Too many screens. All the foods. Let’s Go! (September Favorites!)

September is over, fall has begun (it was 60 degrees when we woke up this morning! Woo!), some of our favorite T.V. series have premiered, theaters have been swarming with more good movies than we could see, though we’ve seen a few… and, well. After this epic pile-up of hours spent in front of various screens, including the hours I’ve spent sitting here writing, I’m feeling like a blob right about now. But a well-entertained blob. A well-worked blob. And a well-fed blob. In fact, there’s too much blobbiness going on around here, so I’m engaging mindful mode.* Too much of a good thing, blahbidy, blah, blob.

[*By “mindful mode,” I mean, not eating in front of the screens quite as much. Haha.]

Body Combat is, as usual, saving my ass from slipping into complete blobdom. The new release is a monster. Review coming Friday!

Back to September favorites.  Lots of T.V. these days, and more is coming: Haters Back Off premieres this month. (I love Miranda Sings. Fingers crossed the show is good.) The Affair premiers in November. It’s good that Homeland won’t premiere until January this time around, because there’s already way too much going on. ~Movies, as mentioned, and food, as usual! No beauty products this time.

And now, with limited commentary, here are a few things that tripped my trigger in September:

 

1). Hell or High Water (film)

 

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You may have already read my thoughts on this film. If you haven’t, you can read it here.

NOTE: If you click any links in this post, their pages will open in the same window, so you’ll have to hit the back button to return here. WP changed their link function and I haven’t toyed with it enough to figure out how to get links to open in a new window.

 

2). Don’t Breathe (film)

 

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Ditto! Click here to read my thoughts about this film.

 

T.V. up next:

3). Broadchurch (T.V. series)

 

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Mom recommended this one, saying that it’s excellent. Mom, as usual, was right. Reminiscent of The Killing, Broadchurch is based on a true story. It drew us in. David Tennant and Olivia Colman are brilliant, and as with any good murder mystery, we were tempted to binge this series. And so we did.

 

4). Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (T.V. series)

 

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We love a fresh, new comedy, and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt nails the “fresh” part. In keeping with Kimmy’s personality, I’d use the word “zany” to describe the humor in this series. This one’s a charmer. Highly recommend!

 

6). The new seasons of American Horror Story, Empire, and Modern Family

 

American Horror Story: Roanoke

American Horror Story: Roanoke

 

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…because WOW, these series. I’m enjoying the latest perverted installment from Ryan Murphy’s sick, sick mind (AHS: Roanoke), and Empire never fails to astound me with its Shakespearean brilliance (it starts out as King Lear and goes from there), and the talent in its cast and every aspect of its production. It’s great to have Modern Family back, too… it’s a charmer that never disappoints.

 

Food!

7). Seedless red grapes.

 

Seedless red grapes

Seedless red grapes

 

Crisp, sweet, and delicious red grapes. I seem to transition into the equinoxes eating red grapes. They buffer the fall space between summer fruits and apples, and again between spring’s citrus and berries.

 

8). Colombian dark chocolate (in bulk at Sprouts).

 

Colombian dark chocolate in the bulk bin at Sprouts

Colombian dark chocolate in the bulk bin at Sprouts

 

We’ve been keeping this chocolate on hand all month. Callaghan doesn’t usually like dark chocolate, but he’s a huge fan of this Colombian variety in bulk at Sprout’s. In fact, he’s the one who discovered it. I’m not too picky about dark chocolate, as long as it’s dark enough to be vegan, but I have to admit, there’s something special about this particular dark chocolate. Who knows what they put into it down there in Colombia.

 

9). Trader Joe’s sprouted wheat sesame seed bagels.

 

Trader Joe's sprouted wheat sesame seed bagels

Trader Joe’s sprouted wheat sesame seed bagels

 

Mid-September, I had a moment of nervousness when my doctor ordered blood tests to check me for food allergies. I immediately thought of the worst (of course)… what if the tests showed that I was allergic to wheat/gluten? My mind went into overdrive coming up with wasteland scenarios, myself in the center of them, doomed to a life bereft of the pastas and breads that are my mainstays. Thankfully, the tests all came back negative.

Anyway, I went to Trader Joe’s and got this variety of their bagels, and they’re so good. SO GLAD and grateful that I can eat them!

 

10). Chipotle Tabasco sauce.

 

Chipotle Tabasco sauce (on avocado toast)

Chipotle Tabasco sauce (on avocado toast)

 

One of my new favorite things is to smash up an avocado, spread it on toasted whole wheat bread, give it a scant grind of pink Himalayan salt, and douse it with chipotle Tabasco sauce. The rich smokiness of the sauce does something to the avocado that you have to taste to understand. You’re welcome.

Yay!

 

What I’m Digging Right Now – November Favorites

November favorites are here! Let’s get right into it and start with food, shall we?

1). KeVita sparkling probiotic drink in strawberry acai coconut.

 

KeVita! Doesn't that word make you want to dance?

KeVita! Doesn’t that word make you want to dance?

 

Let’s just say that ever since a friend introduced me to this softly fizzy, mildly fruity and lightly sweet probiotics drink, I’ve considered probiotics to be my spirit animal.

 

2). Mrs. May’s All Natural Cashew Crunch.

 

Mrs. May's All Natural Cashew Crunch slow dry-roasted snack (original flavor)

Mrs. May’s All Natural Cashew Crunch slow dry-roasted snack (original flavor)

 

Guys, I stumbled upon this sweet, healthy and wholesome snack at Ross a few weeks ago and literally squealed with delight. I used to go to the airport just to buy this, since I couldn’t find it anywhere else. It’s been years since I’ve indulged my addiction to it, and I’d actually forgotten about it until I found it by accident again. Love.

 

3). Garlic from Gilroy.

 

All hail to the garlic from Gilroy!

All hail to the garlic from Gilroy!

 

We pass through the town of Gilroy when we drive to San Jose, California, and this last time, when we went for Thanksgiving, we stopped and picked up a bunch of garlic from the side of the road. Gilroy is the garlic capital of the world, or something like that, and I’m here to testify that garlic from Gilroy is a whole ‘nother species of garlic from its supermarket cousins. Mounds of garlic sautéed in olive oil and piled on pasta never tasted so good!

 

4). Kashi Go Lean Vanilla Graham Clusters cereal.

 

Kashi Go Lean Vanilla Graham Clusters cereal

Kashi Go Lean Vanilla Graham Clusters cereal

 

Here’s another Go Lean cereal flavor that captured my everlasting affection. When I took my first bite, the first thing I thought was Lucky Charms! Okay, it doesn’t actually taste like Lucky Charms, but it does remind me of them, vaguely, or enough, anyway, for it to trigger all the good memories from my childhood. With 11 grams of protein per serving, you really can’t go wrong with this. It is delightful with almond milk. Do recommend!

 

5). Vega protein smoothie powder in Viva Vanilla.

 

Vega protein smoothie in Viva Vanilla

Vega protein smoothie in Viva Vanilla

 

I’m really not a vanilla fanatic… it’s coincidental that there are two vanilla-flavored favorites on my list this month. It just kind of happened that way. The Kashi cereal brings memories of Lucky Charms, and this plant-based protein powder right here whirled up in the Nutribullet with plain, cold water? Tastes like vanilla ice cream! It’s not terribly high in protein, since it’s the smoothie mix rather than the actual protein powder (Vega makes both)… but you get 15 grams of protein in only 80 calories in that little glass of vanilla ice cream-tasting goodness. Drinking a serving of this is my favorite way to add a low-calorie shot of protein to my day.

Let’s move on to products!

 

6). CeraVe PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion for normal to dry skin.

 

CeraVe PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion for normal to dry skin

CeraVe PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion for normal to dry skin

 

I picked this up because I needed a basic moisturizer to use after those times I take an early evening shower (post-workout), not wanting to put on a thick, rich night cream until right before bed, but I was hooked after first use, and I haven’t used anything else at night ever since. My thick, rich night cream has been collecting dust. I should probably start using it again, too… I’m a fan of layering products… but just saying. This lotion by CeraVe is pretty amazing stuff.

 

7). Cover Girl Ready, Set, Gorgeous Foundation.

 

Cover Girl Ready, Set Gorgeous! in 115

Cover Girl Ready, Set Gorgeous! in 115

 

I really don’t know why I bought this in the first place… I didn’t need it, since I’d recently purchased (and featured on a “favorites” list) a foundation by L’Oreal. I think it caught my eye one day and I remembered that I’d read rave reviews about it, and it just looked so small and cute and innocuous, like, what harm can come from trying me?  Whatever the case, it’s my new favorite. Not only has it kicked L’Oreal out of its spot on my list of favorite foundations, but I’ve also stopped using my Benefit concealer since I discovered that I can spot-apply this as a cover-up, too. It layers really well, feels great, lasts all day and doesn’t cost much.

And finally, entertainment…

 

8). Nightcrawler (film)

 

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Jake Gyllenhaal. Jake Gyllenhaal in a gritty, dark, intelligent film. We saw this on Veteran’s Day, and it struck us as brilliant on many levels. Does Jake ever choose projects we don’t like? Come to think of it, no, but we found this film to be especially compelling.

 

9). John Wick (film)

 

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Okay, now, this, folks, is what film-candy is made of, and finally, unbelievably, here’s an action flick that managed to restore my faith in Keanu Reeves. Loved it.

 

10). Miranda Sings.

 

Who makes me laugh, besides Callaghan? This girl right here! Miranda Sings.

Who makes me laugh, besides Callaghan? This girl right here! Miranda Sings.

 

I started watching Miranda Sings videos and immediately found myself semi-obsessed with her music videos, so when she came to Tempe to perform in November, I had to drop everything and scour Craigslist for tickets to her sold-out show. This girl is freaking hilarious! Go watch her videos!! Here, I’ll get you started:

 

 

Now, let’s see what December brings!