Taking Advantage of Silence

I spent about four hours total in the car yesterday.

I drove my uncle to the airport, and let’s just say that I was {safely!} able to eat my lunch while sitting in traffic on the way back. Driving to the airport = 1 hour. Driving from airport to internship = 2 hours.

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packed this avocado, double egg, sriracha sandwich to go + salad in a tupperware

Then I drove home at rush hour = 1 hour. While no one is a fan of traffic, I actually strangely enjoyed the alone time. Who gets 4 hours of alone time these days when you really can’t do anything but sit with your thoughts?

As much as I want to blast music the whole time when I’m in the car (especially when THIS Tori Kelly song just comes out!!!), I think it’s important to take advantage of silence. Time to listen to your thoughts in our busy society is sort of a privilege, don’t you think?

I like to talk out loud, even when I’m by myself (hence vlogging), so I’ve been into talking to God as if I’m having a conversation with a good friend. That may sound weird, I get it, but He lends a great ear 🙂 Doing so allows me to sort out any of my anxieties, joys, fears, excitements, questions, or frustrations with the driver who just cut me off.

If you have some time for silence, whether that be in the car or in the morning, make it your own.

  • Make a single mini goal for the day.
  • Reflect on a quote or inspirational story/blog post you read recently. How can you implement the lessons/ideas in your own life?
  • List the things for which you are grateful.
  • Choose one person you love, who you might be a little frustrated with at the time, and think about the qualities you love in him/her and the good memories you’ve had with that person.
  • Crank out some new ideas for your home, cooking, blog, etc.
  • Think about people who you haven’t talked to in a while.
  • Pick one thing that you need to improve (for me— punctuality) and analyze ways in which you can go about improving.

…and the list goes on. It’s incredibly easy to default to noise, because silence can be boring and uncomfortable when our minds know that there are so many things we could be doing. Trust me, I still itch to turn on the radio. But consciously taking advantage of silence can make a positive difference in your day. It certainly has for me!

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Other notes for the day:

The fish bone ordeal is somewhat under control, I think. My eustachian tube is definitely still feeling wonky and like there’s something around that area, but nothing hurts much at all anymore. I don’t think there’s a little fish bone hangin’ out either. I’m just going to wait it out and see if the discomfort disappears.

Speaking of fish, I made tuna cakes last night, which very much embodied the saying, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.”

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tuna “cakes”…

These were tasty though!

Ingredients: Canned tuna, onions, garlic, a little bit of leftover brown rice, cilantro, paprika, cumin, mustard, black pepper, Greek yogurt, lime juice and zest, honey, and a couple eggs.

Directions and measurements: Throw some amount of everything into a bowl. Form into patties and pan fry. Hope for the best.

The first few were more like tuna hashes, but the last batches turned out a little prettier.

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As pretty as tuna cakes can get, that is.

And lastly, I ate a good ol’ favorite last night!

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Dried figs and Greek yogurt! If you’ve been reading for a while, you might remember how often I used to eat this pair. Like, obsessively.

Alrighty, it is past my bedtime as I type this. I hope you all have a wonderful Wednesday! Embrace the silence.

So tell me:

If you have a long commute, how do you fill the time?

What do you do/would you do with a little bit of silence in your day?

What did you eat for dinner last night?

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WIAW: Feelin’ Fancy in the Kitchen

Hello!

One of the many benefits of summer is being able to spend more time cooking and trying out some of the hundreds, maybe thousands (seriously) of recipes I have bookmarked.

I also did some research for volunteer opportunities for this summer and found a meal program at the local Ronald McDonald House. I called them up because I read that the volunteers cook for families staying at the home, which I would have loved to do! But then I learned that volunteers also have to buy all the ingredients to feed 25-30 people…Oh. Cool. The lady on the phone laughed at me when I realized this.

If I was volunteering with a large group of people, I definitely would have done it. Since I would be going solo though, buying food for 25-30 people is totally not feasible for an ongoing volunteer job. So now I’m looking into volunteering at a hospital. I have the itch to DO THINGS.

For now, I’ll just stick to cooking for my family and me.

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Sharing my eats at Jenn‘s weekly WIAW party!

Here’s what I ate yesterday as I got all fancy in the kitchen!

Breakfast

I woke up hungry, but I also had a craving for pancakes, which takes time. I could have made a usual green smoothie to satisfy my hunger quickly, but I sucked it up, ate a nectarine, and got to work on some pancakes.

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Green silver dollar banana pancakes from The Healthy Maven to be exact.

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Topped with Greek yogurt, sunflower seed butter, and maple syrup 

I threw in that maple syrup in honor of Canada Day yesterday. Just kidding, maple syrup is just required for pancakes.

I had one extra pancake… #becausefutbol #beacausepancakes. They’re silver dollar pancakes too, and mini things are irresistible.

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Lunch

As I was stretching and doing some core work in the family room, I was watching Ten Dollar Dinners on Food Network. Melissa D’Arabian was making salmon cakes, and all I thought was: I could go for some of those right now. So I made some tuna cakes with whatever we had in the house!

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Topped with a spicy relish {Mom had two and I had two} 

I only cooked up four for us to eat at lunch yesterday, but the recipe makes about 14 cakes (we refrigerated the rest). Here’s what I used:

Crispy Tuna Cornmeal Cakes

{adapted from this recipe}

  • two 7-oz. cans tuna, flaked with a fork
  • heaping 1/4 c. cornmeal
  • 1/3 c. finely diced bell pepper
  • 1/3 c. diced vidalia onion
  • 1/3 c. plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 tsp. spicy brown mustard
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • 1/2 tsp. dried dill
  • 1 tsp. lime zest
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 egg

Combine all ingredients well. Form into patties using ~2 tbsp. of mixture per patty. Cook in a skillet lightly drizzled with olive oil on medium heat for 3-5 minutes per side (until crispy!).

These were darn tasty for an impromptu kitchen creation by someone who can’t make sweet potato fries.

Sides:

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There are only three here, but LOTS o’ carrots and unpictured Wheat Thins with hummus

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Dried pineapple rings

Snacks

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Summer’s rubies

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Cinnamon Puffins

Dinner

Sam and Michael came over to chill at my house near dinner time, so I kept it simple and quick. I wasn’t that hungry either.

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Spinach salad with olive oil-s+p-honey dressing + two hard boiled eggs

Dessert/Midnight Snack

After Sam and Michael left at around 1 AM (party animals here. watching Fantastic Mr. Fox and talking about awkward middle school memories), I got the munchies.

dried figs and greek yogurt

Three dried figs + Greek yogurt. Duh. {recycled picture}

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Spoonful of almond butter {recycled picture– it was smooth last night, not crunchy}

So I guess I was only feeling fancy in the kitchen for the first half of the day, but two out of three meals is fair game! I also apparently like circular foods.

Hope you all have a wonderful Wednesday!

So tell me:

What was the last recipe you tried?

What was the last thing you created in the kitchen?