Productivity can lead to work satisfaction?

How many of you guys are sneaking around at work and reading blogs? Sometime last week I realized I had a little problem. I was opening up my google reader not only during my lunch break but every time I needed a little mental break. Sure, all the guys around me are reading sports and other “man magazines,” but regardless – I wasn’t feeling comfortable with my little addiction of blog reading in between reports and meetings. So I did something that changed my work productivity drastically! I downloaded LeachBlock and blocked google reader from 9-12 and 1-5. This way I can still enjoy a little reading on my lunch break, but during any other time, it’s all work. I’ve been feeling SO much more productive and it’s making me so happy. Every day by 5pm, I feel like I’ve done 10 hours of work. I’ve been just flying through stuff. It’s been awesome. Who knew that work satisfaction was achievable by doing more work? PS – Healthy and Sane of course should be excluded from any blocked blogs. ;)

Anyways, just wanted to share this little tidbit with you – moving on to today’s eats…

BREAKFAST

Banana walnut muffin

So much nutty goodness :)

Plain oikos with chia seeds

2 clementines (eek, these guys look veiny)

LUNCH

Leftover scallops with champagne mushroom sauce and orzo

+ roasted broccoli (coconut oil + S&P, roasted at 425* for 40 minutes)

Most delicious lunch I’ve had in a while. So so satisfying!!!

SNACKS

Packed for work, all consumed :D

DINNER

A few days ago I asked Adam if he had any requests for this week’s menu. He asked that we have some red meat soon. I decided to cook some up today by utilizing our crock pot once again since I had my photography class at night. Guys, the crock pot is quickly becoming my favorite kitchen gadget. It’s so perfect for busy nights!

I followed this recipe for slow cooker Cuban braised beef and peppers, using organic grass-fed sirloin and omitting the onions. I served this deliciousness over whole wheat couscous and a few lime wedges. The beef was incredibly tender and the tomatoes basically melted and kept everything super juicy. Another winner! :D

I also had 1/2 banana bread larabar during photography class, which was really informative. I actually understand shutter speed, aperture and ISO now. The instructor said that we won’t be allowed to shoot in automatic after next week. Scary and exciting! :mrgreen:

And once again it’s past my bedtime…. See you later, kiddos. Thanks for reading. You guys are the best! :grin:

Question of the day: how many hours a day/week, do you spend on blog reading?

Eating intuitively vs. eating “whatever you want”

I’ve been feeling under the weather the past few days. Although I am thankful that I am getting it “out of my system” before our vacation (going to Aruba next Friday!!!), it is really throwing me off my intuitive eating “game.” I feel crappy and hungry… and I’ve fallen into the trap of eating junk “because I can.” I am not judging myself for this but I would like to change it. In my opinion, there is a big difference between eating whatever I want and eating intuitively. My “sensors” for what I truly want are still screwed up. I am used to emotional eating and with my guard down due to my cold, I am giving in to those urges. I know I’m eating too much sugar – my body doesn’t need or really want it but I keep reaching for more! I hope once my throat doesn’t feel like someone stuck a fist in it and won’t let go, everything will be back to normal. I’m fighting for it.

To help me fight this cold, I have been eating clementines and oranges like it’s been my job. I’ve been obsessed with oranges lately. Just can’t get their sweet juices out of my mind! I also finally had a chance to try the Simply Orange juice. I received a free coupon from the company to taste and review it on the blog. I very rarely drink fruit juices but this one came at the right time. I need all the vitamin C I can get. Simply Orange juice is made of 100% orange juice – that’s it! That’s my kind of ingredients list. :)

Unfortunately, although I love oranges, orange juice is too sweet for me. See the tiny glass I poured myself? I had to choke it down – it was way too sweet. I think Simply Orange needs to use less sweet oranges. ;) Ok, that’s a joke. Adam drinks OJ on a daily basis and really liked this one. I’ll stick to whole oranges myself. :D The rest of today’s breakfast…

Plain oikos, 2 clementines, 1 banana walnut muffin, TJ’s nutty American trek mix + coffee

To help me get out of my funk, I’ve also been trying to cook some healthy meals. Yesterday’s dinner (also known as today’s lunch) could not be more simple. I know I need my energy so in 5 minutes of prep (and 7 hours in the crock pot), we had a nutritious meal of peppers stuffed with rice, beans, corn, cheese and salsa (recipe can be found here. Thanks, Travis! :D ).

This was the easiest meal I’ve made in ages. I loved that you didn’t even need to cook the rice – the crockpot took care of it all! As for the taste – it wasn’t bad but nothing earth shattering either. I used a fraction of the cheese, extra corn and nonfat greek yogurt instead of sour cream. I’d probably make this again just because of how easy this was.

Tonight’s dinner was a bit more complex and it was amazing!!! I started with this recipe from Cooking Light for scallops in champagne mushroom sauce. I planned on serving it with some roasted broccoli but Adam and I were so hungry we couldn’t wait for it. So yeah, instead of waiting for 40 minutes for broccoli, I boiled some orzo (took 10 minutes!) and massaged some kale with EVOO, lemon juice, and S&P.

OMG – SOOOOO good! The scallops were perfectly seared (I made sure to really pat them dry and then didn’t move them around the pan) and the mushroom sauce was so incredibly creamy and flavorful. By the way, I cooked 1lb of scallops and then doubled the amount of sauce (although probably only used 1.5x sour cream). The lemony kale also went really nice with the scallops. Best homemade dinner I’ve made in a while, in my opinion. Definitely guest-worthy!

Since we opened a bottle of sparkling wine to cook with, I also poured myself a little glass to have with dinner (I probably had 1/2 of this). Not a bad way to end the night if I say so myself ;)

Oh and here is some evidence of the clementines I’ve been consuming…

And there was a lot more delicious junk that we’ll just quickly run through…

Um, the above container was purchased tonight! :oops:

Surprisingly, all this junk did not even make me feel sick. I’m am thankful for that. Tomorrow I plan on kicking it up a notch in the fruit and veggie department. We went grocery shopping tonight before dinner so our fridge is fully stocked. :grin:

Do you believe there is a difference between eating intuitively and eating whatever you want? Do they ever become one in the same?

Boston cream pie step-by-step “tutorial”

Do you guys know what a Boston cream pie is? I’m not sure if it’s a regional “Boston” thing or if this is a popular dessert all over the country. All I know is that the only kind I’ve had prior to making it this past weekend was in a donut form from Dunkin Donuts (and it happens to be my favorite donut of theirs). The “pie” is really a yellow cake with custard, topped with a chocolate glaze.

I don’t bake often but I especially rarely make cakes. In fact, before this weekend I’ve only made a cake once and that was nearly a year ago. This weekend as you know, we were celebrating my father in law’s birthday, and also had friends over for dinner. I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to make something more special since it would have the highest chance of being eaten by more people than just me. :lol: To make a long story short, I was told that my FIL’s favorite dessert is Boston cream pie, so I searched online for a highly rated recipe (can be found here) and got to work. It was so easy! Here is how it went down.

CAKE

All the ingredients:

Mix and beat all of them…

Cake batter:

Pour batter into a greased cake pan (I always use a canola spray with flour)

Bake at 350* for 30 minutes

Done! :)

Cool…

CUSTARD

Custard ingredients:

Mix the sugar, cornstarch and salt, then stir in milk gradually…

It will eventually thicken…

Add 1/2 of milk mixture into the egg yolks

Return egg yolk mixture to the saucepan, add vanilla and cool the custard (I transferred it into a glass bowl for faster cooling).

COMBINE THEM

Cut the cake in half

Spread the custard over the bottom half

Top with the other cake half

Done! :grin:

CHOCOLATE GLAZE

Glaze ingredients:

Melt butter + unsweetened chocolate

Remove from heat, add powdered sugar and vanilla

Cover cake with glaze

Smile! :mrgreen:

Really DONE! How easy was that?

It was pretty delicious. My favorite part, of course, was the chocolate glaze. Have you ever had Boston cream pie?

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