WIAW-Trying other blog recipes

Merry Christmas Eve! Are you ready for all of the festivities to begin?

These past few days have been a whirlwind and I cannot believe that Christmas is tomorrow.

Yesterday was a pretty good day of eats. I have been working on getting more variety into my diet and trying to break the habit that I have or eating the same things Every.Single.Day. I did fairly well yesterday. On to the eatsā€¦.

Breakfast:

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I started the day off with a nice and comforting breakfast. I made Amanda’s gingerbread pancakes. The only changes I made were substituting applesauce for the banana and omitting the chocolate chips because I am not a fan of them in my pancakes. I know. Craziness.
The pancakes were really good (like all of Amanda’s recipes), except I don’t think they can be eaten without syrup. The greek yogurt can be tasted, so the sweetness of the syrup is a MUST.

Lunch:

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I never know what to eat for lunch. I am not one for waiting an hour while something cooks, so I usually need something quick and easy. When I am hungry, I am hungry now.
I made Angela’s Tortilla Soup (from the Oh She Glows cookbook) for dinner last week, and pulled some of the leftovers out the freezer for a quick and delicious lunch. I topped mine with tortilla strips and green onions.

Dinner:

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We went out for pizza with some friends as an early Christmas celebration. I ordered a mini veggie pizza, but ate the entire thing before realizing that I forgot to take a picture. Whoops.
Afterwards, we went bowling. I haven’t bowled in FOREVER and man am I awful. Oh well. It was fun anyways šŸ™‚

There were lots of snacks involved in yesterdays eats as well, but those were eaten so fast that pictures were not involved. Sorry. I really need to get better at that. New Years Resolution perhaps?

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! Enjoy your loved ones and eat some good food.

Check out the other eats.

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Banana Streusel Muffins

A non-pumpkin recipeā€¦ in the middle of November? I know, I know. It’s slight craziness. Do not be disappointed though. These banana streusel muffins do not disappoint.

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Now, normally I am pumpkin all the way. Bread, pancakes, muffins, donuts, etc. I want all the pumpkin I can get my hands on. Until, I run out of cans of pumpkin. And I am too lazy to go buy some more. But I want some muffins. Oh, the dilemma!

But then, to my surprise, two way overripe bananas are sitting on the counter. You see, I do not eat overripe bananas. If they have the slightest hint of brown on them, there is no way I will be the one to consume them. Unless, they are in baked good form. Then I am game!

So, with my lack of pumpkin, and overly brown bananas, these muffins were born. And they sure did satisfy.

They are perfectly fluffy with big round tops, and a crunchy brown sugar topping that puts them over the edge. They are also made partly with wheat flour to give them some extra fiber. Because of the sweetness of the banana, and the addition of applesauce, not much added sugar is necessary. Hooray for healthier baked goods, that take care of any cravings you might have. These are definitely a winner!

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Banana Streusel Muffins:
adapted from Damn Delicious
-1 cup all purpose flour
-1 cup white whole wheat flour
-1/4-/1/3 cup sugar (depending on your desired sweetness)
-1.5-2 teaspoons cinnamon (depending on how spicy you like)
-0.5 teaspoon nutmeg
-1 teaspoon baking powder
-1 teaspoon baking soda
-0.25 teaspoon salt
-2 large very ripe bananas
-0.5 cup applesauce
-2 eggs
-2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Streusel Topping:
0.25 cups flour
0.25 cups brown sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 tablespoons butter (I believe coconut oil would work as well)

Instructions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a jumbo muffin pan with 6 liners. A standard 12 size muffin pan would work as well.
2. Prepare the streusel topping by by combining all streusel ingredients in a small and working together with a fork or your hands to make sure butter is incorporated.
3. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
4. In another bowl mix together the banana, applesauce, eggs, and banana.
5. Combine wet ingredients with the dry and stir until just combined. Do not over mix.
6. Scoop batter into muffin pan and sprinkle streusel over top. Use fingers to press gently into batter to make sure it sticks.
7. Bake in oven for 25-20 minutes for jumbo sized. Baking time will be less for standard size muffins.
8. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
9. DEVOUR!

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What would it be likeā€¦?

I am sure some of you have seen the video that shows the differences in how adults and kids react to the question of what they would change about their bodies.

This video brought tears to my eyes. A little dramatic? Maybe, but it really hit home.

I was a super happy kid that ate whatever I wanted. I ate my fair share of fruits and vegetables, but I also plenty of kid foods as well. My parents let us eat what we wanted for the most part, without anything getting too out of control. We were never told what we could/couldn’t have and were all pretty healthy kids. I was always really active and pretty slim.

I remember vividly the day I went to the grocery store with one of my friends when I was in 2nd grade. We were running down the aisle ahead of her mom picking out a bag of chips for our sleepover. When I picked up the bag of Ruffles she immediately put them back and told me her mom only allows her to eat Reduced Fat chips. I was so confused. I didn’t even know what reduced fat meant. I probably didn’t even know what a gram of fat was.

Nutrition and food labels are VERY important, but there is something so freeing about being so innocent as a child. Not worrying about calories, fat, weight, body image, etc. For the most part, I just ate as a kid. Calories didn’t exist, and cookies were always ok.

I tried to think back about how I would have answered the question of what I wanted to change in my body when I was a child. I probably would have answered with something ridiculous like having wings or something. Maybe time traveling, because I was 5 going on 35.

What happens when we hit a certain age that we change from accepting ourselves to hating everything about our bodies? Society? Peers? Media?

I have often wondered what life would be like without mirrors or nutrition labels. People might be happier without having calories plastered over their eyes or seeing themselves every three minutes in the mirror. Fad diets might be less prevalent because people wouldn’t even know how to eat low carb or fat free. But then again, maybe it wouldn’t be any different.

One thing I learned from this video was to accept myself. Maybe my stomach isn’t completely flat or I am not as tall as I wish, but I am me. If children can teach us that life isn’t as awful as we make it seem, then is it really?

Instead of moving from acceptance into hate, learn to love yourself. If the worst thing about myself was that I didn’t have fairy wings, I would be okay with that.

What would you want to change about yourself when you were young?

What were your thoughts of the video?

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Don’t Believe Everything You Read

A few years ago,Ā  I had a very unhealthy relationship with food. I went into a phase where I read only diet and fitness magazines, and believed EVERY.SINGLE.THING. I read in them. My calories dwindled, my variety of food shrank, and my eating rituals became more and more prevalent. But, I was being healthy right? Because they were the diet/fitness experts weren’t they? And I was only following what they said.

It took me quite some time to figure out that maybe, they had it all wrong. 1200 calories a day might make you lose some weight, but it also might make your organs shut down and kill you in the process. Eating no carbs might make you thinner, but you will be laying in bed all day due to lack of energy. Zero grams of fat might make you lose some cellulite, while also making your hair fall out and your brain functioning plummet.

Not everything you read and hear is truthful. People get these crazy ideas into their heads, and think they have the end all be all for losing weight, and being healthy. Sorry, they are usually wrong.

There are so many fad diets and ways to eat anymore, that I cannot even keep up. Are we all supposed to be Paleo, gluten free, no dairy, no sugar, no soy, Whole 30…or just survive on air?

If we all ate whole, natural foods, such as fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts, whole grains, etc. there wouldn’t really need to be fad diets. Health would come more naturally, rather than artificially.

Unless you have allergies or intolerances, what is the purpose of restricting so many foods out of your diet and making life so much harder on yourself?

I started reading blogs a few years ago, when I was trying to mend my relationship with food. I thought that bloggers might have some more rationality than the magazines I had been reading, and might give me some more inspiration to try new things. They did, and most of the blogs I read post amazing ideas and recipes.

But….In the past few months, I have been hearing/reading things that have been giving me (and other readers) some sketchy information. Since when did eating fruit become unhealthy? Eating apples and bananas will not make you gain weight. Maybe if you eat them with other unhealthy things or a ridiculously large amount, but no. Also, eating “clean” 100% of the time is sometimes unrealistic. You are not a bad person for eating something that sounds good, but might not be the most nutritious.

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, and what works for one person might not work for another. But, rationalize what you hear and read. Really think about the choices that you make and the ideas and information you take to heart.

As a person who has had an unhealthy relationship with food in the past, sometimes it is hard to separate the truth out of things. Don’t let yourself fall back into or start to develop unhealthy patterns because you read/heard something. And, if you are a blogger, take to heart the information you are feeding readers. Some things you say might affect someone in a way that you didn’t really mean.

Happy Thursday. One more day until the weekend.

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WIAW-11/5/14

Ever since the time change last weekend, I have woken up to a sunrise instead of pitch black darkness. It is spectacular in the morning, but not so ideal at night when I am driving home. This whole getting dark at 5:30 is throwing me all off balanceā€¦as well as my meals.

My appetite is all out of whack, and I am going to blame it on this time change thing. What is so bad about leaving the time alone? My body would greatly appreciate it.

Anyways, on to the food:

Breakfast:

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Oatmeal parfait-pumkin oatmeal, greek yogurt, and graham cracker crumbs.

For some reason, I have not joined the whole flavored oat craze. I like my oats plain and simple, no flavorings, no toppings. This parfait was my 1,000,0001 try at getting myself to like flavored oats, and I still am loving the plain version more.

Lunch:

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Roasted brussel sprouts along a [unpictured] smoothie. Lunches at school are especially hard because I have almost no breaks in between classes, so I grab what I can when I have time. Whatever works right?

Snacks:

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Banana applesauce muffin. This was GOOD!

Dinner:

Jackfruit tacos

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I finally got on the latest kitchen craze to drape your tortillas over the oven racks to create healthy shells. It was a success. I will definitely be using this method in the future.

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My family is Mexican food obsessed, so they will try anything out of the ordinary in Mexican flavored form. These tacos turned out great! This is the Ā second meal I have created using jackfruit and both were better than expected.

What was the best thing you ate this week?

Are you still living off of Halloween candy?

Check out what everyone else is eating today as well!

WIAW- Before

Over the past few years, I have completely changed my eating habits. In the past, I only worried about calorie counts. The lowest calorie option was always the best option, no matter what it was. I thought this was definition of healthy. Low calorie foods, chemicals and all had to be good for you right?

I was SOOO wrong. After going through nutrition counseling and taking a few nutrition courses to educate myself, I have found a new definition of healthy. One that does not rely on calorie counts.

In the past, calories were all that mattered to me. No matter how processed the foods were, if they were low calorie, they equated to healthy in my eyes. This led to me eating tons of artificial and chemically foods that definitely did not make me feel my best. Not to mention I was not getting adequate amounts of calories either.

100 calorie packs and artificially sweetened foods were my go to choices. Meals consisted of salads dressed with non fat dressing, and not much other substance.

My diet was severely lacking in nutritional value and my body was definitely suffering.

It took me a few years to figure out that this was not “healthy”. Healthy is eating whole and nourishing foods with the occasional treat every so often (but more often than not!). Healthy is not eating the least amount of calories you possibly can.

Eating only low calorie foods will not give you adequate nutrition. In fact, most of those foods are laced with chemicals and unheard of ingredients. You are usually better off eating the real thing anyways!

Instead of focusing solely on calories, focus on eating REAL food–> fruits, vegetables, beans, whole grains, etc. Your body will thank you, and so will your taste buds.

After stopping eating processed snacks, when you do finally go back and eat one, you realize truly how terrible many of them taste.

Be sure to check out all the other foodie posts on Peas and Crayons.

That’s Not Inspirational

Fitspiration. Motivation. Dedication. Healthy. Inspirational.

Pictures of ridiculously in shape and very skinny girls are all over the internet. Some of them are captioned with ridiculous sayings that they claim are supposed to be inspirational to get you motivated to start a healthy lifestyle, or workout. Honestly though, most of those photos do more harm than good.

There are times when your body needs a rest, or you really want to enjoy that piece of pizza or that bowl of ice cream. Will all of your hard work reverse if you do? NO!

I used to get really upset when I saw these “fitspiration” pictures All.Over.The.Internet! Now, I try to think rationally. Are these pictures doing me any good? I try to avoid seeing them now to avoid the feelings they bring up for me.

A few days ago, one of my friends posted a picture of her very thinĀ self on Instagram with a caption going along the lines of “this is what six days a week, hot yoga, and clean eating does for you.” I was alarmed.

I thought to myself, why don’t I look that way? Why aren’t my abs visible like that? Where did my thigh gap go? Why don’t I eat clean every meal of the day?

And then I snapped out of it. I lived that way for way too long and lived in misery. I want to enjoy my life and not be put on a strict plan. Life is too short to not enjoy it.

Before you get down on yourself for missing one workout or not being as skinny as the girl next to you, remember, we are all different. Being healthy means enjoying life. Do not be so hard on yourself.

Fitspiration is not always inspiration.