Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Work & Photography

This summer my boss and I are going into the community and having some fun while we promote Bakery On Main. Last week we went to Mission Beach to hand out granola samples. It was great meeting new people! A lot of people were on vacation so we told them where they could find the products in their state. We wanted to do something different with our granola so we used it as a topping on frozen yogurt. I really liked it! We had chocolate yogurt, mango and strawberries topped with our Extreme Fruit & Nut granola. My second picture is at the top of the roller coaster at Belmont Park. It wasn't easy to hold granola and take a photo on that rocky ride but I'm happy it came out clear. I can't wait for our other adventures this summer as we make our way through San Diego spreading Gluten Free Happiness!

Thursday, May 29, 2014

MY Passion

I love photography. I'm at a point of my life where I think I want to take it more seriously. I don't know exactly what that means as far as planning for the future, but what I do know is that I want to start shooting more. For example, I want to take more head shots and family photos. When I look back on my most recent sessions, that's what I've been doing. I'm open to any sort of photography opportunity but my current favorite is family photos. Lucky for me, I have the perfect family to photograph wherever I want! A couple weeks ago my amazing friend Analisa, Vincenzo and I went to the park for a photo shoot. Analisa's husband is away at sea right now, but when he comes back next month we will be taking more photos! Stayed tuned.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Whole 30 again..

Recently, my boyfriends mom and sister mentioned that they wanted to do Whole 30, so Danielle and I said we'd do it with them! We started on Tuesday this week and so far it's going ok. You would think since I've done it before that I would't have cravings or miss certain foods because I know the changes my body is going through, but I do. I'm struggling a little. My biggest and maybe only issue is when I don't prep food. ALWAYS PREP YOUR FOOD! If not you'll be in a situation where you're hungry, tired, annoyed because you're so hungry and just feel like grabbing fast food. Ok, maybe I'm the only one that feels that way. That's exactly how I felt last night. I ended up buying $7 pre made guacamole from Whole Foods because I needed something on the drive home from work to keep my stomach happy, and hold me over until dinner. If I brought little snacks to work, or ate a real lunch, this wouldn't have happened. Yes, I'm eating it with a spoon!

Another reason this time around it's only going O-K so far is because the reason I'm doing this again is so I can support Maya and Nada. I needed Danielle so much the first time around I figured everyone needed someone for support. I guess there are people out there who can motivate themselves (obviously I'm not like this) and don't need to rely on others. Nada doesn't eat junk food so this whole 30 hasn't been an issue for her. Maya isn't having any problems either, besides missing her diet soda. Neither of them "need" me and I assumed they would. It's my fault for assuming they would come to me with questions and tips. Waseam tried to comfort me and say that he needs me in his life, which is nice, but my intentions for this 2nd whole 30 was the be someone they look up to. I'll get over it, but I just wanted to share my feelings thus far with my 2nd whole 30.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Post Whole 30

I DID IT! What a great feeling it is to accomplish something I never (honestly) thought I could do.  I said before that i wanted to ease myself into certain foods to see how my body would react and I think it went well! Wednesday was my first day that I could eat whatever I want. I had 3 pieces of See's Candy. I think since I didn't have it for so long eating it again really tasted like the very first time I had it. It made me so happy. I'm not sure if that's bad that candy can make me that happy but I was very happy. In the afternoon I had Jeni's Brambleberry Crisp ice cream. The description from the website says it best.

Buttery, oven-toasted oat streusel and a striking, sweet-tart “brambleberry” jam of blackberries and black currants layered throughout vanilla ice cream.

I just love that I can see and taste real streusel and blackberries. If you haven't had Jeni's I highly recommend trying it. You can order here online. If you need it right now then go to the find us tab on their website then click where to buy & it will bring up local places around you that will have a selection of flavors to choose from. Lucky for me, Whole foods sells my favorite flavor! I didn't feel sick or anything from my first day of sweets, wish I was very happy about! In the past couple of days I've had macaroni, waffle fries, granola, tortilla chips and beer. Everything has been fine and I haven't noticed any problems. I'm not 100% sure how I'll eat from now on but I did love how I felt when I was on whole 30 so I'll try to eat that way as much as possible and still have my sweets in moderation. My sister and I were just talking about this yesterday. I always say how much I love macaroni and cheese but I don't even eat it once a month. It's just one of those things. Yes it's my favorite but I guess I just don't get around to eating it that much. I think I'm ok to eat it when I do because I'm not making it an everyday thing.
I do want to make some suggestions for people thinking about doing whole 30. I didn't read the book before I started but I would highly suggest reading it. I'm sure it answers lots of questions first timers have and is just a great tool to refer back to when necessary. It's important to stay hydrated! I started putting fruit in my water and I really enjoyed drinking water that way. I would put lemon, strawberries, oranges, basil or mint. Another thing I loved using was avocado on top of pretty much everything. I also used olive oil for salad dressings. I want to point out that because I didn't read the book or research a lot before I started, I just ate the same meals over and over. I think the book probably gives many different recipes to try so you can have more variety. I didn't take a lot of time to prep my food so I would just eat broccoli, peppers and onions for most every meal. For me that was fine, I didn't get bored. I know some people need variety so I suggest researching the challenge more so you are aware of every option for eating. Please comment if you have any questions about my experience!

Monday, March 31, 2014

9 Days left!

I'm sorry this post is late! I'm in the single digits people!!!!  There are some things I wanted to talk about. Last week I had a dream I cheated. Don't worry, I didn't. I think dreams in general are amazing. They can seem so real that I really had to question myself when I woke up. I've read that people have these dreams and Danielle said she did too so I'm glad I'm not alone.

I went out of town for a couple days for work and I have a few pictures to share. The first one is hilarious to me. I ordered a street taco so the toppings are pretty limited since it's just a simple taco. After I took away the things I couldn't have I was left with meat, onions and guacamole. It was yummy, it just looks really funny to me because there isn't much food. My second picture is of the salad I ate the first day. I had greens, onions, tomatoes, mandarin oranges, almonds and pecans, avocado and I squeezed a lemon on top for dressing.

Sometimes I just think about life and I can't believe I'm even doing this challenge. I've always said that I have no control when it comes to food. I will eat whatever I want and not say no to food. I've never seen a reason to limit myself or pass on something I enjoy eating. It's crazy because this whole challenge is saying no to everything I really want. I know it's for the better but brownies, cookies and cake still looks delicious. I'm doing something I never thought I could do! I think the main issue here is with myself. I don't give myself enough credit. Of course challenges are done for a reason and I love testing myself to see what I'll put myself through to achieve my goals. It's amazing how great I feel accomplishing something. I think I feel so great because no one is forcing me to do this challenge. I willingly accepted to completely change how I eat for 30 days. That's huge! I can't stop thinking about how happy my body must be right now. I've never EVER given it a break from sugar, let alone dairy and wheat. Sugar is in almost everything. I'm ashamed that I love sugar so much. It's embarrassing because it's not good for me and for some reason I still wouldn't mind eating something with sugar in it. Why would I put my body through that? I'm starting to realize just because I think something tastes delicious doesn't mean I have to eat it. I know that seems like common sense but I'm really starting to understand that. Honestly, who wants to say no to cake or ice cream? I don't, but maybe I'll start to really practice eating sweets in moderation. I can't believe I just typed that. Never did I think I would ever say something like that. I'm seeing with my own eyes that I can make it 30 days without eating how I always have. It's been a great month for me and I've learned so much about myself. I'm down to 9 days and I'm getting excited. What I really can't wait for is introducing dairy, wheat and sugar (at different times) to my body to see how it reacts. I talked to a woman a couple of days ago and she said she got sick after her challenge. Obviously I'm not hoping to get sick, but I'll listen to my body and see if it rejects any of my food choices. The countdown is on, 9 days, I CAN DO THIS!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

13 days in!

I'm almost halfway there and I'm feeling great! Sunday I tackled going out to eat and it was such a positive experience. The waitress was understanding of my requests and my meal was seriously delicious and so filling! This salad includes a huge piece of Yellowtail, egg, cucumber, carrots, tomatoes, avocado with a side of lemons and olive oil for dressing.

I just threw this salad together because I was hungry but wasn't looking to really cook a meal. I ended up loving it, when I thought it would just be okay. It's romaine, strawberries, pecans and walnuts with olive oil as dressing. My smoothie had watermelon, blueberries, a whole banana, spinach and water.

My Dad is visiting for a couples days so Saturday morning we went to breakfast at Great Maple. Everything looked amazing so I was really looking forward to my meal. I had eggs, cherry tomatoes, bacon, caramelized onions, avocado and basil. I love cantaloupe! I don't know why I don't eat it more often, it's really refreshing!

 Today I took my Dad for a belated birthday Adventure. First we went to the Swap Meet. It was the first time for both of us, so it was wonderful to experience it together. I found a basket I've been looking for, and a blanket. Dad found a plaque with his favorite baseball player on it, a NFL flag, socks and a clock. Later we rode bikes around the bay and went to lunch at Bareback Grill in Pacific Beach. I had grilled chicken, tomato, onions, lettuce, avocado, pickles and grilled pineapple. The pineapple was just the right amount of sweetness.

I was talking to my friend Paige who just finished a 10 day cleanse and she said the days after she was done she slowly added one or two things into her meals to see how her body reacted. I definitely want to do the same thing. My body has never been without sugar, bread, or dairy for 30 days so I'll want to carefully add those in to see if they upset my body. Let's hope not! I'm really looking forward to eating some ice cream and a sandwich. In a couple of days I'll be half way done. I can't wait to see what this next week brings.

Friday, March 14, 2014

We all make mistakes

Happy Friday!

I'm sure you're very curious to hear how how I'm doing with my whole 30 challenge, maybe more so after you read the title of this post. Last weekend I was in Anaheim for the Natural Foods Expo and I cheated. At first it wasn't on purpose. I ate some seasoned peas (the other flavors had noodles and nuts) so I thought that was fine until I read the bag and saw it had sugar in it. I shouldn't have assumed, I should've read the bag before taking a sample. I was running around the expo with my friend Krystal, sampling so many things. She is paleo too but not doing the whole 30 challenge so she can eat things that I can't. I think I was on a high from seeing her (our schedules are both so full we don't see each other as much as we'd like to, and it was a big deal that we were both out of town at the same event so we were excited to see each other) that I wasn't 100% paying attention to what I was eating. I think I ate chocolate covered coffee beans? Something was chocolate covered. Believe it or not I still said no to other things but I did try some kind of PB that was delicious. One night at dinner I had a bite of veggie lasagna that was doused in cheese.  Also, I found out Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream was at the Expo and I freaked out! I've only been one time in Columbus but it was AMAZING! So obviously I cheated on purpose and tried a sample of the 5 flavors they had.

I'm not proud of my cheats, but I think it's important I'm honest with myself and everyone else following my progress. I started my challenge over this past Monday. Today is day 5 for me. I've talked to some people who think I shouldn't start all the way over, but maybe add days at the end. Personally, I wouldn't feel right about saying I finished knowing I cheated. Danielle has been so good and hasn't cheated it all so I definitely owe it to her to finish the right way.
My favorite meal this week was probably the meal I found out I could have at in n out, which I also made at home the next two days in a row. This is how you order it: Double meat animal style, hold the spread, extra mustard and protein style. So there is no bun, it's lettuce instead, and they mustard fry the burger and grill the onions. I think it had pickles too! It was really delicious.
Ok, almost one week down. Go see how Danielle is doing! She should be blogging later today.  I'll make something in the crockpot next week. I keep saying that but I really will. :)

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Whole 30: Week One

Here is a summary of how my week went!

Day 1: My favorite meal was my lunch (which I had again for dinner), Carne Asada, green peppers, onions topped with avocado.
Day 2: My favorite meal was dinner. I had chicken with spinach, broccoli, peppers, asparagus topped with cherry tomatoes and avocado.
Day 3: My favorite meal was my lunch! I made scrambled eggs, ground beef, onions, peppers topped with cherry tomatoes and cilantro.
 This is the day I started to get into a routine of drinking lots of water with lemon and going on walks to clear my head and try to focus on the challenge. At this point I was still a little sad I couldn't just eat whatever I wanted. Prior to this challenge pasta with pesto was my go to meal. If I had no idea what to eat or I was just too hungry to cook, I would make pasta. For me it's an easy out (not that I'm proud of that) and makes me not really work at putting together a meal that is going to fuel my body. Something I love about this challenge is the fact that if I eat, I know I'm eating good things. If I am too tired to eat and I skip a meal (that isn't ideal) at least I'm not filling my body with unhealthy food.
Day 4: My favorite meal was breakfast. I made steak, 2 over easy eggs, a clementine and hot water with lemon. I got to go on two different walks Tuesday and I loved it!
Day 5: My favorite meal was dinner, but I will talk about that in a minute. Today was the first day I tackled eating out. It was my friend Jeri's birthday so her, Analisa and I went to breakfast. I ate an apple before so I wouldn't be hungry. Analisa gave me all of her fruit from her meal. It was really sweet of her! Waseam's birthday is tomorrow but he's going out of town too so we celebrated last night. Two outings in one day! Dinner was AMAZING. Our waitress was so sweet and understanding of my requests. I had a burger with onion, tomato, pickles, avocado spread and it was all on a bed of lettuce. I had a side salad with tomatoes. It made me really appreciate the people that don't make a big deal out of specific requests and the fact that she was so willing to help me. The restaurant we went to was hosting a karaoke night and I love music and listening to karaoke!
Day 6: My favorite meal was lunch/dinner. My boss picked me up at 8am so we could head to Anaheim for the Natural Foods Expo this weekend. It's a huge event that I'm honestly so thankful to be a part of. I love traveling and especially with a company I love. I had a banana for breakfast. We spent a couple of hours setting up our booth and I tried to stay hydrated as much as possible. I had some pistachios and pineapple for a snack. We finished at 3pm and I was feeling pretty lightheaded from not having any substantial food yet. For a late lunch, early dinner, we went to a local mexican restaurant. I ate steak, grilled peppers, onions and tomato. I put a bunch of guacamole on my food. It was really good! I think you see a theme here, I enjoy steak, onions and peppers. I had that a lot this week. Next week when I'm home I plan on using my crock pot for at least one meal. I'm really excited. I think next week will be better.
Danielle, thank you so much for being there for me this week! We talked so much and it really helped. Also, Waseam was a great help too. I was cranky the first couple of days and he never was mad at me for my bad moods. I think it's getting better although being away without access to a blender or refrigerator for 4 days will be a whole different obstacle to tackle. It'l be a little rough but I'll make it work!
Go check out Danielle's update coming tomorrow! Can't wait to start week 2 with you Danielle. We can do this!

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Whole 30 Challenge

Happy March 1st!

My good friend Danielle (you can find her Here) and I made up a running and abs challenge last summer and were feeling up for a challenge for this month. Danielle suggested the Whole 30 challenge (you can read more here) and I told her lets do it! I don't feel that I can explain it perfectly so I included the link if you're interested in learning more. It's all brand new to both of us but we've been researching blogs, forums and turning to other friends who have been eating Paleo regularly. I know for sure we are staying away from grains, sugar, beans, alcohol, white potatoes and junk food. I am really looking forward to this month because I should probably already be eating this way anyway. I LOVE brownies, oreos, potatoes, cheese and plenty of other things that I shouldn't love as much as I do, but I'm learning I should start to eat those things in moderation. My metabolism is really good but I'm starting to realize that my food choices will affect me later in life, even if I can't see it now. A couple of my family members have diabetes and I don't want that to be part of my life. I want to stay as strong and healthy as possible. I know the I have the power to make smart choices and I'm thinking this challenge will really open my eyes to cleaner eating. I want junk food to be a treat and not an easily accessible option for a snack. I want to fuel my body with food that will make me feel good, give me energy, and not weigh me down. I don't know if I've ever gone a month with french fries or sugar, ok let's be honest- I definitely haven't. That's what I love about this challenge. It's going to be hard and I love accomplishing something difficult. Danielle, thank you for suggesting this and supporting me! Both of us will blog every Friday of March to let you know how things are going. Check back soon. 

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Happy 2014

Happy 2014! Obviously I'm not the best at blogging but I really am trying to make a better effort this year. By a better effort I mean that I'll try to blog at least twice a month. That seems pretty reasonable, right? Let's hope so!

Recently I've been trying to reach out to local photographers to talk to them about photography or shadow them on a shoot. So far I've been unsuccessful at getting anyone to meet up with me, but that's ok. I won't give up trying to reach out to people. I really admire when people have their own business and I'm also fascinated by how they got to that point in their life.

I'm also trying to get better about posting whatever I feel like saying. It's hard not to compare myself to other bloggers when I read their posts and admire their writing skills. I just tell myself that someone out there likes the way I write and relates to me (whether this is true or not) in some way so I need to stay true to how I am.

Here are some old pictures from Indiana. I LOVE INDIANA.