ABC’s of ME

This has been floating around the blog world for the past few days, so since I’m so busy I decided it would be the perfect thing to do!


A. Age: 22

B. Bed size: Twin at school, Full at home (I miss my “big” bed)

C. Chore you dislike: drying dishes (love washing them, but I will gladly hand the drying over to anyone else!)

D. Dogs: None…. I can only wish for now

E. Essential start to your day: A long run, and/or a relaxing breakfast with coffee

F. Favorite color: Blue ( I know, it’s a boy color) but I like pretty blue and PINK!

G. Gold or silver: silver!

H. Height: 5’1″

I. Instruments you play(ed): I played the piano and clarinet as a kid, but haven’t picked up an instrument since I was 14.

J. Job title: Student working towards a degree in Nutritional Sciences.

K. Kids: Hopefully one day!

L. Live: State College

M. Mom’s name: I like to call her mom or momma bear

N. Nicknames: Care, Care bear (those were from high school/growing up), Cara Bell (my family), Goose, Goose-ling, (Andrew likes to call me goose, short for silly goose)

O. Overnight hospital stays: none

P. Pet peeves: when people’s pants are too short and their socks are hanging out, and slow walkers who take up the whole sidewalk

Q. Quote from a movie: I am totally drawing a blank on this one…

R. Righty or lefty: Righty

S. Siblings: Twin brother, Dan

T. Time you wake up: Weekdays: 6:30-7am Weekend: 7:30-8:30

U. Underwear: It’s none of your business…

V. Vegetables you dont’ like: asparagus

W. What makes you run late: My slow paced morning… I don’t like to be rushed!

X. X-rays you’ve had: Teeth (as everyone does), Low back, hips, shins (all running injuries, nothing actually amounting to anything)

Y. Yummy food you make: Cookies and Quick breads are my specialties

Z. Zoo animal favorites: I haven’t been to a zoo in AGES…. I suppose I always thought the polar bears and giraffes were cool. SO BIG!


That's the twin bro and me, he obviously got all the height in the family.


That’s the ABC’s of ME!

Tell me one random ABC of you!


Study Days

They seem to go so fast…. well at least today’s study day did. I really got a lot accomplished which was GREAT, but my to-do list is still soooo long. I can’t wait until Friday and then it is Spring Break!!! I say that like I’ve got big plans, but really I’m just going home for a few days and then drafting two term papers. BUT spring break does mean that I don’t have to go to class which also means I get to cook delicious things, and workout all I want! Considering I spent my entire day here:

Nutrient Metabolism and Nutrition Aspects of Disease

I am so ready for these exams to be over!!!

I woke up early and got in a quick 5 miler since I knew I’d be sitting all day and once I got breakfast in I got to work. I studied for most of the afternoon and then the boy showed up and asked if I wanted him to bake me anything… well of course! (he was really thrilled to have his picture taken)

Don't mind the laundry hanging in the background..


I decided I wanted some cookies, so I set out to find a cookie recipe that we had all the ingredients for. I decided on yet another one of Christina’s recipes her Banana Walnut Chocolate Chip cookies are fantastic! No lie…. I’ve had about 5 this evening.





I also whipped up a super yummy dinner. I get soooo hungry when I study, I need brain fuel! I made a Nacho-like salad. There was some guacamole, salsa, and chips left from our taco dinner last weekend, that I decided need to be used up. I got my head thinking and came up with a delicious salad! First I started with a few tortilla chips that I baked in the oven with some shredded cheese. I topped the chips with some lettuce, bell pepper, cherry tomatoes, guac, salsa, and 2 poached eggs.




Poached eggs on top of salad is delicious!



I decided to be artsy.



I think it worked.

Arizona dreaming spice blend by Penzey’s Spices is excellent, well all their spices are I cook with them all the time! 🙂



I offered to make the same thing for the boy but he decided on something a little more “manly”.


Nacho's with no beans chili



He wanted me to tell and show you that he did have a salad as well….




Well now that it is quickly approaching my bed time I am going to relax and watch a movie with the boy. Have you ever seen You Again? It’s looking pretty good so far! I hope you all have a great night!


Do you and your significant other eat drastically different meals at times?

Non Stop

Yep, you guessed it. This girl has been non stop running for the past few days and probably for the next week. I will try to post as often as possible, but my school work is SUPER demanding this next week. I promise once I’m through this week I’ll be back with awesome awesome goods! I already have a HUGE list of recipes I want to make and share with you all… as soon as I find the time.

Because in college, there is no such thing as too many desserts!

My friends and I don’t waste our calories on alcohol like other college kids. We just enjoy dessert after dessert 😀 I’m pretty sure I’m okay with that, not to say there isn’t the occasional glass of wine….. It pairs perfectly with dessert!

I will leave you with one recipe that me and some awesome girls made this week, enjoy!

This recipe was adapted from the lovely Christina over at Sweet Pea’s Kitchen and her Red Velvet Cheesecake Brownies

Raspberry Cheesecake Brownie


  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 oz Hershey’s dark chocolate chips
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Cheese Cake topping:

  • 1 jar of  seedless raspberry jam
  • ½ cup rasberries
  • 2 TB lemon juice
  • 8-oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Butter the bottom and sides of a 8 inch metal baking pan. Put a long piece of parchment paper in the bottom of the pan, letting the parchment extend up two sides of the pan and overhang slightly on both ends. (This will make it easy to remove the bars from the pan after they have baked.) Butter the parchment.
  2. In a small, heatproof bowl, melt butter and chocolate together. Stir until combined and very smooth. Set aside to cool for a few minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, eggs, vanilla extract and red food coloring. Add chocolate mixture and stir until smooth. Add flour and salt and stir until just combined and no streaks of dry ingredients remain.
  4. Pour into prepared pan and spread into an even layer.
  5. To prepare cheesecake mixture, beat cream cheese, sugar, egg and vanilla extract in a medium bowl until smooth. Mix raspberries, raspberry jam, and lemon juice in a separate bowl. Distribute the cheesecake mixture in 8 dollops over batter in the pan. Swirl in the raspberry with a knife or spatula.
  6. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until brownies and cheesecake are set. A knife inserted into the cheesecake mixture should come out clean and the edges will be lightly browned.
  7. Let cool completely in pan on a cooling rack before lifting out the parchment paper to remove the brownies.

We made these Monday evening, and they were devoured by Wednesday afternoon. I guess that is what happens when there are boys around, or maybe it was mainly us 🙂

Also, if you haven’t noticed my addition of the “what’s for dinner” page. Check it out! I’m going to be documenting all the dinners I make since not all of them make it on the blog, but are still pretty darn yummy!

Have a fantabulous and blessed weekend!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

This is obviously going somewhere good….. I mean butter, eggs, sugar, and peanut butter ALWAYS results in a beautiful ending.

I’ve had quite the casual weekend, a little homework here, a little baking there, some hanging out with the boy… its been productive AND relaxing, who knew that existed! I have quite the crazy next two weeks before spring break, why did all of my professors decided to cram a majority of the semesters exams and projects all BEFORE spring break… we do have another 6 weeks of school, right?!

I also had a CRAZY adventure going grocery shopping this weekend…… It was windy, like 35 mph steady with 55 mph gusts every 5 seconds, or so they say.

I had planned to go grocery shopping so by golly I was going, but on my way there I noticed all the traffic lights were out. As I was turning into the shopping center I realized that Giant and Walmart were both without power….. and closed. So I ventured my way to Wegman’s and it was nuts, but there was power! After this little adventure I finally got my shopping done. I am telling you go buy Chobani’s new flavors….. it made the madness absolutely worth it! The Mango and Lemon are AMAZING!

My new favorite: Mango

Anyhow…. all weekend I was hardcore craving  a little comfort food, something tasty. Obviously that always leads me to chocolate or peanut butter, or both in this case. My mom used to make these bars quite often when we were growing up, and I haven’t had them in ages. I also decided it was time to whip something up from my stash of “mom’s recipes”, because that hasn’t happened in a few weeks. Which was probably the cause of my need for something yummy, she really is the best!

We always have fun in the kitchen together

So my journey in wanting to bake these really began around 12:30am last night, but being as I was out of eggs, and I only had a spoonful of peanut butter left. It had to wait until this morning… So you can bet that as soon I was back from my run, I was baking.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

½ cup butter

¾ cup creamy peanut butter

1 ¾ cup sugar

1 ½ tsp vanilla

4 eggs, slightly beaten

1 ½ cups flour

½ tsp baking powder

¼ tsp salt

2 cups chocolate chips


Preheat oven at 350 degrees

Prepare 13×9 pan with non stick spray

Melt butter. Add peanut butter; stir until melted. Stir in sugar and vanilla. Add eggs and stir with spoon until well blended. Add flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir until blended. Stir in chocolate chips. Spread batter into prepared pan. Bake 35 min or until top is golden brown and edges firm.( it took about 40 minutes in my oven). Cool. Cut into bars, large or small whatever you prefer! I did a little of both 🙂

Baked to perfection

Perfect study break snack 🙂

What comfort food do you crave when you’re stressed?

Anything with lots of carbs or that I had often while growing up at home! Cookies, and mac and cheese.


These days I’m full of excuses to indulge my inner foodie and love for healthy living, or really any excuse to get me out of doing the two term papers and multiple exams looming over my head for the next few weeks. Half way through the semester…. I’m pretty pleased with that!

I used the beautiful, completely unseasonal weather as an excuse to go for a run on a busy morning, as well as an excuse to go for a walk with the boy when I should have been preparing an outline.

Obviously a photo from the summer, because lets be real there is no green here unless you want to count the tiny sprigs of grass trying not to drown in mud from all the snow melting.

I am using Valentine’s Day as an excuse to buy cheap, cute kitchen and decorating items for next year

Major score at Walmart! Table cloth, cookie cutters, and cute heart plate!

And perhaps a little Ghirardelli to indulge my sweet tooth

I’m using a rushed day as an excuse to eat Raspberry Chobani with butter toffee almonds and calling it lunch and then later having a second lunch because yogurt just won’t cut it.

SO pretty and yummy! Yogurt and almonds is a super concoction!

Cinnamon Cheerios and Kashi Blueberry clusters

It is funny how I bought more produce this week then I ever do and seem to have consumed it all faster than I ever do….. so I resort to cereal and yogurt… or an excuse for ANOTHER grocery run of the week to get some strawberries, because well its winter and I need some “summery” foods in my life

To add to my yogurt... with honey on top.

Then there is the fact that it is Friday night, no homework EVER gets done on Friday night. So I like many others decided it was pizza night, a pizza night followed by baking and watching the office on hulu….. What did I bake you ask?

Jess’s Cinnamon Sugar Flatbread Crackers

She posted them this morning and I decided I just had to have them!

He was such a good helper 🙂

Greatest combination out there!

Team work at its finest. Please ignore and don't be blinded by my extreme paleness

The final product!

I modified her recipe just a little bit….

Cinnamon Sugar Flatbread Crackers

1 1/4 cup all purpose flour

1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons warm water

1/4 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons sugar + 3/4 tablespoon cinnamon for sprinkling

A smear of butter or margarine (to coat top)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Combine flours, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a bowl, mix. Add water and olive oil. Mix until dough forms. I used my hands, it was easiest.

Cover a baking sheet with flour and roll the dough as thin as desired with a rolling pin. Brush top of crackers with melted butter or margarine. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar mixture over top and cut with a pizza slicer into desired sized crackers. Bake for 10 minutes, or until golden and crisp. Let cool completely.

I think I’m off to bake more tomorrow… I’m using this weekend to bake, catch up on sleep, and prepare for another VERY busy week!

What “excuses” have you made lately to indulge in your preferred lifestyle?

run, run, run, bake, bake, bake, homework, sleep. I’ve got to stay sane somehow with all this school work, some would beg to differ that I’ve actually remained sane.

Does anyone else use holidays as excuses to buy cute little things on sale?

I couldn’t wait for Feb 15 so I could go buy some heart shaped cookie cutters!

Favorite Meals

So we all have them……


I’m assuming a majority of the blog world LOVES breakfast, hence the pictures of decadent oatmeal bowls out and about in the blog world. However, I don’t much care for breakfast.

I mean I eat it everyday don’t get me wrong, but nothing too big, generally a small yogurt or a piece of fruit with nut butter will do and coffee, PLEASE don’t forget the coffee!

Some greek yogurt, sometimes with a min-in such as almonds, raisins, or blueberries is a typical breakfast.


If there is one meal that I love to eat it is lunch! My whole day just isn’t right if I don’t have time for lunch…. This is the meal I always can’t wait to eat! And I’m an excellent sandwich maker, just ask anyone I’ve made a sandwich for…. 😀

Lunch for me will generally consist of a few choices, but I always mix them up… I always try to incorporate a lot of veggies and fruits into my  lunches as well since so I know I’m getting them all for the day! I have a tendency to turn towards sweets or yogurt or granola bars as snacks as the day goes on. I also like to try and incorporate left overs whether it be steamed veggies or a can of something I didn’t finished the night before like beans, or tomatoes.


Wrap: Flat out w/ hummus, feta, bell pepper, lettuce, and tomato

Salad: Broccoli, carrots, bell pepper, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, gaucamole, hummus

Soup: Homade chili, or canned soups are good on the fly

Sandwich: Hummus, feta, pepper, tomatoes, and lettuce


Every once and awhile I’ll venture from the usual and have a SUPER delicious lunch of pancakes, or something else of my choosing!


I ALWAYS need something sweet after lunch as well, sometimes I cure this with a small cookie, piece of chocolate, or a latte…. today it was hot chocolate!

Yum! I was out of milk tho, so it wasn't as good as it usually is.

I also LOVE dinner and coming up with super recipes…. my roommate, friends, and boyfriend are always astounded by the things that I decide to whip up for dinner. Last night was an amazing pasta dish with zucchini, onions, pepper, basil, and Parmesan cheese.. sooo sooo simple but absolutely delicious! (Sorry no picture, I’ve been lacking at the whole picture taking thing)


And there are snacks and we all know I LOVE snacks…… ok I think you caught me. Once I get past breakfast I just love to eat, I can’t complain 🙂



What is your favorite meal of the day?

Valentine’s Day

I know, I know I’m a day late….. It has just been one of those weeks and it’s only Tuesday!

We got Valentine's Day stickers in the mail from his mom 🙂

This weekend the boy and I both had work up to our eye balls, as well as a SUPER packed day Monday. But finally, last night we were able to catch our breath and celebrate the “holiday”. I have to say… I think Valentine’s day is a pretty dumb holiday, but I’m also a girl and I really won’t pass up a day that the sole purpose for is receiving flowers, dinner, and relaxing with the one you love.

That being said, I left Monday nights plans to my love….

I had a packed day and was really looking forward to whatever it was that he was planning. I basically told him dinner on him would be lovely and more than enough, and that is exactly what I got, along with a wonderful night of relaxation and an adorable card.


We started dinner with a salad….. when he asked me what I wanted for dinner I told him I was really craving veggies, so he got the very veggie salad blend, he’s a silly one.  Then we moved on to some broccoli and potatoes.


Cheesy broccoli and potatoes 🙂

Next came some delicious bread with some olive oil and herbs, baked in the oven

And finally… some chicken with cream of mushroom soup (I don’t think you can ever go wrong with this dish)

And lastly this boy totally knows the way to my heart ❤

Cookie Dough Brownies

After a long stressful weekend and Monday it was lovely to just relax for the evening with each other! I was a happy girl 🙂

really bad lighting

I hope you all had a wonderful day as well 🙂


Do you think Valentine’s day is a pointless holiday?

Yes, but again I won’t complain about having dinner made for me!


Do you celebrate with your loved ones?

Yep! I don’t think this is just a holiday that has to be all romantic, it can be celebrated with all loved ones, and hey it’s an excuse to eat candy and wear pink 🙂




I have a huge exam on Monday, so yesterday I decided what better way to motivate myself and power my studies, than with some awesome awesome meals! I really don’t like studying…. like more than normal. And I certainly don’t study like a normal college kid. I like to intermingle my studies with some good meals and lots of breaks to keep me focused and sane!

Let’s just say I’m glad it’s my last hard semester of college!

I woke up early, on a saturday to get my run in before my marathon of studying. After my run I headed to the boyfriend’s house to study (They have a kitchen table to spread out on…. and I don’t). I had bought one of Chobani’s new flavors friday night while I was at the store and was dying to try it!

Lemon! I may just buy more of these to eat for dessert! So good!

I studied the morning away and finally around 2 pm felt lunch calling my name…. I get super distracted and can’t focus when I’m hungry or tired, so I knew I had to stop and take a break. Let’s just say I’m not the normal college kid that stays up late a studies for hours…..

Flat out w/ hummus, black beans, and bell pepper

After lunch I decided it was time for a nap. I was happy with the progress I had made that morning. When I got up I studied for an hour or two and go hungry AGAIN….. yep I eat allllll the time. So I decided to have a snack, because I knew I wouldn’t start dinner for another hour or two.

Wheat thins w/ PB and apple sauce w/ cinnamon were snack on

Finally, I had enough! Staring at the computer typing a study guide and reading over notes gets the best of me after about 6-7 hours…. I go a wee bit crazy if I do work for too long, just ask the boy.

Friday night I had went grocery shopping and gotten a ton of  fresh vegetables and other “new” things that I don’t usually buy, so I decided that we were going to have a nice dinner tonight. That is after I layed on the couch and watched Wedding Crashers for about 30 min….. sometimes you just have to unwind.

Dinner started off with some awesome sauteed veggies! You really can’t go wrong with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, onion, zucchini, and bell pepper!

Then I moved on to some chicken which I had been marinating in Light Italian dressing all day. I sprinkled it with a few whole wheat bread crumbs and set it to bake in the oven at 400  for about 25 min. –> easiest way to do chicken, marinate it in salad dressing and then bake. Super tasty and moist!

This was gonna be it for dinner…..

But then I was going through the pantry and found some cornbread mix. So we had cornbread as well 🙂

It was sooo tasty and fast. The boy LOVED it! He came in from studying and immediately went YUM that smells amazing and I got countless compliments throughout dinner! I make this boy dinner nearly every night, but this meal was def a favorite of his!

We ended the night with some chocolate chip cookies and TV…. I’d say it wasn’t a bad day. 😀

Chocolate chip, cranberry cookies

I’ll be back with that recipe tomorrow 😉


What is your favorite way to unwind after a long day/week?

Definitely a movie or TV with the boy and some cookies or wine 🙂



Banana Chocolate Chip Bread!

You know you want some…….


Whenever I make this stuff I can barely keep it around, it’s slightly addicting and deliciously so! I’ve made this bread for YEARS! It has grown and changed with me through those years, but is still simply amazing. My brother and dad would always ask me to make this when I was in high school, my roommate and friends are constantly asking for it now, and I made it for my boyfriend for our first valentine’s day 2 years ago… I guess what I’m trying to say is make. this. now.


You really won’t regret it.

Start with these…… well not these ones, they are a little too yellow but they looked much better then the ones I actually used.

Add lots of this…… and several other ingredients…..

My secret ingredient is cinnamon…..maybe in this quantity, it’s not so secret….

Chocolate chips also add a nice touch……blueberries are wonderful as well, but they’re not in season and we obviously have a plethora of these 🙂

Mix, Mix, Mix

Pour and bake…..

Perfection 🙂

Banana Chocolate Chip Bread

Adapted from: Betty Crocker

2 or 3 mashed very ripe bananas

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup white sugar

1 tsp (or more) cinnamon

3 1/2 tsp baking powder

2 1/2 TBsp olive or vegetable oil

1 egg

1/3 cup milk (I’ve used skim and almond milk, they both produce wonderful products)

1 cup desired mix-in (chocolate chips (mini chocolate chips are good too!), nuts, blueberries)


Preheat oven 350

Mash bananas and place in bowl, add sugars, egg, and everything else….hold on the mix-ins

Mix until batter forms, sometimes you have to add a tad more milk if it seems sticky

Mix in desired mix-ins (chocolate chips, blueberries, walnuts, etc)

Spray cooking spray in loaf pan

Pour batter in

Bake 55-60 min or until tooth pick comes out clean

I plan on this bread powering me through a weekend of studying….. 😀

What are your weekend plans?

Study, study, study

Do you have a recipe that your “known” for?

Banana bread

Chocolate Chip cookies

Brown Bagging it

I by far think it is the best thing to take your lunch to work, school, wherever your day leads you. It is often healthier and definitely helpful when you are on a budget! I know people always think PB&J is the only portable food, but given the right equipment and preparation just about any food can be portable. I pack my lunch and a few snacks just about everyday…. I start classes early and generally don’t rest much until dinner time, so in order to keep myself properly fueled and not just reaching for anything I must bring something satisfying along. This was a lunch/snacks I packed last week.

Banana, salad w/ lots of veggies& avocado, hummus, almonds, and some other sort of fruit. (this day it was grapes but often it is an apple or orange.

I’ll generally snack on a granola bar either mid morning or mid afternoon, these ones are my all time favorite!

then about an or two hour later have the salad and banana. Then later the almonds and fruit are a snack. I basically snack on things throughout the day. But it is soooo easy to pack your lunch everyday as long as you plan ahead…

This is how I manage to pack everyday and eat healthy on a busy schedule:

1) Prepare on the weekends

I come home from the grocery store and chop all my veggies and fruits for the week, so I can just throw a handful in my salad or in a baggie to snack on. Then you can also just throw some PB or hummus into small container to take for dipping.  Also some weekends I will make a big pot of soup or a few extra pancakes or chicken breast in order to have as quick portable meals during the week. It even helps out at dinner time too, because you can just throw the veggies in a pan to stir fry or heat up some soup for a quick dinner. I think preparation is number 1!

Chop all your veggies for the week, so you can grab and GO!

2) Make the best of leftovers

Often I will try to incorporate leftovers from the meal the night before into my lunch. If we have a yummy grain concoction I’ll sometimes throw it in a salad or into some pureed soup such as tomato or butternut squash, canned soup is just fine for these days but homemade is great too!

If I have veggies left over from the night before I will try to incorporate them into some sort of wrap or sandwich, and again you can always throw them in soup… I’m a sucker for soup, especially with this cold weather! Leftover chicken or preferred meat or meat alternative is good for this too, same deal throw it in a salad, wrap, or some soup.

Cous Cous on top of some butternut squash soup

3) Convenience is a must sometimes!

I always keep some campbell’s healthy request soup bowls on hand, I generally stick the vegetable ones so I know I’m getting my veggies at lunch and will typically have some fruit and cheese or some nuts on the side. Its a filling, fast, and healthy lunch!


4) Plan Plan Plan

Make sure before you got to bed at night, if you don’t have the time in the morning that you have gotten everything together so you can grab it all and head on your merry way! It will take a few days to figure out how much you need to take depending on your day and how hungry you get…. Also plan to grab some whole fruits to round out your meals. As long as you plan ahead and prepare things you are excited about eating it is all super do-able!

5) Don’t forget a water bottle and snacks!

Staying hydrated is key to healthy and feeling satisfied! Who cares if your running to the bathroom on the hour, it is worth it and your body will thank you! I ALWAYS have water with me and if I don’t boy can I feel it!

Snacking is also key to not overeating later, so make sure you always have a little something around. I get hungry OFTEN so I always pack one extra thing, to make sure I’m prepared when hunger strikes. Snack for me are generally almonds, trail mix, whole fruits, granola bars, veggies and hummus, or crackers and peanut butter.


I hope these tips were super helpful and that you all are having a SPLENDID week!

What is your favorite grab and go lunch?

I loooove soup this time of year, so I’ve been eating ALOT of it for lunch. I also enjoy salads with hummus as well!

What is your favorite thing to snack on?

Butter Toffee almonds and fruit!!!