Posted by: Santa Barbara Dreaming | December 14, 2008

Julia to the rescue

Hooray for the weekend! 🙂 Weekends are truly the greatest, aren’t they? Even though my throat is burning and my nose is trickling like a broken faucet (haha, lovely image, no?) I am happy! I even got to sleep in today till 9. It felt so great to get some extra sleep. I even took a nap (I actually didn’t plan to nap; I just fell asleep 😉 )

But reeeeeeeewind to Friday. I actually did decide to work out. I knew that being cooped up in the office all day, and then going home and being cooped up at home would NOT help me feel better. I knew that a little exercise would get my blood pumping and make me feel better. I told myself that I would run an easy 2 miles, but once I got on the treadmill I felt energized, and actually ended up running 3.27 miles in 30 minutes. Isn’t it funny that once you start moving, you feel so much better? The hardest part is actually DECIDING to exercise. Once you’re past the mental part, I find that the physical part isn’t that hard. I suppose my ‘mind‘ is actually the hardest ‘muscle‘ to train. I would say it’s even harder than the jiggly parts of my gut! My mind can talk back at me and be stubborn and resistant. At least my pooch doesn’t get snappy with me! haha

I also did 50 minutes of core-centric strength training. I did a bunch of ab circuits and triceps and hamstrings. Take that, booty! 🙂 

Friday grub:

I was over at James’, and he had not had dinner yet. His pantry was looking a little empty, but he had some frozen chicken tenders, pasta, and corn. “What are you gonna do with them?” I asked him. “Ummm, microwave the chicken tenders, and boil the pasta, and heat up the corn.” He said. “What? Don’t you have some sauce?” I ask. “No.” says James.

Poor kid was gonna eat plain chicken tenders, plain pasta, and plain corn

Good thing I was there to spice up his meal!

From his sparse pantry, I whipped up some Mexican inspired pasta that turned out mui delicioso!

Julia’s Caliente Penne:

Caliente Penne

Caliente Penne

Whole Wheat Penne
Almost one whole bag of TJ’s Fire Roasted Frozen Corn
Balsamic Vinegar
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
TJ’s Pasta Seasoning
Chipotle Seasoning
Rosemary and Garlic Seasoing
1 tablespoon TJ’s Red Chili Sauce (Or tabasco) 
Salt and pepper
1 teaspoon crushed garlic 

1. Boil pasta.
2. While pasta is doing its thing, heat some olive oil and crushed garlic in a pan. Add frozen corn and cook, adding in as little or as much seasoning and chili sauce as you like. James likes it hot, hot, hot, so I added a LOT of Chipotle seasoning and Chili Sauce.
3. Drain pasta, and add to corn and seasoning in pan. Mix thoroughly and add more spices as necessary. Eat

ssssspicy baby

ssssspicy baby

 I had no idea what a Mexican Inspired pasta would taste like, but this was hot, spicy, flavorful, and was a delight. It had just enough heat to wet your appetite, but not too hot to put flames of fire in your mouth. It was just so flavorful from all the different spices! I was actually quite impressed at my impromptu culinary skills 🙂 And of course, it was wayyyyyyyyyyyyy better than plain pasta and plain corn! Most importantly, James enjoyed it very much. He even told me it was the best sauce-less pasta he’s had! 🙂 I am so delighted by this recipe I am definitely making this again sometime soon. It’s even good cold. I think the key here is using whole wheat pasta, because the nutty flavor of the WW can take a lot of heat and flavor. I think that if I had used regular pasta, it would have ended up being too spicy. I think shrimp would also be a good addition to this dish. Yum.

This post is gonna be quick. But I did want to leave with this one thought I was having today. I was having a conversation about the silly games we used to invent and play when we were kids. (Before the age of Nintendo and X-box. Man, we still had to play tag in real life, not virtually! haha) I used to play this game called Cockroach, where my friends and I would ‘scuttle around’ and try to crawl into small places and holes and be kind of creepy, like cockroaches.  Looking back, I fail to find what was so entertaining about this game…. I mean seriously…. roaches? Ew. We also played this game called Pee Pee Mat, which was ridiculously fun. (Don’t ask about the name……haha) 

Question: What sorts of games did YOU invent and play as a kid? Do you think little kids these days are better off or worse off with all this new technological/virtual games?

Happy weekend! Enjoooooy it while it lasts! Tomorrow, I have a Conditioning Specialists Holiday Party, so hope to have some fun photos to share 😉



  1. how sweet of you to make pasta sauce for james! LOL i’m surprised he didn’t just eat them outta the box :).

    (or resort to cereal + water)

  2. couple of things. First, I can’t be more agree with you that our brain is the hardest muscle to train. Many many times it takes me a long time and good effort to decide to go for a run, specially when I feel low mentally and physically. But when I get there I, after a quick warm up I feel energized and feel that I can run forever. Usually I ended up doing more what I was planning and feel great after that.

    Your pasta looks delicious!!! I bet James was impressed by your culinary skill.

    I can’t remember any specific game that I played when I was a kid. Maybe they were stupid but I think I prefer them than the modern technology. Because in our “old” days, you need to play a game with someone and even it was a stupid game, at least it let you communicate with other. And actually as far as I can remember, I enjoyed a lot playing those games. But nowadays, there are too many options for the kids and they don’t appreciate it much. And those video games…… it’s absorbing and not good for kids to term of socializing with other kids. I don’t know…. these are just my thoughts.

    have a nice sunday.

  3. Oh man, I hearya on “getting there”. Im always happy afterwards, but that never seems to matter in the process 😉
    Those games, how funny! WHAT in the world was PeePeeMat? haha! Too cute

  4. I LOVE EXTRA-SPICY DISHES!!!!! Holy yum 🙂 You’re a fabulous cook, Julia!!

    I think that kids need to be careful with a lot of the virtual games out there today, since most of them are centered around violence 😦

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