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WIAW #14

Hellooo! It’s What I Ate Wednesday! Let’s get to it ūüôā Also a big thanks to Jen for hosting the partayyy over at peasandcrayons.com every week!

breakfast: a tone it up protein pancake with blueberry green tea slim life yogi tea on the side

Recipe found here ūüėČ

This recipe is from Toneitup.com, my most recent obsession. It is a fitness/food blog by two friends, Karena and Katrina, both certified Personal Trainers and have designed their own¬†nutrition plan and workout videos (a lot are free on their youtube channel). I absolutely love them! I heard about them in a Self magazine a few months ago and just recently started checking out their blog. They are such an inspiration (check out Katrina’s body transformation), are so genuine and have really helped motivate me to work for that beach bod I’ve always wanted. You should check out their blog if you haven’t already! They post free workout videos, recipes, motivational quotes, weekly check-ins, etc. They also have a store where they sell cute tank tops, lunch boxes, stickers…andddd they just launched their line of Beach Babe bathing suits¬†(SOO cute! Right now they don’t sell sizes separately, so when they do, I will be ordering one…or two!)

crazy cute

or this one! and they’re reversible!

lunch: a yummy salad from Pluto’s with spinach, garbonzos, kidney beans, cukes, broccoli, mango, strawberries and almonds. with whole wheat bread!

A day full of shopping ensued…

kristin and i decided to go out on a limb and try on lipstick at the MAC counter (i never wear lipstick!). i am wearing their matte lipstick called “ruby woo” and she is wearing “creme de nude.” i ended up buying the red!! i can see a makeup tutorial in the near future..

After shopping (I bought the red lipstick and some cute jean shorts from Urban Outfitters), Kristin and I rushed home because we wanted to make it to a workout class at our gym called Chizzled. I snacked on a few grapes before dashing out the door.

Chizzled was a great workout! We did lots of squats and pushups. I’m feelin in already and I love it! We both ran 1 mile on the treadmill afterwards but were too tired to do any more :p.

dinner: ezekiel wrap with hummus, half a homemade black bean burger (recipe being perfected!), cukes, home grown sprouts, red bell peps, avocado, spinach, and baby kale. with a pink lady apple on the side and lots of H2O!!

After din, I hung out with two friends from high school, Alexis and Sheeva but we were too busy catching up on each other’s lives that we didn’t end up following through with our plans of watching Project X and eating popcorn with chocolate chips (our faveee). Oh well! Missin the rest of the fab five though, Hannah and Jordan who need to come home!!!

Questions of the day:

What’s your favorite red lipstick? Or nude? I would love to try out some cheap drugstore brands too!

What was the best thing you ate today?

xoxo,

Kara

p.s. I also noticed that I ate vegan today completely unintentionally! Maybe I am a true vegan at heart…

father’s day!

Hi everyone! Hope you all had a fabulous weekend. School is finally over so I have more time to devote to the blog and I am excited about it! Although I will be attending summer school, I’m hoping to be able to blog more frequently and often!!!!! I missed you guys :)!

I had a great weekend spent with family. Father’s day was memorable and might just have to be repeated next year! My Nana Min came to visit all the way from Seattle, Washington so we took her on a hike near South Lake Tahoe to a scenic spot at Wood’s Lake.

Our day consisted of….

hangin with the best dad ever

the stylish cookie dog posing for the camera

eating my fave new chips, which are gluten free too!

preeeetty views

pictures with nana!

balancing on treacherous logs

a visit to Sorensen’s in Hope Valley for dinner!

relaxing in a hammock at Sorensen’s resort after a long day of hiking

devouring dinner… Chicken, corn-on-the-cob, dill potato salad, and green salad with an amazing basil vinaigrette

AND of course, dessert. Sorensen’s famous mixed berry cobbler!

it was a great day!!!

I LOVE YOU DAD!!!!

xoxo

Kara

happy easter and a special birthday!

Hello beautiful friends!

Hope everyone had a relaxing day whether or not you’re celebrating Easter!

easter basket!

I woke to find this full of my favorite goodies. The Easter bunny knows me well ;). Chia seeds, hemp seeds, cacao beans, gum, sulfate-free shampoo & conditioner (smells so good I can’t wait to try!), and a couple new bars I’ve never tried!

Then we went over to my grandparent’s house for brunch. We had a wonderful time admiring my grandma’s antiques and cooking gadgets (I found the reason why I love knick knacks..haha), telling stories, but most importantly, celebrating my lil sis’ sweet 16!!

nom nom i love easter brunch! my grandma made amazing dill and goat cheese eggs, roasted & herbed potatoes, lemony asparagus, and gouda olive bread. we brought fruit salad topped with coconut!

the birthday girl!

see's candies. yum.

sunflower sistas

look at her now...she's practically a model!

Happy 16th birthday Kristin!! Thanks for being the best little sis a girl could ever ask for :). I love you!

xoxo,

Kara

happy, healthy holidays!

Hiii!

Oh how I’ve missed you guys! My excuse to explain my absence is that I thoroughly enjoyed my time with friends and family, sans technology. Who can blame me?

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday and safe New Years! I’ve been a busy girl so here are some pictures to catch you all up :)!

sf with ceej

dinner at fishermans wharf!

my very first bite EVER of crab cocktail! i definitely have been missing out.

my plate of deliciousness. already full from looking at it. lobster, filet mignon, mashed potatoes, rice & vegetables. sooo freakin good & plenty of leftovers!

he was so excited to wear that bib.

buttery crabby hands ahhh!

afterwards, we went to the ghiradelli chocolate factory and even though my tummy felt like it might explode, we ordered a peanut butter chocolate sundae to share. we barely finished half of it. butttt it was tasty.

christmas eve day with the cousins!

sista friend

time to open presents!

OH MY GOD!!!! A Vitamix!

my dad knows me so well. i love dogs and peanut butter! best card ever and best dad ever.

after exchanging & opening gifts we nibbled on these babies and sipped tea (from Aveda...ya I know weird. it's a hair salon that sells tea! but it's my new favorite!) while watching christmas with the kranks.

all ready for santa!

don't mind me in all my early morning glory. i just rolled out of bed to make this green smoothie in my new vitamix!!

green smoothie creation (spinach, almond milk, frozen pineapple & mango) topped with pomegranate seeds!

Christmas morning, I woke to find some sparkly Juicy Couture stud earrings, Burt’s Bees hand cream, lotion & chapstick (addicted to their almond milk beeswax hand creme and chapstick), yoga pants & other goodies! Then my dad, Kristin and I had a plane to catch! Every winter, we meet up with my dad’s side of the family for a ski trip. We’ve been going to Big White in BC, Canada for years but just last year switched to Whistler. I LOVE it!!

kristin and i in front of the olympic rings!

veggie burger at a cute cafe in Whistler called Ingrids!

Kristin and I are the only snowboarders in the fam so we usually stick together –¬†getting stuck in powder, falling while exiting the chairlift, flying off jumps in the terrain park, braving cliffs, and taking pictures on the slopes.

say cheese! notice our face masks...it is really cold in Whistler for these cali girls!

beeeeyouuutiful.

baby cousin gus, kristin, me and jen-ai (our aunt!)

After a great ski trip in Whistler, it was time to head back to the states to celebrate 2012!!!!!

nye dinner at scott's seafood

cj's fooood. i ate some of his "plants" and stole a bite of halibut.

my salmon with sundried tomato pesto and white beans.

dysfunctional new years pic with my friendsss.

it's almost midnight!

It was a fabulous night to say the least. And I’ve finally decided on a New Year’s resolution. My friend Sheeva came up with one that was too good, I had to steal. It is to make sure my friends and family know how much I love them because the unexpected sometimes does happen, and life is much too short.

Tonight my sister, mom and I are going to watch the documentary, Forks Over Knives. I heard about it from a friend who told me I must watch it!! I’m excited and will have a review tomorrow :).

xoxo

Kara

 

WIAW #9

Hi sweet thangs!

Hope you all had a fantabulous Wednesday!!!

Mine started out like this…

coconutty chocolate oatmeal

In the pot went 1/3 c oats, 1 cup water, 1/2 banana, 1 heaping T cocoa powder, 1 tsp coconut oil, and cinnamon. I proceeded to top it with unsweetened coconut shavings, strawberries and raw almonds.

purty food

Then I was off to zee gym to get some sweatin on! I made up this workout which was adapted from the¬†Tone It Up¬†girl’s Bikini Max Burn workout (love them btw, check them out if you haven’t!):

20 jumping jacks

10 burpees

20 walking lunges (a lung on each leg counts for one)

30 jumping jacks

20 burpees (OMG kill me)

30 walking lunges

5 minute cardio (I ran on the treadmill at speed 7 for all of these)

10 pushups (no girly ones!)

10 tricep dips

20 walking lunges

5 min cardio

20 second plank (go directly into the next thing without collapsing on the floor in between ;))

20 tummy tucks (bring knee to the outside of your chest to work your obliques, doing the same for the other side = one rep)

5 min cardio

20 bicycle crunches (each side counts for one)

5 min cardio

[insert relaxing yoga class taught by my momma]

After, I did the Itty Bitty Bikini Workout by the Tone It Up girls (found here) and ran for 5 minutes to finish up my awesome workout!

YAY for sweating.

That intense workout made this girl hungryyyy for lunch. I decided to make a “healthy tostada.”

whole wheat tortilla heated on the skillet + brown rice...

then a layer of each: black beans + sauteed celery, onion and carrots + sprouts & cucumber...

topped with chopped spinach, avocado, sunflower seeds and nutritional yeast!

Seriously so good. I wished I had a whole other one to devour, but that thing filled me up! The only downside was that it was hard to eat, I basically ate it like a salad and ripped off pieces of tortilla.

Next on the agenda: time to hunt for the perfect Christmas tree! My dad, sister and I had one of these on our way to the Christmas tree farm:

 

soo good. get these.

(source)

And once I was home, I whipped up a little snacky snack.

plain greek yog with cinnamon & walnuts and an apple for dippage!

Later came some oven drama…my oven at home is broken and won’t be fixed for 4 weeks!! Ahhh that means NO BAKING?! No christmas cookies?!! ūüė¶ I will find a way…

And finally dinner! Made by moiii.

Mediterranean Quinoa

serves 4

Ingredients:

1 c quinoa (I used TJ’s red quinoa)

olive oil spray (or EVOO, we were out)

1/2 sweet onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, crushed

4 baby portobello mushrooms, cleaned and sliced

1 package savory tofu

1/2 c cherry tomatoes

3 big handfuls spinach

medium stalk fresh rosemary

handful of chopped basil

2 small heads broccoli

1/4 c sun-dried tomatoes

zest from 1/2 a lemon

juice from 1/2 lemon

1/8 tsp cayenne

1/2 c crazy feta or regular feta

1/4c toasted pine nuts

1/3 c kalamata olives, halved

whatcha need!

Directions:

Bring 1 cup quinoa and 2 cups water to a boil in a saucepan, then let it simmer for about 10-15 minutes or until the quinoa has fluffed up and there is barely any water left. Set to the side. Spray a large frying pan with olive oil spray and saute onions and garlic on medium-high heat until somewhat transparent. Add the mushrooms and tofu stirring occasionally for about 3-4 minutes or until the mushrooms look tender. Next, throw in the basil, rosemary leaves, handfuls of spinach and cherry tomatoes. Cover and let sit while you go on with the next step. With the saucepan of quinoa you set aside, add about 1/3 cup water plus the broccoli florets, cover and steam over medium heat until the broccoli is a bright green. Stir your sauteed veggies, watching until the tomatoes are soft and the spinach has wilted. Transfer the quinoa and broccoli into a bigger bowl. Add the sun-dried tomatoes, lemon zest, lemon juice, cayenne pepper, feta, pine nuts, olives and finally, when ready, the sauteed veggies. Mix it all up and serve!

the finished product! yummmy

Chocolate cravings ensued…

UM EWWWWW

Okay well, I have some explaining to do, but the result was DELICIOUS I SWEAR!

I’ve heard about chocolate pudding made with avocados in the blogging world but have never found the courage to try it! Tonight was the night. It was a success and a perfect way to satisfy a chocolate craving!

Chocolate Almond Pudding

serves 1-3 people (depending on how much chocolate goodness you’re craving! warning: it is very rich though)

Ingredients:

the meat of 1 ripe avocado

4 heaping T cocoa

1/2 t vanilla

1 T almond butter

4 T maple syrup or agave

couple shakes cinnamon

~1/2 c water (add in at the end if you’d like it to be less thick)

Directions:

Blend all ingredients in a food processor except for the water. If your pudding is too think, add the water in slowly. Keep blending until it’s completely smooth! This only takes a few minutes! Enjoy!

such a transformation!

topped with frozen blubes and mangoes!

The above was enjoyed while decorating the Christmas tree and dancing to Christmas music! Am I the only one who has memorized Santa Baby by Eartha Kitt (and plays it on repeat)?!

xoxox,

kara

 

 

 

it’s been a while…hello WIAW! and thanksgiving recap.

Hi lovelies! Hope everyone had a delicious and memorable Thanksgiving. I know I sure did! It was full of nomzzz and my favorite people. Here’s a quick photo recap before I get into what I ate today…ahem…yesterday….

from left to right: turkey, stuffing for the vegs, stuffing for the carnivores, mashed sweet potatoes

roasted potatoes, green beans with slivered almonds, steamed brussel sprouts, carrots, and two weirdos...

the table all set up and plates of my grandma's deeelicious salad

my plate! mmmm drooling

time to eat!

hey grandpa, smile!

Unfortunately I couldn’t wait to dig into the dessert that I didn’t take a picture, but I had a huge slice of apple AND pumpkin pecan pie. And an even bigger scoop of vanilla ice cream, obviously. Oh baybayyyyy.

lil miss cooksters aka the vacuum cleaner hiding under the table

‚̧

modeling, the ushe.

i got it from my momma.

And that ends the Thanksgiving recap! I wish I had taken more pictures. The yummy cheeses for our cheese + cracker appetizer were placed on colorful fall leaves from the backyard, Kristin and I made the flower centerpieces, and the gravy transformed from a lumpy mess to pure deliciousness! (Secret ingredient(s): everything in the kitchen. Cornstarch? Check. Whiskey? Check. Beer? Check.) Shhh I didn’t tell you that. Anywhoo, I sucked at taking pictures on Thanksgiving. End of story.

Onwards!

Breakfast on this gloomy/foggy/horror-movie-esque day was:

smoothie in a bowl topped with oats, walnuts, raw almonds and cacao nibs!

Late lunch was:

tj's collard greens mix sauteed in EVOO and sliced garlic + tj's chile lime chicken burger + H2O on a cute urban outfitters coaster (gotta stay hydrated!)

Snack was: My favorite kind of apple. A Pink Lady! Mmmm sweet and tart!

Din din was:

tempeh veggie brown fried rice. i used tj's stir fry veggies, tj's 3-grain tempeh, handful of collard greens, an egg, sesame oil and braggs liquid aminos! topped with sesame seeds and grated ginger.

No workout today. Instead I studied and consumed large quantities of these:

can't. stop. eating. them. hoomygod.

Later….after hours of studying (finals week coming up!) slash online shopping slash blog stalking…the roomies and I came up with a brilliant idea.

to mix the best two things on earth: chocolate and peanut butter.

Anyone confused by Skippy’s “Natural” label? I would think natural would mean peanuts and maybe ¬†salt, but the ingredients also include palm oil and sugar. What’s different about this and regular Skippy?!

anyone down for a late-night chocolate fondue party?!

We made chocolate fondue by microwaving chocolate chips for 1 minute, and made pb chocolate fondue (lighter one on the left) by mixing a huge scoop of pb into another bowl of microwaved choco chips. The featured dippers: frozen strawberries (ehh, not as good as they sounded), bananas, almonds, brown rice cakes, and sliced apples!

the ugly frozen strawberries were not popular.

Sugar highhhhhh + studying = success?!

On another note, I painted my nails today! Aka procrastination at it’s finest. You can’t do anything but sit there and wait for them to dry :).

still goin strong with the ring-finger-a-different-color trend!

Ring finger color: Urban Outfitters Chrome Pewter 1. Other fingers: OPI Russian Navy.

I hear navy nail polish is the new black ;). What do you think? My roommate says it reminds her of a robot. Haha. I think it also looks wintery..?!

Off to bed! I have a midterm tomorrow morning.

YAY.

xoxoxxoxo,

Kara

how to dig yourself out of a workout rut

As of lately I’ve been experiencing a little case of motivational issues when it comes to exercising.

Even thinking of running makes my booootay sore and beads of sweat form on my forehead.

Welllllll maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration … But ever since I started working, my desire to get mah heart beatin flew out the window. All I want to do when I get home from work is eat, lie on the couch and eat some more.

So in order to jumpstart my fitness routine I started googling “how to get yourself out of a workout rut” and came up with this list (plus a few more that I thought of myself)!

ENJOY!!!!!

Plan a short workout that doesn’t require getting in your car and driving to the gym. It can even be less than 20 minutes. Something is better than nothing! A few of Kristin (sister) and my favorite things to do when we¬†want to get a quickie workout in are running up and down the stairs blasting music throughout our house, and shakin what our mama gave us in the kitchen. Sorry to reveal our secrets Kristin ;).

Wear your workout clothes around the house. You might suddenly have the urge to bust out some jumping jacks or pushups.

Change up your usual (and maybe boring) routine, i.e. go to the gym at a different time, try a new workout class, run outside, go hiking …

tahoe with my loves

Hating the dreadmill? Try walking or running outside! And don’t forget to bring your dog, cat, guinea pig (kidding …)¬†if you have one :).

i spy ...

Focus on the benefits not the difficulties. Remind yourself of how good you will feel after working out, how much more energized you will be, and how happier and slimmer you will look, rather than thinking about how hard that 5 mile run or spin class is.

my bikini bod can SO handle this hill.

Go to an exercise class! I find that working out with others around pushes me, because I compete with others in my mind (even though the instructors¬†tell you not to compare yourself to others). This is an example of what goes on in my head: “That lady is lifting 10 pound weights … come on Kara if she can do it, you can too!” or “Wow that girl is squatting low, I bet¬†can squat lower” or “I’m sooo sore but¬†no one else is¬†giving up so neither will I!” Maybe I’m the only one that does that, but I encourage you all to try it ;).

Ease into it after a long dry spell. You can’t except your body to be right back where it was before you stopped working out. Start with a brisk walk/run or yoga class and gradually work your way up to your usual workout routine.

Schedule a time in your calendar dedicated to exercise. This way you can’t give yourself any excuses NOT to go.

sorry i'm booked!

j biebs on my mind.

Make a new workout playlist to get yourself pumped up! This song always gives me a sudden burst of energy.

Buy a workout video to sweat and pant to in the comfort of your own living room ;).

Buy a cute workout top, running shorts, head band … whatever. Then go show it off at the gym :D.

got my eye on these lulus!

Reward yourself for your hard work. A piece of chocolate, some¬†fro yo, a jar of pb (oh wait .. that’s just me), a movie night, or a massage are all great options.

Email me, call your mom, find a workout buddy, join an online forum like Dailymile.

me & my sis just doin what we do

Working out doesn’t always have to be at the gym. Make it fun and mix it up!¬†Play volleyball, tennis, soccer, racquetball, go rock climbing, jump rope, paddle board … the list goes on. Do something you like.

Boxing or tae bo are very popular, fun and calorie blasting workouts! And it makes you feel strong and fearless ;). Many models even do it.

Make goals and give yourself deadlines to meet those goals.

Post your goal in BIG WORDS somewhere that is easily visible to you every day. On the fridge, on your mirror,¬†directly on¬†the ice cream carton …

inspirational!

that's the right kind of attitude!!

Recognize and accept¬†the ebb and flow. Motivation is not always a constant thing. Realize that every day your body will tell you what it is capable of, and sometimes it might say: “Today I want to sit on the couch, eat cookies and watch marathons of Jersey Shore.” Hey, I’m not gonna deny it. But while you’re feeling like a couch potato, don’t fret, because your motivation will soon return. In the meantime, think about your goal and do some of the things on this list until it comes back.

Stick with it! Don’t let obstacles in the road knock you over. Force yourself¬†to keep moving forward towards success. (I guess force is kind of a strong word, but sometimes I feel like I have to force myself to work out or else I will never do it. After “forcing” myself though, I always feel happy I did it.)

Remember that working out isn’t only about burning calories and losing weight. Exercise not only improves your physical health, but livens your mood, wards off sickness, raises your self-confidence and builds friendships.

that's one healthy polar bear!

So next time you are feeling unmotivated, tired, worn down and have absolutely no energy to work out, I encourage you to try something on this list!

And now, I’m going to work my lil booty off at zee gym!

Adios ‚̧

Kara