Monthly Archives: December 2012
Lookin’ Back at 2012
My 2012 in a nut shell:
- JANUARY: Start of my very first job. Star of new semester. Start of my very first indoor track season (which began pretty shaky with a not-so-stellar 3k).
- FEBRUARY: Qualified for the Conference Indoor 5k. Ran the fastest 5k time of all the freshmen in the conference. My birthday!
- MARCH: Spring Break. First actual SNOW DAY. First Outdoor track meet in Tucson
- APRIL: Track trip to California. PR (personal record) of 17:50 for the 5k. Qualified for the Conference Outdoor 10k. ‘Jocks vs. Greeks’ dodgeball tournament.
- MAY: End of freshman year. Traveled to Bozeman, Montana with the track team for Conference Championships. Ran my first 10k! Wild Huckleberries. Bulldogs on Skate Boards. Home for the summer.
- JUNE: The Maine concert with Danielle (my second time seeing them live!) :) Beach. Roller blades. Running. First 3D movie.
- JULY: New York City! Subways, Empire State Building, Grand Central Station. Central Park, Bryant Park, Washington Square Park, Times Square. 1st surgery. Long recovery. Launched Strong Like My Coffee.
- AUGUST: Pack up. Move back to school. Sophomore year!
- SEPTEMBER: Football games. Cross country meets. Recipes. New Roommate – Fernanda! Pumpkin Spice Latte back at Starbucks. Happy Girl!
- OCTOBER: Mom visits for Girl’s Weekend. FINALLY started running again :D :D :D Ice skating. Rock wall climbing. First snow fall. Pumpkin Carving. Happy Halloween.
- NOVEMBER: Beyond ready for a weekend at home. Hiked to the ‘Bridge to Nowhere‘. Emergency Room. Rode a mechanical bull. Thanksgiving with family. O Christmas Tree.
- DECEMBER: End of semester; 2nd surgery in NYC; survived the Mayan Apocalypse; Merry Christmas!
After 5 months I have over 100 blog posts, and followers in 82 countries (I didn’t even know 82 countries existed!) So here are my Top 5 Favorite Strong Like My Coffee Moments:
5.) Our hilarious adventures Not Hiking Mt. Humphries:
4.) My Dad’s 50th Birthday!
3.) All things COFFEE:
2.) My fave recipe: Strawberry Banana Oat Cookies :)
1.) The Many Faces of Missy:
Have a fun & safe New Years! I haven’t come up with a resolution yet, but I’m working on one! See you in 2013 ;)
College Girl’s Meal Plan
Since my College Girl’s Grocery Guide became so popular on Pinterest I am continuing with a similar topic: meal plan.
I sincerely believe the best way to maintain a healthy diet is to pre-plan every day’s meal. Lots of times I do this the night before (after I’m full from dinner) on the post-it sticky notes on my laptop. I plan my breakfast, lunch and dinner plus snacks and sometimes dessert. But it only works if you commit to eat what you’ve planned, instead of impulse calorie-bombs like pizza or ice cream.
Now that it’s almost the start of a new year, and a new semester if you are in school, it seems like a good time to clean up some eating habits. And a lot of time, people eat junk food because they want something quick and available. Which is usually nothing super healthy. So here is a basic list of easy, healthy meals that are nutritious and affordable:
Another good reason to plan out each day’s meals ahead of time is to be able to make a grocery list and have every ingredient you need on hand. If you’ve got a meal plan and a grocery list, you won’t even need to walk down the ice cream aisle because it’s not on your list! ;)
I didn’t include snacks on this list, but I’ve got plenty of light snacks on my Healthy Study Snacks Page:
As for dessert: I definitely can’t say that I skip dessert every night. And that is also why there is not ice cream in our house! Because when there is, I will eat it.
- Some night’s at school, I’ll make a bowl of oatmeal after dinner.
- Other times at home, we’ll pop some light popcorn to go with a movie.
- I think sticking a fat-free yogurt in the freezer for half an hour is also a yummy treat :)
- And so is frozen banana slices with peanut butter!
- Lots of nights I’ll enjoy a decaf coffee with yummy creamer.
- But sometimes you just need chocolate….Dove dark chocolate squares are my favorite.
Basically, if you have the day’s meals all planned out you will be less tempted to reach for the candy bowl or order the pastry at the coffee shop because it isn’t on your agenda! And before you order anything from a restaurant, you should check out the calorie content first – you might just be shocked.
- Typical restuarant salad entree: Around 1,100 calories (Almost 2/3 your daily needs!)
- Typical coffee shop muffin: 550 calories (Add in the latte and that will take an hour on the treadmill to burn off)
- Typical restaurant pasta dish: 1,200 calories
You may also like:
Gingerbread Coffee Bundt Cake with Espresso Icing
Yesterday my family resumed our 5:00am gym workouts – Christmas vacation must be over.
The tree is still up but it looks naked without presents underneath. I’m not ready to pack away all of the holiday decorations just yet! Like this cute centerpiece my mom made, just a vase with candy canes lining the rim and filled with mini shiny ornaments.
Since we had been so busy all December with traveling and medical stuff, Christmas kind of crept up on us. We didn’t even do our annual baking for friends and neighbors! So I knew I wanted to make something special for Christmas dessert. I found a perfect recipe on Pinterest from Sprinklebakes.com. A homemade Gingerbread Coffee Bundt Cake with Espresso Icing. Sometimes we make exceptions from our healthy diet; Christmas dessert was one of them ;)
Cake from scratch is a million times better than from a box; I added lots of extra ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg because I don’t think you can have too much flavor for a spice cake. And the fact that there is coffee in the cake and icing is perfect…my family certifiably is addicted to coffee. Lately the three of us finish off a full pot of coffee within an hour of being awake. We have turned into two-pots-a-day people. Yikes! Honestly I just love the flavor.
The cake turned out perfect! Dark brown with tons of cinnamon and spice flavors. Next comes the “glaze.” It is just espresso or STRONG coffee (that sounds familiar…) and powdered sugar.
Confession: I struggle with glazing a cake. I have made approximately three cakes (all from Joy the Baker) that involve making a glaze from powdered sugar and some form of liquid and they never turn out like the picture. Instead of resting thick and glossy atop the cake, my glaze gets absorbed into the cake or just runs down the side. If anyone knows the trick to making a real glaze, help me out!
I ended up just about doubling the powdered sugar to make it thick enough to stay on the cake. I also recommend making your espresso/coffee as strong as possible so that you can still taste it over the sugar.
Gingerbread Coffee Bundt Cake with Espresso Icing:
2 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 heaping tsp ginger
2 heaping tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cloves
1/2 cup molasses
1/2 cup STRONGLY brewed coffee
1 1/4 cup butter, softened
1 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
3 eggs, plus
2 egg yolks
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and Flour a bundt pan (I recommend this instead of spraying with non-stick spray); set aside.
- Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves.
- In a separate bowl, stir together molasses and coffee.
- In another large bowl, cream the butter with an electric mixture. Add in the brown sugar and beat for another couple of minutes. Next, beat in the 3 eggs and 2 egg yolk one at a time.
- Alternately add the flour mixture and molasses mixture to the egg mixture; begin and end with the flour.
- Pour the batter into the prepared bundt pan and use a spatula to smooth over the top.
- Bake for 45 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean.
- Let the cake cool in the bundt pan for 20 minutes; then remove from pan and turn it over on a wire rack to cool completely.
3 Tablespoons Espresso (or strong coffee)
1 1/2 – 2 cups powdered sugar
- Whisk together the coffee and sugar until completely smooth. Pour over the cake, let it set for at least an hour before serving.
Despite the not-so-glazey glaze, this cake turned out to be delicious, and got two thumbs up from the family! It’s very much like a more dense spice cake with a sweet topping and should absolutely be enjoyed with a fresh mug of coffee.
Missy enjoyed her Christmas too and even found of couple presents for her under the tree!