wiaw #21 and a special invitation

Hello again my friends :) I would like to thank you all for your kind words yesterday in regard to my 100th post! If you haven’t yet, make sure to enter my giveaway for a huge 32oz container of coconut oil! And make those cookies while you’re at it ;)

It’s Wednesday again! I’m growing to really look forward to this day of the week! I love throwing together a post of the things I’ve been loving lately and looking at what everyone else has been nibbling on.

For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about- it’s What I Ate Wednesday! Jenn @ Peas and Crayons hosts a weekly blog party where people share what they ate on any given day or over a period of time. It’s great for ideas! Head over to Peas and Crayons to check out more of the action!

Yesterday was a fairly average day for me, nothing too exciting and no real themes emerged. I’m a little sad to say I didn’t even work out except for 15 min of yoga in the morning and a 15 min walk later on in the day. What can I say, it was a lazy day? Hopefully even though, this month’s theme is fitness, you’ll all forgive me.

So without further ado, here’s my day of food, activities and fun!

WIAW # 21

Started the day with some lemon water and vitamins as usual

Then I did my 15 min of yoga, followed by 15 minutes of meditation. I did a simple sequence of a few sun salutations, some standing poses and a few ab moves. My meditation was the guided audio from Day 9 of the 21 Day Meditation Challenge I mentioned I was doing in my last WIAW post. I’ve been loving it so far! Today’s meditation focused on learning to listen to the intuitive knowledge of our hearts. I think this is such an important lesson, so I’m glad I’ve begun working on it. I think we could all benefit from learning to quiet our heads and all outside influences and focus on what we need and want.

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Breakfast was a standard green smoothie- in this one there’s a banana, blueberries, kale, a few leaves of basil, a little bit of Sunwarrior protein powder and flax seeds. Topped with fresh berries and the last of my pistachio rosewater granola.

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Snack was an unpictured apple with some Better’n Peanut Butter

Followed by a couple (unpictured) squares of dark chocolate.

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Lunch was a new to me product! Some GoGo Quinoa pasta with organic tomato sauce, bell pepper, mixed greens and nutritional yeast. Simple but tasty. Served with some of my homebrewed kombucha

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Snack was a smoothie again- a bit of a smaller one with half a banana, frozen cherries, a little chocolate Sunwarrior, and ice. Topped with sprouted and dehydrated buckwheat groats.

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Dinner was some roasted veggies with quinoa. Veggies were an assortment of what was in the fridge: beets, parsnips, carrots, pepper, broccoli and cauliflower, roasted with salt, pepper and thyme. This was so delicious! I dare even veggie haters to dislike this. I went back for a second helping of the veggies!

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after-dinner snack of vanilla almond rooibos tea and dark chocolate

And since this month’s theme also includes some fun! I thought I’d add in a couple photos of what I got at IKEA the other day!

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the bedspread! I fell even more in love with it in person

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a little kit that that included stencils and shakers so you can sprinkle cinnamon or cocoa on top of your drink in cool patterns

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A couple cool placements for food pictures :)

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This obviously isn’t from IKEA, but while in Ottawa I also went to the Van Gogh exhibit at the National Gallery and fell in love with this painting: Almond Blossom

And that concludes today’s What I Ate Wednesday! Now before I go, I have one more thing…

I would like to cordially invite you to the first ever “Healthy Vegan Fridays” blog party, this Friday July 27th! Basically it’s a weekly blog party where bloggers can submit healthy vegan recipes for other bloggers and readers to see. You submit recipes from your own blog, and each week myself, Shelby and Carrie will highlight our favourites, as well as the most popular ones. We hope this will be a place where bloggers and readers alike can come to get great ideas and inspiration! Click on the tab below my banner for more information, or the link I provided above. The post on Friday will have more details on how to submit recipes. Hope to see you there!

Have a great Wednesday everyone!

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wiaw #20- sips and salads

Happy Wednesday everyone!

Firstly, I just want to say I’m so excited you all loved the recipe for the raw veggie stir-fry I posted on Monday! Sometimes I wonder whether anyone will be interested in something so simple. But you guys definitely appreciate the simple things in life ;) And for that, I thank you!

Since it’s Wednesday, that can only mean on thing! It’s time for some What I Ate Wednesday fun. For those of you who are new to the idea, this is a weekly blog party hosted by Jenn at Peas and Crayons where foodie bloggers post about their daily eats so we can all drool over each other’s deliciousness. Head over to Jenn’s blog to check out all the other posts!

This week, I’ll share a couple recipes with you (!!) and also give you a couple sneak peaks to others that are coming soon. And since July’s theme is fitness, I’ll share with you the workout I did as well. It wasn’t much, I wasn’t feeling too awesome. BUT I had a really good day of eats so without further ado let’s get into it!

What I Ate Wednesday- Sips and Salads!

This was a delicious day of refreshing beverages and salads!

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warm lemon water to start my day!

insert a mental workout here. Well maybe not a workout per say, but definitely a mental exercise!- meditation! I decided to join in with the 21 Day Meditation Challenge where each day you are emailed a link to a short guided meditation with a focus on Love. This was Day 2 and so far I’m really enjoying it! I gave meditation a good shot during my cleanse a couple months ago, but it has fallen to the wayside since. I found it helped with my stress levels a lot so I’m doing this challenge as a way to get back into the habit!

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I decided to take a break from the green smoothies today in favour of a Red Velvet Smoothie! Don’t worry, there are still a veggie in there though ;) This was a nice change of pace and it really tasted like the cake! Scroll down for the recipe!

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Next up I had some of my Raw Pizza Bites. These are seriously so good- you feel like you’re biting into a cheese pizza- but it’s raw, grain-free and vegan! Recipe coming soon ;)

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Next up at work I had a salad with a Mediterranean theme. I had some mixed greens with artichoke hearts, black olives, tomatoes, quinoa and sunflower seeds with a simple lemon juice and hemp oil dressing with fresh ground pepper. This was a super satisfying light lunch (which I ate at 10 am…my work schedule is weird…)

Tony Horton's 10-Minute Trainer<sup>®</sup>

Came home and did my workout! Today I did a quick once since I had to go back out soon and I was really tired. I did the cardio routine from Tony Horton’s 10 Minute Trainer. Now I am not a big Tony Horton fan…I tried P90X a few years ago and only got a couple weeks in because I found him a little annoying and couldn’t listen to him anymore! But these 10 minute routines are great! Small doses of Tony are best :) He really works you for those 10 minutes!

I also worked on my wall sit. I’m up to 2 min 45 seconds!

I find the key to this is to watch something while you’re doing it and don’t put your hands on your legs like in the picture! I found when I did that it made the pose easier- I would push on my thighs with my hands, lessening the load on my core. Keep your hands off!

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After this workout I had a little time to kill before heading out so I snacked on some of these cookies- Quinoa Chocolate Chip Cookies to be exact. I made them for a staff potluck a while ago and they were very well received so I had to make another batch so I could share them with you all! I have a recipe coming up for these as well. I’m going to pretend I didn’t eat 4 of these…

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When I got back home I was miserable- it was sooo hot out yesterday and my car’s air conditioning isn’t the best. So when I got back home I felt drained and dehydrated. So I whipped up this Blueberry Peach Kombucha Slushy that was inspired by this drink from Gena at Choosing Raw. Scroll down for the recipe!

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For dinner, I was so tired, I was honestly going to have a bowl of cereal. But then I remembered that I was going to have to post photos of what I ate. Not wanting to be boring, I decided to whip up this salad instead. Thank you WIAW for saving me from a boring, uninspired dinner ;)This is a Sweet Potato and Lentil Salad with a Coconut Curry Dressing. It’s a great way to have a curry, but without the heaviness of the traditional preparations. Not going to lie, I snacked on one more cookie to fuel me through the prep. Recipe coming soon!

After dinner I sipped on some tea and indulged in a little raw chocolate.

Now for the recipes!

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Red Velvet Smoothie (Vegan, Gluten-free, Sugar-Free, Raw)

This smoothie tastes like a dessert but it healthy enough for breakfast! The beets give it a great colour and an earthy sweetness! The optional ingredients give it a little more staying power, but are, of course, optional!

  • 1 medium beet, peeled and chopped
  • 1 apple, cored
  • 1/2 cup nondairy yogurt (I used So Delicious Coconut in plain)
  • 2 tbsp cacao powder
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • pinch cinnamon
  • stevia to taste (I added 2 drops chocolate stevia)
  • Optional additions:
    • 1/2 a frozen banana
    • 1 tsp flax seeds
    • a few almonds
    • protein powder (I added 1/2 a scoop of Sunwarrior Warrior Blend in Natural)

Put all ingredients in a blended and blend away! Serve with some cacao nibs sprinkled on top!

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Blueberry Peach Kombucha Slushy (Vegan, Gluten-free, Sugar-free)

This beverage is insanely refreshing and filled with probiotic goodness from the kombucha. The ginger gives it a bit of a kick!

  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1/2 cup frozen peach slices
  • 1 cup kombucha (I used my homebrewed kombucha which is a green tea base but use whatever your favourite is)
  • 1 tsp fresh grated ginger

Pop it all in a blender and blend!

I just noticed how similar both those drinks look. Haha oops. I promise they taste different!

That’s it for me today! Have a wonderful day and check back soon for one of the teaser recipes!

Which recipe would you all rather see, the “Raw Pizza Bites” or “Sweet Potato and Lentil Salad with a Coconut Curry Dressing”?

wiaw- mad about cherries and quickie workouts!

Good day friends!

Wow it seems like the weeks are going by faster and faster. I could SWEAR I just posted my last What I Ate Wednesday post. But no, here we are again, for another round of drooling over each other’s pictures of food. And, since Jenn, the lovely girl behind What I Ate Wednesday has made the theme for this month fitness, I’ll also be sharing what workouts I’ve been enjoying!

Before I get into that though, just a quick little update on health-related issues mentioned in my last couple posts (1 & 2)- I have bought a couple books to read and bought a new iron supplement that came highly recommended from some bloggers and readers. I also got back on track with other supplementation that I slack on at times including vitamin D and omega-3s. Anything I discover or any changes I make, I will make sure to keep you posted on!

And now with out further ado I bring you…

Peas and Crayons

What I Ate Wednesday- Mad About Cherries and Quickie Workouts!

These are my eats from Monday, July 9.

Pre-breakfast

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warm lemon water as usual, also had my omega 3s, vitamin B12 and vitamin D.

Breakfast

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I had the day off so breakfast wasn’t another green smoothie! I instead made an oat parfait that included some quick cherry jam, peaches, ginger oats with blackstrap molasses and tahini (for iron), coconut yogurt and buckwheat groats. YUM. I can post the recipe if you’re interested!

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so obsessed with cherries right now!

Morning Tea

Amaretto

I went and ran some errands (got myself a liquid iron supplement, did some foodie pen pal shopping!) and got some iced Amaretto Herbal Tea from David’s Tea. I forgot to take a picture of it prepared but here’s the tea itself! Lightly sweetened with agave it was delicious.

Workout

Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred

Did Level 3 of this DVD. I’m almost done the 30 days! I have to say I have definitely seen changes since starting this. What’s even better, each workout is only 20 minutes. It’s a hard 20 minutes though!

Post-Workout Smoothie

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No lunch today since my workout was strangely timed. But I did have this awesome green smoothie post-workout made with Maqui powder and it was sooo delicious!

Afternoon Snacking

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I was making a batch of this Chocolate Cherry Almond Granola up with added chocolate chips and while I didn’t actually eat any of it, I did snack on some of it’s ingredients some chocolate chips.

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I saw some almond milk yogurt at the store the other day and I got so excited! I’ve never seen them at my store before!

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I hate to admit it, but I wasn’t a huge fan. I probably should have known better than to buy the cherry flavour. While I love cherries, I hate cherry-flavoured things. It tasted kind of fake, was really sweet and was kind of lumpy even after I stirred it forever! I have another flavour so we’ll see how it compares!

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yes this whole plate was my dinner. There’s actually a lot of veggies under the pasta so I swear it’s not as much as it looks like! I made this House Dressing by Chef AJ on the recommendation of Somer. Oh man, that is good stuff, so tangy! I served it on a simple romaine salad with some orange cherry tomatoes I found at the grocery store. With that is steamed broccoli, parsnips and spinach with brown rice pasta and a veggie dog. I don’ eat those very often, but I had bought some to take to a barbeque and have leftovers. I wish I didn’t like them as much as I do!

Snack

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A bowl of cherries. Have to eat them as much as possible before they’re gone! And I know I said I was going to try and stop snacking after dinner, but I figure a bowl of fresh seasonal fruit isn’t so bad right?

And now for a couple of my favourite workouts lately!

Lori and Michelle at Purely Twins have made this 5 minute plank workout that is so tough and challenging. You can really feel it toning your abs and it works your entire body! As I am writing this, they posted how they are starting bridge work to complement the planks. I’ll have to start that soon!

Good quickie workout for when you only have a few minutes

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Some great Yin Yoga poses to help release tension. It was hard for me to get into the mindset of holding simpler poses for a long time, but it feels so good after!

In addition to these workouts, the ladies at Purely Twins have inspired me to do my own challenge! In particular, since I had so much fun challenging myself to hold plank, I am going to try and work on my wall sit!

I did my first one of the challenge yesterday and got to 2 minutes. I’m going to keep working on this and hopefully update you on my progress!

Peas and Crayons

As you can see I’ve been pretty obsessed with all things cherry lately. What will I do when this beautiful fruit is no longer in season??

Have a lovely day everyone!

wiaw # 18: rainy day snacking

Hey there friends :)

It’s Wednesday, so you know what that means! It’s time for another What I Ate Wednesday!

But before I get into that, I just thought I’d do a brief little summary on my experience with Alex’s Sugar-Free Challenge that ended in June. I’m a little late, so I apologize!

All in all, it was a very rewarding, eye-opening experience. I didn’t realize just how many foods I eat on a daily basis that include added sweeteners of some kind! Even health foods! I kept finding myself reaching for stevia for my tea, wanting to eat snacks that had agave in them, even my favourite hot sauce has sugar. It really showed me how easy it is to take in sweeteners without even noticing, leading to us craving them more and more and eating them more subsequently. I like to think I resent my taste buds a little- I’m more than happy to pass on the stevia in my drinks when not needed and I’m going to try and experiment with using dates more often.

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With sugar-free eats like my chia seed breakfast porridge and date-sweetened banana bread, going without sweeteners wasn’t all that bad!

That being said, I am very happy to reintroduce stevia, agave and maple syrup back into my life :) I received a bunch of cool products recently from food swaps that contain these ingredients and I have been itching to try them! I am trying to keep it all in moderation and was doing really well until today. I was in a very snack mood and just kept eating little bits of everything! I think it was the rainy weather.

With that, I now bring you my What I Ate Wednesday for this week! Jenn has proposed a new theme for this month…

Peas and Crayons

Fitness!

I wish I had known this was coming! My posts on pre and post workout snacks would have fit right in here! But oh well, hindsight is 20/20 right? If you missed those posts, definitely check them out, lots of good tips in there!

So for this week, I’m going to let you in on what I’ve been currently doing for exercise and then next week I’ll try and have something a little more solid planned.

So with out further ado, here are my eats from yesterday…

Pre-Breakfast

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My usual warm lemon water to stimulate digestion and detoxify the body. I’ve started taking an omega-3 supplement which I also take now as well as my usual iron.

Breakfast

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A green smoothie- I know shocker right? In the mix are a banana, blueberries, spinach, avocado, cucumber, flax seeds, maca powder and spirulina and some Perfect-Fit Protein Powder given to me by Suzi. I like this powder, but I find I can only use half a packet or it’s way too sweet. I think Sunwarrior has spoiled me ;) On top are sprouted and dehydrated buckwheat crunchies, blueberries, raspberries and a Better’n Peanut Butter sauce I made by adding water to the Better’n PB.

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I am in love with this stuff! Thank you so much Shelby for sending it to me! It has 100 kcal for 2 tbsp and is made with peanuts, defatted peanut-flour, sugar and salt. So not the healthiest nut butter out there, but not the worst either. It’s such a nice treat!

Snack

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A little bit of this Alter Eco Dark Chocolate Quinoa Midnight Crunch bar that was given to me by Shelby again. It’s so good! It’s really good quality chocolate, has awesome crunchy bits through it, and is fair-trade and organic! Definitely try this bar if you see it!

Lunch

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Lunch was leftovers from a dinner I made on the weekend- Quinoa with Kale, Raisins and Chickpeas. Recipe to come tomorrow. This wasn’t actually the plate I ate, but this picture was so much nicer.

Workout!

Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred

This is what I’ve been working on lately. I have had this DVD for a long time, but never put myself through 30 days of it. I decided that a program with a specific length that was easy to follow would be really good for helping to get me out of my extended funk of fatigue and lack of motivation. Plus, Jillian Michaels has a way of keeping me motivated like no one else! Now I haven’t been following it perfectly everyday for 30 days, but have been supplementing this with some other things. Some days I’ve done yoga instead for which I do either…

Jillian Michaels: Yoga Meltdown

another Jillian classic, or…

Slim Calm Sexy Yoga: 210 Proven Yoga Moves for Mind/Body Bliss

I use sequences from this book as well as sequences of my own devising for a more relaxing, meditative workout. It’s always good to have balance!

Anyway, I’ve done a total of 22 of her workouts from the 30 Day Shred with yoga and rest days interspersed. I’ll be sure and give a review on it when I’m done.

Post-Workout Snack

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A variation of my post-workout recovery smoothie. This one brought back my love affair with Vanilla Sunwarrior (I had given it up for a while since it contains stevia) and oh how I missed it! Served in my new cup! I am in love with these, especially because actual mason jar lids fit.

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some ginger pear white tea was had….

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as was some home-brewed kombucha! I first mentioned I was starting this here and guys I’ve finally gotten it to the taste and tanginess I like. I’ve decided to do the continuous batch method of brewing so all I have to do is pour a cup of kombucha out and replace it with a cup of the tea base. This way I’ll always have kombucha around :)

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my “fermentation station” as I like to call it. Yes I’m nerdy that way ;) Here’s where both my kombucha and sauerkraut work away!

Dinner

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Dinner was a snack type plate with a leftover black bean burger wrapped in lettuce, a pickle, some tomatoes and some tortilla chips. I won a giveaway hosted by Jennifer at The Foodery and it arrived today- these chips were part of it :)

Finally….

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One of my almost raw maple walnut cups for dessert!

And that concludes my 18th What I Ate Wednesday!

Quickly before I go- Happy 4th of July to all my American readers and fellow bloggers!

Have a great day everyone!