Let Kim eat cake!

It was a love and food filled weekend for me.

On Saturday I got to spend the day with my family, immediate and extended.

My great-aunt Ethel just turned 95, and my mom, dad, aunt, and uncle headed to my cousin’s house for a family visit to celebrate. If I could be anyone when I grow up it would be Ethel, I think she’s just about the most amazing person that has ever existed. And let me just say, that woman makes 95 look good!

Forget 95, I hope I’m in half as good shape as she is when I’m 35!

Sunday was my best friend’s bridal shower.

I couldn’t be more excited for a wedding if it were my own. My best friend and her fiancé (also one of my closest friends) have been together for ten years, and have been engaged for half that time. They’ve been saving for their dream wedding for years, and now it’s right around the corner!

Isn’t she going to make the most beautiful bride?

I consider myself extremely lucky to count these two foxy ladies as my bestest friends.

After all the celebrating and hugging was done I was ready for a nap. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I may have had my fill of cake for a while…

Who am I kidding, there’s no such thing as too much cake!

 

In the meantime I’m returning to regularly scheduled eating and exercise.

Breakfast


Oatmeal/cottage cheese/egg-white (tastes better than it sounds)pancake with maple syrup

Snack


Chocolate protein shake with almond milk

Lunch


Whole wheat wrap with tofurky, tomato and onion
Steamed broccoli

Snack


Post workout chocolate muffin

Dinner


I had class tonight, a class that conveniently caters dinner. Salad with candied pecans and oranges—yummo!
Half a goat cheese, pesto, and vegetable sandwich

Exercise: 35-minute jog, 30-minute stair climb, 60-minute strength training (with personal trainer)

Kim

An Adventure in Muscle Building

There is a lie that many of us like to tell ourselves when it comes to exercise: that lie is that different types of exercise will create different shaped muscles. It’s often touted that things like Pilates or Ballet will make long lean muscles, the kind of muscles we so covet of those pesky ballerinas. To counter that, it’s often thought that things like dead-lifts and the Smith machine will make Arnold-worthy bulges.

The sad, and often craptastic reality is that muscle shape is determined by genetics.

Sucks, I know.

I spent the majority of my formative years in a tutu, and yet I have legs like a linebacker. I blame my dad, I am the living, breathing, female version of my him. The family resemblance is really obvious when we wear shorts.

He’s pretty cute, right?

My mother, who is now well into her thirties (you’re welcome, Mom) has long lean arms and legs, my dad and I…not so much. Now that I’m older I’ve come to terms with my legs. I may not ever feel the urge to wear a mini-skirt, but my legs are strong and capable and I’m proud of what they’ve accomplished. Now, my upper body is another story. I have exactly the opposite problem. While a single lunge seems to be enough to have my hamstrings in prime shape, it doesn’t matter how many curls or pull-downs I do, my arms pretty much always look the same.

I’ve interviewed the paternal figure about it, and it seems that he suffered from the same problem back in his athletic days.

Am I doomed to a lifetime of strong legs and not-so-strong arms?

Probably, but with a wee bit of fidgeting with diet, supplements, and training I may be able to get a tiny bit of definition in my least cooperative of appendages. For the next few weeks I’m going to play around with my diet a bit, and I’m taking Branch Chain Amino Acid supplements. BCAAs are said to help to promote muscle growth and repair. I don’t usually do supplements but these ones seem relatively harmless, and I haven’t been able to find any real risks involved in their use.

So, if I’m eating more protein and taking silly pills over the next few days/weeks, don’t think I’m aiming for a complete lifestyle change–I’m just experimenting.  I may not be able to change the shape my muscles come in, but I can at least try to show that shape off.

Do you have any body parts that just don’t seem to change, no matter how hard you work them?
Do you take any supplements?

Breakfast


Egg white omelet with spinach and goat cheese
Orange
The love of my life Coffee with almond milk

Snacks


Strawberry protein shake (pre-workout)

I also had a chocolate protein muffin (post-workout)

Lunch


Mini turkey meatloaf
Salad with tomato, cucumber, onion and beets

Dinner

No picture.
I had dinner at a class I was taking, salad and a vegetable wrap.

Exercise: Strength-triceps and chest, 35-min run, 35-min elliptical

 

Kim

What’s Making Me Happy: Running Weekend Edition

I’ve been MIA the last few days, but there’s been a lot keeping me happy.  For starters, the fella celebrated a birthday and I got to take him out Kim-style to celebrate.  After the celebrating I hopped on a train and headed out to Long Island to run a 5K with some of my hometown friends and do a little bonding with the fam.

Dinner at Candle 79, New York’s premier vegan restaurant.  Followed by…

Cirque de Soliel’s Zarkana

A walk around Fashion’s Night Out


Super serious model face initiated.  A strong contrast to…

Super cheesy post-5K face.
We had a lot of fun.  I wasn’t as fast as a once was, but considering I haven’t run in MONTHS I was pretty psyched to get through the race in 32 mins.  We’re signing up for another 5K in October, I’m hoping to come in under 30 mins at that one.

Photo Credit: Gateway Playhouse

Today my aunt and uncle (Manhattanites) are coming out to Long Island to visit my parents and we’re all going to a community theater production of Sweeney Todd.  Incidentally this is the theater I first started my acting career at.

I’ll head back to Brooklyn tonight and maybe get a little work done.  A very full, and happy weekend.

What’s making you happy?

Kim

Dear Internet: I’m Back

The good news: I finally got my hands on a new computer. About 45-seconds after I pressed “publish” on my last blog my computer did its last little freak out of the technologically living world (deleting everything on my iPhone that had the misfortune of being plugged in at the time) and is now resting comfortably on a shelf at my parents’ house until I can figure out what to do with it.

The bad news: I’m really behind on work, emails, and all things technologically related…in other words: life in general. The next few days are going to be a mad dash to make up assignments and kiss some editorial patootie so that I can keep myself employed. How were people able to passive-aggressively communicate with others before the advent of the Internet? Oh right, they actually did communicate in real life. How quant. The few days that I was computerless and phoneless were super stressful, but also strangely rejuvenating. While I wasn’t being hysterical, it was actually quite soothing to be completely unplugged.

I think I’m going to add one more resolution to my May list:

Digital detox one day a week. This is going to be hard, but I’m going to take one day a week off from technology and experience life as it is, not as it is on the Internet.

In the meantime I’m happy to be back in the land of the tech-capable. I’m also glad to be back in Brooklyn. I spent the last three days visiting my family and while I’m always nostalgic for home, a few days away always makes coming back to the daily grind of my real life feel fresh and exciting.

The Internet withdrawal left me confused and disheveled, and only capable of communicating with Ray-Ray…

Ray-Ray is my parents’ cat. He was a rescue kitty and came with the name, but I still like to make fun of my parents for having some sort of obsession with the name Rae/Ray. I’m thinking we should start naming all new additions to the family [First name] Rae

Breakfast


Whole wheat English muffin with peanut butter
Banana

Lunch


Ham with mustard on a roll

Dinner


Black beans and brown rice with turnip greens

 

 

Kim

Mother Knows Best

 

Happy birthday to my mom!
Thanks for always teaching me appropriate public behavior ;)

What is it they say about apples and trees?

Nose picking habits aside, I’ve learned a lot from my mom. She’s a pretty remarkable lady, and in honor of her birth I’m going to pass on some of the nuggets of wisdom she’s instilled in me since I was a wee little Kim.

  1. Never settle. If it’s not exactly what you want, it’s not worth your time or investment.
  2. Put red spices in the fridge, it keeps them fresh.
  3. You can only change yourself if you love yourself first.
  4. It never hurts to ask (…usually this is in relation to getting a discount).
  5. Actions are far more important than words.
  6. Breakfast; it’s important, you should eat it. Preferably with coffee.
  7. There are some things, no matter how full of fat and sugar they are, that are not worth giving up in exchange for a healthy life. For her this is Pepsi and salad dressing, for me it’s Buffalo wings and gummy bears. Everyone needs a vice!
  8. Talking while yawning prevents the hiccups.
  9. You teach people how to treat you.
  10. Most importantly, my mother’s motto for life, “F*#k ‘em if they can’t take a joke.”

As far as mothers go, I’m pretty psyched I ended up with mine. In some ways we’re very similar in others we’re so different you’d have no idea we were related at all. Regardless, there’s no one who knows me quite as well as she does. No one who can soothe me, or irritate me, or make me laugh when I’m crying quite like my mom. I love her like whoa, and I’m really excited that she was born.

What are the best words of advice your mom gave you?

Breakfast


Egg white omelet with spinach and goat cheese
Whole grain toast

Lunch


Leftover roasted vegetables and quinoa

Dinner

I met up with my friend Anna for a wine and food pairing. Anna and I met through the magic of the Interweb, she started out reading Elastic Waist, and then The Kim Challenge, and eventually we realized we both lived in New York and worked close to one another and became regular lunch buddies. Sadly, (for me anyway) Anna is leaving New York to rock out with the good folks of the Washington DC area. As far as farewell outings go, this was pretty tasty!

There was wine…


Chardonnay


and fried oysters

Then Pinot Grigio



with strawberry and fried chicken salad


and Chiantti


paired with lentil soup


then came bacon wrapped peppers stuffed with goat cheese
and another wine, but at this point I wasn’t quite as sharp with the listening skills


This one was some sort of mishmash of wines from a Long Island vineyard. It wasn’t as awesome as the rest, but it paired with some delicious


Lamb chops, kale and orzo in a sesame oil based sauce

Of course there was dessert. Apple crumb concoction with butter pecan ice cream and chocolate torte with raspberry sauce

It was an amazing dinner! Thank you Anna for inviting me, and for being my friend. I’m super excited for this next chapter of your life, and that I’ll have one more person to meet up with in DC.

 

I’m going to say something I very rarely say: I may need a diet. There has been a lot of super-rich foods in my life lately, and a lot of alcohol, and my pants are not fitting quite as nicely as before. I don’t really do diets anymore, but lately my moderate eating style has been slightly less moderate. My April resolution to eat cleanly hasn’t been quite as successful as I’d planned. I think step one in getting back to a working relationship with my jeans is to cut out alcohol (this is actually a pretty hard reality since I review bars a significant portion of my living). I think it’s time to acknowledge that this little metabolism of mine is not quite as fiery as it used to be. Kind of a bummer, but at least I have a gym membership again to absorb some of the damage.

Salad anyone?

 

Kim

What’s Making Me Happy: Weekend Edition


The show seems to be going well. My parents are coming to see it today ;)


Sleeping late


Home manicures


A new fair trade coffee shop in my hood


Organic Chinese takeout!

Your turn! What’s making you happy this weekend?

 

 

Kim

A Valentine’s Day Retrospective

Nathan and Cecile Married October 2, 1943

I’ve definitely been way more open regarding my super-duper personal life on my blog lately.  I’m not sure why that is, but I say if it feels right, do it.

Yesterday was the anniversary of my grandmother’s death, it also happened to have been my grandfather’s birthday.  I always thought it was kind of romantic that she died on his birthday (he died six years before she did).  Now that was a couple that really loved each other.  The story goes something like this: My grandfather worked at a pharmacy, my grandmother came in one day, and that was it…well at least for him.  Apparently she wanted nothing to do with him, but through persuasive action (action that would at this time be considered stalking, and may require a restraining order of sorts) he eventually wore her down and they got married, had babies, and loved each other a lot for a very long time.  That was inspiring, and then it was depressing because it got me thinking about Valentine’s Day.

This year I am alone.  I’m not going to feign excitement and empowerment, but I will say that I’m fine, I’m not devastated either.  Instead of thinking about my current situation, I started thinking about my past.

Last year I spent Valentine’s Day in Miami crying on a treadmill.  2009-2010 had been a really hard time for me.  My mom almost died, my job was borderline abusive, and my then boyfriend was about to be shipped back to Israel (he was here on a student visa as he got his MBA) if he didn’t find a job soon.  Everything felt hard. The trip was meant to be a stress reliever, but instead the stress caused something entirely un-expected to happen.  It caused me to miss my period.  I’m not a particularly irresponsible person (and I’m not going to get into the details of my sex life), but I had a friend who had recently gotten pregnant even though she too wasn’t irresponsible, and I was scared.  I decided, for the first time in my relationship history to be mature, and allow my boyfriend to actually be my partner.  His response was to stop talking to me, to stop looking at me, or touching me…except to make some fairly insensitive remarks.  On Valentine’s night he cancelled our dinner reservations so he could nap, and I spent the night running in the empty hotel gym.  The next day we went to a nearby Walmart and got a pregnancy test, all was well with the world again.  No offspring growing in these loins, and the boyfriend returned to his previously doting self.  I, however, did not bounce back so easily, and when we got off the plain in New York that was that; that was the last we ever saw one another.

The year, and boyfriend before that, I spent Valentine’s Day alone.  Not because I wasn’t dating someone I cared about, but because he lived 800 miles away.  Shortly afterward we broke up because dating long distance proved to be too hard.  The hardest breakups to get over are the ones that end without any hard feelings; they just feel infinitely sad and blameless.

The year before that was my first Valentine’s Day alone after a four year relationship ended with lots of pain, big first heartbreak pain.  I had fallen out of college and into this relationship and had never been alone as an adult.  My entire adult identity at that point was so wrapped up in being a part of a we.  I was learning how to be a single me again, and it sucked.  It really sucked.

This year, while I’m single, and definitely disappointed at my seeming disaster marked track record, I’m also not mourning anyone.  For the first time in many Valentine’s Days I am not hurting because of a relationship.  I can’t express how good that simple truth feels.

Over the weekend I went through my contacts and deleted all my exes; their emails and phone numbers erased forever. This wasn’t thought out, or philosophized over in my head, it just felt right.  I have this habit of collecting ex-friends, being buds with my exes. Exchanging text messages and emails, and meeting up once or twice a year to catch up.  I used to find comfort in that, and thought myself to be extremely mature.  Lately though, not so much.  I find myself more often than not avoiding calls; leaving emails unanswered and being too busy to grab that coffee.  I think the Valentine I gave myself this year was the freedom to let go of the belief that if I cared for someone once, I should care about them forever.

Maybe I’ll never find that lifelong love my grandparents had, maybe I will, but one thing’s for certain I won’t find it in my past…it took some time, but letting go finally felt right, and it finally felt good.

Breakfast

Whole wheat bagel thin with egg whites and lite Swiss cheese

Lunch

Note to my single self: one lasagna will last way too long

Snack

Orange

Dinner

Brown rice pasta with olive oil, garlic, asparagus and scallops

Kim

Challenge Up!

Damn it feels good to be a gangsta.

Oh, wait, I’m definitely not a gangsta, but it feels pretty good to be me regardless.  Three-day weekends have a way of making the whole world seem more promising.  I really couldn’t have asked for more from this weekend: fun, food, family, friends, flirting, (I can’t think of any more ‘f’ words) there was even some college basketball and talks of my two bestest friends (who have been engaged for over four years now) finally setting a wedding date. Bring on the big, ugly bridesmaid dresses (I’m sure they’ll be tasteful, but seriously if they wanted to dress me up like  popsicle and call me Petunia, I wouldn’t be any less excited)!

This weekend also brought a new determination in regard to something other than which color dress my friend should let me wear.  I’ve had the goal of running a marathon for my 30th birthday (probably not on the date of, but in or around) on my mind for a long time now.  I think it’s a pretty awesometastic way to ring in a new decade. I just turned 28, which gives me two-years to prep, and by prep I mean get used to running long distances, and perhaps get a few races under my belt.  I’ve decided to start signing up for races, and I’m going to drag other people along with me. . .

I wrote to my editor at Social Workout today, and asked if my next assignment could be to lead a half-marathon training challenge.  He loved it, and I’m heading into the office tomorrow to discuss challenge specifics.    I’m a big fan of peer pressure.  For those of you that are interested in upping your mileage this year and/or signing up for a specific race, I’ll keep you posted on the challenge and the training schedule ;) .

I’m pretty nervous, this definitely tests the boundaries of my running identity.  I think the farthest I’ve run is 5-miles, and I’m pretty damn proud of each and every one of those five, but I’m all about testing my limitations.

Who’s in?

Breakfast

Kashi Go Lean Crunch with strawberries and almond milk

Lunch

Vegetable barley soup (more like a stew), apple

Snack

Kind bar

Dinner

I decided to change things up by playing with tempeh instead of tofu.  I’m not sure how I feel about tempeh yet, it’s a weird consistency.

Broccoli, tempeh, brown rice in peanut sauce

Kim

Holiday Rambling from my Over Medicated Mind

I love baking, I just don’t love eating baked goods.

Don’t get me wrong I love a cookie, muffin, or chocolate layer cake as much as the next person, but I’m  not generally the type of person to crave dessert on a regular basis.

If I could bake for other people all the time, I would be happy.

Christmas in my family means Chinese food and movies, and it is a day of familial bonding we look forward to all year.  Mainly because it’s usually the one time of year that we all have off from our respective responsibilities to spend the day just simply being a family.

Unfortunately I threw a wrench in our regular routine by coming down with the plague this year.  Instead of me visiting my family, my family came to me.  It’s a good thing too, because man did I need to be around people.

My dad, sugaraholic that he is, gave me a perfect excuse to whip out that Kitchen Aid Mixer that sets my heart aflutter.

“Do you have any chocolate?”

“I don’t keep sweets in the house, but I could make chocolate chip cookies.”

“That’ll do.”

Of course, I still have the flu and quite possibly have now made delicious little flu-cookies, but still, everyone seemed happy.

If you don’t know this yet, the key to “chewy” vs. “crispy” cookies is to use corn syrup instead of white sugar.  Sugar granulates and gets crispy, corn syrup is made of ooey-gooey magical sweetness.

Okay, so I don’t keep ‘sweets’ at home, that doesn’t mean I don’t keep all the ingredients necessary to make ‘sweets’ hidden in the recesses of my pantry.

Family members satiated with sweets; it was time to get this holiday tradition on the road:  The Chinese takeout appeared as if by magic (well, actually my dad picked it up, but he’s kind of like magic).

Can’t forget the soup!
Egg drop.  In all my efforts to recreate my favorite takeout dishes at home, I never get the consistency of egg drop soup quite right.  Perhaps a 2011 resolution?

Sesame chicken, brown rice, white rice, egg foo young, beef chow fun

Mmm, tastes like Christmas!

Let me preface this by saying I’m still a wee bit loopy.  Over dinner I tried to impress my father with my newfangled knowledge of the German language, but it mostly turned into me saying a bunch of “words” then asking “Does that mean anything?”  To which my father just shook his head and wondered whether it was too late to exchange this daughter for a newer model.  Then I started saying, “Dad say ________ in German.  Okay, say___________.  Now dance.”

Maybe it’s time to lay off the cold medicine.

Since my pajama adorned self dragged my family all the way to Brooklyn, I figured the least I could do was share my new toy with them.  It was time to break in the new Wii!  This was my first real Wii-a-thon, and the first time my parents ever played.

They loved it!  I think the exact words my father used were “outstanding” and “delightful” and my mom said “I love it, don’t buy me one.”  She says this a lot, because somewhere in the recesses of my Filofax I take notes on the things people say they “love” and then come birthdays, holidays, and just because moments I tend to reference back.  Note taken.

We bowled and played table tennis, and after a while I wore myself out, but I let those two crazy kids that made me duke it out.  It was really fun.  I think I may have found the key to getting my parents to visit me more often!

My mom did have one complaint though, she said my Mii didn’t look like me, and hers and my fathers were definite doppelgängers.  Sigh, everyone’s a critic…

Really, it was the best I could do given the cartoon options I had to work with.

My mom is quite proud of hers.

Personally, I think my dad looks more like Hulk Hogan in Mii form, than himself.  I’m pretty okay with that, Hulkamania was a bright spot in my development.

Since I was in no shape to hit up the movie theater,  as we usually do, instead we scoped out all the really bad horror movies that Netflix had to offer.

Strange, the gratuitous nudity and sex that doesn’t phase me a bit when I watch these movies with my friends makes me uber uncomfortable when I’m sharing a couch with my dad.  Luckily my parents are the types to tease me about my puritanical reaction than be offended or it could have been super weird.  Still, next year let’s aim for a family friendly comedy.

While this day certainly broke from tradition, it really was one of the best Christmases we’ve had in a while.  We laughed, we coughed, we ate cookies, and clapped for one another.  This warm, comfortable feeling is what the holiday season is all about.  My family may be small, but it is close, and I can’t imagine having two more wonderful and doting parents.

Merry Christmas and Happy Saturday!

Kim

‘Tis the Season

For a Chrismikkah Bush
Technically I’m Jewish, but I love Christmas Trees!
Life’s too short not to decorate trees in your house.

For Homemade Gifts
Chocolate Butterscotch Blondie Mix

For Mistletoe
What?  Like you didn’t hang it over your door justincase

For  Sentimental Gifts
I couldn’t think of anything I needed, so for my birthday this year I asked my parents for my grandmother’s ring.
I’m not much of a jewelry girl, but I’ve always loved this ring.

For Birthday Cake
9 more days!  But who’s counting?!

What do you love about this time of year? (It’s okay to be corny, the cornier the better)

Oh, right, and there’s the regular ole everyday eating:

Breakfast

Whole wheat English muffin with cottage cheese and tomato
Pineapple

Lunch

White bean and spinach soup (this was so good I’m planning on emulating at home next week)
Fruit salad
Whole grain bread

Dinner

I might be a little obsessed.
Homemade hot and sour soup.

Kim