Tag Archives: vegetables

go get 'em husband

7 Feb

Good morning!

I honestly cannot believe how quickly the weekend flew by…seems like it just started.

On Saturday things warmed up a bit around here, and some of the snow started to melt off.  By late in the day, many of the streets were almost clear…but there’s still tons of white everywhere else!  Apparently (I never watch the weather) there is more snow headed this way in the next few days, but we shall see!

I know I’m beginning to sound like a broken record, but Saturday and Sunday we spent a lot of time organizing and packing.  The story of our life these days.  I have to admit it feels sooo good to get it done, though.  We are still a long ways from being packed, but I think we did finally finish the office for the most part after being buried in boxes and files for the last few days.

Saturday night I got inspired to make a stir-fry.  When I asked the husband what he wanted for dinner, he said something I thought I would never hear him say: “How about something besides mexican?”

I thought I was dreaming.  Did he just say he didn’t want mexican food?!

So stir-fry it was!

I chopped up bell pepper, onion, broccoli, carrots and cabbage and stir-fried it in about one tablespoon of olive oil until it was tender.  Then I tossed in some frozen edamame (did you know edamame has the same amount of protein as roasted turkey?) for protein.

After it had cooked for a little bit, I mixed together about two tablespoons natural peanut butter, two tablespoons tamari, a couple teaspoons rice wine vinegar and some water to thin it out.  Honestly, I just kind of guessed at the proportions and tasted as I went.  I poured the sauce over the veggie mixture and continued to cook them for another 5-10 minutes.

In the meantime I cooked some buckwheat (soba) noodles, and when it was all done I poured a big spoonful of veggies over the noodles….and that was it!  Easiest stir-fry ever.

Stir-fry reminds me of Thailand so much.  During the last few months we lived there, I literally ate stir-fried veggies in some form every. single. night.  No exaggeration.  Always on top of brown rice.  Granted I wasn’t a vegetarian then, and I used fish and oyster sauce (Thai style) for flavoring, but it was still so good.  Really takes me back:)

cooking with friends in Thailand

Anyway, on Sunday the husband and I went to lunch with some dear friends of ours from our college days.  They are several years older than us and have three of the cutest little kids.  During our time in Campus Crusade for Christ at OSU, Dan discipled Jonathan, and Debbie discipled me.  They have always meant so much to us and have walked with us through some of the most important decisions in our life.  It was so nice today to catch up and spend time with them…we’re really going to miss them when we move.

Debbie and I / Dan and Jon – about five years ago

Other than packing throughout the afternoon, I also made some Super Charge Me cookies for the husband.  While he ate cookies, I enjoyed a leftover vegan cinnamon roll.  This morning someone brought cinnamon rolls to Sunday School, and ever since then I’ve been craving one.  I can honestly say that these rolls are one of the best vegan baked goods I’ve made yet.  The day after I made them, I realized that unless I wanted to turn into a giant cinnamon roll, I needed to put them away for awhile.  So into the freezer they went.  A couple of times since then I’ve pulled one out and heated it in the microwave for about a minute and a half…and it’s always just as good as when it was fresh out of the oven.

You really must make these if you’re a cinnamon roll fan!

So that’s the weekend in nutshell – only two more weekends left until moving weekend!

Last thing – I have to give a shout-out to my better half.  Today is the husband’s first day at his new job, and I am so dang proud of him.  I’m so thankful for all the hard work he has put in over the last several years to get us where we are.  This is just one more step we get to take along the path of our life.  I’m going to miss him now that he’s leaving earlier, getting home later and not coming home for lunch (tear), but I know he’s going to love his new role…and he’s totally going to rock it! Go get ’em husband:)  I love you!

Did you have a good weekend?
What’s your favorite vegetable?

I think mine would have to be spinach…or maybe snap peas.  It’s really hard to narrow it down, though!

christmas number one

13 Dec

Well, I have to say that McCoy family Christmas weekend was an epic success.

We started the weekend off strong on Friday night when my mother-in-law announced that there would be intermittent BINGO going on all weekend – with prizes to boot!  At random moments one of my parents-in-law would make the call “it’s BINGO time!” at which point we’d all gather round for a chance to win.

This is my mother-in-law completely in her element – bingo by her side

and a grab bag of prizes just within reach:)  love it!

Saturday morning we got up first thing and got to cookin’!  It has become a yearly tradition for us to make meals for older folks in the church and then take them with us as we go caroling from house to house.

This year we made bean soup, corn bread and banana bread.  The phrase “how many McCoys does it take to _____” was thrown out a lot throughout the morning:)

Another important event on Saturday was the celebration of my MIL’s birthday! So so thankful for her:)

the original mccoy family:)

After a couple hours of visiting and caroling, we headed back to the house to get dinner ready.  I am the only vegetarian in the family, so many times I will either just eat the sides that are made or I’ll roast up a batch of veggies.  I went with the latter this weekend, and even threw in some potatoes and edamame.  Protein, check! Carbs, check! Veggies, check, check!

I coated them with a mix of olive oil and random seasonings.  Unfortunately I went a little heavy on the red pepper, but other than that they were pretty good!

While we enjoyed dinner, little Miss Olive enjoyed chewing on her new favorite toy given to her by her grandparents:)

And then it was time for gifts.  My mother-in-law completely goes over the top with the gifts – she and my father-in-law do so much for us.  It’s seriously outrageous.  We had a great time – I love getting to watch people open gifts…so fun.  And opening some myself wasn’t bad either I suppose:)

Unfortunately my mother-in-law had a bit of hard time this weekend because on Thursday night she was rooting around in her closet for something and a five pound dumbbell fell and landed on two of her toes.  I felt so bad for her…I think she was in more pain than she would let on…but of course it didn’t stop her from serving all of us all weekend.  It’s just who she is:)  I hope I can be as sweet and selfless as she is when I have children someday.

All in all it was a great Christmas with the family.  It’s kind of nice to have one Christmas done, but still have almost two weeks of Christmas fun to go…I like it!

Merry Christmas from us! Jon, Candice and Olive

Olive refused to look at the camera.  I think she was a little bitter about the sweater.

Hope you all had a great weekend!

Stay tuned tomorrow for round three of the perfect vegan sugar cookie + a discount offered from one of the coolest online boutique stores around!

happy day

9 Dec

Happy Birthday to the best sister in the world…

taken 3 years ago in Thailand: my sister and I on her birthday with two of our favorite Thai friends, P’Dew and P’Nong

Love you!

Also, happy 2 year vegetarian birthday to me!

Getting better all the time:)

(go here if you’re interested in hearing more about why I eat the way I do)

roll with it

9 Nov

Hello.

Even though Tuesday’s are my favorite day of the week, today has been kind of a stick in the mud.  There is just a lot going on and a lot of things the husband and I are thinking through right now…but one thing I’m thankful for is that we get to do it together.

So, instead of talking about the less than stellar parts of the day, let’s talk about the highlights!

I made it to the gym this morning in time to lift a few weights (today was arms) and get in a 35 minute workout on the treadmill.  I did a little incline walking, non-incline speed walking and running.  And then I came home and had an cold and creamy green smoothie.

For some reason green smoothies have been missing from my life lately, and I’m not sure why.  But today I got a serious craving, and it really hit the spot.  Refreshing.

A few hours later the husband surprised me with a lunch date at “the bread place.”ahhhhh.

This sandwich was stacked with lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles, cucumbers, sprouts and pesto.  One of those kinds of meals that you finish and then wish you could relive every. single. bite.

Or is that just me?

Anyway.

Do you ever have those nights when dinner just doesn’t seem to come together very well?  For every meal you think of to fix, there is some reason why you can’t make it happen.  You’re out of hummus.  Or the bread is molded.  Or you forgot to pick up that green pepper at the store.

Or you char your kale chips to a crispy black.

Whoops.

The kitchen was quickly filling with smoke, so I snatched the baking sheet out of the oven and raced it out onto the back deck.  Suddenly have no idea why I was standing outside in the cold, barefoot with a smoking hot sheet of blackened kale in my hand, I balanced it on the deck railing and hightailed it back inside!

Whew!

And now, 3 hours later, I’m remembering that I never went back out to retrieve it.  Our neighbors must think we are so weird.

Anyway, so dinner ending up looking like this.

roasted potato rounds, corn, steamed broccoli and steamed green beans

This meal was seriously lacking in protein, but by this point I really could have cared less.  Sometimes you just gotta roll with it.

What did you have for dinner tonight? Let’s hear it!

a big bowl of mustard

27 Oct

Hi!

I love Wednesday evenings.  Don’t you just love Wednesday evenings?  It’s the first time of the whole week that we’re on the downhill slide to the weekend.

Wednesday night’s also my yoga night.  The 5:30 class that I teach caps off an entire afternoon of tutoring, and honestly tonight I was just so tired all I wanted to do was collapse on the sofa.  But alas, as with most other times I feel that way, yoga is precisely what I need.

This morning I made it to the gym and did a 20 minute run at 6.0 pace and then hit the weights.  I’ve decided I’m going to knock out a short cardio session + weights on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday.  Tuesday and Thursday will be just cardio days.  So far I’m liking the schedule…granted today is only Wednesday.

While I’m liking the schedule, I’m not too sure how my muscles feel about it.  So far they won’t stop complaining.  But I know it will get better.  That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it 🙂

Anyway, this morning was so busy with random tasks that I didn’t have time to eat breakfast.

Didn’t have time to eat breakfast!

This is not normal (for me).  Or acceptable.

And now it’s 10 pm.  I’ve had dinner.  I’ve had froyo.  I’m still wanting to snack on something.

Rest assured, I’m not hungry.  But you know how they (who is “they” anyway?) say that people who don’t eat breakfast, eat more throughout the day?  I’ve never really given that theory a test run, but after today I totally believe it!  I have no doubt that my urge to keep snacking all night long is correlated to my lack of breakfast this morning.  Especially considering I worked out.

Anyway. Onto more important things. I figure I’ve teased you long enough about this out-of-this-world creamy squash soup, eh?

ooooooh, ahhhhhh.

Looks delicious?!

Or looks like mustard in bowl?

I’ll let you decide.

Outrageously Creamy Squash Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 medium sized kabocha squash (Okay, okay, any squash will probably work)
  • 2 cups low-sodium vegetable stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup vegan sour cream
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp all spice
  • 1 tsp sea salt

Directions

  • Cut squash up into wedges and lay on a baking sheet.  Roast at 400 degrees for about 25 minutes, or until a fork pierces it easily.
  • Once squash is tender, allow to cool (or burn yourself if you’re impatient like me) before peeling or cutting skins off.
  • Put squash in a blender or food processor.  Add the rest of the ingredients and process until smooth.
  • Pour into a saucepan or a microwaveable safe bowl and heat through before serving.

I would also highly suggest holding out a few pieces of roasted squash to snack on while the soup is whirring.  Do it! Do it! Do it!

Hope you guys have had a fantastic start to the week.  Onward to Friday!

P.S. Don’t forget to enter my giveaway. I’ll love you forever!

P.S.S. I’ve updated some of my tabs at the top, and I’d love for you to check ’em out when you get a chance!

P.S.S.S Are you supposed to add more p’s or more s’s in these kinds of situations?

Do you have a workout routine/schedule that you stick to?  Or do you just wing it?

getting real

12 Oct

Tonight the husband and I got a serious hankering for some diet coke.  So, we decided to take an evening walk down to the grocery store before dinner.

It is quite ironic that we have three (yes, three) cars, yet we walked to the grocery store.  But I love our walks.  With the husband working evenings on our business, we don’t have as much time for them as we used to.  I miss them.

Once we got there, I sat outside with Olive, while he ran inside for the goods.

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about contentment.  I am the world’s worst about getting in too big of a hurry all the time.  While I love the idea of slowing down and enjoying life as it is now, I don’t practice it very often.  I’m always wishing for the next thing. Always thinking that things could be just a little bit better if only…

Lately I’ve really been struggling with this, and the last couple of days I’ve actually been able to recognize how detrimental this is to my life.  I count myself very blessed to be in the stage of life I’m in.  I’m so thankful that Jon supported me in leaving my job so that I could pursue what I’m passionate about. And I’m tired of surrendering to discontentment and allowing fear to defeat me.  I’m slowly starting to realize something about myself – I’m afraid of being successful.  I think that part of my discontentment at this phase of life is due to not allowing myself to succeed.

I allow three things to defeat me on a daily basis: procrastination, being paralyzed by fear and making excuses.  I’m still diligently trying to figure out why I allow these things to interfere with my goals and dreams, but I’m working on taking steps toward overcoming them.

The other night Jon and I laid awake for hours, him letting me hash out every angle of this struggle.  I’m so thankful that he pushes me to challenge myself, to take myself to the next level, and most of all to believe in myself.  I don’t know why he believes in me as deeply as he does, but sometimes that’s what keeps me going. Before we went to bed that night, he walked me into our office and made me put down my new commitment on our chalkboard closet door.  Everyday when I see it, it reminds me that I really am stronger than I think I am.

side note – the coloration on this pic is way off.  Our walls are not bright yellow:)

It’s so normal in the blog world to always focus on the positive, and I really don’t want to be a downer, but surely I’m not the only one who struggles with this?  Am I alone in being my own biggest obstacle to achieving everything I want for my life?  Sometimes I just ask myself “why are you procrastinating on the things you care about most?” “Why are you not focusing your intentions on the things that are most important?”  “And why do you spend more time wishing for things in the future, rather than living in the present?”

So that’s me lately.

And so as not to leave on a dreary note, here’s some amazing fall food that has been warming me through and through:)

Making homemade pizza crust

The best thing about this crust was the process of making it.  There’s something therapeutic about making homemade bread.

Unfortunately it was a total fail.  I used too little yeast and didn’t let it sit long enough + I used all spelt flour when I probably should have incorporated in some white flour.

Even with leftover veggie spaghetti sauce from the other night and shredded vegan cheese, it still tasted terrible.

The side of broccoli saved the day!  Sprinkle on a little sea salt, and you’ve got yourself heaven on a plate.

I also used that same leftover homemade spaghetti sauce in a mix with kidney beans and sauteed swiss chard.  All piled on a tiny bed of pasta.  The sauce was definitely the star of this show.

Oh wait.

I take that back.  The kabocha squash ruled again!  I seriously cannot get enough.  I actually bought a whole ‘nother one this afternoon.  I’m thinking maybe soup this time…

Yes, I think soup could be just the thing.

let's clear things up

14 Sep

Hello!

This morning…I juiced.

But before that I went on a 3.5 mile run.  It was a decent run – not the best I’ve ever had, but certainly not bad.  I love those moments when I hit a high in the middle of my run, whether caused by my current tune, something to do with the scenery or just a good strong and steady stride, it’s just so sweet.  We didn’t make great time – I think we finished in about 38 minutes, but I’ve just been less worried about time lately.  I would honestly rather just enjoy running than be super worried about how fast I’m going.

Anyway, so I came home and showered and then got to juicing.  I know I mentioned a few weeks ago that I had switched cleansers to Burt’s Bees because I wanted to start using all natural skin care.  I’ll be doing a full review on it later as I want to give it a little more time before I form a final opinion.  One thing I don’t think I mentioned before is that I felt like it was a good time for me to make the switch because I was having some serious breakouts on my face.  I haven’t had a problem with breakouts since high school, and I’m not really sure what’s going on.  But I figured since my face was already broken out, it would be a good time to change my skin care system, since switching can often trigger a breakout. Might as well get it all over with at once.

Not sure that was the best idea.  I’ve been using Burt’s Bees for about 2 weeks now, and my face has progressively gotten worse.  I honestly don’t think that BB is specifically the problem.  I think there was already a problem, and so far BB just hasn’t miraculously cleared up my skin.  It has gotten so bad, though, that I finally called the other day and set up an appointment with the dermatologist.  I’m seriously feeling desperate!

Anyway, I woke up this morning and was washing my face when it occurred to me that I should really try every natural remedy I can think of before I end up with a prescription cream of some sort that is full of chemicals and most likely expensive on top of that.  After just a little bit of researching I came up with a few ideas that I’m going to begin implementing.

  • Drink a lot more water – I drink water with most meals, but often forget to drink it in between
  • Eat more raw foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds (read: lots of juices, green smoothies and salads)
  • Eliminate (with a few exceptions) refined sugar and coffee
  • More yoga – yes, I think this matters.  It helps relieve stress and tension, which has a positive effect on my skin
  • Not wearing makeup whenever possible – this is kind of a catch 22 because I want to avoid makeup so my skin can breathe and begin to clear up, but I also have more of a desire to wear it because my face is so broke out.  Not sure exactly how to handle this other than I won’t be wearing makeup anytime I’m at home
  • Continue to wash morning and night with Burt’s Bees
  • Use tea tree oil on blemishes
  • Stop touching my face! I have a bad habit of doing this.

I just felt so compelled today to do whatever I can to take care of this problem.

Breakfastleafy greens + 1 beet + 1 carrot + 3 celery stalks + 1 apple + small piece of garlic = one amazing juice

After my juice, I did an hour yoga session.  I’m learning to turn my planning for classes into awesome classes for myself. I pulled out all the stops, even using my lavender scented cloth:)  A couple of hours later I had a snack plate.

Newman’s Own spelt pretzels

natural almond butter

homemade salsa

carrots and celery sticks

And for lunch I opted for a green smoothie.  This contained 2 handfuls of spinach, 1 container of soy yogurt (we’re out of almond milk), 2 heaping tablespoons Vega Shake and Go Smoothie, half a banana, 1 tbsp chia seeds and ice.

For an afternoon snack I veered from raw and ate up a cinnamon raisin Ezekiel english muffin with 1 tbsp almond butter.

Plus I drank lots and lots of water all day long!  Many trips to the bathroom ensued.

For dinner Jon and I grabbed salads from Chipotle on our way to buy groceries.  Mine included lettuce, black beans, grilled veggies, 3 kinds of salsa and guacamole of course!

Overall I already feel much better today.  Even though I can’t tell a difference on my face yet, it feels good to know that I’m going everything I can.  I would love to be able to cancel that dermatologist appointment in a week.

Well, now that I’ve laid out all my problems for the world to see, I must be headed to bed;)

Question: have you ever had problems with your skin, whether acne or something else?  Any ideas for natural treatments?