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Rhode Island, United States

Monday, March 31, 2008

Treat time!

Boy was I craving something sweet tonight! I guess it's about time for my chocolate cravings... so I had no excuses but to listen to my body (it knows what it wants) and have 3 small delicious squares of my favorite dark chocolate- Ginger Dark Chocolate by Chocolove! I had this along with my nighttime snack of a yogurt. This time, I tried soy yogurt for the first time, and really liked it! The first bite was definately different, not bad but different. After a few bites I realized the yogurt was creamy and not too watery, and I liked the strawberry banana flavor very much- this will be a good substitute for organic yogurt, I'd like to try other flavors and brands!

Regarding the nutrition of all the "treats" I've been having lately:
I know having too many treats of any sort is not good, and I am well aware of the effects of too much added sugar in a diet.
However, I do not feel as though the small desserts I've been consuming (for the most part) are "too much".
Therefore, I just wanted to clarify the small treats I allow myself are just that; treats, because I believe there is no such thing as "bad" foods- that everything in moderation is fine. I've got a HUGE sweet tooth, and I love chocolate! I wouldn't want to deprive myself of this satisfying, simple pleasure of life! The extra treats I've been having aren't my healthy strategy to gain weight, that's mostly in my larger morning meals and bigger snacks. Yes, the treats contribute but only as general EXTRAS... I might have dessert every night for a few nights in a row as opposed to only having dessert a couple nights a week when I'm not in the process of gaining.
So my point: love your chocolate, your cookies, your treats. Have dessert, just keep it small! If you're trying to gain like me, yes a couple extra desserts are ok but try and get the extra calories from healthier sources such as nuts, healthy oils, dairy/soy products, and slightly bigger portions of nutritious foods. There's my advice on that, I wanted to clear up any confusion that I was eating cookies and chocolate to gain weight- this is NOT the healthiest way, so I wanted to make sure this was clear!


Generally, I pride myself in being a pretty organized, put-together person. I write down assignments, make lists (lots of to dos!) and always have a plan. This being said, for the most part I try and be prepared for anything. Growing up in New England, I have come to learn you always need to be prepared for it's classic quick-changing weather. I always pack a sweatshirt and an umbrella, just for this reason. Last night I planned out my day, packed my bag, and then decided I'd rather use my OTHER bag... so I switched my school and left this morning with my newly packed bag. Well, in the process of switching bags I switched all my books- but forgot to add my sweatshirt and umbrella. I should have realized walking outside into the dreary day that it was probably going to rain. But, I didn't think of it until I left my Kinesiology class and it was downpouring, and I realized I had on a wool coat, no hood, and no umbrella. Yikes!
What a wet day it was.

At least I prepared all my food the night before, so that turned out well!
I ate my lunch, soggy (me, not the lunch) in the cafe attached to the dining hall while reviewing some chemistry. I had a serving of Skinny Bitch's delicious Chick'n Salad, stuffed into a whole wheat pita (Bakers brand- nothing but wheat, yeast and salt!) with some carrots and a big apple. Filled me up well!

I snacked on a baggie of trail mix between classes:

When it came time for dinner, I definately needed something to warm me up!
So I cooked up a big bowl of low fat lentil soup (about 2 cups) with a side salad made of spinach, bell pepper and mushrooms drizzled with Annie's gingerly viniagrette. I also had a hunk of multigrain loaf I grabbed from my house- this was a 2-oz piece split in half with 1 tsp promise margarine. Very warming and filling!

Tonight I've got a whole list of to-dos, I just hope they don't take too long, I'm wiped and would love a good night's rest!

Easy enough

This morning I woke up feeling pretty well rested, had 1/2 my chocolate chip peanut clif bar (sooo good!) and went for a nice easy 45 minute run. Not too many distractions, so it went well.
For breakfast I went the easy route- 1 mini bagel with 1 tbsp PB and 2 tsp jam (I'm almost out... time to try a new type! I've heard good things about Bonne Maman Preserves... anyone else have opinions?) as well as 1 cup 1% cottage cheese and a nectarine. Classic filling breakfast to start my long Monday.

The only frustration so far this morning was my microwave... it was working fine the last time I used it but lately it's been making a funny "popping" sound. I had originally thought it to be the misalignment of the tray, but the tray's aligned and it still makes the sound. I hope theres nothing wrong with it- I love my microwave!!

Off to start the day with some studying, I'll be back later tonight for a combined lunch/dinner post!

Side Note: I forgot to mention my biggest achievement in my "achievements" post last night... I gained 1 lb last week, so I'm starting to get there! Lets hope for another 1 or 2 this week =)

Sunday, March 30, 2008


Today was a day full of achievements! This morning I got inducted into a national honor society, so my family and I were invited to attend a big initiation brunch. The food wasn't bad, and there were veggie options- but it definately wasn't healthy! I tried to be smart about portions but not restrict my enjoyment of the array of choices. So, I sampled a bit of each of the vegetarian options; egg, cheese & spinach strata, roasted sweet and red potatoes, a mini cheese crepe with a bluberry topping and fruit salad. I ate just what was on my plate amd was satisfied with one helping. (Probably all the fat from the cheese...) After the brunch and ceremony, we said goodbye to my grandparents (they came to support me and brought me a starbucks card!) and I headed (where else?) to Starbucks to study!

It was quite a nice day, I enjoyed my little sunny spot even though I was slaving away at chemistry problems most of the time. Mid-study I munched on the snack I had packed- an apple and a small baggie of mixed nuts.

Before work, I felt like it was nice enough for an iced drink, so I ordered an iced unsweetened passion tea to go and worked the night away. It wasn't a bad night at work, a couple of mishaps but I was working with one of my favorite managers, so that was a plus. For dinner I reheated some leftover Vegan Mac n' Cheeze (about 1 1/2 cups) and had some broccolli (just about 2 cups) along with it. It was just as yummy as last night!

I finished work and when I got back to my dorm I knew exactly what I wanted as my after-work snack... the last of my vegan PB cookies and fruit! So I sliced up a kiwi quick, and enjoyed my sweets.
Now I'm just about ready for bed, but unfortunately I still have more to do tonight- school reading, lunch for tomorrow, unpacking (which I'll most likely put off until tomorrow)... I've only got more weeks here and I've accumulated SO MUCH... I had no idea how I'm going to get it all home! Ah, well- another problem for tomorrow. Time to finish off my night!


So I set my alarm before I went to bed last night... but I forgot to turn it on. Smart move, Kris! So, I ended up waking up 25 minutes later than I had intended (thank god for my body clock!) and only ran for 30 minutes (just a 5 minute cool down walk) before having a quick yogurt/granola/strawberry breakfast to hold me over until "brunch". They call it brunch (it's at 10 am) but it's really just an early lunch for me. I'll have a snack in between brunch and work, then I have leftover mac n cheeze for dinner tonight! Yum!
I'm not sure what to expect at this brunch... they had veggie quiche last brunch, I hope theres something I can eat like that... I guess we'll see! I might be stopping for a huge salad afterwards if they don't have anything veg-friendly! I'll try and take pics of whatever I do eat, but I can't guarantee them... it might just be a really good description, this is kind of a fancy event.

A healthy, yummy mush!

This was 1 cup stonyfield french vanilla yogurt, 3/4 cup granola (what was left of the flax plus, and ginger zing) and about 6 really big strawberries sliced.
Ok, time to go pack up my stuff!

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Internet scare!

After a slight internet scare with the wireless network on my computer, I finally got it back up and running so I could study, and now I can post my study snack- a big bowl of red grapes and one of my little pb cookies. This one was tiny, so it was the perfect sweet treat but I didn't feel as though I was going overboard with two treats in one day. Made my chem studying go by faster!

Fluorescent palette

Mmm mmm mmmm....
I can't stop saying it!
My meals today have been nothing short of fantastic!

I ran for 35 minutes on my treadmill this morning and walked for a few reading ED&BV of course, and then got ready to head to lunch with my mom before our day's plans.
We stopped at one of my favorite middle eastern restaurants, Markos, for healthy baked falafel wraps. It looks really big and long, but the wrap is super thin and they're stuffed with just the right amount of hummus, lettuce, tomato, cucumber, pickles and falafel! Yum!

Afterwards we picked up my friend (and next year's roommate) Tyler and met up with the realtor to go look at a couple houses. We looked at 2 (the other we had wanted was already sold!) and we think one's a keeper- lets hope it all works out! I can't wait for a kitchen!!
Since we were in town, we stopped for a slightly healthy treat at the PodHead Cafe- real italian gelato, my fave! I had a big "regular" size with 1/2 pistachio (it had yummy chunks of pistachios!) and 1/2 mixed berry. Definately a nice afternoon sweet!

I went grocery shopping and bought a few essentials; some fruit, baby carrots, bell pepper, snow peas, wheat pitas, some marinade for tofu, some stonyfield nonfat yogurts, and I grabbed a strawberry banana Silk Soy yogurt to try!

I was super hungry by the time I got home and started making dinner- I made Fat Free Vegan's Easy Mac and Cheeze, but I added my own twist to the end, added a bit of smartbalance margarine for creaminess and topped the mixture with some vegan cheddar and a crushed wheat cracker (1 on each) and baked them for 10 minutes for a baked cheezy creation! It was SOOO good, I licked my bowl clean AND had the other little bowl (the rest of the serving) that I had saved if I still wanted more! On the side, we had steamed broccolli and snow peas roasted with some rosemary garlic marinade. A delicous rounded meal!

Mmmm "cheezy"

Didn't fit!

Bright breakfast

It's bright and cheery outside today, so even though I had a late night I woke up on time this morning!
Since I'm at home, I HAD to make myself my favorite at-home breakfast: A waffle sandwich!
I toasted two flax plus waffles, covered them in 2 whole tbsp PB (extra healthy fat/calories!), a drizzle of REAL maple syrup and a big banana, squished it altogether and enjoyed!
I also had 3 gigantic strawberries on the side! They were sooo yummy, I sliced them up but I had to take a pic of them whole- they were gorgeous!

This breakfast should keep me nice and fueled for my morning run, then my mom and I are going out to lunch before meeting up with my friend Tyler and going house shopping for little beach houses to live in next year! I'm bringing my camera to take lots of pictures of the kitchens, if I can! We might stop for a bit of a treat after house shopping, Tyler doesn't get to go to Narragansett a lot and I love to bring him to the PodHead... can you guess what we'd be having? ;)

I'm also going shopping for some staples for the week (just the basics, I'm on a budget!) before coming home to make a big ol' vegan dinner!
See you later this afternoon!

Pizza Night!

Sorry for the late post, I got back very late (or should I say early?) from my friend's house last night, but I'm home now and eager to share our fun creations!

By the time I headed over to Eric's house, a little later than planned, I was already quite hungry- as were Alex and Eric, who had just come back from hockey practice! So of course we began munching on pizza toppings... =)

When it came time to make the "dough" we decided to use the quick method, packaged 'individual' crusts (no trans fats, but they were white crust) that we found out actually had about 4 servings of grains in them! But I didn't stress out too much, they were yummy and it was worth it once in a while.
I fixed mine up with tons o' veggies! Some red sauce, mushrooms, green and red bell pepper, a big handful of part skim mozarella cheese and olives!

Here are my friends' creations:

It looks from the pictures like mine is much smaller than the others- thats just because I formed it smaller, and it had a thick crust instead of a thin crust! But mine is wayyy taller than the others- I piled it up, gotta love them phytochemicals!

We baked 'em for just under 20 minutes and they came out just crispy enough. Yum! Believe it or not, I ate this WHOLE THING!

After hanging out for a while, we were onto our next baking adventure of the night: Vegan cookies!

We made Dreena Burton's recipe for "You've got peanut butter in my chocolate cookies" from ED&BV and they were fantastic! We made them little (got about 22 out of the batch) and They kind of "puffed up" more than flattened out, so they were these little delectable round pb-chocolate balls that we immediately inhaled as soon as they came out of the oven! They were just as good hot as they were cooled down... I ended up having 4- yes, 4!! Two little itty bitty ones, and 2 "regular" sized ones (still pretty small) and enjoyed every bite. Of course we had extra cookies, Alex took a few and Eric isn't the biggest PB fan, so I took the rest to share with my family- I'm sure they'll appreciate it!

We settled down afterwards to watch a movie into the wee hours of the morning. I almost fell asleep there, but decided to head back home because we all needed to get up early. Altogether I had a great, fun night with friends and it was a great ending to my crazy, crazy day!

Friday, March 28, 2008

The more natural the better!

This morning I woke up craving the delicious new snack I discovered a couple days ago- yogurt with trail mix! Well, I have plenty of trail mix but no yogurt so when I was out today I picked up a yogurt on sale I had been curious about- it's Brown Cow brand, All Natural Low Fat Vanilla Bean Flavor- with real vanilla on the bottom! It was very yummy, and had a light natural vanilla flavor that was just enough with a heaping 1/4 cup of my filling, sweet trail mix! I should be good until pizza and cookies now =)

Wild and Wet

This morning was very different than my usual Friday mornings, it felt a bit wild! I woke up early and did about 25 minutes of strength training in before heading to my appointment in town. I had a little mishap in the process of getting there-as soon as I got down to my car I realized I had forgotten my ID and cell phone in my room (had my camera to photograph breakfast though, of course) so I had to drive back to my dorm, knock on windows to get someone to let me in, run and get my things, and head to the appoinment. I'm glad I left a few minutes early!
The procedures went well, and they were fairly quick, so that was a plus. I was abosolutely famished by the time they were over, so I quickly snacked on a nectarine as soon as I hopped in the car! For the rest of my breakfast I went to my favorite bagel/coffee shop down the street and had one of their home made whole wheat bagels topped with some lo-cal homemade veggie cream cheese. Yum! I also had a big cup of berry black tea, which went perfectly with the scrumptious bagel!

I got some studying down, and went on a quick grocery store trip for some parchment paper for the cookies I'm making later tonight with my friends- we're having a cooking/baking night, and making our own pizza and baking cookies! Should be a lot of fun!
I had class at 12, so I headed back to campus, went to class, and unfortunately during class it started to rain. HARD. And because I had left so early (when it was totally dry out) I was completely unprepared, and had to venture all the way back to my dorm with my purse, lunch bag, school bag AND shopping bags in the pouring rain! A wet, wild morning!

I was super hungry when I got back to my room, so I cooked up the last bit of my tofurkey roast, sliced it and put it between two pieces of Rudi's Organic honey sweet bread with broccoli slaw mixed with 2 tsp dijon nayonaise (WAY better than coleslaw, and adds tons of flavor!) and some spinach. I had a handful of baby carrots, and an appe to round out the meal.

NOW I'm finally full, and off to my chem exam review before getting my stuff ready to head back home for the weekend!
I might not get to post dinner tonight, but it'll be up tomorrow morning!
Have a great Friday!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Special Snack

Tonight's evening snack was special for a couple reasons. One, because I finished up the last slice of olive oil cake I snagged from easter... it's been sitting in my fridge waiting to be savored, and let me tell you it was just as good as the first time around!
I also had some sweet kiwi on the side (I've been into kiwi lately!).

The second reason my snack was so special is that it's the last time I'm going to be eating for over 12 hours, because I have to fast for a couple tests I need to do at the doctor's in the morning. I don't think I've EVER gone 12 hours with eating, so this should be quite the challenge!
I figured I'm going so long without eating I might as well make my last snack count, and it was as delicious as I had planned it to be!

Alright, no more food for the night...
I obviously won't be able to go for my usual run in the morning because my test is early in the morning and I won't have any fuel anyways- so hopefully I'll be making up the exercise with a lot of walking during the day. I'm also not going to be able to have my usual healthy breakfast, but I think I'm going to treat myself to my favorite Bagel shop after my tests... a big ol' bagel with healthy homemade cream cheese? Sounds like a plan!

Breakfast and lunch will be late tomorrow, but I'm not leaving I promise!

More leftovers!

I really love this Quorn roast we got for Easter... it's yummy, filling and versatile- so I don't mind eating so many leftovers of it!
Tonight I had a couple more slices of it plopped on top of a whole wheat mini bagel with some dijon mustard and melted provolone, for an open-faced quorn melt! Yum!

On the side I had a big 2-cup container of my leftover roasted veggies, my favorites- brussels sprouts and cauliflower roasted in evoo and s& p. De-lish, as always!

Unfortuately my yummy leftovers are just about used up, but I guess that's a good thing- I get to think of some more new, inventive meals for next week!
Too bad I'm kind of on a budget for a while, I'm only able to stock up on fresh items at the grocery store at the moment (I'll be going shopping Saturday) but I have enough in my "dorm pantry" to last me a couple weeks!
Get ready, Kristin's getting creative! =)

Done for the day

Finally back to the dorm after a long, busy day... but I got everything on my "day" to-do list done, so even though I have a whole lot of studying ahead of me tonight, at least I have a little time to relax and settle down after a tiring one.

For lunch I made myself a big ol' veggie wrap with about 4 tbsp artichoke hummus, 1/2 a bell pepper, some cucumber and brocco slaw in an ezekiel wrap, along with some carrots and a very juicy pear.

Filled me up while I finished my lab, then I snacked on a cherry pie larabar before my lab.

The larabar held me over, but I'm ready to eat now... Off to make dinner!

Missed my oats

Didn't have the best start at the gym today, had 1/2 a banana with 1 tsp PB before I left, headed to the track and thought I might be able to run today... so I stated, ended up getting super crowded and kicked off, so frustrated after 10 minutes of running, knowing I won't be able to get another run in until Saturday, I headed to the cardio machines.
I didn't have much time left at this point, so I just did 15 minutes each on the elliptical and stationary bike. Of course I had to re-set the bike at one point and forgot to put it on a resistance setting... so it was a pretty easy ride. Oh, well- at least I got some activity in, which is what is important!

When I got back, I made myself another big bowl of my favorite oats- 1/2 cup dry oats, 1 cup hempmilk, 1 tbsp PB, 1 tbsp flax, the other half of my banana and a bit of cinnamon & agave nectar. Yum!
I didn't realized how much I had missed my delicious, creamy bowlful of oats!
I had previously run out of my big quaker cansiter, and since it's getting warmer I didn't want to waste the $$ on another big cansiter, only to not finish it when spring comes and I don't want a hot breakfast... but I found some quick rolled oats for cheap in bulk at WholeFoods, so I got a bit to last me the next couple of still-chilly weeks!

This day is sure to be a challenge... I'm ready to get it over with!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Gotta have my snack!

As delicious and filling as my dinner was, I was still in the mood for my nightly snack a couple hours later.
I had a big kiwi, sliced, with 1/2 serving of graham sticks. Perfect while I was making my big wrap for tomorrow's lunch!

I had an annoying situation studying today; I realized I didn't have any room left in my lab notebook to finish my pre-lab... AFTER the store I could buy a new one at had closed. Just my luck. So, tomorrow after Philosophy I'll be heading down to the store to buy a new notebook and scrambling to finish my pre lab before chem and then chem lab... I hope I can get it all done!
I'm not sure how long my lab will be, it seems it could go either way... I guess we'll have to wait and see. If I do get out early, I'll have enough time for a "last dinner" and a "last dessert" before I have to fast (yuck) for some doctor's tests on Friday morning. Lets hope! That slice of olive oil cake is calling to me from my fridge =)

Disappointing dinner

Unfortunately I encounted a disappointing dinner situation tonight, the friend I was supposed to go to dinner with had to cancel at the last minute, and I was stuck, mushroom burger and plans-less for the night. Ah, well. Can't do too much about canceled plans, but I hadn't planned any other options for dinner... so I did what any cheap college kid would do, go home and raid the parents' kitchen!
For dinner I searched our cupboards back at home and came up with a yummy, balanced meal of a big plate (1.5 cups) of whole wheat fettucine topped with some bell pepper, broccolli florets and spinach I sauteed in 1 tsp of olive oil and some minced garlic, as well as a handful of chickpeas. I topped all this with 2 tbsp asiago cheese and dug in! It was very tasty, and although not the mushroom burger I had been craving it definately hit the spot!

Up close:

Now I still have some work to do, and my lunch for tomorrow to round out the night... but hump day is over and the weekend is getting closer- I've got plans for Friday night, and a fun vegan dinner at home on Saturday!

New favorite

I think I just found my new favorite snack... yogurt topped with TRAIL MIX! Thanks to Erica at SweetEats for the wonderful idea! For my snack this afternoon I had 1 Stonyfield low fat yogurt with a heaping 1/4 cup of home made trail mix (pumpkin seeds, banana chips, mixed nuts and dried cranberries)... definately delicious! I'm pretty full too, not super full... but I'm going to need an appetite for later, I'm going out to eat at my FAVORITE restaurant in my hometown- Crazy Burger, with one of my high school friends.
I'm sure i'll be indulging in my favorite burger again- the mushroom burger! Pics to come, of course =)

"It's a beautiful day..."

U2 is playing through my head...
It truly was absolutely glorious walking down to class today. So lovely outside- very breezy, but even the wind wasn't cool today! It's about 55, which means it is definately warming up in New England! I went into Kinesiology smiling because the sun was shining and for once, my "trek" to class wasn't such a trek.

I'm back in the dorm now, the walk back wasn't as sunny but still pretty nice. For lunch I heated up my favorite leftovers- sloppy joes on a warmed ezkiel bun. On the side I had some baby carrots and a plum.

This should fuel my day, jam packed with studying galore! Better get on that...

Getting there

"Getting there" seems like a good title for this post, because that really is where life is right now... getting there. This morning I woke up and had 1/2 my favorite chocolate chip peanut crunch clif bar and headed to the gym for a 45 minute run. The weather was nicer out this morning, I would have run outside but it's still quite windy. Getting there, though! I can see spring right around the corner =). I ran a little bit faster than usual, which is good to get ready for racing season (my first race is April 12th). When I got back, I showered and had breakfast- bigger than "usual" but going to be my standard during my gaining phase, 1 whole wheat mini bagel with 1 tbsp PB and 2 tsp jam, 1 cup 1% cottage cheese and a nectarine. Tasty and filling, as always!

I still feel a little disheveled after vacation, but I'm slowly getting back into the swing of schoolwork, studying, etc. I have a lot on my to do list though- this afternoon will be filled with reading, pre lab and overdue dishes!
See you after lunch...

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Going, Going, Going

Lately my days have seemed never ending. I find myself having to plan everything a week in advance- studying, meals, groceries... just to get everything done! I can already feel the stress of this last month of school starting to pile up. I am working a bit more, which is time consuming- but I definately need the money for Italy, not to mention food each week, etc, so that's my catch 22 right there, I can't complain too much. I already had to cancel my weekend hiking plans because I realized I have an upcoming chem exam I need to study for... AND I took extra hours at work this weekend! Juggling all of this, on top of searching for a decent place to live next year AND my focus on gaining weight is a whole lot to handle. I guess a good/bad part of the whole situation is I DO tend to eat more when I'm really stressed out. A bad habit I know, and I try not to succumb to too many cravings or at least moderate them- for health's sake . In my current case I'll just be focusing on making sure the extra snacking I do partake in is at least healthful for the most part, nutrient and energy (calorie) dense so I can use it as sort of a weight-gain tactic.

I had a pretty moderate lunch and dinner today, but my snacks were signifciantly more substantial than usual.
Lunch was packed and eaten while studying the chemistry of carbohydrates- 3 tbsp artichoke hummus on an ezekiel wrap stuffed with spinach, red bell pepper and brocco slaw. For sides I had a big green pear and some cucumber slices.

I snacked on a baggie of nuts and an apple while studying again later at Starbucks, and then grabbed a tall nonfat latte to take with me to work (dairy, a caffeine boost and more calories!)

For dinner at work I packed some more leftovers- a bit of quinoa salad, 1.5 servings of quorn roast with some mushroom gravy, and a baggie of carrots sticks.

My dinner was satisfying but not too big, so my sweet tooth struck about an hour later... I just HAD to dig into the little basket of easter eggs we have to share... I snagged a handful of about 12 that I enjoyed while fixing up the store- kept my mouth and taste buds busy!

Back home I had my usual nighttime snack of yogurt, this time with the rest of my fruit salad mixed in.

Mmm, creamy and fruity!

Night all!