Monday, February 24, 2014

Thoughts for Monday

Where did the weekend go?! Every weekend should be three days. We've been busy bees kitchen reno planning (more on that later), snowboarding, DIYing and just plain having fun! 

Life currently...

The weather in Tahoe is gorgeous. This weekend I actually went snowboarding one day and hiking the next. We're in dire need of snow, but I'm loving the warm weather. With that said I'm still snowboarding and can say I've mastered the "jump shot." (See past jump shots here & here)



Eating paleo is getting easier and easier. I'm in love with the warm spinach salad and grain free sandwich bread from Against All Grain. It's also my new favorite cookbook!


Living in Tahoe never gets old. It's February and in the mid 50's. Check out the view from our hike yesterday! I'm looking forward to summer!


 Stylit: A free online style service. Yes, Please! All you have to do is fill out a short survey and a stylist will send you personalized outfits once a week, for free! Don't worry links to each item are included just in case you love an item and want to purchase it.


Half marathon training starts next week! I'm on the 12 week training schedule. My emotions are mixed. I dread running, but will be so happy when I start training. Wish me luck. Let me know if you're training for a race so we can motivate each other when the going gets tough.


Well, that's my life in a nutshell these days. I'm off to conquer the world or log some miles :)

Linking up with Join the Gossip

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Paleo Eats + Against All Grain

After completing Whole30 the hubby and I started focusing on eating paleo as much as possible. We've had the occasional glass of wine and sweet treat on the weekend, but overall we're 95% paleo. With that said I've been on a mission to find new tasty and health paleo dishes.

While searching for new recipes I decided to buy Against All Grain: Delectable Paleo Recipes to Eat Well & Feel Great. I never thought I would love a cookbook as much as I do Against All Grain! Danielle Walker is a genius and food wizard!  

Danielle's recipes are simple, easy to make and delicious. Each dish I've made has been a hit in our house. Best part you don't even realize you're eating paleo!

Danielle created over 150 recipes and all of them are grain, legume and dairy free. Including a wide variety of baked goods, desert and even grain-free granola and breakfast recipes!

Let's get to good part! The food.


Hands down the best gluten/dairy free bread I've ever eaten. It's moist, dense and fluffy all at the same time -- the secret ingredient is cashew butter. I sliced it right up and made a chicken salad sandwich! This morning I enjoyed a slice with raspberries perseveres and fresh carrot orange juice.

Slow Cooked Chicken Tacos
I love mexican food. Chips & guacamole, street tacos and margaritas -- that's my jam. When I saw this recipe I knew I had to give it a try. Instead of using a tortilla, the hubby and I enjoyed the chicken over shredded cabbage and topped it was avocado. Think of it as a taco salad.

Mexican Chicken Chowder (similar)
Our weekly cook-up includes some type of soup. During winter months soup is a filling easy on-the-go lunch. At first I wasn’t sure about the recipe, but was pleasantly surprised with the outcome. The combination of sweet potato, spinach and  chili peppers was a little fiesta in my mouth.

Curry Chicken Salad
Chicken salad is another weekly staple, but I never thought about curry! Grab some leafy greens and top it with a scoop or two of the Curry Chicken salad and you have lunch! The flavor will keep you wanting more.

These are just a few of the items I've made from Against All Grain. I'm looking forward to diving into the desert section.  

There are a plethora of cookbooks geared towards the paleo lifestyle, but after a bit of research you can find one that's right for you. Whether you're a seasoned vet or new to the paleo lifestyle I would recommend adding
Against All Grain: Delectable Paleo Recipes to Eat Well & Feel Great to your kitchen shelf.

Purchase the book here.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Columbia Shimmer Flash Jacket Review


If you were to peek inside my closet you would find an unruly amount of jackets, TOMS, cozy cardigans, cotton dresses and scarfs, among other things. Each jacket has its purpose i.e., work, rain, running, snowboarding, errands, etc. However, this season, on a daily basis, I find myself pulling the same Columbia Shimmer Flash Jacket out of the closet. It was love at first try-on. 

If I had to categorize the jacket it would be the perfect puffy for errands, bonfires, or layering under a ski/rain jacket. It's an everyday contender. I wear it to the gym, walking the dog, office, and running errands. I even rocked it at the SnowGlobeMusic Festival this year. Although, it's much more low profile than the typical bulky puffy it still keeps you warm.

One word -- Omni-Heat, Columbia’s secret weapon.

A thermal reflective technology that helps to regulate your temperature by reflecting and retaining the warmth your body generates, while dissipating moisture and excess heat to keep you comfortable. 
The Shimmer Flash is available in a number of colors. I love the tri-blue (aka riptide) color I'm rocking, but would also recommend black or dark purple.



  • Omni-Heat thermal reflective and insulated
  • Omni-Shield advanced repellency
  • Interchange compatible
  • Attached, adjustable storm hood
  • Drawcord adjustable hem
  • Interior security pocket
  • Zip-Closed pockets & Thumb holes
  • Light weight -18.4 oz
  • MSRP: $150 

Good:
  • Light weight without losing warmth
  • Packable
  • Hood
  • Thumb holes
  • Slim fit and length -- not short like Patagonia's popular down sweater jacket
  • Versatility

Bad: 
  • Absolutely nothing! I've worn it almost everyday over the last four months.

Bottom line: I highly recommend purchasing this jacket whether you live in cold climates or are just visiting. 

Walking in the woods, SnowGlobe Music Festival, Heading to work

{Disclaimer: The jacket magically appeared on my doorstep with a sweet handwritten note from the folks at Columbia. However, I was never asked for anything in return. I love this jacket. Opinions are 100% my own.}

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Nutella Cheesecake Brownies

Pinterest made me do it! 


That's right, I just had to make Nutella Cheesecake Brownies. They're not paleo and I'm not sorry. After finishing Whole30 I decided to treat myself and friends on Superbowl Sunday.You should make these today. They are soooo worth it and easy. I pinned the recipe to my Sweet Treats board and decided it was time to stop pinning and start baking. I don't want to over sell the brownies, but I might just show up at your door with a batch in the near future. Just saying.


Makes 18-20 big brownies or cut them in half for bite sized!

Ingredients

Brownies
1 cup, 2 tbsp All-Purpose Flour
1 cup, 2 tbsp. Unsweetened Cocoa Powder (I ran out of cocaa powder and 
used about 1/4 cup salted carmel hot chocolate!) 
1/4 tsp plus ⅛ tsp Salt
3/4 cup Unsalted Butter, cut into pieces
3/4 cup Brown Sugar, packed
3/4 cup Granulated Sugar
4 Large Eggs
2 T. Pure Vanilla Extract

Cheesecake
2 - 8 oz. Pkgs. Cream Cheese, softened (I used Trader Joe's - one light and one full fat)
1 cup Granulated Sugar
2 tbsp Pure Vanilla Extract
2 Large Eggs (I like organic)
1 cup Nutella

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9×13 baking pan.

Brownies: Combine flour, cocoa and salt in a medium bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar using a electric mixer until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla extract; mix well. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Spread batter into pan. The battered will be nice and thick.

Cheesecake: Using a electric mixture, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Add vanilla and beat until combined. Pour over brownie batter. Now for the best part, drop spoonfuls of Nutella over the cheesecake and gently swirl into the cheesecake batter with a knife.

Bake for 45-50 minutes until center is set. Cool on a wire rack before chilling in the refrigerator overnight or until ready to serve.