Thursday, July 29, 2010

Cupcake Date

Ah-ha!  So I was indeed spelling my bum pain wrong.  Thanks to all of you the cleared it up...piriformis muscle!  So now my pain has a name...Piriformis Syndrome...Wikipedia describes it very well.  The treatment is exactly everything I've been doing...chiro, massage, stretch and strengthen.  So I guess more core and glute work is in my fitness future.  I suppose the bonus of all this is that I will end up with a very firm, cute butt!  :) 

Started the day dreaming of Vegas...


I jumped into breakfast right away because I'd been thinking about it since I put it together last night.  First breakfast cookie in my new place!


Powerhouse.  In the mix: rolled oats, Maranatha Chocolate Peanut Butter, mashed banana, flax meal, chia, unsweetened Almond Breeze, and a few Craisins for fun.


This morning I topped it with organic vanilla yogurt and the rest of my banana.  Deeeeelish!  Kept me full all morning.

Lunch was one of my faves...homemade chicken salad.  Nom.

I cooked up and chopped an extra chicken breast the other night while I already had the grill going.  Today I added celery, green onion, and chopped red grapes...


Mixed with olive oil mayo, salt and lots of pepper.  At the last minute I added chopped walnuts for more crunch.


Instead of serving on bread I decided to make use of some of the veggies I have on hand and made little radicchio wraps instead.


The slightly bitter taste of the radicchio went really well with the fresh and creamy chicken salad.  I didn't miss the bread at all.

After finishing work for the day I met the camera shy other Jamie for a dinner and cupcake date! 

She works downtown so I met her at the Starbucks near her office.  I grabbed a decaf Iced Americano while we were there, then we walked the few blocks to our restaurant of choice.


Jamie had some work done on her teeth today so we opted for our fave little Vietnamese restaurant, Saigon Night, because she knew she could order something soft to eat there if need be.  Turned out her freezing was gone and she was able to order her usual anyway. :)  I ordered the same thing.


#18 - Bun Bi, Thit Nuong, Cha Gio - Rice vermicelli, grilled pork, shredded lettuce, carrots, bean sprouts and peanuts...with yummy sauce and a shrimp spring roll.

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It's a huge serving!  I realized when I was about 3/4 of the way through that I wasn't even paying attention to eating it anymore so put my chopsticks down.  I probably should have stopped at half and brought the rest home!

Don't worry I left enough room for dessert. :)  Since I moved away only 2.5 years ago Victoria seems to have sprouted a few new cupcake places.  You know checking them out is high on my priority list!  Pink Sugar was conveniently along our path back to the car (OK, maybe we totally planned it that way!)...

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From their website: Cupcakes baked fresh in small batches daily, Pink Sugar Cupcakery's unique designer cupcakes are an artisan treat. Made with ingredients such as fresh bananas, real strawberries, pure Madagascar bourbon vanilla and fresh lemon, lime juice and zests, these dairy and egg-free treats are the only way to make your day a little sweeter.


With all of the colourful varieties to chose from I had to read each description to see what caught my fancy.  I was leaning towards one of the chocolate with the bright icing, but when I read the description of The Lolla Lee Lou I knew it was the way to go for my first venture into the shop. Vanilla cake filled with a coconut lavender cream. Topped with a lemony cream cheese style frosting.

Because these cupcakes are vegan they are a little different texture that your standard cakey cupcake but the taste was still all there.  Nom.  The icing was softer than average buttercream but the fresh lemony zing and coloured sugar were delicious.  I had missed the note about the filling so that was a fun surprise.

Jamie ordered the Peanut Butter Cup-Cake which looked great!  but I think next time The Elvis might have my name on it.

Back at home I'm just doing some stretches for my bum (pigeon anyone!), catching up on a few episodes of last season's Mad Men, and aiming to head to bed early.  Night!

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A Day Ago

Well yes...I did promise two posts yesterday but I'm sure you all survived when it didn't happen.  :)

So here's yesterday in a nutshell...

Coffee at my new desk...


Breakfast on my now functioning dining table...


Kashi Honey Almond Flax with vanilla soy milk, blueberries and banana.


Trip to chiropractor which confirmed that it indeed my lower back/hips that are causing my pain.  He referred to my pura forma muscle?  I tried Googling that and obviously I'm spelling it incorrectly because I can't find a thing!  Something to do with how it connects with my sciatic and everything kind of wraps together in my bum and affects nerves all up and down my leg.  Yippee.  Not.

So I'll go back to him tomorrow and keep working at it.  In the meantime he told me not to spend too much time sitting.  Ha!  Ya, that's doable when I work at a desk all day...and oh, sitting is the only time I'm not in agonizing pain. Fab.

Lunch was light as I was in a hurry...


Veggies, wheat crackers, and Sabra crack hummus.


Of course I was hungry not long after that tiny meal!  So Squirrelly toast with Supercrack and the cheese I'm not so sure about...


I had intended on getting some sort of activity.  I haven't been back to the gym since Monday, haven't kept up with Lynn's Seven Days of Yoga at all, and have barely even been outside since the weekend.  But somehow I got the bright idea to go shopping instead...and ended up coming home empty handed.  Oh well.

Well, not totally empty handed...I did get the world's tastiest ice cream bar from Purdy's.  I used to hate the roasted almonds when I was a kid, but now they are the whole reason I indulge once in a while!


By the time I finished shopping my pain was at like an 8 so I ate my dinner in the comfort of my desk chair and caught up on some blogs I haven't read in a bazillion years. 

Leftover Chicken and White Bean Salad...


Probably should have done some stretching but oh well...maybe today.  :)

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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Chicken and White Bean Salad

Weeeeeha!  I finally got my desktop computer out of it's box and set up on my shiny new desk.  Today I get to work in comfort with a real keyboard and my lovely large 22" monitor.


And now have a beautifully cleared and polished dining room table that will no longer function as my office.  It's like a grown up lives here!


Close up of the thoughtful and cute housewarming giftie from my friend Ingmarie.  She's so creative when it comes to this stuff!

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I should probably chill that wine, but it's so cute in it's little basket. :)

Anywho...back to yesterday...



Starbies Denver mug courtesy of my coworker Michelle who was living there for a few months.



Shocker.  More Squirrelly toast with PB and Supercrack.  Anyone know where to buy Crofters Supercrack Spread in Victoria? I need to restock on the other flavours.


My Mom brought me these tasty little LaCalera oranges...they've been hanging out in my fruit bowl and I almost forgot about them.  Kinda like a clementine or mandarin but firmer.



Pickles wrapped in turkey, wheat crackers, grapes, and Wensleydale cheese...


I didn't know it could happen...but I think I met a cheese I don't really like.  Firmness and texture is lovely but taste is kinda bland and pasty.  Too bad!  I very much enjoyed the Wensleydale with blueberries that Miss Marie served me...must need the fruit!


It was good if I paired it with the grapes.  I'll eat it up but it won't make my shopping basket in the future.

After lunch I took another trip to my new massage therapist.  We have now assessed that we think all of my glute/leg pain may actually be stemming from either my hip or my pelvis so I'm going to see a chiropractor today.  The massage is totally helping but if it's actually an alignment issue one or two treatments may cure the problem.  Let's hope!

Afternoon snackie...


I can't wait to have time and ingredients to bake some of my own healthy snacks...but Kashi is a good holdover. :)

Deeeelish Dinner...

Another yummy recipe from Eating Well magazine.  You may likely see quite a number of recipes pop up here because I flagged a bunch to try!  Chicken and White Bean Salad...


So fresh and fiberific!  This salad was really all about the dressing for me.  They refer to it as their All Purpose Vinaigrette which I'm not sure I would agree with as it wouldn't suit all dishes, but the zing from the orange juice and garlic went incredibly well with the chicken and white beans.

Vinaigrette: (I halved this)

  • 1 medium clove garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 6 tablespoons fresh orange juice, plus more to taste (I used Tropicana)
  • 1/4 cup white-wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

Peel the garlic and smash with the side of a chef’s knife (I just grated mine using my microplane). Using a fork, mash the garlic with salt in a small bowl to form a coarse paste. Whisk in oil. Add orange juice, vinegar and mustard; whisk until well blended. Taste and whisk in up to 4 tablespoons more juice to mellow the flavour; season with more salt, if desired. Set aside at room temperature.

It is pretty tart straight up out of the bowl, but I added a little extra OJ to smooth it out...then once mixed with the salad it was just right!  Especially with the fresh basil in the actual salad.


For the salad itself I followed the magazine recipe pretty much to the letter.  I used white kidney beans, goat feta in place of the haloumi and romaine instead of escarole...and only made a half batch.  It's a bit of work getting everything all chopped up, but once you do it's easy from there.  :)

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I let the chicken, veggies, beans and cheese marinate in the dressing for about 30 minutes in the fridge...then mixed up the romaine and radicchio when I was ready to eat.

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I love that the chicken makes it feel hearty, but the veggies and zingy dressing keep it fresh and crunchy.  The beans are a healthy added protein...and the cheese is just plain tasty.  :)  This salad would lend itself well to lots of modifications...I can see shredded carrots or beets!  Whatever you like really.  Let me know if you give it a whirl.

I'm betting my bowl of leftovers will be even better with 24 hours of marinating in the vinaigrette. mmmmmmmm.

After that tasty meal I got to work on setting up my computer...snacked on some Goldfish crackers...drank a lot of water (massage day must do!)...then called it a fairly early evening.

I satisfied my sweet tooth with these fun organic gummy worms I found hiding out in my road trip snack bag (which I finally just unpacked!).  Tasted like real juice!  But still felt like a sneaky treat!  :)

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nom. nom. nom.

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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Set Up

Sorry kids, no bloggie tonight.  I got my desktop computer all set up but it's taking all freaking night to update, transfer files back over, and upload the 1600 pictures I've taken since I last used it.

Had I been smart I would have blogged from my laptop but alas I did not realize that it would take so long to get set up.

But tomorrow expect two posts!  Hurrah!  Both from the comfort of my lovely new desk!

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Monday, July 26, 2010

Day in the Life

Today felt much more like a normal day in the life of Jaime.  My apartment still looks like a cyclone went through it but thanks to a few good comments and some discussions with my Mom and friends I’ve decided to just let it go.  It will be done when it’s bloody well done.  :)

What do I normally do when I get up?  (Besides shuffling bleary eyed to the potty…).  I drink coffee.  In this lovely smartass mug from my mother…

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Sweet right?  Riiiiight.  But see this heart…well, it’s one of those dealios where when you add a hot beverage words appear…

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Mhmmmmm.  Some gift, eh!?  haha, thanks Mom!

After sufficient caffeination it’s time for breaky.  Blueberries, strawberries, organic vanilla yogurt…sprinkled with hemp hearts…

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After a litre of water and working for the morning it’s time to make lunch!  A Squirrelly sammich!

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Toasted Squirrelly bread, crack hummus, fat-free roast turkey, local yellow tomatoes, and baby spinach…

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Served with pickles.  Oh it’s nice to have options in the fridge again!

What have I not done for a month that I did today?

… wait for it …

I went to the gym!!  That’s right.  I worked solidly through the afternoon and at 4:30 I got my gear on, hopped in my car and headed over to see what the Goodlife here in Victoria was all about.

I’ll save my review of the gym for later in the week after I’ve had a few visits but I will say I’m not completely sold on it yet. 

Since it has been a while since I’ve worked out, and since I have no idea what is causing my glute/hip/leg pain I decided just to do an easy cardio day and upper body strength training.

Treadmill:  20 minutes incline power walk

Strength:  3 x 12

  • overhead press
  • tricep dips
  • lateral raises
  • hammer curls
  • overhead tricep lift
  • bicep curls (with barbell)

I had to drop to less weight than usual but hopefully it will only take me a week or two to get back up to where I was. 

Finished with 3 x 30 second planks mixed with 3 sets of easy crunches and lots of stretching.  My glute didn’t bother me too much until I got to the floor work.  I’m honestly really starting to think it’s actually stemming from my hip joint. 

After the gym I came straight home for a snack and a shower.  Lynn mentioned dates on her blog the other day so I was on the lookout for them when I shopped.  She stuffs hers with cream cheese…I stuff mine with peanut butter. 


Dinner was supposed to be a yummy White Bean & Chicken Salad I found in a magazine, but even though I took the chicken out of the freezer yesterday…it was still frozen!  So, tune in tomorrow for that one.

Instead I made a simple Shrimpy Salad on Wasa crackers…and didn’t miss that salad at all.  I love me some fresh West Coast shrimp!


With celery, green onion, olive oil mayo, dijon and s&p.  Normally I would add dill but I haven’t fully restocked my spice rack yet.


With veggie sticks to fill the salad void.


The rest of my evening was spent doing my first load of apartment building laundry (yes I gave up in suite laundry…but I shall survive…we have a very nice and properly priced laundry room here), talking on the phone, and finishing off my effing desk.

Seriously people.  They apparently expect She-Ra or He-Man to be assembling this freaking thing.  Because it’s MDF it weighs a zillion pounds, and there were literally like 75 pieces.  I know it doesn’t look it but geeeeesh.  I deserve a Girl Scout patch or something!


See…even the manufacturers knew that it wasn’t really easy to assemble…


See that winky face?!!  Someone there thinks they are VERY funny.  Rotten buggers. 

Anyway…it’s done!  Tomorrow I can set up my desktop computer and will have a real little office space to call my own.

While I worked at it I snacked on the last of my local cherries.  Must.get.more. 


Now it’s off to bed to catch up on True Blood…and maybe Entourage if I’m still awake.  I just realized last night that it had started up again while I was travelling so I have a few episodes to watch. Yay!

Now THAT is what a day in the life of Jaime should be like.

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