Foodzie + Sea Snax

I got something fun in the mail the other day!

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As part of the Foodbuzz tastemaker program, I received a free foodzie tasting box to sample.

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Upon first opening the box, there were definitely lots of goodies noticeable.

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I liked the info sheet showing where all the foods came from. I’m going to work my way through them all, but here’s a sneak peek:

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Herbed sea salts

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Biscotti

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Shortbread cookies with Dulce de Leche

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dried pineapples

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Iced tea

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And SeaSnax.

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I decided to check out the SeaSnax sample first. I really liked the attractive packaging and that the food was all natural.

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Inside were several sheets of roasted seaweed, lightly salted.

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I’ve seen seaweed snacks at Earthfare before and thought about trying them. I believe seaweed is a rather popular snack food in many Asian countries. I think they’re on to something, because from what I’ve read, seaweed is good for you. These chips were almost like kale chips to me – light, feathery, flimsy but crisp. They were salted nicely. They had a slightly fishy flavor, but if you’re used to eating seaweed in sushi or miso soup, it’s nothing you wouldn’t be used to.

I thought these snacks were fun to eat!

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For lunch I enjoyed some frozen and re-heated been and veggie soup

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(Tuscan style)

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And since I haven’t had one in awhile – a donut from a local bakery! Hubby picked this up for me!

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He also made a fabulous dinner AND photographed the meal for me as I was running late from Zumba. It’s a bison steak with grilled potato wedges and steamed broccoli.

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For dessert, we tried this Trader Joe’s find.

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Not healthy at all, but very tasty Apple Blossoms. Yum!

What do you think about seaweed snacks – would you try it?

Lady Gaga Week

I had another 12 hour away day today. I left the house around 9am and got back just after 9pm. Phew! Doesn’t being away from the house that long make for the longest day?! Not to mention I was at the office till almost 7pm.

But let’s start with breakfast…

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I broke out an old favorite – Power Toast!

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This toast was on Dakota with Maranatha Peanut Butter, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, and hemp seeds.

I forgot how easy, fast, delicious, and nutritious this stuff is!

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I celebrated Starbucks Monday sans makeup but with a Pumpkin Spice Latte…this time with only 2 pumps (they put 3 in a tall!).

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And I think I may have found another culprit to the too-sweet drink before…the whipped cream! I didn’t realize the pumpkin spice lattes had whipped cream on them. Whoops!

Still, by reducing the pumps by one, it made a huge difference!

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Lunch was fabulous!

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First up, some fresh veg – cucumber, tomatoes from my garden, organic carrots with hummus leftover from my cookout the other night.

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Also making an appearance leftover from my cookout was one of those fabulous vegan quinoa burgers….man these things are good! I know, I need to share the recipe, but give a girl a break? ;) Remember how I was away from the house for 12 hours today? Makes it hard to type recipes up.

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Lunch #2 was a salad with baby spinach, cucumber, carrots and tomatoes….plus sunflower seeds. I used a new dressing from Trader Joe’s – red wine vinaigrette. I must say…I don’t like to say negative stuff much, but that salad dressing was terrible. It just tasted like flavorless oil.

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For a snack, I tried something new that I found at Whole Foods – Three Sisters Cinnamon & Apples Oatmeal.

I specifically bought this product to keep at my desk at work. It’s good for busy people like me to have healthy snacks readily available, so you don’t get stuck hitting up the vending machine.

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Box info.

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Nutrition…and check out that ingredient list! Nice and readable.

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The oatmeal heated up quite nicely and I loved how you could even use the pouch to measure the water (they have a fill-to-this-line mark on the package). So easy and convenient! I only wish I had some milk at the office to stir in.

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The oats were really tasty – I loved the chewy apple pieces. The flavor was sweet but not too sweet. I really enjoyed it.

***

So, as I was saying before, I stayed at the office till just before 7pm today…phew! Long day!

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My long work day meant I missed zumba, so I decided to go shopping in hopes of finding great stuff to wear to the Lady Gaga concert this weekend! So excited!

Any guesses what’s in the bags?

While we’re on the topic of Lady Gaga…I’m going to declare this week Lady Gaga Week!

Here’s how I plan to celebrate Lady Gaga Week:

  • Listen to my Lady Gaga Smart Playlist all week (at home, in the car, at work, etc.) – I may not listen to any other music this week…lol
  • Wear non-pant outfits…as in skirts (don’t think the whole leotard thing would fly at the office) since Lady Gaga doesn’t like pants
  • Don’t give a flying f what people think (this one will be hard for me, but I’ll try to channel my inner Gaga)

I may be adding to the list as I think of things. ;)

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Hubby was a doll and had dinner almost done by the time I fiiinally got home.

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We had spaghetti with meat sauce over whole wheat pasta, plus steamed broccoli with a real butter drizzle. It was super good and so great to be able to eat so soon after getting home from a long day.

Just because you’re not going to the concert doesn’t meant you can’t be festive this week…How will you celebrate Lady Gaga Week?

Coconut Water = Super Hydration

Happy Monday all!

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Breakfast was an amazing bowl of oats!

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I swear when I haven’t had my oat fix in awhile I start craving it!

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Today I made oatmeal for me and hubby: Banana Chocolate Oats.

Sounds decadent but the bananas were my only sweetener. I did sprinkle a lil sugar in hubby’s because he likes his sweeter.

In the bowl: oats, milk, water, cocoa powder, sliced banana, walnuts, cacao nibs, flaxseed meal.

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Breakfast was enhanced by today’s brew: the Don Pablo coffee we picked up at Costco over the weekend. I really enjoyed the smooth coffee flavor – it’s just the way I like my breakfast coffee (kind of reminds me of Fresh Market Breakfast Blend). Glad we picked this up! (and remember to stay tuned for a free coffee contest! I’ll let you know once I hear back from Don Pablo himself!)

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Bailey tried to tell hubby when he was ready for breakfast today by placing his food bowl on hubby’s foot. Subtle, Bailey…subtle. :lol:

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Did anyone celebrate Starbucks Monday with me?!

I had a grande vanilla soy latte!

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I depended on the freezer for my eats today.

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You guys know I don’t really like frozen meals, but if I’m going to have one, the Organic Bistro ones are pretty good. I enjoyed this savory turkey flavor – esp the mushroom sauce. The green beans weren’t too mushy either. Not to mention it came with quinoa (I’m a big fan of quinoa)! Neat, no?!

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Snack = TJ’s frozen steel cut oats. Kind of weird to 1. have oatmeal twice in one day and 2. have oatmeal without toppings. It was pretty good as is.

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Lunch #2 = romaine salad with green pepper, celery and cherry tomatoes. Plus sunflower seeds, hemp seeds and balsamic vinaigrette.

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Pre-workout snack = Cherry Pie Larabar. Well…just half. I ate the other half post-workout today.

***

Post work I had a double header of ZUMBA!

I struggled a bit energy wise in class one.

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Between classes I downed this Vita Coco coconut water.

I think the coconut water really gave me an energy boost! I felt more energized during the second class (yes! after I already worked out for an hour!).

Thank you coconut water!

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Hubby actually signed up for our Costco account today (yay!) so I had him pick up more coconut water. It’s such a good deal there and I think I’m only going to be drinking more and more of this stuff!

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He also got me some rice milk and some of those brown rice chips (addicting!), which I munched on pre-dinner.

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And since I didn’t get home till close to 9pm (I’m such a chatty Cathy post workout!), I opted for some Lemony Lentil soup (heated stovetop from frozen).

What’s your favorite way to hydrate during your workouts?

Pizzalicious

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Hiyas from the Chic house!

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My basil plants are finally growing back after being attached by slugs. I managed to harvest both some green and purple basil leaves. Woohoo!

I used them in lunch today.

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Leftover cooked pasta = pasta salad lunch.

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I added chopped spinach, cherry tomatoes, feta cheese, basil…

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…plus a balsamic vinaigrette.

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Plus toasted pine nuts on top. Yum!

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Guess what I got today?

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My zumba instructor gear! I got my sign in sheets, class cards, and all that fun junk.

My first class starts next Tuesday! Can’t wait! :)

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Lookie what I tried for a pre-workout snack today! A carrot cake Larabar (*)!

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The bar looked just like the others and had a similar texture. I liked the chewy bites of what I presumed to be carrots.

I thought the flavor was not quite as spot-on as some others they have. It didn’t quite taste like carrot cake to me. It had a lot of spice and just didn’t remind me as much of the flavor as some others do. Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoyed the bar, I just didn’t think it tasted like “carrot cake.”

***

Post work I was so excited to go back to ZUMBA! It had been almost a week. I expected it to be a bit rough since I hadn’t done it in awhile and it was but I pushed through and felt amazing and strong afterwards!

I worked up a real appetite for dinner tonight!

***

We had plans to go out to Brixx with Kath + Matt tonight. We have a lot of events planned with them since it’s their last weekend in town! :(

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I started with a sampler – 420, Starhill Love, spaten, hoppyyum (that’s the best I can remember the names…lol).

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Hubby and I split bruschetta over conversation with Kath and Michelle.

Also chatted with Kelly, but I forgot to get photos of everyone tonight!

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Hubby and I also split a pizza – 1/2 BBQ Chicken and 1/2 Chicken Caprese on a whole wheat crust.

Both flavors were really good but I still love the BBQ chicken the best.

Post dinner we went in search of dessert.

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I got a single scoop of half baked froyo. Woohoo, they actually let me have a kid’s size this time!

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Post dinner, I hit up Ben + Jerry’s with Katie, Stew, Rachel, and hubby.

Such fun! :)

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Lookie what else came in today! My business cards!!

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The front.

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The back. Look familiar? I just ate this cherry almond french toast recently!

You likey? :)

Remember to check out my OpenSky coupons (click) for discounts on organic body butter, Galaxy Granola and other goodies!

Crunchy-Carb-Awesomeness

Thanks for the tips on managing dinner when you work out after work! If you have any to add, please leave em here (click)!

Here are my 2 faves:

  • Jen said “I typically have an afternoon snack before I leave work. So on days I exercise at night, I eat dinner during afternoon snack time and my snack during “dinner” time after my workout. I don’t go to bed with a full tummy anymore and feel much better in the am”
  • Rebeca said “I don’t know if you meal plan or not, but I make a serious commitment on Sunday nights to prep as much of my meals as I can and set them in containers for each night… I at least do three meal preps even if I don’t have a set night for them, that way I still have the freedom to go out and can just plop prepped veggies and measured out ingredients in pans and enjoy!”

Rebeca’s comment reminds me a lot of the Robin Miller style of meal planning. I’m probably one of the worst people I know at meal planning. I usually just fly by the seat of my pants. lol My Prep Day Sundays were pretty effective but more for lunches than dinners. I should work on this. Perhaps I could have a new challenge?! I’m due for a new challenge…though I do have some ideas related to a Project Hydrate-esque challenge but with vegetable servings! Anyone interested?

And…while we’re talking about yesterday, can I share another photo of last night’s Strawberry Country Cake?

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Hot d*mn! I think I’m in love! Seriously though…I’m pretty comfortable in the kitchen with cooking…not so much with baking. And even then for both, when I’m entertaining I’m always terrified I’m going to royally screw something up and my food will be inedible. Thusly, when my kitchen experiments go right, I get really excited! :)

***

Would you believe I stayed up till 1 am last night browsing through the new zumbawear and talking myself out of buying too much new stuff? I started with a list of 5 things I wanted and managed, after an hour of coercing, to get my list down to a more affordable 3. I was glad to downsize my list but wish I could have done it well before 1 am! Can’t wait to share my new goodies…course, they have to ship here first! :lol:

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In my groggy state this morning, I decided to make breakfast quick. I toasted up some of mom’s whole wheat fruit + nut bread, which I topped sparingly with real butter.

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I normally like to do almond butter (for the protein) on my breakfast toast (a la Power Toast), but I feel like it detracts from the delicious taste of the bread.  

Anywho, it was fast and delicious and made with love!

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Ya’ll…my hair is so STRAIGHT today! My stylist used a straightening iron on my hair yesterday. I used to flat iron my hair every day but I felt like it was damaging it too much so I started wearing it more curly and doing blow outs. Plus, I like the extra body you get with blowouts. But, once in awhile I definitely love the look!

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Since I was in such a rush this morning, I just grabbed a healthy frozen meal. As you guys know, I’m not the biggest fan of frozen meals, but as a busy working woman, I think they’re ok once in awhile – especially if you choose your meal carefully.

This one, by Cedarlane – Garden Vegetable, has a nice short ingredient list.

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The flavor was nice, too! I loved the tender corn tortillas with the soft bean filling – plus the warm tomato-y sauce.

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I also had a nice, big salad for lunch #2. In the mix – lots of fresh romaine (organic) and tomatoes from my garden – sweet 100s AND a green zebra! Plus, sunflower seeds, chick peas and balsamic vinaigrette.

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And I couldn’t resist eating most of this donut leftover from a morning meeting. It was pretty good, but it doesn’t have anything on the ones we get from our local bakery!

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Post-work, we headed out to Brixx for a farewell dinner for a co-worker who is leaving our project. :(

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My co-worker and I split a sampler – Sweetwater Blue (tastes like blueberries!) and Victory Golden Monkey.

I loved the first one and thought the second was really good but not quite as much my style.

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I snacked on apps the table ordered to share – bruschetta and hummus on pita triangles.

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A side spinach salad for a veggie serving.

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Plus half this BBQ Chicken pizza for the main event. (The other half will make an awesome lunch for hubby tomorrow!)

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The thin crusts here are so tasty. I love saving the crust part of the pizza for last so I can savor the crunchy-carb-awesomeness!

I noticed the last time I ate out with a large group at Brixx that many people had different eating styles with pizza crusts. Some people saved them all till the end and then devoured all the crusts at one time. Some people didn’t eat the crusts at all. Some, like me, eat them at the end of each silce but before beginning a new slice.

How do you eat your pizza crusts (or do you not eat them at all)?

Hair-Bumps: For Work or Play?

Loved reading about everyone’s signature hair styles on yesterday’s post (click to read the comments)! I mean, I definitely just pull my hair back up when I’m feeling lazy…or wear it curly (so not worth straightening in the summer! not in the humid at least!) but I also really love a side pony tail or loose side-braid.

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Speaking of the signature looks…I def rocked the hair-bump again today. I think I’ll be doing this for awhile. I like how it keeps my hair out of my face and off my back when it’s all hot outside. Under Megan’s tutelage, I will perfect this hair-bump! (one day)

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I made a big bowl of farmers-market-fresh blueberry oats with vanilla almond milk. Man…I am so spoiled by these blueberries! I’m going to be so sad when the blueberry season is over and i have to resort to wrinkly grocery store berries or just frozen blueberries.

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I tried the other tea from that wedding favor from my friend’s October wedding – Irish Breakfast tea with sugar and creamer.

And for today’s exciting EATS………..

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Oh yes! It’s one of the new Larabar flavors – Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (*)!!!!

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Not sure if I noticed before, but Larabars are Fair Trade!

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Signature short ingredient list and nutrition info.

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Inside -like a traditional Larabar but with chocolate chip pieces!

This bar was soooooo AWESOME! It tasted like a Cashew Cookie bar with tender chocolate chip morsels. If you like the Cashew Cookie flavor and chocolate chips then you’ll LOVE this! Can’t wait to see this hit shelves in stores! I think it’s coming out in July. For a limited time you can get 15% off – click here for the link.

***
The Larabar was a pre-zumba snack! And a fabulous hour of zumba I had! :)

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I def think the hair bump looks more fun with my zumba clothes than work clothes. :lol:

Hmm…hair bumps for work…or for play?!

Speaking of play – my training is almost over! I’m going to be a real instructor teaching real zumba classes soon! Can’t wait! :)

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And for post-workout…it was Taco Tuesday! Yum yum! I managed to down 2 1/2 of these delicious tacos on soft corn tortillas. Nommers!

Since we’re talking about hair – how do you wear your hair when you workout? I used to wear mine down a lot but now I’m doing the hair-bump + a pony-tail.

Ok, I’m off to work on the playlist for my first real full-length class -a demo for a potential private class!! Squeeeeee! :)

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