Archive for May, 2009

After Heather’s recent post about processed products, I thought I’d add in my two cents (after all, I am a hippie).  

Sure, I’m pretty minimalist in the beautifying department, but I am a girl!!  So what’s a hippie to do?!

Allow me to introduce Caribbean Sol

They have biodegradable everything, including sunscreen, lotion, body wash, shampoo/conditioner, and even self tanner…

According to Dr. Ginger’s “worst, better, best” classifications, the “worst” products have parabens (ew, toxic, ew), while the “best” are natural and paraben free.

Caribbean Sol’s products are made from all organic, biodegradable ingredients.


You can see the ingredients listed on the labels of each and every product here.

Trust me, I’m a huge fan…

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I’ve previously raved about the Onyx Oil here as well as the sunscreen here, and I regularly lather up with the (above) natural cocoa shea body butter and natural kukui body silk before bed.


Shampoo, conditioner, and bathing gel


Peek-a-boo (I spy with my little eye)…an arm in the mirror – and the Caribbean Sol faces only sunscreen.

Sadly, there are a lot of other products from the “worst” column, too, in there.

Below is the natural body satin moisturizer and natural lip balm.

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So clearly I’m a fan…

They even have self tanners and dog shampoo!

Basically I love their products – something a hippie AND a girly girl can enjoy, since often times they are one and the same…hello?  blogger chicas   🙂


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Ugh, my hair is NOT cool with this weather.  NOT cool man, NOT cool.

Today’s food photos are nowhere to be found…I’m not sure where they vanished off to, but the culprit is either my camera or computer (and based on my recent technology-challenged history, it’s the computer).  It’s a shame, too, because I went to Whole Foods on the way home from work (killed the weekly monthly budget), and there were some major food porn pictures from the hot bar.

I guess my computer was jealous of the deliciousness going on, and wanted to eat them too…

Anyways, I have my dessert pictures, so at least there’s that!

First, though, here’s a fun little survey that Nutritious is Delicious tagged me in a few days ago…

1. Picture of where you blog:

Welcome to my “living” room – I put the quotation marks because it’s a New York apartment, and there’s really only one room…so labeling the areas is somewhat arbitrary.


2. Describe the space:

Couch.  Pillows.  The ottoman doubles as a desk for my computer and as a table for my chow seshes. 

A few random things: I rotate between different coasters for my mugs (yes, plural) of coffee, this particular one is from Australia (gift from my sister when she lived there).

Also, the pictures hanging on the wall in the background are all beach/ocean pictures to remind us of home sweet home.


This one I did with oils as a gift to Kyle on our second anniversary (it’s a picture of where he took me (as a surprise) on our first anniversary).

3.  What am I wearing now: PJs (my ever-so-sexy combo of sweatpants + wife beater + slippers)

4. Last read: The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls; Currently reading: The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith

5. Do you ever nap: Nope.  Never.  I’m an insomniac, so if I slept mid-day, I’d never sleep at night.

6. Last hugged: Kyle

7.  Current obsession:  This is hard given my addictive personality…(I’m assuming this question is food related).  If I said hummus, that wouldn’t exactly be accurate, since that’s more of a lifelong infatuation, not some passing whim of an addiction…so, to answer the question, probably falafel (I’m in a bit of a rut right now), and also shredding carrots into ribbon-like noodles.

8.  What’s for dinner?  Haven’t decided yet…we may go out to eat with friends.

9.  Last thing I bought:  Starbucks coffee (at work) and WF hot bar dinner.

10.  Listening to now:  The obnoxious ladies of The View (sadly)   😦

11.  If I could have a super power:  Invisibility?  The ability to fly?  Or maybe the ability to eat and eat and eat and never feel full  (actually, that would be dangerous).  I have no idea.

12.  Favorite weather and why:  Do you even have to ask?!  As if I don’t whine about this enough…

Sunny and warm because I’m a Cali girl and I miss my home state weather!  Plus, I think I have SAD, seeing as how the sun makes me insanely happy regardless of all else in my life (and the rain makes me gloomy)…sorry Portlanders!

13.  Time I wake up:  This varies based on if I’m working or not.  On work days I get up at 5 am, on my days off I wake up whenever…I don’t set an alarm, but it’s usually around 8 am.

14.  Most challenging goal right now:  planning a wedding in CA, while living in NYC.

15.  Fave pair of shoes:  I’ll always go back to my running shoes.

16.  One thing I can’t live without:  Ummmm, Kyle?  Family/friends?  I guess those aren’t “things.” 

Soap.  I could live without a brush – already proved that last week, and I could maybe even survive without a shower (although it would be tough).  But I’m fairly anal about my hands and face being clean.  Maybe that’s a nursing thing…I mean I DO wash my hands 800 times an hour while at work.   It’s amazing I still have skin!  But in all honesty, I try to live my life, so I don’t have an answer to questions like this, since things are just things.  In high school I probably would have said something like my hair straightener, and in college, my cell phone, but now that I’m so much more mature lazier, I have a different set of priorities (if you can call it that, since all my money still goes to Barnes & Noble, Whole Foods, and Starbucks Corporate America).

17.  My bed time:  I wish the answer to this were different…but usually between 12-1 am is when I can finally face plant my pillow.  This is a constant target area for improvement for me. 4 hours of sleep on work nights isn’t acceptable!

18.  One place I wish I could be now:  CA, with my fam/friends or Hawaii (relaxing on the beach) – only 3 more weeks ‘til I’m there!!

**Yes, you read that correctly, I’m going to be in Maui for 2 weeks in June.  Woohoo!

OK, and now, the long overdue dessert pics.


First I had 5(!!) medjool dates stuffed with PB


Then I toasted the heel piece of Alvarado Street bread with peanut butter and carob chips, which melted into this…


Could you just DIE!  This was heavenly (no other word could even come close to describing it).  I wanted to have 25 more slices, but (fortunately) there was no more bread.  I see a grocery trip in my near future!

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I didn’t realize (raw) Wednesday had arrived (already?!) until I was making my lunch last night.  I guess that’s what happens when your schedule is completely random. 


So this is what I packed to eat…but I wasn’t really feeling it.

…so THIS is what I actually ate!

Food creations 

I heart this place.  There’s one in Union Square (easy walking distance from where I work). 

My ravenous appetite was STILL in full force today, so I polished off the apple and odwalla bar by 9 am…meaning by the time I got off the unit for my lunch break, I was ready to get my grub on.

Even though the weather was looking gloomy and rain was only a drip drop away, I had falafel on the brainYou know how it is when you become OBSESSED with the idea of having a certain thing for lunch and suddenly there is no obstacle too great to prevent you from getting it!? That’s how I felt about Maoz. 

I got hummus and falafel with pita.  Mmmmm…

Not one to waste food – I had my RAW salad, too. 

I got off work on time and bolted home, where I had a nice (mostly) pre-made dinner all ready and waiting for me 🙂


If I don’t pre-assemble things before I work, I’ll come home ravenous and end up pounding half a loaf of bread, rather than put together a real meal.

I had loaded the tuperware up with was veggies (mushrooms, bell peppers, tomatoes, and spinach) and BBQ tempeh, drizzled in Country Bob’s All Purpose sauce…


So all I had to do when I got home was throw in HALF an avocado…and some hummus (you didn’t think I could go a meal without it, did you)!?

I finished off my home-made hummus, but never fear, I had a fresh new tub of Sabra ready and waiting for me 🙂

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Sabra love with an English muffin (yes, K, they are Thomas’) and the weirdest shaped carrot.  Mmmm!


This meal was SoOoOo good!

I have given up on the no-snacking after dinner part of the Whole Life Challenge.  So here come the dessert pics!


Wouldn’t be dessert without carob chips and dried fruit!


Back to packing up for tomorrow.  Anything you guys do to prepare for the day (food-wise) that helps you save time – or reduces the likelihood that you’ll opt for “less healthy” options)?

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First of all, I’d like to start off by thanking itsawrapteacher for sharing her love.  She passed along this

…so cute, right?  I think she’s such a lovely, fabulous lady, I hope she knows it!  I, too, feel the support of this entire blog community on a daily basis, so I feel like I should pass on the warm & fuzzies.

I’m supposed to pay it forward to 7 peeps, which is damn near ridic since everyone deserves it, BUT…K, Andrea, Julie, Lara, Jess, Caroline and Brooke – you are true gems!

Sure, it’s silly since I don’t even really KNOW you guys, but I look forward to reading about your lives stalking you and reading your comments on a daily basis…you perk me right up – now if that’s not support, I don’t know what is!

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It was a VERY berry morning.  Strawberry chobz + even more strawberries.


These were the Arnold Schwarzenegger of strawberries.  They were SO huge, I think I only needed 4 to fill the bowl to the brim!


See!!  Massive! 

For lunch, I made a Philly NY cheese steak seitan wrap…yeahhhhh, my version has nada to do with the greasy, cheesy, meaty dish made famous by the city of brotherly love.  Oddly enough though, seitan with veggie slices kinda reminds me of the artery clogging sammie (as gross as that is to admit).  Fortunately, my wrap is a bit more healthy, and pretty simple to make.

1.  Warm tortilla

2.  Add way too much seitan (so there’s no way it will close)


3.  Melt cheddar flavored veggie slices (or any other vegan “cheese”)


4.  Be generous with the avocado


5.  Try to make it healthier by tossing in something green

6.  Stop, drop, and roll (like you’re on fayah!)


7.  Gobble gobble


Lunch was delish, have I convinced any of you to make your own seitan yet?


I had an apple and kiwi before heading off to the gym.  This was the first time I ate a kiwi WITH the fuzz…surprisingly, it was not even noticeable.  So maybe Erin isn’t crazy after all…

I had a mayj BLAH of a gym sesh.  I could hardly force my way through effort level 0 on the elliptical.  Rather than force myself through an additional 30 minutes, I ditched.  Lounging on the couch reading blogs was way more relaxing. 

I had a WF tofu ball to hold me over until dinner.


And an apple…


All day I couldn’t seem to find anything that was satiating.  For dinner I was really really really craving carbs, so I made some hummus and threw everything I could find on a plate to dip into it.  What DOESN’T dip in hummus?  (answer: nothing)


English muffin, mushrooms, steamed broccoli, and carrots…with the best home-made hummus EVAH!

Of course, I needed another plate full of goodies and more hummus, so for the second helping I had more broccoli and another English muffin, and 2 falafel balls.


I was full after this, but still not satisfied.  Hard to explain.  Some days are just like that – what my body wants, my body wants, why try to figure it out…might as well just give in.

All day long I’ve been rockin’ a Kirstie Alley sized appetite, even moments after eating, my tummy was ready for more food.  As if nothing could hold my appetite – so frustrating!  I felt like I was eating to fill up a post-marathon calorie void (only I hadn’t run a marathon).  Grrr…

So I did what any good foodie would do…turned to chocolate

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…and cereal  🙂


Nothing like snacking the day away while expending next to no calories.  I am back to work tomorrow, so I packed my lunch, laid out my scrubs, and got to bed watched Chelsea Lately.


OK, in the interest of full disclosure, I also had this bowl of (way way way too many) carob chips and raisins, despite the fact that I already polished off an entire chocolate bar less than an hour ago. 

Ummm, am I carbo loading or carob loading?

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Monday holiday!  Hooray!


It took this many cups of coffee to get me moving this morning…

Ok, I realize this looks a bit like a scene from Intervention (before the person has recognized they have a problem).  BUT, in my defense, it was for both me and Kyle, and I often make extra (for PM iced coffees), so don’t judge.


I frothed it up of course!

My breakfast wasn’t exactly traditional, but boy was it TASTY!


I forgot to mention how effing amazing these BITE-LETTES were last night.  I would DEFINITELY recommend them.  I could barely control myself from eating the entire tub all at once!  They are like mini-oatmeal raisin cookies – and since they are ”wholesome” and vegan, I don’t feel bad about inhaling them like they would spontaneously combust mission impossible style if I didn’t…


These cookies will self destruct in 5 seconds…


A little later I had a more complete meal to start the day off right.  ‘T’was divine 🙂

Since the weather was BEYOND fabeezy, Kyle and I decided to get our stroll on (whole life challenge – check).  After a few hours of adequately soaking up the sun multiplying our freckles, we returned to our hot stuffy apartment (AC time? I think so).  This east coast weather is very baffling to me.  I know I whine about it all the time, but it’s just so weird how one week it can be in the 30s and next thing I know, I’m sweating bullets in my paper thin scrubs…I mean, I haven’t even had time to put my umbrella away!  Probably because I’ll need it again a week from now…

But before this tangent gets outta hand, let’s get back to the food stuff.



A few more falafel balls, WF tofu, chickpeas, and carrot “noodles.”  YUM!  I really love carrots.  And they are pretty sweet when shredded; a great pairing for savory WF goodies.

I had a few more bite-lettes with silk for lunch dessert. 


After lunch we went to pick up a new suit Kyle had on hold.  We meandered through Riverside Park on the way downtown (I packed a few pineapple rings for the road). 


Could this plastic bag BE any more recycled?  The foggy look is SO hot right now…

Seriously, it’s a good thing we moved apartments a couple of months ago, otherwise I would still be hanging on to bags from 2007, all in the name of being green. 


I was dragging when we got back home – enter iced coffee 🙂

And now, completely random and off topic…

Two things you may or may not have realized about me (1) I do not have naturally straight hair and (2) I am pretty freakin’ lazy when it comes to putting effort into my appearance (my platinum blonde Los Angeles days are far behind me, and not missed in the least). 

So, that said, I may have discovered how I can use my inner slacker and still come out ahead. 


This is 4 day old unwashed hair.  Gross, you say?  Maybe. 

I mean, sure, some of the details of my job aren’t so glamorous…(use your imagination), but I didn’t have any contact precaution patients over the weekend, I didn’t exercise or work up a sweat, AND (not that I have to justify this to anyone but myself) I was out late with co-workers on Saturday night, so I just didn’t get a chance to shower.  And yet, each day I woke up with straighter and straighter hair, which is pretty amazing for not even lifting a brush in over 72 hours!!!  I may be onto something here…

Are you guys AM or PM shower people?  I’m a night time girl for sure.  Especially on days I work, I like rinsing the “nasty” off after a long day, while minimizing my routine in the morning.  But then, I guess going to bed with wet hair explains why it takes me extra long to get ready in the AM – since I have an afro to tame when I wake. 


Back to the food.

I’ll admit, the main motivating factor in going to the gym today, was the shower after. 

C’mon Elise, it’s been 3 days, suck it up and run so you can get clean.

I elliptical-ed for 60 minutes while zoning out to Kanye and the likes. 

When I got home I threw some quinoa on the stove before hopping into the shower…


When they were done, I tossed in some garbanzos

This is an idiot-proof meal.  So easy.  So delicious. 

I ate most of it plain, but then decided to make a salad, too, so I added some into the salad.


Spring lettuce, cherry tomatoes, baby carrots, quinoa, garbanzos, and raisins.



After dinner I decided to get down with Jon and Kate + 8.  Kyle and I did 6 loads of laundry, too.  It’s a good thing all I wear is scrubs and work out clothes (both of which I have in endless supply).


For deezer, I had a few more oatmeal raisin bite-lettes, carobs chips and medjools dates.


OK, I finished them.  How could I leave those last few though.  They were lonely, and I heard them calling my name…

PS I responded to all your comments at the end of my last post. 

PPS Win a blog make-over!!  Zesty is a computer whiz.

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I’ll admit, I wasn’t thrilled when I found out my weekend to work fell on Memorial Day weekend, BUT, as it turned out, Saturday and Sunday weren’t too bad (considering I felt like the only person in Manhattan that had to work).  I guess that’s the effect warm weather has on me. 

The unit felt beyond empty this weekend.  As in, I did 4 crosswords, as well as started and finished a new book.  Don’t worry, I managed to save a few lives somewhere in there, too…

Anyways, I did pretty well with Maggie’s whole life challenge on Saturday.

1. I started the day with a 10 minute rise & shine yoga, which I am realizing should really become a permanent part of my routine on work days because it really does wake me up.

2. I walked to and from work, the subway, and the restaurant where I had dinner.

3. I had a *new* meal for dinner – ok, I went out to dinner, but I think it works.

4. There was zero post dinner snackage (I wasn’t exactly hungry after our 9 pm dinner)…so by the time I got home, I just went to bed.

5. My lunch greens were certainly organic.

6. Ummm…I had spinach in my salad?  Ok, ok, I’ll work on the green smoothies and oats.  Even though I’ll never be as talented as Heather in that department!


Saturday’s work time chow chow.

I also went a little bar crazy on my lunch break on Saturday…


Anyone else notice the NEW packaging of Odwalla’s SuperProtein flavor?  I think it’s the same, but I bought one of the old and one of the new to compare, and the nutritionals are different!!!  I’ll let you know if the taste is the same.

No pictures of Sat dinner because I went out with a bunch of co-workers who don’t know about HHH 🙂

Sunday wasn’t as fabulous challenge-wise.

I still had a great lunch, though. 


I swear, you aren’t doing a double take of Saturday’s eats, I’m just lacking creativity.  Sorry!  Please note the new Dulce de Leche Luna bar addition though. 

Another (new) thing I’ve been doing in this weekend’s salads is shredding carrots with a peeler (I’m so crafty).

AND I made the garbanzo beans from their dried form…so much cheaper, and wayyyyyy better.  Seriously, I was a bit skeptical about giving it a go initially…so for all of you in the same boat, who are questioning the hype about making your own beans…BELIEVE it!!!

Can you believe this……..turned into this!

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Granted it took practically all Friday afternoon, but they are SO much cheaper.  I was amazed at how much they grew, thank goodness I used a big enough pot!  I kept having to add more and more water, I thought it was going to overflow at the end.  I basically just let it simmer on a really low setting for a few hours, and voila – home made beans for a week day!

Anyways, Sunday was just as slow at work, but I was DEAD tired from staying out so late Sat night (note to self: don’t go out with co-workers who don’t have to work the next day)…I definitely couldn’t drag myself out of bed early enough to do any rise & shine yoga. 

As far as the other aspects of the challenge are concerned, I walked a bit, but didn’t exactly hold up my end of the bargain for #3-6.  Oh well, there’s always tomorrow.

Dinner was a hodge-podge because I was starvin marvin by the time I walked through the door.


My doll-face fiancé had stocked the fridge with “Elise” items from WF, which allowed for a quick ‘n easy plate assembly.


Falafel love, tofu love, chickpea love.  LOVE!!!

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Now that’s amore!


I MAY have had a couple rows of these too 🙂

As I lazed on the couch, catching up on my second favorite Housewives, I wished I had more dessert…

As if on queue, my knight in shining armor Kyle pulls out these babies!!!


Whaaaa!!!  Have I mentioned how FAB-U-LOUS Kyle is?!?

Ok, gotta catch up on my shut eye now, night night bloggie loves.

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