trader joe’s grocery haul

i thought that i’d show you guys what i got at the grocery store this week since i haven’t posted about what i’m eating in so long! i went on friday to trader joe’s to grab some groceries for the next week, and it was the first time i went to TJ’s in probably a few months here. the only one that i know of in atlanta is a good 20 minutes from where i live, so usually in the thick of the semester i can’t really justify 40min driving just to get groceries when there’s a kroger 5 min up the street. but, since it was only the first week back i had some extra time so i figured i’d treat myself and make the trip!

here’s what i got for this week:

the produce i picked up included a bag of navel oranges, 3 pink lady apples, 5 bananas, bag of baby carrots, bag of baby spinach, and spring mix. i ate an orange in the car on the way home and they are SO GOOD. i think it’s orange season and i’ve been craving citrus lately so these will be perfect for snacks in class and in lunches. i also feel like peeling oranges makes me feel more awake because of the smell… tell me i’m not the only one?

the carrots, apples, and bananas are all mostly for snacks. i still had some spinach at home so i just got one bag to keep me going through the week (i throw this in eggs, smoothies, salads, and pretty much any hot meal i make) and some spring mix to spice up my salads a bit.

for the refridgerated/frozen goods, i got eggs (obvi), ground turkey, goat cheese, lowfat milk, shitake mushroom chicken, brown rice, and spinach and artichoke dip. i think ground turkey is one of the cheaper meats you can buy at TJ’s (2.99/lb) since to me their meat seems a bit more expensive than typical grocery prices. i got the milk for my coffee and over the weekend i had the spinach and artichoke dip as an appetizer before dinner with some wine. chips + dip + wine = my kinda relaxing weekend evening haha.

i haven’t had the shitake mushroom chicken before but it was quite a bit healthier than their frozen orange chicken so i figured i’d give it a go! i always buy 1 or 2 convenience meals at TJ’s since they are so decently priced and it’s nice to have something to grab when i come home and am exhausted. the rice is for the chicken as well as a mexican burrito bowl with some veggies, beans, and ground turkey.

and now for the fun stuff! i have some salsa at home so i wanted chips to get to dip with them, and am out of peanut butter (because ants decided to make an appearance in my kitchen last week..) so i picked up my favorite crunchy kind. i also got bread, two of my favorite chocolate sea salt rx bars, wine (merlot, always), and these new pink and white cookies i found. i don’t tend to keep much dessert food in my house and last week i was craving something to have after dinner with tea, so i looked for some sort of cookie to buy. i’ve never had these before but they are really good and reminiscent of those mother’s circus animal cookies- aka some of the best packaged cookies of all time- without the trans fat!

i always try to buy myself 3.99 flowers whenever i manage to make it to trader joe’s because they make me so happy. i’m a huge fan of yellow flowers because they are so bright and calming. sunflowers and mums are some of my favorite!

here’s some of the meals that i’m planning on making with these groceries and some of the stuff i already have:

  • rice & shiitake chicken (frozen meal)
  • nachos with chips, beans, ground turkey, cheese, and green dragon sauce (from tj’s and it’s one of my favorites!) plus veggies on the side
  • rice bowls with turkey, beans, and a bag of frozen mexican veggies from kroger
  • leftover spaghetti squash pizza pie
  • salads with greens, veggies, grilled chicken, goat cheese, and balsalmic

my lunches typically include leftovers from dinner or a salad, and breakfasts are the usual eggs & veggies plus turkey bacon or toast or something.

what are you guys eating this week?? fav TJ’s find?

see ya soon for some recent meals and an update on my foot!



this morning, i woke up and let something small upset me. next thing you know, 20 minutes later, i was in a full-on grumpy mood not wanting to get out of bed and start my day. so i laid there for a minute, and started thinking about why i was so upset about a small thing like this. and then i realized that lately, i’ve been letting little things that go wrong or make things stressful affect me far more than they should. i’ve been soaking in the negative feelings instead of acknowledging them and moving on.

so, after i got out of bed this morning, i made it my mission to turn my mood around. i made a great breakfast, i drank coffee on my porch in the beautiful fresh air, i read a devotional, i listened to music, and i took my time getting ready for the day. while i was getting ready i came across a book that i haven’t picked up in awhile called “you can’t ruin my day”. it’s a really great book that was collecting dust at the top of my bookshelf, so i picked it up and turned to a random chapter.

the chapter was about perspective.

as i was reading this chapter, i started thinking about my life a year ago at this time. my 21 year old self was taking extra classes, stressed out that i wouldn’t get into nursing school, worried about what would come of my relationships if i moved even farther away, and so much more. if you had told this Julianna that a year from now, i would be a ucla graduate, living in atlanta, georgia (with my own beautiful room, to boot!), going to emory university for nursing school, and having just spent a month over the holidays with my boyfriend and family, i would probably have started crying.

i would have cried because i would have been so relieved. i would have been shocked that i was accepted into one of the top universities in the nation for nursing. blown away by the fact that i was, in fact, living across the country from all my family & close friends, and i was doing ok. filled with joy at fact that i still was solidly in the relationship i was once fretting over. i would have felt all of these things and more.

yet here i am, barely thinking for a second about all that i have accomplished and all that i have been blessed with. my mind occupied with the stresses of nursing school, the frustration of sacrifices made to do well in school, and the struggle of being separated from those that i love.

perspective. that’s what i needed a hearty dose of this morning. i needed to think about just how joyful i would have been a year ago to see that my life is better than i could have hoped for. it is everything i could have wanted, albeit filled with plenty of challenges, but that is life, isn’t it?



i started thinking about what i am going to think of myself a year from now. am i going to be thinking the same things? am i going to be wishing that myself right now knew just how life could turn out? am i going to be thinking that i should have savored life a little more and worried about the future a little less?

the answer is probably yes.

one of my intentions for the rest of this month (+ this semester) is to take a step back and have some perspective on my life more often. to realize that i’m living my dream, and just because it’s hard, doesn’t mean it’s not exactly what i want.



foot injury + working out

i will be the first person to tell ya that i am awful at being injured or sick. i am healthy the majority of the time so even a small injury is upsetting to me because i feel like it throws everything off. last week, i had a foot injury flare up after walking too many miles in SF in shoes that were not meant to walk 10 miles. the pain started after we got back, and it was a very familiar pain that i actually dealt with after my first marathon a few years back.

i had expected for my foot to be better by now, a week after i injured it. but it’s not. and that’s soooo frustrating to me. i was fully expecting to be able to just jump right back into crossfit, and had a bit of a meltdown yesterday after my first full day back at school and wanting to go work out.

i have said it before and i’ll say it many times, i honestly don’t know how i would survive nursing school without having the physical outlet of working out. the stress runs high in nursing school and a way that i cope with it is to sweat. and when you feel like that’s taken away from you at the moment, it hardcore sucks.

so yesterday i burst into tears on the phone with mom because school left me feeling overwhelmed + i felt like i couldn’t do anything about it. she calmed me down a bit and then i drove myself to crossfit with the mission of not using my leg at all. i ended up on the airdyne bike using just my arms and did a WOD on that and bench press. it felt nice to move again even though it was frustrating to not use my foot, it was something.

so, as long as it takes my foot to get better, i’m committing to resting it as much as possible. we have 12 hour clinical days this semester and i reeeaally need my foot to be working normally asap. but, until then, i’m babying the best that i can, foam rolling my legs (two muscles in the lower leg that attach to the 5th metatarsal on my foot are part of my problem – the tendon is inflamed and irritated and the muscles are tight af), and taking ibuprofen.

i’m trying to be gentle with myself and not worry about it too much. getting upset with my body doesn’t get me anywhere and rushing healing will make things worse. fingers crossed that things will be back to normal soon! moral of the story: always, always, always wear walking shoes in the city. even if you don’t think you’re going to be walking much.


winter break 2016

hi friends!

i honestly can’t believe that it’s been almost two full months since i posted a blog post. the last bit of November and December before my winter break was absolutely insane, and i wanted to give school my full focus. i’m happy to say that all the hard work paid off with good grades! but after months of grinding i really needed a break. i’m happy to say that this winter break was exactly that!

i actually had a month off of school, which has never happened before and was honestly very much needed. i spent the first week in eugene, OR with my boyfriend and then we drove down to the bay area to spend the holidays with my family. the next week or so passed in a whirlwind of christmas shopping, good eats, and lots of seinfeld episodes and kitty snuggles. we also spent an afternoon in berkeley, went go-karting with my dad and brother, and had lots of in-n-out of course!


christmas morning i made homemade cinnamon rolls, my mom made a veggie fritatta, and my brother made our traditional pigs in a blanket (just crescent roll dough and little sausages)! we had a slow breakfast, opened some stockings and presents, and went to visit my grandparents in the afternoon. it was an amazing christmas!

after christmas my family and Taylor drove back up to OR to spend a week in Sunriver and ski at Mt. Bachelor. aside from one workout at home, the two days we spent skiing were the only two days that i worked out for all of break! i got to see snow fall for the first time in recent memory (i was born in NJ and my family also lived in Illinois, but i don’t remember too much) which was exciting for me. we also went sledding and played lots of board games! huge thank you to my dad for such a fun trip <3

after we drove back down from sunriver i had a few days at home, one of which was spent in the city! my mom and Taylor and i took BART into the city and then took the muni before walking almost 4 miles each way to see the golden gate bridge. it took up most of our day but the views were so worth it! the only unfortunate thing about all the walking is that i was wearing steve madden boots (not exactly the best shoe for walking) and injured my foot. a few days later my mom took me to urgent care and a i got an x-ray, which thankfully showed no issues. i was concerned because this area of the same foot got injured a few years back after i ran the LA marathon and it hurt so much i wanted to make sure it wasn’t a stress fracture.


i was actually supposed to be flying back from california today, but after hearing about the storm that was supposed to hit atlanta and the low temperatures, my dad was able to rebook my flight on delta for free to yesterday. there were a lot of cancelled flights yesterday evening and this morning,  so i’m glad i’m already back safely and snuggled in instead of stuck in an airport somewhere. we didn’t end up getting much snow at all, but the last time atlanta got snow it was a disaster, so ya never know haha.

and that’s the mini update of what’s been going on around here lately! i’m hoping that my foot heals quickly since i’m itching to get back to crossfit after almost month off of working out.

i’m hoping to continue to blog into 2017 despite not blogging much at all in 2016. it was such a transitional year for me and was stressful in many ways, not to mention busy! blogging started to feel like a chore and with the little free time i had i chose to spend it elsewhere. i kind of fell out of love with it, but the weirdest sort of thing brought me back to it today. my mom got me an instant pot- which is a pressure cooker- for christmas, and as i was getting it out last night and trying to test it out, i had this moment of realizing that i missed blogging. i utilize other people’s blogs so often for things like “how the hell do i use my instant pot and not blow anything up” (well, ok, a lot of other things too. but you get the point). i realized that i wanted to share what i was making and wanted to get back to sharing bits of my life with internet. so, here we are!

for the record, i didn’t blow up my kitchen with the spaghetti squash i was cooking and managed to make my favorite spaghetti squash recipe in record time. i followed these instructions to cook my squash and then this recipe (loosely modified) from paleomg to make spaghetti pizza pie. i also started a pinterest board for instant pot recipes so if you have one and also want tips for not blowing up your kitchen, feel free to follow it here.

cheers to 2017! thank you for being here. it means the world to me.


WIAW: a day in the life of nursing school

hello and happy wednesday! i hope you all are having a great week!

stopping by to share a little what i ate wednesday post, monday style! mondays are by far my busiest day of the week class-wise, so i thought i’d take you all through what i eat to stay fueled and energized throughout the day. hopefully you’ll get some ideas for quick meals or snacks to include in your daily eats!

i figured since i haven’t done this in a long time, i’d take you through a little day in the life as a nursing student as well. we’re getting down to the last month of the semester, and it’s pretty much so insane that i can’t even look at my calendar for the rest of the month. one day at a time, folks!

6:20am: first alarm goes off, but i’m so tired that i snooze it until 6:40, and then proceed to be rushed the rest of the morning… story of my life!

6:40-7:20 am: the first thing i do after getting up is brush my teeth, wash my face, put in contacts, and then head to the kitchen to make some coffee & breakfast. i went to starbucks the previous night to study and forgot it was buy one get one free on the holiday drinks so i brought an extra gingerbread latte home to enjoy this morning! they’re a little sweet for my liking so i made a cup of freshly brewed coffee to mix it with and make it a little stronger. i pour half of the mixture into a tumbler and drink half while i’m cooking breakfast.

omelet breakfast

for breakfast i start making my usual- spinach and feta omelet, uncured turkey bacon, and some toast. i typically make the omelet and turkey bacon every day since i love it and it’s easy, and will switch up the carb source depending on my mood.

after eating rather quickly, i put together my lunch with food i packed the night before, get dressed, swipe on some mascara, and head out the door to get to class.

fall outfit

(side note: i’m ridiculously happy that i get to wear pants and boots and longsleeves now that it’s colder. i also got to break out a vest that i’ve had for forever and my lululemon vinyasa scarf- aka the best scarf ever)

7:25-8:00 am: walk/take the shuttle to class. i have a bit of a longer commute than i used to at ucla, and overall it takes about 30-35 minutes door to door to get to the nursing school. i actually walk to a parking deck, hop on a shuttle, and then get off and walk to the nursing school. at first i was upset that i didn’t get a parking pass because getting to and from school takes up a decent chunk of time (when in reality it’s about a 5-7 minute drive from my place). but, it helps me stay active and get my steps in so it’s not too bad!

8:00-11:00 am: pathophysiology lecture. our lecture is 3 hours which is pretty long, but i always enjoy this class because it makes so much sense to me and i love this kind of science. we’re learning about all the alterations of the respiratory system today, and it’s definitely information overload! during lecture i sip on the coffee that i brought with me. during the two breaks we get i always go outside and walk around to make sure that i stay awake!

11:00am – 12pm: eat lunch outside with some friends and then i head inside to grab some (free!) hot water for my tumbler and to work on this post. i packed my lunch last night, which is brown rice, pinto beans, cooked ground beef & onion, a hefty scoop of salsa, mexican style vegetables, and a sprinkle of cheddar.

mexican bowl lunch

after i head inside i make some tea with the hot water i got – these two teas are so good together, and the chai has a little caffeine for a boost- and eat these little biscotti my mom sent me in a care package.


12-3pm: health promotion and foundations lecture. we ended up only having 1 hour of health promotion lecture, which was a panel with veterans, and it was really eye opening and interesting. in between classes i end up snagging a free piece of pizza for a snack instead of eating the yogurt that i brought (honoring cravings yall!). i worked on an online test in the little break between classes and then had my perioperative lecture for foundations. we also ended up getting out of that class early – it’s normally 2-4pm – so i raced home to try to make it to an earlier CrossFit class. on the way home i ate an apple that i brought for snacks!

siggi's and apple

3:10-3:40pm: commute back home, change into workout clothes, and head to CrossFit. i was literally running out the door to make the 4pm class!

5-6:15pm: CrossFit. i mixed up some unflavored BCAAs, l-glutamine (both of which you can get at and use the code FOSTER for 10% off!), and some lemonade sweetened with stevia to drink during class. we did a really hard workout that was basically two metcons- it was a 7 minute emom of 3 full clean and jerks each minute, and then we did the “nasty girls” workout after. i subbed 2:1 pull-ups for muscle ups and was dead by the end! after class i spent some time working on my kipping pull-ups before heading out the door to go home.

6:30-7:30pm: i make it home and mix up a protein shake with cinnamon swirl whey protein from slap with some unsweetened vanilla almond milk. then i hop in the shower, change into pajamas, and light a candle in my room to cheer me up. candles are just the best!

slap nutrition protein

8pm-9:30pm: i reheat some homemade pizza for dinner that i made last weekend. i just get premade whole wheat crust (this one was from target) and add sauce (i did half red sauce half pesto), shredded cheese, sliced fresh green bellpepper, and applegate pepperoni. the applegate pepperoni is just the best and it doesn’t have any nitrates or nitrites added- totally worth the extra $. i had my pizza with a simple salad of spinach, carrots, feta, and balsalmic.


while i eat dinner i study for my health assessment checkoff that was on tuesday and my exam that was today (wednesday).

9:30pm: i’m already hungry again, so i make an evening snack to have before bed. i had a chocolate almond cluster that was in a package my mom sent me, a piece of dave’s killer bread with sunbutter, and the siggi’s yogurt that i had left over from my packed lunch today.

night snack toast yogurt

9:45-10:15pm: nightly wind down. i try to stretch, foam roll, or meditate each night before bed. i also use my favorite destress essential oil, turn down my lights, talk to taylor, and just try to relax before i get in bed in an effort to get a better night’s sleep.

10:20pm: lights out!

i hope you enjoyed a little peek into my life lately! as you can see i eat a lot of food to fuel my day and my workouts- i like showing full days of eating to try to be an example that eating less is not necessarily healthy. and this is what works for me and my body!

and with that, i’m signing off! i just finished an exam this morning and will be working on a project and going to class later this afternoon. happy hump day! we’re almost there!


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