Butter is Better

Day 2 of vacation week started off with some pumpkin spice coffee in my U.S. House of Representatives mug (I used to be an intern there!). I’ve been having full-caf coffee and I can definitely notice the difference.

coffee

I made peanut butter cup oats for breakfast and even convinced my mom to have them too!

  • 1/3 cup oats, 1/3 cup milk, 1/3 cup water
  • chopped apple (cooked with the oats)
  • 2 Tbs peanut butter
  • a few chocolate chips

oatmeal

I ended up doing quite a bit of work from home. Around noon, I decided I needed to try a piece of pumpkin cookie from my favorite bakery. This cookie was SO moist and light. Almost cake-like.

Pumpkin cookie

I was tempted to take a nap with Kiwi the cat (love.him.so.much)……

Kiwi

But I got myself out the door for a run instead! I took it very easy today – 4 miles followed by 4 strides at the end. In case you’re unfamiliar with strides – they are controlled pick-ups of speed. I usually make mine about 100 meters (or one city block) long. I pick-up speed for the first 25 meters, maintain a quick, yet relaxed pace for the middle, and then gradually decelerate for the final bit. I do these before workouts or in the week leading up to a race. It gets my leg muscles used to movin’ fast!

Post-run, I put together an interesting lunch – a big bowl of grapes, a Stonyfield Farm pumpkin pie yogurt, and a few crumbled graham crackers. I’ve been searching for this special seasonal flavor of yogurt for months and I have to say I was a bit disappointed. If you like sweet yogurts, this might be a good option, but I really missed my plain greek yogurt!

Grapes and yogurt

Still hungry, I toasted up a whole wheat sandwich thin and topped it with a layer of peanut butter and a few chocolate chips.

sandwich thin

I was out and about walking and shopping for most of the evening. Around 5pm, I needed to break into my emergency purse snack – raisins! Luckily, these held me over until dinner. I was getting hangry.

raisins

Din-din was a quick salad of spinach, celery, and thousand island yogurt dressing.

salad

And them mom made pierogis! Our neighbors have us some homemade potato pierogis and while they might not be the most nutritionally sound choice, they were DELICIOUS. I forgot how much I miss the local Polish specialities.

pierogis

Mom combined about 3Tbs of butter (err…maybe more) and a large, sliced onion in a saute pan over medium heat. After the onions begin to get a bit brown, she added the pierogis. She allowed them to cook until the pierogis were heated through and the onions were caramelized.

pierogis and onions

I had two pierogis and a leftover stuffed shell.

pierogis

After finishing up my Season 2, Episode 6 of Mad Men – it was time for dessert! Homemade pumpkin ice cream with a crumbled sugar cone on top.

pumpkin ice cream

Lots of sweet things today and a bit of butter – but isn’t that what enjoying good food is all about? I’ll try to eat something green tomorrow 🙂

Check out some tips from this vegan, running machine – she just ran 3:15 for her first marathon!

Breakfast is important, we all know that, but cheerios can get a little boring. Luckily, Women’s Health comes to the rescue with innovative recipes like the berry waffle-wich. Yum.

  • Mmmm your breakfast is making me jealous. Hah – actually all your food in this post looks fabulous. Mommas sure know how to cook. Enjoy your vacay! I can’t wait to head out tomorrow. And I am going now to check out this 3:15 marathon runner – holy cow!! 🙂

  • I forgot hoe good perogies are; I need to reconnect with my Polish family.
    And cake like cookies are def the best

  • Those handmade pierogies look divine — I have to try to make some someday!

    Also, how fabulous is Mad Men? I got hooked last year and can’t believe I have to wait until next summer for new episodes 🙁 Season 3 (the one that just ended) had some ups and downs, but overall I think it was the best one!

  • I’ll have to try out strides! Especially after this first marathon, I’m going to concentrate a bit more on speed.

    I’m not a big fan of the pumpkin pie yogurt either–I make my own with plain yogurt, pumpkin, spices, and stevia. It’s cheaper and tastes way better.

    Love perogis! My mom makes delicious perogis.

  • ummm so much goodness here…i agree with missing plain yog (the flavored stuff just isn’t as good anymore!), where did you intern in the House? i work in politics – intrigued, the pierogis look amazing!

    enjoy your day girl!

  • i would be tempted to take a nap with kiwi too 🙂

  • That is an amazing shot of the pierogis– it makes them look as good as they taste 🙂 I can’t wait to go home for Christmas and track some down.

    And thank you for your explanation of strides–I’m still a running newbie and hadn’t come across an explanation that made sense until I read this.

  • I LOVE pierogis. I haven’t had homemade ones in such a long. Also, I think its sooo cool you interned at the House. Maybe its the pol sci dork in me but I beyond impressed.

  • Mmmmm being home for the holidays and eating all the good stuff – sounds great to me! Thanksgiving isn’t much of an indulgence for me except the day of since I’m so new to it! Christmas is where the trouble (i.e. goodness) lies for me!

    Love that you got your mum eating oatmeal!

  • mmm broken up waffle cones on ice cream is sooo good!

  • This post made memories of Christmas come flooding in! It’s was a family tradition when I was growing up to make pierogies for the holidays- so good huh?! Good food and family: what could be better!

  • Ada

    It’s certainly refreshing to see someone utilize butter in every-day cooking. Some people avoid it like it’s the plague when really it’s just dairy! I hope you enjoy the remainder of your time at home:)