Daily Archive: December 17, 2011

The Second Christmas Tree

Posted by Nicole

Well, it’s been quite a day!  We officially made it to the casa and had a day filled with laughter, food, decorating, fun, and pictures.  Way too many pictures.  [David and I are both camera-obsessed]

Rewinding to this morning, after going to the gym

The drive was nice and there wasn’t much traffic.  We made it to Groveland in about three hours, including our stop at a random food/fruit stand on highway 120.  David and Sam raved about the pie from this particular stand, so a stop was necessary!

They had lots of variety: salad dressings, flavored nuts (twss?), honey of all types, fruits/veggies, soup mixes, etc.

We picked up 3 avocados ($1 total!), a spaghetti squash (39 cents/lb!), two soup mixes (split pea and Cajun jambalaya rice), and an apricot pie.

For the remainder of the car ride, I watched 500 Days of Summer.  I always have to stop this movie about 2/3 of the way through because I don’t like ending. Conveniently, we made it to Groveland just before the heartbreak parts.

When I looked out the window…….. there wasn’t any snow!

I was a little bummed, but I’m sure we’ll see some snow tomorrow in Yosemite.  Upon arriving at the house, I was ready for a late lunch.

Two Boca Vegan burgers on a bed of spinach filled me right up.  40g of protein, quick and easy!

After unpacking and putting the jambalaya rice on the stove, we headed out to the backyard to chop down a Christmas tree.  At home, we have a fake tree, but we decided to have the real deal here [at least for the three days we will be at the house].

I’ll let the pictures do the talking…

I may look tough, but I let Sam do the honors.

The tree looks tiny next to David (he is 6’4″), but it fit perfectly in the house.

As soon as it was up, we got to decorating!

We took a brief hiatus from tree decorating to walk to the grocery market and get some necessary supplies for dinner.  We bundled up and enjoyed the view of Pine Mountain Lake along the way.

On the walk back, it was super dark (there are no street lights here).  We saw some special sights…

A place to take pictures with Santa and his sleigh.  All the kids were enjoying it, don’t mind the somber looking boy ^

The fire department was handing out free hot chocolate and coffee.

This house looked like a gingerbread house; the lights were awesome.

By the time we made it back (4.12 miles roundtrip) it was time for dinner.  My mom prepared split pea soup and cornbread while we finished decorating the tree.

Turned out pretty nice :)

Dinner included leftover jambalaya rice + split pea soup + extra carrots.  One bowl with honey-baked ham, and one without.  Served with some quick Marie Callendar’s cornbread (a cabin staple).

And apricot pie of course.

Now I’m signing off for some relaxation by the fireplace and intense board gaming.

Have a great weekend!

Q4U: Highlight of your Saturday?

15 Minute Kabocha Squash

Posted by Nicole

Compared to what I said in my last post, I branched out and actually “cooked” in the kitchen. I have been so interested in trying kabocha squash because many people say how delicious it is. I love spaghetti squash, so I figured, why not?

I was nervous to actually “cook” the squash, so I got advice via Twitter. Tara gave me tips on how to roast the squash… but it would require 45 minutes. I’m lazy and impatient, so I decided to try my easy/quick spaghetti squash method and it worked out perfectly!

[sorry for the iPhone photos]

1. Cut the squash in half.

2. Remove the seeds/strings.

4. Place half the squash, open-side down in the dish. Fill with ~1/2 cup of hot water. Cover dish with microwave-safe plastic wrap.

5. Microwave on high for 10 minutes.

6. Remove dish from microwave *it will be hot* and flip squash over. Remove any additional strings that came loose.

7. Sprinkle with garlic powder and eat [straight out of the skin if you’re lazy like moi] with a side of protein. I had an egg scramble with spinach, nooch, garlic powder, pepper, and tapatio. I also used some of TJ’s Organic Spaghetti Squash w/ Mushrooms for extra flavor on the squash.

Another success… I flipped an omelette for the first time! Considering how many omelettes [AKA egg scrambles] I make, this was pretty exciting.

AND another success, I actually made it to the gym in the morning. I’ve been waking up anytime from noon – 2PM [I know, I’m terrible] so getting out of bed at 7:15 to go to the gym was a bit of a struggle. Not to mention it was freezing outside!!!

Whoever said California winters are a joke needs a reality check.

ps- the ONLY reason I went to the gym early was because we are headed to Groveland/Yosemite today! My mom, David, David’s son Sam [the cannoli master], and I are driving 3 hours to leave the sunny Bay Area and see this…

It’s going to be a great change of scenery :)

Q4U: Kabocha Squash or Spaghetti Squash?

I think I’m gonna be loyal and stick to my spaghetti squash lover.

Q4U: What was your workout today?

30 mins elliptical [lazy level 8] + 40 mins treadmill [1 mile run, the rest was incline walking…] + hopefully we’ll go on a walk/hike this afternoon :)

*** I think I said lazy one.too.many.times this post. I’m too lazy to find synonyms.