Archive for September 13th, 2010

This weekend was a reminder of why Kyle and I moved back to the West Coast.  No offense NYC, but when it comes to the weather and the social scene, California is where the party’s at! 

I may be well out of college, but that doesn’t mean I’m an old fart (yet).  This weekend I was drawn to keg parties and tailgates like a moth to a flame. 


I don’t mind a seedy bar once in a while either.

But before I get to the brew-fueled festivities, let me back up to Friday.

You like my new pink Wifey mug?  It was a gift from my husband ;) 


I had mega frothy coffee while making headway in my job search.  Keep your fingers crossed for me! 

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I decided to break the fast with a bang.  Pancakes are a rare craving because I don’t wake up with an appetite.  But there are always exceptions when my stomach is involved, and on Friday that meant pancakes.

Vegan Whole Wheat Banana Vanilla Pancakes

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 3 drops NuNaturals vanilla stevia
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 banana (mashed up)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup So Delicious coconut milk French Vanilla “creamer”

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Check out the banana inside.  Yummm…

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After such a hearty breakfast (I’m usually into lighter fare in the AM), noon came and went and I still wasn’t hungry for lunch.  Since I had a date with a friend in the early afternoon, I headed out with an apple as back-up (hanger management, if you will). 


In-apple-propriate crotch shot.

We did some hospital stalking (job research at it’s finest) and then I came home to make a real meal.


For lunch I finally got a taste of the hottest ticket in town, DAIYA

I was scared to purchase the entire $5.99 bag (that’s a big expense if – heaven forbid – I didn’t like it).  Fortunately, for economical people like myself, Whole Foods sells it in smaller containers at a fraction of the price.


I started with the cheddar flavor. 


Vegan grilled “cheese” with a Zevia cola on the side.  Have you entered my Zevia giveaway yet?


Now I know what all the hype was about!  It does melt.  Win for me.  Loss for my poor bank account.

Later on I hit the road for a quickie 3 mile run and my daily Vitamin D dose, and then came home to shower and make dinner. 


All I wanted was more Daiya, so I threw together a recipe that is definitely delicious enough to share.

Cheezy White Bean Dip

  • 1/2 can cannellini beans
  • 1/2 can garbanzo beans
  • 1/2 cup “ bean juice” from can
  • 1 tsp xanthan gum
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup vegan cheddar “cheese”




I had it with veggies first…and after licking the plate clean of every last drop, I decided to make it into a second course, too.


Sweet tater with cheezy bean dip.  Can you believe how long it had been since my last sweet potato!?!  Criminal.


Winner winner faux cheese dinner. 

The night could have ended there and I would’ve considered it a success, but it continued on…


Let the good times roll…


Isn’t it amazing how pouring a can into a glass instantly makes Bud Light a classy beverage?  Or maybe that’s just my opinion. 

I was one beer deep before doing my hair and make-up to go out (poor decision), and two beers deep as we headed off to a friend’s place for some good old fashioned Friday night shenanigans. 


Sweet photog skills. :P  Let me fill you in on a little secret I recently discovered…grad students know how to party.  Why didn’t I choose a career in which happy hours were justified as networking opportunities?  I was just trying to hold my own.


PM snackage went down.  The above photo needs no further explaining. 

Saturday morning was a bit rough as a result, which made a double dose of java almost as necessary as air.  I probably could’ve used an IV to rehydrate myself, but coffee is much more practical. 


Recovery was the name of the game on Saturday morning, but by the PM we were off to Main Street to get our race day packets.


Oh, did I forget to mention Kyle signed us up for a 10K while we were on our honeymoon?  The couple that runs together…who knows. 


Lunch was a new creation, involving a revamped sammie of my favorite ingreds.


Avo. Chickpeas.  Daiya.


I hand-mashed the chickpeas so they would be a bit chunky, but still stick together and then added them atop a bed of melted Daiya “cheese.”  They were on the same slice of bread, which made the cheddar fairly elusive in the above photo, but a little queso goes a long way.  Smooshed into the other slice was half an avocado.  All together now…


Trio to be repeated. 


Like I said before, Kyle and I had to pick up our race packets with our bibs and goodies on Saturday afternoon, so I grabbed an apple for the road and off we went!


We stopped on the way home to get sweat bands, and I just had to take a photo with my girlfriend role model.


Hi Jillian!  Thanks for introducing me to strength training – I had no idea what I was missing out on!  Soon my abs and arms will look just like yours 😉


The walk back home took a bit longer because I was side tracked by Santa Monica’s community garden.


Note to self: work out green thumb soon. 


We also made a trip to The ‘Bucks for two iced soy mistos…and swung by WF for some essentials (bread)…and stopped into a sports bar to check up on the Federer match… 

After all the detours on our walk back to the casa we finally made it home…but it was a short lived layover in the hippie household.  No rest for the weary social.

Where were we off to, you ask?


Here’s a hint: it involved 75 minutes of traffic…and pre-packed eats.


Sure, the Rose Bowl is legendary in the sports world, but in the food world it is seriously lacking.  Vegans consider this your warning (unless you are willing to make a meal out of kettle corn).  Fortunately I smuggled in the above eats (minus the PranaBar which met it’s fate in the looooong car ride to Pasadena). 

PranaBar = My new favorite company.  Period, end of sentence.  I prefer real food to bars, but each and every flavor is perfection.  I could go on and on (consistency, size, texture, ingreds – nothing I would change).

18 Rabbits Bar – Of all the flavors, the Belle Bananas Foster was the last left on my shelf.  It was good, but not one I’d buy again.  It tasted exactly (and I mean exactly) like a bowl of oats with bananas and walnuts on top.  I don’t like walnuts, but if you do, this is the bar for you!


Tailgating at the Rose Bowl really takes me back.  Too bad not much has changed since I was an undergrad…drunk frat boys, long bathroom lines, and a losing team. 


Still, I love it all.  We left early enough to get home before midnight since we had such an early wake up call the following day.


True enough, Sunday morning Kyle and I got a bright and early start to the day with the Lexus 5000 Santa Monica 10K.  I look deceptively chipper for 6:30 am. 


We rarely run races together, but this was a nice route and I really enjoyed having a partner.  You like our new sweat bands?  Kyle wanted one for his head, so I was the lucky recipient of the unclaimed wrist band.


It was a chilly morning in Santa Monica, but the commute to the starting line wasn’t too bad.  We took the bus and arrived 8 minutes before the horn went off, which was perfect timing (in my opinion).  No need to shiver myself silly 30 minutes before it’s even go-time. 

I’m not sure what kind of turnout I was expecting, but there were way fewer runners as compared to the past races I’ve done in NYC.  I’m not accustomed to having so much space! 

The course was a slow and steady uphill for the first 4 miles, which was a bit tough, but it was all worth it once we hit the last two miles.  Downhill to freedom!  Weeeee!

I finished in 47 minutes (not too bad considering my honeymoon exercise consisted of…stretching eating). 

And now I’m officially a Santa Monica runner.  Watch out, a half marathon may be calling my name in the near future…


After a scalding shower, I warmed up even more with a few cups of joe.  It’s weird but I always feel freezing after morning runs.  The walk home was fine because my muscles were still warm from the race, but once I got home and stretched out, my body cooled down and I was left feeling pretty brrrrrr…weird. 

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If it aint broke.

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This batch of banana vanilla pancakes was topped with cinnamon.

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I polished off the entire stack.  Happy belly.  Happy hippie.

If you know me, you know what the rest of the day was devoted to.

I know I’m a nerd, but I love love love Fantasy Football.  Kyle and I went to a friends house to watch games.  He has a 63 inch TV.  Do you have any idea how big that is?  It’s ridiculous. 

This post is getting mighty lengthy, so I’ll wrap it up with my gorgeous PM snack. 

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Tropical frozen fruit + So Delicious coconut “creamer” + ice ice bay-bay

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Not too bad for our first weekend after the honeymoon.  Seriously, who needs a job when you have such a rockin’ social life? 

Don’t forget, you have until Tuesday afternoon to enter my Zevia giveaway.


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