Tag Archives: Halloween

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?

 

 

 

 

 

Visitors in Town

26 Oct

Happy, happy Friday!!!!

I’ve got a couple of visitors in town this weekend. My friend Lucy, who I have known since first grade when we were in Brownies together, is in DC with her friend from college to scope out law schools and grad schools. I have a roommate out of town who generously offered her room to them, so they’re with me until Sunday afternoon!

I had a great rest of my Thursday after posting in the morning. At lunch, I met my friend Ellen at Burger Tap and Shake by Washington Circle in Foggy Bottom. She was treating me for lunch for my birthday and I love burgers (this was my third one this week!) so I was game. In the effort to mitigate my burger consumption, I ordered a vegetarian burger, which was a falafel patty with feta, pickled vegetables, and a cilantro yogurt sauce. On the menu it’s called the Haight-Ashbury and it’s an excellent pick, even for non-vegetarians. My only complaint was that the patty could have been a little more moist (hate that word), or that there was more yogurt sauce to compensate for the dryness.

Ellen ordered their house burger and a side of sweet potato fries and we split a cookies n’ cream milkshake.

One of the great things about BTS is that they make everything in house (except for the sweet potato fries) and use local, natural ingredients for everything from their meat to their homemade buns. An excerpt from their website says,

“Throughout the day, we grind on premise a custom blend of 3-day aged, naturally raised Local Harvest beef chuck and brisket.  Char-griddled and served on a buttered, toasted, house made bun. By focusing on premium sourcing and in-house production – from pickles to ice cream – we are able to serve a great burger at a great price.”

And it’s true! Their house burger is only $6 and their specialty burgers are $8 – an excellent price for such quality ingredients! I’m a fan.

Ellen brought me a little gift in a bag she knew I would love.

I’m 23 going on 6.

Inside were some wonderful homemade treats for the holidays like white chocolate peanut clusters, caramel truffles, and maple sugar candy that she brought back from her hometown in Canada! I can’t get enough of that stuff!

After finishing up work in the afternoon, I made my way to my volleyball game and got a great workout in, though we lost (so close!). I love that volleyball is still accessible for me after high school and college because it really is a defining part of who I am.

The evening was spent catching up with Lucy and her friend Milena – I love girl talk!

This morning’s breakfast was another PB & J with chia seeds (I told you I can eat the same thing for days on end!), a baby sweet potato, and a small scoop of plain Greek yogurt.

While typing this up, I found a mini-protein bar that was a sample being given out at my gym a few days ago.

It was nice and minty and tasted kind of like a York Peppermint Patty. I am not a huge fan of protein bars, because I feel like they have a really strange aftertaste, so I probably wouldn’t go out and buy them. I am on the hunt for a protein bar that doesn’t taste weird after chewing it – any suggestions? This mini size was the perfect amount for a mid-morning snack.

What do you all have planned for the weekend? I am probably going to stop by a couple of Halloween parties, but I don’t think I’m going to dress up. I was hoping to, but I really lost motivation as the month went on. Maybe I’ll scrounge together something at the last minute – we’ll see!

There is supposed to be a huge storm hitting the East coast over the weekend, which they have dubbed ‘Frankenstorm’ on account of its proximity to Halloween. I’ve been reading mixed reports about where/when it’s going to land, so we will see if I need to be prepared! Seattle has really mild weather, so I have absolutely zero experience with hurricanes or tropical storms. What do I need to do to be prepared? Any suggestions are welcome 🙂

Food For Thought: Do you have any Halloween plans this weekend? If you’re dressing up, what is your costume?

Have a great weekend!

What Will Get Me Through Winter

16 Oct

I’ve found it. I’ve discovered what will get me through the dark mornings and the bone-chilling cold of winter.

It was a rather serendipitous moment when I discovered it, actually. My co-worker and I were sitting outside Caribou Coffee at lunch yesterday, when it began to rain. We still had a good 40 minutes of lunch left, so we decided to move inside and continue our conversation. She was wielding a Starbucks coffee and I had my ever-stylish pink lunchbox, so I decided to buy something to stave off potential employees demanding our expulsion. It was cold so I was looking for a hot tea and this one seemed to be the most appealing. Best $2.11 I have ever spent! Except for, perhaps, my pumpkin from the weekend.

I usually sweeten the crap out of add some sugar to my tea, but this was naturally sweetened and delicious. “An invigorating blend spiced with cinnamon, cloves and orange peel” you guys! I am also fighting the urge to not use an Oxford comma in the quote, but they didn’t use one. It hurts.

I liked it so much that I bought a container of it this morning and I’m hiding it away in my desk at work so nobody can steal it. Thank you, Caribou gods.

As I may have mentioned before, I am on a major peanut butter kick right now and I’m trying to find vehicles for it that aren’t spoons or fingers. Enter toast. I’m probably eating too many carbs between the toast and cereal but I don’t care – I have to stay warm for winter! Underneath that mess is some TJ’s Honey Greek yogurt and sliced strawberries, with a few chia seeds. Stef and I didn’t have our usual Trader Joe’s date on Friday night so I am running low on groceries – this must happen tonight.

Speaking of date, my roommates and I had a house dinner date at home on Sunday and we put together this little masterpiece:

The pesto ricotta chicken I had prepared for a dinner party awhile back made another appearance, along with some salad and seasoned rice. Love me some roommate bonding.

As for Tuesday’s Tidbit, here’s a picture of neighbors down the street from my house who are all ready for Halloween. Excuse the quality, it was dark and rainy when I took the picture. Adds to the overall “feel” though, right?

Food for Thought: Do you dress up for Halloween? What is your costume going to be this year?

I’m thinking about going as Catwoman!

 

 

 

To Everything There is a Season

6 Sep

Well, good morning everybody! It’s not the brightest of mornings here in Washington but I’m inside, so it’s not affecting me too much. I didn’t get too much sleep last night because I stayed up late watching Bill Clinton’s speech at the Democratic National Convention. I managed to pop out of bed pretty quickly, though, and double-checked my cupcakes to make sure the frosting hadn’t melted off the cakes, like last time. Luckily, they were still intact and ready for transport! It is dreary outside, so I was looking for a warm, stick-to-your-ribs breakfast this morning and decided to dress up some oatmeal with walnuts, almonds, raisins, some maple syrup, and a big ole spoonful of peanut butter. It was so hearty, I couldn’t even finish the bowl!

As I walked to work from the bus stop, I took notice of the increasing winds and ominous clouds and decided that fall is well on its way to Washington. As someone who normally wishes for summer all year long (I’m from Seattle, it doesn’t last very long!), I find myself getting excited for autumnal treats and weather that permits boots and leggings.

Pinterest is alive and well with all sorts of fall recipes and decorations, so it’s easy to look forward to trying out all the news things I find and craving the flavors of apple, cinnamon, pumpkin, and cloves. Fall is the season of hearty soups and thick, crusty bread. It’s the time for leg warmers and scarves, without the need for huge down coats. Fall welcomes cheery Halloween-esque decorations, which also means candy! It also happens to be the season in which my birthday arrives. This year will be my golden birthday and I will be turning 23 on October 23rd. All in all, I am definitely excited for what’s in store next season, though I will be sad to say goodbye to summer.

Here are some of the things I am most looking forward to in the next few months:

Seeing the leaves change

Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Pumpkin EVERYTHING! But especially these yummy bites.

Apple Cider – how cute are these?!

Leggings and boots

Comfy cozy sweaters

Of course, there are tons of other things I’m looking forward to, but it’s time to get to work, so I have to sign off now.

Quick Question: What are you looking forward to in the fall? What is your favorite season?

 

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