Saturday, March 31, 2012

a depressing hike? {and a review}

I got up bright and early today (but it wasn't really bright out at 5:30am!) to go for a hike two hours away. I was so excited to finally be heading back to the mountains after months of not seeing any around. I live near the ocean sad. 
When I could make out the shapes of their beautiful ridges I found myself in tears...I'm not sure what this was really about though. Was it because I really had missed the mountains so much that I cried when I saw them or was I missing something else? I missed my old town, my old house, my old community. I missed living beneath "my" mountains. I missed hiking. Hiking with Ben. 

This whole week I have been missing Ben more than ever..I probably have cried every night wishing he was with me. And going for a hike today alone (Marlin did come), just made everything worse. Ben and I hike's our thing. I love hiking with him and not having him beside me today...well, it just wasn't the same. 

It felt wrong somehow. Like I wasn't supposed to be there. Here I am, out hiking and getting to do fun things while he's in school in a gross city, doing homework. It's not right. 

Even with all these thoughts going on in my head, I still managed to stay positive and take in the beautiful views...
Driving in...look at that mountain! Beautiful. 
 3.6 miles to the top...1.5 hours. Done. 
Beautiful clouds. Chilly though. 
 Marlin was having a blast...
 Trying to be happy. 
 Marlin beat me to the top. 
Snow covered tree. 
I did feel stronger than I have ever felt hiking today. I knew it was from all of my hard work with eating and working out. My legs rocked today! They got me all the way up to the top and I was high on sweat but loving it :) 
It was beautiful that's for sure. When I got to the top I was starving, so I whipped out my brand new Jerky that the kind folks over at Perky Jerky sent me! 
 Okay, so I was so happy to have this because it was...SO GOOD! It was sweet and salty in just the right combination. 
Even Marlin was begging for some! He said he liked it!! 
From their website:

"Perky Jerky is the new high-protein, ultra-premium, functional food for active lifestyles taking the nation by storm. We start with premium all natural beef (no MSG, no nitrates), and add our 7 ingredient marinade, which includes Guarana, a little berry from the Amazon that is commonly found in energy drinks.
It’s low fat, low carb, low cal and loaded with protein. No preservatives, no sodium nitrates, and no added MSG."
I had the Turkey Perky Jerky (don't you just love that name?!)...9 grams of protein...wowzers! Wondering what their secret is? 
INGREDIENTS: Turkey Breast, Soy Sauce, (water, wheat, soybeans, salt) Brown Sugar, Lemon Juice, Garlic Powder, Pepper, Guarana, Organic Worcestershire Sauce, (organic rice vinegar, organic wheat-free tamari soy sauce (water, organic soybeans, salt), organic evaporated cane syrup, salt, organic spices).
This stuff was a bag full of WONDERFUL! I would highly recommend this awesome jerky! It's on my "must-buy-more" list for sure :)
You can buy some here to try for yourself if you would like. Do it. 
{All comments and opinions are my own...I am not being paid in any way to say what I say}
I am headed off to work for now...have a good rest of your Saturday :)

Friday, March 30, 2012

Overload Friday

The Lean Green Bean
I was so excited to finally join the foodie pen pal loop this month! I was excited to be able to shop for someone other than myself and pick out awesome, cool foods to include in my package, and then to get one in the mail from someone across the country was just SWEET.
I was paired with Carolyn and here is what her gracious heart sent me:
A beautiful card with some wonderful words on the inside :)
In the box: plantain chips, an espresso cookie, starbucks coffee (hot and ice), justin's peanut butter, peanut butter and co. dark chocolate dreams, edamame, pizza dough mix, oatmeal packs, mint chocolate square, hot chocolate, green tea, craisins, and somersault cookies!

Let's just say that about all this good stuff is gone mom devoured the starbucks coffee (she has a new favorite!), the plantain chips were amazing, I've never had them before so that was new for me. My mom also ate all of the somersaults (she's a sneaky one). Ben and I had the hot chocolate while he was here on break, SO good. I found a new favorite too, the edamame! Super salty and yummy. The pizza from this post was from the dough was a little tough to work with but very yummy! Again, my mom loved the espresso cookie...she's just taking everything haha! 

Anyways, as you can tell I had massive amounts of fun with this and am already looking forward to next month :) If you want to learn more about getting involved head over to Lindsay's site and check it out!

Okay now on to my normal Proud Of Myself Friday! This week has flew by...I can't believe it's already are some of my accomplishments for the week...

  • being able to manage the SUPER busy night at the cafe without too many mistakes
  • making pizza and actually eating it...TWICE
  • writing my guest post on the Libero Network 
  • being able to follow the instructions for the study (the needle isn't as bad as I thought)
  • pushing through periods of feeling gross all over
  • having a real conversation with a customer at the cafe 
  • being more relaxed during work
  • picking myself up after a mental break down
  • keeping my motivations in mind and reminding myself why I am worthy day after day
  • not freaking out when I couldn't go for my normal two walks yesterday
  • making and having mug cake (photos to come)
  • making and trying this (i used cottage cheese and chocolate peanut butter instead)

This week has also been especially difficult with Ed stuff...he's been trying to get my to question everything about my eating and workouts ALL THE TIME! I'm so sick of him and his freakin, no good lies! I have been trying constantly to fight back and disobey his ruling commands. It's been superduper hard but I think it's easier when I keep these things in mind:

  • Ed IS NOT going to give me the dreams I want...he's only going to give me unhappiness and probably death.
  • I don't merely want to survive...I want to LIVE.
  • My worth is NOT based on what size my clothes are or if my thighs touch or not, or if I have a little fat on my worth depends on the size of my heart, the width of my soul, my talents, etc.
  • Ed equals ZERO control
  • Strong is the new healthy!
  • I want kids one day and if I continue down the destructive-Ed path, that won't happen.
  • I am worthy and deserving of a life free of Ed. I deserve to be happy and strong and loved. 

If this wasn't enough for a post I also have a little WHOLE FOODS action for you!
My mom and I headed into Portland on Wednesday for some Whole Foods shopping and to get my transfer school all set up...omg I forgot to mention that I am finally going to start classes again! Woot. I will be enrolling in the Business Program online starting April 18th!! I'm super excited. But back to the real excitement...
I got beets, chicken, peppers, shrimp salad with snap peas and carrots.
My mom got chowder with chips and guacamole. 

The Haul: wallaby yogurts(on sale!), edamame, hazelnuts, almonds, pecans, raw honey, tazo tea, cacao nibs... 
sweet potatoes, vegan carob chips, a lemon, Justin's peanut butter, feta cheese, brown cow yogurt, dates, and ginger!
It was awesome! My mom and I had so much fun looking around...we could have easily bought more but we racked up the money as it's not an everyday thing for us to go to whole foods so it was worth it!

Hope you all have an awesome Friday and a fantastic weekend!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

What I "kind" of Ate Wednesday and a Review!

Top of the morning to ya! Hope you all have been having a fantastic week :) This week I wanted to kinda switch things up a bit..I'm getting tired of taking pictures of my daily eats over and over again, as most days I consume the same things (I know, I know, not a good thing) anyways I thought I'd throw a few pictures at you of some things I've tried that are NEW and then I have a review on a great product!! Sound good? GREAT. Let's get rolling. Oh and thanks to Jenn for always putting this together every week!

Yesterday, as I explained in my last post I went to Mass General Hospital to complete the second visit of my study. I had blood work done (in the children's hospital! woot!) then wet over and got a metabolic test done where they put a big astronaut bubble over my head and measured how fast/slow my metabolism was...I will find out the results in the next couple of days so that is exciting! I've always wanted to know this information. I was then bombarded with tutorials about how to take all of the medication they are giving me and how to shoot myself with a needle twice a day...they are giving me an estrogen patch, progesterone, calcium and vitamin D, and for the injections I don't know if it's a placebo or actual IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor 1). 

It sounds worse than it actually is believe me. It's really not too hard! The worst part is the needle DUR so's a pretty good deal though, I get paid to have all these cool tests done with the result of possibly improving my bone density and such. I'll take it! When I left the hospital I was carrying this: 
After I was FINALLY done at the hospital, I headed to BoYO Froyo for my first experience of some frozen yogurt! I can't believe I haven't tried this stuff earlier! Oh I know why, because MAINE is poop and there are NONE near me :( Such a sad thing. Anyways, this is what I got:
Mint Yogurt with Chocolate
Chips and Coconut Flakes!
It was a shock at first because the yogurt was more tart that I thought it would be, but it was HEAVEN...really it was. So GOOD. If you've never had Froyo, go try some now! I mean it. 

Another thing that I tried this week was Crystallized Ginger. OMG go try this stuff, it is AMAZING. 

Here's a silly picture of Marlin after he got his SPRING haircut! He's such a cutie :)

Talking about spring, I LOVE this season! Not only is it when the snow finally realizes that everyone hates him and goes away, but it's also when everything is new again. The trees start to bud new leaves, flowers begin the decent back to earth, grass becomes green again...okay you get my point. I love it because to me, it means GROWTH and new beginnings. I think I tend to feel happier during this time too, I mean it's warmer and I love that, but also because it makes me realize how precious life is and how we are so lucky to be alive here on earth. We are surrounded by such beauty and we should EMBRACE it!

I was graciously sent a HUGE package of Gnu bars recently and have finally tried all of them!
(Get ready for an overload of photos)...

Gnu is a small company that started in 2004 making all natural high fiber bars that promote heart health and regularity. The bars are packed with 12 grams of fiber per bar! You can learn more about the importance of fiber for health here
Like I said, the Gnu's sent me two bars in each flavor and lets just say I absolutely loved them all!
This is how I tested them all! I cut off a
little bit of each bar and then sampled it!
I must say, the SMELL of these bars was FANtastic! By far the best smelling bars I have ever had!
Banana Walnut: Smelled just like homemade banana bread fresh out of the oven! The taste was amazing, just like banana oats. mmmm yum. 
Blondie: Amazing smell! Wonderful flavor...chewy, like baked oats! 

Blueberry Cobbler: Smelled like fresh blueberry muffins. Real chunks of blueberries! The flavor of the berries was really prominent and delicious :)

Carrot Cake: Mmmm yummy smells of carrot cake! Tastes just like it too! Real chunks of carrot. 

Chocolate Brownie: Amazing smell (obviously)...tasted like a real chocolate oat brownie! I love the texture!

Peanut Butter: It's like eating peanut butter straight from the jar! My favorite :)

Cinnamon Raisin: Super yummy cinnamon smell! Tasted so good, just like a real oatmeal raisin cookie!

Okay so obviously as you can tell, I loved these bars! I just loved the overall texture and flavors of all of them. It was like yummy yummy oatmeal in a bar :) I highly recommend them! 

You can order from their website and get all of the nutrition information here! Do it! 

From their website: At Gnu Foods, we create foods that help keep us in natural balance. Our foods are designed with you in mind, made with all natural ingredients every body needs. Since you were our inspiration, we hope you give Gnu Bars a try. And pretty soon, you’ll be feeling like a “gnu” you.

Have you tried these wonderful bars? 
Why have't you? 
Did you LOVE them?

Before I forget, go check out my guest post I wrote for Libero! You can find it here!
Take care loves :)

Monday, March 26, 2012

Sunday Blues with Some Sunshine

Saturday night was...let's just say AWESOME at work! Wow, I never though I'd say that. We were packed and I was running around like a wild women trying to make everybody happy, but I must say, I thought I did a damn good job. I was super proud of myself for not completely freaking out. I even managed to smile and be friendly (something that is not always easy for me). As a bonus, I made some nice pocket cash, which is always needed!
Despite the good mood I was in after work, it all went down hill fast when I started to talk about wedding things with Ben. It all got way too overwhelming and I just broke down. I get so excited about planning everything but when I start to think about the money and how we're going to pay for it, that's when I freak out. I had a bit of a tantrum and then finally went to bed to try to forget about everything. Luckily when I woke up I was feeling better. During my walk that day I started thinking about how maybe waiting another year before getting married might be wise...I mean for the obvious reasons of money and such but also because I like 2014 better than 2013 (again for obvious reasons). All I know is that I LOVE Ben more than anything in the world and spending my life with him is my biggest dream and that's all that matters.
Ben and I 2010
Sunday was a long, boring day for the most part. It rained. I was sad. I went for a run but it sucked. I worked out and then felt good. Then I walked and got soaked. For dinner I made pizza again, only this time it turned out A LOT better...I spontaneously started craving cheese so I looked up how to make pizza dough and turns out I had everything so I got started! It wasn't too hard, all I had to do was mix all the ingredients together and then kneed it and let the yeast do it's magic. When everything was done it looked like this...
It was very good and Ed seemed to be somewhere else while I ate it, which was a relief. I felt normal and really proud of myself for listening to my body and giving it what it was craving.

Sunday was also a long day for Tucker...since it was raining when I let him out he just came right back in. He was running around the house, messing everything up and making me mad...sometimes I wonder how I'm ever going to deal with kids haha!

Today I have to head down to Boston again for the second appointment of the study thingy that I am doing so I'm not too excited, but I do get paid and that is also a good thing! I am also going to hopefully walk around Boston a bit, maybe wonder to Whole Foods or a fro-yo place...I've never had fro-yo and everyone keeps saying how good it is, so I guess I'll have to go see what it's all about.

Okay now onto the good part of the day...

THE OFFICE! I haven't watched this show in some time and oh how I have missed it! I think I watched four episodes and just couldn't stop laughing. It was so awesome!
I made three collages! I hadn't done any art for a couple months because I just had no interest for it but I finally decided to just DO IT and it turned out to be really good. I made some really cool pieces (pictures coming soon!)

And here are some recent pinterest finds that I love...

Hope you had a good weekend :)

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Sunfood Incan Berries Review

Howdy loves!!!
This morning, I was surprised to receive a package of Sunfood Incan Berries today! Jennifer over at Sunfood Super Foods was super nice and sent me out a sample to review! I have never ordered from Sunfoods before but after the spectacular service and these delicious berries I must say, I will most likely be making an order in the future!

On to the review!

I actually have never heard of Incan berries before, so when I went to try these babies I had no idea what to expect...and to my surprise they were amazingly yummy! My first bite was kind of sour (my mouth had to adjust to the new taste), but after that I couldn't stop reaching in for more! They have a similar texture to goji berries (kinda) but are a bit more acid-y, but in a good way! 

Let's look at the nutrition shall we?

From their website:

"Packed with vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, niacin and phosphorous, Sunfood Incan Golden Berries also contain pectin, which helps to regulate the flow of food through the digestive tract as well as lower cholesterol levels and prevent surges in blood glucose, making it a great food for those with diabetes. Incan berries are also rich with bioflavonoids, also known as vitamin P, which studies have shown to demonstrate anti-sclerotic, anti-viral, anti-carcinogenic, anti-inflammatory, antihistamine and antioxidant properties. Preventing the buildup of atherosclerotic plaque in the blood vessels and improving capillary strength, the bioflavonoids found in these unique berries also help enhance the use of vitamin C by improving its bioavailability and protecting this fragile nutrient from oxidation."

If you don't want to eat them after that, I don't know what is wrong with you! I always love reading  the benefits of different foods and how they can do good for your body, so after reading this, I just wanted to down the whole bag! 

A serving size is one ounce with only 80 VERY healthy calories and of course health benefits!

I ate them straight from the bag but it would be awesome to add some to a homemade trail mix or granola, or even on top of yogurt or oats! 

If you want to order some goodies of your own just go to their awesome webiste at: :)

Have you ever tried Incan Berries (goldenberries)?? If so, did you like them as much as I did? 

Have you ever ordered from Sunfoods? Aren't they just a great little company? 

**all opinions and thoughts are totally unique and my own, I am not being paid in any way to say what I do**