Banana Pancakes

“Maybe we could sleep in

Make you banana pancakes

Pretend like its the weekend now”

-Jack Johnson

 

Okay, I’ve got that Jack Johnson song stuck in your head now, don’t I? Yes? Good. No? We’ll work on that. Who is Jack Johnson? Shame on you.

Well, he was on to something. These pancakes were great to wake up for (sadly, I didn’t wake up to them, but that’s alright). Anyway, I knew I wanted some since the night before at midnight, because who doesn’t? I decided I was gonna wait until when I got up and you could’ve imagined my excitement when I went downstairs to finally make them. I opened the fridge to get the ingredients, and then behold: no eggs. I nearly cried. True story. I’d have to save my dreams for easy two-ingredient pancakes for another day.

However, I didn’t give up. I found a recipe for eggless banana pancakes instead, and I am so glad I did. Shoutout to yummytummyaarthi.com for satisfying my banana pancake craving!

I love pancakes and french toast. Sweet, usually with cinnamon, and almost always with fruit. However, since I’ve changed my eating habits, I hardly eat them anymore. I love their substitute, baked oatmeal, but I’m learning that I cannot completely cut myself off from the so good, but so “bad for you” stuff. These will probably appear a little more on my breakfast agenda. They’re sweet, but not overpowering. There’s also so many options on what to top them with. They hardly need any syrup, and the recipe states that agave works too. I love it with (go figure) peanut butter- especially the Smuckers All-Natural Creamy kind.

And I also snapped a few pictures…

 

-Emilee

Banana Pancakes

The 5th Wave Trilogy

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Okay, so I am a big fan of reading books before their movie counterpart comes out. I am also a firm believer in “the book is always better than the movie.” However, I tend to be a little busy when it comes to reading so I cheat and go on and watch the movie. This kind of happened with “The 5th Wave.” Oops. I still blame everyone else around me for wanting to see it immediately, and I couldn’t just say “no,” you know? But, I will have to admit, the movie was pretty decent even after reading the books and Alex Roe (he plays Evan Walker)? Adorable.

The books have been on my “must read” list forever, and when I walked out of the movie theater a couple of months ago, I was like: “Okay, I have to read these now.” I still procrastinated and got the book a few weeks later, but once I finally got to reading, I was hooked. Rick Yancey (the author of the series) is a phenomenal writer as I’ve heard from the past. He wrote “The Monstrumologist,” which was a book on a list for my competitive reading team back in high school. I never got around to it, but everyone who read it quickly deemed it as their favorite. I can see why.

Yancey writes his perspectives cleanly, and has a great sense of who his characters are and how to write for them. I read a book recently (not going to title it; it was still a fantastic story nevertheless) in which the author wrote in a contemporary setting, but still used cheesy slang from the nineties for fourteen-sixteen year-olds using smartphones. Yancey did not do that at all, and I found there to be intelligence to his writing. Again, I am not trying to degrade the other authors out there; I am just super impressed. Plus, I found myself able to emote with the characters, and enjoying every bit of them he had to offer. They were complex, and had well-supported backstories, and if there is something I enjoy, it is a good backstory. In this trilogy, nearly every main character has one (and there are a ton of them), which I thought was very nice.

Upon finishing the trilogy (I did this last night but was too tired to write this then), I was disappointed: entirely in the fact that it was over. The suspense and thrill, mixed in with the dark components (YA is getting very dark these days, but I do not mind) made this trilogy one of my favorites, and the themes/ideas of an apocalyptic world, extraterrestrials, and young people going beyond their dark capacities honestly kept me up at night sometimes. I want to discuss how this trilogy ended so badly, but I do not wish to spoil the end for you. Believe me- it is so tempting. So instead, I will just have to say that you need to read this trilogy if you haven’t already. If you are looking for good, intelligently written dystopian-sci fi in the YA genre, this trilogy is definitely for you, and you will not be disappointed.

-Emilee

The 5th Wave Trilogy

What “Skinny” Means to Me: My Health Story

In this post, I am going to discuss something that affects me on an extremely personal level. Ever since I was a young child, I had always been overweight. When I got to my junior year of high school, my weight was at its all-time highest. Even with my height and frame taken into consideration, I was always considered the  “chubby” girl. Now, I look and weigh a little differently, but I still struggle on a daily basis with my body image.

This is my story.

Note: This is extremely personal for me to write, and there are some things in here that I’ve never particularly told anyone. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to ask/make them, but please keep them positive and respectful!

 

“I want to be skinny.” Wow, this thought screwed me over.

I can remember this one time before a softball game in middle school. I was often teased for my size because I was bigger than all the other girls, and I remember being humiliated especially this one day when my team had a game and all of our jerseys and pants were were laid out for us in the locker room. When I went to put my uniform on, my jersey was fine, and my pants looked as if they were my size; the size on the label was correct and everything. Then I tried to put them on and they weren’t even going over my knees. I was freaking out. While they appeared to have the correct size label, they were child’s pants. Then, to make matters worse, the girl whose pants were switched with the tight ones I was wearing walked out and her pants (well, my pants) were falling off of her. Then some of my own teammates started laughing and making comments, and you get the picture. This was when my opinion of myself and how I looked changed. I get it. Middle schoolers are ruthless. But that still didn’t change anything about how I felt, even when I entered high school.

High school was actually a pretty decent experience for me. And as for my friends, they could have cared less about how I looked and how much I weighed and I had no reason for worrying about it at all, but it was still this dark entity that I had inside of me that wasn’t going away. I did one of the most dangerous things a girl could do and I compared my body to others’. I wished that my features were smaller, and that I just looked, well, prettier. I had this friend that whenever we went shopping, she was squeezing into small sizes and looked great in them. She could show off her form in anything and look fantastic, while I looked like the Pillsbury dough-boy in the same outfit. Size was more than a number, and I felt like it defined how I looked. And I didn’t get it either. I ate considerably healthier than most people I knew, and I did recreational softball after middle school (school sports=never again.). It just wasn’t fair.

Cue senior year. This meant senior pictures, senior prom, and my final season of high school marching band, in which I was the going to be the drum major. I was fresh off of a transformative summer program (GSE for life!) which made me grow immensely as a person, and shrink a size in jeans. I had lost a little bit of weight, and gained a lot of confidence. GSE was the confidence boost that I needed, but I was not out of the clear yet. I had graduation ahead of me and I still wanted to lose ‘x’ number of pounds so that I would look good in my prom dress. I spent so much time worrying about how I looked that I missed out. I started to miss out a little less when the second semester began, but yet again, the cloud over me wasn’t gone.

The January before I graduated, I got a gym membership. I focused more on my health (notice I said “health” and not “losing weight”) and ate a little better. This was a good first step. The pounds started falling off and I lost another few before prom and found a dress a size smaller than I expected. Then I fell back into the negativity again, and then that number on the tag wasn’t good enough for me. Why couldn’t it just go down? Why couldn’t my stomach be flatter, or why couldn’t my face be thinner? Especially after the prom when all of these pictures started to pop up on social media, I felt a little less better about myself. I am ashamed of how I felt, and how I even feel now (but now I kinda wished I wore a different dress, so that’s a different story…). I had a great time at prom; I spent it with all of the people I cared about and we had fun. That is what should have mattered. 

Then I graduated, and in the fall I went to ECU. That was when I began to focus more on strength, and let me tell you, strong is amazing. I ran a 4k. I climbed a rock wall, multiple times (which is something I have never been able to do). And I also made friendships that I am going to treasure for a lifetime. Sometimes I even forgot about how my body looked and weighed.

Today, I am at the healthiest I have ever been physically, and while I’d like to say I don’t, I still struggle with my body image every day. I over-analyze what I eat, limit myself, and compare myself to others more than I care to admit. I regret ever comparing myself to others in the first place, and wish that I cared more about how decent of a human being I was than the size of my pants. I regret all of the negativity I fed myself whenever I ate something with minimal nutritional value that I actually enjoyed. Now I wish that my health goals are less size oriented and more strength oriented in the future. So I’m going to keep running and going to Bodypump classes. I’m going to lift more and eat more greens. But I’m also going to learn how to take naps and eat that piece of so-freaking-amazing cheesecake, without hating myself for it. My journey is not over yet, but it is getting better slowly and surely. I have only one life to live, and I have to live it to the fullest capacity.

So what does the term “skinny” mean to me? I made a post on Instagram a few months ago baring more skin than I ever felt comfortable showing and commented that “skinny” was unrealistic and overrated to me. It should be that way for everyone, no matter their size. “Skinny” is no longer a descriptive term that measures size; it measures worth. And that is never worth it. So what again, does “skinny” mean to me? I’m starting to discover that it means nothing. It can go on and go to hell.

-Emilee

What “Skinny” Means to Me: My Health Story

Coco-whattt?

Okay, so along with my addiction to peanut butter and oatmeal, I have this new kick lately that just might make it onto my permanent list. It’s sweet, a little fruity, and also oh-so versatile. And tropical. Behold the mighty coconut!

The coconut adds just the right chewy texture to the foods I already love. Plus, I’ve been really wanting to buy some coconut oil for quite some time so I broke down and bought a jar at Walmart a week ago (you can never underestimate Walmart, I got this jar for seven bucks versus the eleven that I’d spend elsewhere for a jar of the same size). Since I had shredded coconut and coconut oil, plus a couple of dates and unsalted cashews on hand, I decided I wanted to make some raw “energy bites.” Adapted from SweetPhi.com (okay, maybe I followed it almost exactly), I decided to give it a try. I also realized just how much I needed a food processor. I had a tiny one-two cup chopper that I used and it was barely sufficient enough for the project. Long story short: I really need a food processor. And my birthday is in a month if anyone is curious…

These coconut-date balls are moist and chewy, and the unsweetened coconut is perfect because the balls are sweet enough. My only problem with this recipe is the yield, so I’ll probably be doubling it in the future.  

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I actually didn’t roll them in the coconut flakes and used it all inside by mistake. Oops, they tasted fine anyway…

Oh, and each ball is around 50-60 calories, and is chock full of nutritional value (you got your omegas and potassium, perfect for a workout!).

I wish I could say my coconut obsession stopped there, but it didn’t. My sweet tooth took over and I found this recipe from lilluna.com that was for chewy oatmeal and coconut cookies. Oh. My. God. These turned out amazing. And they were bae and family approved. How couldn’t they be? Oatmeal and coconut work together so perfectly, and the texture was on point. I think I’ll be adding pineapple and macadamia nuts next time…

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Note: I am sucky at taking pictures of the baking process. Sorry!

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Last of all (Did you think I was done yet? Think again.), I had wanted to try coconut water for a while as well, so I had picked some up on my last beach trip at Whole Foods. It was… interesting. Honestly, I gagged at first, but I was sooo thirsty. It eventually became better with each sip and the flavor got even better after refrigeration. Being the stubborn, weird person I am, I then wanted to try other flavors, so I just bought a peach and mango flavor, and another one infused with pineapple. Will update after I try them.
-Emilee

Coco-whattt?

The Reality of My Blog

Hi guys! Yes, I know. No post in five months. FIVE. Well, if I was going to be totally honest with myself from the start, there was absolutely no way I had the time to make regular posts on here. However, this blog is and will be something that I refuse to give up on. I will continue to write about my hobbies, experiences, and thoughts, but it will be at my own leisure and on my own time.

With that being said, with all this time between posts, I have now been able to generate more of an idea about what it is I will be posting. Along with my typical posts about food (because let’s face it, food is life…), and other hobbies, I also decided that I will be posting a couple of super short essays about various topics that are important to me. I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoy writing them!

Here’s to the revamp, and I cannot wait to start posting!

-Emilee

The Reality of My Blog