In the Laptop Market

I have a computer question!

So my laptop…is junk. I’ve been using the same HP Pavilion laptop for the last 4 years, aka the duration of my university career, and the old geezer is suffering. It can hardly handle running anything, especially multiple programs at a time. And being the ultimate multitasker that I am, I always have at least 5-10 tabs and 3-5 programs running at a time. Yeah, not wise for a computer that can hardly handle running two. But whatever. I suffer the consequences by waiting two minutes for one thing to load and having it freeze on me daily. Plus it has near zero battery life so it’s useless to bring to class. Or anywhere for that matter.

I’m pretty ready for something new.

So: What kind of laptop do you have? Give me the deats! Is it old, new, fast, slow? What do you like/dislike about  it?

And more precisely: Do you have a Mac? How do you feel about Macs versus PCs?
I’ve always been a PC gal but I’m very seriously and mostly leaning towards a Mac. In any given class, out of all the laptops I see being used, I’d say 75-90% of them are Macs. That speaks volumes to me. I want the power!

So please give me your laptop deats! It would be a huge help.

 

And so this isn’t all techy-related word garble, here are some foods that have been rocking my taste buds lately.

My new Greek Yogurt discoveries all over the place.

Such as mixing it in with oats to harden into oat-like past overnight

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Or as a fruit topper.

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Finishing up the last bits of my jar of coconut butter. I have a feeling it’s going to be a while before I buy another jar of that edible white gold. Though I may have to attempt the homemade version next!

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A little bit of Wheat Berry and Bean Salad without the wheat berries.

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A sad attempt at Lauren’s Gluten Free Coconut Muffins that turned into muffin crumbles. This was NOT the fault of the recipe but entirely my own since I didn’t have several of the ingredients on hand and decided to mess around with a bunch of substitutes. Clearly that didn’t work so well. I recommend trying the original recipe though since these were thumbs up in the flavour department. But they probably stay together better if you don’t make sad substitutes. Sorry for making a mess of your recipe, Lauren! Hah whoops.

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Chocolate Vitatops with plain yogurt and strawberries. I’m almost out of these too. One lonely one left. I may need another Costco stock-up trip soon.

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Miscellaneous Veggie Platters

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The orange stuff on the bread = McLaren’s Imperial Sharp Cheddar. Apparently it’s a Canadian thing but my gosh is it ever good. One of my favourite breakfasts years ago used to be a toasted english muffin with imperial cheddar on top. Ugh now I’m seriously craving one.

Egg and fruit plates are always a nice way to start the morning. Microwaved egg whites with ketchup + grapefruit slices + orange slices + hot tea + Martha Steward mag. I feel like I’m a 40 year old woman based on this picture.

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And last but FAR from least… Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Dessert Hummus. If you haven’t made this yet, get out your food processor RIGHT NOW. I made half the recipe, didn’t even add chocolate chips and only used half the amount of maple syrup and this was still to die for. Holy Moly.

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I’m going to leave it at that since I’m now starving and in desperate need of some breakfast!

Please don’t forget to give me some laptop info! Happy Wednesday!

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Only One More Sleep

Well here it is, Christmas Eve. First and foremost…

Merry (almost) Christmas!

(and Happy Holidays to those who might not celebrate)

This morning I was awakened bright and early by my mother, demanding aid in shovelling the piles and piles of heavy snow that covered our driveway. Actually, she didn’t demand at all but rather enquired about it since I enjoy shovelling. I was quite enjoying sleeping, but no better way to start off the morning than with a good, sweat-inducing shovelling workout. And boy was it a workout. It took us an hour on TOP of the hour my mom spent before she even bothered to wake me, and we don’t have have that big of a driveway. There was a lot of snow. SO I substituted the shovelling for my workout of the day. I figured it was pretty well equivalent with all the crazy lifting I did.

The rest of the day was spent shopping for last minute groceries, cleaning out our entire spare bedroom, cooking and eating.

Actually the past several days straight seem to have been full of lots of eating. Especially yesterday when I did more baking. I made three more things but because they are part of a gift, I’m going to save them for a post-Christmas post ;)
Needless to say, because of all the baking munching I did (which is why I try not to bake all that often), I didn’t eat much in terms of meals throughout the day yesterday. I tried to snack on fruits and veggies, and also had some…

Leftover sushi
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Tuna on rye
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Stir Fry with Rice, Chicken and Veggies
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Today after finishing up shovelling I was ready for a cold breakfast (yeah, I was sweeeeaty) so I made my favourite Weetabix with pumpkin, vanilla yogurt, cinnamon, unsweetened almond milk and frozen banana slices. 003

Shortly after I was cooled down and ready for some coffee. With a couple bites of baked goods of course.
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Throughout the day I munched on veggies, rye bread and some acorn squash (with salsa) that I had been meaning to bake up for days now.
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For our Christmas eve dinner for the past couple years my mom, brother and I have started up a tradition of putting together a bunch of appetizers and eating them up while watching a movie.

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The spread included amazing Spinach and Artichoke dip. Seriously so SO good. If you like spinach dip (and who doesn’t?) MAKE this.
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Between the three of us we put a good solid dent in this.

Baked pita chips with brie cheese
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Shrimp with cocktail sauce
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Raw veggies
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Plus BBQ chips and Rice Crackers for dipping, as well as Breaded Shrimp and Bacon-wrapped Scallops.

I started off with one plate of stuff…
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…But just ended up munching on ridiculous amounts of everything. I only had one breaded shrimp and two scallops with the bacon removed, but plenty of everything else. I ended up having more than I wanted to and definitely more than I needed to satisfy my hunger, but it’s hard when it’s sitting right in front of you and when it all tastes so good…

Then I ate some bites of the baked goods lying around here.. yeah okay so NEXT WEEK can be healthy ;)

Anyway, hope you’re all having fun and fam-filled Christmas eves and holidays in general and “see” you all after Christmas!

Wedding Time = Eating Time!

Today I didn’t bother taking pictures of any of my meals. They were all fairly simple, standard and unexciting as I am attempting to begin a recovery from a weekend full of way too much eating.

Yesterday was my aunt’s wedding, held in the evening. I took the day off work as it would have been too rushed getting home and ready after getting off work, and plus I had family visiting so I kind of wanted to be around and chill with them and such. Although I ended up meeting a friend at the mall for a few hours out of the day because she has been gone all summer and was only back for a couple days before heading off again for another several weeks, so that was my only opportunity to see her.

Anyway, I started the day off with some cereal, as per the regular.

The rest of my eating during the day was pretty random and snacky, pretty much whatever I could grab on the go.

Then it was finally time for the wedding. It was a very small and informal thing, not the whole typical big schmancy wedding deal. The ceremony was held at a little local place called The Grist Mill.

It wasn’t long, we were probably there for about an hour, including the before waiting time, although I wasn’t paying that much attention to the actual time that passed.

After that we headed down the road to a restaurant called Sole (pronounced Soul-ay, like ‘sun’ in french).

Check out my brother in the corner there. Yeah, he’s wearing a lime green tie. Him and my cousin both wore them. He also wore a Batman belt buckle while my cousin wore a Superman belt buckle. These guys are characters. I love em. They were thinking of wearing fedoras too but my brother chickened out. Wimp.

The menu was prechosen, so there was a choice between five (I think… it might have been four) appetizers, three entrees and two desserts.
I don’t remember all of the options, but…

Appetizers included some kind of fancy soup, caesar salad, greens with shredded egg and goat cheese, tortellini in a vodka sauce, and possibly one more that I can’t remember.

Entrees included a chicken dish, a beef dish and a fish dish. I really wish I could remember the descriptions of all of these because clearly they were much fancier and more detailed than what I’m spewing out here, but my memory for such things is crappy.

Desserts included banana bread cheesecake or some flambee crepe with strawberries.

Before any of this great food was brought out, we had drinks and pre-appetizer appetizers.
I got a vodka bar lime which was probably the best I’ve ever had (not that I really order that drink that often, but still) but very sweet.

There was free unlimited wine all night so I definitely had a glass of white x2, plus there was champagne provided for a toast. Yeah, I chugged it. I’m classy like that.
My beginning of the night drink collection ;)

Then we had crackers and cheese, grapes and braed with a pesto oil dipping sauce. I had a couple crackers with a piece of white cheddar and a goat cheese ball, some grapes and two pieces of bread.

For the appetizer I picked the greens with goat cheese. Funny enough I couldn’t even see the shredded egg on there until I looked at this picture after. It looked so similar to the goat cheese.

I was debating between this or the tortellini, which my cousin got. It looked good too, but I’m glad I got the greens because I definitely needed some more veg in my day and I think it was a moderately healthier choice.

For an entree I chose the chicken. It was roasted chicken in what seemed like some kind of gravy, with roasted potatoes and broccoli. I ate most of it but left some of the chicken and broccoli. By this point I was stuffed. And drunk. Oops.

Then for dessert, while everyone else at my table chose the crepe, I could not resist the cheesecake. I love cheesecake. This one was crazy. It tasted just like banana bread. In cheesecake form. Weird but oh so good. I gave several bites to others and left a few bites on my plate. But I did eat a good portion of it. Shoot.

Then I had a peppermint tea. And capped the night off with…. a shot of Sambuca, compliments of my uncle. He got one for all of my cousins. It was my first encounter with Sambuca. Verdict? Brutal! I totally didn’t even chase though. Or at least I waited a minute to chase it… man that stuff burns. If only I liked black licorice.

Needless to say, my stomach has never been so bloated as it has been this entire weekend. So gross. I feel gross. And to top it off, there wasn’t really any opportunity to exercise at all. So I’ve felt like one big disgusting blob all weekend. I’m not too concerned about it though, sometimes these family special occasion weekends just need to happen. Now I just need to pack in the fruits and veggies this week:)

A Farmer’s Market, A Birthday, and More Food Shopping

This weekend was just a whoooole lotta eating. It sucks but at the same time I’m not super torn up about most of it. I enjoyed pretty much everything I ate and it’s not like it was all double chocolate fudge cake or anything within that vicinity of food types for the most part so it’s all good.

Saturday

Because I knew I had eaten quite a bit the day before, I wanted to keep this morning’s breakfast light. So I had a bowl of fruit with yogurt, along with an iced coffee.

I must have made my iced coffee pretty heavy on the caffeine though because shortly after I was shaking so badly. I think the combo of the light substanced breakfast plus the large caffeine dose was overkill. I knew I had to get something more substantial into me to stop the shakes so I went for a pumpkin chocolate chip muffin. Perfect. It did just the trick and I was feeling fine almost immediately.

Look at that beauty basking in the sunlight.

I didn’t work this Saturday, which is a first in a long time, so my mom and I went to the local farmer’s market, which we haven’t done in ages. This place is packed with food, oh so much food. So much delicious food at that. The danger zones are the inside food vendors and the big long tables filled with fresh baked goods. We were dangerously close to buying a gigantic raspberry roll thing covered in thick gooey icing but I forced myself away from it. This is part of what we picked up there.

We’re bread junkies. I cannot resist fresh bread. So we got a lot of bready items.
The first picture includes:
– A big doughy loaf of some of the best bread I have ever tasted. I don’t even know what kind it was but the loaf was huge and chewy and great and is now almost gone only one day later
– A small loaf of veggie bread
– Flax Plus Pumpkin Raisin Crunch Granola Cereal (Only $2! This stuff is usually $4-5 at the grocery store)
– Chili Sauce
– Red Pepper Jelly
– Baba Ganoush
– Extra Old Cheddar (I hardly ever eat cheddar but I just had to have this one. I’m a sucker for old cheddar and the samples they had out were delicious. So I’ll try to eat this one sparingly…)
– Focaccia Bread with greek toppings
– An apple square
We also got that bag of mixed peppers, tomatoes, plums and nectarines. But the majority of our haul is not the healthiest… but gee was it all tasty stuff.

I started off with some fresh bread and cheese. Then I had more fresh bread dipped in the baba.

Then I had some of the focaccia with some chili sauce for dipping.

Then I had some of the apple square, which I soon decided to heat and put into milk. It was good but a little too sweet. It reminded me of an apple crumb pudding that my mom makes, but I like the one she makes a lot better.

Yeah, that IS a heck of a lot of food. When dinner rolled around I was only slightly hungry and very carb full, so I opted for a bowl of veggies. But I’m pretty sure I also had some bread while getting this together.

Then I wanted to try one of the lovely looking fresh plums we bought.

Lovely looking but not so lovely tasting. It was mushy and unflavourful. I ate a few bites and then tossed it. I hope the entire batch isn’t this bad but I have a feeling they might be.

Later on I had a friend’s birthday to go to. It started off with a barbecue and I wasn’t hungry so I resisted the meat skewers. I did have a couple tortilla chips dipped in peanut sauce. And some alcohol. And then later when the raspberry cheesecake was introduced I was in trouble. A giant plate of cheesecake plus a lack of resistance from alcoholic influence = trouble. I had several large bites of cheesecake. And then I dug into the crappy McCain frozen cake because it was sitting there. And then I decided it would be wise to dip pretzels into the cheesecake. Yeah. SO wise.

We didn’t even end up making it to the bar we were planning on going to because by the time we actually got up and moving from the backyard the night was almost over. I did get some walking in though which might have burned off a couple of the cake bites… ugh. I also did a good doubled up workout in the afternoon though to compensate for some of the bread consumption. And as I said, most of the stuff tasted great, so I can’t sit here with too much regret.

Sunday

Today I wanted to try eating really cleanly because of yesterday’s carb and junk overload. So breakfast was about a 1/2 cup of cottage cheese and a big plate of fruit: an apple, a nectarine, grapes and strawberries.

Then I remembered my newly purchased cereal, so I had a couple small handfuls.

And I had a half coffee/half light hot chocolate drink.

A little while into the morning I was about to do a workout but was feeling a little hungry. I tried to ignore the hunger but it, combined with a pb and banana craving, overpowered me. So I had half a frozen banana mashed up with some white chocolate peanut butter.

This tasted MUCH more appetizing than it looks.

I did a really good hour long Tae bo bootcamp workout. Then I had lunch, which was a bowl of veggies with Goddess dressing, and a piece of the focaccia with baba ganoush and chili sauce on top.

Then my mom and I went and did grocery shopping. Like we really needed MORE food, but whatever. We also did a quick bulk food store run because my mom wanted something chocolate. So she got Clodhoppers (chocolate covered granola things) and we snacked on a few of those in the car.
Then I finished up the last of an old hummus container with some bread. I also had some slightly thawed frozen berries.

Then dinner time arrived so I finished off the last of some tofu in half of a small tortilla with chili sauce, dijonnaise and spinach. I also had some baby carrots with dijonnaise.

We bought these vanilla flax cookies at the grocery store, so I tried half of one. Slightly crunchy and slightly chewy at the same time, with a very subtle vanilla flavour. I was decently impressed.

Enough so to go back for the second half. That I topped with a raspberry.

Then, because I noticed the raspberries were nice and big with holes perfect for stuffing, I decided to be brilliant and stuff em with some fat free capuccino ice cream. I think I had two stuffed. Plus a few more bites of ice cream all on its own.

And once again, lots of food was eaten today. At least there were slightly less carbs than yesterday though, and the majority was pretty healthy.
What a weekend.