Friday, November 25, 2011

Monday, November 14, 2011

Sat 12/31: Split Lip Rayfield with Dumptruck Butterlips

Sat 12/31: Split Lip Rayfield with Dumptruck Butterlips:
When: Saturday, Dec. 31, 2011, 7 p.m.
Where: The Bottleneck, 737 N.H., Lawrence
Cost: $17 - $20
Age limit: All ages
Description: Split Lip Rayfield has carved out their own genre of music with their unique sound and instrumentation. Often described as a mix of bluegrass and country with an accent of metal, no other band delivers the experience of the homemade gas-tank bass played by Jeff Eaton, sets the mandolin strings on fire like Wayne Gottstine, or makes the banjo sing like Eric Mardis. Together, they burn up speakers and stages alike providing an unforgettable experience. This is one trio not to miss!

Fri 12/16: The Wilders

Fri 12/16: The Wilders:
When: Friday, Dec. 16, 2011, 8 p.m.
Where: Liberty Hall Cinema, 644 Massachussets Street, Lawrence
Cost: $2.50 - $10.50
Age limit: All ages
Description: Tickets on sale now - $12.50 adults, $2.50 10 and under

Sunday, November 13, 2011

The No-BS Guide to Boosting Your Immunity and Avoiding the Common Cold [Colds]

The No-BS Guide to Boosting Your Immunity and Avoiding the Common Cold [Colds]:

The runny nose, hacking cough, sore throat, headache—it's no wonder people resort to all sorts of absurd remedies to cure the all-too-common cold. We talked to experts to get a better idea of the tried-and-true things that actually work, and got a stuffy-nose full of commonly held myths that you should avoid. More »

Tuesday, November 1, 2011 Shows You Where You Can Stream, Rent, Download Or Buy Movies Shows You Where You Can Stream, Rent, Download Or Buy Movies: canistreamit-logo
Add this site to your bookmarks because I guarantee you, at some point, you’re going to need it. is a new search engine that shows you where you can stream, rent, download and buy movies. The site checks the libraries at Netflix, Amazon, iTunes and Hulu and provides links to the appropriate listings. And if a movie isn’t available, you can sign up for, set a reminder and the service will email you when the movie’s availability changes.

The service is a side project from the team at UrbanPixels, a NY-based technology consulting, branding and design firm, who says they built the site because they were in need of something like this. (As were we all).

Thanks to all the competing services, the ever-changing content deals between movie studios and streaming providers and the maddening decision by some studios to enforce a 28-day window between DVD releases and streaming availability, it’s hard to know what’s available where, in what format and when. But now you can just search

There really isn’t much to using the service – you just enter a query and hit enter. Each search result has four icons: one for streaming, one for a digital rental, one for downloads and the last for where you can purchase the DVD. Click the link for the service where you want to view or buy the movie and you’re redirected there. That’s it.

My only complaint? It would be nice if they added TV shows, too.

UrbanPixels Co-Founder Alex Petrescu says they’re not in it for the money – they just wanted to build a tool for the community to use.

Thanks, guys.

Gnomeo and Juliet

Gnomeo and Juliet:
An edgy Shakespeare adaptation like no other, this animated musical transports the classic tale of forbidden romance between two star-crossed lovers from warring families to the unlikely yet hysterical world of garden gnomes. Featuring songs from legendary recording artist Elton John, this movie features the vocal talents of Emily Blunt, James McAvoy, Jason Statham, Patrick Stewart and Michael Caine.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

Step one- don’t burn the almond milk in the microwave. You want it slightly warm, but not hot. Kinda like a bath for a baby. Just so we’re clear, the yeast is the baby… Pardon my nonsense, I’m on a cinnamon roll high.

Mix the yeast & almond milk and set aside while you measure all the dry goods.

This recipe uses mostly whole wheat flour, with just a bit of bread flour for kicks and giggles. Use whatever you have on hand. I don’t like wasting whole wheat flour for kneading. I know, I’m weird.

Add some sugar. The real deal. Nothing fake here.

Throw in some baking powder, salt, & cinnamon and you’re done with the dry ingredients.

Time to pour in the milk & yeast mixture. It should be a little bubbly on the surface- if not, your yeast might be past it’s prime.

Then comes the applesauce time when you realize you’re out of applesauce.

Hmmm..banana maybe?

Aha! Pumpkin! (Yes, I’ve been hoarding that since last fall since NC is stingy in selling canned pumpkin. And yes, that would be 3 jars of PB. I have more, I promise.)

So pumpkin it is! (Don’t worry, your cinnamon rolls won’t taste like pumpkin. Although I’m already planning to make an intentionally pumpkin batch.)

Now mix away. Only don’t mix too much. There is such a thing as too much of a good thing.

It probably won’t really come together like dough. Unless you’re superhuman. And if you’re superhuman, what are you doing making cinnamon rolls from scratch?

Knead the dough until it magically forms a ball. Add bread flour as needed or you’ll have a sticky mess and curse my name.

Now comes the fun part- roll out the dough. Ok, kneading is probably more fun. But I don’t really feel like I’m baking til I whip out a wooden rolling pin circa 1923.

Make as close to a rectangle as you can, but let’s not go crazy. I’d say my dough’s about 1/4 of inch, but that’s only because I feel like that’s what all recipes say. I don’t measure. It’s as thick as it looks. It won’t matter either way.

Melt a little vegan margarine (or whatever you have on hand) and pour it across the rolled out dough. Spread it with a pastry brush if you want to continue feeling fancy.

If, unlike myself, you happen to have applesauce on hand, you could use that here instead of the butter. But I kinda like the butter.

Sprinkle the butter with brown sugar and cinnamon. Use more than what’s in this picture. This is not the time to hold back. I got distracted by licking the brown sugar off my fingers….

Then roll ‘er up. Try to start with a tight roll so it doesn’t get loose and sloppy on the ends. You can always cut the ends off it doesn’t work. I may or may not have eaten the dough ends raw…

Slice away. I’m guessing these are about an inch wide? I think it made about 9. Or 11.

I hear you can use dental floss to cut dough so you don’t squish your pretty little rolls, but I only have mint flavored. Who wants mint flavored cinnamon rolls? Eck.

Spray or butter a pan and fill with the cinnamon rolls.

Here comes the hard part. Stop. Put down the dough. Step away from the pan.

Well, before you step away, cover it with plastic wrap & put it in the fridge. Then step away. Go to sleep. Dream of cinnamon buns dancing in your head.

Ok fine. If you’re impatient like me, throw a few extra in a pan for semi-immediate consumption.

Put them somewhere warm-ish [I use the DVR box…] and go clean up that mess you made.

After 30 minutes or so, pop them in the oven for about 20 minutes and give your batch a test run. All in the name of baking, right?

But on to the real deal….

Time to make the best breakfast ever. If you’re nice enough to share these with someone special, they will love you forever. I’m not that nice.

Bake the Buns!

Pull the buns out of the fridge and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Take a little bit of cold margarine and spread it on the tops of the buns. Nobody will fault you for using your fingers. Then sprinkle the cinnamon rolls with granulated sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Oh yes.

When the oven’s ready, bake them for 20 minutes. The key to this insanely delicious bun is to ever so slightly under bake them.

That bears repeating. Ever so slightly under bake! For me, it was 20 minutes on the dot since they were cold from the fridge.

While they’re doing their under-bake thing in the oven, mix up the icing.

Honestly, I’m not giving you measurements on purpose. Powdered sugar has a life of it’s own- I swear it has multiple personalities. Just pour a bunch of sugar in a cup, and add a splash of almond milk and tiny bit of vanilla.

If it’s too thick, add more milk. Too thin? Add more sugar or a bit of cornstarch.

When the cinnamon rolls come out of the oven, let them cool just a tiny bit. I know, it’s hard.

But if you do that, when you drizzle them with icing they’ll stay nice & pretty!
Now eat away! Don’t hold back! If you don’t want to finish the pan, find somewhere to lock it up. Don’t come complaining to me when they’re gone the same hour day.

I’ll stop torturing you now.

Oh, I guess you want the recipe, huh?

I don’t blame you- cinnamon rolls so healthy you can legitimately call them breakfast? Yes please.

1 c almond milk
1 packet instant yeast
2 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c bread flour (plus 1/4-1/2 c for kneading)
2 t baking powder
1/4 c sugar
1/4 t salt
1 t cinnamon
4T pumpkin puree

2 T vegan margarine
4 T brown sugar
2 t cinnamon

Powdered sugar
Almond milk

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Create the Perfect Trail Mix

Men's Health (or Women's Health) has a nice take on creating the perfect trail mix. It's not that difficult and certainly makes it worth it to have on the counter for snacks.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Star Trek

 Woot! Now the kids get to see some REAL SciFi!

Star Trek: With the unflappable Capt. James T. Kirk (William Shatner) at the helm of this classic sci-fi series, the crew of the starship USS Enterprise keeps intergalactic danger at bay and delves deep into the exploration of space... the final frontier. Leonard Nimoy co-stars as the sharp-eared Spock, Kirk's Vulcan first officer, with DeForest Kelley, James Doohan, Nichelle Nichols, George Takei and Walter Koenig rounding out the iconic crew.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Iron Man 2

Iron Man 2: "Wealthy inventor Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) -- aka Iron Man -- resists calls by the American government to hand over his technology. Meanwhile, Ivan Vanko (Mickey Rourke) has constructed his own miniaturized arc reactor, causing all kinds of problems for our superhero. Sam Rockwell, Gwyneth Paltrow, Scarlett Johansson, Don Cheadle and Samuel L. Jackson co-star in director Jon Favreau's sequel based on Marvel comic book characters."

Friday, June 17, 2011

Almond Butter Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Great Gluten Free, Dairy Free Cookies

From Clean Eating


  • 1 cup unsalted almond butter, stirred well
  • 3/4 cup Sucanat
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 3 oz dark chocolate (70% cocoa or greater), broken into small pieces


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. In a medium bowl, stir together first 5 ingredients until blended. Stir in chocolate.
  2. Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls onto parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned. Let cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes. Remove to a wire rack and let cool for 15 more minutes.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Runner's Diet

Carbs to Choose Often

Fruits (about 60 calories per serving)
Apple, orange, pear, nectarine: 1 small (tennis ball size)
Banana: 1 small (5 inch)
Peach, plum: 1 medium (fist size)
Grapefruit: 1/2 whole fruit
Canteloupe: 1 cup
Berries: 1 cup
Fresh pineapple: 3/4 cup
Canned fruit (in its own juice): 1/2 cup

Low-Starch Vegetables (about 25 calories per serving)
Carrots, celery, cabbage, brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, eggplant, leeks, onions, green beans: 1 cup raw or 1/2 cup cooked
Green pepper: 1 whole
Asparagus: 7 spears cooked or 14 spears raw
Lettuce/raw greens: 1 cup 100-percent vegetable juice: 1/3 cup

Carbs to Choose with Caution (watch those portions!)

High-Starch Vegetables (about 80 calories per serving)
Beans (lima, navy, pinto): 1/3 cup
Corn: 1/2 cup
Peas/lentils: 1/2 cup
Baked white or sweet potato with skin: 1 small (tennis ball size)

Pasta/Rice (about 80 calories per serving)
Couscous (cooked): 1/3 cup
Brown or white rice (cooked): 1/3 cup
Noodles/pasta (cooked): 1/2 cup
Bulgur (cooked): 1/2 cup

Breads/Cereal/Crackers (about 80 calories per serving)
Tortilla (white or wheat): 1
100-percent whole-wheat bread: 1 slice
Mini-bagel: 1
English muffin: 1/2
Pretzels: 3/4 ounce or 8 sourdough nuggets
Popcorn (air popped): 3 cups
Saltine crackers: 6
Rice cakes (all varieties, large): 2
High-fiber cereals: 3/4 cup
Oatmeal: 2/3 cup cooked or 1 instant packet

Protein Picks

Very lean (about 35 calories per serving)
Chicken or turkey breast (skinless): 1 ounce
Fish fillet (all whitefish): 1 ounce
Canned, water-packed tuna: 1 ounce
Shellfish: 1 ounce
Egg whites: 2 large
Egg substitute: 1/4 cup

Lean (about 55 calories per serving)
Chicken or turkey (skinless dark meat): 1 ounce
Salmon, swordfish, herring, trout, bluefish: 1 ounce
Lean beef (flank steak, top round, ground sirloin): 1 ounce
Veal or lamb (roast or lean chop): 1 ounce
Pork (tenderloin): 1 ounce
Canadian bacon: 1 ounce
Low-fat hot dogs: 1
Low-fat luncheon meats: 1 ounce

Dairy Products (about 90 calories per serving)
Fat-free or 1-percent-fat cottage cheese (calcium fortified): 1 cup
Low-fat, sugar-free yogurt: 3/4 cup
Fat-free, sugar-free yogurt: 1 cup
Low-fat cheese (all types): 2 ounces

Fats of Choice

Full-Calorie sources (about 50 calories per serving)
All oils: 1 teaspoon
Avocado (medium): 1/8
Almonds, cashews, filberts: 6
Peanuts: 10
Pistachios: 15
Olives (green or black): 8 medium
Peanut butter (creamy or chunky): 1 teaspoon

Reduced-Calorie sources (about 25 calories per serving)
Light tub margarine: 1 teaspoon
Light mayonnaise/salad dressing: 1 teaspoon
Light cream cheese: 1 teaspoon
Fat-free salad dressing: 1 tablespoon

Monday, June 6, 2011

Pulp Fiction

Pulp Fiction: "
A burger-loving hit man (John Travolta), his philosophical partner (Samuel L. Jackson), a drug-addled gangster's moll (Uma Thurman) and a washed-up boxer (Bruce Willis) converge in this sprawling, comedic crime caper fueled by director and co-writer Quentin Tarantino's whip-smart dialogue. Their adventures unfurl in three stories that ingeniously trip back and forth in time, resulting in one of the most audacious and imitated films of the 1990s."

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Hospital Hill Half Marathon

I ran the Hospital Hill half marathon Saturday morning. Finished with a time of 1:58 which was 10 minutes slower than the Kansas half marathon I did a while back. I am blaming it on the hills and over-preparing. I was too hydrated and had to pee during the race. I also walked through the aid stations thinking I needed to stay hydrated due to the heat and sun. I was over-thinking the race and it made me slower. Anyway, it was great to see Kansas City from that point of view.

I was 64/185 in my age group and 691/3155 overall. You can check the results over at the search page. There were over 6000 people in the race including 5k and 10k participants. The pack was HUGE. I couldn't believe how long the pack held together after the start. It was almost uncomfortable.  I thought the Kansas marathon was bad with people jammed together on the bike path but this was a whole street!

I feel pretty good overall on the day after. My calves hurt a lot. My knee, which I iced all day after the race, feels pretty good today. Good enough to mow the grass anyway =/ Now I have to decide if I am going to consider myself training for a full blown marathon. I guess I should pick a race before I set a schedule.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Marathon Training Schedule

I've looked at  a few training schedules now and some of them are very confusing. This one seems short and sweet. Here is the link to the page. And here is the actual schedule. I need to iron out a good cross-train routine. I tend to just run 6 days a week instead.

Week 1: run 3, 4, 9
Week 2: run 3, 6, 10
Week 3: run 3, 6, 12
Week 4: run 3, 6, 14
Week 5: run 4, 8, 16
Week 6: run 4, 8, 18
Week 7: run 4, 8, 8
Week 8: run 3, 10, 16
Week 9: run 3, 10, 18
Week 10: run 4, 10, 20
Week 11: run 3, 8, 10
Week 12: run 3, 6, race (6 on Wed, no cross-train)

H.R. Pufnstuf: The Complete Series

Wow, may have to check this out. I have vague memories of this show.

H.R. Pufnstuf: The Complete Series: "
This vintage animated series charts the adventures of 12-year-old Jimmy, who sets off on a boat with his enchanted flute to a distant land populated by life-sized puppets, witches and a fluorescent green dragon named H.R. Pufnstuf."

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

11 Keys for a Successful Marathon Journey

Courtesy of

If you Google 'marathon training,' you're likely to come up with thousands of pages of information about how to have a successful marathon journey. It can be almost as overwhelming as the thought of training for your first marathon. There is plenty of how-to information out there, so I wanted to go over the 10 traits every marathoner should develop on their way to the start line.

Post it in a highly visible area like the fridge and refer to it when you need a fresh dose of perspective. Like a supportive training partner, it will remind you that it's all about the journey and not the destination and that some of the best marathoning moments are likely to happen on the way to the start line.


Start from where you are in your fitness level to get to where you want to be safely (the finish line). The fastest way to a successful marathon journey is down reality street. The first week of the training plan should closely match that of your current training. If not, find one that does.


Eat the elephant one bite at a time. Every marathon season starts with the very first step. Tomorrow's workout will lead to the next and soon 6 miles will turn into 14. And you'll know you are on your way when you use the words "only" and "6 miles" in the same sentence.


It takes a village to train a marathoner. Surround yourself with a community of people who will support you from start to finish (seasoned marathoners, running store experts, massage therapist, your spouse or friends). Take the time to communicate with your family and friends the importance of this journey as well as the significant time commitment. You'll need support along the way, and if they know what it means to you, they will be there for you.


Track your workouts, feelings, weather, apparel, foods, mishaps, and anything else you can think of along the way. You are writing your own marathon novel and keeping track of the details can help boost your confidence later in the season.


Every long training workout is an opportunity to rehearse for race day. Fine-tune your pre-race meals, on-the-go fluids and fuel. Most importantly, decide what you'll wear. This will help you be less frazzled and more mindful on race week.


Not every workout is going to be a joy. In fact, you're likely to miss a few training runs along the way. The key is consistency and keeping the momentum flowing. The marathon training plan is a blue print that you can modify to fit your journey to the start line. Be flexible along the way. A short workout is better than none at all.


It won't officially be a marathon training season with out at least one workout that knocks you off your feet. We learn some of our greatest lessons from the most adverse training sessions.


Tapering is to marathoning as sleep is to life. Adding to your training plan in the final few weeks in hopes to do some last-minute cramming only takes away from your race day performance. Occupy your mind and rest your body. You will likely perform as well as the quality of your recovery.


As you make your way through the final weeks of training, feelings of shear and utter fear can creep into your mind. "This seemed like a great idea a few months ago," you may say to yourself. This is the time to review your training log, focus on a few strong workouts during the season, and have faith in your preparation. It's what going to get you through to the finish line.


It is easy to get caught up in the excitement on race morning, especially with your well-rested body. The secret to a beautiful finish line photo is to be the tortoise rather than the hare. Pace yourself early, hold back the reigns, and invest in the final 6 miles (the second start line). Being able to pass people in the final miles of a race (nicely, of course) is one of the most inspiring feelings. Your legs will be fatigued, but you'll feel like a superhero.


It is better to define your success by the magnitude of the accomplishment, than the minutes on a clock. Fast or slow, we all make our way to the finish line with our own two feet. Celebrate every finish and appreciate your marathon journey.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Moving Pictures: Stunning Photographs Brought to Life

Can you say "The Daily Prophet"?

The world has been entranced by photographs since their invention well over a century ago. When video came along, however, that was even better. Somewhere along the way, we have learned to love both still and moving images. Now, well into the 21st century, a team of artists is combining them in a fantastically unusual way.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Make Breakfast in a Mug in Just One Minute [Cooking]

Click here to read Make Breakfast in a Mug in Just One MinuteMake Breakfast in a Mug in Just One Minute [Cooking]: "
May is National Egg Month, but of course a quick hot breakfast is welcome any time of the year. This basic 'egg in a mug' recipe has infinite possibilities. And it only takes a minute or two to deliver fluffy yumminess. More »"

The Call of the Wild

Just added this to the Instant Queue.

The Call of the Wild: "
Featuring a burly, spirited canine as its hero, Jack London's classic adventure tale of the Great North is faithfully adapted in this made-for-television feature from screenwriter James Dickey (Deliverance). After being snatched from his California home and taken to Alaska, Buck winds up in the hands of struggling prospectors who intend to use him as a sled dog. Buck must survive bad owners and bad luck before seeking his own form of redemption."

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Chasing women..

Nice article, very informative.

Chasing women..: "
… is the secret to a happy marathon. Dr. Mark Cucuzella, who just ran a sizzling 2:37 in Boston at age 44, credits the lessons he learned from great female runners.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Guiness Chocolate Cheesecake

Guinness Chocolate Cheesecake from

1 1/4 cups crushed graham crackers
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 teaspoon instant coffee (optional)
In a bowl, stir together graham cracker crumbs, cocoa and coffee (if you are using it). Add melted butter. Stir together until well-combined. Press mixture evenly on the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan.
24 ounces cream cheese
1/3 sugar
5 teaspoons cornstarch
3 eggs
1 egg yolk
1/2 cup Guinness
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Combine cream cheese, sugar and cornstarch. Beat until smooth. Add eggs and egg yolk, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add Guinness and vanilla. Stir until well-combined. Stir in melted chocolate. Pour mixture over crust. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Lower the temperature to 200 degrees and bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until the center no longer looks wet or shiny. Remove the cake from the oven and run a knife around the inside edge of the pan. Turn the oven off. Return the cake to the oven for an additional hour. Chill, uncovered, overnight.
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
4 tablespoons of heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon instant coffee
In a small saucepan, melt chocolate chips in cream over low heat, stirring constantly. Stir in coffee until dissolved. Spread the warm mixture over the cheesecake. Chill until serving time.

Monday, March 28, 2011


Great Scone recipe from


  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup dried currants or raisins
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon milk


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
  2. Sift the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt into a large bowl. Cut in butter using a pastry blender or rubbing between your fingers until it is in pea sized lumps. Stir in the currants. Mix together 1/2 cup milk and sour cream in a measuring cup. Pour all at once into the dry ingredients, and stir gently until well blended. Overworking the dough results in terrible scones!
  3. With floured hands, pat scone dough into balls 2 to 3 inches across, depending on what size you want. Place onto a greased baking sheet, and flatten lightly. Let the scones barely touch each other. Whisk together the egg and 1 tablespoon of milk. Brush the tops of the scones with the egg wash. Let them rest for about 10 minutes.
  4. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, until the tops are golden brown, not deep brown. Break each scone apart, or slice in half. Serve with butter or clotted cream and a selection of jams - or even plain.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Best Snack Foods

I'm a big fan of this email from Men's Health. It's called Eat This, Not That. They offer insightful and honest solutions for problems facing people who can't always plan out their meals. I find myself eating out quite often and this guide has saved me many times offering reasonable substitutes and better choices when it comes to readily available "fast food".

Here is a great one for snacks foods.

WTF Weather? It's March!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Want: New Balance Minimus

Running and Rambling has a great review of the new Minimus shoe from New Balance. I have had my 101s for a while now and I love them dearly. Being new to trail running I haven't owned other shoes but I'm willing to try since my 101s are always muddy and wet.

These shoes look (and sound) as nice as my 101s. I hope I get a chance to try some out.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Save the Boobies 5k

I finished the Steps for the Chest (aka Save the Boobies) 5k this morning with a record time of 24:22. My Runkeeper time was 26 something since I forgot to hit stop but I corrected it when I got home.

It was an easy flat run but scattered with snow and slush. I am sure I would have broke 24 minutes if it was dry. For the first run of the year I was happy with how I felt during the race. Some of the longer runs I've been doing certainly helped out.

I'm really excited about next weekend now. The Shamrock Shuffle should be warmer and dry hopefully. With any luck I'll break my 24 minute mark and a celebration will ensue =/

Woot, second in my age group!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Mixed Berry Whole-Grain Coffee Cake

I've been looking for a good healthy coffee cake I can safely leave on the counter and snack on for days. Most cakes don't qualify as healthy especially when they come from your mom or grandmother's recipes. I hunted this one down online and hope to try it out this weekend.

From Green Mountain at Fox Run.

This coffee cake makes a great centerpiece for your Easter brunch. Made with whole-grains and berries --both good sources of disease-fighting antioxidants - it's not only amazingly delicious, it's incredibly good for you, too! Enjoy!
3 tablespoons butter
1 cups quick-cooking oats
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup skim milk
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 (12-ounce) bag frozen, unsweetened mixed berries, thawed and drained
(about 1 1/2-2cups frozen or 2 cups fresh berries)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 9-inch round cake or springform pan or 9 x 9 square pan. Mix butter, oats, 1/4 cup flour and brown sugar in small bowl with fork or pastry cutter until crumbly. Set aside. Combine flours, sugar, oil, milk, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and egg in large bowl. Beat mixture with wire whip or mixer 1- 2 minutes, until well blended. Stir in mixed berries. Spread half of the batter in pan and sprinkle ½ of oat mixture on top. Add remaining batter and sprinkle with remaining oat mixture and chopped walnuts. Bake 40-45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Serve warm.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Coffee Chocolate Chip Cheesecake

It seems to be baked goods week here at work. This one came in today and I had to get the recipe.

Coffee Chocolate Chip Cheesecake

3 blocks of soften cream cheese (leave them on the counter all day)
3 Eggs
1 Can of Sweetened Condensed Milk
2 tbs vanilla

18 oreo cookies (I use double stuff)
2 tbls melted butter

1 cup of chocolate chips
2 tbs flour

I use a 2” deep 12” round spring form pan, and a 3” deep 9” round spring form pan.

Mix the cake stuff until smooth.  This make take five to ten minutes.

Smash the cookies, spread in a spring form pan, stir in melted butter, and pat down.   I sometimes add instant coffee to the butter for flavor.  I have also used mint flavored cookies.

Coat chips in flour, and then stir them into the cake mix.  Pour cake mix into the spring form pan.

Bake for 55 to 60 minutes at 350.  Bake until brown on the edges and the middle does not sag or giggle.  Cool overnight.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Runner's High

Found a nice article about the Runner's High (thanks RunLawrence). Funny thing was that I was just saying to a friend last week how I never seemed to "feel it" until I ran at least 5 or 6 miles. That goes right along with what the article says.
In a groundbreaking 2003 experiment, scientists at the Georgia Institute of Technology found that 50 minutes of hard running on a treadmill or riding a stationary bicycle significantly increased blood levels of endocannabinoid molecules in a group of college students.
I guess that makes perfect sense to me now. I wondered why I never felt that way after running a 5k on the treadmill or on the road but seem to feel it after running the trails or a long run on the weekends.

Martin Park Loop

Mapped out the Martin Park Loop with my phone and Runkeeper during lunch. Nice run even if it wasn't sunny. There was a pretty good south wind and and an overcast 50 degrees. Still nice for February. It's supposed to be above 70 tomorrow so maybe I'll run two days in a row =P

Monday, February 14, 2011

North Shore Run

Managed to snap some pictures on my run this weekend. I decided to check out the Clinton trails since it was a sunny 55 degrees. It was a little slushy in places but nothing too bad. Most of the trail was packed snow. I could have skied most of it. It did bring back memories of cold-weather training.

Flickr Shots
Runkeeper Event

Monday, January 31, 2011

Snowmageddon Part IV

Another blast of snow headed our way. I don't even need to mention how this was supposed to be a dry winter, do I?

Saturday, January 22, 2011

More of the white stuff...

Well, so much for a dry winter. It was forecast to be a really dry winter but we have seen at least as much snow as last year and that was quite a bit. Now we have 6-8 inches on the ground and 2-3 on the way later tonight.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Leaving AT&T

Our family has been a loyal customer with AT&T for many years. We were customers before the iPhone craze and we have been loyal through at least 5 iPhone upgrades. We now have a total of 4 lines with AT&T. But now the times may be a changing. And they don't seem to care one bit.

Verizon recently announced they will be offering the iPhone as we all know. It just so happens that my wife is eligible for an iPhone "upgrade" (it still costs a nice chunk of change) just a few weeks after the iPhone hits Verizon. It also just so happens that she recently broke the glass on her 3GS. Now, after a rather disheartening visit to the AT&T store (they can't do anything thing to help us out) we are faced with a stunning array of options. We can...

  1. Have the 3GS repaired for ~$100.00
  2. Get a whole new 3GS with AT&T for $49.00
  3. Upgrade now for the sweet low price of $600.00 
  4. Borrow a phone and wait 4 weeks for the "upgrade". Then pay out $200.00 for the iPhone 4
  5. Borrow a phone and wait a couple weeks until Verizon offers the iPhone and see what kind of family plans they can offer and eventually dump AT&T all together

There is no way they can just allow us to upgrade now and ignore the 4 weeks. We have been customers for years and have gone through numerous upgrades on their schedule. Now we just need a little help and they can't seem to budge even a little bit. They almost seem to not care at all about losing loyal customers. You would think with the competition breathing down their necks that they would be eager to hold on to customers they have especially since the idea of gaining new customers seems even more unlikely at this point.

I guess from their point of view we will have to pay for our contract one way or another with the  outrageous early termination fees (if we leave for Verizon). And at this point they are ready to face a certain amount of loses. It's just a shame that customer loyalty means so little anymore. I guess it's just to hard to judge and trust individuals personalities for the bottom line so we are given unbelievable early termination fees to balance it out. Way to stick it to the consumer! Maybe we will just get rid of all of our phones and just have a land line from now on :^P

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Diet Rules to Follow

Men's Health has a nice bit on the "Rules of the Ripped". I have condensed them here for easy reference but you should read the article for in depth explanations.

I'm proud to say that I've actually been doing most of this on my own for the past few months and it has been working. It mentions very interesting research about diet soda. I've recently started drinking more diet Coke. Perhaps I'll look for a replacement (unsweetened tea).

  • Rule 1 "I Will Eat Protein with Every Meal and Every Snack"
  • Rule 2  "I Will Never Eat the World's Worst Breakfast" (no breakfast)
  • Rule 3 "I Will Eat Before and After Exercise"
  • Rule 4  "I Will Eat It If It Grows on a Tree"
  • Rule 5 "I Will Eat the Salad Even If It Makes Me Feel Girly"
  • Rule 6  "I Will Not Drink Sugar Water"
  • Rule 7 "I Will Follow the Rules of the Ripped 80 Percent of the Time" 

A Caveat: You'd think the easiest way to cut out sugar water calories would be to switch to diet sodas and teas. And yes, that will cut calories. But for reasons we don't fully grasp, diet sodas actually increase your risk of weight gain. Research shows that people who drink one to two cans of regular soda per day increase their risk of becoming overweight or obese by nearly 33 percent. But replace those regular sodas with diet sodas and the risk rises: diet drinkers are 65 percent are more likely to become overweight, and 41 percent more likely to become obese. Several studies have hinted at why this is. In 2009, researchers found that artificial sweeteners may interfere with your brain's satisfaction signals, essentially making you crave more food than you need. And even more recent research by scientists in the Department of Psychological Sciences at Purdue University suggests that artificial sweeteners may slow metabolism—meaning the more diet soda you drink, the fewer calories you burn during the day.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Zannie’s Black-Eyed Pea Dip

Zannie’s Black-Eyed Pea Dip:

Zannie is my sister.

Well, she’s not really my sister. But she’s the mother of my two sweet nephews—we had our first babies at the same time—and she’ll always be a sister to me. When I was big and enormous and pregnant with my second child, we spent a summer together and she’d bring me cokes on ice because I couldn’t get off the couch.

I love you forever, Zannie.

This is a scrumptious recipe Zannie shared with me once—a delicious black-eyed pea dip that’s warm, not cold, which ushers in all sorts of interesting texture and flavor. Try it for your New Year’s gathering today or tomorrow. It really is yummy.

  • 1 can (14-ounce) Can Black-eyed Peas
  • ¼ whole Onion, Chopped Fine
  • ¼ cups Sour Cream
  • 8 slices Jarred Jalapenos
  • 1 cup Grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese
  • 3 Tablespoons Salsa
  • Hot Sauce, to taste
  • Salt And Black Pepper To Taste

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Drain black-eyed peas and partially mash, leaving some whole.

Add all other ingredients, stirring to combine.

Spread into a 1 1/2 quart baking dish and bake for 20 to 30 minutes until hot and bubbly.

Serve with tortilla chips!

*Note: if you have them available, you can use the canned black-eyed peas and jalapenos (they’re canned together.) If you do this, you can omit the extra jalapenos.