Every song’s like new shoes, salads, cookin’ in the kitchen, running, exercise, this is healthy living..

We don’t care, we’re making pasta in our dreams! Oh, that’s not the lyrics to the Lorde song? My bad.

So where has the time gone?! I think about you all every day! And my laziness. And the fact that I should blog more. And workout more. And that I’m a failure. Ok, I’m being a little melodramatic. But I seriously need to step up my game. Can anybody lend me their time management skills? Mine are pretty much non-existent. Thanks!

I really have no excuse for not working out or blogging. In the evenings after I’ve finished my homework/studying… I just… I don’t even know! Time disappears. I end up watching Dexter or something with Daniel and before I know it, it’s bed time. I’m an old woman now so bed time comes early between 10 and 11 pm. In my undergrad days, it was never before midnight! My how times change.

Ok, so what have you been up to? Well I’ve been up to eating healthy! Just kidding. I’ve been attempting to eat more salads. Check out these tasties:

greek salad

Spinach salad with a greek spin. No olives but I added cucumber, tomatoes, feta, and some balsamic vinaigrette. So good!

fresh spinach salad with strawberries

This one was pretty much like the one above except with strawberries and raspberry vinaigrette. Sweet!

I’ve also been getting my fish on as well. Daniel has cooked us some tasty tilapia.

chipotle raspberry tilapia

We opted to make something easy by baking it with the Chipotle Raspberry Sauce like we did with the salmon here, but in foil in the oven at 400 degrees F. I think it was in there for 15-ish minutes. It was good but I think the sauce is even better with the salmon.

breaded tilapia

Daniel also wanted some breaded tilapia one night which I am all for. I made the bread mixture with Panko, corn flake crumbs, parsley, and lemon zest. It was nice and crispy.

home made chipotle

We also attempted to make our own version of Chipotle with rice, corn, black beans, sautéed veggies, salsa (homemade with tomatoes, cucumber, and onion), and shredded kale on top! We were out of cheese and didn’t have sour cream so I opted to spread some jalapeño Laughing Cow cream cheese on my tortilla. It was pretty good!

We’ve also had some not-so-healthy dinners.

fish tacos

These are THE BEST fish tacos you will ever have. From So Long Saloon in Manhattan. I love the crispy shell and the tasty sauce mixed in the with coleslaw on top. Oh it’s sooo good! We ordered them to go and ate them while we made the Chipotle Raspberry Black bean dip. I’m obsessed.

I’ve been trying to at least eat a healthier, more filling breakfast than my usual cereal. I’ve been meaning to try overnight oats. Ever heard of them? I think they’re a new trend but I first heard of them from Julie at pbfingers.com. Let me just say–they are so good!

overnight oats

I have yet to try them with fruit. I’ve mainly been sticking to pecans and Ghirardelli milk chocolate chips. It’s like dessert for breakfast! Definitely make them with chia seeds–they fill you up! I don’t get hungry at work in the mornings anymore when I eat this for breakfast. It’s amazing! I’m usually hungry two hours later after breakfast like clockwork.  On the days I forget to fix overnight oats the night before I just make hot oats with the same toppings. The chocolate melts and makes it so good. It’s only 70 for 16 chips 😉

Speaking of chia seeds. Now that I’ve had them I’ve started noticing them more in other items, like my tortilla chips!

chia seed tortilla

Yeah, Walgreens definitely brought the satisfaction. It made me feel a little better about eating the bean dip with these.

So remember when I bought new running shoes a couple months ago? I really liked them (the Brooks Adrenaline 13) but I felt they were too similar to my old Brooks Ravenas. Also, I accidentally bought the wide size so I had to tie them a lot tighter for them to fit the same snugness. I realized this after one time of wearing them indoors so I continued to wear my old shoes until I exchanged them for….. drum roll please….

The Brooks Ghost 6!

brooks ghost 6

They’re so light, comfortable, and still have good support! I’m going to try them out as is but if feel like I need more cushion I have some inserts I can use. They just fit my foot shape so much better. I’m in love.

brooks ghost 6

Just in case you couldn’t already tell how much of a loser I am, I took some glamour shots of my new shoes…

brooks ghost 6

I took a lot more than 3 photos but I’ll spare you. I’m so pumped to wear them. It’s been so long since I’ve gone running. I can’t wait to get back in the game! I also bought a tank top that matched my shoes… it was meant to be!

Alright, enough about food and shoes. My best friend Charissa is in town and I’m so excited! She’s been here all week and tonight we are reliving our days in the Ville, Aggieville that is (the bar district for all you non-Manhattan folk).  It shall be fun! She also bought some new running shoes the other day (we went shopping together) and she chose the new Brooks Adrenaline 14. They are awesome! Hopefully we can motivate each other to actually run in our new shoes! Wait, didn’t I say enough about shoes? Sorry!

Have you been getting your run on or shoe shopping? Or eating? I hope you’ve at least been eating!

Playing With The Big Kids Now

I had my grad school orientation today! Not to sound completely nerdy, but I’m actually really excited. I know it’s going to be hard work and I’m definitely going to need to improve my time management, but I can already tell it’s going to be an amazing two years in this program.  Everybody was so welcoming and friendly, I can tell it’s a tight-knit group that I’ll get to know well. Oh, and I already found an internship! It’s within a few departments at K-State that I’ll rotate through involving new technologies and licensing for 20 hours a week for both years of grad school. I’m excited but nervous. I’ll start at the beginning of September so I have at least a week of school to get accustomed to first before I start.

Ok enough school talk about that. Time for food!

Meal Food Calories
Breakfast Corn Flakes 100
Almond milk 90
Snack Fruit Smoothie 220
Lunch/Dinner Chipotle Burrito Bowl 550
Chipotle Chips and guac 360
Total 1320

As I mentioned yesterday, Daniel “subtly” hinted that we should go to Chipotle. By “subtle” I mean he “casually” coughed Chipotle a few times until I realized what he was trying to say. At first I thought he was saying “troll feet.” They sound similar when you’re coughing, I swear! So, anyways, I had my usual Burrito Bowl. I like to get the vegetarian with the fajita veggies and both bean options with it. I top it with mild and corn salsa, a little cheese and sour cream, and lots of lettuce. Yummy!


I split it in half and ate it for both lunch and dinner. It’s so much food, I usually can’t finish a bowl all in one sitting. Plus, I had this delicious smoothie before we went.

fruit smoothie

I added a banana, greek yogurt, strawberries, blackberries, almond milk, and orange juice. These fruit smoothies never fail to disappoint me!

For our workout, Daniel and I ran 2 miles and walked another mile and a half. It was hot and after several days of not running, I had lost some endurance.  Today I’m going frisbee (disc) golfing with Daniel and his friend Garret. I haven’t gone in a while so I’m looking forward to it. It may end up being my workout for today since I didn’t have time to go running earlier.

I hope you all are having a wonderful week so far! Happy hump day!

Day One of the New Apartment

We are finally getting semi-settled. It always feels weird moving to a new place at first. I wonder how long it will take until this place feels like home.  Our apartment is still a mess so once everything’s put away I’ll provide those before and after photos.

So on move-in day we needed something fast and easy for lunch so we grabbed some Burger King. Fast food is packed with calories and my diet took a toll. What I would consider a fairly small meal was over 800 calories. I had 3 chicken strips, a small order of fries, one packet of honey mustard, and a small tropical mango smoothie. Wow. Good thing I was going up and down a lot of stairs that day (we live on the 3rd floor). Then for dinner we decided Chipotle would be delicious and easy. I didn’t eat much yesterday but it added up fast!

Meal Food Calories
Breakfast Cereal 80
Almond milk 20
Lunch BK chicken strips, mango smoothie, fries, honey mustard 860
Dinner Chipotle Burrito Bowl 470
Total 1430

Alright, now for the juicy stuff. So today is my one year anniversary with Daniel. It’s crazy that I met him a little over a year ago and we’re already moving in together. It just feels right. I love that crazy kid. So I thought we were going to exchange gifts today but he decided to surprise me yesterday. After family had left from helping us move I was unpacking boxes and there was this envelope on top that said “I love you Rachel” on it but I just assumed that was the letter Daniel had wrote me back in June when I was in Germany. So I just moved it to the side while I unpacked other stuff.  I saw it again when I was unpacking a different box but didn’t notice and moved it to the side again. Finally Daniel said, “what’s that?” pointing to the envelope in the box and I scooped it up and said, “that’s mine!” all jokingly possessive. Until I realized that this was a different envelope than what the letter had been in. It was stiffer with a card inside. I opened it up and there hanging in the card was a beautiful pearl necklace! That sneaky boy! I fail at being surprised apparently. Isn’t it normal to just have a bunch of envelopes that say “I love you Rachel” hanging around?


It’s not the best quality photo but you get the idea. My man did good!

As being Queen of Procrastination, I didn’t allow myself time to think of a creative delivery for Daniel’s gift so I decided while he was busy unloading the car with stuff to hide his gifts in the apartment and play the “hot and cold” game with him. I told him they were hidden somewhere and he had to find them. If he was far from them I said he was “cold” and as he got closer I said he was getting “warmer” and then “hot.” He found them pretty fast. In the bathroom I hid some cologne (Dolce & Gabbana Sport [Mmmm smells so good!]) . And in the living room I hid a mini wooden chess board that I found in Germany. We have yet to play but he plays chess way more often than I do so he’ll probably beat me. I gotta get some practice in!

Anyway I have some good recipes for you all tomorrow! We decided to do some cooking for our anniversary instead of spending a lot on a fancy dinner.  Definitely a good choice. My man made dinner and I baked dessert!

Marco…. Polo!

Daniel and I were in Topeka yesterday to have lunch with his mom, sister, and niece. We went to Paisano’s Ristorante, a better version of Olive Garden. I had the Marco Polo which is grilled chicken breast with broccoli, zucchini, and carrots, with fettuccine and garlic. Then it’s smothered in this flavorful almond  cream sauce. Heavenly.

Marco Polo fettuccine chicken almond cream sauce

I actually ate a lot of the salad and breadsticks that come before the meal so once I actually received my dish I was too full to eat much. But that means left overs for today!

Before lunch, we were actually early and it’s right by this big park so we walked around there for a bit. Daniel grew up in Topeka so he knew it well and took me to the carousel.


We decided not to ride it (the music was really loud). But we did take advantage of the Wizard of Oz characters. Here is Daniel being an adorable Dorothy.


I decided to be a cowardly lion.

cowardly lion

Here’s what all I ate yesterday:

Meal Food Calories
Breakfast Cereal 75
Almond milk 20
Lunch 2 Breadsticks 280
Salad 150
Snack Marco Polo Chicken with almond cream sauce 145
Dinner Chipotle Burrito Bowl 645
Drinks Lemonade (2.5 glasses) 225
Total 1540

So Daniel and I have been slowly moving things to my parents house. There will be a few days between move-in of our new place and the end of our current lease so we’re temporarily storing things at their place. Speaking of “their” place, you may have noticed me referring to it as my mom’s house before. Well that’s because my dad has been working in Germany for 3 years. Yesterday he officially moved home and we picked him up from the air port last night! As a welcome home, Daniel and I are cooking dinner for my parents tonight. We’re having salmon and asparagus and I’m making pecan pie for dessert! Get excited for those recipes tomorrow!

Anyway back to my point, we were moving some things yesterday so we were too hungry to attempt to find something to cook. We went to Chipotle and I ordered a burrito bowl with brown rice, black and pinto beans, mild and corn salsa, a little bit of sour cream and cheese, and lots of lettuce! I get the same thing every time. I think that’s common. Do you ever order something different each time from Chipotle?

Chipotle Burrito Bowl

After all the moving we ended up not working out. It was definitely tiring lifting heavy wooden furniture. Even though I know I should have made time for it, the important thing is that I was at least up and moving and not sitting around. Every little bit counts.

Chipotle Raspberry Black Bean Dip

Last night while Daniel and I were contemplating what to have for dinner we realized we had all the ingredients necessary to make Chipotle Raspberry Black Bean Dip. Now, before you convulse in disgust, hear me out. In this wonderful town I live in there is this popular restaurant called So Long Saloon. They have this amazing dip and at first I was skeptical too but your taste buds will thank you. It’s so good, it should be sinful.

Now, I realize there are a lot of versions of this recipe out there, but mine is very simple, quick, and you only need THREE ingredients!

Here’s what you need:

  • 1 can drained black beans
  • 1 8 oz package of cream cheese (preferably 1/3 less fat)
  • 1/2 bottle of Raspberry sauce

There are many different brands of the raspberry sauce — a popular one is Bronco Bob’s (definitely a good choice) but I really like Fiesta Juan’s Raspberry Jalapeno — less calories and just as delicious. Even though they have different ounces in their bottles still just use half. Fiesta Jaun’s is a little thicker so no need to add extra.

So here’s what you do:

1.  Preheat oven to 350 F. In a 9 X 9 baking pan spread the cream cheese evenly in the bottom. You may need to set the cream cheese out for a little bit so it is soft enough to spread. Then pour the drained black beans over the cream cheese. Drizzle the raspberry sauce evenly all over the top.

bean dip

2.  Place dish in oven and bake for 15 minutes. Remove and stir ingredients until well mixed.

bean dip

3.  Enjoy with tortilla chips!

Chipotle Raspberry Black Bean Dip

This recipe makes 4 servings at 179 calories.

That’s not bad until you add the tortilla chips. I also ended up having almost two servings last night! It’s addictive stuff. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Similar recipes add various ingredients such as caramelized onions or pepper jack cheese. There are lots of versions to try! Get playful with it if you want. I just like it quick and simple — especially when I’m hungry!

Now on to what all I ate yesterday:

Meal Food Calories
Breakfast Cereal 100
Almond milk 30
Left over Alfredo & Shrimp 60
Snack Wheat Thins 140
Pistachios (small handful) 40
Lunch Almond butter & jelly sandwich 250
Dinner Rice & Veggie Stir Fry 150
Chipotle Raspberry Black Bean Dip 358
Tortilla Chips 350
Total 1478

Not only did I make the dip but I also made the stir fry! Daniel was busy working on a paper (summer classes, bummer). But I enjoyed trying to show him up with my version of the meal. I started with chopped green peppers, then I added a slew of ingredients:

  • Onion powder
  • Sesame seeds
  • Ground red pepper
  • Greek rub
  • Garlic salt
  • Sesame oil
  • Honey
  • Soy sauce
  • Lemon & lime juices
  • Rice!!!

Stir fry

Mmm, mmm good! I tried to eat as much of this as I could but the bean dip was calling my name! Oh, and in case you’re wondering, Daniel was proud of my version of the stir fry 🙂

At least we’re slowly getting rid of stuff in our cabinets/fridge. So it was totally necessary to make the bean dip… but I didn’t workout yesterday. Some one tell me to get off my butt and exercise! Please?