Ohhh Heyyyy Spring!

With the start of spring (please don’t snow again!!) I’ve been sorting through my things and organizing. With my running and work out stuff, I’ve been going through and wearing everyone once more to test if it is worth keeping or not.

For those of you who are into fitness, you are well aware of the struggle. Something might be absolutely amazing when you try it on in the store, and then you wear it to work out and it is a failure. I can’t tell you how many things I’ve purchased with great hopes, only to be horribly disappointed. There were those spandex that slid down my bum as I ran… or the shirt with the weird stitching that made me bleed… and of course the countless sports bras that seemed fine, only to be uncomfortable and awful.

However, on a whim I purchased a sports bra from Under Armour and it has surpassed my expectations in all sorts of ways. The straps are not as elastic and they cross slightly higher than I’m used to – however this has proven to be far more comfortable. The bras come with removable pads, which I like because I can still maintain shape and modesty in tighter tops. Most of all? I like that the bras come in actual bra sizes so you can actually buy a bra that is made for your size.

Check them out here: http://www.underarmour.com/shop/us/en/armour-bra

 

But, seriously…

The last couple of weeks I have been slowly updating my blog in small ways – tagging recipes appropriately, re-categorizing posts, editing typos, and the like. In the process, I noticed that I have been missing so many of the nice comments that you all have been leaving me!!!! MISSING, like totally never saw it and never responded!! HOW RUDE!  So, I have been very belatedly going through and answering comments that I didn’t respond to… very belatedly!

But, seriously, I will try much harder to make sure I don’t miss any of the lovely comments you post, and I’m very sorry if I am just getting back to you. I hope you continue to read and visit, because I am really grateful for your attention and comments!

Conclusion? THANK YOU for visiting me and I hope we will still be friends! (pretty please?! with some chocolate sprinkles?!).

Go Bags

Hello my friends!

I just wanted to stop in and say hellooooooo! Hello!!! I’m in the middle of a crazy busy month, but I wanted to share something with you that makes running out the door on hectic mornings just a little easier. I hate having things scattered on the bottom of my bags, so a while back I started shoving all my odds and ends into little pouches so I could just grab them and find what I wanted. Then I started actually adding things that would be helpful and organizing my little pouch. I call them “go bags” because they have all of the essentials that I need for the day and in case of little emergencies.

I have about 4 or 5 of these, and it makes it easier for me to be ready to go. I just grab my wallet, a little go bag, and stuff them in whatever bag I’m using for the day and I can be on my way.

Without further ado… one of my little go bags! This one is a bare essentials one.

IMG_7518 IMG_7519

 

 

So you can see, it’s a small bag (I believe this is from a Clinique sample from a billion years ago) and it will fit in just about all my bags.

In this one I have:

  1. A pen
  2. Travel size Aleve
  3. Eye drops
  4. A sample of Marc Jacobs Daisy perfume
  5. Weleda Lotion
  6. Mickey Mouse Bandaids in assorted sizes
  7. Listerine Strips
  8. Purell
  9. Lip Balm
  10. Bobby Pins
  11. Hair ties
  12. Safety pins (not pictured)

I have a couple that include more things like: (1) a travel tooth brush and tooth paste, (2) scissors, (3) travel sewing kit, (4) antiseptic cream, (5) a spare pair of underwear, and (6) lady things like pads/tampons.  During the spring, when I have hay fever I also add allergy pills and tissues. One or two of my bags also includes waterproof eyeliner and a pink lipstick, but since I rarely wear makeup these items don’t make it into most go bags.

Do any of you guys do this too? What do you keep in your purse?

Mushroom and Artichoke Soup

I’ve been sick the last couple of days, the kind where you are just plain passed out on the couch and drooling. So when I finally managed to peel my tired and sick body off the couch, I wanted something hot and delicious. Luckily, I had a container filled with roasted mushrooms and some spare artichoke quarters languishing in a jar… so I thought… SOUP! Since I was fuzzy from sleeping 2 days straight, I put on some good music and chopped methodically while I simmered up this soup. Turns out, this is just what I needed.

Mushroom and Artichoke Soup (A little bit of this and that from the Kaprise Kitchen)

  • 2 cups of roasted mushrooms (I made mine like this), finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup of canned artichokes (the ones I had are marinated in oil and Italian spices, but plain should be just fine), finely chopped
  • 1 medium sized yellow onion, finely diced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, smashed and finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • pinch of cumin, paprika, and whatever other spices you want!
  • 1 cup of water
  1. If you haven’t already, finely chop all of the ingredients.
  2. In a pot, heat the butter and olive oil
  3. Gently stir in the onion, cooking until translucent and sweet. Add the garlic and cook for a few minutes.
  4. Stir in the mushrooms and artichokes.
  5. Add 1 cup of water and bring to a simmer
  6. Season accordingly.
  7. DONE!

Easy Peasy! This is easily made vegetarian by just using olive oil…. I ate mine with some seared scallops, but you can add or leave out protein as you see fit!

photo

I hope you are all staying warm! It’s been freezing out here, and much to my dismay, my dog LOVES being outside in the snow and ice.

 

 

Marathon Training (a 60 Day Challenge)

Hello hello!!!

Today, I wanted to share my goals for this year in terms of running. I am planning on running either a half or full marathon on March 8, 2014. I know that seems like a super weird statement… what do you MEAN “either”?!

My friend C emailed me and R last year in the fall and asked “MARATHON?” and of course, I was immediately psyched and IN. C and R started training using a 24 week training schedule. Me? I came down with a violent cold that had me bedridden for nearly 3 weeks. The minute I felt better, I was flying to Korea for a funeral. When I returned from Korea, the stress of losing a loved one sent me straight back to bed with a pinched nerve in my back. Then, the holidays rolled around, and I was inundated with family, presents, and cold weather. This year has been unusually cold, and so running outside (my preference) has been a bit of a struggle.

This brings us to NOW. It’s about 8 weeks to the marathon, the hotels and flights are all booked, but my training isn’t where it should be. So far, I’ve really only been able to get a couple long runs in and then some shorter runs on the treadmill. I know that because I have a high tolerance for long runs that I could potentially be ready for this marathon without hurting myself, but I’m hesitating. Someone once characterized my running as “brute force” because of my ability to push through long runs despite obstacles. Since I have been running for a long time, and have training for many (many!) races, I do know the limit to my “brute force.” I think I’m toeing the line right between being ready and pushing it.

So… what is my 60 day challenge? I am going to train as if I am trying to get a half marathon PR, and try to throw a longer run in when I can. I’ll make the decision to run the marathon in early February… and worst case? I’ll PR in the half. :)

Why am I telling you this? Because I think it’s important to realize that planning these races is important to being successful and to keeping your body healthy. So… I’m holding myself accountable and will post once a week updating you on my progress. :)

Excellent. Run healthy and happy.

 

2014 and 14 things about ME!

The first week of the NEW Year is almost up! But, I thought I’d come and say hello again even though I haven’t a single recipe to share (well, I do, but I didn’t take pictures….). I was wandering across the blogesphere and I noticed a lot of people had these little 15 things about me, or 50 things about me posts. I love that kind of thing! Mostly because I’m supremely curious about people… I just want to KNOW things! Anyway, I thought I’d pop in and write up my own, since I haven’t shared much about myself.

Oh… and I tag ALL of you. Tell me 14 things about you! I want to know!!!

  1. I am a grown up, but I struggle with that idea. I’m just a girl, dude.
  2. I am an excellent speller, but in 5th grade I lost the spelling bee because I misspelled California.
  3. My dog is a lhasa apso. She is currently snoring her head off her plushy bed.
  4. I believe in second chances, sometimes in 3rd and 4ths too.
  5. I graduated from law school a while back, but I teach for a living (hahhhh, with that pay maybe it’s 1/2 a living)
  6. I love running. I’ve run 3 10 milers, 10 half marathons, and 1 full marathon since 2010. I’m thinking about running another marathon in March.
  7. I have terrible eyesight, so I need my glasses or contacts to see anything
  8. My favorite seasons are summer and fall (spring comes in last since I get hayfever)
  9. Today, my computer told me it was running out of space and I needed to delete things! So I finally went through my 30,000 pictures and deleted the blurry ones
  10. I buy books at the airport based on how many pages are in the book. I read quickly, so I try to buy as many pages as possible to keep myself entertained
  11. I love junk food… candy, chocolate, cookies, brownies, and french fries are regulars in my diet (ooops)
  12. I adore getting dressed up. I love putting on pretty clothing and doing fun things.
  13. I prefer red wines and whiskeys to any other type of alcohol. And yes, I can hold my liquor.
  14. I love picking fruit… like anything at all. There is something extremely satisfying to me about picking fruit. I’m planning on a bigger garden this year so I can grow vegetables!

So… I pass the baton to you. Tell me 14 things about you! In honor of 2014. :)

 

Happy New Years!

I realize I am a few days late, but I wanted to stop in and wish everyone a Happy HAPPY New Years!

I always feel a great sense of relief at the New Year mark each year… I feel like a fresh gust of cold air has arrived to sweep away all of the gray and dreary things to only leave the sparkling and wonderful things in life.

So. In honor of the New Year and feeling clean, refreshed, and happy… I have been earnestly applying myself to all of the things I want and need to accomplish. I have promised myself only to live happily… a complex thought, but really just a goal to remind myself to be happy.

I hope that you all have started off on a happy foot, and I hope that all of you have a bright and beautiful 2014 ahead of you. I, for one, and excited for this new year… the clean slate!

love, hugs, and all things good!! -h

 

Soup, Stew… Something for the Snow

I’ve recently decided that it was time to clean out my entire refrigerator… top to bottom. When I was making room for Thanksgiving Day things, I noticed I had very wisely packed away one person size portions of beef, chicken, lentils, and other things in the freezer. Unfortunately, my preparation for those “rainy” days never got used because whenever I crave something, I’m running out the door and to the store. So… to make use of those “rainy” day provisions, I’ve been making a lot of soup and stew with those little squirreled away packets of food.

Soups and stews are easy… for the most part all you need is a little protein, some vegetables, spices and herbs, and a little water.

Today I made a beef soup with ribbons of kale, a handful of fresh herbs out of the crisper, and some green French lentils. It’s not much of a recipe but here it goes.

Something for the Snow Soup (Kaprise refrigerator clean out recipe)

  1. Cube a portion of beef or any protein. I used 8 ounces of sirloin steak.
  2. Toss lightly in flour
  3. In a heavy bottomed skillet (I use my Le Creuset for this) and over high heat, sear the cubes of beef until crisp in olive oil.
  4. Toss in a crushed clove of garlic and stir
  5. Pour in about 1/4 of a cup of wine (and drink some too)
  6. Add 1 cup of crushed tomatoes and 3 cups of water
  7. Bring your soup to a low simmer.
  8. Add 1 cup of uncooked and rinsed lentils (you could also used canned if you prefer)
  9. Add salt, pepper, a pinch of cayenne, a pinch of cumin, and whatever else you desire.
  10. Simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the lentils are cooked through
  11. Stir in ribboned kale and herbs. I used about 5 leaves of dinosaur kale, a bunch of cilantro, and a handful of parsley
  12. Taste and adjust seasoning to taste.

Done!! :) I know it’s not much of a recipe, but these quick little soups get me through the winter. I make a little pot for dinner, and then eat it with an fried egg in the morning… if there is any left over I have it for lunch with some crusty garlic bread (yes. I work from home, so I can eat garlic in the middle of the day).

xoxo-H

Lemon Tea Shampoo

I know, I know… another recipe that isn’t food related! But, since this blog is more about how I love food and all the goods things, I think this is a good fit too. I believe in only eating the best and most delicious food… so it only makes sense that you should treat your entire body with the best ingredients too.

I stopped using commercial shampoo last year because it was affecting my scalp. I was getting red sores and a number of generally unpleasant symptoms. I originally thought it was because my hair had gotten to heavy and long… so I chopped it off. Then I stopped using shampoo, and my scalp stopped bleeding (so gross right?).

Anyway, these days I wash my hair with “shampoo” every few days and just water wash it the other days. The neurotic person in me can’t stop taking a shower and scrubbing myself from head to toe, so instead I take it easy on the soap. This is what I use… I tend to use this little mix twice a week. Remember that less is always better and that you should rinse your hair and scalp thoroughly and with cold water. I’ve found that the blast of cold water I drench my hair in at the end of my shower helps keep the shine and my scalp from flaking or otherwise misbehaving on me.

Lemon Tea Shampoo (pulled from all over the web)

  • 1 cup of tea
  • juice of 1/2 lemon (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 1/4 cup of castile soap (I used Dr. Bronners’ mint)
  • 1 teaspoon of jojoba oil
  1. In a squeeze bottle, combine all the ingredients and gently swirl to combine.
  2. When using in the shower, shake the ingredients together and apply a small amount evenly over your hair. Rinse thoroughly and finish with cold water.
  3. If you find that this shampoo is a bit strong for you, dilute with water.

 

:) I hope you enjoy this alternative to commercial shampoo… what hair secrets do you have??