March 31, 2009

Great talks day~~~ ^_^

Yesterday I had some great talk with two of my advisors. The first one lasted about 40 min exclusively about my research and the second one was with my main advisor/co-author that lasted for 3 hours!!! Obviously it wasn't all about research. We had some good advisor to advisee talk, some co-author kind of chat and finally some friend to friend conversation taking some coffee and taking sunshine. Actually she asked me for advise, my opinion about what she should do now (she has been offered in another university), my perception about how other students see her and how she could improve. That caught me totally by surprise!!! I am close to her and we spend a lot of time together, but from that to this conversation there is a long way... but I was so glad. First, because that means she trusts me and she knows I'd give her sincere answers. Second, she taught me something really important. We need to improve ourselves all the time no matter how successful we are right now. There is always room to do it even better. She told me that once for a while, she takes back and analyzes her situation objectively, then reoptimizes her actions/strategies, finally do it! I think that might be one of the reason of her sucess. I'm so happy to meet her and get to know her, she not only taught me how to do research, but also gives me life guidance. I'm such a lucky girl. (Did I mention she's the #1 female economist in the world? and top 15 in our field?).
okay. Enough rambling for the rambling section. Now on to the daily business, shall we?
I woke up 6am (went to bed around midnight) not suprised. Who can sleep 8 hours when you have a knot in your stomach due to the stress/anxiety?
Breakfast was again toasted muffins with laughing cow and PB & Co. Smooth Operator. I like it a lot alghouth other bloggers find it not sweet enough, but I think it's perfect for a toast. A sliced apple and some banana.Because this is so boring, let me "excite" you guys with a decent breakfast I had in BA. Muffins, toast, jams, cheese and the best coffee!.For lunch, I made another stir fry before I left in the morning since I'd spend most of the day in school. This time was high in protein: tofu, 2 eggs, mushrooms, spinach, soy sauce, sesame oil and sesame seeds. All on a bed of brown rice.I also packed a bowl of fruits and two Argentinian Quaker's bars.As I said yesterday, I was planning to go to a yoga class last night. Although I had more work to do, I thought it was better for my body and for my productivity if I take a break. So, I went to a 90 min vinyasa flow class. It was amazing!!! I haven't done yoga for 3 weeks and I could notice how different I felt. I felt weak, tired and sore.. aka... more dosis is needed.
Before I left, I had half soy pita (high in protein) from Tj's.Dinner was really simple: soup! I used the portbella mushroom soup as base, added frozen okra, green peas, corns and spinach. And some more shitake mushrooms I made earlier.I loooooveeeeee this soup!!! So creamy!!!! I can't wait to go to WF again and get more of this soup.
Dessert time: Fage + strawberries + mixgranola! It was delicious!! I missed it!!!Question: How often do you reoptimize (rethink your life, analyze it objectively)?

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Don't do this: stressed eating & ignoring people!

My next week presentation finally caught me with stress. I worked until 8pm last night; munched too many snacks instead of proper meals; I ignore Star's calls; I ignore my roommate's presence; I didn't call my parents (I hope they read this and forgive me); I couldn't schedule to meet my advisor yet!! BAD BAD BAD!!!! BUT, not everything is lost: I think I'm getting the results from my simulations as I thought I would.. yeah~ that excited me and relieved me somehow. I've been working on coding and simulations for a week now and was getting weird results...but yesterday at 7pm after being all stressed out, my mind did Tic and voila, I found my mistake, such a stupid mistake! It's always like that, that you can be struggling with something for weeks or months and suddenly everything clarifies and you realized what was wrong or what was right! It's such a random process, a faith of luck sometimes. But not always, because if you don't focus on the problem trying to figure it out over and over again, luck will never come!
okay. too much rambling for my too little time for this post!
Let me do a quick recap of yesterdays' random eats.
breakfast: leftover oatmeal that I made on Sunday and didn't have (1/2 c. oats, 1 tbsp flax meal, 1/2 banana, 1/2 c. almond milk, 2 egg whites) topped with ricotta. And a bowl of strawberries.It wasn't satisfying. (so weird, they used to fill me up pretty well). I had two cups of coffee later which made me even more irritable.
AM stress snack: two last cookie from Leng while I was looking at my two computers.Lunch was good: stir fry (the best for a long time!!!) made with firm tofu, broccoli slaw, spinach and mushroom, all seasoned with vinegar, soy sauce, ginger powder, honey, sesame oil and toasted sesame. Together with rice and barley.It was delicious and satisfying. I'll make it again soon! ^_^
Dessert and PM snack: POM jelly! I saw it first in Maggie's blog and loved the idea. So I got agar-agar this time in Argentina and used a bottle of POM to make this cutties. They're so easy to make and soooo good!!! I had like 4 bowls of these.
PM stress snack: 4 bowls of thisricotta with wheat berries. yes, you read it right, 4 bowls!!! INSANE~ But, wait, not only that. I also had a Quaker True Delight and a gigantic banana just an hour later!I felt I needed to chew and devour food in order to think. Have you guys find that chewing helps you to think?
Anyway, all these snacks filled me too much for dinner. So I had a small balanced plate without rice, tofu and miso as late dinner (10pm).What a day~~ I'm seriously considering on cutting back on my work and stress today by going to a yoga class tonight. And of course, eat better! ^_^ I'm stressed out, but I keep my mind positive!

March 30, 2009

recap of Sunday and more pic from Argentina!~~

Hi lovely people~~~ How was your Sunday? I hope you enjoyed it as I did, although my way of enjoying it was studying 9 hours on my research (Nerd!?), but it was productive so I don't complain. let me do a recap of yesterday's eats before I move to more pic from Arg.
Breakfast: again the same combo, toasted Tj's muffin + laughing cow and strawberries (I actually made oatmeal, but when it was done my body wasn't convinced so I put it away and toast the muffin. Intuitive, heah?)No AM snack again! Work work work!
Lunch: balanced plate again, same veggies, no rice because I was craving something crunchy so I finished that 1/3 package of tortilla flat bread.Dessert: little bowl of ricotta + Chocolate PB.PM snack: Quaker's chocolate mousse bar (brought from Argentina, I don't think they hold it in US). It was delicious!!!Dinnah: 2 baked sore filled with onions, soy sauce, sesame oil and honey; my first succeded kale chips and some rice.Dessert: another new kind of greek yogurt Voskos. It has 24 g of protein!!!! that's 49% of daily intake! In term of taste? It's good, it's not tart, it's very creamy but not as thick as fage. (maybe a little thicker than Oikos). Overall, I like it. ^_^ (I'm such a greek yogurt fan, I want to try all kinds in the world! ). I had it with my mixgranola!okay. now let's move to a meal that I had in one of the most fancy italian restaurant in BA (I know I've said most fancy restaurant too many times, but it's the truth! Most of the restaurant I went this time are the best in BA) called BICE. They are also in other part of the world, like Milan, NYC.the entrance
the bread basketitalian flat bread with seasoned oil
we had an octopus salad as first course
I had fish with a mouse of broccoli as main dishStar had fried shrimp
And the most famous italian dessert: tiramisucoffee and petit foursSuch a great meal, isn't it?

okay. Done with the recap, time to start working. Hope everyone has a wonderful Monday to begin the week! :)

March 29, 2009

Balanced Plate recreated and new products reviews!!!~~~

Yesterday I spent the whole day working on my research ( we had a pretty good "date", as Erin would call it). I am glad that I can work at home again (maybe due to the last two weeks that I spent in Argentina and had to work alone at home) because eats get so much better this way.
For breakfast I had toasted muffins with laughing cow and Chocolate PB, 4-5 gigantic strawberries and a coffee brought from Argentina. I know that I haven't had oatmeal/oatbran for ages... I want to have it mentally but my body still was in the toast inertia (do you know that our body has memory? if you eat something everyday for a long period, your body just get used to it?).
I worked through all morning. Surprisingly I didn't need to snack. this is something that I acquire during last two weeks, that if I have good meal, I just don't need to snack or very small snack.
Lunch: balanced plate!!! Yeah~~ I've promised to recreate it because it's delicious, it's pretty, it's sooo healthy and lastly because my body is still craving it (had it almost everyday for the last two weeks). It's really simple to make. Actually the only thing that you have to make is the squash/carrot sauce. You can find the recipe here
So, in the plate: 1 cup barley, red peppers, endive, spinach, broccoli, asparagus, mushrooms, butternut squash and mixed sprouts, two tofu squares (plain)After displaying them nicely, you pour the sauce over it, 1 big spoon of miso paste and 1 tbsp of toasted sesame.
Voila~~~~ Coco's balanced plate!!! It was even more delicious than the original one!! It fulled me up but was quickly digested... perfect for lunch for people who has to work afterwards.
Dessert: a new kind of ricotta, I got it from WF. It's organic and FF. The texture is very smooth but not so heavy as other kinds of ricotta that I had before. It's not tart at all. Really really good. I think I'll buy it again. I had it plain with cinnamon, I'm sure it will be great combined with fruits, apple sauce or pumpkin puree.
More work in the afternoon until the postman came with a package for me. It was from Leng @A Fat Cat who created Vegetarian. I won a contest she hold two weeks ago, it was a lovely package with her wedding favors and vegan chocolate chip cookies.
These cookies were sooooo moisturize, perfectly sweetened... just the best cookie I had this year so far! I wasn't hungry at all but munched on 3 of them.
Around 6 I wanted to eat something fresh... so I had an ugly fruit that I got in WF. It's gigantic and its taste/flavor is between orange and grapefruit. It was too tart for me.
Dinner was assembled really simple since it was 8pm and I decided not to go to a birthday party in the last minute. I used 1 cup of mushroom soup as base, added 1.5 cup of frozen okra and 1/2 bunch of kale, two Tj's turkey meat ball and 1 package of shirataki. It was delicious!~
Dessert: my first Oikos!!! Thanks to Kristine I got some coupons to try it free. Unfortunately WF didn't have the plain one, so I got the vanilla flavor. The texture is not as thick as Fage but very creamy though. I couldn't really taste the vanilla flavor but certainly less tart than the plain. I like it a lot, it's a great alternative to Fage.
Lastly I got my mixgranola!!! yeah~ I won a contest hold by Michelle and got to 20$ gift card. Look it!!! It has soooo many goodies. And allll natural, no added sugar, so original! I love the idea that I can make my own granola. I topped oikos with some of it. oh..... soooo good! Love the crunchiness.Such a great first day in US. I miss Star and the life in BA a lot, but I kept my mind busy on my research so I don't get sad. I know that ignoring the feeling isn't wise, but at least it worked yesterday.
Question: How do you face your true feelings (the bad kind)? Do you hide it? Ignore it? Or face it?
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