WIAW: White Cheddar Mac & Cheese

Dear Readers,

It has been six weeks since my last WIAW post and these are my confessions.  HA!  Kidding.  But really…  It feels like I’m sitting down in a confessional since it has been over a month since I’ve joined Jenn’s delicious link-up.

I could remind you about how busy life currently is, but that would be redundant and I’m sure that others are equally as {or even more} busy.  But really…  Life is crazy, in the best possible way.  Teaching, conferences and meetings before/after-school, tutoring, working at the running store, running, getting ready for a fabulously fun bachelorette weekend, doctor’s appointments, yada yada yada.  I’ll save those rambles for another time because today it’s all about the food.

Salty, sweet, chewy, crunchy, doughy, fluffy, I don’t discriminate.  But I do get cravings and hankerings for things that I just have to have and couldn’t live another minute without.  

Breakfasts lately have been pancakes, but bagels are a close second.  I’ve eaten enough tuna fish to sustain a small country.  Trader Joe’s needs to sell their Sweet Apple Chicken Sausages in larger packages, five is just not enough.  I ate a whole bag of frozen peas after working at the running store {and yes, I had already eaten dinner}.  Wegmans real crab sushi rolls and organic soups are my favorite to get when Ryan and I go on weekend lunch dates.  I forgot how tasty doughy, white carbs are #wheatbrainturnedwhite.  And how delicious Annie’s White Cheddar Mac & Cheese is.  Actually, anything cheesy sounds absolutely divine.  PB&J will forever steal my heart.  And all days that end with ice cream are good days!

Now, onto yesterday’s eats…

IMG_7020

Breakfast:  It’s much easier for me to remember to take my vitamins when they’re gummies.  Two mini plain bagels topped with TJ’s creamy peanut butter + St. Dalfour Four Fruits Preserves with a side of {unpictured} frozen berries.

IMG_6972

Mid-Morning Snack:  School was delayed due to Monday’s snow, so on my way in I stopped by Starbucks.  A handful of dates and a grande Coffee Light Frappuccino minus the frapp base, plus a banana.  It has a mild coffee taste with a hint of banana.  The only thing that could make it better would chocolate.

IMG_7004

Lunch:  An apple, {unpictured peas and carrots}, PB&J sandwich on potato bread {current favorite bread!}, and  TJ’s honey pretzels.  More white carbs, swoon.  Oh, and a Diet Hansen’s because I had a stomach ache.  I suppose I do now have one confession to share since I was supposed to have given up candy and soda for Lent…

IMG_7008

Afternoon Snack {unpictured}:  In the car on the way to my chiropractor appointment, I ate a banana and a Luna Bar.  I used to eat a Luna Bar almost every day a few years ago and I seem to be getting back into the habit.  Hate to admit it, but Quest Bars aren’t doing it for me anymore.

IMG_7022

Dinner:  I’ll never forget when my momma first bought a box of Annie’s White Cheddar Macaroni & Cheese back when I was in high school.  I was bummed.  Bummed because I was so used to the traditional blue box…  But oh my, I quickly realized that there was more than silly shaped coated in orange cheese and I’ll never go back.  

For dinner I sautéed mushrooms with salt + pepper, added a handful of frozen peas, and poured a little jarred marina sauce into the pan.  While that was cooking, I cooked a box of Annie’s Whole Wheat Shells & White Cheddar {according to the directions} and warmed up a few frozen turkey meatballs from TJ’s.  The mushrooms and peas made a great base for the mac & cheese + meatballs, plus {salted} sliced tomatoes.  Definitely worth remaking again and again!

IMG_7032

Dessert:  A generous scoop of Stonyfield’s Gotta Have Vanilla frozen yogurt with a few animal crackers + grapes.  Strange combo but it hit the spot.

IMG_7038

P.S.  Check back tomorrow for a recipe for PB&J Energy Bites!  They’re no-bake and gluten-free!

IMG_6999

Question:  What food{s} have you been craving?

Question:  What’s the strangest combo you’ve recently enjoyed?

— Allison

Signature

Thinking Out Loud: If they only knew…

Thanks to two snow days and a 2-hour delay, this week has flown by!  Last night I worked my first team night at the running store.  Team night is when a local high school’s cross country/track team comes in to get fitted for shoes for their upcoming season {and receive a super sweet discount!} – the store was the most crowded it has been since I started working, but it was a lot of fun!

Thinking-Out-Loud

Thanks Amanda for hosting another link-up!

1.  Truth: I used to refer to the treadmill as the “dreamill,” but this past winter I’ve had a change of heart.  It’s always there for me, it’s never covered with ice/snow, the temperatures are consistent, and the hills are…  Nonexistent.  Plus, it’s a great chance to catch up on trashy TV {i.e. Bravo}.

IMG_6700

2.  Yes, yes, yes.  Runner’s World is so smart.  This is exactly why I run.

IMG_6736

3.  Did you celebrate National Pancake Day?  If you missed out but still want to celebrate this weekend, check out Tuesday’s Favorite Finds: National Pancake Day post.

IMG_6698

4.  Or if pancakes don’t tickle your fancy, what about muffins?  These Wheat-Free, Dairy-Free Morning Glory Muffins would be great to make and freeze for a quick weekday breakfast.

muffin_1

5.  Today I took a personal day because I had two different dermatology appointments.  PSA: Get yourself checked!  Melanoma doesn’t discriminate!

IMG_6747

going back in April to have the mole that’s circled removed & tested

6.  Speaking of health, I want to talk more openly about my “health hiccups” on the blog this year.  By doing so I hope to connect with others who have gone though/are going through similar situations, share my experiences, and inspire others to keep a positive attitude.

IMG_6751

shared via Instagram this morning

7.  I love when “throw everything together and hope for the best” dishes turn out to be delicious!  These meatballs contain a few ingredients that may make you question my cooking ability.  I want to make them once more before I share the recipe, but in the meantime, I need help naming them…?

IMG_6718

8.  Another “throw everything together and hope for the best” recipe…  Except, this one has a name.  Three Bean Bell Pepper Chili.  With a side of dog.

IMG_6707

9.  I overheard a group of high school girls chatting and one of the girls said “Ugh, I’m starving!  I overslept this morning and didn’t have time to eat breakfast or pack a lunch.”  Her friends suggested she go get a sandwich, but she ended up buying a banana and pretzels because “I need to fit into my bathing suit for spring break!”  Wish I {could have} said something.

17a442f813e468b7b0e88ef0f59ba4f8

10.  And an obligatory snow picture.  Everything looks so tranquil covered in snow.  I wonder if we’ll see another storm this season?

IMG_6678

Question:  Do you ever jump into conversations if you overhear something that grabs your attention?  Yes, I do BUT I think it really depends on the situation and topic.  Chatting about coffee in the line at Starbucks?  Sure, I’ll jump in.  But a conversation between high school girls and body image, that’s a tough one.

Question:  Snow – sick of it or hope for more?

— Allison

Signature

Thinking Out Loud: Three Calendars

Thought #1:  This is a must read –>  The 20 Important Facts Dog Lovers Must Never Forget.  All of the pictures will make your heart melt.

Dog and Little Girl

Thought #2:  I wanna find a cute {preferably low/open back and neon} chevron dress this spring.  Dress it up with a pair of wedges or keep it simple with a pair of flip flops.  I can feel the warm weather just thinking about it.

Chevron Dress

Thought #3:  This has been my ringtone for the past couple of months.  I definitely send/receive more text messages than phone calls, but I always love hearing the my phone ring!

IMG_6391

Thought #4:  A bagel slathered with Greek Cream Cheese, sliced strawberries, and a drizzle of honey has been my favorite {repeated} breakfast this week.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Thought #5:  An ad for Gluten Cutter appeared on my Facebook sidebar Tuesday night.  The website claims that it “is a digestive aid exclusively formulated with… plant based enzymes that specifically target and break down gluten as well as other hard-to-digest foods into simpler forms that your body can digest.”  Thanks, but no thanks.

Gluten Cutter
Thought #6:  Life is crazy busy.  I have no complaints {I’m loving it all}, but there’s a lot going on.  Teaching full-time, tutoring twice a week, working at PRR, studying for the elementary ed licensure exams, training for spring races, and somehow maintaining a social life.  Thankfully, I’ve got a handful of awesome guest posts and a few fun giveaways scheduled!

IMG_6358

Thought #7:  Speaking of work…  Working at a running store has its perks.  I’m OBSESSED.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Thought #8:  I’m currently using not one, not two, but THREE planners.  One is for school, one is for my personal life, and then I also use the calendar on my computer/phone.  I really should merge them all into one, but I’d rather not see “Art Enrichment” or “Science Lab” on my personal planner and there’s no need to know my workout schedule during the school day.

Organized Someecard

Thought #9:  I planned to review the Sunshine Burgers that I received {courtesy of Fit Approach – thanks!}, but my schedule postponed those plans.  I’ll definitely share my thoughts soon.  What I will say is that they didn’t disappoint.  Although, some of the flavor combos were…  Interesting?!

IMG_6381

Thought #10:  Grey’s Anatomy AND Scandal return next Thursday.  Thank goodness for DVRs, otherwise I’d miss all of my favorite shows since they’re scheduled for after my bedtime…  I should consider moving to a state in the Central Time Zone.

Scandal

Thinking-Out-Loud

Thanks Amanda for hosting another link-up!

Question:  What’s your favorite veggie burger?  Have you ever tried a bison burger?

Question:  Who’s your favorite character on Grey’s Anatomy?

— Allison

Signature