The (Almost) Perfect Salad

May 17, 2008


No salad can be perfect without crumbled goat’s cheese!! But I was all out.

But First, Breakfast

I started today with some hot plain tea – Earl Gray Lavender – while I debated what to have for breakfast.


I settled on cold cereal (Kashi H2H + TJ High Fiber Fruit and Nut) with banana + kiwi. Plus a sprinkle of flax. My stomach wasn’t up for feeling full of oats today.


TV + Berries + Exercise

I don’t watch much TV other than the Food Network and Oprah, but the husband has got me watching The Office. BRILLIANT show. It’s just my kind of dry humor. I know a bunch of you watch it too :)

After some TV, we set out to go blackberry picking near our old apartment. Sadly, they weren’t even close to being ripe yet!! We’ll have to go back in a few weeks.

But while we were in the neighborhood, we went to our old YMCA. Such memories! It was fun to workout at a different gym for a change. I did the elliptical plus upper body weights and then we went for a 1-mile run/walk around the gym. Our old neighborhood was so walkable – I miss it sometimes.

Sensational Salad

We’re out of food, so we stopped by the grocery store for some veggies to grill for lunch. Zucchini, squash, portabello. We also grilled some mango, green pepper, carrots and focaccia bread:


And this salad was born:

  • Lettuce Mix tossed in homemade balsamic-maple-dijon dressing.
  • Grilled carrot, zucchini, squash, portabello + green pepper
  • About 1/4 cup cottage cheese
  • About 1/4 cup wheatberries
  • 1/2 a grilled mango
  • Avocado
  • Sliced toasted almonds

With toasted focaccia on the side.



I had the husband take a photo of me with the bowl in context to show how big the salad was! I love big meal-size salads, especially when they take me a long time to eat, and have given up on small bowls. Now I just make them in serving bowls!



He’s obviously exaggerating the turtle neck pose, but here he is last night demonstrating for the group:

turtle-ii.JPG turtle-i.JPG


We snagged the only available hotel room in the area from one of my sister’s friends’ moms. Since we are going up to Davidson tonight and have to be back on Sunday morning, it’ll save us a late-night drive and early morning rush. We’re sharing it with Karen (mother in law – I’ll start using her name now!). So I’ll have a recap post of tonight and tomorrow’s grad ceremony + brunch tomorrow afternoon. See ya then :)

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{ 36 comments… read them below or add one }

1 VeggieGirl May 17, 2008 at 1:20 pm

The Office = amazing show. Period.

Oooh, your salad & focaccia meal looks fabulous! Yum!

Haha, love the “turtle head” shots of Matt :0D

Have fun at Davidson!


2 R. Leigh May 17, 2008 at 1:22 pm

What a beautiful salad! Do you grill the mango with the pit still inside or did you take it out? I’m going to have to try that :)


3 Kath May 17, 2008 at 1:27 pm

R. Leigh,
I peeled and de-seeded the mango and then grilled the “cheeks” and cubed it afterwards.



4 Megan May 17, 2008 at 1:32 pm

Kath I just wanted to say how great your blog is. I have been reading your blog since last November or so and all the pictures are just gorgeous. The layout is professionally done and you have such a great attitude that it makes my day to see you have fun and enjoy yourself. Weird since you don’t even know me, but I feel like you are a friend of mine and am happy when you have a good time:)
Keep up the great work!!!


5 Kath May 17, 2008 at 1:35 pm

Megan ,
Thanks so much – that made me smile out loud :)



6 eliza May 17, 2008 at 2:16 pm

I totally agree with Megan – your blog is amazing. I know there has been some discussion about target calorie ranges and that you’ve said before everyone is different, but I was wondering if you could help me a bit. At 5’8, 145 I’d like to lose some fat (I have a small frame and it all settles on my stomach gross). According to some calculations I need to net about 1100 calories if sedentary-ish to lose weight… this seems really low. Is it? If not, do you know of a better way to calculate my calorie needs? How did you determine yours? I’ve tried experimenting, but end up just maintaining on weeks when I’m a lot higher and a lot lower. Thanks!!!


7 Justy2003 May 17, 2008 at 2:23 pm

My boyfriend’s just gotten into watching The Office on DVD lately (renting them), which means I’ve been catching some episodes as well. I have a feeling we’ll be buying all the seasons on DVD soon…it’s definitely an entertaining show!

Have fun at your sister’s graduation…I’m headed to my sister’s high school graduation next weekend!


8 Sidi May 17, 2008 at 2:47 pm

The Office – I started watching it from the first episodes. It was strange for the first few minutes, but I became a big fun of it right away. And another favourite is My Name is Earl.
Have fun!


9 Kate(the teenager) May 17, 2008 at 3:04 pm

Kath, Just wondering, when you become an RD, what type of work do you want to do??


10 working May 17, 2008 at 3:51 pm

I love The Office! My husband has never really worked in an office (he’s a surgeon), so he doesn’t get why I’m laughing at stuff sometimes when it mirrors my old workplace, but we still watch :)


11 Ange May 17, 2008 at 3:51 pm

The office is the BEST show on TV hands down!!!

The season finale on Thursday was frickin hilarious


12 Kate May 17, 2008 at 3:51 pm

Eliza – I think an 1100 net sounds about right. You have to take into consideration that when you workout, you burn at least 300-500 calories. So that means on you would gross 1400-1700 calories on days you work out (which I assume is most days of the week), which for 5’8 and 145 lbs, sounds pretty good! A great site Kath turned me on to is They have lots of useful and accurate calculators to figure this stuff out. Hope that helps!


13 magpie May 17, 2008 at 4:12 pm

That salad looks soooo good. I only eat salads out of serving bowls too – I love huge salads.

My boyfriend watches The Office too but I haven’t really gotten into it yet. I’ve seen some of the more recent episodes but haven’t caught up on the early seasons.


14 Deb May 17, 2008 at 4:15 pm

When I have my salads, I explained to shocked on -lookers that I’m having a salad “the size of my head”. :-)


15 clueless May 17, 2008 at 4:25 pm

Hi. I’m 5’2 1/2 and am 135 lbs. Want to get to 125. It’s all in my hips! How much should I eat in calories if I gain wait easily? I am at the gym every day and mix it up for workouts an hour every day including strength training twice per week. I’m a little frame so it makes me look even fatter.


16 hk May 17, 2008 at 4:26 pm

yum, looks so summer-y!


17 LT May 17, 2008 at 4:51 pm

that sounds frustrating! If you don’t like the bulkiness you probably need to work out less and just be more active whenever you can – walking, housework, etc. You may be afraid that you will gain weight with fewer work outs but your appetite should decrease shortly to compensate for the change. Good luck!


18 yaz May 17, 2008 at 4:57 pm

Wow… you look so pretty in the pic of you with the salad. And by the way M looks awesome turtle neck or not. :)


19 clueless May 17, 2008 at 5:13 pm

LT.thank you. I’m actually pretty careful with the diet. Overeating/appetite not an issue. I was just blessed with a pear shape and J Lo booty. If I reduce workout, the pounds just come on. I’m always cleaning or in motion. thanks for taking the time to respond. :o)


20 jenny May 17, 2008 at 5:44 pm

hi, i was wondering if anyone could help me. my period has stopped for a while and my doctors said that it was due to my low weight. i have successfully gained back 10 pounds and am at the weight when i did have my period. however, period still hast returned. help? i am kind of scared =(


21 caitlinbo (in FL) May 17, 2008 at 6:15 pm

jenny, don’t be scared. be proactive. call your doctor, explain the situation, and make an appointment to receive professional help. im sure it takes a while for you period to return, but you should follow up with your doctor to make sure you are getting the help you need.

ALSO… :) hope everyone is having a nice day! i went to a farmers market and it was lovely… how many people here participate in CSAs like Kath?


22 Allyson May 17, 2008 at 6:15 pm

Hey Jenny-

I’m not sure, nor am I any kind of medical professional (pre-school teacher) but maybe your body just needs some time to readjust itself? If it still hasn’t returned after a few weeks I would see my doctor again.
Hope this helps, I know how scary body issues can be.



23 Sarah May 17, 2008 at 6:46 pm

Hi Jenny, I experienced the same situation and my obgyn said it can take up to 6 months (after you has reached a healthy weight) for your body to regulate… That being said, I encourage you to call your doctor to follow-up.


24 Suzanne May 17, 2008 at 9:12 pm

LOVE LOVE the Office. How crazy was that last scene? Can’t wait for the next season!

Your salad is HUGE. It look SOOO good! Looks just like summer. :)

The pictures of the husband made me laugh out loud!

I have a random unrelated question: Are you and the husband planning to get a pet? Do you like animals? Just curious! I am a huge dog-lover, and it would be so great to see a pet in your photos. :) Just curious!


25 eliza May 17, 2008 at 9:55 pm

thanks for your help kate… but i’m still confused. in order to maintain my weight the calculator told me i could eat 2100 calories a day (not including workouts), but in order to lose weight i have to eat 1100. i’m not sure if i should have a 1000 calorie or 500 calorie deficit each day. kath, could you give us some insight into how you figured this out for yourself? i’d also love to hear more in depth about the beginning of your weight loss journey. it seems like this blog starts up after you’ve lost your weight. it may be more work than you have time for, but it would give invaluable insight into the path you took to get to where you are if you could talk a little about your beginning. thanks for continuing to be an inspiration to many, many appreciative people!


26 Kiala May 17, 2008 at 11:00 pm

Eliza, I’m 5’8″ and about the same weight as you. It takes a calorie deficit of 3500 to lose one pound. So the thing you are looking at, where it tells you to have a 1000 calorie deficit a day would equal you losing 2 pounds a week. WITHOUT EXERCISE. SO if you work out and burn say 500 calories a day every day for a week, and eat 1600 calories worth of food every day, that would be the same thing.

I just made it worse didn’t I?


27 Chelsea May 17, 2008 at 11:39 pm

I tried Kale chips for the first time tonight and sadly I have to say that I didn’t like them :( I wanted to so badly too but they just weren’t yummy to me.


28 Ruby Red Vegan May 18, 2008 at 12:32 am

The Office is my favorite! Jim is just too darn cute.

Kath, that salad! Oh my goodness! That salad is the equivalent of me dying and going to heaven. And I’m loving the huge-volume-style serving. :)


29 Renee May 18, 2008 at 1:00 am

That salad looks delicious!

p.s. I also graduated today :)


30 oatmeal May 18, 2008 at 6:35 am

The cereal mix looks absolutely amazing! As good as the oats you usually have! 😀

The Office IS the best show! This season is way better than season 3, I think!

And yay~grilled veggie salad! Love the addition of the mangoes 😀 The big salad bowl is a good idea indeed–I always find that I need a lot of veggies to keep me full~


31 Melanie May 18, 2008 at 7:10 am

Hello Kath! I’ve been reading your blog since last fall and I really enjoy it. I have been struggling with my weight my whole life and you are truly an inspiration to all. Since 2000, I’ve lost a total of 89 pounds. I now seem to be stuck at the weight I am now. I still have around 36 pounds to lose, so I’m keeping positive that I will be about to lose that weight in the next year or so. Keep up the great work and I’ll sure keep on reading ya! :-)


32 april May 18, 2008 at 10:50 am

I just wanted to share a recipie that tasted exactly like banana pudding! It was delicious! All I did was mix 1/2 Cup of oatmeal with 1/2 cup of skim milk and 1/2 cup of light vanilla yogurt and one sliced banana. I let that refrigerate over night and then this morning i sprinked cinnamen on it and ate it with a spoonful of PB! It was wonderful!


33 Amy13 May 18, 2008 at 2:03 pm

Eliza, check the FAQs section. Kath talks about her weight loss and how she determined her net calories there. Hope that helps! :)


34 Janna May 18, 2008 at 4:09 pm

I don’t want to scare you but you may want to look into something called PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome? i believe). A lot of people think their pd doesnt come because of their low body weight or because they work out a lot or other things like that, but it may be this.


35 Kath May 18, 2008 at 7:37 pm

Kate (the teenager),
Did you ever make it to Charlotte!?

Re. R.D. here’s what I said last week: My long-term goal is to have a private practice. Short term, I have no idea. I do know I would rather work a variety of part-time, gym and/or freelance-type jobs rather than a full-time hospital job.

I’m not really trained to give calorie estimates – but I like for their RMR and BMR calculators.

jenny ,
I would ask your doctor since he/she knows your situation best.

Suzanne ,
I don’t think we’re ready for a pet, but we’ve talked about getting a dachshund in a few years since we both think they are so cute and hilarious. Hub is allergic to cats, and I don’t think we’d go hamster/hermit crab/fish route. I’m scared of bit dogs so we’d have to get a small one.

Chelsea ,
Awww – I’m blaming it on The Bean!

Renee ,
Congrats on graduation!!

Melanie ,
Congrats on your 89 pounds!! WOW! Keep up the good work :)



36 healthyceliac May 19, 2008 at 5:49 am

The Office is one of my all time favorite shows. It one of the few that will make me laugh out loud when I’m alone in my apartment.
And, I have to get a salad bowl like that! I love big volume meals of really healthy food.


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