Tag Archives: life

#StudiousSeptember: Meal Prepping

29 Sep

giphy-2.gif

Bust out your aprons and get ready to start cooking! Whether you relate more to the show Worst Cooks in America or Master Chef, I can guarantee you have the capability to prep your meals for the school week. I know right now, everyone is talking about meal prep to get in shape, but there are many other benefits than that. It saves you time and money during the week.

If you are a full student, like I am, it’s very hard to find time during the week to cook and fast food ends up being the majority of you food intake. Meal prepping eliminates this because on the weekend (I usually prefer Sunday) you can cook all of your lunches for the week and put them in tupperware containers. Like I stated earlier, no matter your skill level, you will be able to do this! Meal prepping doesn’t have to be fancy and you can use your simplest recipes to save money and time.

There are many ways you can start to meal prep, but this is a break down of what I usually do for the week:

Before or on Sunday, I will plan out what I will buy at the grocery store for my lunches. (Even though I usually meal prep for just my lunches, you can use meal prepping for dinner if you have late courses, or for breakfast if you are an early riser) Remember that any meal you can make can be turned into a meal prep recipe, just cook more servings! As a college student, I have to budget constantly, which usually is one of the largest factor that controls what I buy. Along with a strict budget, another thing that controls what I buy for the week depends on my appetite. I sometimes get bored with my food during the week so I like to try to have slight variations. For example, if I cook chicken for the week, I will sometimes put green beans with it for one day and on another I will substitute the green beans for wedged potatoes.

giphy.gif

After a trip to the grocery store, it’s cooking time! Instead of dreading cooking a meal for the week, my boyfriend and I try to make it as fun as possible. We will put on music and make an afternoon of cooking. We will prep all of our ingredients and incorporate new spices, while trying to imitate the lovely Chef Ramsay’s cooking (we’ll also try to do our best Ramsay impressions!). Once we are all done, we will divide the meals into tupperware dishes, place them into the refrigerator, and in the morning grab our meals before we are on our way to work and school. Meal prepping is pretty straight forward and is also very versatile once you start learning how to cook more foods. 

Even though now I would rather cook than go to a fast food place, I was not the biggest cook when I first started college. I was busy with classes and I didn’t know how to make anything other than grilled cheese and the boxed mac and cheese. Cooking was a very daunting and difficult task for me until I started to meal prep. I started by looking up different recipes on Pinterest and All Recipes that were easy and simple to make. After a few months of copying recipes, I started to go off of my judgment of spices and food pairings that I like rather than just what is on the internet. I learned I really love to cook and there is so many different things you can do with meat and veggies. Now, this is one of my favorite times of the week because I am creating something new and learning how to use kitchen appliances that were once foreign objects to me like a cast iron skillet and a wok. Cooking is something I think everyone should at least try because it is fun and has a great reward: an amazing meal! Not only is it yummy, but you feel a sense of accomplishment knowing you are the one who created it!

Below I have provided a few simple recipes for you to try whether you are a veteran in meal prepping or trying it for the first time! Have fun and cook on!

giphy-4

Meal Prep for Breakfast:

     Mason Jar Oatmeal                                                                          Breakfast Burritos
instant-oatmeal-jars.jpg breakfast-burrito4x.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

Meal Prep for Lunch:

        Mason Jar Salads                                                               Pesto Chicken Sandwich

IMG0523-1024x768.jpg  Screen Shot 2017-09-25 at 9.10.00 AM.png

Meal Prep for Dinner:

Chicken Fried Rice

Screen Shot 2017-09-25 at 9.29.50 AM.png

I have attached a recipe for chicken fried rice on the title and the photo I included is what my boyfriend and I made this week! Instead of traditional chicken fried rice, we decided to put our own spin on it. For the veggies, we used green onion, carrots, yellow squash, and sugar snap peas and we put in extra chicken! Even if you start out with a recipe, put your spin on it and include what you like!

Best,
Courtney

 

Advertisements

#FearlessFebruary: So What You’re Saying Is…I Have to be a Grown Up Now?

27 Feb

Senior year baby!

 ph

Tis’ the year for creating the last long-lasting memories of college, celebrating not having REAL adult responsibilities, senioritis (which honestly started junior year for me), and any other great things that come with almost graduating!

However, not all is sunshine and butterflies. At this point there is decisions to be made. Life gets real. ADULT LIFE IS ON ITS WAY!

ph

And if you aren’t ready, it will catch you by surprise… like it did with me!

So what are my fears you ask? Failed plans. Uncertainty. Rejection. Sucking at real adult life.

ph

Funnily enough…I’ve had to come face-to-face with all of these fears real fast and real hard this month.

So let me tell you how I went from having my life all figured out to facing the beast of uncertainty.

From day one of freshman year, I knew that my education would not stop at undergrad. In my mind I had it all figured out. I would graduate from the U of A and immediately pursue a PhD in clinical psychology. Now as a senior I know that 1) Clinical psychology is a VERY competitive program taking only 3% of 200+ applicants and 2) grad school is expensive! But with the hopefulness of my freshman self, I applied to 3 universities for this program.

ph

Fear #1: Rejection √

About 2-3 weeks ago I got a decision letter from my dream school: SDSU. “Lucero, we are sorry to inform you that…..” rejection. Well, that sucks. I knew what I was getting into when I applied, so part of me was expecting it and the other part of me was crushed. So one rejection in and still waiting to hear from the other 2, I’ve made my mind that maybe graduate school won’t be the next step, which brings me to fear #2: failed plans √ .

Fear #3: Uncertainty √

I am all in with this fear. Literally, for the past 3 weeks this has been my reality… I have no idea what I am doing next! Part of me just wants to be like…

ph

Recognizing I don’t have much time I ponder whether I should apply for master’s programs or join Peace Corps? Get a job? What should I do????? This has been the most frustrating and disheartening experience so far.

As with any fear it’s important to understand its origin and the possible ways to overcome it. With this mentality, I’ve set out this week in search of potential next steps: jobs.

ph

 

I feared not going to graduate school straight from undergrad because it wasn’t part of my initial plan and I didn’t know what other paths were available to me. After talking with several people (boss, mentor, friends, etc.) I’ve come to the realization that this is a real opportunity for me!

ph

Having a year off before going into graduate school gives me the opportunity to: 1) reapply to the programs with better, stronger applications, 2) get experience that will not only build my resume further, but enlighten me about what I truly want to do, 3) give my brain and health a break (very stoked for this one), and lastly 4) explore my options.

It’s easy to forget sometimes when things aren’t going so great that there are a lot of great opportunities out there and that you can accomplish anything! Things happen for a  reason and honestly, I feel that although this wasn’t my original plan… I’m going to be very thankful in a year for that rejection because it made me open my eyes to the other opportunities out there for me!

Oh, how was February fearless? Well, I came to terms with my fears and created action plans that have helped me conquer or at least diminish these fears! Goodbye confusion and feeling rejected and hello job search!

ph

 

– Lucero

 

Soooo…. Now What?

5 Nov

College teaches you a plethora of lessons.

Lesson 1: Procrastination is real.

1
Lesson 2: Networking is real and it’s crucial to successes in life.

But the lesson I learned that was the hardest to grasp and come to terms with was that things will not always go the way you planned them to.

And this realization is worse when associated with your academic well-being.

Let me rewind so I can provide crucial background that explains why I’m so caught up on my academics.

All throughout my academic career of K-12 I was the straight ‘A’ student who obsessed over her grades and connections with her teachers. I guess you could say I was a “goody two shoes” of sorts.

3

To me, there was nothing worse than failing academically. Not even failing, a ‘C’ was a heart attack waiting to happen.

2

I was overly obsessed with getting the good grades. This had just been my character since I started school back in kindergarten.

Well, that same mentality followed me to high school where I made sure to build a strong, impressive academic foundation for myself. I came to college and that same fiery passion burned in my being, but was rapidly and sadly put out by the reality of college courses. These courses weren’t going to be easy! Most classes, I have had the ability to breeze through and excel at effortlessly. Some not so much.

Perfect example: Race and Ethnic Relations.

This course was a 400-level class and I was a puny, inexperienced freshman. What was I doing in such a class?

4

Anyways, this class sort of kicked my butt. As much as I tried ‘B’s’ were always printed on my papers whether it was an exam, an essay, or simply 4 questions on a piece of paper. I couldn’t get past the ‘B’ curse. Don’t get me wrong…this was an AWESOME class! I loved the topics and material I learned. The professor was witty and knowledgeable beyond belief. But this was one of those classes that made me realize that sometimes things wouldn’t go my way and that was OK!

So what am I trying to get at here?

whats-your-point

Life will sometimes not go the way you plan it to and that is ok.

You might now always get the grades you want, but what matters is that you give it your best shot and find ways to succeed from what could be a tragedy.

Here is what can happen next after you realize your semester isn’t going the way you want it to academically:

1. If time allows, SAVE YOUR GRADE! Sure your first exam(s) didn’t go the way you wanted them to, but perhaps the remaining assignments will have sufficient grade weight that they can save your grade! For these remaining assignments, make sure to consult your professors, TAs, preceptors, everyone and anyone to assure that you get a good grade that will help you and not hinder you.

5

2. If it seems that your grade is a lost cause, strategize. Sure one class might have gotten the best of you, but there are still other classes. Focus on these courses to make sure that your GPA doesn’t take the hit for a bad class.

3. Perhaps think about a GRO (Grade Replacement Opportunity). This method allows you to take the same course again to get a better grade! This way you have experience with the course and know what to expect the second time around. Thing with GROs is that there are strict limitations for how much and when you can use this (amazing) second chance. Also the original grade isn’t dropped from your transcript, but it isn’t factored into your GPA. People will still know that your first time around wasn’t the most glamorous round.

4. As always, make your advisor part of your plan! They’ll know how this hiccup will affect your overall experience and how to proceed from there. When in doubt, your advisor is a great resource for you.

5. Move on and learn from this experience! Sometimes, it isn’t possible to fix a bad grade when it happens. Learn from it! Make sure you don’t make the same mistake again. Learn how to prepare in advance and what mistakes to avoid!

6

It’s hard to accept the fact that perhaps your first semester isn’t going the way you had pictured it to go, but the important thing is to learn from this experience, apply those lessons to the future, and bear down! Life happens. Life goes on.

-Lucero