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17 October 2011

Recent Loves

It has been over a month since I blogged.  If you knew how much was getting accomplished at work though, you'd be proud... no? Yeah, not as fun.  This is a short post to get back into the swing of things, but I had to share some of the most amazing things I can't get enough of lately:

Creamy VEGAN! Avocado Pasta from this chick;

I was doing so well coming off my Starbucks-coconut-syrup high, and then I found this drink... I liked La Croix water before this.  Now, I love it;
And I LOOOVE drinking my La Croix in my Starbucks cold-cup. I am rarely without it.
Still LOVING my bi-weekly Pilates class.  Even when work is bonkers, I shut my door (proverbially, until my office is finished) at 5 to get to the Y and in class before 5:30.  Seriously can't go without it.
My Apple Magic Trackpad at Work... this gadget has totally revolutionized how much fun working can be. 
Parenthood is on Netflix.  Heaven help my productivity.
Have a Great, Great Week! I'm off to ... work 

01 September 2011

Wise Words

"Out of the recent troubled years of tax reduction and budget slashing has come a new consciousness of this principle: If our communities are to support a forward-looking program of free public education, they must be told what the schools are doing for the children..." generalities are not enough, readers want to know what has been done and what can be done."
-J. Erle Grinnell 1937

11 August 2011

Summer Fun

It's been too long since I blogged.  Way too long.  Since my last post (which I totally phoned in- sorry), I've logged over 5,500 miles via car and plane to see dear old friends, attend weddings, and hang out in my favorite city.  Because I'm too lazy to write words about the trips, here they are in pictures:
Seeing my dear friend, Megan - The last time we saw each other was at my High School Graduation

Getting to Meet "Gwyndi" (Megan's precious girl) and 
Emma, (Marta's daughter and my new best friend)

And then it was Wedding Time!
Congrats Corey and Abbey, or "Corbey"

...and then it was on to Boston: I like books.

 No, we were not bridesmaids. Our dresses were only "similar"

Oh My Prom

Law School Loves on a Bus

Being "those people"

Mr. and Mrs. Hoffmann - Too Gorgeous!

Fabulous Night.
I'll have way more exciting posts to come, but for now, I'm trying not to die of exhaustion from all the projects going on at work.  Have a wonderful Friday, Everyone!

13 July 2011

Salad Meals

I really didn't even want to put the word "salad" in the title of this post because it's such a cliche word.  I think the 90's (maybe the 80's- i was a fetus) gave this word a bad name.  I swear I can remember thinking as a young child, "eat a salad, lose weight." Sad.  What's even more crazy sad is real people thinking "as long as there is lettuce somewhere in there, it's healthy."  No, silly-pants, tons of cheese and meat and bacon and a cup of blue cheese dressing on lettuce is not healthy.  And the whole connotation that goes along with a lady saying, "i'll just have a salad" is silly.  Salads can be meals, people, delicious, healthy filling meals.  So, while I continue to think of a better name for salads, enjoy some of my favorite lettuce concoctions below.  Also, I'm not putting dressing suggestions, but think healthy people, extra-virgin olive oil, other oils and vinegars, or, simply, a mashed-up avocado.
I always start with romaine or romaine hearts or other combos of crunchy lettuces. I like crunch. And I despise baby lettuces. Except baby spinach. I don't know why, but most baby lettuces make me want to vomit.  I'm being dramatic.
And then, depending on how I'm feeling that day, I add the following combos (or sub-combos):

1. Tex-Mex

Black Beans (drained and rinsed) or Warm Refried Beans (some find this weird. I find it amazing)
a smidgen of pepper jack
Black Olives
White Onions
Green Bell Pepper
Your favorite homemade salsa
Spritz of Lime

2. Grainy (in the good way)

Chilled (or Warm) Plain Cous Cous (or other grain you like)
Grape tomatoes
Red, orange, or yellow bell pepper
smidgen of feta
Little Lemon Juice

3. Fruity

(Start with Spinach here)
really, any berries
Green apple
Oranges are delish, too

4. Intense Flavors (use a toothbrush after this one, folks)

Kalamata Olives
Green Olives
Red Onion
Bell Pepper
Bean Sprouts

5. Summer

Green Beans
Spritz of Lemon

12 July 2011

Yum-Fest Summer Dish

I am addicted to avocados and guacamole.
Serious addiction.
On my vegan days, it's all I want to eat.
And I usually do.
So, when I saw this "salad" recipe on the WholeFoods website, I was seriously convinced that someone had crawled inside my brain (stomach) and made a "salad" I would fall in love with.  Informative aside, I'm using quotes around "salad" because to me, this is just a pre-mixed up guac that is so deliciously chunky and marvelous... and a little magical.

Avocado and Grape Tomato "Salad"

1 pint grape tomatoes, halved 
chopped cilantro, to taste

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 
1 tablespoon lime juice
1/4 white onion, chopped
2 avocados, chopped 
Coarse or Sea Salt

Mix, Enjoy. Eat with a fork 
or with homemade tortillas 
or on top of pretty much anything.

My Food Rules

In the spirit of my self-proclaimed "Food Week" The following are my "Food Rules."  They are not totally my own and acquired primarily from what makes sense to me, from Michael Pollan's books and philosophies, from various documentaries and movies about food and the food industry, and ultimately, what makes me feel good.

image from

1. No Meat. This rule is based mostly on the fact that I don't live on a farm or near a really great farm like this where I can get meat. I have no qualms with people eating animals.  That idea, at its core, is entirely natural.  But, I do have serious issue with people eating animals that were not raised humanely and that were slaughtered in gigantic meat production factories. Unless I can see a cow or chicken or pig, etc. from birth until food, I'm not going to eat it.

2. Tons of Veggies and Fruits. Why try to fill ourselves with empty calories and "treats" when there is an abundance of delicious in the produce department? Seriously, I have grown to love Veggies and Fruits and rarely find myself buying anything outside of the Produce department.

3. Buy Seasonally. Buy what is in season - it's usually cheaper and healthier for the environment (i.e. less fossil fuels used getting an orange from chile or spain to cleveland in the middle of February). Also, it just makes sense to eat root vegetables in winter, asparagus and peas in spring, tons of citrus in the summer, and pumpkins and gourds in the fall.

image from

4. Buy Locally. Again, we can all reduce our carbon footprint if we buy things to eat that are local.  Or even from the U.S.  Often it costs a little more to support the mom & pop bakery or the blueberry farm down the road or the fishermen in the Gulf, or the Citrus farmers in the Rio Grande Valley.  But seriously, local always seems to taste better.  I am constantly finding amazing Texas foods that are some of the best things I've tasted... ever. Search out your local vendors. It's delicious.

5. Buy Organics. As often as I can, I buy organically. I totally get that a lot of the organic farms are HUGE conglomerate farms in California and a lot of the produce is really not that much different from conventional produce. But, the extra (possibly false) security I get from eating an organic apple rather than a conventional apple is worth the extra cost.  Seriously, there is some crazy stuff getting sprayed on those plants sometimes.

6. Nothing out of a Box or a Can. Caveat up front: I do not apply this rule to pasta (like, real pasta folks) and some teas that for selling sake have to be in some container. BUT, I do apply it to pretty much everything else.  Simply because "food" does not grow in boxes.  There are scary things put into stuff that at one time was food to make it last for years. Seriously, I do not want to buy a box of something today that I could eat in 2 years.  This rule is the hardest for me, I'll admit. Not when it comes to obvis like pop-tarts, granola bars, crackers, cookies, and mac & cheese, most salad dressings, and all frozen meals, BUT, I often find myself for convenience sake grabbing a can of black beans instead of making my own or grabbing a can of whole tomatoes.  I'd LOVE to make black beans and stew my own tomatoes, but sometimes it's just not feasible.  I do what I can though, and really try to think about what is actually in those boxes and cans.

There are a ton of other little rules I try and follow, but these 6 are the biggies for me. And if nothing else, think before you eat/put it in the car.  We try on our clothes before we buy them, we interview people before we hire them, and we research gadgets before we buy them... doesn't it make sense to think about where our food comes from before we put it into our bodies?

11 July 2011

Back in this post at the beginning of the year, I talked about my continued goals of being a good vegetarian and eating food.  More than halfway through 2011, I can happily report that these goals are being met and I feel even better and am even more impassioned to tell others about what I eat and why I eat what I do.  Today, a dear friend posted on her blog a list of the 47 foods that everybody should eat because they are nutrient rich, delicious, healthful and good for the body and mind.  (Thanks so much, love!)  She linked it back up to the original source here.
This week, I'm going to be a super blogger (until Friday when I leave to reunite in Kansas City with tons of friends and celebrate the Marriage of Corey and Abbey <3) and talk all about food.  My food "rules," foods I love, and ... things like that. 
To start off the week with a bang, here's the "47 foods list."  I totally agree with what's on this list and have already tried to incorporate many of these into my diet, cheers to adding more:

47 Foods You SHOULD Be Eating
  1. Spinach 
  2. Wild salmon (fresh and/or canned)
  3. Blueberries
  4. Raspberries
  5. Swiss chard
  6. Quinoa
  7. Rolled oats
  8. Pistachios
  9. Barramundi (often called "the sustainable sea bass") can be found in the frozen section of Whole Foods & has half the calories, yet equal omega 3′s to coho salmon)
  10. Plain Greek yogurt
  11. Apples
  12. Red, yellow and orange bell peppers
  13. Lean red meat (we prefer grass fed beef)
  14. Whole eggs
  15. Blackberries
  16. Almonds
  17. Sardines
  18. Carrots
  19. Black tea
  20. Green tea
  21. Pink grapefruit
  22. Turmeric
  23. Kale
  24. Cauliflower
  25. Red grapes
  26. Nut butters (peanut butter, almond butter, cashew butter, etc)
  27. Coconut (either fresh, where you crack the shell or unsweetened, shredded)
  28. Strawberries
  29. Avocados
  30. Tomatoes (raw and cooked as both have unique benefits)
  31. Pumpkin (we often add canned, unsweetened 100% pure pumpkin to our smoothies)
  32. Unsweetened cocoa powder or cocoa nibs (also often added to smoothies or Greek yogurt)
  33. Pineapple
  34. Sweet potatoes or yams (technically not the same, yet they’re often used interchangeably)
  35. Beans (black, kidney, chick peas, red beans, etc)
  36. Lentils
  37. Garlic
  38. Broccoli
  39. Red and green cabbage
  40. Onions
  41. Cherries
  42. Cinnamon
  43. Oat bran
  44. Beets
  45. Barley
  46. Mushrooms (all types)
  47. Canola and olive oils (replace other less healthy fats with these, don’t simply add these to the diet)

30 June 2011


An office-mate came up with the above term.  I'm fully embracing it.  And pushing the limits of Office-appropriate wear.  I feel a little like I'll be in Liz Lemon's shoes and confessing to Oprah one day in first class that yes, I actually did wear a romper to work once.  Here goes my justification:
1. This is the actual Romper:
Classy, Right?
2. I got it in the size up so it actually looks a little more like a dress
3. It looks like a dress
4. I'll be wearing a cardigan.
5. I work in an Annex apart from the Main Office.
6. I'm not going to be seeing any clients tomorrow
7. It's my Birthday on Saturday
8. It's July 4th on Monday, and Gosh-darnit, I should be free to wear a romper to work.
9. I really want to wear it, AND
10. Tomorrow is Romper Thursday.

Seriously, folks.  Don't dare me to wear something.  (Looking at you, "I bet you can't wear a tie and not look like a lesbian" dare. xoxo Christopher)

29 June 2011

Casual Friday

This post is lazy.  I admit it.  I'll give you the background.  I'm totally in love with the the jcrew "catalog" look right now.  As in, messy bun, pale makeup, red lips, "mad men" eyewear, and men's inspired clothing.  Seriously in love.  As in, I wear that look every day.  I'm so in love with it I fear sometimes that I'll be the equivalent of one of those ladies still sporting the winged hair look in 2011 and trying to convince everyone it really is cool.  Keep me in check, Maggie. Seriously.
So, when I logged in to Gilt post insane-nauseating-workout, the "Casual Friday" section caught me and alleviated the pain for a swift moment. This is why:
Cardi, CHECK, red lips, CHECK, awesome eyewear, CHECK, Adorb trousers, CHECK
I essentially wore this outfit today.
No Lies. 
Except I had these Kate Spade trousers on:

Kate Spade pants

Be inspired for your Casual Friday!  It's only 2 Days AWAY!!!!

12 June 2011

a New Desk

I stayed out in East Texas this weekend to work and get a lot of outstanding errands done; including, finding a desk for my East Texas "week-home." Cue the party because I found the Perfect desk. I'm not talking 80% of what I was looking for, I'm talking about EXACTLY what I was looking for.  A while back, I almost settled for this desk at west elm:
I liked the clean lines and the metal, but it looked too new for me, too much like I just went to an urban furniture store and picked something "cool" out; which, is exactly what it would have been.  So, I didn't spend the $400 and held out, hoping that something truly exciting, old, classy, and industrial would appear.  Lo, and behold, Ethel's Treasure Quest in Tyler, TX had EXACTLY what I wanted:
These pictures really aren't doing it justice. Actually, it may just be the room it's in- not my choice of paint color or hardwood color, BUT ignore these things, readers and focus on the desk. The AMAZING black iron base with clean lines and a bit of fancy shape and the PERFECTION of the slate top. It doesn't get more industrially perfect than this!

Isn't that slate amazing? 
AND, one of the best parts of the new desk is that I found it in Tyler, which means, city folk that it was ABSURDLY cheap. Seriously, I would have paid at least $500 for this piece in some Dallas and Houston stores, but out here in East Texas, I got this amazing piece (the WHOLE thing) for only $125.  And seriously, Ethel's is awesome. Check her out if you are ever out here!

11 June 2011

R.I.P., Molly

Today, my parents came to the very hard decision with our vet that our beloved Molly-dog should be put to sleep.  What made it easier was knowing that it was the best decision and remembering the AMAZING 17 years she was the PERFECT dog...

10 June 2011

19 May 2011

Civil Wars.

No, not this kind:
and not the kind that happen because of this guy:

I'm talking about the ever-delightful band behind the studio album, Barton Hollow.  Comprised of Joy Williams and John Paul White, it's an indie folk band I can't get enough of. Seriously, on repeat drive to and from work.
'Poison and Wine' is the song currently (and happily) stuck in my head.

P.S. Can we also talk about how much I love the decor in the Music Video House?

18 May 2011


I am (likely) supporting Obama in 2012.
...and not just because this "Made in the USA/Birth Certificate" Mug is awesome.
But, it is.

17 May 2011

Guest of the Wedding Dresses

Summer is undeniably the time for weddings.  Not for this blogger, but most certainly for this blogger's dear friends and family.  Nordstrom has made me very happy with this link, a whole trove of dresses particularly suited for the "Guest of the Wedding," i.e., me (and maybe you).  (p.s. is it just me, or do I seem to be using more adverbs than usual? hmmm...) While there are some dresses on the Nordstrom site that might fly (sadly, there are many dresses on the link that are so inappropriate for weddings that I could write a whole other post about "what not to wear from the Nordstrom 'guest of the wedding' site to a wedding), I'm shopping all over the web to find darling and elegant dresses to wear to this summer's (and next spring) weddings.  I must say, if I'm having this much fun picking out dresses to wear as a guest to the wedding, I can't even imagine the excitement of picking out the perfect white suit to wear on my lunch-break J.O.P. wedding.  For real, ya'll.
From J.Crew; Cotton Taffeta Gabby Dress. I Love Navy. It is the new black. Seriously, you just read a factual statement there. I love it with gold and with silver. Perf. $225
(Dear Kendal, If you read my blog, I'd like this to be my bridesmaid dress - no pressure, but cute, right?)
Alice + Olivia Bree tie-dye dress; $495
A little more casual, but depending on the wedding it could totally fly... right into my closet.
Also loving this Blakely dress from the Crew, too. $235
I really think this is an elegant color. And I'm LOVING the ruffles.
I'm not actually sure if you can wear caftans to weddings. 
But, if you can, I'd wear this one by Temperley London; $1620

I adore (read ADORE) the Herve Leger Bandage Dress; $1450
I also adore this color; although there are tons of other great colors.
OK, so Maybe not actually "wedding guest" appropriate. But I really REALLY like this - depending on who your friends are, I think someone could totally get away with this.
Stella McCartney Backless Tuxedo Dress; $1285
Thread Social Embroidered silk one-shoulder dress; $695
J.Crew Alexis lace-trimmed silk dress; $200