Thursday, November 3, 2011

Be happy.

Big Kitty.  Lounging in the sun. 

Hi.  How's your week so far?  Mine is meh.  Working the night shift blows.  But I am almost done.  One more to go and then I'm free for a bunch of days.  I can't wait. 

I heard something interesting on the news last night (no, I'm not going to lecture you again about something environmental).  Get this.  Did you know that just 10 minutes of fast walking a day can boost your energy for two hours and that 30 minutes of exercise on most days of the week can reduce your risk for depression by 12%?!  I know that, for me, when I miss a few days of working out, I am a total mess.  I am emotional.  I am moody.  I feel blubbery and gross about my body.  I crave those endorphins I get when I exercise so I absolutely agree that moving your body will decrease your risk for depression and help you feel happier.  The study showed that 1 in 4 women between the ages of 45 and 55 are on an antidepressant and 1 in 5 women in that age group say they don't have enough energy to make it through the day.  So interesting.  Take-home tip?  Get moving!!  

I am attempting to clean out our fridge of all perishable items before the weekend.  I hate throwing food away so last night's mission was to use all the produce, all in one dish.  I was pretty successful!  Behold, vegetable-filled spaghetti sauce!

Vegetable-filled spaghetti sauce (makes approx 4 servings)
  • In a large pan, heat a tbs or so of olive oil over medium-high heat
  • Add one diced onion and 3 or 4 pieces of diced garlic, cook 2-3 minutes
  • (If making meat sauce, add one lb ground turkey or beef at this point)
  • Add 2 diced carrots and 2 diced celery stalks, cook an additional 5 minutes
  • Add 5 or 6 diced mushrooms, cook for 5 minutes
  • Add one tbs dried Italian herbs (oregano, basil, parsley), pinch of salt and pepper
  • Add one large can of diced tomatoes with juice
  • (this next step might seem weird) Instead of tomato paste, add one tbs ketchup.  I find that I open a can of tomato paste and use such a small portion that the remainder always goes to waste.  Ketchup is a great substitute!
  • Bring to a boil and then simmer for 30 or so minutes.  Add small bits of water if sauce gets too thick.  With sauces, the longer simmered, the better!
  • When ready to serve, stir in a few handfuls of spinach and let wilt.  Then add a cup or so of grated parmesan (or in our case, sharp cheddar... I know, weird, but I'm trying to clean out the fridge!)
  • Serve over spaghetti or linguine or shells or any pasta of your choice. 
We had our spaghetti with those tasty turkey meatballs I made (and then froze) a few weeks ago.  Such a deliciously hearty meal full of healthy vegetables.

How do you incorporate more vegetables into you and your family's diet?  This sauce is a great way to get a day's worth of vegetables in one meal.  If our kid doesn't like vegetables (oh, the horror!), hopefully I can trick her into eating them by feeding her this sauce.  If I cut the carrots small enough, she'll never know, right??

Are you a workout endorphin junkie?  I totally am.  I am a mess if I miss a few workouts in a row.  I know that I am a happier, more rounded person (not literally!) when I am consistently moving my body!!   

I entered this photo of my beautiful Big Kitty into the Brown {Shades of Autumn Photo Challenge}.  Big Kitty is a gorgeous, dark mahogany color that catches the light when she lays in the sun.  If there is ever a sliver of sun in our apartment, Big Kitty is guaranteed to be in it.  Man, I love this cat. 


  1. Ahh that spaghetti sauce looks sooo yummy!! I could just eat that plain..without the pasta lol!

  2. oh my oh my this looks so good. Could be that I just ran 13.3 miles (answers question #2). nah, it looks good because it probably is!

  3. I have had our homemade sauce something like 6 times in the past week or so! I think I'm ready to move on, but yours looks quite delicious too.

    And..UGH. I am DEFINITELY a work-out endorphin junkie and this injury has me moody some days, too! I'm getting imaging taken so hopefully I'll get some results soon and will quickly get back to MOVING MY BODY!

    Have a great weekend! :)

  4. Hey, I just wish I could write the way you do. I have a hard time putting my own voice on my blog, do you know what I mean? Everything you write, just sounds like the Bri I have known for so long. Hey, I really want to come visit you a month or two after you have your baby. I am SO EXCITED for you! BTW, I did some awesome late night roller blading tonight. Remember when we both had "lightning" blades? I think we had different colored laces. I think I had yellow and you had pink. Am I right?

  5. that sauce looks and sounds so yummy! i love the endorphins that come with a workout, i am just having a hard time making it a routine :(

  6. What a beautiful cat! I love her :)

    The food looks amazing too!

    Thanks for taking part in the Shades of Autumn Photo Challenge :)


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