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zoe & the beatles

just a twenty-something vegan navigating healthy, positive living with a little help from her friends john, paul, ringo & george!

Category Archives: greens

(points for anyone who can correctly identify the movie the title of this post came from!)

but seriously. lately, my kitchen has been pumpin’ out some seriously bitchin’ foods.

take, for example, coconut butter!

quite possibly the easiest thing in the world to make. take unsweetened, flaked coconut (i used bob’s red mill brand but who really cares) and process in a food processor until smooth and creamy and oh-so-delicious.

other oh-so-deliciously bitchin’ food?

the yo soy mucho bowl, a la cafe gratitude! k and i cooked it up a few nights ago. in that (cafe gratitude bowl!) is wild black rice (our modification!), shredded romaine, delicious guacamole, and salsa fresca. all homemade, all awesome. the cashew nacho cheese comes straight from ashley of edible perspective. girl knows what she’s doing! this was a huge hit (four friends joined us for dinner!)

another huge hit? (am i annoying you yet?)

spicy swiss chard wrap! served alongside some mary’s herb crackers & hummus (duh)

the innards

wild black rice (a new favorite) and sprouted quinoa mixed with left-over cashew cheese and hot sauce, diced red onion, julianned orange bell pepper, and some avocado slices. peeeeerfection at its finest.

more perfection? (yes, i am entertaining myself) today’s lunch!

roasted carrots with roasted cauliflower and a delicious cheesy (vegan cheese, of course) quesadilla on the side…

you bet i smothered that in hot sauce. although i love daiya, i don’t think it quite likes my stomach…

but know what did like my stomach?

this pretty pink smoothie! made with frozen mango chunks and frozen organic raspberries. and water. topped with unsweetened coconut flakes and puffins! i found puffins on sale (like serious sale) and totally swooped up two boxes. score!

i’m having so much fun in my kitchen again. some foods still make me anxious (hellooo pizza, pasta, and bread!) BUT guess what? i eat rice. yeah, i said it — I EAT RICE! not white because i hate it (always have, nothing new) but brown, black, wild — throw it at me.

i’m proud of myself. i’m striving to create a happy, healthy, balanced environment in which to live in. and it feels amazing. some days it’s difficult to beat down the negative voice in my head and i compensate by over eating or under eating. and, sometimes, the grumble in my stomach ignites a feeling of happiness. on days i feel anxious skipping a meal or working out past the point of exhaustion sound like solid ways to deal. sigh. i’m working on it. it’s an incredibly odd thought, really, to want so desperately to be healthy in mind and body yet want, at the same, time to cling desperately to unhealthy habits.

this year i need to focus on one thing and one thing only: to let my negativity go. i know the happy, whole person i can be without this awful negativity constantly in the back of my mind. i need to find the happiness in myself. i’ll get there, with a lot of patience and determination and self compassion, that much i know.

i wish you a wonderful start to your week as this lovely weekend draws to a close. well, not for me actually! somehow i managed to get saturday, sunday, AND monday off! tomorrow i will enjoy a climbing session with k and my friend joe. i’m excited. are you interested in rock climbing? ever wanted to do it? ever done it?! regardless, keep your eyes out for a post about climbing soon!

have a magnificent monday!

namaste

zoe

happy monday to you all!

after opening at work the past three days, i finally have a day off! feels good. i just completed a thirty minute basic pilates mat work video. i think a certain pilates enthusiast might be proud of me 😉 and i am now slurping down a beautifully purple smoothie in a bowl. fruit for breakfast = a happy, happy me.

you know what else equals a happy, happy zoe? sunday morning farmer’s market in my home town! after work (5 am – 9…flew by!) i sped home to meet my aunt and my dad at my hometown’s farmer’s market. it’s a pretty big one and yesterday it was so crowded. but it still rocked. i ended up with a huge (2 dollar!) bushel of kale, some assorted summer squash, four bags of raw crackers, a bitchin tomato (i forget what kind :(), and some organic basil. i also proceeded to eat a million peach, plum, and nectarine samples which were followed by a spicy avocado wrap from the raw foods stand. oh, and i most definitely flirted with the guy running the squash stand. he may or may not have influenced my decision to purchase said squash 😉

something i noticed yesterday: i ate about 96% raw! fruit for breakfast. raw spicy avocado wrap for lunch. apple and carrot for a snack. massaged kale salad with raw yellow squash, homemade farmer’s market pesto, peas and raw crackers. and, since i was in town, a slice of raw layer cake from cafe gratitude. the only non-raw things: some almond butter and some hummus. i felt awesome all day. raw foods agree with my body very well!

okay, okay, on to what you’re really curious about…

my falafel recipe!

well, i shouldn’t say my recipe. i adapted it from isa chandra moskowitz’s recipe. she’s the author of this book i absolutely love:

but to get her recipe, i recommend getting her book. it’s awesome. here’s the way my vegan, gluten free falafels went down:
what you need
2 cup cooked chickpeas (i used up all the ones i soaked so i just used canned)
1/4 cup sprouted bread (i used alvarado)
2 tablespoon garbanzo bean flour (i use bob’s red mill!)
1 small red onion
2 cloves garlic
1/2 t baking powder
1 t cumin
1 t coriander
1/4 t cayenne pepper
1/4 cup parsley
1/2 t salt
black pepper

what you need to do
process chickpeas and bread crumbs in a food processor until chopped and combined. add everything else and process until it’s just about smooth. refrigerate for at least half an hour. (i chilled mine for about an hour just cause i went out right after making them)

after it’s chilled, preheat the oven to 375. pop spoonfuls of the mixture onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. make sure they’re not super thick or it will take forever to cook (lesson learned). bake for about 15 minutes on each side. remove from oven. barely allow cooling time. smother in tahini dressing (unfortunately this is not my recipe, it’s isa’s. so i cannot give it out but i can tell you it’s delicious!) and promptly eat.


(not pictured: a big old side of broccoli i ate while waiting for these to cook. i was starving, what can i say ;))

the next day i wrapped them in a giant collard green for lunch!

bad picture but i assure you, twas tasty.

the other day i bought some baby bok choy too! i whipped some up for lunch:

simply steamed with garlic and olive oil and doused in lemon. served over brown rice.

and now for the words part of my post. remember when i asked if you all wanted to see a bit of my real writing, not just my ramblings and musings? well, here you go! this is the beginning of a story i wrote last semester for my short story fiction class. feel free to laugh, dislike it, or provide constructive criticism where you see fit. i have not edited it, either. it’s called “ghosts of pumpkins past” (yeah, i suck at naming things.) and, please note, i use some “strong language” in here.

The man sitting across from me looked nervous. He hunched forward on his elbows and wore his hat low on his forehead. The brim skimmed his eyebrows, the eyes beneath them at times passing quickly to the left and then to the right. The plastic name tag clipped to his shirt read ‘visitor’ in red, capital letters, his real name already disposed of by my memory. Fluorescent lights bleached the color from his skin, leaving it tinted yellowy-gray, like the sun’s rays through fog. I smiled. The question he asked a moment before with a tone of forced confidence hung heavily in the silence bridging a gap between us. I cleared my throat.
“So, you want the short answer, or the long answer?”
He chuckled, as if confused. “Well, ma’m, I think the long answer might benefit me more.”
I sighed, though kept smiling all the same. “All right. Long story it is.”
The man’s lips mimicked mine and twisted into a thin, apprehensive smile. I’m sure he fancied himself covert, but the greedy appetite for the story-of-the-century gleamed in his beady brown eyes. Anticipation caused him to blink frequently and every couple of seconds his tongue smoothed over his cracked lips.
“I rarely discuss incidences involving the woman who happened to birth me,” I finally said after a long pause, “but, considering the circumstances, I’ll break my one golden rule.”
Excitement dilated his pupils. No longer did his eyes bounce from side to side, oh no. Now they rested solely on mine. “I bet you think you are special,” I asked. The grin alighting his face told me he did. “Please,” I said, “don’t.
My relationship with my mother started in the back seat of a beat down chevy pick up in the middle of bum-fuck, Nebraska. This was the place my mother quenched her thirst for rebellion, with some boy’s pee-wee shoved between her legs. Whatever makes you feel loved, right? Anyway, one pee-wee accidentally forgot to pull out during the grand finale and alakazam!” I paused for dramatic effect, throwing up my free hand and leaning closer towards him. The man, who looked so thoroughly absorbed already — eyes unblinking, teeth nibbling the bits of loose skin around his nails — jumped. I relaxed back into my previous position and continued. “Nine months later, I popped out, bursting a blood vessel in my mother’s eye on the way. Sperm donor daddy ditched small town rural life — and, incidentally my mother and I — for the Big Apple, where NYU and life-long dreams beckoned.” I sighed, thinking for a moment what might have been. But then I remembered where I was and who I was talking to and why I was talking to him and forced myself to keep talking in the whimsical way every journalist wants their interviewee to sound. “Whatever dreams painted my mother’s future dissolved into baby diapers and stretch marks. I personally restrained her from grasping that shooting star out of nowhere, USA. Talk about resentment from the get-go, huh?”
The man was again caught off guard by my pause, by my rhetorical question. He straightened, suddenly uncomfortable and embarrassed, and laughed softly.
You and I both, buddy, I thought. “At eighteen and with a baby out of wedlock in the middle of the America’s bible belt, my mother was an immediate leper. Her zealous, bible thumping parents wept and cursed God for gifting them a child so clearly born from the flames of hell.” The man nodded now, and jotted something down on the little pad before him. I shook my head, unable to suppress the toothy grin. “Guess they’re really pushing that idea now, right?”

and that’s where i’m going to leave you for right now. if you like it let me know and i’ll keep posting bits of it! as for now, i’m off to enjoy the day. i have hot yoga planned for later! it’s a new studio and it’s hot vinyasa, not bikram! i haven’t been to bikram since june unfortunately so i am really looking forward to this! have a good one!

namaste.

zoe.

happy monday kidlettes! how was your weekend? hope it went well!

the rest of mine rocked, basically. last night i went to a giants game (my second of the summer!!) with one of my best friends from high school. the giants swept the dodgers!!!! meaning (for those baseball challenged people ;)) out of a three game series, we won all three games! and considering the rivalry…it’s pretty awesome.

notice the “beat LA” cup?

le sigh. such a gorgeous day! what you don’t see: the giant wall of fog rolling in to the right. “the coldest winter i ever spent was summer in san francisco”, after all 😉

following the game i dragged brought my friends (we met up with two other people) to cafe gratitude! where i had a slice of their strawberry shortcake. i might be an addict. i’m okay with that.

yesterday also involved some good eats!

massaged kale salad with some cucumbers! i might be in love with kale. lately i’ve been craving it like a mad woman. and green foods in general. i woke up today craving brussel sprouts and kale. um. who am i again? almost everything in my grocery cart yesterday was green! funny comment i’ve been meaning to share: the other day i read an article about the actress emily blunt and what she does to loose weight or tone up before a movie. she said she goes on a few day “green only” food regimine. and she said something like “it is surprisingly hard to eat only green foods”…to which i was like, what? what? weird, right? who knew eating greens was so difficult ;)!

but not everything in my cart was green. i finally splurged and picked up these:

i am not a big cracked girl because i don’t really find them to be a substantial snack ever. maybe three or four servings, sure. but not like…seven chips. i’d much rather eat a plate full of veggies anyway. so i bought these with a little bit of skepticism but i’ve heard such great things about them. let me tell you…i am so happy i purchased these! they’re a lot bigger than i thought and taste heavenly! especially dipped in some sabra chipotle hummus :)! do you like mary’s crackers? or are you another cracker fan?

anywho, what i really want to discuss with you today is healthy eating! it’s no secret healthy eating and nutrition are really big interests of mine. i am fascinated by food and its healing properties and its fueling properties. i am incredibly passionate about it and love to learn as much as i can about it. i love talking about it so much my mom has suggested to me several times i should become a nutritionist. which might be fun, but i have other ideas as to the path my future should take (but that’s a whole other post a comin’ soon!).

however, sometimes i think my passion gets misinterpreted. when i talk about health and nutrition, i am sharing information i find interesting . i want to share with everyone all these facts about health and nutrition i stumble upon but sometimes, when i watch the faces of the people i talk to, their expressions read a little like this: “who is this crazy person and why the hell is she telling me this?” i’ve mentioned this before but i’m going to say it again: food choices are very personal. and whenever i discuss my lifestyle choices or food facts, i think people find me “preachy” or “superior” which is so NOT my intention! i think there is a direction connection between veganism and the word “snob.” i’m not sure why (well, okay, maybe peta has a bit to do with that…) but i certainly don’t think i’m a snob! and a lot of vegans i know aren’t, either!

lately i’ve found myself rethinking what i share with people. i never want to make another person feel badly about their food choices or their lifestyle. i do not feel superior to anyone. i just love what i love and i love sharing what i love! but often times i forget my interests are not other people’s interests. not everyone cares about the hormones in their food or the difference between organic and non-organic or how certain foods boost energy and mood.

so i guess my question is this: how do you share healthy eating without appearing “preachy?” it’s a hard line to follow, i think, because when someone encroaches on a person’s lifestyle — intentionally or not — the first reaction that person usually takes is a defensive one. how do you share your passions in an appropriate way? have you found yourself monitoring what you say?

anyway, enjoy your monday kidlettes! i have work some 6-10 tonight then a party for my friend who is about to leave for spain for a year. i don’t want to think about that quite yet so, let’s just call it a party!

namaste!

zoe!

after four long years, it’s finally here folks…

THE EFFIN’ WORLD CUP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (multiply that my 3 million and you’ll just scratch the surface of how excited i am.)

i love soccer. literally. i am in love with it. i played on a team from the ages of 3-19. i lived it, breathed it, ate it. in high school i sacrificed weekends at soccer tournaments and always enjoyed every last sweaty minute. i love the competition. i loved taking girls out (the legal way. i hate cheap shots). i loved scoring goals. i loved the team work involved. I. LOVE. SOCCER. (football!!!)

not only do i love soccer and not only did the world up start today, but it’s in SOUTH AFRICA!!!!! my home away from home. last summer we got to see them building the actual stadiums! at least the ones in capetown.

i miss this place every single day. a piece of my heart will forever be there.


(i took those, just in case you were wondering :))

i cannot imagine being there right now. the government was prepping for the massive influx of people. it must be an absolute madhouse. i remember too that the government was attempting to cover up all the poverty. they put up fences along the major freeways to partially hide all the informal shanty-town settlements (the houses made of tin and plastic and garbage.) it makes me sick to think that, just for the sake of tourism, the south african government tried to cover up the real state of their country. out of sight, out of mind, right? ugh.

regardless, i cannot express enough how much i would kill to be there right now. my mom even suggested my dad and i go but a) um, that’s ridiculously expensive and b) my dad had to work. BUMMER. so i’ll just have to watch each and every game instead. oh darn…;)

le siiigh. moving on…

yesterday i did something i swore i never would or could do: i went running without music! i went on my friend trail run and just enjoyed my surroundings. my music was the tree branches catching the wind and the soft chirps of early morning birds. oh, and the flies serving are cheerleaders around my ears the entire time. that buzzing sound sucks so much.

but it was beautiful. i took it easy for my knees sake (i scheduled an MRI for next tuesday…fingers crossed it’s not a torn anything…) and just ran an easy couple of miles in about twenty minutes. nice nice nice way to start the day. i spent the rest of it lounging around, biking riding to a friends and then the farmer’s market and then home.

i had some good eats yesterday, too. i’m really trying to eat more as well as eat more balanced meals. i think i did okay yesterday. protein oatmeal in the morning after my run. yum.

lunch:

a salad with a head of romaine, half a mango, and a quarter of an avocado. lemon/agave/olive oil dressing. i think next time no agave. it’s just too sweet for me. anyone else have that issue?

and a slice of tempeh covered with some almond butter and homemade preserves. (if you’re wondering why it’s not in between two pieces of bread it’s because i ran out of bread forever ago and haven’t bought any. keep forgetting.)

dinner was some farmer’s market finds!

sweet potato, farmer’s market collard greens sauteed with some olive oil, a sliver of earth balance, salt, pepper, and spaghetti squash. yuum.

dessert was an unpictured bowl of dark chocolate chips :)!

i just got back from an early morning bikram session. god i love bikram! i am most definitely getting stronger in my back. when i first started, cobra pose, boat pose, airplane pose and all the poses using your back muscles were SO difficult to hold. but now i look forward to them! don’t you love feeling yourself getting stronger?

i also looked forward to this little number:

gina’s breakfast cookie!

in this was 1/3 cup oats, one T chocolate protein powder, one T almond butter, 2 T almond milk, 1/2 a nanner, a pinch of cinnamon and a pinch of chocolate chips. stuck it in the fridge overnight. DELICIOUS. this plus the rest of my mango from yesterday and breakfast rockedddd.

the rest of the day will consist of some reading (just checked out middle sex from my library! i love jeffery eugenides. the virgin suicides was so great. i read it last summer so i figured i’d read his other book this summer!), some more awesome food, and a dinner in berkeley with my family, aunts and uncles included. it’s my cousin’s graduation dinner! he’s off to USC in the fall. after dinner i’m pretty sure i’ll park myself in front of the television for some world cup action (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!).

before i go, imma leave you with a little more south africa.














namaste!

zoe!

good afternoon!

hope everyone’s tuesday is going swimmingly.

i woke up around nine this morning. i’m far too much of a morning person. funny too, as i used to be the queen of sleeping in. now i just find it to be a waste of the day. why waste the sunshine? i even took down the black blanket covering my blinds so i could wake up with the sun.

and wake up with the sun i did. i lounged in bed for about half an hour looking at some of my favorite blogs before i got up to prepare breakfast. i decided to switch up my regular breakfast and went with a green monsterrr this morning. into my blender went two handfuls of spinach, half a nanner, one T raw cacao powder, one T ground flax seed, and one cup CHOCOLATE almond milk! new purchase. i dug it for sure.

following the GM i allowed my stomach to digest before heading out on a nice run. thanks to www.mapmyrun.com i got an exact estimate on my new running loop! turns out it was a lot more than i originally thought. it’s just under 6 and a half miles. something like 6.48? anyway, it’s the path i ran the other day when i had to stop after four miles.

today went MUCH better. my legs were itching to run and it just sounded good. the other day it did not sound or feel good but i forced myself through it. big mistake. as you know, i ended up feeling ill and ended up having to stop.

NOT that case today! today’s run absolutely rocked. i started out slower than the other day which i think really helped. i felt strong, amazing, and capable. i used some of my running tricks too: breathing into my lower stomach, not breathing shallowly, and not looking down. often times on runs i find difficult, i realize i am looking down instead of gazing straight ahead like you do in yoga. employing this looking forward technique makes all the difference, i swear. i listened to my 10k playlist and ended the run on a strong note. my pace picked up for the last three miles and i ended up back at my apartment at just under an hour. almost seven miles in under an hour? i am MOST definitely getting faster.

today’s run helped me clear my head, too. i just let myself go. yesterday’s bikram sesh did the same. it was by far the best bikram session i’ve had. i’ve been stressed and emotional for the past week. my week long PMS never fails to deliver me terrible mood swings and depression. and breakouts. it really, really blows. but it looks like i’m in the clear because i feel GREAT today, mentally, physically and emotionally. i am back to feeling confident and centered. thank the universe because i was about to lose my mind. negativity can seriously drown a person, you know? how do you deal with negativity? work outs really help but does anyone have any suggestions as to how to beat my PMS symptoms? they’re incredibly draining.

after my run i did a bit of ab work and some weight work and looooots of stretching before downing a glass of water with one T of protein powder. then i iced my knee, blogged it up a bit, and showered. then lunch. a great, great lunch!

salad!

contents: half mango, one head of romaine (i have a TON to get through! operation eat through the pantry is certainly rollin’!), 1/4th of an avocado and a sprinkle of pepitas. i made a dressing consisting of the juice from one lime, one t agave nectar (i find agave ridiculously sweet and cannot handle much of it at one time. plus, all the reports deeming it worse then high fructose corn syrup have me using it in moderation.) and 2 t olive oil. ultra yum. hit the spot.

i paired the salad with a sweet potato i baked last night!

baked sweet potatoes totally win over microwaved ones. it takes more time but it’s certainly worth it. i spread a bit of almond butter on it. omnomnomnoooom! this lunch absolutely hit the spot. i’m on track with eating more and more often, too. we’ll see how it goes for the rest of the week!

currently listening to some musica and staring out the windows at the beautiful summer sky. i think i’m about to go on a leisurely bike ride or something. i hate being inside when it looks so gorgeous outside. ya dig?

also, i realized on my run today that i keep forgetting to post my playlists!
my 10k playlist:
hide & seek (tiesto remix)
aliens exist (blink 182! oh hell yeah i still love this band!)
& down (boyz noize. LOVE this guy!)
oh! (a-track boyz noize remix)
every time we touch (cascada. what up high schooool!)
fancy footwork (chromeo)
face to face (daft punk. OBSESSION. daft punk = life.)
let it go (deadmau5. deadmau5 (deadmouse) is AMAZING.)
ghosts n’ stuff (more deadmau5)
speakerphone (kylie minogue. a very under appreciated woman! she makes some awesome pop!)
bulletproof (la roux. i have a dubstep remix too which i heard before la roux’s version. it’s ah-mazing.)
disco heaven (lady gaga)
starstruck (lady gaga)
just dance (lady gaga)
poker face (lady gaga)
satellite mind (metric)
misery business (paramore. the only song i can stand by this band.)
lisztomania (phoenix. i have been in love with this bad for about three years. they are simply amazing. their old stuff is spectacular. i really encourage anyone and everyone to check them out. they’re one of my favorite bands.)
1901 (phoenix)
we will rock you (queeeeeeeen!!!)
hurt you (the sounds)
a-punk (vampire weekend. love this band, too.)
untouched (the veronicas. pump up action right here, folks!)
gold guns girls (metric. metric is great.)
stadium love (metric)
my girls (animal collective. okay lets talk about my straight up obsession with animal collective. i have SO much animal collective on my ipod. sigh. they’re…indescribable.)
summertime clothes (animal collective. this was the first song i ever heard by them. i stumbled upon them with stumble upon.)
boyfriend (ashlee simpson. the only time i will ever listen to ashlee simpson.)
L.O.V.E (ashlee simpson…)
track 15 (it’s by hot chip. actually, it’s a remix of a hot chip song. not sure which one. sorry…)
talk to me (peaches. this bitch is badass on way too many levels.)
lasso (phoenix. funny only new phoenix made it’s way onto this playlist!)
4 songs & a fight (the sounds)
pop the glock (uffie!)
just a girl (no doubt. PUMP. UP.)

if you didn’t notice, i love electronica. it’s much more then the same beat over and over, i promise. under the umbrella of techno there is so much more then house, which most people associate with techno (aka: the same pounding beat over and over and over.) look into dubstep. or drum & base. two of my faaaavorite types of electronica music. ESPECIALLY dubstep. le sigh. i love it.

what do you listen to when you work out? what is your favorite kind of music? got any good work out music you can share? i’m always on the look out for fresh new stuff to work out to! keeps the work outs fun and exciting 🙂

before i go officially, i’m going to leave you with this uplifting bit:
the happiest, most positive little girl ever.

feeling down? just take a look at this. i think we can all take a cue from this little ball of positivity and recreate her antics whenever we’re down. i think i’ll try to!

have a great day, kidlettes!

namaste!

zoe!

balancing. it can be a difficult task, no? sometimes life just overwhelms. between work, school, and a social life, certain aspects get pushed to the side. like slowing down, for instance. or breathing. or squeezing in a work out. or eating enough food.

eating enough food? um. what? do you think i’m crazy, too? phhfft, right there with you. i love food. but as of late, i’ve been struggling with it. i find myself tired, and at times cranky. this past week has been horrendous in terms of mood swings. i credit this to a nasty case of PMS and, upon reflection, my unbalanced eating. i always eat breakfast. always. i love breakfast! but lunch? it’s a 50/50 shot. if i am out and run out of time to eat a substantial lunch, i wait until dinner to eat a proper meal which leaves me a) ravenous and b) a hardcore crankypants.

seriously, you do not want to see me when my blood sugar dips. it’s…well, not too pretty 😉 i get irritable, let’s just say that!

and, upon further reflection, i honestly think i do not eat enough during the day period. i think part of this is subconscious and part of it is, unfortunately, conscious. i have some big bad food anxieties. i have no idea why and when these developed so intensely but i do know i’ve always had them. i stopped eating bagels in high school (even though i love bagels…), stopped drinking soda and fast food (nothing i miss :)), and cut out a lot of other “bad” foods. so when i am presented with them, i get stomach churning anxiety. it’s awful. and, i think, it keeps me from eating “normally.”

i am an active person. i work out 5-6 times a week. i have a lot of muscle mass. muscle requires more calories to function properly. even though i eat healthfully, i honestly believe i do not eat enough to be balanced. and that’s what we’re all shooting for in this game of life, right? plus i’m a libra…i dig balance 😉

so for the next week, i am going to “experiment” by eating more and more frequently. i think this will help my mood swings, my energy levels, my skin, my overall happiness, my metabolism, AND my general well being. my body doesn’t deserve this. my sanity doesn’t, either. usually i’m good at prepping meals for on the go purposes but sometimes i slip up…like today. ugh at work i brought two carrots to eat. so by the time i was off at 3:00, i was STARVING. sorry body, next time i’ll plan better…

any input as to caloric intake per day for an active person? i’ve done a little research which lead me to believe i need to eat more. i DO eat — don’t get me wrong. but i eat until i am full and wait for the next hunger cue. i don’t think this system is going to work anymore…

luckily this morning started off on the right foot. i made a new batch of oatmeal!!!! shocking, i know. i’m such a boring and repetitive person but this morning i dreamed up a new bowl of oats:

1/3-ish (ran out! :() cup oats
1 T oat bran
1/4 cup almond milk
1/2 cup water
half a nanner
a TON of cinnamon
a dash or two of nutmeg

topped with:
handful of puffins
1 T maranatha’s crunchy almond butter (which, unfortunately, i really am not the biggest fan of. i took a risk and bought it even though they added salt. all i can taste is salt…i like it, but i don’t love it. totes stickin’ to TJ’s brand! or justin’s when i feel like splurging ;))
a sprinkle of unsweetened coconut

hit the spot! great flavors. i also ate about a million strawberries 🙂

oddly enough, even though i was completely satisfied, i was suuuuper hungry around 12:45-1. i ate those two big carrots i told you about. quite unhappily. i wanted foooooood.

the idea of exercise sounded terrible all day. i planned on walking to target and calling it a day but instead, when i got out of work, i got hit with the run bug. pre-run snack: gluten free (trying this out too…) rice cake with a spread of almond butter and the other half of nanner. perfect!

took off on the run. you guys, running it getting more and more difficult to do. honestly, i might be falling out of love with it…which makes me so.so.SO sad. i love running. exercise has felt like more of a chore as of late though :/ it upsets me but i’m not going to stop. it really does keep me saner. any suggestions as to motivation?

i ran a little over three miles today before stopping to walk for half a mile. i felt a bit disappointed in myself, i’m not going to lie. but i felt a little sick and thought it best to take a breather. for the last 1.5 miles i did intervals: sprint 30 seconds, jog one minute. i’m new to intervals so i’m taking it slow.

then the best part of the day came: DINNER. operation clean out the pantry officially started today. i did go out and buy some broccoli, apples, oranges, a cantelope and some almond milk though… confession: i’m obsessed with indian food. anything indian, really. i’m enthralled by the culture. it’s so fascinating. i can’t wait to go there. i looked up a recipe for curry and came up with this one:
ashley’s creamy coconut brown rice & broccoli tempeh curry!

the only thing i changed was adding in a BIG handful of spinach, cumin, more cayanne (i luuurve me some spicy food!), less salt and the portion sizes. i made it more one-person friendly 🙂 (aka: 1/4 cup of rice!)

rice base:

confession: i suck at making rice. i always mess it up. this tasted fine, though!

rice topped with curry!

all mixed up now:

guys, this stuff was delicious! seriously. and super simple to make! i thought i was going to fail (this is a bad habit of mine…) because i was making a huge mess. i was really doubting myself. but this turned out terrifically! sometimes, i need to remember that i am trying things for the first time. i need to let some of my perfectionism go. immediately.

anyway, thanks, ashley :)! dinner was perfect!

i’ve got a little get together planned with a friend tonight so it’s high time i end this rambling post and go get my social life on. have a good night, kidlettes!

namaste

zoe

beatles fun fact: During the week of April 4, 1964, “Can’t Buy Me Love”, “Twist and Shout”, “She Loves You”, “I Want to Hold Your Hand”, and “Please Please Me” occupied the top five spots simultaneously on the Billboard Hot 100. To date, this achievement has never been matched by any other artist.

i am not feeling very creative today.

i set my alarm yesterday for 8 so i could attend a 9 am bikram yoga class but when i woke up around 7, i decided i was way too tired to force myself to go to yoga so i turned off my alarm and passed out until 10. i rarely sleep past 9 so the extra few hours were quite glorious. it was nice not to force myself to do something, either. gotta respect that body, hm?

so i might have an addiction. to oatmeal. it’s literally the only things i crave when i wake up. when i find a food i really really like, i tend to eat it every day. in the same way. oooh i’m bad. it’s usually mainly with breakfast foods, though. liiiike oatmeal. today i ate my chocolate/banana/pb/coconut flake/puffin mix sans oat bran (not sure why. changin’ it up a bit! hah!) and was fully satisfied.

i worked from 12:30 to 5:30 today so packed a lunch while preparing breakfast. i was cravin’ some greenery since i seemed to be lacking it yesterday. so this little monster of a salad was created:

romaine lettuce, broccoli, one small zucchini, left over lentils, and a fourth of an avocado. i also packed two big carrots to munch on. yuum. dressed it with one T of olive oil and one T apple cider vinegar.

clooooose uuuuuppp:

work was work. i’m having an emotional day today, i think. one minute i felt totally fine and the next i felt like crying. i think i’m riding such an emotional wave right now because of summer and what looms ahead. although i do enjoy alone time i’m feeling borderline deserted. it’s something i will have to get used to and just learn how to suck it up.

luckily after work i came home and made a good dinner.

a massive pile of collard greens (had to cook up the rest of them!) which i sauteed in one T of olive oil and a sliver of earth balance with some zucchini, minced shallot (i think i love mincing things. it’s going to become and issue ;)!), and some salt and pepper. simple and delicious. unpictured: another carrot and some leftover potato salad from my friend’s bbq. yuum!

after dinner i biked to my friends house to hang out for a little. but they were watching tv and just sitting there and man, i was not in the mood for just…sitting. the majority of the people i hang out with really relish their time in front of the television. i think there’s a time and a place for everything but dang, it seems no one really knows how to carry on a conversation anymore. all actions and conversation seem to revolve around the television. it’s a bummer.

so i left because i wanted to bake! more vegan cookies, of course 🙂

i wanted chocolate and peppermint so i created these:
what you’ll need
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup coconut flour
1 T ground flax (add 3 T of water to this and let sit for 10-15 minutes…egg substitution!)
2 T unsweetened coco powder (i use hershey’s just cause i have it.)
1/2 t baking powder
1/8 t salt
1.5 ripe bananas (mine were pretty large.)
1/4 cup almond milk (unsweetened vanilla)
1/3 cup canola oil
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 t vanilla extract
1/2 t peppermint extract

what you’ll need to do
preheat oven to 375 degrees.
combine all dry ingredients into a bowl.
combine all wet ingredients into a bowl.
make a “well” in dry ingredients.
dump half of wet ingredients into the “well” in the dry ingredients.
mix! though don’t over mix.
dump other half in. mixxxx.

it should look something like this:

line a baking sheet with parchment or wax paper. form little balls and flatten into discs. bake for about 12 minutes, depending on your oven (mine is very tempermental.)

they should look something like this:

i may or may not have snuck a bite before taking this picture. here’s another one for good measure.

omnomnom!

i topped them with coconut. cause i love coconut. totally optional. overall i think they turned out okay. texture wise they were spot on. they (again) were not too sweet but definitely not bland. they peppermint added a nice touch though i feel like something was missing. i am missing crunchy cookies. i somehow cannot make crunchy vegan cookies. it’s a concept that goes completely over my head, apparently. guess that means i’ll just be experimenting in the kitchen more! oh no…;)

regardless i liked them and ate two before callin’ it quits. these might be a good base for a whoopie-pie-like creation. if i had enough almond butter (only enough for tomorrow’s breakfast :() i would of smacked some in the middle of two cookie-cakes. yum!

anywho, it’s nearing 10:30 here on the california coast and i’m still tired — even after a good, solid 10 hour sleep. i’m going to go read a bit before passing out. night kidlettes!

beatles fun fact: After Paul’s song, “Penny Lane” became a Beatles hit, the street signs for the actual Penny Lane in Liverpool disappeared with such regularity (as they did on the real Abbey Road), that the town reverted to simply painting ‘Penny Lane’ on the buildings, rather than have street signs.

question of the day: do you find friends planted in front of the tv just about every time you stroll through their front doors? do you have a difficult time getting them to participate in activities outside, such as hiking? no one seems to want to do that up here 😦

also…ever baked anything some scratch without a recipe and ended up with something BRILLIANT?! i bet you have…you little foodies out there amaze me 🙂

namaste

zoe

seriously, i’m not sure where my mind wanders off to sometimes. like yesterday for example.

i woke up yesterday and wanted to run. like, really really really bad. i ran a nice, leisurely 4 miles the previous day after taking a solid week off of running and had no knee troubles. so i wanted to do it again! i woke up, ate a little somethin’ somethin’ and took off. half way through the run i realized i forgot to slip my key under my front door mat. i panicked. haaardcore. i had a mini break down during my run because i was so frustrated. it was sunday so the office with the spare key was closed. i had no phone, no car key, no money and candace is in san diego till august. i was basically screwed.

i stopped at a friends house to use her phone and called my mom who had a spare car key for my car and started to make her way up to my apartment. on a whim, i decided to try my back door. i was so upset and so hungry from my run i was desperate to try ANYTHING. magically the door was OPEN! in any other case this would be a bad thing but i was SO. HAPPY. ugh. on today’s 6-7 miler i made use of my fanny pack-like thing and stuck my keys in there. no more stupid moves like that, please.

on a lighter note, it’s been absolutely beautiful here. it is most definitely summer. and i am most definitely enjoying it. saturday i biked around just so i could be outside. i love soaking up the sunshine when i can! on saturday i also said goodbye to one of my bffffffffs nate. he and his family go to mexico for a half a month every summer (jealous!!) and he’s not coming back up after. he’ll be up and down the coast but for the most part, he’s gone. i’m pretty bummed.

yesterday i got to go home and spend sunday with my family. i look forward to these sunday family dinners so much. i love my family. there’s just something so centering about returning home to your roots. it helped too that yesterday was GORGEOUS. though, i must admit, it took a while to get over the funk of locking myself out of the house. because then i forgot my phone which, on any other occasion i wouldn’t need, but yesterday i needed. so i turned around and headed back to the apartment. it was a frustrating start to the day.

but it ended on all kinds of good vibes. after dinner i went to my childhood friend’s house (literally, this girl knew my parents before i did and was my friend straight outta the womb!) for a memorial day bbq. i didn’t eat much — just some AMAZING potato salad sans gross mayo and a slice of my friend’s homemade lemon cake. it was exactly what i wanted and you know, i didn’t even worry about eating it. incredible step forward.

what i did notice yesterday was a theme: everyone commented on my weight. everyone. everyone said i looked really good and i am appreciative of their comments but dang, i hate talking about it. yesterday, at the urging of my mom and aunt, i stepped on the scale for the first time in about half a year (the last time i was at the doctors). i was pretty shocked at what i saw.

i reached my “goal” weight a long time ago, i guess. i never quite had a “goal” weight though — i never have and never will obsess about numbers. unfortunately i work on obsessing about my appearance. but the funniest part of all of this is that, even though i’ve reached the weight and size i’ve always wanted to be, i’m still not 100% satisfied. i always thought that when i got to this point i’d be completely happy and worry free. i find it both funny and sad that i’m not either of those things 100%. it most definitely opened my eyes to my body’s true shape. i wake up feeling more and more happy about it every day and i don’t regret stepping on the scale at all yesterday despite my opposition to scales because i think it helped me along my path towards self-love and self-acceptance.

gah. ENOUGH BABBLING. i’m sorry. onto the eaaaats of the past few days. i again (stupidly) forgot my camera so i could not document the AWESOME eats of the past two days. i did eat this little gem though:

a roasted veggie & siracha ezekiel wrap!

mmm veggies!!! not only was it delicious, but i totally learned (FINALLY!) how to wrap a burrito/wrap properly!

kind of made my life.

sigh. i will relive that soon. i think the key was to warm up the tortilla a little bit before wrapping. wraps, especially ezekiel wraps, tend to not be as maluable when cold. an obvious DUH to most people, but not to me. i catch on slowly, i guess.

anywho, the rest of the day shall be a monday funday with a friend who is always (permanently) leaving town. we’re hitting up sol food (!!!!!) later. pumped. till then i will just be lounging aroundddd.

beatles fun fact of the day: (figured this blog needed way more beatles thrown in it. it’s in the name, afterall ;)) The Beatles got their name from a line in the movie ‘The Wild Ones’. Lee Marvin’s character said the motocycle gang wanted Marlon Brando’s charcter back, even the beetles (he was referring to the women in the gang). They changed the ‘ee’ to ‘ea’ so it was like the musical term ‘beat’.

question of the day: have you ever had an epiphany concerning your body, self-love, and self-acceptance? has it been an easy journey for you, or a hard one?

have a great day, kidlettes!

namaste!

zoe

hellohellohelloooo. and good evening :)! hope everyone’s day went splendidly.

OKAY. SOMEONE TELL ME WHY, PLEASE, I HAVE NEVER BOTHERED TO HIT UP THE WHOLE FOODS’ SALAD BAR AND HOT BAR. SERIOUSLY.

a new one just opened so i of course checked it out. by far the best one i’ve ever been in. aaaamazing. i stopped for lunch and hit up their salad bar. i took a box and piled it high was spinach, romaine, green & red bell peppers, asparagus & mushroom & sundried tomato mix (um. also tell me why i used to hate sundried tomatoes???), lemony quinoa (SO GOOD!), artichoke hearts, carrot shreds, BEET SHREDS (!), cherry tomatoes, and two REAL dried apricots. best dried fruit i’ve ever had. AND it was cheaper today because it’s memorial day weekend. you guys, i’ve found paradise. this could be a serious issue for my wallet. uh oh.

outside of the greatness that is whole paycheck foods my day was nothing short of relaxing and centering. started with this bowl of awesome:

1/3 cup rolled oats
1 T oat bran
1/2 cup almond milk
1/3 cup water
half a nanner
1 T raw cacao powder

topped with a baby T of almond butter, cinnamon, unsweetened coconut, and a new item: CINNAMON PUFFINS! best. decision. EVER. the puffins added a great crunch aspect! i tried eating a bowl of puffins and half a banana the other week but was so hungry mid-morning i deemed it a unsuitable breakfast and more of a snack food. but now it has a new job…making my oatmeal badass.

after breakfast i dashed out of my house and drove to san francisco to meet the woman who runs the bakery i am (hopefully!) working at it this summer. it went very well! i go in a week from monday to get situated in the kitchen and see if i work out. fingers crossed i do! (and by the looks of it, i think i will! but hey, no cockiness yuh? the universe has a funny way of knocking you back down when you think you’re on top!) it was such a cool environment and it was PACKED. like…line out the door packed. my uncle and i stood in line for pastries for about twenty minutes before we ordered. but dang kidlettes, it was SO worth it!

confession: i get really anxious when presented with high calorie/high fat foods. i’m trying not to be so rigid but it’s not an easy feat. like yesterday for example: i was in out local super market and my eyes fell on the slices of cake the bakery puts out. and there were my two favorites, staring me down: german chocolate and chocolate decadence (just imagine this as death by chocolate. i am all about the thisissorichyou’retotallygoingtogetdiabettesfromonebite kind of cakes!). i had a craving all day and ALL night. it was so hard to pass it up but i did it. and i felt like it was the right decision. i didn’t know what was in the ingredients. i knew the sugar would spike my insulin levels and my hormones would get aaaaaaall outta whack.

it was a really really hard thing to pass up but i am glad i did. because i had quite possibly the BEST chocolate croissant today. i always forget my camera (sorry!) otherwise there would be a picture of the most flaky, buttery piece of goodness ever right below this! it had just the right amount of chocolate and made me super happy. all sweet cravings fulfilled!

…still though, i felt anxiety about eating it. i ALMOST didn’t get anything, actually. then i said “zoe, get over it.” so i did. but a bit of a guilty cloud is still hanging above my head. i know it’s ludecris to think ONE sweet will make me unhealthy and “fat”, i’m working on it.

following the meeting my dad and i went downtown to look at ON SALE le cruset!!!!!! then this happened: my life got MADE. HARDCORE MADE.

what’s in the box!!!!???!!!

ONLY MY NEW BEST FRIEND!

seriously guys, this is a dream come true. i basically fantisize over these pots and pans. i cannoooot believe i own one now. i paid for half of it. now, i’m sure that you’re thinking to yourself: dang zoe, you’re pretty spoiled. trust me, i’m not. i totally recognize how fortunate i am and i am incredibly grateful for my parents and my life. i am actually very uncomfortable with my parents buying me things. i often take gifts from them reluctantly. i’m not sure why i feel the need to justify this, but i just don’t want to come across as someone who gets whatever they want. because i don’t.

ahem. moving on. it’s a 7 and 1/4th cocotte ronde. and it’s beaaaautiful. seriously, it’s just so loverly. i might dream about it tonight and all the things i can cook with it. ahh, the dreams of a foodie.

in between all the running around i did accomplish some exercise today! i’m still laying off the knee. bummer because the weather was beautiful today and all i wanted to do was run. luckily, i also felt like doing yoga! it’s been a second since i did any (outside of bikram, that is!) and HOLY CHATURANGA! my body has missed this. i did a twenty minute hatha stretch and strength, a 25 minute vinyasa flow, and a 30 minute yoga with weights. all courtesy of yogadownload! visit this site if you haven’t. your soul with thank you 🙂

another side note: i’m getting anxious about my work outs too. they’re not as “intense” and i’m (irrationally) afraid of getting “soft”. i’m taking more days off because of my knee and, because of my lack of “movement” (aka: running), i’m not eating as much as i usually do. i’m watching what i eat too carefully. has anyone else ever struggled with this? it’s almost like i am talking myself into not eating as much because i don’t “deserve” to because i didn’t work out as hard as i usually do. demented thought process. i know. any suggestions on how to divorce this habit?

i still worked up a bit of a sweat though. after yoga i showered, then biked to the market! i’m in love with victoria’s bike. it’s going to be hard to part with when she gets back. le sigh.

dinner was simple: 2 roasted carrots and 1 parsnip (seriously if i could eat roasted carrots for the rest of my life i might.) covered in…HOMEMADE FARMER’S MARKET PESTO! i bought a bunch on basil last sunday and i’ve been sitting on it, thinking about what i wanted to make. i originally really didn’t want to make pesto because i wanted to try something new but i’m a creature of habit. so this happened:

it may not look appetizing but trust me, it was all good things!

farmer’s market pesto: (adapted from gena’s!)
2 cups packed basil
2.5 T olive oil
1/8 t salt
half a lime (or lemon! i ran out :()

process in food processor/blender. spoon over whatever you please!

just finished an apple. i’m about to slip into some sweats and watch a documentary. i gots work from 10-3 tomorrow. BLEH.

have a good one, kidlettes!

namaste

zoe

iiiiii CAN’T WAIT! frustrated with dumb test but i got this.

still grey outside. BOO. but my grey mood seems to have lifted some. hooray! my appetite returned at the end of the day yesterday and dinner was this little invention: farmer’s market collard greens, graham marsala/cayenne pepper spiced brown letils, and farmer’s ROASTED BEETS!!! i wanted something warm and comforting. this literally HIT THE SPOT.

what you’ll need:

1 cup brown lentils
one small beet
three large-ish collard green leaves
one small shallot
one large garlic clove (or less depending on how much you like! omit if you hate garlic. you might be crazy though.)
2 T olive oil
1 T earth balance
salt
2 t graham marsala
1 t cayenne (i luuurve me some hot hot heat kidlettes!)

what you’ll need to do:
preheat oven to 400. wrap beet in foil and roast for about 45 minutes to an hour. should be fork tender. (i’m not going to lie. i was so hungry and i am SO impatient i totally didn’t let it bake all the way through. still delicious but not as delicious as it could of been for sure!)
rise off lentils. bring 2 cups of water to boil. add lentils, graham marsala and cayenne. boil for 2-3 minutes before turning heat to low, covering the pot and letting it simmer for about twenty minutes or until lentils are tender.

meanwhile prepare the collard greens! (original recipe from sweet beet and green!)

chop into this strips. mince the shallot and the garlic. heat 2 T of olive oil and 1 T earth balance in a saute pan over medium heat. once heated add garlic and shallot. cook for about three minutes, or until the shallots are soft. add collard greens. cook until bright green and slightly soft/wilted.

when everything is ready PREPARE!
step one:
collard greens!

step two:
lentils! (about a half cup)

step three:
BEETS!

pretty, no? pretty tasty too! this was seriously delicious. the best part? LEFT OVERRRS! which promptly went into my lunch today. simple salad of romaine, sweet potato, and left over lentils! topped off with 2 T of my vegan garlic cream saaauce.
pre-mixed:

scrambled together!

you may be asking yourself, “zoe, do you ALWAYS eat salad out of giant aluminum mixing bowls?” to which i’ll reply “yes, why yes i do!” because i always make mondo salads 🙂

not pictured: one too many spoonfuls of trader joe’s sunflower seed butter. i’m officially down to almond butter now! i’ve been working my way through my nut butters. i had a ridiculous amount. actually, come to think of it i still have some pumpkin butter left over…hm…i think i feel a baking idea coming along…

anyway, just an fyi: the sweet potatoes i use are SMALL, folks. lemme show you:

i have reaaally small hands! (i’m 5′ 1″, remember that!) a friend in high school actually called me baby hands. thanks, kevin!

i’m about to take off for the gym. my knee feels better but i’m still laying off running. i think i’m going to tackle an epic spin session. i really enjoy the bike. i feel a new hobby coming on…i might end up doing yoga later tonight too. something gentle to stretch everything out. we’ll see. but for now i’m going to BIKE TO SCHOOL! my friend victoria is going to france for three weeks (lucky girl!) and was nice enough to let me borrow her bike!

(notice the pink bike. the pink yoga mat. my pink purse. pink overloaaad!)

i am pretty sure i shouldn’t of eaten all the sunflower butter because now it’s just kinda chillin in my stomach. whateverrr. i’ve been really hungry for some reason today! listening to zee body 🙂

when i get back home today i will OFFICIALLY BE ON SUMMER VACATION! lots of things to report on later. for now, have a good day kidlettes!

namaste!

zoe!