Paleo Sautéed Kale With Apples & Bacon + Mystery Box!!!!!!!

Sometimes kale can be scary.

I’ve had some nasty bites of kale recipes. And I gave up on it for a while. But this week, I’m really trying to clean it up after all the birthday celebrations so I’m trying to eat more vegetables and mostly paleo. Just mostly. I got a lot of Starbucks gift cards for birthday — I love my skinny vanilla lattes!

Anyways, I chopped that kale up and sautéed it with some bacon and apples.

apple bacon kale paleo

I mostly followed this recipe from Real Simple — really no changes needed to make it paleo, but I skipped the apple cider vinegar out laziness and skipped the salt & pepper.

Paleo Sautéed Kale With Apples and Bacon

Ingredients:

  • 4 slices bacon
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1 apple, sliced
  • 1 medium bunch kale, thick stems removed and leaves torn into bite-size pieces
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar

Directions:

  1. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the bacon until crisp, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Let cool, then crumble.
  2. Add the onion and apple to the drippings in the skillet and cook until tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Add the kale, season with ¾ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper, and cook, tossing occasionally, until tender, 8 to 10 minutes more. Mix in the bacon and vinegar.

I’m thinking about adding sweet potatoes next time!! And I’m glad I used up some of my kale.

It’s been funny — every time the rain clears up, the parks nearby are instantly slammed. We’re not used to such limited sunshine and we soak it up!!!!!

But, I went for a jog… got caught in the rain. To the point where I was starting to worry about my phone!!!

running in the rain

It made it!

rainy run 5k

I didn’t say it was fast… some of the muddy blocks were treacherous!!!!

pippa on my yellow couch

Pippa was really happy to be at home on the couch. She’s normally not allowed on that couch, but she just hates it when I sit out there and read. There’s nowhere comfortable for her!!!! Poor baby.

my bear rug

But my little Boyd Bear is a rug!!!!  And he sheds so much he will never be allowed on any furniture but the old futon. That hair comes off in tufts!!! Don’t feel bad. He has built-in padding.

Umm… did someone send me this???? It’s a mystery. It came addressed to me!! No note. Not invoice. And Special K bars???? That’s totally random. It wasn’t from the Special K… it was in a USPS Priority Mail Box coming to me from Michigan??

mystery box

Next time send Cheetos, please. :)

Have you ever gotten any mystery mail? I also once got an Orla Kiely diaper bag in the mail. I thought someone was trying to drop a hint, but it turns out my in-laws shipped it for a baby shower gift for a cousin. Haha.

Do you like kale? For real?? :) 

Do you like to run in the rain? It’s so slippery!! That scares me. Especially since I never have my contacts in. I think it’s overrated but can be refreshing.

Blackberry Applesauce + Fitmixer Goals

I tried a fun little experiment today:

Slow Cooker Blackberry Applesauce

  • 4 Honeycrisp apples – cored, chopped (but not peeled – that would require far too much effort)
  • 1 package of blackberries
  • 1 cup of water
  • Whatever was left in my cinnamon shaker!

Slow cooked it for about 5 hours on high. Mashed it up with a potato masher. I had thought about using strawberries, but blackberries seemed naturally sweeter, and I didn’t want to add any sugar. You could add agave, honey, Truvia, whatever, but I don’t really have a sweet tooth in that department – so I didn’t. I ate it hot, and I was a huge fan! I’ll see how it holds up tomorrow. I need to get some cinnamon sticks to make some regular applesauce. I like it really cinnamon-y! Bonus: makes the house smell amazing!

It’s never too long before the dog vultures swoop in. Boyd got a little lick in. I still ate it.

I’m still in fitmixer BOOT CAMP!

Although I haven’t talked about it a ton on the blog, but we’re 24 days in and it’s going well. It’s FUN! It’s extra fun doing it with my sister-in-law so we can send each other texts like,”Are you hungry?” Lol.

Well, I neglected to do the first two weeks of homework. But I’m going to redeem myself with this post.  Our homework this week is to set some specific goals! I did set some goals at the beginning of the year, but now’s a good time to do a little revision!

Ready?

Fitness first.

  • Run at least on race before the end of the year. I’ve only run two this entire year. I hate coughing up registration fees, but it’s definitely motivational, especially for longer distances. I was inspired by spectating at RNR Denver! :)

I wish I could find a half marathon to do, but we’ll be out of town the week of the Boulder race (MINI VACATION!!) and I haven’t seen any others. Can you BELIEVE I’ve never run a half? My longest race was Frosty’s Frozen 10 Mile. I need something close to my house or I will never commit to doing it. I am a hermit after all.

  • Run a 5k in under 21 minutes. I’ve done it at least twice before (though never in a race). It’s not cute on me, but I’m going to do it. And this is perfect weather for it. I just need to find a decent place to do it without trippy sidewalks and stop lights.
  • Run lighter. Ugh. It has to be said. I’ve been really hazy about my goals in this area. Mostly because I’m pretty content right now, but I have to remember that this will help me achieve my other running goals. So today (while running) I came up with the number 6. I’ve lost 1 or 2 so far, so I’m going for a grand total of 7 by Thanksgiving. That is going to take some serious sticking to the nutrition plan. However, I’m proud to say, I haven’t missed a day of logging my nutrition. 24 straight days of logging all my meals!!! The My Fitness Pal app is really easy to use…. especially for someone who eats are repetitively as me English muffins, eggs, sweet potato fries, repeat!  Bonus: I still want to run a marathon someday soon. A fast one. I’m not the “finishing is winning” type although I wish I was.
  • Practice my double unders 25x. Why can’t I get those stupid things?!?!?! I’m not going to say DO double unders because I’m starting to doubt that I can. But I don’t doubt that I can practice! :)

(kelly lasserre Etsy shop)

  • Get my grocery budget under control. What’s up with that? There are only two of us. Can we blame this on moving from Minnesota to Denver? We always feel like things are super cheap when we grocery shop in Winona or Wabasha! I plan to use the money I save on shoes! :)

  • Take dance classes with Kevin James. We’re doing it! We just have to figure out which class to start with — starting October 8th. Kevin chose taking dance classes together over going to CrossFit. Slacker. Lol. Of course, I will be just like J.Lo in Shall We Dance. Obviously.
  • Work on my biz. 
    • Give out business cards!
    • Work on some specific programs — adults, Pre-K, technology integration, etc.
    • My real goal is to have 20-25 students (I’m currently at about 13-14). But I won’t count that as a goal since I can’t force it to happen. :)
    • Keep up my awesome spreadsheet!
    • Research performance opportunities for my students.
    • Create and email the first newsletter!
    • Budget my studio’s revenue! <—- Fun part!

  • Go to a (preferably classical) concert. I’m not putting go to the ballet. That’s cheating since we already have the tickets!

  • Read the entire New Testament in October. I started this yesterday. I came close to reading it all once in 30 days with my church in the DR, but didn’t quite make it. I’m following an adapted version of this schedule.

  • Go on a small vacation… and plan a BIG ONE! We have yet to really go on any vacation.. we’ve barely gone away for a weekend! And that includes our honeymoon, birthdays, and first anniversary! Party due to procrastination, indecisiveness, and poor planning. We’re planning to go away for a long weekend in two weeks! I can’t wait.
  • Update these goals by November 1. No slacking. I hope I remember.

I probably already bit off more than I can chew (CLASSIC!!!), but I tried to make them attainable.

Any new goals for this month? Only a few months left in 2012!!

Have you ever made apple sauce? Do you have any of those cool applesauce making tools?!?! Those things look awesome.

Apple, applesauce, or apple juice? Definitely not juice. An apple with PB2 or homemade applesauce. Kevin would say apple crisp!

P.S. THE BEST SANDWICH EVER!!! Seriously!!!

Saturday Success

I conquered the next highest box!!!!!! 24 inches!

It’s what all the cool people do on Friday nights.

I’d been gunning for that box for a while, and after Thursday’s workout, I KNEW I could do it. I did 150 jumps on the 18-inch box, and I got so tired that some of them were so half- hearted. I was barely even trying and still clearing it easily. I still made Kevin come stand over by me for moral support. But I didn’t make him hold my hand like I did the first time I tried an 18er.

Because Kevin is a most excellent blogger husband, he suggested taking this picture with the smaller one to compare my progress. There’s only one higher. I’m already convinced I can do that one too, but I’m in no big rush. I have other fish to fry. Like double unders.

Who says instagram is a waste of time? I was inspired by trainerbob! I did it in honor of his birthday today. Tina from CNC also recently posted about how she made it up to 35 inches. Always room for improvement, but I’ll revel in my 24 for now!

That cute little tongue is what woke me up this morning at 5AM.

Yeah. Pippa Cordelia decided to wake me up by licking my mouth. I screamed!!! And I had to be a responsible parent and let her out. A little later, I took her on her first run. She did pretty well, but we definitely have some leash training to do! She actually escaped out of her collar at one point! I freaked because, unlike Boyd, she can actually run faster than me. THANKFULLY, she was distracted by two big dogs barking behind a fence so I was able to snag her right away. She’s getting all new (PINK) stuff, but it won’t be here till after the weekend.

She is doing so well in our house. She’s a total doll and follows me around the house all day. She is absolutely heartbroken when she has to be locked in a room for some reason. I have no idea how she could handle being in a shelter. She must have hated it so much!! Pippa and Boyd aren’t BFFs yet. I have a feeling Boyd wakes up every morning and thinks she’s still here? But it’s made Boyd much more affectionate!! Hah.

I was really in the mood for some jam last night so we bought some at Sunflower Market. I think it may be the first time in my life that I felt in the mood for jam, but I was dreaming about it yesterday afternoon.

And what goes best with jam?

At least in my opinion! I’m not really a syrup fan so I love jam on pancakes. I made these Greek Yogurt & Honey Pancakes with whole wheat flour.

Kevin and I locked the poor puppies inside and ate on our front porch. Eating with two dogs staring at you can be intimidating!! Haha.

After pancakes, Kevin got to work on his second-to-last weekend of MBA homework, and I hit the gym to do this workout:

(source)

I used a 25lb kettlebell and the 18-inch box and finished in 26:30. I was really slow with the swings and squat. The 25lbs just felt so heavy today!!!! Afterwards,  I did a few box jumps on the 24-inch box just to make sure I could still do it today.

After the 1 mile run, I paused briefly to put my hair in a bun. Did you see what my hair does on box jumps? Same thing happens with kb swings and box jumps. It can be downright dangerous when I’m practicing double unders!! Oh my. But I can’t run with my hair in a bun. It won’t stay!! It’s tricky!!

Currently at home snacking on apples, PB2, and yellow chips – with Pippa sleeping at my feet.

What successes have you had at the gym/in life lately? I also adopted a beautiful puppy, in case you hadn’t noticed. By the way, a few of you asked. We think she’s a chocolate lab/Vizsla mix, but who knows for sure!

How do you wear your hair for working out? Maybe I need to perfect one of the Olympic gymnast hairstyles like the ballerina bun.

PB Power Oats + Flower Delivery!

I wasreally looking forward to this Monday morning breakfast! However, I did grossly underestimate the amount of time it would take me to make. Especially in my groggy, pre-coffee Monday morning state.

Especially with all the banana mashing. I despise bananas. So I must moosh them into oblivion before consumption.

 

PB Banana Power Oats (via my new fave Pinch of Yum)

  • 1/3 cup rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup water
  • pinch salt
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 banana (I used a frozen one)
  • 1 tbs. flaxmeal
  • 1 tsp. packed brown sugar
  • pinch cinnamon
  • 1/2 tbs. peanut butter
  1. Combine oats, water, and salt in a bowl.  Beat the egg white, then whisk it in with the uncooked oats.
  2. Microwave for 2 minutes (or boil on stovetop).  Check consistency and continue to heat as necessary until the oats are fluffy and thick.
  3. Thaw banana, mash, and add to oats.  Heat another 30 seconds in microwave.
  4. Stir in flax, brown sugar, and cinnamon.  Top with peanut butter!

I definitely felt very skeptical about sugar and peanut butter for breakfast, but the nutrition facts won me over. Not too bad, right?

Protein? Fiber! Although if I had PB2, I would definitely use it. I just looked up the closest place to buy it… 21 miles away!! And it’s shockingly expensive to buy online. The internet rarely disappoints me! But in this case, it’s just way more expensive! I would also sub Truvia for brown sugar, but I ran out this week!

I saw the cutest thing on my way in to work this morning, but I was just one second too late with my trusty baby iPhone.

One second earlier, and you would’ve gotten to see that guy’s trunk FULL of beautiful flowers. That must be such a nice job, right? Delivering flowers? Everybody loves that kind of surprise!! I can only assume he’s still wandering the building since no flowers have appeared on MY desk yet…

I had a genius idea how to incorporate last night’s Creamy White Chicken Chili leftovers into our lunch! Can I just say how much I love the perk of being able to go home for lunch with my husband. It’s a little rushed, but we love it!!

May I present… the Chicken Chili Green Chilie Omelet! This specialty was inspired by (a very unhealthy) omelet I had back in December at The Original Pancake House. I actually liked our version a lot better because all the cheese in the restaurant dish made me feel so sick. I had Kevin do the eggs, because he’s the omelet maker in the house, and then I just reheated the leftovers. I added cheese and jalapeño to Kevin’s because I’m a super nice wife.

I wanted to get some vegetables in so I shared the chili love with some green beans. I love putting vegetables in some sort of sauce to make them less… noticeable. Lol. Marinara is always a good one for that trick!

I can NOT make it through the afternoon without a snack so I convinced Kevin to drop by Sooper’s on the way back to work.

Apples were 3/$1! :)

Corrie: Why would you buy candy when you get 3 apples for a dollar?

Kevin: Because you can get like 50 M&Ms!!!

Ha. Ha. Ha.

I actually double snacked it! I had already done the complicated packing of an English muffin w/PB&J before I talked Kevin into the grocery store trip. So I just brought it anyways. Why waste? Plus YAY!! I get a super long gym session tonight because Kevin is going to get his hair cut. Usually he’s loafing around waiting for me to leave so I feel pressured to hurry up!! Haha.

Have you ever gotten flowers at work? I think it’s sweet, but I’d definitely be extremely embarrassed!!! Kevin bought me frozen berries & Fage Greek yogurt the other day as a surprise. Loved that! (This is not a guilt trip – he does read my blog.) Haha.

Or, what would you choose over flowers? Ballons? Chocolates. Tony Burch flats? A Vizsla!!!

What was your afternoon snack? You saw it. It’s usually Greek yogurt, but this was nice.

 P.S. Those PB Power Oats really are awesome. What with the flax and the banana and the egg white!! :) Try it!! Just remember to super moosh the banana!!

The Perfect Summer Lunch

I had a few potatoes left over after the potato painting activity so I decided to craft something out of them for today’s lunch. Traditional potato salad is OUT in our household because I am a mayo hater. Miracle Whip. Whatever. All white, nasty and gross sauces are banned from my refrigerator. While rummaging around in the cupboards, I also found some leftover pesto from the Mason Jar Meals. Perfect.

I just boiled those potatoes right up (while I was working out – told you I multitask). I drained them, diced them, poured some pesto over them, and topped them with some green onions. Delicious! I really want to try this recipe for pesto potato salad with green beans. A good way to sneak in some more vegetables!

On our grocery shopping extravaganza, we bought some of my loves – the flatout artisan flatbreads. This is the Italian flavor. I topped it with hummus + veggies for a simple wrap.

We also had some apples with the chocolate PB2. I’m a huge fan of PB2. It looks like a weird health protein muscle builder freak thing because it’s powdered, but it’s actually really awesome. I like the regular pb flavor better, but Hy-Vee was out.

PB2 Powdered Peanut Butter
It’s what’s not in PB2 that makes it so good for you. For starters, our special process removes 85% of the fat calories without the chemicals typically used in producing reduced fat foods. Something else you won’t find in PB2 is preservatives. What you will find is natural roasted peanut flavor that’s also available in a rich chocolate variety.

That was my little food advertisement for the day. :)

The perfect cool meal for a blazing hot day!!!

This morning, I obeyed the LETTER of my “workout in the morning” goal but not the SPIRIT. I worked out at about 10AM. Today I was in the mood to crank some Wisin & Yandel radio while I worked out so I chose to do my own workout.

Today’s Workout – 600 Reps:

1. Half Burpees With Calve Raises – 60 reps

2. Plank Twists – 60 reps (switching legs)

3. Jump Lunges (all the way down and touch the ground slightly with your back knee) – 60 reps

4. One Leg Dead Lift – 30 reps on each leg

5. Crunches With Leg Extensions – 60 reps

6. Prisoner Squats and Front Kick – 60 reps (switching legs)

7. One Leg Tricep Dip – 60 reps (switching legs)

8. One Leg Jump Knee Up – 30 reps on each leg

9. Chest Lift – 60 reps

10. Over The Chair Kick – 30 reps on each leg

(adapted from BODYROCK.tv)

I can tell the workout was effective because two hours later when I tried to lift my arms to obssessive compulsively pluck my eyebrows, they were a-shakin’! I liked the workout, but I did get tired of counting reps. My BRE was always so good at doing that for us @ the gym!

Looks like we’re going to be in Chicago for our 1 Month Anniversary! I’m so excited to meet Kevin’s grandma and some aunts & uncles. We also plan to spend some time hanging out. Any great suggestions on what to check out? I really want to go to a special cupcake bakery like Swirlz.

Have a fabulous afternoon. I’m off to tutor the kidlets, then my brother, sister-in-law, and precious nephews are coming over for dinner. I’m so excited!

Gold Star

Oh yeah! I made myself proud today with my food choices.

Today was my first foray into the critically acclaimed (by healthy living bloggers worldwide) breakfast food: Overnight Oats. These could more accurately be called Double Overnight Oats. They were a little warm yesterday morning after the refrigerator door debacle. But hey, it was worth the wait. I combined vanilla greek yogurt with oats + a tad bit of skim milk and blueberries. Yum!

Lunch was pretty fancy! I used the panini grill to make turkey-avocado-cheddar paninis! We had carrots & grapes on the side. A few too many carrots for Kevin James who pleaded with me to put some of them back into the bag.We used the foldit Artisan flatbread I raved about the other day.

I had a few slices of apple while I was making Kevin’s after school snack. That’s right. My not pictured food today – not chips, not pop – APPLES! I also had a small bowl of cereal before my workout. I immediately put the cereal box in the pantry so I didn’t inhale three additional bowls like I always want to! :)

Check out this cranky runner girl!?!? It’s the second time in a row I didn’t have an iPod or a Garmin when I was ready to run. That makes me a crankypants!!! But I problem solved and used an app called imapmyrun + Jennifer Lopez Pandora Station to power me through. The result? 5.01 miles in 36 minutes – that’s a 7:11 pace. Holla! My hunger was a little subdued after that burst of activity so I was able to wait for dinner to cook.

Dinner was lunch’s twin! I had the panini grill out, and I didn’t want to clean it. Gross, right? But that thing is a pain to clean. And it weighs about 50 pounds. I like to make use of it when I bring it out! Turkey-cheddar-avoado panini with broccoli + oven fries. I couldn’t finish the broccoli and potatoes. I do not know why. Odd.

A little chocolate frozen yogurt to keep it real. Unbelievably small portion size for a McMillin, but I’ll take it!

I just want you to notice some absences. NO POP and NO ICED COFFEE. Good for my health, and good for Kevin’s wallet. I’m wiped. That run really did me in. So I’m calling it a night! :)

P.S. What kind of workout did you fit in today? I want to try some more outdoorsy stuff (like canoeing – haha) this summer. Kevin, please don’t take that too seriously. It was an innocent comment. And you know I will try to back out last minute!

One of Those Mornings…

I’m tired of naming things Newlywed Diet Number ___ … so I’ve upgraded to using more fascinating post titles like the one you see above.

I loosed the Boyd Monster on the girls this morning when I decided it was time for them to wake up. Doesn’t he look like a doll on the bottom right? Really, he was absolutely wild and licking them like crazy!!!!!!!

We woke up this morning to find that the refrigerator door had been left open. The food was actually WARM to the touch. Not just not cold. Warm. For once, I was not the culprit, but I shall leave her unnamed. That was not a pleasant start to our day. I had to send the husband out for milk for our breakfast cereal and replacement chicken for the lunch I had planned for Deidre Marie.

I had to eat my breakfast all by my lonesome this morning due to all the craziness, and I let the little girlies sleep in. Cascadian Farms Chocolate O’s x2 + apples. Deidre and I practiced making some homemade goldfish crackers for her son’s upcoming first birthday bash. We’re making them in a secret surprise fun shape. Really, it’s only a secret surprise because I didn’t get any great pictures. :)

This active guy kept us company while we “worked.”

I PROMISED YOU I WOULD EAT MORE VEGETABLES TODAY!!! And I did, yo. Continue reading