Dine & Dash Diaries

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A Jar Half Full

This morning started in the best sort of way—with an empty peanut butter jar and these ingredients.


Perfect for oats in a jar!

What’s the purpose of eating oatmeal out of a peanut butter jar? To use up the last of the nut butter, of course!


To make OIAJ, cook oatmeal in a pot or bowl as you would on the stovetop or in the microwave. Let cool for a bit, then pour into the nut butter jar, stir and top as you would a regular bowl of oatmeal.

I topped mine with Kashi Go Lean, raisins, honey, and as a last minute choice, I switched the peach out for some raspberries.


There’s something about oatmeal in a peanut butter jar that makes it that much more delicious. Probably because there’s a little more PB in there than I’d usually use… 🙂

Last night, Sam and I had the hardest time deciding what to eat for dinner. Our “staple” dinners are usually pretty limited considering our opposite lifestyles—I’m a vegetarian and he’s a meat ‘n’ potatoes guy—so we were considering pizza (half meat and half veggie), pasta or Mexican. But by the time we got home, though, we were starving and decided to go the grilling route. I had a MorningStar Farms veggie dog, some Alexia sweet potato tots and a side salad.


Yes, that’s Sam’s Old Milwaukee back there. 😉

I’m hoping to try more Alexia brand frozen foods after I work my way through this bag. I’ve had all their sweet potato varieties (tots, fries, chipotle fries) and they are delicious. Crunch outside, sweet and creamy inside.



After dinner, Sam and I considered going out for frozen yogurt, which we’d get every day if we could. Instead, we settled on some quick chocolate chip cookies (I use a basic recipe, but maybe I’ll post it later). I thought I overbaked them, but Sam said they were just right. Score.

Check this out: The New York Times created a super-cool infographic/video showing how Olympic athletes fared in the 100-meter dash compared to Usain Bolt (who is the fastest to date). It’s crazy to see how even the “slowest” runners from a century ago are still sooo ridiculously fast. I suppose that’s why they’re in the Olympics, eh?

If you could compete in any Olympic event, what would it be?
I would probably compete in gymnastics or water polo, just because I’d kill to be able to tread water like those polo players can.


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Pollen, Pears and My First DNDD Post

Hey guys! Thanks for taking the time to stop by DNDD. I’ve wanted to start a blog for a long time, and today I’m finally getting to it. I’m planning to post twice a day to talk about food, fitness and daily life. This first week may be a bit spotty as I’m simultaneously brainstorming, blogging, designing and figuring out how to set up my own domain. Anyway, let’s get to it:

This morning started with a quick 2.5 mile run around my neighborhood. My boyfriend Sam and I just moved to Des Moines a couple weeks ago, so it’s been fun running new routes around our apartment. If you’re anything like me, you tend to get stuck in a running rut when you live in the same place (for me, it was Iowa State/Ames) for a long time. I’m enjoying the “where should I go next?” internal debate because 1) it encourages me to run farther to see where I end up and 2) I’m not bored with the scenery yet.

Sam was just getting back from the gym when I was heading out and said it was a little chilly out. I got excited because I have exercise-induced asthma—more on that in another post—and often have trouble running in extreme temperatures (JULY, WHY DO YOU EXIST?!). But then he mentioned he saw on the news that the pollen was high and my excitement faded. I’m allergic to pollen, grass, weeds…basically everything in nature, so it’s pretty rare for conditions to be perfectly suited to my ridiculous breathing needs. But when they are, I feel so awesome.

I popped an allergy pill (sure, they take a while to kick in, but whatever) and hit the trail. The breeze felt nice, and today was the first day I didn’t have to purposely run through the sprinklers to cool off, but I could definitely feel the allergies kicking in. I refuse to bring my inhaler on short, non-race runs because I’m stubborn and like to pretend I don’t actually have asthma, so it’s a mystery how I would have fared without it. Mostly I was just happy to not be melting in the sun before 7 a.m.

Breakfast this morning was a new twist on my old staple: oatmeal. I usually have my oatmeal with some sort of fruit, plus granola, brown sugar, cinnamon and chia seeds. Today I added pears, raisins and instead of granola, a new-to-me cereal: Kashi Go Lean Original. Image

I’ve had the Go Lean Crunch and several other Kashi foods before, but I’ve never sprung for the plain ol’ original. I’m usually pretty enticed by “health food,” but I’ll admit was skeptical when I read the packaging. I can dig honey-toasted seven grains. Soy protein grahams? I mean, I like graham crackers. But “fiber twigs” that look like dog food? Not so much.


But I was wrong. To my surprise (and to the delight of my wallet), the cereal provided a nice crunchy contrast to the oatmeal/pear mix. I haven’t tried it alone yet, but I bet it’d be nice with some berries and almond milk.

Check this out: The Women’s Health #Run10Feed10 race: run 10 kilometers, feed 10 hungry people in your neighborhood. Official races take place in metro areas this fall, but anyone anywhere can participate. The race encourages each participant to raise $100 toward their cause.

Have you taken part in a philanthropic race or athletic event before?

I participated in few Relay for Life teams in middle school and high school. RFL is an event in which participants raise a certain amount of money for each lap they walk or run, then the proceeds go to cancer research. My hometown has seen more than its fair share of cancer and was once the top RFL fundraiser in the country. It’s a big event and a special way to both remember those who lost their lives and celebrate the survivors.

I’m off to work. Have a good morning!