Archive for the ‘Food’ Category

Local Love: Avocado Cafe and GIVEAWAY

Thursday, August 30th, 2012

No cats were harmed during the making of this post. We’ll get to that later.

If you are visiting me from Oh Boy Fourth Grade, I was right. I told Farley I didn’t want thousands of fans seeing my chipped nail polish and wack makeup. Lucky for me you were probably too blinded by my yellow sweater to notice! If you aren’t visiting me from Oh Boy Fourth Grade, what are you thinking???? GO VISIT HER AND THEN COME BACK HERE! :)

Last week  I visited a brand new cafe in the Bracken Village in NE San Antonio for lunch.

Who knew there were so many yummy uses for an avocado!

 

I thought the name was cute and earthy, but I never guessed most of the menu really would include avocado. (DUH)

The moment we walked in the door, we were hit up with FREE dessert samples!   I LUV me some dessert before the main course.

BTW teacherbarbies, my trick for telling kiddos how to know the difference between dessert and desert is that eating DESSERT is TWICE as nice as being in the hot DESERT.

There is your squirrel lesson for the day.

OK, back to the avocado yumminess.

I had the avocado, chicken, and provolone sandwich. There was another wedge, but I had gobbled it down like I was on lunch duty or something before I took the photo.

It was DELICIOUS!!! RANDOM FACT- I have not consumed avocado in NINE YEARS until this sandwich people.  After living in Costa Rica with an avocado tree in my backyard (which meant it was included in most meals) I swore off avo for awhile. OH yeah and rice and beans. Sheesh can a girl get some MEAT ?  Living in Costa Rica definitely sent me on the path of pastry overload, because I couldn’t eat rice and beans three times a day.

OK

the Avocado Cafe delights weren’t done.

We had CELERY and dip in lieu of chips and salsa brought to the table. Some of you will gag, but I found it so random I gobbled them up.

I had trouble finishing my food because I was distracted by the country chic design. Old table, lanterns hanging from a branch, and a birdhouse? I may never leave.

 

Who needs a Cat in a Hat when you can have a Cat in a BOX!

 

Seriously though, you should check out the Avocado Cafe if you are nearby, or not! You can stop in my favorite jewelry place Bless Your Heart next door in the big red barn!

 

SO, if you haven’t already read Farley’s post about the perfect pens BIC sent her, here is your chance. Go to Farley’s blog and check out the pens and pencils. Comment there and you have a chance to win her giveaway. Then LIKE my Facebook page for Happydally  and tell me you commented on Farley’s blog. If you managed to jump through those two hoops, you will have a chance to win the Velocity BIC pens from me!!!   Heather and Farley weren’t lying. That pen was SMOOOOOOOOTHHHH.

One post will be randomly selected from Happydally’s Facebook page on Tuesday! SO get on over there!!! If we were in South Carolina it would be GIT!

Blah Blah Blah Day

Friday, July 13th, 2012

I heart you M&M! You are a good friend.

I will let you be LC since Audrina is  an air head…Though I’m the blonde in this friendship:)

You may want to be Audrina because she is smokin hot in a bikini.

I had to google LC vs Audrina Bikini to find this pic! I LOVE THE INTERNET

While chatting with my friend at Starbucks, I got a free drink today!

Starbucks now has these “Refreshers” drinks with caffeine from green coffee beans.

I had the lime refresher and it was awesome! I didn’t know what it was at the time (they asked me if I wanted the free tall drink and I said holla!) but it tastes a little like a green tea without the bitterness. I will definitely be switching to this the next time I go to Starbucks (from my usual Passion Tea Lemonade).

What is your favorite Starbucks drink?

A Long Hiatus

Sunday, May 20th, 2012

My break from blogging is over.

I try not to blog unless I have something nice to say (words of wisdom from the movie Bambi).  I still can’t think of many nice things, but I wanted to catch up on the past month.

I turned 30 on April 28th.  I’d be a liar if I said this didn’t bother me.  THIRTY?  I am in the phase of being neither young or old. Just in my thirties.

I feel like I should go buy a house or have some sort of minor cosmetic surgery to celebrate the milestone.  Botox?

Despite my dread of the new number, we had a great weekend.

Farm Boy and I met my parents in Dallas to celebrate.  There was a lot of eating and more eating.

 

Birthday Celebration Weekend Day 1

Our first food adventure was in the Bishop Arts District at Eno’s Pizza.

 

Farm Boy's favorite bridge in Dallas

 

Mom and dad, or as Sherman calls them Nana and Papa

A Yummy pizza place in Bishop Arts District

The famous Chocolate Sack Sundae

 

While the pizza was yummy, the most delicious part was the dessert.  As you can see the Chocolate Sack sundae was HUGE! Trying to tackle the chocolate sack was half the fun.

I’d love to go back to the Bishop Arts district and try several other places. We were able to have brunch the next morning at the Mockingbird Lane Cafe Brazil, but there is also one found in this cute block.

What is your favorite place to eat in Dallas?

All the Single Ladies

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

Put yo hands up!

Farm Boy is in Chicago this week and I am living it up!

I get into all kinds of trouble when he isn’t around. Typically in the calorie department.  Let’s be honest. I am like a naughty child who needs supervision.

Day 1 (Mind you this was my post state writing STAAR testing night…two days of staring at “nothing” will make one do strange things).

1. Ate chips and salsa for dinner.

2. Watched 6 hours of Bravo without moving.

BTW- I want to become a rich hoarder so Jeff Lewis will come stay with me for a week!

I also watched Million Dollar Listing NY.  I feel like I should be a real estate broker. I was calling prices like I actually know the difference between Tribeca and Chinatown!

I think Ryan is pretty ick except for his songwriting.  Though I would probably hire him, Fredrick is a troublemaker. I like little Michael…such a bad.

3.  Played about 20 rounds of Drawsomething with random strangers

4.  “Walked” the dog by throwing chips across the room for him to eat

5.  Dangerous Amazon Prime online shopping for running gear while eating a Klondike bar. Very counterproductive

As you can see, I have a problem. It is largely based around chips and ice cream. I need a babysitter.

 

Do you have any sneaky habits when your significant other is far away? Keep it PG people.

How to Train For a 5K While Sick

Saturday, February 18th, 2012

How does one train for the Thin Mint Sprint 5K when they’ve been sick for a week?

EAT THIN MINTS!

A thin mint a day keeps the doctor smaller pants size away!

Who has time to shop for smaller pants anyways?

Seriously though, I found this recipe and I almost licked the screen!

No Bake Thin Mint Cookie Truffles from Six Sisters’ Stuff Blog

I think this picture has been pinned 500 times, so you know it is worth making!

So yes lovelies, I am working on getting ready for that 5K. Non-traditional training schedule, but just as fun!

Will Run for Cookies

Sunday, February 12th, 2012

 

I will run for cookies. Especially Girl Scout Cookies! I would probably also run for any form of

ice cream, brownie, or tex-mex queso. Just sayin.

Thanks to my fit friend M, I am signed up for this 5K.  The first real 5K I will (hopefully) have completed since undergrad.

I fell off the jogging wagon in October. :(

On a positive note, that means my “new” running shoes are still like new!

SO if you are in the SA on March 24th, you should grab a glass of milk and come run with us! Slowly.

You will be jogging slowly M.M or I will pass out.

To get a head start on my training, I’ve went through 3 boxes of Girls Scout Cookies already!!! Those new Savannah Smiles are SOOOOOOOO  Lemony Snicket Good.  Delicious, yet unfortunate for my thighs.

Weekend Food Find: Steel Cut Oatmeal

Saturday, January 21st, 2012

Twice in the past week I’ve made this delicious recipe from The Yummy Life Blog for Overnight, Slow Cooker, Apple Cinnamon Steel-Cut Oatmeal.

Wow, that is the longest recipe title EVER!

Well worth it though. It is quite yummy.

I used Bob’s Red Mill Steel Cut Oats. This package was enough for two double batches!

I also went overboard on the apples. I used 4 or 5.

I can’t remember because I kept feeding Sherman pieces and then had to cut up more to add.

Are those apple chunks or BUTTER!!?? :) Token out of focus shot. It wouldn’t be a Happydally post without one of those.

Seven Hours Later…

24 Hours later-Leftovers with dried cranberries! DELISH!

I really enjoyed making this recipe. I even took it in my lunch TWICE this week. I will definitely add more dried fruit next time to sweeten it up a bit. Check out Monica’s blog for more yummy recipes!

Do you have a favorite crock pot recipe? I’d love to try something new!

Happy Weekend

Thanksgiving 2011

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

I’ve enjoyed reading everyone’s daily posts on FB about what they are thankful for. I didn’t jump on the bandwagon, but here are some things that I am thankful to have.

I am thankful for free time to spend outside and enjoy the fall weather. (Even if that means sweatin it out in 85 degree heat in the S.A.)

I am thankful for my family.

 

I love my lil bro too, but he is too busy playing Mr. Basketball in NYC this week to be photographed. That is ok because we saw you on ESPN 2 and Channel 9 tonight!!!! Just to keep you in check, I will post embarrassing kid photos. He’s so cute!

Sherman- I am thankful for having a break from mommy duties when your PaPa is around.

 

Farm Boy- I know I’m not supposed to post you on the blog, but I am very thankful for you. You look handsome rockin the Paul Bunyan beard/ Movember moustache. I hope you win the contest!!!

 

We make a good team. :)

 

I’m off to get some sleep before the food fest begins.

Dressing is my favorite part of Thanksgiving. Do you call it Stuffing or Dressing?

I hope everyone has a safe and Happy Thanksgiving.

 

 

 

 

Tuesday Confessions: Dirty

Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

I have a confession.  I have planned in advance not to wash my hair.  I am too tired after spending 7am to 8pm at school today to explain all the details why, but if I don’t explain a little this post will seem even more silly. I’m silly. Sleepy silly.

I do this quite often though.

I don’t know why I’m confessing about my dirty hair.

I have a dirty hair scale I’ve created in my mind. Like a rubric for all my Teacher Barbies out there.

It includes things like…

What time of day did I was my hair yesterday or today? (The later the better)

Did I eat in any restaurant that made my hair stinky? (Greasy Spoon joints like Jim’s or Mela Indian food)

Did I put my hair up in a bun during planning and now have a giant crease in the back of my hair?

Can said crease be hidden by putting it back in a bun?

Can simply braiding or pinning my bangs back cover it up?

Does anyone give a *@#$?  (No)

See all the decisions that go into washing hair?!!?

I have complicated the situation by cutting bangs again. I LOOOOVVVEEEE chunky bangs.  One problem. She didn’t cut mine chunky enough.  They are very 2nd grade cute cut, not hippy 70’s wannabe cut.

Bangs get durty. Fast. I notice this more now that I am Katy Perry brown.

 Good bangs day for Katy

 Dirty bangs day perhaps?

Using cleavage, I mean flowers to distract us from your dirty bangs?

 

I love Katy Perry.

Have no fear friends. I will not be stinkin up the place too badly.

I know it is best not to wash your hair everyday, but to help I use THIS STUFF!!!

I highly recommend it (and you can find it at Walgreens and Target)!

And because I haven’t LMAO enough today, you must watch this kid sing my favorite Katy Perry song (Yes it has been around a long time…still funny to me) Why didn’t he download the lyrics!? lol

[youtube lm_n3hg-Gbg 640 510 ]

I need to work. I’m too tired.

Maybe tomorrow I will tell you about the fun stuff we did tonight at our Ancient Cultures Time Traveling Event! I don’t know why I capitalized all that.

Anyone else have funny hair secrets?

Not So Smart Bacon

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011
Hello from Zombie Land. That is how I feel after a day of entertaining 4 kids.  I’ve never appreciated my calm, sweet dog more. I LOVE being a doggie mom. Don’t follow instructions-go in your CAGE. OH and he can NEVER SAY NEVER or No.  He just huffs a little when he disagrees.
Enough about the Sherms.
One of my goals/ideas for happydally was to include interviews from friends/cool people who inspire me or who I just find fun.
Long ago in a faraway place, I attended a high school with some fun people. I never hide my love of Facebook, and that is how I found one of my old school mates who now lives in a lovely place called Seattle.  While reading his posts I realized he was not only hilarious, but also a vegetarian (ok at first I thought vegan, but he explains more later).
High School is a funny place. I am sure I’m quite different than I was in those days. As is Josh. He had really long hair, and I seem to remember he wore a lot of sports jerseys.  Little did I know he was a budding film director.  He probably didn’t know I was a budding pain in the @$$. lol jk Everyone knew that.
A few weeks ago I got this crazy idea to try vegetarian bacon. I know, what was I thinking.  It was a shocking experience, and it made me think of Josh. How did he get into this and does he eat veggie bacon? I had to know.

The picture is so deceiving :(

So here is my interview with Josh. A super cool dude.  He only agreed to be interviewed because I told him 20 hot Texas teachers would read it. So to the 5 of you who read it, please pass it on to 5 of your friends so I am not made to be a liar.
1. OK, first things first. When did you cut your hair? (I’m still stuck in 1998 and want to know)  
Just kidding- Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? 
My family is originally from Illinois, but I grew up for the most part in Broken Bow, Oklahoma. I attended Broken Bow Public Schools from kindergarten through high school. Additionally, I attended Eastern Oklahoma State College and the University of Oklahoma before moving out to Seattle and finishing my BA at the University of Washington (Go Huskies!). I’ve lived in Seattle since 2003. I am currently a free-lance film and video editor and student in a digital filmmaking program at Shoreline Community College. I tend to keep fairly fit. I work out three times a week and do cardio 4-6 days a week. I ride my bicycle a lot, including commuting to and from work, to and from the grocery store, and to and from pub quizzes. I have a tendency to make self-summaries sound like cover letters or resumes, so let me sum up by saying I am a hugger, a high-fiver, a fist-bumper, a wearer-of-many-hats, and a good guy to know.
2.  How long have you been vegan? Did you start as vegetarian and transition to vegan? 
I’ve been vegetarian since 1999.
The vegan label is a tricky one for me. I find the term too constricting. I also find that it has many negative connotations to it. Rather, I just avoid eating any food that contains animal products. I don’t wear leather. My wallet and belt are both made from recycled bicycle inner-tubes (shout out to an awesome Seattle company, Alchemy Goods). I wear canvas shoes. However, I do have a couple of nice wool coats and several wool baseball caps. These are things that vegans wouldn’t wear. By and large, there is an ideology behind veganism to which I don’t fully cotton and that’s the main reason why I don’t describe myself using that term.
I have been avoiding any sort of dairy or eggs for roughly a year now. The reason I am avoiding these things is that they cause severe stomach problems for me. My doctor and nutritionist both said to eliminate those things from my diet. I had never really eaten a whole lot of dairy or eggs, so it wasn’t that difficult to do. However, when I head home to Broken Bow or I’m visiting family in the Midwest, I find that I often have to make exceptions when dining out. It’s a lot easier to avoid any animal products in Seattle and on the West Coast in general. However, I know of a couple of great vegan places in Dallas and Austin.
3.   What inspired you to make this change?

Well, my switch to vegetarianism started shortly after graduating high school. I began weening meat out of my diet in the late summer or fall of 1998. I had been doing research about switching. There was a lot of misinformation about how people become sickly after going vegetarian. Turns out, those people did not slowly make the switch. Rather, they dove in head first without accounting for proper nutrition. So I gave myself a year to get rid of the meat and plan my diet well. It became a lot easier to make the switch when I moved out of my dad’s place and into my own apartment that fall. I had more control over what came into the kitchen.
I had never been a big meat eater. My mom always had to pick out the chunks of chicken out of my Chicken and Stars soup as a kid. To be honest, meat, eggs, and dairy always kind of grossed me out. I couldn’t separate the food from its source. I always felt bad eating animals, even as a little kid. I knew that most people didn’t think about this stuff or didn’t care, so I kind of kept this to myself until I reached a point where I had more control over my lifestyle. I then made the switch.
I always have to let people know that I don’t care what they choose to eat. I made my decisions as an adult and I won’t begrudge anyone else their decisions. I would just hope that people make better decisions about where their food comes from. Again, this is a lot easier in a place like Seattle. We have several ranches within 100 miles of the city that raise organic, grass-fed beef and free-range chicken. Several Seattle neighborhoods have weekly farmer’s markets at which you can buy locally sourced produce, dairy, eggs, meat, etc.
4.  Jenn (a happydally reader) would like to know “How does he keep his protein/energy up?”   Any tips?

I get plenty of protein from beans, nuts, and organic/non-GMO soy. I also tend to use quinoa, a grain that is also a complete protein. Protein is important, no doubt. However, we really don’t need as much protein as the government’s food pyramid suggests. Plus, each person is an individual case. It’s far more important to make sure your nutrition is balanced between vitamins, minerals, carbs and proteins. Also, if you’re going vegetarian/vegan, befriend dark green, leafy, and cruciferous veggies in order to make sure you keep your iron levels up. Get outside and move. Get in the sun. Exercise and a healthy, balanced diet are all you need to ensure that you have plenty of energy. You can forget about eating meat if you do all of those things.
5.  Do you have any go-to blogs or cookbooks for good vegan recipes?
I have a Vegan Planet cookbook of which I’m fond. Honestly, though, I Google recipes or try to replicate things I’ve had in restaurants around here. The Internet should be your best-friend when it comes to this stuff. Also, if you have a smartphone, you can download a number of different apps that include recipes that help build shopping lists for said recipes. The best one I can think of off of the top of my head is the Epicurious app for either iOS or Android.
Also, I’d recommend people read The China Study. It’s the most comprehensive study into food, health, and nutrition conducted in human history. It’s a scientific study conducted without any sort of funding from vegetarian or non-vegetarian lobbies. The results are actually kind of surprising.
6.  What is your favorite vegan meal to make for non-vegans?
Oh man. I make some killer vegan tofu Thai tacos, some spicy Korean BBQ tofu, falafel. Also, when I’m home for Christmas, I make vegan mashed potatoes and gravy for Christmas dinner. But I’ll often take friends to a couple of my favorite vegan restaurants here in town for dinner. Bamboo Garden or Araya’s are the two that immediately come to mind.
7.  You live in Seattle, (Lucky) so I’m going to assume it is a vegan-friendly place (I just picture they are cool like that). Do you struggle when you come back to Texas and Oklahoma to find vegan restaurants or affordable produce?

It is difficult to find vegan-friendly places to eat in Oklahoma and Texas. However, I know of two awesome vegan cafes in Dallas and there are a lot of places with vegan options in Austin. I am seriously considering relocating to Austin next year, so I am researching places to eat there. Also, you hooked me up with the link to Wheatsville Co-op, a place that is right up my alley. They also have popcorn tofu on their hotbar.
Produce is not too difficult to find. My step-dad is actually a produce guy at a local supermarket, so I have an in. My mom also stocks her freezer with vegetarian goodies for me in anticipation of my visits home. In fact, she’ll probably do that in a couple of weeks, since I’ll be heading home for a couple of weeks at the end of August.
8.  Would you ever go raw? (I have an obsession with the idea, I just can’t commit)

Oh man, I don’t know! Sprouted grains are delicious. However, there are too many things I like that would not qualify for the raw foods diet. However, go to a Whole Foods now and buy some sprouted almonds. They are a bit pricey, but oh man are they delicious.
9.  Do you have a funny story you want to share that is food related? :)

The last Thanksgiving during which I ate meat, I had a slice of turkey breast from a turkey deep-fried in peanut oil and a slice of turkey breast deep from a turkey deep-fried in jalapeno oil. That’s not too funny. The next Thanksgiving, there was totally vegetarian-friendly dressing. It existed outside of the turkey and was therefore not the tainted stuffing. However, when the turkey was removed from the oven, the cooks mixed the stuffing from the bird with the vege-friendly dressing and thus, I couldn’t eat it. That’s actually kind of sad.
Okay, how about this one! My friends found out I went vegetarian when we stopped at a Fazzoli’s in Hot Springs, Arkansas on our way to a Foo Fighters/Chili Peppers concert in Little Rock. They asked me why I kept asking about which of their sauces had meat. When I told them that I had stopped eating meat, they all looked at me blankly and then one of them said “What are you trying to be, Joshie Greenbeans or something?” The nickname Joshie Greenbeans has stuck ever since.

10. When are you moving to Texas so we can make our movie? 

I’m actually considering relocating to Dallas or Austin next spring/summer. It all depends on what sort of steady work I can find in editing and post-production.
11. FYI – Veggie bacon is not so good. It looks like and smells like Beggin’ Strips. Therefore, it must taste like Beggin’ Strips. Soy sausage (soysage!) on the other hand is pretty good…if you get the right type.
And CUT
JOSHIE GREENBEANS my brain is on overload! Thank you for sharing all this information.  I’m going to google the noodle out of the sprouted almonds and cruciferous veggies (wth?) and I will post something delicious!
If you would like to blogstalk Josh and all of his sports lovin, tofu cookin, bicycle zoomin, movie makin greatness you can read more on his blog Unpainted Huffines
He also has an upcoming project directing the pilot for my cable series Nanny Notebook. I’m Serious. My story must be told.
Would you ever consider a vegetarian/vegan lifestyle? What are you thoughts?