Tag Archives: shopping

It’s a Wonderful Life!

Yesterday might have been one of the best days of the year! (is that fair?) Well, here’s what I did, in order, with a few pictures:

  • Woke up at about 8am & brewed some coffee
  • Went to hot yoga from 9:30-11am
  • drank lots of water on my way to TJMaxx. There, I bought a new yoga mat & a laptop case. I have been using my mom’s mat, but I bought my own orange mat! This is my second laptop sleeve/case, but the 1st one was much too small, so I got this one:

laptop back laptop front

 purple-y, huh?

 

< showing it’s backside (oh!)

 


 

& it’s front, spilling it’s brains (cords) >

 

 

 

 

  • Then, I went home, made me some grub (huge-ontic salad with greens, carrots, tomatoes, broccoli, brussels sprouts, edamame, garbanzos, peppers; an apple; & carrots with hummus) & ate it outside
  • puttered around on my computer, especially on Craig’s List because I’m searching for a bike. I e-mailed a guy about one & there’s a strong possibility of me getting it. He e-mailed me back quickly, so I may go take a look-see this week! I also e-mailed my friend down the street who restores bikes for fun (!) & works at a bike store in town to see if it’s a good deal… he says go for it!
  • I decided to finally test out my new shoes from Christmas (why did I wait this long?!), thus I found myself on a 35-minute run… I felt like I was flying… or going fast, for me! But, I also decided the shoes were half a size too smallouch!
  • I got back home and prepared a letter to my sister, including random, funny newspaper clippings & pictures, because she thinks those kinds of things are weird and funny, like I do, too. Many of these were about cats & Prez Bush-isms
  • I whipped up a smoothie, using this: alive a-c packet It has a LOT of really great, whole-foods ingredients (greens, spirulina, etc.) with 16 g. protein + apple-cinnamon flavor, yum! I added an apple, ice, water, & a couple of spoonfuls of sogurt… & cinnamon. It looked like this, in the blender: alive in blender GREEN!!! I was like, what’s going on here??? …but that’s how it’s supposed to be because of the ingredients, soo, I popped it in the freezer, while I…
  • Took a shower & got dressed
  • Then, I drank this: alive smoothie with more cinnamon on top. At 1st, I didn’t like it. I wanted to like it, but I didn’t. I kept drinking it, and finally decided I did like it! The added apple & sogurt made  it thicker & I liked the way I felt after it, with all those wholesome ingredients! I probably won’t buy this particular flavor again, but I like the product. I did this on my way…
  • to the Post Office to mail something for my dad & my sister’s letter
  • & to exchange my shoes for the correct size. It’s quite a trek over to do that, so I’m glad I had some fuel! I got a little nervous driving ol’ Desi (my 1997 Toyota Tercel) over there, especially when I thought it was over-heating, YIKES! So, I drove about 60 mph or slower the entire time, despite those angry, fast drivers. I also returned a sweatshirt & got store-credit for it.
  • While I was over that direction, I stopped by Whole Foods. I wasn’t that impressed, so I left almost directly and headed to my natural-foods store/work for dinner.
  • I got there about 20 minutes before they closed the Colossal Salad Bar, so I had to hurry, which is not like me in my eating habits! I piled on a HUUUUUGE salad (x2) & tried split-pea soup for the first time- YUM! I added cayenne pepper for a kick. I also had a large bowl of fruit. Nothing like making your own salad with every ingredient imaginable (2 kinds of tofu (teriyaki & blackened), chickpeas, edamame, shredded carrot & beet, mushrooms, marinated mushrooms, tomatoes, steamed veggies, raw veggies, crunchy & “hair-like” sprouts, about 7 different dressings, nuts, raisins, different cheeses, cooked eggs, different grain-salads & mixtures…. tons!) + rice & beans, soups…. DEE-VINE! No photo– sorry, maybe another time.
  • I left stuffed, so I went home, got some goodies together & left for my uncle’s to have some dark chocolate-covered ginger & go to sleep

Today, I have to finish registering for classes & turn my change into ca$h… not much else… maybe go visit that bike and/or see a movie, go book-browsing… I never know!

Have a great week, friends!!!

*OH! By the way, the makers of Clif products have a red wine out, that is organic, with no sulfites. I hear it’s excellent & totally worth raving about!

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Filed under errands, exercise, grub, optimism, school, shopping, work

Thankful and Giving! (and getting)

What a wonderful day I had on Thanksgiving! TG

^ Here I am with Mr. & Mrs. OrangePop… those who birthed me! I love them a lot and am very fortunate to have such loving and supportive parents! I have 2 older sisters who, unfortunately, weren’t able to make it. My sister who is away working at a ski resort went to a church and had a free dinner with the old people who sponsored it!!! How cute! My other sister had her traditional meal the night before and she ate leftovers (which, I think, is one of the best parts of the food-part of the holiday!) that day and lounged, watched the parade (where she actually went to see it in NY last year!). She came home the next day and we’ve been hanging out, when I’m not at work

cake

^ My Vegan with a Vengeance cake! The Ginger-Macadamia Nut-Coconut-Carrot Cake was a total hit!

Quorn Quorn Turk’y Roast– I loved it! Even the biggest meat-eater tried it and agreed it tasted just like turkey and admitted to even liking it! Yay! It’s not vegan, but I’m not. I rubbed it with olive oil and Italian seasoning and then baked it wrapped in tin-foil! Delish!

 sweet taters Sweet Potato Casserole– my favorite side, which became more like the center. Plenty of walnuts, brown sugar and goodness in this baby!

My Black Friday started at 6am, when my mom and I went to Target (oh, love) and saw people LEAVING when we got there… whatttt?! Ludicrous! It’s not that I just needed anything or was looking for something in particular, but this gal loves a good deal, so I was on the hunt… I also loved that it marked the beginning of the holiday season so it was fun listening to the first bit of holiday music on the way there, while it was still dark. I got a sweater-ish top, a pair of black high-tops, Werther’s hard candies, and gum. Woo, big-spender. Then, we went to Michael’s where I got 2 types of yarn (I can crochet!) and some stationary. Then, Old Navy, where I bought two T-shirts. All on sale. Because I’m thrifty like that!

Today, we (my parents, oldest sis & I) went to get our Christmas tree! Beforehand, we stopped and got coffee and bagels, then skipped along to the tree-tent.  We’ve been debating whether or not to get a small tree and put it on a table, like we did last year when Jasper was a very curious pup; or to get a regular-sized tree and risk him eating the ornaments off the bottom, try to drink the tree’s water, or something else spontaneous and odd… in the end, we decided on a tall tree! The very 1st one we looked at was the one we got! It’s just beautiful and it fills the house with a comforting, lovely smell! Live trees are just the way to go! I’ll show you a picture once all the ornaments go up, but for now:

TuckerJasper

 

*Tucker & Jasper taking turns playing Santa!

As we decorated, we, of course, listened to holiday tunes. What’s your favorite song of the season?! I love (I think it’s Paul McCartney?) the song that goes, “Simply- having- a wonderful Christmastime!” It’s so happy and fun! Traditionally speaking, I love “Silent Night” (sad and lovely, because it reminds me of my Grandma) and “Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire” especially by Bing Crosby!

 

I hope everyone had a fantastic, loving Thanksgiving, like I did! 

Oh, another school week begins, sooo make it a great one!

XOXO~Gossip Girl Miss OP

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November is almost over?

…it sure is!
I’ve celebrated 5 months of employment at my job! Ha, very monumentous… I am happy to still have a job with the way things seem to be now. Although, the price of gas yesterday, I saw as low as $1.79!!! I had school on Monday & Tuesday, but am off the rest of the time for a little break
I started seeing the Christmas tree tents being filled with trees the other day, too! It is always a tradition for us to get our tree the day after Thanksgiving… which is today. So, HAPPY THANKSGIVING, ya’ll!!! I am blogging to you straight from my couch, as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is starting. Oh, Miley C. and David A. are headliners. What youth this country has!
Last night we had 2 of my aunts and an uncle over for dinner. And some little boy hung out with us… who?! Let me show you:

Jassy

Jassi’per!

Afterward we went out by the pool and had a fire in our fire pit and made s’mores! Let me tell you: it was cooooollldddd! My mom made the best soup in a large pot- plenty for seconds and leftovers! We call it “Garlicky Spicy Tortellini Soup.” It’s super easy, warming, filling, a little spicy, and GOOD! Basic ingredients: (We don’t even use a recipe anymore because it’s this easy. Just stock the ingredients and add as much or as little as you like!) 
  • Package or 2 of Tortellini (we used dry Barilla tortellini, probably the Cheese & Garlic kind, but any would be great! (spinach, 3-cheese, etc.)
  • Large can of stewed tomatoes, cut up
  • 2 cans of tomatoes with green chilies
  • Bag of fresh spinach, rinsed and drained
  • GARLIC!!!!! Few cloves… or bulbs. Ha, no, but this is essential to making the soup that much better (doesn’t garlic just do that to everything?!)

Cook everything and let simmer and add spinach last, just before serving until it shrinks like it does and mixes well. You can add red pepper flakes or S&P, but it’s not really needed.

And, VIOLA! Serve with crusty bread and lots to drink!

Today, of course, is the main event of Thanksgiving! The family is going to be eating real bird, and I’ve seen the whole Tofurkey roast with stuffing, that’s like $27.99, but it’s just me and I’m weary of the Tofurkey brand (although I DO like the lunch “meat” that’s “cranberry-stuffing” flavor. So, that’s holiday-ish!). Anyway, I LOVE Quorn chik’n, so I saw a Turk’y roast (I love how ebonic vegetarianism becomes…) with 5 servings, so I got that to try! 

I’m not a pie fan. I think I used to like it, and I want to like it, but I don’t. We’re having apple & pumpkin pies and Ginger-Macadamia Nut-Coconut Carrot Cake from Vegan with a Vengeance.  Oh-la-la, I’m excited! I’ve got that to cook up today!

We used to have lunch at my mom’s parent’s house, then dinner at my dad’s parent’s. *Phew!* That’s a lot of eating. My mom’s parent’s aren’t alive anymore and everyone’s sort of adopting their own traditions with family, so we’ve decided to give my dad’s parent’s a break since they host Christmas and invite both sides of the family and whoever can make it, comes! We might take the ol’ rascal, Jasper to the park to tire him out, since we’re having a lot of people over today and he’s not a (total) crazy man!

Have a wonderful, giving, loving Thanksgiving!

*Questions for ya:

WHAT ARE YOUR HOLIDAY TRADITIONS?!

WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE PART OF THE PARADE (if you watched!)… and/or THE HOLIDAY?!

WHAT ARE YOU THANKFUL FOR?!

I hope you really think about these and really tell the people you love how you feel and take note, not just today, but everyday, for all you have and are able to do! Truly, I’m thankful for so many things I want to cry in appreciation… XOXO~ “Miss OP”

*And yes, I do plan on waking up early to shop. I have to work (changed to later, though!), and even though I rarely buy much, I love the spirit of it and the “kick-off” to the holiday season!

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Mug Shot!

My mom’s a teacher. For elementary kids. So, for every holiday or event, she gets gifts: cards, candy, gift certificates if she’s been a good girl, and mugs. You know, dollar-store trinkets. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m a frugal gal and love a good deal, and it’s cute that these kids are so proud to be giving my sweet mother a gift, for whatever occasion! But my mom is funny about it, too. As she comes home from school carrying bags with what might look like some pretty good stuff, she starts re-unwrapping them for me to see. Her famous line, when she gets those trinkets she has no use for, is, “Just give me the dollar!” and then she puts it aside like she’s going to give it away. Now she’s on summer vacation, but as I was rummaging through the kitchen looking for a mug this morning, I’ve noticed that I have quite an array of options! She keeps those mugs. Every-stinkin-one! I’ve tried to throw some out, but I find them the next day in the dishwasher because she finds and rescues them!
mug 1

(^ yes, that’s a Jasper hair)
mug 2

not just mugs… jars, other cups and coffee to-go cups, too
mug 3

Happy Christmas in August!

Sister 2 is almost as bad. She goes to thrift stores and collects them that way. She has some pretty cool ones, as well as random, funny and huge ones. She feels sophisticated with some, and calls certain ones her “writer’s cup,” like the one with the tan-brown-blue, below. You know, like those old men writers in old movies, or something. She calls the blue one, below, her “camping mug.” Like she ever really goes camping! No. Actually, the one with the harp on it is from Ireland, from my parent’s trip, so I’ll give her that one.  My favorite mug (I don’t know why, but I have favorite utensils, mugs, bowls, etc.) is the one below, with the fish. It’s from a restaurant down here, called Shells, but I don’t know when/why we got it! And I painted the “beachy” one.
mug

This is not even it. There are more in the dishwasher, in my sister’s rooms, and probably in other random places in the house.

My mom goes out with a bunch of her teacher-friends from school. They steal dishes, napkins, plates, cups, etc. and somehow they wind up on our front porch or hidden in her classroom, or something. They think it’s funny because my mom is not the kind of person that would ever do that, so they make fun of her for “stealing!”

Anyway, there you have it… a small collection from my kitchen, to your computer!

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Filed under collections, dogs, summer, travel

I speak with honest GARLIC breath!

orange pop

Why, hello, my lovely long-necked friend! I saw this at the store and had to try it! Why? WHY NOT?! Yes, it is diet, but it still tasted like I melted an orange creamsicle in my mouth! I felt like I was in the 50’s at the soda fountain. Oh, a twist on my beloved orange pop! Too bad I don’t have a juke box and I wish I drank it with a straw, but now I think of it…

To back-track, I made some famous Chickpea Cutlets from V’con for lunch today. I also had Emerald Kale Salad from the deli at work, which was excellent. One bite into the cutlets and I said, “OHHH YEAH!” I made a spin off of some mustard sauce, which I could never in a million years replicate, because I just sort of put some of this in, and some of that in… improvisation! From what I remember, it had some mustard powder, Braggs, Wasabi powder, garlic, Agave nectar, some flour to thicken it… I don’t know for sure, but it was garlicky, tasty, and delicious, all together! I was very satisfied, can you tell?! The kale salad was garlicky, too, so afterward, I sort of felt like I had just eaten the entire bulb of garlic! Ha! (Jasper and Tucker did not want to speak to or kiss me afterward!)
chickpea cutlets

Isn’t my mini-whisk the cutest?!

So, I went to the mall after that, because I have a few gift cards and I love a good sale, but nothing caught my bargaining eye, so I left and picked up my liquified-creamsicle and some decaf coffee (Cinnamon Hazelnut, thank you) and went home. I really wasn’t hungry for dinner. 4 hours later, can you believe it?! Usually my body is saying, “FEED ME!” every 3 hours or so, but I wasn’t hungry! I was, however, in the mood to cook. After going through my recipe books and taking stock of what I would fancy in my head, I decided I would eat a good, full, meal. And it would be tasty! I made a spin off of Pasta de la California in V’con (hmm, Pasta de la Madam Orange Pop?!), with some spicy Bar-B-Que tempeh, and a side-salad with Annie’s Woodstock dressing! How have I not known about this beauty-of-a-dressing before?! Loved it! Props to Annie and her employees! Again, I have garlic breath, but I wouldn’t have it any other way!
pasta

I have to be honest here. I’ve been dreaming all today when I would sneak in some exercise, other than walking around the mall. I haven’t been feeling as strong lately and it’s been probably a week since I’ve hit the gym. But, I have been walking, biking, running (minimally) and working recently. And, some more honesty for you, I’ve been feeling a bit tired, frail/thin-feeling. This is not a good feeling for me because I am usually full of energy, happy, warrior-like (yes, me, Orange Pop, Warrior Princess!)… so I knew I needed to eat and eat I did! I feel like sometimes I look like a little girl, or worse, a little boy! You know what I mean? So, here I type, full, sleepy and a bit uncomfortable, but I will be kind to myself because I’ve been not-so-kind in the past, if ya know what I mean.

So there’s honesty for ya! I promised myself and my parents I’d take great care of myself while they’re away, and always! That’s a gift everyone should let themselves have!

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Quick, Easy, Successful

Not men, but I mean the GRUB!

I got a tea ball! I consumed too much java yesterday, so I figured I’d switch to tea this morning! After my mis-hap with my teacup (the holes were bigger than the leaves!), I used my tea ball to brew some Mango Green Tea. I am LOVING mango in any form these days and this tea was awesome! Here it is, all brewed in my (self-) painted cup, with the tea ball sitting on the little tea bag holder.
tea ball

I also made some homemade oats this morning! Usually, I use a package of Quaker Simple Harvest oatmeal, which is great and easy and has some really yummy ingredients, but all I have in the cupboard is the one with honey and in an attempt to have a vegan day, this morning I made my oats with soymilk, a chopped-up apple, cinnamon, walnuts, and brown sugar. How very autumn of me?! I love this combo, though! Maybe I’ll try some muesli sometime with cold oats and mango! Oh, that’d be delish!

Last night after coming home late from work, I had been planning on making a dish from V’con, but instead, I went to my 3 reliable amigos… allow me to show them to you:
easy meal

So easy and quick and satisfied my taste for some Mexican cuisine! Okay, okay, I’ll admit I did add a few other ingredients (like onion, green pepper, red pepper flakes, nutritional yeast, avocado and, of course, tortilla chips). But still- easy and tasty! This morning I felt the fiber of all that and the beans right before bedtime… eek, but that’s totally healthy, right?! I’ve got a fridge full of leftovers, it seems: beans of all sorts, veggies, tomatoes, rice… hmm, the possibilities!

Day off! Day off! House to myself! I’m going to cook some good stuff, write some letters to friends (yes, I’m that old-fashioned, still!), and perhaps go shopping (I’m looking for some comfy shoes to wear to work, since I stand on my feet all day!), maybe rent a couple movies (any good suggestions out there?), and tool around with the dogs! Have a spectacular “Hump-Day!” (Think Fergie: My Humps!)

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More V’con Variations!

I merged 2 recipes from V’con to make 1 very nice one! I wanted to use some more of the chipotle peppers I had from the last recipe I used since I have a lot of heat left from those babies. But the “Everyday Vegetable-Chipotle Tamales” sounded like too much work and I don’t have the steamer basket it requires! Soo, I used the Everyday Vegetable-Chipotle filling recipe and turned them into enchiladas and used the recipe for the Enchilada Chile Sauce in the recipe for “Potato and Kale Enchiladas with Roasted Chile Sauce.” I used sundried-tomato wraps. Here was the finished product:

enchiladas

Totally vegan, but I put sour cream and cheese on the table for my family. Also, no Mexican-themed dinner is complete without tortilla chips, so I had those out, too! I wish I had taken a picture of the innards, but let me tell you it was pretty and delicious!

Tucker wanted some of my sister’s… but there was none left for him! And he would have cried from the spice! Sorry, boy!
tucker

My mom was giving Jasper a little taste, but he was distracted by the bright light of my camera and his eyes look spooky!

 jasper

On another note, I just finished a book and am onto reading My Sister’s Keeper, by Jodi Picoult. I am only about 60-70 pages in, but I really like it and am excited to read it before I see the movie (With Cameron Diaz and “Little Miss Sunshine”)! Is that the best way to do it: read, then watch?! I think so, or I’ll never finish the book, because I know how it ends already!!!

Okay… another day of thrifting and hanging out! I go to my aunt’s to dog-sit tonight, so I’ll be checkin’ up on all your beautiful blogs there, most likely! Thanks to all those who have added me to their blogroll! Have a wonderful hump-day!

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Filed under books, dogs, grub, shopping, summer