Better With Sprinkles

The Colourful Side to Healthy Living.


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WIAW: Crazy for Sangria…and Cute Babies.

Good morning and happy Wednesday!

WIAW

Which, of course, translates to happy WIAW Smile

So I already covered Saturday and Sunday of my long weekend, but I held onto Friday just for WIAW purposes. Friday was family Easter at my parents. Basically, it was a typical family holiday for me: lots of food and lots of people (I think we ended up with 21 in total…yup, it’s getting to be a pretty big family).

Pre Workout

Because we were going to head to London around noon, I headed to the gym first thing. I wasn’t too hungry when I woke up, so I just had my watermelon BCAA’s and a handful of grapes before a back workout followed by 20 minutes of easy elliptical.

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And of course, wanted breakfast as soon as I got home.

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Eggy oats with jam. Shock surprise, right?

In the early afternoon, Eric and I headed to my parents with my Easter contribution in tow. The contributions for the main meal are split up depending on whose hosting (the host family makes the turkey/main dish, my other aunts bring the sides), but my uncle, my cousin and myself are always in charge of dessert. Yes – there’s three of them.

What I decided to make this year:

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Easter cupcakes!

I used my go-to chocolate cake recipe (Betty Crocker recipe…it’s delicious) and made a peppermint buttercream icing. I added green food colouring and used a star tip to make ‘grass’, which I then topped with toasted coconut ‘nests’ and mini eggs. I do not consider myself much a decorator AT ALL, but I’m definitely learning!

I was pretty hungry again by the time we got to my parents, so I attacked the appetizer table:

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The cheese and crackers tray. My great uncle brings this to every get together, right down to the brand of crackers (Wheat Thins and Vegetable Thins) and the black tray. I helped myself to a few crackers and pieces of cheese.

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I have absolutely no idea what this is, but it was some sort of phyllo pastry stuffed with spinach and feta. Whatever it is, it was good! And is making me think that I need some more feta in my life…

There was also a shrimp ring that I went to town on. Unfortunately, so did everyone else so it escaped pictures.

Then, my mom pointed me in the direction of her homemade sangria.

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I’m not a huge red wine fan, but I will make a definite exception for sangria. Especially my mom’s – hers is fantastic. I love the addition of fruit too – oranges, strawberries, and peaches. This glass times maybe…4 or 5 spread throughout the afternoon? Yup, I’m a fan.

Family time!

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And then my cousin arrived with her seven-week-old baby.

It can be said that I am baby-crazy. Although I’m nowhere near the point in my life where I would be ready to have one myself (I’m 23 and still in school. No thanks) I absolutely melt whenever one is brought in my vicinity. And baby Liam just happens to be an absolute cutie:

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Oh god. I die. Those little overalls. And baby socks – I swear, baby socks are the cutest thing ever. And just to add to the heart-meltingness of the situation:

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Eric looks pretty cute holding a baby! Smile with tongue out

Side note: I was actually tempted to text my dad a picture of a positive pregnancy test for April Fools. But considering how I act around babies, he would probably believe it. And then he might have a heart attack.

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Or maybe not. Smile with tongue out

Ok, I’m done with baby pictures now.

Dinner:

The peeps that come out at every Easter family gathering:

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Nobody actually eats the peeps, so most of them actually end up being thrown out. But my grandmother (who passed away when I was 10) used to bring them every year. So my aunt continues that tradition – it’s a nice touch! I kind of wish I had rescued a couple to bring home so I could make Peeps s’mores. That would have been pretty awesome.

Pinot Grigio to start:

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And a deviled egg.

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These things are like currency at my family dinners. Everyone adores them, and they’re the first thing to go. So when you sit down, you grab one ASAP. And that’s a pickle in the bottom corner there.

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My dinner: stuffing, mashed potatoes and turkey with gravy, ham with applesauce, steamed baby carrots and garlic green beans. Plate cleared.

And then dessert:

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Yup…my family does dessert well. This plate was split between Eric and myself, which meant that he ate a few bites of everything and I ate the rest Open-mouthed smile

We’ve got my cupcake, a chocolate lava cake, and Oreo cheesecake. It was all fabulous, but obviously, mine won out. Smile with tongue out

The rest of the night was spent digesting, playing card games, and more playing with the baby. And a Game of Thrones rerun we randomly found on TV – good way to end a holiday, methinks.

Today I’m back at class – I got an impromptu cancellation yesterday, so I ended up with a five day weekend. Definitely not complaining about that one.

Have a good day!

<— For family holidays, is there a certain course/dish you’re responsible for?

<— What are some of your family’s Easter traditions? The Peeps is my favourite.

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WIAW: Eating Well at Home.

Happy WIAW!

Thanks to Jenn for hosting, as per usual!

Today’s WIAW is from last Sunday, where I was home for the weekend. You will notice that today’s post is almost entirely lacking in green things. But I’m ok with that, because everything I ate on Sunday was freakin’ delicious. I got a burger, I got fries, I got Mexican food, I got a brownie…no regrets whatsoever!

Breakfast

Due to the time change on Sunday, the clock read 9:30 when I got out of bed at my parent’s house. Yay actually feeling like I got to sleep in!

By the time I got up, got in a quick workout (core + 10 minutes on the treadmill) and got organized it was 10:30. I was meeting Chelsea for lunch at noon, so I went with a small breakfast to tide me over.

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Coconut Oikos and Brown Sugar flavoured Mini Wheats. I didn’t like Mini Wheats when I was a kid, but I developed a HUGE obsession with them about three years ago – the only breakfast cereal I wanted for about six months. It was a little bit of overkill so I don’t pick them up too often anymore, but they’re still easily one of my favourite breakfast cereals.

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So good.

Chelsea and I met at the Works, a burger place that popped up in London a few years ago. I’d been a few times before, but it was her first time so I was excited for her to check it out. Basically, it’s a build your own burger place with a ton of insane toppings – check out her post for more details!

I decided to go with a “Down Under” turkey burger on a whole wheat bun. It came with caramelized onions, an egg, beets, grilled pineapple and gouda.

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We had absolutely no idea what was so Australian about this burger, but it was good! Although, the first burger I ever got at the Works still wins out though. ‘The Sweet Ride’: caramelized onions, half of a grilled pear and brie.

Sweet potatoes fries on the side – The Works has fabulous sweet potato fries. Perfectly crispy with the right amount of salt!

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Other burger options that are definitely on my must-try list at the Works:

  • Hunka Hunka Burnin’ Love: peanut butter, banana and bacon
  • Sexy Burger: pineapple, sweet and spicy sauce, cream cheese and hot peppers
  • The Love Goat: peppercorn crust, goat cheese and bacon

So delicious…and definitely filling!

After lunch, Chelsea and I wandered around Covent Garden Market for a while. It’s a gorgeous year-round indoor market in downtown London – I hadn’t been since the summer, which is entirely too long! I was a tad disappointed though – I had hoped to pick up a mini cupcake at the cupcake place, but the stand wasn’t there anymore.

So I bought cheese instead Smile with tongue out

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Thornloe’s Eventural. I worked in a cheese stand during my last year of undergrad, and this one was always one of my favourites. Brie with a line of vegetable ash in the middle – it’s so good.

Chelsea was also kind enough to set aside a jar of coconut butter from Organic Works for me.

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Finally! This stuff is so hard to find, and paying for it online it ridiculous. I haven’t tried it on/with anything yet, but I tried a bite out of the jar and I think it was worth the wait Smile with tongue out

Thanks for a fabulous lunch/Covent Garden date, Chelsea! ❤

Oz

Afterwards, I had plans to meet up with my mom for a movie/dinner date. The movie of choice?

Oz the Great and Powerful in IMAX 3D.

(source)

 

Of course, this movie is pure Wizard of Oz nostalgia. I really enjoyed it! I thought that Mila Kunis’ acting was a little over-the-top and soap opera-ish (which pains me to say, because she’s one of my favourite actresses), but everything else about the movie was great. It was a two-hour long movie and I didn’t get bored once, which is saying something.

And James Franco is just awesome. Could not think of a better person to play Oz. Seeing it in IMAX 3D was really cool too. It was so intense! Really expensive (as if regular movie tickets aren’t enough already) so I wouldn’t do it too often, but pretty fun once in a while. Although the 3D glasses get a tad annoying after a while.

 

Dinner

Our original plan was to go to the Milestones that’s in the same mall in the theatre, but earlier in the day my mom and I got to talking about Under the Volcano, one of the few Mexican restaurants in London that we both really love. So…we went for Mexican.

Under the Volcano actually just changed locations – as in, it was changed over two days before. Unfortunately, they were still getting organized and didn’t have all of their usual options – they didn’t have their extensive margarita list and they were out of a lot of items on the menu. They weren’t quite done the redecorating phase yet either – they had leased a building where an old diner was, and they still had the old diner sign up. The inside of the restaurant still looked like diner-esque, but with Mexican-style blankets everywhere. But the food was still good, which is the most important part, clearly.

 

My mom and I both love sangria, so we split a pitcher.

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I’m not a huge red wine fan, but I suppose if it’s mixed with juice, I’m good to go?

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Hello, chips and salsa. Which, is not complete without guacamole thrown in the picture as well.

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Better.

For dinner, my mom ordered her usual at Under the Volcano – the chicken chimichanga. Basically, a chimichanga is a deep-fried enchilada, but it doesn’t come off as overly greasy.

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I decided to go with something I hadn’t tried before – the blackened tilapia, which came with rice and coleslaw.

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I hadn’t had tilapia in a while, but it’s one of my preferred fish. This was delicious – nice and spicy, which I love.

Dessert

We had hoped to share deep fried ice cream for dessert, but unfortunately, they were out (boo). But…a chocolate brownie with ice cream and chocolate sauce makes for a good second choice.

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We definitely polished it off without trouble Open-mouthed smile

I love Under the Volcano, so I will definitely be back once they get a little more organized in their new location!

After dinner, I went home and collapsed on the couch to digest – so.much.good.food! I need to go home more often…I eat so well! Open-mouthed smile

Have a good one!

<— What should I use my coconut butter on?

<— What’s your usual order at a Mexican restaurant? Quesadilla or crunchy tacos of some sort is usually my first choice.


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Sushi Salad and Barbie Shoes.

Good morning!

So, my weekend was fabulous.

I’ve been feeling pretty stressed out lately with school, so I just needed a weekend away. We all need that self care once in a while! I headed home for the weekend and made fun plans with some pretty fabulous people. I’m feeling a lot more relaxed now, which is a good thing – this is definitely a lots-of-shit-to-do sort of week. But I do have a couple’s massage on Saturday to look forward too!

Because I was going to be gone all weekend, I headed out Friday afternoon/evening to get my grocery shopping done. I didn’t need too much, but the fridge has been restocked.

Farmer’s Market

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  • turkey breakfast sausages
  • sweet potatoes
  • mozzarella
  • green onions
  • yellow beans

FreshCo

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  • baby carrots
  • English muffins
  • whole wheat tortillas
  • bananas
  • lemon juice
  • plum sauce
  • whole chicken
  • sour cream

Zehr’s

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  • pork chops
  • chicken fingers
  • shaving cream (Eric’s, clearly)
  • guacamole

And I figured out the meal plan for the rest of the week:

  • Monday: Kristin’s Maple Sweet Potato Hash
  • Tuesday: pork chops, rice and roasted beans
  • Wednesday: roasted chicken and veggies
  • Thursday: Buffalo chicken quesadillas (Mexican food kick still going!)
  • Friday: pizza

And then it was a stay at home and relax sort of night!

Saturday

I wasn’t leaving until late Saturday morning, so I had time for a good breakfast.

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Banana oats with peanut butter and strawberry jam. Delicious!

I made the drive home, and chatted with my mom for a bit before we made the trip out to Costco.

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I’m pretty sure that’s the least amount of money I’ve ever spent at Costco – not bad. I made up for it in free sample though: there was Easter chocolate and Nutella involved 😀

Cream cheese and more of that gum that I love. And the coconut Oikos that I tried last week? They actually had it at Costco. Sooo…going to be eating a lot of that for the next little while!

After Costco, I headed over to the mall to meet my best friend for some catch-up and some shopping. And believe me, I shopped.

Suzy Shier had just changed locations in White Oaks Mall and was having a 40% off sale. I took advantage!

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1 blouse, 2 shirts, a striped pencil skirt, and a pair of ankle boots, plus two tank tops from Sirens.

Notice how I still haven’t been able to find new jeans or pants yet…oops. It’s all Spring stuff coming out right now, so it’s hard to find long pants!

I don’t consider myself a fashionable person in the slightest, but I’m trying to get away from the jeans and tank tops that have been dominating my wardrobe since high school. I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing, but I’m making an effort! Smile with tongue out

Barbie Shoes

I freakin’ love shoes. Boots, flats, heels – I have a massive collection and cannot go into a mall without at least trying on a pair. Even though I’m already pretty tall (5’7) I have a thing for platforms and stiletto heels. Nothing wrong with towering over people!

So no surprise, we wandered into town shoes.

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And I am now eagerly awaiting the arrival of these shoes on my doorstop. Open-mouthed smile More money than I usually spend on shoes, but I am obsessed. Apparently for this line, Town Shoes collaborated with the makers of Barbie to recreate some of the shoes seen on the doll. My six-year-old self would be so thrilled with me right now Smile with tongue out

Now, I just need somewhere to wear them…

Dinner

For dinner, the best friend and I headed over to Earl’s. I hadn’t been there before, but it’s one of Laura’s favourite restaurants, so I was eager to check it out. The wait was a little long (we waited about 45 minutes for a table) but they gave us raspberry mojito and chili chicken samples, so I guess I can’t complain at all!

To drink, I ordered their vanilla pomegranate mojito.

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It was made with vanilla Smirnoff instead of tequila, but it still had the feel of a classic mojito. So delicious!

When I see anything that relates to tuna and/or sushi on a menu, it must be ordered.

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This was the Albacore Tuna Sushi Salad: organic greens, carrots, cucumber, mango, avocado, brown basmati rice, sushi rice, toasted nori and rare seared tuna with a white miso vinaigrette and sesame seeds. My plate was definitely cleared – it was amazing!

Right as we were eating, a waiter walked by and offered us tiny, warm chocolate chip cookies.

DSCF2251Hello, free tiny dessert!

I’ll definitely be heading back there at some point – the service was excellent (free samples and the manager coming by to make sure that you’re enjoying your meal? I love that sort of thing. It makes for a great experience) and I was more than happy with my salad. And…I want to head back and check out their martini menu!

After stopping to visit another friend of ours, I headed back to my parents to relax for a bit. Biggest dilemma ever: my mom was watching Downton Abbey in one room, and my brother and his girlfriend were watching Pitch Perfect in another. I floated Smile with tongue out

Sunday was busy and full of fabulous food, but I’m going to save it for another day. Today, I’m diving headfirst back into schoolwork. Only one month left before coursework is complete!

<— heels, flats, running shoes or boots? All of the above Smile with tongue out

<— Is there anything that you *must* order if it’s on a menu? Depends on my mood, but I order seafood at least 80% of the time.