Sometimes….I think about a well-balanced meal…..

Sometimes, I really try to think about ensuring that I have a well-balanced meal. Sometimes, I try to be sure that I am eating fruits and veggies with my meal. I do that for my girls. Why wouldn’t I do it for myself? Sometimes, my meal is a giant salad. (I’ve written before about my newfound love for bagged salads which is what I’ve done almost every day for my lunch now that school has started.)

Sometimes, I am very careful about what I’m eating for dinner.

But….sometimes….I’m exhausted and I have zero effort left in me and dinner is a bowl of cereal once the girls have gone to bed. I know the importance of eating a meal together but I also know that the girls need to eat, read, do homework, have a bath/shower, get in their jammies. While they are doing that, I need to get laundry done (started), load/unload the dishwasher, and get some miles completed on the treadmill. If there’s extra time, I would much rather have some extra snuggle time with my girlies while we read (for the 2,000,000th time) something by Mo Willems.

So, sometimes, I really try to make that effort to eat something that’s well-balanced.

And sometimes, dinner is cheese with a side of cheese.

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Manchego cheese with manchego cheese – why have a cheese board filled with things you might not like when you can have two giant cheeses that you know you will love? 🙂

To be honest, I am going to give myself credit for the hard apple cider that I drank along with this meal. That’s fruit! So, dairy, carbs and fruit. Not too bad.

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Has Anyone Ever Been Excited to Eat a Salad?

I am fairly certain that no one has ever been excited to eat a salad. I know for sure that I never have. Well, let me specify. The only salad I’ve ever been excited to eat was the Waldorf salad that my grandpa made. Although, it wasn’t until I was much older that I learned that it was called a Waldorf salad. We always called it apple salad. His was not a typical Waldorf salad. That salad taught me that marshmallows could and should be a salad ingredient.

But…..I have been trying to eat better. Grad school and other stresses have led to some (or a lot) of stress eating so I’ve been trying to eat more veggies and more salad. I have found a salad that I don’t mind eating. Fresh Express bag salads (specifically the chopped kits) are pretty good.  There are greens but also extra crunchy things and the included dressings are pretty good.

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But really…..the reason that I am trying to eat more salad? It’s so that I can eat more of the stuff that I want to eat. I tell myself that if I eat some veggies, then I can have some dessert.

Why do I eat salad?

So that I can eat a donut.

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Guilty Pleasures

Carbs. Carbs. More carbs. I know that I don’t need a giant bowl of carbs….but sometimes…..you just need a big pile of carbs, right?

My newest guilty pleasure…..waffle fries from Spud Heads with the Guns’ n Rosemary topping. I mean. Seriously.

Because sometimes when you’re spending way more time at the mall than you had planned on….and sometimes when you’re kids are going insane because they are tired/hungry/hangry…..and sometimes when you are getting frustrated because you just need to buy some shoes but can’t seem to find what you want…..sometimes you need a bowl of fries covered in yumminess.

What is your guilty (or not-so-guilty) pleasure food? Carbs? Chocolate? Carbs and chocolate?

Cheap eats = Yummy eats

So, as my readers already know, I love Food Network.  And I love the show The Best Thing I Ever Ate.  I love hearing different opinions and I love it when one of those opinions lead me to a new food/restaurant in Chicago.  Recently, an episode aired that was titled, “Bang for the Buck.”  This episode asked what the best food you can get is while spending the least amount of money.

As happens each time I watch this show, I asked myself what my answer would be.  This time I actually didn’t need to think too hard.

Tank SushiHalf-price maki rolls.  Yes.  Please.

I love sushi.  I love love love sushi.  The problem is that I can not physically get a light sushi dinner.  It’s impossible for me.  When I am going for sushi, I fully expect that Ryan will have to roll me out of the restaurant when the meal is over.  So, obviously, half-price maki rolls are perfect for me.

I am already looking forward to when I can go back to Tank to load up on sushi.  Unfortunately, I have several months to wait.  Our midwife said that I can still have almost all seafood as long as I eat in moderation.  Um.  Moderation?  Since I can not do that with sushi, I will wait.  But you can bet that I will be taking the baby for many lunch dates at Tank.

When you are eating on a budget, what is your favorite spot?

When things work out even when they don’t

This past weekend, Ben and I had a date to go shopping and get some food.  Those are two things that I enjoy greatly.   The plan was to find some maternity khaki pants.  I need some maternity khaki pants.  And do you know what I discovered?  One can not find khaki maternity pants.  Apparently, they only exist online.  *sigh*

But have no fear.  Although my goal of finding the perfect pants was not achieved, remember that we had two things to do.  We went shopping and ate food.  And eating food has never been something that Ben and I have had trouble with.

Lunch?  Shrimp and cheese grits at Heaven on Seven.

Shrimp! Grits!

Dessert?  Parfait at Scooter’s.

Yum! Custard! Italian ice! Together in a cup!

Two of my favorite foods with one of my favorite people.

And now, I can find some pants online.

Mmmmm. Sandwich.

The sandwich might be the perfect food. You can put almost anything on a sandwich.

Earlier in the week, I had two of my favorite sandwiches.  Ryan made Cuban sandwiches for our dinner.  (Delicious.)  And, we had lunch at The Grind where they have many sandwiches including The Med.  I’m not normally a “healthy food” kind of person but this is seriously one of my fave sandwiches in the whole city.

What is your favorite sandwich?

The Med = delicious

One of the reasons why I love living and eating in Chicago

Last night, Ryan and I went out for dinner. The original plan was to finally get to Chicago Pizza and Oven Grinder Co. However, when we got there, there was a wait time of an hour and forty minutes. Yea. Not so much. So, we went for a walk.

One of the best things about living and eating in Chicago is that if the wait time at one restaurant is too long, there is always another spot to go eat.  While Ryan and I were walking, we passed several places that we could’ve eaten at.  We finally decided on Frances’ Deli.  It was quite lovely.  Turkey dinner with all of the Thanksgiving sides?  Yes, please.

Did I know beforehand that this place existed?  Nope.  But that’s what’s so amazing about Chicago.  There are tons of places that you might walk by every single day and they might be really great.

You’ll never know until you try.  Or until the wait at the other place is way too long.