Archive | Blogs RSS feed for this section

I MET MAMA PEA!!!!

22 Aug

For those of you who aren’t aware of Mama Pea, you have my word I won’t smack you if you promise to go to her site immediately. But don’t get so caught up in her witty and hilarious writing that you forget about this little blog. 🙂 There are several reasons I adore Mama Pea.

  1. She is adorable
  2. She has the most enviable tongue in cheek writing style that makes me want to be her BFF
  3. She replies to so many of her bloggers comments it’s no wonder she doesn’t shower some days
  4. She seems like a very honest and genuine person

After meeting her, I can confirm that she is indeed as adorable as her pictures, if not more. Loved her hair, makeup, shoes, dress, etc. And I’m pretty sure she showered. She is just as personable in person as she in on her blog. Do you ever meet people who you know are just putting on a front? Where they are just being polite and nice because they are thinking about how it will benefit them? Well Mama Pea is not like that in the least. I felt like we could just sit down and have a conversation over some vegan cupcakes while I giggled over her Pea witticisms.

Portland attempted to give me a minor heart attack by deciding to close down 405 the day we drove down from Washington, which also happened to be the morning Mama Pea had her demonstration. Originally the plan called for Nathan to be dropped off at his brother’s house but in fear of missing the biggest moment of my vacation, I told Nathan he would have to come Downtown with me and figure something out.

We arrived with twenty minutes to spare and found an excellent deal on parking ($5 for the whole day!). Luckily  for Nathan, Deschutes Brewery happened to be right across the street from In Good Taste, where the demonstration took place. But unfortunately that meant it was also close to many other wonderful places in The Pearl District like Powell’s, Anthropologie, West Elm, North Face, Whole Foods, Lululemon, and more.

In Good Taste was a great store itself. If I could actually afford to buy high quality products this is where I would come. They also had great mustards, salts, and spices that were reasonably priced.

A Viking mixer??? Yes, please!

 

Super cute containers for marinades, dressings, or sauces

Since we drove non-stop from Bremerton to the demonstration after consuming a 20 oz tea, I headed straight to the bathroom. When I was washing my hands I heard some rustling outside the door. When I opened it I was greeted by some very familiar faces; Pea Daddy, Gigi, and Lulu. It’s so strange since I haven’t met anyone recently that I’ve only read about on the internet (last one was former Governor Jesse Ventura in high school but I don’t know if that counts). I felt like we all knew each other, and they were just waiting outside the bathroom for me. I greeted them with a big “hi” like we were long lost friends. Pea Daddy handled it in stride (I’m sure it’s not the first time it’s happened to him) telling me they were waiting for the bathroom and not stalking me (darn). Quickly I recovered and said I was here to see their mom.

There she is!

My favorite part of the demonstration was that Mama Pea kept things really intimate. We all gathered around the island while she cooked and she went around and asked everyone how they came to be at the demonstration. She also emphasized we could jump in at any time with questions. Gigi stood at the front with her most of the time, asking if she could help (I see star potential there as well). Mama Pea said her favorite vegan protein to work with is tofu. The most important thing about preparing tofu is to press, press, press! There are some great tofu presses out there but if you are just venturing into vegan or vegetarian cooking, she recommended cutting the tofu, layering a dish towel or paper towel over it, put another cookie sheet on top and then layer it with multiple heavy things such as dictionaries you never use. Mama Pea also reminded us it’s important to marinate the tofu, which I wish I would’ve learned years ago when I was a vegetarian. No wonder I never liked tofu! It pretty much takes on whatever flavor you are cooking with and doesn’t have much flavor of it’s own. Mama Pea marinates her tofu for a few hours or overnight and then broils it in the oven for about 5-6 minutes each side. She said it helps it get that great crisp on the outside.

At the demonstration we were treated to Chipotle Lime Tacos (LOVE chipotle), a version of Strawberry Roasted Chickpea with Cinnamon Vinaigrette, and Fruit Skewers with a cream cheese dipping sauce. I would make every single one of these recipes at home in a second for several reasons–

  1. The flavor was incredible
  2. There were so easy
  3. They are good for you

The salad

 

Naked Taco; I should've taken a picture of mine before I ate it but it was already in my belly before you can say "chipotle"

Part of the reason I often don’t like “healthy” or “diet” food is because there is a lack of flavor. Not here! The tacos even got my nose a little runny, but that is an indicator of great spice in my book. 🙂

After the demonstration Mama Pea signed books and talked with each of us. We even got to take pictures (and she said she like my shoes)!

What's a Pea picture without Gigi?

And since she was such a great helper and is really heading places herself, I also had Gigi sign my book.

After I pried myself away from Mama Pea so I didn’t have a restraining order on my record, I headed to Anthropologie to swoon over all the beautiful clothing and then vomited after reading all the prices. I did spend $16 on two mugs with “P” on them (and no, not for Mama Pea but for my new last name). I also dropped some money at West Elm, Whole Foods and Powells, because, as I justified my spending to Nathan, it’s tax-free here so really I saved us money. After spilling a good portion of my water bottle all over my dress and snuffing some up my nose I ran into Mama Pea and brood on the sidewalk. They said “hello” even though I’m sure they were in fear that the girl with the cute shoes was stalking them.

The day was absolutely lovely and I couldn’t ask for anything more, except maybe Mama Pea declaring that she thought that we would be the best of friends and go get pedicures together (my feet are seriously disgusting from running; I would take pictures but I’m sure they would end up in science magazines).

 

New Smoothie Recipe and Other Musings

1 Aug

The past two mornings I haven’t wanted to get out of bed. Now, I know people say that, but I literally did not want to leave the house. I was so sad, anxious, and crabby that I felt the world would be a better place if I just stayed in. Why? That is a very good question, and I do not have the answer. The only answer I have is that I have major depression. Now before I get into the nitty gritty, I’ll tell you why I decided to blog about my illness. I’ve read a couple posts from my favorite bloggers that went over similar topics, especially one from Hungry Runner Girl. She wrote a great post about how she tries to be happy and positive all the time for other people but she can only do so much. Been there, done that.

I have had anxiety and depression since I was a young child. There were times I would tell my mom I wanted to die when I was only five years old. I told her I wanted to go home to Jesus. I can’t even imagine what my poor mother thought. I wasn’t diagnosed with anxiety issues until high school when I began acting out at home. I punched through the dining room window, and I cut myself with a knife. I went to therapy but wasn’t on any medication. In my sophomore year in college I became very depressed. I didn’t go to classes and received the worst grades I’ve ever had. The second semester I laid some pills out on my desk. Instead of taking them, I called for help. I was hospitalized for one night and released into the care of my parents (who are THE best parents in the world). I had to drop out of school that semester and my roommates asked me to move out, people who I thought were my friends, because they didn’t want to feel responsible for me.

Those were not good times. I’ve been on Celexa since then and have my ups and downs. I want to get off my anti-depressants someday but I am also aware that this may not happen. This illness runs in both sides of my family, with several people committing suicide on my dad’s side.

At work this morning I had a breakdown. I had my moment where I cried in the bathroom. People were wondering why I was sad. There was a comment, “She has a brand new house, new husband, and so many things going for her.” Let me settle this, not once have I wanted someone to feel bad for me. I want people to try to understand me. I know that I am very blessed and I am thankful for that everyday. The thing about depression is it’s a disease. I don’t know why I feel sad sometimes, or why I feel worthless, I just do. A majority of the time I can talk myself out of it, but I have my moments. I can’t be happy all the time. There are times where my raw emotions will take over.

This is another reason I need to exercise. When I exercise I feel like there is a strong possibility that I will be able to go off my medication. And I have made long strides since the day I was hospitalized. But this is something that will always be with me.

On a more cheerful note, I was greeted by my loving hub and happy pup when I got home which helped ease the heaviness on my chest. And I have a new smoothie recipe!

Mango Coconut Smoothie

1/2 cup frozen mango chunks

1/2 frozen banana

1 scoop vanilla protein powder

1 cup coconut water

1/2 cup soy milk

1/2 tablespoon flax meal

1 handful spinach

Put all in the blender and let ‘er rip! I drink half and leave the other half in the freezer until the next day.

For breaky, I had the smoothie and a piece of my Clean Eating Banana Bread. Lunch was the shrimp salad, chased with some snacks of Planters Energy Mix and grapes with a side of string cheese. I was going to have leftovers for dinner but I let the hub eat the chicken and I had cereal.

I checked out a weight lifting DVD at the library today which I’m excited to use this week. I will be sure to give a review!

Blogs I’m Digging and Inspiration

21 Jul

There are several reasons I started a blog and since today was primarily leftovers and I stuck to my scheduled four mile tempo run, I thought I would devote a post to this topic.

  1. I am an avid reader and used to write a lot when I was younger. I actually majored in English Literature in college and thought about writing as a career, but my skin isn’t thick enough.
  2. I am infamous (well, in my opinion!) for starting something and not following through. I don’t know how many times I’ve started a workout regime or diet and not carried it through. I knew the blog would hold me accountable. When I had a goal of running my first half marathon for my 30th birthday, I let as many people know as possible because I couldn’t let them down. Blogging will be like that.
  3. Inspiration! There are so many real people out there who inspire me on a daily basis. Yeah, you can look up to celebrities, but that’s unrealistic and sets you up for failure. I like seeing real people and hearing real stories. I saw Krista’s blog link on the MSN website and I thought, “That’s a great idea!” Also, a good friend of mine has a blog that is about her journey towards a figure competition, which I loved to read (more about her later).

Here are some of the blogs that I subscribe to and read daily. Hopefully they’ll inspire you too!

Last but not least, Lelia. I met Lelia on a crazy night on New Year’s Eve in 2010 and instantly knew I liked her. Even though I’m 30, I do occasionally make mistakes, as I did that night by drinking too much (I generally don’t drink very much and have a very low tolerance to alcohol–two strong mixed drinks did me in). The Hub teased me the next day since I followed her around like a lost puppy and told her she would be a bridesmaid in my wedding (which is funny because 1-we weren’t even engaged yet and 2-we didn’t have a formal wedding and were already planning not to). He coined the term Bestie and it’s stuck.

Lelia is a huge inspiration to me. She is a confident, strong, and smart woman. She is training for her first figure show and is doing a great job. I’m so proud of her! But at the same time she is human. She will cave on her food at times and have a meltdown but she gets right back in the saddle. This gal knows so much about food, nutrition, and working out. I’m glad she’s always a phone call or e-mail away if I need help, need a routine, or need someone to talk when things aren’t working out.

Bach Party Shenanigans

Hot damn girl!

Who inspires you?