Roasted Chickpeas &Veggies

What a fabulous day!  It was warm, windy and smelled of spring.  Just love it!  I was so happy to have taken the day off and spend some time outside.  My flower garden is now cleaned up and ready for blossoms, I can see a little peek of green already in some areas 😀. Got my 4.3 mile HR zone 3 run in, which was tough.  It was windy and I really had to focus to keep my heart rate near the zone. 

I even checked out Pinterest for a new sewing project…Upcycled an old shirt into an apron.  This is my 2nd sewing project and I couldn’t be happier with it!

So now that I have an apron, I need to cook!  As usual I was thinking something easy peasy and yummy.  I hadn’t had roasted chickpeas in awhile so I thought I would pair it with some veggies and basmati. Boom!  Complete meal right there.  It’s seasoned with a bit of lemon- olive oil & a few spices because that’s what my flavor book said would pair well with all of the veggies I chose.  I have to be honest, I didn’t measure anything but the rice & chickpeas.  I don’t believe in measuring veggies & sometimes spices should just be sprinkled, not measured.

I will be making this for 3 days (1 can of chickpeas feeds me for 3 days).

Roasted Chickpeas & Veggies

1 can rinsed chickpeas (split into 3 servings)

1 Tbl + 1 tsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Thyme

Himalayan pink salt

Black pepper

Dried (or fresh) oregano

Dried (or fresh) basil

2 tsp fresh lemon juice

Crushed red pepper

Onion powder

Garlic powder

~5 asparagus spears, cut into 1″ pieces

~1/2 cup broccoli florets

~1/2 cup chopped cauliflower

~1/4 cup chunked red onion

Cooked basmati rice

Preheat your oven to 400°F.

Mix your chickpeas with 1tsp oil, 1tsp lemon juice and sprinkle with spices.  Put them on a pan covered in foil and pop in the oven.  Set timer for 7 minutes.

Add your veggies to the same bowl, add the remaining oil and lemon juice with an extra sprinkle of spices, mix well.

Add your veggies to the pan and toss with the chickpeas.  Set timer for 10 minutes, toss and set for another 7.  

When it’s done, spoon your roasted goodness over a serving of basmati rice.  I’m not going to tell ya how much rice to eat 😉. I pre-cooked some rice so that I’m getting about 1/2 cup per serving.

Enjoy!  You could add other veggies if you like, brussel sprouts would be great, as well as mushrooms.  

Cheers!!

Stress Relieving Kermie Koozie

Happy finally Friday!  It’s been a long week littered with stress and migraines, blech.  Usually workouts are my go-to in order to relieve stress but they have been ineffective this week.  So, what does a knitter do to relieve stress?  She makes a Kermie Koozie for a friend 🙂  The pattern turned out pretty good, though if you’re stranding multiple colors, be sure to keep the tension loose!  I am sure the stress had nothing to do with it, but my koozie is a smidge tight.  The koozie fits wonderfully around a bottle of craft beer, though (tee-hee!).

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Kermie Koozie
Dimensions: ~6 x 4
Gauge: 10 stitches and 15 rows = 2″ using US 4
Materials: worsted weight yarn, 5 US 4 double pointed needles, stitch marker
Chart: at bottom of page, may opt to knit up to 3 kermies in one pattern.

CO 48 and distribute evenly on 4 needles.
Row 1-5: K2, P2
Row 6-11: Knit
Row 12-30: follow chart.
NOTE:  I completed the chart 3 consecutive times (so I have 3 Kermits).  I placed two stitch markers to mark the end/beginning between chart 1-2 and 2-3.
Row 31-35: Knit (remove stitch markers)
Row 36-39: K2, P2
BO in K2, P2
Optional decrease if you’re going to use it for bottles only and want a snug fit around the neck:
Row 31: K2, K2tog 12x
Row 32: Knit
Row 33: K2, K2tog 8x, (optional K1, K3tog)
Row 34-35: Knit
Proceed to end of pattern.
Weave in ends.

Ahh, stress is better…and how can you not smile when looking at 3 Kermits keeping your beer cool?

I hope you enjoy.  If you make the project, please do not sell.  Make it for yourself or to brighten a friend/family member’s day 🙂

Cheers!

P.S. please let me know if you find an errata so I can correct it on the decrease (I only made a standard).

CHART:

kermit-chart

Winter Citrus Salad

It’s that time of year when we crave some sunshine, warmth and summer.  At least I do.  It’s also a vital time to take in lots of vitamin C to boost our immune system and ward off funk.  I had been pondering just how to do this.  Generally during the winter I don’t crave or desire salads, but prefer something warm and comforting (without putting on extra weight in an ideal world).  I decided to do some googling to see what fruits were in season and lone behold citrus fruits are.  Bonus, I love citrus especially grapefruits and tangerines.  Mmmmm!  

I love a fresh fruity salad in the summer, it always makes me feel light and energetic.  How lovely it would be to have the same effect in winter. Though I haven’t been diagnosed, I do feel “blue” in the winter (SAD).  The days when the sun is loath to shine and the temps hardly tickle the freezing point puts me in a slump and I’d like nothing more than to sit under a huge comforter and knit.  That’s obviously not a realistic choice so I usually fight, compromise or trick myself into staying active & eating healthy with a range of strategies (motivational pics, rewards, yes, rewards, review my Why, etc).  

So here comes the salad and my hopes to pack myself full of healthy goodness and boost my spirits.

Serves 1

Vinaigrette (makes extra):

2 tsp fresh lemon juice

1/2 tsp raw honey

2 tsp extra virgin olive oil

1/4 tsp minced fresh basil

1/8 tsp minced fresh ginger

Dash pink Himalayan salt

Pinch Chile powder

1/2 tsp minced shallot

1 Tbl roasted almonds

1/3 cup rinsed chickpeas

Organic baby spinach

1-2 tangerines

1/2 chopped red and yellow bell pepper

Whisk all of the vinaigrette ingredients together.

Place your spinach, chickpeas and pepper in a bowl.  Toss with a heaping tablespoon of vinaigrette.  Top with slices of tangerine and toasted almonds.

I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.  Was delish with mango-peach sparkling water or a Sauvignon Blanc 😉
Cheers

Sweet Potato Packet

Greetings!  I’ve been so tardy on posts and I have no excuse.  I finally had the Morton’s neuroma surgery in November and to be honest, I’ve been in a knitting and reading frenzy since. (I can’t help myself, but I’ve read about 4 books and knitted several washcloths, 3 scarves, a hat and started fingerless gloves and a crochet blanket.)  Needless to say I’ve been on a bit of a fitness hiatus due to the surgery, some very modified yoga, weights and a few short stationary sessions but that’s about it. Until a couple weeks ago; I’ve finally been able to get back into a fitness routine.  The left foot is still not 100% but it does seem to be improving.  I have a run/walk for triathlon base training this weekend and I’m excited, nervous and a smidge anxious.  This will be a big test regarding how well the surgery went as well as recovery.  Fingers crossed!  I miss that runners high, the scenery, fresh air, I don’t need to keep going.

All that being said I’ve still been on the meal plan and prep train.  I can’t function without it and I have no idea how people do! 😀. I have been in a bit of a food funk though, no big cravings for anything in particular.  I knew I wanted something with minimal prep and cooking (more time to knit, bahaha!).  I also wanted something comforting since the cold has finally befallen us this January.  It’s a whopping 3°F with a windchill of -5, wait, -5 isn’t as bad as I thought.  It’s still freaking cold.

All of those thoughts bring a Sweet Potato Packet to mind with portobello mushrooms, leeks, walnuts and a sprinkle of cheese.  I hope you enjoy.

Serves 1 

1 sweet potato, peeled and thinly sliced

1 leek, sliced

4-6 mini bellas, wiped clean and sliced

2 Tbl walnuts

Shredded Gruyere cheese

1/2 tsp minced garlic

2 tsp fresh minced basil and oregano (or 1/2 tsp dried)

Sprinkle of red pepper flakes, sea salt & pepper

1Tbl extra virgin olive oil

Preheat oven to 400°F.  

Note on leeks (I learned this from Real Simple). To prep, slice off inedible green part and root.  Slice leeks and place in a bowl of cold water, swirl.  The sand falls to the bottom & your leeks float.  How cool is that?!  Then just strain, or I fished them out and gently squeezed to remove the water (since I’m only working with 1)

Toast your walnuts for about 3-5 min at 350, be sure not to burn.

Toss the potato, leek, bellas & spices in a bowl with the olive oil.  Be sure all of your goodies are evenly coated.

Take a piece of parchment paper approx size of a baking sheet and fold in half.  Place your veggies on the paper, top with roasted walnuts and about 2Tbl shred Gruyere.  


Fold paper over and fold all the way around.

Bake for about 20-25 minutes, unwrap and enjoy!  It’s that simple!  The mushrooms are a bit roasted and the potatoes have a lovely sweet and spicy flavor (thanks to the red pepper). This paired well with white tea, carbonated water OR a glass of Sauvignon Blanc 😉


Wonderful additions would include Swiss chard or baby kale.  
Cheers!

Finding Balance and Baked Oatmeal

Yesterday was fabulous!  I got some chores done (laundry, weeding and the continued battle with this spikey green plant from hell).  My hubby and I ran errands on the motorcycles, which just makes running errands all the more fun.  We had a lovely afternoon visiting my twin via skype, enjoyed an epic cheat meal and more family time with Skype and FaceTime all the while enjoying a few craft drinks.

This morning I woke up a bit groggy, thanks to a great Olympic beach volleyball match at 11pm and thanks to ChoChi for informing me with a head butt & chase around the bedroom at 2:30am and again at 5:00am that she was famished.  Nonetheless at 6:30 it was time to get my Sunday going.  I love Sundays, it’s my day to reassess and recharge.  I completed my personal development reading while sipping perhaps the  most amazing almond milk latte on the planet (I’m sure it had nothing to do with the fact that I was still tired) and then off to my office to get my Preparation Sunday going.  Here’s my rundown in a nutshell and it works: Assess the previous week, what went well/what didn’t & adjust for this week, plan my meals (in conjunction with my work schedule), schedule my workouts (with a back-up time), schedule my coach power hour, and create my Foundation To-Do list to add daily to my CCDM to-do.  It’s shear genius!  Since adopting this strategy I get more done and feel less stressed.  Not to mention I’m beginning to get “life balance” down.  Identifying what’s important to me and making that a priority while still enjoying other aspects of life.  I think one of the biggies here is health and fitness.  It’s something most people struggle with; how to enjoy life & social time and still stay healthy and fit.  Here is my two cents on that.

The first step is to Decide that being healthy is really what you want and it’s Your Priority.  Then tell yourself Why it’s important, this is uber critical, it’s what keeps you focused.

For example: the more I have been training and eating well, the more results I have seen (duh), when I eat like shit and drink too much, I don’t train for shit and don’t see results (duh again but sometimes it takes careful tracking to come to this very simple conclusion.  Something I work through with my challengers).  It’s important to me to workout and progress so eating better and not drinking as much as I used to is my priority.  I still enjoy cheat meals and social time with family and friends, I just try to keep things in check….balance 😀

As an ode to balance and my sweet tooth here is a healthy Peach Oatmeal Bake Recipe that tastes as good as dessert. It’s a modified version of a Cookie and Kate recipe so many many thanks to her blog and creativity.

Serves 1 (just double or triple for more)
Ingredients:
1/3 cup rolled oats
pinch of baking powder
dash nutmeg
dash cinnamon
pinch of Himalayan salt
1 sliced peach
2 tsp melted virgin coconut oil
1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1 flax egg (1 Tbl chia/flax, 2 Tbl H20)
1/4 tsp pure maple syrup

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Preheat oven to 375F.  Combine your dry ingredients.  Use extra coconut oil to grease a small baking dish.  Combine your milk, egg and syrup.  Place your sliced peach around the rim of the dish.  Stir the melted coconut oil into your oats and spoon the mix into the dish over the peach.  Pour your milk mixture over the oats and smoosh around to evenly coat/soak the oats.  Bake at 375F for 25 minutes.
Optional: sprinkle toasted pecans over the top.

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Enjoy with an espresso on your deck with your furbaby 🙂

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Have an amazing day!

Day 24

I can hardly believe I’m on Day 24 of my P90X3 challenge!  Time flies, it hasn’t been perfect but nothing is.  There are always slip ups.  I was reading an article the other day  from Stew Smith that basically said you need a solid 3 weeks to create a positive habit (something most of us know).  The real kicker was that he said any time you start a new challenge you will always go through a phase where you want to give up or you end up staring an obstacle head-on.  If you get through that phase you will succeed, if you give in, you will not.  It’s so true, I have seen it during my own health and fitness journey.  The crazy excitement about starting a new plan, one that will work and get me where I want to be, this time.  Then about 2 weeks in, after following my plan to the “T” something happens.  My schedule goes haywire, I come down with a cold, I get injured, we are traveling or family is in town, name something.  In the past I have lost to that obstacle.  And you know what?  It’s so easy once you miss one workout or have a cheat meal that turned into a cheat day to not let it be a big deal to miss another, then before you know it, you might as well start over…again.  Each time you start over though, you lose a little bit of that excitement, because doubt is lingering in the shadows.  “will I really follow through this time?”  So, how many times do you start over?  I have started many.  I have been on my health and fitness journey since high school.  And then I became a health and fitness coach.  It has kept me grounded, it has given me more knowledge to get through these obstacles and help others get through theirs which only provides motivation to keep going.  We all feed off of each other’s success and results.  😀

Honestly, during these past 3 weeks I have missed a workout here and there BUT I didn’t let it stop me from getting one in the next day.  NOTHING was going to keep me from missing 2 days in a row, even if that meant being up at 0400, scraping my ass off the couch after a long day and slogging through a workout, rescheduling other tasks or offering others to join me if they wanted to see me.  It got done.  You need to stay consistent to keep momentum going.  Those who succeed do so by being persistent.  Sometimes it takes getting creative to find that motivation to keep yourself going.  Today I would have given anything to just crawl into bed after work with a book and call it a damn day.  Insomnia is kicking my ass lately.  But working out is a two-fold treatment: it wears you out physically and it lowers stress levels.  So, alas, Day 24 is done.  It was not pretty, I’m not embarrassed to say I nearly fell on my ass doing Joel Jumps, but it doesn’t matter.  It got done.  You know what?  I’m ready for tomorrow.

The next time you meet that obstacle will you throw in the towel or will you use it to mop up the sweat pouring from your face?

Already improving!

Holy balls I just finished Day 11!  So very happy!

So I have to admit, I’m the worst mid afternoon person eva.  I think I could get into the whole siesta thing. For real, get up early, get a bunch of shit done then take a post lunch naparoo, then get up and rock out again.

It’s terrible but my brain and energy fall to the depths around 1-2ish.  It’s worse if I get dehydrated or hangry so I do my best to avoid that.  I always carry water and Shakeology with a blender bottle with me.  Speaking of which, that’s what got me through today.  Before I knew it 1:00 rolled around and my patience level was in the danger zone.  I’m generally a happy, positive person so when I get that way I’m usually overly tired or hungry.  No, I’m not a toddler, just in tune to my needs 😜. Thank goodness for my emergency Shakeology!  Blended it up while driving and nobody faced the wrath of Becky, yahoo!

I was Uber unmotivated by the time I got back to my office.  Cue a quick pick me up!  The Mollinator and I did burpees, she was super excited afterwards.

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After work I stumbled down to the home gym and hammered out P90X3 The Challenge!  Super stoked, already improving!  Upped my reps on the push-ups by 2 💪

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Pull ups are still my nemesis, so I’m using an assist band.  I have been really working on nutrition and focusing on getting good protein and carbs in working 30minutes post workout.  I shit you not, I’m seeing a difference.  I have also been better about a preworkout snack, usually fruit.  Also helping!  So my advice, eat good food and time it well!  Keep a journal and pay attention, it works!

Time to make more food, coconut curry almond soup tonight.  First time making it (not my recipe).  Have a good one!

Cheers