Hot Off the (Tofu) Press

June 12th, 2011 | Posted by Alison Spath in Dinner Time - (8 Comments)

I love pressed tofu for a myriad of reasons.  It has a different texture than its non-pressed counter part.  It soaks up marinade better and holds together nicely in stir fries.  I’ve heard too that squirrels do not like pressed tofu, but that may just be a rumor.  Squirrels are also supposed to hate marigolds, but I don’t want to talk about that.

You can buy a contraption made for the sole purpose of pressing tofu – it’s called a Tofu Press (go figure) and is basically a little vise that squeezes all the water out of the tofu block for you.  But 1) I’ve already done the vise in my kitchen routine, b) I don’t want to buy one and three) no one has offered to send me one for free.

Tough Nut to Crack

February 27th, 2011 | Posted by Alison Spath in Life - (35 Comments)

If you’ve been following along, you may recall that I recently spent some time hulling black walnuts.

These black walnuts have spent the winter curing in my cool, dry attic. Rumor has it that black walnuts are really hard to open. Rumor has it this would be why I’ve been none too eager to get cracking here.

Black Walnuts Curing in the Attic

Come to find out that when you harbor black walnuts and don’t crack them, you’ll be haunted by backyard squirrel ghosts; the lost souls of squirrels who died from winter starvation because you deprived them of all the food they would have otherwise stored for hibernating.

Once upon a time I was that girl who tried and tried to lose weight and never saw any real, lasting results. While I never had a huge amount of weight to lose, I did know I wanted to be slimmer than I was for what felt like the majority of my life.

The post-pregnancy weight was always a little scary but eventually came off after each pregnancy with the addition of some moderate exercise. Then in early 2008 when I found myself back at my post-pregnancy weight and I hadn’t just had a babyI knew it was time to get serious.

A dear reader named Kenzie left a comment the other day asking me to do a post about how I make my salads and what I put in them. Turns out I just so happen to have “Big Giant Salad” on the dinner menu tonight! Here’s how I make a salad that will knock your (and maybe even someone else’s!) socks off.

Step 1: Start with a beautiful head of lettuce. Something OTHER than iceberg for crying out loud please. Red leaf is typically my head of choice, but green leaf or romaine work nicely.  Don’t be afraid to throw in spinach, arugula, dandelion or other mixed field greens too if you’ve got ’em.

Turn It Up

October 9th, 2009 | Posted by Alison Spath in Breakfast - (13 Comments)

A typical Friday morning, a typical Friday morning run. I considered waiting to run until this afternoon since the girls will be off with Aunt Ellen for the day, but the blasted weather man is calling for rain so I went out early to beat feet to beat the rain drops.

Today when I was cruising along to a playlist instead of a podcast or audio book, I remembered something Brendan Brazier talks about in Thrive.

How to Love Running

August 18th, 2009 | Posted by Alison in - (64 Comments)

How to Love Running

Before we get started, I need the record to clearly state that I definitely have not always loved running.

I use to be that person who ran only if I was being chased. I started running with the hope that it would help me get back into my skinny jeans – and it totally worked. Once I realized running was my ticket to serious weight loss, and then maintaining said weight loss, there was no turning back.

How to Open a Young Coconut

August 18th, 2009 | Posted by Alison in - (10 Comments)

Young coconuts are where you find coconut water – an excellent source of potassium, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, riboflavin and thiamin. It’s also low in calories, contains no cholesterol and is a source of calcium, it’s one of my favorite post-run beverages.

Coconut Water

A young coconut is not to be confused with a mature coconut – the brown hairy nut we all know and love. (Yes, we’re still talking about coconuts here.) The beautiful thing about a young coconut is the coconut water. The water turns to “milk” and the the fat content of the liquid increases with time, as the coconut matures.

But How?

June 7th, 2009 | Posted by Alison in Motivation - (3 Comments)

My motivation to get healthy began in 2008 when I started to notice how achy and old my body was feeling at the ripe old age of 29.  Getting healthy wasn’t just about losing weight and feeling better about my appearance, (although I won’t deny that vanity certainly played a role) I realized I wanted to feel good again, to feel like myself again.  To feel young again!

You: Staying Young by Dr. Michael Roizen and Dr. Mehmet Oz was what kicked off my “It is Time to Get Healthy” initiative.


How to Get Started Running

June 2nd, 2009 | Posted by Alison in - (7 Comments)

With the exception of learning how to walk and talk, learning to run was one of the best things I ever did for myself.  I’ll freely admit that I thought all those people who said they loved running were just plain old liars.  Either that or sadistic.  Sadistic liars!  The worst!

Some how though, I managed to stick with it – mostly because it was my ticket to significant weight loss.  I kept going because I wanted to be sure I maintained said weight loss.  Then somewhere along the way I came to love it.  Damn you running – you weren’t supposed to be so enjoyable!

If you’re looking to catch fruit flies and don’t want to practice nabbing them with chopsticks, you can use this easy combo of ingredients to rid yourself of a fruit fly invasion.

All you need is a little dish, some apple cider vinegar and dish soap to make your own fruit fly trap.


Pour apple cider into dish and stir in a squirt or two of dish soap. Set dish in an out of the way place somewhere near the fruit flies.


Walk away whistling and pretend that you aren’t watching.  A couple of hours or overnight, those suckers can’t resist.