Appreciate It. Cherish It.

Gooood eeeevening, loves. It’s already Friday! Which means back to work for me, and break is over. Le sigh. I’m not going to lie: I was a leetle disappointed to wake up to weather good enough to drive to work in. I wasn’t rready for my mini vacation to end! Normally I’d feel bad, guilty, about missing a day of work: but this weekend I decided to cherish it – I mean, everyone else is enjoying their breaks nearly work-free. I was glad that for once I got a true break where I didn’t work 40 hours!

Mango-lassi inspired oats make everything okay, however.

In the mix: spelt, tvp, brewed coffee, almondmilk, 1/4 cubed mango, goji berries, vanilla, chai spice blend (featuring cardomom)

On the top: icing, 1/4 cubed mango sauteed with a sprinkle of sugar and coconut, almonds, chai spice blend, flax, strawberry-pom jam, and white choco coconut pb

If you haven’t tried White Chocolate Coconut PB, you don’t know what you’re missing. Seriously: I have about 5 jars of nut butters to chose from (granted – only two are open due to my “can’t have too many open at once” issue – but still) and this one is the only one I want. I mean yeah, I’m a coconut fiend to begin with, but words cannot express my love for Naturally Nutty. The end.

Don’t know why I don’t have mangoes more often. They are so good! May need to become a part of my rotation πŸ™‚

Lunch was pretty much all packed – a wrap that consisted of last night’s dinner leftovers (I think I’ll do a recipe post for it tomorrow, actually.) which was sort of random because that meant stuffing corn, sugar snap peas, carrots, turkey meatballs, and pineapple in a wrap. Now I bet you’re really curious what this dinner consisted of. It was good – promise!

And – of course – an orange, carrot sticks, kale (that I didn’t end up burning this time!) sesame rice crackers, wasa crispbreads, butter snaps, scone, almondmilk (for cawfee/tea at work) and if you switch that kashi bar for a apple walnut soy joy bar – that is my eats for the workday. And since I can’t really leave the house in the morning without spelt bread and dates – I had some spelt toast with honey apple butter and dates for the drive with my coffee πŸ™‚

Today was a clunky-boot day:

biiiig boots. My mom has too many pairs and gave me a pair she got brand new. I’m not complaining. My converse don’t fair well when it comes to puddle jumping.

…and A cup of irish cream later, I was ready to start my trek in to the workday…

hah! gotcha.

The drive in. was. crazy. I should have brought my camera! There were trees everywhere, and every single shanty on the lake was tipped over. I should really start bringing my camera with me everywhere I go. Not only does a two hour daily commute give you a lot of thinking time – but you certainly see some interesting sights, too!

One thing I got to thinking about on the drive home was how grateful I am – just in general – for everything I have, am able to love and cherish. I think what prompted these thoughts were a. some girls talking ahead of me in the store about how they “couldn’t wait to get wasted this weekend,” and b. some really depressing customers lately. Ready for me to get a little cliche? Okay!

We’ll start with the first scenario. I am so grateful that I never fell into the drinking trap. I won’t sugar coat. My freshman year I got a little out of hand. But nothing terrible by any means, and I was able to come to my senses before going to far with anything. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for many of my friends, who fell hard. I was reading an article in the newspaper this morning about a huge underage party that got busted – with multiple 15 year olds! 15! Honestly – when I was 15 I was in bed by 9:00! (okay, maybe not, but I digress). One of the comments was that the parents were bound to be disappointed – but often, I don’t think that is the case. I think the reason why my friends fell so hard and not me – is because their parents didn’t care. Eventually, it got to be that I wasn’t cool enough – of course – because I didn’t want to destroy my life, goals, and body with drugs andor alcohol. We parted ways. It was tough.

But you know what? I am the happiest I have ever been right now, and what matters is that I did what was best for me and didn’t lose sight of what I stood for and where I wanted to go in life. Selfish? Maybe. But I think that one of the most important things I’ve learned lately is that sometimes, you need to be selfish. Don’t get me wrong – I mean this in terms of not losing sight of what you stand for, or sacrificing that just to make others appreciate you. People need to appreciate you for you – don’t feel you need to change yourself just to get approval.

The second part of my little “revelation”: Be grateful for what you have. Appreciate and cherish it every day. Don’t take the little things for granted. I feel like I’ve been listening to so many people complaining about the tiniest little things. I’m not saying I don’t complain. Heck, I was complaining about being cold due to not having power less than twenty-four hours ago! But you know what? After I complain about minor things like that – I immediately regret it. Why? Because that doesn’t matter! I have a family that loves me, a job I love, a roof over my head, food in my belly, a vehicle, and overall, amazing life opportunities. So then I remember: if that’s all you’ve got to complain about, you’re doing pretty darn good.

I work hard. I am not handed much. I like it this way. I feel it makes you appreciate everything so much more. Everyday, we’re faced with choices. We can be in a good mood, we can be in a bad mood. Happiness is related to health. Sometimes, it’s easy to beat ourselves up, easy to compare ourselves to others, easy to let ourselves down. But why? We hold the power to make the choice. We can let things get us down – be it other people being “better than us” or otherwise – or we can let these same things be a driving force, pushing us to be the best we can be, an inspiration to do better. So, what’s your choice gonna be today? Tomorrow?

Every time I see an amazing photographer come through the lab, I wonder “Will I ever be that good? Will I ever be half that good?” and sometimes I’ll beat myself up a bit. But then I remember: you’re never going to be that good if you don’t have faith in yourself first and foremost. So I just let it motivate me to always try my hardest – because those who believe they can do it, do.

Okay, I’m off of my soapbox now πŸ™‚

Oh, food? OHHH, right, this is a foodblog. You guys want pictures of food!

heh. jusss’ kiddin’.

Pretty much all I’ve been craving lately is fruits and veggies. Like, serious fruits and veggies. Like “oooh, sweet potato. broccoli. kale. carrots. sugar snap peas. tomato. red pepper. And I wonder if we have any brussels sprouts. And while we’re at it, I could really go for an orange…and I haven’t had a banana yet today.” yes. that was me driving home.

Butttt, I knew I had to balance my meal better than that. So I threw together a crab-shrimp quesedilla and paired it with some fruits and veggies.

Quesedilla: Crab & Shrimp meat, dijonnaise, plum tomato, lime juice, mozz, s&p, spinach, red onion

Dipping sauce: greek yogurt, lime juice, sprinkle of sun crystals, pepper, dash dijonnaise

and sugar snap peas, corn, kale chips with lemon pepper, and 3/4 of a neglected orange.

Why does everyone leave orange slices in my house? I can never stop at a slice, seriously. haha.

My addictions/obsessions regarding tastebuds have definitely been changing lately! I mean – I’ve used lime in almost everything for dinner this week! I love the refreshing flavors of it. That and basil, tomato, that sort of vibe. The yogurt-lime sauce is soooo good, though. It made an appearance in last night’s dinner, too.

I’m now thinking it’s time to catch up on blog reading and a newfound granola addiction to feed. And a vanilla latte! But seriously – now that I know how easy granola is to make – I could be dangerous. I can think of tons of combinations! And I mean – I am the girl who has a mix-and-match bag of granola bars because I like to use samples of each kind in yogurt and applesauce messes. Granolas are the perfect remedy to that! hah.

Catch all you lovelies lataaa.

(p.s. I’m making a trip into town tomorrow to get giveaway items….hmmm. What’s it gonna be?!)



Filed under breakfast, cooking, dinner, foodblog, health, health food, healthy living, lunch, oatmeal, recipe

4 responses to “Appreciate It. Cherish It.

  1. Hey girl!! you are so sweet-thanks so much for your sweet comment!!
    your eats look AMAZING! seriously! sooo creative!
    im soo glad you are so happy! you are so right about having FAITH in yourself!

  2. I am so very grateful for what I have each and every day. I gotta try those mango lassi oats, they are lookin really good. Yes, faith in ourselves is the best we can be.

  3. What a great post… Yes I also complain but I am ever so grateful for everything in my life …And you know what girl you are a great photographer!!!


    oh ya great eats!!

  4. first: mango lassi inspired oats made my mouth water a little bit.

    Second: “Be grateful for what you have. Appreciate and cherish it every day. Don’t take the little things for granted.”
    I’m so guilty of not doing this! Thanks for reminding me that I need to not take things for granted and enjoy life!

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