A Change of Scenery

brrr! Look what I woke up to!

Hey lovebugs! I hope everyone’s had a boppin’ humpday with as many pleasant changes of scenery as I’ve had! I was certainly shocked to see a good ol’ coating of snow on the ground when I rolled into the kitchen. I thought it was far too warm to change over from rain to snow, but I thought wrong.

Change of Scenery #2 - switchin' up my artistic flair.

Change of Scenery number two came in the form of my oatmeal artwork. I must have had an epiphany while sleeping (which – did I mention that I slept like a rock last night? I swear all my blood was on the left side of my body when I woke up. It was rather…painful.) that making chia icing-fruit compote X’s across my oatmeal isn’t the only way to dress it up. Why not a concentric circle for your viewing pleasure?

Pumpkin-Gingerbread Oats with Cranberries

Ahhh….isn’t that a refreshing change? Hey, there’s no way the oats are leaving – take what you can get 😉

I remember the first time I was raving about the combination of pumpkin and cranberries to my boss. I was so proud of this great pumpkin-cranberry bread I had made, yet the only reaction I got was a grossed out look and a “Pumpkin-Cranberry, Jess? That does not work.” I was shocked! I loved it – and thought why not pumpkin-cranberry? I always thought it was normal.

Regardless – I still have absolutely no idea why this combination came across as so utterly ridiculous, and whether or not it actually is. What I do have an idea of, though – is how much I love it. So, I’ll cook my pumpkin-cranberry oats, and devour them, too.

The base for this morning was:

-oat bran, 5 grain hot cereal, wheat bran

-brewed coffee & almondmilk

trail power

-1/2 T. molasses

-1/2 T. chia seeds

-agave, nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, ginger

The toppings:

-pumpkin chia icing, milled golden flax

-crystallized ginger, dried currants, chopped mixed nuts

-ginger jam, PB&Co Cinn. Raisin PB

-and a “cranberry sauce” made of  frozen cranberries, dried cranberries, currants and orange zest simmered in almondmilk and a drizzle of agave.


Le Cawfeyy? Cinnamon Roll!

Luckily, however,  it wasn’t actually too cold out. It was a very wet snow – if it had been a lot, we’d have been in trouble! But either way, I’d far prefer snow over rain, at least this time of year. The rain makes everything such a mess. We have enough mud!

Today was a work day, though – and by the time I was halfway to work, I looked around myself and realized…”There’s no snow here!” I guess they hardly got anything – whereas we actually got a decent enough snowfall for the trees, road, lawn, cars – everything! to have a good half inch coating.

Orange - "Trail mix"

For mid-morning snack I had the usual orange and a delicious mix of trail power, Yogi crisps, almonds, granola, dates, and apricots. I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again (and no, I won’t rant and rave about how much I love Yogi this time) but I love this Navita’s Naturals trail power mix! I adore the mulberries and golden berries. So good! Love just grabbing a handful of those puppies.

I am, however – feeling the orange burnout. I think I’ve got one more, and after that, I think I need to find a new morning fruit snack – a change of scenery, if you will. I’m thinking just some good ol’ bananas. I’ve come to the conclusion that if I don’t have a banana in the morning, I’m hungry all day. This happened today. I had to shell out a whopping $.17 for a banana on my walk to the post office mid-afternoon. After that – hunger be gone! I haven’t been using them religiously in oats lately – and I swear my days aren’t as awake when I don’t.

Soy crisps - hummus - hardboiled egg

Another change of scenery when it comes to snack choices. Does anyone else love hardboiled eggs with hummus?! I think I prefer my homemade chickpea deviled egg – but hummus takes a close second. In addition – those sea salt soy crisps are divine with hummus. Love their saltiness!

One reason I held off for a while trying those, however – is because they are soy, with soy protein. I’ve heard of mixed reviews on soy and how it effects some people. I’ve tried educating myself on the subject, but it’s still kind of foggy. Does anyone have any thoughts on soy, or personal experiences in terms of bad side effects? I’m psyched that they pack 8 grams of protein per serving, but I’m debating whether I should be concerned that that is soy protein.

You knew this was coming - chickpea patties! With leftover broc & mango.

Lunch, of course, was just as amazing the second time around. I got interesting looks. Oh, well.

You knew this was coming, too.

Best flavor for last?

As usual, simply splendid.

Yep – the last Clif C-bar flavor I had to try. This is saddening – as amazing as they are, I want more flavors! I decided to leave blueberry for last, thinking it would surely be the best. I’m a blueberry fanatic, and, hey – when it comes to Z-Bars, blueberry is easily my favorite! (Actually – I take that “easily” part away. I think it’s split between that and s’mores. And graham. Oh – they’re all good, who am I kidding?)

But was it? You know – I actually think I prefer the apple one! That’s not to say blueberry is bad. It is right up there with raspberry, but I think apple ust barely edges over them both. It has got a pleasant blueberry taste with, once again – just the right level of sweetness. I was concerned it would be almost too sweet like the cherry-pom bar almost was, since it also have the evaporated cane juice in the blueberries. But, that was a non-issue! The only thing is – I wish the blueberry taste was stronger! I’m a huge blueberry fan, and while the intensity was thisclose to being there, there can always be more blueberry 🙂

So – all in all, absolutely amazing and far from disappointing. I’m definitely going to be getting more on my grocery trip tomorrow! But, I think there will be one more apple one 😉

This bar also brings me to another question. It may seem random, but bear with me. Do you ever deal with almost being made to feel non-human for the food you eat, in terms of how people view it and you? I sometimes deal with this at work and school, and sometimes it frustrates me, and sometimes I like answering the questions. Sometimes, though – my boss will just come over, look at something, and make a funny face or just a “hmm.” sound, and walk away. This drives me nuts. Like, are wraps really that weird? Are bars really that weird? This is the reaction I got when I was sitting & had this bar on the table in front of me. Typically – this is not a “oh, cool.” reaction. I can typically tell the difference. If I’m in a joking mood, maybe I’ll say something witty or foodie-like. Sometimes, though, I’m just not in the mood to need to defend myself for eating healthy. I think what I find most frustrating is that sometimes, I think they feel I’m depriving myself, when in actuality, it’s simply something I enjoy and am passionate about. Don’t get me wrong – if I’m asked an honest question, I love to do my best to educate! But it’s when judgement is passed first that makes me feel put-down and silly.

End of rant, you guys don’t want to hear any more I’m sure, haha. But I’d love some of your experiences! I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that being in such a secluded area – there really aren’t any health food stores or restaraunts, and so a lot of the products I view as staples are hardly even heard of, I’m sure. (for instance, when I had some popchips in a container last week, the conversation: boss:what are those?” me: “they’re chips!” boss: “well I know they’re chips…” me: “uhhh….well…what do you mean? you can try one!”boss: “ohh, no thanks.”  haha- I guess I just found it comical because, well – popchips don’t even look all that abnormal.)

But…speaking of popchips!

Look what I came home to!

Can't wait to take these to work - individual bags! All the information, right there & visible 🙂

...maybe I'll even share all these amazing COUPONS!!


Look at how much Corinne over at popchips! pampered me! I am in awe of the generosity – and simply cannot wait to dig in to all the flavors I now have to try. First on my list? Definitely salt and pepper! Followed closely by sour cream & onion. How awesome are these single-serving bags?!

I also scored a bunch of coupons!! Keep your eyes peeled over the next couple of days, though – I may or may not want to share the love with you guys!! (and when I say may or may not, it’s proven that I pretty much mean most definitely will.)

Whew – all that excitement made me ready for some dinner, though! Sorry to be boring, but, It’s gotta be done…

The lone soldier.

My last chickpea patty! It’s a good thing I had that poplove to cheer me up – otherwise I’d be in mourning! I think that’s the fastest I’ve ever polished off a bean-patty recipe. And there’s none of those puppies hiding in the freezer, either!

The best change of scenery for the day? The sun came out late afternoon, and stayed with us through the evening! uhhhh-maaaazing 🙂

…and an uhhmaaaazing sweet potato side! Not kidding: sweet potato, microwaved for approx 2 minutes, then chopped and sauteed in a drizzle of olive oil, agave and seasoned with salt, pepper, and garam masala. And – the last of my cubed mango! sweet potatoes, why are you so dang good?

After this seriously splendid day of eats – I’ve got some blogs to catch up on! I hope each and everyone of you had an uhhmaaaazing day. What was the best part of it for you?! and – remember – soy protein, and health food perspectives!

G’night 🙂

[p.s. a co-op and Hannafords rendezvous is in order for tomorrow. Wish me luck I make it home with at least a couple cents left!!]



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

11 responses to “A Change of Scenery

  1. your pictures are INSANE good! Love the oats, and cant wait to be creative with ingredients next week. Those patties are genius!

  2. also, I feel you on the banana, I didn’t have one this morning and literally thought about it all day long!

  3. HEY LOVE!!
    mmm love your bfasts!! and popchips-omgsh LOVE sour cream n onion! and salt and vinegar!!

  4. holy smokes. i just found your blog a couple days ago and i’m already in love. 1)pumpkin + cranberry heck yesssss that’s a good combo. i’ve done it too!! 2)your oats are beautiful, when can i come over for breakfast? 3)who makes the smores coffee? 4)holy crap, i just bought two things of hummus and they’re kinda blah and wasn’t sure what to do with them…i also have a hard boiled egg everyday.. that combo is about to be my new favorite. i can tell. gosh you are greatttttt! haha

  5. love the changes of scenery! Oats look positively delicious! And I completely hear you when you get frustrated about people treating you like you’re eating dog poop when in reality it is food you love. That stuff can really put a damper on my mood. Most times I can shrug it off or just feel confident in my eats, but I lose patience after a few times! I just have to remind myself that I am the one who I’m feeding and I want to eat the foods I enjoy. Excellent topic!

  6. did you make the chickpea patties yourself?

  7. :: sigh:: we have run out of pop chips. My sig other polished off the BBQ and we have run dry in Toronto. Have fun at Hannaford!!
    I just want to comment on the soy (as an aspiring nutritionist 🙂
    A lot of the studies that promote soy as beneficial and healthy are funded by, well, soy companies. I believe even the FDA had recalled it’s previous statements touting the benefits of soy in your diet. The biggie for women is that soy, the non fermented types, contains phytoestrogens which mimic estrogen in the body. You can see where this can cause a problem. I’ve had a pretty tumultuous relationship myself with soy! I can tell you I cut it out of my diet now and I can see a huge difference, no joke!

    And I always get looked at funny for what I eat. Even in the big city, people still think you are weird if you are eating leftover quinoa pilaf and kale chips for lunch. Oh well. My body is a temple, I say, and I am treating it well! I should be judging YOU with your whopper and/or doughnuts! haha!

  8. I know how frustrating it can be to deal with people that think you (we) are weird for how we eat, when it’s not really weird at all! I get it a lot at work and it always annoyed me. I get mean looks for not going to (the WORST) pizza place every Friday (that only has gross pizza I don’t want to eat). It’s not really friends, it’s mostly at work and I always complain to my husband about it! I’m with ya! and btw I LOVE the combo of cranberry and pumpkin!

  9. Susan

    Aww man if the snow came back I would not be a happy camper! You’ve got a great attitude though.

    Good luck on your g-store trip haha. I should probably say good luck to the store, since I know you’ll make out like a champ!

  10. Pam

    Hey…Popchips…yumm! We are suppose to have an inch of snow tonight also…ugh!


  11. Your oats sound great!!! And once again, gorgeous pictures!
    Pop chips ROCK!!! As do those Cliff bars. I haven’t tried the blueberry yet, only the apple – but the apple was darn good!

    I get the same reactions from my friends and family. I hate hate HATE having to defend my healthy lifestyle.

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