a cheery nog

Has it really been a whole week since I was last here with you all? It feels like its been barely more than a day. Earlier this week I started working as a research assistant at a local hospital, which I do at night after I’m done at my current job. It’s also finals week at school, and my course’s final exam is next Tuesday. I feel like I’m in a time warp and somehow ended up here…

I would post pictures of some gorgeous muffins or healthy dinner plates, but over the past few days when I’ve been eating it’s been whatever was:

a. within arms reach,

b. seemed to be food-like; or

c. easiest and quickest.

Nothing special or especially healthful, which is why I won’t be sharing anything interesting tonight. I did, however, get to have a quick moment of holiday cheer this evening. I’m not sure this is what Sam Adams intended his taster glass to be used for, but whats not to love about a shot of nutmeg & nog?


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whole wheat apple muffins

These past few weeks I have been going to the gym before work. It’s been cold, windy, and exceptionally dark when I wake up. None of these things make it easy to keep going, especially since I am the last person who would be called a “morning-person.” Even as a joke. It’s just not funny.

I’ve been known to groan and make guttural noises when woken up. I pull covers over my head, squeeze my eyes shut, and curl my body up tight like a cashew. Mornings and I are definitely not friends.

But – like all things – you get used to change over time, and I’m slowly (and reluctantly) becoming a morning person.

I can’t believe I just wrote those words, in reference to myself.

I wish I could say that I am naturally able to gracefully adapt to all new and challenging situations. Instead, I owe everything to these muffins.

They are hearty but still light, and have a rich flavor and texture from the whole wheat. They are healthy but still delicious, and they are full of giant baked apple chunks that remind you of summer and fool you into thinking you’re eating pie for breakfast (which I wholeheartedly support).

These muffins save my mornings. Instead of ignoring the alarm, the thought of one of these makes me unfold from my cashew pose, lift the covers off my head, and shuffle (eyes still closed) into the kitchen. They really are that good.

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins

Adapted from King Arthur Flour and Smitten Kitchen

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbs ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 2 large apples, peeled and cubed

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease and flour muffin pan and set aside for later.

Combine whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a medium-size bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, cream the butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar. Continue stirring until the mixture becomes fluffy, and then add the egg. Thoroughly mix in the egg, and then add the yogurt gently, not over-stirring. It doesn’t need to be completely mixed in. Add the apple cubes, mixing only enough to distribute the apples.

Spoon the batter into the muffin pan, making sure to pack the batter down into the bottom. The apple chunks can sometimes keep the batter from falling into the bottom of the cups, which can leave you with odd-shaped muffins. Personally, I love muffins of all shapes and sizes… but this also helps with even baking.

Bake for 10 minutes, and the turn the heat down to 350 degrees. Continue baking for another 10-15 minutes, being sure to check with a toothpick to make sure they’re cooked in the center.



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draw-string pants.

My favorite time of day is when I can finally take off my work clothes, or my weekend clothes, and make the much-desired change into sweatpants. You thought I was more glamorous than that, didn’t you? Sorry to disappoint. I’m sure you can understand, though, especially with the holiday season being upon us.

Of the entire year, there is not a single more gratifying day for donning sweatpants than the night of Thanksgiving after the dishes have been put away, the cranberry sauce packaged, and after guests have left (or before, if you’re desperate). I’m currently lying supine on The Man’s sister’s couch, post-Thanksgiving Meal II, and I could not be happier to be in my favorite sweats. We are about to have Thanksgiving Pie II in a bit, but I’m ready for it.

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