way up.  It was a cute place, though a little interesting.  I had a small salad and a portabello mushroom sandwich.  We were all pretty exhausted by the time we reached this place, so ordering dinner was funny.  M noticed that on the menu was a dish or two that contained nuts, and pointed it out to D and I.  So when we were all ordering, D was trying to articulate that none of the food that came to our table could have nuts or be made near any nuts, since our youngest has such a severe allergy.  What came out of his mouth, however, was that there could be no nut touching.  I think the waitress turned red, and we all lost it in hysterical laughter.  He was finally able to explain that none of our food could have nuts touching it....but for the past week now, whenever one of us wants to laugh, we just just No Nut Touching and everyone giggles.

We spent the night in South Bend, IN, and since it was M's bday the next morning (poor kid....having to travel on his bday), he picked breakfast.  We went to Perkin's.

I did pack my Vitamix and chocolate Vega powder, so I knew at the very least, I could make smoothies - and I did!  That made me full enough where all I ordered at breakfast was a bowl of fruit, and I was fine.

Otherwise, most of my meals consisted of oatmeal, salads, or pasta.  A week of that gets to be not only very boring, but I also started feeling weighed down.  I knew by the last day or so we were gone, that I was going to have to do a cleanse of some sort when I got back home.  I can't describe the leaden feeling my body has, and I just wanted to purge it all and do a "reset" back to my normal way of eating.  In that vein, I purchased this book for my Kindle and read it on the journey back home.  It's a raw food detox book, and since I have been oh so slowly migrating towards more raw foods in my diet (or "higher raw"), I thought this would be a good road map for me as well.

I mostly enjoyed the book, and am always happy to learn more about nutrition and how different foods affects my body.  Most of it made a lot of sense, though some of it was a little too off the deep end, even for me.  I have decided to incorporate many of the suggestions, but not all of them (no colonic for me, please).

One of the things I liked about the book is that it is not a one-size-fits-all approach.  Going to hard and fast (cold turkey) into a raw food lifestyle can be uncomfortable as your body detoxes too quickly.  She has a graduated approach, and what level you are is based on a quiz in the book to determine what your lifetime of eating habits have been.  I was surprised to find I'm only a Level 3 (I had though I'd be a 2 possibly), but am going to follow her advice for a while and see how it goes.

In a nut shell - fresh green juices for breakfast, and as much fruit as I want to eat until lunchtime.  Lunch will be a raw meal of my choosing (salads, wraps using raw breads/tortillas, spiralized veggies with a raw marinade, etc...), and a cooked meal for dinner.  She calls this "raw until dinner", and I don't think I'll have any problems with doing that as long as I'm prepared.  I will update the blog on how I'm feeling (since today is really the first day).  Breakfast so far was 1/2 a cup of coffee (maybe I'll get to NO coffee someday!) and a green juice (romaine lettuce, celery, lemon, apple, ginger).  I have some cut up melons, blueberries, bananas, and strawberries for when I get hungry until lunch.  I haven't decided on what lunch will be yet though!

Last night, I soaked some flax and sunflower seeds, then this morning I ground those up with the veggie pulp from my juice and some spices to make a raw bread, which is going in the dehydrator now.  I also juiced a pound and a half of carrots (needed the pulp for other things), but of course can't let that go to waste, so I added some celery, orange, and apple, and will have a lovely orange juice ready for me later.  I know I should drink the juice right after it's made, but I'm full from the green juice, so I'm just going to have to wait.






FITNESS

There wasn't much fitness this past week.  After the first day of driving, we arrived in IN at about 10pm.  I was antsy (you don't exactly expend a ton of energy sitting in a mini van for 15 hrs), so I hopped on the treadmill at the hotel's fitness center.  I really, really needed it, though it woke me up even more, so it was after midnight before I fell asleep.

I was shocked and upset to find out our hotel in WI did not have a fitness center.  It was surprising because they had an indoor pool.  And unfortunately, it was a bit out in the country, so the roads in the surrounding areas would not have been safe to run on....I'd have either gotten lost or ended up as road kill. 

There was also no way to workout in our room.  Although we had booked the 2 room suite, we barely fit.  They were the tiniest rooms I'd ever seen!  The kids were stacked on top of each other, and we had to crawl over their pull out bed and cot to get to the other room.  I'm sure this lack of workouts very much contributed to that leaden feeling I picked up while gone.

I'm looking forward to getting my workouts and training back on track!  I have a Tri in a month...and I need to get ready.

LIFE

Life this past week has been a mixture of things.  Sad at having to say goodbye to an important person in my family, happy at getting to see family we haven't seen in years, busy because of the driving and organization needed, and grateful for having a great friend who took care of Sammie, Bumble, and Kiko while we were away.  I spent much of it feeling reflective, which can be hard also. 

The second day of the trip up to WI was my son's 14th bday.  Of course it was a big bummer for him to not get to go to school and spend it with his friends.  Fortunately - my brother in law, Uncle M, picked out a great spot for his bday dinner/party.  We went to Dave & Busters to have dinner and let the kids play video games.  My sister's family was there, as well as my parents, my Aunt, and my Grandma.  The kids had a blast, and M mentioned that he thought he had a great bday after all.  I'm so happy for my family being able to give him that under the circumstances of our trip.







We had dinner at my sister's house, and also spent an afternoon where the kids and my parents came to our hotel to go swimming, and that was fun.  It was awesome to see all the cousins playing together and having such a great time.  I wish there was a way we could do that more often.

So here are some more pictures of the week...















So now life is about getting back on track, but not losing sight of all that went on this past week.  I have a great family that I need to do a better job at keeping in touch with (how much fun will it be to let the little cousins skype?!), and make a better effort to visit with (it's been 3 1/2 years since my entire family went to visit).  It's so easy to think that my individual life in VA is so busy and demanding, that I barely have time for anything else.  Out of sight, out of mind can be a dangerous thing.  I do not want another sad event to be what brings my family all back together.

Until then, it's time to get my house and family back in order and on track, and then plan trips to see family, emails and letters with pictures, and making sure that the communications stay open and frequent.