Monday, April 2, 2012

Currently Craving: Bamboo

I am loving these kitchen essentials from TruBamboo!

"TruBamboo is an award-winning eco-friendly company known for its dedication to form and style. TruBamboo's Columbian designer aims to achieve harmony between both beauty and performance. The result is functional kitchen d├ęcor produced with only hand-sorted grade "A" bamboo. Superior quality artisan construction is expressed through the use of rich detailing and hand finishing for best in class fit, finish and function."

Not only are these housewares beautiful and sustainable, they are also going to help me keep a little green in the bank! Right now they are on sale over at HauteLook and NOTHING is over $20...how can I resist? 
Basics Collection Dish Rack
 One of my goals is to not use the dishwasher, as much. This will be the perfect rack for drying my dishes after I hand wash them! 
Basics Collection Square Caddy with Six Utensils


Basics Collection Cheese Board with Stainless Steel and Bamboo Utensils

 Perfect for entertaining new friends at my new home! 
Circa Collection Cutting Board with TruGrip Feet

Basics Collection Folding Banana Hanger


And last but certainly not least...
These will keep my Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free Oats and Flours fresh, fresh, fresh! And are much more attractive then the rubber-bands and Ziploc bags I'm currently using. 
**Now these are $35...but you get all three, so it's just a little under $12 for each!**

Round Storage Containers with Silicone Lining- Set of 3 


Friday, March 30, 2012

Whoop Whoop...It's the 30th!

And do you know what that means?  Yes, it's Friday...Yes, it's almost April...but most importantly it's FOODIE PEN PAL REVEAL DAY!!
The Lean Green Bean




This is my first month participating as a Foodie Pen Pal and I am so glad I did! Not only have I met 2 fantastic women, the person you mail to is not the person who mails to you! 



First and Foremost, here are some details about Foodie Penpals:
-On the 5th of every month, you will receive your penpal pairing via email. It will be your responsibility to contact your penpal and get their mailing address and any other information you might need like allergies or dietary restrictions.
-You will have until the 15th of the month to put your box of goodies in the mail. On the last day of the month, you will post about the goodies you received from your penpal
-The boxes are to be filled with fun foodie things, local food items or even homemade treats! The spending limit is $15. The box must also include something written. This can be anything from a note explaining what’s in the box, to a fun recipe…use your imagination!
-You are responsible for figuring out the best way to ship your items depending on their size and how fragile they are. (Don’t forget about flat rate boxes!)
-Foodie Penpals is open to blog readers as well as bloggers. If you’re a reader and you get paired with a blogger, you are to write a short guest post for your penpal to post on their blog about what you received. If two readers are paired together, neither needs to worry about writing a post for that month.
-Foodie Penplas is open to US & Canadian residents.  Please note, Canadian Residents will be paired with other Canadians only. We’ve determined things might get too slow and backed up if we’re trying to send foods through customs across the border from US to Canada and vice versa. So, I’m going to keep two separate lists and match US w/ US and Canada w/ Canada!

If you’re interested in participating for April, please CLICK HERE to fill out the participation form and read the terms and conditions. You will also find contact information on that page for the UK branch of Foodie Penpals if you’re a blogger across the pond!
You must submit your information by April 4th as pairings will be emailed on April 5th!
Ok, Ok....I know you are interested to see what I got, but don't forget to sign-up afterwards, so you to can be in on all the fun!
My Foodie Penpal this month was Jill from Eating As A Path To Yoga! Honestly friends, I can not tell you how excited I was to open my package and see "The Fresh Market" label on several labels! Of course, I was also excited to just receive all the yummy treats, but "The Fresh Market" holds a very special place in my heart! It's one of my favorite stores from back home. My Mom and I always go there when I'm home for some delicious treats, and it's my favorite place to pick up flowers! Of course, there aren't many around but if you have one in your area, you must check it out--if you haven't already. 
Raspberry Lime Green Tea, Orange Blossom Honey, and Greek Dressing


Jill saw that I had just started (and might I add LOVED, more to come on this later!) a Gluten Free cleanse, so she was sure to include some fantastic GF options in my package. I am most excited to try the Blueberry Muffins this weekend. The granola was yummy...definitely devoured as a munchie for my road trip this past week! 
Along with some wonderful edible goodies, Jill included a lovely print out of quotes for Mindful Eating. Appropriately, just what I needed, as I am currently working thru some serious moments of "emotional eating"! Obviously immediately placed on the fridge! 



Thanks Jill! You're amazing! Go see what she got from her Foodie Penpal!! 

And if you want to see what I got for my Penpal...
Check out Tiffany's Blog! 

Happy Friday Ya'll

P.S. Sorry for the absence, but I have been on the road... :) 


Wednesday, March 14, 2012

WIAW #4

Today was long...so tonight's post will be short and sweet! Perhaps it will even be a (mostly) silent








Good Night!


Monday, March 12, 2012

Getting Back in the Kitchen

I love to cook...
I was enrolled in Culinary school, I work in the Restaurant Industry, I love food! 
Lately, though, I haven't really been feeling it in the kitchen. 
I used to get in the kitchen to relieve stress but lately I have just been so busy with work and so tired. By the time I get home in the evening, I just want to pour a glass (errr....bottle?!) of wine and sit on my butt and just throw something together for dinner. 
Besides being tired, busy, and stressed, I have just felt so blah lately. I'm not sure if its the winter blues or what...
So, I sat down a few weeks ago and started to really analyze what was making me feel like this. And the results were an obvious domino effect! 
1. Winter Blues--I get lazy, like really lazy, in the winter! All I want to do when its cold and dreary is cuddle up and keep warm. 
Like I've told many people I only like cold and snow in two situations: Christmas Day (only!) and if I'm on a mountain, knowing at the bottom of the hill is a nice toasty lodge, with a Hot Toddy waiting on me! 
2. Tired--Being lazy, just makes me more tired. Work has been exhausting too...I'm talking so busy that I can't be productive because I don't even know where to begin! Of course, I have taken control of this by making sure I make my to-do list everyday and really focusing on completing the tasks that have priority. 
3. Not cooking--As I mentioned, I love to cook to relieve stress, and that obviously has not been happening. So not only I am not doing something I love but I'm not getting the nutrients I need to get out of this funk! 
4. Workouts are Slack--Are you starting to see the domino effect here? Since I'm so tired, being lazy, not eating right, I'm missing out on the activity that helps the most! The best way to get those endorphins flowing, relieve stress and push that funk right back where it came from is to GET MOVING! 


Just because I love a big fluffy waffle and Texas is on my mind!


What I am doing about it you ask? 
In an effort to get back on my A-game, I'm taking small steps to get back to where I need to be. 
1. Get Back in the Kitchen: The past few weeks, I have dedicated Sunday afternoon to grocery shopping and meal planning. Meal planning has always been a great way for me to make sure I'm eating right and spending plenty of time in the kitchen. 
2. Exercising: I started a new workout plan last week and so far its working out nicely! Its a program I can actually complete at the gym in my apartment complex. (I haven't joined a gym because I travel so much for work, it would be a major waste of money!) I am setting a personal goal to hit the at least 3 mornings each week. Hopefully, this will help with the whole not wanting to do when I get home from work and also give me more time in the kitchen after work. And now with the time change the sun is still up when I get home, so I can go on a nice walk with Gary after dinner. 
3. Getting Sleep: I'm cutting back on the booze**, and working on unplugging earlier. I also write my to-do list for the next day, right before I fall asleep. 
**No, I'm not an alcoholic but I do love me some wine! 


Tonight, I whipped up an easy, healthy dinner in less than 30 minutes!




Backed Salmon Packets
1 3oz. Salmon filet
1 cup Broccoli
1 small Shallot (sliced thin)
1/2 tablespoon Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Garlic (minced)
Sprinkle of Oregano, Thyme and fresh Cracked Black Pepper
2 Lemon wedges
Foil




Preheat the oven to 350. 
Place the salmon and broccoli in foil. Spread sliced shallot over top. Sprinkle your olive oil, herbs and garlic evenly. Squeeze lemon juice over salmon and broccoli. 
Fold the foil to form a packet and pop in the oven for about 20 minutes.













Wednesday, March 7, 2012

You Know it...WIAW! #3

It's Wednesday...so you know what means! But first a quick announcement! 
My Spring Fling Giveaway has been extended, so make sure you go here to enter! 

Ok now on to the real reason you are here...








 Early-thirty protein shake and banana...yeah this is new to me... also new to me is working out in the AM, which I did today! (pat.on.back) I will admit I was pleasantly surprised, this protein smoothie was not to bad! 


Breakfast at the office: 1/2 sweet potato with cinnamon and a turkey "muffin" 
(absolutely delish!) 


Ok now, here comes the GREEN!! 
Lunch: Steamed Brussels over Quinoa and a Spinach salad with Raw Sunflower Seeds, Cranberries and Celery. 




Snack: Green Apple with Justin's Chocolate Peanut Butter (excuse me, heaven!) Blueberries and Green Tea ;)


Dinner: Steamed Veggies (cabbage, broccoli, asparagus) and Spicy Chicken


It was one of those days...so yes, even my wine, courtesy of TJ's was GREEN! ;) 
(However, I don't know if this is really gluten free...oops, again) 

**Do you work out in mornings or evenings? 
**Sweet or savory for foods for Breakfast? 
**I received a large RED box in mail today... very excited to share about what the contents of this box... 
can you guess what it was?





Sunday, March 4, 2012

fro-yo = fail

Now I know what you might be thinking...fro-yo =fail? That's sac-ra-lidge! But wait to hear the story before you judge!

Last week was my first week on Meghan Telphner's "Gluten-Free Cleanse". Monday through Wednesday were great! Not much to change in my diet as I pretty much eat Gluten-free anyway. I took it a little easy on working out this week but Wednesday evening, I felt like I needed a serious sweat session. Hit the gym and ended up on the elliptical for an hour. (Both treadmills were out of service.) After the cardio, I spent about 15 minutes with the free weights. Later that evening I started to develop a major headache. So, I went to bed hoping that would solve the problem....

When I woke up on Thursday, I still had a little headache and was feeling pretty blah. As day went on, and I began having to deal with people, I noticed I was not only extremely cranky but extremely sensitive, look at me wrong and I was either gonna bite your head off or burst out in tears! Fortunately, that morning the gang over at Making Love in the Kitchen had sent out an email...Handling the Healing Crisis. It was very apparent I was experiencing some of the lovely symptoms that come with the healing and detoxing of the toxins when on a cleanse. So I was able to follow most of their tips...
  • Drink plenty of water. There’s nothing better to wash away the yucky-ness than water, which flushes out toxins and makes your cells happy.
  • Add lemon to your water. Lemon is naturally detoxifying and kicks your liver and digestive tract into gear. It’s a great way to start your day!
  • Rest: Sometimes the best thing you can do is to do nothing at all. Get your sleep, take naps if you need them. Your body is doing some repair work and this can make you feel more tired than usual.
Only problem was...that didn't quit do the trick! I was still super blah on my drive home and had to stop by the store for a few essentials. Well we just got a new frozen yogurt shop in the center across from my apartment, so I figured a little pick me up was in need.
This is where the fail comes into play....
I had assumed ALL fro-yo was Gluten-free, not sure why, but I did. So filled my cup with Peanut Butter and Chocolate (YUM) and as I was paying, I looked up to see....
THE LIST OF GLUTEN-FREE options! Ooops.
But other than that, the CFC is going pretty well!

Today, Gary the Boxer and I were able to get out and enjoy some sunshine and warming temps! Definitely something we both needed! 


Then I did some grocercy shopping...look like I shouldn't have any problem with GREEN theme for March's WIAW!








And now here's a little something that I recommend watching...it's sure to keep the "Monday's" away! (Just watch the video...mmm-k?!)
http://jezebel.com/5890298/the-real-housewives-of-disney-will-ruin-your-childhood





Thursday, March 1, 2012

Spring Fling Giveaway!

Good Morning Friends!
In honor of March....hallelujah Spring is on the way...I've got a prize for you!
I'm giving away a pair of gorgeous Serenity Small Stone Drop Earrings from Stella and Dot!

  • Hand cut polished semi-precious dyed jade drops are handset in a shiny
  • 12k gold plated hammered brass bezel.
  • 12k gold plated brass fish hook ear wire.
  • 2" length.
  • Available in aqua or lapis.
  • Lead & nickel safe.


To be entered into the drawing:
2. Follow me on Twitter!
3. Leave a comment letting me know how these earrings would be the perfect addition to your Spring 2012 wardrobe! 
**Make sure to leave a comment here at Cooper's Cravings, letting me know you have Liked and Followed!**
Contest will close Friday, March 2 at 8pm MNT.
CONTEST CLOSES SATURDAY, MARCH 10 at 8pm MNT. 

If you are interested in learning more about Stella & Dot, please email me at Ashley@cooperscravings.com



Wednesday, February 29, 2012

WIAW Numero Dos!


 
It's that time again!


Leave it to me, to forget to take a picture of my lunch on WIAW....figures!


Breakfast: Egg White and Veggie "Muffin", 1/2 Sweet Potato with a Sprinkle of Cinnamon and a cup of Vanilla Biscotti Coffee

 Snacks: Blueberries, Veggies and Hummus, and an Apple
 
Supper: Trader Joe's Cilantro Lime Chicken burger topped with Salsa, Sauteed Cabbage, and Tomato slices with a 1/2 avocado


This weeks WIAW is also Gluten Free!

 Tomorrow I'll have an update on the Cleanse and Mediation Challenge!

On a side note, did anyone watch American Idol tonight?
My friend Elise, is competing! She rocked!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

New Week; New Challenge

Well the weekend has come and gone...and unfortunately, this one was a wash. Not much productivity over this way that's ok! Sometimes a weekend of nothing is good for the soul.


This week on Cooper's Cravings:



 Tomorrow starts the Gluten- Free renewal Cleanse over at
I'm excited to cleanse my body and really focus on a fresh, whole foods.

The Gluten-Free Rewnewal Program will help you:
  • Reduce cravings for sugary sweets and floury breads
  • Lose weight and puffyness
  • Reduce bloating and puffiness
  • Lower allergen intake
  • Stabilize blood sugar
  • Balance pH
  • Lower estrogen levels
"This month-long cleanse will allow your body the time to start cleansing itself from the negative effects of gluten and bring on some positive ones - like increased energy, weight loss, better digestion and clarity.
Eliminating gluten also means that you’ll be focusing on fresh, whole foods. And when you cut out the processed foods that are weighing you down, you’ll also cut out many of the hidden sources of gluten, sugar and bad fat, too. "

This week I'm also starting the 21-Day Meditation Challenge from 
I am hoping this challenge helps me to quite my mind and truly learn to focus, clear my mind for improved concentration and gain a deeper understanding of my inner self.

Workouts for the week:
- 3 mile run x 3
-30 Minute Yoga sessions x 2
-30 Minute Full Body Workout from fitsugar.com x 4














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