Thursday, January 13, 2011

Wants and Desires

With the big move in October and Christmas following so quickly behind, I haven't really been shopping for me at all!

Of course I bought stuff for the apartment, but it's just not the same is it?

With my birthday around the corner, I've been thinking of items that I really want just for little ol' me. Now that I'm firmly in my (ahem, mid) 30's, I also find that I'm drawn to classic, investment pieces that I can keep well into my 40's and that I can maybe pass down to a daughter some day. I think about raiding my mom's closet when I was in my 20's and I was so grateful that she held onto certain items.

Sailor tee. I've wanted one forever!

Grown-up purse, since I'm swiftly approaching mid-life.

This cape. I'm not usually a fan of American Apparel, but this hits all the right notes. Seems vintage and classic at the same time.

Classic Wellies. My last pair fell apart, but these are built to stand the test of time.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

5 years

Did you know this blog is 5 years old?  Yep.  I started on New Year's Eve way back in 2005.  I was such a different girl back then - a little lonely, not really sure of her place in the world.  I'm not completely sure of it now, and New Year's Eve still makes me a little blue, but I'm slightly more confident and lot more self-reliant.

If you read the blog, you'll know I'm not one for New Year's resolutions, but this time around, the new year presented me with a chance to re-evaluate my health and the poor turn that it had taken.  I had a summer full of pizza and tacos and pasta with pesto and the extra pounds to prove it. 

I started out the new year with Gwyneth's detox.  I modified it a bit, not following the menu's exactly (I just couldn't stomach that avocado soup and I didn't give up coffee), but sticking with the spirit of the fast.  At the end of about a week of no dairy, no refined sugar, and no processed flour, I was feeling pretty good!  

I'm not a convert, by any means.  I fully intend to indulge in a hamburger sometime soon and possibly some birthday cake at the end of the month.  I may have also had a bagel for breakfast yesterday morning.  But I'm in love with my juicer now, and making a decided effort to eat cleaner foods.

This is where Jamie Oliver's soup comes in.  Well, I've been eating a lot of soup lately because it's the perfect food to keep me going through the day and I can make a lot in advance.  But I particularly love Jamie's soup. It's packed with flavor and veggies and with a dollop of plain (non-fat) Greek yogurt, it's positively decadent.

(I've also been eating a lot of this and this.  Both highly recommended.) 

Lentil and Spinach Soup, serves 6-8
*adapted from "Jamie's Food Revolution"

2 tbs. olive oil
2 medium carrots
2 celery stalks
1 medium onion
2 cloves garlic
2 quarts chicken or vegetable stock
thumb-sized piece of ginger
1/2 small red chili
10 grape tomatoes
2 cups red lentils
7 cups baby spinach
salt and black pepper, to taste
1 cup plain (non-fat) Greek yogurt, to garnish, if you like

Put a large sauce pan on medium heat and add 2 tbs. of olive oil
Chop carrots, celery and onion and add to pan
Sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook for about 10 minutes, with the lid askew, until vegetables are soft
Meanwhile, mince or grate the ginger, seed and finely slice the chili and cut the tomatoes in half.
Next add the stock, ginger, chili, tomatoes and lentils.
Bring soup to a boil and reduce to simmering.  
Simmer, with the lid on, for about 10 minutes or until lentils are falling apart.
Add the spinach and cook, stirring, for another 30 seconds, or until the spinach is good and wilted.
Taste and season with salt and pepper to your liking.
Serve with yogurt if you like!