Green Chile Steak Salad


I love to order a steak salad at a restaurant.  Mainly because you still get the “meat” of your dinner, but you don’t feel too heavy afterwards.  I was surprised the first time I tried one that the two of them would even exist together.

I took a small steak fillet (uncooked) and took a meat mallet to it to make it as thin as possible.  I sliced the meat into thin strips and laid them out on my cutting board.  I took 1 piece of roasted green chile and placed it on top and rolled them together like a sleeping bag.  I was out of toothpicks to hold it together, so I put them in a baking pan and they seemed to stay still.

I then turned the oven to broil and placed them in the oven for 10-12 minutes until fully cooked.  I pre-made a caesar salad and added the steak at the end.  Good stuff.  It always taste really good after a workout.

All you need is: steak, green chiles, and caesar salad!

Family In Town

Mike is one of ten kids in his family.  His mom and dad just celebrated their 50th anniversary, so all the kids have come down for a reunion.  That means LOTS of family in town and not a lot of time at home. 

My dad and stepmom came into town too to join in on te awesome festivities.  We already partook of a 9:30pm screening of “The Amazing Spiderman” the day before it came out (thank you to friends who own the theatres in town) and now we are off for some White Sands fun tonight. I can’t wait to post pictures of Barney’s first time there.

My dad really likes Cracker Barrel so we had to go for nostalgic reasons.  Remember this game?   You jump the pegs to see how many you have left over.  I am terrible at it!

Barney has been excited to have more attention because of all the people.  Before that, Frog was his only companion.

Riley is Barney’s cousin.  He likes to watch America’s Funniest Home Videos and becomes glued to the screen if it’s on.

Mike and I have been trying to continue with our biking workouts.  We’ve been very lucky to get them in between the schedule and heat.  Mike prepared for a time trial he did and did very well in it.

I’ve been running a lot more thanks to all the 5k’s and half marathons coming up.  It’s been tempting to do a whole marathon so I am hoping to get conditioned one day for that.

I have found an awesome reduced fat meal at Trader’s Joes.  Go get it!

So good!

Question:  Any favorite things that you like to get at Trader Joe’s?  Do you have any meals you like to get that are good for you?


Goodbyes, Bikes, and Sinks…

 I have always been terrible with goodbyes.  I had a roommate for a week about ten years ago, and she decided to move back to Texas.  I barely knew the girl and the day she left, I bawled my eyes out.  I am extremely worse with animals.

This is my class red eared slider (who has had so many names I can’t even remember its name) and she came home with me this summer along with four other animals.  She is the messiest eater and the dirtiest reptile I have had to take care of.  When you walk in the room, she gets really excited and swims to the side of the cage and goes crazy.  The problem is, I would have to change her 20 gallon tank once a week.  After going through three filters, I couldn’t do it anymore. Long story short, I found a sanctuary for her.  When I took her, I was really sad.  I stood there for 15 minutes watching her swim around.  Thankfully, I held my composure, but I hate to say it, I cried a little in the car on the way home.

I am such a softie for animals.  This is why I could never work at a vet or zoo.  I would take ALL of the animals home with me.

Meanwhile, I dusted off the mountain bike and took it out for a Tuesday night ride.  I’ve been preparing myself mentally for a time trial in a few weeks, so I’ve been dissing Safire (the name of my mountain bike).  It was so fun and beautiful out!  I’m starting to feel better after the terrible 12 pound weight gain my job created for me this year. 

There was a beeeaautiful sunset that night.  Only in New Mexico.

Last situation of the week, my kitchen sink.  In the last year, our microwave, garbage disposal, and dishwasher have died on us.  I woke up yesterday and turned on the kitchen sink and got sprayed in the face like in the cartoons when they are playing practical jokes on each other.  No, the joke was that the sink was next to go.

So here is what my kitchen looks like now. I never realized how much I use a kitchen sink until we’ve been without one!

I love how Barney has to be part of things.

P.S. Leftover pulled pork with mushrooms on a mini tortilla pizza.  Good stuff.  Trader Joe’s Roasted Garlic Marinara Sauce makes an excellent pizza sauce!

Question: Have you ever had to say goodbye to a pet?  How did you handle it?

We Meet At Last!


Barney has this routine every Sunday when we drive over to Mike’s parents house.  He will be perfectly normal until we hit the dirt road that turns off to their house.  Then he starts yelping like a hyena.  Near the road, there is a farm house with a dog that runs up and down the fence.  For some reason Barney gets extra loud and irritated at the dog.  Mike named the dog “Red” and every time we get near, Mike will say “You’re going down Red!” and Barney starts acting up, as if he knows the dog’s name is Red too.

Red and Barney have never formally met, occasionally passing by each other.  While playing in the irrigation ditch, Red made an appearance.  And they met face to face.

It was a lot less dramatic as I thought it would be.  Red growled, but Barney didn’t find it as entertaining to bark at him when he wasn’t in a car driving by.

Anyway, I have two products that I’ve tried that are really good!  I highly recommend them.  One is the Jamba Juice smoothie mix in the frozen food section.  We don’t have them here and I miss drinking them while walking around BYU campus.  Add some juice and you got some awesomeness.

I like to drink it for breakfast, but it would be good for a summertime treat too.

Another product is the Alternative Bagels.  The are low-calorie, whole wheat, and have a lot of fiber!! I usually just warm it up briefly in the microwave instead of toasting it and it tastes like a pretzel.  Good stuff!

You can find them in the refrigerated section at Walmart or Albertsons.  Off to work!

A Change In The Weather

Ever since we came back from San Diego, this has been Barney’s permanent spot.  He somehow became even more obsessed with playing frisbee in the backyard.  If we even say the word “play” or “frisbee” in totally normal voices, he’ll immediately run to the door and look out.

He is extra annoyed in this picture because I refuse to keep on going out.  He would run his legs to bloody stumps if he could.  I told Mike when we are rich, that I am investing in a frisbee thrower.  (If they even have one.)

I am really excited to have my sister here in a couple of weeks so I can take her here to Pro Ranch Market.  I guess it’s always been a huge deal in New Mexico, but I had never even heard of it.  Basically, it’s really cheap.  And they play a lot of authentic Mexican music inside.  I actually feel like I am at EPCOT at Walt Disney World when I go in there for some reason.

Their produce is so cheap and very fresh!  I walked off with a basket load of cucumbers, onions, lettuce, apples, limes, green chiles, and carrots for around ten bucks! 

After a workout at the gym this morning, where I ran into one of my students (which was embarrassing and happens a lot), I took care of some projects and then got ready for a ride.  Yes, I found my other pink sock.  It has been missing since San Diego.  Where did we find it? It had mysteriously slipped INTO one of Mike’s jersey pockets…how does that happen?

Anyway, as we were driving to the OCHO coarse in Picacho Hills, I noticed the sky looking a little green towards El Paso.  Then I got a notice on my phone for a sever thunderstorm warning producing 60 mph winds and hail. 

I am showing the comparison of west versus east.  Notice the left hand side of the screen is super dark…yet it was so nice out towards the west.  Anyway, it made me a little nervous….but we rode anyway.  (I’ve had to pick up Mike in lightning storms where he refused to give up a ride.  Most of my close calls with lightning involve biking and the husband telling me not to be a wuss. 🙂 )

We ended up being ok, but cut the ride short mainly because of the wind.  And nothing happened.  So weird.  I like the change in weather though.  This usually happens in July, but we need it.  The last rainstorm we had was back in the beginning of May.

It was home to another night of Chicken Lettuce Wraps and then off to watch my shows.  Teaching rocks.

P.S. Coconut Lifewater is awesome.

Question: Have you had any close calls with lightning?

Barney and I got stuck in a lightning storm by ourselves in Cloudcroft when we got separated from Mike.  We ended up running/biking back five miles to the car in the soaking rain.  Good times.

Chicken Lettuce Wraps


I miss PF Changs.  The closest one to me is about 45 miles from here and its a little bit out-of-the-way.  I went to the farmer’s market on Saturday and saw these huge heads of lettuce and they reminded me of the lettuce wraps I dearly love from there. 

Tonight I got a little hungry before watching the NBA Finals, and considering tomorrow is grocery day and we don’t have much in the fridge, I came across the lettuce and thought I would work with what I have and make some.

1 package of Tyson pre-cooked chicken (diced)

1 can of water chestnuts (diced)

1/2 container of mushrooms (diced)

 1 tbsp garlic salt

2 tbsp Trader Joe’s Soyaki Sauce

Dice and saute all the ingredients on medium heat for about 5 minutes.  Add a little juice from the water chestnuts to keep it moist.  Add more soyaki sauce if desired.

I made a sauce to pour on it to give it a little more flavor.  It included:

1/4 cup of sugar (dissolved in water)

1/2 cup of water

2 tbsp ketchup

2 tbsp soyaki sauce

1 tbsp mustard

1 tbsp tobasco (to give some kick)

It tasted great!  I would add a little more ketchup or chili sauce to the sauce for consistency, but the mushrooms and water chestnuts hold in so much favor!

Slow Cooked Turkey Legs


I was browsing the meat aisle of the grocery store and saw that Turkey Legs were on sale.  My first instinct was to BBQ them, since everything tastes so much better on the grill.  If I owned a deep fryer, that would be even better, but I don’t.  It’s been 100 degrees outside and not so pleasant to stand outside and barbecue, so I went to my back up plan.

When in doubt, use the crock pot.

I added a whole bottle (yes a whole bottle!) of barbecue sauce, and then to give it a little kick, about 3/4 cup of Frank’s Red Hot Sauce. I added about 1/4 cup of water and stirred it up.  I wished I would have put some onions or fresh garlic in to spice it up some more.  Place the turkey legs in.  Give it about five hours on low heat.

I was worried it was going to be dry, but the barbecue really holds in a lot of the juices.  When I put the leg on a plate, I took some more of the sauce and put it over the top.

Love how flaky it came out.  Crock pots rule.  For a girl who didn’t own one until about five years ago, I was missing out!

Question: I’m in desperate need of recipes with turkey. Do you have any suggestions?

San Diego Last Days In A Nutshell

So I fell a little behind on blogging the last couple of days in San Diego.  Honestly, we contemplated leaving early because of the dreary weather, but when we woke up on Tuesday, it was beautiful! Why couldn’t it have done that the other three days we were there?

Again, we spent our breakfast at Starbucks.  Love my perfect oatmeal.  We thought about going to the gym instead of riding all around San Diego because of how cool the weather was, but we sucked it up and went out anyway.

We rode out to a pier with a bunch of crabs and enjoyed the marina. There were like twenty stray cats hanging out there.  What a perfect place for them to hide…all you can eat crab!

 We then headed over to Mission Beach along the boardwalk and then up to La Jolla.  It’s so fun to ride along the boardwalk and people watch.  You see some crazy people.  We take a side street up to La Jolla from there.  I say up, because it has the hugest hills to ride on.  I love the view in the background.

It ends on top of Mount Soledad which is a monument above La Jolla that gives a great panoramic view of the city. Mike wanted pose like Rocky with his bike.  This was before he decided to mountain bike the side of the mountain with a few onlookers watching him.

We went to the San Diego LDS Temple the next day, where you can see it from this mountain also.  Of course, the sun decided to come out this day (which was the last day there), so we had to take advantage of the sunshine. 


It was fun to tour the city on the bikes.  Later on we had to stop at our favorite Wahoo’s and get some fish and shrimp tacos.  I used to order the fish tacos all the time and you can see my recipe where I try to remake the whole plate under my Recipes section.  This time I switched over to shrimp and they were awesome!  The calorie count is a little bit lower so its good if you are watching your waist.  Also,I am on the hunt now for Mr. Lee’s Chili Sauce that they have at the restaurant.  I can’t find a link for it anywhere.

And then we headed off to Old Town to check out the sites, including the Mormon Batallion Museum.

I love Old Town.  It is so fun to walk around and smell all the aromas of the restaurants, as well as the museums.  Mike makes fun of me because I like to go to museums.  He says I’m an old fart for liking that stuff, even though he goes with me and enjoys it as much as I do.

We spent our last moments at the beach where Mike boogie boarded while I sat and read.  I love the ocean, and I love to swim in the ocean.  But I can’t swim in the Pacific without a wet suit.  Give me the Atlantic any day or the Gulf of Mexico, and I will be in the water, but I can’t get myself to go into the Pacific Ocean.  Maybe if I went to Hawaii or something?

Question:  If you could go anywhere in the United States on vacation, where would you go?

Clouds, Cold….San Diego?

Sunday. Day two of our trip. This was the day I really regretted not doing what I originally planned to do.  I decided way back in March that I really wanted to complete the Rock and Roll San Diego Half Marathon.  I even planned out the whole vacation around it.  Then when it was time to sign up for it, it was so expensive and I didn’t feel at all ready for it.

When we got to the hotel, everyone was here for the race and one of the guys suggested I “ghost run” the marathon.  I guess a lot of people jump in on these huge marathons without paying for it.  Have any of you done that before?

I ended up not doing it.  But it was very intriguing. O.K. enough regretting and on to the day we had. 🙂


We’ve had a little bad luck this trip when it comes to the weather.  It’s been very cloudy and overcast which makes us a little depressed. So we decided to find a gym and workout while we waited for the sun to come out on our BEACH day.  We headed to the local Starbucks and had some apple juice (no straw included) and some perfect oatmeal.

I’ve talked about this before when it comes to breakfast how the oatmeal is a perfect pre-race meal, but it’s also so inexpensive.  Yes, I know I just mentioned something inexpensive at Starbucks when a lot of people complain about how expensive they are.  We were able to get all of this for about ten dollars.


Mike and I found a local fitness club that let us pay for a day pass.  We both headed to the elliptical and were excited to get going.  We have never sweat so much in our life!  I am attributing it to the humidity, but it was awesome! It really made you feel like you were doing a great workout.  We then took an hour on weights.

We are trying not to take the gloominess of the last few days as a sign or anything (because we may be a little superstitious), but come on!  After talking to a guy at the hotel gym and a desk clerk, San Diego has a term called “June Gloom”.  I guess this is pretty normal.  Then again we usually come in May or July.  We learned our lesson.  No more June!  If you have to wear shorts and a shirt to the beach and can’t lay out, there is no use going to the beach .:)

The husband found it very intriguing that the elevation was four feet.  We are used to the 4000-6000 feet rides we do and love the fact that we ae at sea level.  It feels good on the lungs. 

He also managed to go in the freezing, cold water and body surf too.  He said he found it “refreshing”. Nut.

I was more intrigued by the awesome seagulls walking around.  Most people think of them as annoying creatures, but they are kind of funny to watch.  They absolutely refuse to fly unless its their last resort.  I found this out when this guy kept getting chased by a little girl and refused to take off and just kept running in circles.


Dinner was amazing.  We found a sushi place the last time we are here that was also a seafood buffet.  I was partially through my plate when I took this picture, but you get the idea.  It’s a little pricey, but the quality of food is excellent.  You can find it in the Mission Valley Mall.  It’s called the Onami Restaurant and Sushi Bar.  Highly recommend it.

Not to mention, they had these bad boys.  Does anyone have an easy recipe for Chocolate Covered Strawberries?  I really want to learn how to make them without making a huge mess in my kitchen.


San Diego Day One

  We finally were able to make our yearly pilgrimage to San Diego.  We usually try to make it later in the summer, but we just couldn’t wait.  Plus we are coming mainly for our anniversary too.  Happy 3rd anniversary to us! Three years have flown by and we have so many awesome memories together.  We have been very lucky.

Since I am a little behind on blogging, I thought I would get up early at the hotel and do some blogging before we go out today on a MASSIVE bike ride.  When I say massive, I mean at least forty or fifty miles away from town, in the hills, and across the whole city of San Diego.  Last time we did this, we ended up about thirty miles north of town watching people glide off cliffs.  Stay tuned to see what we find today. 🙂

We finally made it.  Mike makes fun of me because I always have to have my hands on my hips.  I never know where to put my hands.  I call it the “awkward hand pose” because if I don’t put them on my hip, I look extremely awkward.

First thing we did was head to the beach and noticed it was super cloudy and cold. Boo.  We never have weather like this on our trips.  Mike didn’t let it damper his mood, so he found a blow up bat and decided to joust with it on his bike.

He then was trying to ride his bike along the ledge and thankfully stopped before he hurt himself.  It’s nerve-wracking when people stop and say they are going to film it on You Tube for you. 

Dinner consisted of shrimp tacos at Wahoo’s Fish tacos (which I forgot to take pictures of) with a side of Cajun rice and black beans.  I’ve never had the shrimp tacos and they were awesome!  I can’t say which one I like more, the shrimp or the fish, but I highly recommend both!