Category Archives: running

Carrot an Apple Juice

I started my 4th of July with an interval run and some carrot and apple juice. Maybe that will break my current phase of wanting to eat everything in sight (yesterday was anothet disastrous snacking at the office day).


I bought a juicer about 2 weeks ago after wanting one for a long time. My dad always made carrot and apple juice for our weekend breakfasts, and I’m going to continue that tradition with my own family. I will be just as insistant as he was that my kids should drink it right away to get all the nutrients and annoy them with talk about how good carrots are for your eyes.

One secret tip he taught me: add a little bit of olive oil to your glass for extra energy and to bind the nutrients!


I used a medium-sized bag of organic carrots and two small, organic apples.

Happy fourth!


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A Case of the Summers

Woah, I’ve apparently been on a blogging hiatus for a whole week now. That’s mostly because our kitchen hasn’t been its usual self, as in a place of inspiration, but rather a battlefield of take-out boxes and dirty dishes. You know how it is – a trip out of town, an unpleasant stomach virus, and a crazy work schedule can do quite a bit of damage. Plus, it’s June, my absolute favorite month of the year, and I’m having a hard time following routines and pursuing long-term goals right now. I want to be outside, soaking up the sun, smelling the freshness everywhere, and living in the moment.

To add to all that, we’re going out of town again this Wednesday on a driving trip to the Carolinas. I’ve never been and am excited to add four new states to my list of currently 39 – Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. We’re meeting grad school friends in Wilmington for a conference and also just vacationing. I can’t wait to swim in the warm Atlantic. Also, I have some great vegan/vegetarian restaurants I’m eying up for eating, so the blog will thrive off this trip as well.

Right now, I’m sitting on our balcony enjoying this perfect, non-humid Monday night with a glass of red wine, not thinking about much of anything. So here are some pictures I did manage to take in the last week.


I made this quickie spinach salad to eat next to sick Dave last week. We watched “The Wave” on Netflix while I ate – seriously a movie you should watch, and I’m not just saying that because it’s German.


Quinoa spinach salad I made for our Memorial Day cook-out with friends. Here is the recipe. The dressing is amazing.


Memorial Day dinner. I’ve been eating meat again outside of home on occasion, which I have mixed feelings about. My desire to avoid it has taken ethical dimensions as well as health-related ones, so eating it doesn’t make me feel great. I think I need to get over the need to put a label on my diet and just be happy that I have very healthy habits 95% of the time. We shall see.


Dave and I roasting marshmallows for our Memorial Day s’mores.


Oh, and the best of all: our friend Mark makes the best cocktails – this one had rum, coke, crushed basil, and maybe other things.


Dave’s mid-week dinner creation: Barley soup. Really good and really well-spiced.


Thursday night, we had dinner at Gigi’s, a restaurant in our neighborhood that’s trying to be up-scale, but failing, while we still appreciate its tappas menu and outdoor seating. For desert, we split a pear crisp with vanilla ice cream. Quite delightful.


Friday night, Dave made green bean casserole. On the balcony, paired with a wheat ale, it made for the perfect weekend starter.


Saturday breakfast. I felt like I had to compensate Dave for coming on a 3-mile run with me. Poor guy, his allergies were really kicking in, and he was sneezing all the way through. Claritin to the rescue (at least until we find a more natural remedy)! I made coffee, scrambled eggs in almond milk, avo slices, and toasted whole wheat bread with Daiya Cheeze, tomato slices, and scallions.


After breakfast, Saturday was all about the lake, reading, and soaking up the sun. At nearly 90 degrees, we also needed some good sunblock. But regardless, the 3ish hours we spent here, swimming, playing Yahtzee, and relaxing were glorious.


Sunday breakfast: banana pancakes with Earth Balance and Pennsylvania maple syrup. I also made some crepes-like creations, which I rolled around Nutella and ate without prioritizing photography.


Today’s lunch (vegetarian wrap and sweet potato fries), courtesy of my co-worker, which we ate while working through lunch-hour during a 9-hour collaborative excel project in the conference room. Fun times!

I have been sticking to my summer work-out routine every day, which has been especially fun due to my new Asics.


Such great colors. I’m doing a 3-mile run one day and an interval run with weight lifting interspersed on the next. Friday is rest day. Dave has come to my last three work-outs. Yesterday, he challenged me to competitive interval sprints and I lost every time. How does this guy never exercise and still beat me like that?

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Filed under Breakfast, deserts, drinks with dinner, eating out, running

Breakfast and a Book

It has happened – Dave has now contracted my flu and is down with a fever and stomach cramps. It’s been quite the week around here. I finally felt better on Saturday, and then Sunday he started. But we’re hoping to still make it to our friends’ house tonight for a Memorial Day BBQ, even if Dave won’t be able to eat anything.

So yesterday, while he slept, I was on my own enjoying my Sunday between some much-needed laundry-doing and working out. I started my day with some nice reading time and my favorite breakfast.


After four days of having no appetite whatsoever, I was delighted to wake up to a growling stomach. I made myself some toasted whole-wheat bread with avo and two fried eggs on top. I added almond milk and maple syrup to my coffee and enjoyed some organic strawberries on the side.

I picked the book I was reading up on Saturday – Heart of the Matter by Emily Griffin. I had read another one of her books before (Something Borrowed) and think her writing is perfect for some addicting, mindless leisure reading. I finished Heart of the Matter in less than 24 hours. It also reinitiated a desire in me to write fiction. That happens all the time though, so we shall see.

Poor Dave couldn’t eat anything other than apple sauce and some crackers, so I stuck to simple fare for the rest of the day – a smoothie and some sesame almonds for lunch, and a spinach salad for dinner.

In the afternoon, I did my first post-sickness work-out, which was great. I went for an interval run in the neighborhood in perfect 66-degree and sunny weather and then hit our apartment complex’ gym for some weight lifting. I want to focus on toning my upper arms a bit, so I came up with a simple routine. Yesterday was my second time doing it. In an ideal world, I would do intervals and weights every other day, and 3-mile-ish steady runs in between, with one six-mile run on the weekend. I just realized that should be my summer work-our regimen, now that Memorial Day has officially ushered in summer.

Today, I’m going to go to the mall to try and get some holiday deals. My knees are demanding a new pair of Asics.

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Three-Course Turkish Dinner

After running 6 miles on Sunday morning (first time doing a longer run since my Half Marathon on April 13), I spent most of my day in the kitchen preparing an elaborate Turkish dinner.


Aren’t my head-band and flowery apron something? Dave was handling the food photography because he got excited to use the tripod and a nicer camera than my iPhone (which I usually use). Anyway, I didn’t know he would put me into 80% of the pictures or I would have chosen to look less ridiculous.

Now to the task at hand: Cook a three-course Turkish dinner for four people in three hours. All three recipes were new to me, but the cookbook Sultan’s Kitchen has been phenomenal so far, so I wasn’t too worried about it.

1. The Appetizer – Grape Leaves Stuffed with Pine Nuts, Currants, and Rice


Just looking at this has me wanting to make another batch of these beyond-delicious things. It was my first time making vegetarian grape leaves. In the past, I’ve stuffed them with rice and ground beef or lamb. But no longer. The combination of pine nuts and currants with cinnamon, dill, and parsley is out of this world. Sprinkled with lemon-juice, they’re a fresh, tangy summer treat. They could be their own meal and I definitely devoured the left-overs for lunch on Monday. Triple yum!

We served them with some fresh baguette and Raki – an anise flavored liquor that no Turkish meal should be without.

2. The Main Course – Flounder Fillets Stuffed with Pine Nuts, Spinach, and Scallions

Holy moly. Flounder fillets are expensive. The recipe called for 3 lbs., but that would have meant $45, so I decided to get four and divide all the other ingredients in half too. That was a good choice, since we had so much other food, too.


First, you cook the pine nuts in olive oil until they’re golden brown, then you add garlic, spinach, and scallions and saute the mixture until it has wilted. After letting it cool, you place the desired amount in the center of the fillet and then fold it over, holding it together with a tooth pick.


Number one and two.

Then, you steam the fillets in a mix of dry white wine, chopped tomato, lemon juice, spices, and dill for eight minutes. When it’s done, you sprinkle it with parsley.


We served this course with bread and a choice of red and white wine. Don’t you want to take that piece of baguette and make it soak up the delicious sauce? The dish was the perfect mixture of herbs, fish, and a tangy mix of wine, tomato, and a kick of spiciness due to paprika and red cayenne pepper. So good. So so good.

3. The Desert – Rose Water Pudding


This was a basic pudding made with whole milk, heavy cream, sugar, and cornstarch, but the rose water gave it a very unique flavor. We actually sprinkled these servings with cinnamon before putting them on the table, but were too absorbed into conversation by that time to remember taking pictures.

It was so much fun to try three new recipes and introduce our friends to Turkish cuisine. They seemed to really enjoy everything. Dave and I definitely loved all three dishes, so we’ll definitely make them again. The leftover grape leaves definitely were a special Monday lunch treat.


Filed under deserts, drinks with dinner, leftovers, recipes, running, seafood, Turkish

Tied for Best Breakfast

Saturday’s breakfast was sweet potato pancakes…


… which I later topped with almond butter and maple syrup. This has been a weekend favorite for a while now, but today it got serious competition.


Whole wheat baguette with avocado and poached eggs. This was a team effort between Dave and me – he was very excited to get the poached eggs just right after rejecting my idea to make this with eggs over easy.


Yummy yolky perfection.


I am also still high off my Settlers of Catan victory last night.


We had friends over for wine and ice cream, played this, and watched a movie.

Since my half marathon a month ago, my running resolve hasn’t been quite what it used to. I think it’s because I put so much pressure on myself right away to get faster and do a ton of intervals. But really, what I need to do is just keep running. So today, I’m going to do 6 miles with no pressure – just enjoying myself.

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Of Dark Runs and Cemeteries

I’m a huge weirdo for many reasons, and one of them is that I like cemeteries. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t deliberately go to them just to, you know, creep around. Nor would I ever step on one by myself at night because that would be scary. But I like history and genealogy and thinking about all the individual lives that happened in the span of time (nerd alert).

So today I hung out on a cemetery. But more about that later.

Dave and I got up at 5 today to go to the gym and continue with his German lessons. When we got to our apartment gym, we couldn’t believe our eyes, but there were already two girls in there working out – at 5:15 am. I know that’s not even that shocking, but it was the first time this ever happened.

Two people kind of fill up the place, so we had a problem. Dave suggested we run outside. This was a bit of a crazy idea because it was pretty cold and also pitch black. We were only in shorts and t-shirts, but we just started running. After we warmed up and it got a bit lighter out, it was actually pretty enjoyable. I quizzed Dave on German declinations as we were going. Yes, you may judge.

Back at the apartment and happy to be warm again, we had some breakfast and went over more German grammar.


Omelette with goat cheese, salsa, and avocado slices. Oh, and the first of four cups of coffee I’ve had so far today (oops).

When lunch came around at work, I was too tired to think straight. That’s because we have been going to bed kind of late and today is the day it’s catching up with me. So I decided to go for a walk with my Spotify spring playlist.

This is where I ended up.


This is the Woolrich cemetery. I sat down in the shade, listened the music, and called my mom and a friend.

This is an especially intriguing cemetery because it’s really old. Woolrich was founded in 1830 by John Rich II, and many 19th century Rich family members are buried here. When I first got hired, I read the Woolrich history book and then later discovered the graves of many people mentioned in it here. Kind of cool, at least to weirdos like me.

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“What in the World Are You Eating?”

I ventured into the world of quinoa for breakfast this morning. That was mainly because I had leftover quinoa from last night’s dinner, which was this:


Looks appetizing, right? It was quinoa, kale, and sauerkraut with a sauce made out of sunflower seed butter, red pepper, almond milk, and nutritional yeast. I liked it, but Dave thought it was absolutely disgusting due to the nutritional yeast. He hates nutritional yeast and I knew this, but chose to ignore it. He has now officially requested never to have to eat it again, so I will begrudgingly enjoy it by my lonesome in the future.

That said, the dish really must look disgusting because when I was eating it for lunch today, the VP in charge of our department walked by and asked “What in the world are you eating?” in bewilderment. “Ummmm, sauerkraut, kale and”… was my response, and then “it’s very healthy.” Not sure the man has ever heard of half of the ingredients, so I chose to spare him the details.

Anyways, back to today’s breakfast.


My usual oatmeal combo with quinoa instead: quinoa, a fried egg, avocado, and nutritional yeast. Got my brain going for our daily morning German lesson. I also love grapefruit for breakfast, but haven’t had it much at all recently. Today I did, obviously.

My lunch run was so fun because the weather was amazing and perfect and all the glorious adjectives you want to use for 60 degrees and sunny when it’s April and everything is blossoming. I did intervals and listened to Turkish music.

When I got home, I was starving, but we wanted to play tennis before it got dark out. There was not enough time to make the Daiya casserole I wanted to make, so Dave creatively saved us and made a citrus salad.


It had lettuce, avocado, grapefruit, and a dressing made from olive oil, grapefruit juice, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. It was perfect because it kept my stomach from eating itself but wasn’t to heavy to play tennis right after eating it.

The score of tonight’s game is so embarrassing, but I’ll share it anyway: 15:2 for Dave. There were a lot of sad spins around myself without actually hitting the ball, so Dave had plenty of opportunity to ridicule me. Now I am eager to start weekly Sunday volleyball with our friends because that’ll be his payback 🙂


April 26, 2013 · 9:09 pm