Tag Archives: couscous

hap-bee halloween!

31 Oct

Olive says “I hope you had a ‘Hap-bee’ Halloween weekend!!”

Is there some kind of competition for cutest dog costume contest?

Some may think it’s silly to dress up animals for Halloween, but I think it’s just so darn cute.  And besides, with no human children to speak of we must spend our time doing something!

We did have some Halloween fun with humans this weekend as well.  Saturday night we headed over to our friends’ house for a party with our Sunday School class.  We had sort of potluck with lots of delicious food, roasted marshmallows and a pumpkin carving contest!  I was the proud wife of the best carved pumpkin winner. Here’s the husband’s masterpiece:

Not bad for a graphic designer, eh?  🙂

Anyway, I signed up to bring a pasta salad to the party.  The main dish was slated to be ribs, and when we arrived our sweet hostess proudly announced that they had grilled 15 pounds of ribs – “so eat up!!”  haha. Lovely:)

I don’t mean to be cynical at all – this is one of the sweetest couples you’d ever meet, but I have to admit that I cringed a bit at the announcement.  Anyway, I usually sign up to bring some kind of side dish or salad when we got to parties, so that I’ll for sure have something substantial to eat that is vegetarian. And for this particular occasion I decided to go with a classic favorite.

Summery Fall Couscous Salad

Even though it’s technically more of a summery dish, I knew it would be a hit.  Plus the recipe makes a huge amount, perfect for parties and potlucks.  Seriously ya’ll, if you get a chance, please make this salad.  Once people get past the “foreigness” of couscous there is no holding them back.  Sometimes I even make it just to have at the house – and the husband eats it like candy:)  If you’re making it just for your family though, you may want to half the recipe.

The stars of this salad:

My sweet friend, Grace, also brought a tasty salad that was meat free, so I enjoyed some of that, a few chips and some bread!

And a s’more of course.

Anyway, it was a great time.  You really can’t beat good food and great friends, ya know?

After the party Saturday night, we stopped by Redbox to rent a movie – The Greatest.  Have you seen it?  If you don’t mind movies that make you bawl for an hour straight, then you should definitely rent it!

Jon loves to rent really sad movies with me and then fall asleep and make me watch them by myself.

Case in point:  When we were in Tokyo a couple of years ago, we got in bed to watch P.S. I Love You.  Um, yeah.  Talk about a tear jerker.  Within 5 minutes the husband was fast asleep, and I was left to be sucked into this horribly sad movie all by myself.  I got revenge, however, when he woke up to me sobbing uncontrollably at 1am, begging him to tell me why he made me watch it all alone.  And that is no exaggeration, my friends.  I was an complete mess.  If you’ve seen it, you know what I mean.

Anyway, so last night was pretty much a replay, but not quite as intense.

Needless to say I woke up after only about 5 hours of sleep, puffy eyed and tired.  I’m sure everyone at church wondered just what kind of party we had Saturday night, haha.  o’well!

Naturally, it is now almost midnight, and I still have some tasks to finish up.  I’m working on something for tomorrow’s post that I’m pretty excited about.  Heather is having a special post this week where she’s linking other bloggers who took on a recipe that is a challenge and is out of their comfort zone.  I love challenges like this!  Stay tuned…

See you guys tomorrow:)  Let’s start strong for another week!

What was the craziest or funniest costume you saw this weekend? While it wasn’t super crazy, on Saturday afternoon at about 4 o’clock I happened to glance out our front window, and there was a Peter Pan and Tinker Bell walking down our street.  I know it was the day before Halloween and all, but there was just something funny about it:) lol.

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to nap or not to nap

27 Jun

Is your weekend flying by as quickly as mine?  It seems like it just started and now it’s already mid day on Sunday.

I’m hoping to fit in a short nap today, but I have so much I need to do I’m not sure it’ll happen.  If it’s ever going to happen though, Sunday is the day!  Sometimes it’s hard for me to nap during the day because I feel like time is just passing me by, and I could be using it to do something productive and/or fun!

Unfortunately, our alarm did NOT go off this morning *lame*…so we didn’t make it to Sunday School, but we did manage to get to our 2nd service on time.  We are currently studying 2nd Timothy, which I’m really enjoying because I think there are a lot of practical applications to take away for my daily life.  I love our pastor because he teaches the Bible straight up – verse by verse and passage by passage.  If you’re interested in checking out some really great teaching of the Bible, you can check out the website here.  You can download podcasts of the message each week or just past messages.

After church we headed home for some lunch !  I had quickly gulped down a green monster on the way to church, so my stomach was really talkin’ to me.  Lately, I’ve been just throwing together veggies a lot.  I always vary which veggies I use or the sauce or grain…or something, so it doesn’t get boring.  I love these kind of meals!

Today I stir fried some frozen cauliflower, green beans, spinach and edamame in a skillet.  I then added it to some leftover couscous from the other night and topped it all off with leftover “cheeze” sauce.  It was every bit as delicious left over as it was fresh!

Jonathan also shoved these down my throat a little while ago. uhg

I’m off to do some laundry and work on some projects.  I may also try to squeeze in some yoga a little later.  Or maybe…just maybe I’ll go join this girl

Hope you all have an amaaazinng Sunday!  See ya later

Do you like to take naps on weekends?  Or do you feel like it wastes part of your day?

say cheeeeze!

24 Jun

Gooood morning!  I was up and at ’em fairly early this morning – I’m meeting my mom in the city to hang out for the day, and I have to leave in t-minus 20 minutes.  eek!

Jon and I got in a good, strong 2.5 mile walk this morning.  We set out with intentions to run, but were such chatty Cathys the whole time that we ended up walking.  I dare say that going on walks with my husband is one of my favorite things in life.  I think I’ll try to slip in some online yoga tonight…I’ll letcha know which video I end up using, but I’m thinking maybe this, which was suggested to me by Maggie via Heather.  Thank goodness for blog friends, right?!

Last night I went to my power yoga class, and by the time I got back home it was after 7, and I was famished.  I decided to whip up this little recipe for Vegetable Couscous + Cheeze Sauce that I had seen on Angela’s site a couple of days ago.

I followed Angela’s recipe, but I did make a few adjustments.  First off, I halved the recipe because I was running low on nutritional yeast; I still had leftovers.  Also, I had to keep adding water as I stirred the cheeze sauce because it kept getting too thick.  In the end, I still would have liked it a little thinner and will likely add more water next time I make it.  Thirdly, I used about half the hummus and half the Earth Balance.

For veggies, I used sauteed broccoli sprouts, chopped carrots, chopped onions and chopped bell pepper.  Lastly I sprinkled ground red pepper over the top before I inhaled ate it.

All in all it was just as amazing as Angela raved.  I will definitely make this again, and I’m super stoked to have leftovers of the sauce awaiting me in the fridge.  muahaha.

I also treated myself to a side of steamed broccoli:)

Okaaayyy, now that I am officially 5 minutes late already, I gotta jet.  Sorry mom!

See you guys later!

spring!

8 Apr

Hey guys!  How has your Thursday been?  Mine has been just fine, but quite tiring.  I haven’t been getting as much sleep as I need to lately, and it’s really starting to wear on me.  With a 5am wake up call each morning, it’s hard to do everything I need/want to do post 5 pm and still get a decent amount of sleep.  I’ve been locking in about 6ish hours, which could be worse, but it also could be a lot better.  I’ve got to do something about my schedule b/c it is just not working.  How many hours of sleep do you aim for?  Do you feel that a lack of sleep affects you in all areas throughout your day? I definitely do.

I tell you what, I had the best lunch today!  Last night, Jon had to go to Tulsa for a freelance meeting.  He is going to be creating the branding (logo etc.) for the Route 66 Marathon in Tulsa this year, and he had to meet with the director of the race (I’m so proud and excited!).  Anyway, he called me on his way home at about 9:30 and said that he was stopping in Whole Foods to get me some Amazing Grass and a few other odds and ends.  Do I have an amazing husband or what?!  He ended bringing home 2 Kombuchas, Amazing Grass, and 2 different salads from the bar for me to take for lunches.

This first one is called Couscous Primavera, and I’ll be taking it for lunch tomorrow.  Yay!

Ingredients include:  Israeli couscous, carrots, onion, bell pepper, scallion, zucchini, evoo, lemon juice, dill, parsley, lemon zest and salt/pepper.  I definitely plan to try and recreate this one on my own.  It was delish (I couldn’t help but try a bite when he got home last night)!

The second on is Orange Quinoa with Mint and Almond:  quinoa, bell pepper, green onions, almond slivers, mint, orange, lime juice, sherry vinegar, honey (not vegan, I know!), sea salt, and pepper.  I took this one for lunch today.  It was tasty as well, but overall I think I like the couscous better.

Sorry all I have for you is boring store bought meals tonight, but sometimes you just gotta go with it.  I love getting special dishes from WF…especially because it’s a rarity!

After I got home from work today, Jon and I took Olive on a walk.  I’ve been having a really difficult time getting the energy/motivation to work out after work.  I am a huge morning workout person, so I’ve been feeling very frustrated with my schedule.  When I’m already getting only 5-6 hours of sleep, it’s hard to bring myself to get up earlier to work out.  I just really don’t like working out in the afternoons, though!

Our walk was great, though.  I love spending time outside together and just enjoying the weather.  I didn’t work up much of a sweat, but it was better than sitting on the couch!  Here are some pretty pics of springtime in Oklahoma:)

Are you a morning or afternoon workout person?  If afternoon, how do you get the energy to do it after working all day?  Also, how do you balance getting your workout in with cooking dinner, eating, cleaning up, blogging, keeping up with household stuff, spending time with significant other etc?  Please share your tips and tricks!

See you guys tomorrow.  TGIF!

couscous salad and today's eats

5 Apr

Hey hey everyone!  How’s it going?  As promised yesterday, I have a newbie and an oldie recipe for you!

First up is Couscous Salad

Ingredients

  • 1.5 cup couscous, uncooked
  • 2 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 1.5- 15 oz. cans black beans, rinsed
  • 1.5 can low sodium corn
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 bunch scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/2 – 1 chopped avocado
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • handful of cilantro, chopped
  • 2 tsp chili powder

Directions

  • Bring vegetable broth to a boil.  Add couscous. Remove from heat and cover.
  • Chop bell pepper, onion and scallions and set aside
  • Whisk together oil, red wine vinegar, lime juice, and cumin in a large bowl
  • After couscous has sat for 5-10 minutes, fluff well with a fork and transfer sauce in bowl
  • Add black beans, corn, bell pepper, chopped onion, scallions, cilantro, chili powder, salt and pepper and mix well
  • Add chopped avocado just before serving

recipe adapted from here

This salad is great chilled, but can also be served hot.  I made this recipe for my family Easter gathering, and I brought home a couple servings worth of leftovers.  So, if you’re making it for one, you may want to half this recipe.  I love having leftovers on hand, though.  I took a bowl of this for lunch today, and it was filling as a meal too!

You guys have got to try this – I absolutely loved it and so did my fam!

Next up is my version of Averie’s Vegan Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Protein Bars

This was actually my second time to make these, but I altered a couple of things from the last batch, and I think they turned out even better!

Ingredients

one ripe banana, mashed
1.5 cup oats
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1/2 cup natural pb
1 scoop of Jay Robb Brown Rice Protein Powder (or protein powder of your choice)
3 tbsp sliced almonds
2 tbsp whole flaxseed
2 tbsp chia seeds
1.5 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions
Mash banana in a large bowl
Combine the rest of the ingredients a few at a time and mix well
Place saran wrap in 8×8 pan (Averie’s idea:)
Press mixture into pan with hands
Cut bars right away – I cut mine into 16 squares
Freeze bars

I think these bars are best served right out of the freezer, but you can eat them any way you like!  As you can tell these are quite calorie dense, but they are so sweet and delicious that one small square is satisfying!  After freezing mine, I took them out of the dish and wrapped them individually.  Instant portion control!  I was so happy because these were a total hit with my family.  Usually they aren’t too keen on my concoctions, but I think they really loved these.  Score!

My eats today were pretty basic.  For some reason I wasn’t that hungry today.  I sipped on my green smoothie throughout the morning, whereas I usually finish it on my drive to work.  I even took the last bit of it to lunch with me.  As mentioned earlier I also had leftover couscous salad for lunch.

I also packed all of this!


Kiwi, carrots and almonds…with a side of plastic;)

Whole soy yogurt and sliced almonds/dried cranberries (my favorite!)

Pretty kiwi:)

So, I actually didn’t end up eating the kiwi or the carrots because I just didn’t need it.  It’s sitting in my fridge at work, waiting to be eaten tomorrow!  I don’t think I’ll be able to resist it tomorrow – I love kiwi!

Dinner tonight was Whichwich.  We just didn’t feel like cooking – we both had a lot to do tonight and wanted to just chill out and skip kitchen duty. So, Whichwich it was!

Tomato and avocado on whole wheat with lettuce, pickles, pepperoncini, mushrooms, bell pepper and onion – my fave!

Well, it’s getting pretty late and I still want to go out for a walk with Jon and Olive.  Our walks are always the highlight of my day!  I think we may have some storms coming in though, so off I go!  See you guys tomorrow!

Btw, I do have some potential developments in the works regarding this post.  I’ll update as soon as I can!  Please keep your fingers crossed for me:)