Archives for September 2012

An Easy Recipe for Sweet Potatos and Black Beans

I made a great dinner last night!  It was easy and delicious.

Let me back up.  I was planning on making a sweet potato and black bean salad.  My daughter had sent me the recipe and it looked good.  But, with a multitude of email addresses, I couldn’t find the recipe!  So I Googled  “black bean and sweet potato recipe” and came up with this great one from Eating Well — Sweet Potatoes with Warm Black Bean Salad.

 

 

 

I adjusted the recipe a bit, as I didn’t have tomatoes and I didn’t want the sour cream.

 

 

This is what I did:

  • Microwave 1 sweet potato (about 5 min)
  • Mix 1/2  can of black beans with 4 oz of salsa , and heat on stove or in microwave
  • Slice sweet potato, press to make a well in the middle  and pour the bean and salsa mixture into the well.

I served it with some steamed kale for a colorful plate!

Catching up

Hello blog friends, I have been neglecting you!

I have been very busy–I’ve started a new job and that has been taking up a lot of my time and energy, but I am totally enjoying it. I am working on a few big projects that I can really sink my teeth into.

I also have been keeping up with my running which is a good thing as I have a half marathon in early November. I’m on track with my training as far as running goes, but my yoga practice has taken a back seat. I really need to make time for yoga too as it complements the running nicely–tighten the muscles, stretch them out, tighten them, stretch them out, etc., etc.

And while I haven’t been writing about health and nutrition, I have been eating very healthy and working on my vegan recipes, (much more on this in future posts).

But mostly my time has been spent pampering myself — hair treatments, facials, hair cut and highlights, manicure, pedicure and an eyebrow wax…now I am NOT typically this high maintenance but I have been buffing and polishing to get ready for my son’s wedding! The wedding is this Saturday and I am so excited for him and his fiancée!!

Racing through Newington, NH

A great race yesterday, the Fox Point Sunset 5 Miler in Newington, NH.  The course was nice, starting off in the old historic village, running a bit through the Newington Town Forest (the oldest town forest in the US), down toward Great Bay and then back toward the town.

As you can imagine, whenever there is a “down toward the bay” there are some hills as you climb out!  While the course started off flat and then downhill toward the Bay, from mile 3-5 we had a steady climb from 21 ft to 110 ft as we moved back toward the town, with an uphill finish!

But I was very pleased with my race.  Knowing the course and knowing that I’d lose time on the hills, I went out faster than usual, I relaxed a bit on the third mile to recover and get ready for the hills, and then I did my best to the finish.  I ended up in 42:21, virtually tied to my time from last year 42:20.  The exciting part is that I achieved my goal of top ten in my age group, finishing 6th out of 61 in my category!

Aromatherapy Anyone?

I’ve been reading up on the aromatherapy and the  therapeutic value of essential  oils, and I have discovered that there really is something to it!

Wikipedia defines aromatherapy as,

a form of alternative medicine that uses volatile plant materials, known as essential oils, and other aromatic compounds for the purpose of altering a person’s mind, moodcognitive function or health.”

According to another source I read,

Essential oils are the highly concentrated, volatile, aromatic essences of plants. Scientists agree that essential oils may perform more than one function in living plants. In some cases they seem to be a part of the plant’s immune system. In other cases they may simply be end-products of metabolism. Essential oils contain hundreds of organic constituents, including hormones, vitamins and other natural elements that work on many levels. They are 75 to 100 times more concentrated than the oils in dried herbs.*

Aromatherapy and essential oils have been used throughout history.  Again according to Wikipedia,  the ancient Greek physician, Dioscorides, wrote about the healing properties of essential oils in the first century, and distilled essential oils have been used as medicines since the invention of distillation in the eleventh century.  Eastern cultures used therapeutic oils, and in the early 1900’s European doctors and scientists began to discuss the value of essential oils and introduced the term aromatherapy.  And during World War II a French surgeon, Jean Valnet, pioneered the medicinal uses of essential oils, which he used as antiseptics in the treatment of wounded soldiers.

So I’m going to give it a try.  I’ll report back on what I discover.  Have you tried aromatherapy?   I’d love to hear about your experience!

*http://www.auracacia.com/auracacia/aclearn/ar_basics.html