Friday, August 15, 2014

All-in-1 Friday!

Good afternoon!

Today's post will be the smoothie and the Daily Chi. There's also a quick collage of my colorful lunch salad as well.


  • 1 large handful spinach
  • 1 banana
  • 1/2 c blueberries
  • 1/2 c raspberries
  • 2 tbs almond butter
  • 8oz almond milk
  • 8 oz water
  • 2 tbs protein
  • 2 tsp Very Green
  • 1 tbs chia seeds
This one is another PB&J type smoothie and it was great. I've always loved raspberry jam so this was right up my alley.


Today after I finished my leg workout in the afternoon, I figured I'd get a little quiet meditation in. Tango decided he was going to join me and I couldn't pass up the photo op!


And finally, here's my colorful lunch salad! I've been having salad for lunch about 3-4 days of the week to keep my diet on track. No sense having daily smoothies if you're going to eat junk for the rest of the day! The ingredients are:
  • arugula
  • butter lettuce mix
  • cherry tomatoes
  • pickled beets
  • herbed goat cheese
I topped this with about 1 tablespoon each of balsamic and olive oil then tossed for a great lunch!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Daily Chi "The Look"

Good afternoon,

Tango is being a little snarky today but also very cuddly. He has a look that he gives me when he thinks I'm being silly and I managed to capture it twice today! I also caught a neat picture of Jade hanging out on the window sil next to my desk.


Minty Smoothie

Good afternoon!

Today's smoothie has a secret ingredient. I'm sure you can guess from the title that it's... Mint! I added a handful of mint leaves to today's smoothie and the outcome was great.


  • 1 large handful spinach
  • 1 small handful mint leaves (about one stem of large mint leaves)
  • 1 pear
  • 1 mango
  • 8 oz coconut water
  • 10 oz water
  • 2 tbs protein
  • 2 tsp Very Green
  • 1 tbs chia seeds
I had intended to make a different smoothie entirely today but I couldn't prep the kiwi because of my allergy and my boyfriend had left for work early today. Overall, I'd say my experimental smoothie was a tasty success!

For those who do the social media thing, I have a Twitter! Check me out at @Smooth_Chi.


Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Daily Chi, Play with Me!

Good afternoon,

Here's a handful of pictures of Tango trying to get Jade to play with him. I do have to say, the full body picture is my favorite because he looks muscular.

Oh, I see a cat!

Play with meeeee!

Mom! She won't come play!


PB&J Smoothie

Good afternoon,

Today's smoothie is an awesome one. My brother left town early this morning for a few days to gather more paperwork and he's already regretting missing this morning's smoothie combo. The secret ingredient today is: Almond Butter! With Almond Butter and frozen strawberries, this definitely reminds me of a Peanut butter and Jelly sandwich from childhood lunch boxes.

  • 1 large handful spinach
  • 1 banana
  • 1/2 c frozen strawberries
  • 2 tbs almond butter
  • 8 oz almond milk
  • 8 oz water
  • 2 tbs protein
  • 2 tsb Very Green
The upside-down smoothie in the picture is actually the one my boyfriend made for his brother who was in town overnight after a late flight in. Seems like our new place is getting good use with all this family around! Anyways, always remember to put the soft foods on the bottom to give the blender some time to pick up momentum before taking on the frozen fruits. We'll definitely be making this one again and I bet it would be fantastic with chocolate protein :)

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Green and Vegan alternatives

Good afternoon,

Sorry about the missed day. My brother is in town for the next week or so while he waits on a work Visa and he's a vegan. That means I'm making two different smoothies so we can all work with our own dietary needs!


Here's the basics of what I ended up putting in everyone's smoothies and I'll let you know what I subbed in for my brother:

  • 1 large handful spinach
  • 1 banana
  • 8 oz pineapple
  • 2 tbs lemon juice
  • 1 tbs honey
  • 8 oz coconut water
  • 8 oz water
  • 2 tsp chia seeds
  • 2 tsp Very Green
  • 2 tbs protein


To keep his vegan, my brother had hemp protein and no honey. I gave him half the other supplements and I made his in the mug container since it was for one person. I do have to say, the brown color that the chocolate flavored hemp protein produces wigs me out!

Friday, August 8, 2014

Silly Daily Chi

Good afternoon!

Tango, being the well-love little guy he is, has a variety of dog beds. The one in my office is the one he spends most of his afternoon hours in. It's a neat little bed that can either be a comfy dog pod or an open topped bed.

I've seen both Tango and Jade use this bed but Tango is the only one I've seen actually collapse or expand the bed. It's neat to see how his mind works to open the bed up or squish it down! Anyways, today he was being silly and somehow closed the pod behind him. I coaxed him out with one of his favorite toys but he just retreated right back into the pod. He looks like a little turtle!


Cucumber in a smoothie?

Hi!

So making smoothies is all about getting healthy, eating more fruits and veggies, and having fun finding the best combo of produce. Today's smoothie had something I thought was interesting in it: a persian cucumber.

image from http://kblog.lunchboxbunch.com/ 
So persian cucumbers are basically mini cucumbers that are a little softer and have no seeds in them. They're great for smoothies because they're not hard on the blender and they have a nice mild skin that isn't bitter like some larger cucumbers. Overall, a nice addition to the smoothie and something I'll probably use in the future!


  • 1 persian cucumber
  • 1 handful kale
  • 1 pear
  • 1 banana
  • 8 oz coconut water
  • 8 oz water
  • 2 tbs protein
  • 1 tbs chia seeds
  • 2 tsp Very Green
Good smoothie! Not too sweet but very refreshing with the light cucumber taste and the pear as well. I also like cucumber drinks so it's not surprise I enjoyed this in my smoothie.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Mini Smoothie

Good afternoon,

The Magic Bullet is drying out after getting a thorough washing so I used my little blender today. My Hamilton Beach blender is actually a prize I got from Dave & Buster's and it's a really useful one!



  • 1 small handful kale
  • 1/2 c papaya
  • 1/3 c mango
  • 8 oz coconut water
  • 4 oz water
  • 1tbs protein
  • 1 tsp Very Green
This smoothie turned out really smooth since there weren't any seeds in it at all. The recipe above actually only makes one large serving, not enough for two unless you only give each person 8ish oz. Overall, a good smoothie but it could use a little more flavor, probably will add cherries or something next time.

I'm impressed at the ability of my tiny blender to blend so well! The neat thing is that the blender itself is actually a portable smoothie cup but I don't love the idea of carrying around the blade in my cup so I poured the smoothie into one of my usual cups.

Daily Chi Quickie

Good afternoon!

Sorry I missed yesterday's Daily Chi. Work is super busy right now with the invoicing for July. Here's a quick video of Tango being silly with a towel. Whenever I take a shower, he always waits for me to give him my towel after I dry my hair so he can roll in it. I guess he likes the smell of my shampoo!


Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Atomic Purple Smoothie

Good afternoon!

Today's smoothie did something interesting, it changed colors! The smoothie started off as a berry red/pink while being blended and progressively got darker until it was a very bright purple color. I'm guessing it was the berries that made this happen but I wonder why it took about half an hour for the color to fully develop!

Already starting to purple up in the last picture!

  • 1 handful kale
  • 1 cup frozen mixed berries
  • 1 cup pineapple  (I used canned)
  • 8 oz coconut milk
  • 8 oz water
  • 2 tbs protein
  • 2 tsp flax seeds
  • 2 tsp Very Green
Overall, a very tasty and pretty smoothie! There were a lot of seeds which I think is probably because of the raspberries and blackberries in the frozen mix I had. And of course, adding flax seeds didn't help either. Here's the awesome purple after it oxidized some:


The color has since deepened to a darker blue-purple and is very pretty. At this rate, I'm expecting to get mutant super powers from this smoothie!


Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Daily Chi Dances for Dinner

Good afternoon!

Tango may have 3 legs to work with but he tends to prefer walking on 2 when he's excited about eating. Last night he had a large dinner because we missed lunch and he was exceptionally excited about his egg/raw kibble combo.


This morning he also walked for his breakfast though he was pretty talkative about it. I'm trying not to encourage his vocalizations during these times because I don't want him barking/yipping and expecting to be rewarded for it. I wait until he's mostly quiet before rewarding him with his meals.




Tasty Tuesday!

Good Morning!

Today's smoothie turned out really well! While I have been roughly following recipes for the last week and again this week, I always make modifications where I think they'll improve the smoothie (Or to fit ingredients I already have). This smoothie's modifications are: Kale instead of Spinach and Yogurt Drink instead of Almond Milk. Not to mention the additives I like to use to make the smoothie more filling!



*Keep in mind that these recipes make enough for two smoothies or two people*

Like I said, this smoothie is delicious! Both my peach and mango were frozen and the consistency came out great. I managed to spill some of the yogurt drink on my phone while taking pictures but it worked out ok.

Keep an eye out for Tango dancing for food later today!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Daily Chi: Cats and Dogs Living together!

Hello hello!

Today's collage is a collection of Tango relaxing and showing off his attitude. As 6 lbs of pure sass, Tango makes some wonderful faces when I take pictures. However, one of his favorite pastimes is taking a nap.


Tango is not an only "fur-child", he shares his home with Jade, my rescue cat. She's a huge cat, at least 12 lbs at any given time and probably part Maine Coon. At double Tango's weight, Jade definitely likes to pick on the little guy. They will chase each other around in spurts and Jade likes to ninja-pounce on Tango around corners. They're like siblings that always rough-house but still love each other. Whenever one or the other is gone for an extended time, the first thing they check when we get home is each other.

Tango is using Jade's dish because I need to microwave his food, she doesn't mind!

Monday Smoothie

Hello!

I hope everyone had a great weekend. I had a smoothie on Saturday that I didn't love and just skipped breakfast entirely on Sunday. I did spend a good portion of time on Saturday evening prepping the fruit for this week's smoothies though and I'm pretty excited about the new combos I'll be trying out.


Today's smoothie before it was a smoothie! I guess that looks like a lot of ingredients but when all you're doing is dropping things into a blender, it's not all that hard to put together in 5 or so minutes. It's the weekend prep that makes the quick blend possible! In today's smoothie we have:
  • 4 oz blueberry chia seeds (Chia Pod)
  • 1 handful kale
  • 1 banana
  • 1/2 cup frozen strawberries
  • 6 oz yogurt drink
  • 8 oz water
  • 2 tbs protein
  • 2 tsp Very Green


Smoothie in process! The order I added the ingredients is the same order I put the recipe in which is why you can't see the chia seeds hiding under the kale. When you use fresh kale in smoothies, you always have to take out the woody/fibrous stems or your blender will suffer. That's probably the most time consuming thing I do for any one ingredient the morning of the smoothie. I probably spent about an hour prepping fruit on Saturday but that's not bad for 7 days of breakfast for 2 people!

This week's interesting fruits are papaya, pear, peach, and cherries. 

Keep an eye on Smooth-Chi for today's Daily Chi, guest starring my cat, Jade!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Jello Daily Chi!

Good afternoon,

My nickname since high school has been Jelly after a jet-lag fueled musing about plants in a Japanese bio lab. Since then, I've loved jellyfish and anything that looks similar to them like octopuses. My boyfriend got me a little octopus stuffy for my birthday last month and I named her Jelly. Fast forward to earlier this week and I picked up a octopus dog toy for Tango. We, of course, named him Jello to go with Jelly.

Here's Tango and Jello!


Tango is very gentle with his toys. He doesn't tear them up or take the stuffing out. Actually, he treats most of his toys like little puppies he has to take care of an groom. Jello is no different and has been enjoying getting carried around and cuddles or groomed by Tango.

I snapped this next picture of him earlier today when he decided the only place he could be was my lap. I guess he wanted to be a lap warmer while I worked in my office! Here's Tango "helping" me work.


I'm not sure if I'll be posting over the weekend for this blog yet so if I don't, have a great weekend and eat healthy!

Kiwi in a smoothie?

Good morning!

Today's smoothie has a fruit that I've never had in a smoothie before, kiwi. Now, there's a good reason I've never had kiwi in a smoothie and that's a mild allergy to the skin of a kiwi. Something about the fuzz on the kiwi gives me hives. It's not just kiwi either, particularly fuzzy plant stems like sunflowers also give me hives!

Needless to say, my boyfriend was the one who took the job of peeling the kiwi and prepping it for the smoothie so we could follow the recipes I've been using. I have a set of 3 weeks worth of recipes and shopping lists that I'm currently following. If there ends up being interest, I can post them in their own page later!



  • 1 kiwi (peeled!)
  • 1 apple (peeled and cored)
  • 1 mango 
  • 1 handful of kale
  • 8 oz coconut milk
  • 8 oz water
  • 2 tsp flax seeds*
  • 2 tsp Very Green*
  • 2 tbs protein*
* As before, supplements not required to make smoothie, just to make it a more filling breakfast alternative.

So far, it's a little crunchy like the seeds of a kiwi usually are but otherwise a smooth, slightly tart smoothie. The smoothie is a pretty mint green color that matches the green rim I use on my cup in the mornings. Apparently boyfriend just dropped his cup on the way to work and broke it so we're down to 3 Magic Bullet cups! They're nice because you can put them directly on the blade for small batch blending.

Later today, keep an eye out for pictures of Tango with his new toy, Jello the octopus!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Luchtime Daily Chi!

Good afternoon!

Here's a quick collage of Tango last night when he was waiting, impatiently, for his dinner.


Tango is on a special diet of low fat food to keep his pancreas happy. In about September of last year he had a really bad pancreatitis attack that led to an emergency vet trip and subcutaneous fluids. After that he was on basically a pancreatic reset diet for a month. When I tried weaning him back on to normal dog foods, he would get sick all over again. It has been a long time coming but we finally have his pancreas all leveled out again with this diet and he's a happy little dude!

He's a little on the skinny side still so Tango gets three meals a day and he loves every single one of them! Most dogs don't do tricks and get super excited about plain old kibble but Tango is all about his Primal raw food! His other favorite is the scrambled egg we use to supplement his diet with healthy fat and protein.

video

As you can see, he does tricks for his meals! I'm working on a standing spin with him right now and he's offering it pretty regularly as a trick so we're making good progress! Roll over was probably the hardest trick I've taught him so far but he's definitely a trainable little dude :)

Putting the Chi in Chia Seeds

Good morning!


Today's smoothie recipe is a variation on one I did Monday morning. Monday's did not turn out so great so I'm glad I made a few adjustments for today's! You'll notice there's also a cup of chia pudding there; this was my second attempt at chia pudding and it came out great so I'll also share that recipe!

Smoothie:

  • 1 banana
  • 1 apple (peeled and cored)
  • 1 handful fresh kale
  • 8 oz coconut milk
  • 8 oz water
  • 1 tbs chia seeds*
  • 2 tbs protein powder*
  • 2 tsp flax seeds*
  • 2 tsp Very Green*
* Supplements aren't required, the smoothie tastes just fine without them. Substitute your favorites!

The trick with this smoothie that made it better than monday's is that I used coconut milk instead of coconut water, I doubled the liquid by adding 8 oz of plain water, and I prepared the fruits and froze them earlier in the week. Overall, the frozen fruit blended better and the extra liquid made for a much smoother texture. 

Another alternative is instead using 8 oz coconut water and 5 oz greek yogurt, which is what I ended up adding to Monday's to make the texture smooth out and loosen up.



Chia Pudding:

  • 1 tbs chia seeds
  • 3 oz Lactaid (or any milk substitute)
  • 5 oz coconut water
  • 1 tbs honey
  • Combine ingredients in a sealable container, mix well, let sit overnight in the refrigerator for a quick breakfast pick-me-up!
I tried the first batch with coconut milk and it didn't come out as creamy. When I used the Lactaid (Full fat!), it came out perfectly. Now, this recipe could also work with low fat yogurt instead of milk and coconut water if you don't like to use milk and want a creamier texture. Overall, the honey definitely made the whole dish. 

The thing that made me want to try out chia pudding was the fact that these little seeds puff up in liquid and look like frog eggs. I grew up in the country for the early half of my childhood and one of the coolest school trips was always going down to a pond to catch tadpoles and find squishy frog eggs. This would make a great Halloween snack project for a classroom snack day!

Keep an eye out for today's dose of Tango to see his stages of begging for dinner!


Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Daily Chi

Tango is a photogenic little dude so I think a Daily Chi picture of him will show all of his glory. This one is from yesterday and I call it the Princess and the Pea.

He's got so many layers under him but I bet he could probably still feel a kibble between the pillows!


Hi!

Hello world!

My name is Jennifer, I've been a blogger before over at Lacquer Ninja when I was super in to nail polish. Over the last year or so, I've started having less time for the hobby and have moved to a completely new place in my life. Now, I'm  living in Tyson's Corner, drinking smoothies daily in an attempt to get fitter and spending lots of time with my little dude Tango.


Tango is a three legged chihuahua that I rescued back in 2012. He's now 3.5 years old and a total character. He's my little furry soulmate and we're basically the same being in different bodies. We can cuddle for hours or go hiking around the National Mall  to look at Cherry Blossoms.


Most days, I'm working from home while the corporate office is getting built out so Tango and I spend the whole day together. He used to accompany me to work at my last job too so we're pretty used to being together all the time! I definitely miss him when I'm out of town but I have a good group of people around that I trust to take care of him. Tango can be shy and reactive around strange people but it's something I keep working on in hopes that he'll be a happy little dog that likes attention as much as people like him. The little dude has a fan club because he's so awesome!

In the mornings, I've been using my Magic Bullet blender to make healthy smoothies for my boyfriend and I before we head to work (me to my home office and him to Falls Church). I've been instagramming our smoothies with the recipes I've found or made up and thought it would be fun to do a blog about them and Tango. Thus the birth of Smooth-Chi!


This is today's smoothie and all the additives I added. The Recipe is listed below for those who'd like to try it out! I'll probably post smoothie recipes daily or every other day as people show interest. Enjoy!

Wednesday's smoothie is nice and sweet. This was my first time using chia seeds since I found them at TJ Maxx yesterday. I've always thought they looked neat suspended in drinks at places like Whole Foods. The soaked chia seeds definitely looked like Frog eggs this morning!

  • 1 banana
  • 1 c frozen berries
  • 1 handful fresh kale
  • 8 oz coconut milk
  • 4 oz water
  • 1 tbs chia seeds (soaked in 3 tbs coconut water overnight)
  • 2 tbs protein
  • 2 tsp Very Green