Thursday, October 27, 2016

Thinking Out Loud #8

This week has felt so long for a multitude of reasons, like food poisoning, and I'm really just ready for it to be the weekend. The Michigan v. Michigan State game is on this weekend and that is a HUGE deal. It's a really big rivalry and I'm pumped to watch some good football and just relax. Once again get ready for a whole bunch of randomness in this weeks thinking out loud...

1. One more reason to love fall is for all the yummy squash. I eat squash pretty much year round but nothing tastes better than fresh squash in the fall. My grocery store finally has a giant selection of squash in and I couldn't be happier. I just roasted my first buttercup squash, my favorite, of the fall and have been eating it mashed all week😋

2. Bob's Red Mill oatmeal cups are seriously a life savor! I was traveling this past weekend and didn't have access to my kitchen but I still wanted to oats after my morning runs so I packed two of these to go cups. All you have to do is add hot water and let it sit for 3 minutes and BAMB done! I packed some fruit to throw in with the oats because doesn't everyone travel with fruit😜 

3. Speaking of getaways while we were out in Grand Rapids we trekked out to Grand Haven which is one of my favorite places. I could stay at the beach forever because it's so peaceful. Watching the waves and soaking up the sunshine is my idea of a perfect day. My soul felt so free at the beach and nothing beat walking along the beach with my favorite person. I was really sad that the pier which goes out to the lighthouse was closed because it is being rebuilt. We walked along the boardwalk and all along the beach. It hasn't even been a week but I miss the beach so much. 

4. I have a new favorite hangout place in Grand Rapids- Z's Bar and Restaurant. I talked about it in yesterday's post. It had a super casual atmosphere and tons of TV's so it was great for a night of football watching. They also make an insanely delicious margarita. Next time I am in town I will definitely be back.

5. Once I got over food poisoning (again see yesterday's post) I made the drive to an area health food store to pick up a few items. I needed some fruit so I picked up raspberries and blackberries because they were both on sale, but I also nabbed two packages of Purely Elizabeth granola because they were on sale 2 for $10! While I was there I also picked up a tropical trail mix sans nuts because I can't have the fats and they had Wild Friends pumpkin spice so I picked up one jar to include in a care package since nut butters still makes me sick😭 

6. Yesterday I was on the go all day, I actually got to wear heels and dressy clothes so I was pumped- I love an excuse to dress up and yes I am wearing purple pants. But because I had a prior engagement at 11am and couldn't pack a lunch I was stuck eating what I could carry on me. I packed a chocolate sea salt rxbar, my favorite flavor, and I had a banana in the car for once I got out. I don't normally have days like this but the rxbar did it's job of holding me over and not making me feel sick like other protein bars. 
7. I'll end on lucky number seven again this week and leave you with this beautiful quote. I came across it while scrolling through Pintrest and loved it immediately. My mom always used to tell me that material things don't last forever but someone would never forget how you made them feel.

Have a great Thursday everyone! Do you have any fun weekend plans? Are you a college football (or sports) fan in general?

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Weekend Dets and Eats

Happy Wednesday! Even though it's halfway through the week it's not too late to share a weekend dets and eats is it? It's been awhile since I've shared one and I had a pretty fun weekend for once that involved getting out and actually doing something-> wut🙆

Friday I was finally starting to feel a little bit better, this flare has been kicking my butt, but I was able to get normal food again. As much as I love oatmeal eating it for a week straight because it's the only thing I could keep down was a tad much. Friday I made a quick lunch before heading out to Grand Rapids for the weekend to celebrate one of my best friends birthdays. Lunch is one gluten free O'Dough's bagel thins topped with avocado, organic turkey breast, peach salsa, and goat cheese paired with a peach. 

After eating lunch and loading up the car I headed out to Grand Rapids. I was seriously craving Mexican food so we headed to On the Border for dinner. It was still happy hour when we got there and they had a special on margaritas so we got one and I split it with my boyfriend. I got a burrito bowl with chicken and it was SO GOOD😍 I didn't use the dressing that came with it but it seriously hit the spot and satisfied my Mexican craving (except I'm craving it again writing this).

We were pretty lame on Friday night and stayed in, hung out, and watched movies. Technically we watched Jeopardy first (because we are really 80 years old) but we were all getting angry because the categories were so stinking hard! I'm normally fairly decent at Jeopardy but the questions were ridiculously hard. Despite being up late I still hit the mini gym for a sweat ses before getting the day started. I got in four miles while upping the speed every few minutes and then I walked for a few minutes to cool down along with doing some stretching.

After cleaning up we headed over to my boyfriends cross country meet, which happened to be in Grand Rapids. We watched the guys race, holy smokes some of them are so fast!, and we stayed for most of the girls race before heading out to get some food and take a nap. After lunch and a mini nap we headed out to one of my all time favorite places- Grand Haven. I love being at the beach in Grand Haven because it's so relaxing, it's definitely one of my happy places. It was a gorgeous fall day with a light breeze and even though it was chilly it was perfect for walking along the beach and just enjoying each others company. 

By the time we left the beach it was getting close to dinner time, our stomachs let us know that loud and clear😋, so we headed to Carrabba's. I knew we were going to have a wait ahead of us because it was a Saturday night so I had part of the coconut chocolate rxbar I had packed, no one needs to be subjected to a hangry Rachael- it's not pretty😳 luckily I had a snack because we waited over an hour and a half to get our food and the restaurant was not even that busy. We were so frustrated because it was just pasta dishes and a salad for me. When we finally got our food there were pieces of chicken on mine that were not cooked all the way through and the dishes did not come out all at the same time. We were incredibly frustrated but luckily our waitress was great and the restaurant picked up our tab. Sadly we ended up getting food poisoning from there so needless to say Sunday and Monday were not a fun days and we will not be going back. 

By the time we left the restaurant we were frustrated (little did we know what was coming😳) and tired. We wanted to go out but we headed back for a quick nap first. Around 10 we headed downtown to head to Mojo's which is an awesome dueling piano bar in downtown Grand Rapids, but the place was packed so we ended up walking down the street to Z's Bar and Restaurant. It had a very chill atmosphere, the service was great and there were tons of TV's so we ended up watching the end of the MSU v. Maryland game as well as the OSU v. Penn State game, the cubs game and post game celebration, and the end of Red Wings game. We all ordered some drinks, I got a margaritas and it was one of the best margaritas I've ever had. It was so nice to just hangout together, relax and watch some sports- it was seriously an awesome night for sports🙌 next time we are in Grand Rapids we will definitely be hitting up Z's again. 

Despite not feeling the best we headed home Sunday morning. My food poisoning didn't hit until Sunday afternoon and it was not a fun 36 hours. Thankfully I am doing fine now, but I don't think anyone will want Italian food again for a very long time🙊

How was your weekend? 
Did you do anything or go anywhere?

Monday, October 24, 2016

Stovetop Protein Oats

Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend and got to enjoy some beautiful fall weather. I ventured out to Grand Rapids to celebrate one of my best friends birthdays and we had a great time hanging out and enjoying the city. As much as I love getting away for a weekend I love coming home to my kitchen and my regular gym. I definitely missed my regular morning oats while I was gone. 

Speaking of oats I tried stovetop oats for the first time and holy smokes they're so good!! I have been missing out on some seriously dreamy, creamy oats for a long time😋 Last week I was not feeling good so I practically lived off oatmeal but I wanted to switch things up so I opted to make stovetop oats. Now I'm in love and knew I had to share because they're so good.

Stovetop Protein Oats

  • 1/2 cup GF oats
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • pinch cinnamon
  • 2 Tablespoons plant based protein (I like Nutiva hemp protein and Bob's Red Mill)

In a medium pot bring almond milk to a boil. 

When almond milk starts boiling stir in oats and cinnamon and turn heat down to medium. 

Stir oats occasionally for 1-2 minutes, or according to directions on oatmeal container.

Just before removing oats from heat stir in 2 Tablespoons of protein powder. 

When everything is fully mixed remove oats from heat, scoop into a bowl and add your favorite toppings. 

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Thinking Out Loud

Happy thinking out loud Thursday! I apologize for being absent from the blog this week but I have needed some time away after last Friday's post. I'll share more about that in a minute, but I also have some fun things to share- wine and fall colors🙌 Ready for another bout of randomness? Here we go😁

1. Is anyone else really tired of hearing about politics 24/7? Don't get me wrong I am a closet political junkie but at this point it's pretty much all that the news is talking about and I am really sick of hearing about it. I also don't understand why candidates can't focus on the issues that are actually important instead of wasting a TON of time bashing each other. Apparently they never learned to play nice. I was out running errands the other day when I saw this shirt and I literally laughed out loud and had to get it. The shirt fits me so perfectly and I'll take wine over politics any day🍷 

2. Since the flare started my stomach has been really upset so pretty much the only food I have eaten for the past week has been oatmeal. For the first time ever I made stovetop oats and HOLY SMOKES they're so good!! I have no idea why I waited so long to try stovetop oats because they are made so quickly, just like microwave oats, but they're so creamy😍 I have been making protein stovetop oats to make sure I am getting enough protein and I'm going to try to have that recipe up tomorrow because they are the bomb😋 They are definitely the creamiest oats I have ever made.

3. I would like to say thank you for all the comments, emails, and texts with words of encouragement and support on my last post about my faith struggle. It is always super scary to be so open, honest and vulnerable in a post because I never know what kind of reaction I am going to get. I literally wept over the outpouring of love and support from everyone. I have yet to respond to comments because I need time to figure everything out and work through things, but please know your words mean more to me than you will ever know💜 On the same note, because I mentioned it in the post, I am finally getting some relief from my flare. I don't know if it's temporary relief, but it is MUCH needed. I have been resting a lot this week and taking it easy because I don't want to make things worse. A few days were incredibly rough but yesterday was a pretty good day. 

4. On a very happy note I was able to run yesterday for the first time since the flare began. I didn't go very far or very fast but it felt AMAZING! My heart was bursting with happiness when I left the gym because I have missed running so, so much😭 I know I still have a long road ahead of me to get to where I want to be and get back to a running streak but I am determined to push through. Whoever said running is the best form of therapy was absolutly right. It's also free so it's the cheapest form of therapy.

5. Last weekend I was able to try some of the pumpkin spice rxbar and I was kind of ehh about it. It tasted ok, but it was not great. I'm not a giant pumpkin spice person so maybe those who really like pumpkin spice will like it. I definitely don't hate it but it's not my first choice of flavor- my favorite is chocolate sea salt and the chocolate coconut.

6. Random question but for any dog owners out there I need your advice/tips. Cora is basically a fish and in the water every chance she gets, normally once or twice a day until the lake freezes over (she's crazy I know). She has to get a bath at least every other week because she smells like a lake dog. As soon as she goes in the lake after her bath she starts smelling again. I have tried purchasing doggie deoderizer from the pet store but it's only temporary. Do any of you have advice on how to make the clean dog smell last longer? Keeping her out of the water is just not realistic, no matter how hard I try🙈

7. I'll end on lucky number seven today and leave you with this gorgeous leaf. Fall colors are almost at their peak in MI and it is a gorgeous fall so far. There are so many bright reds, yellows and oranges and when the sun hits the leaves it makes the photography nerd in me geek out😁 Plus the weather has been unusually warm, mid 70's to low 80's and I am not complaining! It has been amazing to walk around in summer clothes and enjoy all the beauty of fall.

How has your week been? 
What is your favorite thing about fall?

Have a great Thursday! 

Friday, October 14, 2016

The Faith Struggle

I have struggled with this post for some time now. It's not an easy topic for me to talk about and it's not a subject that most people openly talk about. That topic is faith, but more specifically struggling with faith.

Since I was born I have gone to Sunday school and church and spent time doing different volunteer projects for the church. My mom was a Sunday school teacher so she made my brother and I memorize a lot of scripture, but I never minded. Never while I was younger did I question God or my belief in him. I was a straight-laced, conservative student who kept my nose in the books and out of trouble. While some kids were out experimenting with substances, relationships, or whatever I was the 'good girl.' I wandered a bit from what I believed at the end of high school but when I wound up totally broken and full of hurt I found forgiveness and grace in the arms of Jesus. 

When I moved away to college I found a church to attend and again stayed away from the typical college lifestyle. I surrounded myself with people who shared my beliefs and supported me. Everything changed when I graduated college and moved back to my hometown. Suddenly the very life I had built for myself ceased to exist and I was struggling to find my way. 

Shortly after moving home I had to have surgery, but the surgery triggered a lupus flare and I wound up in the hospital for a week and spent even more time out of the hospital recovering. The difficulties didn't end there. My dad's fibromyalgia became so severe he was frequently in the ER just so they could give him some strong pain meds that are not commercially available. Doctors didn't (and still don't) have answers or solutions. Someone I loved hurt me in the worst way and I was devastated. I didn't get the dream job, in fact I couldn't get a job at all, or at least one where I could afford to have a place to live and eat regularly. More fibromyalgia flares. An emergency surgery. What started off as an IT band injury but ended up being a lupus flare that left me in bed for a week. My faith began to crumble. 

I tried to remain strong but a person can only take so much before they begin to break. Bible verses I memorized as a child would (and still do) float through my head like Romans 8:28, "And we know God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them." 

Don't misunderstand me I still believe in God. I believe he created the world and is in control, but I have so many questions and for the past couple months doubts. My dad has suffered for years with fibromyalgia and God could heal him, but he doesn't. Why? Why must he continue to suffer? Does God not see the hurt and pain my dad suffers on a daily basis and the pain that my family endures because of his fibromyalgia? God could heal me and lift the burden that lupus is. I can't tell you how many times I have woken up sobbing or laid in bed crying because the pain has been so excruciating. God could heal me but he doesn't. God could have provided a good job for me, but he hasn't. He could have prevented the flare I'm enduring right now. I just don't understand. 

I don't understand how God who is supposedly good can let people suffer. Now do I think that my family or I are better than anyone else and should therefore be healed before others? Absolutely not. I just don't understand how God who professes to be good, loving, all powerful and above all can let people endure such suffering. I'm not asking for a perfect life because there is no such thing as perfect, but some relief would be nice. Last week someone told me that they were praying for me in a specific situation and I told them that their prayers were not working because I was still suffering, to which they replied, 'It's all in God's timing.' I get that life isn't about instant gratification, but a person can only be broken so much before they cannot bear the load anymore. I reached that breaking point awhile ago.

Some of my fundamental beliefs are rooted in God and the bible and those have not changed. Those views and beliefs are too ingrained in the fiber of my being, but there are some things I have begun to question. I still read my bible, I still go to church, I still believe in God, but I feel abandoned by God. Where was he when I was laying on the floor by the toilet for two and a half days straight this week because I couldn't keep food down? Where was he when I cried in the middle of the night for nights on end because the pain was so excruciating? Where was he when I didn't have the strength to get out of bed? I felt no comfort, no peace, nothing. Just pain and loneliness.

These are the things I have been wrestling with lately. I don't know where I will end up. I would like to say there is a light at the end of this very long, very dark tunnel but I don't know that. Maybe something will reignite my love of God and cause those passion flames to burn again but I just don't know that. The hurt and pain run too deep right now. It something that I am going to continue to wrestle with because I want to and need to figure it out for myself. It's not easy to take a step back from everything you have ever believed in and reevaluate it all. 

If you have struggled with your faith please let me know. Comment or email me and share with me what you did and how you got through it, or if you're still struggling share with me what brought you to that place. My only hope is that something good can come of this wandering. 

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Thinking Out Loud

I'm really not sure how it's already Thursday, but nonetheless Thursday means it's time for another thinking out loud post. Of course there's tons of randomness and Cora makes an appearance! 

1. This week has gone by in an absolute fog, thank you lupus, but I'll get into that later. I did manage to find a new (or new to me?) type of peaches called donut peaches. I don't like donuts but I had to try them and was sadly disappointed. I was expecting the peaches to be fairly sweet, hence the donut part, but they really weren't. They tasted like a cross between a peach and a nectarine, but the juiciness and sweetness just weren't there. Maybe it's too late in the season for them but I will not be buying them again. 

2. Since I still haven't been able to run I have been lifting more and doing more HIIT. My lifting buddy and I absolutely killed each other last week with our workouts. I was so incredibly sore by the weekend I was expecting a body part to just fall off. Sunday's I take off from lifting and honestly it was a godsend. Besides being up way too late my body just needed a break. The rest was appreciated and come Monday I was ready to go. On the bright side I should be cleared to run any day now so I'm pumped. 

3. Let's just get this one out of the way because it's been hard to keep to myself. I have been pretty absent from social media this week because I have been experiencing a lupus flare. I started having symptoms of a flare last week, but just thought the problems were random and now I know they're not. A flare is a period of time where symptoms worsen, there's no rhyme or reason as to why a flare starts. Now I know my blood work was indicating the start of a flare last month but symptoms really started manifesting in the past week. I have been incredibly exhausted, in extreme pain and nauseated beyond belief. I spent the better part of two days laying next to the toilet because it was so bad that I prayed I could just puke and feel better. Luckily I have the best support system to help me through this but it's incredibly frustrating to go through. It's an emotional roller coaster and not exactly a fun thing to go through so that is why I have been absent from social media and the blog.

4. Eating has become difficult because the mere thought of food makes me want to put. I have managed to get some oatmeal in me though. I made chocolate protein banana bread oatmeal that was really good that I was able to get in my stomach and keep down that eventually I want to share with you guys because it was so good and so easy! I added a few berries on top and a few pieces of a chocolate rxbar for some added protein. 

5. This is a day late, but I want to wish a very happy (belated) birthday to my beautiful cousin Jessi! I could brag on her forever because she is one heck of a woman and I literally would not have survived college (or life) without her. She is such an amazing woman and I hope this year is her best year yet, I love you so much cuz and I am beyond thankful to have you in my life💜

6. Cora has taken to begging for some of my morning oats. I have tried everything in the books not to get her to beg for food, but she has been cracking me up recently. She knows she's not supposed to be so when I go to take my oats over to the table she will sit down by me but not look at me😂 It's her attempt to hide her begging and I know it's terrible but I laugh every time. I don't give her anything though because these oats are all mine. 

I'll end things at six this week, sorry I don't have much to say as this lupus flare is kicking my butt. A giant thank you to my friends, boyfriend, and family who have been helping me through this week and dealing with all of the lupus craziness. Hopefully one day there will be a cure, but until then I am going to nap because I am exhausted. 

Do you have any fun weekend plans? 
What is your go to food when you're not feeling well?

Monday, October 10, 2016

Weeks Dets and Eats

Happy Monday! Last week I shared a weekend dets and eats and I got a positive response so I figured why not share another weekend recap? Plus I've had zero inspiration to get in the kitchen to cook or bake so I'm just going to blog my way through this creativity slump. I'd like to say it's too hot to cook and while that's partially true I just haven't felt like getting in the kitchen to cook anything new. I've been eating the same old, same old for awhile now and I really don't see that changing anytime soon, lazy and sad but true.

Anyway, onward to the weekend. Normally my weekends are pretty boring, but I have been getting out more recently and it's been really nice. Friday morning I got in a good back and core workout with some cardio to end it, still no running though😭, and came back to clean up and refuel before heading out to run some errands. I had my usual protein oats to refuel but topped them with some fall inspired sprinkles that I found at HomeGoods a few weeks ago. I'm kind of addicted to HomeGoods because they have the coolest decor pieces there! They also have a good selection of specialty foods that aren't offered at typical grocery stores so I always look through there, I almost always find some pretty awesome sprinkles when I'm there😏

After eating I headed out to run some errands. One of the things on my to do list was to find a new blazer since my old blazer has gotten tight as my back and bicep muscles have gotten bigger😳 For once I decided to wear my natural hair since it was (mostly) cooperating and not being crazy frizzy. Naturally my hair is incredibly wavy and it's gotten wavier in recent years. I rarely wear it natural because it gets so dang frizzy, but I wore it without doing anything to it and I got more compliments than I ever have. Literally I had strangers coming up to me saying they liked my hair, I was so confused but I wasn't about to argue with people being so nice. I never did end up finding a blazer and I've searched high and low for one so if anyone has any input on where to find one that isn't crazy expensive please let me know. I just want a regular black on that's fitted and not baggy.

On my route there was a new home store that finally opened after months and months of construction so I dropped in to take a look. It was like HomeGoods on steroids because the place was HUGE! They had so many cute decor pieces and their prices seemed really reasonable. Of course I got sucked into the wall decor section and ended up reading (and laughing) over some of the signs. I got a good laugh at the signs about wine and there was a bunch of science type funny signs that I laughed at but knew my boyfriend would appreciate. I didn't spend a lot of time in the store because I had a ton of other errands to run so I'm looking forward to stopping in on a slower day and getting time to browse.

In the afternoon my dad and I got back to work rebuilding the deck. We finished up the biggest section of railing, got it hung and started sanding. It may not sound like a lot of work but it really was, plus it was over 80F degrees out with no breeze. I was hot and sweaty by the time we called it quits, but seeing the deck come together makes me feel like we've accomplished something. My knee and IT band were semi killing me by the time we stopped so I made sure to ice it at night. 

Saturday morning I hit the gym bright and early and got an awesome lift in. My arms were shaking by the time I was done and I was so sweaty💪 It felt good to get such a hard workout in early, but I was starving by the time I got home (what else is new?). I whipped up the usual post workout oats to fuel up for the day. All the usual toppings are present-> strawberries, banana coins, blueberries, raspberries, Enjoy Life chocolate chips, and a drizzle of honey.

I was feeling pretty good after a week of hardcore lifts and actually getting dressed in more than gym clothes. I felt good and I loved my new sweater so a selfie was required. I actually consulted my best friend while I was in the dressing room as to if I should get the sweater or not. She loved the color and was totally on board, plus I got a really good deal on it so I was a happy camper. 

In the afternoon my boyfriend came over and we headed out to enjoy the day since it was a picture perfect fall day. We drove to a neighboring town, walked around downtown and found a park off the main street so we walked around. Apparently it was homecoming because there was a TON of people packed in the park taking pictures. Seeing all the kids dressed up brought back a lot of fun memories from high school. It also made me want to find an excuse to get all dolled up in a pretty dress and go out, however my boyfriend did not feel the same need to get all dressed up😂, he's not one who enjoys wearing a suit and tie. The dresses were beautiful and it was fun to see all the different designs. After walking around the park we headed to Mongolian BBQ. My boyfriend had had a rough week so I surprised him by making reservations because it's his favorite place. He was definitely a happy camper. While he got a bowl I got the soup and salad bar because I can't have anything off the grill due to food allergies and cross contamination. I loaded up at the salad bar with all the veggies and a gluten/meat free "chicken" they offered which was actually pretty good.

Saturday night we headed to a haunted forest, he had to convince me to go since I am NOT about those sorts of things, but it ended up being really cheesy. We got stuck in a group of 10 year girls with their mom and we had fun laughing while they screamed as things jumped out at them. Sunday morning I dragged my very tired butt to the gym for a quick cardio workout before heading to church with the family. While I am all about the summer weather I am loving that it is boot weather again. Sweaters and boots are my favorite things about fall beside the gorgeous leaves. In the afternoon my boyfriend came over and helped my dad take the dock out to get ready for winter (he's seriously the sweetest♥️). 

I was dead by the time dinner rolled around, this grandma is too old for staying up so late. Luckily when I went grocery shopping for the week I found a nourish bowl that was filled with veggies and bean and had 14grams of plant based protein so I microwaved that and threw in some baked turkey for added protein. It was an incredibly lazy dinner, but I was way too tired to cook so this was a easy and healthy option. I spent the remainder of the night playing with Cora, who had a TON of energy, and working on emails. I hit the hay extra early because I was so tired😴 

What did you do this weekend? 
What is your favorite way to cheer someone (or yourself) up after a bad day/week?

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Thinking Out Loud

This has felt like the longest week ever. It has not been one of my better weeks, but I'll get into that in a minute. Please can it just be Saturday already?! I have a few things planned on Saturday for my boyfriend and I because it's been a heck of a week and we both need some time to destress and unwind. I'm keeping things a surprise, I LOVE surprises, and I'm pretty excited about it😁 anyway let's jump into this weeks thinking out loud post...

1. To say this week has been long is an understatement. The major blow came to me on Tuesday when I finally sucked it up and went to doctor because I had been having really bad knee pain for about a week. I figured it was nothing so I continued on it, I had a run streak to protect, but apparently I was wrong. Of course the doctor had to go and bend it every which way, at that point I felt like punching him because HOLY SMOKES IT HURT. The doctor is pretty sure I hurt my IT band which he stressed is common among runners and he told me to stop running for awhile. I was crushed. I have been running every single day for months. I love it and I miss it and I cannot wait to get back out there. I got sent for an X-RAY and if that doesn't show anything I'm going to get an MRI next week. I miss running SO MUCH😭

2. Want to know what else stinks about not being able to run right now? The weather is absolutly perfect. I'm talking 75F degrees, a light breeze, sunshine a picture perfect day. On the bright side I have been getting outside with Cora and soaking up all the sunshine. Cora is loving this weather as well because it's not too hot for her, she is not a fan of 90F degree days especially given she's black and has a LOT of fur. 

3. I found a two pound container of strawberries on sale for $3.50 so of course I snatched them up. Most places have one pound containers for $2 or $3 this time of year because berry season is basically over. I was cutting up some strawberries to go with dinner last night and I came across this mutated strawberries. You would think it's two strawberries but it's actually one strawberry! The leaf only went halfway through the middle of the berry, it was strange but it tasted delicious so I'm not going to complain.

4. It may still feel like summer but I'm totally crushing on these protein pumpkin waffles right now. Sadly I can't eat them with nut butter on top so I pile on the berries and syrup. They're so good and make a single serving so for those of us who cook for one it's perfect! The recipe easily doubles or triples so you can definitely make it for more than one. I really can't brag on this waffle enough, it's THAT GOOD😋

5. Some days when I actually get out of gym clothes and do my hair and makeup and feel accomplished. Such days obviously require the flower crown snapchat filter. Seriously though I basically live in gym clothes. I need to stop being such a bum and wear regular people clothes once in awhile because I wore jeans for the first time in awhile and it felt incredibly weird. I have a strict policy that I don't leave the house wearing sweatpants though so I'll throw on capris or something- never leggings though. I despise leggings.

6. I have been honing my carpentry skills with my dad recently. He decided to take on the task of rebuilding one of our main decks so I've been working with him. My dad has been having me help him with carpentry stuff and other various things like plumbing, electrical, car repairs/maintenance since I was really young and I've learned a lot. I'm proud of the fact that I can build stuff like deck railings and change the oil in my car without help. Needless to say I was never the girl who painted her nails when I was little #tomboy.

I don't have a ton to say this week so I will end things there. What's your favorite snapchat filter? What is one skill you have and are proud of?

Have a great Thursday everyone, only one more day until the weekend🎉🎉🎉

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Protein Pumpkin Waffle (Single Serving)

It's Waffle Wednesday! In case you didn't already know, but waffle Wednesday is totally a thing. What makes these waffles is the fact that it's pumpkin everything....and I mean EVERYTHING!

Waffles are always great, but something about pumpkin waffles just makes me smile. Strange I know, but pumpkin makes everything better! Which is only fitting seeing as it is pumpkin season right now. Besides being loaded with all things pumpkin this waffle is packed with 18 grams of protein! If 18 grams of protein doesn't convince you to fire up your waffle iron then the fact that is it pumpkin should!

Protein Pumpkin Waffle
  • 1 Tablespoon coconut flour
  • *1/2 scoop protein powder (Quest, Vega, PEScience all work)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 Tablespoons organic pumpkin- NOT pumpkin pie filling 
  • 3 Tablespoons egg whites
  • 2 Tablespoon unsweetened vanilla almond milk
* You do not have to include protein powder

In a small mixing bowl combine all ingredients. 

Heat up waffle iron to medium-high setting. Spray waffle iron with nonstick cook spray.

When warm pour batter into waffle iron. I have a jumbo waffle maker so I made one giant waffle, but for a regular size waffle iron you can get two waffles.

Check after 4-5 minutes. Every waffle iron is different so cook time will depend on your waffle iron.

I topped my waffle with fresh raspberries, Purely Elizabeth pumpkin fig granola, Wild Friends pumpkin spice nut butter, and Walden Farms pancake syrup.

Nutrition (first one is with protein powder and the second is without): 
MACROS (with protein powder): 9C/2F/18P
MACROS (without protein powder): 8C/2F/6P
Nutrition Facts
Servings 1.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 125
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2 g2 %
Saturated Fat 1 g5 %
Monounsaturated Fat 0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 8 mg3 %
Sodium 168 mg7 %
Potassium 133 mg4 %
Total Carbohydrate 9 g3 %
Dietary Fiber 4 g17 %
Sugars 2 g
Protein 18 g37 %
Vitamin A19 %
Vitamin C2 %
Calcium22 %
Iron10 %
Nutrition Facts
Servings 1.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 75
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2 g2 %
Saturated Fat 1 g5 %
Monounsaturated Fat 0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg0 %
Sodium 110 mg5 %
Potassium 90 mg3 %
Total Carbohydrate 8 g3 %
Dietary Fiber 4 g15 %
Sugars 2 g
Protein 6 g13 %
Vitamin A19 %
Vitamin C2 %
Calcium7 %
Iron10 %