Treating + Retreating

This weekend, I knew exactly what I needed to do. I needed to take a break, slow down, and do what felt best for me. As much as I love going out on the weekends, I also love waking up Saturday morning not hungover. So that’s what I did.

Therefore, the theme of this weekend was treating and retreating (and eating! haha).

cenote omelette

Sunday Brunch at Cenote. An omelette with arugala, goat cheese, sprouts, pesto, capers and mango pico de gallo. Cucumber, kale & mint juice on the side.

By the way – guess who’s off vegan! More on that later.

I took a break from going out, and made lunch dates with friends instead. Rather than sleeping in, I woke up early and tackled some workouts. It felt good! It’s all about balance, right?

Friday started out with some FABULOUSLY repurposed Chipotle leftovers.

Chipotle leftovers repurposed

So good. And so vegan.

I stopped by a nearby co op grocery store and grabbed their Chipotle Potato Salad (to diiiee for), and a cup of Kosmic Kombucha on tap (!!). I put my Chipotle sofritas burrito bowl leftovers over a bed of spinach, and added the potato salad & sliced avocado. Ridiculously good.

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It’s Monday and I Ain’t Even Mad

Something about this Monday just seems not so daunting. Coming off of one of the best weekends I’ve had in awhile, I feel recharged & ready to take on this week.

It was a perfect, glorious weekend filled with live music, friends, and sunshine. This weekend took its time. For once, I didn’t feel like it flew by. What a wonderful feeling!

I even got flowers from the love of my life, TJ.

Flowers from TJ

Okay, you caught me… I’m talking about Trader Joe. ; ) <333

Saturday night, I got real wild and crazy at the grocery store. I was hanging with a friend, and I requested a pit stop at HEB. When berries are on sale, you gotta do what you gotta do!

IMG_5454Posin’ by Bai .. shoutout to my friend Georgie, who is the blogger at In It 4 the Long Run, and the Community Manager for Bai.

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Why I Returned My FitBit (And What I Bought Instead)

You know the running joke that no one can enter Target without coming out with 5,000 impulse purchases?

Yeah, try living within walking distance of a Target. It’s a blessing and a curse, my friends.

On Monday, something inspired me to buy a FitBit. Maybe it’s the way my clothes are fitting… maybe it’s my sedentary desk job… or maybe it’s something in the air during SXSW. But I had been seeing and hearing about FitBits galore, so I went for it.

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I opted for the Flex, which is one of the more common models I’ve been seeing. Granted, I didn’t do much research on fitness trackers before Target lured me in. So I guess I wasn’t really sure what I should expect.

By nature, I’m not very tech-savvy. I consider myself a ‘late adopter’ (marketing nerd!). I will say that the FitBit was very easy to set up and sync with both my phone and laptop.

6 active minutes? Wrong.

I was looking for something that would track my activity and help me get an idea of calories in vs. out. What I found was that the FitBit was great for tracking steps — and not much else.

I fully admit that it could have been user error, but the FitBit did not know when I was working out. It would know if I was walking or jogging, but it didn’t recognize my HIIT or strength workouts from Monday & Tuesday. Bummer!

I also found it challenging to log my food. There’s an extensive database, but most of the food that I eat is not packaged with predetermined nutrition facts. I gave up logging food right away.

fitbit screencap

All in all, I realized the FitBit Flex wasn’t right for me. Which is just fine, as far as my bank account is concerned. : )

I returned it yesterday, and emerged victoriously with this dress, this dress, two workout shirts ($2.57 each!), 3 nail polishes, whitening mouth wash, eye makeup remover, some groceries, fabric softener, and more. See? Who says impulse purchases can’t be practical?!

Sweets and Beets

Your Turn-

  • Do you use a fitness tracker? General thoughts?
  • Best Target impulse purchase you’ve made lately?

Thinking Out Loud~

Oh my gosh, it’s Friday Eve. I’m so thankful because I’m beyond ready for a weekend!

It’s also South by Southwest (SXSW) in Austin, and while I don’t have a wristband or anything, there are some free events going on that I’m excited to check out. But back to the task at hand … rambling!

Thanks to Amanda @ Running with Spoons for hosting one of my favorite linkups where I don’t have to organize my thoughts. My brain stopped working a long time ago anyways.

Thinking-Out-Loud

1. I never want to wish time away, but I’m so ready for March to be over. March was always kind of a poopy month, other than the beginning of Spring. To me it’s just cold and too transitional. No good holidays, either — sorry, St. Patrick.

2. But May is going to be amazing! I’ve got the Dave Matthews concert, Shaky Knees Festival in Atlanta, and a super-long birthday weekend at home to look forward to. Yay for May! 🙂

3. “The deep end is where you prove to yourself that you can swim.” This is a quote that I’ve been telling myself so much lately — particularly in a work context. I first saw the quote on a Free People graphic.

Post image for Free People Horoscope by Tracy Allen, Week of December 15–21

4. I’m excited to get back on my yoga mat. Free classes on the Whole Foods roof should be starting up again soon, and that’s my favorite thing ever.

5. Sooo, I quit my Blogilates challenge with 1 week left. But no regrets. I wasn’t getting what I wanted out of it, and now I’ve cleared up my schedule to work out more efficiently. Back on my HIIT & strength training game!

6. I feel like a new woman. I got my eyebrows done today, and I’m getting my hair cut tonight. I’m so groomed.

7. CCK’s protein black bean brownies are my life. With the addition of my food processor, I can see these being a weekly occurrence in my food prep. Soo fudgy and good, but she’s right – you need the choco chips. ; )

8. After last weekend, Expo West is so on my bucket list. I’d love to go one day! Did anyone get to go?

Sweets and Beets

Your Turn-

  • Anything you’re looking forward to in the next few months?
  • Are you judging me for quitting the Blogilates April Abs challenge? ; ) At least my veganism is still going strong!

I’m Going to Process Evvvverything

So, I finally invested in a food processor. And it’s a game changer.

Homemade hummus, black bean protein brownies & energy bites for lunch

Homemade hummus, black bean protein brownies & energy bites

After a bit of shopping around, I ordered this Black and Decker 8-cup food processor for $26 via Amazon Prime. Can’t beat that deal!

Before, I had been using a Magic Bullet to make smoothies and things. While it served its purpose for a lot of things, I never had much luck using it as thoroughly as the commercials claimed. And after seeing tons of recipes that called for a good old fashioned food processor, I knew it was time.

In the span of 24-hours, I’ve already made:

Vegan pizza with cauliflower/chia crust, kale, mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes and soy cheese.

Vegan pizza with cauliflower/chia crust, kale, mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes and soy cheese.

Next up on my list is Liz (I Heart Vegetables)’s vegan Nut Meatballs and Zucchini Noodles. Anything that’s vegan and incorporates both of my current favorite kitchen gadgets is bound to make its way into my kitchen.

Speaking of which, my other must-have kitchen gadgets include:

    • Spiralizer – because, hellooooo, zoodles!
    • George Forman grill – because everything is better in panini form.
    • Small plates and bowls – because you feel like you’re getting more food when you use a smaller plate. It works!
    • Ramekins – because baked oatmeal.
    • Toaster oven – because when you’re a) single, and b) living in 105 degree temperatures, you don’t always want to turn the oven on.

… Guys, I’m on a roll. I’m going to process everything. Then when I’m done, I’m going to bake it, spiralize it, press it into a panini, and eat it off a small plate. And I’m going to be the happiest girl in the world! ; )

Sweets and Beets

Your Turn-

  • What’s your favorite food processor recipe?
  • Other favorite kitchen gadgets?

Worth A Read: Whole Lotta Love for Whole Foods

Not much to blog about today, I just wanted to share this article I stumbled upon. It’s called “Whole Lotta Love for Whole Foods in Austin,” and it was just published this week in the Houston Chronicle.

In a lot of ways, the article captures my love for the Whole Foods flagship store here in ATX. I knew anybody who might read my blog would appreciate it.

The author writes, “my first date with my beau was at the Austin flagship Whole Foods.” That’s basically my dream!! Haha. I could never date a guy who didn’t appreciate a good veggie. ; )

Whole Foods headquarters in Austin, TXIn case you missed it – check out my post about my office holiday party on the roof of Whole Foods. It was a great time – good food, drinks, and ice skating!

Aaaand now I want the salad bar. ; )

Sweets and Beets

Gluten Free Expo + Sweet Deals

This weekend, I had the opportunity to attend the Gluten Free Food Allergy Expo at the Austin Convention Center, representing Oatmega.

Austin Gluten Free Food Allergy Fest 2015

I personally am not gluten free, but it was interesting to chat with people about their gluten free lifestyles. I’ve known people who have eliminated gluten for various reasons. But I’m always so amazed when people tell me they need two sets of everything in the refrigerator, etc. (I thought of you, Emily!)

I enjoy working grocery store demos for Oatmega, but I really love going to events like this because I get to meet other vendors & like-minded consumers in the nutrition world. I could talk about it for hours — which is a good thing, because that’s what I have to do. : )

Oatmega bars are gluten freeAnother perk of working events like this is the freebies. I came home with 3 mini packs of Barney’s Cocoa Coconut Almond Butter (amaaaazing), Rhythm Foods kale chips, Enjoy Life sunflower butter granola bars, and a few other goodies.

This stuff was so good, I think a jar is calling my name.

Speaking of freebies & gluten free goodies, I received some exciting mail after returning home from the Expo on Saturday. Coupons!

Purely Elizabeth coupons

A few weeks ago, I filled out an online survey from Purely Elizabeth, and received these free product coupons in return. I’d say that my 15 minutes was well worth it!

I’ve already spent the coupons on my favorite granola (Cranberry Pecan <3) and the new-to-me Cranberry Pumpkin Seed Ancient Grains oatmeal. Can’t wait to try!

Another sweet deal I enjoyed yesterday was an amaaaazing acai bowl at Blenders and Bowls in Austin. They were doing a promotion for get a large bowl for the price of a small, and I couldn’t pass it up.

IMG_5243

I opted for the “Green Bowl” with acai, spinach, avocado, strawberry, banana, apple juice, cucumber, hemp granola and sliced almonds. So delicious – but just a treat. These babies are pricy!

Though it wasn’t exactly acai weather outside, it was a glorious Monday treat. It’s the little things!

Sweets and Beets

 Your Turn-

  • What’s your favorite Purely Elizabeth or Barney Butter product?
  • Have you ever had an acai bowl?