Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Dumpster Diving.

The title is intriguing, isn't it? Sadly, it is exactly how I spent my Monday morning.

I'm not a big fan of Mondays in general, but spending 40 minutes in a dumpster at 6:30 on Monday morning makes me a little concerned about how the rest of the week will turn out...

Anyways, you don't care about how my week is going to turn out, you just want to know why I was in the dumpster. Well, about 6:15 my alarm went off and I had already decided that getting out of bed at 6:40 would still give me plenty of time to get ready for work. So, I started going over the things I needed to do for the day, what I should wear to work, and then all the things I needed to take to work...and where all of those items were.

My thoughts:

"Black slacks, cleaned and hanging in the closet. check"
"Mustard yellow shirt. Good option, yet have to wear that specific bra. Is that bra clean? Yeah, I think we're good there."
"Ipod...charged and in the purse."
"Work ID Badge...in the...oh my...it's in the bag I used for lunch on Friday, in the car, but I cleaned out the car on Sunday. That bag is...NOW IN THE DUMPSTER!"

I don't think I've ever leaped out of bed so quickly in my life. Since I work for a government contractor, getting the badge was a pain in the butt to begin with, and to replace it would be a nightmare. Not only does that badge give me access to the building and my office, it is how I log onto my computer. Also, it has my pass code token for logging in remotely. So many valuable items, now in the garbage. Not only that, but I knew that the garbage was picked up early Monday morning, giving me a very small window to start looking.Therefore, I spent about 40 minutes, in my pajamas, going through garbage. At first, I was like this:
But soon realized that if I was going to make any progress, I needed to actually get in the dumpster. So, I got my trusty flashlight from the car and jumped in. Remember how I said that the garbage gets picked up on Monday mornings? Well...that means that I got to go through a week's worth of trash. I was optimistic because I had only thrown it away the prior afternoon. Unlucky for me, some newlyweds had opened their wedding gifts and the garbage was now on top of my missing badge.

Slowly, I started to find remnants of what was in the bag with the badge, but no sign of the bag or the badge. I had removed so much of the trash, and was starting to really worry. Then, all of a sudden, I found the bag, and the only thing still in it...the badge. I almost cried, seriously. I stuck the badge in my hoodie and jumped out of the dumpster just in time to see the garbage truck pull up.

If that wasn't lucky, I don't know what is!

...all that for a stupid card.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Red Velvet Cupcakes

Do you ever have those moments when you have this intense unbearable craving? I'm sure some mother out there has had this during pregnancy, at least. Yeah...I've never been pregnant, but I still get cravings.

Craving of the week: Red Velvet Cake.
I haven't had it in years because it just isn't something that anyone has requested; therefore, no one makes it. Maybe if I grew up in the Western household I would have it more often, but I didn't, so I don't.

Anyways, we all know I have a sweet tooth, and this complex where I try to make it healthier to somehow convince myself it is okay to eat. Because of this, Cooking Light (by Taste of Home) is my best friend. I don't know what I would do without it. And, as always, it came through when I was looking for a Red Velvet recipe.

I made these cupcakes on Sunday and sent them with Ben to his family dinner (sorry Roos'/Grows, the recipe didn't make enough for the whole family). He came back and said his family loved them. His little sister emailed me to tell me how amazing they were. Well...I must agree that this recipe did the trick. My craving his been satisfied and now have a new fun recipe.

Hope you enjoy :)

Red Velvet Cupcakes

Yield: 30 cupcakes (serving size: 1 cupcake)



Cooking spray
10 ounce cake flour (about 2 1/2 cups)
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups nonfat buttermilk (I used lowfat because I couldn't find nonfat)
1 1/2 teaspoons white vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons red food coloring (I just put in enough to give it a good red color, no measuring)


5 tablespoons butter, softened
4 teaspoons nonfat buttermilk
1 (8-ounce) block cream cheese, softened (I used 1/3 less fat cream cheese)
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar (I didn't use quite that much, just go by how sweet you want it)
1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract


1. Preheat oven to 350°.

2. To prepare the cupcakes, place 30 paper muffin cup liners in muffin cups; coat with cooking spray.

3. Weigh or lightly spoon cake flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine cake flour, unsweetened cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl; stir with a whisk. Place granulated sugar and unsalted butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 3 minutes). Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour mixture and 1 1/4 cups nonfat buttermilk alternately to sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Add white vinegar, 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla, and food coloring; beat well.

4. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes on wire rack; remove from pan. Cool completely on wire racks.

5. To prepare frosting, beat 5 tablespoons butter, 4 teaspoons nonfat buttermilk, and cream cheese with a mixer at high speed until fluffy. Gradually add powdered sugar; beat until smooth. Add 1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla; beat well. Spread frosting evenly over cupcakes.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Deal of the Day: Restaurant Coupons

So, we have recently learned that I like to save money. Okay, more like, you learned that I am frugal, cheap, etc.

Well, I think that I'm going to start doing deals of the day, of the fun stuff I can find. This may not happen very often, but I am thrilled when I find a deal and therefore, feel the rest of you might be able to benefit.

As for today's deal, http://www.restaurant.com/.  A friend of mine told me about this website, and how him and his wife would get giftcards for super cheap to pretty nice restaurants. Good Food? Cheap? I'm sold.

Well, I signed up for the free website and didn't think much of it because I didn't have time to look into all of the restaurants available. Soon, I started receiving emails about deep discounted giftcards. Of course, I was now intrigued and had to see what kind of fun things I could get.

I ended up purchasing three $25 giftcards for $6!!

That is 92% off! Getting a $25 giftcard for $2 dollars, is a deal in anyone's book, I'm pretty sure :)

The coupons last for a year, so it's not like you have to spend them immediately...so awesome!

If you like to go out, and don't like to spend much...this is the way to do it!

Let's face it...I'm a walking advertisement. I should get paid for this stuff!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

B&K All The Way

If you hadn't noticed...I LOVE pictures. Taking them. Getting them taken of me. Love it all.

Mr. Army...not so much, but every once in a while, I can convince him that it's time for pictures. Yesterday, I got lucky :)

They aren't the best pictures in the world of us, but it's documentation...that we're still alive and well!

Somehow, I even got Mr. Army to pose for some solo pictures in my, not so put together, studio. The editing is very minimal, so please disregard the yucky background...but I must say, I have a dang cute boyfriend.

This one is my favorite.

Mr. Army's favorite.

Welcome to our Sunday afternoons...aren't we the most exciting people you know?!

FroYo, How I Love...Yo?

 I love sweets. This is no secret. Therefore, I will try to find every place possible that will sell "healthy" sweets. Frozen Yogurt is what I consider a "healthy treat". Packed full of sugar, but guess what? Fat Free Baby!

Anyways, there is a place down the street from my house called Yogurt Stop where you serve yourself any  kind of frozen yogurt, add toppings and then pay by weight. Delightful! I just found out that they are opening one up the street from my parents house too...I literally squealed when I saw the Coming Soon sign. If you want to try it, call me; I'll even pay :)

If you aren't much of a frozen yogurt person, or if you're in the mood for trying something new, I heard about this place called Sub Zero in Centerville. You pick your cream (custard, frozen yogurt, low fat, etc), your flavor and your mixins. Then, they use liquid hydrogen to make it right in front of you. I manipulated Mr. Army into going over the weekend and he said he found a new favorite place, which definitely means this place stands out because I take him to every ice cream/frozen yogurt place I can find.

...This blog really has no point except to share my love for ice cream.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Barefoot Running.

As some of you may know, my boyfriend has a knack for finding the most unusual and sometimes ridiculously crazy projects. Most of the time, I laugh in disbelief until he proves that it works (whatever it may be)

Well, the wild hair idea of the week: Barefoot Running.

At first, I wouldn't even let myself think about trying to run barefoot, but after some research and intriguing discoveries...we bought these...

Yeah, they are a little funny looking, but OH so comfortable. Running in these "shoes" will help to teach you how to change your running style. Most people that run, are "heel strikers", which means your heel will hit first and then you will distribute your weight forward. With barefoot running, you will bruise your heel with the heel strike approach, and therefore you need to adjust by landing more towards the ball of your foot and distribute your weight back.
...Mr. Army has been reading up on a blog called Barefoot Ted for some inspiration and tips for running barefoot.

Mr. Army actually tried the running today and said it was amazing. He felt that the run was more enjoyable and fun. I am a little nervous to try it, but will do so and let you know how it goes!

Thursday, March 11, 2010


Okay, so I may have a little obsession with...coupons. I know it sounds a little silly and maybe slightly ridiculous, but my new hobby is to see how much I can save, on everything.  My sister was so gracious to feed this addiction by introducing me to coupons.com Mr. Army amuses me by laughing and asking "do we have a coupon for that?" every time we go out to dinner or need to go to the store. He may laugh, but I'll tell you what, I save money honey!

The other day, I was watching T.V. and saw a commercial for Soft Scrub Total. After the commercial I really wanted to try the product, but would only do so if I had a coupon, since it wasn't a necessity. Well, lucky for me, a coupon came in the mail a couple of days later. (Is it odd that I get excited about cleaning products?)

An example of my savings...tonight, I had to do some grocery shopping and saved $7.90 in coupons alone. Coupled with price matching, I saved over $17.

With my savings, I bought a new movie...don't worry, it was on sale too :)

P.S. If you want to know of other websites and ways to get coupons or save money, I might be able to help you out!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Training Time!

Well, it's that time again...the races are coming and I need to get into shape!

I have this complex where I cannot be left out of any race when I know more than two people that are running it. Therefore, the Salt Lake Half Marathon is calling my name...again.

I ran it two years ago for the first time. My time was 1:55. Not bad, not a record. Then, last year I did not intend on running the Half because I had a minor snowboarding accident and messed up my ankle. Lo and behold, the morning of the race, I put on my shoes and helped Miss Lisa cross the finish line. I have no idea what our time was, but I wasn't really in it for the time; I was in it for her.

Now, this year, my goal is to run the SL Half in a faster time than two years ago. Can it be done? Yes. Will it? We'll see. The race is in 6 weeks and have I run 13 miles yet? That's a big fat NO

I'm working on distance: longest run this month 8 miles

I'm working on speed: quickest two miler this month 15 minutes (fastest ever was 13:23, so you can see the improvement needed)

And the best part of it all...I get new Asics this week!

I may need help staying motivated to run distances...anyone want to drag me out on Saturdays or Sundays?

Monday, March 1, 2010

Whole Wheat Banana Nut Bread

This recipe is my favorite ever. I love when bananas start to turn black because then I get to make this awesome bread. I have modified the recipe to not have any oil or refined sugar, so here you go. Enjoy!

Whole Wheat Banana Nut Bread

2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups very ripe bananas (I usually use 4 medium bananas)
1 1/4 cups honey (the recipe actually calls for brown sugar, so it's your call)
2/3 cup plain nonfat yogurt
1/2 cup fat free egg beaters (or 2 eggs)
1/3 cup applesauce (the recipe actually calls for oil)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup walnuts (or some like raisins)

1. Move oven rack to lowest position. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease bottoms only, of two 8X4-inch loaf pans or one 9X5-inch loaf pan.

2. Stir together all ingredients until blended. Pour into pans.

3. Bake 8-inch loaves 50 to 60 minutes, 9-inch loaf 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes (I'd wait about an hour or so to wrap in tin foil, etc.)

Hope you all like it as much I do :)