July 31, 2011

I was on the hunt for accessories today and came home with three pairs of shoes for $50! The two on the left are from Rack Room and on the right, Payless. I’m a girl who likes a bargain, and these are all comfy and more stylish than my usual tennis shoes and flip flops.

[I tend to wear a lot of boring flats and comfortable shoes because of my foot surgery and lasting pain that heels give me, but I do love cute shoes for special occasions. I find wedges especially comfortable.]


Why the need for accessories? I’m flying the nest of dough and yeast and going to BLOGHER this coming weekend!!! In San Diego!!

Although I’ve been to the past 3 BlogHer conferences, I wasn’t planning to go this year since cross country trips are quite expensive and I knew I’d have the bakery to keep me busy. But a few weeks ago I got an invitation for sponsorship that I couldn’t pass up. Matt and my family said GO!

I’ll be traveling on behalf of American Express and the new AmEx prepaid card, which you can read about here. My travel costs will be reimbursed, yet I’ll be loading my own funds on a prepaid card, kind of like a gift card to myself or like I took out money in cash for the trip. Except it’s safe and protected if it’s stolen.

[Anyone in San Diego want to grab a drink Thursday night? If so, email me Katheats at Gmail!]

Also part of my accessories – a new wallet in which to put my new card!


You may have seen a Twitter conversation this week regarding my desire for a new wallet. I LOVE the layout and functionality of my current one that I bought at Target last year, but I just am not in love with the colors or frayed edges.


I loved that it had one side for cards (lots of ‘em) and another zippered side for lots of dollar bills, receipts, business cards, checks to deposit and more. The style just wasn’t doing it for me.

IMG_4521Blog IMG_4523Blog

After lots of Twitter recommendations and browsing of wallets online, I concluded that I should just go to some stores to look around.

Within 30 seconds of walking into TJ Maxx I found one! Same layout – cards on one side, pouches on the other and a pretty shiny color! My only complaint is that the card side is rather fat and it doesn’t lie as flat as my old one, but I can live with that. And the ID slot is impossible to get your ID out of!


Last but not least – TJ Maxx bowls for $2.99 each! In love with the designs and they’re my favorite colors!


I came home with quite the accessory collection for under $100 : )


Also with hunger for dinner!


Last night I soaked some black beans in water and this morning I simmered them in the crockpot for about 4 hours. I love cooking beans in the crockpot because there’s no risk of the foam boil-over that happens to me so often on the stovetop!


The highlight of this beans + rice bowl was a nutritional yeast sauce I put together. It was FABULOUS!! Why don’t I cook with nutritional yeast more often!?

Smoky Cheese Sauce

Serves 2 bowls | Makes about 1/2 cup


  • ~1/2 cup nutritional yeast (link to Emily’s description of it!)
  • ~1/3 cup milk
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 pinches smoked paprika
  • 2 dashes Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 dashes Liquid Smoke (my new favorite ingredient)
  • 1 big pinch cayenne pepper


  1. Mix all in pot.
  2. Heat, stirring constantly, until mixture bubbles.
  3. Pour onto food!

Served with brown rice, cooked peppers and the beans in some cumin and smoked paprika, tomatoes and plain yogurt.




Dessert – a double doze of Harry, Ron and Hermoine and a “Better Than Crack” brownie from our freezer!


Just finished HP7.1! Because of my travels, we’re probably going to have to wait 2 weeks to see the finale, but it will be worth the wait!


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{ 95 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Ann @ Day by Day July 31, 2011 at 9:03 pm

New shoes, wallet, bowls and a fun trip coming up!? What a great day. I’ll actually be in San Diego a few days after you- my brother and I are taking a cross country road trip starting tomorrow morning…


2 Baking N Books July 31, 2011 at 9:04 pm

Love the purple color. I just have a plain black (ugly) wallet, but it’s hard to find a good one.

Excellent job on the Sponsorship! Wow – impressive. I guess there’s no way to pass up those opportunities. Although, I think it would be a lot funner if it were a getaway to an island resort somwhere 😉


3 Julie @ Sugarfoot Eats July 31, 2011 at 9:05 pm

Cute bowls! I’m going to have to get myself to TJ Maxx!


4 Hillary July 31, 2011 at 9:06 pm

Hmm I need a wallet too (the change purse section of mine just busted open and can’t be repaired). I think you may have just inspired me to go looking at TJ Maxx tomorrow!

And I think it’s extra wonderful that you watched HP today because it’s Harry Potter’s birthday! Yes, I know that, and yes, I know how outrageously dorky that makes me. Oh, well ; )


5 KathEats July 31, 2011 at 9:12 pm

I didn’t realize that! And we were watching the one when it WAS his birthday!! Today!


6 Hillary August 1, 2011 at 8:30 am

Haha JK Rowling would be thrilled!


7 Lauren July 31, 2011 at 9:08 pm

Have an amazing trip! Maybe I’ll get the opportunity to go to a conference at some point, that would be great. Btw, I absolutely love the denim shoes all the way in the right!!


8 Holly @ The Runny Egg July 31, 2011 at 9:09 pm

You’re going to turn into a tomato :)

I love the new wallet and I agree about wedge shoes — they are comfy but seem more dressy than flats (although I live in flats and love them). 3 for $50 is a good deal!


9 Michelle (The Runner's Plate) July 31, 2011 at 9:11 pm

I love when people share their clothes/accessories/etc.!

I have never worn wedges before, but I think I need to try a pair since I’ve heard from multiple people now that they are quite comfortable.


10 Lauren @ Lawfully Wedded Wife July 31, 2011 at 9:12 pm

Wow, way to go with those deals! I love getting things like that at T.J. Max, they are always changing the inventory and they have the cutest stuff! Congrats on the sponsorship, I’m sure BlogHer will be a blast.


11 Cait's Plate July 31, 2011 at 9:16 pm

Okay first of all – I LOVE those shoes – and that wallet! And those bowls! I just picked some new bowls up myself a couple days ago. I’m glad other people get excited about purchasing pretty bowls :)

Second of all – SO exciting about BlogHer! I’ve never been but am absolutely dying to go sometime. I love your recaps of these events so I’m excitedly awaiting this year’s :)


12 Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance July 31, 2011 at 9:17 pm

I have a tendency to overboil my beans and get bean juice all over the stove! Although I admit– I always get sidetracked in the kitchen :)


13 Allie (Live Laugh Eat) July 31, 2011 at 9:17 pm

Love the color of your new wallet! I have a huge wallet like that but I never use it because it can’t fit in my purse with my hugh jass camera.


14 Vanessa July 31, 2011 at 9:20 pm

I love those times where you score at stores like Homegoods and TJMaxx. :-) Congrats on that sponsorship. I’m convinced I’m never going to be able to attend a blogging event simply because I can’t afford it.


15 kaila@ healthyhelper! July 31, 2011 at 9:22 pm

Love those shoes!!! And the purple wallet is adorable!


16 lynn @ the actor's diet July 31, 2011 at 9:24 pm

glad you get to go to blogher! i was supposed to go but sold my ticket b/c i’m emceeing a foodie event in LA i couldn’t say no to….would’ve been nice to see ya! :(


17 Hilliary @ Happily Ever Healthy July 31, 2011 at 9:29 pm

I love a good bargain! Those shoes are super cute! Great finds today!


18 suki July 31, 2011 at 9:31 pm

ooh, i’ll be in san diego! it seems like every evening will be pretty crazy. hope to run into you on the conference floor? :)


19 Sarena (The Non-Dairy Queen) July 31, 2011 at 9:32 pm

Love the shoes! Have fun at BlogHer. I went to BlogHer Food and it was so much fun! It’s always fun being surrounded by people that share common interests and who get blogging. Dinner looks amazing!


20 Taylor July 31, 2011 at 9:33 pm

i’ve seen you mention liquid smoke before, but what is it?? could it be left out of recipes or is it easy to make/buy?


21 KathEats August 1, 2011 at 7:38 am

I found it at Whole foods. It was cheap and in the sauces section. Definitely could be left out.


22 Lea @ Healthy Coconut August 1, 2011 at 1:06 pm

I bought liquid smoke recently and you can find it next to the BBQ sauce section at Wholefoods.


23 Taylor August 1, 2011 at 1:27 pm

thanks! i’ll definitely look for it next time i’m there


24 Eileen July 31, 2011 at 9:35 pm

Nice job on the shoes! I’m jealous of a trip to San Diego … it’s supposed to be amazing!


25 Felicia (Natural + Balanced) July 31, 2011 at 9:35 pm

now i want a brownie!! :)


26 Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles July 31, 2011 at 9:38 pm

You were a deal grabbing fool! :) YES! ALL of your purchases are awesome!


27 mac July 31, 2011 at 9:39 pm

You came out with a steal! Love the shoes, I’m a big fan of wedges!


28 CheezyK July 31, 2011 at 9:41 pm

Those bowls are lovely! You have the best selection of cutlery and crockery, half the time I’m more in awe of those than the food that you’re actually taking photos of :)

We did the HP catchup too, watched the movies or listened to the audio books (or both in the case of the last two books and movies). So much fun and well worth the effort!


29 Ash @ Good Taste Healthy Me July 31, 2011 at 9:43 pm

Love the shoes!!


30 Lindsey July 31, 2011 at 9:44 pm

Love the shoes! I also am a flats girl usually but am loving wedges this summer too!


31 Gina @ Running to the Kitchen July 31, 2011 at 9:45 pm

Love those wedges on the far right! I can’t believe you got 3 shoes for less than $50, that’s super impressive deal hunting right there.


32 Kaitlyn July 31, 2011 at 9:51 pm

Yay san Diego ! I’m not sure how much free time you will have but let me know if you need any recommendations on where to go! I’ve been here for three years and love it ! :)


33 KathEats August 1, 2011 at 7:39 am

Do you want to do something Thursday night? Or perhaps a run? I’ll put you on the email list for ideas if that’s ok!?


34 Kelley August 1, 2011 at 4:14 pm

There’s a 5K planned at BlogHer on Friday Morning if you’re interested too!


35 Joyce @ Jranola Joyce July 31, 2011 at 9:53 pm

Love all the shoes!
I was just talking about how much I love wedges today! :)


36 Rachel @ Eat, Learn, Discover! July 31, 2011 at 9:54 pm

just thought I’d mention, I love everything in ball jars.


37 Namaste Gurl July 31, 2011 at 9:56 pm

Yum- I love home made burrito bowls– WAY better than Chipotle all the way :) I also love the ingredients you used– my favorites! Coincidentally, I had a bean and rice dish for dinner tonight too with mexican spices, red quinoa, peppers and red onion, nooch and avocado :)

What brand of liquid smoke do you use? I bought hickory smoked and HATE IT.


38 KathEats August 1, 2011 at 7:42 am

Mine is Colgin – I don’t think it’s hickory?


39 Laura @ Cookies vs. Carrots July 31, 2011 at 9:57 pm

Cute shoes! Ending the night with HP + a brownie sounds like perfection!


40 Stephanie @cookinfanatic July 31, 2011 at 10:00 pm

What a great idea to do the black beans in the crockpot! Dried beans are so much better than canned but I never seem to have the time to watch a pot of them on the stovetop for hours. Do you just add enough liquid to cover and turn to high for 4 hours? Would love to know details so I can try – thanks Kath!


41 KathEats August 1, 2011 at 7:43 am

Yep! I soaked overnight and then covered with water and put it on low for 4 hours. Matt said they were overcooked, so you could start with 2 hours and taste them. Once I didn’t soak overnight and did low for like 6 hours and they were done.


42 Ginna July 31, 2011 at 10:04 pm

I am from San Diego and got married there right on the bay! Have you been before? We miss it so much esp with this VA heat. If you have time to check out some good eats my fave restaurant is in Balboa Park, The Prado. Amazing. And the Hotel Del Cornoado’s Sunday brunch buffet is nothing short of spectacular (its very pricey but so worth the splurge)!


43 KathEats August 1, 2011 at 7:44 am

I’ve been a handful of times – Love it! Spent a summer there when I was in 6th grade and my dad worked there. I don’t think i’ll be able to slip away for brunch, but if we get to go to the Great Harvest Convention this year, it’s on Cornoado!


44 Alaina July 31, 2011 at 10:06 pm

I love that color of the wallet!! Looks like something I would have picked out. :-)


45 Angel7 July 31, 2011 at 10:10 pm

I like all your purchases–very fashionable!


46 Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga July 31, 2011 at 10:15 pm

This post is just right up my alley!

First, I will be your welcome wagon here in San Diego! Just let me know your schedule, dates/times available, etc and we’ll work something out as discussed on email but keep me posted.

a “Better Than Crack” brownie = it looks like it!

the cheese sauce sounds awesome! Anything with nooch is really just my thing.

And your shoes and wallet…CUTE! I love TJ Maxx for finding cute dishes, cute blog props and accessories and things like wallets and purses. Perfect!

Don’t forget flipflops. San Diego is an uber causal place where flip flops are the norm :) Of course, I love my heels too!


47 KathEats August 1, 2011 at 7:46 am

Just did a search for hot power yoga – you have Core Power there!! Want to go to a Friday AM class? I’ll email you!


48 Tammy August 1, 2011 at 10:01 am

Put me on your email list too!! I’m in North County but may be able to come meet you!!


49 Molly @ RDexposed July 31, 2011 at 10:23 pm

Unless my knee is taped up I must avoid heels as well (unless I want pain for the next 10 days). So unfair for a girl. For the love of running, I suppose.


50 Katherina @ Zephyr Runs July 31, 2011 at 10:25 pm

HP7.2 IS worth the wait!! Congrats on being able to go to BlogHer this year! I’d love to go next year once I’m more established. Love the new wallet & bowls, too!


51 Sara July 31, 2011 at 10:27 pm

I need to get brave and try nutritional yeast. For some reason I’ve been afraid of it, but I keep reading rave reviews…


52 J3nn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) July 31, 2011 at 10:28 pm

Great loot! I almost always go straight to the dishes when I go to TJ Maxx/Marshall’s, lol.

The smoky cheez sauce sounds so good. I made nutritional yeast sauce the other day with a cauliflower base. It’s amazing!

I love liquid smoke and have several bottles of it. I need to remember to USE it! haha


53 Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife July 31, 2011 at 10:28 pm

Love the shoes, bowls, and wallet!!! Looks like a great day for shopping :)


54 Robyn @ Blueberries and Oats July 31, 2011 at 10:43 pm

I saw your shoes and thought they were cute, then I saw your wallet and thought it was super cute, and then I saw your new (cheap! yay!) bowls and was blown away! I want some! Way to shop on a budget!

I’m in San Diego on vacation right now but I leave Thursday! >.< Damn!


55 rumfunandsun July 31, 2011 at 10:44 pm

Loving the shoes and wallet!!! Excellent choices! I love a bargain too! Have fun on the trip. I can’t wait to hear what everyone has to say about it!


56 Debbie July 31, 2011 at 10:51 pm

Oh My Gosh Kath, you have no idea just how much I would love to meet you! We moved to San Diego 2 years ago (October), but I’ve followed your blog way longer than that. Anyway, if you have time during the day would work for me. Let me know if you have any daytime openings for friends and you can count me in!

Blessings – Debbie


57 KathEats August 1, 2011 at 7:47 am

Emailing you!


58 Hannah July 31, 2011 at 11:13 pm

Love the shoe on the far left particularly! And phwoar, wish I had that in my freezer!


59 Melissa @ Journey to Marvelous July 31, 2011 at 11:21 pm

Sounds like a great day of shopping…I LOVE TJ Maxx for dish shopping! have fun in San Diego!!


60 Stephanie July 31, 2011 at 11:29 pm

jealous of all the lovely tomatoes in your posts! mine need to ripen faster :)


61 Katelyn @ Chef Katelyn July 31, 2011 at 11:53 pm

I am an accessory kind of gal. I wear seven rings — sevvvven. Two on mah toes. That wallet is adddorable! I could eat those shoes fo breakfast. <3


62 Lexi @ A Spoonful of Sunshine August 1, 2011 at 12:28 am

I <3 TJ Maxx. It (and its amazingly cute/cheap bowls) never fail me!


63 Lorin August 1, 2011 at 12:38 am

What?! I didn’t know BlogHer was going to be in San Diego. I live here and I would’ve signed up had I known about it. It always seems like the blogger events are on the East Coast. I’m in north county san diego and under 21 so wouldn’t be able to meet up for a drink, but have fun!


64 KathEats August 1, 2011 at 7:47 am

Might do something else like yoga, so I’ll put you on the list!


65 Khushboo August 1, 2011 at 1:25 am

Love the wallet color! I’m much more ‘out there’ with colors when it comes to accessories!


66 Kerry August 1, 2011 at 3:33 am

Gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous new wallet, looks fab!


67 Aine @ Something to Chew Over August 1, 2011 at 4:54 am

Cute shoes and wallet!

And dinner looks yummy :)


68 Katie August 1, 2011 at 5:50 am

Cute new wallet! I always find putting my ID in the respective slot doesn’t work for me – especially when you need to get it out quickly but can’t. I usually put mine in one of the credit card holders instead. :)

That meal looks so delicious!


69 Lauren August 1, 2011 at 5:59 am

Love, love the shoes! You’ll have a blast in San Diego this weekend. Are you going to the HLS this year? I just saw that Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds are coming to C-Ville the weekend of the HLS and as excited as I am for Philly, I was so bummed to see that I have to miss this incredible concert. I would have been done in VA in a second to see it.


70 KathEats August 1, 2011 at 7:48 am

Yep, I’ll be at HLS! Kind of glad I’m missing the crowds of the concert :)


71 Lauren @ What Lauren Likes August 1, 2011 at 6:20 am

woah! looks like shopping was a sucess. So cute :)


72 Jamie in Arkansas August 1, 2011 at 7:15 am

Hey Kath,
Do you cook the beans on High or Low in the crockpot for 4 hours? I wanna try it!! :)
Jamie in Arkansas


73 KathEats August 1, 2011 at 7:48 am



74 Cait @ Beyond Bananas August 1, 2011 at 7:22 am

Wedges are one of my favorite types of shoes because they give you some height -yet do not tear apart me feet like some pumps do. PLUS they are super cute. Loving your finds!


75 Megan August 1, 2011 at 7:27 am

Definitely a shopping success, such nice things for under a hundred. Especially loving those denim wedges. When I don’t spend too much on things, I always like them better too, I don’t know if that is something that happens to you!


76 [email protected] Flying ONION August 1, 2011 at 7:44 am

New shoes. Traveling to BlogHer. New adorable wallet.

What a perfect day! 😀


77 Nikki August 1, 2011 at 9:26 am

Woo! Love all the shoes, girly! Have fun at the conference!

By the way, that smokey cheese sauce sounds delish.


78 Nikki August 1, 2011 at 9:28 am

Ohhhh and when you’re in San Diego, you should try to hit up The Field, if you have time. It’s an Irish Pub in the Gaslamp District. It isn’t one of the largest or most touristy places, which is why I love it. They have great food, and often have live music going on. To top it off, the atmosphere is always friendly and low key.


79 Leslie August 1, 2011 at 12:14 pm

My parents live on Coronado. If you get the chance to go for the Great Harvest thing, you HAVE TO do it!! You’ll love it.


80 Riss August 1, 2011 at 12:21 pm

I LOOOOOVE TJ Max for cute dishes! I just got 3 pairs of bowls myself (because you HAVE to have matching sets!) Super cute and perfect for big bowls of yummy oats and steamy hot soups! Oh, I just can’t wait for fall!


81 Anne August 1, 2011 at 1:23 pm

Love the shoes and the wallet. I might have to make a Payless trip, we no longer have a Rack Room in town. Just wanted to let you know the C-Ville crunch and Honey Peanut Butter were hits with my daughter and the dogs love the treats. Do you ship?


82 KathEats August 1, 2011 at 2:17 pm

Glad to hear it!!

We don’t ship yet..


83 Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin August 1, 2011 at 5:09 pm

I think my favourite part of this post are the bowls – they’re so cute!


84 Maria August 1, 2011 at 6:10 pm

Be very careful with the wedge heels. I took a bad fall in an airport on a new pair. When I went to the shoe repair place to ask them to add a different sole, he said, “Don’t buy these again. I have lots of customers who have hurt themselves.”

Apparently the new plastic is harder (and cheaper for the manufacturer), but it slips very easily on certain types of floors. Shoes that are higher, especially with a thin wedge are apparently the worst. These look like the ones I had, so take care.


85 Kaci August 1, 2011 at 6:49 pm

I loveeeee those shoes, and congrats on finding such a cute wallet for such a good price!!


86 Elliott August 1, 2011 at 8:26 pm

Hi! I’m not attending BlogHer but I live in downtown SD. As a fellow beer drinker (we all need carbs – right?), I feel I must recommend Neighborhood (777 G St.). GREAT selection of beers and the food is awesomesauce too. I actually like their lunch menu more than dinner. It’s a small place but totally worth the wait. Mission Brewery is great too. It just opened in East Village (1441 L St.) and they have five beers on tap (soon to be 10). Word to the wise, San Diegans love hoppy, hoppy strong beers so be careful of the alcohol content. Darling hubby forgot to ask one night and found out he was drinking 9%!


87 KathEats August 1, 2011 at 8:30 pm

Thanks for the recommendation! I hope I have a free meal to explore, but often there’s so much conference food that you don’t need a real dinner.

I happen to have an affinity for high alcohol beers. I wish it weren’t so, but it’s what my mouth declares!


88 Elliott August 1, 2011 at 10:53 pm

If you like strong beer then make sure to try Stone Brewery while in town! They are the most well known brewery in SD and most bars have one of their beers on tap. I’m a total hophead and love, love, love Stone IPA.


89 KathEats August 2, 2011 at 6:07 pm

Is it near downtown? That would be fun!!


90 Jenny August 1, 2011 at 9:23 pm

I love your old Target wallet actually. The pattern is so nice. And yess, wedges are surprisingly comfortable and they are cute!


91 Laura Ann August 1, 2011 at 10:15 pm

Yay, San Diego will be glad to have you! Will you be staying downtown? If you’re able to explore a little, North Park and South Park have an awesome beer and foodie scene – 30th street (which runs between the two) is packed with great beer bars. Wherever you end up going, I’d love to meet up on Thursday if I can!


92 Charise August 2, 2011 at 6:38 am

Ahhh gotta love TJ Maxx for great deals on cute stuff. I was just at our TJ/Homegoods combo store yesterday picking up a few things for the new house.


93 Sara, Food Blogger on a Diet / Ms. Adventures in Italy August 2, 2011 at 11:27 am

I’ll be there, speaking on Saturday, and going to the 5k on Friday morning – if you’re around, let me know and it would be great to meet up!


94 Katie O'Leary August 2, 2011 at 12:00 pm

How fun that you will be in San Diego this weekend. That’s my hood! If you happen to be meeting up with any readers for coffee let me know! :)

-Katie O.


95 RebekahK August 2, 2011 at 5:38 pm

Wow! This cheese sauce is insanely delicious!!! Thanks for sharing.


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