No phone zone

Sometimes I think I was born in the wrong decade/century. While I definitely see the utility in email and texting, and technology in general, sometimes I think we need to make a more conscious effort to disconnect and unplug. Oprah has a campaign to stop texting while driving, but the “No phone zone” should extend to the dining room table and bedroom.

Since finishing school and moving back to live full-time with R, we have informally decided to have a “Year of Yes”. What exactly this means, we are still defining. Four years is a long time to have only spent the weekends together and I’m sure the life experiences we’ve had over these years have changed us. So, we just want to take time to focus on “us” and living life “together” once again.

Anyhow, this “Year of Yes” will hopefully have us saying “No” to one thing.

Here’s the email I wrote to R today:

During the Year of Yes, let’s say NO to phones at the dinner table and right when we wake up. Let’s say YES to more conversations and YES to more experiencing the present!

http://www.realmomnutrition.com/2012/08/16/why-life-got-better-when-my-smartphone-died/

Are you in Dr. Mr. H??!!?

Love,
Mrs. Dr. H

Out of the 2 of us, he’s probably the one who will have a harder time with this, especially at the dinner table. But we’ll see.

I recently read an article about productivity that suggested not checking your email for the first hour of your day. Brilliant. Why didn’t I think of this? I’ve been practicing this for about a week now. It definitely takes discipline, but I think it’s a habit that I’m going to keep around.

Oh, and here’s another reason I should probably spend less time on my phone. I dropped it on my garage floor about a week ago. Nothing like an ugly phone to discourage you from using it.

Comment Love: What about you? Do you find the phone [or insert other technology] invading more and more of your life? Are you constantly and compulsively checking Facebook, Twitter, or the weather just because it’s right at your fingertips? What steps are you taking to “be more present”?

Advertisements

Crunchy Biscoff Bread

Image

I was first introduced to these delicious crunchy cookies on Delta Airlines. I became to like them so much, that I would often beg ask the flight attendants for extra. My world changed when I discovered that Wegman’s was carrying them and I no longer had to buy a $500 plane ticket to devour enjoy these yummy cookies. Just when I thought life couldn’t get any better, one day while at Wal-Mart, there is was…Biscoff spread in “smooth” AND “crunchy”….wait for it…with a $1.00 off coupon. I could’ve died and gone to heaven. I snatched up those glass jars like I was a contestant on Supermarket Sweep.

Since Biscoff Cookies and Spread went mainstream, life has been a little sweeter around here. I have to admit, even though I’ve seen dozens of ice cream, muffin and bar recipes incorporating Biscoff, I’ve been more of a purist, using only the spread (on toast, apples, in banana milkshakes) or just eating the cookies. After hoarding Biscoff recipes on Pinterest, I finally decided to bite the bullet and bake with Biscoff. This recipe is a simple recipe that makes a sweet, dense bread, similar to a coffee cake.

Crunchy Biscoff Bread (I adapted the recipe found here.)

Makes 2 mini-loaves

Prep time: 10 minutes

Bake time: 35 minutes

Ingredients:

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar (The original recipe called for granulated sugar, but I only had brown in the pantry.)
3 large eggs (I only had 2 eggs, so I just added a couple of teaspoons of water to the batter.)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Biscoff cookies, crushed (I used 7 for batter and 3 for topping. I crushed them in my Vitamix, but you could easily crush them with your hands.)
4 T Biscoff spread (Split between 2 loaves)

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 325°. Spray mini-loaf pans with cooking spray.

Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

Add eggs and vanilla. Mix well.

Gradually add in flour, baking powder and salt.

Gradually add flour mixture. Mix just until combined.

Add in crushed Biscoff cookies to the batter and mix until combined.

Divide batter between the 2 mini-loaf pans. Place about 2 T Biscoff spread on top of each loaf. Swirl Biscoff into batter using a butter knife.

Top loaves with more crushed Biscoff cookies.

Bake for 35 minutes, or until a pick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean. Cool completely in pan on wire rack (if you can even wait.)

How have you been enjoying Biscoff cookies and spread? Do you like it crunchy or do you like it smooth? Any Biscoff recipes you’ve been dying to try?

update: Thirty before 30

I fully intended to update you on the progress of my TB30 list the day after my 30th birthday (which was about 2 months ago). Better late than never, huh?

Although I wasn’t able to finish everything on my list, it was still loads of fun trying to.

Here’s a repost of my TB30 list with some added commentary from yours truly. Continue reading

Making my own reality

As I about a week away from entering a new decade, I thought I would give you an update on how I was doing with establishing my 3 new habits. Accomplishing #3 on my Thirty before 30 list had to be my worst favorite thing to do. I think because it was the one thing on my list that took the most perseverance. I get into ruts. Do you? One of my New Year’s Resolutions from 2009 was to become an early riser. Surprisingly, I did fairly well with that resolution even into 2010—that is until this summer. We had returned from a month of being in Taiwan and I just couldn’t whoop that jet lag. So, I started sleeping in later than I wanted. During the school year, I usually try to get up before 7, most mornings getting up around 5:30 am. So, how did I do with (re-)establishing habit #1? Continue reading

pockets are just containers for your hands

Some people have a shoe fetish. For others it’s purses. I have a container fetish. I am slightly obsessed with finding the perfect way to hold everything. Now, I must tell you I am pretty selective about my containers. I thought I’d share a few of my favorites.

my banana case

Perfect for packing nature’s perfect food and not being worried about it getting all bruised up in my backpack. No, I have never had a banana not fit.

IMG_0165 IMG_0166

Continue reading

Real simple, real free

I currently don’t subscribe to any paid magazine subscriptions, but if I did, I would definitely get a subscription to Real Simple magazine. Well, the next best thing to their magazine, is their website. I especially liked one of the featured articles from today and thought I would share because who doesn’t love free stuff!

Surprising Stuff You Can Get for Free | Real Simple.

Taiwanese girl takes on Turkish food

I was going to wait until I ate all 30 new foods before I wrote a post about accomplishing #24 on my TB30 list. But I just had a meal so delish that I believe it is deserving of a post of its very own.

After posting my TB30 list on my blog, my wonderful friend, D (check out her blog here) offered to help me cross off a few from the list, particularly #24. Now, I must tell you about my dear friends, D and R. D and I used to be classmates and her husband, R, is currently finishing up his PhD. We don’t necessarily hang out very often or socialize with the same crowds. And on the surface, we all don’t have much in common: A Taiwanese girl raised in the South, a girl who grew up in Vermont and a guy born and raised in Turkey and now living in America. But it is our love…no, our passion for food and life that we share in common. I don’t know what it is about D and R, but instantly I knew I just liked them. They are 2 of the most interesting and talented and kind people that I have ever met. You know those kind of people you just feel a kindred spirit with? Well, that’s D and R. After meeting 2 years ago, we had talked about giving each other Turkish and Taiwanese cooking lessons and we honestly had all the best of intentions of getting together, but just hadn’t. Well, with my birthday just being around the corner, there was a sense of urgency that gave us that push to do it. So, D invited me over tonight for a last-minute trip around the world to enjoy a homemade Turkish meal. Continue reading

They say it takes 21 days…

They say it takes 21 days to form a new habit. Well, the new habits I plan on forming are only for the weekdays (Is that cheating?) and I know I’m bound to miss a few days. So, according to my calculations,if I start now, I’ve given myself about 40 weekdays to get my habits formed before my next birthday so I can check off #3 from my TB30 list.

I couldn’t decide on just 3, so I came up with 4 new habits that I want to start. (Plus, if one doesn’t go through, I’ll still have met my goal of 3 new habits.) Continue reading

digital decluttering

Although I really dreaded having to do #5 on my TB30 list, I got some great encouragement from my friend L. She suggested, in keeping with my 30’s theme, that I delete 30% of my Facebook friends.  Now, I consider myself pretty selective in who I have “friended” on FB and definitely don’t play the “let’s see who can get the most friends on FB” game, but was surprised that after doing the math, I realized that in deleting 30% that I would have to delete 154.5 friends! Continue reading

tHiRtY before 30

Here is my list of the things I want to do before I turn 30.

Caveat: You must know that ever since I turned 25-ish, I have had a hard time admitting my age to people. I don’t know why because in no one’s book is mid-20’s considered “old”. To be honest, some of it must stem from insecurity. I guess sometimes I’m insecure about what I should have accomplished or experienced by age “x” and by admiting my age, I’m allowing people to judge whether or not I’m living up to that standard.  So, for me to put a post about turning 30 out “there” for all to see, is a BIG deal…but also is part of #30 on my list.

In following with the so-called theme of this blog, these are things that I want to do or try to make my life a little fuller. In reality, I know that the list is ambitious to try to do all of these things before my next birthday, which is in about 2 months, but that’s okay because that will just leave me more to do by my next birthday. Look for posts on some that have already been accomplished. And even though I haven’t completed this list, I’m also taking suggestions for next year’s list as well. Continue reading

About me.

What are three-and-a-half interesting tidbits about yourself?

1. I have a container fetish.

2. I often (usually daily) wear 3 mis-matched earrings on purpose.

3. I have a list of what I call “Starbucks names” that I use at restaurants where they call out your name when your order is ready 1) to avoid the hassle of trying to spell it and 2) to avoid the embarrassment of the employee when they struggle to pronounce it.

3.5. I get a high off of free (and ridiculously cheap) things. Give-a-ways, free food samplings, coupons/discount codes and roadside treasures. This girl lives on good deals!

So, you’re a registered dietitian. Does that mean you only eat “healthy” things?

Capital “N”, capital “O”. In fact, the other day at a friend’s 50th birthday party, after I just finished explaining to some new friends that I was a dietitian, a grandmother shook her finger at me for eating a Puerto Rican fried codfish patty.  For some people, they exercise to stay fit and reduce their disease risk. For me, I exercise so I can eat. Growing up, I never put much thought into what I ate. I knew that inherently somethings were better choices, but that often didn’t stop me from eating them. My afternoon snack in high school after I could drive was 3 McDonald’s cheeseburgers. I was one of those blessed with a wooden leg as a child. Now, that I’m growing older, um, I mean, wiser and I’m cooking for more than just myself, I’ve taken more interest in not only promoting well eating to others (which used to be my job), but in eating well myself.

Do you consider yourself a “green” person?

Maybe not Kermit-the-frog green, but maybe more of a yellow-ish green (?). Do I think that we should all be taking steps to make this earth a better place to live now and then? Yes. Do I think it’s realistic for everyone to grow all of your own food, never drink bottled water and go around all day hugging trees? No. But I do think that we can all find ways to adjust our current lifestyle so that it’s Planet Earth friendly.

Why did you decide to start a blog?

The idea to start a blog came from wanting to capture daily happenings of life to share with my sister and BIL who are serving our country in the war in Afghanistan. Before she deployed we would talk regularly about everything! I miss her dearly and wanted to find a way to “tell” her everything that was going on here in the States. So, I thought the best way to do it would be to start a blog.

Again, back to the dietitian thing, does that mean your blog is only going to be about food?

No, I’m not necessarily writing to appeal to a specific audience. Again, I’m started a blog as a way to document my life. Yes, there is a lot of food in my life being that I live to eat and that I’m in the field of nutrition. So, my blog will have a lot of food focus, but I’m mainly hoping that it will just be an fancy electronic reflection of me.

Your blog’s web address is pocketoffulllife.wordpress.com. Can you explain the meaning behind the name?

First of all, for any of you that know me personally, you know that I have name issues. So, a lot of thought went into the name of my blog. Any web articles that I read about naming a blog said that the blog should give readers an idea of what your blog’s focus would be and reflect your personality and style. Well, that was a little bit of a problem because I didn’t want my blog to have just 1 focus. I wanted it just to be about my life and hey, if something interesting happens along the way, then hey, I’ll blog about it. Literally, months of time passed before I came up with any contenders. I even went through an intense brainstorming process to try and inspire ideas. Well, once I finally settled on something (hurray!), almost quicker than my fingers could type I went to wordpress.com to register my blog’s desired name. Well, whadda ya know? Of course, it was taken. Back to the drawing board. Well, I fell to love the concept of full life, which is what I am trying to live and embrace and I love pockets. I figured out that the reason I really love pockets is because they are just “containers” for your hands. Pockets are just the right size to fit needed essentials. I guess symbolically what I’m trying to say is that it living a full life doesn’t mean that you have to have everything. It means doing the most you can with what you have. It is the ideal of have a “rich” life simply that I want to embrace. So, pocketoffulllife.wordpress.com is my version and finally, my blog, now with an identity, can make it’s entrance into blog world.