Feels Like Fall

Well actually it doesn’t feel exactly like fall…yesterday was 85 degrees!!! I think my arm got a sunburn just driving around in my car.  I was so busy yesterday that you wouldn’t believe me if I told you all of the things that I got done.  After a lazy Sunday (minus the 18 mile run), I had a lot of catching up to do around the house.  After a full day, I was way too tired to even think about blogging…hence the day late post.  When planning for the marathon, I expected the training runs to impact my social life (“Why no I can’t go out for dinner and drinks Saturday night, I’m running 15 miles Sunday morning”).  I figured with BOY diving head first into his first semester of law school, our social life would be a little quieter anyways.  What I wasn’t prepared for was how exhausted I would be and how much extra sleep I would need.  I typically sleep 8 hours a night and this past week I’ve been getting 9-10 hours a night AND only waking up because my alarm clock made me.  After another long and wonderful night of sleep, I woke up Monday morning with time to enjoy some tea and make some pumpkin pancakes.  Fall is around the corner and I am digging the pumpkin (plus I didn’t have any fresh bananas in the house but as you will soon see found a plethora of pumpkin).

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I based my pancakes off of Evan’s gluten-free recipe because it seemed simple and quick.  Instead I used 1/2 cup whole wheat flour, 1/2 cup pumpkin (no banana), 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, and 1/2 cup of milk along with the 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda.  My pancakes don’t look nearly as fancy, but they were hearty and tasted delicious topped with no sugar applesauce and a drizzle of sugar-free syrup.

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I headed off to hot yoga with the intention of strengthening my core, relaxing my mind, and lengthening my legs.  The teacher was not one that I have gone to before.  She had a beautifully calm voice as she led us through challenging poses and balances.  I was surprised by how sore my ankles were from Sunday’s run and how strong by quads felt in my warrior poses.  She did not disappoint on the core and had us doing some crazy variations of boat that worked every muscle in my trunk.  I left exhausted and sweaty, but also calm and ready to start my week.  I headed off to the bank for some reformatting of my accounts and then to Runners High ‘N Tri for some marathon gear.

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I am ready for a new pair of running shoes (these have definitely packed on the miles between triathlons and races), and I needed to stock up on blocks. I also walked out with some body glide, a new pair of socks, and a hydration drink called NUUN.  It looked interesting and I have been trying some different less processed options (mostly coconut water).  I’ll let you know what I think!

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Then headed to Costco for fruits and veggies and home for lunch. I was starving by this point to so I scarfed down the rest of my CSA soup and some WF leftovers.  Then I got busy in the kitchen…

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I happened to have everything for the Root Vegetable Tagine in the house (thank you CSA), so I dusted off my crockpot that has been hibernating all summer and threw in my ingredients to make an easy lunch or dinner for this week.  I am in a bit of a fall cleaning mode and it was time to clean on the pantry. Things were getting slightly out of control and I wasn’t able to fit some of my new Costco purchases into the pantry. This picture is truly embarrassing…

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PS Look who is stockpiling pumpkin???  Talk about embarrassing! I know there was a shortage but this is nuts! (BTW, this isn’t even all of it…but I don’t want t you to judge me any more than you already are!)

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In between cleaning, I got started making a Mint Chocolate Almond Butter. I had these wonderful mint and chocolate chips and knew they would pair fabulously with a home made almond butter.

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I started by roasting my almonds for ~15 minutes.  Let them cool 5 minutes before putting them into your food processor.  Usually this is the time where I say pour yourself a glass of wine and let the processor do the work, but wine does not mix with antibiotics and so instead, I went back to work on the pantry.  I am posting some pictures of what the almonds will look like as they transform into almond butter.  It takes about 8-10 minutes and you really just need to scape the sides periodically.  Then add 1/4 teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of raw sugar.  Process for 1 more minute.

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Smooth and all set.  Take the warm almond butter and pour it into a bowl.  Stir in 3/4 cup of mint and chocolate chips until smooth and melted. 

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Then stick the bowl in the refrigerator.  This step is not technically necessary but it will prevent you from sticking your finger into the bowl for yet another ‘taste’ over and over again!  After about 10 minutes, you may have forgotten about the AB and it can be removed from the fridge.

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I truly do not know how to get this stuff nicely into a container.  What a delicious mess!!!

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I had planned on making the BOY some oatmeal cookies today as well. I found this recipe on How Sweet It Is in the morning and figured I could use my mint and chocolate chips.  As I worked my way through the panty, I also found the remnants of a fruit and nut trail mix that only had raisons, peanuts, and banana chips left.  Does this ever happen to you?  All the good stuff gets eaten first?

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I hate to throw away food and figured I could find something to do with the trail mix.  I also had some random rice cereal left that was somehow still crunchy. I decided to turn the oatmeal cookies into trail mix cookies that could also be titled ‘Empty Your Pantry’ cookies.  The BOY doesn’t like bananas (hence all the leftovers in the trail mix bag), so I made a few just mint chocolate chip cookies first.  I ran the trail mix through the food processor for about 1 minute and added that and the rice cereal to the dough.

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In between cookie batches (I must have ended up with close to 4 dozen cookies), I went back to work on the a pantry.  I love the bulk section at the Whole Foods, but bags of grains do not lend themselves to an organized pantry.  It would be great to have some matching canisters, but recently I have been saving my glass mason jars for nut butters and gifts and my wheatberries and other grains fit perfectly.  I got most of the pantry done (just the top shelf to go) and since it looked better, I was feeling better!  Of course the BOY didn’t even notice.

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My cookies turned out good and the BOY said that he would take some to school for his study group tomorrow.  IMG_5215IMG_5216

 

The last baking task was making the start of a Whoopie Pie for next weekend.  Please excuse the law books in the background!  I got this new pan at Sur La Table for $2 on clearance.  I wanted to get started on the cake part because I will be running my 20 miler next Saturday and didn’t know how I would feel afterwards.  Now that I wet your pumpkin appetite…More Whoopie Pie details to come next weekend!

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After all of this time in the kitchen, I hadn’t even made dinner. I whipped up some balsamic chicken and a salad and boiled the last of the crop share corn.  I was too exhausted to take any pictures, but let’s just say dinner was light and tasty.  I even made my own salad dressing using strawberry balsamic, olive oil, honey, and Dijon mustard which paired perfectly with the strawberries and feta on our salad.  The BOY approved and was happy to chew on a cookie as he finished up his homework after dinner.

 

Is it possible that I used every single dish, utensil, mixing bowl in my kitchen?  I finished up the laundry and headed upstairs and fell into bed.  I’m sure you are exhausted just from reading this post!

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So even though the weather hasn’t caught up to the changing seasons, between my crockpot, pumpkin stash, fall cleaning, and Monday in the kitchen I am all set for FALL!

 

 

PS I forgot to add this to Sunday’s post

Marathon Countdown: 4 weeks

Weekly Miles: 33.5

One thought on “Feels Like Fall

  1. the trail mix cookies were amazing… really… light, tasty, spicy… just amazing… (I ate the entire little baggy that DD dropped off with my banana applesauce bread)

    dd, please send the recipe to the ya yas… we NEED this recipe, especially the famous cookie baking ya ya!

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