Chicken thighs and orange lights

October 8, 2013 at 6:15 pm

Last night I grilled up a few pounds of chicken thighs to use for two dinners.

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It’s pretty hard to mess up chicken thighs because they are so delicious and fatty. They never end up dry and taste great just with a little salt for seasoning. I change up the seasonings, though. For these I used pink Himalayan salt (from Trader Joe’s…comes in a grinder) and a heavy application of smoked paprika. I just grill them on fairly high heat for about 3 minutes on each side. They were delicious and all three boys made positive comments about them.

Dinner was grilled chicken thighs, kale chips, and small white potatoes for the boys and sweet potato for me. Lots of butter on all the potatoes, which reduces the glycemic load of whatever carbs you are eating. Always eat your carbs with lots of good fat. That’s my unprofessional opinion and the NSNG (no sugar, no grains) way.

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For the kale chips, I just used bagged, cleaned kale (from Trader Joe’s) and I picked out any big ribs that I saw. There are always a few. Then I spread the kale out on a baking sheet, drizzle lightly with olive oil, then season as desired. I used Trader Joe’s garlic sea salt this time (also comes in a grinder). Go light on the seasoning because after the kale cooks it shrinks and concentrates your seasoning. Then I toss it all around a little to spread out the oil/seasoning, and bake at 350 degrees until crispy, about 15 minutes. The boys love kale chips.

This morning Chewie and I walked Mack to school.

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We had to deal with a dog running around off leash, scaring us to death. It was not an overly threatening dog, but I am scared of all dogs off leashes that come running at us. I’m sure I’ve blogged about it before, but I have been involved in two dog attacks, and it really is terrifying when it happens. I will put myself between any dog and Chewie, and will own the house of anybody whose dog injures me. I am a lawyer, you know. Please people, do not let your dog run around without a leash, no matter how friendly and well-behaved you think they are. Some people, especially children, are very frightened of any dog that approaches them. Why do you want to scare people? Do you want me to own your house?

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I finally got the outside Halloween decorations put up today.

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I’ll try to remember to take a picture tonight of the lights after dark. Chad thinks Halloween decorations are cheesy. However, he does not feel this way about Christmas decorations. What’s the difference? Whatever. I like fun. Hardass only sort of likes fun.

I ended up spending all morning doing the decorations and other things around the house and forgot to have breakfast. Well, I was drinking coffee with heavy cream all morning (only three cups, each with one teaspoon of cream which is plenty to make a nice light creamy coffee), and I just didn’t feel hungry until later. So I had brunch instead of breakfast

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I had some leftover curry sauce in the fridge (just red Thai curry paste, coconut milk, and a splash of fish sauce) so I made curried kale, mushrooms, and onions. I topped that with two eggs and bacon. Yum.

The rest of the day was a blur of housework (laundry of course) and running boys around in the car. Now Joey Z. is over hanging out with the boys.

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(in case you were wondering, it is still summer in Florida)

I’m going to use the rest of the grilled chicken thighs to make NSNG Pad Thai tonight. I’m hungry thinking about it (possibly because I have only had one meal today). This fat adaptation thing is for real. I almost never feel like snacking anymore and in general my hunger levels are so low. I don’t find myself thinking about eating all the time like I do when I’m all carbaholic.  I like it.


Baby AJ, Trader Joe’s, Bulk Nation, and Volunteer Day at School

October 7, 2013 at 2:32 pm

Yesterday’s breakfast (and today’s was exactly like it so I didn’t take a picture):

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This is my favorite “fast” breakfast. Keeps you going for hours.

Yesterday the boys and headed across the Sunshine Skyway Bridge (Cal took these pictures):

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To meet my friend Theresa (of Active Eggplant), her husband Ryan, and her new little baby AJ for lunch in Sarasota. We met at Square 1 Burger.

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This was my first time trying Square 1 Burger, but I had heard good things. I didn’t really care where we met. I just couldn’t wait to see 10 week old AJ in person finally.

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Look at that baby goodness! The little face is so perfect. He was adorable.

Remember this sweet bicycle bunting that I bought at the Artpool Indie Market “Crafty Fest” a little while ago?

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It was for AJ. Theresa and Ryan are avid cyclists, and when I saw it I immediately thought of them. I hope they like it!

I am easily influenced by others’ choices at restaurants, so when Theresa said she was going to get the 3-Mushroom burger, I had to order that also.

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I got mine on a bed of greens with a side of steamed broccoli.

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It was amazingly delicious! Square 1 Burger is definitely a high end burger place, and the options are endless. I also liked the chic, edgy décor.

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I’d go back!

After lunch we all headed to Trader Joe’s.

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Since Sarasota has the closest TJ’s to us, this is a destination shopping experience for us. Trader Joe’s is the only place I can find canned coconut cream that I like, and I also love to stock up on their organic, grass-fed beef and organic, free-range chicken. So about once a month or so we make the trip down. They have broken ground on a TJ location in Tampa, and I can’t wait. It is supposed to open next year, and I hope it’s early next year! There are also (serious) rumors about a TJ coming to 4th Street in St. Petersburg. I hope the rumors are true! The rumored location is very close to our neighborhood.

Of course Ryan and Theresa had to stop and admire a cool bike in the rack on the way into Trader Joe’s.

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It was so great getting to hang out with you guys and meet the awesome AJ!

I had to drool over this for a minute…

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but did not succumb to temptation.

I stocked up on winter squash…

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bought a case of cuties…

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and loaded up our cart with a ton of other stuff.

After we left Trader Joe’s we stopped by the new Bulk Nation just one block away.

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Chad had mentioned reading about this place opening, but I forgot about it until we drove by. I couldn’t spend much time in the store because we had a cooler full of meat we had to get back to St. Petersburg, but I couldn’t resist checking it out.

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Holy smokes. I think that they had every type of non-perishable item that you could imagine.

The evil candy wall:

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Pet products:

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Joffrey’s Coffee of every variety:

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Herbs and spices:

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All types of baking supplies as well as every individual color of sugar and sprinkles:

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Nuts, fruits, veggies, and snacks:

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Jarred/pickled vegetables, etc.:

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All kinds of interesting things.

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Next time I’m going to plan better and hit up Bulk Nation before going to Trader Joe’s.

At Bulk Nation they were pretty curious about me asking to take photos. The cashier asked why I wanted to take photos. I told her that I was going to write about the store. She asked, “Write for what?” I told her I had a blog. She asked, “What are you blogging for?” I replied, “Mostly for my own amusement.” She totally could not understand. I guess it’s inexplicable, really.

So they wouldn’t think I was a total freak (too late), I did buy something.

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Most of the fried/dried veggies (like the green beans, carrot chips, vegetable chips) all contained canola oil. Here is a great article by Wellness Mama about Why You Should Never Eat Vegetable Oil or Margarine. These banana chips were made with coconut oil. Yay!

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They are relatively high in carbohydrate (because banana are high in carbs, duh), but with no added sugar and no unhealthy ingredients, I thought they would be good as a treat. And keep me from looking like a lunatic bulk food stalker.

Dinner last night was grilled asparagus and roasted butternut squash (both from Trader Joe’s, and the bags of TJ’s prepared butternut squash are awesome), and previously frozen Whole Foods salmon that I also cooked on the grill in a foil pouch with Trader Joe’s African smoked seasoning blend. I love that stuff.

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This morning it was raining so I drove Mack to school. Then later I went back to school for my volunteer day. Here’s my OOTVD (outfit of the volunteering day):

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Wednesday is International Walk to School Day!

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(You can read about Walk to School Day 2012 here, 2011 here, and 2010 here.)

I put together homework packets, a usual.

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I did battle with the copy machine and won.

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I sat with the sweet potato in the courtyard while he ate lunch.

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Luckily it had stopped raining for a little bit.

Not sure what to make of this:

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Silver? I hope the standard is MUCH higher for gold.

When I got home this had arrived in the mail:

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Thanks St. Anthony’s Hospital foundation! The boys will enjoy sharing that huge cookie. I went to the Sprinkles event last year and it was really fun. Last year it was held in the Vinoy ballroom, which is beautiful. Check out that link for details, but this is a really great event. I hope to go again this year! (and give away all the cookies again like I did last year)

Now I need to go make my lunch. I’m thinking olives rolled up in Applegate Farms roast beef and leftover roasted butternut squash because that is the fastest thing I can shove into my mouth and I’m all of a sudden starving.


p.s. thanks for all the comments on my Zoo Boo post!