Tag Archives: Chobani

NaNoWriMo

1 Nov

Happy November! Can you believe October has already flown by? Is it socially acceptable to start playing my Christmas playlist on Pandora? I’m probably getting a little ahead of myself.

First off, I want to give a shout-out to one of my oldest and dearest friends, Stephen, for his 23rd birthday. He and I have been friends since 5th grade – it’s crazy to think that we’ve known one another for almost 15 years now! Happy birthday, Fuzzy!

I hope everybody enjoyed their Halloween – to my knowledge, my house didn’t get any trick or treaters. Then again, I didn’t get home until almost nine, so I’m guessing that the majority of kids were off the streets by then.

Oh well, more for me.

The beginning of November marks the first day of NaNoWriMo, also known as National Novel Writing Month. It is an event designed as a challenge for participants to write a 50,000 word novel in one month, starting the first of November and ending on the 30th. In their words,

“Valuing enthusiasm and perseverance over painstaking craft, NaNoWriMo is a novel-writing program for everyone who has thought fleetingly about writing a novel but has been scared away by the time and effort involved.

As you spend November writing, you can draw comfort from the fact that, all around the world, other National Novel Writing Month participants are going through the same joys and sorrows of producing the Great Frantic Novel. Wrimos meet throughout the month to offer encouragement, commiseration, and—when the thing is done—the kind of raucous celebrations that tend to frighten animals and small children.”

I have thought about writing a novel for a long time now, but I have always been intimidated and just haven’t had enough free time to actually sit down and write something that isn’t a paper for school. Now that I’m a “young professional” with time on her hands (theoretically…), I decided that this would be a great challenge. Last year, over a quarter of a million people participated in NaNoWriMo! If you are interested in participating or just want to learn more about it, head over to their About page and check it out!

And now, back to your regularly scheduled programming….

Yesterday’s lunch was kind of a hodgepodge of various vegetables: some sweet potato, some kale, some carrots – you get the idea. I didn’t do a regular grocery shop this past weekend, so I’m getting creative on lunches for the rest of the week.

Today my boss is taking me out for lunch, so I just need to make it to Friday’s lunch and then I can re-stock. One thing I have to avoid today is the kitchen, where all the office snacks are stashed.

 

There was a Halloween contest in my building yesterday and somebody in my office won this huge basket of treats. Fortunately, he decided to share. Unfortunately, he decided to share. The basket has all sorts of goodies, ranging from not-so-good-for-you to seriously-you’re-putting-that-in-your-mouth bad for you. I snagged a small bag of pretzels that I can keep on hand as a snack. For the most part, I’ve been able to do a good job keeping my hand out of the candy jar at the front desk – we’ll see how long that lasts!

After work, I decided to do a back-to-back workout at the gym, which consisted of a Body Pump class and immediately followed by a Zumba class. I think I’m ready to up the weights on the leg sets again, though I’m still struggling to complete the arm sets with my current weight. Hurray for progress!

By the time I got home, it was nearly nine and I wasn’t in the mood for anything to complicated for dinner. For some reason, pizza flavors are really calling to me (remember the cauliflower bowl?), so I made a mini pizza on a whole wheat wrap: pizza sauce with shredded mozzarella and the last of my turkey pepperoni.

I ended up turning into a wrap and it was kind of like those pizza Hot Pockets that you can buy frozen, except it was a million times better.

On a completely unrelated note, guess what I’m sending off today?

My ballot! After drying it off and filling it out, it is finally ready to be sent off. I tried to mail it yesterday, but was thwarted at the post office when there was a fire in the building and everybody had to evacuate. Whomp, whomp. Hopefully today will be a little more successful.

Since I didn’t have to make lunch this morning, I set my alarm for 7:00 AM, instead of the usual 6:30 and made my way downstairs for breakfast. I forgot that I had run out of tea at my house, so plain old water had to do for today. On the menu: blood-orange Chobani with a peanut butter and jelly sandwich thin. I bought a pack of these at Costco over the weekend, so they will be making frequent appearances here in the next few posts.

I just love all the different flavors that Chobani creates! I generally try to eat plain yogurt and sweeten it myself, since most fruit yogurts have so much sugar, but every once in awhile I like to indulge. I bet if you froze these cups, they would be the perfect dessert!

Food For Thought: Have you ever thought about writing a novel? HAVE you written a novel? What type of genre would it be?

 

 

 

 

 

Bare Feet

16 Aug

Thursday night, what’s upppp?????

I am a happy girl because I have had a really fulfilling week at work and tomorrow is Friday, which means I get to see the boyfriend! We have resigned ourselves to only seeing each other on the weekends because the week is so hectic, so it’s something to look forward to every week. Once a week is still better than every six months, when I was living in Rome 🙂

But seriously, I had a great dinner, which I will describe to you in great detail (of course) and I am listening to Spice Girls radio on Pandora and they’re currently playing ‘Say My Name’ by Destiny’s Child. Love it.

Anyway, recap to lunch, which was spent with all the female co-workers at the office who are near my age, including the German interns, so there was a good group of us chit-chatting during our lunch break. I had a salad, a side of corn on the cob, and a piece of the yummy spanakopita that I have been raving about for the past two days. Unfortunately, the salad is the only one I have photographic evidence of (remember how I was talking about not wanting to freak out people I don’t know very well by photographing everything I put into my mouth?).

It’s on the grass because we were sitting outside in a park, not because I work in a field. I had a mid-afternoon snack of honey-flavored Chobani, which was the perfect combination of tangy and sweet.

What’s up, mouse?

Work zoomed by because I was busy putting together envelopes to send out the current issue of the journal to our subscribers. Right afterwards, I headed over to the gym to get my Zumba on.

It was only when I arrived and went to change in the locker room that I realized I didn’t remember to pack socks in my bag. Sigh. I briefly considered wearing my shoes without socks, but that always results in horribly stinky shoes and blisters, so I decided to go barefoot. It actually worked out just fine! Nobody gave me any funny looks (that I noticed) and I danced around like a mad woman (but that’s nothing new).

I returned home early (by my standards) and decided to make a dinner that had been on my mind for awhile. I bought a couple of summer squash at Trader Joe’s last week and wanted to use them before they went bad. I have been craving pasta because, well, when am I not craving pasta? So I decided to make summer squash pasta with feta and parsley. It was ridiculously good and I am so happy I have leftovers for tomorrow. I am going to do a whole post tomorrow with a recipe, so you guys can replicate the deliciousness in your own kitchen, but here’s a teaser just to get you excited.

That quickly became this:

And then this:

It’s a magic bowl.

I am going to spend the rest of my evening doing really exciting things like folding laundry and showering. I went to bed a little later than I would have liked last night, so I’m going to try to get to bed earlier tonight (for realz this time). There are some books on my Kindle that are waiting to be read, so I might make a dent in those.

Have a splendid evening and when we next “meet” it will be almost the weekend!!!

U-S-A!

27 Jul

Good morning and happy Friday!

Have you all seen Google’s image today?

Today is the first day of the Olympics in London!!! I love the Olympics, especially the summer ones, and this is one of the few times I walk around sporting red, white, and blue (aside from the 4th of July) and chanting “U-S-A!” I am super excited to watch the beach and indoor volleyball, the running events, and gymnastics.

My gym is hosting an opening ceremonies viewing party this evening on their rooftop deck. They’re providing the big screen TV, the food, and the beverages, so it’s going to be a party!

Quick Recap…

Dinner Last Night

When I put my dinner together last night, it looked so delectable, all arranged!

My (lately) ever-present bowl of veggie pasta; a side salad consisting of some romaine, sliced tomatoes, diced cucumbers, a drizzle of balsamic, and a dash of salt and pepper; coupled with a side of baby carrots and red pepper hummus. This is what my elementary school teachers would have called “aesthetically appealing”. I’m just going to stick with the word “yummy”.

I did some bed shopping online last night and found a great GroupOn deal for mattresses at a store that’s not too far from my house, so Stef, his family, and I will probably stop by the store this weekend to test out the mattresses in question and if we like them, we can save oodles of money! I love it when deals are available for something you really need or have been looking for.

Breakfast

This morning I combined my daily oatmeal and yogurt bowl and just tossed in a handful of raw oats with my strawbery Chobani yogurt. I like it because it adds some more texture to the dish, along with plenty of fiber. This is a great option for people who like the taste of raw oats and forget to make cold oatmeal overnight.

After topping it with blueberries, strawberries, and walnuts, I added a glass of Silk vanilla soy milk. Look at all the red, white, and blue-ness of it! U-S-A! U-S-A!

Today I have my last personal training session at the gym and then I’m going to go to Happy Hour Boot Camp, which is a class at the gym that is totally unknown to me and then head up to the rooftop to get my Olympics on! Have a great Friday and I will check in with you later!

Quick Question: Are you a fan of the Olympics? Do you prefer summer or winter? What are your favorite Olympic events?

The Return of (soy)Milk

26 Jul

Good morning! Only one day left until Friday!

I stayed up a little later than I had intended last night, but I was talking to Stefano so it was well worth it. This morning I made myself up a yogurt bowl, with some oatmeal stirred in and the usual fixings.

I was about to leave the kitchen when I thought about the container of Silk vanilla soymilk I had sitting in the fridge. Now, I am not a milk person – I don’t like to use it for anything really, except for cereal and hot chocolate. I’ve hated regular milk as long as I can remember, but even with soymilk, it rarely makes an appearance unless it’s mixed up with something or baked into it. Today, I decided to try a glass of it, because drinking water with breakfast was getting pretty boring.

I was pretty pleased, actually! It really complemented the vanilla yogurt and it had just enough flavor to make it more interesting than just drinking water. I’m not a coffee drinker (*gasp*) so iced coffee is not an option and I think a cold glass of soymilk might make it into the rotation!

Off to get ready for work now, I am learning about websites today, which (as you can probably tell)are totally not my strong suit, so I really need to pay attention. Does anybody have anything out of the ordinary planned today? I hope it’s a great one. Looks like it’s already pretty hot over here, thank goodness for air-conditioned offices!

Ciao!

Grocery Comparison

25 Jul

Good morning, all! I have another day of training at work today, so I am up bright and early (by my standards) and ready to take on the day. I was pretty excited about my breakfast this morning – with my Chobani replenished, I was ready to make a kick-butt yogurt bowl. I filled this one with a 6 oz. mango Chobani, a handful of oats, fresh blueberries, some diced strawberries, and a sprinkle of chopped walnuts. It was a symphony of textures and flavors and I loved it!

When I went grocery shopping yesterday, I was thinking about how irritating it was to not know the price differences of the groceries at Target and my nearby grocery store. I had glanced over my receipts before, but they didn’t give me a good enough insight into the price comparison of some major food items. So, I decided to find out for myself.

Armed with a notepad and pen (the good, old-fashioned way), I made my way, first to Target and then to my grocery store. I walked down each aisle and took note of the products I buy regularly and their prices. I did some actual shopping at the grocery store, but when I got back to the house, I looked over the different price points and was really amazed with what I saw – there were some huge differences! The biggest one that shocked me was the cost of fresh mozzarella – $5.99 for 16 oz. at Target and a whopping $8.49 for the exact same size and brand of mozzarella at the grocery store! Ridiculous. I noticed some trends, though. Breads, packaged foods, and refrigerated foods (like milk and eggs, which the exception of yogurt) tended to be cheaper at Target, while fresh produce, baking items, and frozen goods were cheaper at the grocery store. It made me much happier to know the different price points of items and I made a list of “Where To Go For” so I can keep it handy when I go grocery shopping next week!

There a few more pages like the one above, but I just showed you this as a sample because I figured you didn’t want to see the prices of every single item. You’re welcome.

Grocery shopping has been a little bit of a challenge here, just because the cost of living is so much higher and so it has been difficult for me to gauge whether something is overpriced or just expensive because things are more expensive here.

Have you comparison shopped at your local grocery stores? Was there a big difference in prices? What’s the most expensive item on your shopping list?

I hope you all have a magnificent day – tonight’s post will come a little late because I have volleyball this evening, which  goes until 9 PM. See ya later, alligator!

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