Too Early For Heat

October 20, 2008

The husband and I woke up shivering this morning. We just have a thin duvet cover on our bed with no duvet inside. My computer thermometer (hooked up to the Weather channel) says it’s 36* outside!! But it’s too early for heat! We keep our AC off until July and I would rather not start our energy pull of heat this early, but it’s seriously COLD! So we bundled up side by side and pushed snooze. It was simply too cold to get up. Luckily I have my last day of Fall Break so I had the luxury of choosing to workout later in the day. He’s working at EarthFare, but will just count his biking as his daily activity  :)

We got up 45 minutes later and made a wonderful hot breakfast. I decided to save the pre-made oats for busy mornings and made oatmeal from scratch instead.


I forgot to mention that when I walked to Harris Teeter yesterday they were COMPLETELY out of pumpkin!!!! So I asked the husband to bring home 2 cans from EarthFare (where it’s pricier). I assumed all pumpkin would be the same, but this one is totally different. It’s thicker and almost gel-like. And it had a strange grassy taste at first. I almost threw it out, but once I heated it the strange taste went away. I ended up liking it fine. You know how sometimes on other blogs their pumpkin oats are much darker in color than mine? I wonder if they are using different brands! This one did seem to be darker.


Today’s combo:

  • 1/3 cup oats, 2%, water
  • 3 chopped dried apricot halves (they got lost :( )
  • 1/2 medium banana
  • Wheatberries
  • Chopped pecans (would have been better toasted – they were kinda flavorless)
  • Vanilla, salt, pumpkin pie spice
  • Dollop pumpkin butter (made the whole bowl!)
  • Spoonful AB


With coffee


Look who wasn’t too cold for a morning stroll!


I had a glorious time taking a bath and reading in bed last night. Can’t wait to do it again!!

My plan was to go shopping today (I have a few gift cards/coupons), VOTE!!!, and go to Costco for a few things (like $.29 bananas). But that will only happen if I can get quality studying done between now and 10:30 or so when I’m going to the gym. Maybe I’ll go right after lunch? If I don’t make it out, that’s OK, but that’s the plan.

Remember on this chilly first-day-of-the-week: You’re never fully dressed without a smile :mrgreen:

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{ 40 comments… read them below or add one }

1 zestycook October 20, 2008 at 8:13 am

Kath, same feeling over here – its cold and wow those oats look so tasty. Hope you have a great day.

Take care


2 Betsy October 20, 2008 at 8:27 am

it was 40 degrees when i left my apt this morning…it’s only october!!! but, i like this so much better than the sweltering heat in the summer.


3 AlliJag October 20, 2008 at 8:28 am

I need to get my hands on that pumpkin butter – it looks amazing!

Enjoy your last day of Fall Break! 😀


4 Caroline F. October 20, 2008 at 8:49 am

Happy Monday! I live in S.Florida, so I’m very jealous that you are getting a taste of fall, while we are still stuck in eternal summer! Although I do believe its letting up a bit… Anyways, a few things! First, what brand is the pumpkin butter you have? Ive searched and only found 1 brand at my WF but one of the first 3 ingredients are HFCS… Id like to think there is some purist Pumpkin Butter out there just waiting for me to find it!!! :( And.. I thought I’d share some of my hot breakfast cereal experiences… Ive been playing with different grains and the most recent 2 being Millet and Spelt flakes. Both of which are a bit easier on the digestive system. I really enjoyed them the past few mornings!! I toasted the millet first in a bit of EB and then cooked it accordingly, and it tastes reminiscent of (dare i say..) Popcorn! and a bit banana-bready (w/ bananas of course…) Ok well, maybe it could be a fun change for you two! Have a great rest of the day! Stay warm! :)

-Caroline F.


5 caitlin October 20, 2008 at 8:52 am

BRRRRRRRR SOUNDS cold!!! stay warm and enjoy your day!


6 Rhodey October 20, 2008 at 8:53 am

PB and I were supposed to run at 5. Instead we tried to get warm and fell back asleep until 7:45!!!!!

these cold morning are the hardest ones. especially when there is a warm body next to yours!

and my store ran out of libby’s one day so i tried another can and threw out the whole thing. it was icky!


7 WendyF October 20, 2008 at 8:54 am

Hi Kath;

The pumpkin oatmeal is my favorite. I am back from my bike ride to San Diego. it was quite toasty,except for the early morning 37 degree starts, now I can catch up on a week of blogs :-) I love all the trees in your backyard,its really beautiful. I just planted a some grape vines in mine to see if I can some grape to grow. Enjoy the rest of your fall break!


8 Jen October 20, 2008 at 8:56 am

I’ve never thought to add pumpkin butter to my pumpkin oatmeal.

I’ve added it to other plain hot cereals, though.

Thanks for the idea!


9 Meg October 20, 2008 at 8:57 am

Hi Kath or anyone else who wants to weigh in…
Recently my mom read In Defense of Food, which I have not read, but I believe you have. Since she read it she says she has taken the advice from the book and switched back to eating the full fat diary products (whole milk, real butter etc.) that she grew up with. I was surprised and wasn’t sure this sounded like a good idea. She is petite, but has had trouble maintain a good bad vs. good cholesterol balance. Is this really what the book recommends?


10 SmA033 October 20, 2008 at 9:05 am

Hey kath– i’m planning on making a trip to Great Harvest Bread sometime this week! (yay!!) Any suggestions as to what breads to get??


11 Charlie Hills October 20, 2008 at 9:05 am

I have not read In Defense of Food, but I can’t disagree with going back to whole milk, butter, etc. When we hear things like that, what many of us have trouble with is it flies in the face of the fat-phobic approach we’ve been taught over the last several decades. If you drink a glass of whole milk, feel satiated, happy, and full, and still stick to your 1800 calorie a day plan: why is that a bad thing?


12 Tina October 20, 2008 at 9:08 am

Is it just me or do we often post about similar things? It happened a couple times last week too! :)

$0.29 bananas!? What a deal!

Happy Monday!


13 Megan October 20, 2008 at 9:13 am

Stay warm!

I have noticed that varying brands of canned pumpkin taste different too!


14 Mel October 20, 2008 at 9:17 am

I had the same problem with different brand of pumpkin this weekend. I thought for sure that I had messed up my cake but it turned out fine, just like your oatmeal.

I hate the cold, not only is it cold here but it’s rainy and windy… yuck.


15 Celia October 20, 2008 at 9:23 am

WOAH! Is that a deer in your backyard?!! 😯 Or is it not???!!!

Eh! Too bad canned pumpkin (imported from the US) is so expensive here, or else, I’ll stock up on loads of them …


16 haya October 20, 2008 at 9:23 am

hey everyone : pumpkin butter is REALLY EASY to make yourself!
* 1 (29 ounce) can pumpkin puree
* 3/4 cup apple juice
* 2 teaspoons ground ginger
* 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
* 1 1/2 cups white sugar (i’m sure you could change this up for some other sweetener)
* 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
* 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg (you could sub all the spices for pumpkin pie spice if that’s what you’ve got)

Combine pumpkin, apple juice, spices, and sugar in a large saucepan; stir well. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes or until thickened. Stir frequently.

i made mine using real pumpkin that i baked but if you want the convenience of the can, there it is. HFCS free and made with love!


17 Betsy in Pittsburgh October 20, 2008 at 9:28 am

It was 32 degrees in Pittsburgh this morning on my walk to work… yowz!


18 VeggieGirl October 20, 2008 at 9:30 am

43°F HERE!!!

Mmm, looove the HOT bowl of pumpkin oats :-)

Gorgeous deer in your yard!!

Happy Monday!!


19 Justy2003 October 20, 2008 at 9:32 am

Wow, 36 is cold! Haven’t had that here since the dead of winter last year! There are some perks to living in the south, I suppose…such as 60* lows in October/November :)
Happy Monday!


20 runjess October 20, 2008 at 9:38 am

Brrr! I used to live somewhere where 36 in winter would have been a blessing, but now I’m in Texas and a total wuss.


21 Charlie Hills October 20, 2008 at 9:41 am

I’m with you jess. It dips into the 60s overnight and I’m wondering why I didn’t move even farther south…


22 Holly October 20, 2008 at 9:45 am

Yowsa! I love fall, but it is just too cold in the mornings now. I’m with you – we’re trying to save $$ by not turning on the heat for as long as we can. I might cave…I’m telling myself to be strong! :-)


23 Amy October 20, 2008 at 9:47 am

I was wondering if anyone has a good way to add protein powder into oatmeal while keeping the consistency smoothe not lumpy? Thanks!


24 melissa October 20, 2008 at 9:53 am

Haya, thanks for the pumpkin butter recipe!
Sounds delish!


25 Ally October 20, 2008 at 9:54 am

Hi Kath, I’m not giving you advice really cause I think you have a way healthier attitude towards food than I do and I do love reading your posts, but in regards to your last blog – do you think you are having trouble stopping eating lately because you think about what you’re eating too much? I do admire how you guys plan out meals and all but it seems like a lot of time you’re studying food, writing about what you eat, preparing food, reading other people’s blogs, of course you’re going to want to eat!! Sometimes reading your blog makes me crave food cause you guys make it look so good even when I don’t really want it.
I find I eat the healthiest/most normal when I really don’t focus that much on food.
This is where I think the volume eating thing backfires, you can get away with eating huge salads cause they are low cal but it can tend to make me always want to eat a lot and feel deprived if I’m not eating something voluminous. I agree with the passage you posted about training your body to not always want food. Just some food for thought!! haha. Take care!


26 Cat October 20, 2008 at 10:01 am

haya: Thanks for the pumpkin butter recipe, can’t wait to try it!

It was frigid when i left my apartment this morning for work… unfortunately I didn’t have time for a warm breakfast first, sigh. Oh well, I am certainly making up for it with my 3+ mugs of tea already this morning 😛


27 magpie October 20, 2008 at 10:02 am

Enjoy your last day of break, hope you get some good studying done!

If you’re out shopping you might want to check out Linens N Things, I think they’re having liquidation sales now…


28 Beadie October 20, 2008 at 10:05 am

I know what you mean, it was burrr cold here this morning too!

Have a great day shopping!


29 Miss Tiffie October 20, 2008 at 10:31 am

What kind of pumpkin do you usually use? I use Whole Foods’ 365 products a lot and I love their pumpkin :] I still haven’t tried pumpkin oats yet but I mix it in my yogurts.


30 Kinder October 20, 2008 at 10:31 am

How much pumpkin puree do you add to the oats?
I have to say that pumpkin oatmeal doesn’t really resonate with me, but neither did banana oatmeal, and I am a convert. I love my banana oats – lately I have been eating it with homemade applesauce on the side – so I get a little in every bite (like the peanut butter idea) and your maple pecan granola (which is awesome!). So yummy!


31 Kristie October 20, 2008 at 11:04 am

I hate waking up cold but I definitely wouldn’t mind it so much on a day when you get to sleep in and don’t have to drag yourself out of bed right away!

I’m noticed a difference in pumpkin too. There are two main brands at the stores here, one of which I really enjoy and the other that I don’t like much at all, at least not plain. I don’t get it… it’s just pureed pumpkin! What’s the difference? Weeeird.

Enjoy this chilly fall day!


32 julybug October 20, 2008 at 11:12 am

Ugh, waking up cold is the pits. We actually choose to the leave the heat off because if not the apartment turns into a sauna.


33 Erin October 20, 2008 at 11:15 am

Brrr….. We haven’t turned the heat on here either! It’s the summer to fall transition of trying not to turn the heat on to early!

Remedy: Making steel cut oats with homemade cranberry jam, yummmmm!


34 Jen October 20, 2008 at 11:49 am

To the person asking about adding protein powder to their oatmeal: I do that all the time. I use about 1/2 scoop of vanilla powder and dissolve it a little bit of water (about 2 tablespoons or so) to create paste before adding it to the hot, cooked oatmeal.

No lumps :)


35 Beth October 20, 2008 at 12:03 pm

I refuse to turn on my heat as well – and it is freezing in the mornings!!! It makes it so hard to get out of bed – especially considering how dark it is out. I am actually looking forward to the end of daylight savings time so that it will be light earlier!


36 coco October 20, 2008 at 12:23 pm

so colorful bowl of oatmeal! I also wonder why canned pumpkins have always darker colors than homemade?
That’s why I began to make myself which is cheaper and safer.


37 Marianne October 20, 2008 at 12:28 pm

I just bought a can of the same pumpkin, because it was the only brand around that came in a small can when I was there (probably because it was just after Canadian thanksgiving, and the shelves were quite bare of the canned pumpking). Good to know it’s not too bad once heated up, I got worried for a moment when you said it tasted grassy. I’ll have to break it out soon and try it!


38 Kath October 20, 2008 at 1:03 pm

Caroline F.,
It’s Trader Joe’s pumpkin butter. I’m always on the lookout for new grains – I haven’t tried all the flakes yet, but maybe sometime soon.

Meg ,
I don’t recall Pollan suggesting we all go back to full-fat diary. It sounds like one of those things that will work well for some (more satiety) and not for others (whole milk PLUS usual food = more calories = weight gain). I say meet in the middle with low-fat dairy. It’s a nice compromise of flavor from the little bit of fat, but really all that extra saturated fat doesn’t provide any nutritional value (there’s as much calcium in skim milk as whole).

SmA033 ,
I love the High Five Fiber and the Dakota is really good. The wheat cinnamon chip made awesome french toast. That’s all we’ve tried!

Ally ,
I think you hit on my point – I am bored therefore my brain is wanting to think about food instead of more fulfilling/thought provoking things like good books, relationships, etc. But I think it’s incorrect to assume that dietitians always are thinking about food because most of my studying has nothing to do with it (much more about vitamins, deficiencies, growth, chemistry, etc.).

magpie ,
THANKS for letting me know – I need to go use my gift card!! Poor LnT – I have always loved the store.

Miss Tiffie,
Libby’s 100% Pure

Kinder ,
Half a cup.



39 Amy October 20, 2008 at 3:07 pm

Thanks, Jen!


40 Chelsea October 20, 2008 at 5:57 pm

I bought the same pumpkin yesterday at Whole Paycheck. I’ll need to do a taste test and see if I agree :)


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