Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Running Diva Meets Rock Glam

I don't know if you remember our conversation (my blog post) about "rock glam" earlier, but I do. I recall it because it's my new favorite thing — layering of my chain necklaces paired with my winged earrings an my Italy boots. Today, I paired it with black leggings instead of my jeans and my canvas London Jean by Victoria's Secret motorcycle jacket in mahogany. And I took pictures!
From left to right: wing earrings, Target — $7.99; grey Italian leather slouch boots, Los Lolitas, Florence, Italia — E 159, approx. U.S.$200; [jacket] London Jean by Victoria's Secret canvas motorcycle jacket in mahogany, Victoria's Secret — $29.99 (clearance); [white top] long-sleeved white shirt, Target — $9.99; [not seen, grey tank] grey tank top, Five Dollar Fabulous; [chains] 3-layered chain, Express — $29.99; single silver chain with crystals, gift; single gold chain with gold locket, family heirloom.

Go me, eh? Very rock glam. Aren't the famous Italy boots just divine? I love them so much. 

I also wanted to brag about the 6 miles I ran yesterday. 1:07:31, with hills. Not particularly fast or anything, but the big deal was that I did it by myself for the first time (running the Iron Horse Trail on Sunday with my aunt's out of shape black lab, Trooper, doesn't we went "his pace" for the last 2 miles as he kind of died and I mean, head down, don't wanna go no more, died). I did a decent pace and didn't walk the hills, not even the last huge hill that my parent's house is perched on top of. Kind of proud of myself.
Also, at my lovely friend's marathon on Sunday (which she rocked, did I mention?)  she got me this uber adorable (and yes, that is the technical term) tank from Running Divas.
The front says "Happy / when / she's running / she's flying," and the back says, "girls gotta run" in the middle, with "running divas" towards the bottom left. I feel rather awesome/baller when wearing it. 

So that's pretty much it for today, I hope you enjoyed my little collages and photos.


TODAY: (haven't run yet, but will) 3 miles
YESTERDAY: 1 hour gentle yoga, 6 mile run

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Millions of Peaches, Peaches for Me

Okay, so my focus today still isn't great, but I really really wanted to upload this picture for you all.

I mean, how cute is that, right? Absolutely darling. I'm sure it was delicious, though I wouldn't know as I somehow missed the cake course. The remnants looked lovely and it was big enough to serve at least 100 people and there were definitely only 30 there.

'There' was the Palace Hotel in San Fransisco for a babyshower for my godsister.

Have you ever been to the palace hotel? It almost gives Rome a run for its money. It's absolutely fantastic, gorgeous, and I've only ever been in the garden court for brunch or tea and the lobby. Well, the powder room too, but isn't that inevitable?

The Garden Court,

Gorgeous, huh? You should see it full of ladies in hats and tea dresses (men in slacks and jackets), with the tables decked with pastries, champagne and tea. Fantastic.

That's that, I suppose. I have more pictures for a later date, but I need to upload them — so I don't have them yet. Sorry, I'm lazy. Needless to say, the food was delectable. Tea sandwiches of Smoked Salmon with caper mousse, chopped dill and caviar, Sliced Turkey with cranberry butter and asparagus, Smoked Duck Breast with foie gras cream and raspberry, Cucumber with sundried tomato mousse, and Sliced Bosc Pears with pointe reyes blue cheese cream and honey. The duck and the pears were my favorite, I usually gravitate towards fish, but the smoked salmon was too smokey for my taste. Assorted pastries which involved little fruit tartlets of lemon curd and berries, chocolate mousse tartlets, miniature eclairs, chocolate dipped strawberries and others. Champagne, and various types of tea. Wonderful.

In other news, it's peach season and my stomach has been graced by some pretty exceptional peaches this season. But my favorite part of peach season is peach jam and peach and fruit pie.

Peach Pie Recipe
1 standard pie crust — either homemade or frozen (homemade is best, but either works — you want enough for a top)
2 or 3 cans of canned peaches rinsed and drained or 5 fresh peaches, pitted and sliced
2 cups of blueberries, raspberries, blackberries or all three — again, fresh is best but frozen works
1/4 cup sugar
1 Tbsp flour
1 tsp cinnamon
a dash of nutmeg
1 Tbsp lemon juice
— for a different taste, add a tsp of curry powder or a little bit of basil

Combine ingredients in a large bowl and pour into pie crust. Either slice remaining crust into strips and create a lattice crust, or create a hotpot crust, just make sure to perforate the top to prevent explosions :)

Bake at 350 to 375 degrees until the crust is lightly golden and the filling is bubbly. About 30 minutes. Cool slightly before serving, then serve with vanilla ice cream on a sunny porch after a yummy summer dinner.

I always add berries to my peach pies, it seems to take the peach and step it up a notch. Though don't use strawberries, something about their chemistry actually detracts from the end flavor. 

Another good peach recipe is peach crumble. If you don't have enough pie dough for both the bottom crust and the top crust, throw the filling into an oven safe casserole dish and break up the pieces of dough and scatter across the top. Sprinkle with a mix of cinnamon, brown sugar, nutmeg, and a little bit of flour crumbled with a few tablespoons of butter. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees until the filling bubbles and the crust is golden brown. Now, tell me WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE WAY TO COOK PEACHES?

Monday, July 26, 2010

Manic Mumbling Mondays

No, I am not abandoning you. The reason (I've just realized) that my blogs tend to be top heavy at the beginning of the week and nonexistant at the bottom, is because of the unbalanced schedule I deal with at work and in life.

Mondays and Tuesdays are lightweight work-wise, few things that must get done, and so largely filled with fluff. Wednesdays is also fairly lightweight, but the pressures of "hump day" kick in and I am a bit more dedicated (and usually feel that after two days of blogging, I should take a day off) and then Thursday and Friday are jam-packed with fun work things that actually need to get done (bor-ing). And then by Friday I'm so blah that all I can concentrate on is doing nothing — or rather, racing through my weekend trying to find time to clean, do laundry, spend time with my boyfriend, and accomplish the myriad of family activities that have been propelling me through the last three months leaving me somewhat bewildered that it's already almost August and I cannot for the life of me remember what happened to May.

Such is life.

My sister, mother and I spent a lovely weekend in the bay area. And by lovely, I mean mildly tense. And by mildly tense, I mean...well, I don't know what I mean. Ups and downs of high tension (grandma in the hospital again, arriving at my aunt's house and having no place to sleep, driving for hours subjected to the button-pushing finesse of my sister) and low-no tension (godsister's beautiful baby shower, watching my lovely friend bask in the glow of post-marathon glory — she finished in 4:31:41, and...well, no, that's it). Which means Monday morning feels as manic as they say and I have oh, about nil for attention span.

So I am truly just checking in. I will load pictures of the babyshower food tomorrow (Palace Hotel in San Fransisco, delectable) for you to drool over and in the meantime, TELL ME ABOUT YOUR FAVORITE PEACH DISH as that will be my next topic, as 'tis the season!

Checking in on my running though, you may notice that last week was weak in mileage (which lead to sleepless nights and a buttload of extra energy), and the reason was that my lovely friend was tapering, so I tapered with her. She's not running this week (recovery) so I need to gear up and make sure I haul my butt out on those runs without her. I've got my first ever half-marathon on August 14th. Wish me luck, and thank God that today's a rest day (though I'm still antsy, so I wish I had time to run!)...


SUNDAY (7/25): 6 miles (last 2 slooooooow as the dog I was with was out of shape)
SATURDAY (7/24): 3 (fast!) miles
THURSDAY (7/22): 2 miles
WEDNESDAY (7/21): 2 miles

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Fashion Statement

So I discovered yesterday that I'm different from the other women in my immediate family. I've always known this really, but not on quite such an obvious level. I mean, my sister dresses quite nicely, though she does have her "what was she thinking" moments, my mom is a bit of a loss but she's more concerned about the people in her life and what makes her happy then what she's wearing, which is admirable, but...

Let me rewind.

I was wearing new biker-esque wing earrings yesterday (Target: $7.99), and my sister went, "Hey k, cool earrings." And I said (at this point I was post-run and was in sweats and cute, lounge-sweater that I got for $6 at this cheapy boutique at the mall — best 6 bucks I've spent), "Thanks, they really went with my work outfit today — very rock glam."

The blank stare that was incited by the words "rock glam" was a mild shock.

She said, "See, k, this is how you and I are different. I never wake up in the morning and think, 'I'm going to dress rock glam today.' I wake up in the morning and think, 'Okay, clothes...'"

At this point I had to defend myself and explain that I don't think like that, it's more of a process — I want to wear this dress/shirt/sweater, my feet hurt/don't hurt so I want/don't want to wear heels, and build from there. My shoes and the main "piece" usually defines the outfit. And then I cock my head and look in the mirror and think, "Okay, now what can I do to make this outfit interesting?" Because it's really more fun to have an outfit that's interesting.

Again though, this is not to say that I dress "interesting" on a daily basis. My main staple is t-shirt, jeans, scarf and ballet flats — cashmere sweater when it's cold, heels if I'm feeling perky. Today for instance, black $5 tee, American Eagle jeans, faux-animal print cashmere scarf in white/grey/black from Italy and snazzy pointy-toed heels in electric pink that I rescued from a thrift store for $1.99. That's not glam anything, it's just me.

Yesterday was a bit different. I wanted to wear my skinny jeans because they're comfy, but I hate the ballet-flat look with them (I'm a bit too pear-shaped for it to be flattering, I can do it, it's just not a look that does much for me), so I wanted to wear my Italy boots (grey leather, slouchy, nearly-knee-high, classic heel and toe, yum yum yum) over them. And I wanted to wear my new earrings.

Pondering my closet I pulled out a grey blazer and eyed it. I put on a white tank top (again, five-dollar fabulous) and threw on the blazer, rolling up the sleeves. Even with the earrings it needed a bit of something.

I added a layered long necklace I got as a gift from Express a couple years ago that used to be silver and now is a brassy-tarnish that won't go away and added a long rhinestone chain, a long silver chain and a gold chain with a gold heirloom locket pendant. Add the earrings and a bit of heavy eyeliner and voila: rock glam.

I was rather proud of the outfit, and really it just kind of happened. That's how all great outfits (and masterpieces) really happen. You just keep going until it's just right. Try new things, wear something a different way, and all of a sudden you have a brand new piece.

My sister later brought up my rock glam comment to my mother who looked at me and said, "Isn't Adam Lambert rock glam?"

Oy vey.

TODAY: rest day
MONDAY RUN: 3 miles

And I just did the math and I've rocked 28 miles since last Tuesday. No wonder my knees are bitching so loud.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Running Mojo and Kitchen Joys

So apparently the two posts on, what was it? Monday? made up for me not posting practically at all this week. But, in my defense, it was apparently major Bitch Week (featuring a master mix of your favorites, like "Rip Me a New One" and "Screw This") and I reserve this place as a non-bitching arena.

If I ever "disappear" again, that's probably why.

That or I'm busy "being there." You know what I mean.

Between the house being full of my parents and my sister (remind me why I moved home again? Free rent may not be worth it right now), my aunt's puppy (albeit a very very very tiny puppy, as Mija's a chihuahua, but she's a puppy nevertheless) and the impending arrival of my grandparents this afternoon...the house has never felt so small and I've never felt so grateful to be able to escape to work.

Now that's a new feeling. "Escape" to work. Ah, me. At least here, I can write! My sister (younger by two years) has "taken over" the office/craft room that houses my computer, so I've been barely able to check my email at home, let alone post a blog! But that makes no nevermind, as I was too cranky to write anything positive anyways.

Even after I plied myself with boba tea several times last week!

Big things happened this weekend though:

1. My lovely friend and I ran ten miles on Saturday — a first for me, though paltry for her. I did it to see if I could, my previous "record" being 6 miles, and was surprised that I not only finished, but I was still functioning (a critical point) afterwards! And topped it off with a blistering 3.5 miles yesterday morning (another foul mood that I burned off with running).

To get through the ten miles, I was up early (1.5 hours before running) to properly fuel up — had my cappuccino (real caffeine is a special treat for me, I normally drink Tazo Zen green tea in the mornings as it's better for my disposition and my body. Coffee and espresso is for days when I really really really need the extra kick, I'm going to be running a lot, or I need a special treat to get me through the day), a bowl of Honeybunches of Oats with Almonds and some craisins sprinkled on top, a "shot" of Emergen-C for electrolytes and a natural vitamin boost, and a huge glass of water.

During the run itself, we both carried water and dutifully mowed through Clifbar Shot Bloks (similar to gels, but tastier and easier to gulp down while moving) — both regular and extra salt (berry and margarita flavored!), as we both have salt deficiencies — every three miles-ish (we didn't hit it at 9 miles, because we just had one to go, though we could have). So we finished in relatively good humor. I consumed a Clifbar "Mocha" flavored gel when we were done to tide me over until I could get some real food (I had to drop my lovely friend off and her house and then drive home — so 20 to 30 minutes). Think brownie-batter. Pretty good, but wouldn't want to eat it during a run.

All in all, I did really good! We finished in an hour and 50 minutes, avg. 11 minute mile, and I didn't need to ice anything until after my run yesterday! WHAT KICK STARTS YOUR RUNNING MOJO? HOW DO YOU MAKE THE DISTANCE?

2. My boyfriend and I sat down and mapped — er, rather sketched — out our "future" his prompting, no less. He is one of those wonderfully classic men whose catchphrase is "my plan is that I have no plan." Great for him, mildly aggravating for a woman who is so A.R. she cannot go without planning her week on Sunday evening. Though after 2+ years together I've figured out how to work around his carefree outlook without panicking and going into crisis overdrive myself — give the man deadlines. If I have deadlines, then there is a plan — at least, enough of one for me — and there isn't enough of one to put him in a panic.

It's a wonderful thing.

But back to the point. He said, "We need to talk about our future and make some plans today." I went, "Say what now?" And then quickly agreed to do so before he changed his mind. Now we have "concrete" plans (with dates to have things done by! Ah, he's finally figured me out...) and I'm stoked about the future.

3. During my run (and actually I'd been noticing all week) I realized that my favorite running sunglasses had been squished and no longer stayed on my face quite the way I wanted them to. Sad day. I'm kind of a sunglasses snob, as it usually takes a while to find some that I like that also look decent on my face (the bug-eyed era was particularly bad for me). So as a rule, I snatch up any pair that happens to look decent if I can afford it, and for running sunglasses (which tend to be alternately all-purpose as well) I put up the big bucks, and as with my shoes, I stick to a brand I know and like.

My sunglasses of choice are Electrics, and I've been rocking the EC DCs in Black Clear Fade

and the fact that they'd been squished past the point that I couldn't (gently) bend them back, made me super sad. They're still wearable, but not for running or other sport-activities (I play ultimate too, and my "name" in ultimate is "Shades" as I always wear 'em). They're camping/car/river sunglasses now. Which sounds hoity-toity, but for someone as active as I am, you need a pair that will stay on your face!

So I went to the store to get myself some new ones, and decided that I really didn't like the solid black EC DCs, which was all they had. So I tried a couple of other pairs. The Technician style was nice, but the winner was the Charge in Tweed

They stay on my face even better than the EC DCs did, they're incredibly lightweight, and they look pretty freakin' sexy! Haha. I thought I'd get some flack for the "rasta" stripes on the side from my boyfriend and co. but as a Humboldt native, I'm apparently allowed to rock them, even if I'm about as hippie as a bikini-clad palm tree.

Anyways, so it was a decent weekend, even if my pocket is lighter for having to get new sunglasses.

I'm trying to think if I've had any yummy food lately. Oh! Yes, I did!

My sister made the best whole wheat bread. I think this is the recipe. She told me where it was, but I kind of forgot. This looks like the right one, but I'm not entirely sure (if this is the wrong one, I'll update it next post). It was scrumptious though. Just plain it was delicious, I ate it for breakfast all week. It was a huge recipe, it made 3 decently sized loaves. One turned out kind of flat, because she chilled the dough overnight (takes a while to make it and she started late), but it was still absolutely divine. DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE BREAD RECIPE OR EXPERIENCE? TELL ME ABOUT IT!

I've made baguettes in my day (easiest thing ever, by the way) and pretzels, but I've never had the bread pans (or the inclination to go buy them) to do loaved bread. I definitely am going to now — er, rather, once boyfriend and I have relocated to a home of our own (soon!) and I have my kitchen back.

Speaking of kitchens, I miss mine so much. I have all the coolest toys. I moved into my last house in San Luis Obispo after living on campus the first two years with three plates, some cups, a bowl, and a set of silverware. I may have had a pot, but that was it. Moving out...I had six good sized (as big as they could be and still be liftable by me) boxes of kitchen stuff — not counting the individually boxed crockpot, toaster, blender, and my pride and joy...

My artisan Kitchen mixer in empire red. She's my baby. The only thing that she isn't good at making is cheese cake (the mixer blade doesn't quite reach the bottom of the bowl, and with cheese cake filling it's hard to get at the bottom really well with a least, with the cheese cake I make — me and Betty do great things). I adore her. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE, HAVE-A-RELATIONSHIP-WITH, COULDN'T-LIVE-WITHOUT-IT KITCHEN APPLIANCE/UTENSIL?

Anyways, that's all for now, though as it's Monday it's a slow day at work. I'll probably update later!


SUNDAY: 3.5 miles
SATURDAY: 10 miles!!!!
WEDNESDAY RUN: 3.1 miles
TUESDAY RUN: 2.7 miles + .7 miles hill repeats, total 3.4 miles
MONDAY: 1.5 hrs Flow Yoga 

Monday, July 12, 2010

A few good things

I know, I know, it's overkill to do two posts in one day, but I just had to.

First and most importantly, my life is now complete: there is a God, and He has sent Bubble Tea into the land of marijuana (Humboldt). My favorite "treat" in college was to walk from campus to the nearby Quickly which served boba, more commonly known as "bubble tea." (Though later they also started serving crepes...I'm not sure of the reason why, as crepes are well, crepes, and boba is rather Asian.)

Then I moved home. Northern Humboldt, to my knowledge, had no place that served boba. Then this wonderful little drive-thru called "Z & J's Asian Subs" opened in a weird little building that's had probably 3 different business come and go through it in the last six months. Not good odds, but Z and J, whomever they may be, have more smarts than the previous owners. They advertise on the radio. Constantly.

To my joy, I was running around doing errands on my lunch break today and was listening to the commercials on the radio with half an ear when a bit about Z & J's came on and the words "now serving bubble tea" were uttered.

I almost caused an accident I was so surprised.

It was as good as I had hoped, though the line was ridiculous. Next time I go, I'm going to try their Chinese chicken salad, but this time, I just got Thai milk tea with boba.

It's better than cupcakes.

And that says something. As I adore cupcakes.

Next topic: As some of you may know (or not), I'm a graphic designer and I get to do a little freelance here and there. My favorite thing to do is create logos. They're so fun, I can be so creative and they're such a challenge to get an individual's personality and ideals just right with one little graphic.

Side note: for those of you not familiar with the wonders of Adobe Creative Suite, do yourself a favor and become so. Now.

Back to the original message at hand: Everyone is different, everyone wants something a little different, and it's practically delicious to meet someone's expectations and get inside their head just enough to make a good product.

The other side of that though, is that you know you are a good designer when you're not 100% happy with something you do, but it still completely and utterly satisfies the customer. Basically, when you're less ecstatic about your product than they are, you have reached the summit of design. However, there's always more to learn, and you should never stop reading, learning, and researching to improve your work.

Remind me, and I'll publish some recent pieces next time I post. In the meantime, satisfy yourself by checking out my portfolio here or go glance through HOW Magazine (only the coolest design magazine ever. They had an entire issue dedicated solely to fonts...sigh...and they do it annually...heart be still).


Camping, etc.

After a blissful weekend spent on the shore of Ruth Lake camping with my family, I suppose the best thing to discuss is camping food. And camping.

My family has gone camping every single summer of my life. We usually double dipped with a week at Ruth Lake with family friends and their respective hordes, and a week or two at Lake Tahoe in the D.L. Bliss campground with my mom's family.

Tahoe has been a tradition since my mother can remember, and she and her family have that particular campground worked over to find the best campsites.

(I'd tell you, but then I'd have to kill you.)

At Ruth Lake, we'd always take over Fir Cove — back when the campground was "reservations only" during the week and "public" on the weekends. We'd book the whole campground so we'd have it (and the respective beach) to ourselves, and then we'd fill it with as many families and their kids, toys, and dogs as we could round up. Those weeks were spent happily playing kick the can and catching toad-tadpoles (huge suckers), hauling water for dishes and scrambling back and forth from the beach to the campground for snacks and sodas. Food was fair game, and toys were shared by all.

Of course, as we got older, the toys got better too.

The prime toy of my childhood was my dad's original windsurfing board. Made by Bic, the thing was easily 10 feet long, if not more, weighed a ton, and could carry as many as eight kids before sinking became a serious problem. We'd spend hours balancing, bickering, pushing, stealing, pirating, imagining, frog hunting, and more on that thing.

Sounds like a great time, huh? It was.

Today, the best toy is the Malibu speedboat, complete with tower, stereo, wakeboards, wakeskate, airchair, water skis, and inner tube. That's hard to beat now that the Bic board has floated its last breath and remains only in memory. Plus, it's hard to beat a toy as cool as a speedboat.

We power up first thing in the morning to get the glass, shivering as the water is barely warmed by the rising sun. I learned quickly that falling made you colder faster, whereas if you didn't fall, you stayed drier — and thus, warmer.  I've wakeboarded on other lakes (Tahoe, Nacimiento, and Shasta), but I swear that Ruth Lake and that boat are the best. Nothing's better.

Though it didn't hurt my back quite so much when I was younger.

The other thing about camping is prime camping food. WHAT DOES YOUR FAMILY TAKE CAMPING?

For my family, we traditionally have fajitas, spaghetti, mac and cheese, pancakes, oatmeal, and those individually boxes cereals that come in all different flavors (like Fruit Loops, Pops, Frosted Flakes, Cocoa Puffs, and more). The trick is getting enough water though — my mom was smart when we were growing up though, and made the rule that before every soda we had to drink a large glass of water. We could have as many sodas as we wanted, we just had to drink the water first. It worked and we didn't have nearly as much soda as you might think, and we definitely got enough water.

Now that soda isn't quite the lure that it used to be, however, it is more of a challenge.

The bottom line though, is that nothing tastes quite as good as it does when you're camping after a long day of fun in the sun after a shower in water heated by the sun. And man oh man, is it ever hard to wait for that first star to come out that says it's time to hit the sack, with your stomach full of s'mores and content from the day's exertions.


SUNDAY: 3.5 miles
SATURDAY: a very lame 1.5 miles, + some wakeboarding and other camping activities

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Running for Sushi

I am having such a hard time today. Maybe it was being roused from a warm, cozy nest — my first in months, as sleeping in the same bed as my pillow-stealing boyfriend makes it hard for me to make a nest out of pillows and blankets — at the ungodly hour of 6:30 a.m. in order to eat an hour before my 5 mile run with my lovely friend.

Then I ran five miles.

Finishing with hill repeats.


This reminds me that I didn't update you on the 5k we ran on Sunday (belated happy-4th!). We broke 30 minutes, running a rather pathetic 29:42 (I was running 26 & 27s in high school), but granted we pushed and ran 9:45 minute miles when we normally travel distances of 4+ miles and go much slower (10:45s). AND I've only been back from Italia since last Wednesday and had 3 running days under my belt prior to the race.

I was just glad I finished.

But I regress. So we ran 5 miles this morning, though we run in the evenings usually. She has a meeting tonight and the roads we take for the longer distances get a bit sketch after dark. So we ran this morning.

I also normally cop out after 4.5 or so during the week, because I'm not as built up in my endurance as she is, but I'm skipping tomorrow because my sister is flying in from New York for a couple of weeks. So I'm playing hooky.

In order to stretch my legs out after sitting for a couple of hours (I work a sedentary desk job doing layout for a newspaper), I walked to a nearby sushi place, Obento Sushi, on the corner of F & 6th in Eureka, CA. My sister lovingly refers to their menu as "fake sushi" as it consists of less adventuresome contents like cream cheese, chicken, lox and benign veggies like cucumber, green onions,  and carrots, but damnit, it's still pretty good. Perfect for not completely blowing the work my five miles did this morning.


With my new (relatively) shoes though, my joints are handling the roads pretty well. Yes, if you must know, I'm an old lady at 23 with my knees and hips after a long run. If you're looking for good shoes in Humboldt County, hit up the Jogg'n Shoppe on the corner of 11th and G in Arcata. They don't have a huge selection, but the owner is a great guy who loves to talk running and will hook you up with the perfect shoe — even if it means ordering it.

If you're not a HumCo resident, check out the Running They do an excellent job explaining (on their website, no less) what kind of shoe you need for the kind of runner you are. So definitely check it out.

I personally prefer the Mizuno Wave Alchemy, which I've been rocking since 2001 (and my freshman year of high school).

They're great, hugely supportive, and perfect for people who over-pronate a bit and is predisposed to shin splints and knee problems. They update them every year or so, but the core support system doesn't change. I have narrow heels too, so my biggest problem finding running shoes is finding ones that will stay on my heels without causing problems. These ones rock. Love 'em!


For those of you interested in drooling in jealousy over my Italy trip, check out my photos here and let me know what you think!


TODAY: 5 miles
SUNDAY (7/4): 3 miles

Monday, July 5, 2010

Food and Wine from Saturday

All righty.

I've spent all day doing gloriously nothing. Well, not nothing, but a great deal of nothing interspersed with trying to sort through my 989 pictures I took while in Italia. So, I've not had much chance to even think on this!

Dinner on Saturday, as mentioned before, was lovely. We went with the 2006 Sangiovese from Coates, a local Humboldt County winery — it was organic and vegan, though my lovely friend and I showed some concern when we (both wine aficionados) failed to see any sign of good legs on the wine. We're wondering if it's a lack of filtering (which it mentioned) or a lack of sulfites (only naturally occurring sulfites) or what.

In the picture, the glass has the Sangiovese, the Tobin James bottle is the late-harvest Zin that we were going to crack with the chocolate cake, but opted out of. The cake was quite something on its own.

We had the Summer Salmon with Peach-Apricot Salsa as mentioned before, though we did a white rice (which we have a huge bag of) rather than go purchase the brown rice recommended. Tasted just as good, though not quite as good-for-you.

Delicious though, eh? It was. For full recipe, go here.

In addition, we had a lovely home-grown lettuce and tomato salad, with Trader Joe's "Goddess" dressing. Practically divine.

I over-dressed the salad initially (a glassful of wine will do that on an empty belly) but I rescued it with another handful of lettuce from the garden :)

The real kicker to this meal was the finish. We made a Vegan Chocolate Avocado Cake with Avocado Buttercream Frosting. If you can get past the fact the frosting looks kind of like a two-year-old (or the Hulk) emptied their green goo from their nose...

It was really quite excellent.

Definitely a different frosting flavor, but the cake was rich and moist and good — my helper (my lovely friend) did an excellent job "super mashing" the avocado (a step that's critical to avoiding avocado bits floating around the batter).

So tell me, as I am too tired to continue tonight...WHAT ARE SOME ODD RECIPES THAT YOU LOVE AND TASTE BETTER THAN THEY SOUND?


Sunday, July 4, 2010

Quick Update

Happy 4th, everyone! Currently stuffed to the MAX on good fourth of July food — oysters (yum yum!), corn on the cob, bruschetta, tri tip, chicken, chips n' salsa, you name it, we ate it. I'm going to explode.

Family tradition has us at the Trinity River at a friends' house enjoying the sun, water and, inevitably, food. The running joke there is "oh my god, it's been ten minutes since we last ate. Who's hungry?" and "'I'm full' is no excuse for not eating." Sad but true — catering to the nation's obesity, but tempered with river rafting, racing up and down a rather impressive hill for beer, water and food, volleyball, frisbee, snake, and horseshoes.

So not much to fill you in on here, but I did want to mention — pictures taken of last night's sumptuous meal and final wine selection (neither zin nor dream weaver), along with a rather risky chocolate avocado cake recommended to me. If you can get past the booger-green frosting, it's delicious. My boyfriend kept repeating that it looked like the Hulk had exploded all over it. Pictures will be put up tomorrow, because today's revelry has me too tired to upload them :)

Ciao for now.


Saturday, July 3, 2010

Fish and Wine

Okay, so. Let's try this shall we? I have some time on my hands.

Something I love love love love love to do is eat. Not so great for my waistline, but pretty spectacular otherwise. I also love to cook.

When in Italy (Capri, specifically), I tasted the lightest, to-die-for gnocci ever — like no way in the world could any Italian-American restaurant hope to emulate it. Florence (and oh heck, most of Italy) boasted the most delicious gelato in the world. Sorrento had lemon-flavored gelato (and limoncello!) made from fresh, organic lemons grown in the area — superb!

So I suppose in an attempt to encourage my cooking more often, I'll try and fill you in here.

Tonight, my lovely friend (which is what she will be...she's my running buddy and my closest girlfriend here in Northern California, so anytime from here on out I tell you my lovely friend, that's who I'm talking about) and I are getting together as usual — we do this often — with a bottle of wine and a craving.

We're doing something special tonight, a family friend posted this salmon recipe a while back and I've been thinking about it all day. Rule number one of "dieting" is if you crave something, eat it. So with our 2006 late-harvest Zinfandel (pictures to come), we will be eating Salmon with Apricot-Peach Salsa. Sounds pretty yum, huh?

There is the question of should we do the Zin or some Tobin James "Dream Weaver" (a delicious, light champagne-type wine)? Or both? Yum yum. Too many decisions.

By the way, you will quickly find that I am a wine fanatic. It was an acquired taste, but now my some of my favorites include Tobin James' "Ballistic" (a 2007 Zin), and "Bella Bella" (2006 Barbera), Eberle Winery's 2007 Côtes-du-Rôbles (Mourvedre, Syrah, Grenache), and J. Lohr's Cabernet (any year). I always like a good Riesling or Chianti, Muscat does all right but the shelf versions tend to be a bit cheap.

Locally (NorCal), I'm a fan of good labels. Yes, that's right — I judge the bottle by its label. I figure if the winery has any sense of pride in their product, they will put the money into hiring a good designer for their labels. So: good labels = decent wine. It's been foolproof so far. Current favorite is Three Blind Moose Zin and Cab. Great label. Ravenwood isn't bad, and Barefoot will do in a pinch.

Wine tip: stick to cabs, merlots, chardonnays, and zins (white and red). Those are pretty classic and hard to fudge too much — and know your pick out of those. I abhor Merlots and Chards, so I tend to not buy them and not drink them (house wine is almost always merlot and chard).

But I digress. Salmon. My wine wheel (yes, I have one) recommends light whites with fish. What do you suggest?

Check back and I'll let you know how it goes.

First one, big thing

Seems like after all that work of building this darned thing I should at least write a token thing. Kind of exhausting getting it just so though. I'll build upon it as we go.

What I would like to do here is tally my runs with my friend (she's training for a marathon at the end of aspirations are somewhat lower), so that I can have a record of the mileage I put on my poor feet.

P.S. Shockbloxs are my new best friend. Made it through six miles today feeling like I went on a good run rather than like someone rather large and in charge worked me over with a baseball bat. Wooo hoo. Go me.

TODAY: 6 miles, hills were involved