smoothie 1.0

What’s in that glass, you may ask?  Deliciousness.  You may not believe me because it is green, but I speak only the truth.  There is no ‘green’ taste.  Don’t judge.  Make it once and you’ll be hooked and need your green fix once a day.

It’s not easy being green… but it sure is yummy.

Pineapple-Mango Smoothie

  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or any other dairy/non-dairy milk)
  • 1/2 cup frozen mango chunks (trader joe’s has them)
  • 1/4-1/2 cup frozen pineapple pieces (trader joe’s has these as well)
  • optional: 2T protein powder (soy, rice, etc.), 1T Chia seeds

Put all ingredients in a blender (or magic bullets work great for individual smoothies, ours is put to good use).  I tend to start at the top of the list and work my way down, it weighs down the spinach so you don’t have a leafy explosion ;).

And believe me, you can NOT taste the green.

But be honest… you’ve eaten a Shamrock shake so what do you really have to be scared of.

out and about in mke: coa

Coa Restaurant.  The Heart of Mexican Street Food.

I have gone to Coa a few times, I do love mexican food and they put a nice spin on it.  It is conveniently located in Bayshore Mall, which has free parking (as long as you can find space in their lots/parking garages)!  I also love their chips, they are some of the best tortilla chips I have ever eaten.  They use their fresh corn tortillas (made in house I believe), and fry them to deliciousness.  I’m pretty sure their chips are one of the main reason I chose Coa to be my  post-graduation dinner spot… that and guacamole :).

Coa’s claim to fame is their “street food” concept, focused around mix and match street tacos.  This was my first time visiting since I switched to be a vegetarian, even though I have had a few of their vegetarian menu items in the past.  While the vegetarian fare is not overwhelming, it’s a pretty good variety for the average vegetarian.  The Coa Nachos, Grilled Street Corn, Queso Fundido, Black Bean Soup, as well as the Calabacitas and Rajas fillings for the street tacos are listed as vegetarian on their menu.  Some of their other options could probably be made vegetarian if asked (but I had chips on my mind).

Plus, I gave up dairy recently, which limited my options tremendously since their cheese is on everything!  As I can remember, the cheese they use is delicious but I didn’t feel like doing that to my body!  We ended up eating later in the evening since it was after my graduation ceremony, so I was in a more snacking type mood.  I started my meal with a Light Margarita (white wine with fresh squeezed lime – YUM!).  I love this drink, it’s super refreshing and a great option if you’re not a fan of tequila.  For my “meal”, I ended up indulging in their chips and got the Coa Nachos (no cheese or crema) and we got an extra side of guacamole before the meal (the only complaint for this is it came with CHEESE on top – never expected guac to come with that.  If you are avoiding dairy make sure you specify it without the cheese!).

Other items I have had in the past include the black bean soup (I wonder if you can get it without the crema to be dairy free?  Might have to ask next time), as well as the grilled street corn appetizer.  I have also had their enchiladas and burritos during my other dining experiences at Coa, and are also delicious as far as I can remember.  You’d just have to check if you get the basic version if it would be vegetarian (unless it doesn’t matter to you).

For a local Milwaukee restaurant, I am actually fairly impressed with their vegetarian offerings.  I do wish they would list more of their items if they are in fact vegetarian (namely the burritos and enchiladas), just to make it easier to know without needing to ask.

So if you’re looking for a new mexican dining experience and you are in the Milwaukee area, I highly recommend Coa, for vegetarians and meat eaters alike!  To view their menu, click here.  And here’s a plus, they also have BRUNCH on Sunday.

I am not paid for any reviews I do, nor do I receive anything free.  I am simply a blogger who loves to eat and go out to restaurants in Milwaukee.



COA on Urbanspoon

what makes me, me

This is a hard question for me to answer. Why would anyone read what I write? Well, I have spent plenty of time on other blogs reading, learning and picking up recipes (to be quite honest, it’s a little bit of an obsession of mine), so I decided to combine what I have learned as well as impart some of my own experience to hopefully help others avoid some of the errors I have made along the way.  I also mentioned previously that I managed a different blog when I was studying abroad in London. I did that mainly to keep in contact with friends and family since it was hard to keep everyone updated individually! I really enjoyed it and found out that I was actually a fairly good writer. I was told by many people that they enjoyed reading my updates and there were requests to keep something going once I returned, but I never ended up getting anything set up since I didn’t think I had anything to write about anymore. So there’s a brief history of my blogging!

And why did I decide to get into blogging again? As I was nearing the end of my education without a job in sight, I knew I would need to do something to both help fill my free time as well as potentially help in my job search (marketing + blogging = good experience). Keeping a handle on my writing is also a benefit of pushing myself to write informatively and continuing to (try to) make things intriguing!  So, starting a blog was a no brainer. Now, for the topic…

I’m basing it off of things I am passionate for. Baking (and some cooking), running, yoga, traveling and marketing are all things I truly enjoy and love doing and try to do as much as I can and being able to experience a little bit of everything will definitely help my time to pass during the days.

A small fraction of what I baked this past December

My love of baking goes waaay back, I have always had a sweet tooth and being able to make my own treats was always my preference. I’ve even had a small Christmas cookie business the past few years which has always been a highlight of my December, albeit an incredibly stressful time in my life! Owning a bakery at some point in my life would be incredible (I’ve got a lot of dreams 😉 ). My baking style has changed quite a bit from the early days of experimenting with recipes, including the recipes I used this past Christmas, which will be evident in future posts I’m sure!

This is the only picture I have of me running (from NYC trip in January)

Running on the other hand is a relatively recent endeavor, I’ll go more in depth on my history of running sometime in the near future.  I like to read about other people’s journey to running or other exercising, so I will share my story with you guys.  And I have definitely grown to love it over the past few months, and having the Disney 1/2 marathon to look forward to in January 2012 definitely has me motivated to keep going!

No pictures of me doing yoga either... but I have the green mat and it is AMAZING!

Yoga has been a part of my life for the past year and my practice has grown a lot in that time. I am doing poses I never thought I would be able to do, and I know there is still so much more that I am hoping to accomplish in the future! I try to practice at least two times a week, (shout out to Strive Yoga!), and if I can’t make it there I have some DVD’s I also enjoy.

London is my favorite 🙂

Traveling has always been a passion since my first airplane trip when I was 4, but I really got to experience it when I studied abroad and got to not only be in London, but also the entire United Kingdom (Scotland & Wales), Ireland, France, Belgium, Italy and Germany. I have traveled around the US quite a bit as well, but there are still so many places to go! I’ll have to do some look-backs on my favorite highlights in each country.

Oh Twitter...

Finally, I must admit I am a bit of a marketing junkie. I’m relatively new to the marketing world but I try to keep myself up-to-date on all the hot marketing news. I also love social media, but hate Twitter.  I have one, I have followers, but I’ve only tweeted like 30 times in the last year and a half… maybe I’ll find enjoyment in it one day… maybe… don’t hold your breath.

As you can see, I enjoy doing a lot of different things and like to stay busy. As the blog progresses I will go further into each one of my passions. In addition to what I listed above, I am also focused on nutrition and living as healthily as I can which will be reflected in my posts. Having extra free time this summer will give me time to train for upcoming runs as well as spend time in the kitchen to experiment with more nutrient-dense recipes. I am looking to do a few day/weekend trips over the summer as well (having/not having a job will greatly impact what I can afford to do!). Hopefully my blog will end up being well balanced and enjoyable to both myself and my (future) readers!

little ball of energy

I typically do my longer run on Saturday since it used to be my only day off of school/work for the week.  I’ll still keep up my Saturday ritual since it will work well with training for my upcoming races, but this past weekend I switched up my routine a bit.  I attended my baccalaureate service for Graduation on Saturday morning with my family and then we went out to brunch.  Needless to say, I did not want to wake up early to run the usual distance, so Kinley (my sister) and I did a quick 3 mile run instead.  I was then planning on running on Sunday… but then I wimped out because of the 45mph wind gusts, there’s lovely Wisconsin for ya ;).

Monday it is then!  It was still a little windy, but the sun was shining and the temperature was in the 40’s which is what I am used to.  So I woke up around 7, ate a rice cake with 1T trader joe’s peanut butter and set out for my run at 8.  I’m not quite sure why, but my energy was just not with me.  I ended up running a 10k in pretty good time for myself but I just felt like I was dragging.  I used to run without eating anything before, which is not very effective but I think I still must not be energizing enough.

I definitely could have used some of these energy-filled balls as a pick-up halfway through!  I found this recipe for Chocolate Coconut Dough Balls from The Edible Perspective and changed it up just a bit based off of what I had on hand.  They taste very similar to Larabars, which I love and these were so simple to make!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup ground almonds (I had a pack of pre-ground trader joe’s raw almonds)
  • 12 pitted dates
  • 1T unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2T unsweetened shredded coconut

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. In a food processor, chop up the dates (make sure you have pitted dates, or otherwise take the pit out before you do this).
  2. Add in the ground almonds, cocoa powder and shredded coconut.  Mix together until it will form into balls.  I also added about 1T of water to the mix to get the correct consistency (I think because the original recipe called for medjool dates which I did not use).
  3. Roll into balls (mine made 13) and keep refrigerated.

I’ll definitely be bringing these along with me on Saturday’s run to see if they’ll help me keep up my pace (if they’re still around that is, they’re delicious)!

change of address

Don’t worry, I haven’t moved so you can still send my graduation cards to the same address haha.

The real address I am referencing is for the blog. I had almost everything perfected on my blogspot blog, and then I went to it on Saturday to start a new post and all of my layouts, pictures and pages were gone. I had a little freak out. Hours were wasted and now I had to start all over. I had used blogspot for my London blog with no problem, but this event made me question whether I actually wanted to use it for my new blog. Since I was only one post in and everything else was gone, I figured I should look into other services to see what I wanted to do.

Well, as you can see I decided on WordPress. I am still getting familiar with this system, and unfortunately it is not as easy to navigate as blogspot, but I can tell it will be much more integrated once I finally figure everything out! The biggest change is not having Google Analytics on it – still trying to figure that out! Needless to say, my blog is still a work in progress but it will definitely keep me busy getting it perfected.

Now, onto other changes. I am now officially graduated! Empty diploma cover and all!

It’s a very anticlimactic feeling. College is over. I can no longer categorize myself as student, something I have been able to identify with for as long as I can remember. And for once in my life I do not know what’s coming next. This is not a typical summer break, I won’t have classes to go back to this fall and I do not currently have a job of any kind. Numerous resumes have been sent out but it’s time for me to play the waiting game. I know eventually something will come up, but it’s the unknowing that’s going to drive me up the wall. At least I will have time to devote to this ;).

So check back often as I am expecting there to be numerous changes and posts throughout the week since I’ve got no where else to be haha. And I think some baking might be in order for this afternoon…

here i am again

I fell in love with blogging over a year ago when I documented my time studying abroad in London for a semester. I did get hooked and loved making new posts when I had something new and exciting to write about! Unfortunately when I arrived back in the States, summer was here but I was working my first full-time internship and did not do a whole lot to make it worth documenting.

Hopefully, things have changed.

I graduate soon. Like, in two days. It’s crazy. My collegiate career is fast approaching its end, something I thought would never get here at times. So what will I do with all my free time when I have no homework to do, papers to write, or tests to study for? Well, besides scouring the internet for job postings to apply for to begin my “grown-up” life, I thought it would be a good hobby to start up a new blog to help with my restlessness sitting at home with nothing to do all day!

My aim is to highlight the ups and downs of my life and my job search, as well as share my love of baking, running, yoga, traveling, marketing and whatever else comes up in my life!

Hope you enjoy coming along in My Search of Summer.

-Kelsey