Tag Archives: Barack Obama

Inside My Snack Drawer + WOL Day 3

13 Feb

It’s hump day, everybody! Halfway through the week before a much needed long weekend.

Can you believe Valentine’s Day is tomorrow??? I feel like every single holiday is sneaking up on me and I’m so not prepared. I am hoping to get crafty this evening and make some goody bags for some loved ones in the area. Next year I want to be more on the ball and send them to all my friends – even those in faraway places.

So today I want to talk about one of my favorite food places: the snack drawer at my desk. As most of you know, I pack my lunch every day and always include snacks for the mid-afternoon slump between lunch and the end of the work day. I’m generally pretty good about estimating the amount of food I will want, but some days my appetite is out of control and my stomach just feels like a black hole. Enter, the snack drawer.

IMG_2027[1]My office has a basket of snacks that will appear occasionally in the kitchen and my gym often has different kinds of bars at the front entrance. I take those times to add to my snack drawer and I don’t think I have ever actually bought any of snacks. As you can see, I have an assortment of bars, as well as my very favorite Nut & Chocolate trail mix from Planter’s. I like to keep my snack drawer full of things that have lots of protein so they’ll fill me up and power me through the rest of the work day and my gym time before I can get home for dinner.

The other day, I tried Zone’s Perfectly Simple bar for the first time.


This is from the makers of ZonePerfect protein bars. The idea behind Perfectly Simple is using fewer, all-natural ingredients. Here’s a look at the data:

Serving Size: 45 g bar
Calories: 170
Fat: 4 g
Fiber: 2 g
Protein: 8 g
Sugar: 19 g
I like that there’s a good 10 grams of protein in there, but 19 grams of sugar? For a 45 gram bar, that makes 42% of this baby sugar. Luckily, all of it is fruit-based, as the ingredients include Soy Protein Isolate, Apple Juice Concentrate, Sweetened Dried Cranberries, Date Paste, Roasted Almonds, Dried Pomegranate Seeds, and Cinnamon Powder. I like that there’s no added sugar (except to sweeten the cranberries).
I thought the taste was pretty good, though I don’t think I will ever get over the grittiness of protein in these bars. Just not a fan.
The verdict? With a couple grams of fiber and 10 grams of protein, it did a good job of filling me up until I was home to make dinner, but I still prefer whole foods, like an apple with some peanut butter, over a bar.
Do you have a snack drawer where you work? Which kinds of foods do you like to keep stashed for emergencies?
One mini meal I have been really into is an open-faced sandwich with a wedge of Laughing Cow cheese and some slices of smoked salmon.
IMG_2029[1]I nom’d on that as an evening snack while watching the State of the Union. Did anyone else watch it? My favorite part of it was Joe Biden’s tie.
joebidentieLOVE that purple.
Politics aside, there was a line of President Obama’s speech that really stood out to me and inspired today’s Week of Love Challenge.
Preach, Barry, preach.
When talking about raising children, the focus of parenting is often on the mother. For a long time, this was because mothers did (and still do) spend the most time caring for children. However, father figures are so important in a child’s life. Be it a biological or stepfather, an uncle, or even a beloved coach, having an important man in your life is crucial. Like female role models, male role models set an example for what it means to be an upstanding citizen who plays a positive role in their community.
My dad has always treated me like I am capable of anything. I was a fearless child growing up and he never held me back from trying new things because I was a girl. If I wanted to play soccer, he made sure that he practiced with me and didn’t go easy. When I wanted to study Arabic, he was always there to help me understand concepts that were difficult to understand. He is a fierce advocate for me as a career and education-minded woman.
Coming from his background, this could be a big surprise. My dad is Egyptian and is the only person in his family to live outside of Egypt. As many people know, the culture surrounding women there is generally not what it is in Western countries. All of my female relatives married young, had multiple children, and didn’t work. Many of them never reached higher than an elementary sch0ol education. Every time I visit, I am asked when I am getting married and starting a family, which is practically unheard of for a 23-year-old in the States, but very common practice back in Egypt.
Still, my father has always valued my desire for higher education and has never once suggested that I should be more focused on domestic life. He supports me in everything I do and pushes me to challenge myself by encouraging me to apply for a job or to look at graduate programs. As far as he’s concerned, I can do anything just as well, if not better than my male counterpart.
As a result, I have grown up with self-confidence and an assuredness that I can do anything I set my mind to.
So let’s give it up for the dads, grandfathers, husbands, uncles, stepfathers, teachers, coaches, and other male role models that play such an important part in our lives. Like yesterday’s challenge, this could mean anything from sending them a heartfelt email or posting a sticky note on the mirror in their bathroom to remind them how much they are loved.

Binders Full of Women

17 Oct

I am not going to get political in this blog post, but I just couldn’t help but mention the “binders full of women” sound bite that has gone absolutely viral across the internet. Before the presidential debate had concluded, there was already a Facebook page and a Tumblr dedicated to this little phrase. This one is my favorite:


Love me some Beyonce.

I watched the debate all by my lonesome, which was probably for the better because nobody was subjected to all of my added commentary. While I was watching the testosterone-fest, because let’s be honest, that’s what it was, I had a yummy plate of rice and veggies, with some leftover chicken from my house dinner on Sunday night.


I stopped by the grocery store to pick up some staples to tide me over until Friday, but neglected to read the label on the vegetables that said they came in an “Asian-style sauce”. Needless to say, I was a bit surprised when I poured the steamed vegetables onto my rice. I’m generally not a fan of store-made sauces because they almost always have too much sodium and sugar in them – but I wasn’t about to throw away a perfectly edible batch of vegetables. The sauce ended up being okay, though the flavors didn’t mix too well with the pesto and ricotta in my chicken. Ah well, you live and you learn.

Remember the tea I was raving about yesterday? It is making my mornings at work so great. I left the tin at my desk so I have something to look forward to when I get to work in the morning.

There were some oatmeal raisin cookies in the kitchen and the perfect addition to the cinnamon-y tea. My mornings are so cozy now! I get to work, make my mug of tea and read the blogs on Google Reader, scan the news for interesting articles, then get going on work. If I have a lull in the morning, I take the time to get a blog post up!

I’ve got lots on my plate today at work, so I have to sign off now, but I hope everybody has a happy hump day! Halfway there, guys 🙂

Food For Thought: Do you have a morning routine at work that makes you feel settled in and ready to go for the day?


Two Steps Behind

5 Sep

You know those days when you’re super on top of everything and everything gets done when it’s supposed to? Today was not one of those days.

I feel like I’ve been two steps behind everything in my life today. From work assignments, to my workout, to a baking adventure – I was just a little slow on the uptake today.

The morning went by really quickly and I was grateful for a respite in the form of lunch: tuna, garbanzo bean, and arugula salad with a side of the roasted rosemary potatoes I made last night.

Before I knew it, it was time to race to the gym and get to Body Pump. I was doing the back and hamstring set and was wondering why I was struggling so much, when I realized that I had left some extra 1 kg plates on each side of bar – sheesh. I managed to make it through the set, but I’m guessing I am going to be superrrr sore tomorrow.

I had to make a quick stop to Target to pick up some more coat hangers (my closet is getting dangerously full) and some cupcake stuff for a co-workers birthday tomorrow. It was after eight before I even got to my house, so I scurried to get the cupcakes together. Turns out, the box mix I picked up (yes, I cheated) only made 12 cupcakes and I needed 20…whoops.

I scrambled around my pantry for some cupcake fixin’s and I came up with the ingredients for cinnamon oatmeal raisin muffins. The recipe is so simple and they only take about 15 minutes to bake. I will post the recipe soon, I promise 🙂

By the time I was done with the muffins, I was really not in the mood to make anything special for dinner. I ended up just cooking up a cheese quesadilla and finishing up my rosemary roasted potatoes.

It was quick and easy and didn’t take too much fuss. Some days you just need to eat like a college student. And now, in what feels like the first time I can sit down and breathe, I am typing up this post and watching President Clinton nominating President Obama as the representative for the Democratic Party this election. His new vegan diet has done him well, he looks great!

I am going to finish this up so I can focus on his speech, but I hope you all have a wonderful evening and I hope to catch you tomorrow when I’m hopefully not so frazzled!

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