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GraceW's Profile

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What do you keep in the house for weekend guests?

I don't have anything in my new studio for guests.. that being said, I might find out what they like and what allergies they have before stocking up on cereal or oats, yogurt, maybe 1-2 generic snack-items, fruit, lots of vegetables, and whatever I am planning to serve. To be realistic though, I'd probably want to explore some new restaurants with my guests. And maybe I'd take them to a farmers' market.. where I could buy the above items.

I'd probably make monkey-bread (you can make it with frozen dough or Pillsbury refrigerator biscuits or from scratch) if I really want to go all-out for breakfast (even though I couldn't eat it). --However, if you don't want to take the time, just take them out to experience your local food-culture and support local businesses.

When I went to visit a friends' family recently, his family had a dish of Dove chocolates in the living-room.. which actually turned out to be key because when I woke up before breakfast.. and no one was awake, then I could either get a piece of chocolate or take some of the fruit that was sitting out while I waited a few hours for others to wake-up. ---Also, one night I made their 'secret family recipe' brownies with his sister, and that was really REALLY fun. So maybe you can involve them in the process if you decide to make something decedent or laborious.

about 2 hours ago
GraceW in Home Cooking

Weight Watchers Foodies - Time to Begin Again! September 2015 Edition

I had a rough couple of days last week. I moved across the country a few weeks ago, and after the stress of moving subsided--plus I got more confident roaming about the city, I had a few rather indulgent days testing-out new restaurants and treats where I live. I hope I got that out of my system...

I've banned myself from public transit and am without a car--so I doubt my activity took a dip. At least that has been constant; most days I've been walking 6-12 miles. And this week I've been back to my usual plant-based, dairy-free, gf diet.. however I also challenged myself to lay off fruit--which I usually eat daily. I also made a deal with myself that if I was clean (plus no fruit and no sugar--except three bites of a meal-bar that had, I think, 1 gram) during the week, then on Friday I can have one lunch out. I am hoping this works because I've noticed having the mentality of "taking the weekend off" of eating clean is too much. --I doubt that I will cut out fruit permanently because I've definitely noticed I have a fairly flat mood.

I can add that my go-to meals have been omelettes with tons of greens. Tons upon tons of arugula and mixed greens with lots of herbs and spices. Instead of snacking on fruit I have been snacking on mushroom slices, radishes, and frozen peas. I forgot how delicious TJ's petite peas are to snack on.. straight from the freezer bag.

about 15 hours ago
GraceW in Home Cooking
2

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - September 2015

YAY-New Kosher Dill Organic Pickles--I wouldn't say they are as good as a Jewish Deli (half my family is Jewish--we went to the deli at least once per week), but these are still tasty. They are at least better than any of TJ's pickles in the past. I knew I was going to somewhat kill myself walking these 1.5 miles home, plus two bags of groceries, but after eating three (I tried to stop at two and couldn't), I will buy these again in the future.

Warning/nay--Garlic Powder--They need to make the holes smaller on the top. The powder comes out quite fast.

YAY-Radishes--I am telling you, again, these radishes taste amazing, especially roasted. And they are so much cleaner than radishes anywhere else.

YAY-Wild Arugula--$1.99 and always amazing (especially in omelettes)

NAY-Quest Smores bar. I've had Quest bars before--I usually like them, and they are a good meal supplement when I can't get gf food. However, the graham taste just seemed off to me.

YAY-Coconut Cooking Spray--if you have been avoiding this because you don't like the taste of coconut.. then still get it. As offers affirmed last month, you can NOT taste any coconut on your food.

about 21 hours ago
GraceW in Chains
2

Paris - Restaurant near Notre Dame seating @ 6pm?

It isn't fancy--but very cozy: Comme Chai Toi (Restaurant Saint Michel) opens at 6 pm. Good wine, good food, very nice owner and very friendly staff.

http://www.commechaitoi.fr/

1 day ago
GraceW in France

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

I always ate them with Ketchup--because they taste like fries that way! Try it.

Aug 30, 2015
GraceW in Chains

How much do you usually pay for one cup of Frozen Yogurt?

There is probably a thread out there somewhere asking about this.. but I didn't see one. I just went to Red Mango and Menchie's for the first time recently, and I wondered how much you typically pay when you go there...

I really try to not put a lot in, but usually my bill comes to $4 or $5 (when I put in chocolate-covered espresso beans), and I am wondering if this is a lot or not much for these kinds of chains. I asked the worker there today, and he said he has seen $12 for a small cup before and $20 for one large cup before. YIKES!

Let me know if you have any froyo tips.

Aug 29, 2015
GraceW in General Topics

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

YAY-Organic Pink Lady apples. This is probably a YAY because I am on the west-coast now. (And/or because it was organic? Maybe.)

YAY--Giant sugar crisp (green) grapes. This is the biggest container of grapes that I have ever seen. And they are tasty--frozen or normal.

FYI--I saw they have new toffee chocolates. I love love toffee, but it does contain traces of wheat.. so somebody go dig-in for me! <3 Anyway, I think this is a sign that the holiday-craze of interesting products will be tasty this year.

Seattle... Amazon Prime Fresh...?

Yes, thank you. I do love WHF--that one on Denny can get so crazy packed with people (from all the tech companies on that street, maybe), but you're right: the bulk section can't be beat. In an ideal world, someday, maybe a PCC will open in Eastlake. (A girl can dream.)

Aug 28, 2015
GraceW in Greater Seattle

Seattle... Amazon Prime Fresh...?

The cost of their fresh produce is astronomical compared to other stores. I am gf so I can't use many of their boxed stuff or bread or any regular staples, but if I want wine, then I'd definitely go back. Wow, what a load of wine all in one store!

Seattle... Amazon Prime Fresh...?

Yes, the heat has made it even more difficult. I've started to realize maybe just to keep regular meals simple and possible eat out more, if I want good food. There's no use when it is hot.

Aug 28, 2015
GraceW in Greater Seattle

Seattle... Amazon Prime Fresh...?

Yes, although TJ's used to be a "luxury" store for me.. I've realized the prices are cheaper than what I see elsewhere. And I can walk it in about 26 minutes (even with red lights)... so I guess TJ will be my new best friend.

Mostly I need it for the eggs. I went to Pete's but BOTH Pete's and Hamlin's (and actually the two other "markets" along Eastlake) charge $3.99 for one dozen eggs...**cries in a corner** I cannot afford that. TJ's charges $2.69. Moreover as a gf, vegetarian I need eggs for breakfast and usually eat hb eggs with other meals too. I looked into delivery services but most require a minimum amount. So, hello, TJoe's be my egg-dealer.

Aug 28, 2015
GraceW in Greater Seattle

Seattle... Amazon Prime Fresh...?

Having lived here now for a few weeks, I think most people in Eastlake have access to a car.. maybe that's why there isn't a real grocery in Eastlake. Or maybe people in Eastlake don't eat food. :)

Aug 27, 2015
GraceW in Greater Seattle

Do you appy foods to your face or skin ?

I tried the egg-white mask. Eh, just turned into a mess, but my face was pretty shiny and tight the next day.

Also I've been into salt scrubs for the last two months. I haven't been using the one I purchased from WHF.. which is probably why my face looks like hell. But also I know so much of your skin (whether it is oily or dry) results from what you eat.... so the inside-out approach is also worth considering.

Aug 26, 2015
GraceW in Not About Food

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

NAY--Crunchy Curls--I would still love these if they were still gluten free... they used to be. I haven't had them for a few years, but I picked them up and was snacking on them on the way home.. to then realize it now says "MAY CONTAIN TRACES OF WHEAT" on the back. I flipped it over to the front and the "g" for gf is gone; I am not sure when this changed, but FYI... if you're a Celiac, stay away.
Proof that it used to be GF and vegan..
http://www.veega.co/2013/02/dining-in...

Aug 23, 2015
GraceW in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

Online, so far, it only lists the nutrition facts.. not the ingredients. I am guessing the fries are battered with wheat flour? (I am basically asking if they're gluten-free. And supposing that they are not--which is probably good for the sake of my thighs.)

Aug 22, 2015
GraceW in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

Thanks--I was avoiding it because I assumed it would have a coconut smell or taste.

Aug 22, 2015
GraceW in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

MEH/?--Canola Oil kitchen spray--I feel like this comes out faster and more comes out than PAM. I also feel like it makes everything taste buttery even though I did not buy the butter-flavored one. Do people use this? Is it any more or less "healthy" or lethal than PAM? If anyone can recommend a cooking-spray there that would be great.

Aug 21, 2015
GraceW in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

We absolutely loved that sauce at children while making pizza bagels. So I would definitely recommend it for those babysitting, with children, or with grandchildren. Although you might want to bake yours--we always made them in the microwave.

Aug 19, 2015
GraceW in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

I would say it is a MEH for me. I will keep the bottle, but I can't really imagine using it for too much. I do think it is better than Sriracha, but that's only because after years of using Sriracha, I got sick of it.

Aug 19, 2015
GraceW in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

YAY-99 cent Valrhona Chocolate Bar--In the bar, there are seven pieces (probably each piece is two bites), and there are seven days in the week. So if you need a late night mini-mini chocolate snack or a morning quick treat with your coffee: you get one per day. Plus, if/when you have a complete bar.. no big deal: 160 calories--which is probably less than your usual powerbar or granola bar. I now commute, but I also had an emergency one in my car in case of another snowpocolypse or absurd stress--inducing traffic.

Aug 17, 2015
GraceW in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

I plan to get the big 2 lb box soon (after I buy some pots and pans) and make this jam--it looks good and easy!
http://www.sagelysweet.com/maple-cinn...

Aug 17, 2015
GraceW in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

Thanks--I haven't been able to try them.. and now that there are FOUR varieties of figs at my local TJ's, I haven't gotten to all of them yet.

Aug 17, 2015
GraceW in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

Yay--Organic Sugar plum Tomatoes--great flavor and super tiny.

Yay--Tom's toothpaste-TJs always has the lowest in-store price.. And now that I switched to Tom's I can't go back to nasty artificial stuff.

Yay--prices as a whole. I used to think TJ was expensive (compared to some Midwestern grocery stores), but I am finding that produce and frozen stuff are both priced well below west coast chains and independent stores. Plus I can actually find things!!

So, what MUST I buy from Whole Foods?

I agree with those that referred to the 365 brand; I compared prices of oats and other canned goods and grocery generic items with Jewel (Midwest store) and 365 products were actually cheaper and better quality.

I like the seafood there. Once and again I treat myself to the salad or hot bar. I feel like the wine section and cheese section are both great if you want high quality that you can bank on. And as others stated they have better yogurt and ice cream options (esp if you can't have traditional dairy).

In closing maybe also check out the Whole Body section: I picked up a good salt scrub for my face there last month... And don't forget to buy the fig spread with the Orange low in the specialty department.

Aug 14, 2015
GraceW in Chains
2

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

Just moved out here. They had green figs, black figs, and tiger stripe figs. (plus the frozen organic figs)

Aug 14, 2015
GraceW in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

Yay--Mixed medley cherry tomatoes (organic)--These are very tasty: especially the yellow ones.

Yay--Sliced mushrooms--We didn't have these bagged mushrooms in the Midwest but they are super convenient because they are already cleaned.

Yay in general for west coast TJ'- There are more options in the produce section. There's even three kinds of figs! The bakery section has a few more cakes and better looking cinnamon rolls than the Midwestern TJ that I am used to but the only additional gf baked item that I noticed was par-baked flatbread in the refridgerated section (and I'm not up for turning on my oven in this heat) but if someone has tried it let me know.

Aug 13, 2015
GraceW in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

I know what you're talking about.. it tastes kind of like you're just spooning unsweetened cocoa powder into yourself. And it's drying out your mouth. And you don't think you will be able to breathe for much longer.

Aug 10, 2015
GraceW in Chains
2

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

Do you ever get it from TJ's? Do you have a favorite there? I curious to know which kind you think is best (so then I can buy that kind when the pastrami lox is out).

Aug 10, 2015
GraceW in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

Wow--you would think that I would have tried twisting them... never thought of that, but whenever I pick out eggs people give me odd stares for even opening the carton (?).. I usually just look for broken ones and then assume I am fine. But mostly everyone else just grabs a carton and goes on shopping. I guess they don't miss an egg here and there, but I prefer to get all that I paid for.

Aug 08, 2015
GraceW in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015 [Old]

Yes, I only first had it when I went to Europe for the big family trip. Fortunately it is milk-chocolate.. so I don't find it that tempting, and I can keep multiple bars just laying around.

Aug 07, 2015
GraceW in Chains