Tuesday, July 25, 2017

SP Cleanse Day 1 (Monday)

Pina Colada Shake
Ok guys, I woke up still feeling full from the night before.  But I doubt those were real feelings.  They were probably fake feelings I kept telling myself because I was starting this cleanse.  Regardless of what kind of feelings they were, I had to face reality.

I made my first shake with frozen coconut chunks (I think chunks is a funny word... haha chunks), frozen pineapple bits, unsweetened coconut milk with my two scoops of SP Complete powder stuff.  With my trusty Magic Bullet (does anyone still use one of these anymore?) I blended this concoction.  And you know what? It was actually good!  Add a little rum and you've got a pina colada!!  HAHA JK!

After "breakfast" I dropped off my daughter at school so she can be all social and stuff while I came home and organized all the food I had gotten from the grocery store (see pic on previous post).  For my snack I went with my go-to which lately has been sweet potato "toast" with smashed avocados--all SP Cleanse approved!  I love this low carb snack for anytime of the day! You just slice your sweet potato (orgaaaanic don't forget!) and throw them in the toast oven on your highest setting.  I run it in there twice to get it extra cooked if that makes sense.  While that's going, scoop out your avocado, sprinkle some pepper and garlic powder (my favs) and when the toast is ready, pile those delicious avos on top.  It's very filling and nutritious (I'm not a nutritionist so I'm just assuming it's nutritious hehe).
My version of the trendy Avocado Toast

Since I was doing so well on this first day (HAHA) I made plans to meet some of my coworker friends for lunch.  Summer is almost over (boo hoo) and I've been wanting to hang out with them this whole time!  I chose to meet at one my favorite restaurants in the OC--Rutabagorz.  I was first introduced to it when I was a student at Chapman in Orange.  I would eat that Garlic Chicken Salad with walnuts and feta like no other. Alas, my favorite menu item would not be compliant to this cleanse.  No worries though, Ruta's always has great options for everyone!  So I chose the Vegetarian Chef
Vegetarian Chef Salad minus the Cheffy Parts
Salad but had to be one of those... You know the person that asks for substitutions in a meal.  I always feel bad asking for changes but I had to be strong and of course I was really nice about it, I said, "PLEASE and THANK YOU!" So I had to ask for no cheese and no eggs, oh and instead of whatever dressing it came with, I just asked for olive oil and vinegar which apparently has a special fancy name for it that I've now forgotten.  As you can see the salad was divine.  The sunflower seeds added a great nutty flavor without being a nut which is also a no-no.  (Note to self, get sunflower seeds for future salads)  I've also believed salads that you don't have to prep and make are so much more delicious than ones you make yourself.  I think because after the prepping, putting together and cleaning, I think the meal is more work than it is tasty in the end.  Oh well... got to stay positive!

Ok dinner time!  I had to be quick with this one.  After I picked up my daughter from school, I quickly whipped up some sauteed broccolini (avocado oil, salt and pepper), baked sweet potato with organic butter, and some kalamata olives on the side.  I saw another person's blog with kalamata olives in their salad and I thought, hm that sounds good.  For "dessert" I had some fresh strawberries which my daughter confiscated during our meal together.  Strawberries are her fav.  This was a great meal and quick because we had to run to swimming
lessons after!

Phew, first day of swimming lessons went well.  ASH was a little hesitant to be in the water which is very strange since she loves swimming in our pool.  I think she sensed me feeling rushed and didn't want any part of that stress.  In the end, she blew her bubbles, kicked her legs, scooped her arms like the best of them.  She also discovered the pool where we were at was shallow enough to allow her to stand on her toes.  I think that was her favorite part.

After dinner snackaroo!
I almost forgot I had one more shake to go.  So I made it as my after "workout" (trust me... swim lessons was a workout! :) ) along with a little snack of baby carrots. I couldn't resist the pina colada shake so guess what flavor I made...you guessed it... PINA COLADA!  Day 1... success.  Was I hungry?  I didn't have a starving feeling, but definitely after swim lessons, I was ready to have a little snackaroo.

What I need to work on for tomorrow: drink more water.  Remember to take the supplements (I took them twice so I missed one time).

21 Day Purification Cleanse by Standard Process

So today is the day I..

I know what you're thinking... it's just another diet and you haven't been successful really before.  Yes, 'tis true.  I've attempted Beachbody's 21 Day Fix twice now and have gotten deathly sick BOTH times (not from the program, but just from life...and 26 second graders). Weight Watchers was fairly ok but then someone would ask me to go to an All You Can Eat Korean BBQ birthday dinner... then I'd fall off the wagon.

Let's just say, I don't have a choice now.  I am ::cough cough:: getting older now and it's been very hard to get back into shape and just be a healthy human being.  Around me I've been tempted with a lot of indulgences and if you know me... I. LOVE. FOOD. Let's be honest, I'm not in shape.  I'm not healthy. I'm tired ALL. THE. TIME. I'm really hoping that starting this process today will help kick start better eating habits and there will be great rewards no matter what:

  • get healthier (duh)
  • gain more energy
  • clearer and smoother skin (reminds me of mom who would make me drink/eat random Chinese foods/soups and say, "It's good for you... make your skin pretty.")
  • loose weight
  • better digestion
  • less bloating

I'm sure there more positives from the process and for the next 21 days I will keep you posted on the ups and downs I experience.  Let's hope there are more UPs than downs!

For more information on what this program entails this is how I explain it, but if you want the deets then click on the link above: Days 1-10 Veggies and fruit (double the veggies than fruit), SP Complete shakes, 1/2 cup grains (quinoa-gross, brown rice, or lentils). Days 11-21 same as before, but I will get to add lean meat!!!  Counting down the days... so excited!  HAHA  So that will mean chicken and fish basically.  I'm such a meat eater and although I keep thinking I'll miss the carbs the most, I think I'll miss the meat the most.

I remember a time when I gave up meat for Lent (I'm not Catholic btw but did it for fun) and I was successful! However I did allow myself fish and other seafood along with fake meat (Gardeins Mandarin Chick'n =yummy).  That will be a no no for the first 10 days on this cleanse.

So to wrap this up, in a way I'm excited that I'm finally taking the time to do this for myself. I'm also happy that it's not during the school year when I'm limited to bathroom breaks... However, I'm nervous that my willpower will be weak (I've been known to have weak willpower) and that I'll forget and finish my daughter's leftover chicken nugget she didn't finish from her plate.  But I will do my best to stay strong and commit to this program so that I can better health for myself!  So... here we go!

Grocery shopping results for all my healthy goodness snacks and meals!

**Please note, I started writing this on Day 1 and never published it.  It's now Day 2 so I will catch up with my notes and photos!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Kids + Fancy Foods

I love this video of a group of second graders who experience an expensive 7-course dinner at one of New York's fanciest restaurants.  I've never been to this restaurant nor have I ever been to New York, but it would be awesome if I traded lives with them this one time to be a part of what they did this day.

My favorite part is at the end where they toast:

"To justice and all!"
"To vampires!!"

Kids are awesome.  I hope mine grows up wanting to try all sorts of cuisines.  Then if she doesn't like it I can eat her leftovers.  Ha!

Monday, October 6, 2014


I love strawberries.
I love peaches.
I love whipped cream.
I love my Hello Kitty bowl.
I love strawberries, peaches and whipped cream in my Hello Kitty bowl.

The end.

P.S. I also love french fries.  Just saying.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Guava Time

At my childhood home, there's a guava tree in the backyard. I don't know what kind of guava it is, but from Googling "types of guava" I'm going to guess it's a China Guava tree (http://www.21food.com/products/guava-49088.html). This makes sense because we are Chinese, right?!
The fragrant aroma is very distinctive and indescribable if you ask me. The flesh is soft and mushy but it also has edible seeds inside that are hard and crunchy. As I type I feel like I got part of a seed stuck in my teeth. I need floss. 

Anyway, the scent and sight of these little fruits remind me of my childhood. Running around in the lawn sprinklers on a hot Southern California day (no one would be caught doing that now in this major drought...sad), attempting 100 cartwheels before collapsing from dizziness, and of course being a typical little Asian girl and munching on weird Asian fruits.  I remember when the tree would produce an abundance of guavas. So many we couldn't possibly eat them all before they rotted or before the birds got to them. All my aunties and uncles (family friends) would come over with their reused plastic grocery bags and pick the guavas. Their bags were almost overflowing! Those were the days...!

One day if I am to ever own a house with a backyard (I must say WITH a backyard because nowadays those are almost nonexistent in today's OC real estate) I would want fruit trees so my child/children could pick off weird fruits and love them as much as I did. But for now, I will gladly take fruit from my parents house and enjoy them on my condo patio. :)

Did you grow up with fruit trees? Vegetable plants? How about now? 

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Pinterest Pins...Failures and Successes

Raise your hand if you're a Pinterest fan! Personally I have a love/hate relationship with the site.  I love the ease of finding ideas on there and the ability to organize my sometimes chaotic thoughts.  I love looking at pretty and eye catching images.  A lot of my time is wasted  occupied by perusing through the collection of pins that others have found.  It's like little virtual treasures.

Most of my pins are related to food--cookie and cake recipes and tips, dinner recipes, slow cooker recipes, even juicing recipes from that time of my life (once).  However sometimes I feel like some of the pins I find can be deceiving, especially the food ones.  The pins make the process look so simple and when executed by the amateur like me???  Well let's just say there have been a few failures and successes on my attempts.

This week I completed three recipes I found on Pinterest.  It all started when my husband looked in the fridge and found about 30 string cheeses that were about to expire (I bought a huge bag of them from Costco thinking I could totally eat them all...I know I'm not the only one that as done that!).  Then I recalled browsing Pinterest in the past and seeing some fun snack ideas with this ingredient.  I thought this was a good time to try them.  Of course not only did I find string cheese recipes, but I found about 10 other pins to add to my "Taking Care of My Tummy" board that were unrelated to string cheese.  So this week I attempted two string cheese recipes and one recipe for mini shepherd's pie.  Why shepherd's pie?  Well I also had pie dough in the freezer I thought I should use up.  Pie dough stays good in the freezer you say?  Whatever, I just wanted shepherd's pie, okay?!  hehe :)

Moving on, the first recipe I tried was oven baked mozzarella sticks found here (and if you scroll to the bottom there is another recipe for oven baked onion rings... yea, I added that pin to my collection too).  The ingredients and process looked simple enough: string cheese, bread crumbs, an egg, flour, and seasonings.  I followed the easy instructions and this is what happened:

This was a Pinterest FAIL.  The taste itself wasn't too bad though.  A little on the salty side, but over all not too bad.  The cheese all melted and because of that it became a big blob of cheesy-breadcrumb-thing.  I probably would not make this again.

Next on my list was a recipe for cheesy-stuffed garlic butter crescents found here.  I spruced it up a little by adding pepperoni because I saw that idea on a different pin and because I love pepperoni (and salami, and prusciutto, and pancetta, and bacon, and and and...).  This again also asked for easy ingredients and had simple steps.  As a result, this is what happened:

The oozing cheese...

This was a Pinterest SUCCESS!  These were so tasty and addicting.  I dipped them in marinara sauce sprinkled with Italian seasoning and voila! It reminded me of an upscale pigs-in-a-blanket appetizer.  hehe Okay, not upscale, but a variation on crescent roll recipes.

And finally, the non-string cheese recipe I tried was mini shepherd's pie.  I saw someone else pin this recipe (found here) and it used muffin pans and ground beef.  However I remembered I got these really adorable mini pie dishes (thanks L & C!) and I had not tried using them yet.  I thought this would be a fabulous recipe to break them in with. I also decided to use ground lamb instead.  As with the other recipes, the ingredients and instructions were simple (see a trend?) so I said, "Why not?!  I love shepherd's pie!"  This dish also reminded me of our trip to the UK back in 2012 and ate lots of this stuff there.  That was a fun and delicious trip!  Here is what happened with this version of the recipe:

How cute are these little pie dishes?
I love that they are sunshine yellow!
This was a Pinterest SUCCESS!  At least I think so!  My husband has yet to try his so I will update you on what he thinks later.  The ground lamb brought a different dimension to the flavors of this dish and the crust gave it another textured layer that was quite delightful!  I would definitely recommend you all trying this recipe!

Well, that's it for now.  I'm sure I will post many more reviews on things I have found using Pinterest and letting you know if they are failures or successes.  In the meantime, this is a fun site I found (while on Facebook, not Pinterest) about other people's Pinterest failures.  It's quite funny!!!  Check it out here and have fun nom nom nomming! :)

Thursday, September 18, 2014

A Morning Stroll with a Morning Treat

There have been quite some scorchering days here in the OC. In the high 90s and low 100s which is pretty warm for September. Or is it? I guess weather here is sometimes unpredictable when it comes to seasons other than summer. It could be very hot like it is now. Or feel like a real autumn or maybe winter. Haha Who am I kidding? It never feels like winter in September. Heck, it rarely feels like winter in winter! That reminds me of a day in college and it was 80 degrees in the middle of February! Don't tell my parents, but I totally ditched class that day to go to the beach because why not?! :) I miss college. But I don't miss the extra 20+ pounds I gained back then! 

Anyway, I wanted to get in a stroll before the heat became too unbearable for baby and me. So I strapped her in and walked to our local Starbucks. I had been craving for a little coffee lately and something hearty to eat. Do bagels count as something hearty? I count them as that. 

The heat wasn't too bad yet and actually it was quite enjoyable especially in the shade with a slightly cool breeze. Though as I'm typing this under the shade at an outdoor table it keeps getting sunnier and sunnier out there. I should probably head back anyway. The little one feel asleep and if she stays asleep this mommy can catch a little nap!! Oh wait... I just had a latte...=caffeine... Let's see how this goes!