Oct 24, 2010

Test Anxiety


Midterm studying is in full force, and I have decided that it would be best for me to not post for the next two weeks at least until all of my midterms for the time being are over and done with. I hope you will all support my decision and continue to stop by and comment regardless!

--- Ellen

Oct 23, 2010

Field Trip


No time to blog. No time to blog. No time to blog. BYE!


Busy. Busy. Busy. So very sorry, I promise to try and actually post next time!

Oct 21, 2010

Full Day Times Two


I had a doctor’s appointment this morning, since the medications still are having no effect and the test results still show nothing. So, I had to eat breakfast basically as soon as I woke up. As much as I wanted something hot to eat, I just could not get the idea of cereal out of my head. So, I poured myself a big bowl of All Bran and sprinkled on some cinnamon, added dried berries, and poured some Unsweetened Original Almond Breeze on top. Well, apparently this is a very absorbent cereal because by the time I brought my bowl back into my room all I had left was essentially a bowl of mush. But, I ate it anyway. No picture though, sorry.

I’m getting another scan done and getting referred to a bigger, better hospital in Ann Arbor, because the doctors here that I’ve been seeing are all stumped as to why this has been going on for 5+ months and keeps getting worse. Right after my doctors appointment was work for several hours, errands, and class. I went home very quickly to drop things off and grab a quick bite to eat (very veggie salad topped with artichoke hommus and Italian dressing), then it was straight back to campus for a midterm review session. Basically, all of this rushing around amounts to few pictures being taken and not much to report for the day. So, sorry, again.



No work this morning, but no play either. To start, my alarm clock malfunctioned somehow and never went off this morning. So, I rushed to make oatmeal: old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla tea, mixed with chia seeds, flaxseed meal, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with dried berries, maple syrup, and PB&Co. WCW peanut butter.


Jetting off to class, I had a lecture on calorie restriction. Basically, what I got from it was, if you restrict your calories, you will live longer. That is, if you are in a bubble of complete health and never face exposure to pathogens of any sort. However, since that is never the case and we are forced to leave our homes and interact with the world around us, it is more important to eat normally so that our body responds appropriately to invaders.

After a snack of Honey Nut Cheerios and Cinnamon Brown Sugar almonds, it was off to Biology lecture. Nothing too much to report there. Circulatory system, blah blah blah. I ate a banana and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich while sitting there and listening. Afterwards it was straight to Biology Lab to collect some more data in the Natural Area behind the lab. We should be done collecting all of our data next week. Thank goodness!

Once back home, I made up spaghetti squash, broccoli, and a tomato for dinner. I love eating bowlfuls of vegetables!


Now back to study, study, STUDYING!

Oct 19, 2010

Larabars and Leases


Monday morning once again. *Sigh* Breakfast as usual: old-fashioned oats made in sub-par vanilla tea, mixed with flaxseed meal, chia seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with maple syrup, PB&Co. White Chocolate Wonderful peanut butter, and dried berries.


Work went by a bit slowly today, though I’m not really sure why. Next came a quiz in Food Safety. I studied as much as I think I could have, and although I didn’t get a great score I am still doing better than half the kids in my class. After Food Safety was my Biology Lab lecture. Boring and uneventful, other than we got our tests back. Again, not great, but not below average. This I will accept considering the amount that I missed due to not being able to go out into the field.

After lab I went on my weekly grocery trip, and guess what I found?! Three out of the four new Larabar flavors! I could NOT believe my eyes or my luck when I saw them. I instantly grabbed one of each. If only there was also the Carrot Cake flavor among them… Also, sorry for the poor picture quality. It was taken using the camera on my phone, as I do not normally take my camera with me to the grocery store.

Once home again, I did a repeat dinner of last night (actually, I made a double batch yesterday just so that I wouldn’t have to cook today). Now it’s getting pretty late and I have yet to begin doing any of my work. Bringing my laptop to campus is starting to sound more and more worth the extra 20 pounds on my back.


No work this morning! But that does not mean that there was any resting going on (there’s no rest for the wicked!). I had a meeting with a girl I am thinking about living with next year (yes, lease signing started this past weekend, and the good, close places go fast) as well as some errands that I needed to run before the week was out. To fuel my morning, I had a bowl of old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla tea, mixed with chia seeds, flaxseed meal, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with maple syrup, PB&Co. WCW, and dried berries.


If only I had some Coconut Butter to put on my oats in the morning. Maybe Chocolate Covered Katie could help me out if I win her giveaway?

I had a Biology lecture (and quiz) as well as a few hours of work today. Then, I signed my lease for next year. I’ll be living with a girl who’s in the honors college with me and we even had our orientations together. It will just be her and me, and I have high hopes that my roommate situation will be much improved next year. Only 10 more months to go!

Another long day means there’s no time to waste to start on homework and I have another fairly long day tomorrow as well. G’night everyone!

Oct 17, 2010

Homecoming and Time Warp


Early morning wake-up to study. Breakfast of old-fashioned oats made in my icky Vanilla tea, mixed with chia seeds, flaxseed meal, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with Grape Nuts, maple syrup, and PB&Co. White Chocolate Wonderful peanut butter.


Yesterday was State’s homecoming parade and so today was the homecoming game against Illinois. Rather than watch the game, I opted to go shopping with my mom to get a few more fall-appropriate clothing items that look semi-professional for work, meetings, and other such occasions. I walked away with a wonderful navy skirt from Gap as well as two sweaters and two camisoles from Old Navy. I’m pleased, considering how hard it is to shop for me. It also allowed me to get some ideas for my Christmas list (yes, I already have people asking for a wishlist from me for Christmas gift ideas).

Lunch was a banana, a small carrot and spinach salad, and a Chocolate Chip CLIF ZBar. State won the football game, making us now 7-0 and (apparently), Gerard Butler was at the game. Very suiting indeed (alright, I admit it, I didn’t know who he was since I’ve never seen 300).

I don’t know why I’m so tired today, but I have felt a need for caffeine like no other since before noon and focusing past 4 o’clock became impossible. Enter: one-hour free computer game trials! Yeah, I party hard.


I studied a bit for Nutrition and Biology this morning, and then made a bowl of oatmeal: old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla tea, mixed with chia seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, flaxseed meal, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with the last of my Grape Nuts, some dried berries, maple syrup, and PB&Co. WCW.


Unfortunately, I basically completely forgot about food throughout the day. Before I knew it, in between watching Friends in the background of reading for Biology and Nutrition, it was 6 o’clock. I had eaten a banana and a Honeycrisp apple at some point during the day, but there was never really any meal that was prepared and then eaten. That’s a problem I sometimes have. I get so engrossed in what I’m doing that I forget about the time and normal human body processes.

So by the time I allowed myself to take an actual break, I was, unsurprisingly, quite hungry. It was quite time-intensive and a bit laborious, but I had a meal and mind and no way was I going to talk myself out of it. Spaghetti squash, mixed with broccoli, and topped with tomato sauce and a few spices and seasonings. It turned out much better than I thought it would and made for one very happy study tummy. The lighting was terrible, since we have no overhead lighting in the apartment, but I’m glad that I subbed in the tomato sauce for a cheese sauce at the last minute.


Alright now kiddies, back to work. Tomorrow’s the beginning of yet another week. Let’s hope this one proves to be better than the previous.

Oct 15, 2010

Hall of Fame and Fall Views


Apparently yesterday marked my 100th post. Well that certainly flew by uneventfully, haha.

I toughened myself up and went to the gym this morning for an elliptical hills workout. 3.02 miles in 30:00 followed by core work and a shower. Breakfast was old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla tea (still not a fan of this flavor), mixed with pureed pumpkin, chia seeds, flaxseed meal, cinnamon, and nutmeg, and topped with Grape Nuts, PB&Co. White Chocolate Wonderful peanut butter, and maple syrup.


While eating breakfast, I watched a few video lectures for Economics and packed my lunch and snack for the day. Banana, Honey Nut Cheerios with Cinnamon Brown Sugar almonds, unsweetened applesauce, and a Fiber One Oats & Apple Streusel bar (again, I had a coupon). In the cards today was Nutrition (with quiz), Biology lecture (with quiz), and Biology lab (fieldwork). Ex-haust-ing. I was glad when the class ended and I was able to go out to dinner with my dad.

We went to the Spartan Hall of Fame Cafe, which showcases the university’s achievements in athletics. This place has been around for a while, but this was my first time actually eating there. With a huge lack of vegetarian options, I opted for a Greek Salad. It was not good. Honestly, the best part was the sun-dried tomatoes, and that’s only because it was the only thing not too overwhelmingly flavorful or oily. I was really in the mood for sushi after measuring trees for 3 hours, but alas other plans were already made. Oh well, at least I got to see my dad.

Entering Study Mode, NOW! But here’s something to keep you occupied for a bit: http://www.thisiswhyyourefat.com/. I think it should be more like: ThisiswhatswrongwiththeUStoday.com if you ask me. Our “contributions” to the culinary world are horrendous. People don’t want to go to the US to sample our cuisine, like they do to France and Italy. Our food is only known for causing high cholesterol and other health problems.


No gym this morning. Instead, I did some light weights to work on my upper body strength. Breakfast was a Biology textbook with old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla tea, mixed with chia seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, pureed pumpkin, and flaxseed meal, and topped with PB&Co. WCW, Grape Nuts, and maple syrup.


I brought along some Cinnamon Brown Sugar almonds with Honey Nut Cheerios and a White Chocolate Macadamia LUNA Bar to hold me over through work, Food Safety, and Biology lab work. Coming home was absolute bliss after that long day. And now I have a lot to catch up on, so I’ll be ending this post short and working the evening and the night away.

But, I will leave you with this Midwestern fall view:


Oct 13, 2010

Optimism and First Day


First of all, thank you for those that entered my giveaway. It was small, the odds were good to win, but I’m sure that all blogs start out this way. If this blog is still around a year from now and I run a similar giveaway, then that’s something I can compare to. But, since this was my very first and I still have a fairly low frequency of page views a day, I’m glad that I received any participants at all! Anyways, congratulations to Comment #3, belonging The Student Kitchen! Shoot me an e-mail over at ratliffe@msu.edu with the address you want me to send to and I’ll put your package together!


Breakfast was a slight variation of my pumpkin oatmeal: old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla tea, mixed with pumpkin puree, cinnamon, nutmeg, chia seeds, and flaxseed meal, and topped with Grape Nuts, maple syrup, and PB&Co. White Chocolate Wonderful peanut butter. I don’t like this tea as much as my Vanilla Caramel, but I’ll “suffer” through the box, I suppose.


I caught myself up on my Hulu queue while reading some for Biology and studying for my quiz in said class today, and then I was off.

Everything was fine; until I got off of the bus on campus, that is. Suddenly, I felt nauseous and in unbearable pain. I asked my dad to bring me to the ER immediately. Here I am, 6 hours later, and the hospital did nothing but run blood tests which all came up normal. I literally left the hospital feeling worse than I did going in and I almost demanded an ambulance when I was at home, on the floor, struggling to breathe. I just wish that there was some way to deal with the pain, but there’s not, and that’s the worst part. Just knowing that the pain will last for 6 hours (if not more) is almost enough to make me start crying. It’s that fear of the inevitable I guess. You cringe because you know what you’re getting yourself into and there’s nothing you can do to stop it.

Right now, I’m just resting. The pain hasn’t gone away yet, so that means meals are on pause for the time being, and I’m continuing to forego the gym for the present as well. Trying to reduce the amount of stress on my body right now as much as possible.


Out the door by 8:30am made for a rushed-feeling morning. Breakfast was a chocolate calcium chew with a side of old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla tea, mixed with pureed pumpkin, chia seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, and flaxseed meal, and topped with maple syrup, PB&Co. WCW, and Grape Nuts. I had to be ready to go so early because today was my first day at my new job! I’m going to be doing assistance work at the university a few hours a week. I think I’m really going to like doing this, and can probably continue next semester or even next year as long as I do the job well and still enjoy the work.


Work flew by and I snacked on some Cinnamon Brown Sugar almonds with Honey Nut Cheerios (I had a coupon) and a banana on my way to class and just made it to my building before the sky opened up and unleashed its watery fury. I came home after class, snacked on some popcorn, watched Friends, and read for Economics and Nutrition.

Dinner was another delicious spinach and soy cheddar cheese scramble. I was really craving something warm, light, and comforting, and for some reason this meal satisfies all of those requirements for me.


Long day tomorrow. Pray that I make it through my Biology Lab in one piece! Hopefully the prospect of dinner with my dad will get my body through…

Oct 11, 2010

Job Interview and LAST CHANCE for the Larabar Giveaway


Breakfast of old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla Caramel tea (the last of it), mixed with chia seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, flaxseed meal, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with Grape Nuts, PB&Co. WCW peanut butter, and maple syrup.


I came onto campus early because I had an interview for an assistant position. I’ll let you know later how that all turns out, of course. I wore a casual, yet slightly professional outfit: black jeans and a button-down flannel shirt. For lunch, I packed a can of Amy’s Organic Split Pea Soup and some saltines to accompany it. I also brought along a mix of the last of my Cascadian Farm Raisin Bran cereal, cinnamon, and Cinnamon Brown Sugar almonds.

I’m going to be ending today’s post early so that I would be able to remind everyone to enter my giveaway since today is the LAST DAY to enter:


Oct 10, 2010

Rivals and Tough Decisions


Woke up early despite the protesting I heard from my body, but not to work out. No, I had to wake up early so that I could eat a hearty breakfast and bus my booty over to campus by 9:00am so that my Biology group could spend hours on end collecting data for our major project before all of the leaves fell from the trees, which is due within the next week or two most likely. Old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla Caramel tea, mixed with cinnamon, nutmeg, chia seeds, flaxseed meal, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with PB&Co. WCW, Grape Nuts, and maple syrup.


After breakfast, I listened to half of my Nutrition class lectures on protein and then had to leave to run a few errands. I needed to get more ink for my printer and pick some things up from my mother’s house so that I can start preparing for Halloween festivities. After returning home, and finishing my protein lecture, I had lunch. I tried one of the Cocoa Mole Larabars that I won in the giveaway for the first time and it was actually pretty good! The chili added a little kick right at the end that wasn’t too terribly painful or overpowering and the texture was magnificent. Why on Earth would they retire this flavor?! At least I have another one in my stash to look forward to down the road.

Along with a Honeycrisp apple and a few dark chocolate morsels, lunch came with a side of even more studying. I was seriously all across the intellectual spectrum today. Nutrition, Biology, microorganisms, and Microeconomics. Though switching what I was working on made the time seem to go by faster, which I guess is good. But, as soon as the clock struck 3:30pm. Homework was pushed aside and the television was turned on because. . . today was the game. Michigan State played their rival: the University of Michigan. If you go to school at MSU, you can’t miss this game. We had not lost to Michigan in football since 2007 and so have been in possession of the coveted Paul Bunyan trophy for the past 2 years and were hoping on making this year the third in a row and to make our current 5-0 record into a 6-0 record.

Don’t worry. Paul Bunyan is still safely at home for yet another year. 6-0 Spartan Victory! Unfortunately, pain struck just after the game started and that pretty much crushed any dinner or evening plans I had hoped for. We’re stuck right now as to where to go from here in treatment and testing, which is incredibly frustrating. I feel like my doctors don’t really care and are starting to just write me off because I’m such an anomaly, but I’m not making my pain up! How are my doctors not as concerned about me being about 10 pounds underweight and it continuing to drop, and my increased frequency of pain. This has entered into every area of my life and is slowly but surely destroying me. I survived mono with my education and friendships intact, why is this not the same situation?


Again, no workout. I slept in instead because I had a rough night last night. I woke up late, ate a Honeycrisp apple, was still hungry, and so made my classic oatmeal: old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla Caramel tea, mixed with chia seeds, flaxseed meal, nutmeg, cinnamon, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with maple syrup, PB&Co. White Chocolate Wonderful peanut butter, and Grape Nuts.


I ate my breakfast/lunch in peace and went back to studying. Anything to keep my mind off of what’s on my mind, if that makes any sense. I got an e-mail saying that the Honors College is interesting in interviewing me for a position on campus, which would be nice. I worry how my health will be factored into working, but I guess that’s something more to worry about later if I actually am offered the job. Rather than having an actual lunch, due to waking up later and so eating breakfast later, I just had a Chocolate Peppermint Stick LUNA Bar instead. I love this flavor.

Dinnertime rolled around and I was in the mood to cook something. First, I sautéed some spinach, then I added in two eggs worth of Eggbeaters mixed with plenty of salt and pepper until nice and scrambled and cooked. Then I topped it all off with soy cheddar cheese and ketchup and served myself a few saltines as well since I’ve apparently been hoarding a very large box of them in my cabinet. A strange craving, admittedly, but you should always listen to your cravings. And look at how colorful it is!


Now I’m off to continue watching Gilmore Girls (the last season) and reading for Microeconomics. Night, everyone, and I hope that you had a much more relaxing and enjoyable weekend than I did!



Oct 8, 2010

No Good and Date Night Do-Over


This morning, I did not feel like heading over to the gym. So, instead, I did two sets of this 10-minute Total Body Workout:
- 1. 1 minute Jog
- 2. 1 minute Push-Up with a Side Plank
- 3. 1 minute Front Lunge with Chest Flies
- 4. 1 minute Backward Lunge with a Triceps Kickback
- 5. 1 minute Squats and Overhead Shoulders
- 6. 1 minute Jump squats
- 7. 1 minute Plie squats
- 8. 1 minute Plank
- 9. 1 minute Jackknives
- 10. 1 minute Cool Down

I showered afterwards and then set out to make breakfast. Old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla Caramel tea, mixed with chia seeds, cinnamon, flaxseed meal, nutmeg, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with Grape Nuts, maple syrup, and PB&Co. WCW peanut butter. I also brewed myself a cup of Celestial True Blueberry tea to help try and fight the cold I seem to have come down with.


Long, long, long, long day today. I packed a spinach salad with artichoke hommus and Italian dressing to mix in and a Peanut Butter Cookie LUNA Bar for lunch, a banana for a snack, and Cascadian Farm Raisin Bran with Cinnamon Brown Sugar almonds accompanied by an Envirokidz Peanut Butter Crispy Rice bar for dinner.


The reason I had to bring so much food with me to class today was because I would be gone from 9:20am until 9:00pm since I had an exam at night for my Economics class. Just another reason for me to dislike Thursdays. But, I think that the fact that my lab did not have to go out into the field today and that I wore the new Larabar shirt that I won to class made it all a bit more tolerable.


I have no idea how the exam went, nor do I really care right now. I’m in a terrible mood, have had a not so great day now that it’s all said and done with, and I have a terrible weekend to look forward to. I’m just trying to use all my energy to keep myself together right now… It’s not working. I literally cried for hours, not quite knowing why, and it wouldn’t stop. I wanted to hit myself for being so stupid, weak, emotional, angry, and a plethora of other emotions. What started out as a perfectly fine day, ended up in destruction and disaster.


No workout this morning. I used that time to do work for class and study instead. It didn’t help that I got another bad night of sleep, due to stress and the apparent need of drunk college students to be very, very loud in the early hours of the morning. I somehow spent almost 3 hours doing work before I finally ended up making breakfast. The usual: old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla Caramel tea, mixed with chia seeds, flaxseed meal, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with maple syrup, PB&Co. White Chocolate Wonderful, and Grape Nuts with some True Blueberry tea to drink.


I snacked on a banana and a piece of dark chocolate a little bit later, but was not hungry to eat a lunch before I had to leave for Food Safety, so that was just forgone for the time being. I think sometimes I just get so busy that I can’t or don’t respond to my body’s signals. Part of it today, though, is most likely from my cold and the fact that I’m downing mug after mug of hot tea as often as possible. My stomach never really empties itself since I”m always adding fluids to it which I think explains the lack of hunger thing. I still made sure to bring along an Envirokidz Peanut Butter Crispy Rice bar, though, and had a small bowl of All-Bran with cinnamon and USVAB when I got home.

Then I was off to beautify myself. Lyle and I were supposed to have a date night last Friday night, but I had to cancel because I was too sick, so we rescheduled for this week. Since I basically own nothing nice or even nice-ish, I once again assembled an outfit out of borrowed clothing. Floral bubble-like skirt, plain back top, and black flats.

We went to Cosi, since it’s supposed to be a nice soup-salad-sandwich kind of a place. Well, neither one of us was very pleased. For one thing, if I order a Hummus and Vegetable sandwich, I kind of expected there to be hummus in the sandwich. And biting into a basil leaf the size of my hand and a red onion being in the dominant vegetable was entirely pleasing either. Also, a Chicken Parmesan melt has never meant the same thing as a Chicken Margherita pizza. And to think, I’ve been wanting to try this place for a very long time now and I was greatly disappointed. Live and learn…

Fun’s over now, back to work.



Oct 6, 2010

Back to Business and A Giveaway!


Even though I did not get much sleep last night (I literally lied in bed for 2 hours just trying to fall asleep, apparently I need total and utter silence in order to sleep and that’s impossible in college), I woke up ready to go to the gym! Ahh… Finally, after taking almost a week off from working out I finally set foot on the elliptical again! Glorious. I took full advantage of this surge in energy by kicking out 40 minutes on a random intervals workout, covering 4.09 miles, and followed by a little core work and a hot shower.

Breakfast was The Breakfast Of Champions, and I’m not talking about no big bowl of Wheaties cereal. The real Breakfast of Champions: Old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla Caramel tea, mixed with chia seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, flaxseed meal, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with Grape Nuts, maple syrup, and PB&Co. WCW peanut butter.


I spent some time reading about biostatistics and then was off to Biology for a quiz and lecture with a banana in hand. When I got back home and settled myself down finally, I heated up a bowl of broccoli slaw (carrots, broccoli, red cabbage) and a little artichoke hommus glopped on top. This was followed by catching up on my Hulu queue and finishing biostatistics and starting in on my regular Biology textbook readings.

I did learn something interesting in lecture today, though! Birds do not have sensors for capsaicin (hot peppers, anyone?). So, if you’re sick of those pesky squirrels gobbling up all your birdseed, you can spray capsaicin on your feed because mammals are the only ones who possess those capsaicin pain sensors.

Nestled in between studying for my exams and reading for Biology, I made up a plate of Kashi Pesto Pasta Primavera. It’s been quite some time since I’ve eaten something with pesto in it, but this was yet another attempt to try and rid my fridge of frozen meals (I am, however, keeping myself stocked up with frozen fruits and vegetables). Slowly, but surely. The dish was okay, but I wouldn’t get it again. The pesto was much too watery and I did not really enjoy the texture of the noodles.



In preparation for the next round of testing, I had to eat a large meal (my dinner) at 9:00pm last night and then not eat or drink anything until after the HIDA scan this morning. So when I woke up this morning I grabbed my gym bag and hit the gym for a stationary bike workout. I knocked out 30:00 which covered 6.57 miles and allowed me read a little about the life of Stephanie Plum.

The scan itself lasted about two and a half hours (I mostly slept) and I pretty much just had to lie still for that time. Yay for not having to ingest contrast! As soon as it was over I was, of course, starving! Old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla Caramel tea, mixed with chia seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, flaxseed meal, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with Grape Nuts, PB&Co. White Chocolate Wonderful peanut butter, and maple syrup.


I went to my Food Safety lecture, even though I really did not feel like going, because, unlike some classes where you can miss the lectures and still learn everything, this class has no textbook and the powerpoints are all “fill-in-the-blank” style. Couple that with uncooperative classmates and you’re all on your own. Once I got home, I downed a banana and a couple pieces of dark chocolate as I opened this glorious and exciting package from Larabar:


As some of you may know, Larabar recently retired their Cocoa Mole flavor and, as a part of that, they hosted several giveaways and guess who won one of them?! This girl right here! This surprise package in the mail definitely made my day. I won FOUR Cocoa Mole Larabars, a Cocoa Mole Larabar t-shirt, and a Larabar sticker. So, to commemorate this occasion and to spread the love around, I am going to host my first very own giveaway! You will win TWO Retired Cocoa Mole Larabars, as well as a few other secret, special items that I will throw in just for fun.

I spent a great deal of the afternoon and night trying to catch up on assignments that have, literally, popped up out of nowhere and they took me forever to get through. I did, however, find time to try out a new product (new in the sense that I’ve never tried it before): Honey BBQ Smart Wings by LightLife and some broccoli slaw. I had a coupon for a LightLife product and decided to get something I would not normally have gotten. I burnt them a little in the preparation, but otherwise it tasted okay. I’m not sure I’d get it again, though. I don’t think I’m much of a honey-BBQ fan, but it had been so long since I’d eaten anything with BBQ sauce on it, so I guess I forgot my taste preferences. They were also a little dry.


To enter the giveaway, simply post a comment below. That’s it! All entries must be received by 6:00pm EST on October 11, 2010.

cocoa mole

Oct 4, 2010

Dinosaur Dash and Marie Claire


Once again, I woke up too sick to do anything athletic today. So, instead of running myself, I bundled myself up so that I could head out and cheer Lyle on for his first 5K race in 5 years: The Dinosaur Dash. I’m sort of glad that I did not race again today as it was even colder than CCRR was last weekend. Breakfast was a Chocolate Chip Clif Z-Bar and a banana grabbed on the way out the door, as well as a Chocolate Brownie PureBar. Lyle ended up finishing with a 26:03 and 284th out of a total of 883 runners. I stuck it out in the blistering cold so that I could see him cross the finish line and take a picture to commemorate the occasion.


Once the race was over and I was back home I was famished for oatmeal! I didn’t care that it was past noon; I wanted oatmeal gosh darned it! And I wanted it to be fall-themed. Old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla Caramel tea, mixed with chia seeds, flaxseed meal, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pumpkin puree, and topped with Grape Nuts, PB&Co. White Chocolate Wonderful, and maple syrup. It’s fabulous even in the afternoon.


I’m still scavenging for the time being because 1) I haven’t felt great, and 2) I beyond desperately need to go to the grocery store. You know you need to go right away when you have no choice but to eat cereal for dinner if, indeed, you want to eat something for dinner. Only one more day of this kind of life and then I can at least get some produce and other smatherings of food!

More pumpkin oatmeal and, hopefully, an elliptical workout in the morning. As well as a Food Safety quiz and more studying.


Well, I had intended to head to the gym this morning, but somehow I have picked up a bug and my throat is a bit narrower than it used to be, making swallowing and the like a bit more difficult than it is appreciated being. In addition to unexplained aches, I made the decision to sleep in an extra 1.5 hours. I think I made the right choice, don’t you? Tomorrow for sure though, as long as I don’t get any worse, I can promise all of you readers that I will do… something.

Breakfast was old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla Caramel tea, mixed with chia seeds, cinnamon, flaxseed meal, nutmeg, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with Grape Nuts, maple syrup, and PB&Co. WCW peanut butter.


In the midst of studying for my Economics exam this week, taking notes on lipids for Nutrition, and working my way slowly through Gilmore Girls (season 5), I of course checked out my blogroll and came across this post by Caitlin over at Healthy Tipping Point. I’m not one to read magazines, so I’m glad that Caitlin posted a PDF on her blog so that I could read the article. It’s reasons like that that I don’t read magazines and try to always have a critical eye when reading anything. Healthy Living blogs have had such a positive influence on my life since I started following them this summer. I’ve tried so many new things that I previously had never heard of, or didn’t know enough about, or were just too scared to try. They’ve inspired me to want to learn how to cook and rediscover my love for vegetarianism and pseudo-veganism. It saddens me that one outlet of the media is trying to deprive many others like who I was from finding and enjoying these blogs.

I had lunch with Lyle today, being that it’s a Monday. I had raspberry preserves on a whole-wheat sandwich thin and a bowl of cheddar broccoli and potatoes. Yes, I am really scraping the bottom of the barrel for food right now. But I’m so close to fresh produce I feel like crying from joy and self-pity! I also packed some Cinnamon Brown Sugar almonds mixed up with Cascadian Farm Raisin Bran for a snack to hold me over until I could get back from grocery shopping and eat something hopefully good.

I’ve been really lightheaded the past few days. Even if I have just woken up or eaten a meal, so I don’t know how to explain it, but it sure is a pain when you’re trying to take notes in class… or trying not to pass out during/between classes. Once I finally got home from grocery shopping, I didn’t feel like eating at all and forced myself to eat some peaches. I’m hoping that my body will decide that it wants sustenance again and that I’ll feel like eating a little later. Once again, my goal for tomorrow morning is to be well enough to get on the elliptical. In other health news, I have a scan scheduled for Wednesday. I’ll only have to fast for a short amount of time, but I have to lie still for 2 hours. I consider it a fair trade-off. I hope you all have had a good start to the week!

And thanks for sticking around through this tough time in my life. I won’t give up as long as you don’t!

Oct 2, 2010

Date Night and Rainy Football Saturday


I woke up still feeling terrible. We ended up bringing me to an Urgent Care center because my face and eyes started to swell shut. The doc thought that I was having an allergic reaction to something, but I have barely eaten a thing in the past three days, and hadn’t eaten anything at all in over 6 hours and had no trouble breathing. Either way, I woke up this morning and my face and eyes are still pretty swollen and I feel terrible still, so I forewent the gym once again. I don’t like taking this many days off from fitness, but I’m at a pretty precarious point in my health right now with both my parents worrying and no idea what my doctors have been thinking.

So, because of my decline in health, I’ve decided that until the worst of it is over, workouts will be put on the very back burner. I will still do my best to post recipes, goings-on, and food pictures (I have a few things in the works, which involve a recent purchase), but don’t expect to see much in the way of workouts or running on here for the foreseeable future. Mysterious, undiagnosed, unpredictable diseases mean that I can’t plan for the future. Not the next day, the next hour, the next minute. Try hard as I might, my body does not care that I have class, a race, or haven’t seen my friends in who knows how long. Right now, I’m just going to try and focus on keeping myself out of the hospital and doing irreparable harm to my body.

I spent most of the morning studying for my test rather than hitting the gym or popping in a workout DVD. I threw a shower in there somewhere because I figured it was necessary. Breakfast was sorely missed over the past few days. Old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla Caramel tea, mixed with flaxseed meal, chia seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg, and pumpkin puree, and topped with maple syrup, Grape Nuts, and PB&Co. White Chocolate Wonderful peanut butter. I’m not a huge fan of the WCW, it just tastes like normal peanut butter, so it’s only because I expected more of a “white chocolate” taste. I’ll eat it, of course. I just won’t expect so much out of it next time.


Lunch was a Chocolate-Chip Clif Z-Bar, a Honeycrisp apple, and some Jell-O Chocolate Mint Mousse. I don’t usually like mousses, but I actually kind of enjoyed this; maybe due to the chocolate-mint combination? After lunch, I grabbed a bus on to campus for a quiz in Food Safety over Salmonella, E.coli, Listeria, and Shigella. At least, that’s what I thought. Apparently, the quiz is going to be Monday instead. Great. I dragged myself to campus, in pain, to take a quiz that turned out to be moved.

A nurse from my doctor’s office said that I should be eating two servings of fresh fruit, drinking 64 oz. of water, and eating 20-25g fiber a day and that that would make me all better. Problem is, those are things that I’ve been doing all along for months. Apparently they don’t believe me when I tell them about my medical and health history. I get that people lie, it’s inherent to some degree, but I know that this has nothing to do with any of those things because I already do do all of those things. I’m so frustrated and still in pain. We’re going to start asking around for new doctors willing to take on the challenge of figuring out what’s wrong with me. I’m honestly up for anything right now. Any tests, any doctors, any treatments. I just want to be better. I just want to be healthy again. To be able to plan more than a minute in advance again. I want control of my life back.

Lyle and I were supposed to have a date night tonight, but had to cancel because of me. The best laid plans. . .


Woke up still feeling crappy, so yet another day with no workout. I think that it goes without saying that I will not be running tomorrow, but I’m just saying it for a fact here. Breakfast was old-fashioned oats made in Vanilla Caramel tea, mixed with cinnamon, nutmeg, flaxseed meal, chia seeds, and pureed pumpkin, and topped with Grape Nuts, maple syrup, and PB&Co. WCW peanut butter. I am totally loving this mix now that I finally got all of the proportions right.


Today was a big conference football game for my university: playing against Wisconsin. Good thing I don’t tailgate, because it was rainy, cloudy, and cold all last night and all of today as well. Eating was kind of difficult today again. I was prescribed some new pills to try, which will hopefully help, but the top of my dresser is beginning to look a bit ridiculous with the amount of pill bottles it houses. For some reason, I was a little nauseous starting midday, so I tried to keep things simple for the rest of the day. Things like Cascadian Farm Honey Nut O’s with Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Breeze and bananas. However, this did nothing to appease my body, but at least I tried, right? I don’t like weeks like this where I’m in pain 4-5 days in a row basically nonstop.

Unfortunately, Coach is back in the hospital with a blood clot in his leg after he suffered a heart attack last week and was not able to be there in the coach’s box. Our prayers go out to you, Coach! Luckily, we rocked it out and ended up with a solid win against a team ranked much higher than us.