What I Want Wednesday

What I really want right now is for a fully charged phone…

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Eh, so I may or may not have accidentally left my cellphone charger plugged into my computer at work today when I was reading The Moon and More during my lunch break.

And since I currently have 8% left on my battery I figured to be on the safe side I would turn it off for now.

That means that I don’t have any pictures right now. I actually have my full WIAW post written up… but no beautiful imagery to go along with it.

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This will just serve as a placeholder until later tomorrow (Wednesday) when I can get my charger!

P.S. It just so happens that the planned title of my post fits in perfectly with this unfortunate mistake as well… So, what did I ACTUALLY want this Wednesday? Well, you’ll just have to wait to find out! 😉

10:00 PM and time to take a cue from these furry buddies. Ready to recharge! 😉

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I finally got my charger! Edited to add my post:

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Yo I’ll tell you what I want, what I really, really want

So tell me what you want, what you really, really want

I wanna, (ha) I wanna, (ha) I wanna, (ha) I wanna, (ha)

I wanna really, really, really wanna zigazig ah

If you wanna be my lover, you gotta get with my friends

(Gotta get with my friends)

Make it last forever, friendship never ends

If you wanna be my lover, you have got to give

(You’ve got to give)

Taking is too easy, but that’s the way it is

Now for those of you who literally cringed as you read those lyrics, my sincerest apologies. Really. I understand how just the thought of hearing this Spice Girl song again may be enough to make you bang your head against your desk (but please don’t bang your head against your desk, you still have this entire post to read! 😉 ).

As you can tell by that intro, I’m going to tell you what I really really want. No worries– not in line what the original lyrics had in mind AT ALL. What I really want is to share with you what I’ve been up to this past week. And as the second part of the lyrics suggest, “[I] have got to give” as well! So in reward for reading my recap, there is a surprise at the bottom! (Which I am sure most of you have now stopped reading to go see what it is… Okay, are you back now?)

Some may call this a mini photo dump, so I’ll keep the words to a minimum.

The past two weekends I’ve taken the long (3+ hour) trek home to go to two of my high school friends graduation parties. Here are the cute favors that I got at the one:

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I totally want to have another graduation party after seeing all of the fun decorations that these girls had. The first that I went to held the party at her aunt’s. The tables were super colorful with polka dot balloons, and they had their in-ground pool open with a waterslide for the kids. The second party was Minnie Mouse-themed with a super cute cake! Pink everywhere. I was in heaven.

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Courtesy of the mom’s facebook page!

Whenever I come home for the weekend I usually arrive at the house around 10:00 or 11:00 to my family sprawled out on the couches and chairs of our living room. Fast asleep.

I can always count on my dog Lilly though to come running up to me and wag around like the little rodent she is (said in the most loving way possible!). Every time I have to set down all of my bags, sit down on the ground, and immediately she jumps up on my lap to give me a gazillion kisses. Then for the rest of the weekend she is basically attached to my hip.

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Such a lap baby.

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Usually I also get a nice welcome back from Scout. A little scratch of her back and she’s got her fill of me.

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(So this post is much more word-heavy than I had planned, but I’m just going with it!)

Besides my family, friends and pets, I also really look forward to getting to lay out on our deck. As long as it’s warm I go out there a few times every weekend to eat my meals or read.

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When I’m home I of course always cook at least one meal for my parents. Usually breakfast!

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This time it was pancakes on both Saturday and Sunday morning. On Saturday I used a recipe that I found online from Civilized Caveman Cooking. It received a thumbs up from me for being super easy! My parents thought they were okay and said they’d eat them again.

These are the pancakes that I made on Sunday from a recipe of my own creation.

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*Hint Hint* — *This may or may not be the surprise at the bottom!*

On my way back Sunday evenings I have been listening to not my radio (still messed up), but either my Pitch Perfect CD or audio books. I made it through the first four CDs of a Lord of the Rings Radio Dramatization (really good!).

Now I’m giving those a break to listen to Bossypants by Tina Fey.

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My trips back usually involve some banana eating as well. This picture is for you Meghan. Is a traffic jam in the middle of the highway public enough to qualify for some #publicbanana goodness? (Check out Allie’s post for some more #publicbanana fun if you haven’t already. Totally jealous!).

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Then when I get back to my apartment I run around putting everything away. It takes about 10 minutes and I do it before anything else (including making my supper) because otherwise it will never get done and I’ll still have full bags at the end of the week.

And what happens when a self-declared klutz runs around like a maniac with a hungry belly?

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Yep. She cuts herself on who knows what.

But she doesn’t let that stop her. Hence the blood, making it look ten times worse than it actually was.

After I had put everything away I cleaned it up and put on a Scooby Doo Band-aid…. What? You don’t have a box of those in your cupboard? I also have neon bandages but I thought Scooby was more appropriate because I was going to be watching him later on Netflix.

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So while I ate supper, bandaged up with Scooby, I also enjoyed watching Scooby Doo Mystery Incorporated on my laptop. Quite the interesting series displaying the characters in High School. At least check out the first episode if you haven’t already!

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Now that I have thoroughly exhausted all interesting photos on my phone, I think it’s time to fulfill my promise of a surprise. I mentioned above that I made pancakes over the weekend. One from this girl, but the second time I made the recipe all by myself. Stuffed with blueberries and drizzled with honey, these are the favorite of about the twenty Paleo pancakes that I have made my parents so far. They said that they were the “real deal.” (Not their exact words, but basically. I’m not sure any parents who would really say “real deal”).

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Unbelievably Grain-Free Berry Pancakes

Grain/Gluten/Wheat-Free, Paleo/GAPS-Friendly, Nut/Dairy-Free Option

Makes two batches of three pancakes

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Ingredients:

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tbsp honey (optional)
  • 1 small banana
  • 1/4 cup yogurt (I used full-fat cow’s – Can use dairy-free kind too)
  • 1 tsp vinegar (I used apple cider vinegar)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup almond flour (or other nut/seed flour)
  • 3 tbsp coconut flour
  • dash of sea salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • frozen/fresh blueberries

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Directions:

  1. Preheat griddle to 350 degrees (or a pan to about medium heat). Coat with coconut oil, ghee, or cooking spray to prevent sticking.
  2. Put all of the wet ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth.
  3. Then add the dry ingredients and combine again.
  4. Using a 1/3 cup measuring spoon scoop portion out the batter onto your griddle in medium-sized circles, spreading with the back of the measuring cup if too small.
  5. Cook for approximately 3 minutes, then place a few (5 or so) blueberries on each pancake. Cook for another minute until the side facing up is bubbly. Flip and cook for approximately four more minutes. Repeat with remaining batter and serve!

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Now go whip up some pancakes! (maybe for your Dad this coming Sunday??)

Thank you for standing by this morning when I had my technical difficulties with this post!

Recipe shared at Real Food Forager.

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Have you ever had any setbacks when getting a post ready for your blog?

What do you want this Wednesday? And what are you going to do to make it happen?! 🙂

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Edited to add: I’m also going to link this post up with Meghan at Clean Eats Fast Feets for her Week in Review. I forgot to do this when I first published and Meghan’s post bright and early this Monday morning reminded me… 🙂

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My “Souper” Weekend (WIAW)

Wowee do I have a lot of pictures to share with you today!

So let’s skip the fluff and get right to it.

It’s time for another WIAW hosted by the lovely Jenn of Peas and Crayons. Go check out her blog for even more wonderful WIAW posts from some pretty awesome bloggers.

This weekend, as you know, was an extra long one with Monday off for Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Extended weekends are the greatest. I got to spend a lot of time with my family, cooking, and a little bit of shopping thrown in. Grocery shopping that is…

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Since starting GAPS in December, both of my parents have now joined me in whole foods living. My dad is currently a few stages ahead of me on the Intro Diet, while my mom started right onto full GAPS because she doesn’t have any digestive issues to begin with. Both are feeling great and are really embracing this new lifestyle. I am seriously so proud of their effort to eat clean. Their eating habits have changed dramatically since I wrote this WIAW post entitled Me Vs. Them.

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Another positive to having parents on GAPS is that now we eat some of the same food. On Friday when I came home my dad had a bowl of chicken and vegetable soup simmering on the stove to share. That is the first time in over six months where I have been able to eat the same thing as my parents for supper. It’s quite a surreal feeling.

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Also, on this whole foods journey I’ve introduced my dad to some awesome food. Like squash! At first he couldn’t stand it… Ya. I know. Who is this man?

Well, eventually he came around. He’s still not much into spending a lot of time cooking though, so I knew I had to figure out a quick, painless way to cook squash that he could do during the work week. Sure, he could have microwaved it, but we all know that microwaving isn’t the safest method of cooking. And slicing takes way too much effort…

So, with a little searching on pinterest, I came up with a method that is relatively pain-free:

How to Cook Squash in the Oven Painlessly

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Ingredients:

  • 1 whole squash, any kind
  • 1 oven
  • 1 pan

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Place whole squash in the pan and bake for 1-2 hours.
  3. Check after 1 hour with a knife. When it goes clean through, it’s done.
  4. Cut in half and then scoop out the seeds.

Note: For squash that you can cube, bake on the lower end of the cooking times. For squash that comes off the skin easily and is soft enough to puree, bake closer to the 2 hour cooking time.

Hmm… Super easy, right? I don’t know why I didn’t think of this sooner? No peeling or slicing, and the seeds are so much easier to remove after the squash is cooked.

After I let the squash cool, I store it in a Pyrex container in the fridge. As I’m scooping and cutting, I tend to snack on a lot of squash (maybe too much sometimes? Hehe). My favorite way is to just slice butternut squash into wedges and eat. They kind of remind me of chomping on orange slices as a kid.

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Over the weekend I also made another batch of Cauliflower Rice Risotto with some of the butternut squash that I cooked.

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I let the risotto cool in the fridge again, then I topped it with some crock pot chicken and sweet peas.

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Other than food I also got to go to one of my brother’s basketball games. That was probably the highlight of my weekend; my brother is over six foot, so he is pretty good at stuffing players and blocking shots.

Last week I shared a picture of my dog Lilly, but my other pets got jealous. Now it’s their turn!

It was pretty cold over the weekend, so my dad let our larger, outside dog Riley in. We enclosed our kitchen with chairs so that he wouldn’t make a mess of the rest our house, but he was perfectly content with visiting with everyone and getting petted. He is such a sweetheart! I tried to get a good picture, but he just wouldn’t sit still.

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Scout also wanted to get in on the action. She’s such a little diva. As soon as we emptied one of our paper bags from Whole Foods, Scout hopped right on in and started messing around. Cats just LOVE boxes and bags. She actually let me carry her around in it for a while.

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And let’s not forget Apollo, my brother’s cat who he dubbed “Introvert.” He’s not exactly a people person…

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Let’s see, what other pictures do I have to share with you all?

How about this awesome shot I took while I was doing a load of jeans on Saturday:

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Or this picture I took of a sunset on the way to my brother’s game:

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A successful experiment on my mom’s part.

She experimented in making some homemade dressing made from lemon (or orange?) juice, olive oil, and salt. One half she used plain, and the other she mixed with some homemade yogurt. For a snack she dipped a few organic romaine lettuce leaves into the two dressings. She was very impressed, especially with it being GAPS legal.

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And a not so successful experiment on my part.

I’m always looking for new ways to incorporate protein powders into dessert for my brother to try. He can use all of the bulking up he can get with basketball! Last time it went over well, but I guess this time I made one too many substitutions when making these no-bake cookies. I personally think it would have tasted awesome, but he’s very very picky.

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Of course, since it’s WIAW, I should probably include some of my regular meals lately. Just because I’ve been eating a lot of soup, doesn’t mean I don’t make up some delicious combinations!

At home for a snack I cooked up two sliced carrots and shredded chicken in a little broth until tender. I drank the broth on the side (it’s so sweet and delicious from the cooked carrots) and I topped the carrots and chicken with a little coconut oil and sea salt.

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At school today I peeled and cooked yellow squash “noodles” in chicken broth. I topped the squash with a large strip of chicken, sea salt and rosemary. After I took this picture I also added a nice big drizzle of olive oil.

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To round out this incessantly long WIAW, a little warmth for this sub-zero weather that we’ve been experiencing up around here:

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Peppermint tea.

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Questions for you:

What is your favorite health food store? I’m all about Whole Foods and Earth Fare!

Have you ever tried cooking a squash whole? Do it. Now. You’ll never go back. Promise.

How do you capture good pictures of your pets?