Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween! And Happy Birthday to Jamison! Have a great hallo-birthday.

Wyatt is going as a dragon this year.  I thought it was a unique costume, but there were 3 dragon outfits at our MOMs club Halloween party last Friday.  This is the best, least moving, photo we have. 

For those that follow me on Instagram, these are repeat photos.  Sorry!  Last night Hunter carved our pumpkin while I made pepitas with the seeds.  My family always roasted the pumpkin seeds growing up in butter and salt.  Hunter does not appreciate the pumpkin seeds as much as me.  Since I have a severe addiction to spicy, I added cayenne pepper and chili powder this year.  I roasted on 350 degrees for around 30 minutes.  I probably should have roasted longer, but I needed to go to bed!

Hunter had to bust out the Dremel

Seeds pre roasting

The final product

Tonight, we are probably going to trick or treat with Jacque and Collin on her street because I need some free candy.  Oh, and Wyatt needs to enjoy the experience.  Have a good evening!

Next from our trip to Sanibel, FL.  Sorry for all of the slacking!

Labels: ,

Thursday, October 25, 2012

What We Have Been Up To

Somehow I got so wrapped up with work and life that I forgot to blog! Ok, not really.  I actually thought about it everyday but could not find the right motivation.

So what did you miss?

Wyatt and I made strides against breast cancer with a few other people from the mom's club on Saturday. 

Wyatt and I are on the right

We fit in church, trip to Orlando, trip to Costco, and dining at Cocina 214 on Sunday.  The owners of the restaurant developed the idea because "two of the owners from Texas missed the Tex-Mex and Mexican food they had grown up eating".  Sounds familiar!  The food was great. The temperature got down to the 60s so we put Wyatt in jeans.  Doesn't he look too grown up?

Monday, Wyatt and I made our first trip to a Disney park.  We visited Animal Kingdom because some friends were going to be there that day.  Wyatt had a great time (aka no melt downs), and he even got in a 45 minute nap in a rocking chair in the Baby Care Center.  I plan to go visit a few more of the parks before we move to our next location.  I was too busy chasing Wyatt and navigating the park to remember to take pictures, so all I have is a picture of his button.

Today, we pick up Hunter's mom from the airport!  We have a Trunk or Treat tomorrow with our MOMs club, and then we are making the trip to Sanibel, FL.  Biking, shelling, eating, and playing are all on the to do list. 

I will probably continue to neglect the blog over the next week.   Gotta work, gotta visit, gotta travel. 

Labels: ,

Friday, October 19, 2012

A Virtual Run For Real Cupcakes

Tonight Hunter, Wyatt, and I ran The Cupcake Classic 2012, a virtual 5K.  Our Moms Run This Town chapter leader baked funfetti cupcakes with pink frosting.  Delicious! I ate one.  Then I grabbed another one "for Wyatt".  He only ate a crumb or two so I HAD to finish his. Before running, we had this Greek Salad with Chicken for dinner and I loved it. You should try this recipe.  Easy peasie too.

I used this virtual 5K as my hard training run, so I allowed my heart rate to go to the high 160s and ran 3.75 miles.  My pace was 11:24 min/mile.  

Tomorrow, Wyatt and I are Making Strides Against Breast Cancer by participating in our local walk.  We will be walking 3 miles...with a lotta ladies wearing pink.  I bought a pink shirt from Target.   I also did a practice session with pink hair chalk.   So easy, even for someone like me!  Happy weekend to everybody. 

Labels: , , , ,

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Pan Seared Burrito

A cooking idea from Hunter and his college roommates: Buy the burrito sized tortillas from the store. Get all of your favorite burrito ingredients together.  Stuff your burrito and roll it like so.  Put some olive oil or butter in a skillet.  Sear your burrito a few minutes on each side so it is crispy. 

How have I never tried this before?  This will not compare to Freebirds but is the best I can do in my current location. 

"Put some hot sauce on my burrito baby!"  A big thanks to Hunter and his college roommates who watched the movie Next Friday more times than you can imagine.

Labels: ,

Monday, October 15, 2012

Heart Monitor Training - 1 Month Update

Ok folks...I have been running about 20 miles a week for the past 4 weeks consistently following the heart monitor training plan.  That breaks down to 5 runs a week - 4 days of easy and 1 day of hard.

Have I improved? Yes.  Have I improved as much as I wanted to? Not yet.  I have only had one "stellar" slow run so far.  I ran 4 miles at 12:16 min/mile Tuesday evening.  There was no stroller, a nice breeze, and I was in a great mood.

As a reminder, I have to keep my heart rate for slow runs around 153 bpm.  My heart rate requirements for the hard runs vary based on the training plan, but in general have to be under 170. 

Week 1 Paces:
3 Mile Easy Run - 15:02 minute mile
1 Mile Hard Run - 11:13 minute mile

Week 4 Paces:
3 Mile Easy Run - 13:48 minute mile
Hard Run Intervals - 14:46 minute mile

I can't really compare the paces for my hard run because week one's hard workout was 1 mile 65%, 1 mile 80%, and 1 mile 65%.  For week 4, I had to run 1 mile 65%, 1 mile striders, 1 mile 400m interval at 80%, and then 1 mile 65%.  After striders, my heart rate is high and I can't do my intervals very fast at all. I even walk all recovery intervals instead of jog.  Maybe I should slow down on my striders but that is the whole point of them.  P.S. I do feel like a maniac running really fast down the sidewalk with my jogging stroller bouncing around.  I always wonder if people think I am being chased.  They might also think I am a super fast runner, but if they wait about 5 seconds they will see me walking again.

So at one month, yay, I have improved.  I have not improved as much as I want to yet but there is definite progress.  I will consider this training plan to be a total winner if I can get my slow runs to around 10:00-10:30 minute mile pace.  That was my slow run pace back in the "good ol in shape days" and my heart rate was probably in the high 160s for that.  Come on heart! You can do it.  I will check back in with everybody in another month.

Related Posts:
Heart Monitor Training - Why Am I Trying It?
Heart Monitor Training - Part 1 - Max Heart Rate
Heart Monitor Training - Part 2 - Resting Heart Rate 
Heart Monitor Training - Part 3 - Hard vs Easy Runs

Labels: , , , ,

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Earl Grey Tea Latte - Almost As Good As Starbucks

I love earl grey tea...usually decaf style.  I am really lame and caffeine affects me big time.  Side note....I am halfway through the book Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking.  This book mentions that many introverts have problems with caffeine.  Something about being sensitive and the body over responding to stimulation.  I thought that was interesting.  Another side note, the Gu Roctane's that I would take while running longer distances back in the pre baby days are like my version of legal performance enhancing drugs.  Those things wooorkkkk for meeee.  Last side note...I would probably keel over and die if I took one of those 5 hour energy things. 

Back on topic.  Starbucks has an excellent Earl Grey Tea Latte that I have done my best to copy at home by surfing the interwebs and trial and erroring.  I shall share with you now.

1. Go to Target and buy the Tazo Earl Grey tea and the Archer Farms Vanilla Coffee Syrup with real sugar.
2. Return home and get your tea pot going. Also, find a mug that can hold around 12 oz of liquid. 
3. Steep 1 to 2 bags of Tazo Early Grey tea in about 8 oz of water in your mug. It needs to be strong.
4. While tea is steeping, find a microwave safe container with a lid, and pour 4 oz of milk into it.  Shake the milk by hand for around 30 seconds to make it all foamy.  Zap it in the microwave for 45 seconds.
5. Pour the milk into the tea.  Add 1 to 2 Tbs Vanilla coffee syrup.  Sprinkle with cinnamon.

Yes, Hunter has one of those fancy coffee machines but I never learned how to steam or froth milk in it because I never got into coffee.  That machine probably also wakes up sleeping children.  Perhaps I will learn this weekend. 

Labels: , , , , , , ,

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

This and That

I am running (barely) 20 miles a week.  I will give a real deal update at the end of this week since that will be one month on the new training plan.

I loved the movie Moneyball.

One more month until cooler weather in I hear.

I am trying to figure out a Halloween costume for Wyatt that doesn't require a hat or anything complicated to put on a toddler.  On my list of possibilities I have...Rambo, Nerd (suspenders), Farmer (overalls), or just an orange jack o lantern shirt (boring).  Please help. I am the least creative person in the world and these kinda things are low priority for me.  Wyatt has some holiday disappointments in his future.

I made a truly spontaneous trip to the beach Monday and in order for it to count as spontaneous, I was not allowed to bring sunscreen or an extra change of clothes. I only had 25 cents which covered 20 minutes of parking in the meter at this beach.  I let Wyatt get a little sandier than planned so I struggled with sand removal back at the truck.  I opened my bottle of Lemon Perrier and poured it on Wyatt's hands.  Worst $0.75 wasted ever.  There was minimal sand removal and I was down half a drink.  I dusted him off with his onesie and we rode home mostly nekee in a sandy diaper.  I let him eat some Annie's bunnies on the trip home so we had nothing but smiles and sand in our teeth!

Labels: ,

Monday, October 8, 2012

Cooking in the 90s

I have in my possession a 1993 Recipes from First Baptist Church of Richmond, TX cookbook.  Hunter pulled the book down and insisted that I make Sharon's banana pudding for him last week.  I flipped through the book and tagged several recipes that I intend to test and share.  Now early 90s was casserole CITY, and almost half of the recipes call for Oleo (whaaa?) or mayonnaise (ewww) so I will modify frequently.  Regardless, there are some good looking recipes.  First up....I need to use the extra buttermilk I have in my fridge from making Homesick Texan's Tomato Pie with Bacon and Jalapeno (Excellent Recipe).

Angel Biscuits with Cheese by Mildred

1 package of yeast
1/4 cup warm water
2 tablespoons sugar
2&1/2 to 3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup shortening or oleo (I plan to use butter)
3/4 cup cheddar cheese, grated
1 cup buttermilk with 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
parmesan cheese

1. Dissolve the yeast in warm water. Add a teaspoon of sugar.
2. Mix the remaining dry ingredients and cut in the shortening.
3. Add the cheddar cheese, buttermilk, and yeast mixture and blend. If too soft to roll, add a little more dough.
4. The dough is now ready to roll and cut into biscuits. Let rise a little more while resting on baking sheet.
5. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese.
6. Bake in 400 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes.
**Dough can be kept in covered container in the refrigerator for several days

Labels: , , , ,

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Music For Your Workout

I am 50% safe during my runs since I only run with one headphone in.  Maybe I can increase that number to 75% safe because I carry the Pink SABRE pepper spray?

Anyways, I like music when I run.  Some of the Pandora Workout mixes that I have mentioned before are great.  But like most Pandora stations, they are great the first few hours of a listen and then they start wandering over into boring music.  Or the remix versions of a song you have already heard 10 times and given a thumbs down to.

I just put the Spotify app on my phone to test out their Radio (Pandora like channels).  I am tempted to pay for a month of Spotify Premium to see if it is worth $9.99.  You can build better playlists, listen to any song on demand, and can listen while offline.  I need to test it out to see if it is better than building my own playlist in iTunes and purchasing songs as I find them. 

There is also an interesting site called Jog FM. You can enter your mile pace and the site will recommend music based on your speed.  This integrates with Spotify.   Jog FM also has an app for your iPhone for $2.99.  Interesting.

How do you find new workout music?   What songs do I need to add to my playlist?

Labels: , , , , , ,

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

My Sweet Little Toddler

Sweet: Wyatt brings me books all day and insists that he sit in my lap with as much of him touching me as possible while we read it.
Not So Much: Reading a 1988 "Mommy and Me" book 17 times in one day. At least I can laugh at their crazy outfits.
Real page from the book

Sweet: Wyatt will eat a whole banana, link of sausage, peach, or serving of rice and beans.
Not So Much: He will refuse to eat that item ever again.  Picky, picky. I don't enjoy the game of what will Wyatt eat for this meal.  Items he will never turn down...pickles, olives, blueberries. I wish I was joking.

Sweet: Wyatt feeds me crackers.
Not So Much: Wyatt feeds me crackers that have been slobbered upon, smashed into his grubby paws, and he won't even let me chew in between.  MUST... KEEP... ACCEPTING....CRACKERS! I just eat them to avoid the wailing. 

We are communicating more and that is a big step.  He points to the fridge occasionally when he wants a drink. "That that that" or "ungh" means I want whatever I am standing next to.  Sometimes "ungh" means my toy is stuck in the sub woofer opening.  Sometimes "ungh" means I can't get my block out of the raisin bran box.

This week feels long to me.  Maybe its all the rain.  Twice now I have loaded up the dipe bag to go out for a walk or to the park and had my dreams shattered by the rain.  I don't know what my deal is.  I am an introvert.  I should be happy to sit in my house with a mostly happy kid all day.  Apparently, I need to be around people more than I thought.  I just don't need to talk to them.  Maybe only see them out doing things..from afar.  Kidding...mostly!  Is it Saturday yet?


Monday, October 1, 2012

New Shopping Plan

Since my favorite hobby / outing / escape is a trip to the grocery store, and I am there 1 to 4 times a week, I have decided to do more price comparisons.

Publix has a great selection, but the prices do seem high.  You pay for the quality and the nice shiny store of course.  Walmart has a decent selection, but is not my favorite place to shop.  That leaves Target.  Target meat prices are a good bit lower than least for this week and at least for flank steak, skirt steak, and chicken breast.  I assumed that Target groceries would be a good bit more expensive than Walmart.  Not true...again, at least for this week for a few staple items.The bread I usually buy is 10 cents cheaper at Target.  The milk is 1 cent cheaper at Walmart.  I will continue to compare for a while, but I think this means I shop at Target for now.

Several of the mamas in my mama's clubs have mentioned the Target REDcard.  Usually, I am not a big fan of the store cards, but I finally decided to sign up for this one. 

With the Target REDcard, you get 5% off of your purchase and it is applied before the bill hits your card.  You see it on your receipt.  You also get free shipping on Target's website.  You can choose either the debit card or the credit card option.  This beats the Discover cash back bonus specials.

Target, me and you will be besties for now.  Don't ruin this relationship for us.  :)

Labels: , , , , ,

Meals For the Week

In attempt to get out of the food funk, I have some recipes picked out for this week.

Baked Chicken Milanese with Arugula and Tomatoes by SkinnyTaste - I heart arugula

Tomato Pie with Bacon and Jalapenos by Homesick Texan  - Buttermilk purchased

Vietnamese Noodle Salad with Chicken by Bev Cooks - I have bean sprouts from a farmer market type of place

I also have a big bunch of dill I need to use.  Please submit your favorite dill dip recipe to me so I can continue to eat tubs of sour cream and raw veggies whenever I am too lazy to make lunch.  I am also considering fridge dill pickles or cheddar dill scones

Labels: ,