Today’s winnings:

7 banana nut odwalla bars, 17.6 oz Fage 0%, 6 caramel nut brownie mini-luna bars, 32 oz. homemade Dominican beans (habichuelas?), leftovers from lunch (rice, tamale de pollo, chicken, baked ziti)

7 banana nut odwalla bars, 17.6 oz Fage 0%, 6 caramel nut brownie mini-luna bars, 1 banana, 32 oz homemade Dominican beans (habichuelas?), leftovers from lunch (rice, tamale de pollo, chicken, baked ziti)

Total cost: $0!! How is that possible? Let’s start at the beginning …

I got up at 5 again this morning for the gym. I debated skipping it and going back to bed, but I knew that today would be full of dangerous unlimited food situations — and I have a tendency to go into survival mode in those situations and eat like I will never see food again. Sooo, to the gym I went. For time’s sake, I skipped the weights and just did the jog there and back, 30 minutes StairMaster, and stretching/abs. Stats: 59 minutes, 390 calories, 134 average heart rate.

After the gym, I had a milky mug of nutcracker sweet tea and zoomed up to East Harlem for the parents’ group. Most of the families who use the services at my agency are Mexican immigrants, so the home visitors often organize groups for the parents to help alleviate their social isolation. This Thursday morning relaxation group is one of the most popular, so I wanted to take advantage of my last class-free Thursday today (classes start next week) and finally go see what it was all about! The parents arrived, and we all chatted over breakfast. I was expecting a typical spread of muffins, bagels, danishes, etc. But we had pancakes, Trader Joe’s nonfat French vanilla yogurt, canned peaches, and scrambled eggs with onions, peppers, and cheese!

Plate #1

Plate #1

Plate #2

Plate #2

Plus more nibbling. In total, I probably had about three of these:


One cup of this:


And 2/3 cup of this:


I don’t like coffee, but it was fuhr-eeeeeeeeeezing in there, so I held/gulped nearly a full cup of it:


I started getting ready to leave a little before noon so that I could make my lunch engagement, and on my way out, my coworker Inginia gave me the unopened Fage to take home!!! Inginia also had me try some of this amazing dish she made from a Lebanese friend’s recipe … which she hopefully remembers to bring in for me tomorrow because it was delicious. It had wheatberries, garbanzo beans, and spinach:


So, after stuffing my face for nearly three hours with all of this scrumptiousness, I hightailed it back over to the agency for our potluck lunch in honor of a coworker who is transitioning to a different department. We had Belkis’ homemade Dominican beans, Midred’s homemade baked ziti, tamales de pollo, Dominican rice, and chicken:


Because I love my camera’s macro setting, you get to look at the chicken inside the tamale:


And the cheese on the ziti:


And the calabaza in the beans:


Somewhere in here, Belkis revealed that she had made a second container of the beans (see display of “winnings” above) just for me because she knew how excited I was about them! Don’t I have amazing coworkers? She also gave me the banana!

And then the salad arrived, so I had a second plate with more tamale, beans, and a mountain of green:


I was pretty stuffed at this point, but the baked ziti was smack in front of me and I kept pulling off the crunchy pieces from the top as we chatted because it doesn’t count if it never touched my plate ;-). And then it was time for dessert! We had an oreo cake:

Rosa (the honoree) and Beryl (the cake-cutter)

Rosa (the honoree) and Beryl (the cake-cutter)

My piece(s):


I ate some more:


Plus one of Heather’s peanut butter pumpkin blondies that I made for the event:


I had to run out for a visit at 1:30, and when I got back an hour later, there were only two blondies left! (I had cut them into teeny pieces so there were initially about 25.) I had one with a mug of sugar cookie sleigh ride tea:


And then I, um, ate the last one, you know, because it was lonely …


While I was gone, the leftover ziti had miraculously moved to the end of the conference room table so that it was right next to my desk. I continued pulling off noodles throughout the afternoon. (Was I hungry? Of course not.) And after each noodle (or four), I ate a mint candy from Belkis’ candy jar to communicate to my mouth that lunch was over. Six (or maybe more) times. I finally wrapped up a bowl of leftovers (again, refer to “winnings” picture) to bring home.

At 3:00, the all-staff meeting began, and that’s where I grabbed the 7 Odwalla bars (meant for snacking during the meeting) with the help of Mildred, who knows how to look out for the penniless intern :-). I also may or may not have inhaled a handful of mini pretzels.

Needless to say, the running club was a must tonight. Kate and I boldly did a whole four miles (but only because the options were 4, 5, or 6). Stats, including a 6-minute warm-up: 44 minutes, 374 calories, 152 average heart rate. And the mini Lunas were waiting for us when we got back to Niketown!

I’m still full nearly 12 hours after lunch. I did not overdo it to the fullest extent of my expansion abilities, thank goodness, but I certainly ate more than necessary. And now I need to go collapse into bed because eating is hard work and I am drained!

6 thoughts on “Windfall

  1. Sarah says:

    yes for free food! whenever they give out samples at races, i take as many as i can, no matter what it is.
    that oreo cake is calling my name and i dont even like oreos….


  2. erin says:

    that tamale looked amazing. i want one now, and i just finished breakfast. it was cereal… not nearly as interesting as anything you make. but i’m up in maine and we’re making a german feast tonight. i’ll be sure to fill you in on the menu!!


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