Category Archives: holiday

Ketch-up!

I mean, CATCH UP! Because there ain’t no KETCHUP here! …instead… 

close up

Did I lure you in? …keep reading to see more!

I’m sorry I have been a naughty, absent bloggermama, but I’ve been pretty good about commenting on everyone else’s lovely blog-iggities! Thanks for keeping my interest & taking up all my free time, GOSH! No, I love it!

…continuing from Valentine’s Day, like I said before, my dad & I got pedicures. This is a picture of the little Oriental ladies (who know us by name) rubbing our dogs. Please disregard the scary Casper-legs. I’m working on it. My dad is drooling. See us in all our luxury:

pedicure HA! My color is called “Wild Child”– a bright green-ish… my dad picked it out. I guess I’ll be ready for St. Patty’s Day!

I’ve been taking lots of yummy food-photos (the photos aren’t yummy, but what’s in them has been!) Here are some oatbran breakfasts, as of late:

dsc04493 dsc04575 dsc04576 < with banana, soy, pb & granola; again with banana, nuts, soy & banana… with my mom’s cute little cocktail napkins (she thinks she’s funny & this is so her…); & with soy, strawberries & nut butter. I really forget what is in each, but they had cinnamon (of course!) & were all good & truly solidify my love for oatbran.

P.S. That’s TEAnot COFFEE!!! Weeee!!!

dsc04492 < my Multi-vitamin of choice & Calcium-Magnesium-D(3) supplement, in strawberry-flavored liquid form (milky, but I like flava’-flave!)

dsc04577 hand ques jas + ques < Tempeh Quesadillas, based off of this recipe, from Vegetarian Times (online), but I didn’t broil it with cheese on top. I added peppers, onions, spinach, mozzarella, tempeh, tomatoes, salsa in a whole-wheat tortilla; cooked it in the skillet; served it alongside homemade guacamole (just avocado, salsa, onion & red pepper flakes!) & blue corn tortilla chips. A nice lunch, with Jasper in the background, contemplating the meaning of life… or something like that.

Friday the 13th was my grandpa’s birthday, so on that Sunday the 15th, we had the family over to celebrate that & Lover’s-Day on the 14th. (that was out of order, sorry) I made a cake from Vegan With a Vengeance: 

Raspberry Blackout Cake with Ganache-y Frosting– here it is, in the process/layers:

1st jam layer 1st frosting layer layer 2 jam finished 

TA-DAAAA!!!

My mom is way creative (hello, teacher!) so we had a “circus-theme”, bringing out the inner child of my grandpa. Our table cloth was (*homemade*) zebra-print, & we had circus animals & clowns/ring-leaders on the table, too. Here’s the arrangement I made. I’m so 6-years-old:

circus RAWR!!!

jim < He likes the gorilla

jim tootin his horn < tootin’ his own horn= ring leader?

with flowers slice of cake

… this cake turned out so moist & delicious! If you have the cookbook & have a reason to make it (& even if you don’t!), DO IT– you will not be disappointed!!! It was a major hit, if I do say so myself (& I do)! The party was great, too! Having family around is always a fabulous, beautiful thing, don’t ya agree? Even if you don’t always get along with them all, the love is still there! For sure!

Okay, this post is way-long, but I have some other great kitchen-makings that I feel really great about showing you! SOONER THAN LAST TIME, I will show you!

Until then, enjoy your weekends. What are you doing?! I hope it’s warming up in some wretched parts of the country! I’m sending warm wishes to you all- in your hearts & on your bodacious bods!

 

 


10 Comments

Filed under books, dogs, family, grub, holiday, winter

He loves you, yeah-yeah-yeah!

Me & The Beatles say, “HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY, LOVES!

I hope your day is filled with love, in all areas of your life: for yourself (#1!), friends, family, the things you do & everything in your world! What are you doing to celebrate this commercial love-filled holiday?!

I have to work tonight, but until then, I’m going to watch some romantic-comedies & get a pedicure with my dad. He loves them & he’s not afraid to say so! Last night, I saw He’s Just Not That Into You with one of my girlfriends. We’re both single, so it was our date! It make me just want to shout “STOP TALKING!” sometimes because sometimes the characters were so awkward, but it was cute & fun. Afterward, we chatted on the outside benches. Lovely!

When I woke up this morning, I saw, on my computer, a card:

dsc04482 dsc04483

from Daddy!!! (thanks, Daddy-o!) plus a sweet little note with it!

dsc04485 

& a box of chocolate (& cash) from Mommy! (thanks, Mom-sie!)

I’m so lucky to have such a supportive, loving family! Truly, sometimes I feel overwhelmed with inheriting a great fortune, in the form of love, care & happiness! I hope you feel this way, in some part of your life, too!

Thanks to everyone on their feedback, though I was looking for even MORE than a few people. But, none-the-less, it was great to hear from a few special people & I’ve come to realize that, yes, it is MY blog, so I can write whatever, but will you read?

I think I even had a dream about my blog, leading me to some ideas… kind of cool, huh?! Would it be too much of a nuisance to change my name or blog?! Any experience with this?

Some of my favorite tea-makers sent me a sample (which I had inquired about a while back) dsc04478 dsc04479

with 3 flava’s: Green tea Pomegranate, Himalayan Apple Spice, & Berry Detox. I’ve tried the Green Tea Pomegranate & it’s tasty, so I’m looking forward to the others. Also, a lil’ coupon, YIPPEE!!! I love me some savings!

…speaking of TEA, I just got some new French Vanilla flavored tea, from Mr. Big(elow)!

french vanilla tea < it’s wonderful! I’ve been drinking it with soymilk & agave, which brings out the flavor & sweetness! mMmMm… even without coffee, I like to have a little fix of something, with some caffeine in the black tea in my mornings!

I saw the nutritionist this week again, too. While I followed the meal plan she gave me, toward the end, I felt even more hungry, even with less exercise I had been doing. So when I saw her, she weighed me (I was UP about 1.5 # in a week & a half, & I am happy with this!) & we worked on another, bigger meal plan. A “prescription,” if you will. It’s incorporating a lot of fat (mmm, hello nuts, seeds, avocado, nut-butters, etc…) & she said it’s her goal to get my *girly-thing* within 2 months!!! While I know this may be a pain (literally?), this excites me, because it’s been gone for farrrr too long! And that is just not right. 

Want to see some food? OKAY:

breakfast < yesterday’s breakfast, with a ray of sunshine from above (mug): oat bran (thanks to Heather, I have noticed that yes, oat bran, as opposed to oatmeal satisfies my hunger a wee bit more! Check out her comparison on the nutritional info. on the 2 oats here). Anyway, oat bran with walnuts, banana, cinnamon, vanilla & s’milk, multi-grain toast with Smart Balance butter & 2 eggs with spinach + S&P & tea with agave & s’milk. WOW, filling, but delicious! 

ingredients < a phone call, from the plain so’gurt to almond butter on the banana phone!

in blender in the blender it goes…

…+ ice & blueberries berries in

…to make: final smoothie YUM!!! Just what I needed on a warm winter day. Yes, it’s warm, sunny & BEAUTIFUL here in FL… *wish you were here!*

noodle view noodle bowl 

^ noodle bowl with: soba noodles, tempeh, veggies, sliced almonds, with red pepper flakes & flaxseed oil drizzled on top for some moisture & nutrient-absorbing fat! (Eaten with chopsticks, of course… Noodles are very difficult to eat with choppies so I had a fork around, too)

clif & tea snack < snack: Clif bar & tea (I LOVE this flavor tea!)

okay, I have a few more food photos, but instead, I’ll leave you with some great men in my life… they’re begging for you to “Be Theirs!” They’re lovers, I swear:

dsc04477

~*XOXO*~

p.s. I love you!

17 Comments

Filed under dogs, family, grub, holiday, movies, optimism, work

It’s just a game

Thanks for the well-wishes on my last post, ya’ll! I’m still waiting for people to design the next ORANGE POP LAYOUT!!!! I think Brooke has been the only one, with others suggesting people/places. Can I say that I’m desperate? But I’ll work on it & appreciate anything I can get!

(Per the title of the post:) The other night, I was at Le WalMart & I noticed this on the side of a cereal box for kids!!!! How much more obsessed with #s & calories can we make society… at a young age?! It’s perhaps AppleJacks? But, oh, it’s a game! How… fun? Look:

cereal cal game

^ How many calories are in a banana? An apple? A celery stalk?

grrrr… on another note, I have no idea how many calories are in this (though, I’m sure I could figure it out if I wanted. But really, I don’t want to):

dsc04386 < pre-cook

dsc04387 < post-oven-cook

I made a “pizza” on a whole wheat piece of Naan, with tomato sauce, mushrooms, onions, eggplant & goat cheese, alongside a more simple salad than some previous ones. It ’twas tasty!!!

On my Tuesday/Thursday classes, I have one class, then an hour & a half break until my next class, soo, here’s how I spent it, last Thursday:

snack < laptop, tea, snack in the form of a Luna bar, & those monkey things? Valentine’s! (for the record, I didn’t LOVE this flavor… I don’t know, it seemed chalky, like I was eating “puppy chow” or something. oh, well, I still love my girl Luna!)

I also brought my own teabag & asked the school cafe for hot water. A free tea! yay (I’m soo frugal, it’s great right?!)

Have a great Sunday & start of a new week!!! *What are you looking forward to today & this week?*

I’m looking forward to a nutrition appointment on Thursday & hanging out with family & friends, writing & sending the rest of my Valentine’s, cooking, working on the blog more… still waiting for YOUR IDEAS, lovelies! 

Any inspiration on cooking new meals, since you’ve gotten to know some of my tastes & new(er)-found-eating techniques!!! Happy day to you & yours!

9 Comments

Filed under family, grub, holiday, school

Tag! I’m it!

Oh, so little ol’ Matt tagged me, so while I felt annoyed at first, I’ve decided to be thankful that he thought of mui, Miss Orange Pop! This also means that I had to get my booty in some sort of gear to blog about something. So, thank you, “Bama!”

Here it goes (before 2008 has been forgotten & 2009 is over!):

*In no particular order of favorites*

4 favorite memories from 2008:

  • Starting school again (college)
  • Re-visiting Portland, OR
  • Jet-setting to Paris, spontaneously with my sister, right before exams
  • Making new friends & going out with them!

4 favorite movies that I saw:

(I had to look up which movies came out, thus putting them in ABC-order!)

  • The Dark Knight
  • The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
  • Hannah Montana
  • Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2
  • & this year I saw Into the Wild 

4 favorite foods in 2008:

4 places I loved in 2008:

4 things I liked in 2008:

  • Having a job
  • Going to the beach on winter break
  • Spending time with family, especially my sisters
  • Going back to school

4 things I am looking forward to in 2009:

  • Getting a bike
  • Furthering my education (okay, 3 times, really? I’m a nerd!)… & trying to decide on future plans
  • Building strong(er) relationships
  • Traveling with my sisters

(…thanks, really, Matt!) It’s good to look back, but I think it’s more important to look forward & ahead about what is to come.  Sure, a lot is unknown, but that’s pretty cool & exciting to me, that I just don’t know what’s coming my way in 2009! I’m not going to tag anyone else, but with that, I’ll leave you with this:

peace

    4 Comments

    Filed under family, grub, holiday, movies, optimism, school, travel

    51 more weeks of 2009!

    Week #1 of 2009 is under our belts: Yow-zee! How are ya’ll feeling?

    So, I apologize that while most bloggers play catch-up during the weekend, I am a total slacker. I will tell you why:

    • My uncle comes home on the weekends and lounges at his house pretty much the whole time, so I scoot my boot’ back to my house on weekends, to:
    • sleep in my own bed
    • see my own dawggies & 
    • just kick it here. 
    • I get a better internet connection there so it’s easier to blog & 
    • I work more on weekends than during the week.

    So, there’s that. Thanks for understanding, like I knew you would!!!

    However, I did manage to snap some photos & remember what I’ve been up to…

    Last night after work I came home pretty hungry! (YIPPEE, because my appetite was M-I-I-A (Missing In In-Action) during the day. I made myself this:

    pb eng muffin< toasted Genesis English muffin with Skippy Natural chunky PB, cinnamon & a squirt of honey

     

     

     

    & this:

    soy yogurt + chia< plain soy yogurt (I’ll call it “sogurt“) with my Ruth’s Chia Goodness cereal, more cinnamon & another drizzle of honey

     

     

     

    Stirred all up, I LOVED it with so’gurt. It was perfectly crunchy & sweet!

    This morning I woke up to another beautiful day in FL! I decided I’d head to the beach (don’t throw a snowball at me for it!), after I filled my innards with some goodness! I had an almost-all-black banana that was crying out for some saving… so, I mashed it up, added some regular oatmeal (because half of my good groceries are still at my uncle’s house), cinnamon, raw wheat germ, & a splash of soymilk. Where’s what it looked like:

    nana oats

    Making my oats this way with the mashed ‘nana made it super-thick, even without something like PB or nuts in them… schweet! I headed to the beach soon after, after stopping at my favorite place to get coffee. I bring my own mug (BYOM?) and pay $1.06 each time… but I fill my mug with my own soymilk (I shall call it “smilk“)because they “only” have half-n-half, skim & 2% milk… and I like the way my own smilk tastes in my java.

    So, yes, the beach was dee-lightful! I spend a little over 2 hours there, took a lil’ walk, picked up some shells, soaked up some rays, fo’sho! I’ve been a little sad because my hair is growing in a lot darker than the ends show. Wah! I LOVE being a natural blonde, so spending some time outside definitely lightens it up! HOO-RA!

    I took some veggie cookbooks & my journal to look through, because I’d love to get back in the habit of cooking some good food, instead of relying on the basics. Though I love me some PB&J & sogurt concoctions, I still love a nice meal & interesting new tastes on occasion!

    When I got home, I had some leftover soup:

    soup< my mom made it & it has: barley, lentils, a variety of vegetables, spicy canned tomatoes, & some fresh corn from the ear (not HER ear, though!)

     

     

     

    I’ve got to tell ya… you know my possible boy interest? Well, we’ve been hanging out (we went to Starbucks where we both enjoyed some green ginger tea), my favorite Thai restaurant, & I met him at work before I had to work to talk, then he came through my line so I could check him out (OH, yes I did!) Unfortunately, though, he said he doesn’t want a girlfriend but would love to still hang out and get to know me because I seem like a cool girl and he’s sorry if he sent me mixed signals. I graciously said thanks for letting me know, & that I’d still like to hang because there aren’t that many of us that appreciate good food & healthy living! TRUE story! Oh well, he seems suuuuper-cool, so it’ll be great to have another friend in town! Way to be positive, OP!

    School doesn’t start until next week, so I’ll be enjoying another week of sunny days & leisure time! Good luck to those going back tomorrow! I’ll be able to get my blogging under way a bit more this week, too… take care & have a peaceful week! 

    I’m in the market for a good book: any suggestions, my trusted ol’ friends? I love things that are relatable, interesting, some sort of psychology involved, possibly (?), biographical, heart-warming… anyone?

    • *P.S.* I love you
    • But really: is my bolding & italicizing too much? 
    • Tell me what you REALLY think. It takes more time to do this, & I think this may contribute to why I blog less than some of ya’ll, but 
    • how often should I use these features? 
    • How else might I improve upon the blog? 
    • Anything you’d like to see differently/more/less of?
    • THANKS!

    I’ll leave you with one more sad photo. The holidays are over, you know why?

    …just take a look, yourself:

    tree

    …back to it’s natural habitat, I suppose.

    6 Comments

    Filed under books, exercise, family, grub, holiday, optimism, school, Uncategorized, winter

    2009 is mine!

    Hi beauts! I hope you all had a lovely New Year’s Eve & celebration!

    Yesterday I went to the beach– can ya believe it?! I’m sorry to those of you in horrible snowy/stormy weather! I’ll soak up some rays and tan my cancer-free skin for ya! There were tons of tourists because of the football Bowl game in town, but still, awesome! I took a run for a little over 30 minutes- not on the sand like the other day, because my calves were feeling really tight today. Light & breezy! Then, I became a bum and laid on the beach, writing my holiday thank you notes! I had a salad with some of my newest produce:

    salad 1< mixed greens with roasted garlic beets, carrots, sprouts, tomatoes, & avocado. I wasn’t reallllly hungry, but I wanted something fresh, yanno?! Great, beautiful, healthy fats, with my fave Annie’s dressing, to boot! Later, I had some nuts & trailmix for some protein, mates.

    I laid low, went to dinner with my parents, then settled back into my uncle’s place to watch the movie Elf about 3 times because it’s on for 24 hours! Everytime I watch it, I find something new to laugh at. Har! Har! Har! I think it’s weird, too, that Christmas is over, and we’re still watching holiday movies & sing[ing] loud for all to hear… still & always cute!

    The boy, like me, is NOT a night-owl. I talked to him today and he went to bed early, haha. I wasn’t expecting any real romance for the New Year, and I’m a casual gal (fancy things don’t fit my fancy!), but a lil’ movie-watchin’ or something would have been nice. Oh, well.

    I like to think I started my 2009 off well!

    I bought some really great-sounding cereal the other day, by Ruth’s Hemp Foods:

    Apple Almond Cinnamon
    I guess a lady from California requested that we order it, and you know how people in Cali are about health, so it just must be worth carrying. I actually talked to her the day she 1st bought it from us, so she kinda suckered ME into trying it! I am so-o-o glad she did & I did try it! It’s gluten-free, high in fiber, Omega 3’s & so-o-o much more, so check out the link, for more!

    pre-cook chia< pre-cook

    just chia< when I added some water, to just ~2-3 T. cereal

    cha-cha-cha-CHIA, in a bowl! It plumped up!

    chia + oats

     

     

     

     

     

    < then, I decided I still needed more, so I added some cooked rolled oats & more water & soymilk… then some cinnamon, even though there’s already some in the product!

    I LOVED this! It made me feel really good, not too full & not bogged-down at all, & it gave me a great feeling of energy. It says you can try it in yogurt, baked goods, or whatever your lil’ heart desires, so I will do just that!

    It was a good feeling to have, because I had decided yesterday to go to a hot yoga class! Boy, did I sweat out some toxins! It was my 1st one, but like I said, I was feeling kind of tight and restless, especially when I try to sleep, so I wanted to sttttrreeeettchhh it out! Miss OP LOVED it! hmmm, guess what color my mat was?!

    I drove the long way home, by the water because the sun was shining, but my tummy was talkin’ to me (“FEED ME! *nom*nom*”) I wanted to continue treating myself right, so I made a huge-ontic salad with the same goodies as yesterday, plus garlic & Bragg’s Liquid Aminos. I also had extra carrots with hummus!

    big & beaut salad< I ate it outside on the porch, because my Mother Nature asked me to join her! …and I always obey my mother!

     

     

     

    I also had a Kombucha for more purification & energy for my innards!

    kombucha

    I tried the Goji Berry one today, for more anti-oxidents (the Wild Root one is great for detoxifying because of the added herbs, though!)

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Later, I had red bananaa red banana for some potassium for my cramped muscles

     

    …with a container of plain lowfat yogurt (hello, protein!), cinnamon (of course!), & a few swirls of Agave Nectar, to make this mess:

    yog + nana

    I love those lil’ red bananas because yes, they’re smaller, but they’re so pretty, like a sunset, when you open it up to eat it… that’s why I photo’ed it before adding anything! ...so photogenic! 

    Honestly (because I’m an ethical blogger), I’ve thought about New Year’s resolutions, but I have come up with few things to be concrete. I must do this. I have a journal, where I can draft my ideas & things I want to work on… then, perhaps I’ll share, but I don’t know. Sorry. I think personal changes are sort of… personal.

    Anyway, Happy & Healthy New Year in 2009!!! THANK YOU for reading & commenting on occasion… it lets me know I’m not alone in this bloggity-world!

    The family is all gathering together again at my grandparents’ house for dinner… for the 1st time this year!  (*rolls eyes in anticipation for, “I HAVEN’T SEEN YOU SINCE LAST YEAR!” comments*) But, really, it should be a good time! It always is, when family is together!

    peace

    8 Comments

    Filed under Celiac Disease, exercise, family, grub, holiday, movies, optimism, winter

    The Ghost of Christmas past has come

    Jassy Santa < Jasper

     Tucker \/ Tuckie Santa

    “Ho! Ho! Ho!”

    We had Christmas Eve dinner at my aunt’s house (mom’s sis) after church, which was great. My aunt really gets into the holiday decorating and had this display up and kept adding to it, since September! It looked great & festive!

    dsc04045 dsc04046  

    dsc04048 dsc04050

     Isn’t it just awesome?! Can you see the Grinch on the mountain (pic #1) & my aunt in the mirror (pic #2)?! She has a train going through, which is in motion in pic #4 and she made that cute little peppermint path! She’s worked hard on it- it’s great!

     

    tree < The mini Christmas tree in my room, with little ornaments, T & J, and there’s also 2 school pictures of the kids I babysit on there somewhere. I got the BELIEVE ornament this year… it’s sorta my word!

     

    On Christmas day, we woke up to stockings & gifts at our house, then we went to my grandparents’ (Dad’s side of the family) to do the same & eat breakie. Breakfast was homemade quiche, mixed fruit salad, pastries, *ahem*sausage*ahem*, tomatoes, OJ & coffee. mmMmm… Only one of my sisters could come home for the holidays, so I reveal to you THEE. BEST. DECORATION. OF. OP’s. CHRISTMAS, who stood in for my other sis, who couldn’t be with us. Check “her” out, drinking some wine:

    sisters

    She’s made fun of that thing, since the day I brought IT home in 6th grade, 9 years ago… it’s not Christmas without it! We literally took pictures with (hmm) SISTER CRACKER as if it was really her. My dad ALWAYS reads ‘Twas the night before Christmas in bed on Christmas Eve, so we called her up, had her on speaker phone, and tucked the lil’ cracker in bed with us!!! (aawww) I think she got in more photos this Christmas than if she had actually been here… oh man- GOOD TIMES!

     pattern dress pink Nike shoes

    s+p stocking SB's & tangerine

    Some gifts: a great wild-pattern dress shipped from my sista’; an organic cotton long-sleeved tee (I also got the same brand gray bag that can hold the world in it!); some Nike shoes (& a gray half-zip Nike hoodie); salt + pepper shakers to add to my collection (a holiday one & the Wizard of Oz one- isn’t that one soo cool?!); my stocking from home; the obligatory tangerine & in that cute little cloth envelope… a Starbuck’s  gift card!

    since I’ve mentioned food in all my other posts, I’ll add one to this: it was a gift from the neighbors, and I’m not quiiiite sure what it is, but I’ll describe what I think it is. It was like toffee/brittle covered in a thin layer of chocolate with almonds in it! sooo rich & buttery & dee-lishtoffee

    I got spoiled for sure! I got so much more than I could need or want, aww, blessings!

    So, yesterday I went grocery shopping at the health-food store/work, to re-stock my uncle’s pantry & fridge with some more yum-si-ness. (Bella is laying on my arm, so I keep misspelling things and pressing odd keys!)

    Here are some boring staples: garbanzo beans, my favorite Annie’s salad dressing, & plain soy yogurt

    groceries 3

    Produce: I filled a bag full of salad greens from the salad bar (way cheaper & organic: a bag full, for about $1.50!), an avocado, Roma tomatoes, Sweet Clover sprouts, red bananas (I have some tangerines & apples still!)

    dsc04159

    …and some goodies I hardly ever get, or have never had, but was excited about: Nutiva hemp protein powder packet, 2 different trailmixes, 3 Betty Lou’s energy balls (tee-hee, I said “BALLS!”), a raw organic food bar, & some dark chocolate ginger

    groceries 2

    new groceries

    ^ MORE goodies:  Ruth’s Chia Goodness cereal (Chia-pet for breakfast!), Food for Life  Genesis English muffins, crackers, & roasted garlic beets from the deli!

    I brought my own bags like a good lil’ girl. My store donates 5 cents for every bag someone brings in, to a charity, which is different every month! I helped yesterday with 10 cents! I spent about $35 on that schtuff!

    Later, I went to good ol’ Publix & picked up a bag of baby carrots, organic blue corn chips & a Luna sunrise bar: Strawberry flava’.

    Yesterday, I went with my parents, sis, & grandparents (who loooove dogs) to see Marley and Me. Loved it! Adorable! I didn’t read the book, but it was sweet, none-the-less! 

    Afterward, I met a friend to catch-up at Border’s. We used to meet up there in high school and take allllll the magazines we could carry to the kid’s area, look at them, talk, & put them back. Sorry, Border’s workers- guilty! We didn’t take mags this time because we had a lot to talk about in a little bit of time (because she met her mom afterward)…

    You know WHY we had so much to talk about?! Well… 

    …well, before that, here was a light dinner with some new goods:

    dinner

    ^ a toasted Genesis English muffin with some Baba Ganouj hummus, sprouts, greens, & tomato. Also, a salad with carrots, sprouts, Newman’s Own honey mustard dressing. After I took it, I added some sunflower seeds to it. My tummy was acting weird, so something light was just what I needed. I had some of my favorite tea, too: Celestial Seasoning’s Honey Peach Ginger to soothe the tum-tum.

    Okay- now, the good stuff:

    Me, lil’ Miss Orange Poppity-Pop had a date! *GASP* I don’t have much dating experience because in high school, I was always so busy with sports & activities, that I just didn’t care much about that. But, I met him at work– he shops there all the time & eats in the deli whenever he can. Needless to say, he’s super-healthy & a total foodie! He’s also smart, cute, sweet…

    We went to a raw/veg/vegan restaurant and got a few different things, tried each others’ food, shared dessert, talked the whole time, he showed me where he is workin‘, he drove me back with plans for something else in the works! We went out once before- met at a pub, actually (he’s not a “pub-guy” but met some old buddies there), and I thought it’d be awkward, but it totally wasn’t! His friends included me & I even recognized/knew some people that were there, too!

    YIPPEE! He, like me, am not a night-owl, and he had a busy day today, so we’re not getting together tonight for the last time this year in 2008, but next year for sure! I’m going to dinner with my parents tonight and just layin’ low.

    When I was little, my family would turn the clocks back a few hours so we wouldn’t be up so late… we’d bang pots-and-pans and light sparklers on roller blades at like 9 or 10 PM every year! HA! This year, it’s all about the true midnight!

    *FUN FACT: this year is one second longer because the earth’s rotation is slowing… so enjoy your extra-second-longer year & have fun (& be safe) welcoming a new, fabulous year in 2009! (PEACE in 2009, as we always say!)

    6 Comments

    Filed under collections, dogs, family, groceries, grub, holiday, movies, optimism, shopping, winter, work

    Beginning to look a lot like…

    the Holidays (to not be religiously-biased) 

    …even though the high will be 80 degrees on Christmas morning…

    So, for my homemade gifts, I’ve decided against giving out the “Almond Joy” granola because I tasted it and it tasted… burnt. No one wants that, no matter how bad they were this year!!! I woke up yesterday morning on a mission: better granola, & something else homemade. What, may you ask? How very trendy of me to make biscotti!!! I looked up some recipes from V’con and other cookbooks and sort of varied it to my liking. I came out with my own, OrangePop variation! It’s fabulous, if I do say so myself! Healthy + Vegan + Delicious = a winning combination! 

    For my 1st trick, I present…. GRANOLA:

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    ^ this was the best, yet! I added nuts and dried fruit but I added the sliced almonds during the last 5 or so minutes because that’s where I got, um, *burned* last batch! Good move, me!

    I packaged them like this, afterall:

    dsc04023 with a little tag with the ingredients, added later. I used mostly organic ingredients from my health-food store (aka work) so people will know they’re adding wholesome goodness to their innards! 

    I also made a ginger-sunflower seed version that was great, too!!!

    I shall post these recipes, okay?!

    For my next trick, I reveal… BISCOTTI:

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    dsc04015

    and I packaged them all differently, like this:

    dsc04022 I gave one to my uncle and he didn’t want to choose one because he didn’t want me to waste the “gourmet wrap job” on lil’-ol’-him! HA, it’s wax paper… and ribbon

    * I will post the recipe, because it was original when it was finished, and not exactly from any book or recipe I looked up! *

    Anywho, amongst all the baking and the house smelling ab-so-lutely divine, I also baked up a cake because my grandparents came over for dinner to see the house all decorated purrty for the holidays. It was a suuuper-easy recipe my mom had, so I whipped it up real quick. It was a lemon bundt cake with a cinnamon-sugar swirl. Here’s it in the making:

    dsc04018

    …and the final product:

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    ^ Do you see what I see? A lil’ bit of me, OP looming in the background?!

    mmMmmMmm… orange soda

    One of these days I’m going to post a photo of the BEST part of our Christmas decorations. I’ll reveal that later. But now, here was our dining atmosphere last night:

    dsc04025

    HAPPY & HEALTHY HOLIDAYS 😀

    7 Comments

    Filed under family, grub, holiday, optimism, winter

    Tree-huggin’ Christmas gift

    Last night, I went home to find a package from my friend Bama filled with goodies like Clif and Kashi bars, Sport beans, a funny Christmas card and Chris Carmichael’s book Food for Fitness to “Eat Right to Train Right” because I’d love to run more and even compete again, but want to make sure I have my bases covered, as far as good sport nutrition! THANKS BAMA- you’re GRRRR-REAT!

    Last night I felt like baking. With all these awesome bloggers making cookies and other yummy treats this time of year, even though I’m getting sweets, I still want to contribute. i thought about something original. Then, I thought something homemade and totally OrangePop-ish would be the best! Soooo, I came out with 2 varieties of…

    GRANOLA!

    While The Santa Claus was on TV, I just sort of looked up recipes, and then played around and made my own anyway. My 1st attempt I tried a variation of “Almond Joy” except later I realized I should have added cocoa powder for the chocolate part…oh, well!

    granola 1

    granola 2

    The 2nd one, I added more dried fruit and nuts and… wow, even more of a winner!

    granola 3

    I put them in granola tubs tubs.

    I know there’s a niftier idea than plastic baggies to give them in (I still want to make more varieties, but I was getting sleepy!) **Any suggestions??** They’re very much welcomed!

    Would you believe that they contain no oil? It’s true. I may post the recipe I used, if they’re hits, or if I get an influx of requests.

    …until then, THERE’S ONLY A FEW MORE SHOPPING DAYS LEFT ‘TIL CHRISTMAS! EVERYONE BE HAPPY AND LOVING 😀 and especially, show it if you feel it!

    5 Comments

    Filed under grub, holiday, movies, optimism, shopping, winter

    FREE, ME!!

    I slept in, mondo… when I woke up, I put out the FLAME!!! Okay, I was watching the news on TV this morning when I woke up (okay, afternoon) when I saw it: smell like a burger! For $3.99 you can smell like a flame-broiled Burger King ham-boogie. Nice. They also referenced the SuperBowl commercial from McDonald’s where a man mistakenly puts a wrapper in the dryer and his wife’s clothes smells like beef and he is turned on… see it on YouTube here, with Miss OP:

    Okay, onto the good stuff…

    I finally finished my semester!!!!

    YIPPEEE!!! YOW!!! HURRAY!!! ZIP-ZIP-ZIPPERRR!!! WEEE!!! So, I’ll happily be blogging more until I start mid-January (the 12th or so?). I’ll be working (*grumble*), relaxing, and doing other unforeseen things in my future. Unfortunately, either of my sisters will NOT be home for Christmas. It’s gonna be weird. And sad. Me lovez ‘da sistah’s!

    So, yesterday. As soon as I woke up, I went for a brisk walk around to wake up and energize me! It was so nice out and great for my mind. When I got home, I put on a pot of coffee and made some oats for brain-food. oats

    ^ I had Target’s Pumpkin Spice coffee (I mix the grounds with generic/cheaper variety with the yummy stuff to make it last longer. I also add cinnamon to the filter!); the oats are: ~1/3 (+) c. Bob’s Red Mill 5-grain hot cereal, chopped apple, ~1 T. Skippy Natural Chunky PB, cinnamon, a splash of soymilk, and brown sugar. MmMmMmmmmm…

    So, then Government Exam. Yow!

    Then, the gym for some cardio… gotta get the heart pumpin’!

    I have to tell you something. My uncle has been looking for a job for a while now. He’s a real estate appraiser, but work is hard to find right now with that… so he’s also been a black-jack dealer! Cool! Anyway, he wants to work at a big casino around here, but until he can be transfered here, he has to work at another location, a few hours away. He also has a cat (Milo!) and a dog (Bella, who is also Jasper’s sister!!!!), so I am staying at his house to watch his “brats” (or “kids”- they’re both! HA!).

    It’s been pretty fun. Man, Bella is FULL OF ENERGY, ALL! THE! TIME! And Milo was barely seen, until a couple of weeks ago. Aww, he likes me! Because I feed him, probably. He’s a one-minded animal! Let me introduce you to them- Milo:

    Milo

    Bella: (actually sleeping?!)

    dsc03970

    It’s a mini-Jasper

    So, since I told you that, I’m staying at his house. I’ve moved in my stuff, OP’ed his kitchen, I get my own room and Bella snuggles with me at night. BUT, his shower-head is like a drizzle… so I went home after the gym to shower. And, my fab Paris-sister is still home (she can’t get a flight back, uh-oh!), so we went to Publix to get sammiches. I love their hoagie-bread! 

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    ^ Mine was a veggie with spicy mustard, Provolone cheese, S+P, and all the veggies, except black olives. EEK! (green pepper, banana peppers, tomatoes, onions & pickles… I think that’s all!)

    Then, work. It wasn’t too bad. I got paid, but since I went to Paris the last weekend I’ve worked, it was a small paycheck. I’ve only been working Thursdays & Saturdays (and some Sundays) during school, so over break, I’ll probably pick up some more hour$!  It was slooowwww though!

    Afterward, I decided I needed a fun lil’ zing to celebrate the end of my semester! I was by myself and tired, so I found this baby in my uncle’s fridge and saw a little recipe on the back, so I improvised. My version of cookies & milk, no?!

    cookies & milk

    hmmm, I’m not a big drinker, and this tasted in NO WAY like alcohol, which I loved… but I drank it so quickly, and limited it to just one cup. I heated some soymilk and mixed it that way. Great! While watching Jim Carey’s version of The Grinch, it was a little nice to have no agenda!

    So, then I slept in until, late. I woke up at 8:30, but have NOTHING TO DO, so I rolled over and kept sleeping. It was strange for me, since I’ve been a morning person these days, but I stayed up late (for me!) and had a lil’ drinky-drinky! 

    Have a great start to your weekend, loves! Any plans?! Holiday shopping done? I’m allllllmost there. Just something else for my mom & Paris-sis. Hopefully I can navigate the crowds, but since I already have gift-ideas for them, it shouldn’t be too bad!

    I work Sat. & Sun. then not again until next Sat! ENJOY!

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    Filed under dogs, family, grub, holiday, movies, school, shopping, work