Thursday, August 4, 2011

Running Shoes

Currently I am reading this book

picture courtesy of

For those of you who have not read the book it is one man's story of how he began running again after numerous injuries.  It chronicles the story of the Tarahumara, a tribe located in Mexico, as well as other ultrarunners.  I am currently at the part that is discussing the types of shoes these people wear and how they are still able to run LONG distances in sandals.  We're talking 40+ miles in SANDALS!  Now to me this seems crazy though Sam read this book last fall and due to it was given toe shoes for his birthday this past January.

photo courtesy of

The thinking behind these shoes is that before about the 70's humans were running in simple shoes without balance control, cushioning and all those other things we pay mucho bucks to have.  The book states the statistics, but I am too lazy to look them up, on how the number of running related injuries has drastically increased since people have started to use 'doctored' shoes.  It really is astonishing to look at and so far I highly recommend this book if you are a runner.

But it got me thinking....

Once I began training for my first half marathon I went to a running store that specialized in finding a shoe for my gait/protonation to help balance my step.  Since this time I have gone through a countless number of ASICS Nimbus shoes only to have injured my groin, have knee pain and possibly even have had a stress fracture in my fibula ( I do not know because I rarely go to the doctor when I should and by the time I got an x-ray there was no fracture, though still pain).  Could these ailments be partially caused by the shoes I wear?  Part of me wants to try them but they are $60 and what if they don't work out?  Then all that money is wasted, but my ASICS are well over $100, so would it be worth it to try them out?  My boyfriend RAVES about these and loves them, though he was in a lot of pain after the first few runs in them.  By pain I mean that his calves were not used to running 'barefoot' (more or less) and so they had to adjust to his normal running style.

What do you think about these running shoes?  Should I give them a try?  What shoes do you run in?

Monday, July 25, 2011

Beer Dabbler/Twins Game/Osaka

A few weeks ago I attended the Highland Park Beer Dabbler. 

For those of you who do not know a beer dabbler is a place where brewers get to show off their products and for a measly $30 individuals can purchase tickets and drink as many samples of that product as one wanted.  It was awesome and if you LOVE beer as much as me I highly suggest you fork over the money and go to one if you get the opportunity to.  The unfortunate part about this particular beer dabbler was that it was after several rainy days.  This resulted in a mud pit and extremely hot and humid day.  Thankfully there was a DQ right across the street where we took refuge for some food and serious AC time.  This allowed us to buck up and sample the rest of the beers we had yet to try.  Overall a great day that resulted in a nap from about 8-10 PM.  Oh yes this was merely a nap ;)

Just some of the tents with beer underneath them.

One of the local brewers present.  Gotta LOVE local.

Ross, Sam and Matty sampling some beer.  See the mud in the background... YUM.
Overall 65+ breweries and 200+ beers to sample equals a GREAT time.  

Back in March my family attended the auto show as we do every year.  We always enter any contests they have and this year it finally paid off.  My momma won two tickets to a twins game!!!  It just so happened that the tickets were for this past Saturday.  

Although it was a SUPER hot day it was not as bad as it has been here.  I still managed to get sweat the entire game though!  This picture does not do a great job showing my serious sweating...  I love the new Stadium and although I miss the Metrodome there is something to be said about watching baseball outside.  The best part of the game was that we WON!  Go TWINS!  I told my mom this just means that in order for the Twins to do better we need to go to more games :)  I'll let you know how that goes...
Apologies for the awful quality
After that Sam and I had a great date night trying out the new Osaka Japanese Restaurant that recently opened in Golden Valley.  Sam had never done Hibachi before and I had a coupon so it seemed like a perfect opportunity to try it out.  All in all it was a great time!  They also had a great happy hour that we were unfortunately too full to test out.  Which means we'll just have to go back there!  I guess it's a good thing, but I always forget to take pictures when Sam and I go out!  His company is just so great that I forget to snap any pictures.  I'm working on this... We'll see how it goes.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Several things

First off... why I love March #2,3,4,5,6,7....

#25 (because it was my 25th birthday on the 25th of March)
Great birthday planner, plus he's so cute ;)
Catch-up time...  Since my last post I:
-turned 25
-had 2 midterm exams, did well on both. SCORE!
-Started coaching my 2nd season of Lacrosse :)

Since I'm still in school for another month I have a busy time ahead of me!  Coaching + School + Training for a 1/2 marathon = a busy KK.  At least I like staying busy!  And I've continued to bake!  Here's my last attempt... 
Chocolate Chocolate Chip Muffins
They were ok... I played around with the original recipe and did not add enough moisture so they ended up dryer than I wanted them.  To remedy that situation I poured some Baileys over some and then a mixture of Butterscotch Schnapps/Agave nectar over the rest.  Best idea. Enough said.

I also have a new goal for myself.  Last year I received the cookbook Bakewise from my mother.  I have made several recipes from it so far but I really want to try ALL of them.  SOOOO my new goal is to make a recipe from this cookbook every week.  And I'll have lots of hungry lacrosse girls to eat the nummy treats, so I won't have to eat it all... even though I'd love to!  So you read it first... a recipe every week.  And I'll do my best not to change them, which will be a challenge for me, but I believe in myself!

First game of the season tonight.  I have faith in my girls and have to think of wise words to motivate them to their first win... here I go!

Friday, March 4, 2011


Last night while we were out at dinner my mother asked me:

"Now would you want to have a surprise party for your birthday?"


I love my mother but seriously!  And she had only had one glass of wine.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Why I heart March #1

Enough said.

PS- If you do not know what that is I do not know if I can call you my friend.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Deliciousness in bar form


These are the only words to describe the bars that I made on Sunday afternoon.

I had spotted this recipe over on How Sweet It is months ago and had been meaning to make them.  I finally got around to it and boy am I glad that I did.  They literally have everything you could want in a bar, brownies, chocolate, peanut butter, peanuts, and of course reese's peanut butter cups.  I modified the original recipe because that's just what I do.  I try not to eat high fructose corn syrup, which is unfortunately found in Rice Krispies, so I used puffed millet instead.  This probably changes the texture a little but it was still GREAT.  I could have also used brown rice krispies, but I was not about to spend $4 on a box of cereal.  I also used dark chocolate instead of milk chocolate, because seriously it's WAY better!

I urge you to make these the first chance you get.  You will be happy, your waistline may not.  But hey spring is right around the corner so you'll get outside for that run soon enough ;)

adapted from HowSweetItIts

1 recipe brownies (I used No Pudge's fat free!)
1/2 cup peanuts
1 cup Reese's Miniature Peanut Butter Cups, chopped (I choose to use dark chocolate ones)
1 Tbsp butter
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup Puffed Millet

Prepare brownies as directed on box in a 9x13 inch pan.  Once baked sprinkle with peanuts and peanut butter cups, return to over for approximately 4-6 minutes to melt the pb cups slightly.  While that is in the oven melt the butter, peanut butter and chocolate chips in a saucepan.  Once melted stir in the puffed millet.  Don't forget the pan of brownies in the OVEN!!!  Pour the puffed millet mixture over the brownies, being careful not to move the peanuts and pb cups around too much.  Spread evenly in pan.  Refrigerate for 2 hours, or if you're impatient like myself freeze until solid and then EAT!

Just for fun here's a pic of my barley oats that were my breakfast this morning:

For those of you who have not had barley you MUST!  It becomes really creamy, and I only cooked it in water!  Check this site out for recipes and also to learn all of the health benefits from it:

Friday, February 18, 2011


Reasons you know it's spring in MN

1.  You wake up in the morning to hear birds chirping.

2. You slip, fall and bruise your rear at night, because all of the melted snow has now turned to ice on the sidewalks.

3. People are walking around in shorts at 40 degrees.

4. The path around Lake Calhoun is so packed with people it is simply un-walkable.

5. You have to give your dog a bath after every walk.

6. People start ordering "iced" coffee drinks as soon as the thermometer reaches 30 degrees

I could go on and on, but those are my top favs!!!!

What are some of yours?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Bad Bad Bad

I've been bad bad bad, which equals busy busy busy.  School and life are getting the best of me lately...  since my last post it was my father, Sam's and good friends birthdays, school is going GREAT and I've been interviewing for some jobs/internships.  Pretty much this equals not posting :(  But I am going to change.  I just need to realize it's ok to not have LONG posts every time!

Since my last post I've made a birthday cake, cupcakes, cookies, chili and lots of other goodies.... however I forgot to snap photos of many of them.  Here is a little taste of what I've been up to though:

Went to Boston; BC vs. BU

Sam's Cake that looked beautiful before I forgot to put it in the fridge.  Whoops!

Out with Jacqui celebrating Sam's Bday

Birthday boy and friends on his bday
Hope that gives you all a little taste of what I've been up to :)  

Yesterday I decided that I had been so busy and needed to do something nice for myself.  Since I love food and had a groupon that was about to expire I decided to treat myself to some Tiger Sushi for lunch.

This weekend is going to be spent with lots of quality time with Sammy.  He's having a hard week, ie 4 exams, and we have yet to celebrate love day!  Going out, making dinner and making care packages are on the agenda.  Well and of course some homework is going to be thrown in there as well :)  I will take photos!!  Much love to all!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Cranberry Banana Bread

Still attempting to use up my banana's and cranberry's that are taking up home in my fridge/freezer, I decided the other day to make Cranberry Banana Bread.  Again I searched for a recipe, and again I adjusted the found recipe to my liking :)  I'm still on a super health kick, using butter/oils sparingly, using only whole wheat flour, and uping my fruit/vegetable intake.  This bread goes along with this strategy perfectly!  Hope you enjoy :)

Cranberry Banana Bread
adapted from TwoPeasKitchen

1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/4 cup old-fashioned oats
1/4 ground flax seeds
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
2 large bananas, mashed
1/2 cup fat free vanilla greek yogurt, I used Chobani Blueberry
2 Tbsp Agave Nectar
1 large egg
about 1/2 cup milk
1 cup fresh/frozen cranberries, halved

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease a loaf pan, I used an 8x5x3 inch pan.  Mash the bananas in a large bowl.  Add the yogurt, agave nectar, egg and milk.  Stir until combine.  (I did not feel like doing dishes this day so I made this a one bowl recipe, the dry ingredients can be combine in a separate bowl before mixing the wet.  This will result in a less chewy bread.)  To the wet ingredients add the dry ingredients.  If the dough is too thick add a touch more milk, I did not measure exactly but I am pretty sure that I used about a half cup of almond milk.  Add cranberries and stir just until combined.  Place dough in the pan and bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes, until crust is browned and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

This bread is delicious!!!  The only things I would do differently next time would be to add some walnuts, as the original recipe calls for.  I was fresh out of walnuts :(  I would also increase the amount of sugar in this recipe, perhaps up it by another tbsp of agave nectar.  I was fine with the taste of the bread, however I have a slight feeling that it may not be sweet enough for others.  This also could be because I used fresh instead of dried cranberries, which tend to be much sweeter.  I really enjoy the texture that comes from using so much oatmeal in the recipe!

Today is going to be filled with some errands, a test for a new job, class and then dinner with the boy :)  I head to Boston bright and early tomorrow morning to chaperone a Lakers player.  Super excited as I've never been there before, unfortunately I will only be in the city for 24 hours and Saturday morning will be spent watching the BU lacrosse clinic.  At least I'll get some drills out of that :)

If you could go to one city for 24 hours where would you choose?

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Banana Oat Bars

In an attempt to use up more of the banana's I have in my freezer I searched foodgawker this morning for some healthy recipes.  I came across this one, from All Day I Dream About Food.  I changed a few things here and there to make it a little healthier and I am certainly glad I did because I do not really think the changes take away from the overall flavor.  Avocado replaced the butter and some almonds got thrown into the mix, results = delicious and guilt free :)

Banana Oat Bars

1/3 Cup mashed Avocado
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg
3 large ripe bananas, mashed
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups oatmeal
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup raisins
1/3 cup coconut
1/4 cup chopped almonds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line an 8x8 pan with parchment paper.  "Cream" the avocado and brown sugar together until well combined.  Add egg and mix thoroughly.  Add mashed banana,salt and cocoa powder.
Creamed avocado and brown sugar
Once combined add remaining ingredients.  Spread evenly in the prepared pan.  Bake in the preheated over for 30 mins.

I added cocoa powder to counter the green color of the avocado.  It did not affect the taste much and I think it would be interesting to see what would happen if I did not include this, I do not know how green it would really look... next time!  I also decided to line the pan with parchment paper since I used avocado in place of the butter/coconut oil.  I think that the bars would have been just as easily removed with a greased pan if you do not have parchment paper.  I just did not want to take chances the first time, I've had too many catastrophies!  There's nothing worse than delicousness you just can't get out of the pan.  A few changes I may make next time is to play around with the mix-ins.  Perhaps some chocolate and peanut butter chips, or butterscotch chips?  Raisins, craisins and nuts for a trail mix bar?  The possibilities are endless!  I also want to try it with no sugar, or perhaps exchanging the brown sugar for maple syrup, agave nectar or honey.  I'll let you know if any of these work :)

I'm enjoying my Sunday fun-day watching football at Bunny's with some friends and then having 'bar' night with Sam.  We tend to not be able to both drink together, as one of us usually has to drive home, so tonight is our night to hit the town and walk/cab home :)  Enjoy your Sunday!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Cranberry Orange Muffins

Winter break as left me with a lot of unoccupied time.  Thankfully this has allowed me to do some baking! I attempted to make homemade pretzels on Saturday, the did not turn out picture worthy... ie HORRIBLE! Needless to say I have a new goal of perfecting pretzels this year.  I've really been in the mood to bake a cake, however I have 3 birthdays to celebrate/bake for in the coming weeks so I've held off on this front.  This has lead to me using up leftovers in my fridge/freezer.  Doolittle's over ordered banana's a while ago so I got the leftovers which ended up being over 30 banana's.  Half of them have been used thus far, and about 5 of them went into Banana Chocolate Chip muffins last week.  Unfortunately I forgot to snap a photo, I promise I'll get better at this.

Last night the cranberries that have been sitting in my fruit drawer went into some Cranberry Orange Muffins.  I modified a recipe from the Betty Crocker Cookbook making some healthier additions and changes.

Cranberry Orange Muffins
adapted from the Betty Crocker Cookbook

1 egg
1/2 cup almond milk
1/4 cup agave nectar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup Whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup All-purpose flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tsp Baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp Orange zest
1 cup Cranberries, halved

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Beat the egg, then add milk, agave nectar and oil.  Once combine add dry ingredients.  Mix until just combined, should be slightly lumpy.  Add in orange zest and cranberries.  Using a 12 muffin tin, fill 2/3 full.  Bake for 20 mins.

These muffins are best eaten warm!  Though I'm sure they'll taste just as good tomorrow morning for breakfast :)

On a different note, it's garbage day today but both of our garbage cans are frozen to the ground!  Literally I could not get either of them to budge!  Hopefully it'll warm up and I'll be able to move them before garbage day next week, otherwise we may have an overflow.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Old Photos

While updating somethings on my computer I came across these lovely little photos!  Take a look at the progress of Kalyn's wedding cake that I made!

Bottom layer topped with Chocolate Mousse

The Crumb Coat, there's one big layer of Chocolate cake sandwiched between the chocolate mousse and vanilla cake

The almost finished product

Hope you enjoyed!  My goal this year is to take more pictures.  I used to be great at it but over the past few years I've forgotten to document a lot of fun events!  

Christmas 2010

So as promised here are some photos of the cookies made by my mother and myself.
Our Sugar Cookies

Clockwise from Top: Chocolate Ginger, Spritz, Pecan Sandies, Orange Chocolate, and Thumbprint

Coconut Macaroons and Lemon Sables

Peanut Butter Nutella Sandwiches, Chocolate Crinkles, Russian Teacakes, Toffee Squares

Chocolate Peppermint Pinwheels, Peanut Butter Logs, Oatmeal Chocolate Chip, Rum Balls

The PB Nutella Sandwiches were a new addition this year, and let me say they were a surprisingly huge hit.  We always make the PB logs but the recipe makes more than enough, so this year we decided to make half the peanut butter dough into regular pb cookies.  I thought that was kind of boring so I suggested we sandwich two cookies with some Nutella.  They passed the taste test with flying colors, and ended up being the first cookies gone on Christmas eve.   If you want any of the recipes for the above cookies I will definitely post them, I just do not particularly want to post all 16 recipes if people won't utilize them!  In addition to the pictures above my mom also made rosette's but I forgot to snap a photo of them :( 

My Christmas was low key in the sense that we did what we always do!  Christmas Eve with my dad's family, this year that meant hosting 21 adults and 5 little kids, then presents in the AM with my brother and parent's followed by an early dinner at my Aunt's House.  All in all it was a great christmas filled with family, great food and great fun.  

After dinner and several hours of playing Kinect on Xbox I headed out to the bars with some friends.  This is something that Sam and I have recruited people to do for the past few Christmas Days and it always leads to a lot of fun.  I really enjoy going out to the bars, but not when it is so packed that you have to wait in line outside in the cold to get in.  If you have the same feelings I highly recommend hitting the bars on Christmas day as they are about 1/3 full as normal!!!  We headed to Stella's pretty late actually, unfortunately so late that we missed 2-4-1's which end at 12 AM :(  Overall fun night, hopefully we can recruit even more people next year!

The rest of the week was spent relaxing :)  Sam starts chiropractic school next week and I just finished my first semester of grad school so we were both ready to do almost nothing!!  This nothing included playing with old toys (McDonald's Hamburger maker and Dr. Dreadful), walks, football, movie marathon (Little Fockers, How do you know?, and the Tourist), sleeping, drinking and cooking.  

I spent New Years Eve over at my friend Brandon's house.  He and my other friend Lindsey had made us steaks and some other goodies, YUM!  We spent the evening eating, drinking cocktails, wine and champagne and playing games.  It was a great night, so great that I fell asleep at approximately 12:05 AM.  At least I made to New Years though right?!?!

I have break for the next two weeks and I plan on spending my time working, working to find a new job, and cooking/baking.  Sam gave me a whole grain bread cookbook so plan on looking for some bread photos soon!!  

Hope everyone had a great holiday and happy New Years!