Monday, July 14, 2008

Where Do I Go from Here?

I am a tad stressed today. I have been contemplating my future as a nutritionist, figuring out when and where I'll take which courses...transferring credits makes things so much more difficult. Why didn't I just go to a school that offers a nutrition major in the first place?! On top of my long term education woes, I have two quizzes and a project due this week. Fortunately, I finished my project (for nutrition) about a month ago--yes, I am one of those people--, and my quizzes are classified as "minor."

OK, enough Debbie Downer talk. I have some awesome eats to share.

Apparently, I was a hungry beast on Friday evening because I ate two hefty snacks. First I had a pair of Vans whole grain waffles with Cinnamon Raisin PB.
Later, I had my usual smoothie/shake. Don't be alarmed by the unappetizing green color of this concoction--it was really tasty! I am guessing that the green color comes from the pea protein in the Alive! mix. I would buy this again, especially since I don't have to order it online--I found this at my local Whole Foods. Saturday
Before heading out the farmers' market (finally!), I made a quick tofu scramble with the usual components, plus salsa, all stuffed into an Ezekial pita. This dish was relatively tasty, but I don't think I would recommend the combination of tahini+salsa--not a good example of fusion cuisine.
We made a quick day trip to the lake house on Saturday, and I didn't bring my camera, so no lunch pics. It wasn't anything innovative: PB&J on whole wheat with steamed veggies and natural applesauce. Everything came straight out of the pantry or freezer. Upon our return (at about 8:00), I needed something fast and veggie-full. Thus, I whipped up a batch of "E-Z Artichoke Dip" from the Chicago Diner Cookbook. I dipped carrots and crackers in it, and I had a dish of organic vanilla yogurt with farmers' market blackberries for dessert. BTW, the dip is vegan, in case you're curious. I tried yet another new protein powder (what is this? #3?). This time I sampled Living Harvest's Vanilla Spice Hemp Protein. The end result was mind-bogglingly delicious. I didn't taste the mango at all, but I enjoyed this shake, just the same. It reminded me of cake batter, with that distinctive hempy kick. Sunday
More waffles! Another pair of the Vans variety with sliced banana and a dollop of vanilla soy yogurt. So good.
We had several errands to run yesterday, so I prepared (and consumed) my lunch in record time. I ended up with a green lunch: a quick sandwich with sliced tofu and fresh guacamole (leftover from Chipotle); I also had a sliced kiwi. Quite possibly the most delicious sandwich I've ever had, although it would have been even better if I had had the time to grill the tofu... Four months after purchasing Veganomicon, I had yet to try the much beloved Chickpea Cutlets. So I made some last night, and they were delicious! I just made two, but now I wish I had made more. I served it with some fresh salsa for dipping, farmers' market tomatoes with roasted yellow peppers, and steamed squash. For a sweet ending, I had some peaches with Nutty Topping from Ellie Krieger. Technically, the topping is supposed to accompany pancakes, but I figured it would taste just fine with fruit too.
The shake last night was a bit of a mess. In the middle of assembling my creation, I realized that the blender was leaking! I tried to blend it all together before it seeped out, but I ended up with a half blended mess. I transferred the mixture to the Bullet to complete the process. Let's just say I ended up with a messy kitchen and a not-so-tasty shake. Bummer.
Despite having a dysfunctional air conditioner, I decided to have a hot bowl of oat bran this morning. Stovetop oat bran is fast becoming one of my favorite breakfasts! Today's version had whipped banana and Sunbutter.
Yet another green lunch today: tomato slices with more guacamole, green grapes, and Tofuna salad (chickpeas with Nayonaise, lemon, paprika) on Ak-Maks. So fresh (and clean).
OK, now I am off to obsess a bit more about my future. Ciao for now.


ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

Holy deliciousness, a CAKE BATTER smoothie?! I am heading to the Living Harvest website right now to see about this protein powder.

*Runs off in the direction of the Living Harvest site*

VeggieGirl said...

I'm obsessed with Living Harvest protein powder (and the hempmilk, of course!), so I'm glad that you're enjoying it :0)

I know how difficult it can be when trying to figure out what to do with your future - I've switched my major three times, and have switched universities as well!! Hang in there, and be sure to take time to relax when dealing with this situation. If you need any further support, I believe you have my email address - I'd be happy to help :0)

Anonymous said...

ehhhhhhh good luck w/ the school stuff! hope your choices get easier :)

Allison said...

Oh goodness, I've switched from occupational therapy, to psychology, and finally to nursing (transferring schools once)! It can be such a mess, but I know you'll work it out! :0) I muuust try that Living Harvest protein powder...and as always, I love the *tofuna*!
PS...The close-up picture of your Sunday waffles looks like it should be in a magazine!

Erin said...

Good luck figuring out your school business. You'll get it straight. My advice is to get a degree you actually want to do something with :)

At least you're eating some good food in the meantime. I was already thinking of having banana oat bran for breakfast tomorrow, I might have to mix in some pb and give it a try.

Anonymous said...

I've been eyeing that Alive shake for a while now and I'm so glad you gave it a good review! All of your shakes look delicious!

Anonymous said...

Let's hear it for the Ak-Mak!

Can I tell you what I am getting at Mother Earth tomorrow - waffles!

CeciLiA said...

Oh bummer - I'm currently all stressed out about my degree as well, urghh!! Hope it'll all work out soon :0)

Yummy shake you have there :0) I love all of your shake combinations, so much better than the ones I used to drink :0/

OOOooh is the artichoke dip yummy?! They look like spinach dip to me, haha!! Can you please email me the recipe - when you HAVE the time, NO RUSH ;0)

Living Harvest's Vanilla Spice Hemp Protein sound sooo good!! I wonder if I can order them online?! Hopefully the shipping cost won't be too much ... mmm ... cake batter (why can't they have a cookie dough flavor)

Your guacamole sammie looks really good to me - hrmm maybe I should give avocados another try (I'm not a fan of it - SHOCK)

Oh boy, chickpea cutlets - GAH!!!!! I must make them soon, I must be the last person on earth who hasn't made them yet!

Oh btw, sorry about your blender :0( Hope you have a great day ahead of ya!!!

Anonymous said...

Yiiiikes, stressing about future endeavours is never a fun experience. Good luck with the transfer and such, I'm sure you will get it all worked out just fine.

On a happier note, so many of your meals have made me feel super food inspired. They all look deeeelish. I love the sounds of the tofuna hehe

Ruby Red Vegan said...

Everything with your major will work out in the end -- getting to the end can be frustrating though, and I can totally relate to you! I've had to do a lot of special arranging of my schedule and transfer credits to keep on track for nutrition & dietetics, and I've felt doubtful before about being a dietitian while I'm a vegan at the same time, but the work is worth it if it's what you love!

The nutty topping looks so great for pancakes, fruit, or waffles! Thanks for linking to the recipe -- I'll have to try it. And I only recently discovered how delicious avocado tastes on a sandwich (and I had that with sundried tomatoes -- I highly recommend the combo). I want to try one with grilled tofu now!!! I got a cast iron grill press today, too. :) I love your banana and kiwi arrangements in this post, too. So, so cute.

CeciLiA said...

by the way ... do you eat the kiwi's skin?!! Just curious ... my friend eats them ... but I don't ... so I want to know who is the odd one ;0)

Kimberly said...

Great meal ideas, as always! I MUST try the guac/tofu sandwich - I always do avocado with salsa, so that will be a nice change.

Also, in my experience, you are way too young to stress about your career just yet!! As your interests broaden and priorities change, it will all fall into place naturally. Heck, I started college as a Spanish major with plans to become a professor - but after three changes in major, some graduate coursework, and an accidental career in int'l economics, I'm headed to law school at the ripe old age of 26. Just go at your own pace :)

Jenn said...

I definitely understand the need to "obsess" about the future. As I enter into senior year, my mind has started racing with all the "what if?" questions. I can only imagine that it's going to get worse once school starts. I guess all I can say is hang in there - and I'm with ya if you need someone to talk to!

Your smoothie/shakes look delicious - particularly the one you said tasted like CAKE BATTER - no way! That's my favorite ice cream from Cold Stone so I MUST look into getting my hands on some of that powder!

Guacamole really does make a sandwich/pretty much anything a million times better. I love Chipotle for that reason :o)

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

That does have to be rough, making sure you get all the courses you need, and having all those test, eek! Hang in there, it'll be worth it in the end.

Oh my glorious goodness. My tummy is growling after this post. You are seriously going to be responsible for my purchasing a blender, I can't keep looking at your delightful shakes and smoothies! I need to make one of my own!

Vegan On Stage said...

CAKE BATTER!?!?!?!?! i want some!!!!

DEFFF come to see the show if you can!! that would be sososo cool!!!!!!

ChickPea said...

CCV: LH hemp protein rocks! I think it might have been the mango+vanilla combo that made it cake-sh. Weird, I know.
VeggieGirl: Thanks for the LH recommendation! I love it!
You are so sweet to offer your support.
Love of Oats: Thanks for your kind words. Good luck with your wedding plans--looks like things are coming together!
Allison: Isn't Tofuna great? It's so easy and tasty. Oh, and thanks for complimenting my amateur photography!
Erin: I completely agree-this whole mess is totally worth it if it means I get to do what I love. Banana oat bran is a must-try.
Shelby: I love the Alive! shakes. Like you, I had seen them in the store for quite some time--I'm glad I finally tried it.
Nikki: Yay, another Ak-Mak lover! So versatile and so yummy. Let me know how you enjoy your waffles!
Cecilia: Sorry to hear that you're stressing too. Hopefully, we'll both get through it!
The dip IS technically artichoke spinach dip--I think I was a bit heavy-handed with the spinach though:)Yes, I do eat the skin, more out of laziness than anything else.
Lighter Portions: Glad to hear that you got some ideas from my post--let me know how you like Tofuna...chickpeas will never be the same!
Ruby: I know you probably understand my specific helps to know that someone else understands. I have been pleased to discover vegan friendliness in my nutrition classes. We had a project a while back in which we were required to design a diet plan for ourselves--the professor specified "no dairy required!"I'll have to try sundried tomatoes in my next guac sammie:)
Kimberly: I appreciate your kind words. Sometimes I get so caught up in wanting to start my career NOW that I forget that I am still young.
Jenn: Yes, I think it's easy to fall into the career stress trap as a college junior/senior. It's nice to know I have your support!
I think what made the shake taste so good might have been the vanilla hemp+mango combo. Call me crazy but the fruit tasted "decadent." PS Rock on, Chipotle fans.
Jennifer: I don't think I could live without my seriously makes my life complete. Let me know what concoctions you make if you do buy one!
Vegan On Stage: Can't wait for Christmastime!

Lauren said...

Your tofu scrambles always looks so good!

I was wondering if you would mind posting your modified recipe of the cheese muffins you made from clean eating. Did you find them tasty? Or do you think there are better muffins?

Also, you mentioned you buy nature's own wheat, there were so many wheat varieties which one do you buy? The first one I saw is 50 calories per slice is the one you get? Thanks that brand looks great!

ChickPea said...

Lauren: I would like to post a recipe of the muffins, but there are a few obstacles:
1) I'm a little concerned about copyright infringement since I got it from a magazine (although I veganized it).
2) It's been a while since I made those muffins, so I don't remember exactly what went into them!
Glad you like the bread--it's relatively inexpensive and widely available.

LK said...

All your food looks really good! Tofu scramble yum! And I love Ezekiel pitas. Also love tofu sandwiches with lots of avocado (my favorite sandwich is to add garlic powder, Braggs, and dried basil to tofu and then serve with avocado!). And oatmeal with banana and nut butter is my favorite way to have oatmeal :)

BTW Are you a nutrition student? We (my sister and I) are nutrition students at Texas A&M (well, we won't be once we graduate in Aug). Good luck with your studies.

ChickPea said...

lk: Oh my goodness, that tofu sandwich you described sounds heavenly! I'll definitely have to try that, since I use those ingredients all the time--just not together.
I am a nutrition student, although I haven't gotten to the fun courses yet. Right now, I am stuck in the chemistry, anatomy, and physiology stages. Ick. That's so cool that both you and your sister will be RDs! Congrats on graduating!