May Day 22: In My Bag

wpid-20150521_175522.jpgI’m not going to lie- I was really excited about the in my bag post. I love seeing what other people have in their bags and having a sneak peak into their life. I don’t care carry a cute bag though, I carry a worn backpack. It’s more practical for me. I’m always walking from here to there and I have to tote around a lot of stuff. It might make me look like a dork- especially when I go out after work- but I don’t care. It’s necessary and it works for me!

Also- on the front of my backpack there is a light up Bruins 2015 pin that I got from my parents.

Usually there’s a laptop, charger, whole foods market apron, and planner in this guy as well- but I was able to leave them at work overnight (which I usually can’t do because I work at a different location almost every day). There was also a banana in my bag yesterday, but I forgot to include it in these pictures!wpid-20150521_180307.jpgHere’s what we got:

  • Umbrella
  • Card holder (debit card, credit card, id, etc.)
  • Two notebooks for work
  • Suncreen
  • Lip gloss
  • Small set of keys- which includes my gym access card!
  • Smart Trip
  • Ponytails
  • Mug and a tea bag (to make once I got to work)
  • Grocery list (why type it into your phone when you can have a real little paper list!)
  • Zip pouch with all my colored pens
  • Water bottle
  • iPod
  • 10 inch chef’s knife (I was doing a demo at work and wanted my knife!)
  • Julienne peeler (I was making zucchini noodles in said demo)
  • Microplane (I needed some zest for the same demo)
  • Blue towel (all of the kitchen supplies were wrapped in it)
  • Umbrella
  • Phone Charger
  • Comb

And USUALLY I can fit my bag with my lunch in my backpack too. I use this wicked tired out whole foods bag…wpid-20150521_181135.jpgAnd yesterday is was filled with a turmeric-saffron-ginger flavored beef stew (made with my homemade bone broth and pureed pumpkin instead of tomatoes) + organic cherries + Jackson’s Honest sweet potato chips (cooked in coconut oil!!!). There was also a little bag of prosciutto in there to go with the chips for a mid-afternoon snack.wpid-20150521_181155.jpgKeep it wicked healthy.

May Day 20: Need

wpid-20150520_075237.jpgPostin’ for yesterday (because I’m a slacker).

Today is rainy and chilly and gloomy.

Yesterday though- it was sunny and bright and perfect outside. I woke up a little tired, but the weather made me so happy and I instantly felt the need to have an acai bowl for breakfast.

I used to eat them more often for breakfast, but now that I’m trying my best to adhere to the aip as possible, they just don’t make sense for me to have. My breakfast these days is usually some sort of homemade breakfast sausage (mix ground turkey thigh with chopped dates and tarragon and s&p… so good) sauteed dark leafy greens with onion (kale, collards, or chard), and roasted sweet potatoes. Yum.

But yesterday, I wanted a big bowl of smooth, fruity goodness. Want isn’t a strong enough word- I needed it. 

So I blended up a frozen acai pack with a 1/2 a frozen banana, 1/2 tbl. collagen, 1/2 cup of coconut water, 2 tbl. of coconut milk, 1/2 cup pureed sweet potato, and 1/4 cup of frozen coconut meat- and I topped it with some shredded coconut and blueberries. I ate a couple of my breakfast sausages on the side for some protein.

Eating as many nutrient dense foods as I can on a regular basis is what gives me the freedom to cave into my craving needs when I want to and not feel guilty about it. I definitely couldn’t eat an acai bowl for breakfast every day nor would it be the healthiest thing for me right now, but it is the healthiest thing for me mentally when I’m reaaaaaally craving it and I let myself have it.

Keep it wicked healthy.

May Day 19: Go

wpid-20150519_092427.jpgI love the freedom of zipping around the city on my bike. Having a bike makes me feel like I can just go wherever whenever I want. My bike also helps me live a life on the go that I love. I can easily get from my apartment to my gym to downtown to meetings and back home again while experiencing the sometimes death defying adventure of sharing the road with a bunch of cars.

This morning, I brought my breakfast with me when I went to the gym so that afterwards I could eat outside. In between bites of sweet potato + blueberries + kale + ground turkey breakfast sausage and scrolls through instagram, I looked over at my bike and felt really lucky to have something so simple that makes such a difference in my life.

Keep it wicked healthy.

May Days Fourteen Through Seventeen

wpid-20150517_183140.jpgMay Days 14-17: Home | Laughter | Small | In My Cup

Whenever I used the word home I always used it to describe the house that I grew up in back in Massachusetts. I didn’t think DC would ever feel like home. But somewhere it did become home. My apartment with Will became home without me even realizing it. Sometimes I get homesick and sad because I miss my family, but the person wiping my tears here on my couch here in DC, he reminds me of the home we’ve created together. Here is home. Home is where you make it.wpid-20150517_183532.jpgwpid-20150517_183246.jpg[Our home has been filled with cooking (per usual) and Mad Men this weekend. The finale tonight has us both feeling all the feels.]

On Friday night, when I was feeling over emotional and tearful- Will was able to bring laughter back into my life and make me smile. He does this all the time.

Home is where the heart and the laughter is.wpid-20150516_152612.jpgHome is also where the food is. Well for me anyway :) In addition to being thankful for Will, I’m wicked thankful for summer produce right now. Small pieces of fruit are making me so happy!wpid-20150517_164402.jpgwpid-20150517_184229.jpgFruit + a cup of tea has been my evening nightcap for the past several days post-dinner while watching either Broad City, Inside Amy Schumer, or Mad Men re-runs. The best.wpid-20150514_081029-01.jpeg[In my cup has been juicy summer fruit! I’ve been practically addicted to watermelon]wpid-20150514_085156.jpgThis tea bag quote reads: live light, travel light, spread the light, be the light. I think it was my favorite tea wisdom yet.

Keep it wicked healthy.

 

May Day Thirteen: Kindness

Semi Final 1This post is for yesterday- the word was kindness.

Kindness is key. Whether its in how you treat yourself or those around you- kindness should always be deployed.

Being kind to myself is something I have really worked on in the past handful of years so you can trust me when I say, it’s something that comes with practice.wpid-20150511_162327.jpgBut being kind to others is something I’ve always believed in. Try to understand where other people are coming from. Try to put yourself in someone’s shoes.wpid-20150511_163839.jpgTreat others the way you want to be treated. The golden rule, right?!

Kindness was something I needed to keep in mind this year throughout the kids cooking class I taught at a local middle school for work. I love all those kids and they’re all wicked smart/talented/awesome, but there were definitely trying days- days where things were a little too hectic or crazy- days where I was feeling short-tempered and tired.Semi Final 2But I reminded myself of what I was like when I was their age and how excited they were to be there cooking with me. I also didn’t want the kids being nasty to each other- I had to lead by example with kindness, politeness, and a teamwork makes the dream work mentality.

And it led to some pretty awesome collaborations.wpid-20150511_163855.jpgKeep it wicked healthy (and kind).

May Days Eleven and Twelve

wpid-20150512_142614.jpgMay Days 11 + 12: Noise and Time.

Too much noise is something that tends to stress me out. External noises like sirens, construction or yelling. Noise in my head like too much over thinking, creative buzz that I don’t know how to channel in some way, or worrying. I thrive in clean, organized, quiet, and peaceful surroundings.

But because I live in the real world, those can’t be my surroundings all the time. It’s unrealistic for me to expect that scenario. I know I need to work on tuning out the noise or even just accepting it for what it is and getting on with my life.

This is one of the reasons I turned to yoga originally- to find peace of mind, to block out stressors, and to cope better with the aspects of life that are difficult for me to deal with.

Yoga doesn’t really do those things for me though. It just doesn’t. For some people its the answer, but for me, it doesn’t work that way. I love it- but I get caught up in perfectionism and the idea that “I’m working out” so I can’t get to that place of acceptance and rest.

I had always wanted to try meditation as an alternative, but didn’t know how to get started. It seemed so intimidating. Do I just sit and try not to think? Should I lay on my yoga mat? Should I sit in a chair? Do I count breaths? I had ZERO clue how to get started.

I knew I’d do well with a guided meditation because whenever my yoga classes had incorporated something like that, I really enjoyed it. But I was at a loss at how to access regular, ever-changing, ever-growing guided meditation practice.

Until I stumbled upon the Headspace app. I saw it mentioned in a Greatist roundup of health and wellness apps and immediately downloaded it. It’s an app built around three foundation mediation courses (each having ten sessions in them- so thirty days of meditation) and then once you’ve finished the foundation ones, you can move on to more focused meditations for things like relationships, self-esteem, and creativity. It’s basically a workout for your brain. It’s sort of goal oriented because you can unlock different sessions- which I think I respond well too because of my type-A nature.

The first ten sessions are free (and only ten minutes long!)- but then you have to pay for additional sessions/months after those. Even if you’re not into paying for more sessions, its totally worth doing the first ten free ones!

I just finished the first twenty days of the foundation courses and am loving it! It forces me to carve out time in my day to just be with myself and to breathe. It helps me to better respond to the environment around me. It helps me have a clearer brain and thus be more present at work and in my relationships. The picture at the top of this post is the view I have everyday when I sit down to complete a session. I sit in a chair on my balcony- facing downtown. It’s pretty relaxing.

They’re not paying me to say all this- I just really really like the app. Meditation is something I never thought I’d “be into,” but I’m totally digging it right now. I’m really thankful that I found it.

Also thankful that I have the day off today from work. Gotta love those flexible schedules. Allergies attacked my body pretty bad yesterday and I was a wreck. It was nice to have so much open time today to rest, meditate, cook, and just breathe.wpid-20150512_074019.jpg[my throat hurt really bad this morning so I made a smoothie bowl using pureed butternut squash, coconut water, collagen, pink himalayan sea salt, frozen banana, and frozen coconut meat + topped with golden raisins, coconut flakes, and a drizzle coconut butter- which hardened immediately for a delicious magic shell effect!]

Keep it wicked healthy