Just Checking In

Oh hi, excuse me as I am typing this while I’m underneath a pile of wood, textbooks, novels, and more paper! Remember me? It’s only been a week since my last post but so much has been going on. Lots of getting down and dirty at the studio! I can’t wait to show you all my final piece. My critique is on Monday so it’s coming up soon! I’m actually going to start filming the video piece for my structure tomorrow. Anywho, on with the show!

Thank you all for the compliments on my outfit! A couple of you asked where I got the skirt from, and Holly you guessed it! Anthropologie of course! Am I that predictable? Hehehe. Also the backpack was a gift from my grandparents from a random street market down in Colombia.

A necklace I permanently borrowed from my mom!

This woman she knows actually makes jewelry and this is one of her pieces and there’s a matching bracelet as well. I just realized that in the picture of me dancing below I’m wearing another necklace the woman made. I love how they’re eye-catching but fun at the same time.

Oh! And a little tip for OIAJ: I like to bust out the jar when I have what my eye says is about 2-3 tbl of the nut butter left. I also cook my oats separately and stir it in little by little so the nut butter gets mixed in really well!

I forgot to mention that a couple weekends ago I let my inner dancing queen out and ended up with wet, sweaty shoes!

Now on to some eats from these past couple of weeks. Randomness commence!

Greek yogurt + granola + lots of blueberries + cinnamon + a special nut butter...

Ohhh yes!

While I was visiting my soul sista’, Liz, I saw she had an amazing assortment of nut butters to choose from. Her favorite brand is Futters’, can’t you tell? I loved these so much and she was kind enough to ship them to me! Complete with a super sweet card that’s sitting on my kitchen counter that I see every morning. Having meaningful reminders of my friends (especially the ones that are far away) always comfort me.

Chocolate pecan butter + Greek yogurt + granola + banana slices + dried figs + cinnamon

Figs and chocolate-anything are such a great combination!

Also great on toast!

I like to cut my toast in half so I can try more spreads such as : butter, butter + marmalade, chocolate pecan butter, chocolate pecan butter + Mymoune’s Crème of Dates with Almonds.

Sadly, my coconut butter burned!

Good thing I've got a jar of Cacao Bliss as back up!

Maple-roasted roasted brussels sprouts and shallots with goat cheese

For the brussels sprouts I just sort of followed this recipe.

Since the weather has been sunny I felt like making one of my favorite chickpea recipes!

Mock tuna salad–simple and yummy

More chickpea goodness!

I followed smitten kitchen’s chana masala recipe and served it on top of some basmati rice + coconut oil. I love the fragrance basmati rice gives off when it’s cooking.

I had a frozen chickpea cutlet I made awhile back and it came in handy!

Romaine + chopped yellow onions + tomato slices + my favorite BBQ sauce + Lemony Goddess dressing + goat cheese

This doesn't even look like chickpeas have anything to do with it!

But they most definitely do. I stumbled across a beet hummus recipe not too long ago. I love beets, so naturally I gave this a try. Note: this was so so so good with Dr. Kracker’s apple crisps.

Boy do I have a lot to catch you all up on! Stay tuned for my next post, which will hopefully be sooner than later. Much love to you all.

“A crust eaten in peace is better than a banquet partaken in anxiety.” -Aesop

A Cabinet Full of…

You were so good to me!

You better believe this OIAJ was fantastic! Sunland’s caramel peanut butter with apples and oats? Like caramel apples minus the stickyness that gets on your teeth.

Another jar...

This time it was Sunland’s dark chocolate peanut butter. This was so delicious! I sliced a banana and put in a handful of raisins. I thought to myself “hmm… what are somethings that taste good covered in chocolate?” I always forget about raisins!

Just for the sake of having something to feast your eyes on.

More more more!

This time I got to use a jar of Blue Diamond’s crunchy almond butter. I also spiced it with my tea masala. The jar was too small to fit the peach slices and mango chunks so I just took bites of each as I ate the OIAJ. Hopefully I continue to be a lucky girl with the OIAJ. I’d actually like to try sweet potatoes in jar–saw the idea over at this cutie’s blog!

Sandwich on-the-go: avocado mixed with hummus + tomato + onion

Favorite outfit last week!

This is what I was wearing actually when I almost got hit by a car and flew off my bike. My knees and legs got cut up and bruised but atleast no pants were ripped!

Tried a new veggie burger...

I’ve seen many of you rave about Amy’s veggie burgers so I knew I had to give them a try. This is the Texas veggie burger in a ciabatta roll with Bone Suckin’ BBQ sauce + vegan mayo, onions, and lettuce. I think the veggie burger was definitely yummy tasting.

Afterwards I met up with an old friend at the river!

The warm weather has been off and on. We were lucky that day to get lots of warmth and sun.

Ze river

What the heck are those green things?

Well those are pumpkin seed butter balls. I just took 1 cup of pumpkin seed butter, lots of cinnamon and honey, and mixed it all together. Then I left them in the freezer to harden. They have a distinct flavor but I think the honey and cinnamon helped balance the pumpkin seed butter flavor. Plus, I really love the color!

Well, this semester is quickly coming to an end and I’ve had lots of projects/assignments, exams, projects in progress, celebrations, and life in general going on. Even though I’ve been really busy, I’ve loved it! This is going to sound weird but I feel like I’m being eaten by the creativity monster. Hehe don’t worry it’s a good thing. I also know the warm weather makes it easier for me to just go out there. I hope everyone is doing well and also enjoying life.

“Contentment is not the fulfillment of what you want, but the realization of how much you already have.”

Chocolate Filled Everythings Exist

Hello hello there! I’m going to start this post off the best way I know how.

Yeah I'm going to say it... this was a bomb ass breakfast!

Cold oatmeal and in the morning I mixed in a few big spoonfuls of pecan butter, cinnamon, NuNaturals liquid vanilla , and a sliced banana and pear. Holy yum every bite of this was delicious.

Hummus with a special ingredient...

Horseradish cream!

This gave it a nice kick!

Some Belgian beer to go with my dinner!

Fruitful hehehe

Roasted and seasoned sweet potatoes go well with salads, don't you think?

Then I was headed to a show!

We wanted more from the Screaming Females!

A bowl of Udi's granola, Greek yogurt, frozen strawberries and peaches, and blobs of almond butter

I also think I spy banana slices in there as well…

Noteworthy snack: Dr. Kracker's Apple Crisps + goat cheese + honey

And a noteworthy night...

Friday nights are pretty much dubbed Girls’ Night Out for me! I was wearing some of my favorite things and I was feeling on top of the world. Later that night, I guess when I had taken my blazer off in the car it somehow managed to escape because I lost it. I was so upset! I kept reminding myself that it was just a material thing, then the voice “but it’s one of your favorite things!” would creep up. What’s a girl to do? Have a friend that gets a funny feeling and finds it on the road in front of her apartment the following night… unharmed! Yay!

My Sunday was spent at the river with a good friend of mine and talking about freedom.

Matilda came too and she actually went swimming around for a bit.

I've also been hunting and gathering material for my final project for my sculpture class.

I also attended an award ceremony the sculpture department hosts annually.

Walked into the holy land...

That expression sums it up!

As soon as you walk into this chocolate shop… the tantalizing smell finds its way to your nose!

Huge jars upon huge jars of goodies lined up along the entire store!

YEAH!!!

There were even drawers with even more chocolate-covered goodies.

Katie! Where were you?!

I really wonder how much chocolate is covering each square foot of this place.

I really wonder how much chocolate covers each square foot of this place.

Look at how cute these are.

Every kind of truffle to feed the imagination...

And giant bars of chocolate... to make your own!

Eventually we made our way out of the store and also tried on some cute outfits at different boutiques. We also made a pit stop at this place I’d never seen before.

A new Greek place!

Opa! Now here’s another thing to celebrate ladies and gentlemen… it’s Friday!!! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend.

Satisfaction Guaranteed

I just finished my dinner and that’s one thought that came to mind. During my semester I usually make things in batches, and I have my go-to recipes that I know are quick and tasty. However, cooking a special meal is something that I appreciate every time. I just got done having an incredibly flavorful meal that took a bit of time to make, but was still very simple. Eating good food makes me feel… content. I think that’s the perfect word because I feel happy yet calm. If only you could see the smile on my face hehe.

This was my dinner!

Remember how I use to think brussel sprouts tasted like farts… that is until I gave them a second chance. I finally prepared them the way I thought I would enjoy them most. Now this just opened up so many more doors. I followed this recipe to make shallot and balsamic roasted brussel sprouts. I want to try roasting them with honey, honey and lime, and maple syrup! I bet it would be nothing short of delicious. For the cannellini beans I cooked them with minced garlic, cumin, dried basil, salt and pepper, and a bit of balsamic vinegar. These were served on top of basmati rice and everything was topped off with pine nuts.

A close-up was in order!

I’m proud of myself for giving this veggie a second chance and deciding to prepare it myself. And you know what? It was absolutely delicious! Do you ever feel proud after cooking or baking something?

Super easy snack!

I think I’m doing a good job of coming up with simple savory snacks! This is a Dr. Kracker seeded spelt flatbread. I really enjoy the size of these flatbreads because they’re not as small as the Wasa crackers. You can top them with more things! The flavor is also something to be noted. I could have these plain too! It was delicious and simple which lends to  its versatility. You can make these a part of a savory or sweet snack (topping with nut butter and jam perhaps).

Another flavor...

These are the Sunflower Cheddar crisps. They’re perfect to use as croutons in a salad as well. If you go on their site you can read all of the great recommendations they have for each flavor. Back to these crisps! I love their nuttiness, crunch, and cheesiness! By the way, these are awesome with avocado!

A refreshing shake!

I tried a packet of Jay Robb’s Vanilla Rice Protein powder. I blended in a frozen banana and almond butter as well. Yummy creaminess!

Another savory snack idea!

A nice fluffy pita filled with chickpeas, tomatoes, and goat cheese. I wish I would’ve had a garlic sauce or something to go with this!

POM!

Not too long ago I was sent a package of POM Wonderful’s 100% pomegranate juice. Juice is such a refreshing thing during the warm months. Perfect timing, I say! Anyway, these alone are tasty and not as tart as the fruit itself. I know this has nothing to do with the juice, but I’ve always loved the packaging. The glass ones are my favorite because you can re-use them. Anyway, I have one more container left and I wanted to try it in a recipe. Anyone have any suggestions???

I finally got around to trying another recipe from the Veganomicon.

These are beanballs! They were so easy to make and were perfect for leftovers. I served them with penne pasta (I didn’t have spaghetti on hand), artichoke scarpetta (that translates to “damn good sauce”), goat cheese, and pine nuts. On the side you see frozen grapes. These are one of my favorite things to eat when the weather gets warm.

And my breakfasts are still my favorite meals!

This was a bowl Udi’s granola, Greek yogurt, sliced banana and apple, and my favorite peanut butter. Granola and yogurt, especially Greek yogurt, is one of my favorite combinations.

Oh, and I re-stocked my supply of my favorite BBQ sauce.

Bone Suckin’ Sauce! I think it’s a favorite amongst many of you out there; with good reason!

Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah

Yum

These were Dr. Kracker‘s Apple Crisps. Verdict? Awesome! These are probably my favorite flavor out of all of them. They have just enough sweetness from the caramelization of the brown sugar. Yes, you can really taste the dried apple! I tried them with cheese and…

Delicious with almond butter as well.

The other fruity cracker is the Cherry Semolina flavor. It was too tart for my liking, but once again, those are just my taste buds. My dad tried them and he really enjoyed the crackers. To each his own, right? Let me note though that all of these crackers are perfectly crispy. All the ingredients seem to be toasted, which just brings out the flavor a bit more.

Refreshing bowl of overnight oats with a twist!

I’ve seen Averie make overnight oats with protein powder and I wanted to give it a try myself. I soaked the oats with the protein powder, water, cinnamon, and NuNaturals vanilla stevia. In the morning I topped it with a sliced banana and a couple scoops of almond butter. After mashing and mixing the bananas and almond butter in, I was a very happy girl and so was my tummy. When it starts to get hotter I can’t stand warm bowls of oats. I start sweating like a mad man and I keep sweating for a good hour afterwards.

On another note…

Recently I did a performance piece to go along with the video and accessories I made.

Part 1

Part 2

Shout out to one of the sweetest hearts out there!

One evening I decided to make myself a banana hammock, inspired by Katie. One side had coconut butter and the other side was topped with granola. Then I put the two sides together and ate each bite with a scoop of almond butter. I also had a marzipan made by the company that makes them right, Niederegger! Since the weather is warming up, I think all of you should put on your shades and make yourself a yummy banana hammock.

I let the red lentils and rice cool down to avoid any sweating.

I made my usual lentil recipe with coconut oil, and I cooked up some brown basmati rice. I love the fragrance basmati rice gives off. Anywho, I mixed the lentils and rice with the salad ingredients. Delish! After that I headed out to check out the annual student art show put on at one of the gallery spaces at my school.

Performance piece done by some friends.

This was like a laboratory filled with art. They even had crazy sounds playing.

It was nice to see the work of some friends and peers. There are so many wonderful ideas floating around and I love to see them come to life!

I also met up with one of my favorite people!

He had a little gift for me! Delicious heart-shaped cookies with homemade icing. Actually, he wants to open up a pastry shop. He totally should because those cookies were amazing! I loved washing them down with a glass of creamy almond milk.

Pretending to be a shorty so he could fit in the picture with me!

Lotta Apricota

Awhile ago I was contacted by Nature’s Path to review some of their new products. Have you checked out their granola bars? When I was looking through that flavors it was so hard to choose! All of them sound delicious. But I managed to cut it down to three:

Lotta Apricota: I loved the bits of dried apricot and almond pieces, and the overall chewiness of the bar. One thing that could be toned down is the sweetness. This granola bar was the sweetest because of the yogurt “icing”. It didn’t taste bad, just a bit too sweet for me since I tend to be sensitive to that.

Chococonut: Once again it was a bit too much on the sweet side, but the dark chocolate chips helped bring it down a bit. Maybe more dark chocolate chips will do the trick, hehehe! This bar had the same chewiness that I like from the previous bar. Oh and you all know how much I just love coconut, so this was my favorite!

Pumpkin-N-Spice: Okay, I hate to sound like a broken record but this was too sweet as well. Other than that though, this bar was yummy. However, this was a yummy treat, especially to have towards the end of the cold season.. comforting flavors: cinnamon, pumpkin, and raisins!

I think all of them don’t need all that sweetness because there was enough of the actual flavors… and they could stand up taller without the extra sweetness. A little positive sidenote:

“….All our bars now come in the EnviroBox, which is 36% smaller box than a standard 6.2 ounce box.”

I hope all of you are doing well. I’ve been wrapping the semester up and I’ve got some projects and good news that I’m looking forward too. I’ve also been loving just hanging out with my friends and my dad who was in town this past week. I can’t believe my visit with Liz was only a week ago though. I already miss her! What do you all have in store for the next week?

It’s Pudding Time

Hello everybody! As promised, this post is a recap of the shenanigans me and Liz were up to during my visit. As many of you know, her birthday was earlier this week! So if you haven’t wished her a happy birthday yet, don’t forget heheh. So let the celebration begin!

Liz and her family picked me up at the airport and we were off to dinner!

Two stylish peas in a pod!

We went to this chic restaurant called Red, The Steakhouse.

The olive oil and parmesan cheese dip for the bread.

So good!

Four cheese baked mac-n-cheese, potatoes au gratin, sautéed broccoli and garlic, sautéed spinach, and seared killbuck valley mushrooms. Um… yum?!

Strike a pose!

So let me just say that Liz’s mom has serious decorating skills, and their home truly feels like a home. There’s so much character in everything and I could spend days just looking at all the little treasures.

I stayed in the "Bates Motel"

AHHH!!!

Liz had some of my favorites ready for me for breakfast!

The Udi’s granola was basically a sunken island in the sea of almond milk. I sliced in a banana and scooped in some chocolate almond butter. This was so yummy! I also tried Futters‘ chocolate hazelnut butter and their chocolate pecan butter. Holy crap these were awesome!!! Not just the flavor, but there was a distinct texture to these nut butters that I loved.

Both in our zones hahaha.

Then we took Chooey for a walk on an unusually warm morning.

Liz's mom taking care of the pretty flower arrangement.

And before you know it, it was lunchtime!

Look! She's simply glowing!

Amazing fresh pita bread and a yummy dip with olive oil, sesame seeds, thyme, and marjoram.

Let me just note that I loved that every place we went to had a dip that was different from the norm.

The baba

Yum!

Falafels with a tahini sauce, spicy hummos (best hummos ever), and the garlic spinach which was sautéed spinach with toasted pine nuts and onions. This was such a delicious lunch! Definitely the kind of food I’m in the mood for when the weather starts to warm up.

After lunch we headed to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Outside in the crazy wind!

Rockin' out!

At the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame we got to see this really cool movie of all the musicians that have been inducted up until 2010. It was especially neat because you got to see all the stars’ outfits, lyrics, and other memorabilia as well.

Then we headed to the previous night's restaurant's neighbor... Moxie!

Her sweet parents!

Delicious veggies!

The best broccolini I’ve ever had, brussel sprouts, and we couldn’t get enough of the killbuck valley mushrooms!

The spread...

Liz’s mom and I ordered some tea because were tea ladies hehe. They also had this seeded bread that I enjoyed with a white bean dip and some herbed butter. After dinner we headed to one of the area’s malls.

We made a stop at the chocolate store.

Look at all of those candied apples!

I picked the biggest and juiciest chocolate-covered strawberry! Which also happened to be deformed.

When we came home it was time to try one of the raw vegan "moon pies" that Liz's friend sent for her birthday.

Deliciously rich!

The birthday girl modeling her birthday present! I'm glad she liked it hehehe.

That morning I got to meet one of Liz’s brothers and his family.

There was an Easter egg hunt for the boys.

Keeping her eyes on the road.

And look who we ended up behind!

We obviously couldn't get enough of Taza!

This girl's got a lightbulb in her because she keeps glowing haha!

Liz got a refreshing Falafel salad and a side of spicy hummos.

That day they garnished the hummos with chickpeas!

My turn!

I ordered a falafel-hummos roll that came with pickled turnips and seasoned fries. Incredible! But what else could I expect?

Then we were off to Whole Foods to pick up some of Liz's staples and some new things to try as well!

When we came home, it was time to open up the Easter baskets her mom had put together for us!

Then it was getting close to the time of my departure. So soon?!

Chooey escorted us to the airport!

I love you Liz!

The "never let go" pose!

Now I understand why Theo is one of her favorite brands of chocolate.

And a yummy grawnola bar sample from One Lucky Duck.

Also, check out the video of us that VeggieDad filmed! I can’t help but have a big cheesy smile whenever I watch it. It just makes me really happy to think about the past weekend with Liz and her family. They are such wonderful people, and I’m lucky to have her as one of my best friends!

Things I’ve Been Loving

Baked sweet plantains with sea salt, cinnamon, and coconut oil

Homemade Pecan Butter

I’ve been eating this with dates, oatmeal, sweet potato, bananas, and even carrots!

A beautiful hyacinth

A beautiful hyacinth

OIAJ with my favorite peanut butter

Tea...

... with crystallized ginger.

Wicked!

Coconut water and dates!

Amy's kitchen goodies!

Note: do not just microwave this! I highly suggest toasting it so it gets a crunchy crust.

Salads!

The warm weather has made me in the mood for delicious salads. I’ve been loving avocado and Drew’s Lemon Goddess dressing in most of them. Dr. Kracker’s crackers have been the perfect sidekicks. The kind folks there contacted me to find out if I’d like to sample and review their crackers. No problem!

Fire Roasted Crisps

These have tart sun-dried tomatoes, sweet potato, and black sesame seeds. They were okay, but I think they could use something salty to give them more flavor; perhaps up the cheddar cheese?

Yum!

The Hummus Maximus crackers were delicious! These are one of my favorites out of the savory flavors. You can even see the seeds! Another interesting thing is that these are made with spelt and chickpea flour.

Homemade smoky chipotle hummus made with avocado oil!

My next post is going to be so exciting! I haven’t told you all, but I am currently hanging out with Liz and her family. We’ve been celebrating her birthday all weekend! So yes, just expect an awesome post hehehe.