Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Snow in Texas

Wow!  I am super late with this post.  It actually snowed 2 weeks ago!  I really hate the cold and despise everything that goes with it!  BUT....snow is beautiful!  Was hoping after a good snow it would warm up a bit, but NO!  The cold weather has stayed.  I am ready for some fresh berries and flip flops!

BTW how is the cleaning out the pantry challenge going?  Any one have any ideas for a can of coconut milk or a can of palm hearts?

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Clean out the Pantry!

The other day my husband asked.."what's for dinner?"  I hadn't really planned anything so I looked in the pantry and realized it was stocked full of everything I could need to prepare an amazing dinner yet I had no idea what to make.  In these types of situations I usualy ask myself what I am hungry for and make that.  If I don't have the proper ingredients I go get them, the store is only 3 blocks down the street.  However, on this day I decided to make something that I already had the ingredients for, no more special trips to the store.  Then I ran across a blog post about using up the food in your pantry during the month of January.  A way to save some money after all of the holiday spending.  I am sure I have enough food in the pantry to last the month of January!  I think this will force be to become creative with the ingredients I have and discover new recipes.

Check out my pantry and fridge...I have enough food to last past January.  How blessed am I to have all of this food available to eat, yet I still complain there is nothing to eat!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Black Eyed Peas & Cabbage

They say for luck and prosperity you should eat black eyed peas and cabbage on New Year's Day.  I wasn't leaving anything to chance, so I definitely focused meal time around these 2 vegetables.  First up was a Portuguese Soup with kidney beans, potatoes and cabbage.  I had made a large pot of this soup about a month ago and froze half to eat for this special occasion.  This is a recipe my Mom found in the Austin American Statesman after eating it at a restaurant in the area.  The restaurant would not reveal the recipe so my Mom was ecstatic to spot it in the paper.  She clipped it out and we have been making it for years.  I have changed up the recipe a little substituting veggie broth for beef broth and eliminating the sausage.  This soup is delicious, the broth is souper flavorful!

After the soup, we chowed on some spiced up black eyed peas.  I used a recipe I found in a Moosewood Restaurant cook book called Indian Skillet Black Eyed Peas.

After dinner we all piled on the couch and watched Eat, Pray, Love, ate popcorn and opened a bottle of wine (Max had water)!  Another relaxing evening on the couch....getting up for work on Monday is going to be torture.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

The best thing about starting a new year is being able to reflect back on the previous year and look forward to the new year with what would you do differently?  A fresh start!  I like to set intentions not resolutions.  Resolutions are always broken, but with intentions you have some wiggle room.  Just like in yoga class, at the beginning I set my intention for the class. What will be the focus in class that day?  Sometimes it is getting better at a pose I have been struggling with or if I have a stressful day it is just focusing on my breathing to relax.  Whatever my intention is I try to stick with it for that class and it allows me something to focus on.  So, here are my intentions for 2011:

  • Almost Vegan:  I have been vegan/vegetarian for the past 2.5 years now.  I always start out the year strong sticking to being vegan, but halfway thru the year I begin to falter and then stay vegetarian for the balance of the year.  So, why do I choose to be vegan?  For me, it is mainly health reasons.  I simply love the way I feel when I eat vegan.  Yes, the environmental and animal issues are important, but the main reason is health.  So, I decided to approach this year with a little different mind set.  I am not going to stress the small stuff!  I mean it's not like I am allergic to dairy...so, if my family want to go out to eat at a restaurant and I get a little butter in my meal, no biggie.   So, that is why I am calling myself..."almost vegan."
  • Exercise:  Being off work this past week has allowed me to slow down and focus on myself a little more. I have been going to yoga and/or the gym daily and it feels awesome.  I am committing to staying focused on exercising.  I will not come home from work and veg on the couch every night.  I will remember how great I feel about myself when I take care of myself and that means sticking to yoga class.
  • Saving $$:  This is a no-brainer, I think we all want to save more money.  I will not become seduced by commercialism trying to convince me that I need materialistic possessions to make me happy.  I will not waste time on the week-ends being herded thru shopping malls using my hard earned money on over priced crap from China.  I will use my precious week-end time to connect with my family and friends.
  • Environment:  This year I want to do more to protect the environment.  Recycling is easy, but what can I do that is not so easy.  I want this to be more of a focus for my family this year.  I know there are tons of way we can improve our lifestyle to be more environmentally friendly, we just have to take the next step.  This year I am committing to taking that next step! 
Looking forward to a fresh start in 2011!